Israel God-Given?


111513_mishmash_israelThe recent Pew research study, The Portrait of Jewish Americans: Findings from a Pew Research Center Survey of U.S. Jews, found that 55 percent of U.S. Christians believe that God gave Israel to the Jews compared with 40 percent of American Jews. The breakdown within the Jewish community is pretty straightforward: 84 percent of Orthodox Jews, 54 percent of Conservative Jews, 35 percent of Reform Jews and 24 percent of Jews with no denominational affiliation average out to the 40 percent of Jews that believe Israel is divinely given to the Jews.

A 2009 study, A Portrait of Israeli Jews, which was conducted by the Israel Democracy Institute and the Avi Chai Foundation, did not address this question but did report that 70 percent of Israeli Jews believe that Jews are the chosen people and that 69 percent of Israeli Jews believe the Torah and its precepts are God-given. One can therefore infer that the percentage among Israeli Jews might be significantly higher than those of American Jews.

Hear more about the recent Pew study from a panel of experts on Nov. 25 at Congregation Shomrei Emunah (6221 Greenspring Ave., Baltimore) at 7:30 pm. For more information, visit

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