Making an Effort

On Tuesday night, Jews around the world will gather at synagogues for Kol Nidre – the service that begins the holiest day of the Jewish year, Yom Kippur. The service takes its name from a prayer at the beginning of the service in which we absolve ourselves of all vows and oaths that we will take in the coming year. You read that right – all vows we have yet to make in the coming year. This prayer has been used as a basis for anti-Semitic stereotypes of the shifty, untrustworthy Jew through the ages.

The Torah and Jewish legal texts take vows, oaths, and keeping your promises very seriously. Numbers 30:3, for example, forbids us from breaking a vow – a prohibition that the Talmud tells us “shakes the whole world.” Ecclesiastes 5:4 states that it is better to not vow at all than to vow and not follow through. I’m sure you can come up with dozens of other passages with a similar message.

How, then, can we recite Kol Nidre? Because Jewish law is very clear that the prayer only applies to personal vows that we make to try to induce ourselves to proper behavior – and that the annulment only applies if we have honestly tried to fulfill it and have, as humans so often do, failed. I’m going to eat better and exercise more. I’m not going to argue with my spouse. I’m going to spend more time at prayer. I’m going to treat others more kindly. I’m going to more carefully watch what I say.

In other words, Kol Nidre isn’t a “get out of jail free” card. It is an acknowledgement that human beings are little more than dust and that our inclination to do evil is strong. Kol Nidre asks God to remember our weaknesses and forgive our vows if, after sincere effort, we find ourselves unable to fulfill them. But only after sincere effort.

May this be, for all of us, a year of vows fulfilled. G’mar chatimah tovah – may the Day of Atonement end in a good inscription in the Book of Life.


Author: Stand For Israel | September 25, 2012
Posted in:  Uncategorized


 

What do you think?

  • steve
    October 8, 2012
    11:45 am
     

    loooooong live israel

    Reply to this comment »
  • Aliza
    October 7, 2012
    11:48 am
     

    The Jewish holiday are very important to the Jews and it start from Rosh-Hashana to Simcha-Tova. I pray to God that in those holiday the enemies will not take the advantage to attack Israel or any jew around the world.

    Reply to this comment »
  • SUSANA
    October 1, 2012
    6:49 pm
     

    I would like to wish all our sisters and brothers in the HOLYLAND a happy YOM KIPPUR.May the GOD OF ABRAHAM,ISAAC & JACOB protect the nation of ISRAEL.My family and I are just praying that one day we will set foot on the HOLY-LAND, where the MESSIAH really set foot on.May YESHUA give ISRAEL and all jewish people around the world PEACE.No weapon formed against u shall prosper in Jesus name,for we can do all things thru JESUS CHRIST who has given us strenghth.

    Reply to this comment »
  • Fredy A
    September 28, 2012
    10:47 am
     

    Bendiciones para el pueblo de Israel, el pueblo elegido por Dios.

    Reply to this comment »
  • Christopher
    September 26, 2012
    3:46 pm
     

    It has been humbling for me to take part for the first time in my life in Yom Kippur .. May YHVH bless His people and continue to protect and lift them above their enemies and foes ..

    Reply to this comment »
  • JAYNE
    September 26, 2012
    9:28 am
     

    May this be the most blessed Yom Kippur. May may the Name of the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob be praised as never before. And may the enemies of Israel be as those who become confused and devour the evil intentions of each other. I am a Christian and so thankful to support the people of Israel. I am so thankful to our all loving and merciful Father who is so for us…who can be against us. Who defends His people Israel. Blessings on Yom Kippur!!!

    Reply to this comment »
  • Patricia
    September 26, 2012
    7:17 am
     

    God Bless Israel. I, too, am a Christian that supports and loves her. Let’s all remember to keep her in our prayers, I do believe God is watching over her and she will reign, as she should!

    Reply to this comment »
  • Theresa
    September 25, 2012
    10:17 pm
     

    Shalom and blessings to all who celebrate the nation of Israel!

    Reply to this comment »
  • Karen
    September 25, 2012
    10:14 pm
     

    Blessings on your special Holiday! I support the land of Israel and pray God will ever protect especially these days when so many countries around would like to see it wiped off the face of the map.

    Reply to this comment »
  • Theresa
    September 25, 2012
    10:13 pm
     

    Shalom and blessings to all those who celebrate the nation of Israel!

    Reply to this comment »
  • Theresa
    September 25, 2012
    10:09 pm
     

    Shaiom and blessings to all who celebrate and love Israel!

    Reply to this comment »
  • Adrianne
    September 25, 2012
    9:57 pm
     

    I am a Christian. I love the Jewish Holy day, Yom Kippur. It is the day of atonement. As a Christian, we recognize Jesus as our atonement. So I have also observed the celebrations, fasting, praying, seeking YHWH, around Yom Kippur and seen great favor of God released in my life. I lift Israel also in prayer.

