The Manual of Discipline
Note: These are not the rules for Victory Community.
1. YAHWEH; A Commitment
Everyone who wishes to join the community must commit himself to respect YAHWEH and man; to live according to the communal rule; to seek YAHWEH [ ]; to do what is good and upright in HIS sight, in accordance with what HE has commanded through Moshe (Moses) and through HIS servants the prophets; to love all that HE has chosen and hate all that HE has rejected; to keep far from all evil and to cling to all good works; to act truthfully and righteously and justly on earth and to walk no more in the stubbornness of a guilty heart and of lustful eyes, doing all manner of evil; to bring into a bond of mutual love all who have declared their willingness to carry out the statutes of YAHWEH; to join the formal community of YAHWEH; to walk blamelessly before HIM in conformity with HIS various Laws and dispositions; to love all the children of light, each according to his stake in the formal community of YAHWEH; and to hate all the children of darkness, each according to the measure of his guilt, which YAHWEH will ultimately requite. All who declare their willingness to serve YAHWEH's truth must bring all of their mind, all of their strength, and all of their wealth into the community of YAHWEH, so that their minds may be purified by the truth of HIS precepts, their strength controlled by HIS perfect ways, and their wealth disposed in accordance with HIS just design. They must not deviate by a single step from carrying out the orders of YAHWEH at the times appointed for them; they must neither advance the statutory times nor postpone the prescribed seasons. They must not turn aside from the ordinances of YAHWEH's truth either to the right or to the left.
2. Indoctrination into YAHWEH
Moreover, all who would join the ranks of the community must enter into a
Covenant in the presence of YAHWEH to do according to all that HE has commanded
and not to turn away from HIM through any fear or terror or through any trial to
which they may be subjected through the domination of Belial. When they enter
into that Covenant, the kohen (priests) and the Levites are to pronounce a
blessing upon YAHWEH of yeshua and upon all that HE does to make known HIS
truth; and all that enter the Covenant are to say after them, So be it,
Then the kohen (priests) are to rehearse the bounteous acts of YAHWEH as revealed in all HIS deeds of power, and they are to recite all HIS tender mercies towards Yisrael; while the Levites are to rehearse the iniquities of the children of Yisrael and all the guilty transgressions and sins that they have committed through the domination of Belial. And all who enter the Covenant are to make confession after them, saying, We have acted perversely, we have transgressed, we have sinned, we have done wickedly, ourselves and our fathers before us, in that we have 'gone counter to the truth. YAHWEH has been right to bring HIS judgment upon us and upon our fathers. Howbeit, always from ancient times HE has also bestowed HIS mercies upon us, and so will HE do for all time to come.
Then the kohen are to invoke a blessing on all that have cast their lot with YAHWEH, that walk blamelessly in all their ways; and they are to say: MAY HE BLESS YOU with all good and KEEP YOU from all evil, and ILLUMINE your heart with insight into the things of life, with FREE UNMERITED LOVE TO YOU 'with knowledge of things eternal, and LIFT UP HIS merciful COUNTENANCE TOWARDS YOU to grant you peace everlasting.
The Levites, on the other hand, are to invoke a curse on all that have cast their lot with Belial, and to say in response: Cursed are you for all your wicked guilty works. May YAHWEH make you a thing of abhorrence at the hands of all who would wreak vengeance, and visit your offspring with destruction at the hands of all who would mete out retribution. Cursed are you, beyond hope of mercy. Even as your works are wrought in darkness, so may you be damned in the gloom of the fire eternal. May YAHWEH show you no favor when you call, neither pardon to forgive your iniquities. May HE lift up an angry countenance towards you, to wreak vengeance upon you. May no man wish you peace of all that truly claim their patrimony. And all that enter the Covenant shall say alike after them that bless and after them that curse, So be it, HalleluYah.
