The origins of judaism section 4

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The origins of judaism section 4

Judaismmonotheistic religion developed among the ancient Hebrews.

Origins of Rabbinic Judaism

Judaism is characterized by a belief in one transcendent God who revealed himself to AbrahamMosesand the Hebrew prophets and by a religious life in accordance with Scriptures and rabbinic traditions. Judaism is the complex phenomenon of a total way of life for the Jewish people, comprising theologylaw, and innumerable cultural traditions. The first section of this article treats the history of Judaism in the broadest and most complete sense, from the early ancestral beginnings of the Jewish people to contemporary times.

In the second section the beliefs, practices, and culture of Judaism are discussed. It is history that provides the key to an understanding of Judaism, for its primal affirmations appear in early historical narratives. Thus, the Bible reports contemporary events and activities for essentially religious reasons.

The biblical authors believed that the divine presence is encountered primarily within history. Although other ancient communities also perceived a divine presence in history, the understanding of the ancient Israelites proved to be the most lasting and influential. The people of Israel believed that their response to the divine presence in history was central not only for themselves but for all humankind. Furthermore, God—as person—had revealed in a particular encounter the pattern and structure of communal and individual life to this people.

Claiming sovereignty over the people because of his continuing action in history on their behalf, he had established a covenant berit with them and required from them obedience to his teaching, or law Torah. This obedience was a further means by which the divine presence was made manifest—expressed in concrete human existence. Even the chosen community failed in its obligation and had to be summoned back, time and again, to its responsibility by the prophets—the divinely called spokespersons who warned of retribution within history and argued and reargued the case for affirmative human response.

In nearly 4, years of historical development, the Jewish people and their religion have displayed a remarkable adaptability and continuity. In their encounter with the great civilizations, from ancient Babylonia and Egypt to Western Christendom and modern secular culture, they have assimilated foreign elements and integrated them into their own social and religious systems, thus maintaining an unbroken religious and cultural tradition.

Furthermore, each period of Jewish history has left behind it a specific element of a Judaic heritage that continued to influence subsequent developments, so that the total Jewish heritage at any given time is a combination of all these successive elements along with whatever adjustments and accretions have occurred in each new age. The various teachings of Judaism have often been regarded as specifications of the central idea of monotheism. One God, the creator of the world, has freely elected the Jewish people for a unique covenantal relationship with himself.

This one and only God has been affirmed by virtually all professing Jews in a variety of ways throughout the ages. Jewish monotheism has had both universalistic and particularistic features. Along universal lines, it has affirmed a God who created and rules the entire world and who at the end of history will redeem all Israel the classical name for the Jewish peopleall humankind, and indeed the whole world. The ultimate goal of all nature and history is an unending reign of cosmic intimacy with God, entailing universal justice and peace.

This arrangement is designated a covenant and is structured by an elaborate and intricate law. Thus, the Jewish people are both entitled to special privileges and burdened with special responsibilities from God. The universal goal of the Jewish people has frequently expressed itself in messianism —the idea of a universal, political realm of justice and peace. In one form or another, messianism has permeated Jewish thinking and action throughout the ages, and it has strongly influenced the outlook of many secular-minded Jews see also eschatology.

Law embraces practically all domains of Jewish life, and it became the principle means by which Judaism was to bring about the reign of God on earth. It is a total guide to religious and ethical conduct, involving ritualistic observance as well as individual and social ethics. It is a liturgical and ethical way constantly expatiated on by the prophets and priests, by rabbinic sages, and by philosophers.

the origins of judaism section 4

Such conduct was to be performed in the service of God, the transcendent and immanent ruler of the universe, the Creator and the propelling force of nature, and the one giving guidance and purpose to history. According to Judaic belief, this divine guidance is manifested through the history of the Jewish people, which will culminate in the messianic age. The division of the millennia of Jewish history into periods is a procedure frequently dependent on philosophical predilections.

This formulation could be theologically reconciled with the assumption that Christianity had been preordained even before the creation of the world.

In the 19th century, biblical scholars moved the decisive division back to the period of the Babylonian Exile and the restoration of the Jews to the kingdom of Judah 6th—5th century bce. These theories, however, have been discarded by most scholars in the light of a more comprehensive knowledge of the ancient Middle East and the abandonment of a theory of gradual evolutionary development that was dominant at the beginning of the 20th century.The Bible is the holy scripture of the Christian religion, purporting to tell the history of the Earth from its earliest creation to the spread of Christianity in the first century A.

