Israel, Jews do not obey living God,



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What is the problem for Jews, Israel, Israelites.?  Why the trouble?
You, Israel, Gentiles can be running or dancing but in your dancing and running are you listening to God?
The Jews never ever obey God except for short periods and finally God tossed out the Jews, Israel out of the Promised Land by Assyria out of the Northern Kingdom, Capital Damascus and Southern Kingdom by Babylonians, Capital Jerusalem


Western Wall and Dome of the Rock, Jerusalem

What about today 2014 during this Israel, Hamas, Palestinians and others, Gentiles such as England, America, Europe, Australia and others.
Nothing has changed regarding the Jewish nation because they still not listen to God and that is why they missed acknowledges Jesus is the son of the living God and Jesus Christ is in fact the Christ, Messiah. So 2000 years later after missing the moment or understanding that visit by Jesus Christ they are still waiting for a Messiah who visited 2000 years ago.
So God
Ezekiel 36:19
So I scattered them among the nations, and they were dispersed throughout the countries; I judged them according to their ways and their deeds.

The fact in 1947 Israel was planted it was God's compassion of the Jews. They had nowhere to go. So in a wonderful way even though the Jews are still not obeying God he cared about the Jewish people and have again given them a place.

It is clear the Jews will not hear or perceive Jesus Christ is the Messiah if you look at Israel and its makeup. 
Judaism, Secular-traditional, Orthodox, Bottom of this page for more information

Chief Rabbinate,
Great Synagogue
in Jerusalem,
seat of the Chief Rabbinate


Brief overview  Bible, God, You, Me,
Israel God's people, would not obey God. Time and time again the Jews, Israel said, "Ok, we will obey God." After a short time again they would disobey God.  Time and time again God relented and gave Israel a new start. Finally God said he was sick of relenting. God then tossed out the Jews from their land into exile for 70 years and after this they never got their land back.

Jesus was born and about 30 AD he started his ministry which lasted 3 years. Jesus because he was the son of God had full measure of Holy Spirit. He walked on the water, Raised the dead, , thousands of people stayed with him. Whenever people came  he healed those who wanted healing. All towns he came to  were blessed by his visit and his disciples visit. So Jesus had an extra amazing ministry. Unfortunately the crowds were so large Pharisees, Scribes and other leaders were envious so finally they condemned him to death. .Romans  did what the Jewish leaders wanted so they crucified Jesus.

What was not expected but as Prophesied in the OT God raised Jesus  from the dead and he did amazing signs with his disciples and another 100 people. So Jesus resurrection was real and then Jesus went back to heaven where he came from.

Today 2014 Jews are still waiting for the Messiah.  The Messiah came, but even though the leaders saw the great signs he did and his teaching they refused to believe. One person who was blind and Jesus gave him sight he said to the leaders. If God was not with Jesus he could do nothing. The Pharisees said, "We know God spoke to Moses, but this person we do not know"

So the Jewish leaders refuse to obey God and as Jesus said, they will kill me. Which is what they did. Jesus also said the kingdom would be taken from the Jews and given to the Gentiles.

2014 is what has happened. The Kingdom of God is no longer residing in the Israel Nation and that is clearly obvious. Millions of Gentiles are preaching the Kingdom of God and I am one of them.

Now we need to state, the Jews are hated, God warned them if they did not obey him instead of a blessing to the world they were going to be hated and that is exactly what has happened.

God has stated that even though the Jews hear they will not believe. Though they see what Jesus has done they will not perceive and that is still the case today.


You can be running or dancing but in your dancing and running are you listening to God.
The Jews never ever obey God except for short periods and finally God tossed out the Jews, Israel out of the promised land Assyria to the Northern Kingdom and Southern Kingdom Babylonians.

The Jews, Israel have never recaptured their previous glory in the promised land and as we know in history Jews were hated and country after country kicked the Jews out and finally in a compassionate gesture  with millions of Jews no where to go the United Nations embedded Israel and made a country in their original country. 1947 that means the Jews had no country to call home for over 2000 years and that is simply amazing and even now 2014 the Jews are still looking for the Messiah.

Jesus said the Jews were going to get the Gentiles to kill him which is what happened and Jesus rose from the dead on the third day.

The Pharisees, Scribes were present when Jesus did the wonderful miracles. A famous miracle is when people pulled away part of a roof Jesus was staying and the people had such faith they put a paralytic on a bed lowered it into the front of Jesus and Jesus said to the Pharisees and people there so you know that I have the authority to forgive sins he said to the paralytic pick up your bed and that is what happened. Another time a man had a limp hand the Pharisees were there. Jesus said to the man stretch out you hand and it was restored immediately . and what was the response of the Pharisees to this miracle? They and the Herodians went out to see how they could destroy Jesus.


Overview to same time in your reading and listening.
Israel, Jews saw God at work where God brought the Israelites to stand near the mountain. Mt Sinai he was. Moses and Ten Commandments
God wanted to shock the Hebrews to remember the shaking, thundering mountain and God's voice so they would never forget and obey God.

Unfortunately even after 40 days the Hebrews made a Golden Calf.

Unfortunately even though the Jews saw God at work they still would not obey God which is quite amazing.

  • Moses died and then Joshua parted the Jordan river while it was in flood and a million approx people went through the flooded Jordan. God at work.
  • Jericho with walls and people in Jericho thought they were safe but all the Jews had to do is go around Jericho with its army and Ark and on the seventh day the walls fell flat.
  • Ai the next town they went to conquer  decided to only sent a few thousand but the Hebrew soldiers were defeated because Achan took spoil for himself even though God said take nothing. So Nathan and his family were killed.
  • Finally the Jews, Israel had taken the whole Promised Land as promised with pockets which they did not take possession for a number of reasons.
Jews, Hebrews, Israel Promised land Northern Kingdom Capital Damascus. Southern Kingdom Capital Jerusalem

unfortunately they did not listen to God and the golden days were  Kingdom David and Solomon, Solomon built the original glorious Temple accoding to God's plan and David drew up the plan and Solomon built it. . As the years rolled on God was frustrated because they obeyed for a while then go back and in the end God said the Jews were so bad they were teaching other nations the evil things.  Jews became so bad that the nations God had judged in the beginning the Jews were worse then them. Amazing but a lesson for us. That included the Jews sacrificed their children.

Finally they were tossed out of their own land.

About 400 years later about 1AD Jesus Christ was born and at 30 years of age he had a 3 years ministry, then the leaders, Pharisees, Scribes and others had Jesus killed. And the Jews also had all the Apostles were killed as they followed them and tried to destroy their work of Jesus Christ.

As the years progressed we know the Jews were dispersed around the world and we know many countries absolutely hated the Jews.

Why did that happen?

God warned them.

There is a fair bit of material below you can listen and read and below here is an overview and below that is a bit more information about the Jews are waiting for a Messiah to come and believe this because right now the conflict Israel, Hamas, Palestines, Gentiles, other nations is setting the scene when the Jewish Messiah will arrive
The belief that the Messiah is to come and the Messiah is not Jesus Christ while on the eart about 30 AD.


The Temple Mount in Jerusalem is one of the most sacred places on earth, and one of the most contested.

For Jews, it's the place where the Holy Temple once stood.

Today Muslims control the Temple Mount and Jews are forbidden to worhip there. But that hasn't stopped some people from making plans to build the next temple.

Everyday, three times a day, Jews recite this prayer: "May it be your will that the temple be speedily rebuilt in our own time."

It's a prayer they've prayed for almost 2,000 years. But today, Jews here in Jerusalem are doing more than just praying.

Just a few steps away from the western wall, rabbis and craftsmen are building what they call a "temple in waiting."

Chaim Richman is a director at the Temple Institute in Jerusalem.

"The Temple Institute is actively engaged in the research and preparation of the resumption of service in the holy temple to the extent of actually preparing operational blueprints for the construction of the temple according to the most modern standards," he said.

This menorah is just one of several vessels being created for the next temple. It's covered with 95 pounds of pure gold and has a price tag of $2 million.

Piece by piece, the third temple is taking shape, with priest's garments, vessels of copper, gold, and silver, and a new generation of levite priests specially trained for temple service.

"We have enough in place now to resume divine service and to build the temple," Richman said. "But obviously, a lot of things have to happen in order for this to happen."

Richman isn't the only one who's ready to rebuild.

Some 3,000 years after King Solomon built the first Jewish temple, another Solomon is laying the foundations for the third one.

Gershon Solomon leads a group called The Temple Mount Faithful.

"From the womb of my mother, I have a task and a mission in my life, which is connected with the rebirth of Israel," he said.

The group commissioned these cornerstones for the third temple. The six-ton stones were consecrated with water from the biblical pool of Siloam and cut with diamonds.

For several years, Solomon and his followers tried to place the stones on the Temple Mount, and every year they were stopped by Israeli police.

"Unfortunately, weakness of the Israeli leadership did not allow us to bring the cornerstones to the right place," Solomon said. "The end-time temple should be built on the same location as the first and the second temple."

But that location is already occupied. The holiest site for Jews is also the third holiest site for Muslims.

"The issue of the Temple, it's so sensitive," Yousef Natsheh of the Palestnian Antiquities Authority explained. "It's not an undeniable fact; it's theories. The political situation, the misunderstanding, the mistrust distorted all the facts.

Muslim law forbids archaeologists from digging on the Temple Mount, so instead, Gabriel Barkay is digging through its trash.

"We have here the entire history of the Temple Mount," he said.

He and his team are sifting through truckloads of debris, unearthed by bulldozers and discarded by Muslim authorities.

Among their finds: an arrowhead from the Nabylonian invasion in 586 B.C. and a 2,400-year-old coin, the oldest ever minted in Jerusalem.

"A beautiful piece, tiny silver piece with an owl and the Hebrew inscription 'Yehud' which is the Aramaic name of Judea," Barkay said.

Some of the most dramatic traces of temple life have been unearthed here at the western wall.

On the walls, you can still see the marks from the fires that destroyed the temple in 70 A.D. Overturned stones are still lying where they were thrown from the top of the Temple Mount by the armies of Rome.

On one stone is a Hebrew inscription: "To the place of trumpeting."

Even more intriguing is the part of the western wall that's still underground.

Dan Bahat spent 40 years excavating the tunnels around the Temple Mount, and he says the most compelling case for the temple is yet to be discovered.

"I believe that behind this stone is a large arch which forms a storehouse, which stored all the treasures of the temple," he said. "In the future, when it will be possible to dig, maybe we'll get to there."

But Bahat's interest in the temple is strictly in its past, not in its future.

"There is no chance whatsoever for the third temple. The third temple will be when the Messiah comes," he said. "Both Jews and Christians are waiting for him so when he comes, let us see what happens. It won't happen before."

*Original Broadcast Date: September 25, 2009.

*Originally aired October 17, 2008.

Have a read of my own  use common sense here.

The videos below are fairly long but you may have the time to listen
We are on the threshold of a major was 2014
Have a good listen easy to follow what do you think
Chuck Missler, evangelical Christian


A long Video about Israel, Hamas, Palestinians .
Just listen to the last 10 minutes 25 minutes into the video. Look at Revelation chapter 11.  Talking about two witnesses. 30 minutes.
Not easy to follow for us Gentiles.



Psalm 83 New King James Version (NKJV)

Prayer to Frustrate Conspiracy Against Israel

A Song. A Psalm of Asaph.

83 Do not keep silent, O God!
Do not hold Your peace,
And do not be still, O God!
For behold, Your enemies make a tumult;
And those who hate You have lifted up their head.
They have taken crafty counsel against Your people,
And consulted together against Your sheltered ones.
They have said, “Come, and let us cut them off from being a nation,
That the name of Israel may be remembered no more.”

