Anonymous asked in TravelAfrica & Middle EastIsrael · 1 decade ago

What is the significance of Jerusalem to Jews?


I was just wondering what the significance of the following places were to followers of Judahism;





The Dead Sea


8 Answers

  • kismet
    Lv 7
    1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    Jerusalem is the holiest place in the Jewish religion. Though both Christianity and Islam have holy sites in the city, the Jewish ties predate that of any other existing religion. King David made Jerusalem the capital of Israel 3,000 years ago -- 1,700 years before Islam was even founded. Jerusalem never served as even a provincial capital during the centuries of Muslim rule. The entire city is sacred to Jews; only the Dome of the Rock has religious significance to Muslims. Moreover, in the modern era, Jews have been the majority of the population of the city since the 1840s.

    As for freedom of worship, the only period during which all faiths have been free to worship in peace has been since 1967 when the city became unified under Israeli sovereignty.

    Bethlehem and Nazareth hold are important to Christians, but not to Jews.

    The Dead Sea, just north of it is Jericho. Somewhere, perhaps on the southeast shore, would be the cities mentioned in the Book of Genesis which were said to have been destroyed in the time of Abraham: Sodom and Gomorra (Genesis 18) and the three other "Cities of the Plain" - Admah, Zeboim and Zoar (Deuteronomy 29:23). But Zoar escaped destruction when Abraham's nephew Lot escaped there from Sodom (Genesis 19:21-22). Before the destruction, the dead sea was a valley full of natural tar pits, which was called the vale of Siddim. King David was said to have hidden from Saul at Ein Gedi nearby.

    In Ezekiel 47:8-9 there is a specific prophecy that the sea will ".. be healed and made fresh", becoming a normal lake capable of supporting marine life. A similar prophecy is stated in Zechariah 14:8, which says that "Living waters will go out from Jerusalem, half of them to the eastern sea (likely the Dead Sea) and half to the western sea (the Mediterranean)..."

    Dwelling in caves near the Dead Sea is recorded in the Hebrew Bible as having taken place before the Israelites came to Canaan, and extensively at the time of King David. Various sects of Jews settled in caves overlooking the Dead Sea. The best known of these are the Essenes of Qumran, who left an extensive library known as the Dead Sea Scrolls. The town of Ein Gedi, mentioned many times in the Mishna, produced persimmon for the temple's fragrance and for export, using a secret recipe. "Sodomite salt" was an essential mineral for the temple's holy incense, but was said to be dangerous for home use, and to cause blindness.

    The Roman camps surrounding Masada were built by Jewish slaves receiving water from the towns around the lake. These towns had drinking water from the Ein Feshcha springs and other sweetwater springs in the vicinity.

  • dandyl
    Lv 7
    1 decade ago

    To answer you,Ever since King David made Jerusalem the capital of Israel more than 3,000 years ago, the city has played a central role in Jewish existence. The Western Wall in the Old City — the last remaining wall of the ancient Jewish Temple, the holiest site in Judaism — is the object of Jewish veneration and the focus of Jewish prayer. Three times a day, for thousands of years, Jews have prayed "To Jerusalem, thy city, shall we return with joy," and have repeated the Psalmist's oath: "If I forget thee, O Jerusalem, let my right hand forget her cunning."

    Jerusalem "has known only two periods of true greatness, and these have been separated by 2,000 years. Greatness has only happened under Jewish rule," Leon and Jill Uris wrote in Jerusalem. "This is so because the Jews have loved her the most, and have remained constant in that love throughout the centuries of their dispersion....It is the longest, deepest love affair in history.For three thousand years, Jerusalem has been the center of Jewish hope and longing. No other city has played such a dominant role in the history, culture, religion and consciousness of a people as has Jerusalem in the life of Jewry and Judaism. Throughout centuries of exile, Jerusalem remained alive in the hearts of Jews everywhere as the focal point of Jewish history, the symbol of ancient glory, spiritual fulfillment and modern renewal. This heart and soul of the Jewish people engenders the thought that if you want one simple word to symbolize all of Jewish history, that word would be 'Jerusalem.'” Jews have been living in Jerusalem continuously for nearly two millennia. They have constituted the largest single group of inhabitants there since the 1840's (map of Jerusalem in 1912) .Jerusalem contains the Western Wall of the Temple Mount, the holiest site in Judaism.

