Esther 9:17 says:

ורבים מעמי הארץ מתיהדים

"The ignorant rabbis became Jewish"

I thought rabbis are already Jewish, even if they are ignorant! Why did they have to convert?

This question is Purim Torah and is not intended to be taken completely seriously. See the Purim Torah policy.

  • Related: judaism.stackexchange.com/questions/55817/…
    – Scimonster
    Mar 2, 2015 at 18:27
  • @Cnsersmoit - not really related. That was asked a "regular" question. This one is Purim Torah. Unless, you want to show the relationship, better.
    – DanF
    Mar 2, 2015 at 18:32
  • Just pointing out a similar, non-PTIJ, question.
    – Scimonster
    Mar 2, 2015 at 18:33
  • When is vrabim ever used as rabbis
    – sam
    Mar 3, 2015 at 5:38
  • @Sam, this is purim torah. The verse is being mistranslated on purpose. See the Purim Torah disclaimer above.
    – LN6595
    Mar 3, 2015 at 22:58

3 Answers 3


Cause Rabbis are not Jewish!

As it is written in kaddish derabannan

על ישראל ועל רבנן - To Israel, and to the Rabbis

  • 1
    OK - You're suggesting the fact that b/c the phrase mentions them separately, one group excludes the other? Otherwise, I must be missing the joke.
    – DanF
    Mar 2, 2015 at 21:06
  • @DanF that is correct.
    – havarka
    Mar 2, 2015 at 21:28
  • 1
    +1, as it appears that you have applied set theory rules correctly, here. "And" implies a union of two sets where the new set has unique members from each of the 2 separate ones. However, it is still possible that each set may contain repetitive members. The question remains if rabbis are in the Jewish set or vice versa. The bigger question is can there be a good union of these two sets? Hmmm...
    – DanF
    Mar 2, 2015 at 21:37
  • 2
    +1. @DanF Hmm, ו has an ambigious meaning depending on context. It can mean union, but it can also mean the set difference like in I Chronicles 16:26. I kinda think ו can be used for pretty much any logical operation (intersection, symmetric difference, Cartesian product, etc). Indeed, this could be the basis for "Three Jews, Four Opinions".
    – Mike
    Mar 2, 2015 at 22:54
  • @Mike - Or a basis for an interesting M.Y. question, perhaps?
    – DanF
    Mar 2, 2015 at 22:57

The answer is quite obvious. It is at the end of the verse:

כי נפל פחד היהודים עליהם

Because the fear of the Jews fell upon them.

The Jews realized that these were a bunch of ignorant rabbis, and because they relied on their halachic rulings for so many years, they thought that they were trustworthy rabbis. They trusted their hashgacha, they davened only their nusach, and just followed all their decrees. Until, one day, the community in Shushan and surrounding villages realized that these rabbis were ignorant nobody's. So they said that they weren't Jewish at all, because they had fooled everyone into doing the wrong thing.

To regain the trust in the community, they had to relearn everything and behave better so that the community would accept them as if they were converted Jews!


I believe that "Misyahadim" - literally "they made themselves Jewish" does not exclude the possibility of them already having been Jewish. The verse is only saying that the Rabbis increased their level of Jewish practice, observance, and identity as a result of the Purim story.

This explains why many contemporary pictures of Purim show the Jews at the end of the story wearing streimels - as a result of the Purim miracle, they decided to increase their level of Jewish dress.

  • 3
    Oh! I always thought they were just dressing up as Polish nobility for Purim.
    – Double AA
    Mar 3, 2015 at 23:06
  • 2
    Wait! You mean that all these guys in Boro Park wearing black coats and shtreimls aren't wearing a Purim costume on Purim? They look like that year round??? Who knew?
    – DanF
    Mar 4, 2015 at 1:12

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .