Wednesday, 18 October 2017

Exodus 22:28: A response to Virtual Yeshiva 3

Now we are going to respond to Arikm7.messiahtruth on his points.

"I apologize in advance for what appears to be a "tirade"...

Again...Not only is there NO proof that he existed but it's clear that Jesus was not a prophet according to Judaism/Tanach as the age of prophecy (which is NOT fortune-telling) ended with the last of the Prophets, Malachi and the Great Assembly. Again, not one of the prophets ever used the kind of language you find in the NT in addressing the nation or its leaders. Even when the Prophets presented Israel and Judah with some very graphic and illicit imagery, the Prophets stopped short of damning the entire nation! You'll never see/read the type of wanton cursing in Isaiah as you'll find in "Matthew". I mean, to even put the two on the same level is insulting to Israel's great prophets."

Jesus didn't damn every one in the nation, never forget his followers were Jews themselves. This I need not go over again:
http://answering-judaism.blogspot.co.uk/2017/10/exodus-2228-response-to-virtual-yeshiva_17.html.

Not sure why the fortune telling thing was even brought up though.

"So for Jesus to prattle and blow (or rather his followers for him) as some kind of legitimate prophet, is not only a deception but the ultimate bottom-scraping form of denigration. In fact, the "proof" that Jesus was whatever gospel wants to shade him is predicated upon a complete and purposeful mistranslation, misapplication, molested and maligned use of passages from the Tanach. If the writers of the Nt can't accurately and honestly reproduce verses from the Tanach (since it would totally destroy the raison detre for their being used by the gospel writers), how seriously are we to take this stuff? "

For them to prove Jesus they would have know the Torah, Neviim and Ketuvim inside out. In Luke 24 after the resurrection, Jesus is stated to have "opened their minds to understand the scriptures" (referring to his disciples): See my article on Luke 24:44-48: http://answering-judaism.blogspot.co.uk/2013/10/luke-2444-48-forgery.html

The New Testament writers reaction would have been "Ah, so that's how he fulfilled that prophecy" Was there any purposeful and willful translation on the part of the writers? No and as mentioned before in the previous paper, the resurrection would be a vindication of Jesus' claims as well as how the verses of the TANAKH applies to him. The events of Luke 24 happened after the resurrection and if the resurrection happened, there is no plausible way the disciples could be deceptive, especially since they were significantly changed after the resurrection from cowards to bold men.

"Now we have certain individuals who want buffet-pick what words Jesus may have said and that which he may not have said? "oh jesus could not have cursed the entire nation because that would include himself". Are you serious?? Who makes the determination what goes, what stays and what gets translated and understood how? And what qualifies him to make that decision?? He wants to use the NT to substantiate that Jesus was a historical figure but yet also wants to employ an arbitrary "keep"/"discard" decision of that SAME body of writing (the NT) as to HIS Jesus creation. Then if that weren't enough there's this trying to sell it back to us if not as a bona fide fact, then certainly as an alternative we must consider. Such a tactic is nothing less than an imitation and duplication of the very devices the actual writers of the Gospels have utilized in creating their story and their version of Jesus. And it is nothing short of being intellectually dishonest and simply a diversion/stall tactic to avoid the topic at hand-- that the jesus character for all bluster of his being a torah-observant jew (either by his own claims or by his followers) was NOT. No Torah-observant Jew I know of would use such language. Not when there are sages who had devoted their entire lives to learning, teaching and living the laws against Lashon Hara (the Chofetz Chaim, being one such sage!). If they were to, they would most certainly be called on the carpet. But the Jesus of the NT is a Bet-Din unto himself and answers to NO ONE, which is the ultimate form of a Jew who as they say 'has gone way off the derech (path)"."

Buffet pick Jesus' words? No one who reads the New Testament denies what Jesus said to the Jews but it's false to say we buffet pick when it comes to what he said. The point of contention is what do those words mean. Are they words of hatred, or words that were justified and righteous with no malice at all?

The New Testament is rightly used as a historical account of Jesus Christ but there is no arbitrary keep/discard decision among Christians (biblical not apostates) on what Jesus meant and it certainly did not entail hatred against his own people.

If you want to talk about vile language, there are many individuals among the Jews who have said horrific things about Jesus (especially on Paltalk and no surprise there are individuals in the entertainment industry who have such language or bile), but it's fair to say not all Jews have hatred of Jesus, some are just indifferent.

Galilee and Samaria weren't perfect, there is in John 4 the story of the Samaritan Woman who was involved in many adulterous marriages.

"John 4:16 Jesus said to her, “Go, call your husband, and come here.” 17 The woman answered him, “I have no husband.” Jesus said to her, “You are right in saying, ‘I have no husband’; 18 for you have had five husbands, and the one you now have is not your husband. What you have said is true.”"

Jesus also further points out the errors that the woman makes:

"19 The woman said to him, “Sir, I perceive that you are a prophet. 20 Our fathers worshiped on this mountain, but you say that in Jerusalem is the place where people ought to worship.” 21 Jesus said to her, “Woman, believe me, the hour is coming when neither on this mountain nor in Jerusalem will you worship the Father. 22 You worship what you do not know; we worship what we know, for salvation is from the Jews. 23 But the hour is coming, and is now here, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth, for the Father is seeking such people to worship him. 24 God is spirit, and those who worship him must worship in spirit and truth.” 25 The woman said to him, “I know that Messiah is coming (he who is called Christ). When he comes, he will tell us all things.” 26 Jesus said to her, “I who speak to you am he.”"

Pretty soon in the context, people of many races will to worship YHWH, Jew and Gentile alike and this is brought about by the Jewish people, specifically the Messiah being the one to accomplish this, but where does the Messiah hail from? The Jewish people. Hardly insulting to Jews or Gentiles.

I ask this question. Did Jesus actually reject the Written Torah? or did he actually reject the Oral Traditions the Phariees added? If it was the latter, he did the right thing if there was a tradition that contradicted what Moses said.

"And while we're on the subject of what Jesus may or may not have said: Why is it that you NEVER hear Jesus say anything NEGATIVE of the Roman government, its leaders or its despotic puppet-men? Forget comparing inflective! You never hear anything negative about the Romans. When reading the gospels, one would think that all was well and peaceful along the galilean country side, with benign roman soldiers and their commanders, respectful leaders and god-fearing, genuflecting (to Jesus, that is) rulers. Amazingly, Pilate is painted as some sort of RIGHTEOUS individual wanting to do the right thing but is forced to doing "evil" by those damned Jews! No..it's rainbows and butterflies and tweeting bluebirds for all! Thousands of People congregate on the hillside for a huge open air dissertation (and a free lunch!)---no one is forced to work as servants, no one is enslaved, and certainly no one is being harassed by the "benign" Romans! The enemy of the story is "those damned Jews!". All the while, Rome directly (and via their puppets, the Herods) were butchering men and women with gleeful impunity in Galilee. Only once does Matthew slip up in his Idyllic Galilee presentation when he inadvertently has Jesus mention about Judah of Galilee. Of course, he's quick to move on lest the obvious question would be "well, what happened to him regarding that tower?""

I have written an article on Pontius Pilate here: http://answering-judaism.blogspot.co.uk/2015/11/pontius-pilate-righteous-man.html

What the Romans were doing to the Jews was inconsequential to the point that the New Testament writers were making. No where is Pontius Pilate painted as a righteous man.

When the Messianic Drew was still around as a Messianic Jew said this to me:

"Pilate was the typical politician. He played both sides against each other. To Jesus, he acted like he was a friend trying to release him. To the Jewish nationalist crowds, he kept holding back on their request until they swore loyalty to Caesar and Rome."

Tony Griffin also mentioned the following:

"Actually the text teaches that he was trying to pacify the Jewish leadership because he was afraid of a revolt and history teaches that another revolt or insurrection would cost him his life and possibly his job as well because he had already been warned by Ceasar to crush any revolts because there were so many issues going on in Palestine. Pilate because he was having trouble crushing all the revolts that had been going on had been warned by Cesar already . He thought that by crucifying Christ he was doing the Jewish leadership a favor because they themselves would've stopped a revolt if he agreed to condemn Jesus. Pilate condemned Jesus and there was no revolt ."

