A History of the Jews by Paul JohnsonThis review is dedicated to the Jewish Nation, reborn as a sovereign people, in the Land of Israel.
In this work Johnson undertakes a comprehensive study of the Jewish people (from the route word Yehudi, meaning people of Yehudah (Judea), popularly referred to today as the West Bank, the ancient cradle of the Jewish people.
He begins the book by referring to the town of Hebron, where the founder of the Hebrew Nation is buried with his wife Sarah. Johnson refers to the previous occupiers of Hebron, such as the Canaanites, Edomites, Hellenes, Romans, Byzantines and Ottomans, which have all disappeared from this land, and compares this to the fact that the Jews are still there. Indeed there is a flourishing Jewish community in Hebron.
Reading this (the book was written in 1987), one is struck by the tragic irony, and a sense of extreme injustice, that so much of the world establishment, is demonizing the Jewish community of Hebron (75% of which are women and children), as well as all other Jewish communities in Judea and Samaria, for the crime of living in their ancient homeland.
This despite the fact that the Jews where living in the area, over 2 400 years before the first Arabs arrived.
Johnson presents conclusive and indisputable evidence from ancient documentation, archaeology and other sciences, that there has been a constant Jewish presence in the Land of Israel, for 3 900 years. Johnson is writing as a British Catholic historian, with no brief for the Zionist cause, but is fair-minded unlike the Palestinianist Goebbelsses such as Noam Chomsky. Edward Said, and Norman Finkelstein, who subvert history to deny the Jews the write to live in the ancient homeland.
Johnson details the contributions of the Jews to the world and the Jewish people, and the experiences of and persecutions of the Jews in 7 parts. Against this backdrop we read of the experiences of those great Jews who have made incredible contributions to the world such as Moses, King David, King Solomon, Elijah, Amos, Hosea, Isaiah, Jeremiah, Ezekiel, Daniel, Rabbi Akiva, Maimonides, Judah haLevi, Manasseh ben Israel, Baal Shem Tov, the Vilna Gaon, the Rothschilds, Disraeli, Samson Raphael Hirsch, Emma Lazarus, Luzatto and Sir Moses Montefiore, as well as the founders of the modern Zionist movement, the ingathering of the Jews to their ancient homeland: Rabbi Zevi Hirsch Kalischer , Rabbi Judah Alkalai , Moses Hess , Leon Pinsker , Theodore Herzl , Chaim Weizmann , Vladimir Jabotinsky , David Ben Gurion and Menachem Begin.
We also learn of the damage done to Jews and the world by the charlatans and anti-Jewish Jews like Pablo of Burgos, Shabattai Zevi, Karl Marx, Leon Trotsky, Rosa Luxembourg, and Isaac Babel. He points out how Jewish Communists
Always renounced their Judaism, which indeed shows how ridiculous it is for some anti-Semites of the right to blame the Jewish people as whole for Communist destruction and terror.
Karl Marx was one of the greatest self-hating Jews in history, whose works are filled with the most vicious and blatant anti-Semitism.
It is not therefore surprising that he spawned one of the cruellest, most destructive and murderous ideologies ever.
Communism has been responsible for over 100 million deaths and the destruction of countless lives.
Today the Marxist world has adopted the
vilification and planned destruction of Israel, as their primary cause, to add to their long list of cruelties (With G-Ds help we will not let them succeed).
Especially on university campuses around the world the disciples of Marx (many of them Jewish) are engaging in this cruel campaign against Israel.
Johnson details the persecution of the Jews in Europe, and also talks of their brutal persecution by Moslems in the Middle East, and we see that the idea that the Arabists have inculcated in the minds of many, that Jews where well treated under Moslem rule, is a grotesque untruth.
Unfortunately European historians on Jewish history, both Jew and Gentile, have tended to paint the story of the Jews in Arab countries as an idyllic existence, while in fact they lived under conditions of extreme inequality and persecution, often being subjected to massive and vicious pogroms by their Arab neighbours and overlords, sometimes greater and more genocidal, than the pogroms of Europe, with the obvious exception of Hitlers holocaust.
