5 08, 2020

Should a Rabbi Make Lenient decisions?

By |2020-08-05T08:12:21-07:00August 5th, 2020|Book Reviews, Jewish Books, Thoughts|

  Rabbi Professor Dr. Daniel Sperber is a leading scholar of Jewish law and customs and the author of many books on these subjects. Citing many fascinating examples and the rulings of highly respected rabbis that often read like short stories, he shows that the view of ultra-Orthodox Jews that an ideal rabbi is a man [...]

28 05, 2020

Our Shavuot is not a biblical holiday

By |2020-05-28T07:57:40-07:00May 28th, 2020|Jewish Books|

The current observance of Shavuot has no relationship to its biblical ancestor and doesn’t even occur at the same time. Very few people know the truth about this day. Most Jews think Shavuot recalls the day the Torah was revealed to the Israelites during the days of Moses. This is not true. This significance was [...]

17 05, 2020

A strange reaction to the pandemic face mask

By |2020-05-17T14:31:43-07:00May 17th, 2020|Jewish Books|

My fiend the philosophy professor Dr. Raphi Jospe who was also one of the editors of the Jewish Encyclopedia sent me the following and said I can pass it along.   See what happens when American legislators don’t study medieval Jewish philosophy.  In the news: An Ohio state representative says he won't wear a mask [...]

16 04, 2020

The Remarkable Thinking of Maimonides

By |2020-04-16T04:42:02-07:00April 16th, 2020|Jewish Books|

Micah Goodman’s “Maimonides” This is an important book. The following are some major points in it. The quotes are from the book.   Maimonides’ God: Goodman states that Maimonides’ God is transcendental, meaning God is not involved in the daily activities of the world. God placed in the world the laws of nature, and then [...]

5 04, 2020

Nachmanides Unique View of the Passover Seder

By |2020-04-05T04:39:15-07:00April 5th, 2020|Jewish Books, Thoughts|

Some may say that the mystic Nachmanides (1194-1270) was more interested in heaven than earth. Unlike Maimonides (1138-1204), who focused on a scientific study of the world, Nachmanides was concerned with the way in which Jews interact with God. Maimonides’ view led him to see three people-oriented purposes for the 613 biblical commandments. In his [...]

4 03, 2020

Purim differs from the biblical requirements

By |2020-03-04T05:28:45-07:00March 4th, 2020|Jewish Books|

  The current practice is that Purim is celebrated as a one-day holiday. Cities that were walled at the time of Joshua’s conquest of Israel – most notably Jerusalem – celebrate Purim on Adar 15, as a commemoration of the end of hostilities in the walled city of Shushan, where the battles occurred on Adar [...]

8 12, 2019

Will the Messiah be human?

By |2019-12-08T08:22:10-07:00December 8th, 2019|Jewish Books|

One of our readers wrote and asked if the Bile predict the future arrival of a godly messiah. The following was my response.   Maimonides I agree with Maimonides that there is no clear explicit statement in the entire Hebrew Bible about a miraculous messiah coming to save the Jews or, better stated, the world.  [...]

5 11, 2019

Mistaken ideas about Abraham

By |2019-11-05T05:57:50-07:00November 5th, 2019|Jewish Books|

Some rabbinical imaginative notions about Abraham Many claims are made about Abraham, most likely to enhance his stature, reputation, distinction, and prestige. Perhaps also because it was felt that Abraham must have had some kind of relationship with God before he was 75 years old. None of these views are even hinted in the Torah. [...]

1 11, 2019

Noah’s Flood teaches us how to understand the Bible

By |2019-11-01T06:57:49-07:00November 1st, 2019|Jewish Books|

The biblical story of the flood during the days of Noah raises many questions, but the answers help us to understand how to interpret biblical events.   Some of the questions are: Why were different divine punishments done in very different ways. For example, Cain was banished in Genesis 4:12 for murdering his brother Abel; [...]

19 10, 2019

A startling example of an inability to learn from history

By |2019-10-19T23:19:36-07:00October 19th, 2019|Jewish Books|

History repeats itself mostly because people fail to learn from the terrible consequences that occurred following the foolish acts of the past. The Bible tells us about the supposed wisdom of King Solomon. In my book “The Authentic King Solomon,” I show that actually, scripture is demonstrating that the king was not as smart as [...]

1 10, 2019

Yom Kippur which the Romans destroyed

By |2019-10-01T21:29:17-07:00October 1st, 2019|Jewish Books|

Like Rosh Hashanah, Yom Kippur does not exist in the Bible. It replaces another day known as Yom Hakippurim. Yom Kippur is singular, “day of atonement,” while Yom Hakippurim is plural, “day of atonements.” The biblical Yom Hakippurim is mentioned in Leviticus 16:29–31, 23:27–32, and Numbers 29:7–11. No work was permitted on this day, special sacrifices [...]

29 09, 2019

The truth about the untrue “since creation” calendars

By |2019-09-29T04:26:34-07:00September 29th, 2019|Jewish Books|

Many people, secular and religious, of different cultures and worldviews, have attempted to calculate the age of the world. There is no agreement between them, simply because it is an impossible task. Christians,[1] Muslims, and Jews have tried to do the calculation based on a literal reading of the Bible and have come up with [...]

21 09, 2019

Genesis according to Methuselah

By |2019-09-21T21:32:19-07:00September 21st, 2019|Jewish Books|

“Genesis According to Methuselah” by Reva Spiro Luxenberg is hilarious. Every page has several funny remarks by Methuselah as he comments on God, heaven, and what God created. I don’t think that I ever read another book that is as clever and as funny as this one. Mark Twain wrote several books about heaven and [...]

