5 March 1901 Death of Gentleman Scholar Paul Bendix #otdimjh

5 March 1901 Death of Rabbi Dr. Paul Bendix, Scholar and Gentleman

Marc Chagall - Jeremiah 31

Bendix, Paul, Dr., was born at Rummelsberg in Prussia, Aug. 29, 1823. He was early sent to a Christian school, where he was often moved to tears when hearing of the crucifixion of our Lord Jesus Christ. At the age of seventeen he went to Danzig for rabbinical study, and afterwards to the Berlin University, where he gained the diploma of Ph.D. in 1850.


Bernstein records:

Subsequently he became a rabbi, and worked at Berent and Grandenz. He disapproved of many of the old Jewish customs, but his congregation refused to allow the introduction of any reforms. The wardens of the synagogue at Grandenz,


where he officiated from 1854 to 1858, wrote of him in a testimonial: “The sermons of Dr. Bendix were instructive and edifying, and owing to his splendid delivery and great oratorical power they never failed to make a deep impression on his hearers.”

While at Grandenz he made the acquaintance of a Christian clergyman, through whom he was led to study the New Testament. The [105] reading of this deeply affected him. Later on he went to live in the house of a converted Jew, which caused many of his hearers to warn him not to hold intercourse with him on Christianity. But he was now seeking for truth and peace, and though he avoided conversation, he could not help noticing the upright and serious life of his landlord, who closed his place of business on the Lord’s Day, held family worship morning and evening, and took a keen interest in home and foreign missions.

All this made an impression on him, and made him say: “This man, surely, possesses the peace I am seeking. He asked me one day what took the place of sacrifices since the Temple was destroyed, what were the essential contents of the Jewish Prayer Book. I could only say to myself, ‘Where is the atonement for sin? I began to read the Old Testament with a terrified conscience, and soon I found that my religious system was built on the sand.’”

At last he felt that he must give up his position as rabbi, and he retired, not without much opposition, to Berlin, where he spent his whole time in the closest study of the Word of God. He became convinced at last that the old covenant was merely a preparation for the new one (Jer. xxxi. 31-34). One difficulty was the word “virgin” in Isa. vii. 14, but when he saw that it was always used in opposition to married women, he at once accepted Christ as his Saviour, and was baptized with his wife and children in 1860, in St. Matthew’s Church, Berlin.


With a recommendation from Queen Elizabeth of Prussia he came over to England, and from 1883 [106] worked in connexion with the L.J.S. [CMJ] He died March 5, 1901, deeply regretted by both Jews and Christians.

Princess Elisabeth of Prussia

Gidney adds: Dr. Bendix died early in 1901. He was formerly a rabbi and made a public confession of Christianity in St Matthew’s Church, Berlin, in 1860. He was a very learned man, and, in 1883 became missionary in Prebendary Gordon Calthrop’s parish in Highbury. He continued in his work amongst the well-to-do Jews until his death, and was also lecturer in rabbinic Hebrew at the Society’s College.

Prayer: Thank you Lord for the simplicity of faith and integrity of character we see in Rabbi Dr. Paul Bendix, a man of scholarship and learning who made a decision to accept you that cost him his credentials as a rabbi, but gave him freedom of faith and conscience. Even so today, may many have the courage of their convictions to confess Yeshua openly as Lord and Risen Messiah. In your name we pray. Amen.

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His son David was a well-known scientist


DAVID BENDIX was born in 1856 and educated at the Kaiserlich-Konigliche Realschule, Berlin. In 1872 he entered Mr. Arthur Vacher’s laboratory, in London, as a pupil-assistant; in 1874 he obtained an appointment with Messrs. Burt, Boulton & Haywood, and shortly after became managing chemist in their anthraquinone works at Victoria Docks; and finally he became Head Chemist and Works Manager to British Alizarine Co., which position he held for thirty-two years. He acted for many years as an abstractor for the Journal of the Society of Chemical Industry. He was elected a Fellow of the Institute of Chemistry in 1888.

David’s wife Alice Bendix was born Alice Farman (or Farmen) in 1860 in Plomesgate, Suffolk. They were married in 1880 in Lambeth, where Davids family lived. They lived in Caernarvon Road and Romford Road from at least 1886. She died in 1951.

Den omvände rabbinen doktor Paulus Bendix. : Öfversättning ur tidskriften “Der Freund Israels”, julihäftet 1862.

About richardsh

Messianic Jewish teacher in UK
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