The Inquisition, the New World, and People of Sephardic Heritage by Paula Rose Michelson

Today we look at the reality of what man can do to their fellow man in the name of religion. This is a very important topic because hatred, human misery, and wars, were and are, waged in the name of one religious group or another. However, God never intended hatred to become a consuming issue causing daughters to lash out against mothers or family to hate family. But, when left to our own devises we can easily chose to judge others quickly lest they judge us.

If you think I am wrong, think of the new kid on your block, the one who comes to school a week after it began. Now ask yourself, “Did I look at or treat him or her differently than I would have if that person began school when I did?” How about the person who spoke with an accent, did you think of or treat that person as odd? We all do things like that, you might be saying to yourself. And your right, humans like to be around people that affirm them and their beliefs. Think of that when you read the expert posted below, and then ask yourself:

Do I think of people who differ from me as odd or inferior?

How would I feel if I were in their situation?

What would happen to me if I decided to treat people who are different from me as if they were entitled to the same rights and privileges that I am?

The Inquisition, the New World, and People of Sephardic Heritage

It is sad to realize that the place where Judaism flourished after the Jewish diaspora from Israel became an extremely hostile environment toward them for hundreds of years and horrifying to note that Hitler’s Third Reich used the pure blood laws that Spain had instituted against the Jewish people when Hitler implemented his final solution.

When we study the Inquisition and its effects, it is important to mention that the Spanish Inquisition came to the new world. The first governor of New Spain, Luis de Carvajal y de la Cueva, was a converso. The office of the inquisitor brought him to trial and found him guilty of Judaizing. He died during his incarceration. The office arrested the members of his family, and they faced the reprisals mentioned above. The only member of this family to survive the Inquisition was Leonor de Caceres, a distant niece of the governor’s. She recanted her Jewish faith at fourteen, was placed within the house of the inquisitor, and when she reached marriageable age was married to a devout Catholic.

Throughout the world, many people are interested in discovering if their heritage is Jewish or, as the Spanish Jews say, Sephardim—a word derived from Sepharad, a root word found in Scripture. In the Southwestern United States, many people of Spanish and Mexican ancestry, as well as Caucasians and some Plains Indians, wonder about the artifacts they have, customs they practice, and stories they heard that suggest a Jewish heritage. Some use the name Sephardic, Ladino, Anusim, Marino, or Converso when they refer to themselves, and that leads many knowledgeable people to believe they are Jewish. Since the Jews lived in Spain for hundreds of years and married Catholic Spaniards, many believe that if you scratch a Spaniard, you will find a Jew. Others, both here and in Spain, have noticed that their last names are the names of Jewish towns razed during the Inquisition. Whether here or in Spain, whether people know they are Jewish or just suspect, the Spanish Jews have learned, over centuries of percussion, to hide who they are as a means of survival.


If you are wondering where I came upon such an unusual idea as each of treating others as we have been treated, you might have thought of the Gold Rule. Although that is a good place to start, I was not thinking of that rule, but of Scripture. In 2 Corinthians 1:2 Rabbi Sh’aul (the Apostle Paul) wrote, “Now this is our boast: Our conscience testifies that we have conducted ourselves in the world, and especially in our relations with you, with integrity and godly sincerity. We have done so, relying not on worldly wisdom but on God’s grace.” I believe that Paul is saying, that without God’s grace we cannot place ourselves in another person’s shoes and act, as we ought. However, with Gods gift of grace bestowed upon those that believe in is son Yeshua Messiah (Jesus Christ) we receive a gift that allows us to do that which the flesh reviles, and act in accordance with Gods will for our lives.

Think of it, by believing we are set free of the need to look down, and we only look up to God and His anointed, everyone else stands on a level field – none better or worse. Therefore, there is no need to rank, demean, or attack another person.

If you think, I am a lunatic or worse, check back next week.

1 Response to "The Inquisition, the New World, and People of Sephardic Heritage by Paula Rose Michelson"

  1. Anonymous Says:
    November 14, 2011 at 8:48 AM

    Any Ort commented on your post in Messianic Authors, Writers, Singers, Musicians, Artists, Missionaries, and…

    Also, I think alot of it is Man influenced by the Enemy. I truly believe the Enemy does his best to try and destroy the race that is or is supposed to be a light to the world, the ones chosen originally by much evil to destroy what is suppose dto be good! Can ONLY come from the Pit.

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