    Reply to this comment »
    • Adrianne
      September 25, 2012
      10:00 pm
       

      Father God, Bless Israel this year and always as You promised You would do. Bless them as ONLY You can! We love You Father! I praise You that this land is theirs. Deliver them from their enemies. Bless Israel, in Jesus’ name, Amen!

      Reply to this comment »
  • sandra
    September 25, 2012
    9:45 pm
     

    ON THIS HOLY DAY GOD SHALL BLESS ISRAEL WITH PROTECTION FROM ALL EVIL, DEMONIC ENEMIES. ISRAEL WILL THRIVE AND RISE ABOVE ALL OF THE HATRED. I LOVE ISRAEL AND SOMEDAY WOULD LOVE TO SEE IT

    Reply to this comment »
  • peggy
    September 25, 2012
    9:26 pm
     

    Now I feel better about not keeping the vow I made several years ago. I tried, but then I would forget.

    Reply to this comment »
  • Randon
    September 25, 2012
    9:13 pm
     

    My heart is with Israel. Praise an Peace be with Israel. Praise the almighty!

    Reply to this comment »
  • Don
    September 25, 2012
    8:57 pm
     

    As a Christian I to pray for the peace of Israel. At this Holiest Day of the year for Jews around the world, may their eyes be forever focused on the LORD GOD ALMIGHTY and walking in obedience following HIM.

    Reply to this comment »
  • Kathleen
    September 25, 2012
    8:28 pm
     

    I pray to night that everyone would come into the covenant and promise of the Lord Jesus Christ. A promise and a covenant that will never be broken. A new beginning for all that will never end.

    Reply to this comment »
  • Diane
    September 25, 2012
    7:54 pm
     

    Israel is the apple of God’s eye…Jacob’s name was changed to Israel after he wrestled with God and said he would not let go until God blessed him remembering the first time he sought the blessing it was by deception….God asked Jacob his name (character) and he confessed his sin of deception and God blessed him and changed his name to Israel meaning a Prince with God Genesis 32:28+ And his decendent The Prince of Peace” owns the land He created and oversees all that is going on there and will return I thnk soon to claim what is His…people and all…then we will see who’s the Boss and most POWERFULL of all

    Reply to this comment »
  • vicki
    September 25, 2012
    7:17 pm
     

    My heart and prayers for Israel.

    Reply to this comment »
  • Laurie
    September 25, 2012
    6:13 pm
     

    I pray for peace and blessings on Israel. May Gods continence shine on the people of Israel and may he give them peace.

    Reply to this comment »
  • JUANITA
    September 25, 2012
    5:58 pm
     

    I will stand with Israel and for this country.They gave us Jesus. What a blessing it is to know him and live in America where we openly read our Bibles, go to church and worship Him. Praise God for He is good.

    Reply to this comment »
  • Gwendolyn
    September 25, 2012
    5:22 pm
     

    Bless you and Happy Yom Kippor Israel.I pray for the peace of Jerusalem and all Israel, and that no weapon formed against you prosper. I am a Christian, and I love you and hope one day to set foot upon your Holy ground. Thank God for you, Shaloam…

    Reply to this comment »
  • Mary Ann
    September 25, 2012
    5:19 pm
     

    I’m 71 yrs old and a gentile, my grandmother taught me to love the Jewish people as far back as I can remember. I taught my children the same thing and they are teaching their children. They are the chosen and I’m just glad to be able to be the 2nd chosen. God bless Israel.

    Reply to this comment »
  • Jim
    September 25, 2012
    5:18 pm
     

    May the Nation prosper in the safety of “His” hands.

    Reply to this comment »
  • Linda
    September 25, 2012
    4:49 pm
     

    God bless Israel the home of my forefathers. I am Christian yet am from the house of Levites. I wear my Star of David and Cross together proudly. I am born Native American yet stand for Israel. I have combined faiths and my beliefs are strongest in the Old Testament that combines all three faiths. I hope some day to see my true homeland during Yom Kippur. Shalom

    Reply to this comment »
    • Frank
      September 26, 2012
      1:16 am
       

      I too am a born-again Luke 14 disciple of the Messiah. Eskimo, Portuguese and Jewish. I too would like to travel to the Homeland. I stand in defense of the People of the Covenant and the Land promised

      Reply to this comment »
  • Lydia
    September 25, 2012
    4:28 pm
     

    My Master is the jewish Carpenter. I am His slave.I to take the privilege of taking part in the Yom Kippoor & the Holiest of the New year begining.renew & refresh my vow to Yahweh to ‘Love my Lord with all my heart, with all my soul,with all my mind & with all my strength & love my neighbour(the least in the human estimation)as myself. I send my heartfelt greetings to all my Jewish brothers & sisters all over the world.

