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Summary

Rabbi Benjamin Blech draws upon his 40-plus years as a practicing rabbi to explain fundamental philosophical and theological concepts of Judaism. Rabbi Blech's premise is that Judaism is primarily a religion of actions rather than beliefs. He contrasts this with Christian theology, which many Jews mistakenly assume is similar to Jewish belief.

Each installment of this 18-part course includes a 15-minute video presentation, along with a few pages of required reading.

Sample class

Then, for a self-check of understanding, students are presented with a number of questions based on Rabbi Blech's material. Students can then compare their answers to the "answer sheet" provided on the webpage.

In this course, Rabbi Blech examines such fundamental questions as:

  • What does it mean to be a "good Jew"?
  • How does Judaism differ from Christianity?
  • Why do bad things happen to good people?
  • What does Judaism say about the Messianic era?

Author

Rabbi Benjamin Blech

A tenth-generation rabbi, Rabbi Benjamin Blech is the author of 11 highly acclaimed books. Understanding Judaism, the required reading for this course, was selected by the Orthodox Union as "the single best book on Judaism in our generation."

Rabbi Blech is professor of Talmud at Yeshiva University, and the Rabbi Emeritus of Young Israel of Oceanside where he served for 37 years.

Rabbi Benjamin Blech is an internationally recognized author and lecturer, having written for Newsweek and appeared on the Oprah Winfrey Show.

Materials

Each class features a 15-minute video presentation (available online), and a few pages of required reading.

Before beginning this course, students will need to purchase the book, Understanding Judaism by Rabbi Benjamin Blech (available at Amazon.com). Each of the 18 lessons in this course will include a few pages of required reading from this book.

Syllabus

Part One: Personal Transformation

  1. Religion: Deed or Creed? - see sample class
  2. The Key to Change
  3. Original Sin
  4. Mechanics of Change

Part Two: Mitzvot

  1. The Most Important Mitzvah
  2. Reward for a Mitzvah
  3. The First Exception

Part Three: Punishment

  1. Measure for Measure
  2. Lashes: Barbaric or Humane?
  3. The Issue of Martyrdom

Part Four: The Body

  1. Life Above All
  2. Enjoy Life on This Earth

Part Five: God

  1. Why do Bad Things Happen?
  2. God's Omnipotence
  3. God's Goodness

Part Six: The Future

  1. Are We Close to the Messianic Era?
  2. Deeds of the Ancestors Foretell
  3. Deed and Creed: Finale

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Sample class
Key features:
  • 18 class modules
  • 15-minute video for class
  • Beautiful PDF printout of class
  • By popular author and lecturer, Rabbi Benjamin Blech

Comprehensive online curriculum explores:
  • Fundamental philosophical and theological concepts of Judaism
  • How Judaism differs from Christianity
  • Why bad things happen to good people
  • How God interacts with humanity
  • The Jewish view of the Messianic era

Self-paced, easy-to-use modules:
  • Gives you complete control over your learning schedule
  • Makes it easy to absorb new concepts and information
  • Self-testing on each class to check your comprehension

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