The history of Jews is full of secrets. Everything experienced by the Jewish people can be used as a worthy example of firmness and true faith. Historians have done a lot of work describing the history of these people. However, only a real Jew can explain many things about beliefs and faith in a better way.
First of all, the way of conducting the worship during the early years in the land of promise and in the nation of Israel should be taken into consideration. The period of time during which the Temple was completed was not serene. According to the historical sources, during the early years, the people were governed by Joshua and a set of adjudicators and kings. They conquered the land of promise by getting rid of all irreligious people. They were forced to respect the Lord and start to declare themselves as a nation of control. Many leaders such as King David, Samuel, Elijah, King Solomon, Jeremiah pressured the Israel’s nation. However, the people struggled greatly to stick to a sincere and obedient course with God. Finally, Israel never truly took hold of the blessings proffered them by God. Actually, Ancient Israel spent many years as a rived nation. They were exiled from their territory and estranged from their religion. Again and again, Ancient Israel disobeyed God. As the result, their disloyalty alienated them from God.
According to the King James Bible, “If any man defiles the temple of God, him shall God destroy; for the temple of God is holy, which temple ye are” (Corinthians 3:17). That is why Jews focused extensively on internal clarification and prayers.
There exists a belief that the development of synagogue worships was connected with destruction of the Second Temple As people needed regular prayers, synagogue became the main thing and the unique center of the Jewish religious life. As it was written in the King James Bible: “Then there arose certain of the synagogue, which is called the synagogue of the Libertines, and Cyrenians, and Alexandrians, and of them of Cilicia and of Asia, disputing with Stephen” (Acts 6:9).
The exact time of the development of synagogue is unknown, so the majority of historians also believe that they have arisen after devastation of the First Temple (586 BC). It dates to the beginning of the Babylon capture. The Jews expelled to Babylon and began to gather in each other’s houses in order to pray and learn a Torah. Later, the special buildings for a prayer, the first synagogues, were built. The Second Temple revived the Jewish life in Palestine, but many Jews remained in Babylon. The synagogue was a spiritual center for many of them. Moreover, it was a place of a prayer and law studying.
Leon Wood underlined that many customs and rituals, which were practiced in the Temple, were transferred to synagogue, while others were forbidden in synagogues just because they belonged to the temple service.
Later on, the synagogues were erected in all the places inhabited by Jews. The buildings looked more beautiful and richer compared to the early times, but internal life was based on the ancient canons. Special schools were opened at synagogues.
When Romans have razed the Second Temple, the synagogue became a belief citadel, a place for gathering, learning the law, and praying. Therefore, there is a belief that the development of a synagogue made the whole Israel nation keep their worship. As it is written in Samuel, God wanteed people to honor Him and pray. The worship “The LORD thy God” helped Jews to survive. During the Second World War, many synagogues were ruined, but Jews have revived from fire and ashes.
It is important to underline that the Jewish people always had a sacred place, the spiritual center where they had a feeling of unification with God and other people. The synagogues became a place of divine service, where the ceremonies and sacrifices, meetings and celebrations were held. A public life of a community concentrated round a synagogue for centuries. Nowadays, a synagogue is the religious-cultural, public and spiritual center of life of a community. Thus, the functions of the modern synagogue are very similar to the synagogue existed 2500 years ago.
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In my opinion, the history of early Israel is a great case in point to the whole world. It makes people understand the significance of obedience to our Creator, His greatness, and shows the beauty and power of God’s might. Nowadays, people know how to live a just life. The history of Israel had also a huge influence on different societies explaining how to live by the rule of law.
Though Israel had been destroyed in 70 AD, the influence of its nation was very strong. About 2000 years later, Israel regains its nation status. Despite the fact that not all people accepted it, Israel’s religion remained one of the most influential forces in the world. Today, a synagogue is a place of spiritual education and culture. People learn to respect religion and to pray for the Jewish nation and its dream to find the motherland since childhood. In spite of the fact that the Jews experienced tense times, they did not lose their roots and became even more religious and obedient.