The New Testament doesn't paint all is well in Galilee. Here is the context for the tower that was mentioned:
"13 There were some present at that very time who told him about the Galileans whose blood Pilate had mingled with their sacrifices. 2 And he answered them, “Do you think that these Galileans were worse sinners than all the other Galileans, because they suffered in this way? 3 No, I tell you; but unless you repent, you will all likewise perish. 4 Or those eighteen on whom the tower in Siloam fell and killed them: do you think that they were worse offenders than all the others who lived in Jerusalem? 5 No, I tell you; but unless you repent, you will all likewise perish.”"

Jesus is making the point "What difference does it make to the severity of their wickedness, they must all repent of their evil deeds regardless. How serious it is inconsequential" This ties into a later point.

"You'll never see Jesus spouting off against the Romans who actually killed his countrymen (and later his followers---as a "prophet", you'd think he'd know his followers' fate!), crucified thousands, butchered, raped and pillaged villages and enslaved countless Jews. No, no. You'll never hear Jesus use the kind of language against them as you will hear him churn against the Jews. Of course, we know it's not Jesus but the writers of the gospels themselves, but still...it's attributed to Jesus."

As Jesus mentioned, it doesn't make a difference how wicked someone is, Jew and Gentile alike must repent of their evil ways.

No Jesus doesn't address the atrocities of the Romans, I think it would have been a given how wicked the Romans are but his language towards his kinsmen can be seen as "You should know better, you are God's light to the nations." Again, what the Romans did was not relevant to the point of the New Testament writers.

"Jesus and his followers are to Judaism and Jewish History as crude oil to pure water.

As such, it's almost a nonsensical and a complete pointless endeavor to try to put Jesus (and by extension, the NT) to the test of what the Torah's injunctions are. We KNOW every single passage, page and parcel of the NT is diametrically opposed to anything the Torah has to say on an issue. As such, we don't need to apologize for the conclusions drawn when we compare what the NT said vs. the Mitzvot involving Leaders.

Trying to make the Jesus character "kosher" for the utterly putrid bile that spews from his alleged mouth onto the pages of the Gospels and Revelation is really, really, REALLY reaching and a suspension of reality (not to mention reading and comprehension skills). Wrapping the argument in suppositions and "what if's" is just that.. a futile diversion from what the black and white texts state."

Already pointed out how Jesus was not guilty of "bile" and pointing at that Jesus is not a wicked transgressor does not arise from a suspension of reality or reading and comprehension skills, it stems from reading Jesus' words in context and interpreting them correctly.

I point out again that Jesus was perfectly justified in what he did and did not violate Exodus 22:28.

Answering Judaism.

Tuesday, 17 October 2017

Exodus 22:28: A response to Virtual Yeshiva 2

Moving on the next point:

"Things have taken a very ugly turn here, and I'm not going to pursue that question any farther.

You asked it, and you can pursue it if you like." Proteus

"I completely agree with everything that Sophie said." Hebrew wander

Let's take a look at the next point:

"Why is it that when someone shows the actual vitriol and utter disgusting things that the Gospels relate as having been spewed from Jesus do some suddenly say that "things have taken an ugly turn here"? 

The truth is that Jesus was NOT a prophet, had no authority to speak as one, and was far more disgusting in his tone, language and verbiage than even that used by LEGITIMATE and REAL prophets (included the greatest of all Prophets, Moses). To spew the kind of bile that Jesus allegedly did (or is attributed to him) is in direct violation of the Torah that xians love to blather that he came to "fulfill".   And if he did actually exist, according to Jewish Law, his vile insults and accusations carry with them the death penalty; not because the Jewish leaders and/or nation is beyond reproach.  It is rather because such unbridled slander and unmitigated and unsubstantiated lashon hara is akin to murder and murder was a crime punishable by death. " Arikm7.messiahtruth

Or maybe because claiming the New Testament is guilty of hateful vitriol is ludicrous when you read the New Testament in context. I fail to see any difference between what Jesus said and what Moses and the Prophets said. Just saying.

ProfBenTziyyon then said:
"It’s called Ostrichianism, Arik."

"Professor:

Apparently, so. And the sand of those holes must be very deep!

I also think it belies a certain intellectual dishonesty on their part.   They not only just want us to just willingly and without any reservation, accept as fact the unsubstantiated and unproven assertion of Jesus' existence, but also (and far more fantastic) that he was on par with those holy personalties of the Hebrew Scriptures. If we protest, then we're the ones guilty of turning things "ugly". 

I find it utterly hypocritical, deceptive and self-serving.   I, for one, would be very interested in further comments from the moderators as to the injunctions of the Torah concerning this issue and concerning how utterly out of scope and out of line with Torah and G-d the entire NT truly is (as it would relate to polemics or personalities).  In short, for every bombastically made claim as to Jesus being this or Jesus being that, there are at least four passages from the Torah alone which not only refutes the silly claim, but also reveals the persona of Jesus being in direct opposition to the self-same Torah."

Jesus' existence is testified not only in the New Testament as historical documents (Which is where most seek their information about Jesus).

Josephus is one example, Jesus is referenced briefly in one of Josephus' own letters, though some have dismissed his letter as a forgery. However, only part of Josephus' words regarding Jesus are not authentic, which is what people who try to deny Jesus is mentioned in Josephus fail to mention when they propound their belief.

If you take out the interpolations, you are left with the following:
"Now there was about this time Jesus, a wise man, if it be lawful to call him a man, for he was a doer of wonderful works, a teacher of such men as receive the truth with pleasure. He drew over to him both many of the Jews, and many of the Gentiles and when Pilate, at the suggestion of the principal men among us, had condemned him to the cross, those that loved him at the first did not forsake him and the tribe of Christians so named from him are not extinct at this day."

Notice the reference to Jesus being the Christ or Messiah and also the reference to his resurrection are omitted, since they were a later addition to the words of Josephus, rather than his words. Even without the admissions, you still have an acknowledgement of his existence. Josephus, regardless of his reputation among Jews, good or bad, should not be dismissed as an invalid source of information.

Nakdimon has done an excellent series of videos responding to Gomerozdubar on what historical document aside from the New Testament mentions the crucifixion: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2uKFFI7Sctg&list=PLCE63E5B6421B2A6B

Finally:
"I have been participating here for ... since 2005.

In all that time, there is a particular tactic that I've called the sukah punch, that one and only one Moderator uses.

It consists of accusing the Christian of exactly that misconduct in which the accuser is about to engage.

In the present instance, this person accused me of deflection, which I had not done; and then deflected.

Do any of the prophets ever criticize a judge or leader?  That was the question." Proteus.

"For J. to have condemned "all Jews," he would necessarily have to have condemned also himself and all his disciples; as during his life, he had no goyishe disciples." Proteus.

To which Sophiee1 said the following:

"The question is not whether any prophet criticized a fellow Jew -- that is not only deflection it is a typical missionary ploy of changing the topic and redirecting the conversation.  I already addressed this red herring in my earlier post -- it is one thing to criticize a fellow Jew to bring them to observance (it is one of the 613 mitzvot -- Vayikra / Leviticus 19:17!) and quite another to condemn all Jews -- for all times -- for no reason and without hope of redemption other than worshiping the man who condemned them!  

The original question had to do with CURSING a leader.   My comments have already been made, along with biblical quotes and quotes from the Christian bible supporting my perspective.   In return there has been bluster and protestations -- and that is all.


Was Jesus a Jew?  Heck, we don't even know if Jesus existed!   Whoever wrote the Christian bible and "put words in Jesus' mouth" and the mouths of his followers are rabidly anti-Jewish.  Plenty of Jews have separated themselves from their fellow Jews and Judaism -- consider the golden calf incident or those Jews who worshiped Ba'al.  Pablo Chrstiani who debated with the famous Ramban was a former Jew who converted to Christianity. . . so to use the excuse that Jesus was a Jew so could not be anti-Jewish fails at the start.   One only need read the Christian bible to see that it reeks with anti-Jewish fervor."

