Posts Tagged ‘Bible study’

Bibi’s Bible Study

December 12, 2011

This post first appeared as “Bibi Launches Bible Study Meeting” on The Shmooze blog at the Forward.

It seems that Bibi is feeling the need to connect with the Word of God these days. Last Friday, Israel’s prime minister announced at a ceremony marking thirty days since the passing of his late father-in-law, Shmuel Ben-Artzi, that he has established a regular Bible study meeting in his official residence in Jerusalem.

The study sessions, which Netanyahu dedicated to the memory of Ben-Artzi, are actually a resurrection of a practice of Israel’s first prime minister, David Ben-Gurion, and also of Prime Minister Menachem Begin. Netanyahu mentioned in a speech Sunday marking the 38th anniversary of Ben-Gurion’s death that Ben-Artzi, a noted poet and Bible scholar, used to attend the study meetings hosted by Ben-Gurion.

Click here to read more.

© 2011 Renee Ghert-Zand. All rights reserved.


Building A Love Of Torah

November 10, 2010

I trained and worked as a teacher of Bible.

My house is filled with LEGO.

I never really thought that these two things had anything to do with one another…until now. Thanks to’s daily “Jewniverse” newsletter that I look forward to waking up and reading on my iPhone every weekday morning, I am now aware of The Brick Testament.

My son is pretty sure that is Dumbledore on Mount Sinai.

The Brick Testament’s creator, The Reverend Brendan Powell Smith (he’s apparently not really a reverend, but just likes the honorific and admits to being “widely regarded as being both highly presumptuous and extremely vain”) has reportedly spend 4 years and in the environs of $10,000 creating a highly detailed LEGO dioramic interpretation of the Hebrew Bible and parts of the New Testament.

Smith claims that everything he used, other than the sky background, is LEGO – and my LEGO-crazed 9 year-old son vouched for that. In fact, my son is pretty sure he recognized the Dumbledore mini-figure head from the LEGO Harry Potter set being used as Moses’s face.

I am especially impressed that Smith did not shy away from the more arcane, archaic and downright bizarre sections of Leviticus (which he refers to as “The Law”). Check out the R-rated scenes in “Sexual Discharges,” “Bestiality,” “Homosexuality,” and “Incest.” And you will not want to miss “When to Stone Your Children,” “When to Marry Your Sister-in-Law,” “When to Stone Your Whole Family,” and “How Long to Hang Someone.”

But lest you think think that The Brick Testament is not for the kids, rest assured that there are plenty of sections that you can look at together with your children at home or use as teaching aids in your religious studies classroom. In fact, this may be a great way to get kids engaged or re-engaged with Bible study. For creative engineering-type kids like my son, this may indeed by the best way to build a love of Torah.

By the way, it looks like I am late to jump on The Brick Testament bandwagon. Click here to read LOTS more about the project.

© 2010 Renee Ghert-Zand. All rights reserved.