Judaism is one of the oldest religions in the world that still exists today. Jewish history, beliefs, and traditions were recorded in the Hebrew Bible beginning as early as the 8th century BCE.

Although it never achieved dominant numbers, the faith of the Hebrews—just one of many ancient Middle Eastern tribes—continues to exert a profound influence in the modern western world.

Jewish beliefs center on the conviction that there is only one God. This was a minority view in its time, but monotheism is now dominant in the western world—thanks to the influence of Judaism on the powerful religions of Christianity and Islam.

Today, approximately 14 million people identify themselves as Jews. There are three main branches of Judaism, each with different approaches to religious life: Orthodox; Conservative; and Reform. Jewish life is rich in traditions, rituals and holidays, which commemorate the past, celebrate the present, and express hope for the future.

  • Jewish Holidays and Festivals

    In Judaism, life is marked by numerous special days in which adherents take time out of their everyday lives to stop work and focus on God and his mitzvot (commandments... read more

  • Jewish Beliefs

    Judaism is one of the oldest religions in the world. Their sacred text, the Hebrew Bible, teaches several doctrines - such as those about God, the Messiah, human beings, and the... read more

  • Jewish Sects and Dominations

    What's the Difference? Judaism is one of the oldest religions in the world. While adherents are bonded by certain core beliefs, there is also diversity within the faith... read more

  • History of Judaism

    History is of the utmost importance in Judaism. Whereas the sacred texts of most ancient religions focus on myths and philosophical concepts, the Jewish Bible is centered around historical narrative... read more

  • Jewish Practices

    In Judaism, rituals and religious observances are grounded in Jewish law (halakhah, lit. "the path one walks." An elaborate framework of divine mitzvot, or commandments, combined with rabbinic laws and... read more

  • Jewish Sacred Texts

    People of the Book Followers of the Jewish religion are known as the "People of the Book," an appropriate title. After the destruction of the Second Temple in 70... read more

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UpdatedNovember 10, 2015
MLA Citation“Judaism.” ReligionFacts.com. 10 Nov. 2015. Web. Accessed 24 Oct. 2016. <www.religionfacts.com/judaism>