The Ultimate Truth

The Ultimate Truth

The prophets of the Jewish Scriptures taught us to look forward to the Messianic age. These prophets described the Messianic age as a time in which the ultimate truth is revealed to all. What is that ultimate truth? What was the clarity that the prophets yearned to see instilled in the hearts and minds of all mankind?

We will shortly search the Jewish Scriptures, the books of these prophets, to find the answer to our question. But before we do that we will delineate the opposing views of Judaism and Christianity concerning this matter.

The Christian missionary is obsessed with the fact that the majority of mankind does not believe the Christian teachings about Jesus. The Christian yearns for the day when all of mankind will believe in Jesus. The Christian also looks forward to the day when all of mankind will believe that the worshipers of Jesus were correct in their faith.

The Jew is disturbed by the knowledge that the majority of mankind does not recognize their Creator. The Jew yearns for the day when all of mankind will fully acknowledge and accept the sovereignty of the One Creator of all existence. The Jew also looks forward to the day when all of mankind will recognize that Israel is truly God’s chosen people and that Israel’s trust in God was well-placed.

Let us now see what it was that the prophets of the Jewish Scriptures yearned for.

Moses described the revelation of the ultimate truth at the end of history; “See now that I, I am He there is no god with me, I put to death and I bring to life, I smite and I heal, and there is no rescuer from My hand” (Deuteronomy 32:39). Isaiah proclaimed: “…and the Lord alone will be exalted on that day” (Isaiah 2:11,17). Isaiah prophesied that on that day Israel will express her joy: “… behold, this is our God, we had hoped to Him that He would save us, this is the Lord to whom we have hoped, we shall exult and rejoice in His salvation” (Isaiah 25:9). Ezekiel speaks of the knowledge that will permeate the minds of all men: “And the nations shall know that it is I, the Lord who sanctifies Israel when my sanctuary shall be amongst them forever” (Ezekiel 37:28).

The central truth of the Jewish Scriptures is the basic fact that everything belongs to God, and only belongs to God. Every word spoken by the prophets of the Jewish Scripture is an attempt to drive this truth deeper into the human psyche. The heart and soul of the Jewish Scriptures is the yearning that every created being fully acknowledge the absolute truth of God’s total sovereignty. The Messianic age that the prophets hoped for is a time when the full scope of God’s mastery is revealed to all.

The truth of God’s total mastery of all is also the heart of Israel’s calling as a nation before God. It was to Israel, and to Israel alone that God revealed that: “… the Lord He is the God, there is none else” (Deuteronomy 4:35). Israel is called upon to stand as God’s witness throughout history and to testify that: “… I (the Lord) am He, before Me nothing was created by a god, nor will there be after Me” (Isaiah 43:10).

The Christian teachings about the Messiah and the Messianic age, are seen by Jews as part of the darkness that the prophets yearned to see dispelled with the advent of the real Messiah. The Christian teaching that exalts one inhabitant of this earth and places him as a focus of religious devotion, is a contradiction to the central teaching of the Jewish prophets. According to the Jewish prophets, no inhabitant of earth is worthy of religious worship. The ultimate truth of Jewish Scripture is that every inhabitant of heaven and earth is completely subject to the One Creator of all. This is the heart of Judaism, and this is the ultimate truth that we will forever proclaim.

God promised that our loyalty to this truth will ultimately be vindicated (Isaiah 26:2).

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Yisroel C. Blumenthal

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133 Responses to The Ultimate Truth

  1. Pingback: Study Notes and References | 1000 Verses – a project of Judaism Resources

  2. Dina says:

    May it happen speedily in our days!

  3. CP says:

    “The ultimate truth of Jewish Scripture is that every inhabitant of heaven and earth is completely subject to the One Creator of all.”

    Comment;
    “You believe that God is one. You do well; the demons also believe, and shudder.”
    James 2:19

    Muslims (2nd largest world religion) and Sikhis (5th largest world religion) believe every inhabitant of heaven and earth is completely subject to the One Creator of all.

    Christianity’s ultimate truth is not God’s oneness, but God’s nature.

    Rather than ‘oneness issues’, I think the ultimate truth for most people is if God loves them.

