"...in the twinkling of an eye..."
The Jews have a storage area in their synagogues called a genizah where unusable books/manuscripts and ritual objects are kept (these areas were also used to house historical documents and questionable books). Anything containing the name of God cannot be destroyed so they are housed in these special areas until they can be properly buried. Needless to say, many discoveries have been made while looking through the genizah of an older synagogue.
One such treasure trove has been the Cairo Genizah which was found in the attic of the Ezra Synagogue. A version of the Amidah/"Eighteen Benedictions," which is the main element of daily services, was found there. The Amidah ("standing") is also known as "The Prayer" par excellence and is recited many times during the day.
The Amidah is broken up into eighteen benedictions with the 12th being the one we are concerned with in this article. The Birkath-ha- Minim is the "Benediction Concerning Heretics" although in many sources it is referred to as the "curse on the Christians." In the past there was some leeway accorded in the wording of these benedictions and the one found in the Cairo Genizah is worth noting:
This, of course, ties in with the New Testament:
(For more on the "Book of Life" please see the Book of Life)
This benediction was added around the time of the destruction of the Second Temple in response to perceived threats of the Sadducees, Boethusians, Essenes, and the early Christians who the rabbis felt were leading the community of the Jews astray.
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