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This was "based on the fear that intimate contact with the Canaanites will lead Israelites to imitate their idolatrous and immoral ways." Thus, Hayes contrasts the restrictions on intermarriage at the time the Torah was written with the time of Ezra by pointing out that the Torah did not prohibit intermarriage between all Gentiles, only those in the seven nations specified.

Furthermore, the intent of the Ezra ban was different in that it was based on the preservation of a holy seed, as opposed to the idea in the Torah that contact with the Canaanites would lead to the Israelites imitating their idolatrous and immoral ways.

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The Biblical position on exogamous marriage is somewhat ambiguous; that is, except in relation to intermarriage with a Canaanite, which the majority of the Israelite patriarchs are depicted as criticising.Intermarriage could contribute to the continuity of the Jewish people." All branches of Orthodox Judaism follow the historic Jewish attitudes to intermarriage, and therefore refuse to accept that intermarriages would have any validity or legitimacy, and strictly forbid sexual intercourse with a member of a different faith.Orthodox rabbis refuse to officiate at interfaith weddings, and also try to avoid assisting them in other ways.First and foremost, Hayes holds that the fear of profaning the seed of Israel was the underlying rationale for the ban in exogamous marriage, rather than the ritual impurity of Gentiles in general.She also argues that the regulations on intermarriage in the times of Ezra were different from the restrictions on intermarriage according to the book of Deuteronomy.Secular intermarriage is seen as a deliberate rejection of Judaism, and an intermarried person is effectively cut off from most of the Orthodox community, although some Chabad-Lubavitch and Modern Orthodox Jews do reach out to intermarried Jewish couples.The Conservative Movement in Judaism does not sanction or recognize the Jewish legal validity of intermarriage, but encourages acceptance of the non-Jewish spouse within the family, hoping that such acceptance will lead to the spouse's conversion to Judaism. 1899) which documents an event in Ukraine that the artist read about: a Jewish woman was attacked by members of her community for falling in love with a Christian convert.Interfaith marriage in Judaism (also called mixed marriage or intermarriage) was historically looked upon with very strong disfavour by Jewish leaders, and it remains a controversial issue amongst them today.Progressive rabbinical associations have no firm prohibition against intermarriage; according to a survey of rabbis, conducted in 1985, more than 87% of Reconstructionist rabbis were willing to officiate at interfaith marriages, The Central Conference of American Rabbis, the Reform rabbinical association in North America and the largest Progressive rabbinical association, consistently opposed intermarriage at least until the 1980s, including their members officiating at them, through resolutions and responsa.Today, however, Reform and Reconstructionist rabbis, according to Jack Wertheimer, seem not at all concerned about intermarriage and have nothing to say in public about it.

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