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This book is the first Haggadah that brings together the teachings of three of the most influential and brilliant Rabbinic personalities of the 20th century: Rabbi Kook, Rabbi Shlomo Carlebach, and Rabbi Joseph Soloveitchik. The Night That Unites also offers a special section of contemporary readings and stories related to the Land of Israel and the Holocaust. Suggested questions are offered as a way of encouraging and guiding discussion at the Seder that will enhance the Passover night experience, and illustrations depicting all 15 steps of the Seder are featured throughout.
In this historical and theological study, John G. Gager undermines the myth of the Apostle Paul's rejection of Judaism, conversion to Christianity, and founding of Christian anti-Judaism. He finds that the rise of Christianity occurred well after Paul's death and attributes the distortion of the Apostle's views to early and later Christians. Though Christian clerical elites ascribed a rejection-replacement theology to Paul's legend, Gager shows that the Apostle was considered a loyal Jew by many of his Jesus-believing contemporaries and that later Jewish and Muslim thinkers held the same view. He holds that one of the earliest misinterpretations of Paul was to name him the founder of Christianity, and in recent times numerous Jewish and Christian readers of Paul have moved beyond this understanding. Gager also finds that Judaism did not fade away after Paul's death but continued to appeal to both Christians and pagans for centuries. Jewish synagogues remained important religious and social institutions throughout the Mediterranean world. Making use of all possible literary and archaeological sources, including Muslim texts, Gager helps recover the long pre-history of a Jewish Paul, obscured by recent, negative portrayals of the Apostle, and recognizes the enduring bond between Jews and Christians that has influenced all aspects of Christianity.
The recovery of 800 documents in the eleven caves on the northwest shores of the Dead Sea is one of the most sensational archeological discoveries in the Holy Land to date. These three volumes, the very best of critical scholarship, demonstrate in detail how the scrolls have revolutionized our knowledge of the text of the Bible, the character of Second Temple Judaism, and the Jewish beginnings of Christianity.
An intimate and moving portrait of daily life in New York's oldest institution of traditional rabbinic learning New York City's Lower East Side has witnessed a severe decline in its Jewish population in recent decades, yet every morning in the big room of the city's oldest yeshiva, students still gather to study the Talmud beneath the great arched windows facing out onto East Broadway. Yeshiva Days is Jonathan Boyarin's uniquely personal account of the year he spent as both student and observer at Mesivtha Tifereth Jerusalem, and a poignant chronicle of a side of Jewish life that outsiders rarely see. Boyarin explores the yeshiva's relationship with the neighborhood, the city, and Jewish and American culture more broadly, and brings vividly to life its routines, rituals, and rhythms. He describes the compelling and often colorful personalities he encounters each day, and introduces readers to the Rosh Yeshiva, or Rebbi, the moral and intellectual head of the yeshiva. Boyarin reflects on the tantalizing meanings of "study for its own sake" in the intellectually vibrant world of traditional rabbinic learning, and records his fellow students' responses to his negotiation of the daily complexities of yeshiva life while he also conducts anthropological fieldwork. A richly mature work by a writer of uncommon insight, wit, and honesty, Yeshiva Days is the story of a place on the Lower East Side with its own distinctive heritage and character, a meditation on the enduring power of Jewish tradition and learning, and a record of a different way of engaging with time and otherness.
Normon Solomon's succinct book is an ideal introduction to Judaism as a religion and way of life. Demonstrating the diverse nature and ethnic origin of those with the Jewish faith, Solomon explores how the Jewish religion has developed in the 2,000 years since the days of the Bible. This Very Short Introduction starts by outlining the basics of practical Judaism - its festivals, prayers, customs, and various sects - and goes on to consider how Judaism has responded to, and dealt with, a number of key issues and debates, including the impact of the Holocaust and the establishment of the State of Israel. In this new edition, Solomon considers issues of contemporary Judaism in the twenty first century. ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.
Opening Israel's Scriptures is a collection of thirty-six essays on the Hebrew Bible, from Genesis to Chronicles, which gives powerful insight into the complexity and inexhaustibility of the Hebrew Scriptures as a theological resource. Based on more than two decades of lectures on Old Testament interpretation, Ellen F. Davis offers a selective yet comprehensive guide to the core concepts, literary patterns, storylines, and theological perspectives that are central to Israel's Scriptures. Underlying the whole study is the primary assumption that each book of the canon has literary and theological coherence, though not uniformity. In both her close readings of individual texts and in her broad demonstrations of the coherence of whole books, Davis models the best practices of contemporary exegesis, integrating the insights of contemporary scholars with those of classical theological resources in Jewish and Christian traditions. Throughout, she keeps an eye to the experiences and concerns of contemporary readers, showing through multiple examples that the critical interpretation of texts is provisional, open-ended work-a collaboration across generations and cultures. Ultimately what she offers is an invitation into the more spacious world that the Bible discloses, which challenges ordinary conceptions of how things "really" are.