It's absurd to claim we don't know Jesus existed, because when we take the New Testament as historical documents, it mentions Jesus himself and that is the source that most people use when they want to know who he is.

I have already pointed out in other papers that Jesus and the writers of the New Testament were not anti-Jewish so I need not go over that again.

Where did Jesus condemn all Jews? The ones who submitted to him and repented to God. While Jesus pointed to himself, he ultimately point others back to God and to worship him.

A Jew who accepts Jesus doesn't cease being a Jew, especially when you consider Paul's words in Galatians 3:28:
"23 Before the coming of this faith, we were held in custody under the law, locked up until the faith that was to come would be revealed. 24 So the law was our guardian until Christ came that we might be justified by faith. 25 Now that this faith has come, we are no longer under a guardian.
26 So in Christ Jesus you are all children of God through faith, 27 for all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ. 28 There is neither Jew nor Gentile, neither slave nor free, nor is there male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus. 29 If you belong to Christ, then you are Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise.".

When read in context, it is referring to our equal status before God. Not only are men and women equally sinners under God's wrath, they have equal standing in Christ when they are adopted into the family of God. Also to point of fact it is talking about there being one in Christ and there is no difference as to OUR SALVATION.

This also applies to Jews and Gentiles, both purified from paganism and wickedness and now are no longer separated, but are one new people in Christ.

I'd argue that reading the New Testament in context doesn't cause one to conclude it is anti-Jewish, nothing of the kind is found in the words of Jesus or the apostles as already addressed in the articles I wrote responding to Uri Yosef (and another article of his was posted by Sophiee which if the Lord Wills I'll respond to that one too.)

Now one final comment for this article and for the next one, I'll look at Arikm7.messiahtruth's comment another time.

"Certainly they did, when the criticism was appropriate and deserved. That was a prophets’ function, but Yoshke’s criticisms were neither “appropriate” nor “deserved”. Moreover, Yoshke was not a prophet and there is no record of him ever presenting proof that he was (as happened in M'lachim Alĕf 13:3, for example). Anyone can claim “I am a prophet from God”, which is why every genuine prophet has to prove that he is what he claims (this is implied by D'varim18:21-22)."

Jesus proved his claims and one simple event aside from the miracles he did in God's name backs his claims to the helm, namely the resurrection. Why? Because if Jesus rose from the dead, then Jesus has God's stamp of approval and thus must be accepted.

Before you cry foul and claim Deuteronomy 13 refutes my point, I have already written on the subject in previous papers:

http://answering-judaism.blogspot.co.uk/2014/01/deuteronomy-13-question-of-vindication.html
http://answering-judaism.blogspot.co.uk/2014/03/deuteronomy-13-question-of-vindication-2.html
http://answering-judaism.blogspot.co.uk/2014/06/spiritual-experiences-what-can-they.html

See also an earlier paper on Anointed Ones and Strange Gods as well: http://answering-judaism.blogspot.co.uk/2013/10/anointed-ones-and-strange-gods.html

Jesus' criticisms thus by this criteria were perfectly appropriate and deserved, just not in the way they have been interpreted by the forum.

Answering Judaism.

More updates if the Lord Wills may be added.

Monday, 16 October 2017

Exodus 22:28: A response to Virtual Yeshiva

A website formerly known as Messiah Truth has a link discussing this text:
https://www.tapatalk.com/groups/messiahtruth/exodus-22-28-don-t-curse-a-leader-t4935.html#.UsdPT_RDulo

Uri Yosef had posted this to me on my website a while ago on one of my papers:
http://answering-judaism.blogspot.co.uk/2013/12/anti-semitism-in-nt-examining-claims-of_30.html

I took a look at the link in question on 15th of October 2017 and there was a discussion that was taking place on the site. I will be looking at some of their points and responding to them as they discuss Jesus violating Exodus 22:28.

Sound familiar?
Uri Yosef posted the following on the site:

"

3. Not Honoring a Torah Sage"Honor the face of an elder [zaken] " (Leviticus 19:32). Zaken does not simply mean an old person; for that is the subject of the first half of the verse ("You shall rise before an old person [seiva]"). This is a commandment to respect Torah scholars. Judges and religious leaders are typically called zaken in the Bible (Exodus 24:14, Leviticus 4:15, Numbers 11:25, Deuteronomy 22:16, 25:7). If Jesus did not violate this by calling them "vipers," no one ever did (Matthew 23:13-33)."

Low and behold, this is almost exactly word for word what Barry Umansky posted: http://answering-judaism.blogspot.co.uk/2014/01/interesting-objections-from-rabbinic.html

"3.Not Honoring a Torah Sage
"Honor the face of an elder [zaken] " (Leviticus 19:32). Zaken does not simply mean an old person; for that is the subject of the first half of the verse ("You shall rise before an old person [seiva]"). This is a commandment to respect Torah scholars. Judges and religious leaders are typically called zaken in the Bible (Exodus 24:14, Leviticus 4:15, Numbers 11:25, Deuteronomy 22:16, 25:7). If Jesus did not violate this by calling them "vipers," no one ever did (Matthew 23:13-33)."

My response is this.

Indeed one should respect their leaders or speak evil. However, one calling out a leader as a hypocrite when it's the truth, is not a sin and is not a violation of the Torah. Furthermore, Isaiah refers to his people as a brood of vipers because of their wickedness, which would include the scribes, judges and religious leaders who were encouraging their people in their idolatry.

Calling someone a hypocrite because of the fact they are doing evil in the sight of the Lord is not disrespect to any leader if they are responsible for bringing instructing people in the ways of Ha Shem or God. In the days of the NT, the Pharisees, though not guilty of worshiping statues, where certainly guilty of Avodah Zara or alien worship. They substituted the commands of God for the traditions of men, just as the people in Isaiah 29 did and Jesus quotes this passage to condemn the Pharisees in Matthew 15.

Of course in the forum post itself, there is the contention that the prophets were justified and encouraged the people whereas Jesus (or the New Testament) writers spewed hate against the Jews.

Is this true?

Apparently Jesus was insulting, badmouthing and reviling? For calling out religious leaders as hypocrites? There is nothing unbiblical about that nor is Jesus guilty of sin. Matthew 23 highlights major sins the Pharisees in his day. You can find the context here:
https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Matthew+23

Bottom line, calling out a religious leader on disobeying scripture (In this case, The TANAKH) is perfectly justified.

Sophiee1's posting of Uri Yosef's article on Sinless Jesus has objections which Barry Umansky quoted and which I responded to in the post above. If the Lord Wills I'll look at the article from Uri Yosef but the response to half (slightly more) will be fine for now.

Spewing of Hate from Jesus and the New Testament writers?
What is the truth? Let's look at the points:

"I'm surpised that weboh and others didn't bring up the prophets or Moses to prove that j-man didn't break this mitzvot." Hebrew wander

"Good point" Proteus

Now the objection in question from Arikm7.messiahtruth:
"HW:

They don't know their own NT, how could they (erroneously and mistakingly) use the personalities of the Tanach as a reference? 

Regardless of what fabrications they try to posit to support that their godling didn't violate the Torah (and worshipping a man as god is not a violation in and of itself??), the point is that there is more than enough evidence in black and white for Jesus' vitriol against not only the Jewish leaders of Israel, but also (as in the case of 'John") the Jewish people themselves. Such hatred is unfounded, wanton and downright libelous. The xian gospels and the figurehead itself will stoop to any level to lie and demonize the Jew, all the while trying to disguise its vitriol as being righteous indignation. In my mind there is no difference in the words of Matthew ("snakes, vipers, white washed tombs, hypocrites, liars") John's bile ("you are children of your father, the Devil"), Paul's verbal vomit ("they killed the christ and god's prophets", "they are only concerned with their stomachs") and the propaganda spewed by Luther and later in ultimate extremes, the Nazis."

Comparing the statements of the New Testament to that of Martin Luther and the Nazis is nothing more than comparing apples and oranges. The Nazis were murderers who had no biblical justification for what they did to the Jews and none of the statements about the Jewish people in the New Testament are hate speech or vitriol.

