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JEWISH MANNERS &<br />

CUSTOMS<br />

Copyright 2017 WisdomTree Group<br />

All rights reserved. Except for brief quotations in book review and articles, as otherwise<br />

permitted by applicable law, no part of this book may be reproduced, used, stored,<br />

transmitted or displayed in any form, or by any means (electronic, mechanical, or otherwise)<br />

now known or hereafter devised-including photocopy, recording, or any information storage<br />

and retrieval system- without prior written permission from:<br />

www.WisdomTreeGroup.com<br />

Printed in the United States of America.<br />

Published by Wisdom Tree Group. LLC!


ON MY JOURNEY<br />

The Christian life is anything but a passive pursuit. The New Testament commands believers to “be<br />

all the more diligent” (2 Peter 1:10), to take “every thought captive to the obedience of Christ” (2<br />

Corinthians 10:5), to “strive to enter through the narrow door” (Luke 13:24), to “run” that we may<br />

obtain the prize (1 Corinthians 9:24), and to “work out” our salvation (Philippians 2:12). Just as God<br />

is sovereign over our all thing, our spiritual growth involves our efforts.<br />

_________________________________<br />

own’s this workbook<br />

__________________________________<br />

Class Instructor & Journey Date


5<br />

<br />

5<br />

<br />

5<br />

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35<br />

39<br />

42<br />

45<br />

MY JOURNEY TO MATURITY<br />

NAVIGATING YOUR JOURNEY<br />

MAPPING MY JOURNEY<br />

CLASS OUTLINE & STUDENT OUTCOMES<br />

ISRAEL'S PENDING CAPTIVITY<br />

ASSYRIANS & BABYLONIANS<br />

MEDES & PERSIANS<br />

ALEXANDER & THE GREEKS<br />

THE MACCABEES<br />

THE JEWISH SECTS<br />

THE RISE OF ROME<br />

THE JEWISH BACKGROUND OF THE EARLY CHURCH<br />

TELLING JEWISH TIME: PART 1<br />

TELLING JEWISH TIME: PART 2<br />

APPENDIX: TOOLS FOR THE JOURNEY<br />

A FOUR THOUSAND YEAR OF JEWISH HISTORY AT A GLANCE<br />

JEWISH CALENDAR DETAILS


TABLE OF<br />

CONTENTS


“The Journey to Maturity begins with a<br />

simple question, 'am I growing up or just<br />

growing old?' Millions of Christians have<br />

grown older without ever growing up; they act<br />

as though spiritual growth is automatic. They<br />

may have a plan to save for retirement. They<br />

may have a plan for sending their kids to<br />

college. But they don’t have a strategy for<br />

enriching their souls. They leave the single<br />

most important facet of human existence to<br />

chance. Welcome to the road that leads to a<br />

better version of yourself !”<br />

-L.B. James


Welcome to My Journey to Maturity<br />

Resolve To Be A Lifelong Learner<br />

Wisdom does not come automatically with age (Job 32:8–9). For many aged saints, gray hair and a<br />

good head go hand in hand. But for others, far too many others, length of life only entrenches<br />

stubbornness, irritability, and careless ways of thinking and living. Life experiences may increase<br />

inevitably with age, but without some long-term pattern of receptivity and intentionality, multiplied<br />

experiences will only create more confusion than clarity.<br />

For Christians in particular, the stakes are even higher for cultivating holy curiosity and the mindset<br />

of a lifelong learner. Teaching and learning are at the very heart of our faith. To be a “disciple”<br />

means to be a “learner.” Our Master is the consummate teacher, and the central task of his church is<br />

teaching (Titus 1:9; 1 Timothy 3:2; 5:17; Hebrews 13:7; Matthew 28:20). God designed the church to<br />

be a community of lifelong learners under the earthly guidance of leaders who are teachers at heart.<br />

Continuous health in the Christian life is inextricably linked to continuous learning. When we say<br />

“learners,” we don’t mean of mere facts, information, and head knowledge. We mean all that and<br />

more. We don’t just learn facts, but we learn a Face. We’re not just learners of principles, but of a<br />

Person. We are lifelong learners in a relationship with Jesus as we hear His voice in His word and<br />

have His ear in prayer, and share in community with His body, all through the power of his Spirit.<br />

Diversify your sources, settings and seasons of learning.<br />

• LEARN from personal conversations. Personal conversations with experienced, knowledgeable<br />

and trustworthy people are tops on the list. You can dialogue and ask questions and hear words<br />

tailored just for you, as they become aware of your situation and needs.<br />

• LEARN from reading books. Books have the amazing value of being accessible anytime and<br />

anywhere; you can go at your speed, in your time and place, and re-read as needed.<br />

• LEARN from taking classes. Classes provide the advantage of learning in context with others,<br />

benefiting from their questions, and being required to focus on the material at some set time for<br />

some particular season.<br />

• LEARN from educational videos. They provide the flexibility of watching at a time most<br />

convenient for you and are beneficial for visuals.<br />

• LEARN from listening to audio recordings. This is perhaps the most underrated way to learn<br />

while multitasking (exercising, cleaning, cooking, or eating) Listening to a recording engages the<br />

mind in ways different than video instruction by leaning on the imagination to picture the teacher<br />

and setting.<br />

I


Embrace the Identity of a Lifelong Learner<br />

Fight against the current that restricts learning as essential to childhood and adolescence but<br />

something unsuitable for adulthood. Resist the urge to waste spare time on mindless entertainment.<br />

Embrace your need for the glory of God, and brace yourself for nonstop learning, not as a burden,<br />

but a blessing of great joy. Own the truth that as Christians, we never “arrive,” but we are always<br />

arriving.<br />

Enjoy to the Journey!<br />

NAVIGATING YOUR JOURNEY<br />

There are four learning levels for My Journey to Maturity: Awareness, Knowledge, Skill and<br />

Discipleship. Each student is encouraged to experience a class within each level of their journey.<br />

Learn more about the level below.<br />

1. Students should enroll before attending a Journey class.<br />

2. Students are encouraged enroll into any class in any learning level according to class availability,<br />

student’s gender, interest or season of life.<br />

3. Prerequisite are not required unless specified.<br />

Getting Started on Your Journey<br />

Two Ways to Enroll:<br />

• Need help? Find a Journey Navigator wearing a “Navigator Badge.” They will assist<br />

you with enrollments, class availability, student note books, locating a class room and<br />

accessing your Journey Account online.<br />

• Don’t need a Navigator? Simple go to online to the church’s website and click “My<br />

Journey” to begin.<br />

II


THE FOUR LEVELS OF LEARNING<br />

AWARENESS LEVEL<br />

Before learning can occur, we must first establish a "need to know.” The Awareness<br />

Level provides a broad overview of the need, describes the scope of the information to<br />

be learned, and clarifies the objectives of the journey.<br />

Tree Metaphor: What is a tree and what does it look like and why are trees important?<br />

KNOWLEDGE LEVEL<br />

The Knowledge Level is the development of understanding, enabling students to<br />

connect the relationships between awareness and the elements of knowledge.<br />

Tree Metaphor: How do I distinguish the different trees within a forest?<br />

SKILL LEVEL<br />

"Now that I understand all this, how does it really apply to my life? What am I supposed<br />

to do with it?" The Skill Level defines and describes, in detail, how particular knowledge<br />

and skills are applied to your life, family, ministry and career.<br />

Tree Metaphor: How do I plant a tree of my own that bears fruit?<br />

DISCIPLESHIP LEVEL<br />

The Discipleship Level is the level of growth momentum. This is where you develop the<br />

capacity to feed yourself and others with less challenge. The Discipleship Level<br />

introduces you to observation, modeling, feedback, repetition, mastery and eventually<br />

doing it without having to think about it.<br />

Tree Metaphor: How can I teach someone to plant and grow a healthy tree?<br />

LIFE GROUPS<br />

Life is not meant to be lived alone. You were created to experience life with other<br />

people, and that’s why we’ve included life groups in the Journey. If you want to grow in<br />

your relationship with Jesus, you need to have intentional relationships with people who<br />

have the same goal. In a Life Group, eight to twelve adults in the same stage of life meet<br />

regularly for a few weeks to pursue spiritual growth and healthy relationships.<br />

III


“Hold yourself responsible for a higher<br />

standard than anybody expects of you.<br />

Never excuse yourself.”<br />

-Henry Ward Beecher


MAPPING MY JOURNEY MAP<br />

Register for all your classes before the New Year begins. Write your classes along your Journey Map<br />

below:<br />

I


OUTLINE & STUDENT OUTCOMES<br />

JEWISH MANNERS & CUSTOMS: FROM THE PATRIARCHS TO PENTECOST<br />

For many Christians, reading the Bible has been like listening to one end of a phone<br />

conversation. We read our Bible as though its peoples were American and interpret their<br />

sayings in terms of our own background and psychology. Oftentimes we may have been left with<br />

questions like what it means to heap burning coals on someone’s head, or what happened<br />

between the Old and New Testament? <strong>Jewish</strong> <strong>Manners</strong> & <strong>Customs</strong> gives you “the other half of the<br />

conversation.”<br />

This course offers a unique encounter with the <strong>Jewish</strong> phenomenon from the its earliest origins<br />

to the present using tools of history, culture, religion, philosophy, sociology, and politics.<br />

Students of church history often puzzled by the sharp contrast between the <strong>Jewish</strong>ness of<br />

the writers and events of the New Testament on one hand and the definitively non-<strong>Jewish</strong> character<br />

of the Early Church after the apostolic period on the other hand.<br />

Beyond the foundations of <strong>Jewish</strong> faith and practices provided in typical Introduction to<br />

Judaism courses, this class examines <strong>Jewish</strong> History as an academic discipline. Still it requires<br />

no prior background in <strong>Jewish</strong> Studies. While all the information you need is available, if<br />

uninitiated you should expect to digest a lot of material in the first few weeks.<br />

WEEKLY FOCUS<br />

1. Introduction & Israel's Pending Captivity<br />

2. Assyrians & Babylonians (Topic Selection)<br />

3. Medes & Persians<br />

4. Alexander & the Greeks<br />

5. The Maccabees<br />

6. Special Topic Presentation<br />

7. <strong>Jewish</strong> Sects<br />

8. Rise of Rome<br />

9. The <strong>Jewish</strong> Background of the Early church<br />

10. Telling <strong>Jewish</strong> Time Pt. 1<br />

11. Telling <strong>Jewish</strong> Time Pt. 2<br />

12. Special Topic Presentation<br />

Student Learning Outcomes<br />

Upon completion of the course, you should be able to do the following:<br />

Become conversant in the oriental manners and customs necessary to understand the Bible.<br />

Assess the events and attitudes that led to Israel’s captivity and the customs born during<br />

their times in exile.<br />

Be aware of the important theological ideas and event during the inter-testamental times.<br />

Identify the major contributions made by pagan nations to the <strong>Jewish</strong> faith and<br />

background.<br />

Discuss the connection between the <strong>Jewish</strong> faith and the Christian faith particularly in terms<br />

of the early development of the church and its theology.<br />

V


MY JOURNEY TO MATURITY 2016<br />

JEWISH MANNERS & CUSTOMS: PATRIARCH TO PENTECOST<br />

Oral Presentation Topic<br />

Each student is required to choose one (1) topic from the list provided. Prepare a 2-3 page report<br />

be kept to a minimum of 3-4 minutes allowing time for class discussion and/or questions. Choose<br />

from the list provided one page 2.<br />

(Name of Topic Selected)<br />

Introduction: (15 pts)<br />

• What is your topic?<br />

• Which scripture relates to your topic and why?<br />

(Your Full Name)<br />

Body: (35 pts)<br />

• Explain who, what, when, where, why and how?<br />

Conclusion/Application: (15 pts)<br />

• How does this inform your understanding of the God?<br />

• How is it relevant to the life of the New Testament Church?<br />

• What are some relevant applications for your personal life?<br />

Sources: Minimum of 2 written sources & one interview: (35 pts)<br />

• Online source, book, magazine or article, Youtube video<br />

• Interview must include a source from a local <strong>Jewish</strong> Cantor or Rabbi.<br />

