9 January, Jerusalem, Israel
Today, 9 January 2006, 9 Tevet, 5766, at the Dati Leumi Synagogue in Har Nof, Jerusalem, the re-established Sanhedrin, which refers to itself as “the developing Sanhedrin”, accepted the vows of loyalty of ten non-Jews who call themselves B’nei Noah (sons of Noah) and established them as the first High Noahide Council in history.
The ten men were mostly from the United States, with one of them being originally from India.
At the ceremony they pledged their allegiance to the G-d of Israel, to the Torah and pledged to work under the guidance of the developing Sanhedrin, according to the Oral Law of the Torah.
According to Rabbi Michael Shlomo bar On, “they will develop a disparate and far flung movement into a powerful instrument for the spreading of the Seven Laws of Noah.”
The ten members of the High Noahide Council are:
Billy Jack Dial, Andrew Oberall, Adam Penrod, Jacob Scharff, Bud Gill, Larry Bomtrager (Chair), Dr. Vendyl Jones (Elder), Jack Saunders, Jim Long (Speaker), and Roger Grattan.
The High Noahide Council will be the governing body of the Noahide Movement, and will work under the direct guidance of the Sanhedrin in developing the details and examining the issues involved in teaching the Seven Laws of Noah and building a way of life around the Seven Laws of Noah.
The Noahide Movement evolves away from Christianity and other religions in following the Seven Laws of Noah as a way of life. It has members all over North and South America and Europe. Its prime mover has been Dr. Vendyl Jones, a Biblical archaeologist who is the model for the movie character, Indiana Jones. According to Talmudic sources, these laws were given to Noah after the Flood referred to in Genesis.
1. Idolatry is forbidden. Man is commanded to believe in the One G-d alone and worship only Him.
2. Incestuous and adulterous relations are forbidden. Human beings are not sexual objects, nor is pleasure the ultimate goal of life.
3. Murder is forbidden. The life of a human being, formed in G-d’s image, is sacred.
4. Cursing the name of G-d is forbidden. Besides honoring and respecting G-d, we learn from this precept that our speech must be sanctified, as that is the distinctive sign which separated man from the animals.
5. Theft is forbidden. The world is not ours to do with as we please.
6. Eating the flesh of a living animal is forbidden. This teaches us to be sensitive to cruelty to animals. (This was commanded to Noah for the first time along with the permission of eating meat. The rest were already given to Adam in the Garden of Eden.)
7. Mankind is commanded to establish courts of justice and a just social order to enforce the first six laws and enact any other useful laws or customs.
These seven laws are viewed as incumbent upon all of mankind, as all of mankind is descended from Noah.
A fuller explanation of the Laws of Noah can be found at Noah’s Laws