Read my articles responding to Uri Yosef on his claims of Anti Semitism in the New Testament if you want more information on whether the New Testament is Anti-Semitic (His article was posted by Sophiee:
http://answering-judaism.blogspot.co.uk/2013/12/anti-semitism-in-nt-examining-claims-of.html
http://answering-judaism.blogspot.co.uk/2013/12/anti-semitism-in-nt-examining-claims-of_27.html
http://answering-judaism.blogspot.co.uk/2013/12/anti-semitism-in-nt-examining-claims-of_8351.html
http://answering-judaism.blogspot.co.uk/2013/12/anti-semitism-in-nt-examining-claims-of_6026.html
http://answering-judaism.blogspot.co.uk/2013/12/anti-semitism-in-nt-examining-claims-of_28.html
http://answering-judaism.blogspot.co.uk/2013/12/anti-semitism-in-nt-examining-claims-of_4202.html
http://answering-judaism.blogspot.co.uk/2013/12/anti-semitism-in-nt-examining-claims-of_30.html
http://answering-judaism.blogspot.co.uk/2014/01/anti-semitism-in-nt-examining-claims-of.html
http://answering-judaism.blogspot.co.uk/2014/01/anti-semitism-in-nt-examining-claims-of_3.html

The articles specifically address the texts he mentions in his paper called "The Anti-Jewish New Testament": http://thejewishhome.org/counter/AntiJewishNT.pdf

Read also my response to Yisroel Blumenthal on whether or not Jesus labeled all Pharisees and Jews as evil: http://answering-judaism.blogspot.co.uk/2016/09/did-jesus-label-all-pharisees-and-jews.html

I recommend reading also another response I made to Yisroel Blumenthal to his article "Judge Not": http://answering-judaism.blogspot.co.uk/2014/03/critique-of-judge-not-response-to.html

"The slander of the elders of Israel and later, of the Jews, didn't start with the alleged Jesus (though it certainly gets no better approval/authority for doing so than via the words of xianity's god-man). It started with Paul and his letters (which pre-date the gospels) and later by the unknown writers of the gospels themselves. I say unknown as authorship of the four gospels (five, if you include the Gospel of Q on which "Mark" is based) comes to us from Catholic Tradition. Nevertheless, hating, demonizing and opposing the Jewish leaders and later the Jewish people as a whole is part and parcel of xianity's "gospel"."

Unknown writers? The authors were who they said they were and may have dictated to others to write their gospels down. Can anyone be sure that the TANAKH itself was written by the prophets or dictated by them to others if we hold to TANAKH AND the NT to the same standard which we should?

I recommend all to read this article by Keith Thompson on this issue:
http://www.reformedapologeticsministries.com/2012/02/who-wrote-gospels-internal-and-external.html

Regardless of whether or not they were written by the apostles, can any text be cited to prove that part and parcel of Christianity's Gospel is demonisation of the Jewish people, both leader and lay person alike? See the article responses to Uri Yosef above.

"Yet xians want to make the incredibly fanciful assertion that Jesus and company were most certainly "Torah-observant"; ignoring the litany of violations of that Torah throughout verse and passage of the Gospels. It's a virtual checklist of Torah violations culminating in vitriol and down right slander. I've said this before and I'll continue to say it a million more times, the Road to Auschwitz was paved with stones from the Damascus Road. Paul's anti-Jewish and anti-Judaism rants set the stage for the Gospel writers to have their main character Jesus be the blasphemer and the (false) accuser of the Jewish People. "

Most of the "violations" committed by Jesus or the apostles were against Rabbinic tradition that was either burdensome, not required or unbiblical and yes that includes the rubbing of the corn between the hands.*2

It also makes no sense to say Paul was anti-Jewish as some of his allies were Jewish followers of Jesus. See Romans 16:7:
"7 Greet Andronicus and Junia,[c] my kinsmen and my fellow prisoners. They are well known to the apostles,[d] and they were in Christ before me."

Some translations say Jews but the meaning is the same, his fellow race of people, his kinsmen:
http://biblehub.com/greek/sungeneis_4773.htm

"Then to say then that this accuser/liar against the Jewish People is a Torah-observant Jew or a Prophet chastizing the sins of Israel is nothing short of being both sickening and disgusting. Not even Moses himself used such vile language when upbraiding the "Wilderness generation" of Israel! Not even Elijah dared to accuse the Jews of being of the 'devil". In fact, when he asserted that ALL the Jews were worshipping Baal, G-d Himself had to correct Elijah of that assertion (7,000 Jews had NOT worshipped Ba'al) and then summarily "fired" Elijah and made Elisha His prophet. What, pray tell, would have been Jesus' punishment if (aside from actually existing) he were, for the sake of argument, a prophet?

And those who don't see the vile and bile of the NT conveniently don't want to see it. There is none so blind as one who does not want to see."

Odd to describe Elijah as "fired" since God still used him until he was taken to heaven. Never have I ever made that connection that Elijah was fired for what he said, but I digress. No Elijah didn't go as far as Jesus did in referring to (not all Jews but some) but Jesus did no wrong.

To go back to John 8:44, The Jews who were speaking to Jesus are Jews who believed in him, supposedly. However, as Jesus speaks, he reveals their heart's attitude towards him, Once again, this is referring to specific Jews in a given context, he is not saying ALL Jews are of the devil, he is condemning a particular group of Jews. They were shocked by his claims and also couldn't stand what he had said about them. They were superficially believing in Jesus, not really submitting to him. This is the one statement in all the Gospels that is commonly quoted by the Counter-Missionaries to attack the NT and accuse it of Jew Hatred.

Jesus statements in John 8:44 are not a blanket condemnation of all Jews, especially since his own apostles were Jews along with many others.

As for refusing to see vile and bile in the New Testament, It's not blindness, it's recognition that the New Testament in context were never intended to be anti-semitic documents.

Let's go to the next points:

"No one claims that Moses or any of the prophets were without sin -- or were more than human." Sophiee1.

"But when prophets railed against leaders, how does that differ from what J. supposedly did?" Proteus

To which we now respond to Sophiee

"Never in the bible does Moses or any of the prophets attack the Jews and curse them as Jesus does in the Christian bible -- condemning the Jews IN TOTAL, calling us hypocrites, devils, blind -- calling the devil our father and so on."

Jesus doesn't condemn the Jews in total, that's nonsense. He followers who were Jews. I point out that the condemnation of the Jews by him was not applicable to all of them in my response to Uri Yosef.

"Moses and the prophets never did such outrageous things.

When the prophets did castigate the Jews it was for turning away from G-d -- not for being observant!

Consider the incident of the golden calf.   When G-d tells Moses what happened Moses pleaded for G-d to not turn away from the Jews (link).     Moses gets angry, but he punishes only the evil doers -- never does he condemn everyone for the acts of a few.

Unlike Jesus.

The message of the prophets repeatedly is that those who sin should repent, become better people and return to G-d.  The message of the prophets is always:  be good people because this is what G-d wants from you.  

"The wicked should forsake his ways, and the evil person should forsake his plans, and return to HaShem, Who will have mercy on him, for He forgives abundantly." (Isaiah 55:7).
" Isaiah called his people a brood of vipers in Isaiah 57:3, Is that outrageous and why not? How is that different from the statements of Jesus?

One of the messages from the Gospels of Jesus was to repent, much like Moses and the prophets. One paper has compiled from both the TANAKH and the New Testament references to repentance, including that of Jesus and Paul: http://www.biblestudytools.com/topical-verses/repentance-bible-verses/

"Jesus' lack of forgiveness seems to be eternal:  one weeps.  One gnashes one’s teeth.  One burns in eternal torment.  ETERNAL.  
 “Anyone who says, 'You fool!' will be in danger of the fire of hell.” (Matthew 5:22) 
The message of Jesus is that if you don't believe in him you are damned eternally.


"He who is not with me is against me, and he who does not gather with me scatters. 31And so I tell you, every sin and blasphemy will be forgiven men, but the blasphemy against the Spirit will not be forgiven.” (Matthew 12:30-32)
"

Accusing Jesus of a lack of forgiveness is a very serious charge. Not to get into the technicalities of it all but Jesus forgives people on countless occasions (Luke 7:36-50 has a sinful woman anointing Jesus with oil, Matthew 9:1-8, Mark 2:1-12 and Luke 5:17-26 he forgives a paralytic and John 7:53-8:11 he forgives an adulterous woman).