1. Temple Beth El Charlotte<br />

2. Congregation Ohr HaTorah in Charlotte<br />

3. Temple Israel<br />

4. The Charlotte Torah Center<br />

E.g. Author, “Title,” link, page or location<br />

Note: Wikipedia is not a reliable source.<br />

I


JEWISH MANNERS & CUSTOMS: PATRIARCH TO PENTECOST<br />

CLASS PRESENTATION TOPICS<br />

1. Ancient Seals and Signets<br />

2. Apparel of the Bride<br />

3. Apparel of the Bridegroom<br />

4. Birth and Care of Children<br />

5. Burial Custom<br />

6. Divorce<br />

7. Dowry<br />

8. Eating <strong>Customs</strong><br />

9. Fasting<br />

10. Fishermen<br />

11. Hospitality<br />

12. Idol Worship<br />

13. Market Places<br />

14. Mourning & Wailing<br />

15. Music<br />

16. Property <strong>Customs</strong><br />

17. Proselytes<br />

18. Sackloth and Ashes<br />

19. School of Hillel<br />

20. School of Shammai<br />

21. Shepherds<br />

22. Sickness<br />

23. The High Priests<br />

24. The <strong>Jewish</strong> Woman<br />

25. The Tithe<br />

26. Treatment of Slaves<br />

27. Washing Hands<br />

28. Wine Press<br />

Class presentations. Each participant will choose a topic and a date by the third week of classes<br />

and make a presentation to the class in one of the following sessions. The topic will come from<br />

the list provided. Your presentation should rely on at least 3 sources. One of your sources must<br />

include a local <strong>Jewish</strong> Cantor or Rabbi from the Charlotte Area.<br />

a. Temple Beth El Charlotte<br />

b. Congregation Ohr HaTorah in Charlotte<br />

c. Temple Israel<br />

d. The Charlotte Torah Center<br />

VII


ISAIAH 5:1-13<br />

ISRAEL'S PENDING CAPTIVITY<br />

Objective:<br />

• To identify the significance and symbolism!of vineyard in the life of Israel.<br />

• To understand the spiritual!circumstances that led to Israel’s demise.<br />

1


Judah's Circumstance & Isaiah’s Purpose<br />

Isaiah ministered and wrote to the people of Jerusalem and Judah. His task was to explain to these<br />

chosen people that the old world order was passing away and that the new order—controlled by<br />

Gentile world empires that sought to swallow Judah up—required a new commitment for Israel to<br />

trust and obey Yahweh as His "servant" nation. The Assyrian threat called for this new dedication.<br />

This was a _________________________ even more than a historical and political crisis for Judah.<br />

It raised many questions that Isaiah addressed.<br />

"Is God truly the Sovereign of history if the godless nations are stronger than God's nation? Does<br />

might make right? What is the role of God's people in the world? Does divine judgment mean<br />

divine rejection? What is the nature of trust? What is the future of the Davidic monarchy? Are not<br />

the idols stronger than God and therefore superior to him?”<br />

The far-reaching nature of these questions called for reference to the future, which Isaiah revealed<br />

from the Lord. The Northern Kingdom had made the wrong commitment, which Amos<br />

denounced, but the Southern Kingdom still had an opportunity to trust Yahweh and live. "Stated<br />

briefly, the purpose of Isaiah is to display God's glory and holiness through His judgment of sin and<br />

His deliverance and blessing of a righteous remnant."<br />

Observations of Isaiah 5:1-13<br />

• Why did God place Israel on a fruitful hill?<br />

• Why did God’s attitude change towards Israel?<br />

It was "in a very fruitful hill" that Isaiah's vineyard grew (Isaiah 5:1).<br />

Preparation of the Vineyard<br />

This has to do with those located on the _________________________. A series of low stone<br />

walls above each other, are constructed along the side of the hill, to keep the soil in place, and at the<br />

right level for growing grapes. Remains of old terraces in various places indicate that this custom has<br />

been practiced for many centuries.<br />

A hedge or wall usually built around a vineyard. An Eastern vineyard is usually surrounded with a<br />

ditch, and the earth from the digging of it is thrown along the inner side of the ditch, and upon this<br />

a fence of posts, branches, and twigs is built with thorn-branches on top. Oftentimes a wall of either<br />

stones or sun-dried mud takes the place of the fence. This serves as protection from foxes, jackals,<br />

or other animals, as well as from any thieves.<br />

Care of the Vineyard<br />

A good indication of the care required in growing a vineyard may be derived by looking at this<br />

parable as given in the book of Proverbs. "I went by the field of the slothful, and by the vineyard of<br />

the man void of understanding; and, lo, it was all grown over with thorns, and nettles had covered<br />

the face thereof, and the stone wall thereof was broken down" (Proverbs 24:30, 31). The sluggard<br />

failed to keep his vineyard-wall in repair, and he failed to keep his growing vines free of thorns and<br />

weeds. These two activities are absolutely necessary.<br />

2


Before the arrival of springtime, the keeper of the vineyard _________________________ off<br />

every superficial branch, every branch that is sickly or feeble, so that the sap may flow into the<br />

healthy ones that will bear fruit. The branch that is located nearest the trunk or root usually bears<br />

the most grapes.<br />

Jesus indicates his familiarity with the pruning of the grapevines, in his famous allegory of the vine<br />

and the branches: "I am the true vine, and my Father is the husbandman [cultivator] Every branch in<br />

me that beareth not fruit he taketh away; and every branch that beareth fruit, he purgeth [prunes] it,<br />

that it may bring forth more fruit. Now ye are clean through the word which I have spoken unto<br />

you" (John 15:1-3). In this example, it is the Word that does the pruning.<br />

Making of Grape Products<br />

The winepress of Isaiah's parable was constructed by hewing it out of rock (Isaiah 5:2). Those seen<br />

today are composed of two depressions hewn out of solid rock. The one is higher than the other<br />

one, and is also larger. The grapes are put into this one, and then trodden by the feet of men,<br />

women, and also children, usually whole families working together.<br />

Application<br />

• Verses 1-7 are rich in symbolism and history, what might the following symbols<br />

communicated about your relationship with God:<br />

◦ Fruitful hill<br />

◦ Stones<br />

◦ Choicest vine<br />

◦ Tower<br />

◦ Winepress<br />

◦ Good grapes<br />

◦ Wild grapes<br />

• What does it look and feel like to experience God’s judgment?<br />

• What does it look and feel like to experience God’s fruitfulness?<br />

3


KEYNOTES FROM MY JOURNEY<br />

Scripture(s) to Study:<br />

________________________________________<br />

________________________________________<br />

________________________________________<br />

Words I Don’t Understand<br />

________________________________________<br />

________________________________________<br />

________________________________________<br />

________________________________________<br />

Date: __________________________<br />

Key Questions Or Insights:<br />

___________________________________________<br />

___________________________________________<br />

___________________________________________<br />

___________________________________________<br />

___________________________________________<br />

___________________________________________<br />

___________________________________________<br />

___________________________________________<br />

Key Questions Or Insights:<br />

_______________________________________________________________________________________<br />

_______________________________________________________________________________________<br />

_______________________________________________________________________________________<br />

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_______________________________________________________________________________________


2 KINGS 17:5–18<br />

ASSYRIANS & BABYLONIANS<br />

Objective:<br />

• To understand the significance of the Assyrian and Babylonian exile and its connection to<br />

the origin of the!synagogue learning custom.!<br />

• To identify the relationship between the new learning custom for God’s people and the<br />

practice of New Testament worship.#<br />

5


Opening Discussion<br />

• What was the cause for Israel's Assyrian captivity?<br />

• Which of the evil acts listed seem the most egregious and offensive towards God? Why?<br />

• What does this say of God and the chain reaction of sin?<br />

Reason for Exile<br />

The defeat and deportation of Israel took place because the Israelites … sinned against God. In<br />

view of His miraculous liberating redemption of the nation from Egyptian bondage, their sin was<br />

even more serious. How ironic that the last king Hoshea had sought help from Egypt (v. 4) when<br />

724 years earlier (1446 b.c.) Israel had finally escaped from _________________________.<br />

Israel did not forsake the Lord completely but worshiped other gods (idols; cf. v. 12) also (cf. Ex.<br />

20:3). They compromised with their pagan neighbors and followed the practices of the very nations<br />

God dispossessed because of their wickedness. They followed the apostate practices which their<br />

own kings, especially Jeroboam I, had introduced into their national life. Though many of their sins<br />

were practiced secretly they were open to the Lord. After just over two centuries the<br />

_________________________ _________________________ ceased to exist as a nation (931–<br />

722 b.c.). Seven of her 20 kings were assassinated. All were judged to be evil by God.<br />

The Assyrian Are Coming<br />

Assyria was a kingdom located between the Tigris and Euphrates Rivers that dominated the ancient<br />

world from the ninth century to the seventh century B. C. Its capital was Nineveh. In stature the<br />

Assyrians were of average modern European height, and were powerfully built. Their complexion<br />

was dark, the nose prominent, the hair, eyebrows, and beard thick and bushy. They rarely<br />

intermarried with neighboring peoples.<br />

The early inhabitants of Assyria were ancient _________________________ (Gen. 10:22) who<br />

probably migrated from Babylonia. They grew powerful enough around 1300 B. C. to conquer<br />

Babylonia. For the next 700 years they were the leading power in the ancient world, with their<br />

leading rival nation, Babylon, constantly challenging them for this position.<br />

Assyria Conquers Israel<br />

• It was the Assyrians that destroyed the northern kingdom Israel who besieged Samaria and led<br />

Israel into captivity.<br />

• After defeating the northern kingdom of Israel in 722 B. C., the Assyrians carried away thousand<br />

s of Israelites and resettled them in other parts of the Assyrian Empire.<br />

• This was a blow from which the nation of Israel never recovered. The ten tribes that were taken<br />

to Assyria became the ten lost tribes, for they have never again emerged in world history.<br />

Because of the cruelty and paganism of the Assyrians, the Hebrew people harbored deep-seated<br />

hostility against this nation. This attitude is revealed clearly in the Book<br />

of _________________________. When God instructed Jonah to preach to Nineveh, the capital<br />

6


of Assyria, Jonah refused and went in the opposite direction. After he finally went to Nineveh, the<br />

prophet was disappointed with God because He spared the city.<br />

Assyrian policy was to deport conquered peoples to other lands within the empire, to destroy their s<br />

ense of _________________________, and break any pride or hope of rebellion and replace them<br />

with strangers from far away.<br />

• Assyrians were great warriors. Most nations at that time period were looters, building their state<br />

by robbing other nations.<br />

• Assyria was the most ferocious of them all. Their very name became a byword for cruelty and at<br />

rocity.<br />

• They skinned their prisoners alive, and cut off various body parts to inspire terror in their enemi<br />

es.<br />

• There is records of Assyrian officials pulling out tongues and displaying mounds of human skull<br />

s all to bring about stark horror and wealthy tribute from surrounding nations.<br />

• Nowhere are the pages of history more bloody than in the records of their wars.<br />

Assyria took the educated, leading people from the Northern Kingdom and replaced them with<br />

populations from other countries they had conquered (2 Kings 17:24). They had to send some<br />

priests back to the area to teach the people the religious traditions of the God of the land (2 Kings<br />

17:27–28). Gradually, a mixed population emerged (Ezra 10). Still, a faithful remnant attempted to<br />

maintain worship of Yahweh near Shechem, producing eventually the<br />

_________________________ community.<br />

Assyrian Worship<br />

The religion of the Assyrians, much like that of the Babylonians, emphasized worship of nature.<br />

They believed every object of nature was possessed by a spirit. The chief god was Asshur. All other<br />

primary gods whom they worshiped were related to the objects of nature. The pagan worship of the<br />

Assyrians was vehemently condemned by several prophets of the Old Testament (Is. 10:5; Ezek.<br />

16:28; Hos. 8.9)<br />

Assyria was a world empire for about 300 years under several warrior kings some of which wielded<br />

Assyria into the best fighting machine of the ancient world. Finally the brutal empire fell in 607 B.C.<br />

giving way to the Babylonians.<br />

The Rise Of Babylon<br />

By 612 b.c. Assyria’s chief cities had fallen:<br />

◦ Asshur, then the religious center; Nineveh, the administrative center; and Nimrod,<br />

the military headquarters. The last light of Assyria was snuffed out by Nabopolassar<br />

in 609 b.c.<br />

◦ Under his son Nebuchadnezzar II (604–562 b.c.), Babylonia fell heir to the Assyrian<br />

empire. For a moment in history, Babylonia was master of the whole Near East.<br />

◦ Nebuchadnezzar brought about the end of the Hebrew kingdom of<br />

_________________________ a n d t h e d e s t r u c t i o n o f<br />

7


_________________________ in 586 b.c., deporting part of its population to<br />

Babylonia in the event referred to as the exile (2 Kgs 24:1–25:21).<br />

• Under Nebuchadnezzar, Babylon became the fabled city of luxury and splendor with which<br />

its name is commonly associated.<br />

<strong>Jewish</strong> Life In Babylon<br />

• Life in the Exile meant life in five different geographical areas:<br />

_________________________, _________________________,<br />

_________________________, _________________________, and Egypt.<br />

• The center of <strong>Jewish</strong> life shifted to Babylon under such leaders as Ezekiel. Babylon even<br />

recognized the royal family of Judah as seen in 2 Kings 25:27.<br />

• Apparently religious leaders like Ezekiel were able to lead religious meetings (Ezek. 8:1; cp.<br />

Ezra 8:15–23).<br />

• Correspondence continued between those in Judah and those in exile (Jer. 29), and <strong>Jewish</strong><br />

elders gave leadership to the exiles (Jer. 29:1; Ezek. 8:1; 14:1; 20:1).<br />

• They laughed at Babylonian gods as sticks of wood left over from the fire (Isa. 44:9–17;<br />