    What good does it do for anyone to believe God is one if they believe God is unloving, unforgiving, unjust or untrustworthy?

    • CP What was Moses’ ultimate truth? Isaiah’s? David’s?

      The Moselm’s and Sikh’s understanding of God’s onenenss is as shallow as their belief in God’s love for His creations and His justice and trustworthiness – if you take the truth of His oneness to its full conclusion – you see His all-encompassing love

      1000 Verses – a project of Judaism Resources wrote: >

      • CP says:

        Moses, Isaiah and David all lived in an polytheistic environments. Therefore to proclaim God is one was a great starting place for the majority of the world. However today most are past that starting point but feeling estranged from God have never experienced the love of God.

        Tell a person of Moses’ Isaiah’s or David’s time; “God is one” and you’ll have a good argument on your hands. Tell a person today and they’ll say; “so what? I’m not sure He even cares about me”.

      • CP says:

        R’B,
        Reading between the lines, I assume you are assigning more meaning to oneness than “1”?

        • CP God’s oneness is an idea that includes alot – Isaiah, David and Moses spoke into the future when they said that the ultimate goal for all mankind is to fully absorb that truth

          1000 Verses – a project of Judaism Resources wrote: >

    • cflat7 says:

      CP,

      “What good does it do for anyone to believe God is one if they believe God is unloving, unforgiving, unjust or untrustworthy?”

      Shouldn’t we “believe” (rather, accept) whatever is the truth, rather than holding on to something we’d prefer is good for us? Even if we discovered God, the Creator, is unloving, etc, shouldn’t we consider what he prefers, what we requires of his creatures?

      • LbrryB says:

        Cflat
        For the first time I don’t understand what your saying.

        • Dina says:

          Larry, if I may be so presumptuous on Cflat7’s behalf: What you want to believe is irrelevant. Only truth is relevant. Even if God were unjust and unloving we would still be required to obey him. He’s not saying that God is unjust and unloving.

          For me, I would rather be miserable and go to hell performing God’s will than be happy and go to heaven transgressing His will. It so happens that God is good and just and merciful and loving, and He gave us a Torah which is uplifting, ennobling, exhilarating. But that is not the reason we worship Him. It’s not a question of what personal gratification we get out of it but what God Whom we love wants from us.

    • LbrryB says:

      CP
      “Christianity’s ultimate truth is not God’s oneness, but God’s nature.”
      CP, what do you mean by this, Gods nature? If you don’t mind.

      • CP says:

        LbrryB,
        To explain; Abraham, Moses and the nation of Israel were born into a predominately polytheistic world. Most people had never heard of the idea of only one God and if they had; thought it foolishness to limit themselves to worshiping only one God. Most Gods were not considered sovereign except over there own territory therefore they worshipped their Gods and the Gods of the territory they lived in.

        There has been a huge paradigm shift in the last 2000 years. There has been a group of peculiar people who have spread the idea of monotheism to the world to the extent that now the world is predominantly monotheistic. Therefore the question on most people’s mind isn’t if God is one? But rather what is God like? Is He loving, understanding and compassionate or cold and distant? Is He forgiving or vengeful? Does God even care about me as an individual? These are the things people wonder about.

        The “ultimate truth” that God is one is no less true today, however it is not a truth which will benefit people estranged from God, they need to know His nature, that he loves them, forgives them, wants to care individually for them and desires to be known by them.

        This is where Christianity has stepped up and excelled.

        • LarryB says:

          CP
          a quick search on Google and youll quickly find that the nature of god taught by christians is all about Jesus, not god. except they teach jesus is god.

          • CP says:

            LarryB,
            Google wouldn’t be my first choice for determining truth about God. Original Christianity taught Yeshua Revealed the nature of God to mankind.

          • Dina says:

            Jesus didn’t reveal anything to mankind, he preached to the Jewish people. His followers spread his teachings about his great, exalted status. Then the religion was forcibly imposed on the entire Roman empire by Constantine. Those who opposed or who preached a heretical doctrine were brutally repressed, including the Jews, the only ones who resisted the message of Jesus and survived.

          • Dina says:

            It is worth considering that if not for Paul whom you disavow, you would have never heard of Jesus. Christianity would have faded as the Jewish movement it started out as and died.