Does Jesus proclaim that if you don't believe in him you are damned, Yes and if his claims are true, nothing else matters and we have to heed his warnings.*

"But as I already wrote --  it is hypocritical for a Christian to support Jesus' evil words and deeds by saying "someone else did it, too."  This is reminiscent of a petulant child who does something bad and says "but all the kids are doing it."   The bad behavior of others is not an excuse for bad behavior by Jesus.

And let us not forget that these same apologists state that Jesus was "perfect" and "without sin" and a god even.   There is no comparison -- and to lump Moses and the prophets in with Jesus cursing others is slanderous -- while using the missionary's favorite ploy of deflecting attention away from what Jesus REALLY did."

No hypocrisy. If Isaiah can get away with calling his people a brood of vipers, Jesus if his claims are accurate can get away with calling the Pharisees a brood of vipers. Jesus committed no evil with his words against the Pharisees, they were just and right.

Where is the deflection from what Jesus did when his words are misrepresented by you and you claim the missionaries deflect attention from Jesus actions? I am not attacking you on a personal level Sophiee but what deflection is present?

Lord Willing more objections maybe addressed in another paper.

Answering Judaism.

*In addition, Jesus is warning against insulting your brother in faith and that they are in danger of hellfire, not that they can't be forgiven. There is no lack of forgiveness unless repentance is now where to be found.

17th of October 2017 *2 Rubbing the corn isn't what is bad, but the prohibition is not a capital offense.

Sunday, 15 October 2017

Shoehorning the Roman Doctrines into Scripture: Revelation 1:4

This article is going back to look at Revelation 1:4, which wasn't addressed or looked at in an article in response to QuinQue Viae.

Look at the other articles before looking at this paper:
http://answering-judaism.blogspot.co.uk/2014/12/shoehorning-roman-doctrines-into.html
http://answering-judaism.blogspot.co.uk/2015/01/shoehorning-roman-doctrines-into.html

Specifically I want to look at Revelation 1 and see what it says but first let's get a recap on what QuinQue Viae said:

"But what of the Sacred Scripture? We also have an abundance of evidence from therein. Jeremiah and Onias pray to God on behalf of Israel. (2 Macc 15) Tobit chapter 12 tells of the 7 great Angels who pray to Yahweh on behalf of the Men on earth. Those same 7 Angels give grace and intercede on our behalf according to Revelation 1:4. Revelation 5 speaks of the elders delivering the prayers of the saints up to God himself. In Jeremiah 15:1 God speaks of the possibility of Moses and Samuel standing before him and interceding on Israel's behalf, but God himself even says this is not good enough, presupposing a precedent already set (as proven via Scriptures & Tradition) of saintly intercession. There is simply no escaping the evidence for Bobo and he grasps at desperate arguments to justify his unbiblical presuppositions. For I go off of the greatest Protestant scholars when I affirm the following:"

Take a look at article 2 specifically to get up to speed on my response to his points and to repost one particular, namely a video by Rabbi Tovia Singer on why Jews go to the grave of their forefathers or great saintly men. This video by him should clarify some misunderstandings on the issue:

Rabbi Tovia Singer discusses the Jewish tradition of praying at a gravesite: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eUEuj0p6eUI

Here's Revelation 1:
"Prologue
1 The revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave him to show to his servants[a] the things that must soon take place. He made it known by sending his angel to his servant John, 2 who bore witness to the word of God and to the testimony of Jesus Christ, even to all that he saw. 3 Blessed is the one who reads aloud the words of this prophecy, and blessed are those who hear, and who keep what is written in it, for the time is near.

Greeting to the Seven Churches
4 John to the seven churches that are in Asia:

Grace to you and peace from him who is and who was and who is to come, and from the seven spirits who are before his throne, 5 and from Jesus Christ the faithful witness, the firstborn of the dead, and the ruler of kings on earth.

To him who loves us and has freed us from our sins by his blood 6 and made us a kingdom, priests to his God and Father, to him be glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen. 7 Behold, he is coming with the clouds, and every eye will see him, even those who pierced him, and all tribes of the earth will wail[b] on account of him. Even so. Amen.

8 “I am the Alpha and the Omega,” says the Lord God, “who is and who was and who is to come, the Almighty.”"

I don't really have much to say and I am not sure where the intercession is present in the text itself. The angels interceding for us isn't much of a problem. It doesn't have to do with interceding for the dead though, either those who are with Christ already in Heaven or with those in Sheol who died in unbelief.

Answering Judaism.

Thursday, 12 October 2017

Who did God send where? A look at the book of Acts and other texts

Some few days ago, Shadid Lewis was pointing out certain contradictions in the scripture so let's take a look at them.

If Jesus had been sent to the Gentiles, why are they upset if all of them could preach to the Gentiles in Acts 11. Why didn't Peter just mention the Great Commission? (I think that was his objection).

The Pharisees that Peter was going to did not need to know the exact words of the Great Commission.

Peter doesn't mention The Great Commission because he is being asked a specific question.
"11 Now the apostles and the brothers[a] who were throughout Judea heard that the Gentiles also had received the word of God. 2 So when Peter went up to Jerusalem, the circumcision party[b] criticized him, saying, 3 “You went to uncircumcised men and ate with them.” 4 But Peter began and explained it to them in order: 5 “I was in the city of Joppa praying, and in a trance I saw a vision, something like a great sheet descending, being let down from heaven by its four corners, and it came down to me. 6 Looking at it closely, I observed animals and beasts of prey and reptiles and birds of the air. 7 And I heard a voice saying to me, ‘Rise, Peter; kill and eat.’ 8 But I said, ‘By no means, Lord; for nothing common or unclean has ever entered my mouth.’ 9 But the voice answered a second time from heaven, ‘What God has made clean, do not call common.’ 10 This happened three times, and all was drawn up again into heaven. 11 And behold, at that very moment three men arrived at the house in which we were, sent to me from Caesarea. 12 And the Spirit told me to go with them, making no distinction. These six brothers also accompanied me, and we entered the man's house. 13 And he told us how he had seen the angel stand in his house and say, ‘Send to Joppa and bring Simon who is called Peter; 14 he will declare to you a message by which you will be saved, you and all your household.’ 15 As I began to speak, the Holy Spirit fell on them just as on us at the beginning. 16 And I remembered the word of the Lord, how he said, ‘John baptized with water, but you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit.’ 17 If then God gave the same gift to them as he gave to us when we believed in the Lord Jesus Christ, who was I that I could stand in God's way?” 18 When they heard these things they fell silent. And they glorified God, saying, “Then to the Gentiles also God has granted repentance that leads to life.”"

The problem was not going to the Gentiles, the actual problem was that the circumcised party were upset that the Gentiles had not been circumcised and received everything that with it as necessary to becoming Christians (Information that Anthony Rogers brought to my attention when I posed the question on my personal Facebook).

To add to this, The Gentiles through faith in the Messiah now have equal access to God without having to become Jews and that they are not lesser than Jews.

Is the phrase by my mouth limiting it by Peter's mouth only and that no one else can speak it?
No. Let's read:
"Acts 15:6 The apostles and the elders were gathered together to consider this matter. 7 And after there had been much debate, Peter stood up and said to them, “Brothers, you know that in the early days God made a choice among you, that by my mouth the Gentiles should hear the word of the gospel and believe. 8 And God, who knows the heart, bore witness to them, by giving them the Holy Spirit just as he did to us, 9 and he made no distinction between us and them, having cleansed their hearts by faith. 10 Now, therefore, why are you putting God to the test by placing a yoke on the neck of the disciples that neither our fathers nor we have been able to bear? 11 But we believe that we will be saved through the grace of the Lord Jesus, just as they will.”"

