origins of judaism. history the ancient israelites (hebrews or jews) were nomadic people who...

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Origins of Judaism Origins of Judaism

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Origins of JudaismOrigins of Judaism


The ancient Israelites (Hebrews or Jews) were nomadic people who migrated from Mesopotamia to Canaan (present-day Israel & Lebanon) around 2000 BCE.


HistoryAlmost everything we know about

the Israelites is based on the Hebrew Bible.

Hebrew Bible = Old Testament of the Christian Bible.

The first 5 books of the Hebrew Bible are know as the Torah, which is comprised of stories about the ancient Israelites and descriptions of Hebrew law.

BeliefsThe Israelites were the

founders of Judaism, one of the 1st monotheistic religions.

Most other people of the time practiced polytheistic religions.

The Israelites believed their God was all powerful and the creator.

Beliefs Judaism teaches that a person

serves God by studying the Torah and living by its teachings.

The Star of David, is the universal symbol Judaism.

BeliefsThere are 3 major Jewish Sects:

1. Orthodox Jews – obey the Torah without question.

2. Conservative Jews Interpret

3. Reform Jews Torah to

make it

relevant today

Worship Practices

Jews worship in a synagogue or temple.

Usually they are built so that the congregation faces towards Jerusalem during worship.

An ark, or cabinet, at the front of the synagogue contains the scroll of the Torah.

Worship PracticesA lamp called the eternal light

hangs before the ark, symbolizing the eternal presence of God.

A rabbi (“teacher”) leads prayers and reads passages of the Hebrew Bible or Torah during the service. He or she will also deliver the sermon.

RitualSome Jews follow strict dietary

laws based on passages from the Hebrew Bible.

These laws establish what is kosher, or acceptable for Jews to eat.

Animals that are considered unclean, like pigs & shellfish, are forbidden.