The book does however have some flaws. Unfortunately, in the chapter about how the Jewish self-determination was crushed, after the destruction by the Romans of the Temple and Jerusalem, he does not recount how the Roman Emperor Hadrian named Israel Palestine in order to cut us off from our land and heritage.
Now those cruel ones who again wish to cut us off from our land and heritage, once again refer to Israel as Palestine.
The spirit of the Roman Empire lives on in the UN, university campuses and leftist academics around the world, the Arabs, China, the EU and Third World governments etc-all of whom wish to obliterate the name of Israel, and so refer to Eretz Yisrael as the hideous abomination-Palestine.
In the name of Palestine Jewish men, women and children are being murdered, as so many times before in history.
While the term Palestinian and Palestine has only been used exclusively to refer to the Arabs who claim ownership of the Land of Israel-after 1967, it is unfortunate that the name had been used by historians so often as the name Palestine is a colonial creation, and to use it to refer to Israel prior to the naming of this land as Palestine is simply superfluous-it should never be recognized as a legitimate name for Israel and Judea, at any time.
What Are the Origins of Judaism?
Years later, the great-great-grandchildren of Abraham and Sarah by now having developed into the 12 Tribes of Israel descended to Egypt, where they were enslaved by the cruel king, Pharaoh. Ten miraculous plagues and one split sea later, the Israelites found themselves at the foot of Mount Sinai. The Torah is the foundation upon which all of Jewish practice is based, both the physical and the spiritual aspects of life. It contains mitzvahs commandments , including the Shabbat Sabbath , Jewish holidays , the kosher laws , the basis of Jewish marriage and divorce , the Holy Temple procedures, and more. The expanded and ever-expanding corpus of Jewish scholarship, tradition, and law was eventually recorded in the Talmud. The main text of the Talmud is the Mishnah , a collection of terse teachings written in Hebrew, redacted by Rabbi Judah the Prince in the years following the destruction of the Second Temple in Jerusalem. Over the next several hundred years, the rabbis continued to teach and expound upon the Mishnah.
Judaism , monotheistic religion developed among the ancient Hebrews. Judaism is characterized by a belief in one transcendent God who revealed himself to Abraham , Moses , and 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 theology , law, 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.
Judaism has its origins in the Iron Age Kingdom of Judah and in Second Temple Judaism. .. The Cambridge History of Judaism: Volume 3, The Early Roman Period. Cambridge University Press. Cohn, Norman (). Cosmos, Chaos, and the.
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The history of Judaism
Church and ministry leadership resources to better equip, train and provide ideas for today's church and ministry leaders, like you. Judaism is a religious tradition with origins dating back nearly four thousand years, rooted in the ancient near eastern region of Canaan which is now Israel and Palestinian territories.
The Hebrew religion gave us monotheism; it gave us the concept of rule by law; it gave us the concept that the divine works its purpose on human history through human events; it gave us the concept of the covenant, that the one god has a special relationship to a community of humans above all others. In the West, in the Middle East, in most of Africa and Asia, the legacy of Hebrew religion permeates nearly everything you see. The Hebrew religion, so important and far-reaching in its influence on human culture, did not spring up overnight. Along with the Hebrew history, the development of Hebrew religion was a long and rocky road. Major shifts in the Hebrew fate inspired revolutions in the religion itself; it wasn't until sometime after the Exilic period that the central document of Hebrew faith, the Torah , took its final and orthodox shape. Through archaeology and analysis of Hebrew scriptures, scholars have divided the development of the Hebrew religion into four main periods. Little or nothing can be known for certain about the nature of Hebrew worship before the migration from Egypt.
The origins of Judaism lie in the Bronze Age amidst polytheistic ancient Semitic religions , specifically Canaanite religion , co-existing with a syncretization with elements of Babylonian religion and of the worship of Yahweh reflected in the early prophetic books of the Hebrew Bible. During the Iron Age I , the Israelite religion became distinct from other Canaanite religions due to the unique monolatristic proto-monotheistic worship of Yahweh. During the Babylonian captivity of the 6th and 5th centuries BCE Iron Age II , certain circles within the exiled Judahites in Babylon refined pre-existing ideas about monotheism , election , divine 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.