Both the Old Testament and the New Testament have undergone changes over the centuries, including the the publication of the King James Bible in and the addition of several books that were discovered later. The Old Testament is the first section of the Bible, covering the creation of Earth through Noah and the flood, Moses and more, finishing with the Jews being expelled to Babylon.

Origins of Judaism

The exact beginnings of the Jewish religion are unknown, but the first known mention of Israel is an Egyptian inscription from the 13th century B. The earliest known mention of the Jewish god Yahweh is in an inscription relating to the King of Moab in the 9th century B. It is speculated that Yahweh was possibly adapted from the mountain god Yhw in ancient Seir or Edom. It was during the reign of Hezekiah of Judah in the 8th century B.

During the reign of Josiah in the 6th century B. The final form of the Hebrew Bible developed over the next years when Judah was swallowed up by the expanding Persian Empire.

the origins of judaism section 4

Known as the Septuagint, this Greek translation was initiated at the request of King Ptolemy of Egypt to be included in the library of Alexandria. The Septuagint was the version of the Bible used by early Christians in Rome. The Book of Daniel was written during this period and included in the Septuagint at the last moment, though the text itself claims to have been written sometime around B. It collects 27 books, all originally written in Greek. The sections of the New Testament concerning Jesus are called the Gospels and were written about 40 years after the earliest written Christian materials, the letters of Paul, known as the Epistles.

Scribes copied the letters and kept them in circulation. As circulation continued, the letters were collected into books. Some in the church, inspired by Paul, began to write and circulate their own letters, and so historians believe that some books of the New Testament attributed to Paul were in fact written by disciples and imitators. The oral traditions within the church formed the substance of the Gospels, the earliest book of which is Mark, written around 70 A. It is theorized there may have been an original document of sayings by Jesus known as the Q source, which was adapted into the narratives of the Gospels.

Matthew and Luke were next in the chronology. Both used Mark as a reference, but Matthew is considered to have another separate source, known as the M source, as it contains some different material from Mark. The Book of John, written around A. All four books cover the life of Jesus with many similarities, but sometimes contradictions in their portrayals.

Each is considered to have its own political and religious agenda linked to authorship. What Other Proof Exists? The Book of Revelation is the final book of the Bible, an example of apocalyptic literature that predicts a final celestial war through prophecy. Authorship is ascribed to John, but little else is known about the writer.

According to the text, it was written around 95 A. Some scholars believe it is less a prophecy and more a response to the Roman destruction of the Great Temple and Jerusalem. This text is still used by Evangelical Christians to interpret current events in expectation of the End Times, and elements of it find frequent use in popular entertainment. Surviving documents from the 4th century show that different councils within the church released lists to guide how various Christian texts should be treated.

The earliest known attempt to create a canon in the same respect as the New Testament was in 2nd century Rome by Marcion, a Turkish businessman and church leader. Disapproving of the effort, the Roman church expelled Marcion. Second-century Syrian writer Tatian attempted to create a canon by weaving the four gospels together as the Diatessaron.Judaismmonotheistic religion developed among the ancient Hebrews.

Judaism is characterized by a belief in one transcendent God who revealed himself to AbrahamMosesand the Hebrew prophets and by a religious life in accordance with Scriptures and rabbinic traditions. Judaism is the complex phenomenon of a total way of life for the Jewish people, comprising theologylaw, and innumerable cultural traditions. The first section of this article treats the history of Judaism in the broadest and most complete sense, from the early ancestral beginnings of the Jewish people to contemporary times.

In the second section the beliefs, practices, and culture of Judaism are discussed. It is history that provides the key to an understanding of Judaism, for its primal affirmations appear in early historical narratives. Thus, the Bible reports contemporary events and activities for essentially religious reasons.

The biblical authors believed that the divine presence is encountered primarily within history. Although other ancient communities also perceived a divine presence in history, the understanding of the ancient Israelites proved to be the most lasting and influential. The people of Israel believed that their response to the divine presence in history was central not only for themselves but for all humankind. Furthermore, God—as person—had revealed in a particular encounter the pattern and structure of communal and individual life to this people.

Claiming sovereignty over the people because of his continuing action in history on their behalf, he had established a covenant berit with them and required from them obedience to his teaching, or law Torah. This obedience was a further means by which the divine presence was made manifest—expressed in concrete human existence. Even the chosen community failed in its obligation and had to be summoned back, time and again, to its responsibility by the prophets—the divinely called spokespersons who warned of retribution within history and argued and reargued the case for affirmative human response.

In nearly 4, years of historical development, the Jewish people and their religion have displayed a remarkable adaptability and continuity.

In their encounter with the great civilizations, from ancient Babylonia and Egypt to Western Christendom and modern secular culture, they have assimilated foreign elements and integrated them into their own social and religious systems, thus maintaining an unbroken religious and cultural tradition.

