judaism at the outset, it is important to note that there is a distinction between the jewish people...

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  • Judaism At the outset, it is important to note that there is a distinction between the Jewish people and the religion of Judaism; not all Jewish people are religious. Many profess to be atheists or agnostics. There are also Jews who are religious, yet have converted to other religions. Of the some 15 million Jewish people in the world today: around 4.5 million are in Israel some 7 million are in North America approx.1 million are in countries that were part of the former Soviet Union approx. 2 million are spread throughout European countries
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  • Judaism Monotheistic belief in G-d also called Yahweh (YHWH I am), sometimes written in English Bible translations as Jehovah (some Jews prefer not to write out His name as that would violate the Third Commandment Thou shalt not take the name of the Lord in vain.) Jews also call Him Adonai, which means Lord Began with Abraham, who was called out of the land of Ur in Mesopotamia, to the land of Canaan, which is where present day Israel is located. Following the Law of God given to the people by Moses (which is why it is sometimes called the Law of Moses) Following scriptures such as the Torahand Talmud
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  • Yes and no. Being Jewish can mean you are a part of a religious movement. However, the great majority of Jews become a part of the religious movement through birth and not due to their beliefs or actions. In this way, being Jewish is like being a citizen of a religious movement. A Jewish identity is automatically bestowed on the babies of Jewish mothers. And this identity stays with them throughout life no matter what they believe or how they act. A person who was born to a Jewish mother or has gone through the conversion process is considered a Jew even if he or she does not believe in Judaism and does not observe Jewish practices. Thus, there are non-religious Jews or secular Jews. A person who was not born to a Jewish mother or has not gone through the conversion process is not considered a Jew even if he or she believes in Judaism and observes Jewish practices. Thus, the conversion process is a very meaningful because it is the only way for a non-Jew to become Jewish. Is Jewish a Religious or Ethnic Identity?
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  • Basic Worldview Universe is made by G-d but is an arena for humans to live in and enjoy, exercising free will, in cooperation with G-ds guidance. G-d is the omnipotent, sovereign, personal, all-good Creator. People were created by G-d to follow His Will which can improve the human condition until a paradisal age is reached
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  • Destiny of the World Will be led by God through various historical periods A messiah that has been prophesied about will come in and lead the world into a paradisal state
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  • What Is Expected of Humans? To honor and serve G-d by following the Law of Moses in letter or spirit To maintain the identity of the people To promote the ethical vision of the great prophets and humanitarians Jewish customs are followed in the home as well as in the place of worship.
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  • Origins Adam and Eve First humans created by God disobeyed Him and were forced to leave the Garden of Eden They continue to procreate to make the human race but humanity is very sinful Noah and family (wife, sons and their wives) are chosen to survive along with male and female animals on the Ark as God destroys the world with a flood God makes peace with humanity but it continues in its sinfulness
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  • Abraham Father of the Hebrew people Lived near Ur in Mesopotamia (between Tigris and Euphrates Rivers) Obeyed a command by God to leave his relatives and take his wife and household westwards to the land God wanted him to have God appeared to him in a dream and told him that his descendants would be as numerous as the stars in the sky and the sands of the beach
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  • Abraham and Sarah Abraham was visited by three angels, who told him that by the following year his wife Sarah would be pregnant. Sarah was believed to be barren. She told Abraham to sleep with her servant Hagar, who bore him Ishmael. Perhaps, this is what God intended. Not so, eventually Sarah conceived and bore Abraham a son, who was named Isaac. Sarah regretted telling Abraham to be with Hagar and feared that Ishmael would take Isaacs inheritance. She pestered Abraham until he sent Hagar and Ishmael away. According to Islamic tradition, Abraham and his son Ishmael were the founding fathers.
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  • Abraham and Isaac While Isaac was still a boy, God commanded Abraham to sacrifice Isaac. Abraham was going to follow through with it. God sent an angel to stop Abraham before he killed Isaac. This act of obedience was credited as obedience to Abraham. Abraham and God made a covenant (agreement). Abraham would make sure all his descendants were circumcise their sons, and God would bless them. This would be an outward sign of their cleanliness, holiness, and dedication to God.