Solomon's image as a wise king and the founder of Jerusalem Temple has become a fixture of Jewish, Christian, and Islamic literature. Yet, there are essential differences between the portraits of Solomon that are presented in the Hebrew Bible. In this volume, Isaac Kalimi explores these differences, which reflect divergent historical contexts, theological and didactic concepts, stylistic and literary techniques, and compositional methods among the biblical historians. He highlights the uniqueness of each portrayal of Solomon - his character, birth, early life, ascension, and temple-building - through a close comparison of the early and late biblical historiographies. Whereas the authors of Samuel-Kings stay closely to their sources and offer an apology for Solomon's kingship, including its more questionable aspects, the Chronicler freely rewrites his sources in order to present the life of Solomon as he wished it to be. The volume will serve scholars and students seeking to understand biblical texts within their ancient Near Eastern contexts.
Discover the Jewish Jesus
It's time to discover the Jewish Jesus!
The love of books in the Jewish tradition extends back over many centuries, and the ways of interpreting those books are as myriad as the traditions themselves. Skies of Parchment, Seas of Ink offers the first full survey of Jewish illuminated manuscripts, ranging from their origins in the Middle Ages to the present day. Featuring some of the most beautiful examples of Jewish art of all time--including hand-illustrated versions of the Bible, the Haggadah, the prayer book, marriage documents, and other beloved Jewish texts--the book introduces readers to the history of these manuscripts and their interpretation. Edited by Marc Michael Epstein with contributions from leading experts, this sumptuous volume features a lively and informative text, showing how Jewish aesthetic tastes and iconography overlapped with and diverged from those of Christianity, Islam, and other traditions. Featured manuscripts were commissioned by Jews and produced by Jews and non-Jews over many centuries, and represent Eastern and Western perspectives and the views of both pietistic and liberal communities across the Diaspora, including Europe, Israel, the Middle East, and Africa. Magnificently illustrated with pages from hundreds of manuscripts, many previously unpublished or rarely seen, Skies of Parchment, Seas of Ink offers surprising new perspectives on Jewish life, presenting the books of the People of the Book as never before.
This book examines the emergence of self-knowledge as a determining legal consideration among the rabbis of Late Antiquity, from the third to the seventh centuries CE. Based on close readings of rabbinic texts from Palestine and Babylonia, Ayelet Hoffmann Libson highlights a unique and surprising development in Talmudic jurisprudence, whereby legal decision-making incorporated personal and subjective information. She examines the central legal role accorded to individuals' knowledge of their bodies and mental states in areas of law as diverse as purity laws, family law and the laws of Sabbath. By focusing on subjectivity and self-reflection, the Babylonian rabbis transformed earlier legal practices in a way that cohered with the cultural concerns of other religious groups in Late Antiquity. They developed sophisticated ideas about the inner self and incorporated these notions into their distinctive discourse of law.
The discovery of the Dead Sea Scrolls in the caves near Qumran in 1947 sparked near endless speculation about the possible connections between the Essenesapurportedly the inhabitants of the settlementaand the birth, nature, and growth of early Christianity. Jesus, the Essenes, and Christian Origins sheds new light on this old question by reexamining the complex relationships among Qumran, the historical Jesus, the Essenes, and Christian origins within first-century Palestinian Judaism. Author Simon J. Joseph's careful examination of a number of distinctive passages in the Jesus tradition in light of Qumran-Essene texts focuses on major points of contact between the Qumran-Essene community and early Christianity in four areas of belief and practice: covenant identity, messianism, eschatology, and halakhah (legal interpretation), placing the weight of his argument for continuity and discontinuity on the halakhic topics of divorce, Sabbath, sacrifice, celibacy, and violence. Joseph focuses on the historical, cultural, chronological, and theological correspondences as convergence. This not only illuminates the historical Jesus' teachings as distinctive, developing and extending earlier Jewish ethical and halakhic thought, it also clarifies the emergence of early Christianity in relationship to Palestinian Essenism. By bringing this holistic analysis of the evidence to bear, Joseph adds a powerful and insightful voice to the decades-long debate surrounding the Essenes and Christianity.
Originally published in English in 1949, The Prophetic Faith features Martin Buber's readings of select biblical prophets--especially Isaiah and Deborah, the only female prophet and judge in the Hebrew Bible. In an approach that combines insights from biblical prophecy with a concern for events in the here and now, Buber outlines his interpretation of biblical revelation. Infused with an anti-institutional--some have said anarchic--sensibility, Buber discusses the notion of kingship as portrayed in the Bible and provides an account of human suffering in an extended discussion of the Book of Job. Anticipating those today who describe themselves as "spiritual but not religious," Buber gives pride of place to a personal God outside of formal religious and legal strictures. Featuring a new introduction by Jon D. Levenson, The Prophetic Faith encourages a renewed appreciation for the Hebrew Bible and its relevance to the practical challenges of the present day.
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