Terms for religions – Multiple Choice
Religion: Jewish Traditions
Apocalypse: From the greek for “unveiling” (latin is revelation); the final battle between the forces of
darkness and light expected at the end of time. Apocalyptic literature flourished in the Hellenstic era. It
first comes from the essenes people, who lived on the outside of urban centres, lived in caves. They
were believers in good vs. evil (sons of light and sons of darkness). They established a centre of priestly
purity in preparation of the apocalypse. Apocalyptic literature also associated the messiah with a divine
overturning of existing order.
- Is a Greek word meaning “revelation” or unfolding of things previously unknown. It is refer to
the genre of prophetical writing with coded symbolic visions which developed in the post-Exilic
(Hellenistic) Jewish culture.
- The un-fulfilled prophecies found in the Jewish Scriptures served to popularize the methods of
- The message of the apocalyptic writers was of patience and trust for that deliverance and reward
were sure to come, often expecting an imminent battle to end the unrighteousness of the present.
- The present evil age will give way to a glorious new age (and restoration of the nation after the
destruction of Jerusalem and the Temple) and a future looking sense of history was born .
- Notions of deliverer figures, such as Messiah were commonplace. The Essenes of the Dead Sea
Scrolls, expected more than one messiah.
- Apocalyptic thinking was extremely influential in Jewish tradition between the second century
BCE and third century CE; however, the disastrous failure of the lltwo revolts against Rome (in
70 and 135 CE, respectively) caused the radical political dimension of apocalyptic tradition to
undergo some key changes.
Berith: Hebrew term for covenant, the special relationship between God and the Jewish People. The
berith is like a contract in which both sides need to oblige to the agreement. For example there was a
convenant between God and Abraham. Abraham is promised the land of Canaan, but Abraham has to
something in return. God uses obedience as a test for loyalty. Example, Abraham was about to sacrifice
his own son when an angel tells him he can sacrifice an animal instead. If the convenant is obliged then
you receive an award. Abraham ends up recieveing the land of Canaan for him and his descendants, in
addition to a long life and peaceful death.
Diaspora: “Dispersal”, the Jewish world outside the land of ancient Israel; it began with the Babylonian
exile, from which not all Jews returned. Judaism had to evolve new ways of understanding and
explaining itself since most of the Jews did not live in Israel anymore.
Documentary Hypothesis: the theory that the Pentateuch was not written by one person (Moses), but
compiled over a long period of time from multiple sources. It was created by Julius Wellhausen. It has
been extremely criticized , but was one of the greatest intellectual achievements of the nineteenth
century. Eschatology: Doctrine concerning the end of age, from the Greek for “study of the end”. Refers to
apocalyptic literature and the jewish bible on predictions regarding the fate of the world at the end of
Exile: The deportation of Jewish leaders from Jerusalem to Mesopotamia by the conquering
Babylonians in 586 BCE; disrupting local Israelite political, ritual, and agricultural institutions, it marked
the transition from Israelite religion to Judaism. The exile caused a Diaspora and gave focus and impetus
to a number of significant social and religious changes. Life became more urban than agricultural. Also,
with the absence of a temple, focus shifted from formal worship to congregational life. Also the idea of
the synagogue was born.
- refers to the deportation and exile of the Jews of the ancient Kingdom of Judah to Babylon after
Babylonians conquered Jerusalem in 586 BCE.
- The Babylonian captivity had a number of serious effects on Judaism and the Jewish culture,
including changes to the Hebrew alphabet and changes in the fundamental practices and customs of the
- A rupture of local Israelite political, ritual, and agricultural institutions, it marks the transition
from Israelite religion to Judaism.
- This period saw the last high-point of Biblical prophecy in the person of Ezekiel, followed by
the emergence of the central role of the Torah in Jewish life. This process coincided with the emergence
of scribes and sages as Jewish leaders.
- The Babylonian Captivity and the subsequent return to Israel were seen as one of the pivotal events in
the biblical drama between Yahweh and "his people" of Israel. Just as they had been predestined for, and
saved from, slavery in Egypt, in the logic of the Bible the Israelites were predestined to be punished by
their god through the Babylonians, and then saved once more.
Exodus: The migration of Hebrews from Egypt under the leadership of Moses, after 400 years of
oppression . It is understood in later Hebrew though as marking the birth of the Israelite nation. Moses
is a prophet and given instructions by God. God tells Moses to request the Hebrews’ release from the
pharaoh and the pharaoh refuses. Then God sends plagues on the Egyptians, but spares Hebrews,
allowing them to escape. The Passover festival commemorates the event.
Menorah: The seven-branched candlestick, a Jewish symbol since ancient (temple) times, well before
the widespread adoption of the six-pointed star; the nine branched menorah used at Hanukkah is
sometimes called the hanukiah. Roman soldiers carried a seven-branched menorah from the destruction
of the Jerusalem temple. At that time the menorah was a symbol of sovereignty, today it is the official
symbol of the state of Israel.
Midrash: Commentary on scripture. Most midrashic commentaries are line by line interpretations of
the biblical text. It is a part of the Tanakh.
Mishnah: The Hebrew summary of the oral law- inherited from Pharisaism and ascribed to Moses-
arranged by topis; edited by Rabbi Judah ha-Nasi before 220 CE, it has an authority paralleling that of
the written Torah. The mishnah is the oldest datable rabbinic document. It was a new type of text with its own topical arrangement in 6 orders (seed, festivals, women, damages, holy things and purification).
Authority is based on notion along side with the 5 books of Moses (passed down by Moses orally).
- is the first major written redaction of the Jewish oral traditions called the "Oral Torah" and the
first major work of Rabbinic Judaism.