For they have consulted together with one consent;
They form a confederacy against You:
The tents of Edom and the Ishmaelites;
Moab and the Hagrites;
Gebal, Ammon, and Amalek;
Philistia with the inhabitants of Tyre;
Assyria also has joined with them;
They have helped the children of Lot. Selah

Deal with them as with Midian,
As with Sisera,
As with Jabin at the Brook Kishon,
10 Who perished at En Dor,
Who became as refuse on the earth.
11 Make their nobles like Oreb and like Zeeb,
Yes, all their princes like Zebah and Zalmunna,
12 Who said, “Let us take for ourselves
The pastures of God for a possession.”

13 O my God, make them like the whirling dust,
Like the chaff before the wind!
14 As the fire burns the woods,
And as the flame sets the mountains on fire,
15 So pursue them with Your tempest,
And frighten them with Your storm.
16 Fill their faces with shame,
That they may seek Your name, O Lord.
17 Let them be confounded and dismayed forever;
Yes, let them be put to shame and perish,
18 That they may know that You, whose name alone is the Lord,
Are the Most High over all the earth.

New King James Version (NKJV)

The Holy Bible, New King James Version Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, I


Isaiah 53 New King James Version (NKJV)
Suffering Servant Jesus Christ here

53 Who has believed our report?
And to whom has the arm of the Lord been revealed?
For He shall grow up before Him as a tender plant,
And as a root out of dry ground.
He has no form or comeliness;
And when we see Him,
There is no beauty that we should desire Him.
He is despised and rejected by men,
A Man of sorrows and acquainted with grief.
And we hid, as it were, our faces from Him;
He was despised, and we did not esteem Him.

Surely He has borne our griefs
And carried our sorrows;
Yet we esteemed Him stricken,
Smitten by God, and afflicted.
But He was wounded for our transgressions,
He was bruised for our iniquities;
The chastisement for our peace was upon Him,
And by His stripes we are healed.
All we like sheep have gone astray;
We have turned, every one, to his own way;
And the Lord has laid on Him the iniquity of us all.

He was oppressed and He was afflicted,
Yet He opened not His mouth;
He was led as a lamb to the slaughter,
And as a sheep before its shearers is silent,
So He opened not His mouth.
He was taken from prison and from judgment,
And who will declare His generation?
For He was cut off from the land of the living;
For the transgressions of My people He was stricken.
And they[a] made His grave with the wicked—
But with the rich at His death,
Because He had done no violence,
Nor was any deceit in His mouth.

10 Yet it pleased the Lord to bruise Him;
He has put Him to grief.
When You make His soul an offering for sin,
He shall see His seed, He shall prolong His days,
And the pleasure of the Lord shall prosper in His hand.
11 He shall see the labor of His soul,[b] and be satisfied.
By His knowledge My righteous Servant shall justify many,
For He shall bear their iniquities.
12 Therefore I will divide Him a portion with the great,
And He shall divide the spoil with the strong,
Because He poured out His soul unto death,
And He was numbered with the transgressors,
And He bore the sin of many,
And made intercession for the transgressors.


  1. Isaiah 53:9 Literally he or He
  2. Isaiah 53:11 Following Masoretic Text, Targum, and Vulgate; Dead Sea Scrolls and Septuagint read From the labor of His soul He shall see light.
New King James Version (NKJV)

The Holy Bible, New King James Version Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc.

Israel your King is coming

Matthew 21:5 New King James Version (NKJV)

“Tell the daughter of Zion,
‘Behold, your King is coming to you,
Lowly, and sitting on a donkey,
A colt, the foal of a donkey.’”[a]

New King James Version (NKJV)

The Holy Bible, New King James Version Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc.

Zechariah 9:9 New King James Version (NKJV)

The Coming King

“Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion!
Shout, O daughter of Jerusalem!
Behold, your King is coming to you;
He is just and having salvation,
Lowly and riding on a donkey,
A colt, the foal of a donkey.

New King James Version (NKJV)

The Holy Bible, New King James Version Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc.


Keep on hearing, but do not understand;
keep on seeing, but do not perceive

Isaiah 6:9

And he said, “Go, and say to this people:
“‘Keep on hearing, but do not understand;
keep on seeing, but do not perceive.’

Matthew 13:14-15

Indeed, in their case the prophecy of Isaiah is fulfilled that says: “‘You will indeed hear but never understand, and you will indeed see but never perceive. For this people's heart has grown dull, and with their ears they can barely hear, and their eyes they have closed, lest they should see

Luke 8:10

he said, “To you it has been given to know the secrets of the kingdom of God, but for others they are in parables, so that ‘seeing they may not see, and hearing they may not understand.’

Mark 4:12

so that “they may indeed see but not perceive, and may indeed hear but not understand, lest they should turn and be forgiven.”

John 12:40

“He has blinded their eyes and hardened their heart, lest they see with their eyes, and understand with their heart, and turn, and I would heal them.”

Isaiah 29:13

And the Lord said: “Because this people draw near with their mouth and honor me with their lips, while their hearts are far from me, and their fear of me is a commandment taught by men,

Romans 11:8

as it is written, “God gave them a spirit of stupor, eyes that would not see and ears that would not hear, down to this very day.”

Acts 28:26-27

“‘Go to this people, and say, You will indeed hear but never understand, and you will indeed see but never perceive. For this people's heart has grown dull, and with their ears they can barely hear, and their eyes they have closed; lest they should see with their eyes and hear with their


Isaiah 44:18-20

They know not, nor do they discern, for he has shut their eyes, so that they cannot see, and their hearts, so that they cannot understand. No one considers, nor is there knowledge or discernment to say, “Half of it I burned in the fire; I also baked bread on its coals; I roasted

Isaiah 43:8

Bring out the people who are blind, yet have eyes, who are deaf, yet have ears

Isaiah 30:8-11

And now, go, write it before them on a tablet and inscribe it in a book, that it may be for the time to come as a witness forever. For they are a rebellious people, lying children, children unwilling to hear the instruction of the Lord; who say to the seers, “Do not see,” and to the

Exodus 32:7-10 Helpful? Yes No

And the Lord said to Moses, “Go down, for your people, whom you brought up out of the land of Egypt, have corrupted themselves. They have turned aside quickly out of the way that I commanded them. They have made for themselves a golden calf and have worshiped it and

Jeremiah 15:1-2

Then the Lord said to me, “Though Moses and Samuel stood before me, yet my heart would not turn toward this people. Send them out of my sight, and let them go! And when they ask you, ‘Where shall we go?’ you shall say to them, ‘Thus says the Lord: “‘Those who are for pestilence

Hosea 1:9

And the Lord said, “Call his name Not My People, for you are not my people, and I am not your God.”


Jesus the Messiah


Verses claimed as fulfilled prophecies[edit]

Daniel 9:24-27[edit]

"Seventy weeks are determined upon thy people and upon thy holy city, to finish the transgression, and to make an end of sins, and to make reconciliation for iniquity, and to bring in everlasting righteousness, and to seal up the vision and prophecy, and to anoint the most Holy. Know therefore and understand, that from the going forth of the commandment to restore and to build Jerusalem unto the Messiah the Prince shall be seven weeks, and threescore and two weeks: the street shall be built again, and the wall, even in troublous times. And after threescore and two weeks shall Messiah be cut off, but not for himself: and the people of the prince that shall come shall destroy the city and the sanctuary; and the end thereof shall be with a flood, and unto the end of the war desolations are determined. And he shall confirm the covenant with many for one week: and in the midst of the week he shall cause the sacrifice and the oblation to cease, and for the overspreading of abominations he shall make it desolate, even until the consummation, and that determined shall be poured upon the desolate" - Daniel 9:24-27 (Authorized Version 1611)

References to "most holy", "anointed" ("Messiah") and "prince" have been interpreted as speaking of Jesus, and the phrase "anointed shall be cut off" as pointing to his crucifixion, the "people of the prince who is to come" being taken to refer to the Romans who destroyed Jerusalem and the Temple in 70 AD.[2]

In the Gospel of Mark, Jesus refers to the “horrible abomination” or “abomination of desolation,” (Mark 13:14) and the Gospel of Matthew adds a direct reference to this as being from the Book of Daniel, "So when you see the desolating sacrilege spoken of by the prophet Daniel…" (Matt 24:15)

The general scholarly view[3][4] is that the author of Daniel is writing a contemporaneous account of the Maccabean Revolt c. 167 BCE and the "cutting off of an anointed one" (9:26)— refers to the murder of the high priest Onias III; the "abomination that causes desolation" refers to Antiochus IV erecting a statue of Zeus in the Temple, the final straw breaking the uneasy coexistence of the traditionalist Jews and the more Hellenized Jews.

Deuteronomy 18:15[edit]

Deuteronomy 18 is one of the earliest prophecies which speaks of a prophet who would be raised up from among the Jewish nation.

15 "The LORD will raise up for you a prophet like me from among yourselves, from your own kinsmen. You are to pay attention to him ... 18I will raise up for them a prophet like you from among their kinsmen. I will put my words in his mouth, and he will tell them everything I order him." (CJB)

Some Evangelical Christians claim that in the first century CE, Jews expected a final prophet.[5] The Gospel of John states that the Jews of Jesus' time asked John the Baptist if he were the prophet described in this verse (John 1:19-22), and that he denied it. In Acts 3:18-22, Peter claimed that Jesus was the fulfillment of this promise.

Ezekiel 37:26-27[edit]

"I will make a covenant of peace with them, an everlasting covenant. I will give to them, increase their numbers, and set my Sanctuary among them forever. My dwelling place will be with them; I will be their God, and they will be my people." (CJB)

The "dwelling place" (Hebrew mishkan) recalls the wilderness tabernacle. The Sanctuary (Hebrew miqdash) points rather to the Temple, in particular the renewed Temple, which will occupy Ezekiel's attention in the last ch.s of 40-48.

Christianity believes that Ezekiel's Temple is more glorious than the Tabernacle of Moses (Exodus 25-40) and the Temple of Solomon (1 Kings 5-8), pointing forward to several beliefs:

  • (1) the glory in which God dwells with man in the Messiah (John 1:14 The Word became a human being and lived with us, and we saw his Sh'khinah (CJB));
  • (2) The Messiah's body is the Temple (John 2:19-21 Yeshua answered them, "Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up again." The Judeans said, "It took 46 years to build this Temple, and you're going to raise it in three days?" But the "temple" he had spoken of was his body. (CJB));
  • (3) the messianic community as the Temple (1 Corinthians 3:16 Don't you know that you people are God's Temple and that God's Spirit lives in you?, Ephesians 2:20-22 You have been built on the foundation of the emissaries and the prophets, with the cornerstone being Yeshua the Messiah himself. In union with him the whole building is held together, and it is growing into a holy temple in union with the Lord. Yes, in union with him, you yourselves are being built together into a spiritual dwelling-place for God!, 1 Peter 2:5 yourselves, as living stones, are being built into a spiritual house to be cohanim set apart for God to offer spiritual sacrifices acceptable to him through Yeshua the Messiah. (CJB));
  • (4) the body of the individual believer (1 Corinthians 6:19 Or don't you know that your body is a Temple for the Ruach HaKodesh who lives inside you, whom you received from God? The fact is, you don't belong to yourselves (CJB));
  • (5) the heavenly Jerusalem (Revelation 21:9-22:5)[6]

Judaism holds that the Messiah has not yet arrived namely because of the belief that the Messianic Age has not started yet. Jews believe that the Messiah will completely change life on earth and that pain and suffering will be conquered, thus initiating the Kingdom of God and the Messianic Age on earth. Christian belief varies, with one segment holding that the Kingdom of God is not worldly at all, while another believe that the Kingdom is both spiritual and will be of this world in a Messianic Age where Jesus will rule on the throne of David. Most Jews hold that the Kingdom of God will be on earth and the Messiah will occupy the throne of David. Jews hold that life on earth after Jesus has not changed profoundly enough for him to be considered the Messiah.[citation needed] Christians (in particular Evangelicals) who believe that it is both/and claim that it is spiritual and within right now, and physical and outward at the return of the Messiah.

