Conversion to Judaism. This entails acceptance of the mitzvos, tevila (immersion), and for men, bris milah (circumcision).

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21
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4answers
2k views

Is it possible for a Gentile to convert to Judaism?

Is it possible for someone who is Gentile to convert to Judaism? What is the prevailing belief of Jewish people on this subject? What scripture backs up this belief? What do prominent Jewish ...
20
votes
3answers
419 views

Must a jew-by-choice who is a firstborn observe the fast of the firstborn

I'm interested in the question of whether a ger who is firstborn (of both parents, say, to keep things simple) must follow the rules for Ta'anit B'khorot. There are some remarks on the wikipedia page, ...
19
votes
4answers
937 views

Can a Jew lose their Jewish Status?

Can a Jew lose their status as being a Jew by performing any action (example: performing idolatry, disavowing core beliefs, converting to another religion, etc)? Or once a person is a Jew then they ...
17
votes
6answers
592 views

When did Avraham Avinu become Jewish

Avraham Avinu is often called "the first Jew". When did he become Jewish. Was it when: He recognized G-d? G-d spoke to him for the first time? Covenant Between The Parts? When G-d changed his name? ...
17
votes
2answers
1k views

If a woman converts to Judaism while pregnant, will her child be a Jew?

If a woman converts to Judaism while pregnant, will her child be a Jew once born?
17
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2answers
217 views

Why Not Eight Days Until a Convert's Circumcision?

Why doesn't a convert dip in the mikveh and then wait eight days until he gets his circumcision? The gemara (Yevamot 97b) says ger shnitgayeir kekatan shenolad dami (A convert is like a newly-born ...
17
votes
2answers
457 views

When (if ever) are converts still related to their relatives?

It is my understanding that when a person converts to Judaism, certain halachic relationships are severed. So I have a couple questions about this. Which relationships are severed? Is a convert ...
17
votes
3answers
268 views

Why is a present day convert not obligated to read the Torah passage about the sacrifice he will have to bring in the future?

Rambam, Hilchot Issurei Biah 13:2 (English) tells us that a convert must do 3 things to complete the conversion process: circumcision immersion in a mikvah bringing a burnt offering The Rambam ...
16
votes
6answers
896 views

First steps for someone considering conversion

I am 25 years old and I am truly interested in converting. I too also only believe in G-d. I live my life to certain rules that others I see aren't strong enough to live by. I want to know what I ...
16
votes
3answers
470 views

When did Ruth convert?

In the book of Ruth it never openly states that she converts and in fact she is referred to as Ruth the Moabite throughout the text. At what point, chronologically, did she in fact convert?
15
votes
3answers
307 views

Adoptee a Cohen or Levi?

If a Cohen or Levi adopts a non-Jew, upon their conversion are they a Cohen or Levi as well or are they a Yisroel?
15
votes
1answer
287 views

Is a convert obliged to honor his parents?

Is a convert obliged to honor his parents? I understand that a convert loses all halakhic relationship to his parents upon being "reborn." Therefore, does the mitzvah of kibud av va'eim still apply?
14
votes
7answers
2k views

Conversion: If G-d really wanted me to be a Jew (and observe mitzvot), why was I not born into a Jewish family

This question pertains to the issue of conversion, and if it makes sense in the Jewish context of some people being Chosen specifically by God. Before beginning, this poster is aware of the long, and ...
14
votes
2answers
466 views

May (or should) a convert recite kaddish after his biological parents' deaths?

May (or should) a convert recite kaddish after his biological parents' deaths? I think the answer is that yes, he may do so out of respect for them (even though, in a strict halachic sense, he is no ...
14
votes
2answers
926 views

Can a non-Jew don tefillin?

May a non-Jew or a person who is in the conversion process don tefillin? If not, what are the reasons that they cannot?
13
votes
2answers
341 views

Does a convert have a clean slate?

When a non-jew converts to Jusaism, must he still do teshuva from past sins, or does the "reborn" concept stretch far enough to consider him "sinless"?
12
votes
2answers
489 views

What should I do about a fake convert?

