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Ask Now Of The Days That Are Past by Eliezer Segal

By Eliezer Segal

This selection of essays from quite a few themes in Jewish background & conventional spiritual literature demonstrates the varied points of Jewish culture which could nonetheless communicate with familiarity to trendy 'western' tradition. even though the essays are on issues equivalent to spiritual customized & scholarship, group, liturgy, & interfaith relationships, they're designed for a non-academic viewers, utilizing humour & perception to emphasize issues that talk to modern events.

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Similarly, our commentator insists that the “suffering servant” chapters in Isaiah, applied by the church to Jesus’ torments, are better understood as personifications of the vanquished Jews of the Babylonian captivity, whose anguish serves an atoning function. He even suggests that the “man of sorrows” in the passage might be Isaiah himself.

For Christians, the value of the “Old Testament” lies chiefly in the prophecies and “prefigurations” that, as they believed, were fulfilled in the life and death of Jesus. Jews reading the same texts might apply them to the future redemption. In many cases, Jews fail to discern any messianic content whatsoever in those verses. During the Middle Ages, the two communities kept at arm’s length from one another, and each read its Bible according to its received understanding. However, the respective commentaries frequently indicate, whether explicitly or by implication, that they were well aware of the competing interpretations.

37 ask now of the days that are past 38 The “has not created me a woman” blessing is part of a subgroup that expresses similar gratitude for not having been created a gentile (that is, a heathen) or a slave. Differing liturgical traditions are at variance over whether these three blessings are to appear near the beginning of the sequence or at its conclusion. This inconsistency attests to an important fact: The three “who has not made me” blessings were not originally part of the same sequence as the others.

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