While Christians have cited the following as prophecies referencing the life, status, and legacy of Jesus, Jewish scholars maintain that these passages are not messianic prophecies and are based on mistranslations/misunderstanding of the Hebrew texts.[7]

Haggai 2:6-9[edit]

"6 For this is what ADONAI-Tzva'ot says: "It won't be long before one more time I will shake the heavens and the earth, the sea and the dry land;

7 and I will shake all the nations, so that the treasures of all the nations will flow in; and I will fill this house with glory," says ADONAI-Tzva'ot. 8 "The silver is mine, and the gold is mine," says ADONAI-Tzva'ot. 9 "The glory of this new house will surpass that of the old," says ADONAI-Tzva'ot, "and in this place I will grant shalom," says ADONAI-Tzva'ot.'" (CJB)

The Second Temple was to be filled with the glory of God and its glory would be superior to Solomon's temple despite the missing artifacts and the absence of sacred fire (God initially lighting up the altar Himself).

For some Christians, this prophecy is believed to be fulfilled in Jesus of Nazareth being present and teaching in Herod's renovated Temple and peace being granted by God for mankind in that place through the tearing of the veil of the Holy of Holies upon Christ's death. Furthermore, it is asserted that if Haggai's prophecy is to be held as true, it must have been accomplished before 70 AD since the Romans destroyed the Second Temple at that time.

On the other hand, many scholars, including evangelical Christians, understand the prophecy as being in reference to the physical splendor of the Temple (as implied by the context) and/or apply it to the yet future Third Temple.[8]

Hosea 11:1[edit]

"When Israel was a child, I loved him, and out of Egypt I called my son."

In its original context, this text from Hosea referred to the deliverance of the people of Israel from bondage in Egypt.[9] The Gospel of Matthew applies it to the return from Egypt of Jesus and his family as a messianic prophecy.[10] “An angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph in a dream and said, ‘Rise, take the child and his mother, and flee to Egypt, and remain there till I tell you; for Herod is about to search for the child to destroy him.’ And he rose and took the child and his mother by night, and departed to Egypt, and remained there until the death of Herod. This was to fulfill what the Lord had spoken by the prophet, ‘Out of Egypt have I called my son’” (Matthew 2: 13-15). Conservative scholars argue that this passage fits into the context of Hosea 11.[11]

Isaiah 7:14[edit]

Main article: Isaiah 7:14

In Isaiah 7:14 the prophet Isaiah, addressing king Ahaz of Judah, promises the king that God will destroy his enemies; as a sign that his oracle is a true one, Isaiah predicts that a "young woman" ("almah") will shortly give birth to a child whose name will be Immanuel, "God is with us", and that the threat from the enemy kings will be ended before the child grows up.[12] The almah has been identified as either the mother of Hezekiah or a daughter of Isaiah, although there are problems with both candidates.[13]

The gospel of Matthew presents Jesus's ministry as largely the fulfilment of prophecies from Isaiah.[14] In the time of Jesus, however, the Jews of Palestine no longer spoke Hebrew, and Isaiah had to be translated into Greek and Aramaic, the two commonly used languages.[14] In the original Hebrew of Isaiah 7:14 the word almah meant a young woman of childbearing age who had not yet given birth and who might or might not be a virgin, and the Greek translation rendered almah as parthenos, the Greek word for "virgin".[15] Scholars agree that almah has nothing to do with virginity, but many conservative American Christians still judge the acceptability of new bible translations by the way they deal with Isaiah 7:14.[16][17] The virgin birth is found only in the gospels of Matthew and Luke; there is no reference to the birth of Jesus in Mark's gospel or the Gospel of John, nor in the epistles of Paul, who says that Jesus was "born of a woman" without mentioning that the woman was a virgin.[18]

Isaiah 8:23-9:1 (9:1-2)[edit]

According to both Jewish and Christian interpretation, the prophet Isaiah was commanded to inform the people of Israel in a prophecy that Sennacherib's plunder of the Ten Tribes was at hand, and that Nebuchadnezzar's spoil of Jerusalem, in later years, was coming nearer.[19]

1“For there is no weariness to the one who oppresses her;
  like the first time,[20] he dealt mildly, [exiling only] the land of Zebulun and the land of Naftali,
  and the last one he dealt harshly, the way of the sea, and the other side of the Jordan, the attraction of the nations.” [ISA 8:23 (9:1)[21]]

After this prophetic address to the people of Israel, Isaiah interrupts his prophecy and speaks to God. According to Jewish tradition, the salvation of which he speaks is the miraculous end of Sennacherib's siege of Jerusalem (see Isaiah 36 and 37) in the days of the Prince of Peace, King Hezekiah, a child of King Ahaz.

The interpretation of ISA 9:1-2 by the Gospel author of Matthew has led Christian authors to hint at its messianic applications.[22]

2“The people walking in darkness have seen a great light;
  Upon those living in the land of deep darkness a light has dawned.” [(9:1)[21] ISA 9:2]

Matthew refers to this, since Jesus began his one to three years of ministry in Galilee:

12 “Now when Jesus heard that John had been put in prison, He departed to Galilee. 13 And leaving Nazareth, He came and dwelt in Capernaum, which is by the sea, in the regions of Zebulun and Naphtali, 14 that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by Isaiah the prophet, saying:
15 "The land of Zebulun and the land of Naphtali, By the way of the sea, beyond the Jordan, Galilee of the Gentiles: 16 The people who sat in darkness have seen a great light, And upon those who sat in the region and shadow of death Light has dawned."” MAT 4:12-16.

In Isaiah, this prophecy describes how Assyrian invaders from the east are increasingly aggressive as they progress westwards toward the sea, the coastline of the levante, while Matthew 4:14-16 has re-interpreted the description as a prophecy stating that Jesus, the new Prince of Peace, would progress (without any hint of becoming more aggressive) toward Galilee. While Matthew loosely plagiarizes a Greek Septuagint interpretation of scripture (Isaiah 8:23-9:1-2),[21] in the Masoretic text it reads totally different and refers to the 'region of the nations'.[20]

Isaiah 9:5 (9:5,6)[edit]

Some Christians believe that this verse refers to the birth of Jesus as the Messiah. The verse reads in Christian bible versions:

"6. For a child will be born to us, a son will be given to us;

And the government will rest on His shoulders; And His name will be called Wonderful, Counselor, The Mighty God,

The Everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace."

In Jewish translations of the Hebrew Bible the verse reads differently and the verse numbering is different (9:6 in the Christian Old Testament is numbered 9:5 in Hebrew Bible versions):

"5. For a child has been born to us, a son given to us, and the authority is upon his shoulder, and the wondrous adviser, the mighty God, the everlasting Father, called his name, "the prince of peace.""[23]

This long name is the throne name of the royal child. Semitic names often consist of sentences that describe God; thus the name Isaiah in Hebrew means "Yahweh saves"; Hezekiah, "Yahweh strengthens"; in Akkadian, the name of the Babylonian king M'rodakh-Bal'adan (39:1) means "Marduk has provided an heir." These names do not describe that person who holds them but the god whom the parents worship.[24]

This verse is expressly applied to the Messiah in the Targum.[25]

Isaiah 11:12[edit]

"And he shall set up a banner for the nations, and shall assemble the outcasts of Israel, and gather together the dispersed of Judah from the four corners of the earth." Isaiah 11:12

Some commentators view this as an unfulfilled prophecy, arguing that the Jewish people have not all been gathered in Israel.[26] Some Christians refer to the foundation of the State of Israel as fulfillment of this prophecy.[27] Others argue that the fulfillment is that Jesus as Messiah brings all nations to himself (cf. 11:10 "Nations will seek his counsel / And his abode will be honored.") citing John 12:32 ("And I, when I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all people to myself.") and Paul in Romans 15:12 when he quotes Isaiah 11:10, emphasizing the inclusion of the gentiles into the people of God.[6]

Some Christians also believe that Isaiah 2:2 is to be understood in connection with Isaiah 11:10,12.

"In the days to come, The Mount of the Lord’s house Shall stand firm above the mountains And tower above the hills; And all the nations Shall gaze on it with joy." Isaiah 2:2

Some Christians believe that Jesus the Messiah is the ultimate "house" or dwelling place of God, as is told in John 1:14 ("And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory") and 2:19-21 ("Jesus answered them, “Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up.” The Jews then said, “It has taken forty-six years to build this temple, and will you raise it up in three days?” But he was speaking about the temple of his body."). Through him the messianic community becomes a temple in 1 Corinthians 3:16 ("Do you not know that you all are God's temple and that God's Spirit dwells in you?"') and Ephesians 2:20-22 ("...built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, the Messiah Jesus himself being the cornerstone, in whom the whole structure, being joined together, grows into a holy temple in the Lord. In him you also are being built together into a dwelling place for God by the Spirit."). It is through the Messiah's exaltation all nations are drawn to him, as in Luke 24:47 ("...and that repentance and forgiveness of sins should be proclaimed in his name to all nations, beginning from Jerusalem.").[6]

Isaiah 53:5[edit]

Main article: Isaiah 53

Isaiah 53 is probably the most famous example claimed by Christians to be a messianic prophecy fulfilled by Jesus. It speaks of one known as the "suffering servant," who suffers because of the sins of others. Jesus is said to fulfill this prophecy through his death on the cross.[28] The following verse from Isaiah 53:5 is understood by many Christians to speak of Jesus as the Messiah:

"But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him, and with his stripes we are healed." Isaiah 53:5 (King James Version)

"But he was pained because of our transgressions, crushed because of our iniquities; the chastisement of our welfare was upon him, and with his wound we were healed." Isaiah 53:5 (JPS The Judaica Press Tanach with Rashi's commentary

Modern scholars, like Rabbi Tovia Singer[29] as well as Rashi (1040–1105) and Origen (184/185 – 253/254 CE),[29] view the 'suffering servant' as a reference to the whole Jewish people, regarded as one individual,[30] and more specifically to the Jewish people deported to Babylon.[31] However, in aggadic midrash on the books of Samuel, a compendium of rabbinic folklore, historical anecdotes and moral exhortations, Isa 53:5 is messianically interpreted.[32][need quotation to verify]

One of the first claims in the New Testament that Isaiah 53 is a prophecy of Jesus comes from the Book of Acts, which describes a scene in which God commands Philip the Apostle to approach an Ethiopian eunuch who is sitting in a chariot, reading aloud to himself from the Book of Isaiah. The eunuch comments that he does not understand what he is reading (Isaiah 53) and Philip explains to him that the passage refers to Jesus: "And the eunuch answered Philip, and said, I pray thee, of whom speaketh the prophet this? Of himself, or of some other man? Then Philip opened his mouth, and began at the same scripture, and preached unto him Jesus." This has been the standard Christian interpretation of the passage since Apostolic times.[33]

The (suffering) Servant,[34] as referring to the Jewish people, suffering from the cruelties of the nations, is a theme in the Servant songs and is mentioned in Isa 41:8-9, Isa 44:1, Isa 44:21, Isa 45:4, Isa 48:20 and Isa 49:3.[29]

Jeremiah 31:15[edit]

Matthew 2:17-18 gives the killing of innocents by Herod as the fulfillment of a prophecy spoken of in Jeremiah:

Then what was said through the prophet Jeremiah was fulfilled:
A voice is heard in Ramah,
weeping and great mourning,
Rachel weeping for her children
and refusing to be comforted,
because they are no more.

