Greetings Brethren:

Peace and Blessings from Almighty God. Are God's people certain people? Are all of humankind created by God? There is no Black or White in Heavenly Places. Ethnicity is exclusive to race however grace and salvation is given to all of humankind that have faith. This gift is not rendered because of race, works or national origin. The Divine Plan is a revelation to all that exist. So is first and last and last to first.

Peace,

Carl A. Patton, FreedomJournal

THE ENIGMATIC HEBREWS

Part 7: Judaism Race Or Religion?

In the name of God, Master of the Universe, Ruler of the earth.

Is the confusion of race and religion among the Hebrew people a deliberate attempt to distort history? What can be gained by claiming that all Hebrews are guaranteed Godliness through Judaism? Also are there other groups of people on earth that are first distinguished by religion and secondly by race? Meanwhile, are there any parallels between the dilemma of Black American racial/religious identity and Hebrew racial/ religious identity?

The record shows that the fusion of race and religion among the Hebrew people is found in a review of the historical events of the Divided Kingdom. However, one may ask the question: Why is it important to distinguish race from religion? The natural order of Creation notes the ethnic origins of man, however, religion is learned. Thus man is born Black American, but religion is embraced by free-will. Religion can be taught, but religion is gained through conversion and acceptance. Thus, religious conversion is a personal experience. The distinction of race from religion is important in a discussion of any group of people on earth. However, because of the history of the Hebrew people as recorded in the Bible this distinction takes on a special significance.

As one comes into the knowledge of Truth he becomes involved in an on-going relationship with God. Thus the Godly person does not conform to the world and is commanded by God daily and through every breath he or she takes. Simply put Godly people act differently from worldly people. Thus, they are moved by love for God and their fellow man. Therefore, race is not the criterion for Godliness. Thus to make this error is to obscure the Supreme significance of God and mis-represent Truth.

Again we note that to note the historical development of the confusion of race and religion among the Hebrew people our discussion is benefited by a review of the history of the Divided Kingdom. With the death of Solomon, the Kingdom Judah and Israel split apart, with Israel in the North and Judah in the South.

The Southern Kingdom of Judah was more stable and its legacy emerged as the mainstream of Judaism. For example Judah had a larger area and a more homogenous population of Israelites, while Israel had more foreign elements.

There are also crucial aspects regarding the exile of the tribes of Israel (Northern Kingdom) and Judah (Southern Kingdom). The Assyrians who took the Northern Kingdom into captivity adopted a policy of dis-unity among the people they conquered. Thus they transported (separated) the nobles and elite to other parts of the Assyrian Empire. Meanwhile the Assyrians brought to Israel many settlers who mixed with the local population and caused the end of Israel as an independent people.

Meanwhile the Babylonian exile and the return of the Hebrew people to Judah (Southern Kingdom) was much different. The Jews transported to Babylon developed a prosperous life in exile. During this exile the record shows very important events that have a tremendous impact on our discussion. The following conclusion and analysis is drawn from data produced by Jewish historians and theologians.

"During the Babylonian Exile Jews transformed themselves into ethno-religious groups that could exist without a Central Temple. This adaptation contributed to the survival of Judaism."

Several other factors contributed to the survival of Judaism and the developing ethno-religious doctrine of the Hebrew people. First the Jews could maintain a sense of identity, without a central religious shrine through their allegiance to the Mosaic laws. In contrast the Hebrews in the Northern Kingdom who had previously embraced paganism thrived among the pagan people among whom they settled. Thus the Hebrews of the Northern Kingdom when taken into exile easily absorbed into the local cultures.

The second major factor that allowed the survival of Judaism in Babylon was the victory of the Persians over the Babylonians. For example the Persians pursued a policy of religious tolerance. Therefore they allowed the Jews to return from Babylon and rebuild the Temple at Jerusalem.

Historically from the days of Moses Judaism had existed in a nomadic fashion. However since the time of David and Solomon (10 century B.C.) Judaism was a religion practiced through worship at a central shrine and Temple at Jerusalem.

The Jews that returned from exile in Babylon had prospered under the leadership of their nobles and priests who accompanied them in exile. Jewish life was re-established with the re-building of the Temple at Jerusalem. All of the Jews did not return, however a peaceful co-existence developed between the Diaspora Jews living in Babylon and those in Jerusalem.

The survival of Judaism is noted in the "ethno-religious" doctrine developed by the Jews living in exile in the Persian Empire. This transformation gave strength to all Hebrews in the Diaspora. Thus, are there positive gains for the fusion of race and religion? Is positive thought regulated to a particular time or place?

Cont. Part 8: The Diaspora: A Multi-Racial People

Return to Enigmatic Hebrews Page

carl@freedomjournalpress.comcastbiz.net