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  • Sacrifice of Isaac (Brunelleschi)
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  • Genealogy Abraham begot Isaac Isaac begot Jacob Jacob begot twelve sons who will become the Twelve Tribes of Israel Jacob led the family down to Egypt, where one of his sons Joseph had been taken and risen in power, in search of food. The family remains but later generations of Egyptian rulers enslave the Jews living in Egypt They remain in bondage for 400 years until they are freed by G-d through Moses
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  • Moses was the greatest prophet, leader and teacher that Judaism has ever known. In fact, one of the primary Principles of Faith is the belief that Moses prophecies are true, and that he was the greatest of the prophets. He is called "Moshe Rabbeinu," that is, Moses, Our Teacher/Rabbi. Interestingly, the numerical value of "Moshe Rabbeinu" is 613: the number of mitzvot that Moses taught the Children of Israel! He is described as the only person who ever knew God face-to-face (Deut. 34:10) and spoke directly to God (Num. 12:8) Moses
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  • Moses continued God spoke to Moses directly, in plain language, not through visions and dreams, as God communicated with other prophets. The story Moses is so central to the Jewish faith because of his leadership in the Hebrew exodus from Egypt, his founding of the nation of Israel, and his role as the person receiving the law of the Jewish people (the Ten Commandments & the Torah).
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  • The Ten Commandments For Jews, they are rules to follow in their relationships with G-d and people. According to tradition, G-d carved five commandments onto two tablets. The first tablet deals a persons with relationship with the Divine (G-d). The second tablet deals with a persons relationship with other people. The Fifth Commandment honor father and mother, appears to deal with human relationships. However, rabbis teach that parents can be looked at as creators, and reflect a Jews relationship with God.
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  • The Ten Commandments 1. Belief in G-d This category is derived from the declaration in Ex. 20:2 beginning, "I am the L-rd, your G-d..."L-rdG-d 2. Prohibition of Improper Worship This category is derived from Ex. 20:3-6, beginning, "You shall not have other gods..." It encompasses within it the prohibition against the worship of other gods as well as the prohibition of improper forms of worship of the one true G-d, such as worshiping G-d through an idol. 3. Prohibition of Oaths This category is derived from Ex. 20:7, beginning, "You shall not take the name of the L-rd your G-d in vain..." This includes prohibitions against perjury, breaking or delaying the performance of vows or promises, and speaking G-d's name or swearing unnecessarily. name of the L-rd 4. Observance of Sacred Times This category is derived from Ex. 20:8-11, beginning, "Remember the Sabbath day..." It encompasses all mitzvot related to Shabbat, holidays, or other sacred time. Sabbathholidays 5. Respect for Parents and Teachers This category is derived from Ex. 20:12, beginning, "Honor your father and mother..."
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  • 6. Prohibition of Physically Harming a Person This category is derived from Ex. 20:13, saying, "You shall not murder." 7. Prohibition of Sexual Immorality This category is derived from Ex. 20:13, saying, "You shall not commit adultery." 8. Prohibition of Theft This category is derived from Ex. 20:13, saying, "You shall not steal." It includes within it both outright robbery as well as various forms of theft by deception and unethical business practices. It also includes kidnapping, which is essentially "stealing" a person. 9. Prohibition of Harming a Person through Speech This category is derived from Ex. 20:13, saying, "You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor." It includes all forms of lashon ha-ra (sins relating to speech). lashon ha-ra 10. Prohibition of Coveting This category is derived from Ex. 20:14, beginning, "You shall not covet your neighbor's house..."
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  • Key Leaders from Ancient Israel Abraham father of the Hebrew people; set them on the path of monotheism different from neighboring tribes Moses giver of Gods law which includes Ten Commandments (called the Law of Moses) Joshua successor to Moses; led the conquest of Canaan giving Hebrews a foothold in Palestine The Judges spoke Gods word David Greatest king of Israel in terms of pleasing God; a man after Gods own heart Solomon Son of David, wisest man who ever lived, built the first perman


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