45:9–10; 46:1–2, 6–7; Jer. 1:16; Ezek. 20:29–32).<br />

A New Way Of Learning<br />

• The destruction of the _________________________ during the <strong>Jewish</strong> exile led the Jews<br />

to emphasize the study and application of Old Testament law.<br />

• This attitude contributed to the establishment of the _________________________ as a<br />

pillar of <strong>Jewish</strong> practice. The exact time of the origin of the synagogue is uncertain, but<br />

many scholars have suggested that synagogues first appeared during exilic or post-exilic<br />

gatherings of Jews to read and study the law.<br />

• The synagogue served as the center of religious, social, and educational life for the <strong>Jewish</strong><br />

community. Jews gathered _________________________ for the study of the law and the<br />

worship of Jehovah. During the week _________________________ were instructed in the<br />

<strong>Jewish</strong> faith and learned to read and write. The synagogue also served as a center for<br />

receiving offerings for the poor and administering charity to the needy.<br />

The elders had general responsibilities for spiritual care of the congregation.<br />

• Perhaps the official of Luke 4:20 who received the scroll of Scripture from Jesus held this<br />

office. The use of the term _________________________ as a reference to an ordained<br />

scholar belongs to the period after the destruction of the temple in a.d. 70.<br />

• The synagogue was the place where Jews gathered for _________________________ and<br />

_________________________ in the New Testament period. The Greek word synagōgē<br />

means “_________________________” and can refer simply to the gathering of people<br />

itself (James 2:2) or to the building in which they gather (Luke 7:5).<br />

Functions of The Synagogue<br />

1. Used for community worship service and study ( a quorum of 10 adult men)<br />

8


2. House of study ( stocked with <strong>Jewish</strong> text)<br />

3. A social welfare agency ( for the needy and the poor) collecting and dispensing money<br />

4. School house for the young taught basic religious education<br />

• The synagogue building was normally a substantial stone structure, often elaborately<br />

furnished. Each synagogue had a chest containing the law scroll.<br />

• The speaker’s platform was raised, and the congregation sat on stone benches around the<br />

walls or on mats or wooden chairs in the center of the room.<br />

• To read from the scroll, the speaker stood. To preach, he sat down (Luke 4:16–20).<br />

In New Testament Times<br />

When Jesus grew up as a boy in the village of Nazareth, he no doubt attended the synagogue school.<br />

The <strong>Jewish</strong> child was sent to school in the fifth or sixth year of his life. The pupils either "stood,<br />

teacher and pupils alike, or else sat on the ground in a semicircle, facing a teacher.” Until the children<br />

were ten years of age, the Old Testament was the one text book. From ten to fifteen the traditional<br />

law was the main subject dealt with, and a study of theology as taught in the Talmud was taken up<br />

with those over fifteen years of age.<br />

Jesus regularly attended and participated in synagogue services. Paul made synagogues his initial<br />

point of contact in the cities he visited (Acts 13:5). Some early Christian worship may have taken<br />

place in the synagogue, for the Greek term translated “meeting” or “assembly” in James 2:2 may<br />

also be rendered “synagogue.” The church and the synagogue separated as it became apparent that<br />

most synagogue members rejected the gospel and resented a Christian presence.<br />

The leading object of the synagogue was not worship, but instruction. The Temple was<br />

“_________________________ _________________________” (Matthew 21:13)—the<br />

synagogue was not referred to by that name. Reading and expounding the law was done in the<br />

synagogue and, though a liturgical service was connected with these, it was not its main function.<br />

The priests had no official standing or privileges in the synagogue, though they were always honored<br />

when present. The leader of the congregation might ask any suitable person to address the<br />

assembly. Persons who were known as learned men, or as expounders of religious faith, were<br />

allowed to speak.<br />

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KEYNOTES FROM MY JOURNEY<br />

Scripture(s) to Study:<br />

________________________________________<br />

________________________________________<br />

________________________________________<br />

Words I Don’t Understand<br />

________________________________________<br />

________________________________________<br />

________________________________________<br />

________________________________________<br />

Date: __________________________<br />

Key Questions Or Insights:<br />

___________________________________________<br />

___________________________________________<br />

___________________________________________<br />

___________________________________________<br />

___________________________________________<br />

___________________________________________<br />

___________________________________________<br />

___________________________________________<br />

Key Questions Or Insights:<br />

_______________________________________________________________________________________<br />

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ISAIAH 45:1-7<br />

Medes & Persians<br />

Objective:<br />

• To understand the significance of the Medes and Persians in their connection to the origin<br />

of the feast of deliverance.<br />

• To identify the zeal for God’s word associated with His undeniable victories.<br />

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THERE’S A NEW SHERIFF IN TOWN:<br />

The Medo-Persians, led by _________________________. invaded Babylonia from the east in June<br />

of 539 B.C. and captured its capital, Babylon, in July of the same year. In biblical chronology, this<br />

o c c u r r e d n e a r t h e e n d o f t h e B a b y l o n i a n e x i l e . W i t h i n a s h o r t<br />

time, _________________________ became a trusted advisor to the new Medo-Persian Empire.<br />

This kingdom of the Medes and the Persians was later ruled by Artaxerxes II, or Ahasuerus, who<br />

married _________________________.<br />

• Why did God raise up the Medes? Jeremiah 51:11<br />

• How did God do it? Daniel 5:30–31<br />

THE END OF EXILE<br />

• Ezra and others recorded that “in the first year of Cyrus king of Persia [539 B.C.], in order<br />

to fulfill the word of the Lord spoken by Jeremiah, the Lord moved the heart of<br />

Cyrus” (Ezra 1:1) , a n d C y r u s a l l o w e d a l l t h e Je w s t o r e t u r n t o<br />

_________________________.<br />

• Not only did Cyrus release the Jews, but he also returned the stolen temple articles and paid<br />

for the Jews’ rebuilding efforts from the royal treasury (Ezra 6:4-5).<br />

• This was a monumental time in Israel’s history, as _________________________ and the<br />

_________________________ were rebuilt and the Law was reinstituted.<br />

DANIEL IN THE LION’S DEN<br />

• Daniel was prominent in the Medo-Persian Empire and a trusted advisor to King Darius.<br />

• However, after being placed as head of the satraps (governors, of sorts), Daniel was hated<br />

by some of them for his quick ascent.<br />

• They laid a legal trap for Daniel that should have gotten him killed, for he was thrown into<br />

the infamous _________________________.<br />

• He survived, by God’s intervention, and he continued to prophesy, rule, and provide counsel<br />

in that foreign land (Daniel 6:28).<br />

A ZEAL FOR GOD’S WORD<br />

• Ezra 7:10<br />

◦ For Ezra had prepared his heart to seek the Law of the Lord, and to do it, and to<br />

teach statutes and ordinances in Israel.<br />

• Nehemiah 8:8<br />

◦ So they read distinctly from the book, in the Law of God; and they gave the sense,<br />

and helped them to understand the reading.<br />

THE FEAST OF DELIVERANCE (JEWISH MARDI-GRAS)<br />

The Persian empire of the 4th century BCE extended over 127 lands, and all the Jews were its<br />

subjects. When King Ahasuerus had his wife, Queen Vashti, executed for failing to follow his orders,<br />

h e o r c h e s t r a t e d a b e a u t y p a g e a n t t o f i n d a n e w q u e e n . A J e w i s h<br />

girl, _________________________, found favor in his eyes and became the new queen—though<br />

she refused to divulge the identity of her nationality.<br />

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Meanwhile, the anti-Semitic Haman was appointed prime minister of the empire. Mordechai, the<br />

leader of the Jews (and Esther’s cousin), defied the king’s orders and refused to bow to Haman.<br />

Haman was incensed, and convinced the king to issue a decree ordering the extermination of all the<br />

Jews on the 13th of Adar—a date chosen by a lottery Haman made.<br />

Mordechai galvanized all the Jews, convincing them to repent, fast and pray to God. Meanwhile,<br />

Esther asked the king and Haman to join her for a feast. At the feast, Esther revealed to the king her<br />

<strong>Jewish</strong> identity. Haman was hanged, Mordechai was appointed prime minister in his stead, and a new<br />

decree was issued—granting the Jews the right to defend themselves against their enemies.<br />

• On the 13th of Adar, the Jews mobilized and killed many of their enemies.<br />

• On the 14th of Adar, they rested and celebrated.- Esther 9:26–32<br />

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KEYNOTES FROM MY JOURNEY<br />

Scripture(s) to Study:<br />

________________________________________<br />

________________________________________<br />

________________________________________<br />

Words I Don’t Understand<br />

________________________________________<br />

________________________________________<br />

________________________________________<br />

________________________________________<br />

Date: __________________________<br />

Key Questions Or Insights:<br />

___________________________________________<br />

___________________________________________<br />

___________________________________________<br />

___________________________________________<br />

___________________________________________<br />

___________________________________________<br />

___________________________________________<br />

___________________________________________<br />

Key Questions Or Insights:<br />

_______________________________________________________________________________________<br />

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DANIEL 11:1-4<br />

ALEXANDER & THE GREEK EMPIRE<br />

Objective:<br />

• To identify the key figures prophesied by Daniel who would later set the foundation for the<br />

gospel of Christ.<br />

• To discover the influence of the Grecian empire on <strong>Jewish</strong> and Christian Culture<br />

15


Alexander the Great<br />

Alexander the Great, 336 B.C., at the age of ________, assumed command of the Greek army, and,<br />

like a meteor, swept eastward over the lands that had been under the dominion of Egypt, Assyria,<br />

Babylon, and Persia.<br />

By 331 B.C. the whole world lay at his feet. On his invasion of Palestine, 332 B.C., he showed great<br />

consideration to the Jews, spared Jerusalem, and offered immunities to the Jews to settle in<br />

Alexandria.<br />

Hellenism and the Jews<br />

When Alexander the great defeated the _________________________ Empire and conquered the<br />

whole world it changed everything. When he conquered a city he would not just leave it in ruins, he<br />

would _________________________ it. Hellenization means that the Greeks would bring in their<br />

way of life into their newly conquered territories.<br />

They would Hellenize everything, new libraries, new buildings, new laws, new military, new<br />

government, and an entirely new way of living, and the language of Greece "koine" would be on<br />

everyone's tongue quickly because of its amazing ease of reproduction.<br />

• The whole world was united by the simplicity of a common language known as koine Greek.<br />

• Little did the world know that it was God's purpose to use Hellenism to prepare the world<br />

for the gospel of Jesus Christ which would come a few centuries later.<br />

• Not even the greatest mastermind could have devised such a plan, let alone bring it to<br />

fruition with a man who was a military genius and statesman like Alexander the Great.<br />

Pharisees Rose to Distinction<br />

• As Hellenism was spreading the Greek way of life was permeating Judaism in a major way.<br />

• Most of the common people became very Grecianized, and the scribes and religious leaders<br />

separated themselves even more as the pillars of Judaism.<br />

• The beginning of Orthodox Judaism was forming within interesting new approach to<br />

interpreting Scripture because of the influence of Hellenism.<br />

On Alexander's death his empire was divided to four of his generals, the two eastern sections were<br />

taken by - Syria by Seleucus, and Egypt by Ptolemy. Israel, lying between Syria and Egypt, went first<br />

to Syria, but shortly after was assessed to Egypt (301 B.C.), and remained under the control of<br />

Egypt until 198 B.C.<br />

Antiochus Epiphanes (Dan. 11:29-35)<br />

Antiochus’ rise to power corresponded to the following predictions by Daniel:<br />

1. Antiochus would come to power after the untimely death of his predecessor.<br />

2. He was a contemptible person, thus he was called by many Antiochus Epimanes (i.e.,<br />

_________________________) instead of his preferred appellation Epiphanes (i.e.,<br />

_________________________.<br />

3. He was not an heir to the throne, indeed to him “royal majesty has not been given.”<br />

4. Antiochus did not lead a bloody coup, but he obtained “the kingdom by flatteries.”<br />

Antiochus Epiphanes (175-164 B.C.), was violently bitter against the Jews and forced them to<br />

convert entirely to Hellenism.<br />

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1. The hostilities of Antiochus against Israel would happen during more than one Egyptian<br />

_________________________ (Dan. 11:29-30).<br />

2. Antiochus would take military control of Jerusalem, and especially the<br />

_________________________: “Forces from him shall appear …” (v. 31a).<br />

3. He would cause the _________________________ to cease: “Forces from him shall appear<br />

and profane the temple and fortress, and shall take away the regular burnt offering” (v. 31).<br />

4. He would “set up the _________________________ that makes desolate” (v. 31b).<br />

5. Antiochus would prefer and protect those who “violate the covenant” (v. 32a).<br />

6. The righteous would suffer intense _________________________ (vv. 33-34a).<br />

7. There would be _________________________ among the righteous (v. 34b).<br />

8. These events would result in a _________________________ of the people of God (v.<br />

35).<br />

He made a furious and determined effort to exterminate the Jews and their religion.<br />

