History of Judaism Part II

History of Judaism 2

Despite all religious exclusivity and demarcation, Judaism opened up in large parts of Hellenistic culture. Greek-speaking Jewish settlements sprang up throughout the Mediterranean, the largest in Alexandria; a temple tax tied the diaspora to Jerusalem. The Hellenistic environment was open to and interested in Judaism, so that it could even be successful in missionary work. The translation of the Hebrew Bible into Greek (Septuaginta) to. Numerous non-Jews joined Judaism: as proselytes who were circumcised and were thus on an equal footing with the Jews, or as “God-fearing people” (including many women) who were interested in Judaism, especially in its monotheism, and also took part in worship, but did not convert to Judaism.

According to etaizhou.info, Roman rule began with Rome’s intervention in the Judean Civil War and the conquest of Jerusalem in 63 BC. By Pompey. High priest remained until 37 BC. A Hasmonean, political power lay with General Antipater, loyal to Rome, father of the tyrannical, but successful ruler, vassal king Herod the Great (37-4 BC). After his death, Rome initially divided its empire among the sons. From the year 6 AD Judea was administered directly, with the Synedrion under the presidency of the high priest as the highest internal Jew. Instance. Increasing conflicts with Roman rule culminated in a war in AD 66 that ended with the destruction of the temple in AD 70. From now on Rome (later identified with the Christian world power in general) was regarded by Judaism as the “Fourth World Empire” named in the apocalyptic vision of the Book of Daniel (Daniel 7:23), the fall of which was to be followed by the dispensation under the Messiah. Further futile revolts solidified this historical image: 115–117 AD in North Africa, Egypt, Cyprus, Syria and 132–135 AD under Bar Kochba in Judea.

Talmudic period: From the defeats the Pharisaic groups emerged as the only ones capable of acting. As rabbinic Judaism, they gradually determined all of Judaism. In addition to the written Torah, the basis was the oral Torah (Halacha), which was also revealed by God at Sinai, according to the traditional view. The entire life should be understood as sanctification in order to bring about the dispensation or the rule of God. Since the destruction of the temple, the synagogue (with the Torah shrine and Torah scrolls as a sanctuary) has been the place of public worship. Doctrine and piety of the law took the place of the sacrificial service. The focus is on reading and remembering the scriptures, v. a. the Torah. the Tannaites, teachers of the law from the 1st to 3rd centuries, codified the oral tradition. Hillel created the seven rules of script interpretation; he taught that the commandment to love one’s neighbor was the fulfillment of Judaism. His student Jochanan ben Zakkai built a house of teaching in 70 AD in Jamnia (Yavne), south of Joppa. He was followed again by members of the Hillel family as patriarchs  - representatives of the Jews recognized by Rome. This created a new center of spiritual life. Here a circle of scholars gathered who drew the tasks of the synedrion to himself and organized religious life without a temple (Gamaliel II). The from Bar Kochba- led Jewish uprising against the Romans (132-135) led to the further destruction of Judea and the leadership of the people had to be rebuilt in the Galilee (successively in Usha, Beth Shearim, Sepphoris and Tiberias). Around 200 the Patriarch Yehuda ha-Nasi made his collection of legal propositions, the Mishnah, the basis for further legal development. The Amorae (speakers, interpreters), teachers of law in the 3rd – 5th centuries Century in Palestine and Babylonia, declared the Mishnah. Their discussions were systematically collected in the Aramaic Gemara. Mishnah and Gemara of the Land of Israel formed the Talmud, which was completed by the early 5th century at the latest of the Land of Israel (also known as the “Jerusalem Talmud” or the “Palestinian Talmud”). At that time, Rome withdrew its recognition from the patriarchs. The Babylonian Talmud was completed after 500; it became the starting point for the reorganization of Jewish piety and for later attempts to organize life in the diaspora. Tannaites and Amoraans also wrote the Midrash (Midrash), collections of legal, exegetical and homiletic traditions based on biblical texts. A liturgical order of prayer and the liturgical poetry (pijut) determined the service. There was also a cycle of traditional fasting days and festivals.

As the situation in the west deteriorated under Christian-Byzantine rule, the rabbinical schools of Babylonia gained in importance. In Babylon, a Jewish colony since their first exile, the Jews found refuge from the Romans since 150 AD. They lived in autonomous communities under an exile who represented them before the government.

After the completion of the Talmud, the Saboreans (opinion leaders, explainers) provided addenda to the Talmud in Babylon during the 7th and 8th centuries. In Pumbedita and Sura there had been important schools of scholars since 589, the head of which, the Gaon, was subordinate to the Exilarchen. The most important Gaon, Saadja , was a religious philosopher, exegete and grammarian; he also wrote the first Hebrew dictionary. The early Geonim felt v. a. about the explanation of the Torah, which then pointed the way for the Jews in the entire diaspora. Since the 9th century, however, under the influence of the Greek-Arabic culture, the focus was on understanding Judaism philosophically (Jewish philosophy). The Masoretes, Jewish scholars in Babylon and Palestine from the 7th to 10th centuries, secured the pronunciation of the Bible ( Masora) through vocalization and established the division into sections and verses.

History of Judaism 2