In Jeremiah 31:15, the phrase "because her children are no more" refers to the captivity of Rachel's children in Assyria. The subsequent verses describe their return to Israel.[35]

Micah 5:2 (Micah 5:1 in Hebrew)[edit]

"But thou, Beth-lehem Ephrathah, which art little to be among the thousands of Judah, out of thee shall one come forth unto Me that is to be ruler in Israel; whose goings forth are from of old, from ancient days." (Micah 5:1)

A verse near the end of Micah's prophecy on the Babylonian captivity has been interpreted by Christian apologists as a prophecy that the Messiah would be born in Bethlehem.[36]

The verse describes the clan of Bethlehem, who was the son of Caleb's second wife, Ephrathah. (1 Chr. 2:18, 2:50-52, 4:4) Bethlehem Ephrathah is the town and clan from which king David was born,[37] and this passage refers to the future birth of a new Davidic heir.[38]

Although the Gospel of Matthew and the Gospel of Luke give different accounts of the birth of Jesus, both place the birth in Bethlehem.[39] The Gospel of Matthew describes Herod the Great as asking the chief priests and scribes of Jerusalem where the Messiah was to be born. They respond by quoting Micah, "In Beit-Lechem of Y'hudah," they replied, "because the prophet wrote, 'And you, Beit-Lechem in the land of Y'hudah, are by no means the least among the rulers of Y'hudah; for from you will come a Ruler who will shepherd my people Isra'el.'" (Matt 2:4-6)

The idea that Bethlehem was to be the birthplace of the Messiah appears in no Jewish source before the 4th century CE.[40] Jewish tradition appears to have emphasised the idea that the birthplace of the Messiah was not known.[41]

Many modern scholars consider the birth stories as inventions by the Gospel writers, created to glorify Jesus and present his birth as the fulfillment of prophecy.[42][43] However since the birth in Bethlehem is one of the few common elements in the Gospel accounts, some scholars believe that both writers were drawing on an existing Christian tradition.[44]


Some portions of the Psalms are considered prophetic in Judaism, even though they are listed among the Ketuvim (Writings) and not the Nevi'im (Prophets).

The words Messiah and Christ mean "anointed one". In ancient times Jewish leaders were anointed with olive oil when they assumed their position (e.g. David, Saul, Isaac, Jacob). And "Messiah" is used as a name for kings in the Hebrew Bible: in 2Samuel 1:14 David finds King Saul's killer and asks, "Why were you not afraid to lift your hand to destroy the LORD's anointed?"

In many Psalms, whose authorship are traditionally ascribed to King David (i.e. Messiah David), the author writes about his life in third person, referring to himself as "the/God's/your messiah" while clearly discussing his military exploits. Thus it can be argued that many of the portions that are asserted to be prophetic Psalms may not be. Psalm 2, spoken of below, can be argued to be about David and not Jesus. Psalms 2:6 says "I have installed [past tense] my King on Zion, my holy hill [Jerusalem, David's capital that he captured in battle in 1 Samuel]." Psalms 2:7 says, "I [David, the author] will proclaim the decree of the LORD: He said to me [David, the person to whom God was speaking], 'You [David] are my Son; today I have become your [adopted] Father.'" If the passage was speaking about a begotten son then that person would have been born the son of that father; he wouldn't have to become it at some later point after birth. (Throughout the Bible it is common to call saints and angels the sons or children of God.)

Psalm 2[edit]

Main article: Psalm 2

"Why do the nations conspire, and the peoples plot in vain? 2. The kings of the earth set themselves, and the rulers take counsel together, against the LORD and his Anointed, saying, 3. 'Let us burst their bonds asunder, and cast their cords from us.' 4. He who sits in the heavens laughs; the LORD has them in derision. 5. Then he will speak to them in his wrath, and terrify them in his fury, saying, 6. 'I have set my king on Zion, my holy hill." 7. I will tell of the decree of the LORD: He said to me, 'You are my son, today I have begotten you. 8. Ask of me, and I will make the nations your heritage, and the ends of the earth your possession. 9. You shall break them with a rod of iron, and dash them in pieces like a potter’s vessel'" (Psalm 2: 1-9).

The dating of Psalm 2 is argued among scholars, but one suggestion is that it was composed under the Hasmonean dynasty (140-37BC.[45] The authors of Acts and the Epistle to the Hebrews interpreted it as relating to Christ.

Verse 2. “Anointed” – in Hebrew mashiah, “anointed”; in Greek christos, whence English Messiah and Christ.

Verse 7. The LORD is the messiah’s father.

As for kings and rulers setting themselves against the Christ, both Herod and Pontius Pilate set themselves against Jesus, whom God had anointed, according to Acts of the Apostles 4: 25-27.

Acts 13: 33 interprets Jesus’ rising from the dead as confirmation of verse 7 (“You are my son, today I have begotten you”).

Hebrews 1: 5 employs verse 7 in order to argue that Jesus is superior to the angels, i.e., Jesus is superior as a mediator between God and man. “For to what angel did God ever say, Thou art my Son, today I have begotten thee?”

Texts vary in the exact wording of the phrase beginning Psalm 2:12, with "kiss his foot", and "kiss the Son" being most common in various languages for centuries. Strong's shows the widely known word "bar," of apparent Chaldean origin but still in common use in Hebrew today as "son," as meaning "heir" or "son." Thus, with this word and the context there is an obvious reverence for royalty which is being portrayed in various manners. The New Testament era translation of the Old Testament, the Septuagint, gives another variation, literally "accept correction." All of these variations express the same concept- to show reverence and submission to the LORD and his anointed.

Psalm 16[edit]

The interpretation of Psalm 16 as a messanic prophecy is common among Christian evangelical hermeneutics.[46] “I bless the Lord who has given me understanding, because even in the night, my heart warns me. I keep the Lord always within my sight; for he is at my right hand, I shall not be moved. For this reason my heart is glad and my soul rejoices; moreover, my body also will rest secure, for thou wilt not leave my soul in the abode of the dead, nor permit thy holy one to see corruption. Thou wilt show me the path of life, the fullness of joys in thy presence, and delights at thy right hand forever” (verses 7-11).

According to the preaching of Peter, this prophecy is about the messiah’s triumph over death, i.e., the resurrection of Jesus.

“God raised Jesus up, having loosed the pangs of death, because it was not possible for him to be held by it. For David says concerning him, ‘I saw the Lord always before me, for he is at my right hand that I may not be shaken… For thou wilt not abandon my soul to Hades, nor let thy Holy One see corruption… Thou wilt make me full of gladness with thy presence.’ Brethren, I may say to you confidently of the patriarch David that he both died and was buried, and his tomb is with us to this day. Being therefore a prophet, and knowing that God had sworn with an oath to him that he would set one of his descendants upon his throne, he foresaw and spoke of the resurrection of the Christ, that he was not abandoned to Hades, nor did his flesh see corruption. This Jesus God raised up, and we are all witnesses of it” (Acts 2: 24-32).

Also of note is what Paul said in the synagogue at Antioch. “And as for the fact that he raised him from the dead, no more to return to corruption, he spoke in this way, ‘I will give you the holy and sure blessings of David.’ Therefore he also says in another psalm, ‘Thou wilt not let thy Holy One see corruption.’ For David, after he had served the counsel of God in his own generation, fell asleep, and saw corruption; but he whom God raised up saw no corruption” (Acts 13: 34-37).

Psalm 22[edit]

Two of the Gospels (Matthew 27:46 and Mark 15:34) quote Jesus as speaking these words from the cross;[47]

"From the cross, Jesus cried with a loud voice, “Eli, Eli, lema sabachthani?” which means, “My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?”

The other two canonical Gospels give different accounts of the words of Jesus. Luke 23:46 quotes Psalm 31:5 ("Into your hands I commit my spirit") while John has Jesus say "It is finished" (John 19:30). Some scholars see this as evidence that the words of Jesus were not part of a pre-Gospel Passion narrative, but were added later by the Gospel writers.[48]

In most Hebrew manuscripts, such as the Masoretic, Psalm 22:16 (verse 17 in the Hebrew verse numbering) reads כארי ידי ורגלי ("like a lion my hands and my feet").[49][unreliable source?] Many Christians translate this as "they have pierced my hands and my feet", based on the Septuagint and Syriac manuscripts. However, the phrase, if translated as "like a lion my hands and my feet" bears no coherent meaning. There remains some controversy about this translation. It asserted that the Dead Sea Scrolls lend considerable weight to the translation as "They have pierced my hands and my feet",[50] although this view is not uncontested.[51] Christian apologists argue that this passage refers to Jesus of Nazareth.[52]

Psalm 34[edit]

"Many are the afflictions of the just man; but the Lord delivers him from all of them. He guards all his bones: not even one of them shall be broken." (Psalms 34:20)

Ray Pritchard has described Psalm 34:20 as a messianic prophecy.[53] In its account of the crucifixion of Jesus, the Gospel of John interprets it as a prophecy (John 19:36) and presents some of the details as fulfillment.

“So the soldiers came and broke the legs of the first, and of the other who had been crucified with Jesus; but when they came to Jesus and saw that he was already dead, they did not break his legs. But one of the soldiers pierced his side with a spear, and at once there came out blood and water… For these things took place that the scripture might be fulfilled, ‘Not a bone of him shall be broken.’ And again another scripture says, ‘They shall look on him whom they have pierced’” (John 19:32-37)

Psalm 69[edit]

"They gave me also gall for my meat; and in my thirst they gave me vinegar to drink"

Christians believe that this verse refers to Jesus' time on the cross in which he was given a sponge soaked in vinegar to drink, as seen in Matthew 27:34, Mark 15:23, and John 19:29.[54]

Psalm 110[edit]

Christian authors have interpreted Psalm 110 as a messianic passage in light of several New Testament passages.[55] In fact, they argue that this refers to Jesus of Nazareth.[56]

“A psalm of David.

1. The Lord says to my lord: ‘Sit at my right hand, till I make your enemies your footstool.’
2. The Lord sends forth from Zion your mighty sceptre: ‘Rule in the midst of your foes!
3. With you is sovereignty in the splendor of holiness on the day of your birth: before the morning star, like the dew, I have begotten you.’
4. The Lord has sworn and will not change his mind: ‘You are a priest for ever after the order of Melchizedek.’
5. The Lord is at your right hand; he will shatter kings on the day of his wrath.
6. He will execute judgment among the nations, filling them with corpses; he will crush heads over the wide earth.
7. He will drink from the brook by the way; therefore he will lift up his head.”

