History of the Jewish Religion Essay

History of the Jewish Religion Essay

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History of the Jewish Religion


The Jewish religion has also undergone many transformations over the years. It started off in its earliest years as being animistic, with Hebrews worshipping forces of nature. As a result this religion had a number of practices that concerned magic and animal sacrifices. The Hebrew religion also became polytheistic which involves several gods. Hebrew religion eventually became anthropomorphic, in which God or gods became human individuals and had human characteristics. Eventually most Hebrews concentrated on one main God who they referred to as Yahweh. Yahweh is a mysterious term used in Hebrew that reads YHWY (in biblical Hebrew there were no vowels), and that still to this day its pronunciation is unknown. It is thought to be related to the verb “to be” and means something like, “he causes to be”. In English the word Yahweh is translated “ I am”: “I am that I am”. Yahweh became a figure of worship that could transcend into the human world. Different tribes of Hebrews probably worshipped different gods, nothing is mentioned in Genesis that one universal God existed at this time (http://www.us-israel.org).
The big change in Hebrew thought that allowed the religion to come to be as we know it today occurred during the great migration from Egypt, where the Jews were enslaved. The Jewish people believe that they were chosen by Yahweh to unite with the other scattered tribes to become a single nation. Moses (Yahweh’s greatest prophet), lead them out of slavery into the promised land. God spoke to Moses on Mount Sinai and outlined the basics of the Jewish religion that is known today. God told Moses that He (Yahweh) is God, and no other gods should be worshipped before him. This cr...


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...ds are not. Rodents, reptiles, amphibians, and insects are all prohibited.
2. Of the animals that may be eaten, the birds and mammals must be killed in accordance with Jewish law.
3. All blood must be drained from the meat or broiled out of it before it is eaten.
4. Certain parts of permitted animals may not be eaten.
5. Meat (the flesh of birds and mammals) cannot be eaten with dairy. Fish, eggs, fruits, vegetables and grains can be eaten with either meat or dairy. (According to some views, fish may not be eaten with meat).
6. Utensils that have come into contact with meat may not be used with dairy, and vice versa. Utensils that have come into contact with non-kosher food may not be used with kosher food. This applies only where the contact occurred while the food was hot.
7. Grape products made by non-Jews may not be eaten.
(http://www.us-israel.org)

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