HIDDEN LDS/JEWISH INSIGHTS - Old Testament
Gospel Doctrine Supplement 45 by Daniel Rona
“If I Perish, I Perish”
Daniel 1; Daniel and certain Hebrews are trained in the court of Nebuchadnezzar— They eat plain food and drink no wine— God gives them knowledge andwisdom beyond all others.
Daniel 3; Nebuchadnezzar creates a golden image and commands all men to worship it— Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-nego refuse and are cast into the fieryfurnace— The Son of God preserves them, and they come forth unharmed.
Daniel 6; Darius makes Daniel the first of his presidents— Daniel worships the Lord in defiance of a decree of Darius— He is cast into the den of lions— Hisfaith saves him, and Darius decrees that all peoples are to revere the God of Daniel.
Esther 3; Mordecai, the Jew, refuses to do obeisance to Haman— Haman arranges a decree to kill all the Jews in the kingdom.
Esther 4; Mordecai and the Jews mourn and fast because of the king’s decree— Esther, at the peril of her life, goes in unto the king.
Esther 5; The king receives Esther— She invites him and Haman to a banquet— Haman plans to have Mordecai hanged.
Esther 7; Esther reveals Haman’s plot to destroy the Jews— He is hanged on his own gallows.
Esther 8; Mordecai honored and placed over the house of Haman— Ahasuerus reverses the decree calling for the destruction of the Jews.
Biblical Word of Wisdom:
The Lord gave the Children of Israel a law of health. It could be
Holy Land and
called a “Word of Wisdom.” The Jews call it the correct, proper or fit way of living, the Kashrut
or being kosher. The word kosher is also used as meaning correct. The Kashrut
modified throughout the ages, yet some basics still remain as was given at Mount Sinai. In thismodern age, there are some Jews who will not eat meat because there are no sacrifices and the
meat cannot be prepared in the correct way. Others will only eat meat that is kosher, that is, slaughtered in the waysacrifices were done and only eating the parts of the animal as prescribed in the Law of Moses. It may be veryenlightening to know the modern explanation of Kashrut
, so it is included the full lesson supplement.
Jews Died as Martyrs Faithfully Observing Dietary Laws:
“During . . . the Greek rule of Erez Israel (second
century B.C.E.) many Jews chose to die rather than eat the unclean foods which the Greeks forced upon them. In
peril of their lives, Jews carried out the laws of ritual slaughter during the Crusades. The Marranos of the
Inquisition, the Cantonists of Czarist Russia, and the inmates of Nazi concentration camps all remained steadfastly
faithful to the laws of Kashrut, despite all threats.” (En c y c lo p e d ia Ju d a ic a Jr.)
In Jerusalem, at the Holocaust Memorial, Yad Vashem, a modern art wall sculpture by
Holocaust survivor Naphtali Bezem expresses the Jewish idea of martyrdom. As the Jews are shown being led into
annihilation chambers, a broken fish represents their spirits. Yet, the fish has wings, as if to say their suffering leads
them to heaven. This is a concept also stated in the Book of Mormon. “. . . the blood of the innocent shall stand
as a witness . . . at the last day.” (Alm a 14:10-11)
Explaining Dietary Laws in Various Ways:
“Many . . . have seen the dietary laws as hygienic precautions and
have attempted to prove that all forbidden foods are unwholesome. Others have attempted to give the
philosophical reasons for Kashrut.
One such explanation is that Kashrut
hallows the common act of eating and
preserves the holiness of the soul through the cleanliness of the foods which the body consumes. However, the
observance of Kashrut
is not dependent on any explanation since the Torah commands the dietary laws without
giving a reason. Therefore, a halakhic Midrash states "Let not a man say, 'I do not like the flesh of swine.' On the
contrary, he should say, 'I like it but must not eat it since the Torah has forbidden it.'” (En c y c lo p e d ia Ju d a ic a Jr.)
Daniel Shows Humble Dedication:
His unswerving obedience to the “Word of Wisdom” is an example for
many people today who are committed to keeping their health code. “Although it is traditionally believed that the
Book of Daniel was written by Daniel himself, there are theories which ascribe the authorship of the book to four
different authors, in an attempt to explain the wide span of years which the text covers. The majority of the book is
written in Aramaic, which was the accepted language among the Jews during that era.” (En c y c lo p e d ia Ju d a ic a Jr.)