Verse 1. God speaks to David. The first instance of "The LORD (Hebrew: YHWH)" in this verse is a translation of the Hebrew name of God, Yahweh. The second instance of "my lord (Hebrew: ADONI)" is David, from the viewpoint of the Psalmist. The opening phrase of Psalm 110 is literally translated as "Regarding David, a psalm," indicating that the psalm is "of" or "about" King David, not written by him. The same introduction (τω δαυιδ ψαλμος) is used in the LXX version of Psalm 110 (which is Psalm 109 in the Greek text).[57]

In the New Testament, the gospel writers leave out the portion "regarding David, a psalm" and reinterprets the remaining out of context verse as a messianic prophecy: “while the Pharisees were gathered together, Jesus asked them a question, saying, ‘What do you think of the Christ? Whose son is he?’ They said to him, ‘The son of David.’ He said to them, ‘How is it then that David in the Spirit calls him Lord, saying, The Lord said to my Lord: Sit at my right hand, till I put thy enemies under thy feet? If David thus calls him Lord, how is he his son?’ And no one was able to answer him a word” (Matthew 22: 41-46). The remaining portion of this verse speaks of how David shall be seated at God's right hand, with his enemies thoroughly defeated. Although Hebrew has no capital letters, the Hebrew translation of that passage reads "The Lord said to my lord" indicating that it is not speaking of God.[58]

"A royal psalm(see Ps.2 intro). It is quite difficult because v.3 is totally obscure, and the psalm speakers often. In Christian interpretation, it is understood as a reference to Jesus, as a messianic and sometimes eschatological psalm; Radak polemicizes against this view" 1. Here God is speaking to the king, called my lord; Perhaps these are the words spoken by a prophet. The king is very proximate to God, in a position of privilege, imagined as being on His right hand in the Divine Council. The second-in-command was seated to the right of the king in the ancient Near East. Such images are rare in psalms, but see Ps45:7. If the king trods on the back of his enemies (see Josh. 10:24), they poetically become his "Footstool" 2. In contrast to v.1, God is spoken of in the third person. The Zion tradition (see Isa. 2:1-4; 60:1-22) and royal tradition are here connected. While v.1-2 express the great power of the king, they also emphasize it comes from God" (YHWH).[59]

II Samuel 7:14[edit]

Hebrews 1:5 quotes this verse as, "I will be his Father, and he will be my Son.". However, the verse doesn’t end with the phrase quoted in the New Testament, but continues: "When he does wrong, I will punish him with the rod of men, with floggings inflicted by men." Christians see Jesus as taking on the sins of all humanity. Therefore, Jesus "did wrong" by accepting the sins of the world.[60] The Old Testament verse is referring to Solomon.[61][62] Given the reference to Solomon, Christians argue, Solomon is thus seen as prophetically typifying Jesus.

Wisdom of Solomon 2:12-20[edit]

The Wisdom of Solomon is one of the Deuterocanonical books of the Old Testament. The Deuterocanonical books are considered canonical by Catholics, Eastern Orthodox and Oriental Orthodox, but are considered non-canonical by Jews and Protestants.

"Let us lie in wait for the righteous man, because he is inconvenient to us and opposes our actions; he reproaches us for sins against the law, and accuses us of sins against our training. He professes to have knowledge of God, and calls himself a child of the Lord. He became to us a reproof of our thoughts; the very sight of him is a burden to us, because his manner of life is unlike that of others, and his ways are strange. We are considered by him as something base, and he avoids our ways as unclean; he calls the last end of the righteous happy, and boasts that God is his father. Let us see if his words are true, and let us test what will happen at the end of his life; for if the righteous man is God's son, he will help him, and will deliver him from the hand of his adversaries. Let us test him with insult and torture, that we may find out how gentle he is, and make trial of his forbearance. Let us condemn him to a shameful death, for, according to what he says, he will be protected".

Zechariah 9:9[edit]

Christian authors have interpreted Zechariah 9:9 as a prophecy of an act of messianic self-humiliation.[63]

"Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion! Shout in triumph, O daughter of Jerusalem! Behold, your king is coming to you; He is just and endowed with salvation, Humble, and mounted on a donkey, Even on a colt, the foal of a donkey." Zec 9:9

The Gospel of John links this verse to the account of Jesus’ entry into Jerusalem: "took the branches of the palm trees and went out to meet Him, and began to shout, “Hosanna! BLESSED IS HE WHO COMES IN THE NAME OF THE LORD, even the King of Israel.” Jesus, finding a young donkey, sat on it; as it is written, “FEAR NOT, DAUGHTER OF ZION; BEHOLD, YOUR KING IS COMING, SEATED ON A DONKEY’S COLT.” " John 12:13-15

The Synoptic Gospels make clear that Jesus arranged this event, thus consciously fulfilling the prophecy.[64]

The Gospel of Matthew describes Jesus' triumphant entry on Palm Sunday as a fulfillment of this verse in Zechariah. Matthew describes the prophecy in terms of a colt and a separate donkey, whereas the original only mentions the colt; the reference in Zechariah is a Jewish parallelism referring only to a single animal, and the gospels of Mark, Luke, and John state Jesus sent his disciples after only one animal.[65] Several explanations have been suggested, such as that Matthew misread the original, the existence of the foal is implied, or he wanted to create a deliberate echo of a reference in 2 Samuel 16:1-4, where there are two asses for David's household to ride on.[66]

In the most ancient Jewish writings Zechariah 9:9 is applied to the Messiah.[citation needed] According to the Talmud, so firm was the belief in the ass on which the Messiah is to ride that "if anyone saw an ass in his dream, he will see salvation".[67][need quotation to verify] The verse is also Messianically quoted in Sanh. 98 a, in Pirqé de R. Eliez. c. 31, and in several of the Midrashim.[citation needed]

Zechariah 12:10[edit]

Zechariah 12:10 is another verse commonly cited by Christian authors as a messianic prophecy fulfilled by Jesus.[68]

"And I will pour upon the house of David, and upon the inhabitants of Jerusalem, the spirit of grace and of supplication; and they shall look unto Me because they have thrust him through; and they shall mourn for him, as one mourneth for his only son, and shall be in bitterness for him, as one that is in bitterness for his first-born." Zec 12:10

In some of the most ancient Jewish writings, Zechariah 12:10 is applied to the Messiah ben Joseph in the Talmud,[69][need quotation to verify] and so is verse 12 ("The land will wail, each family by itself: The family of the House of David by themselves, and their women by themselves; the family of the House of Nathan by themselves, and their women by themselves"), there being, however, a difference of opinion whether the mourning is caused by the death of the Messiah ben Joseph, or else on account of the evil concupiscence (Yetzer hara).[citation needed]

The Gospel of John makes reference to this prophecy when referring to the crucifixion of Jesus, as can be seen in the following account: "So the soldiers came, and broke the legs of the first man and of the other who was crucified with Him; but coming to Jesus, when they saw that He was already dead, they did not break His legs. But one of the soldiers pierced His side with a spear, and immediately blood and water came out. And he who has seen has testified, and his testimony is true; and he knows that he is telling the truth, so that you also may believe. For these things came to pass to fulfill the Scripture, “NOT A BONE OF HIM SHALL BE BROKEN.” And again another Scripture says, “THEY SHALL LOOK ON HIM WHOM THEY PIERCED.” " John 19:32-37

Verses read as Davidic line prophecies[edit]



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Religion in Israel

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Western Wall and Dome of the Rock, Jerusalem

Religion in Israel is a central feature of the country and plays a major role in shaping Israeli culture and lifestyle, and religion has played a central role in Israel's history. Israel is also the only country in the world where a majority of citizens are Jewish. According to the Israel Central Bureau of Statistics, the population in 2011 was 75.4% Jewish, 20.6% Arab, and 4.1% minority groups.[1] The religious affiliation of the Israeli population[vague] as of 2011 was 75.4% Jewish, 16.9% Muslim, 2.1% Christian, and 1.7% Druze, with the remaining 4.0% not classified by religion.[2]

Israel has no entrenched constitution, but freedom of religion is anchored in law. While the Basic Laws of Israel that serve in place of a constitution define the country as a "Jewish state," these Basic Laws, coupled with Knesset statutes, decisions of the Supreme Court of Israel, and various elements of the common law current in Israel, also protect free practice of religion in the country.[3][4] Legal accommodation of the non-Jewish communities follows the pattern and practice of the Ottoman and British administrations with some important modifications. Israeli law officially recognizes five religions, all belonging to the Abrahamic family of religions: Judaism, Christianity, Islam, Druzeism and the Bahá'í Faith. Furthermore, the law formally recognizes ten separate sects of Christianity: the Roman, Armenian, Maronite, Greek, Syriac, and Chaldean Catholic Churches; the Eastern Orthodox Greek Orthodox Church; the Oriental Orthodox Syriac Orthodox Church; the Armenian Apostolic Church; and Anglicanism.[5] Members of unrecognized religions are free to practice their religion.[3]



Religious self-definition[edit]

As of 2009, 8% of Israeli Jews defined themselves as Haredim; an additional 12% as "religious"; 13% as "religious-traditionalists" ; 25% as "non-religious-traditionalists" (not strictly adhering to Jewish law or halakha); and 42% as "secular" (Hebrew: חִלּוֹנִי, Hiloni).[6] As of 1999, 65% of Israeli Jews believe in God,[7] and 85% participate in a Passover seder.[7] However, other sources indicate that between 15% and 37% of Israelis identify themselves as either atheists or agnostics.[8][unreliable source?] A survey conducted in 2009 showed that 80% of Israeli Jews believe in God, with 46% of them self-reporting as secular.[9] Israelis tend not to align themselves with a movement of Judaism (such as Reform Judaism or Conservative Judaism) but instead tend to define their religious affiliation by degree of their religious practice.

Of the Arab Israelis, as of 2008, 82.7% were Muslims, 8.4% were Druze, and 8.3% were Christians.[2] Just over 80% of Christians are Arabs, and the majority of the remaining are immigrants from the former Soviet Union who immigrated with a Jewish relative. About 81% of Christian births are to Arab women.[10]

Religion and citizenship[edit]

Israel was founded to provide a national home, safe from persecution, to the Jewish people. Although Israeli law explicitly grants equal civil rights to all citizens regardless of religion, ethnicity, or other heritage, it gives preferential treatment in certain aspects to individuals who fall within the criteria mandated by the Law of Return. Preferential treatment is given to Jews and their relatives who seek to immigrate to Israel. This serves to increase the Jewish population and provides asylum to people who face religious discrimination in the countries they emigrate from.

The Law of Return does not strictly follow the traditional Jewish religious law (halakha) in relation to the definition of who is a Jew. For example, some individuals who would be considered Jewish under halakha are excluded from the rights under the Law of Return - e.g. those who converted to another religion; while others are entitled to immigration though they are not considered Jewish under halakha, e.g. they are related by marriage to a Jew or a grandparent may have been a Jew.


Most citizens in the State of Israel are Jewish, and most Israeli Jews practice Judaism in some form. In the last two centuries the largest Jewish community in the world, in the United States, has divided into a number of Jewish denominations. The largest and most influential of these denominations are Orthodox Judaism, Reform Judaism, and Conservative Judaism. All of the above denominations exist, to varying degrees, in the State of Israel. Nevertheless, Israelis tend to classify Jewish identity in ways that are strikingly different from American Jewry.

Secular-traditional spectrum[edit]

Main articles: Hiloni and Shomer Masoret
Cyclists ride down the deserted Ayalon Highway in Tel Aviv on Yom Kippur

The Israeli term for Shomer Masoret (or Masorati) covers a wide range of ideologies and levels of observance, and is based on a self-definition phenomenon rather than an organized movement. However, the Shomer Masoret generally perceive themselves as a partly observants.

In 2007, a poll by the Israeli Democracy Institute found that 27% of Israeli Jews say that they keep the Sabbath, while 53% said they do not keep it at all. The poll also found that 50% of the respondents would give up shopping on the Sabbath as long as public transportation were kept running and leisure activities continued to be permitted; however only 38% believed that such a compromise would reduce the tensions between the secular and religious communities.[11]

Because the terms "secular" and "traditional" are not strictly defined, published estimates of the percentage of Israeli Jews who are considered "traditional" range from 32%[12] to 55%.[13] Estimates of the percentage of "secular" Jews vary even more widely: from 20%[13][not in citation given] to 80%[14] of the Israeli population.

Orthodox spectrum[edit]

"Tehillim neged Tilim" ("Psalms [recting] to counter Missiles").
A slogan initially coined during the First Gulf War, 1991, and turned into a popular slogan-sticker ever since, especially among the Israeli Religious Zionism ("National Religious") community and the Haredi Judaism sector

The spectrum covered by "Orthodox" in the diaspora exists in Israel, again with some important variations. The Orthodox spectrum in Israel includes a far greater percentage of the Jewish population than in the diaspora, though how much greater is hotly debated. Various ways of measuring this percentage, each with its pros and cons, include the proportion of religiously observant Knesset members (about 25 out of 120), the proportion of Jewish children enrolled in religious schools, and statistical studies on "identity".