Thereupon the kohen (priests) and the Levites shall continue and say: Cursed be everyone that has come to enter this Covenant with the taint of idolatry in his heart and who has set his iniquity as a stumblingblock before him so that thereby he may defect, and who, when he hears the terms of this Covenant, blesses himself in his heart, saying, May it go well with me, for I shall go on walking in the stubbornness of my heart! Whether he satisfy his passions or whether he still thirst for their fulfillment! his spirit shall be swept away and receive no pardon. The anger of YAHWEH and the fury of HIS judgments shall consume him as by fire unto his eternal extinction, and there shall cleave unto him all the curses threatened in this Covenant. YAHWEH shall set him apart for misfortune, and he shall be cut off from the midst of all the children of light in that through the taint of his idolatry and through the stumblingblock of his iniquity he has defected from YAHWEH. YAHWEH will set his lot among those that are accursed for ever! And all who have been admitted to the Covenant shall say after them in response, So be it, HalleluYah.
3. YAHWEH; Annual review
The following procedure is to be followed year by year so long as
Belial continues to hold sway.
The kohen (priests) are first to be reviewed in due order, one after another, in respect of the state of their spirits. After them, the Levites shall be similarly reviewed, and in the third place all the laity one after another, in their thousands, hundreds, fifties and tens. The object is that every man in Yisrael may be made aware of his status in the community of YAHWEH in the sense of the ideal, eternal society, and that none may be abased below his status nor exalted above his allotted place. All of them will thus be saints of a community founded at once upon true values and upon a becoming sense of humility, upon love and mutual fairness-saints of a society truly SetApart, partners in an everlasting communion.
4. YAHWEH; Exclusion
Anyone who refuses to enter the (ideal) society of YAHWEH and persists in walking in the stubbornness of his heart shall not be admitted to this community of YAHWEH's truth. For inasmuch as his soul has revolted at the discipline entailed in a knowledge of YAHWEH's righteous judgments, he has shown no real strength in amending his way of life, and therefore cannot be reckoned with the upright. The mental, physical and material resources of such a man are not to be introduced into the stock of the community, for such a man 'plows in the slime of wickedness' and 'there are stains on his repentance'. He is not honest in resolving the stubbornness of his heart. On paths of light he sees but darkness. Such a man cannot be reckoned as among those essentially blameless. He cannot be cleared by mere ceremonies of atonement, nor cleansed by any waters of ablution, nor SetApart by immersion in lakes or rivers, nor purified by any bath. Unclean, unclean he remains so long as he rejects the government of YAHWEH and refuses the discipline of communion with HIM. For it is only through the spiritual apprehension of YAHWEH's truth that man's ways can be properly directed. Only thus can all his iniquities be shriven so that he can gaze upon the true light of life. Only through the SetApart (kodesh) spirit can he achieve union with YAHWEH's truth and be purged of all his iniquities. Only by a spirit of uprightness and humility can his sin be atoned. Only by the submission of his soul to all the ordinances of YAHWEH can his flesh be made clean. Only thus can it really be sprinkled with waters of ablution. Only thus can it really be SetApart by waters of purification. And only thus can he really direct his steps to walk blamelessly through all the vicissitudes of his destiny in all the ways of YAHWEH in the manner which HE has commanded, without turning either to the right or to the left and without overstepping any of YAHWEH's Words. Then indeed will he be acceptable before YAHWEH like an atonement-offering which meets with HIS pleasure, and then indeed will he be admitted to the Covenant of the community for ever.
5. YAHWEH's Light or Darkness; Two spirits of man
This is for the man who would bring others to the inner vision, so that
he may understand and teach to all the children of light the real nature
of men, touching the different varieties of their temperaments with the
distinguishing traits thereof, touching their actions throughout their
generations, and touching the reason why they are now visited with
afflictions and now enjoy periods of well being. All that is and ever
was comes from YAHWEH of knowledge.
Before things came into existence HE determined the plan of them; and when they fill their appointed roles, it is in accordance with HIS excellent design that they discharge their functions. Nothing can be changed. In HIS hand lies the government of all things. YAHWEH it is that sustains them in their needs.
Now, ALMIGHTY YAHWEH created man to rule the world, and appointed for him two spirits after whose direction he was to walk until the final Inquisition. They are the spirits of truth and of perversity.
