Torah

Egyptian depiction of the visit of Western Asiatics in colorful garments, labeled as Aamu. The painting is from the tomb of a 12th dynasty official Khnumhotep II at Beni Hasan, and dated to c. 1900 BCE. Their nearest Biblical contemporaries were the earliest of Hebrews, such as Abraham and Joseph.

Jews

Jews Jews (יְהוּדִים‎ ISO 259-2 Yehudim) or Jewish people are an ethnoreligious group and a nation originating from the Israelites and Hebrews of historical Israel and Judah. Jewish ethnicity, nationhood, and religion are strongly interrelated, as Judaism is the ethnic religion of the Jewish people, while its observance varies from strict observance to complete nonobservance. Jews originated as an ethnic...

The 16 Scrolls of the complete Tanakh, Old Testament Scrolls on display in Glen Rose, Texas

Hebrew Bible

The Hebrew Bible The Hebrew Bible, also called the Tanakh (Tenakh, Tenak, Tanach) or Mikra, is the canonical collection of Hebrew scripture, which is also the textual source for the Christian Old Testament. These texts are composed mainly in Biblical Hebrew, with some passages in Biblical Aramaic (in the books of Daniel, Ezra...

Haredim and Zionism

Haredim and Zionism The relationship between Haredim and Zionism became more complex after the founding of the State of Israel in 1948. From the start of political Zionism in the 1890s, Haredi leaders voiced objections to its secular orientation, and before the establishment of the State of Israel, the vast majority of Haredi...

Magen David Synagogue in Kolkata, India

Judaism

Judaism Judaism (יהודה, Yehudah, “Judah”) is the religion of the Jewish people. It is an ancient, monotheistic, Abrahamic religion with the Torah as its foundational text. It encompasses the religion, philosophy, and culture of the Jewish people. Judaism is considered by religious Jews to be the expression of the covenant that...

Biblical Cosmology

Biblical Cosmology Biblical cosmology is the biblical writers’ conception of the cosmos as an organised, structured entity, including its origin, order, meaning and destiny. The Bible was formed over many centuries, involving many authors, and reflects shifting patterns of religious belief; consequently, its cosmology is not always consistent. Nor do the biblical texts necessarily represent the beliefs of all Jews or Christians at the time...

The Character of Wisdom

The Character of Wisdom An Introduction to Old Testament Wisdom Literature Wisdom Literature is a term applied to the Old Testament canonical books of Job, Proverbs, and Ecclesiastes, and sometimes to the Song of Songs (Song of Solomon).  It also includes the Apocryphal books of Sirach (The Wisdom of Jesus ben Sira or Ecclesiasticus)...

Book Old Books Read Knowledge Literature Torn

Wisdom Literature: Ben Sirach and Wisdom of Solomon

Wisdom Literature: Ben Sirach and Wisdom of Solomon Jewish Literature of the Greco-Roman Period Wisdom literature is a genre that has roots deep in ancient Near Eastern culture. There are exemplars of wisdom literature from Egypt of the 2nd millennium B.C.E., and from not too much later written in Mesopotamia....

Jewish Apocrypha

What is Jewish Apocrypha? Jewish apocrypha includes texts written in the Jewish religious tradition either in the Intertestamental period or in the early Christian era, but outside the Christian tradition. It does not include books in the canonical Hebrew Bible, nor those accepted into the canon of some or all...

Nag Hammadi Library

Nag Hammadi Library The Nag Hammadi library (also known as the “Chenoboskion Manuscripts” and the “Gnostic Gospels”) is a collection of early Christian and Gnostic texts discovered near the Upper Egyptian town of Nag Hammadi in 1945. Thirteen leather-bound papyrus codices buried in a sealed jar were found by a local farmer named Muhammed...

kneeling praying

Submission to God in The Old Testament

Submission to God in The Old Testament The Lord is my strength and my shield; my heart trusts in Him, and I am helped. (Psalms, 28:7) Those who trust in the Lord… which can not be shaken but endures forever. (Psalms, 125:1) He said: “The Lord is my strength, my...

Obedience to God’s Commandments

Obedience to God’s Commandments in The Old Testament So be careful to do what the Lord your God has commanded you; do not turn aside to the right or to the left. Walk in all the way that the Lord your God has commanded you, so that you may live...

Destiny in The Old Testament

Destiny in The Old Testament Timelessness and Belief in Destiny For a thousand years in Your sight are like a day that has just gone by, or like a watch in the night. (Psalms, 90:4) I thought in my heart, “God will bring to judgment both the righteous and the...

Belief in Angels in The Old Testament

Belief in Angels in The Old Testament For He will command His angels concerning you to guard you in all your ways; they will lift you up in their hands, so that you will not strike your foot against a stone. You will tread up on the lion and the...

Tzedakah box (Pushke), Charleston, 1820, silver, National Museum of American Jewish History

Tzedakah

Tzedakah Tzedakah (צדקה‎) is a Hebrew word meaning “righteousness“, but commonly used to signify charity. This concept of “charity” differs from the modern Western understanding of “charity.” The latter is typically understood as a spontaneous act of goodwill and a marker of generosity; tzedakah is an ethical obligation. Tzedakah refers to the religious...

Weekly Torah Portion

Weekly Torah Portion It is a custom among religious Jewish communities for a weekly Torah portion, popularly referred to as a parashah, to be read during Jewish prayer services. The parashah (Hebrew: פָּרָשַׁת הַשָּׁבוּעַ Parashat ha-Shavua), popularly just parashah (or parshah /pɑːrʃə/ or parsha) and also known as a Sidra (or Sedra /sɛdrə/) is a section of the Torah (Five Books...

Book of Genesis

Book of Genesis The Book of Genesis (“Origin”, בְּרֵאשִׁית, “Bərēšīṯ“, “In [the] beginning”) is the first book of the Hebrew Bible (the Tanakh) and the Old Testament.[1] It is divisible into two parts, the Primeval history (chapters 1–11) and the Ancestral history (chapters 12–50).[2] The primeval history sets out the author’s (or authors’) concepts of the nature of the...

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