Why Not Allow For Quickie Conversions To Judaism?

From Rabbi Moss in Australia:

Question of the Week:

I often hear rabbis complain that the Jewish people is shrinking due to intermarriage and assimilation. But it is you rabbis who are the major obstacle to Judaism growing! If you would make conversion a bit easier, many more non-Jews would join us. Why do you stubbornly insist on a long and difficult conversion process, when you are closing the door to many potential converts?

Answer:

I would like to nominate you to be the next Secretary General of the UN. You have come up with a brilliant formula that could greatly benefit the world.

You argue that the Jewish people would grow if only it were easier to become Jewish. Let’s apply that logic to some other world issues, and most of our problems could easily be solved.

– Poverty could be reduced immediately. Simply lower the poverty line.

– There would be many more millionaires around if you didn’t need so much money to be one.

– The crime rates would drop dramatically if we just legalise criminal activity.

– If we dropped the life-expectancy age from 70 down to 50, people would on average live much longer.

Either Judaism is truth, or it is not. If it is truth, then truth can’t be saved by diluting it. And if it isn’t, why bother saving it at all?

The road to conversion is a challenging one. Jewish law doesn’t make it easy to convert, because becoming a Jew is a serious commitment. If someone is not ready for that commitment, then they shouldn’t convert.

But bending the laws to allow quickie conversions makes a joke of the whole thing. If a law can be bent, then what significance does it have in the first place? To paraphrase Marx (Groucho that is): “I would never join a club that changed the rules to let me in.”

About Luke Ford

I've written five books (see Amazon.com). My work has been followed by the New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, and 60 Minutes. I teach Alexander Technique in Beverly Hills (Alexander90210.com).
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