The origin of truth lies in the Fountain of Light, and that of perversity in the Wellspring of Darkness. All who practice righteousness are under the domination of the Prince of Lights, and walk in ways of light; whereas all who practice perversity are under the domination of the Angel of Darkness and walk in ways of darkness. Through the Angel of Darkness, however, even those who practice righteousness are made liable to error. All their sin and their iniquities, all their guilt and their deeds of transgression are the result of his domination; and this, by YAHWEH's inscrutable design, will continue until the time appointed by HIM. Moreover, all men's afflictions and all their moments of tribulation are due to this being's malevolent sway. All of the spirits that attend upon him are bent on causing the sons of light to stumble. Howbeit, YAHWEH of Yisrael and the Malak of HIS truth are always there to help the sons of light. It is YAHWEH that created these spirits of light and darkness and mandate the basis of every act, the [instigators] of every deed and the directors of every thought. The one HE loves to all eternity, and is ever pleased with its deeds; but any association with the other HE abhors, and HE hates all its ways to the end of time.
This is the way those spirits operate in the world. The enlightenment of man's heart, the making straight before him all the ways of righteousness and truth, the implanting in his heart of fear for the judgments of YAHWEH, of a spirit of humility, of patience, of abundant compassion, of perpetual goodness, of insight, of perception, of that sense of the Anointing Power that is based at once on an apprehension of YAHWEH's works and a reliance on HIS plenteous mercy, of a spirit of knowledge informing every plan of action, of a zeal for righteous government, of a SetApart mind in a controlled nature, of abounding love for all who follow the truth, of a self-respecting purity which abhors all the taint of filth, of a modesty of behavior coupled with a general prudence and an ability to hide within oneself the secrets of what one knows -these are the things that come to men in this world through communion with the spirit of truth. And the reward of all that walk in its ways is health and abundant well-being, with long life and fruition of seed along with eternal blessings and everlasting joy in the life everlasting, and a crown of excellence and a robe of honour, amid light perpetual.
But to the spirit of perversity belong greed, remissness in right-doing, wickedness and falsehood, pride and presumption, deception and guile, cruelty and abundant insolence, shortness of temper and profusion of folly, arrogant passion, abominable acts in a spirit of lewdness, filthy ways in the thralldom of unchastity, a blasphemous tongue, blindness of eyes, dullness of ears, stiffness of neck and hardness of heart, to the end that a man walks entirely in ways of darkness and of evil cunning. The reward of all who walk in such ways is multitude of afflictions at the hands of all the angels of destruction, everlasting perdition through the angry wrath of an avenging YAHWEH, eternal horror and perpetual reproach, the disgrace of final annihilation in the Fire, darkness throughout the vicissitudes of life in every generation, doleful sorrow, bitter misfortune and darkling ruin-ending in extinction without remnant or survival.
It is to these things that all men are born, and it is to these that all the host of them are heirs throughout their generations. It is in these ways that men needs must walk and it is in these two divisions, according as a man inherits something of each, that all human acts are divided through out all the ages of eternity. For YAHWEH has appointed these two things to obtain in equal measure until the final age.
Between the two categories HE has set an eternal enmity.
Deeds of perversity are an abomination to Truth, while all the ways of Truth are an abomination to perversity; and there is a constant jealous rivalry between their two regimes, for they do not march in accord. Howbeit, YAHWEH in HIS inscrutable wisdom has appointed a term for the existence of perversity, and when the time of Inquisition comes, HE will destroy it for ever. Then truth will emerge triumphant for the world, albeit now and until the time of the final judgment it go sullying itself in the ways of wickedness owing to the domination of perversity. Then, too, YAHWEH will purge all the acts of man in the crucible of HIS truth, and refine for HIMSELF all the fabric of man, destroying every spirit of perversity from within his flesh and cleansing him by the SetApart Spirit from all the effects of wickedness. Like waters of purification HE will sprinkle upon him the spirit of truth, to cleanse him of all the abominations of falsehood and of all pollution through the spirit of filth; to the end that, begrimed upright, men may have understanding of transcendental knowledge and of the lore of the sons of heaven, and that, being made blameless in their ways, they may be endowed with inner vision. For them has YAHWEH chosen to be the partners of HIS eternal Covenant, and theirs shall be all mortal splendour. Perversity shall be no more, and all works of deceit shall be put to shame.
