Religions - Judaism



Judaism began around 1,700 BC in Egypt-Canaan, now Israel.


Abraham, who started the lineage, and Moses, who emancipated the enslaved Jewish tribes from Egypt.


The Torah (the first five books of the Old Testament, and the Talmud).


12 million worldwide, over half in the U.S.


Jews are divided into the Orthodox, Conservative and Reform sects, with other regional/ethnic divisions.


The religion of the Jews is inseparable from their history as a people. Much of the Torah traces the ancestry of Abraham through Isaac, Jacob, Joseph and finally to Moses, the foremost of God's prophets in Hebrew history. It was Moses who gave Judaism the Ten Commandments and established the religious laws and traditions.

By far the most profound characteristic of Judaism is its strict monotheism. The Jews hold an unshakable belief in one God and one only, whom thy call Yahweh, from whom all creation flows. The Jewish people consider themselves a chosen people, apart from all the other peoples of the earth, by virtue of their covenant with Yahweh.

Much stress is placed on the hallowing of daily existence, worship in the synagogue, prayer and reading of the scriptures. Few religions can boast of such a close-knit family tradition as Judaism, making the home a great strength to the religion and a constant refuge to the faithful. Each day, morning and evening, every devout Jew affirms his faith by repeating Moses' prayer: 'Hear,O Israel, the Lord our God, the Lord is One'.

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