Hebrew of the Torah and the Christian Bible

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The Christian Bible is founded on the Torah, the body of scripture known to non-Jews as the Old Testament, the Pentateuch or the Five Books of Moses.

Students of the Bible who lack experience of the Hebrew language and culture, may struggle to reach a proper understanding of the Holy Scriptures. It follows that a knowledge of Hebrew is fundamental to a proper understanding, considering that the contemporary Christian Bible is a product of many translations and modifications. Continue reading “Hebrew of the Torah and the Christian Bible”

Ethiopia: King Solomon The Queen Of Sheba And The Black Jews — Part 2

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In Part 1 we tell the little known story, with roots that reach back to the time of Abraham, of the union of the great King Solomon and the Queen of Sheba.

In Part 2 a promise is fulfilled. They are welcomed by the Jewish state, like prodigal sons returning to the land of Israel.

The first modern contact with the Ethiopian Jews was by Scottish explorer James Bruce, who was searching for the source of the Nile River. Continue reading “Ethiopia: King Solomon The Queen Of Sheba And The Black Jews — Part 2”

Ethiopia: King Solomon The Queen Of Sheba And The Black Jews — Part 1

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The modern history of the Jews in Ethiopia begins with the reunification of Ethiopia in the mid-19th century during the reign of Theodore II.

At that time the Jewish community, known as Beta Israel, numbered between 200,000 to 350,000 people. The name Beta Israel originated in the 4th century AD when the community refused to convert to Christianity during the rule of Abraha and Atsbeha Continue reading “Ethiopia: King Solomon The Queen Of Sheba And The Black Jews — Part 1”

Jewish Passover and Christian Easter: What Do They Have In Common?

It is a little known fact that, in the early Eastern Christian churches, the timing of the celebration of Easter was based on the date of the Jewish Passover.

According to ancient records Jesus was crucified just before Passover. The famous last supper was the day before that. While the sacrificial lambs were being slaughtered for Passover, Jesus was undergoing crucifixion and so became the ultimate sacrificial lamb. Continue reading “Jewish Passover and Christian Easter: What Do They Have In Common?”

Psalm 117 the Shortest Psalm in the Bible

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In my research for this post I discovered a fair number of divergent opinions on the exact number of verses and chapters in the Bible. There are many good reasons for this — including the many variations of modern translations of the Bible.

Compare the text shown in the photo with the text below. It is different. The original King James Version (KJV) which was completed in 1611 is considered the most authoritative of the English translations in use today. It is the basis of the figures quoted here. Continue reading “Psalm 117 the Shortest Psalm in the Bible”

Was 3 BC Venus “Star of Wonder” the Real Christmas Star?

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A week ago, one morning after a restless night, I was up before dawn. There in the predawn blue-black sky was a burning “star”. So startling in it’s intensity and so bright it was that it seemed unreal.

I stared at it for a long time thinking that I had never seen anything quite so astonishingly brilliant  in the sky. Well, apart from the Sun and the Moon, that is.

Days later my friend Bill, who is an amateur astronomer, solved the mystery for me. “Venus is exceptionally bright in the sky right now”, he said. That got me to thinking about the Christmas Star, it being Christmas and all. Could there really have been a “Star of Wonder”. Continue reading “Was 3 BC Venus “Star of Wonder” the Real Christmas Star?”