Thus far, the spirits of truth and perversity have been struggling in the heart of man. Men have walked both in wisdom and in folly. If a man casts his portion with truth, he does righteously and hates perversity; if he casts it with perversity, he does wickedly and abominates truth. For YAHWEH has apportioned them in equal measure until the final age, until 'HE makes all things new', HE foreknows the effect of their works in every epoch of the world, and HE has made men heirs to them that they might know good and evil. But [when the time] of Inquisition [comes], HE will determine the fate of every living being in accordance with which of the [two spirits he has chosen to follow].
6. Behavior YAHWEH's Congregation
This is the rule for all the saints of the community that is, for such
as have declared their readiness to turn away from all evil and to
adhere to all that YAHWEH in HIS good pleasure has commanded. They are
to keep apart from the company of the froward. They are to belong to the
community in both a doctrinal and an economic sense. They are to abide
by the decisions of the sons of Zadok, the same being kohen (priests)
that still keep the Covenant, and of the majority of the community that
stand firm in it. It is by the vote of such that all matters doctrinal,
economic and judicial are to be determined. They are concertedly and in
all their pursuits to practice truth, humility, righteousness, justice,
love and decency, with no one walking in the stubbornness of his own
heart or going astray after his heart or his eyes or his fallible human
Furthermore, they are concertedly to remove the impurity of their human mold, and likewise all stiffneckedness. They are to establish in Yisrael a solid basis of truth. They are to unite in a bond indissoluble for ever. They are to extend forgiveness to all among the ke hunnah (priesthood) that have freely enlisted in the cause of SetApart Pureness, and to all among the laity that have done so in the cause of truth, and likewise to all that have associated themselves with them.
They are to make common cause both in the struggle and in the upshot of it.
They are to regard as felons all that transgress the Torah.
7. Binding Power of YAHWEH's Righteousness
And this is the way in which all those ordinances are to be applied on
a collective basis.
Everyone who is admitted to the formal organization (Hebrew council) of the community is to enter into a Covenant in the presence of all fellow-volunteers in the cause and to commit himself by a binding oath to abide with all his heart and soul by the Commandments of the Torah of Moshe (Moses), as that Torah is revealed to the sons of Zadok-that is, to the kohen (priests) who still keep the Covenant and seek YAHWEH's will-and to a majority of their co-covenanters who have volunteered together to adhere to the truth of YAHWEH and to walk ac cording to HIS pleasure.
He that so commits himself is to keep apart from all froward men that walk in the path of wickedness; for such men are not to be reckoned in the Covenant inasmuch as they have never sought nor studied YAHWEH's ordinances in order to find out on what more arcane points they may guiltily have gone astray, while in regard to the things which stand patently revealed they have acted high - handedly. They have thus incurred YAHWEH's angry judgment and caused HIM to take vengeance upon them with all the curses threatened in the Covenant and to wreak great judgments upon them that they be finally destroyed without remnant.
No one is to go into water in order to attain the purity of SetApart men. For men cannot be purified except they repent their evil. YAHWEH regards as impure all that transgress HIS Word. No one is to have any association with such a man either in work or in goods, lest he incur the penalty of prosecution. Rather is he to keep away from such a man in every respect, for the Scripture says: 'Keep away from every false thing' Shemoth [Exodus] 23.7 No saint of the community is to abide by the decision of such men in any matter of doctrine or Torah. He is not to eat or drink of anything that belongs to them nor to receive anything from them except for cash, even as it is written: 'Desist from man whose breath is in his nostrils, for as what is he reckoned?' YeshaYahu [Isaiah] 2.22 All that are not reckoned in the Covenant must be put aside, and likewise all that they possess. A SetApart man must not rely on works of vanity, and vanity is what all of them are that have not recognized YAHWEH's Covenant. All that spurn HIS Word will YAHWEH blast out of the world. All their actions are as filth before HIM, and HE regards all their possessions as unclean.
8. YAHWEH Tries probationer
When a man enters the Covenant, minded to act in accordance with all the foregoing ordinances and formally to ally himself to the SetApart congregation, inquiry is to be made concerning his temper in human relations and his understanding and performance in matters of doctrine. This inquiry is to be conducted jointly by the kohen (priests) who have undertaken concertedly to uphold YAHWEH's Covenant and to supervise the execution of all the ordinances which HE has commanded; and by a majority of the laity who have likewise undertaken concertedly to return to that Covenant. Every man is then to be registered in a particular rank, one after the other, by the standard of his understanding and performance. The object is that each person will be rendered subject to his superior. Their spiritual attitudes and their performance are to be reviewed, however, year by year, some being then promoted by virtue of their [improved] understanding and the integrity of their conduct, and others demoted for their waywardness.
