The Most Important Piece of Scripture 

The single most important piece of Scripture for the Jewish people is a short paragraph found in Deuteronomy chapter 6. In it, the children of Israel are commanded to love the one Lord God with all their heart, soul and might. This famous statement of monotheism is known as the Shema שְׁמַע which in Hebrew means “hear” because it begins with the words “Hear O Israel, the Lord our God the Lord is one” (Deut. 6:4).

The First Hearing  

Given the central importance of “hearing” in Judaism, you might wonder: where else is this word found in the Bible? Let’s look at the very first time the word shema appears in Scripture. Back in the Garden of Eden, right after disobeying God’s command by eating from the forbidden fruit, Adam and Eve try to hide from God. Of course, he finds them: “They heard (vayishmeu) the sound of the Lord God moving about in the garden…” (Gen. 3:8). 

Hear the Authentic Version of Scripture  

Only if you read this passage in the original Hebrew can you appreciate the irony of this verse. This is because vayishmeu doesn’t only mean “they heard,” it also means “they obeyed.” Of course, Adam and Eve did not obey. Only in the original Hebrew you can grasp the true meaning of humanity’s first sin. Enroll in our live, online Biblical Hebrew course so that you can hear and understand the most authentic version of Scripture.

The single most important piece of Scripture for the Jewish people is a short paragraph found in Deuteronomy chapter 6. In it, the children of Israel are commanded to love the one Lord God with all their heart, soul and might. This famous statement of monotheism is known as the Shema שְׁמַע which in Hebrew means “hear” because it begins with the words “Hear O Israel, the Lord our God the Lord is one” (Deut. 6:4).

 

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