I know someone who converted to Judaism, yet throughout the whole process was telling me personally (so I can't tell the Rabbi) that she wasn't interested in keeping Torah AT ALL but was telling the ...
11
votes
6answers
655 views

Am I liable to be stoned for my devotion to Hashem and the Jewish people?

I have spent over 2 years to this day praying for the Jewish people from the Koren Siddur and Machzorim. I have with my Rebbe's help tried to follow Jewish customs and laws, to my best ability. ...
11
votes
4answers
649 views

Would a Karaite be required to undergo conversion?

If a Karaite who knows that his mother is Jewish (Karaite) wanted to join the Orthodox Jewish Community - would he be required to undergo a conversion?
11
votes
1answer
223 views

Understanding discouragement of converts

Why do we discourage converts? I know that Naomi did so with Rus, but Moshe doesn't seem to do so with Yisro. Why wouldn't Judaism want to encourage converts? Furthermore is it a responsibility merely ...
11
votes
1answer
227 views

if a convert later finds out she was Jewish anyway through her mother's mother, does she need a new ketubah?

If a convert (orthodox) later finds out she was Jewish anyway through her mother, does she need a new ketubah since the one she has says bas Avraham and giyorta? Would the answer be different if the ...
11
votes
1answer
373 views

Are we allowed to ask someone if he's a convert?

I remember learning that we are forbidden to "remind a convert of his past". The implication, as I remember it, is reminding someone that he used to be an idolater. (Though not all converts were.) ...
10
votes
2answers
210 views

Could someone who has committed a heinous crime convert to Judaism?

Is there any reason that someone who has committed horrible sins in the past (for example, mass murder) could not become a Jew? Assume, of course, that the sinner/criminal is willing to do teshuvah ...
10
votes
2answers
596 views

Can only the husband in a gentile married couple convert?

We are a gentile married couple and my husband wants to convert orthodox and im still not sure if i want to convert at all. i found out that the conservative would let my husband convert and stay with ...
10
votes
2answers
255 views

Does our literature discuss invalidating a conversion because the convert would not put his/her lot with the Jewish people?

When a person is interested in converting, there are really two questions they are asked: Are you prepared to accept the theology and observance of Judaism? Are you prepared to accept your identity ...
10
votes
1answer
177 views

How to call up a ger who converted with his father?

In general a Ger is called up as [name] Ben Avraham. However, what if the Ger converted as a child together with his parents? I would think it is the same but I recently saw someone who is in that ...
10
votes
3answers
199 views

What shevet did a convert in the midbar belong to (if any)?

During the time in the midbar or when the land of Israel was apportioned by shevet, if someone converted what tribe (if any) would s/he belong to? The purpose of this question is to deduce a ...
10
votes
2answers
490 views

Was Judaism ever a proselytizing religion?

It is often asserted that up until the time of Constantine or so, Judaism was an actively proselytizing religion. This can be contrasted with the common practice today of rejecting potential converts ...
9
votes
4answers
383 views

Can a convert be a prophet?

I don't think there were any gerim amongst the nevi'im, but would it have been possible?
9
votes
2answers
620 views

Can the child of two converts marry a Cohen?

Can the child of two converts marry a Cohen? How does the situation differ if only the mother, or only the father, is a convert? (I have read that "ideally" the child of two converts should not ...
9
votes
2answers
554 views

Can an Alien convert to Judaism?

Suppose we one day find an extraterrestrial walking on our planet that originated from another planet. The alien quickly learns all about religion and now wants to become a Jew. Do we let him? ...
9
votes
2answers
117 views

Do the parents of a convert merit in the afterlife for their child's decision?

When my child was little, she wanted to know whether my parents, who are not Jewish, would go to Heaven. I explained to her that the righteous of all nations have a place in the world to come. But ...
8
votes
1answer
239 views

Can a convert serve as a dayan?

I believe that there are specific restrictions placed on a ger (convert) being a legal decisor on a beit din. What are these restrictions and do those, ipso facto, preclude that individual from ...
8
votes
3answers
320 views

Observance of the convert

Are converts expected to be more observant than the community they are joining? For example, if most married women in a community don't don a wig or head scarf, would this be acceptable behaviour for ...
8
votes
1answer
209 views

My great great grandmother was Jewish - am I?