- It was redacted c. 200 AD by Judah haNasi when, according to the Talmud, the persecution of the
Jews and the passage of time raised the possibility that the details of the oral traditions dating
from Pharisaic times (536 BC – 70 AD) would be forgotten.
- It is thus named for being both the one written authority (codex) secondary (only) to the Tanakh
as a basis for the passing of judgment, a source and a tool for creating laws, and the first of many
books to complement the Bible in a certain aspect.
- The Mishnah is also called Shas (an acronym for Shisha Sedarim - the "six orders"), in reference
to its six main divisions
- The end of the Jewish commonwealth in the year 70 AD resulted in an upheaval of Jewish social
and legal norms. The Rabbis were faced with the new reality of Judaism without a Temple (to
serve as the center of teaching and study) and Judea without autonomy
Passover: The major spring festival of agricultural rebirth and renewal, given a historical dimension by
association with the hasty departure of the Israelites from Egypt under Moses’ leadership (exodus).
Pentateuch: The first five books of the Hebrew bible, ascribed by tradition to Moses but regarded by
modern scholars as the product of several centuries of later literary activity.
Rabbi: A teacher, in Roman times an expert on the interpretation of Torah; since priestly sacrifices
ceased with the destruction of the Temple, the rabbi has been the scholarly and spiritual leader of a
Sabbath: The seventh day of the week, observed by Jews since ancient times as a day of rest from
ordinary activity. It is a day for prayer and assembly in a synagogue, the Jewish house of worship and
Tanakh: The entire Hebrew bible, consisting of the Torah ( or law), Nevi’im (or prophets), and Ketuvim
(or sacred writings), and named as an acronym of these three terms.
Torah: A word meaning “teaching” or “instruction”; applied most specifically to the Law of Moses (the
Pentateuch) but may also refer to the entire scripture, including commentaries, and even the entire
spiritual thrust of Jewish religion. Torah
Has multiple meanings and may mean literally first 5 books in Hebrew Bible or rest of it all
together or Hebrew Bible or can it all just mean you follow its teachings
God’s ongoing engagement and sequences of moments of success and failure are tied to
moments of obedience and disobedience
1. Torah (genesis, exodus, Leviticus, numbers, Deuteronomy)
2. Prophets (Nevi’im) – stuff coming after Moses and after establishment of Israel
3. Writings (Ketuvim) – classified as short stories and poems Cosmic: Creation of order out of chaos, God creates by taking this material and making distinctions,
creating boudaries and clear sense of identitiy between things (light, dark, sky, earth). World is created.
March 7th, 2011
Religions – Western Traditions: CHRISTIANITY
Lecture 05, 06 and 07
Jesus in the Gospel
The very beginning of the Christianity took place in Judaism
Israel is part of the Roman Empire
Anti-Roman sentiment in the region, especially after the destruction of the second temple
The Apocalyptic hope is really strong because Christianity evolves from the apocalypse from
Apocalypse is the absolute final thing, unveiling (revelation); idea of situation is so bad need
End time of apocalypse, is the beginning of new time
Apocalypse: Desperate hope that someone is going to save us from the bad times
Idea of Apocalyptic: the end is going happen soon because there is no time; which people must
act according and seek forgiveness ASAP
Scholars and devotes of Christianity observe the life Jesus very differently
Sources to understand Jesus: The GOSPELS
Why are there are Four Gospels?
o There are four different versions of Jesus
o There are four versions because there is no more of gospel being the dominant source
o Jesus’s disciples are the founders of the Gospels or their descendants; earliest
communities that were surrounded by these people
Mosaic: pieces of glass are fused together; pieces that have connection between them
Mosaic of Jesus: each of the interpretation bleed into each other; all the interpretations participate
Notion of God’s love, especially Jesus cruxification
Christianity based on Two Commandments:
1. Love for God 2. Love for other Human Beings (Love for One’s Neighbours)
Notion of Messiah
Messiah is not spiritual ruler to right wrongs, Messiah is not one localized savior but worldwide
savior; a spiritual kingdom
Divine Love and Mercy that triggers God to represent him/herself to the world
Key Theoretical Component of Judaism and How Islam Grows After: Jesus retains his humanity
but is a divine being
Jesus is equally divine being and human; it is a paradox
Born and grew up as a Jew, thus Jesus participates in Judaism
However Jesus was a radical thinker
Missionary Religion: it would be mean, a message that has to broadcast
o Message in the Three Traditions: spreading the message and seeing the numbers grow
o Number=Power: more and more people doing God’s will; more support for your
If it keeps growing in number then it becomes TRUE
However Judaism is not trying to gain power through conversions, because it is
not a Missionary Religion
The Story of Pentecost: Jesus has been cruxified and disciples have no idea what to do, tongues of fire
electrocute the disciples from sprit of God; now disciples can speak many language thus spread the
The Hebrew Bible
Tower of Babel Story: Group of people are going to build thus tower, they are building this tower that is
going to reach the heaven; thus shows human ignorance thus God eliminates the communication among
Paul: characterized as the founder of Christianity; Paul and the letters he wrote were so pivotal of
founding the Church; and assured consistency of practice among the Christianity communities
Suggesting Christianity can be religion for gentile or Jews, you did not have to be Jewish to
Many people were Greeks who joined Christianity, therefore the language became Greek;
makes it more accessible
Christianity emerge as non Jewish religion among gentile population
Paul stress less of what Jesus did daily and tried to focus more on the nature of Jesus such as
sacfrice of Jesus for the sinners
As humans we are broken creatures whom sin, Paul says that’s how we are but it is not a bad
thing, God accepts us the way we are Jesus focused less on law and more about “getting my inner state in the right relationship with
Moses perceives the law and follow the commandments; Christia