The King's Rules
Once upon a time in a far away land there lived a king who had a Jewish
advisor. The king relied so much on the wisdom of his Jewish advisor
that one day he decided to elevate him to his head advisor. After it was
announced, the other advisors objected. After all, "It was bad enough," they
complained, "just to sit in counsel with a Jew. But to allow one to
'Lord it over them,' was just too much to bear."
Being a compassionate ruler, the King agreed with them, and ordered the
Jew to convert. What could the Jew do? One had to obey the King, and so he
As soon as the act was done the Jew felt great remorse for this terrible
decision. As days became weeks, his remorse turned to despondency, and as weeks
become months his mental depression took its toll on his physical health. He
became weaker and weaker. Finally he could stand it no longer. His mind was
He burst in on the King and cried, "I was born a Jew and a Jew I must
be. Do what you want with me, but I can no longer deny my faith."
The King was very surprised. He had no idea that the Jew felt so
strongly about it. "Well if that is how you feel," he said, "then the other
advisors will just have to learn to live with it. Your counsel is much too
important to me to do without. Go and be a Jew again," he said.
The Jew felt so elated. He hurried back home to tell the good news to
his family. He felt the strength surge back into his body as he ran.
Finally he burst into the house and called out to his wife.
"Rifka, Rifka, we can be Jews again, we can be Jews again." His wife
GLARED back at him angrily and said, "You couldn't wait until after