          • LarryB says:

            CP
            True, Google only shows what’s being taught out there. Jesus is the focus. I was raised Catholic, Jesus was the focus, and still is with my family. Let’s not forget Mary, the co-advocate. Just like you the bible can be used to justify almost anything. Jesus was the messiah, Jesus is God. Mary is the co-advocate. In Jesus name.

        • Dina says:

          Christianity teaches that God the Father is cold and remote but Jesus is loving and forgiving. The God of the “Old Testament” is wrathful and vengeful but Jesus is loving and forgiving. Christianity perverts monotheism and teaches idolatry.

          • CP says:

            Okay Dina,
            I’m listening. It’s time to back your rhetoric with fact. Please give us anything out of the New Testament Scriptures which support your assertions.
            Anything?

          • Dina says:

            I’m just repeating what Christians have said to me.

          • Dina says:

            Eleazar, if you’re out there, do you want to weigh in? You know Christian scripture inside and out.

          • CP says:

            Dina,
            I’ll have to agree with you on that one; ‘you’re just repeating….stuff’

          • Dina says:

            Tell me the truth, you never heard a Christian say something like that?

            What is so baffling is Christians think Jesus is so loving and forgiving. I got as far as the first two gospels and part way through Luke. And I saw an angry, vengeful, hateful Jesus who preached a narrow gate that admitted only the few.

            In contrast, Judaism preaches that all you have to do is call out sincerely to God and He will be close to you (Psalm 145:18). I’m hugely rushed so I shouldn’t be answering comments today, as I don’t have time to finish thoughts properly. Also I have a load of comments of yours that I would like to respond to next week, as I have time, God willing. Yesterday I spend the day in prayer, along with family and friends and community, for my 1-year-old nephew. Thank God he is out of danger now, but I don’t have the right frame of mind for this right now.

            To be continued.

          • TRM says:

            Ok, let’s see..

            The wrath of God is being revealed from heaven against all the godlessness and wickedness of people, who suppress the truth by their wickedness… Romans 1.

            That would be fine if the wicked would be, let see, the very bad people. But no…

            All who sin apart from the law will also perish apart from the law, and all who sin under the law will be judged by the law.

            But if our unrighteousness (by not keeping the law perfectly) brings out God’s righteousness more clearly, what shall we say? That God is unjust in bringing his wrath on us?

            What shall we conclude then? Do we have any advantage? Not at all! For we have already made the charge that Jews and Gentiles alike are all under the power of sin. As it is written:“There is no one righteous, not even one… The wage of sin is death

            Maybe it’s just a bunch of verses, but it’s clear as per what the new testament teaches that after ONE sin, you deserve to burn forever and ever in the lake of fire (But the unbelieving… shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.)

            So, this righteousness is given through faith in Jesus Christ to all who believe. There is no difference between Jew and Gentile, for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God…

            So, even if the new testament does not say “G-d is bad and Jesus is good”, it say that G-d will punish all who sins; and that means everybody! That does not exclude the children and many even believe baby’s will go in hell. Regardless, this may be objected because who would like to believe in a god who send a baby to hell? Note that the scripture does not say “children don’t go to hell” and “all” in “all have sin and fell short” also include children.

            Therefore, just as sin came into the world through one man, and death through sin, and so death spread to all men because all sinned

            Baby die, this is an undeniable fact. Following the previous verse without any desire to justify the new testament, children die because they sinned, and all those who sin must finish in hell. Most argue that it goes against the character of their god (the new testament one) but I do believe it is only through our conscience that we say it would be wrong for G-d to do that. The New testament teaches that baby die because they sinned and all who sin most burn in hell. Nobody wants to worship a god who would throw baby in the lake of fire, so we make excuse and rationalize what the new testament say.

            But again we can conclude whatever we want… the new testament say “God is love” and it must be, as I heard in some preaching’s, that if God is love, he must sent the sinners in Hell, and He must be just to send babies too! Maybe, I just say maybe, it would be better for me to finish in hell, rather than worshiping such a loving god as portray by the new testament. For god (or Jesus I donno) so loved the world that he will send most your love ones in hell to refuse to bow to Jesus, or just because you never read your bible and did not know about him…

          • CP says:

            TRM,
            Just about every time I read of innocent babies burning in hell someone is trying to prove something through emotion rather than fact. Let me assure you, although Scripture doesn’t address this specifically, the nature of God revealed in Scripture prohibits it.

