Article Index


The Jewish people trace their ancestry back to three ancient leaders known as the patriarchs: Abraham, his son Isaac, and his grandson Jacob. In their daily prayers, Jews still call themselves "children of Abraham". Judaism was the first great faith to believe there was only one God. The Jews believe that God communicates with them through prophets. The greatest prophet was Moses, to who God revealed the Torah, the first five books of the Bible. The Torah contains God's sacred laws, the best-known of which are the Ten Commandments. Keeping these laws is central to the Jewish way of life.

Adams, S., (2000), World religions, Lorenz Books, London, pp. 42-43
Langley, M. (1996), Religion, Dorling Kindersley, London, p. 42

'At its core, Judaism is a religion, but it is also a way of living and thinking, a body of literature, a society, a musical tradition, a language and a history that stretches back 4,000 years. It is built on a code of beliefs, laws and teachings that are set out in the Hebrew Bible and other Jewish religious texts. It is not a remote or purely academic philosophy. Its laws and customs have provided a framework for a practical and spiritual way of life for Jews from the origins of Judaism right up to the present day.'

Graham, I., (2003), Judaism, Chrysalis Children's Books, London, p. 6.