What would be called "Orthodox" in the diaspora includes what is commonly called dati ("religious") or haredi ("ultra-Orthodox") in Israel. The former term includes what is called Religious Zionism or the "National Religious" community (and also Modern Orthodox in US terms), as well as what has become known over the past decade or so as Hardal (haredi-leumi, i.e. "ultra-Orthodox nationalist"), which combines a largely haredi lifestyle with a nationalist (i.e. pro-Zionist) ideology.

Haredi Jews

Haredi applies to a populace that can be roughly divided into three separate groups along both ethnic and ideological lines: (1) "Lithuanian" (i.e. non-hasidic) haredim of Ashkenazic (i.e. "Germanic" - European) origin; (2) Hasidic haredim of Ashkenazic (mostly of Eastern European) origin; and (3) Sephardic (including mizrahi) haredim. The third group has the largest political representation in Israel's parliament (the Knesset), and has been the most politically active since the early 1990s, represented by the Shas party.

There is also a growing baal teshuva (Jewish penitents) movement of secular Israelis rejecting their previously secular lifestyles and choosing to become religiously observant with many educational programs and yeshivas for them. An example is Aish HaTorah, which received open encouragement from some sectors within the Israeli establishment. The Israeli government gave Aish HaTorah the real estate rights to its massive new campus opposite the Western Wall because of its proven ability to attract all manner of secular Jews to learn more about Judaism. In many instances after visiting from foreign countries, students decide to make Israel their permanent home by making aliyah. Other notable organizations involved in these efforts are the Chabad and Breslov Hasidic movements who manage to have an ever-growing appeal, the popularity of Rabbi Amnon Yitzhak's organization and the Arachim organization that offer a variety of frequent free "introduction to Judaism" seminars to secular Jews, the Lev LeAchim organization that sends out senior yeshiva and kollel students to recruit Israeli children for religious elementary schools and Yad LeAchim which runs counter missionary programs. Shalom Hartman Institute of Jerusalem runs the Be'eri program to bring Jewish thought, philosophy, culture and history to "secular" to more than 50,000 Israeli school students[15] and IDF[16] officers without teaching religious practice or demanding observance of religious norms.

At the same time, there is also a significant movement in the opposite direction toward a secular lifestyle. There is some debate which trend is stronger at present. Recent polls show that ranks of secular Jewish minority in Israel continued to drop in 2009. Currently the secular make up only 42%.[17]

Secular–religious status quo[edit]

Main article: Status quo (Israel)

The religious status quo, agreed to by David Ben-Gurion with the Orthodox parties at the time of Israel's declaration of independence in 1948, is an agreement on the role that Judaism would play in Israel's government and the judicial system. The agreement was based upon a letter sent by Ben-Gurion to Agudat Israel dated 19 June 1947.[18] Under this agreement, which still operates in most respects today:

  • The Chief Rabbinate has authority over kashrut, shabbat, Jewish burial and personal status issues, such as marriage, divorce, and conversions.
  • Streets in Haredi neighborhoods are closed to traffic on the Jewish Sabbath.
  • There is no public transport on the Jewish Sabbath, and most businesses are closed. However, there is public transport in Haifa, since Haifa had a large Arab population at the time of the British Mandate.
  • Restaurants who wish to advertise themselves as kosher must be certified by the Chief Rabbinate.
  • Importation of non-kosher foods is prohibited. Despite this prohibition, a few pork farms supply establishments selling white meat, due to demand therefore among specific population sectors, particularly the Russian immigrants of the 1990s. Despite the status quo, the Supreme Court ruled in 2004 that local governments are not allowed to ban the sale of pork, although this had previously been a common by-law.

Nevertheless, some breaches of the status quo have become prevalent, such as several suburban malls remaining open during the Sabbath. Though this is contrary to the law, the government largely turns a blind eye.

Many parts of the "status quo" have been challenged by secular Israelis regarding the Chief Rabbinate's strict control over Jewish weddings, Jewish divorce proceedings, conversions, and the question of who is a Jew for the purposes of immigration.

While the state of Israel enables freedom of religion for all of its citizens, it does not enable civil marriage. The state forbids and disapproves of any civil marriages or non-religious divorces performed amongst within the country. Because of this, some Israelis choose to marry outside of Israel.

The Ministry of Education manages the secular and Orthodox school networks of various faiths in parallel, with a limited degree of independence and a common core curriculum.

In recent years, perceived frustration with the status quo among the secular population has strengthened parties such as Shinui, which advocate separation of religion and state, without much success so far.

Today the secular Israeli-Jews claim that they aren't religious and don't observe Jewish law, and that Israel as a democratic modern country should not force the observance thereof upon its citizens against their will. The Orthodox Israeli-Jews claim that the separation between state and religion will contribute to the end of Israel's Jewish identity.

Signs of the first challenge to the status quo came in 1977, with the fall of the Labor government that had been in power since independence, and the formation of a right-wing coalition under Menachem Begin. Right-wing Revisionist Zionism had always been more acceptable to the Orthodox parties, since it did not share the same history of anti-religious rhetoric that marked socialist Zionism. Furthermore, Begin needed the Haredi members of the Knesset (Israel's unicameral parliament) to form his coalition, and offered more power and benefits to their community than what they had been accustomed to receiving, including a lifting of the numerical limit on military exemptions for those engaged in full-time Torah study.

On the other hand, secular Israelis began questioning whether a "status quo" based on the conditions of the 1940s and 1950s was still relevant in the 1980s and 1990s, and reckoned that they had cultural and institutional support to enable them to change it regardless of its relevance. They challenged Orthodox control of personal affairs such as marriage and divorce, resented the lack of entertainment and transportation options on the Jewish Sabbath (then the country's only day of rest), and questioned whether the burden of military service was being shared equitably, since the 400 scholars who originally benefited from the exemption, had grown to 50,000[citation needed]. Finally, the Progressive and Masorti communities, though still small, began to exert themselves as an alternative to the Haredi control of religious issues. No one was happy with the "status quo"; the Orthodox used their newfound political force to attempt to extend religious control, and the non-Orthodox sought to reduce or even eliminate it.

In 2010 a report released by the Israel Central Bureau of Statistics showed that 8% of Israel's Jewish population defines itself as ultra-Orthodox, 12% as Orthodox, 13% as traditional-religious, 25% as traditional, and 42% as secular, on a descending scale of religiosity. Among the Arab population it showed that 8% define themselves as very religious, 47% as religious, 27% as not very religious, and 18% as not religious.[19]

Chief Rabbinate[edit]

Great Synagogue in Jerusalem, seat of the Chief Rabbinate

It was during the British Mandate of Palestine that the British administration established an official dual Ashkenazi-Sephardi "Chief Rabbinate" (rabbanut harashit) that was exclusively Orthodox, as part of an effort to consolidate and organize Jewish life based on its own model in Britain, which encouraged strict loyalty to the British crown, and in order to attempt to influence the religious life of the Jews in Palestine in a similar fashion. In 1921, Rabbi Abraham Isaac Kook (1864–1935) was chosen as the first Ashkenazi Chief Rabbi and Rabbi Jacob Meir as the first Sephardi Chief Rabbi (Rishon LeTzion). Rabbi Kook was a leading light of the religious Zionist movement, and was acknowledged by all as a great rabbi of his generation. He believed that the work of secular Jews toward creating an eventual Jewish state in Eretz Yisrael was part of a divine plan for the settlement of the land of Israel. The return to Israel was in Kook's view not merely a political phenomenon to save Jews from persecution, but an event of extraordinary historical and theological significance.

The Kotel is under the supervision of the Chief Rabbinate of Israel

Prior to the 1917 British conquest of Palestine, the Ottomans had recognized the leading rabbis of the Old Yishuv as the official leaders of the small Jewish community that for many centuries consisted mostly of the devoutly Orthodox Jews from Eastern Europe as well as those from the Levant who had made aliyah to the Holy Land, primarily for religious reasons. The European immigrants had unified themselves in an organization initially known as the Vaad Ha'ir, which later changed its name to Edah HaChareidis.The Turks viewed the local rabbis of Palestine as extensions of their own Orthodox Hakham Bashis ("[Turkish] Chief Rabbi/s") who were loyal to the Sultan.

Thus the centrality of an Orthodox dominated Chief Rabbinate became part of the new state of Israel as well when it was established in 1948. Based in its central offices at Heichal Shlomo in Jerusalem the Israeli Chief rabbinate has continued to wield exclusive control over all the Jewish religious aspects of the secular state of Israel. Through a complex system of "advice and consent" from a variety of senior rabbis and influential politicians, each Israeli city and town also gets to elect its own local Orthodox Chief Rabbi who is looked up to by substantial regional and even national religious and even non-religious Israeli Jews.

Through a national network of Batei Din ("religious courts"), each headed only by approved Orthodox Av Beit Din judges, as well as a network of "Religious Councils" that are part of each municipality, the Israeli Chief Rabbinate retains exclusive control and has the final say in the state about virtually all matters pertaining to conversion to Judaism, the Kosher certification of foods, the status of Jewish marriages and divorces, and monitoring and acting when called upon to supervise the observance of some laws relating to Shabbat observance, Passover (particularly when issues concerning the sale or ownership of Chametz come up), the observance of the Sabbatical year and the Jubilee year in the agricultural sphere.

The Israel Defense Forces also relies on the Chief Rabbinate's approval for its own Jewish chaplains who are exclusively Orthodox. The IDF has a number of units that cater to the unique religious requirements of the Religious Zionist yeshiva students through the Hesder program of combined alternating military service and yeshiva studies over several years.


The Karaite community in Israel, with an estimated population of 25,000 [20] lives mainly in Ramla, Ashdod and Beer-Sheva. There are an estimated additional 10,000 Karaites living around the world.


Foundation Stone in the Dome of the Rock
Ramadan decorations in Jerusalem

Jerusalem is a city of major religious significance for Muslims worldwide. After capturing the Old City of Jerusalem in 1967, Israel found itself in control of Mount Moriah, which was the site of both Jewish temples and Islam's third holiest site, after those in Mecca and Medina in Saudi Arabia: The Haram al Sharif (Temple Mount) from which Muslims believe that Mohammad ascended to Heaven. This mountain, which has the Dome of the Rock and the adjacent Al-Aqsa Mosque on it, is the third-holiest site in Islam (and the holiest in Judaism). Since 1967, the Israeli government has granted authority to a Waqf to administer the area. Rumors that the Israeli government are seeking to demolish the Muslim sites have angered Muslims. These beliefs are possibly related to excavations that have been taking place close to the Temple Mount, with the intention of gathering archeological remnants of the first and second temple period,[21][22] as well as the stance of some rabbis and activists who call for its destruction to replace it with the Third Temple.[23]

Most Muslims in Israel are Sunni Arabs with a small minority of Ahmadi Arabs.[24] From 1516 to 1917, the Sunni Ottoman Turks ruled the areas that now include Israel. Their rulership reinforced and ensured the centrality and importance of Islam as the dominant religion in the region. The conquest of Palestine by the British in 1917 and the subsequent Balfour Declaration opened the gates for the arrival of large numbers of Jews in Palestine who began to tip the scales in favor of Judaism with the passing of each decade. However, the British transferred the symbolic Islamic governance of the land to the Hashemites based in Jordan, and not to the House of Saud. The Hashemites thus became the official guardians of the Islamic holy places of Jerusalem and the areas around it, particularly strong when Jordan controlled the West Bank (1948–1967).

