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A Fraying Connection to Faith

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A disturbing study from Pew Research Center offers the most detailed portrait of Jewish Americans in 20 years and shows a community with fraying connections to its traditions. Asked to select what’s “an essential part of being Jewish” more people picked “being intellectually curious” than “being part of a Jewish community” or “observing Jewish law.” Respondents were just as likely to consider “a good sense of humor” as essential to Jewish identity as “caring about Israel.”

Most alarming was the contrast between the general population and Jewish Americans when it came to faith in God. Among all Americans, 69 percent say they’re “certain of God’s existence” but only 34 percent of Jews agree. In an era when the Almighty fulfilled Biblical prophecy with the miraculous rebirth of a Jewish state, this lack of faith is hard to understand or explain.

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  1. John from Jonesboro, GA  •  Nov 20, 2013 at 7:54 pm

    It may be hard to understand, but Medved’s puzzling on air today (11/20/13) about Obama’s omission of God in various quotes of the Gettysburg address and other well-known American documents shouldn’t be such a mystery.

    Even after five years, Mr. Medved, you are still clueless about who Obama is and what he believes based on what he does? Is it so hard for you to understand that Obama’s attendance at the decidedly political church of Reverend Wright’s decidedly political sermons means something significant?

    Liberation theology is really about liberating the congregations from belief in God and refocusing them on a leftist utopia of earth, rather than of Heaven. Obama’s words and actions show a man not entirely incompetent, but entirely focused on what he wants.

    From his own words, Obamacare is simply a transition state of policy on the road to his goal of “single payor” healthcare. Seemingly inept social spending and ungainful tax increases on capital gains are nothing more than gestures at “redistributing the wealth.” The dismissal of the already found-guilty Black Panthers of famous Philadelphia election intimidation is nothing more than “social justice,” and seemingly incompetent American foreign policy is a direct manifestation of Obama’s belief in Wright’s assertion that America’s “chickens” should “come home to roost.”

    Why ask such an absurd question about Obama’s omissions of God? The answer is twofold. First, he believes he can get away with it while enlivening his freedom-from-religion donors; and second, because he knows he can do it without criticism from a supine press–and from a “conservative” like you who thinks that criticism of this kind is ridiculous.

    Honestly Michael! If the criticism is absurd, why talk about it on your show? I think we know the answer. Obama may be focused on his leftist goals, but you are morally and philosophically adrift–“absurd” to reuse the word, and beholden to the ephemeral fads of “pop culture and politics.”

  2. greg mchugh  •  Nov 21, 2013 at 11:02 pm

    Why would you judgeand critisize people of your own faith,you have yet to judge or critisize the president who is in a position of leadership and example,which does have an impact on the nation,

  3. Edward Decker  •  Nov 22, 2013 at 2:09 pm

    From my perspective, the decline of observant Judaism and discernible Jewish subculture is attributable to the same social forces that have marginalized most people with professed religious convictions–our culture has come to believe such beliefs are archaic at best, or violent and destructive at their worst.
    Why should anyone think that Jewish culture would not suffer the same marginalization as evangelicals?
    I stopped watching “Law and Order” years ago because serial killers, pedophiles, and the like were so often portrayed as hypocritical, repressed religious people, the “true believers” of whatever faith-group that had spawned them.

  4. Paul Thayer  •  Nov 22, 2013 at 8:16 pm

    Oy vey!

  5. Aaragon  •  Nov 25, 2013 at 4:08 pm

    I Love Michael, he is truly brilliant, and what ever he says is worth listening to…but, there is always a ‘but.’ He perplexes me, someone like Woody Allen (an atheist) can be considered Jewish. In Fact you can believe just about anything and claim to be Jewish; except one thing. If you believe Jesus of Nazareth was the Messiah of God, you have gone too far. No longer is the label “Jewish” applicable to you.
    As a gentile, I simply do not understand the logic. Why can’t someone be both Jewish and believe in Jesus? Is Judaism really to be defined as the, “anything except Jesus” movement?
    Nevertheless, I hope and pray for the security of the Jewish state and God’s blessing on my Jewish neighbors.

    • joseph deutsch  •  Nov 26, 2013 at 12:56 pm

      That’s known as a Christian,

      Perhaps ethnically Jewish….

      As a general rule, we don’t say, Italian Christians or Romanian Christians when talking about religion.

      If we talk about Romanian Christians, it has something to do specifically with that group…..

      Rare, but they exist, are Christians who convert, we never say, Christian Jews…

      • Mike  •  Nov 27, 2013 at 4:09 pm

        One can be a Messianic Jew. Per Wikipedia: Messianic Judaism is a syncretic[1] religious movement that arose in the 1960s and 70s.[9] It blends evangelical Christian theology with elements of religious Jewish practice and terminology.[14] Messianic Judaism generally holds that Jesus is both the Jewish Messiah and “God the Son” (one person of the Trinity),[18] though some within the movement do not hold to Trinitarian beliefs.[19] With few exceptions, both the Hebrew Bible and the New Testament are believed to be authoritative and divinely inspired scripture.
        In 2008, the movement was reported to have between 6,000 and 15,000 members in Israel[33] and 250,000 in the United States.[34]

      • joseph deutsch  •  Dec 1, 2013 at 6:55 pm

        Wikipedia can say that.

        Jews don’t

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