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What are some of Judaism's core beliefs?

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10/10/2017

Answer 1

The generally agreed most important (and perhaps only universal) core belief among Jews is:

There is only One God, absolutely distinct, all powerful and supreme. Not to be confused with anything else. This is the basic message of the only real "creed" in Judaism (Deuteronomy ch.6), called the "Shema" ("Hear" -- most Jewish prayers are named after the first one or two Hebrew words of the prayer): "Shema Yisroel, Adonai Eloheinu, Adonai Ehad" ("Hear O Israel, The Lord our God, The Lord is One" or sometimes translated "Hear O Israel, The Lord is our God, the Lord alone")

This is of top importance, recited at all religious services and included in the text inside the item (a mezuzah) that is affixed to the doorposts of a Jewish house.

You don't see images or likenesses of God in Jewish house or in places of worship so you can't confuse yourself by envisioning "God" (because you would not be correct; God surpasses human understanding).

The concept of only one God, the Creator of all the universe, probably originated among the Hebrew people about 3,500 to 4,000 years ago, and was distinct from the widespread notion that each nation may have its own god or gods, but that Adonai Elohim (the Lord God) was the greatest and most powerful. The Jewish belief was adopted by Christianity and Islam; and as these faiths make up more than half the world's population, it may be Judaism's greatest mark on the world today.

Here are some other core beliefs:

Jews were once slaves in Egypt and were led by Moses with God's help (Exodus ch.3-12)nto the Promised Land, which had been given to Abraham and his descendants (Genesis ch.15) for all time. (Details of that promise are up for debate even among Jews).

Jews were "chosen" among all the nations of the world (Exodus ch.19) for a specific purpose although there are disagreements about what that is. Many say it was to obey and interpret the Torah (the first five books of the Bible) and/or share that Torah with all the nations. It is important to note that the Reform and Reconstructionist movements within Judaism have greatly de-emphasized this notion.

The great Sages of the Talmudic times (100-450 CE) codified the Oral Law, passed down from Moses through the generations in the aftermath of the destruction of the Temple in Jerusalem in the year 70CE. They did this to protect the tradition for Jews as they wandered the earth in search of a safe place to live. These sages handed down the details of Jewish Law (keeping the Sabbath, keeping kosher, how to celebrate holidays, marriage and family laws, property laws, inheritance), etc.

Answer 2

The philosophy of Judaism is that this world is a purposeful creation by God, in which all people are tested concerning their use of free-will. We possess a soul which lives on after the body dies and is held responsible for the person's actions. Anyone who is worthy, Jewish or not, can merit reward in the afterlife.

Here is a list of the most basic beliefs of Judaism, as codified by Maimonides:

1. God exists, and is the Creator.

This tells us that the world is not purposeless or chaotic. Life is the result of a deliberate, purposeful, intelligent and kind Creator; not a melancholy chaos or a string of fortuitous accidents.

2. God is One and unique.

This is the basis of all Western monotheistic belief, which was given to the world by Abraham and his descendants. This belief places God at the center of reality and the center of our world-outlook and thoughts.

3. God is not physical.

This includes the corollary that no person should be worshiped as God or as a god. Judaism has no god-kings, no demigods, no angel who flouts God's will, and no sports-idols, movie-idols etc.

Answer 3

With the many historical forms of Judaism, they all share similar characteristics. The most essential characteristic is the belief in one God who created the universe and continues to rule it. The God who created the world revealed himself to the Israelites at Mount Sinai. The content of that revelation makes up the Torah, God's will for humankind stated in his commandments. A second major concept in Judaism is that of the covenant, or agreement, between God and the Jewish people. The Jews would acknowledge God, agreeing to obey his laws. God, in turn, would acknowledge Israel as his chosen people (euteronomy 26:16-19).

Jewish People believe that goodness and obedience will be rewarded and sin punished by God's judgment after death. At the end of times, God will send his Messiah to redeem the Jews and deliver them to their Promised Land. Although all forms of Judaism come from the Hebrew bible, Judaism is mainly derived from the rabbinic movement during the first centuries of the Christian era. At the turn of the 3rd century, the rabbis, or Jewish sages, produced the Mishnah, the earliest written document of rabbinic literature. Answer 4

the core belief is to be a good person and respct God.


That God created everything and gave the Torah.

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10/29/2016

The philosophy of Judaism is that this world is a purposeful creation by God, in which all people are tested concerning their use of free-will. We possess a soul which lives on after the body dies and is held responsible for the person's actions. Anyone who is worthy, Jewish or not, can merit reward in the afterlife.

Here is a list of the most basic beliefs of Judaism, as collated by Maimonides:
1. God exists, and is the Creator.
This tells us that the world is not purposeless or chaotic. Life is the result of a deliberate, purposeful, intelligent and kind Creator; not a melancholy chaos or a string of fortuitous accidents.

2. God is One and unique.
This is the basis of all Western monotheistic belief, which was given to the world by Abraham and his descendants. This belief places God at the center of reality and of our world-outlook and thoughts.

3. God is not physical.

This includes the corollary that no person should be worshiped as God or as a god. Judaism has no god-kings, no demigods, no angel who flouts God's will, and no sports-idols, movie-idols etc.


4. God is eternal.
This includes the belief that God's ways are also eternal. God is not capricious, forgetful or fickle. Investing in a relationship with God is the only thing that will bear eternal benefits.


5. Prayer is to be directed only to God.
This also teaches us that no person, government or institution is to be accorded blind trust. We pray directly to God, three times a day; and we recount our shortcomings, ask for our needs, and acknowledge our successes with happy thanks.


6. The words of the prophets are true.

The prophecies of the Hebrew Bible have been coming true throughout history. Even secular archaeologists (the unbiased ones) have stated that the Hebrew Bible is the most accurate of historical records, as the disdainful theories of Wellhausen and Bible-critics of his ilk have been shattered by the archaeologist's spade. A list of Bible verses which were deemed anachronistic but later shown to be perfectly accurate would run into the many hundreds. 7. The prophecies of Moses are true; and he was the greatest prophet.

8. The Torah was given to Moses by God.
These two beliefs are the basis of our attitude towards the Torah: it is the center of our lives. Jews are keeping mitzvot (commands), saying blessings, praying, learning Torah and doing acts of kindness and charity all the time. The Torah is the single greatest thing that a Jew has; given to us to provide knowledge, guidance, inspiration, awe and reverence, advice, law, comfort, history and more. It is the basis of Judaism.


9. There will be no other Torah.
We Jews have been around for 3800 years. New fads, manifestos, beliefs or lifestyles which rear their heads are met by the Jew with a calm, seasoned eye and the proverbial grain of salt. The Torah doesn't change; and every new thing can be measured against the Torah's standards.


10. God knows the thoughts and deeds of all.
11. God rewards the good and punishes the wicked.
These two beliefs provide a vast incentive towards righteousness and, when needed, repentance.
They also form part of the basis of our belief in the afterlife, since this entire world wouldn't be enough to reward a Moses or punish a Hitler.
God is just (Deuteronomy 32:4); and all outstanding accounts are settled after this life.


12. The Messiah will come.
13. The dead will be resurrected.

Judaism is the only ancient religion which taught optimism; and a large part of that optimism was and is based upon the words of the prophets.


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10/19/2011

That God created everything and gave the Torah.