Answers to Questions by Yair Davidiy (29 November 2017, 11 Kislev, 5778)
Does Scripture Confirm that Jews of Today are Jewish?
The picture shows a group of Ultra-Orthodox Jews at a wedding in Israel. Are these the same Jews as those spoken of in the Bible? Are they identifiable as "Judah" in Biblical terms? Scripture says they are. We know about the Jews from the Bible. If it was not for Scripture it would not interest anybody what connection the Jews of today have to the Jews of the Bible. It is therefore pertinent to note that the Jews of today are identified by the Bible as Judah!
Here are proofs from the Bible that the Jews of today are the same as those referred to as "Judah" in Scripture:
A. The Jews of Israel Identified as Judah:
1. Judah in the End times will have possession of Coastal Palestine (Zephaniah ch.2). This fits the present State of Israel.
2. People from Judah will dwell in Jerusalem (Zechariah 14:14).
3. Judah will be recognized as both an old lion (Hebrew: "lavi") and a young lion (Hebrew: "gur aryeh") see Genesis 49: 8-9. The present-day Jews are an ancient nation who have created a new state incorporating both the old and the new. Theodor Herzl described the aims of Zionism. He named his book on the subject "Atlneuland" i.e. an Old-New Land which is how the State of Israel sees itself. The name of the city "Tel Aviv" (literally "The Spring-season ["Aviv"] of an ancient site ["Tel"] was a creative adaptation of the term "Altneuland."
[Points 1 to 3 above were first pointed out to us by the writer and historian, Stephen Collins].
4. The Jews in the End Times will be known as â€˜Israelâ€™ (Isaiah 48:1).
5. In the End Times Judah will assert himself (Isaiah 63).
B. The Jews of the Diaspora Identified as Judah
6. The Jews will have been persecuted (Zechariah 1:15, Zechariah 8:13, Isaiah ch.53, Isaiah 42:10, Psalm 44:22). Throughout their exile the Jews were indeed persecuted and victimized nearly everywhere they went.
7. The Jews will have kept the Law (Psalms 60:9, 108:90; Genesis 49:10; Zechariah 8:23). The Jews have done this. Not all of them were always observant but most of them remained basically faithful in principle and they always knew what the Law was.
8. The Jews will have kept the Four Fasts mourning over the Temple (Zechariah 8:19). Religious Jews still mourn on the relevant four days today, just as prophesied.
9. In their Places of Exile Judah will have been defenseless (Hosea 1:7, Psalm 44:22).
10. Judah will always be recognized as Judah (Genesis 49:10).
C. Judah of the Future
11. The Jews of Judah will Return before the Ten Tribes (Micah 4:8 cf. Hosea 6:10). The Ten Tribes have not yet returned but Judah has begun to do so with about 50% of World Jewry now in Israel.
12. The Ten Tribes would get Lost, not Judah (Genesis 34:10 cf, Isaiah 24:3, 49:13-14, 21 Hosea 1:8, Jeremiah 3:6-7).
D. Characteristics of Judah in Biblical Times and the Present
Bert Otten in an article about Judah:
("Judah and Prophecy"Â )
pointed to the following characteristics indicated by the Bible as those of Judah and still apparent in our time:
13. The name of Judah means praise (Genesis 29:35). Religious Jews spend much time in prayer and praise of the Almighty;
14. The forefather of the Jews was Judah who was noted for appreciating the value of money (Genesis 37:26). Rightly or wrongly Jews are still noted for this trait. Paradoxically Jews are at least as generous as any other people if not much more so. The two characteristics are not incompatible.
15. The Messiah is destined to come from Judah (Isaiah 11:1-10). Jews have messianic tendencies. They are politically active and usually in favor of reform, sometimes unduly so.
16. Judah with King David and the Psalms placed stress on music and musical instruments (1-Chronicles 13:8). The Jews are still noted for exceptional musical talent.
17. Jews are often political leaders, and administrators. This was prophesied (Genesis 49: 10).
18. A related trait is Judah being associated with the law (Psalms 60:9, 108:90; Genesis 49:10). Many Jews are lawyers. In fact it is widely believed by non-Jews that the best lawyers are Jews.
More points of identification could be added to the above list. Some of the above points are extremely pertinent in their own right. For example the proofs concerning the Jews living in the land of Israel, dwelling on the coast, calling themselves "Israel", etc.
Other of the points are quite general and could apply just as well to others, e.g. musical talents, etc. Nevertheless taking all of the above points as a whole the only ethnic entity who fits them all as listed is the Jewish nation. This identifies the present-day Jews as Jews according to Scripture and that is all that really matters.
See Also: "23 Identifiers"