Furthermore, each period of Jewish history has left behind it a specific element of a Judaic heritage that continued to influence subsequent developments, so that the total Jewish heritage at any given time is a combination of all these successive elements along with whatever adjustments and accretions have occurred in each new age.

The various teachings of Judaism have often been regarded as specifications of the central idea of monotheism. One God, the creator of the world, has freely elected the Jewish people for a unique covenantal relationship with himself. This one and only God has been affirmed by virtually all professing Jews in a variety of ways throughout the ages.

Jewish monotheism has had both universalistic and particularistic features. Along universal lines, it has affirmed a God who created and rules the entire world and who at the end of history will redeem all Israel the classical name for the Jewish peopleall humankind, and indeed the whole world. The ultimate goal of all nature and history is an unending reign of cosmic intimacy with God, entailing universal justice and peace. This arrangement is designated a covenant and is structured by an elaborate and intricate law.

Thus, the Jewish people are both entitled to special privileges and burdened with special responsibilities from God. The universal goal of the Jewish people has frequently expressed itself in messianism —the idea of a universal, political realm of justice and peace. In one form or another, messianism has permeated Jewish thinking and action throughout the ages, and it has strongly influenced the outlook of many secular-minded Jews see also eschatology.The origins of Judaism according to the current historical view, in contradistinction to the religious account as described in the text of the Hebrew Biblelie in the Bronze Age amidst polytheistic ancient Semitic religionsspecifically evolving out of Ancient Canaanite polytheismthen co-existing with Babylonian religionand syncretizing elements of Babylonian belief into the worship of Yahweh as reflected in the early prophetic books of the Hebrew Bible.

During the Iron Age Ithe Israelite religion became distinct from the Canaanite polytheism out of which it evolved. This process began with the development of Yahwismthe monolatristic worship of Yahweh that gave acknowledgment to the existence, but suppressed the worship, of other Canaanite gods.

Later, this monolatristic belief cemented into a strict monotheistic belief and worship of Yahweh alone, with the rejection of the existence of all other gods, whether Canaanite or foreign. During the Babylonian captivity of the 6th and 5th centuries BCE Iron Age IIcertain circles within the exiled Judahites in Babylon refined pre-existing ideas about their Yahweh-centric monolatrism, electiondivine law and Covenant into a strict monotheistic theology which came to dominate the former Kingdom of Judah in the following centuries.

Second Temple eschatology was significantly influenced by Zoroastrianism. The text of the Hebrew Bible was redacted into its extant form in this period and possibly also canonized as well. The oldest manuscripts of the Masoretic tradition come from the 10th and 11th centuries CE; in the form of the Aleppo Codex of the later portions of the 10th century CE and the Leningrad Codex dated to — CE. Due largely to censoring and the burning of manuscripts in medieval Europe the oldest existing manuscripts of various rabbinical works are quite late.

The oldest surviving complete manuscript copy of the Babylonian Talmud is dated to CE. Other neighbouring Canaanite kingdoms of the time each had their own national gods: Chemosh was the god of MoabMoloch the god of the AmmonitesQaus the god of the Edomitesand so on, and in each kingdom the king was his god's viceroy on Earth.

By the late 8th century both Judah and Israel had become vassals of Assyriabound by treaties of loyalty on one side and protection on the other. Israel rebelled and was destroyed c. This outlook was taken up by the Judahite landowning elite, who became extremely powerful in court circles in the next century when they placed the eight-year-old Josiah reigned — BC on the throne.

During Josiah's reign Assyrian power suddenly collapsed, and a pro-independence movement took power promoting both the independence of Judah from foreign overlords and loyalty to Yahweh as the sole god of Israel.

With Josiah's support the "Yahweh-alone" movement launched a full-scale reform of worship, including a covenant i. By the time this occurred, Yahweh had already been absorbing or superseding the positive characteristics of the other gods and goddesses of the pantheon, a process of appropriation that was an essential step in the subsequent emergence of one of Judaism's most notable features, its uncompromising monotheism. In BCE Jerusalem was destroyed by the Babylonians, and the Judean elite — royal family, the priests, the scribes and other members of the elite — were taken to Babylon in captivity.

They represented only a minority of the population, and Judah, after recovering from the immediate impact of war, continued to have a life not much different from what had gone before. In BCE Babylon fell to the Persians and the Babylonian exile ended and a number of the exiles, but by no means all and probably a minority, returned to Jerusalem. They were the descendants of the original exiles, and had never lived in Judah; nevertheless, in the view of the authors of the Biblical literature, they, and not those who had remained in the land, were "Israel".Followers of Judaism believe in one God who revealed himself through ancient prophets.

