Wednesday, November 26, 2008

From Israelite to Jew: A New Podcast Series

Prior to 586 BCE, the Israelites worshipped a warrior God whom, they said, forged them into a nation and continued to protect them: He was their king, and they were His subjects. In allegiance to this God, whom they called YHWH, they regularly offered sacrifices at their Temple in Jerusalem. When the Babylonians razed the Jerusalem Temple in 586 BCE, resettling part of the population in Babylonia, they also unintentionally sparked the transformation of the religion of the Israelites.

A little over a century later a “remnant” of this people returned to Jerusalem, this time as Jews. Now bringing a book they called the Torah, they began to construct a religion fundamentally different from that of their Israelite ancestors. This course is the story of how the religion of ancient Israel was transformed into Judaism. Our story starts with the building of the Second Temple and ends about 1,000 years later, with the flourishing of the rabbinic movement and the creation of the patterns of thought and rituals that have lasted to the present day.

This podcast series will explore this transformation. Beginning soon - stay tuned!

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