Israeli Jewish in United States

Main Language
Largest Religion
Ethnic Religions (Judaism)
Progress Gauge

Introduction / History

The sabra plant is similar to a prickly pear. It has thorns on the outside, but it's sweet and tender on the inside. This is an informal description that has stuck with the Israelis. They are often referred to as Sabras or Sabra Israelis.

Jewish people have established themselves in Israel, mainly since 1948. Though they are free from persecution in Israel, life is always a struggle. Everyone must serve in the military and there is always the danger of indiscriminate terrorist violence. Some have decided that it's better to live as a religious minority in a peaceful land like the United States. Others have come to the United States because they are enamored with American pop culture, because of high taxes or the lack of housing in Israel. The number of Israelis in the US has increased since the 1980s.

Most Sabra Israelis live either in New York City or Los Angeles. There is a smaller community in Miami.

What Are Their Lives Like?

Sabra Jewish immigrants in the US try to maintain Jewish schools and other institutions. Sabras have established newspapers and satellite broadcasts in Hebrew. In Israel they tend to be secular, but they become more religious in the United States. Sabras face culture shock with American Jews, so much so that they try to keep their distance. They are trying to cling to their Israeli heritage in a strange land.

There are a large number of startup companies in the US founded by Sabra Israelis.

At the age of 13, the Bar Mitzvah ceremony for a boy (or Bat Mitzvah for a girl) is an important rite of passage, which marks him or her as an adult member of the community. While these ceremonies were more spiritually focused in the past, they have become equally important as social events.

Marriage and family relationships among Israeli Jews are much the same as others in the United States. Although Israeli wives generally take on their husbands' surnames, Jewish identity is traced through the mother. That is, if one's mother is a Jew, then he is, according to Jewish law, Jewish.

Jewish identity is threatened when a Jew acknowledges Jesus as his or her Messiah.
What Are Their Beliefs?

Once they emigrate to the US, they tend to become more religious. For religious Jews, God is the Supreme Being, the Creator of the universe, and the ultimate judge of human affairs. Beyond this, the religious beliefs of the Jewish communities vary greatly. Orthodox Jews follow the traditional religious beliefs and practices found in the Jewish literature that interprets Scripture regarding ethical, religious, civil, and criminal matters.

Reform Jews do not believe that the Jewish Law is revealed by God. They are not restricted to kosher foods. They neither wear the skullcap (yarmulke) when praying nor use Hebrew in prayer. All religious Jews believe in the coming of a Messianic Age, but only the Orthodox Jews look for a personal Messiah.

Many Sabras retain cultural Judaism, but they have rejected the spiritual elements taught in the Old Testament. They might take part in cultural events and even religious ceremonies, but they are secular or New Age in their spiritual lives.

What Are Their Needs?

Jewish people have a wonderful understanding of their connection with the Abrahamic Covenant. However, they also have a history of rejecting Jesus Christ as Messiah, the one who has fulfilled that covenant. They tend to view Christianity as the religion of their oppressors rather than the fulfillment of what God promised all of humanity through Abraham centuries ago.

Prayer Points

Pray for the Lord to give the Sabra Israelis in the US hearts that will want to please him. May they look to the Lord for guidance and truth, and not be satisfied with cultural traditions.

Pray for Sabra Israeli people in the US to begin a movement to Jesus Christ, finding ways to exalt him while honoring their culture.

Pray for the Lord to move among Jewish leaders in the US to open the doors to Christ's ambassadors.

Scripture Prayers for the Jewish, Israeli, Sabra in United States.

Profile Source:   Joshua Project  

People Name General Jewish, Israeli
People Name in Country Jewish, Israeli, Sabra
Natural Name Israeli Jewish
Pronunciation iz-RAIL-ee joo
Alternate Names Israeli Jew
Population this Country 137,000
Population all Countries 5,710,000
Total Countries 4
Indigenous No
Progress Scale 1
Unreached Yes
Frontier People Group No
GSEC 1  (per
Pioneer Workers Needed 3
People ID 12267
ROP3 Code 104088
ROP25 Code 303368
ROP25 Name Jewish
Country United States
Region America, North and Caribbean
Continent North America
10/40 Window No
National Bible Society Website
Persecution Rank Not ranked
Location in Country New York City (Kew Gardens Hills), Los Angeles, Miami, San Francisco, Chicago   Source:  Ethnologue 2010
Country United States
Region America, North and Caribbean
Continent North America
10/40 Window No
National Bible Society Website
Persecution Rank Not ranked
Location in Country New York City (Kew Gardens Hills), Los Angeles, Miami, San Francisco, Chicago.   Source:  Ethnologue 2010

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Primary Religion: Ethnic Religions (Judaism)
Major Religion Percent
0.00 %
Christianity  (Evangelical 0.10 %)
0.30 %
Ethnic Religions
82.70 %
0.00 %
0.00 %
17.00 %
Other / Small
0.00 %
0.00 %
Primary Language Hebrew (137,000 speakers)
Language Code heb   Ethnologue Listing
Language Written Yes   ScriptSource Listing
Total Languages 1
Primary Language Hebrew (137,000 speakers)
Language Code heb   Ethnologue Listing
Total Languages 1
People Groups Speaking Hebrew

Primary Language:  Hebrew

Bible Translation Status  (Years)
Bible-Portions Yes  (1477-2010)
Bible-New Testament Yes  (2010)
Bible-Complete No
FCBH NT ( Online
YouVersion NT ( Online
Possible Print Bibles
World Bibles
Forum Bible Agencies
National Bible Societies
World Bible Finder
Virtual Storehouse
Resource Type Resource Name Source
Audio Recordings Audio Bible teaching Global Recordings Network
Audio Recordings Online Audio Scripture Talking Bibles
Audio Recordings Story of Jesus audio Jesus Film Project
Film / Video God's Story video God's Story
Film / Video Jesus Film: view in Hebrew Jesus Film Project
Film / Video Love letter to you from scripture Father's Love Letter
Film / Video LUMO film of Gospels Bible Media Group/LUMO
Film / Video My Last Day video, anime Jesus Film Project
Film / Video The Hope Video Mars Hill Media
Film / Video World Christian Videos World Christian Videos
General Bible for Children Bible for Children
General Biblical answers to your questions Got Questions Ministry
General Faith Comes By Hearing - Bible in text or audio or video Faith Comes by Hearing
General Four Spiritual Laws Campus Crusade for Christ
General Scripture Earth Gospel resources links Scripture Earth
General YouVersion Bible versions in text and/or audio YouVersion Bibles
Mobile App Android Bible app: Hebrew YouVersion Bibles
Mobile App Android Bible App: Hebrew New Testament Bible Faith Comes by Hearing
Mobile App Android Reading App: Biblical Hebrew Readers Faith Comes by Hearing
Mobile App Android Reading App: Lecturas en Hebreo Bíblico (Spanish) Faith Comes by Hearing
Mobile App Android Reading App: Leituras em Hebraico Bíblico (Portuguese) Faith Comes by Hearing
Mobile App Download audio Bible app as APK file Faith Comes by Hearing
Mobile App iOS Bible app: Hebrew YouVersion Bibles
Text / Printed Matter Tools for faith conversations Campus Crusade for Christ
Text / Printed Matter Topical Scripture booklets and Bible studies World Missionary Press
Photo Source Paul Arps - Flickr  Creative Commons 
Profile Source Joshua Project 
Data Sources Data is compiled from various sources. Learn more.

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