9. Charges and bitterness
When anyone has a charge against his neighbor, he is to prosecute it truthfully, humbly and humanely. He is not to speak to him angrily or querulously or arrogantly or in any wicked mood. He is not to bear hatred [towards him in the inner recesses] of his heart. When he has a charge against him, he is to proffer it then on the selfsame day and there and not to render himself liable to penalty by nursing a grudge. Furthermore, no man is to bring a charge publicly against his neighbor except he prove it by witnesses.
10. Communal duties
This is the procedure which all saints of the community are to follow
in all dealings with one another, wherever they dwell. Everyone is to
obey his superior in rank in all matters of work or money. But all are
to dine together, worship together and take counsel together. Wherever
there be ten men who have been formally enrolled in the community, one
who is a kohen (priest) is not to depart from them. When they sit in his
presence, they are to take their places according to their respective
ranks; and the same order is to obtain when they meet for common
When they set the table for a meal or prepare wine to drink, the kohen is first to put forth his hand to invoke a blessing on the first portion of the bread or wine.
Similarly, wherever there be ten men who have been formally enrolled in the community, there is not to be absent from them one who can interpret the Torah to them at any time of day or night, for the harmonious adjustment of their human relations.
The general saints of the community are to keep awake for a third of all the nights of the year reading books, studying the Torah and worshiping together.
11. Open Council Session
This is the rule covering public sessions.
The kohen (priests) are to occupy the first place. The elders are to come second; and the rest of the people are to take their places according to their respective ranks. This order is to obtain alike when they seek a judicial ruling, when they meet for common counsel, or when any matter arises of general concern.
Everyone is to have an opportunity of rendering his opinion in the common council. No one, however, is to interrupt while his neighbor is speaking, or to speak until the latter has finished. Furthermore, no one is to speak in advance of his prescribed rank. Everyone is to speak in turn, as he is called upon.
In public sessions, no one is to speak on any subject that is not of concern to the company as a whole. If the superintendent of the general saint-ship or anyone who is not of the same rank as the person who happens to be raising a question for the consideration of the community, has something to say to the company, he is to stand up and declare: I have something to say to the company; and only if they so bid him, is he to speak.
12. Accusers and new probationer
If any man in Yisrael wish to be affiliated to the formal congregation
of the community, the superintendent of the general saints is to examine
him as to his intelligence and his actions and, if he then embark on a
course of training, he is to have him enter into a Covenant to return to
the truth and turn away from all perversity. Then he is to apprise him
of all the rules of the community.
Subsequently, when that man comes to present himself to the general saint- ship, everyone is to be asked his opinion about him, and his admission to or rejection from the formal congregation of the community is to be determined by general vote.
No candidate, however, is to be admitted to the formal state of purity enjoyed by the general saint-ship of the community until, at the completion of a full year, his spiritual attitude and his performance have been duly re viewed. Meanwhile he is to have no stake in the common funds.
After he has spent a full year in the midst of the community, the saints are jointly to review his case, as to his understanding and performance in matters of doctrine. If it then be voted by the opinion of the kohen (priests) and of a majority of their co-covenanters to admit him to the sodality, they are to have him bring with him all his property and the tools of his profession. These are to be committed to the custody of the community's 'minister of works'. They are to be entered by that officer into an account, but he is not to disburse them for the general benefit.
Not until the completion of a second year among the saints of the community is the candidate to be admitted to the common board. When, however, that second year has been completed, he is to be subjected to a further review by the general saint-ship, and if then it be voted to admit him to the community, he is to be registered in the due order of rank which he is to occupy among his brethren in all matters pertaining to doctrine, judicial procedure, degree of purity and share in the common funds. Thenceforth his counsel and his judgment are to be at the disposal of the community.