• He devastated Jerusalem (168 B.C.), defiled the Temple, offered a pig on its altar, erected an<br />

altar to Jupiter, prohibited Temple worship, made circumcision a capital offense, sold<br />

thousands of <strong>Jewish</strong> families into slavery, destroyed all copies of Scripture that could be<br />

found, slaughtered everyone discovered in possession of such copies, and resorted to every<br />

conceivable torture to force Jews to renounce their religion.<br />

• The prophet Daniel predicted the coming of Antiochus Epiphanes and pictured him as a<br />

smaller type of the Antichrist who would come in the end times.<br />

• The events of Antiochus Epiphanes led to the Maccabean revolt, one of the most heroic<br />

feats in all of history.<br />

Greek Culture And The Church<br />

The Influence of Greek Culture<br />

• Acts 21:37 - And as Paul was to be led into the castle, he said unto the chief captain, May I<br />

speak unto thee? Who said, Canst thou speak _________________________?<br />

• Acts 16:1 - Then came he to Derbe and Lystra: and, behold, a certain disciple was there,<br />

named Timotheus, the son of a certain woman, which was a Jewess, and believed; but his<br />

father [was] a _________________________:Mark 7:26 - The woman was<br />

a _________________________, a Syrophenician by nation; and she besought him that he<br />

would cast forth the devil out of her daughter.<br />

• Galatians 3:28 - There is neither Jew nor _________________________, there is neither<br />

bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus.Romans<br />

10:12 - For there is no difference between the Jew and the _________________________:<br />

for the same Lord over all is rich unto all that call upon him.<br />

The Most Dangerous Influence<br />

_________________________ was one of the most dangerous influences of Greek thought on<br />

Christianity concerned Greek beliefs about the physical and the spiritual realms. Greek philosophy<br />

taught that the earth was created not by the Most High God, but by an underling, several levels<br />

below, who imbued the physical nature of his creation with imperfection. The physical was seen as<br />

evil. Only the spirit was good. These beliefs manifested in several ways. If the physical is evil, then<br />

Jesus cannot be fully man and fully God; He either only appears to be physical, or He cannot be the<br />

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Son of God. Similarly, if the physical is evil, there is no resurrection from the dead. Instead,<br />

"salvation" is reuniting in spirit with the High God.<br />

Rejection of Monotheism<br />

The Christian-Judeo belief in one God was completely foreign to the Greeks. They were fairly<br />

accepting of other religions, however, wishing not to destroy nations, like the Assyrians did, but<br />

incorporate them. The <strong>Jewish</strong>, and later Christian, insistence on keeping their religion pure amused<br />

and sometimes angered the Greeks. It was the cause of the Maccabean Revolts, the destruction of<br />

Jerusalem in A.D. 70, and the martyrdom of many Christians. Hellenism did not infiltrate the<br />

Christian belief of monotheism, but it did reject it, and Christians (and Jews) paid a heavy price for<br />

their faithfulness.<br />

18


KEYNOTES FROM MY JOURNEY<br />

Scripture(s) to Study:<br />

________________________________________<br />

________________________________________<br />

________________________________________<br />

Words I Don’t Understand<br />

________________________________________<br />

________________________________________<br />

________________________________________<br />

________________________________________<br />

Date: __________________________<br />

Key Questions Or Insights:<br />

___________________________________________<br />

___________________________________________<br />

___________________________________________<br />

___________________________________________<br />

___________________________________________<br />

___________________________________________<br />

___________________________________________<br />

___________________________________________<br />

Key Questions Or Insights:<br />

_______________________________________________________________________________________<br />

_______________________________________________________________________________________<br />

_______________________________________________________________________________________<br />

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Key Questions Or Insights:<br />

______________________________________________________________________________________<br />

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2 CHRONICLES 14:2-15<br />

The Maccabees<br />

Objective:<br />

• To identify the key figures prophesied by Daniel who would later set the foundation for<br />

the gospel of Christ.<br />

21


The Land of Israel was sandwiched between two of the rivals and, for the next 125 years, Seleucids<br />

and Ptolemies battled for this prize. Israel fell under the control of the Seleucids in approximately<br />

200 BC. During this time, many Jews began to adopt a Greek lifestyle and culture in order to gain<br />

_________________________ and _________________________ influence. They avoided<br />

circumcision and advocated abolishing <strong>Jewish</strong> religious laws.<br />

• To Antiochus, the office of high priest was merely a local appointee within his realm, while<br />

to orthodox Jews the high priest was divinely appointed. Antiochus appointed a high priest<br />

named Jason, a Hellenized Jew, who promptly abolished the <strong>Jewish</strong> theocracy,<br />

• A brief <strong>Jewish</strong> rebellion only hardened his views and led him to outlaw central tenets of<br />

Judaism such as the Sabbath and circumcision, and defile the holy Temple by erecting an<br />

altar to the god Zeus, allowing the sacrifice of pigs, and opening the shrine to non-Jews.<br />

The <strong>Jewish</strong> Hammer<br />

Though many Jews had been seduced by the virtues of _________________________, the<br />

extreme measures adopted by Antiochus helped unite the people.<br />

• In a small, rural village called Modein, an elderly priest named Mattathias lived with his five<br />

sons—John, Simon, Judas, Eleazer, and Jonathan.<br />

• In 167 BC Antiochus sent some of his soldiers to Modein to compel the <strong>Jewish</strong> inhabitants<br />

to make sacrifices to the pagan gods.<br />

• When the Greek official tried to force a priest named Mattathias to make a sacrifice to a<br />

pagan god. Fearing violence against the people for Mattathias’ refusal, another Jew<br />

volunteered to offer the sacrifices to the pagan gods in the place of Mattathias, but<br />

Mattathias killed this <strong>Jewish</strong> man, as well as the soldiers of the king.<br />

• Predictably, Antiochus began to retaliate, but in 167 BC the Jews rose up behind Mattathias<br />

and his five sons and fought for their liberation.<br />

The family of Mattathias became known as the Maccabees, from the Hebrew word for<br />

"_________________________," because they were said to strike hammer blows against their<br />

enemies.<br />

Jews refer to the Maccabees, but the family is more commonly known as the Hasmoneans.<br />

• Mattathias died in 166 BC, just as the revolt was gaining momentum, leaving his son<br />

_________________________ in charge of the rebel forces. Even though greatly<br />

outnumbered, Judas and his rebels defeated general after general in battle, winning decisive<br />

victories against overwhelming odds.<br />

• Like other rulers before him, Antiochus underestimated the will and strength of his <strong>Jewish</strong><br />

adversaries and sent a small force to put down the rebellion. When that was annihilated, he<br />

led a more powerful army into battle.<br />

• This powerful army, 60,000 infantrymen and 5,000 cavalry, came against Judas, who fought<br />

with a force of only 10,000 poorly equipped rebels, in the town of Emmaus. He prayed to<br />

God for strength and deliverance (1 Maccabees 4:30–33), and God answered and they won a<br />

huge victory over the Seleucid army.<br />

• In 164 BC, Jerusalem was recaptured by the Maccabees and the Temple purified, an event<br />

that gave birth to the holiday of Chanukah.<br />

22


Jews Regain Their Independence<br />

It took more than two decades of fighting before the Maccabees forced the Seleucids to retreat from<br />

the Land of Israel. By this time Antiochus had died and his successor agreed to the Jews' demand<br />

for independence. In the year 142 BC, after more than 500 years of subjugation, the Jews were again<br />

masters of their own fate.<br />

By the end of the war, _________________________ was the only one of the five sons of<br />

Mattathias to survive and he ushered in an 80-year period of <strong>Jewish</strong> independence in Judea, as<br />

the Land of Israel was now called. The kingdom regained boundaries not far short<br />

of Solomon's realm and <strong>Jewish</strong> life flourished.<br />

The Maccabees claimed not only the throne of Judah, but also the post of High Priest. This<br />

assertion of religious authority conflicted with the tradition of the priests coming from the<br />

descendants of Moses' brother Aaron and the tribe of Levi.<br />

It did not take long for rival factions to develop and threaten the unity of the kingdom. Ultimately,<br />

internal divisions and the appearance of yet another imperial power were to put an end to <strong>Jewish</strong><br />

independence in the Land of Israel for nearly two centuries.<br />

A New Custom<br />

Hanukkah/The Feast of Dedication or Feast of Lights<br />

The Maccabees cleansed the Temple and re-dedicated it on the 25th day of the <strong>Jewish</strong> month of<br />

Kislev. When it came time to re-light the Menorah (the multi-branched lampstand), they searched<br />

the entire Temple, but only one small jar of oil bearing the pure seal of the High Priest could be<br />

found. Miraculously, the small jar of oil burned for eight days, until a new supply of oil could be<br />

brought. From then on, Jews everywhere have observed a holiday for eight days in honor of this<br />

historic victory and the miracle of the oil. The observance of Chanukah features the lighting of a<br />

special Chanukkah menorah with eight branches (plus a helper candle), adding one new candle each<br />

night.<br />

• At that time the Feast of the Dedication took place at Jerusalem; it was winter, and Jesus was<br />

walking in the temple in the portico of Solomon” (John 10:22-23).<br />

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KEYNOTES FROM MY JOURNEY<br />

Scripture(s) to Study:<br />

________________________________________<br />

________________________________________<br />

________________________________________<br />

Words I Don’t Understand<br />

________________________________________<br />

________________________________________<br />

________________________________________<br />

________________________________________<br />

Date: __________________________<br />

Key Questions Or Insights:<br />

___________________________________________<br />

___________________________________________<br />

___________________________________________<br />

___________________________________________<br />

___________________________________________<br />

___________________________________________<br />

___________________________________________<br />

___________________________________________<br />

Key Questions Or Insights:<br />

_______________________________________________________________________________________<br />

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MATTHEW 22:23; MARK 12:18-27; ACTS 23:8<br />

The <strong>Jewish</strong> Sects<br />

Objective:<br />

• To identify the political groups that found prominence during and after the period of <strong>Jewish</strong><br />

independence.<br />

• To compare and contrast the differences between each group's ideologies.<br />

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The Pharisees<br />

The most important of the four groups were the Pharisees because they are the spiritual fathers of<br />

modern Judaism. Though the term Pharisee is often used in a derogatory sense today, the Pharisees<br />

in New Testament times were deeply committed to moral behavior and a scholarly approach to the<br />

Scriptures. Their main distinguishing characteristic was a belief in an<br />

_________________________ that God gave to Moses at Sinai along with<br />

the _________________________.<br />

The Torah, or Written Law, was similar to the U.S. Constitution in the sense that it set down a series<br />

of laws that were open to interpretation. The Pharisees believed that God also gave Moses the<br />

knowledge of what these laws meant and how they should be applied. This oral tradition was<br />

written down roughly three centuries later in what is known as the _________________________.<br />

The Pharisees also maintained that an _________________________ existed and that God<br />

punished the wicked and rewarded the righteous in the world to come. They also believed in a<br />

messiah who would herald an era of world peace. Jesus not only criticized the Pharisees for their<br />

hollow legalism (Matthew 23:2–7) but also for distorting the commandments of God by way of<br />

their traditions (Mark 7:8–9).<br />

The Sadducees<br />

The Sadducees were elitists who wanted to maintain the priestly lineage, but they were also liberal in<br />

their willingness to incorporate _________________________ into their lives, something the<br />

Pharisees opposed. In fact, the Sadducees’ primary interest was _________________________,<br />

which made them useful conduits for Roman authority.<br />

They denied any resurrection of the dead (Matthew 22:23; Mark 12:18-27; Acts 23:8). They denied<br />

any afterlife, holding that the soul perished at death, and therefore denying any penalty or reward<br />

after the earthly life. They denied the existence of a spiritual world, i.e.,<br />

_________________________ and _________________________ (Acts 23:8). The main focus<br />

of Sadducee life was rituals associated with the Temple. Annas and Caiaphas, mentioned in the New<br />

Testament (Luke 3:2), were Sadducees.<br />

The <strong>Jewish</strong> Supreme Court<br />

These two "parties" served in the Great _________________________, a kind of <strong>Jewish</strong> Supreme<br />

Court made up of ________ members whose responsibility was to interpret civil and religious laws.<br />

The earliest record of a Sanhedrin is by Josephus who wrote of a political Sanhedrin convened by<br />

the Romans in 57 B.C. Hellenistic sources generally depict the Sanhedrin as a political and judicial<br />

council headed by the country’s ruler.<br />

The Great Sanhedrin met daily during the daytime, and did not meet on the Sabbath, festivals or<br />

festival eves. It was the final authority on <strong>Jewish</strong> law and any scholar who went against its decisions<br />

was put to death as a (rebellious elder). The Sanhedrin was led by a president called the nasi<br />

("prince") and a vice president ("father of the court”). The other 69 sat in a semicircle facing the<br />

leaders.<br />

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The Sanhedrin judged accused lawbreakers, but could not initiate arrests. It required a minimum of<br />

_________ witnesses to convict a suspect. There were no attorneys. Instead, the accusing witness<br />

stated the offense in the presence of the accused and the accused could call witnesses on his own<br />

behalf. The court questioned the accused, the accusers and the defense witnesses.<br />

