Yohanan the Immerser’s Exhortations

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In Yohanan the Immerser’s Exhortations John the Baptist instructs his audience how they are to behave in order to bear the fruits of repentance.

Tower Builder and King Going to War Similes

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The Tower Builder and King Going to War similes attempt to explain why full-time discipleship to Jesus was not suitable for everyone.

Can Gentiles Be Saved?

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Jesus’ broadminded approach resonates with contemporary sages who belonged to the School of Hillel. In their opinion, it is better to leave God-fearing Gentiles in their blessed state with only the necessity of the moral laws given to Noah.

The Synagogue the Centurion Built

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The third Evangelist recorded in the seventh chapter of his Gospel a story about Jesus, the Jewish elders of Capernaum, a Roman centurion and their affable relations. From rabbinic texts and other literary sources like the New Testament, we know that despite years of suffering brought upon the Jewish people by their Roman overlords, there were instances when Jew and Roman behaved amicably toward one another. Luke 7:1-10 stands out as one such episode.

Were Women Segregated in the Ancient Synagogue?

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Did women play a passive role in the synagogue congregations of antiquity? Were they separated from male members of the congregation during prayer and study, as is the case today? According to Professor Shmuel Safrai, the answer to both questions is a resounding “No.”

The Bar-Kochva Letters

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Documents discovered in the Judean Wilderness near the Dead Sea provide some insight into the use of Hebrew in the land of Israel not long after the time of Jesus.