The phrase "By my mouth" isn't limiting Peter to being the only one who can proclaim to the Gentiles and absolutely no one else, that is a gross abuse of the text and is refuted by the following later in Luke's letter:

"12 And all the assembly fell silent, and they listened to Barnabas and Paul as they related what signs and wonders God had done through them among the Gentiles. 13 After they finished speaking, James replied, “Brothers, listen to me. 14 Simeon has related how God first visited the Gentiles, to take from them a people for his name. 15 And with this the words of the prophets agree, just as it is written,

16 “‘After this I will return,
and I will rebuild the tent of David that has fallen;
I will rebuild its ruins,
     and I will restore it,
17 that the remnant[b] of mankind may seek the Lord,
    and all the Gentiles who are called by my name,
     says the Lord, who makes these things 18 known from of old.’
19 Therefore my judgment is that we should not trouble those of the Gentiles who turn to God, 20 but should write to them to abstain from the things polluted by idols, and from sexual immorality, and from what has been strangled, and from blood. 21 For from ancient generations Moses has had in every city those who proclaim him, for he is read every Sabbath in the synagogues.”"

Not only were signs and wonders were done by Barnabas and Paul but the Gentiles would have also listened to them and by no means does Peter raise any objections and say "By my mouth Paul the Gentiles here the message of the Gospel, not yours". The Acts 15 Council are deciding which laws Gentiles are bound to keep as more of them were being admitted into the growing church. Peter cannot be possibly saying that he alone is the one to speak to the Gentiles, All the disciples had that right in light of the Great Commission. Jesus said to his disciples ""

Paul claims he was sent to the Gentiles and Peter was to the Jews and Peter says he was to go to the Gentiles. Was there a conflict between Peter and Paul on who went to go to the Gentiles?

Depending on the circumstances, Both were sent to the Jews and the Gentiles. I was admittedly too rigid in what I said in saying that Paul went to the Gentiles and Peter went to the Jews, I was wrong about that. A careful reading shows that the apostles as directed by the Holy Spirit would either direct their attention to Jews or Gentiles based on the context.

Peter in his own letters is speaking to Jewish believers whereas Paul spoke to mixed to Gentile congregations but as was his habit, he would go to the synagogue first and then to the Gentiles afterwards, although some of the synagogues would contain Gentile hearers as well, namely ones similar to Cornelius who believed in the God of Israel but had not converted to Judaism yet. Acts 17 shows us this particular custom of Paul's evangelism and life: https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Acts+17

There was also a case in Acts 18 where Paul washed his hands of a group of Jews because of the way he was treated:
"18 After this, Paul left Athens and went to Corinth. 2 There he met a Jew named Aquila, a native of Pontus, who had recently come from Italy with his wife Priscilla, because Claudius had ordered all Jews to leave Rome. Paul went to see them, 3 and because he was a tentmaker as they were, he stayed and worked with them. 4 Every Sabbath he reasoned in the synagogue, trying to persuade Jews and Greeks.

5 When Silas and Timothy came from Macedonia, Paul devoted himself exclusively to preaching, testifying to the Jews that Jesus was the Messiah. 6 But when they opposed Paul and became abusive, he shook out his clothes in protest and said to them, “Your blood be on your own heads! I am innocent of it. From now on I will go to the Gentiles.”

7 Then Paul left the synagogue and went next door to the house of Titius Justus, a worshiper of God. 8 Crispus, the synagogue leader, and his entire household believed in the Lord; and many of the Corinthians who heard Paul believed and were baptized."

This is consistent with what Jesus said about wiping the dust of your feet when they refuse to receive the Gospel:

"Matthew 10:1 Jesus called his twelve disciples to him and gave them authority to drive out impure spirits and to heal every disease and sickness.

2 These are the names of the twelve apostles: first, Simon (who is called Peter) and his brother Andrew; James son of Zebedee, and his brother John; 3 Philip and Bartholomew; Thomas and Matthew the tax collector; James son of Alphaeus, and Thaddaeus; 4 Simon the Zealot and Judas Iscariot, who betrayed him.

5 These twelve Jesus sent out with the following instructions: “Do not go among the Gentiles or enter any town of the Samaritans. 6 Go rather to the lost sheep of Israel. 7 As you go, proclaim this message: ‘The kingdom of heaven has come near.’ 8 Heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse those who have leprosy,[a] drive out demons. Freely you have received; freely give.

9 “Do not get any gold or silver or copper to take with you in your belts— 10 no bag for the journey or extra shirt or sandals or a staff, for the worker is worth his keep. 11 Whatever town or village you enter, search there for some worthy person and stay at their house until you leave. 12 As you enter the home, give it your greeting. 13 If the home is deserving, let your peace rest on it; if it is not, let your peace return to you. 14 If anyone will not welcome you or listen to your words, leave that home or town and shake the dust off your feet. 15 Truly I tell you, it will be more bearable for Sodom and Gomorrah on the day of judgment than for that town."

While this was before the Great Commission, where Jesus would send his disciples out among the Gentiles, there is an important point here. If someone consistently refuses you or will not listen to the words of the Gospel, you leave, wipe the dust of your feet and go elsewhere to someone who will listen.

Back to the letters of the New Testament, we see who the writers are addressing at the very start of their letters.

Here are the two openings to Peter's letters:
"1 Peter, an apostle of Jesus Christ,

To those who are elect exiles of the Dispersion in Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia, and Bithynia, 2 according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, in the sanctification of the Spirit, for obedience to Jesus Christ and for sprinkling with his blood:

May grace and peace be multiplied to you."

"1 Simeon[a] Peter, a servant[b] and apostle of Jesus Christ,

To those who have obtained a faith of equal standing with ours by the righteousness of our God and Savior Jesus Christ:

2 May grace and peace be multiplied to you in the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord."

See James' first line in his letter

"1 James, a servant[a] of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ,

To the twelve tribes in the Dispersion:

Greetings."

John in his letters, 2 and 3 John addresses different individuals too.

2 John: "1 The elder to the elect lady and her children, whom I love in truth, and not only I, but also all who know the truth, 2 because of the truth that abides in us and will be with us forever:

3 Grace, mercy, and peace will be with us, from God the Father and from Jesus Christ the Father's Son, in truth and love."

3 John "1 The elder to the beloved Gaius, whom I love in truth.

2 Beloved, I pray that all may go well with you and that you may be in good health, as it goes well with your soul. 3 For I rejoiced greatly when the brothers[a] came and testified to your truth, as indeed you are walking in the truth. 4 I have no greater joy than to hear that my children are walking in the truth."

Paul in his letters would either address an individual (Titus, 1 and 2 Timothy and Philemon) or address various churches (Galatians, Ephesians, Phillipians, Colossians, 1 and 2 Thessalonians, 1 and 2 Corinthians, Romans and some debate Hebrews).

It is also worth noting in Galatians 2 that at one stage, Paul was sent to the Gentiles, whereas Peter was to go the Jews.

"2 Then after fourteen years I went up again to Jerusalem with Barnabas, taking Titus along with me. 2 I went up because of a revelation and set before them (though privately before those who seemed influential) the gospel that I proclaim among the Gentiles, in order to make sure I was not running or had not run in vain. 3 But even Titus, who was with me, was not forced to be circumcised, though he was a Greek. 4 Yet because of false brothers secretly brought in—who slipped in to spy out our freedom that we have in Christ Jesus, so that they might bring us into slavery— 5 to them we did not yield in submission even for a moment, so that the truth of the gospel might be preserved for you. 6 And from those who seemed to be influential (what they were makes no difference to me; God shows no partiality)—those, I say, who seemed influential added nothing to me. 7 On the contrary, when they saw that I had been entrusted with the gospel to the uncircumcised, just as Peter had been entrusted with the gospel to the circumcised 8 (for he who worked through Peter for his apostolic ministry to the circumcised worked also through me for mine to the Gentiles), 9 and when James and Cephas and John, who seemed to be pillars, perceived the grace that was given to me, they gave the right hand of fellowship to Barnabas and me, that we should go to the Gentiles and they to the circumcised. 10 Only, they asked us to remember the poor, the very thing I was eager to do."