          • TRM,
            You are quoting “The New Testament” over and over, as it it’s “god” or “the word of God.”… And this is the problem. Almost all your quotes are really from PAUL the false apostle. You are reacting to the voice of Paull, but I can’t blame you for that, because most Christian pastors and churches really do echo the voice of Paul, not Jesus. They put Paul and Paul’s theology in the center, and marginalize Jesus. They have followed the Pauls as their fathers taught them….. The voice of the true Jesus of the true Apostles is virtually absent from many churches, recorded by Matthew John and Peter (through Mark.)

          • CP says:

            Matthew,
            Have you noticed how this Pauline Phenomenon is growing? I’ve read some authors trying to save Paul by explaining how he is misunderstood. To me it doesn’t matter, the point is his writings have been and are currently being used to lead people into lawlessness and error.

          • CP Why don’t you apply the same standard to Jesus? (the one you apply to Paul)

            1000 Verses – a project of Judaism Resources wrote: >

          • CP
            Yes- there are so many examples. Here is one.
            https://readingacts.com/
            Some Thoughts on the Book of Acts and Pauline Theology

            It’s revived Marcionism – all about Paul and “Paul’s Law-free Gospel” to quote the words of the above mentioned blog- backed up with Luke’s narrative. Paul’s LawLESS “gospel” that he bragged he got by direct “revelation”, not from the Apostles Jesus appointed.

            The formula for Paul worship is easy – start with chanting Paul’s mantra “all Scripture is God-breathed.” No one else anywhere in the Bible ever said such a thing. Paul said it once, and he obviously wasn’t referring to his own letter, which he was in process of writing, or the “New Testament” which was not compiled yet…… But let’s not cloud the issue with facts.

            Then pick any quote from Paul, and say “But what Paul REALLY MEANT was…..” and just fill in the blank with whatever you want.

          • Scholars Observe Marcionism Triumphed In Terms of OT Attention

            Dr David L Baker in his book Two Testaments, One Bible (Inter-Varsity Press 1976/1991) at 51-52 says: “There is in the church a habit of simply ignoring the Old Testament.. Bible study groups spend little time on Old Testament passages. It is clear therefore that the modern church, in spite of its official rejection of Marcionism and Neo-Marcionism, has often allowed implicit Marcionism in practice.”
            SOURCE:
            http://www.jesuswordsonly.com/recommendedreading/56-marcionism.html

          • TRM says:

            “nature of God revealed in Scripture prohibits it.”

            No, your conscience prohibits you to think the god of the new testament would be so harsh as to send babies to hell, when even Jesus said ““I said therefore unto you, that ye shall die in your sins: for if ye believe not that I am he, ye shall die in your sins.” And “Jesus said unto her, “he who does not believe the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God abides on him.”

            “And this is the problem. Almost all your quotes are really from PAUL the false apostle.”

            Well, Jesus’ sayings were few, and not as elaborate as Paul. Most, if not 99% believe that Paul’s words were inspired by the spirit of Jesus. I really don’t see why you should reject 80% of the non testament just because you don’t like it. The whole thing is fraudulent, I can barely read John without being angry about the claims of that book!

          • TRM you wrote QUOTE:
            “Most, if not 99% believe that Paul’s words were inspired by the spirit of Jesus. I really don’t see why you should reject 80% of the non testament just because you don’t like it.”

            .1) This false belief has it’s “Scriptural basis” entirely on a misinterpretation, out of context, of one statement by Paul alone in the middle of one personal letter – “all Scripture is God-breathed.” That’s the false “Evangelical mantra” from Paul the false apostle. No one else in the pages of the Bible ever said such a thing.

            400 years ago, many if not 99% of people believed that the earth was the center of the universe, and the sun and stars revolved around the earth – and Galileo spent the last 10 years of his life under house arrest for “Suspicion of Heresy” for saying otherwise…..