In the New Testament, the Sanhedrin is best known for their part in the series of mock trials that<br />

resulted in the crucifixion of Jesus. The Sanhedrin began with an informal examination of Jesus<br />

before Annas, the acting high priest (John 18:12-14, 19-23), followed by a formal session before the<br />

entire Sanhedrin (Matthew 26:57-68). There the decision was made to turn Jesus over the Roman<br />

authorities to be tried and crucified.<br />

The Essenes<br />

A third faction, the Essenes, emerged out of disgust with the other two. This sect believed the<br />

others had corrupted the city and the Temple. They moved out of Jerusalem and lived a monastic<br />

life in the desert, adopting strict dietary laws and a commitment to celibacy.<br />

In broad strokes, the Essenes could be considered a _________________________ sect. They felt<br />

the end times were imminent, and it was their duty to patiently, passively await the apocalypse. The<br />

Essenes produced written materials found millennia later, known as the<br />

_________________________ Scrolls. These critically important documents shows how carefully<br />

and accurately the Old Testament Scriptures had been preserved over the centuries.<br />

The Zealots<br />

On the other side of the doomsday coin were the Zealots, by far the smallest of the four groups.<br />

The word zealot derives from the Greek zelotes, meaning “emulator or zealous follower.” However,<br />

the Zealots believed their actions would directly influence when and how this doomsday occurred.<br />

Specifically, they believed they were called to commit acts of violence against the Roman occupiers<br />

and to incite others to revolution. Theologically, Zealots were all but identical to the Pharisees,<br />

except for their anti-Roman militancy. This view not only brought them into conflict with the<br />

Roman-friendly _________________________, but it accelerated Roman aggression against Jews,<br />

culminating in the destruction of the temple. In the New Testament, one of the disciples of Jesus<br />

Christ was named _________________________ the Zealot (Matthew 10:4; Mark 3:18; Luke<br />

6:15; Acts 1:13)<br />

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KEYNOTES FROM MY JOURNEY<br />

Scripture(s) to Study:<br />

________________________________________<br />

________________________________________<br />

________________________________________<br />

Words I Don’t Understand<br />

________________________________________<br />

________________________________________<br />

________________________________________<br />

________________________________________<br />

Date: __________________________<br />

Key Questions Or Insights:<br />

___________________________________________<br />

___________________________________________<br />

___________________________________________<br />

___________________________________________<br />

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___________________________________________<br />

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Key Questions Or Insights:<br />

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DANIEL 2:40-45<br />

THE RISE OF ROME<br />

Objective:<br />

• To identify the kind of world that allowed for such a rapid spread of the Christian faith.<br />

• To identify the historical context for the advent of Christianity and three sources of<br />

influence that came together in the Roman Empire.<br />

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Long before Antiochus Epiphanes had fulfilled the prophecies of Daniel 8:23-25 and 11:21-35, the<br />

fourth empire of Daniel’s prophecy was already in the making in the rising power of Rome. The<br />

founding of the Roman empire was the grandest political achievement ever accomplished. The<br />

conquests of Alexander the Great, Charlemagne and Napoleon seem small compared with the<br />

durable structure reared by Julius and his successor, Augustus.<br />

In one sense Julius Caesar--the most wonderful man that Rome or any other country produced--was<br />

the founder of the empire, and Augustus the founder of the republic. With the beginning of the<br />

second century b.c., the western Mediterranean became a _________________________ lake. The<br />

prophetic description of Rome as a monster with great iron teeth which trod underfoot its<br />

opponents (Daniel 7:7) was fulfilled again and again.<br />

Antiochus Epiphanes who had previously been compelled to surrender Egypt to Rome barely<br />

survived the threat of Roman domination until his death in 164 b.c., but thereafter Syria also became<br />

Roman. Everywhere as country after country fell under the heel of Rome, thousands were carried<br />

off into slavery and extreme brutality became the order of the day. The glory of Rome was built on<br />

the misery of its conquered peoples.<br />

Julius Caesar<br />

At an early period, Rome adopted a republican structure with the _________________________<br />

exercising power although all legislation had to be approved by an _________________________<br />

of the people.<br />

• The precise date at which the Roman Republic changed into the Roman Empire is disputed,<br />

with the dates of Julius Caesar's appointment as perpetual dictator.<br />

• He was recognized officially as "demigod"; temples were dedicated to his "clemency."<br />

• He encouraged the people to abdicate to him their privileges of self-government and right<br />

of election, became chief of the senate and high priest (pontifex maximus), so that he could<br />

manipulate even the will of the gods to his own purposes.<br />

Augustus Caesar<br />

Octavian (Augustus) proved the potent factor as the commonwealth sank due to civil unrest.<br />

Octavian realized that supreme power was the only possible solution. On his return to Rome he<br />

began to do over again what Caesar had done--gather into his own hands the reins of government.<br />

Under republican forms he ruled as emperor, controlling _________________________,<br />

_________________________ and the _________________________.<br />

Tiberius Ceasar<br />

Throughout the life of Jesus, Tiberius was the Emperor of Rome. Augustus was not Tiberius' true<br />

father, he was the son of Augustus' wife Livia, by her first husband. Tiberius was in power when<br />

Jesus was crucified. Tiberius died in 37 AD. The coin above was from a denarius which contained<br />

the image of Tiberius on it. The inscription calls him the divine son of Augustus Caesar, detestable<br />

to a Jew.<br />

30


The Provinces<br />

The usual fate of a country conquered by Rome was to be come a subject province, governed<br />

directly from Rome by officers sent out for that purpose.<br />

• Augustus divided the provinces into two classes -- (1) _________________________; (2)<br />

_________________________.<br />

• The provinces were heavily taxed for the benefit of Rome and her citizens.<br />

• They are said to have been better governed under the empire than under the commonwealth,<br />

and those of the emperor better than those of the senate.<br />

See: Mark 12:13-17<br />

It was during these event that Jesus was born in Bethlehem where Joseph had gone in obedience to a<br />

Roman order for registration.<br />

The Herods<br />

There are several men in the New Testament referred to as “_________________________.”<br />

• These Herods were part of a dynasty, a partly hereditary, partly appointed line of rulers over<br />

Israel during the days of the Roman Empire.<br />

• Unlike other previous kings of Israel, the Herods were appointed by the Roman emperors<br />

and the senate.<br />

• The first of the Herods is often known as “Herod the Great” and is the one who sought to<br />

kill Jesus in Matthew 2 by slaughtering all the infant boys.<br />

• This Herod also tried to enlist the wise men to reveal the whereabouts of the baby Jesus.<br />

The son of Herod the Great was Herod Antipas, who was referred to as Herod the tetrarch<br />

(Matthew 14:1; Luke 3:1).<br />

• The word tetrarch signifies that one who governs a fourth part of a kingdom.<br />

• His father Herod the Great divided his large kingdom into four parts and bequeathed them<br />

to his sons, an action confirmed by the Roman senate.<br />

• This Herod Antipas was tetrarch of Galilee, the part of the kingdom assigned to him.<br />

• He is the one Jesus was sent to during His trials and eventual crucifixion (Luke 23).<br />

• This same Herod Antipas was the Herod who had John the Baptist murdered (Matthew 14).<br />

See: Luke 3:1 - Now in the fifteenth year of the reign of Tiberius _________________________,<br />

Pontius Pilate being governor of Judaea, and Herod being tetrarch of Galilee, and his brother Philip<br />

tetrarch of Ituraea and of the region of Trachonitis, and Lysanias the tetrarch of Abilene,<br />

Pontius Pilate<br />

Pontius Pilate was the Roman _________________________ of Judea from A.D. 26-36, serving<br />

under Emperor Tiberius. He is most known for his involvement in condemning Jesus to death on a<br />

cross. John’s Gospel offers some more detail of the trial, including an additional conversation<br />

between Pilate and Jesus.<br />

Jesus acknowledges Himself as a king and claims to speak directly for the truth. Pilate responds with<br />

the famous question, “What is truth?” (John 18:38). The question intentionally communicated<br />

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multiple meanings. Here was a situation in which truth was compromised in order to condemn an<br />

innocent man. Pilate, who is supposedly seeking the truth, asks the question of the One who is<br />

Himself “the way, the truth, and the life” (John 14:6). A human judge, confused about the truth, was<br />

about to condemn the Righteous Judge of the world.<br />

“He's an on time God…"<br />

"When the fullness of time was come, God sent forth his Son." Galatians 4:4, KJV<br />

When we question God’s timing, it is often because we are looking for guidance or deliverance from<br />

a difficult situation. We can rest assured, however, that our heavenly Father knows exactly where we<br />

are in our lives at every moment. He either put us there or is allowing us to be there, all for His own<br />

perfect purpose.<br />

The first thing we need to understand about God’s timing is that it is perfect, just as all of God’s<br />

ways are perfect (Psalm 18:30; Galatians 4:4). God’s timing is never early, and it’s never been late. In<br />

fact, from before our birth until the moment we take our last earthly breath, our sovereign God is<br />

accomplishing His divine purposes in our lifetimes. He is in complete control of everything and<br />

everyone from everlasting to everlasting. No event in history has put so much as a wrinkle in the<br />

timing of God’s eternal plan, which He designed before the foundation of the world.<br />

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KEYNOTES FROM MY JOURNEY<br />

Scripture(s) to Study:<br />

________________________________________<br />

________________________________________<br />

________________________________________<br />

Words I Don’t Understand<br />

________________________________________<br />

________________________________________<br />

________________________________________<br />

________________________________________<br />

Date: __________________________<br />

Key Questions Or Insights:<br />

___________________________________________<br />

___________________________________________<br />

___________________________________________<br />

___________________________________________<br />

___________________________________________<br />

___________________________________________<br />

___________________________________________<br />

___________________________________________<br />

Key Questions Or Insights:<br />

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Key Questions Or Insights:<br />

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ACTS 2:1-13; 22-37<br />

THE JEWISH BACKGROUND OF THE<br />

EARLY CHURCH<br />

Objective:<br />

• Discover what the church looked like when it was still in touch with its <strong>Jewish</strong> roots.<br />

35


The Feast of Pentecost<br />

The festival at which this happened, the festival of Pentecost (also known as the<br />

_________________________) is one of the <strong>Jewish</strong> feasts that the <strong>Jewish</strong> people have celebrated<br />

since the time of Moses. For Judaism, Pentecost is the anniversary of the giving of the Law on<br />

_________________________. On this day they remember their incredible experience in the<br />

desert, when a thick cloud descended on Mt. Sinai with thunder and flashes of lightning and the<br />

loud blast of a trumpet (Ex. 19:18,19). No wonder God chose this day to send the<br />

_________________________ with the noise of a strong, rushing wind, and with tongues of fire<br />

resting on each one of them (Acts 2:2,3)! To the <strong>Jewish</strong> disciples of Jesus, this must have seemed<br />

like a second Sinai!<br />

<strong>Jewish</strong> Christianity<br />

Originally, there was only one kind of Christianity, and that was _________________________<br />

Christianity. That was the Christianity of Peter, Paul, James, and John. They didn’t stop being Jews<br />

when they accepted Jesus! In fact, you could say they became more <strong>Jewish</strong> than ever when they<br />

accepted Jesus as _________________________. According to their own writings, Christianity is<br />

the fulfillment of what Israel and the <strong>Jewish</strong> people are all about, it’s why God separated out<br />

_________________________ from among the peoples. It’s why God spoke to<br />

_________________________ on Mt. Sinai. It’s why God spoke through the prophets: to prepare<br />

a people for the coming of the <strong>Jewish</strong> Messiah.<br />

In the early years, they only preached the gospel to fellow Jews: “Those who were dispersed…made<br />

their way…speaking the Word to no one except to Jews alone” (Acts 11:19).<br />

For example, in Jerusalem, <strong>Jewish</strong> believers in Jesus continued to worship as Jews in the<br />

_________________________, even after the resurrection and ascension of Jesus:<br />

• Luke 24:53 "And they were constantly in the Temple, blessing God."<br />

• Acts 2:46: "Every day…spending a lot of time with one mind in the Temple"<br />

• Acts 3:1: "Peter and John were ascending into the Temple at the ninth hour, the hour of<br />

prayer"<br />

• Acts 3:11: "All the people ran together to them in the portico called Solomon’s [located in<br />

the Temple]"<br />

• Acts 5:12: "They were all with one mind in the Portico of Solomon"<br />

• Acts 5:21: "They entered about dawn into the Temple and were teaching"<br />

• Acts 5:42: "Every day…in the Temple...they did not stop teaching and telling the good news<br />

of Jesus the Messiah"<br />

They also continued to participate in _________________________ worship:<br />

• Acts 9:2: "…letters to the synagogues in Damascus, so that if he found some who were of<br />

the Way [followers of Jesus]"<br />

• Acts 22:19: "From synagogue to synagogue I was imprisoning and beating those who believe<br />

in you"<br />

• Acts 17:2: "...where a synagogue of the Jews was. But according to the custom of Paul, he<br />

went in to them"<br />

36


• James 2:2: "For if a man in shining clothes with gold rings on his fingers enters into your<br />

synagogue [this is what it clearly says in Greek, though rarely translated correctly]..."<br />

