As anyone who has gone through the conversion process in Judaism can attest, it is a long and difficult process to undertake. This isn’t the case to dissuade anyone, in fact, it is due to what one is joining, a people, a nation. You aren’t converting to a religion, you are adopting the culture, the language, the lifestyle, the beliefs, the wisdom, the history, the very nature of the Jewish people. It is not unlike immigrating to a foreign nation, and so there are prerequisites that must be understood and fulfilled. 

This is so true in fact, that even converts are welcomed to make Aliyah (To go up) to Israel and obtain full legal citizenship status in the holy land. With that out of the way… it’s also important to note something else that lends reason to the difficulty in conversion… the Mitzvot!

Jews are the chosen people by G-d, in that covenant, they are expected to uphold the Mitzvot (613 Commandments) of G-d, which each one lends to Tikkun Olam (repairing the world) and ushering in the messianic era (When the messiah comes). If one converts and doesn’t understand these obligations, they will be lacking in G-ds grace for not upholding the covenant of the Jewish people. This is why the Beit Din is so important and why reading, learning, applying, and asking questions from your rabbi are so important throughout the process. 

jews have an obligation to the commandments of G-d, to their community, to the world at large, and it’s imperative that they are prepared to enter into those obligations. Being the “Chosen people,” simply means having an obligation to G-D, to uphold his Mitzvot, to be a light to the world, to work to usher in the messianic age, to be G-ds hype man on earth. Those who don’t want to undertake those obligations would do well not to convert and to remain Noahides (Righteous Gentiles) instead. 

Joining a people, learning the religious aspects, celebrating the holidays and lifecycle events, setting up a Jewish household, learning and living the Mitzvot, learning the history, learning and living the Jewish culture, building a direct connection to and with G-d… these are all reasons why the conversion process is difficult and takes time.