May 10, 2005


The Jews have a mission: Judeo-Christian values (Dennis Prager, May 10, 2005, Townhall)

Most religious Jews rarely talk about a Jewish mission. Rather, they are preoccupied with survival: of the Jewish religion (observance of religious laws) and of the Jewish people. Most non-religious Jews who identify as Jews are preoccupied with survival of the Jewish people. And most Jews with a weak or no Jewish identity identify with no Jewish mission or with a secular one.

In fact, the only large body of Jews with a mission are the Jews with the least Jewish religiosity. Such Jews have been disproportionately involved in secular ideologies such as Marxism, socialism, feminism, environmentalism, gay rights, animal rights and every other ideology of the Left.

Why? There are three major reasons:

1. The original religious impulse that started the Jewish people and sustained them for thousands of years has not died among Jews; it has simply been transformed into secular causes.

2. Jews often had terrible experiences under European Christianity and (though less murderous) under Islam, and therefore came to equate secularism with their liberation from oppression.

3. European nationalism excluded Jewish participation. In no country except the United States have Jews felt fully a member of the national group in which they lived. Therefore, Jews came to fear and loathe nationalism and developed a religious fervor for everything international.

The bottom line is that the less Jewish a Jew is, the more he is likely to feel he has a mission to humanity, and the more Jewish he is, the less likely he is to feel such a mission.

This is a tragedy of immeasurable proportions. It is tragic for humanity because the people who brought the Bible and its Ten Commandments to the world are often the most active in seeking its removal from the world. It is tragic for the Jews because Jews who abandon Judaism and substitute leftist values for Jewish ones (or equate them, which is the same thing) work against Jewish survival. And the Jews who do practice Judaism and are oblivious to any mission to humanity render Judaism irrelevant.

The Jews' mission is as it always has been -- to bring the world to ethical monotheism.

All of which would explain why Christ and Muhammed were necessary.

Posted by Orrin Judd at May 10, 2005 9:21 AM

"2.Jews often had terrible experiences under European Christianity . ."

Yeah well gentiles and Christians had terrible experiences in Cyprus in the second century A.D. , under Yusuf Dhu Nuwas in Yemen in 523 A.D., in 614 A.D. when Jews aided Persians in the sack of Jerusalem, in Spain when Jews allied themselves repeated with Moors to overthrow the Christian Crown, in Hungary under Bela Kun, in the Ukraine at the hands of Lazar Kaganovich, in Russian gulags created by Matvei Berman and Naftaly Frenkel, in Eastern Europe after WWII under Jakub Berman, Hilary Minc, Ana Pauker, Marcus Wolf and others.

Dennis Prager is a good guy but propagates a history divided into victims (Jewish) and oppressors (often Christian). Jews, as is true of everyone, were not only spectators, they were actors.

Posted by: David at May 10, 2005 9:51 AM

"The Jews."

Well, there's somes that does and somes that don't.

(I.e., parts of me wish that one would just stop prattering on about "the Jews.")

Though I suppose there'll always be some wiseguy who'll say something about having "Jewishdom thrust upon", well, whomever....

I know it isn't easy, but can one at least try to avoid the abstractions? Actually, maybe it's altogether impossible.

Posted by: Barry Meislin at May 10, 2005 10:26 AM

E.g., Bela Kun's victims were also Jews (businessmen, etc.). And of course especially so during after Bela Kun's forced departure from the scene.

Posted by: Barry Meislin at May 10, 2005 10:29 AM

"during after" = "after" (the new maff)

Posted by: Barry Meislin at May 10, 2005 10:31 AM

The Jews' mission is as it always has been -- to bring the world to ethical monotheism.

No, it really isn't. Judaism is not and never has been an evangelizing religion.

Posted by: David Cohen at May 10, 2005 11:19 AM

David Cohen --

You need to review your history. During the Hellenistic period, Judaism did seek to bring others into awareness of a "Noahic covenant" and encouraged conversions of those willing to accept the broader responsibilities of the Torah.

Try again.

Posted by: Arnold Williams at May 10, 2005 12:25 PM

In what way was Muhammed "necessary"? In retrospect the world would have been a far better place without him. A good rule of thumb: ignore all religious leaders who spend part of their lives as armed robbers and murderers.

Posted by: PapayaSF at May 10, 2005 1:43 PM

1. The Hellenistic Jews weren't practicing Judaism, which is the point made by Paul when he calls himself a "Hebrew of Hebrews".

2. The seven Noahic Laws, so-called because they were given to Noah, are the commandments that apply to the non-Jews, so by definition, a movement pushing the adoption of the Noahic Laws is not evangelical Judaism.

3. Judaism has always accepted converts.

4. You seem to be confusing your history of the early Christian church with Judaism.

Posted by: David Cohen at May 10, 2005 2:46 PM

What synagogues did Bela Kun, Lazar Kaganovich, etc. attend?

Posted by: Joseph Hertzlinger at May 10, 2005 2:51 PM


He made a good portion of the world acknowledge that there is only the God of Abraham.

Posted by: oj at May 10, 2005 3:21 PM

OJ: Maybe so, but many of them were Jews and Christians before he and his minions converted them at sword's point, and many or even most of the rest probably would have become Christians if he'd never been born.

Posted by: PapayaSF at May 10, 2005 5:37 PM

And they still will.

Posted by: oj at May 10, 2005 7:56 PM

He made a good portion of the world acknowledge that there is only the God of Abraham.

What Papaya said.

Also, Buddhists and Hindus never threatened Jews and Christians to the same extent that Islam does.

Posted by: Eugene S. at May 11, 2005 5:43 PM

Yes, absent monotheism they're hopelessly backwards.

Posted by: oj at May 11, 2005 7:46 PM