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History of the Hebrews, Hebrew
beliefs, and Judaism in today’s
Israelite Kings
• After the Hebrews fought for Canaan and
won their land back, they lived in small
• Each small community had its own judge,
but there was not a king of all Israelites
• The Philistines, who lived on the
Mediterranean Coast, invaded the
Israelites’ lands, and the Israelites decided
they needed a leader….
Kings of Israel
• Saul became the first king of Israel
• After Saul died, David became king of Israel
– King David beat the Philistines and also took over
many other lands while he was king, including the city
of Jerusalem, which he made the new capital of Israel
• David’s son Solomon became king after David
– Solomon built a huge temple to God in Jerusalem,
which became a very important place for the Israelites
to worship
Invaders take over…
• After Solomon died, wars started over who
would become king. These wars split Israel into
two kingdoms called Israel and Judah
• The people of Judah were called the Jews
• Both kingdoms were invaded and the kingdoms
fell apart and most of the people moved away
– The Assyrians conquered Israel, and the Chaldeans
conquered Judah (the Jews)
Invaders take over…
• When the Chaldeans took over the Jews and
Jerusalem, they destroyed Solomon’s Temple
and made thousands of Jews go back to
Babylon and work as slaves
– This time was called the Babylonian Captivity
• When a group of people called the Persians took
over the Chaldeans they set the Jews free and
let them go back to Jerusalem
– When the Jewish people returned to Jerusalem they
rebuilt Solomon’s temple and called it the Second
Jewish beliefs
• The people who follow the religion of
Judaism are called Jews or Jewish people.
• The Jewish people are monotheistic,
which means they only believe in one god
• The Hebrew name for God is Yahweh
Jewish laws
• The Ten Commandments were the most
important Jewish laws, but the Jews also
followed the Mosaic laws, which they
believed Yahweh gave to Moses.
Mosaic Laws
• There are Mosaic laws for just about everything
in Jewish life. Some Mosaic laws:
– Jews do not work on holidays or on the Sabbath, the
seventh day of the week.
– According to the Bible, God created the world in six
days and rested on the seventh day, so the Jews
celebrate the Sabbath on Saturday, the seventh day
of the week
– Jews cannot eat certain foods like shellfish and pork.
The foods they eat have to prepared in a certain way
called kosher.
Today’s Jews
• Jews that still strictly follow the Mosaic
laws are called Orthodox Jews
• Jews that do not follow these old laws are
called Reform Jews
• Conservative Jews are in between
Orthodox and Reform
Jewish religious writings
• The Torah is a group of five books that is
the most sacred text of Judaism.
– The Torah includes the laws of Judaism and
the history of the Jews until the death of
• The Jews worship in a synagogue, a
Jewish place of worship.
• Jewish religious leaders are called rabbis
Jewish holidays and traditions
• Hanukkah is a Jewish holiday that celebrates the
rededication of the Second Temple
• Passover is a Jewish holiday to celebrate the
• The High Holy Days are the two most sacred of
all Jewish holidays
– Rosh Hashanah celebrates the beginning of the new
year on the Jewish calendar
– Yom Kippur is the day when Jews ask God to forgive
their sins