The context doesn't mean they couldn't address the opposite groups as we observe that Paul often went to the Jews first then to the Gentiles. But here we have a period of time where Paul would speak to mostly Gentiles, leaving the Jews to the Apostles. Does this mean that Paul, Peter, James and John never addressed others outside of a specific group? No, they can and could address anyone if the Lord led them to do it.

Answering Judaism.

More maybe added later if the Lord Wills.

Tuesday, 10 October 2017

Comments on Loving Rebuke vs. Hateful Invective

http://yourphariseefriend.wordpress.com/2013/10/30/loving-rebuke-vs-hateful-invective-by-jim/

"Derek,

I am unsure of the purpose for your comment.  I would like to say this, however, that it is dangerous for us as non-Jews (which I assume you are, like myself) to judge Israel harshly.  It is true that throughout Tanach, the prophets reprimand Israel.  But it is also clear that this is for their betterment, not for outsiders to forge an opinion about Jewish sinfulness.  In fact, when a non-Jew is given a prophecy regarding Israel, Balaam, he is not given a message regarding Israel’s sins.  Instead he speaks like this: “He [God] observed no falsehood in Jacob, and saw no vexation in Israel.  Hashem, his God, is with him, and the shout of the King is with him” (Numbers 23:21)."

Judging the Jewish people as a whole based on their history isn't a good idea, there have been faithful remnants of Jews over the centuries. It is true that the prophets did reprimand the people and call them to repentance. Jeremiah even says comforting things to Israel even in the midst of Israel while bringing the message of God's judgement (Jim mentions comfort and praise later on):

"Jeremiah 29:10 “For thus says the Lord: When seventy years are completed for Babylon, I will visit you, and I will fulfill to you my promise and bring you back to this place. 11 For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare[b] and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope. 12 Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me, and I will hear you. 13 You will seek me and find me, when you seek me with all your heart. 14 I will be found by you, declares the Lord, and I will restore your fortunes and gather you from all the nations and all the places where I have driven you, declares the Lord, and I will bring you back to the place from which I sent you into exile."

Read here for the context: https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Jeremiah+29

"I consider it like this: at times, I must correct my children.  And someone from the outside, hearing me reprimand one of them might come to the conclusion that my children are rather ill behaved.  But it is not so.  Both of my daughters are quite wonderful.  They are really developing into quite kind-hearted people, but like all children, they have their moments.  A stranger, hearing me correct one or both of them, might assume the opposite.  But he would be wrong.  And if I am telling someone about my children, I do not speak of their mistakes; I tell them how great my children are and how much I love them."

I won't dive into the issue of original sin as that is an issue for another time but putting that aside, there isn't much to disagree with. There are cases in the TANAKH when the Gentiles ask "What happened to this place?", they would say "Israel disobeyed God and thus destruction happened" (I'm paraphrasing of course). First impressions do count and that is important.

"Now sometimes with non-Jews, they read Tanach, and they see the reprimands of God and they take it as a sign that the Jews are in some way bad.  They are mistaken.  Not only does he reprimand them; he tells them of his great love for them.  And that is ignored.  When he gives a message regarding Israel to non-Jews, he tells them how good Israel is, just like I would talk about my children."

The Jews' history with idolatry in the TANAKH hasn't done their testimony favors lets say (Don't misunderstand me, Christians are guilty of damaging their testimony as well also throughout the centuries, what happened to the Jews can happen to Christians as well). That being said, God's love for the Jews is not to be ignored as Jim rightly points out. Even in Leviticus 26:40-46 despite the Jews' disobedience and being in the land of their enemies, God will not reject them.

"I think we cannot ignore one other thing.  The prophets did give over some difficult words to Israel.  But what did He have to say to the other nations?  Many of those words are even harder.  And what is often overlooked is that God gives correction to Israel, but He also gives words of comfort and promise.

Jim"

Correct, the things said to the Gentile nations around Israel were worse. While Israel were promised restoration to their land and reconciliation to God, the other nations not so. Where are Edom, Moab, Ammon and the other semitic nations that surrounded Israel, all of them are gone because of what they did to Israel and have either assimilated into other cultures or have been wiped out, the latter being the most likely. God does use other nations to discipline his people but will punish the other nations if they become too harsh or cruel.

I'll leave it at that.

Answering Judaism.

Sunday, 8 October 2017

Is the New Testament hate speech? A look at at Two letters from Jim to David

A while ago on one article I wrote on Anti-Semiticism (which you can find here: http://answering-judaism.blogspot.co.uk/2013/12/anti-semitism-in-nt-examining-claims-of_30.html), Uri Yosef (http://thejewishhome.org/counter-index.html) linked to two letters written by Jim of 1000 Verses:
https://judaismresources.net/2013/10/31/two-letters-from-jim-to-david/

Let's take a look at the letter.

"David, I appreciate that you do not see the NT as hate speech. To many modern Christians, it would not occur to them to hate the Jewish people for the things written therein."

It wouldn't occur to a modern day Christian that they should hate the Jewish people in regarding what the New Testament says about them. Anti-Semitism when one looks into the New Testament in it's proper context would never consider it to be a document of hate speech. Has the New Testament been used as hate, Yes but out of context did many evil men use it to justify hating the Jews.

"Let me explain why I call it hate speech. Even if the words addressed to the Pharisees and other groups were accurate–I do not say that they are–they weren’t delivered to those people. The books of the NT are largely directed to non-Jews. And so the image that is painted of the Pharisee to the non-Jew is one horribly skewed. They have no context. They are left with this image of a twisted people who killed either:

1. God (if you are a Trinitarian), or

2. Their rightful king (if you are a Trinitarian or not)

In fact, the NT tells us that the chief priests and Pharisees had put guards at Jesus tomb
because they feared that his disciples would steal the body and claim he was resurrected. When he was resurrected, the guards ran and told the chief priests what had happened, and they paid off the guards to say that the disciples stole the body (Mt. 27:62-66 and 28:11-15.) From here we see that these men must be totally evil. (If you think back to my answer to you in TYVM, you might realize that this story is absurd. The disciples didn’t even begin announcing the resurrection for another seven weeks.) Here, the chief priests, and presumably the Pharisees, know the truth, but they try to cover it up. See, the story itself is hate speech, because it tells us that the Jew is capable of anything, capable of lying about the resurrection and dooming their own people for self-aggrandizement."

The New Testament documents depending on which one you read was either written to Jews, Gentiles or both (Mark to new believers, Matthew to Jews and Christians on how to live the Christian life, Luke to Gentiles and John to believers). The letters of Paul were either written to mixed congregations of Jews and Gentiles or Gentiles, Hebrews (Some say the letter was written by Paul but we don't know) was written to Jewish believers. Timothy, Titus, Philemon and 1-3 John were written to individuals.

As for the stories in Matthew 27:62-66 and Matthew 28:11-15, How in the world would anyone reading conclude that the Jew is in your own words Jim "capable of anything, capable of lying about the resurrection and dooming their own people for self-aggrandizement."? The stories speak only of the enemies of Jesus, not his friends, which would have had Jews within the Christian ranks, even some Pharisees turned to faith in Jesus in repentance. I hardly think there is a justification for suggesting the story the Pharisees who denied Jesus rose from the dead and ran with a narrative that the disciples stole his body is hate speech.

"I made an unfair exchange in that last sentence. At first I’d been talking about Pharisees and priests. In the last sentence, I made it about the Jews. And it is my suspicion that you will call foul. And you are almost right to do so. But then, read through John. Who does John accuse of wanting to kill Jesus: the Jews. It’s not the Pharisees, it’s not the priests, but the Jews. The constant refrain in John is: “the Jews”. They are the ones antagonistic to Jesus. See, the NT doesn’t criticize the Jewish leadership. It is full of invective, both against them and the Jews at large.

And its not criticism. Not really. Jesus holds them accountable for the blood of Abel. That’s not criticism. That’s antagonism. Imagine if one of my daughters hit the other and took a book from her. And then I “corrected” her by yelling at her that not only is she accountable for that but for hitting the neighbor children, holding her responsible for sibling misbehaviors from other families. This would not be correction. But then, if I published a pamphlet to hand out to other children in the neighborhood, talking about how she assaulted other children, whom she’d never harmed, this would become a crime on my part of enormous proportions.

