Archive for 'biblical theology'

Is Heaven reserved only for Jews?

Q My cousin said to me that when we pass away, we automatically go to heaven.  I have searched the Talmud and cannot seem to find anything like that at all. Would you please tell me where I can find this or any reference to us going to heaven?

Answer: It seems to me your grandfather was referring to a famous Mishnah found in the beginning of the 10th chapter of Sanhedrin which states:

All Israel have a portion in the World ...

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Maimonides’ famous Responsa on “Converting for the sake of marriage”

Maimonides once wrote in his Responsa about a certain Jewish man who was living with a non-Jewish maid-servant. The man was suspected of having a sexual liaison with this woman.  The Beit Din found out about this–what was the man to do? Remove the woman from his house?

In response to this question, the Rambam stated that technically according to the law, the woman should be forced out–period. After it learned of his wrongdoings, the ...

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Why is Abel’s sacrifice accepted, while Cain’s is rejected?

4:4 וְהֶבֶל הֵבִיא גַם־הוּא מִבְּכֹרוֹת צֹאנוֹ וּמֵחֶלְבֵהֶן  – and Abel for his part brought of the firstlings of his flock, their fat portions—In contrast to the Scripture’s silence with regard to Cain’s sacrifice, considerable detail is lavished on the quality of Abel’s offering. First of all, he offered his “firstlings,” which the Torah would later view comes from the best of one’s flock. Second, he offered the animals’ fattest parts, i.e., he sacrificed his choicest animals.

Note that Abel does not ...

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Behind the theology of Jewish Terror

The latest news article about the Jewish terrorist Yaakov (Jack) Teitel, a man who has allegedly murdered two people, not to mention, attempted three other murders and committed other acts of violence, has been arraigned in a Jerusalem court today.  “It was a pleasure and an honor to serve my God. I have no regret and no doubt that God is pleased.”

While the story is pretty exceptional, the ideology of Jewish terror is a grim reminder that we, as Jews, ...

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Why do Lubavitchers spit whenever saying the Alenu Prayer?

Why do Lubavitchers spit whenever saying the Alenu Prayer?

This is a great question, but to put it in perspective, we must first analyze the  Alenu Prayer and its historical development. Without a doubt, the Alenu is one of the most moving prayers of the Jewish liturgy; it calls upon all the members of humankind to accept the One and only King of Kings, as Lord and Master of all the earth. Its universal message envisions a time when all the ...

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