• Hebrews 10:25: "...not giving up our meeting (episynagogeen) together"<br />

The Way<br />

Do you remember the first name for Christianity used by the believers themselves?<br />

"_________________________":<br />

• Acts 9:2: "So that if he found some who were of the Way"<br />

• Acts 19:9: "But as some were becoming hardened...speaking evil of the Way"<br />

• Acts 19:23: "A commotion took place, and not a little one, concerning the Way"<br />

• Acts 22:4: "Who persecuted this Way to the death"<br />

• Acts 24:14: "According to the Way that they call a sect"<br />

• Acts 24:22: "Felix, since he understood the facts concerning the Way more accurately”<br />

• 2 Peter 2:2: "The Way of the truth will be slandered"<br />

Christianity was understood to be the way to go, the way to live your life; or you could say, rules for<br />

living. It was not so much a creed of correct beliefs, although beliefs are certainly important. Rabbis<br />

teach their students the correct way to live, the correct way to obey the Law of Moses (Halacha). In<br />

the same way, the <strong>Jewish</strong> Christians believed that their rabbi, Yeshua (Jesus), had given them the<br />

correct way to live, the correct interpretation of the Law of Moses.<br />

God’s Heartbeat beats with <strong>Jewish</strong> Blood<br />

• Israel is the focus and the heartbeat of God’s interaction with mankind, even if nearly the<br />

whole nation of Israel should turn away from God, as happened in the time of Elijah (1<br />

Kings 19;14,18). Because the true Israel is the spiritual _________________________ of<br />

the nation.<br />

• As Paul quoted Isaiah in Romans 9:27: “Though the number of the sons of Israel be as the<br />

sand of the sea, it is the remnant that will be saved.” And because of that holy remnant,<br />

Israel was and still is the apple of God’s eye.<br />

• The coming together into unity of the remnant of Israel and the Gentiles is one of the<br />

reasons Jesus died on the cross. Ephesians 2:13-16. The good news is that you and I, as<br />

Gentiles have been invited to join that remnant, and God is willing to accept us into His<br />

chosen people.<br />

The Influence of the Synagogue<br />

• On the Organizational Structure of the Church<br />

• Oral Recitation of Scripture, Tithe, Communion<br />

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KEYNOTES FROM MY JOURNEY<br />

Scripture(s) to Study:<br />

________________________________________<br />

________________________________________<br />

________________________________________<br />

Words I Don’t Understand<br />

________________________________________<br />

________________________________________<br />

________________________________________<br />

________________________________________<br />

Date: __________________________<br />

Key Questions Or Insights:<br />

___________________________________________<br />

___________________________________________<br />

___________________________________________<br />

___________________________________________<br />

___________________________________________<br />

___________________________________________<br />

___________________________________________<br />

___________________________________________<br />

Key Questions Or Insights:<br />

_______________________________________________________________________________________<br />

_______________________________________________________________________________________<br />

_______________________________________________________________________________________<br />

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JOHN 11:1-9<br />

TELLING JEWISH TIME PT. 1<br />

Objective:<br />

• To learn how <strong>Jewish</strong> biblical time is different from our current Gregorian method of<br />

keeping time.<br />

• To discover when the day, month and the calendar began for Jews.<br />

39


One of the biggest problems facing any student of the bible, especially one who is interested in the<br />

Chronology of it, is understanding the way time is computed, and arranging historical events in<br />

order. It is the problem of how to calculate biblical time. As far as calculating the hours of the day,<br />

the days of the week, and the months of the year is concerned, this is quite straightforward.<br />

• The very first word of the Torah indicates the awareness of the significance of<br />

_________________________ - "in the beginning..." (Genesis 1:1)<br />

• During Egyptian bondage, Yahweh demonstrated His power against Ra the Egyptian Sun<br />

god by causing darkness in Egypt at midday. (Ex. 10:21–29)<br />

• As a result, the very first commandment given to the children of Israel after being delivered<br />

was to sanctify the "_________________________" (Exodus 12:1-2), thereby causing the<br />

infant nation to depart from the solar tradition of the Egyptians (Ra worship) and to look to<br />

the _________________________ for a new means of reckoning time and seasons.<br />

THE DAY & TIME<br />

The Hebrew day begins at _________________________, when three stars become visible in the<br />

sky. The rabbis reasoned that the day begins at sunset based on the description of God’s activity in<br />

creation, “and the evening and the morning were the first day,” Genesis 1:5.<br />

_________________________ is sometimes defined as the late afternoon, that is, between 3:00 pm<br />

to sundown. The timing of the <strong>Jewish</strong> day, is not from midnight to midnight like our days are, but<br />

from even to even (Leviticus 23:32), or _________________________ to<br />

_________________________.<br />

The hour is calculated by taking the total time of daylight (from sunrise until sunset) of a particular<br />

day and dividing it into ______ equal parts.<br />

The Jews of Jesus’ day divided the daylight portion of the “day” into even smaller units, i.e., 4 units<br />

of 3 hours. This mode permeates the New Testament. The darkness that continued during Jesus'<br />

crucifixion “from the sixth hour until the ninth hour” (Matthew 27:45; cf. Mark 15:33) is our noon<br />

to 3:00 p.m. Though Luke probably was a non-Jew, and though the initial recipient of the book,<br />

Theophilus, very likely was also a _________________________, it nevertheless is evident that<br />

Luke used the _________________________ and not _________________________ method of<br />

counting time in Luke and Acts.<br />

Example of a day divided into two<br />

Since the <strong>Jewish</strong> day begins at sundown, you must remember that a <strong>Jewish</strong> holiday actually begins on<br />

the _________________________ before the day listed in a <strong>Jewish</strong> calendar.<br />

For example, Yom Kippur (Day of _________________________) occurs on Tishri 10, which<br />

actually begins after sundown, Tishri 9. Thus a given <strong>Jewish</strong> holiday spans two days on our<br />

Gregorian calendar. Most <strong>Jewish</strong> calendars do not indicate the previous night as part of the holiday.<br />

Observance of a holiday begins at sundown on the day before it is listed in the calendar!<br />

In the example above, Yom Kippur ( is observed both on Thursday the 2nd (after sundown) and<br />

Friday the 3rd (during daylight hours).<br />

40


They describe their time either as hours of the day, or hours of the night, and as there are twelve<br />

hours in the day (John 11:9), then there are also twelve hours in the night. As the length of the day<br />

varies, so the length of their hour varies also. In the summer when daylight is longer, there are still<br />

12 hours in the day, but each hour is _________________________ than 60 minutes. The “sixth<br />

hour of the day” does not mean 6:00 a.m. or even six 60 minute hours after sunrise, but is the 6th<br />

proportionate hour of the 12 that are counted for the day in question.<br />

So we can find various expressions in scripture, such as, "the third hour of the day." (Acts 2:15), "the<br />

ninth hour of the day" (Acts 10:3), "the same hour of the night," (Acts 16:33), and "the third hour<br />

of the night;" (Acts 23:23), which all show how the bible writers recorded their time.<br />

Application:<br />

John uses Roman time with the hours starting at 12am and 12pm as is done today. However, the<br />

other three Gospels use Hebrew (<strong>Jewish</strong>) reckoning time, beginning at sunset. This is apparent from<br />

the care with which the Gospels specify particular hours in relation to the crucifixion. Our Lord was<br />

put on the cross at 9:00am ("third hour Mark 15:25); darkness was over the land from noon until 3<br />

pm. ("sixth" till "ninth hour," Matt. 27:45-45); Mark 15:33-34; Luke 23:44). Thus here the "sixth<br />

hour" could not be Hebrew time (noon), but rather 6 Am., "Matt 27: 1-2.<br />

Class Exercise: Convert the hour into Roman Time (Our Time) using Matt. 20: 1-8<br />

• 3rd HR= ____9A_____<br />

• 6th HR= ___12P______<br />

• 9th HR= ___3P______<br />

• 11th HR= ___5P______<br />

41


MARK 16:1, ACTS 20:7, EXODUS 12:2<br />

TELLING JEWISH TIME PT. 2<br />

Objectives:<br />

• To learn how <strong>Jewish</strong> biblical time is different from our current Gregorian method of<br />

keeping time.<br />

• To discover when the day, month and the calendar began for Jews.<br />

42


INTRODUCTION<br />

If you ask someone, “what day is Christmas this year?,” they may need to look up the day in which<br />

December 25 will occur. However, the date of <strong>Jewish</strong> holidays do not change from year to year.<br />

Holidays are celebrated on the same day of the <strong>Jewish</strong> calendar every year. The reason is due to the<br />

fact that the <strong>Jewish</strong> year is not the same length as a solar year on the Gregorian (civil) calendar used<br />

by most of the western world, so the date shifts on the civil calendar.<br />

THE DAYS OF THE WEEKS<br />

As stated, the <strong>Jewish</strong> days are measured from _________________________ to<br />

_________________________ (Leviticus 23:32). Jews in modern Israel do not have any<br />

_________________________ for the days of the week like we do in those in the west, but count<br />

them as "first day", "second day", etc. This method of just numbering the days is used by God in<br />

Genesis chapter 1 where he numbers the first six days of the week (Genesis 1:5, 8, 13, 19, 23,<br />

31). Jews count the week from _________________________ to _________________________.<br />

The Sabbath or seventh day is the crown of the week; the crown of <strong>Jewish</strong> Holy Days.<br />

• In the New Testament there are more examples, but only for the day after the Sabbath.<br />

• Greek "mia ton sabbatic” is "one from the Sabbath"(Mark 16:1, Luke 24:1, John 20:1, 20:19,<br />

Acts 20:7)<br />

THE DAYS OF THE MONTH<br />

The <strong>Jewish</strong> calendar is based on _________________________, with each moon beginning with<br />

the _________________________. Towards the beginning of the moon’s cycle, it appears as a thin<br />

crescent. That is the signal for a new <strong>Jewish</strong> month. The moon grows until it is full, the middle of<br />

the month, and then it begins to wane until it cannot be seen. It remains invisible for approximately<br />

two days and then the thin crescent reappears, and the cycle begins again.<br />

• The new moon is visible only around the time of _________________________.<br />

• The first day of the month always fell on the the seventh day of the week. (Amos 8:5).<br />

Remember that all <strong>Jewish</strong> feasts day/holidays were on the _________________________<br />

day of the week.<br />

Knowing exactly when the month begins has always been important in <strong>Jewish</strong> practice, because<br />

the Torah schedules the <strong>Jewish</strong> festivals according to the days of the month.<br />

• The number of months in a year is not exact, and varies between _____ and _____ months.<br />

The months of the year are easy to calculate as the first month always starts at the beginning<br />

of the year.<br />

• Months are either _____ or _____ days, corresponding to the 29½-day lunar cycle. Years are<br />

either 12 or 13 months, corresponding to the 12.4 month solar cycle. A month of 30 days is<br />

called malei ('__________'), one of 29 days is chaser (‘_________________________').<br />

In the Torah, the months are numbered; the first is the one in which the Exodus from Egypt<br />

occurred. (Exodus 12:2). Later, names of Babylonian origin were adopted:<br />

1.<br />

— Nisan — (30 days)-Exodus 12:2 ניסן 2.<br />

days) — Iyyar — (29 אייר 3.<br />

days) — Sivan — (30 סיון 4.<br />

days) — Tammuz — (29 תמוז 43


5.<br />

days) — Av — (30 אב 6.<br />

days) — Elul — (29 אלול 7.<br />

— Tishri — (30 days)-Leviticus 23:24 תשרי 8.<br />

days) — Cheshvan — (29 or 30 חשון 9.<br />

days) — Kislev — (30 or 29 כסלו days) — Tevet — (29 טבת 10.<br />

days) — Sh'vat — (30 שבט 11.<br />

days) — Adar — (29 אדר 12.<br />

See: Nehemiah 1:1; Neh 2:1<br />

• How many months did Nehemiah wait before asking the king’s permission to rebuild the<br />

walls of Jerusalem?<br />

THE YEARS<br />

The new year begins with _________________________, the first of Tishri (although this is the<br />

seventh month), in September or early October according to the Gregorian (civil) calendar. <strong>Jewish</strong><br />

years are counted from the Creation of the world.<br />

• An ordinary year can have 353, 354 or 355 days.<br />

• A lunar year of 354 days is about 11 days shorter than the solar year, i.e. one revolution of<br />

the earth around the sun, which corresponds to the cycle of the seasons is 365 days.<br />

• If the <strong>Jewish</strong> calendar were based exclusively on the lunar year, Passover (15 Nisan) would<br />

fall in the spring in one year, in the winter a few years later, in the autumn, then in the<br />

summer and after about 33 years, in the spring again.<br />

• The Torah says that Passover must be celebrated in the spring, (Leviticus 23:5), so the<br />

average length of the <strong>Jewish</strong> year must be adjusted to the solar year.<br />