    Jerusalem was never the capital of any Arab entity. In fact, it was a backwater for most of Arab history. Jerusalem never served as a provincial capital under Muslim rule nor was it ever a Muslim cultural center. For Jews, the entire city is sacred, but Muslims revere a site — the Dome of the Rock — not the city. "To a Muslim," observed British writer Christopher Sykes, "there is a profound difference between Jerusalem and Mecca or Medina. The latter are holy places containing holy sites." Besides the Dome of the Rock, he noted, Jerusalem has no major Islamic significance

  • Kevin7
    Lv 7
    1 decade ago

    the city of King David

  • 1 decade ago


    The holiest city in Judaism, King David's capital and the site of King Solomon's Temple and the Second Temple. Since ancient times, Jews have faced Jerusalem during prayer, and have prayed daily for a return to Israel and Jerusalem.

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  • 1 decade ago

    wow you people are making big paragraphs about this its simple the tale of th nickel. " there is a nickel somwhere around there so all the jews made a big deal out of how rich they would become. " that simple

  • 1 decade ago

    The fact is that Jewish claim of Jerusalem is of recent origin with the rise of Zionism among European Jews calling to escape the horrors of the European persecution. M. Franco, who made a special study of the situation of the Jews in the Ottoman Empire, mentioned that the famous Spanish traveler Benjamin of Tudela found only 200 Jews in Jerusalem in the year 1173. In 1180 another traveler, Petahia of Ratisbon found in Jerusalem one coreligionist only. In 1267 a Spanish Rabbi, Moise Ben Nahman found two Jews in the city. In 1867 an American Missionary reports an estimated population of Jerusalem of 'above' 15,000. With 4,000 to 5,000 Jews and 9,000 Palestinians.

    The increase in the number of Jews in Jerusalem occurred only during the British mandate which imposed a massive Jewish immigration into Palestine against the will of its inhabitants.

    There are no archaeological evidence in Jerusalem that proves any Biblical stories about the city. There is no trace found of any "Jewish civilization" or the so called "Jewish temple". Jerusalem is not more Jewish than it is Islamic or Christian! Zionists understand their connection to Jerusalem as unique which gives any Jew from any origin an exclusive right to the city while the native non Jewish population (even Jews who converted to other religion) are denied that right.

    In result of that, non Jewish population is facing ethnic cleansing on a daily basis. In the years 2000 through 2007 alone Israel destroyed 608 Palestinian houses in East Jerusalem and zero Jewish houses were destroyed.

    Israel stripped thousands of Jerusalem Arabs of residency in 2008 :

    Before the ethnic cleansing of West Jerusalem and the illegal establishment of Israel, Palestinians were native people who owned and operated 84% of the lands in whole Jerusalem city and who were legal citizens according to the British government. Jews owned only 2% of the lands and only one third of them acquired Palestinian citizenship. This clearly shows that Palestinians were real owners and Jews illegal immigrants.

    (Government of Palestine statistical abstract 1944-1945, pp.36 and 46).

    Bethlehem and Nazareth are both Christian cities. Under the Israeli rule the Christian population greatly decreased.

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    center of the faith

  • Shay p
    Lv 7
    1 decade ago


    For the Jews, the significance of Jerusalem is quite clear. The Jewish connection to Jerusalem is an ancient and powerful one. Judaism made Jerusalem a holy city over three thousand years ago and through all that time Jews remained steadfast to it. Jews pray in its direction, mention its name constantly in prayers, close the Passover service with the wistful statement "Next year in Jerusalem," and recall the city in the blessing at the end of each meal.