Purim, One of Happiest Festivities in Jewish Life:
“Purim, one of the minor festivals in the Jewish calendar,
commemorating the deliverance of the Jews of the Persian empire from extermination, some time during the fifth
century B.C.E. The story of Purim is told in the biblical Book of Esther. Haman, chief minister of the Persian King
Ahasuerus, plotted to destroy all the Jews of the empire, because of a personal grudge against the Jew Mordecai.
After gaining the king's consent, he fixed the date for their destruction by lot (pur
in Persian and Hebrew) for the
13th of Adar. Esther, the King's Jewish wife and stepdaughter of Mordecai, courageously interceded with
Ahasuerus, and as a result the king authorized the Jews of his realm to defend themselves from attack on the
appointed day. They succeeded in routing their enemies, and the following day the Jews celebrated their victory,
calling the day Purim, in allusion to the lots that Haman had drawn. Ever since that day has been marked with
festivities and rejoicing. In addition, in memory of the three-day fast undertaken by Queen Esther in preparation
for her intercession with the king, the day before - Adar 13th - is observed as a fast day.” (En c y c lo p e d ia Ju d a ic a Jr.)
Esther, a Tradition:
“The book of Esther offers no exact dating for the events described. Some authorities have
identified Ahasuerus with King Xeres I (485 --465 B.C.E.) but many biblical scholars question the historical truth of
the story, pointing to marked similarities between it and ancient Babylonian folk tales. However, the festival had
unquestionably long been established by the second century C.E., and has throughout subsequent history been
celebrated not only as a commemoration of the specific events recorded in the book of Esther, but also of all the
major and minor deliverances from disaster experienced by various Jewish communities throughout the world.”
“Many Laws, Customs, Folklore Associated with Purim:
“The most important ceremony is the reading of the
Book of Esther from a specially prepared and handwritten parchment scroll called a megillah
. The regulations for
the reading, as for the celebration of Purim in general, are discussed in the talmudic tractate Megillah.
Both men and
women are obliged to hear the megillah,
which is read both on the evening of the 13th of Adar and on the morning
of Purim day itself. Before the reading, three special blessings are pronounced. During the course of the reading it
has become customary to make a din through the sounding of noisemaking objects called gregers
in Yiddish, each
time the name of Haman is mentioned. This symbolically represents the fulfilment of the biblical commandment to
"blot out the memory of Amalek" from whom Haman was traditionally descended. Other customs, made
obligatory by Jewish law, include the sending of gifts to friends, usually two kinds of foods (mishloah manot),
giving of alms to the poor (matanot le-evyonim).
An important feature of the Purim celebration is the banquet held
during the afternoon of Purim day. This was the one time of the year when great levity and even drunkenness was
tolerated by the rabbis. During the Middle Ages the custom developed for groups of young people to go from
house to house staging little plays either on the Purim story or on contemporary communal events. This type of
playlet was known as a Purim Shpil.
Another widespread feature of the Purim celebrations was "dressing up."
Children -- and grownups too -- dress themselves up either as the characters of the Purim story or as well-known
figures. Often the fancy dress chosen represents an idea or a chapter in Jewish history. This aspect of Purim is still
very popular, especially in the State of Israel.” “Through the ages, Purim has come to take on the atmosphere of
an "upside-down day" when nothing is really what it seems to be.” (En c y c lo p e d ia Ju d a ic a Jr.)
Daniel Rona, born in Israel and living in Jerusalem has authored Old & New Testament, Book of Mormon and Doctrine andCovenants and Church History Supplement Study Materials to be used in conjunction with the weekly LDS Gospel Doctrine Lessonstudy. NOTE: Three versions of the supplemental study materials are available FREE
at www.HolyLandsRevealed.com. (Just click“LDS SUPPLEMENTS”)
(1) a short e-mailed WEEKLY REMINDER(2) a one-page two-sided SUMMARY HANDOUT (plus a “PDF” version for printing)(3) the COMPLETE SUPPLEMENTAL MANUAL LESSONS. All are available FREE
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