• This is achieved by adding an entire month about every three years.<br />

• Since the years were numbered, every seventh year was a Sabbatical year (Lev. 25:2-5), and<br />

after seven cycles, a _________________________ Year was to be observed (Lev. 25:8-17).<br />

• Jubilee deals largely with land, property, and property rights.<br />

• According to Leviticus, slaves and prisoners would be _________________________,<br />

debts would be _________________________, and the mercies of God would be<br />

_________________________.<br />

44


APPENDIX<br />

TOOL FOR THE JOURNEY<br />

FOUR THOUSAND YEAR OF JEWISH HISTORY AT A GLANCE<br />

JEWISH CALENDAR DETAILS<br />

45


Four thousand years of <strong>Jewish</strong> history at a glance. Plus a bibliography of the<br />

course.<br />

by Rabbi Ken Spiro<br />

<strong>Jewish</strong> History Timeline<br />

HEBREW<br />

YEAR<br />

BEFORE<br />

COMMON<br />

ERA (BCE)<br />

Day 6 3761 Creation of Adam<br />

930 2830 Death of Adam<br />

1056 2704 Birth of Noah<br />

1656 2104 The Flood<br />

1948 1812 Birth of Abraham<br />

1996 1764 Tower of Babel; dispersion of mankind<br />

2018 1742 Covenant between God and Abraham<br />

2048 1712 Birth of Isaac<br />

2108 1652 Birth of Esau and Jacob<br />

2216 1544 Joseph sold into slavery by his brothers<br />

2238 1522 Jacob and his family move to Egypt<br />

2332 1428 Beginning of Egyptian slavery<br />

2368 1392 Birth of Moses<br />

2448 1312 Exodus from Egypt;<br />

Jews receive the Torah at Mount Sinai<br />

2488 1272 Joshua leads Jews into the Promised Land<br />

2488 1272 Time of Shoftim (Judges) begins<br />

2636 1124 Deborah judges Israel<br />

2813 947 Samson judges Israel<br />

2881 879 Prophet Samuel anoints Saul as king of Israel<br />

2883 877 Prophet Samuel anoints David as king of<br />

Israel<br />

1


HEBREW<br />

YEAR<br />

COMMON<br />

ERA (CE)<br />

2924 836 King Solomon begins his rule<br />

2928 832 Construction of First Temple begins<br />

2935 825 First Temple inaugurated by King Solomon<br />

2964 796 The Kingdom of Israel splits<br />

3143 617 Time of Prophet Isaiah begins<br />

3205 555 Exile of the Ten Tribes by the Assyrian Empire<br />

3213 547 Sennacharib at gates of Jerusalem<br />

3298 462 Time of Prophet Jeremiah begins<br />

3338 422 First Temple destroyed by the Babylonians<br />

3390 370 Persian ruler Cyrus permits the return of Jews to Israel<br />

3405 355 Purim victory<br />

3408 352 Construction of Second Temple<br />

3413 347 Time of the Men of the Great Assembly (410-312<br />

BCE)<br />

3429 331 Alexander the Great reaches Jerusalem<br />

3448 312 Era of prophets ends with death of Simon<br />

HaTzaddik<br />

3500 260 Period of Zugot (Pairs) begins<br />

3515 245 Torah (Seputagint) translated into Greek<br />

3622 138 Maccabee Revolt begins<br />

3625 135 Miracle of Chanukah<br />

Hasmonean rule begins<br />

3697 63 Roman general Pompeii enters Jerusalem<br />

3728 32 Time of Hillel and Shammai<br />

3742 18 Herod the Great renovates the Second Temple<br />

3790 30 Death of Jesus Beginnings<br />

of Christianity<br />

3826 66 Great Revolt of the Jews begins<br />

3830 70 Second Temple destroyed by the Romans<br />

2


Hebrew for Christians<br />

The <strong>Jewish</strong> Calendar<br />

The <strong>Jewish</strong> Calendar -<br />

Mindfulness of the Divine Rhythm<br />

To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven<br />

(Eccl 3:1)<br />

Introduction<br />

The very first word of the Torah indicates the awareness of the significance of time - “in the<br />

beginning...” (Genesis 1:1), and according to Rabbinic tradition, the very first commandment<br />

given to the children of Israel after being delivered from Egypt was to sanctify the “New<br />

Moon” (Exodus 12:1-2), thereby causing the fledgling nation to depart from the solar<br />

tradition of the Egyptians (Ra worship) and to look to the moon for a new means of<br />

reckoning time and seasons.<br />

The Hebrew lunar calendar is “set” differently than the solar calendar. The day begins at<br />

sundown; the climactic day of the week is Shabbat - the seventh day of the week; the moon<br />

and its phases in the night sky are the timepiece for the months, and the seasons of the<br />

year are marked with special festivals or mo’edim (appointed times). Even the years are<br />

numbered: every seventh year was sh’mitah - a Sabbatical year (Lev. 25:2-5), and after seven<br />

cycles of sh’mitah the Yovel, or Jubilee Year was to be observed (Lev. 25:8-17). Indeed,<br />

according to the <strong>Jewish</strong> sages, the history of the world may be understood as seven 1,000<br />

year “days,” corresponding to the seven days of creation. In fact, the Talmud (Avodah<br />

Zarah, 9A) states that the olam hazeh (this world) will only exist for six thousand years,<br />

while the seventh millennium will be an era of worldwide shalom called the olam haba<br />

(world to come).<br />

A Luni-Solar Seasonal Calendar<br />

Actually, the <strong>Jewish</strong> calendar might best be described<br />

as “luni-solar.” Since every lunar cycle runs roughly<br />

29.5 days, the <strong>Jewish</strong> year has 354 days compared to<br />

365 days of the solar calendar. To ensure that the<br />

festivals would occur in their proper seasons (e.g.<br />

Passover in springtime, Sukkot in the fall, etc.), an<br />

extra month (Adar II) is added every two or three years<br />

to offset the 11 day lag per solar year. In this way the<br />

lunar calendar is synchronized with the solar cycle of<br />

the agricultural seasons.<br />

by John J. Parsons 1


Hebrew for Christians<br />

The <strong>Jewish</strong> Calendar<br />

The western sense of time is basically the measurement of linear, progressive motion, but in<br />

Hebrew thinking, time is seen as an ascending helix, with recurring patterns or cycles that<br />

present a thematic message or revelation of sacred history. Indeed, part of being a Jew today<br />

is to be mindful of this divinely ordered spiral of time and to order our affairs accordingly.<br />

The <strong>Jewish</strong> Day<br />

The Hebrew day (yom) begins at sundown, when three stars become<br />

visible in the sky (the rabbis reasoned that the day begins at sunset based<br />

on the description of God’s activity in creation, “and the evening and the<br />

morning were the first day,” Genesis 1:5). Evening is sometimes defined as<br />

the late afternoon, that is, between 3:00 pm to sundown.<br />

Since the <strong>Jewish</strong> day (yom) begins at sundown, you must remember that a <strong>Jewish</strong> holiday<br />

actually begins on the night before the day listed in a <strong>Jewish</strong> calendar. For example, Yom<br />

HaShoah (Holocaust Memorial Day) occurs on Nisan 27, which actually begins after<br />

sundown, Nisan 26:<br />

Thus a given <strong>Jewish</strong> holiday spans two days on our<br />

Gregorian calendar. Most <strong>Jewish</strong> calendars do not<br />

indicate the previous night as part of the holiday.<br />

Observance of a holiday begins at sundown on the day<br />

before it is listed in the calendar!<br />

In the example above, Yom HaShoah is observed both on Thursday the 5th (after<br />

sundown) and Friday the 6th (during daylight hours).<br />

Note that if a <strong>Jewish</strong> holiday were to occur on a Sabbath, it would be moved to the<br />

previous Thursday on the calendar. For example, if Nisan 27 happened to begin on<br />

Friday at sundown, it would be moved to Nisan 26. Accessing a current <strong>Jewish</strong><br />

Calendar is essential to observing the mo’edim!<br />

A Note about the <strong>Jewish</strong> hour (sha’ah)<br />

In rabbinical thinking, the hour is calculated by taking the total time of daylight (from sunrise until sunset) of a<br />

particular day and dividing it into 12 equal parts (this is called sha’ah zemanit, or a “proportional hour”). Since<br />

the duration of daylight varies according to seasons of the year, a proportionate hour will vary by season. The<br />

“sixth hour of the day” does not mean 6:00 a.m. or even six 60 minute hours after sunrise, but is the 6th<br />

proportionate hour of the 12 that are counted for the day in question.<br />

For example, if the sun rises at 4:30 a.m. and sets at 7:30 p.m., the total time of daylight is 15 hours. 15 hours *<br />

60 minutes is 900, which divided by 12 yields a proportional hour of 75 minutes. The “sixth hour of the day”<br />

therefore begins 450 minutes after sunrise, or about 11:30 in the morning.<br />

The calculation of zemanim (“times”) are important for the observance of <strong>Jewish</strong> holidays and Sabbath candle<br />

lighting hours. The results will vary depending on the length of the daylight hours in the particular location.<br />

Note, however, that the hour is not counted from sunset (as might be expected), but from sunrise.<br />

by John J. Parsons 2


Hebrew for Christians<br />

The <strong>Jewish</strong> Calendar<br />

The <strong>Jewish</strong> Week<br />

The <strong>Jewish</strong> week (shavu’a) begins on Sunday and ends on Shabbat:<br />

The Importance of Shabbat<br />

The fourth of the ten mitzvot (commandments) is, “Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it<br />

holy” (Ex. 20:8, KJV). Shabbat is therefore considered to be the most important day of the<br />

week, since its observance is explicitly set forth as one of the Ten Commandments. In fact,<br />

Shabbat is considered the most important of the <strong>Jewish</strong> Holidays, even more important than<br />

Rosh HaShanah and Yom Kippur! During Shabbat, no “work” (defined under 39 main<br />

categories associated with the building of the Tabernacle in the desert) is to be performed,<br />

since this would violate the idea of “rest” (shabbaton) that is to mark the day.<br />

Weekly Torah Readings<br />

Weekly Torah readings are divided into 54 sections. A given weekly section is called a parashah<br />

(pl. parashiyot) and is read during a synagogue service. Each portion has a Hebrew name<br />

(usually the first word of the section). A haftarah is a reading from the Nevi’im (prophets) that<br />

is recited directly following the Torah reading. For a table of the weekly readings, see the<br />

Hebrew for Christians website.<br />

The <strong>Jewish</strong> Month<br />

The duration of a Hebrew month (chodesh) is measured by the amount of time it takes for the<br />

moon to go through a lunar cycle, about 29.5 days:<br />

In the Tanakh, the<br />

first month of the<br />

calendar is Nisan<br />

(when Passover<br />

occurs - see Ex.<br />

12:12); however,<br />

Rosh Hashanah<br />

(“head of the<br />

year”) is in Tishri,<br />

the seventh month,<br />

and that is when<br />

the year number is<br />

increased.<br />

• Rosh Chodesh - The appearance of the new moon is called Rosh Chodesh (“head of<br />

the month”). Twelve chodeshim make a Shanah, or year. The new moon is observed in<br />

synagogues with additional prayers.<br />

• Lunar Leap Years - Since the solar year is 365 days long but a moon year is only 354<br />

days (29.5 x 12), an extra month is added to the Hebrew calendar every two or three<br />

years. The formula is a bit esoteric, but every 19 years there are seven leap years (the<br />

third, sixth, eighth, eleventh, fourteenth, seventeenth and nineteenth years). In a leap<br />

year a 13th month is added called Adar Sheni (Adar II).<br />

by John J. Parsons 3


Hebrew for Christians<br />

The <strong>Jewish</strong> Calendar<br />

The <strong>Jewish</strong> Year<br />

The <strong>Jewish</strong> year is cyclical, with seasonal holidays and festivals. The names of the months of<br />

the <strong>Jewish</strong> calendar year were adopted during the time of Ezra the Scribe, after the return<br />

from the Babylonian exile.<br />

The three bold-faced festival names are known as Shalosh Regalim, the three “Pilgrim<br />

Festivals” (Exod. 23:14), that focus on key national events in Israel’s history. These festivals<br />

mark the three times in the yearly liturgical cycle when all Jews are commanded by the<br />

LORD to go up to Jerusalem to pray and sacrifice. Today, Jews mark these times with<br />

extended worship and prayer, study, distinctive prayer melodies, and festive meals.<br />

The <strong>Jewish</strong> High Holidays run from the ten days from Rosh HaShanah to Yom Kippur and<br />

focus on individual repentance (teshuvah).<br />

The date of <strong>Jewish</strong> holidays does not<br />

change from year to year. However, since<br />

the <strong>Jewish</strong> year is not the same length as<br />

the solar year on the Gregorian calendar,<br />

the date will appear to “shift” when<br />

viewed from the perspective of the<br />

Gregorian calendar.<br />

by John J. Parsons 4


Hebrew for Christians<br />

The <strong>Jewish</strong> Calendar<br />

Four <strong>Jewish</strong> New Years<br />

You might be surprised to discover that by the time the Mishnah was compiled (200 AD),<br />

the sages had identified four separate new-year dates for every lunar-solar year (the modern<br />

