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Another tradition teaches that the word comes from the word "eyver," which means "the other side," referring to the fact that Abraham came from the other side of the Euphrates, or referring to the fact Abraham was separated from the other nations morally and spiritually.
Another name used for the people is Children of Israel or Israelites, which refers to the fact that the people are descendants of Jacob, who was also called Israel.
It is important to note that being a Jew has nothing to do with what you believe or what you do.
A person born to non-Jewish parents who has not undergone the formal process of conversion but who believes everything that Orthodox Jews believe and observes every law and custom of Judaism is still a non-Jew, even in the eyes of the most liberal movements of Judaism, and a person born to a Jewish mother who is an atheist and never practices the Jewish religion is still a Jew, even in the eyes of the ultra-Orthodox.
In this sense, Judaism is more like a nationality than like other religions, and being Jewish is like a citizenship. This has been established since the earliest days of Judaism.
In the Torah, you will see many references to "the strangers who dwell among you" or "righteous proselytes" or "righteous strangers." These are various classifications of non-Jews who lived among Jews, adopting some or all of the beliefs and practices of Judaism without going through the formal process of conversion and becoming Jews.
Most of these disputes fall into one of two categories.
First, traditional Judaism maintains that a person is a Jew if his mother is a Jew, regardless of who his father is.
Several people have written to me asking about King David: was he a Jew, given that one of his female ancestors, Ruth, was not a Jew?
Many people have asked me why traditional Judaism uses matrilineal descent to determine Jewish status, when in all other things (tribal affiliation, priestly status, royalty, etc.) we use patrilineal descent.
The Torah does not specifically state anywhere that matrilineal descent should be used; however, there are several passages in the Torah where it is understood that the child of a Jewish woman and a non-Jewish man is a Jew, and several other passages where it is understood that the child of a non-Jewish woman and a Jewish man is not a Jew.
The original name for the people we now call Jews was Hebrews.
The word "Hebrew" (in Hebrew, "Ivri") is first used in the Torah to describe Abraham (Gen. The word is apparently derived from the name Eber, one of Abraham's ancestors.