13. Lies, brusquely and blasphemous speech
And these are the rules to be followed in the interpretation of the Torah
regarding forms of speech. If there be found in the community a man who
consciously lies in the matter of (his) wealth, he is to be regarded as
outside the state of purity entailed by saints, and he is to be
penalized of one fourth of his food ration.
If a man answer his neighbor defiantly or speak brusquely so as to undermine the composure" of his fellow, and in so doing flout the orders of one who is registered as his superior [ ], I he is to be penalized for one year.
If a man, in speaking about anything, mention that NAME which is honoured above all "YAHWEH", or if, in a moment of sudden stress or for some other personal reason, he curse the (i.e., the man who reads the Book of the Torah or leads worship)," he is to be put out and never to return to formal saints in the community.
If a man speak in anger against one of the registered kohen (priests), he is to be penalized for one year, placed in isolation, and regarded as outside the state of purity entailed in saints of the community. If, however, he spoke unintentionally, he is to be penalized only for six months.
If a man dissemble about what he really knows, he is to be penalized for six months.
If a man defames his neighbor unjustly, and does so deliberately, he is to be penalized for one year and regarded as 'outside',
14. Deceit or defraud
If a man speak with his neighbor in guile or consciously practice
deceit upon him, he is to be penalized for six months. If, however, he
practices the deceit [unintentionally], he is to be penalized only for
If a man defraud the community, causing a deficit in its funds, he is to make good that deficit. If he lack means to do so, he is to be penalized for sixty days.
15. Harbor bitterness
If he harbor a grudge against his neighbor without legitimate cause, he is to be penalized for six months [supra-linear correction: 'one year]. The same is to apply also to anyone who takes personal revenge on his neighbor in any respect.
16. Indecent speech
Anyone who indulges in indecent talk is to be penalized for three months.
17. Conduct at public sessions
Anyone who interrupts his neighbor in a public session is to be
penalized for ten days.
Anyone who lies down and goes to sleep at a public session is to be penalized for thirty days.
Anyone who leaves a public session gratuitously and without reason for as many as three times during one sitting is to be penalized for ten days. If he be ordered to stay (?)**and he still leave, he is to be penalized for thirty days.
18. Of indecorous acts
If, except he be under duress (? )***, a man walk naked before his
neighbor, he shall be penalized for six months.
f a man spit into the midst of a public session, he shall be penalized for thirty days.
If a man bring out his hand from under his cloak, and so expose himself that his private parts become visible, he be penalized for thirty days.
If a man indulge in raucous, inane laughter, he shall be penalized for thirty days.
If a man put forth his left hand to gesticulate with it in conversation, he shall be penalized for ten days.
* There is again a blank in the original. The scribe evidently could not decipher the word in his archetype, but the sense is clear. ** This word is partly obliterated. The sense is therefore obscure. *** Heb. uncertain.
19. Slander and complaining
If a man slander his neighbor, he shall be regarded as outside the
communal state of purity for one year, and he shall also be penalized
. But if he slander the entire group, he is to be expelled and never to return.
If a man complain against the whole basis of the community, he is to be expelled irrevocably.
If he complain against his neighbor without legitimate cause, he is to be penalized for six months.
20. Falling away
If a man's spirit waver so far from the basis of the community that he
betray the truth and walk in the stubbornness of his own heart, but if
he subsequently repent, he shall be penalized for two years.
During the first, he shall be regarded as outside the communal state of
purity altogether. During the second, he shall be excluded only from the
communal board and occupy a place behind all the other saints. At the
completion of the two years, the saints in general shall hold an enquiry
about him. If it then be decided to readmit him, he shall again be
registered with duly assigned rank and thereafter he too shall be called
upon to render his opinion in deliberations concerning the rules.
If a man has been a formal saint of the community for a full ten years, but then, through a spiritual relapse, betray the principles of the community and quit the general body in order to walk in the stubbornness of his own heart, he is never to return to formal saints in the community. No saint of the community is to associate with him either by recognizing him as of the same state of purity or by sharing property with him. Any of the saints who does so shall be liable to the same sentence: he too shall be expelled.