That’s the NT. It doesn’t merely offer criticism. It tells lies about the Jewish people. It spreads those lies to other peoples. And then those people, inspired by the NT have found reason to evict, torture, and kill the Jewish people."

John doesn't have to use a clarifier. He is referring to the Jews yes but you can tell by the context which Jews he is talking about.

See my articles on the Gospel of John responding to Uri Yosef:
http://answering-judaism.blogspot.co.uk/2013/12/anti-semitism-in-nt-examining-claims-of_8351.html
http://answering-judaism.blogspot.co.uk/2013/12/anti-semitism-in-nt-examining-claims-of_6026.html

Not every single Jew when John uses the phrase "The Jews" is blasted or hit with "invective".

Because the blood of Abel was brought up, I'll repeating the point I made in the second article which looks at Matthew and Luke:

"Luke 11:39 Then the Lord said to him, “Now then, you Pharisees clean the outside of the cup and dish, but inside you are full of greed and wickedness. 40 You foolish people! Did not the one who made the outside make the inside also? 41 But now as for what is inside you—be generous to the poor, and everything will be clean for you.

42 “Woe to you Pharisees, because you give God a tenth of your mint, rue and all other kinds of garden herbs, but you neglect justice and the love of God. You should have practiced the latter without leaving the former undone.

43 “Woe to you Pharisees, because you love the most important seats in the synagogues and respectful greetings in the marketplaces.

44 “Woe to you, because you are like unmarked graves, which people walk over without knowing it.”

45 One of the experts in the law answered him, “Teacher, when you say these things, you insult us also.”

46 Jesus replied, “And you experts in the law, woe to you, because you load people down with burdens they can hardly carry, and you yourselves will not lift one finger to help them.

47 “Woe to you, because you build tombs for the prophets, and it was your ancestors who killed them. 48 So you testify that you approve of what your ancestors did; they killed the prophets, and you build their tombs. 49 Because of this, God in his wisdom said, ‘I will send them prophets and apostles, some of whom they will kill and others they will persecute.’ 50 Therefore this generation will be held responsible for the blood of all the prophets that has been shed since the beginning of the world, 51 from the blood of Abel to the blood of Zechariah, who was killed between the altar and the sanctuary. Yes, I tell you, this generation will be held responsible for it all.

52 “Woe to you experts in the law, because you have taken away the key to knowledge. You yourselves have not entered, and you have hindered those who were entering.”

53 When Jesus went outside, the Pharisees and the teachers of the law began to oppose him fiercely and to besiege him with questions, 54 waiting to catch him in something he might say.

Much like in the Gospel of Matthew, Jesus is condemning the Pharisees to hell for the spiritual deadness of Israel they have caused, their hypocrisy, their self rightousness and other things detestable to God. But even beyond that, teachers have a responsibility to handle God's word accurately and to not misrepresent it. They are also held to account for what they say the scriptures teach, which is why James in his epistle exhorts his readers to "let FEW of you be teachers".

People like me who are doing this apologetic work are also held more accountable to God much like teachers are, because of the exposition of the scriptures that takes place and those who manhandle the word of God should expect the judgement of God upon them. 

The Pharisees and the Torah Scholars were not handling the bible correctly and thus they were in very serious trouble and standing with God, hence why Jesus spoke out against them in Luke 11.http://answering-judaism.blogspot.co.uk/2013/12/anti-semitism-in-nt-examining-claims-of_6026.html

"We can’t be surprised at this reaction. When Jesus is crucified, the Jews are portrayed as wanting a robber to be freed rather than an innocent man, the innocent man. Even Pilate can see that Jesus is innocent. He doesn’t want to kill Jesus. But the Jews, they are all for it. That story is the very definition of hate speech. It doesn’t at all offer criticism. It paints a picture of the Jew that is so disfigured.

I understand it would never occur to you to look at this at hate speech. The NT is peppered with the word “love”. How could it be hateful?

It is. 

With respect,

Jim"

Again not every Jew was responsible for the death of Jesus. The New Testament is not guilty of hate speech. The Westboro Baptist Church is guilty of hate speech. The Jews (again not all) wanted a robber free. Do an honest read of Matthew 27 and tell me, where is the hate speech?
https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Matthew%2027&version=NIV

"David,

I have a friend with whom I have often spoken about why I left the Church, and why I see the NT as untenable. In almost every conversation, he brings up how Jews are merely legalists who don’t really love God. (In his theology, doing the commands of God is not an expression of love, you see.) He sees their religion as wholly hypocritical, all action but no heart. Is this from his vast interaction with the Jewish people? No. I don’t think he knows one Jew personally. I know he doesn’t know any Torah observant Jews personally."

Doing the commands is not an expression of love? The New Testament has numerous points made that part of the Christian life involves submitting to God's commands. The differences being Gentiles are not obligated to follow the Torah although a Jew has the freedom to observe the Torah if he feels it honours the Messiah.

http://answering-judaism.blogspot.co.uk/2013/11/observance-of-torah-demanded-of-gentiles.html

The main point of the Bible is that you are saved not by works but by faith. Justification is by faith alone but faith is never alone, it leads to obeying God because of your love for him and gratitude to him.

"Where does he come by this knowledge then? The New Testament. Now, would he advocate killing Jews or burning their Torahs? No. Would he look for them to be pushed out of America? No. But it’s hard to say he doesn’t loathe them. For him, there is almost no crime worse than being legalistic. And it comes out when you talk to him. There is a disgust with the people who, in his opinion, do not love God and obsess over niggling details. That’s the power of the NT. He has an opinion about people he doesn’t know. And he judges their sincerity, having never observed their behavior."

One can't judge another's heart so I don't deny that Jews who follow the Torah do so because of what God told them on Mount Sinai and they have a tremendous passion for God. But there is no atonement that can deal with their sin and failure to keep the Torah in one area breaks the whole lot. It's like breaking the law of the land by speeding past one camera, insisting you slowed down near others but it's inconsequential because you still have broken the law. But does the New Testament really contribute to that line of thinking on the part of your friend, or is it a misunderstanding of the New Testament on his part?

"This leads to a further error, as well. He is unlikely to listen to the substance of an argument. Instead, he attributes motive to the arguer. He is able to write off their opinion without considering their merits. “You only think that because of motivation x or emotion y.” But he doesn’t address the actual points of the argument. He doesn’t even have to listen to the other person as if they too are a person with an intellect. He can write them off ahead of time. This is a deep error that obscures the truth."

Again the New Testament never encourages writing off an argument. It warns against hollow and deceptive philosophy (Colossians 2:9) and false teaching (Matthew 7:15, 24:24, 2 Peter 2:1-3, 1 John 4:1. These references were retrieved quickly from Patheos): http://www.patheos.com/blogs/christiancrier/2015/07/16/7-bible-verses-about-false-prophets/) but never does it encourage not listening to the substance of an argument, since we as Christians are called to give a defense for the hope that we have (1 Peter 3:15)

"He constantly judges the “heart condition” (his words) of the Jew. He doesn’t have to take their ideas seriously. He already knows they’re wrong, because he knows what they are like deep down inside. This makes me very sad for him, honestly. Not so much angry as sad. Because he never really confronts an opposing opinion. He avoids them by writing off other people. And that does us no good. By refusing to take others seriously, we cannot test our own ideas. We cannot rid ourselves of what is false, nor refine partially true.

Jim"

That's a problem that he needs to deal with. Having challenges to us gets us to think and make a decision.

To give an example of television that's thought provoking, Star Trek (The Prime timeline) itself never forces it's beliefs down your throat but rather gets the audience to think what is the right solution to the problem presented in the episode (Unless it's like Star Trek Insurrection or the like where it tries to hit you on the head with it's message.) Opposing opinions Christians need to challenge them and get them to consider a point and see what scripture says lest we become anemic. Challenge is what produces good fruit whereas no challenge gives rise to complacency (Unless you are in Heaven where opposition is never a consideration as evil has been punished and banished.)

Whatever the case, I don't have much to say on this part of the letter.

That's really all I have to say on these two letters.

Answering Judaism.