    The destruction of the Second Temple by the Romans in 70 AD looms very large in Jewish consciousness; remembrance takes such forms as a special day of mourning, houses left partially unfinished, a woman's makeup or jewelry left incomplete, and a glass smashed during the wedding ceremony.

    In addition, Jerusalem has had a prominent historical role, as the only capital of a Jewish state, and is the only city with a Jewish majority during the whole of the past century. In the words of its current mayor, Jerusalem represents:

    ... the purest expression of all that Jews prayed for, dreamed of, cried for, and died for in the two thousand years since the destruction of the Second Temple


    Bethlehem is important to Judaism, but plays no role in Islam.

    Bethlehem is first mentioned in the Bible in Genesis 35, but owes its position in Judaism to the anointing of King David which was staged here (I Samuel 16). It is also believed that Bethlehem is David's birthplace (as interpreted from the Book of Ruth 4). In Micah 5, it is stated that the Messiah should be born in Bethlehem.

    Book of Ruth, Chapter 4

    (At this point, Ruth has already installed herself in Bethlehem)

    13So Boaz took Ruth, and she was his wife: and when he went in unto her, the LORD gave her conception, and she bare a son.

    14And the women said unto Naomi, Blessed be the LORD, which hath not left thee this day without a kinsman, that his name may be famous in Israel.

    15And he shall be unto thee a restorer of thy life, and a nourisher of thine old age: for thy daughter in law, which loveth thee, which is better to thee than seven sons, hath born him.

    16And Naomi took the child, and laid it in her bosom, and became nurse unto it.

    17And the women her neighbours gave it a name, saying, There is a son born to Naomi; and they called his name Obed: he is the father of Jesse, the father of David.

    1st Book of Samuel, Chapter 16

    4And Samuel did that which the LORD spake, and came to Bethlehem. And the elders of the town trembled at his coming, and said, Comest thou peaceably? 5And he said, Peaceably: I am come to sacrifice unto the LORD: sanctify yourselves, and come with me to the sacrifice. And he sanctified Jesse and his sons, and called them to the sacrifice.

    6And it came to pass, when they were come, that he looked on Eliab, and said, Surely the LORD's anointed is before him.

    7But the LORD said unto Samuel, Look not on his countenance, or on the height of his stature; because I have refused him: for the LORD seeth not as man seeth; for man looketh on the outward appearance, but the LORD looketh on the heart.

    8Then Jesse called Abinadab, and made him pass before Samuel. And he said, Neither hath the LORD chosen this.

    9Then Jesse made Shammah to pass by. And he said, Neither hath the LORD chosen this.

    10Again, Jesse made seven of his sons to pass before Samuel. And Samuel said unto Jesse, The LORD hath not chosen these.

    11And Samuel said unto Jesse, Are here all thy children? And he said, There remaineth yet the youngest, and, behold, he keepeth the sheep. And Samuel said unto Jesse, Send and fetch him: for we will not sit down till he come hither.

    12And he sent, and brought him in. Now he was ruddy, and withal of a beautiful countenance, and goodly to look to. And the LORD said, Arise, anoint him: for this is he.

    13Then Samuel took the horn of oil, and anointed him in the midst of his brethren: and the Spirit of the LORD came upon David from that day forward. So Samuel rose up, and went to Ramah.

    Micah, Chapter 5

    2But thou, Bethlehem Ephratah, though thou be little among the thousands of Judah, yet out of thee shall he come forth unto me that is to be ruler in Israel; whose goings forth have been from of old, from everlasting.


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    Dead Sea

    The Dead Sea, unlike the Sea of Galilee to the north, does not figure prominently in the biblical narratives. Its most important role was as a barrier, blocking traffic to Judah from the east. An advancing army of Ammonites and Moabites apparently crossed a shallow part of the Dead Sea on their way to attack King Jehoshaphat (2 Chron 20). Ezekiel has prophesied that one day the Dead Sea will be fresh water and fishermen will spread their nets along the shore.

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