21. YAHWEH's Selection of elder
In the formal congregation of the community there shall be twelve laymen and
three kohen (priests) schooled to perfection in all that has been revealed of
the entire Torah. Their duty shall be to set the standard for the practice of
truth, righteousness and justice, and for the exercise of charity and humility
in human relations; and to show how, by control of impulse and contrition of
spirit, faithfulness may be maintained on earth; how, by active performance of
justice and passive submission to the trials of chastisement, iniquity may be
cleared, and how one can walk with all men with the quality of truth and in
conduct appropriate to every occasion.
So long as these men exist in Yisrael, the formal congregation of the community will rest securely on a basis of truth. It will become a plant evergreen. Insofar as the laymen are concerned, it will be indeed a tabernacle; and insofar as the ke- hunnah (priesthood) is concerned, it will indeed constitute the basis for a true 'SetApart of SetApart places'. The saints of the community will be in all justice the witnesses of YAHWEH's truth and the elect of HIS favor, effecting atonement for the earth and ensuring the requital of the wicked. They will be, indeed, a 'tested bulwark' and 'a precious cornerstone' [YeshaYahu cf. (Isaiah). 28.16], which shall never be shaken or moved from their place. As for the ke hunnah (priesthood), they shall be a seat for the SetApart of SetApart places, inasmuch as all of them will then have knowledge of the Covenant of justice and all of them be qualified to offer what will be indeed a. pleasant savour' to YAHWEH. And as for the laity, they will constitute a household of integrity and truth, qualified to maintain the Covenant as an everlasting pact. They shall prove acceptable to YAHWEH, so that HE will shrive the earth of its guilt, bring final judgment upon wickedness, and perversity shall be no more.
When these men have undergone, with blamelessness of conduct, a two-year preparation in the fundamentals of the community, they shall be segregated as especially sacred among the formal saints of the community. Any knowledge which the expositor of the Torah may possess but which may have to remain arcane to the ordinary layman, he shall not keep hidden from them; for in their case there need be no fear that it might induce apostasy.
When these men exist in Yisrael, these are the provisions whereby they are to be kept apart from any consort with froward men, to the end that they may indeed 'go into the wilderness to prepare the way', i.e., do what Scripture enjoins when it says, 'Prepare in the wilderness the way. ..make straight in the desert a highway for YAHWEH' [YeshaYahu (Isaiah). 40.3]. (The reference is to the study of the Torah which YAHWEH commanded through Moshe to the end that, as occasion arises, all things may be done in accordance with what is revealed therein and with what the prophets also have revealed through YAHWEH's SetApart Spirit.)
No saint of the community-that is, no duly covenanted saint-who blatantly deviates in any particular from the total body of Commandments is to be permitted to come into contact with the purity enjoyed by these specially SetApart men or to benefit by* their counsel until his actions be free of all perversity and he has been readmitted to the common council by decision of the general saints and thereupon reinstated in his rank.
The same rule is to apply also to novices.
* Heb. 'know.
22. YAHWEH's Conduct of elder
These are the rules of conduct for the 'men of perfect SetApart
Pureness' in their dealings with one another.
If any of those that have been admitted to the degree of perfect SetApart Pureness-that is, to the degree of 'those that walk blamelessly in the way as YAHWEH has commanded'-transgress a single Word of the Torah of Moshe either blatantly or deviously, he is to be excommunicated and never to return. No other person in the degree of the perfect SetApart Pureness is to have anything to do with him in the sharing either of property or of counsel.
If, however, he erred unintentionally' he is to be debarred only from that particular degree of purity and from participation in the common council. This is to be interpreted to mean that he is not to render any judgment nor is his counsel to be invited in any matter for a full two years. This holds good, however, only if, after the expiration of the full two years, his conduct be considered, in the judgment of the general saint-ship, to be perfect alike in attendance at general assemblies, in study and in frame of mind, and if he has not meanwhile committed any further act of inadvertence. In other words, this two-year penalty is to apply only in the case of a single inadvertent error, whereas if a man acts blatantly, he is nevermore to be readmitted. In sum, it is only the man who acts by inadvertence that is to be placed on probation for two years to see whether, in the opinion of the general saints, his conduct and frame of mind have meanwhile again become blameless. If so, he may be reinstated in the body of the perfect SetApart Pureness.