In 1922 the British had created the Supreme Muslim Council in the British Mandate of Palestine and appointed Amin al-Husayni (1895–1974) as the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem. The council was abolished in 1948, but the Grand Mufti continued as one of the most prominent Islamic and Arab leaders of modern times. Israeli Muslims are free to teach Islam to their children in their own schools, and there are a number of Islamic universities and colleges in Israel and the territories. Islamic law remains the law for concerns relating to, for example, marriage, divorce, inheritance and other family matters relating to Muslims, without the need for formal recognition arrangements of the kind extended to the main Christian churches. Similarly Ottoman law, in the form of the Mecelle, for a long time remained the basis of large parts of Israeli law, for example concerning land ownership.

In 2008 16.5% of the population of Israel, excluding the West Bank and Gaza, were Muslims. The percentage of people who graduated from Israeli universities in 2008 who were Muslim was 4.8%.[25]


The Church of the Holy Sepulchre, site most sacred to the Christian religion.

Most Christians living permanently in Israel are Arabs or have come from other countries to live and work mainly in churches or monasteries, which have long histories in the land. Nine churches are officially recognized under Israel's confessional system, for the self-regulation of status issues, such as marriage and divorce. These are the Eastern Orthodox, Roman Catholic (Latin rite), Gregorian-Armenian, Armenian Catholic, Syriac Catholic, Chaldean (Uniate), Melkite (Greek Catholic), Ethiopian Orthodox, Maronite and Syriac Orthodox churches, and Anglicanism.

The largest Christian community in Israel is that of the Greek Catholics, (Melkite), with 40% of the total Christian population. They are followed by the Greek Orthodox, 32%, the Latin rite Catholics, 20%, and the Maronites, 7%. The remaining Christian groups amount to around 1% of the total.[26][dubious ]

According to historical and traditional sources, Jesus lived in the Land of Israel, and died and was buried on the site of the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem, making the land a Holy Land for Christianity. However, few Christians now live in the area, compared to Muslims and Jews. This is because Islam displaced Christianity in almost all of the Middle East, and the rise of modern Zionism and the establishment of the State of Israel has seen millions of Jews migrate to Israel. The Christian population in Israel has increased significantly with the immigration of foreign workers from a number of countries, and the immigration of accompanying non-Jewish spouses in mixed marriages. Numerous churches have opened in Tel Aviv.[27]

Eastern Orthodox and Catholic Churches[edit]

Most Christians in Israel belong primarily to branches of the Eastern Orthodox Churches and Roman Catholic Churches that oversee a variety of churches, monasteries, seminaries, and religious institutions all over the land, particularly in Jerusalem. In the 19th century the Russian Empire constituted itself the guardian of the interests of Christians living in the Holy Land, and even today large amounts of Jerusalem real estate (including the site of the Knesset building) are owned by the Greek Orthodox Patriarchate of Jerusalem.[citation needed]


In modern times, one of the most vocal and active sectors of Christianity in support of Israel has come from the Protestant churches that support Evangelicalism. Each year hundreds of thousands of Christian Evangelicals come as tourists to see Israel, to be inspired by the land of the Bible and in the process benefiting the local economy as well.

Messianic Judaism[edit]

Messianic Seal
Main article: Messianic Judaism

Messianic Judaism is a religious movement that incorporates elements of Judaism with the tenets of Christianity. They worship God the Father as one person of the Trinity. They worship Jesus, whom they call "Yeshua". Messianic Jews believe that Jesus is the Messiah.[28] They emphasise that Jesus was a Jew, as were his early followers. Most adherents in Israel reject traditional Christianity and its symbols, in favour of celebrating Jewish festivals. Although followers of Messianic Judaism are not considered Jews under Israel's Law of Return,[29] there are an estimated 10,000 adherents in the State of Israel, both Jews and other non-Arab Israelis, many of them recent immigrants from the former Soviet Union.[30] In Jerusalem, there are twelve Messianic congregations[31][not in citation given]. On 23 February 2007, Israel Channel 2 News released a news documentary about the growing number of Messianic Jews in Israel.[32] In Israel Jewish Christians themselves, go by the name Mashiykhiyyim (from Messiah, as found in the Franz Delitzsch Hebrew New Testament) rather than the traditional Talmudic name for Christians Notzrim, (from Nazarene).[33][34]

Other religious minorities[edit]


Druze man in Peki'in
Main article: Israeli Druze

Israel is home to about 102,000 Druze who follow their own gnostic religion. The Druze live mainly in the Haifa area, Acre and Peki'in.[35] Since 1957, the Israeli government has also designated the Druze a distinct ethnic community, at the request of the community's leaders. Until his death in 1993, the Druze community in Israel was led by Shaykh Amin Tarif, a charismatic figure regarded by many within the Druze community internationally as the preeminent religious leader of his time.[36]


The Bahá'í Arc from the International Archives building

The Bahá'í Faith has its administrative centre in Haifa on land it has owned since Bahá'u'lláh's imprisonment in Acre in the early 1870s by the Ottoman Empire. Pilgrims from all over the world visit for short periods of time. Apart from the approximately six hundred volunteer staff, Bahá'ís do not live or preach in Israel.[37][38] Bahá'í individuals from other countries, wishing to visit Israel, have to seek written permission from Bahá'í World Centre in Haifa prior to their visit.[39]


Israel has 6,400 Buddhists, most of whom practice Tibetan Buddhism.[citation needed]


Israel is home to the only significant populations of Samaritans in the world. As of November 1, 2007, there were 712 Samaritans.[40] The community lives almost exclusively in Kiryat Luza on Mount Gerizim and in Holon. Ancestrally, they claim descent from a group of Israelite inhabitants from the tribes of Joseph and Levi.[41]


Main article: Hinduism in Israel

The small Hindu community in Israel is mostly made up of representatives of the International Society for Krishna Consciousness. In 2002, most of the devotees lived in Katzir-Harish.[42]

Sanctity of Jerusalem, Mount Gerizim, and Haifa/Acre[edit]

Jerusalem plays an important role in three monotheistic religions Judaism, Christianity, and Islam - and Haifa and Acre play a role in a fourth - Baha'i. Mount Gerizim is a holy site to what can be considered a fifth - Samaritanism. The 2000 Statistical Yearbook of Jerusalem lists 1204 synagogues, 158 churches, and 73 mosques within the city.[43] Despite efforts to maintain peaceful religious coexistence, some sites, such as the Temple Mount, have been a continuous source of friction and controversy. Jerusalem has been sacred to the Jews since the 10th century BC.[citation needed] The Western Wall, a remnant of the Second Temple, is a holy site for Jews, second only to the Temple Mount itself.[44]

Christianity reveres Jerusalem not only for its role in the Old Testament but also for its significance in the life of Jesus. The land currently occupied by the Church of the Holy Sepulchre is considered one of the top candidates for Golgotha and thus has been a Christian pilgrimage site for the past two thousand years.[45][46] In 1889, the Ottoman Empire allowed the Catholic Church to re-establish its hierarchy in Palestine. Other ancient churches, such as the Greek, Armenian, Syrian, and Coptic churches are also well represented in Jerusalem.[47]

In Islam, Jerusalem is the third-holiest city, after Mecca and Medina.[48][49] The Temple Mount is topped by two Islamic landmarks intended to commemorate the event — al-Aqsa Mosque, derived from the name mentioned in the Quran, and the Dome of the Rock, which stands over the Foundation Stone, from which Muslims believe Muhammad ascended to Heaven.[50] As for the importance of Haifa and Acre in Baha'i Faith, it is related to Bahá'u'lláh, who was imprisoned in Acre and spent his final years there. Mount Gerizim is the holiest site to Samaritans, who used it as the site of their temple.

Religious relations[edit]

Within the Jewish community[edit]

The State of Israel allows freedom of religion for all religious communities, both in law and in practice. Freedom House reports: "Freedom of religion is respected. Each community has jurisdiction over its own members in matters of marriage, burial, and divorce."

Religious tensions exist between Jewish haredi and non-haredi Israeli Jews. Haredi Israeli males devote their young adulthood to full-time Talmudic studies and therefore generally get exemptions from military service in the Israel Defense Forces. Many leaders of haredi Judaism encourage these students to apply for exemptions from the mandatory army service, ostensibly to protect them from the secularizing influence of the Israeli army. Over the years, the number of exemptions has grown to about 10% of conscriptable manpower. Many secular Israelis consider these exemptions to be a systematic shirking of their patriotic duty by a large segment of society.

Political poster for Shas, featuring Eli Yishai.

Haredi Israelis are represented by haredi political parties, which like all smaller parties in a system of proportional representation may tend to wield disproportionate political power at the point when government coalitions need to be negotiated following national elections. As of June 2008, the two main Haredi parties in the Knesset are Shas, representing Sephardi and Mizrahi interests, and United Torah Judaism, an alliance of Degel HaTorah (Lithuanian Haredi) and Agudath Yisrael. The Shinui party was created as a backlash to the perceived influence of the haredi parties, and to represent the interests of secular Jews that supposedly were not seen to by the other non-religious parties.

Tension also exists between the Orthodox establishment and the Conservative and Reform movements. Only Orthodox Judaism is officially recognized in Israel (though conversions conducted by Conservative and Reform clergy outside of Israel may be accepted for the purposes of the Law of Return). As a result, Conservative and Reform synagogues receive minimal government funding and support. Conservative and Reform rabbis cannot officiate at religious ceremonies and any marriages, divorces, and conversions they perform are not considered valid. Conservative and Reform Jews have been prohibited from holding services at the Western Wall on the grounds that they violate Orthodox norms regarding participation of women.

Tensions exist surrounding Mehadrin bus lines, a type of bus line in Israel which mostly runs in and/or between major Haredi population centers, in which gender segregation are applied. Non-Haredi female passengers have complained of being harassed and forced to sit at the back of the bus.[51] In a ruling of January 2011, the Israeli High Court of Justice stated the unlawfulness of gender segregation and abolished the “mehadrin” public buses. However, the court rule allowed the continuation of the gender segregation in public buses on a strictly voluntary basis for a one-year experimental period.[52]

Between Jews and Christians[edit]

Messianic Jews who are members of Messianic congregations, and separately Jehovah's Witnesses and evangelical Christians, are among the most active missionary movements in Israel. Their proselytising has faced demonstrations and intermittent protests by the Haredi anti-missionary group Yad LeAchim, which infiltrates those movements, as well as other proselytising groups including Hare Krishna and Scientology, and maintains extensive records on their activities. Attempts by Messianic Jews to evangelize other Jews are seen by many religious Jews as incitement to "avodah zarah" (foreign worship or idolatry). Over the years there have been several arson attempts of messianic congregations.[53] There have also been attacks on Messianic Jews and hundreds of New Testaments distributed in Or Yehuda were burned.[54] While missionary activity itself is not illegal in Israel, it is illegal to offer money or other material inducements. Legislation banning missionary work outright has been attempted in the past.[55]

Orthodox Jewish communities in Israel have come under scrutiny for the negative stereotyping and scapegoating of Christian minorities in the region, including violent acts against Christian missionaries and communities.[56] A frequent complaint of Christian clergy in Israel is being spat at by Jews, often haredi yeshiva students.[57] The Anti-Defamation League has called on the chief Rabbis to speak out against interfaith assaults.[58] In January 2010, Christian leaders, Israeli Foreign ministry staff, representatives of the Jerusalem municipality and the Haredi community met to discuss the problem. The Haredi Community Tribunal of Justice published a statement condemning the practice, stating that it was a "desecration of God's name". Several events were planned in 2010 by the liberal Orthodox Yedidya congregation to show solidarity with Christians and improve relations between the Haredi and Christian communities of Jerusalem.