<strong>Jewish</strong> calendar was ratified by Hillel the Elder in the 3rd century AD):<br />

1. Nisan 1 (i.e., Rosh Chodashim) marks the start of the month of the Exodus from<br />

Egypt and the beginning of <strong>Jewish</strong> national history. As such, it represents the start of<br />

the Biblical year for counting the festivals (Exod. 12:2). Note that the month of Nisan is<br />

also called Aviv since it marks the official start of spring.<br />

2. Elul 1 marks the start of the year from the point of view of tithing cattle for Temple<br />

sacrifices. Since the Second Temple was destroyed in 70 AD, the later sages decreed<br />

that this date should mark the time of Selichot, or preparation for repentance before<br />

Rosh Hashanah. Elul 1 marks the start of the last month of summer.<br />

3. Tishri 1 was originally associated with the agricultural “Feast of Ingathering” at the<br />

“end of the year” (Exod. 23:16, 34:22), though after the destruction of the Second<br />

Temple, the sages decided it would mark the start of the civil year in the fall. Tishri 1<br />

was therefore called Rosh Hashanah (“the head of the year”) which begins a ten-day<br />

“trial” of humanity climaxing on the Day of Atonement (Yom Kippur).<br />

4. Shevat 15 (i.e., Tu B’Shevat) originally marked the date for calculating the tithes of the<br />

harvest (ma’aserot) that farmers would pledge to the priests of Israel. This was the start<br />

of the year from the point of view of tithing of fruit trees. Today Tu B’Shevat<br />

represents a national Arbor Day in Israel, with tree planting ceremonies in Israel.<br />

Unlike the other three “new years,” Tu B’Shevat begins in the middle of the month,<br />

during a full moon in winter.<br />

In practical terms, however, there are two<br />

“New Years” in <strong>Jewish</strong> tradition. The first<br />

occurs two weeks before Passover (Nisan<br />

1) and the second occurs ten days before<br />

Yom Kippur (the other two “new years”<br />

are not regularly observed, except by the<br />

Ultra Orthodox). The first New Year is<br />

Biblical and is called Rosh Chodashim<br />

(see Exod. 12:2). This is the month of the<br />

redemption of the <strong>Jewish</strong> people -- and it is<br />

also the month in which Yeshua was<br />

sacrificed upon the cross at Moriah for our<br />

sins. Oddly enough for most Christians,<br />

“New Years Day” should be really<br />

celebrated in the spring...<br />

by John J. Parsons 5


Hebrew for Christians<br />

The <strong>Jewish</strong> Calendar<br />

The "Dual Aspect" Calendar<br />

In this connection, notice that the calendar is divided into two equal parts of exactly six<br />

lunar months each, both of which center on redemptive rituals and end with harvests. The<br />

first half of the divine calendar begins on Rosh Chodashim (i.e., Nisan 1; Exod. 12:2),<br />

which is followed by the instruction to select the Passover lamb on Nisan 10<br />

(Exod. 12:3), slaughter it in the late afternoon of 14th (Exod. 12:6-7) and eat it on the 15th<br />

(Exod. 12:8). The Passover itself initiated the seven day period of unleavened bread (from<br />

Nisan 15-22), wherein no leaven was to be consumed (Exod. 12:15-20). On an agricultural<br />

level, Passover represents spring, the season of the firstfruit harvests, (i.e., chag ha-katzir),<br />

and so on. On the “other side of the calendar,” Yom Teruah (or Rosh Hashanah) marks<br />

the start of the second half of the year (Exod. 23:16, Lev.<br />

23:24), which is followed by the Yom Kippur sacrifice ten days later, on Tishri 10 (Lev.<br />

23:27), followed by the weeklong festival of Sukkot (“Tabernacles”) that occurs from<br />

Tishri 15-22 (Lev. 23:34-36). On an agricultural level, Sukkot represents the reaping of the<br />

the fall harvest (i.e., chag ha’asif) at the “end of the year” (Exod. 23:16). In other words, in<br />

some respects the fall holidays “mirror” the spring holidays on the divine calendar, and<br />

indeed, both sides of the calendar represent different aspects of God’s redemptive plan for<br />

the world. As I’ve written about elsewhere, the spring holidays represent the first advent of<br />

Yeshua (i.e., Yeshua as Suffering Servant, Lamb of God, Messiah ben Yosef), whereas the<br />

fall holidays represent His second advent (Yeshua as Conquering Lord, Lion of the Tribe<br />

of Judah, Messiah ben David).<br />

Cycles of Time...<br />

As mentioned above, instead of thinking of time as a linear sequence of events (i.e., the<br />

measurement of motion), <strong>Jewish</strong> thinking tends to regard it in terms of a spiral or<br />

“helix,” with a forward progression delimited by an overarching (and divine) pattern that<br />

recurs cyclically throughout the weeks, months, and years of life. This can be seen in the<br />

Hebrew language itself. Some of the sages note that the Hebrew word for “year” - shanah<br />

(hn"v') - shares the same root as both the word “repeat” (hn"v') and the word<br />

“change” (hN"vi). In other words, the idea of the “<strong>Jewish</strong> year” implies ongoing<br />

“repetition” - mishnah (hn"v.mi) - or an enduring “review” of the key prophetic events of<br />

redemptive history as they relived in our present experiences... (The idea that the events of<br />

the fathers were “parables” for us is expressed in the maxim: ma’aseh avot siman labanim:<br />

“The deeds of the fathers are signs for the children.”) The <strong>Jewish</strong> year then repeats itself<br />

thematically, but it also changes from year to year as we progress closer to the coming Day<br />

of Redemption... We see this very tension (i.e., constancy-change), for example, in the<br />

“dual aspect” of the ministry of Yeshua our Messiah. In His first advent Yeshua came as<br />

our Suffering Servant and thereby fulfilled the latent meaning of the spring holidays, and in<br />

His second advent He will fulfill the latent meaning of the fall holidays. Nonetheless, we<br />

still commemorate both the “type and its fulfillment” every year during Passover by<br />

extending the ritual of the Seder to express the reality of Yeshua as the world’s “Lamb of<br />

God,” just as we commemorate the fall holidays in<br />

expectation of His rule and reign as our King....<br />

by John J. Parsons 6


Hebrew for Christians<br />

The <strong>Jewish</strong> Calendar<br />

The idea that there are “cycles” or patterns in time is not meant to suggest that there isn’t an “end<br />

point” in the process - a Day in which we will be with God to enjoy His Presence forever. The<br />

idea of “timeless patterns within time,” suggests, however, that the “seed” for our eternal life with<br />

God has already been sown - and was indeed foreknown from the Garden of Eden - despite the fact<br />

that we presently groan while awaiting the glory of heaven...<br />

How to calculate the <strong>Jewish</strong> Year<br />

The year number on the <strong>Jewish</strong> calendar represents the number of years since creation, calculated<br />

by adding up the ages of people in the Tanakh back to the time of creation. To calculate the<br />

<strong>Jewish</strong> Year from our Gregorian calendar, you subtract 1,240 and then add 5,000. For example, if<br />

the year is 2005, subtract 1,240 to get 765. Then add 5,000 to obtain the <strong>Jewish</strong> year of 5765. Note<br />

that this works only up to Rosh Hashanah of the current Gregoraian calendar: after Rosh<br />

Hashanah (the <strong>Jewish</strong> New Year) add one more year (e.g., 5766).<br />

How to determine <strong>Jewish</strong> Leap Years<br />

A year is a <strong>Jewish</strong> “leap year” if the number year mod 19 is one of the following: 0, 3, 6,<br />

8, 11, 14, or 17. Use a scientific calculator with the mod function to determine the result. For<br />

example, 5771(mod)19 = 14, indicating that it is a leap year.<br />

What is the true <strong>Jewish</strong> Year?<br />

Some have said that the <strong>Jewish</strong> Year counts from creation but excludes the various years<br />

of the captivities, while Rabbinical tradition states there are about 165 “missing years”<br />

from the date of the destruction of the First Temple to the date of the destruction of the Second<br />

Temple. Others suggest that there are some missing years in the Hebrew<br />

calendar due to a corruption in the accounting of the years of the Persian monarchies, and that<br />

these years were consciously suppressed in order to disguise the fact that Daniel’s prophecy of the<br />

70 weeks pointed to Yeshua as the true Mashiach of Israel. In short, educated uncertainty exists<br />

regarding the exact year we are living in since the Creation of<br />

the Universe by God...<br />

by John J. Parsons 7


Hebrew for Christians<br />

The <strong>Jewish</strong> Calendar<br />

The <strong>Jewish</strong> Festival Seasons – Mo’edim<br />

<strong>Jewish</strong> time is cyclical and prophetic, a sort of a ascending spiral to<br />

God. The observant Jew will pray three times every day. On the<br />

seventh day of the week, Shabbat is celebrated, as is Rosh<br />

Chodesh at the start of the new month. In addition, the various<br />

larger periods of time, seasons, have their own prophetic role and<br />

function in the overall rhythm of <strong>Jewish</strong> life.<br />

Note: The <strong>Jewish</strong> calendar can be a bit tricky to understand,<br />

especially if you are new to the study of the <strong>Jewish</strong> way of thinking<br />

about time!<br />

In particular, you must remember that a <strong>Jewish</strong> holiday begins on the evening previous<br />

to the day indicated on a <strong>Jewish</strong> calendar (unless that happens to be a Sabbath, in which<br />

case the date is moved earlier). For example, Yom HaShoah (Holocaust Memorial Day)<br />

occurs on Nisan 27 - unless that day is a Sabbath - in which case it is moved earlier to<br />

Nisan 26 (whenever in doubt, consult an authoritative <strong>Jewish</strong> calendar).<br />

Spring - Deliverance<br />

ii.<br />

iii.<br />

i. Rosh Chodashim - The Biblical New Year [Nisan 1]<br />

ii. Preparing for Passover - Spring Cleaning<br />

iii. Shabbat HaGadol - The Shabbat preceding Passover<br />

iv. Ta’anit Bechorim - Fast of the firstborn son [Nisan 14]<br />

v. Bedikat Chametz - The Search for Chametz [Nisan 14]<br />

Passover (Pesach) - Celebration of freedom (Major Holiday)<br />

a. The Passover Seder [Nisan 15 (evening of the 14th)]<br />

b. Unleavened Bread (Chag HaMatzah) - Sanctification [Nisan 15-22]<br />

c. Sefirat HaOmer - Counting the Omer [Nisan 16- Sivan 5]; the countdown to<br />

Shavu’ot.<br />

d. Firstfruits (Reishit Katzir) - Messiah’s Resurrection; [Nisan 17]<br />

• Yom HaShoah - Holocaust Memorial Day [Nisan 27]<br />

• Yom Hazikaron - Israel Memorial Day [Iyyar 4th]<br />

• Yom Ha’atzmaut - Israel Independence Day [Iyyar 5th]<br />

e. Lag B’Omer - 31st day of the Omer count [Iyyar 18]<br />

• Yom Yerushalayim - Jerusalem Reunification Day [Iyyar 28th]<br />

Pentecost (Shavu’ot) - The giving of the Torah at Sinai and the giving of the Ruach<br />

HaKodesh to the Church [Sivan 6-7] (Major Holiday)<br />

by John J. Parsons 8


Hebrew for Christians<br />

The <strong>Jewish</strong> Calendar<br />

Summer - Preparation<br />

• Fast of the 17th of Tammuz - Start of the three weeks of sorrow [Tammuz 17]<br />

• Tish’ah B’Av Last day of the three weeks of sorrow [Av 9]<br />

• Tu B’Av - Harvest and Romance [Av 15]<br />

Fall - Repentance<br />

Elul and Selichot - Preparing for teshuvah<br />

1. Yamim Nora’im (Days of Awe):<br />

i. Rosh Hashanah and Trumpets (Yom Teru’ah) - The rapture of the kellat<br />

Mashiach (i.e., the church or Bride of Christ) [Tishri 1]<br />

ii. Tzom Gedaliah - Fast of Gedaliah [Tishri 3]<br />

iii. Day of Atonment (Yom Kippur) - Israel’s national salvation [Tishri 10]<br />

2. Tabernacles (Sukkot) - A picture of the millennial kingdom [Tishri 15-20]<br />

a. Hosha’anah Rabah - The seventh day of Sukkot [Tishri 21]<br />

b. Shmini Atzeret - The eighth day closure of Sukkot [Tishri 22]<br />

c. Simchat Torah - Celebration of the giving of the Torah [Tishri 22/3]<br />

Winter - Victory<br />

• Chanukah (Dedication) [Kislev 25 - Tevet 3]<br />

• Asarah B’Tevet [Tevet 10]<br />

• Tu B’shevat [Shevat 15]<br />

• International Holocaust Remembrance Day (Jan. 27th)<br />

• The Fast of Esther [Adar 13]<br />

• Purim (Lots) [Adar 14]<br />

by John J. Parsons 9


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TO DIE TOMORROW.<br />

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-GHANDI

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