When these things obtain in Yisrael, as defined by these provisions, YAHWEH's Spirit will indeed rest on a sound foundation; truth will be evinced perpetually; the guilt of transgression and the perfidy of sin will be shriven; and atonement will be made for the earth more effectively than by any flesh of burnt-offerings or fat of offerings. The 'oblation of the lips' will be in all justice like the erstwhile 'pleasant savour' on the altar; righteousness and integrity like that free-will offering which YAHWEH deigns to accept. At that time, the men of the community will constitute a true and distinctive Tabernacle-a veritable SetApart of SetApart places- wherein the ke hunnah (priesthood) may fitly foregather, and a true and distinctive synagogue made up of laymen who walk in integrity.
23. YAHWEH's Authority of priests
The kohen (priests) alone are to have authority in all judicial and economic matters, and it is by their vote that the ranks of the various saints of the community are to be determined.
24. Property of elder of kohen (priests)
The property of the 'perfect SetApart men'-that is, of 'the men that walk
blamelessly'-is not to be put into a common pool with that of men who may still
be addicted to men of deceit and may not yet have achieved that purity of
conduct which leads them to keep apart from perversity and to walk in integrity.
Until the coming of the Prophet** and of both the priestly and the lay MESSIYAH, these men are not to depart from the clear intent of the Torah to walk in any way in the stubbornness of their own hearts. They shall judge by the original laws in which the saints of the community were schooled from the beginning.
That is, the prophet foretold in Devarim (Deuteronomy) 18:18, 'I will raise them up a prophet from among their brethren, like unto you Moshe; and will put MY Words in his mouth, and he shall speak unto them all that I shall command him'. See Introduction, p.5.
25. YAHWEH's Daily conduct of the faithful
These are the ordinances for the conduct of any man that seeks after
inner vision, in regard alike to human relations, the regulation of
affairs on specific occasions, and the appraisal of his fellow men. He
is to perform at all times the will of YAHWEH, as it has been revealed.
He is to make a point of studying all extant wisdom pertinent to
different circumstances and the particular ordinance that applies to the
particular occasion. He is to respect the distinctive rank accorded to
the sons of Zadok and to the elect of any specific epoch by virtue of
their spiritual attitudes, and to appraise them by that criterion, thus
adhering to the will of YAHWEH, as HE has commanded.
Everyone is to be judged by the standard of his spirituality. Intercourse with him is to be determined by the purity of his deeds, and consort with him by the degree of his intelligence. This alone is to determine the degree to which a man is to be loved or hated.
26. Righteous discussion
No one is to engage in discussion or disputation with men of ill
repute; and in the company of froward men everyone is to abstain from
talk about, keep hidden the meaning of the TORAH (Torah).
With those, however, that have chosen the right path everyone is indeed to discuss matters pertaining to the knowledge of YAHWEH's truth and of HIS righteous judgments. The purpose of such discussions is to guide the minds of the saints of the community, to give them insight into YAHWEH's inscrutable wonders and truth, and to bring them to walk blamelessly each with his neighbor in harmony with all that has been revealed to them. For this is the time when 'the way is being prepared in the wilderness', and it behooves them to understand all that is happening. It is also the time when they must needs keep apart from all other men and not turn aside from the way through any form of perversity.
27. Loving and hating brethren; and duty to YAHWEH
And these are the regulations of conduct for every man that would seek
the inner vision in these times, touching what he is to love and what he
is to hate.
He is to bear unremitting hatred towards all men of ill repute, and to be minded to keep in seclusion from them. He is to leave it to them to pursue wealth and mercenary gain, like servants at the mercy of their masters or wretches truckling to a despot.
He is to be zealous to carry out every ordinance punctiliously, against the Day of Requital.
In all his emprises and in all things over which he has control he is to act in a manner acceptable to YAHWEH, in accordance with what YAHWEH has commanded.
He is to accept willingly whatever befalls him and to take pleasure in nothing but the will of YAHWEH.
He is to make all the words of his mouth acceptable, and not to lust after anything that YAHWEH has not commanded.
He is to watch ever for the judgment of YAHWEH, and in every vicissitude of his existence he is to bless his MAKER. Whatever befalls, he is to recount YAHWEH's honour and to bless HIM with 'the oblation of the lips'.
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