    Reply to this comment »
  • socorro
    September 25, 2012
    4:21 pm
     

    May the Lord jumble up the Iranian’s speech to where he blesses Israel instead of condemning them.

    Reply to this comment »
    • Julie
      September 25, 2012
      9:07 pm
       

      I am agreeing with you in prayer, 100%, that your comment comes about. Praise G-d and pray for the Peace of Jerusalem.

      Reply to this comment »
  • Jacqueline
    September 25, 2012
    3:59 pm
     

    Pray for me, I’ve sinned!

    Reply to this comment »
    • Simonida
      September 26, 2012
      3:09 am
       

      Jacqueline I prayed for you. Bring your sins to the cross of Jesus. He died already for your sins. You can continue your life with peace. All results of your sins are in His hands.

      Reply to this comment »
  • Patsy
    September 25, 2012
    3:51 pm
     

    Such an honor for me to wish the Jewish people Happy Yom Kippur. I am a Christian who loves and supports Israel. It’s really simple for me….God has said that He would Bless those who Blessed Israel and curse those who cursed Israel!

    Reply to this comment »
    • Ines
      September 25, 2012
      4:50 pm
       

      God has said that He would “Bless those who Blessed Israel and curse those who cursed Israel’”
      I am so glad you made a point to say that…so many are yet to see those words or respond to them.

      Reply to this comment »
    • Mel
      September 25, 2012
      9:19 pm
       

      You can’t wish Happy yom Kippur… Like you don’t say “Happy Good Friday” or even “Happy 9/11″. It’s a solemn commemoration, you observe it, you honor it… But it’s not like Christmas or Hannukah ;)

      Reply to this comment »
  • Raphael
    September 25, 2012
    3:20 pm
     

    My preayer will be with Israel tonight and may God bless Israel all over the world and all those of us who have decided to follow the same God.

    Reply to this comment »
  • Nikki
    September 25, 2012
    1:52 pm
     

    That sounds good……give it sincere effort. We all ought to do that, even if not Jewish.

    Reply to this comment »
    • David
      September 25, 2012
      4:00 pm
       

      The Lord sees and hears us, even when we think we are alone. With a sincere heart and effort, we must acknowledge him when we make a vow . He will see us through .

      Reply to this comment »
  • Victoria
    September 25, 2012
    1:13 pm
     

    Happy Yom Kippur Israel! I’m celebrating with you as well. I agree with Ecclesiastes 5:4, after all we are ALL sinners, in a sense, how dare we make vows before a Holy God who lives in the World of Truth? God bless Israel world wide!

    Reply to this comment »
  • Michael
    September 25, 2012
    12:51 pm
     

    I found this concept to be both very thought provoking and also very enlightening. A marvelous way to approach such things. God Bless.

    Reply to this comment »
  • Georgia
    September 25, 2012
    12:28 pm
     

    Almost all I know about the Jewish faith I learned from reading a book called, “The Seventy Weeks of Daniel”, and another called ” The Fifth Seal” and also another called “Hebrews” All written by the same author. I love the Jewish people, the apple of God’s eye. And though I am not Jewish, we named our daughter “Hadassah”
    And though all the world be against Israel, God will be for her, and will fight the battle for her in the last days, once and for all, ridding her of all her enemies. And the throne of David will be restored. Shalom!

    Reply to this comment »
    • Carrie
      September 25, 2012
      6:18 pm
       

      Shalom, I agree with you Georgia and know in my Messianic heart Yisrael is the “Apple” of G-d’s eye and He is her COVER and PROTECTOR. This is the Erev of Yom Kippur, the holiest of holy days for the Jewish people. I pray them PEACE,LOVE and COMFORT, because of them we serve and love a “MIGHTY G-D”whose Host of Armies will wipe out all of her enemies in the end. Baruch Haba Hashem Adonai. Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord. To you Tony, I love being able to read that!!! Abba, from your daughter, Carrie Shalom, Shalom

      Reply to this comment »
    • Barry
      September 25, 2012
      10:05 pm
       

      Georgia,
      I respect your love for Israel, but feel led to say this. If you are only reading one persons books about Israel, you will only see Israel through his eyes and will only understand it through his opinions, which may, or may not be accurate. Read many authors to get a more balanced perspective. Shalom Ahlaychem.

      Reply to this comment »
  • Tony
    September 25, 2012
    12:27 pm
     

    I look at the true meaning (I never knew this until today ) and all I can say is Praise God for His never ending, unfailing love and His tender mercies!! I am a Christian, but, my roots go deep into God’s figtree. Where would we , as Christians, be without our true brethren, Israel?……lost and undone be a Holy Lord God Almighty. Thank you, Father God, for Your wonderful love…..your son……tony ( man…I love being able to say that!!)

    Reply to this comment »

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Rejoicing in God’s Word

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