Lesson 2- Jewish Beliefs and Texts
Jewish Beliefs and Texts
The Big Idea
The central ideas and laws of Judaism are contained in
sacred texts such as the Torah.
Main Ideas
• Beliefs in God, education, justice, and obedience anchor
Jewish society.
• Jewish beliefs are listed in the Torah, the Hebrew Bible,
and the Commentaries.
• The Dead Sea Scrolls reveal many past Jewish beliefs.
• The ideas of Judaism have helped shape later cultures.
Belief in one god
 Judaism is the world’s
oldest and possibly the
first monotheistic
religion. Monotheism is
the belief in only one god.
Belief in education
 Teaching children, mostly
boys, has always been
important to Jewish
Belief in justice and righteousness
 Jews are expected to be kind and fair in dealing with other
people, in a display of justice.
 They are also supposed to be righteous and do what is
Belief in obedience and law
 They obey moral and religious laws such as the
Ten Commandments and Mosaic law.
The Torah
• This is a
collection of five
books that make
up the most
sacred text in
• Nearly every
synagogue has
The Hebrew
• This is made up
of the Torah, the
Proverbs, and
the Book of
• It is also made
up of eight books
that describe the
messages of the
• Because some
laws are hard to
scholars wrote
commentaries to
explain them.
• They can be
found in the
The Dead Sea Scrolls were found in 1947.
It is suspected that they were written between 100 BC and
AD 50.
The scrolls included prayers, commentaries, letters, and
passages from the Hebrew Bible.
Judaism helped shape the largest religion of Western
society today, Christianity, as well as Islam.
Many people still look to the Ten Commandments as a
guide and do not work on the weekends, to honor the
People also give to charities, which is largely based on
Jewish teachings.