The history of Judaism is essential to understanding the Jewish faith, which has a rich heritage of law, culture and tradition. Their God communicates to believers through prophets and rewards good deeds while also punishing evil. Jewish people worship in holy places known as synagogues, and their spiritual leaders are called rabbis. The six-pointed Star of David is the symbol of Judaism.

Today, there are about 14 million Jews worldwide. Most of them live in the United States and Israel. Traditionally, a person is considered Jewish if his or her mother is Jewish. The Torah—the first five books of the Tanakh—outlines laws for Jews to follow. The origins of Jewish faith are explained throughout the Torah. According to the text, God first revealed himself to a Hebrew man named Abraham, who became known as the founder of Judaism. Jews believe that God made a special covenant with Abraham and that he and his descendants were chosen people who would create a great nation.

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Jacob took the name Israel, and his children and future generations became known as Israelites. More than 1, years after Abraham, the prophet Moses led the Israelites out of Egypt after being enslaved for hundreds of years.

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Around B. His son Solomon built the first holy Temple in Jerusalemwhich became the central place of worship for Jews. The kingdom fell apart around B. Sometime around B. A second Temple was built in about B. The destruction of the second Temple was significant because Jewish people no longer had a primary place to gather, so they shifted their focus to worshipping in local synagogues.

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While the Tanakh which includes the Torah is considered the sacred text of Judaism, many other important manuscripts were composed in later years. These offered insights into how the Tanakh should be interpreted and documented oral laws that were previously not written down. Around A. Later, the Talmud, a collection of teachings and commentaries on Jewish law, was created.

The Talmud contains the Mishnah and another text known as the Gemara which examines the Mishnah. It includes the interpretations of thousands of rabbis and outlines the importance of commandments of Jewish law. The first version of the Talmud was finalized around the 3rd century A.

The second form was completed during the 5th century A. Judaism embraces several other written texts and commentaries. One example is the 13 Articles of Faith, which was written by a Jewish philosopher named Maimonides.

Shabbat is recognized as a day of rest and prayer for Jews. It typically begins at sunset on Friday and lasts until nightfall on Saturday. Observing Shabbat can take many forms, depending on the type of Judaism that a Jewish family may follow. Orthodox and Conservative Jews, for example, may refrain from performing any physical labor, using any electrical device or other prohibited activities. Most observant Jews celebrate Shabbat by reading or discussing the Torah, attending a synagogue or socializing with other Jews at Shabbat meals.

Throughout history, Jewish people have been persecuted for their religious beliefs.Synagoguealso spelled synagogin Judaisma community house of worship that serves as a place not only for liturgical services but also for assembly and study. The oldest dated evidence of a synagogue is from the 3rd century bcebut synagogues doubtless have an older history.

Other scholars trace the origin of synagogues to the Jewish custom of having representatives of communities outside Jerusalem pray together during the two-week period when priestly representatives of their community attended ritual sacrifices in the Temple of Jerusalem. Whatever their origin, synagogues flourished side by side with the ancient Temple cult and existed long before Jewish sacrifice and the established priesthood were terminated with the destruction of the Second Temple by the Roman emperor Titus in 70 ce.

Thereafter synagogues took on an even greater importance as the unchallenged focal point of Jewish religious life. Literature of the 1st century ce refers to numerous synagogues not only in Palestine but also in Rome, Greece, EgyptBabylonia, and Asia Minor.

By the middle of that century, all sizable Jewish communities had a synagogue where regular morning, afternoon, and evening services were held, with special liturgies on the Sabbath and on religious festivals.

Modern synagogues carry on the same basic functions associated with ancient synagogues but have added social, recreational, and philanthropic programs as the times demand. They are essentially democratic institutions established by a community of Jews who seek God through prayer and sacred studies. Since the liturgy has no sacrificeno priesthood is required for public worship.

the origins of judaism section 4

Because each synagogue is autonomousits erection, its maintenance, and its rabbi and officials reflect the desires of the local community. There is no standard synagogue architecture. The segregation of men and women, a practice that is still observed in Orthodox synagogues, has been abandoned by Reform and Conservative congregations.

A ritual bath mikvah is sometimes located on the premises.

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Pagan Origins of Judaism

Synagogue Judaism. See Article History. Read More on This Topic. Judaism: The traditional pattern of synagogue practices.Rabbinic Judaism or Rabbinism has been the mainstream form of Judaism since the 6th century, after the codification of the Talmud.

