History

Who: Abraham is considered the founder of the Hebrew (Jewish) people. Abraham, his son Isaac, and his grandson Jacob are known collectively as the patriarchs of Judaism. Moses is also a very important figure in the foundation of Judaism. God revealed to Moses the teachings which are central to the Jewish faith.

What: Judaism is the term for the religion of the Jews. The word Judaism comes from the name Judah, who was one of Jacob’s twelve sons, and whose tribe became one of the most influential Israelite tribes. Judah is also the name of one of the ancient Israelite kingdoms. Ancient Jewish people are also referred to as the Hebrews, and the Israelites. The term Israelites comes from the fact that the Patriarch Jacob is also known as Israel.

When: 4000 years ago, that is, 1900 BCE (Formerly, BC, Before Christ, BCE stands for ·Before the Common Era.·It refers to any date before the year 1, and CE, which stands for ·Common era (formerly AD, Anno Domini, year of our Lord), denotes dates from the year one on.

Where: Abraham, entering into a covenant (a relationship based on a promise) with God, left his home in Harran, which was in ancient Mesopotamia, (what is now the Middle East), and went to Canaan, the land God promised to Abraham’s ancestors. The ancient land of Canaan is roughly where Israel and Lebanon are today. As the result of the conversion of other ancient peoples, and as the result of religious persecution, Judaism has spread to many parts of the world, such as Greece, Spain, central and eastern Europe, and North America.