My Jewish Learning

War & Peace Quiz

Peace is one of Judaism's most revered concepts. And yet Jewish tradition assumes that war is inevitable. How much do you know about the Jewish ethics and laws of combat?

Question 1. True or False: According to Jewish law, communal self-defense and personal self-defense are the same thing, with the same rules.


Question 2. The Hebrew word shalom means "hello" and "goodbye" and what else?


Question 3. Complete this quote from the Talmud: "If someone comes to kill you_________"
 Welcome him with open arms
 Get up early in the morning to kill him first
 Reason with him as best you can
 Save yourself by hiding from him


Question 4. According to Rabbi Joshua ben Korha, the concept of peace is in direct opposition to what?


Question 5. In the Mishnah, the rabbis describe a category of "commanded wars" that are to be fought against whom?
 The seven nations of Canaan
 Idol-worshipping nations
 A & B only
 All of these


Question 6. According to Deuteronomy, what are the Israelites supposed to do if the seven nations of Canaan do not accept the terms of peace offered to them?
 Wipe out all men, women, and children
 Kill all the men, and take women and children as captives
 Exile all men, women, and children out of Canaan
 Teach them about Judaism and try to have them join the Israelites' side


Question 7. According to the Torah, what did Amalek do to deserve the scorn of the Israelites?
 They tried to assassinate Moses
 They attacked the weakest members of the Israelites
 They stole all of the Israelites' food
 They burnt down the First Temple


Question 8. True or False: Some German Jews fought for the Germans in World War I.


Question 9. According to Jewish law, when besieging a city the invading army must:
 Walk around the city while blowing shofars
 Allow the people inside to keep getting the animals they need for animal sacrifices
 Leave one side of the city open so people may flee
 Be sure to kill everyone inside, including all cattle and livestock


Question 10. Which of these prayers concludes with an appeal for peace?
 The Amidah
 The Kaddish
 The Priestly Blessing
 The Grace After Meals
 All of these