Rabbinic Judaism gained predominance within the Jewish diaspora between the 2nd to 6th centuries, with the development of the Oral Law Mishna and Talmud to control the interpretation of Jewish scripture specifically the Masoretic Text and to encourage the practice of Judaism in the absence of Temple sacrifice and other practices no longer possible, while awaiting the Third Temple.

Before the so-called Babylonian captivityJudaism could not be semantically spoken of. Of course, the ancestors of the Jews, like their kindred neighbors - the Canaanites and Phoenicians adhered to the old West Semitic religious understandings and practices.

Proof of this is the biblical story of Gehenna. Allegorically Babylon is symbolized by the Tower of Babelthat is, by the mixing of peoples and languages, which comes to show that there was no separate Jewish community before that of the Canaanites and Phoenicians. After the Babylonian captivity and under pressure from the King of Kings began to take shape a single and centralized cult in Jerusalem. Naturally, this single and centralized monotheistic club encounters serious local resistance in Canaan and Phenicia.

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Given both religious traditions and interest clubs and places. The history of Judaism is closely linked to the rabbinic tradition, which dates back to the time of Alexander the Great with the siege of Tyre BC. The formation of the outlook of the Jews which led to the formation of their religion began in the second millennium BC in Canaan.

The earliest period of birth of this religion, as it is known today, based on its conservative tradition, is called Zugot. Rabbinic tradition holds that the details and interpretation of the law, which are called the Oral Torah or oral lawwere originally an unwritten tradition based upon what God told Moses on Mount Sinai. However, as the persecutions of the Jews increased and the details were in danger of being forgotten, these oral laws were recorded by Rabbi Judah HaNasi Judah the Prince in the Mishnahredacted circa CE.

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The Talmud was a compilation of both the Mishnah and the Gemararabbinic commentaries redacted over the next three centuries. The Gemara originated in two major centers of Jewish scholarship, Palestine and Babylonia. The older compilation is called the Jerusalem Talmud. It was compiled sometime during the 4th century in Palestine. The foundation of this religion, however, is laid in the Chazal period, and Judaism acquires a refined appearance known today in the times of so-called rabbinic Judaism.

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And in this sense, the correlative and antagonistic connection of Judaism with early Christianity is enormous and is expressed through so-called Judeo-Christianity. The origin of both Christianity and Judaism lies in the axiological and historical contradictions during the Hellenistic period when the star of imperial Rome rose.

Critical scholars reject the claim that sacred texts, including the Hebrew Biblewere dictated by God, and reject the claim that they were divinely inspired. Instead, they see these texts as authored by humans and possibly meaningful in specific historical and cultural contexts.

Many of these scholars accept the general principles of the documentary hypothesisand suggest that the Torah consists of a variety of inconsistent texts edited together in a way that calls attention to divergent accounts.

These scholars have various theories concerning the origins of the Israelites and Israelite religion. Some of these scholars question whether any or all of their ancestors had been slaves in Egypt. Many suggest that during the First Temple period, the people of Israel were henotheiststhat is, they believed that each nation had its own god, but that their god was superior to other gods.

Christianity

In this view, it was only by the Hellenic period that most Jews came to believe that their god was the only god and thus, the god of everyoneand that the record of his revelation the Torah contained within it universal truths. This attitude reflected a growing Gentile interest in Judaism some Greeks and Romans considered the Jews a most "philosophical" people because of their belief in a god that cannot be represented visuallyand growing Jewish interest in Greek philosophywhich sought to establish universal truths, thus leading—potentially—to the idea of monotheism, at least in the sense that "all gods are one.

According to Prof. Ze'ev Herzog of Tel Aviv Universitymonotheism, as a state religion, is probably "an innovation of the period of the Kingdom of Judea, following the destruction of the Kingdom of Israel. At two sites, Kuntiliet Ajrud in the southwestern part of the Negev hill region, and at Khirbet el-Kom in the Judea piedmont, Hebrew inscriptions have been found that mention 'Jehovah and his Asherah', 'Jehovah Shomron and his Asherah', 'Jehovah Teman and his Asherah'. The authors were familiar with a pair of gods, Jehovah and his consort Asherah, and sent blessings in the couple's name.

After his demise, and the division of Alexander's empire among his generals, the Seleucid Kingdom was formed. During this time currents of Judaism were influenced by Hellenistic philosophy developed from the 3rd century BCE, notably among the Jewish diaspora in Alexandriaculminating in the compilation of the Septuagint. An important advocate of the symbiosis of Jewish theology and Hellenistic thought is Philo.

Hellenistic culture had a profound impact on the customs and practices of Jews, both in Judea and in the Diaspora.


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