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The Palestinian Talmud (Taanis 21a) states that there is only verse in which the Jewish people are referred to as Zion. The verse is in Isaiah 51, 16: וָאָשִׂים דְּבָרַי בְּפִיךָ וּבְצֵל יָדִי כִּסִּיתִיךָ לִנְטֹעַ שָׁמַיִם וְלִיסֹד אָרֶץ וְלֵאמֹר לְצִיּוֹן עַמִּי אָתָּה Here is the quote from the Talmud: א"ר חיננא בר פפא חוזרני על כל המקרא ולא מצאנו ...


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Shortly before the year 70, Jerusalem was surrounded by Roman troops. Raban Yochanan ben Zakai attempted to negotiate a surrender with the Romans. He recognized there was no realistic outcome in which Jewish self-rule remained over Jerusalem. He was opposed by Jewish religious terrorists known as the Sicarii (Latin for "dagger people") who wanted to force ...


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The Torah, aka the 1st 5 books of "Old Testament" does not use the term "Jew" or in Hebrew, "Yehudi" anywhere. I think this term first appears in the book of Esther. Otherwise, the most common term in the Torah is "B'nei Yisra'el", meaning "Sons (or children) of Israel", with Israel being the name given to Jacob. At any rate, in the Torah, the term "Israel" ...


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As many others have mentioned before, when creating laws, you HAVE to make certain distinctions. One of the biggest blindspots i've noticed with Christians trying to understand Judaism, is that they view everything from a theological perspective, and forget one very important point. Modern Christians are used to living in a society where the government is ...


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There are a number of works about Acher, from the historical-fiction to the scholarly and Hebrew. In addition to the books I mentioned in the comments above, various books by Robert Chazan discuss the medieval figures you mention.


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Dvarim 7:7 and Dvarim 4:27 would be my guess. The LORD did not set His love upon you, nor choose you, because ye were more in number than any people—for ye were the fewest of all peoples And the LORD shall scatter you among the peoples, and ye shall be left few in number among the nations, whither the LORD shall lead you away.


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The Maharal from Prague wrote in גבורות ה' (chapter 61): כי אחר שהוציא הקב"ה את ישראל ממצרים ונתן אותם בני חורין, ולא עוד אלא אף מלכים שנאמר (שמות יט) "ואתם תהיו לי ממלכת כהנים וגוי קדוש" זה השם הוא לישראל בעצם, והמעלה והחשיבות שיש בזה לא נתבטל אף בגלותם שהוא במקרה, ולפיכך אומרים חכמי ישראל (שבת קיא ע"א) כל ישראל בני מלכים הם אף בגלותם... In other ...


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The To'afos Re'em (Shu"t O.C. 22) cites a Teshuva of the Rema in which he says one must buy from the Jew even when it is more expensive. He argues, and limits the preference of buying from Jews to where there is no difference in cost. The Chikrei Lev (Shu"t Choshen Mishpat 139) vacillates between limiting it to small expenses or applying the rule to even a ...


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Nice timing, Terri! A couple of weeks ago I was given a pile of books, and in it was one called Finding Our Fathers: A Guidebook to Jewish Genealogy by Dan Rottenberg. It has step by step instructions for finding out information about your Jewish relatives. It also has a list of over 2000 Jewish names in the back, with information about what families are ...


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See Sanhedrin 5:5 - Each participant is written down in 2 of three sets of scrolls - divrei hamezakin, divrei hamechayavin, and divrei hakol (this last one may only be a das yachid). This documentation is important because in certain cases (mostly capital punishment), one cannot change his opinion from innocence to guilt. When "voting," they start from ...


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As has been discussed in the comments on the question, I think your understanding of the word "l'havdil" is not quite accurate. "L'havdil" really just means a distinction between things that are comparable in a particular sense, but not in a general sense (because one of the items of comparison is "holier" for some definition of that word). For example, I ...


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UPDATE Technically everyone "became Jewish" at the revelation at Sinai which is regarded as everyone there having converted at that moment. This is the starting point of the recursive definition of "Who is a Jew". Technically, Judaism did not begin until the revelation at Sinai. Thus, Adam, Avraham, Yitzchak, and Yaakov were able to keep shabbat. However, ...


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Possibly it's an issue of hora'as sha'ah. See ... all of maseches Horayos for detailed discussion on how Beis Din handles broadcasting improper halachic rulings that cause the public to commit an aveirah. "Ein sheliach" works potentially in two different ways - 1) divrei harav vidivrei hatalmid, and 2) Chazal not giving the capacity for shlichus in the case ...


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There are various opinions in the Midrashim regarding the heritage of Bilaam. The idea that is quoted by 'sabbahillel' in the name of Rabbi Sacks is a Gemara Sanhedrin 105a. The Gemara also says identifies Be'or as Lavan. Bilam would therefore be Lavan's son. http://bit.ly/1GX1a4p The Zohar identifies Be'or as a son of Lavan, making Bilam the grandson of ...


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In the hakdama to Be'er HaGolah, the Maharal explains that the most intense kedusha (holiness) is always expressed in the smallest, or most condensed, manifestation in this world. Thus, the smaller the area of the mikdash (temple), the greater its level of kedusha. So too the Jewish people, as the holy nation, have the smallest manifestation in this world.



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