Comunicación y Gerencia
What do we know about Judaism?
• Founded: 13th Century BCE
• Founder: Moses, who emancipated the Jews from
slavery in Egypt and later established a ‘covenant’
between his people and Yahweh on Mount Sinai
Traditionally, it is held that Abraham and his descendants
established Judaism before Moses, however the 10
Commandments are now considered by many to be the
foundation upon which Judaism rests.
• Roots: dating back approximately 4000 years= origins of
Judaism, Islam and Christianity
• Place: Palestine (sometimes called Canaan; now Israel
• Sacred Books: Old Testament (which consists of the Five
Books of Law, the historical books, the Prophets and
other writings). The most sacred are the Five Books of
the Law= called the TORAH
• Symbols: Menorah and Star of David
• Adherents: Smallest major world religions, making up
0.2 % human race
The birthplace of Judaism is also the birthplace of
Christianity and Islam.
• Ancient Israel is the birthplace of the
three great monotheistic religions of the
world: Judaism, Christianity and Islam
• Ancient Israel dates back approximately
4000 years to the books of the Old
• Great patriarchs of Judaism: Abraham,
Jacob, Moses, Joshua
• Hebrews, Israelites, Jews, Semites: have
all undergone persecution throughout
history; from Babylonian Captivity,
Exodus, Diaspora, Spanish Inquisition,
Roots and
• Hebrew means “From
across”- name given to
Abraham and his
• Israelites: Abraham’s
grandson Jacob
renamed Israel which
means “he who has
wrestled with God”. His
descendants were
called “Israelites”
• Jews: named after
Jacob’s son Judah,
ancient father of tribe
of King David’s dynasty
• Nomadic tribes wandered
into Palestine from east in
approximately 1900 BCE
• Mesopotamian society
dominated by polytheism
• God (Yahweh) appeared
before Patriarch Abraham
and told Abraham “to go and
raise a great nation”
• This began the monotheistic
tradition of the Hebrew faith
with the establishment of
the “Covenant”, “Chosen
People” and “Promised
• Abraham settled in Canaan
(remember story: Sacrifice of
• God told Abraham to
leave his home in Ur
to go to Haran, then
Canaan, and “make of
him a great nation”
• Began monotheistic
• Covenant (agreement)
with God
• Abraham proves his
devotion and love to
one God above all
Illustrated Story of Moses:
• Moses received revelations from God:
burning bush, rod / staff, 10 plagues,
parting of the Red Sea
• End of 13th century BCE- Moses led the
Israelites out of bondage in Egypt
during Ramses II reign called the
• Moses led the 12 Tribes of Israel to
Mount Sinai where Yahweh gave him
the 10 Commandments, uniting the
Hebrews under one God
• Moses and Hebrews searched for the
“Promised Land” or the land of milk and
honey, however they wandered in the
desert for 40 years
• Joshua (Yehoshua)
was the disciple of
and successor to
• When Moses was
alive, Joshua was
his loyal servant
and minister. After
Moses died, Joshua
led the Israelites
into the Land of
Key Concepts of Judaism
• solemn and binding agreement between God and Abraham
(humanity) as God as the Creator and the Chosen people
Chosen People
•Jews considered themselves to be God’s Chosen People as God
chose Abraham and led him to monotheism
• Jews were instruments of God’s will
• God chose Jews (humanity); humanity must choose God
Promised Land
•Gained significance during Moses’ life as Hebrews sought to
keep covenant and develop a community in the Promised Land.
Jews believe this is Israel.
• Oneness of Creator God
• Human obligation to worship God
• God is immaterial and indivisible
• God is referred to as YHWH or YAHWEH “I am that I am”
• People are born a Jew (through mother) or can convert (gerut)
• act of performing a good deed or commandment (ie. 10
• Bible contains total of 613 mitvoth (some positive, some negative)
• View of Jesus = born a Jew a preacher and teacher
• Jesus was not the Son of God; the Messiah is still to come
• suffering is heightened because as the Chosen People, Jews expect
to suffer for all of mankind
Death and Afterlife
• on death, body returns to earth (dust to dust) but soul returns to
God who gave it
• body will be Resurrected and reunited with soul at a later time
(therefore no cremation)
Judges: tribal leaders
Kings: King Saul, King David, King Solomon (built temple)
Division: Northern tribes = Israel; Southern tribes = Judah
Prophetic Tradition: word of God spoken through
prophets “Love God and keep the covenant with Him”
Exile in Babylon= Temple of Solomon destroyed; creation
of synagogues and rabbis and concept of Messiah
“anointed one”
Diaspora: dispersal of Jews outside of Israel and
Maccabean Revolt: temple rededicated to God
Expansion of Roman Empire and rule: destroying of the
temple leaving only the Western Wall; rabbinic Judaism
(interpretative commentaries)
• consists of Five Books of
Moses written on parchment
scroll in ancient form by hand
and kept in Ark
• Torah means “law” but more
accurate is “revelation”,
“teaching” or “instruction”
• Torah is divided into 54
sections and one portion is
read each week (2 weeks of
year have a double portion)
so that the entire Torah is
read from beginning to end in
a year
• Tanukh
Jewish Bible, consisting of Torah (Law
of Moses), the Prophets, and the
• Talmud
Second most important source of
rabbinic Jewish law based on
Mishnah, which complements and
interprets the Torah and applies
scripture to everyday life and
• Mishnah
Early rabbinic teachings on how to
live according to Torah
•The Israeli flag is rooted in
Jewish tradition. The white
background symbolizes purity.
The symbols on the flag are
two stripes—one on the top
and one on the bottom—and
the Star of David emblem
adorning the center. The stripes
and blue color are inspired by
the techeileth dye of the tallit
(Jewish prayer shawl)
•Jews have regarded the Land
of Israel as their homeland,
both as a Holy Land and as a
Promised Land. The Land of
Israel holds a special place in
Jewish religious obligations,
encompassing Judaism's most
important sites — including
the remains of the First and
Second Temples
The Western Wall
The Western Wall in the midst of the
Old City in Jerusalem is the section of
the Western supporting wall of the
Temple Mount which has remained
intact since the destruction of the
Second Jerusalem Temple (70 CE)
It became a center of mourning over
the destruction of the Temple and
Israel's exile
Communion with the memory of Israel's
former glory and the hope for its
Became known in European languages
as the "Wailing Wall".
Judaism in the Modern World
Anti – Semitism: racial
discrimination against Jews
• movement originally for reestablishment of Jewish
nation in Israel
• (Heb., sho'ah) which
originally meant a sacrifice
burned by fire
• the annihilation of the Jews
(6 million) and other groups
of people of Europe (5
million) under the Nazi
regime during World War II
Middle East Conflict
• Issue of who has the rightful
claim to Jerusalem
• Covenant = formal agreement
between Hebrews and God
(Yahweh); Hebrews
worshipped God and only God,
and in return, they would be
God’s Chosen People and given
Canaan as the Promised Land
• Spiritual ideas profoundly
influenced Western culture,
morality, ethics and conduct
• Three of the world’s most
dominant religions: Judaism,
Christianity and Islam all derive
their roots from the spiritual
beliefs of the Ancient Israelites
• Do we still see
remnants of anti –
Semitism today?
• What aspects of
Western civilization do
you think have been
influenced by Judaism?
• What are some
fundamental stories in
Judaism that appear in
other religions as well?

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