In my opinion, the central dividing point between Reform and Orthodox Judaism is over the question of halacha, that is, Jewish law. The Orthodox believe (in varying degrees and with varying interpretations) that halacha represents an accurate, precise description of what God want us to do. Therefore, the law is binding on us. That’s it, plain and simple. No ifs, ands or buts. God is God. We know what God wants. We have to do it. It doesn’t matter whether we understand it or not. It doesn’t matter whether we like it or not. It doesn’t matter whether it gives us a spiritual feeling or not. It doesn’t matter whether we feel it enhances our lives or not. God wants it, we have to do it. Period.
The Reform position is much more complicated. First, how do we know what God wants? Reform asserts that every knowledgeable Jew has an equal claim to a personal understanding of what God wants. Therefore, Movement-wide agreement is, in principle, not necessary nor desirable, nor probably even possible. We each (if we are knowledgeable about the tradition, if we confront it seriously and take its claims and its wisdom seriously) have the ability, the freedom, indeed the responsibility to come to a [potentially differing] personal understanding of what God wants us to do. (bold mine)