I've discovered that my great, great grandmother was Jewish - i.e. my mother's mother's mother's mother. She converted to Catholicism upon marriage. Are matrilineal descendants of a Jewess who ...
8
votes
2answers
155 views

Were the eirev rav Jewish?

Were the eirev rav Jewish? If they were in fact Jewish why are they described by the term eirev rav instead of just referring to them as we would any other Jew? If they were not Jewish why were they ...
8
votes
1answer
55 views

Why does “בני ישראל” sometimes include גרים and sometimes not?

Tosafos (to Suka 28, Sanhedrin 86, and M'nachos 61; and Tos'fos Harosh to Sanhedrin 86) cite various verses containing the words "בני ישראל", b'ne Yisrael. In some cases, they note, the g'mara seeks ...
7
votes
2answers
200 views

Does a ger have to tovel their dishes?

When a ger finishes their conversion, must they tovel (immerse in a mikvah) their dishes? Does it matter if they had toveled them previously?
7
votes
3answers
222 views

A Jew named Christian

I'm a gentile and my name is Christian. Would I face more aversion if I wanted to covert to Judaism than someone whose name is, say, Abraham? Would I be encouraged to legally change my name? Also, ...
7
votes
1answer
219 views

Who are these “aliens” in Isaiah 56?

I was reading through this passage in Isaiah 56: 4 For thus saith the LORD concerning the eunuchs that keep My sabbaths, and choose the things that please Me, and hold fast by My covenant. 5 ...
7
votes
1answer
235 views

Does a halachically circumcised non-Jew need Hatafat Dam when converting?

Rambam, Hilchot Milah 1:7 says that a convert must be circumcised before his conversion is complete. If he was already circumcised when he was not Jewish, a Hatafat Dam Brit (taking a drop of blood) ...
7
votes
1answer
157 views

Did Jethro convert? Before or after Matan Torah?

Did Jethro convert? And, was it before or after the Torah was given? I heard a few things this past shabbat, but I would like to see if we can compile all of the midrashic and aggadic opinions.
6
votes
6answers
529 views

Is there any benefit for a gentile to convert through one denomination versus another?

Despite being raised Conservative, it has been my impression that the only conversion that "counts" is an Orthodox one. I suspect this is the case for making aliyah, but under what other ...
6
votes
3answers
725 views

what percentage of Reform Jews are halachically Jewish?

Was there ever a study done on the percentage of Reform Jews who would be considered Jewish according to Halacha?
6
votes
1answer
774 views

I want to be a Jew, but I'm born as a Muslim

I'm from Algeria, but I'm now living in France. I was born as a Muslim, but since I was 13, I realized that Islam wasn't for me. Since two years, I'm now looking for a new religion, and from what I've ...
6
votes
3answers
113 views

What happened to Avraham's students?

We read how Avraham was going around convincing people to believe in one G-d and of his many students. Yet we don't hear of those students (or their descendants) ever again. What happened to them ...
6
votes
2answers
320 views

Why Do Converts Change Their Names?

Rabbi Avigdor Miller said that it used to be that gerim (converts) and baalei teshuvah (repentants) who had been given non-Jewish names did not change their names when they became part of the Jewish ...
6
votes
1answer
111 views

Can one bring a Korban nowadays?

Assuming we don't have a problem with the Dome of the rock. Has anyone discussed sacrifices nowadays regarding: Can (and should) one bring sacrifices nowadays as we don't know the exact location ...
6
votes
1answer
115 views

What if the non-Jew to whom I have sold my chometz converts?

What would be the net effect if the non-Jewish person to whom I have sold my chometz for Pesach converts to Judaism over Pesach?
6
votes
2answers
650 views

A Convert taking on customs of ashkanazim or sephardim

When someone converts is there any determining factor on what minhagim (customs) they will take upon themselves in terms of Ashkanazim or Sephardim? Should it be dependent on the Beis Din they ...