Marriage and divorce[edit]

Main article: Marriage in Israel

Currently, Israeli marriage licenses if performed under an official religious authority (whether it be Orthodox Jewish, Christian, Muslim, Druze, etc.) only between a man and a woman of the same religion. Civil marriages were officially sanctioned only if performed abroad, but 2010 changes in Israeli law allow secular marriage in Israel for people that have proven to lack any religion also.[59][60] This is a major issue among secular groups, as well as adherents to non-Orthodox streams of Judaism. There is fear that civil marriage will divide the Jewish people in Israel between those who can marry Jews and those who cannot, leading to concerns over retaining the character of the Jewish state.

Relative sizes of the religious communities in Israel[edit]

The census results are in thousands.[61]

Year Druze Christians Muslims Jews Total
1949 14.5 34 111.5 1,013.9 1,173.9
1960 23.3 49.6 166.3 1,911.3 2,150.4
1970 35.9 75.5 328.6 2,582 3,022.1
1980 50.7 89.9 498.3 3,282.7 3,921.7
1990 82.6 114.7 677.7 3,946.7 4,821.7
2000 103.8 135.1 970 4,955.4 6,369.3
2009 125.3 151.7 1,286.5 5,703.7 7,552
2011 129.8 155.1 1,354.3 5,907.5 7,836.6

In the 2011 census, non-Arab Christians, estimated to number 25,000, were counted as "Jews and others".[62]

See also[edit]


  1. Jump up ^ Haaretz Service (16-09-2009). "Israel on eve of Rosh Hoshanah: Population hits 7.5m, 75.4% Jewish". Haaretz. Retrieved 2009-12-26.
  2. ^ Jump up to: a b "Table 2.1 — Population, by Religion and Population. As of may 2011 estimate the population was 76.0 Jewish. Group". Statistical Abstract of Israel 2006 (No. 57). Israel Central Bureau of Statistics. 2006. 
  3. ^ Jump up to: a b [1]
  4. Jump up ^ [2]
  5. Jump up ^ Sheetrit, Shimon (2001-08-20). "Freedom of Religion in Israel". Israel Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Retrieved 2008-10-26. 
  6. Jump up ^ [3] (in Hebrew)
  7. ^ Jump up to: a b "A Portrait of Israeli Jewry: Beliefs, Observances, and Values among Israeli Jews 2000" (PDF). The Israel Democracy Institute and The AVI CHAI Foundation. 2002. p. 8. Archived from the original on 30 June 2007. Retrieved 2008-01-28. [dead link]
  8. Jump up ^ "Top 50 Countries With Highest Proportion of Atheists / Agnostics". 27 March 2005. 
  9. Jump up ^
  10. Jump up ^ Moti Bassok (25 December 2007). "Central Bureau of Statistics: 2.1% of state's population is Christian". Retrieved 2008-01-29. 
  11. Jump up ^ "Sabbath Poll", Dateline World Jewry, World Jewish Congress, September 2007
  12. Jump up ^ [4][broken citation]
  13. ^ Jump up to: a b Daniel J. Elazar. How Religious are Israeli Jews?. Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs. Retrieved 2008-01-28. 
  14. Jump up ^ Anna R. Morgan (11 July 2009). The Other Israeli Conflict—The Jewish State Struggles Once Again Over How Jewish It Should Be. The Washington Post. p. B03. Retrieved 2008-01-28. 
  15. Jump up ^ 2009-10-12
  16. Jump up ^ 2009-10-12
  17. Jump up ^ Haaretz: Poll shows ranks of secular Jewish minority in Israel continued to drop in 2009
  18. Jump up ^ The Status Quo Letter (DOC) (Hebrew) English translation in Israel in the Middle East: Documents and Readings on Society, Politics, and Foreign Relations, Pre-1948 to the Present, editors Itamar Rabinovich and Jehuda Reinharz. ISBN 978-0-87451-962-4
  19. Jump up ^,7340,L-3890330,00.html
  20. Jump up ^ Official Site of the Jewish Karaites in Israel
  21. Jump up ^
  22. Jump up ^
  23. Jump up ^
  24. Jump up ^ Ori Stendel. The Arabs in Israel. Sussex Academic Press. p. 45. ISBN 1898723249. Retrieved June 2, 2014. 
  25. Jump up ^ Mansour, Johnny (2012) Palestinian Christians in Israel. Facts, Figures and Trends. Dyar. ISBN 978-9950-376-14-4. pp.21,43
  26. Jump up ^ Mansour, Johnny (2012) Palestinian Christians in Israel. Facts, Figures and Trends. Dyar. ISBN 978-9950-376-14-4. p.23
  27. Jump up ^ Adriana Kemp & Rebeca Raijman, "Christian Zionists in the Holy Land: Evangelical Churches, Labor Migrants, and the Jewish State", Identities: Global Studies in Power and Culture, 10:3, 295-318
  28. Jump up ^ Steiner, Rudolf; George E. Berkley (1997). Jews. Branden Books. p. 129. ISBN 0-8283-2027-6. "A more rapidly growing organization is the Messianic Jewish Alliance of America, whose congregations assemble on Friday evening and Saturday morning, recite Hebrew prayers, and sometimes wear talliot (prayer shawls). They worship Jesus, whom they call Yeshua." 
  29. Jump up ^ Daphna Berman. Aliyah with a cat, a dog and Jesus. WorldWide Religious News citing & quoting "Haaretz," 10 June 2006. Retrieved 2008-01-28. 
  30. Jump up ^ Larry Derfner and Ksenia Svetlova. "Messianic Jews in Israel claim 10,000"., citing & quoting Jerusalem Post 29 April 2005. Retrieved 2008-01-28. 
  31. Jump up ^ Messianic perspectives for Today. leeds Messianic fellowship. Retrieved 2008-01-28. 
  32. Jump up ^ "Israel Channel 2 News - 23 February 200...". 8 April 2007. Retrieved 2008-01-28.  (9 minute video, Hebrew audio, English subtitles)
  33. Jump up ^ Avner Falk Franks and Saracens: Reality and Fantasy in the Crusades p4 2010 - 225 "Nonetheless, the Talmudic Hebrew name (as well as the modern Hebrew name) for Christians is not meshikhiyim (messianic) but notsrim (people from Nazareth), referring to the fact that Jesus came from Nazareth."
  34. Jump up ^ example: The Christian Church, Jaffa Tel-Aviv website article in Hebrew יהודים משיחיים - יהודים או נוצרים?
  35. Jump up ^ Identity Repertoires among Arabs in Israel, Muhammad Amara and Izhak Schnell; Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies, Vol. 30, 2004
  36. Jump up ^ Pace, Eric (1993-10-05). "Sheik Amin Tarif, Arab Druse Leader In Israel, Dies at 95". The New York Times. Retrieved 2010-03-29. 
  37. Jump up ^ "The Bahá'í World Centre: Focal Point for a Global Community". The Bahá'í International Community. Retrieved 2007-07-02. 
  38. Jump up ^ "Teaching the Faith in Israel". Bahá'í Library Online. 1995-06-23. Retrieved 2007-08-06. 
  39. Jump up ^ "Other visits to the Holy Land". Bahá'í World Centre. Retrieved 2010-03-24. 
  40. Jump up ^ "Developed Community", A.B. The Samaritan News Bi-Weekly Magazine, November 1, 2007
  41. Jump up ^ David Noel Freedman, The Anchor Bible Dictionary, 5:941 (New York: Doubleday, 1996, c1992)
  42. Jump up ^ of Devotion
  43. Jump up ^ Guinn, David E. (2006-10-02). Protecting Jerusalem's Holy Sites: A Strategy for Negotiating a Sacred Peace (1st ed.). Cambridge University Press. p. 142. ISBN 0-521-86662-6. 
  44. Jump up ^ "What is the Western Wall?". The Kotel. Retrieved 2007-03-06. 
  45. Jump up ^ Ray, Stephen K. (October 2002). St. John's Gospel: A Bible Study Guide and Commentary for Individuals and Groups. San Francisco, CA: Ignatius Press. p. 340. ISBN 0-89870-821-4. 
  46. Jump up ^ O'Reilly, Sean; James O'Reilly (2000-11-30). PilgrFile: Adventures of the Spirit (1st ed.). Travelers' Tales. p. 14. ISBN 1-885211-56-2. "The general consensus is that the Church of the Holy Sepulchre marks the hill called Golgotha, and that the site of the Crucifixion and the last five Stations of the Cross are located under its large black domes." 
  47. Jump up ^ Preserving Identity in the Holy City
  48. Jump up ^ Third-holiest city in Islam:
    • Esposito, John L. (2 November 2002). What Everyone Needs to Know about Islam. Oxford University Press. p. 157. ISBN 0-19-515713-3. "The Night Journey made Jerusalem the third holiest city in Islam" 
    • Brown, Leon Carl (15 September 2000). "Setting the Stage: Islam and Muslims". Religion and State: The Muslim Approach to Politics. Columbia University Press. p. 11. ISBN 0-231-12038-9. "The third holiest city of Islam—Jerusalem—is also very much in the center..." 
    • Hoppe, Leslie J. (August 2000). The Holy City: Jerusalem in the Theology of the Old Testament. Michael Glazier Books. p. 14. ISBN 0-8146-5081-3. "Jerusalem has always enjoyed a prominent place in Islam. Jerusalem is often referred to as the third holiest city in Islam..." 
  49. Jump up ^ Middle East peace plans by Willard A. Beling: "The Aqsa Mosque on the Temple Mount is the third holiest site in Sunni Islam after Mecca and Medina".
  50. Jump up ^ "The Early Arab Period - 638-1099". Jerusalem: Life Throughout the Ages in a Holy City. Bar-Ilan University Ingeborg Rennert Center for Jerusalem Studies. March 1997. Retrieved 2007-04-24. 
  51. Jump up ^ "Egged launches 11 'mehadrin' bus lines". Jerusalem Post. December 1, 2006. Retrieved 2011-03-08. 
  52. Jump up ^ Izenberg, Dan; Mandel, Jonah (January 6, 2011). "Court scraps ‘mehadrin’ buses". Jerusalem Post. Retrieved 2011-03-08. 
  53. Jump up ^ Elaine Ruth Fletcher (26 June 2000). "Orthodox Suspected in Jerusalem Conservative Synagogue, Church Attacks". Retrieved 2007-01-28. 
  54. Jump up ^ "Orthodox Jewish youths burn New Testaments in Or Yehuda", HaAretz (Associated Press), 20 May 2008
  55. Jump up ^ Larry Derfner (29 April 2005). "A matter of faith". The Jerusalem Post. 
  56. Jump up ^ Persecution of Christians in Israel: The New Inquisition, Journal of Palestine Studies, Vol. 8, No. 1 (Autumn, 1978), pp. 135–140
  57. Jump up ^ Barkat, Amiram (2009-06-27). "Christians in Jerusalem want Jews to stop spitting on them". Haaretz. 
  58. Jump up ^ "ADL Calls On Chief Rabbis to Speak Out Against Interfaith Assaults In Old City". 2004-10-17. 
  59. Jump up ^
  60. Jump up ^ Fleet, Josh (2010-11-04). "Israel To Allow Civil Marriages". Huffington Post. 
  62. Jump up ^ Juni Mansur (2012) Arab Christians in Israel. Facts, Figures and Trends. Dyar. ISBN 978-9950-376-14-4. pp.13,20


  • Leibman, Charles S. Religious and Secular: Conflict and Accommodation Between Jews in Israel. AVICHAI, 1990.
  • Leibman, Charles S. and Elihu Katz, eds. The Jewishness of Israelis: Responses to the Guttman Report. SUNY Press, 1997.
  • Mazie, Steven V. Israel's Higher Law: Religion and Liberal Democracy in the Jewish State. Lexington Books, 2006.

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