Rel 134

Rel 134
Issues in Western Religions


    Judaism is one of the world’s oldest religious traditions.   For Jews Judaism is a way of life with a set of beliefs and values.   Anti-Semitism is one of the current issues still facing Jews.   Anti-Semitism is a belief of hostile behavior toward Jews just because they happen to be Jewish along with their religious teachings that proclaim them as the only chosen people by God.   These sentiments manifested discrimination, prejudice and stereotype views about Jews ranging from individual hatred to violent persecution.   Anti-Semitism is not new it has existed for many years dating back to ancient times.   Jews criticized and in many cases punished because of their refusal to adopt the belief of the non-Jewish society in which they live.

    A more current issue facing Judaism is the different viewpoints regarding homosexuality.   The views concerning homosexuality under traditional Jewish law were that homosexuality was a violation and an abomination in the eyesight of God.   Progressive movements of Judaism have adopted the belief that when writing the Bible homosexuality was not fully understood and now needs to be considered.   Within the Jewish denomination this subject has led to enormous debate and division.   Because the Torah specifically forbids homosexual intercourse the view among Orthodox Jews has been adjusted to regard homosexual desires given that the Torah only forbids the specific act of homosexual intercourse and not homosexual desires.   However, those Jews who nurture the values of Liberal Jewish tradition, known as “The Society of Classical Reform Judaism” validate both homosexual desires and intercourse making these issues a major current topic in Judaism.


    In the eastern Mediterranean sometime mid-first century as a Jewish division, Christianity started. Christians believe Jesus is the Son of God.   This belief was the subject of persecution of Christians by the Jewish...