19 09, 2019

Jewish and Christian concepts of repentance

By |2019-09-19T23:55:17-07:00September 19th, 2019|Jewish Books|

Repentance as we know it today is not a biblical concept despite the thinking of many[1] that the prophet Hosea talked about it. Hosea 14:2 states “Shuva Yisrael ad Hashem Elokekha,” “Return Israel to the Lord your God.” Actually, Hosea says in chapter 14 what he said several times in earlier chapters when he also [...]

15 09, 2019

Was the biblical command to destroy nations cruel?

By |2019-09-15T08:54:54-07:00September 15th, 2019|Jewish Books|

Deuteronomy 29 relates that Moses reminded the Israelites that when they approached Canaan, “Sihon, king of Heshbon, and Og, king of Bashan, went out against us in battle; we smote them, and took their land.” These events are detailed in Numbers 21 and Deuteronomy 2 and 3. The battles with Heshbon and Bashan remind us [...]

11 09, 2019

Why Blow the Shofar – Satan?

By |2019-09-11T04:47:29-07:00September 11th, 2019|Jewish Books|

In 2008, in my first book on Maimonides called “Maimonides: The Exceptional Mind,” I described how ancient Jews had a totally different idea why they were blowing the shofar on Rosh Hashana. Here is some of what I wrote. The Shofar Scares Satan and Keeps Him at Arm’s Length It is absolutely certain that both [...]

8 09, 2019

Rosh Hashana was not a new year holiday in the Bible

By |2019-09-08T04:30:47-07:00September 8th, 2019|Jewish Books|

I just completed my fourth book called “Mysteries of Judaism,” my 54th book. It is part of a series in which I point out hundreds of facts about Judaism that most people do not know. While most of these facts are surprising to many people, Jews and non-Jews, they should not threaten readers. I am [...]

28 08, 2019

Orthodox Jewry is changing

By |2019-08-28T10:13:00-07:00August 28th, 2019|Jewish Books|

Professor Chaim Waxman, a prominent and highly respected sociologist of contemporary Orthodoxy, has made a superb assessment of the history, development, and current and future situation of Orthodoxy in his relatively short but comprehensive 178-page book, “Social Change and Halakhic Evolution in American Orthodoxy,” with 48 additional pages of bibliography and index. Readers will receive [...]

25 08, 2019

The biblical and Roman creation story

By |2019-08-25T14:26:44-07:00August 25th, 2019|Jewish Books|

It is basic psychology that people cannot understand a subject unless they understand its opposite. In fact, this was the first lesson I learnt at Johns Hopkins in my first psychology class. Peter Kamara’s “Ancient Roman Mythology” contains a description of a Roman creation myth. It is interesting to read the striking similarities between the [...]

19 08, 2019

Attacking presidents is not new

By |2019-08-19T03:37:26-07:00August 19th, 2019|Jewish Books|

The recently published book “Presidential Misconduct,” edited by James M. Banner, Jr, is eye-opening. It gives us a new perspective of today’s events. It is the only comprehensive study of American presidents’ misconduct. It contains essays on all of the presidents from George Washington through Barak Obama by leading presidential historians. The historians reveal that [...]

13 08, 2019

Review of my Nachmanides book

By |2019-08-13T09:45:20-07:00August 13th, 2019|Jewish Books|

I received this nice review of my book from Washbookreview.com. Nachmanides: An Unusual Thinker by Israel Drazin, Gefen Publishing House, US $24.95, Pp 240, June 2018 With at least fifty scholarly works to his credit, Nachmanides — also known as Rabbi Moshe ben Nachmanides — was one of the great Jewish Bible and Talmud commentators [...]

11 08, 2019

Mark R. Levin’s excellent attack against the press

By |2019-08-11T03:25:39-07:00August 11th, 2019|Jewish Books|

Mark R. Levin’s very informative book “Unfreedom of the Press” may surprise many readers when they discover that the book is filled with eye-opening fascinating information that is written in clear easy-to-read English. Levin covers many interesting subjects relating to the press, newspapers, TV, radio, attacks on the president, and all kinds of communications that [...]

8 08, 2019

Jewish and Christian concepts of repentance

By |2019-08-08T04:48:41-07:00August 8th, 2019|Jewish Books|

Repentance as we know it today is not a biblical concept despite the thinking of many[1] that the prophet Hosea talked about it. Hosea 14:2 states “Shuva Yisrael ad Hashem Elokekha,” “Return Israel to the Lord your God.” Actually, Hosea says in chapter 14 what he said several times in earlier chapters: stop worshiping idols [...]

5 08, 2019

Does the Torah mention life after death?

By |2019-08-05T04:53:32-07:00August 5th, 2019|Jewish Books|

The general consensus is that the Hebrew Bible does not mention life after death or even hint that it exists. Yet books such as “The Everyday Bible Commentary Daniel” by John C. Whitcomb argue that the book of Daniel does speak of life after death. Dr. Whitcomb’s book is a Christian theological commentary, that is [...]

31 07, 2019

Relying on God’s Help can Result in Tragedy

By |2019-07-31T03:33:30-07:00July 31st, 2019|Jewish Books|

Relying on prayer and divine help in daily life and when problems arise and not following the wise advice of Maimonides to use one’s intelligence, study the laws of nature, and act according to these laws, laws created by God, can, and usually does result in tragedy to one’s self, family, friends, and acquaintances. Examples [...]

25 07, 2019

A novel opinion about the Oral Torah

By |2019-07-25T10:58:58-07:00July 25th, 2019|Jewish Books|

One of the fundamental principles of Orthodox Judaism is the belief that there is a Written and an Oral Torah, both of which were revealed by God to Moses. Quite a few Orthodox rabbis declare that if a Jew does not accept this teaching, the Jew is not Orthodox and is a rebel, an apicores – [...]