Diving and Divinity

How a Bible scholar with a yen for scuba diving ended up introducing Judaism to Christians on a remote island in Fiji.

A six-rayed sea star. Wikipedia.

A six-rayed sea star. Wikipedia.

Observation
July 9 2015
About the author

Joshua Berman is professor of Bible at Bar-Ilan University and the author most recently of Ani Maamin: Biblical Criticism, Historical Truth, and the Thirteen Principles of Faith (Maggid).


Sunset on a Friday evening: clouds have descended on the lush mountains surrounding this grassy campus as young people, dressed in their Sabbath best, cross the central lawn to gather in a large common room. In the stillness, I’m transported back to my teenage years and Friday evenings at my Jewish summer camp—until suddenly my reverie is interrupted: “Dr. Joshua! Happy Sabbath, happy Sabbath to you!” The nearest synagogue is over 1,700 miles away, and I’m in Sabeto, a village on the Fijian island of Viti Levu in the South Pacific.

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More about: 7th Day Adventists, Arts & Culture, Asia, Religion & Holidays, Scuba diving