The biblical reference in the title of Stephen Prothero’s “The American Bible: How Our Words Unite, Divide, and Define a Nation” (HarperOne: $29.99) is purely metaphorical.
Nearly a year ago, Jack Wertheimer, provost of the Conservative movement's Jewish Theological Seminary (JTS) and a scholar of demographic trends, put a challenge to a former student.
Jews around the nation are deeply involved in interfaith initiatives, Wertheimer noted. But they avoid involvement with their own religion's different movements, letting ideological differences get in the way of conversing with each other over issues dear to each. Do something to mend that divide before the gulf is unbridgeable, he urged Stuart Altshuler, a JTS graduate and rabbi of Mission Viejo's Congregation Eilat.