jewish holidays and traditions

Passover Plagues: Ten Days of Devotions by Laura Barron
March 25, 2015
Author: Laura Barron

These ten days of devotions give insight into parts of the Passover story that you might be overlooking.

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Courage Can be Contagious
February 25, 2015

The Jewish holiday based on the book of Esther has a message for Christians too!

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Do you hear the trumpet call?
August 9, 2013
Author: Maxim Ammosov

This year, Shavuot (the Jewish festival behind the Christian Pentecost Sunday) is May 14-15 (sundown to sundown). You can read more Jews for Jesus articles on this holiday here. Beyond that, David Brickner and Rich Robinson have written a very thorough guide to understanding this holiday and how it relates to believers in Jesus. Christ […]

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Complete The Rhyme
February 23, 2013

As David mentioned, Passover begins at sundown on March 25 and the Feast of Unleavened Bread lasts through April 2. For a twist on our quirky holiday quizzes, this time we thought we’d offer you a quirky “complete the rhyme.” A joyous time is Passover, as all of us should know, It marks the time […]

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Bits from the Branches

Purim Quiz
January 26, 2013

Purim is early this year! This “minor” but very fun Jewish holiday begins at sundown on February 23.  Find out how much you know about Purim: Hegai, a less known character of the story, was: a person of strong philosophical leanings; his descendants eventually produced a guy who greatly influenced Karl Marx. a person of […]

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Hanukkah Quiz
November 24, 2012

Why are there so many ways to spell this holiday (Chanukah, Hanukkah, Hannuka, and that’s just for starters)? When the Temple was destroyed, all the genealogical records were lost, so each tribe of Israel chose a way to spell the holiday; that way, generations later, the different tribes of Israel would be able to identify […]

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The “Guaranteed*-to-Get-100%” Feast of Booths Quiz
September 27, 2012

The Feast of Booths (or Tabernacles) is the seventh biblical holiday that God instructed the children of Israel to observe. (see Leviticus 23.) The Hebrew name for this feast is Sukkot (rhymes with “blue coat”). This year it runs from September 30 through October 7. We hope you enjoy (and maybe learn something from) this […]

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The Message of the Mezuzah
March 1, 2012
Author: Rich Robinson

Visit the home of an observant Jew, and even some who are secular, and as you enter, you will notice a small rectangular box attached to the outer doorpost. This object is a mezuzah (pronounced mehZUZah; plural is pronounced mehzuZOTE). Though it is small, it carries a big message. The Word Mezuzah In Bible times, […]

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We Had Questions…Oy! So Many Good Answers!
July 1, 2011

This was the most fun article to put together, because it’s all about YOU! We recognize that not all of our Havurah readers worship at a Messianic congregation, or live so far out in Yennevelt that they don’t have the option. Many in our Messianic family have chosen to worship in local churches and have […]

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Shavuot Among Ashkenazi and Sephardic/Mizrahi Jews
May 1, 2010
Author: Rich Robinson

  Ashkenazi Jews* Sephardic/Mizrahi* Jews (often varies country to country). For convenience, both are referred to here as Sephardic. Pronunciation of the holiday Shavuos (to rhyme with “ya knew us”) Shavuot (to rhyme with “ah, blue boat!”) Food   Both groups typically eat dairy food during this holiday. Among the Sephardim, however, Yemenite Jews do […]

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An Ashkenazic Look at Sephardic Sukkot Customs (What one Reform Jew from Brooklyn learned)
September 1, 2007
Author: Rich Robinson

I come from an Ashkenazic family, which means we have an Eastern European Jewish background. Sephardic Jews come from Spain, Portugal, the Mediterranean, North Africa and Iraq. This chart compares the customs our family knew to those of Sephardic Jews who’ve come to North America from Sephardic regions.* Traditions change over time, and also from […]

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March 1, 2007

We all struggle with how best to tell our unsaved families about Jesus, and there are no easy answers. But Jewish holidays provide wonderful opportunities for witnessing. Our redemption from Egypt is so typical of the way God works His salvation plans. And the well-known theme of the lamb’s shed blood can help you explain […]

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March 1, 2000

At Passover we remember our redemption from Egypt by eating matzo, bitter herbs, roast meats, chicken matzo ball soup and other Jewish delicacies. At Hanukkah we remember the victory over Antiochus Epiphanes and we eat potato latkes or donuts cooked in oil to remind us of the miracle of oil. On Purim we eat Hamantashen […]

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Milk and Honey: Forms that Reflect our Faith
February 1, 1999

One of the challenges we face as Jewish believers is finding forms that reflect and connect our faith in the God of our ancestors, our new birth in the Messiah Yeshua, and our Jewish heritage. Our desire is to keep those forms biblical and distinctly Jewish and to weave them creatively throughout our worship and […]

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Thanksgiving Perspectives
November 1, 1998
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Independence Day in Israel
June 1, 1991

Yom Ha-Atzmaut (pronounced ‘ahtzma-oot‘) is a national holiday in Israel commemorating the signing of Israel’s Declaration of Independence. The document, officially dated to coincide with the termination of the British Mandate on May 15, 1948, was proclaimed by the Israeli government on the fourteenth because the fifteenth was a Sabbath day. Israel’s Declaration of Independence […]

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Greeting Card Alert
September 1, 1990

One way of showing your Jewish friends and relatives that you respect them and the Jewish religion is to send greeting cards at the appropriate times. Jewish New Year cards are now available in most greeting card shops. Rosh Hashanah (Jewish New Year) falls on September 20 th this year. Yom Kippur (the Day of […]

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Baptism: Pagan or Jewish?
July 1, 1983
Author: Ceil Rosen

BINST GEVOREN A GOY! “You’ve become a Gentile!” We Jewish believers in Yeshua often encounter this accusation after we’ve been baptized.

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