            .2) Where are you getting the figure 80% ? Probably because that’s about how much emphasis most “Christian Churches” put on Paul, compared to 20% for Jesus and everyone else….
            And it would fit fairly well with what was in the ORIGINAL “New Testament” which was a creation of the Second Century heretic Marcion. It contained nothing at all except 10 of Paul’s letters, and a shortened Gospel of Luke.

            .3) By chapter count, Paul wrote one third, 33.4%, of our current “New Testament.” Not half, not most, not 80%

        • “Therefore the question on most people’s mind isn’t if God is one? But rather what is God like? Is He loving, understanding and compassionate or cold and distant? Is He forgiving or vengeful? Does God even care about me as an individual? These are the things people wonder about.”

          they wondered about this in the past too

          quote:

          In response, an anonymous poet wrote a hymn celebrating the actions and character of Demetrius, associating him with the great goddess of Greece, Demeter. Here is an extract of his hymn:

          The greatest among the gods have drawn close to our city…

          Both Demeter and Demetrius…

          Hail to you, O Son of the mighty god Poseidon and of Aphrodite.

          The other gods dwell so far away,

          or else they have no ears,

          or they do not exist, or do not care at all about us

          We see you in our midst,

          not a wooden or stone presence, but bodily

          And so we pray to you… bring about peace

          for you are the Lord (κύριος)

          Notice what is said of Demetrius. He is one of the “greatest gods,” the son of God” (specifically of the gods Poseidon and Aphrodite), one who is “near” his own people – not remote, off on Mount Olympus, the one who “brings peace,” who can be called “Lord.”

          These ascriptions to Demetrius should sound familiar to anyone who knows about early Christianity, where Jesus too was known as the incarnation of a divine being, the Son of God, the bringer of peace, the Lord, and God in the flesh. My ultimate point: Jesus was not the first to be called such things, or thought to be a kind of incarnation of the divine. He had predecessors.

          end quote

          the problem with your questions is that it could lead one to idolatry just like it did the people of the past. human needs to imagine things and then makes the imagination into god.

          • CP says:

            Mr.Heathcliff;
            You quote; “These ascriptions to Demetrius should sound familiar to anyone who knows about early Christianity”

            Comment;
            Not “Earliest Christianity”. These ascriptions are Not applicable to Yeshua who was perceived by his companions as Messiah.

          • Concerned Reader says:

            Heathcliff, the New Testament itself has Paul and Barnabas being called by gentiles “gods who have come down in human form,” and Paul reacted very negatively to that by rending his clothes.

            That’s why the Christian concept of the anti Christ was created. Christians had no problems applying the title son of G-d or G-d incarnate to Jesus, who was their hero, but they saw it as absolute idolatry if that concept was applied to anyone or anything other than Jesus, and the Church forcefully destroyed any competing cults and made them illegal.

            In other words, the New Testament itself has an admission within its pages and tradition that under any other circumstances, the concept of G-d incarnate in human form would be absolutely idolatry and abhorrent to the biblical view of G-d.

            Its actually sad and ironic that they never noticed that Jews would obviously point out their double standards one day.

            That was actually my point in the above post I wrote about John the Baptist. If a person (in good faith,) could consider Jesus as a possible messiah candidate, they could (in Jesus’ day and in the early centuries) consider John as a possible candidate on prophetic grounds that are just as solid, and just as likely as Jesus’ alleged fulfillment, but Christianity would label such a belief as the work of anti-Christ.

            I don’t have to argue with Christians using alien terms that they won’t understand. I don’t have to claim that Christian theological notions are somehow alien to Judaism of Jesus’ day, all I have to do is notice that every alleged fulfilled prophecy of Jesus can be applied to myriad other people, and not just him. That means, its not solid grounds for proof. The New Testament view of an atoning death of a messiah figure who rises to life was replicated in Judaism later, and Judaism still rejects it, because there is no pudding, just talk.

            The Christian messiah, the Chabad messiah, the Mandean Messiah, and the Breslov messiah, all have a similar theology built around them, and they are all just as much failed messiahs, because the era of peace and knowledge of G-d did not dawn with their movement.

            The fact that CP admits that miracles are what drives his faith proves my point. Everyone can claim to have experienced miracles. Everyone can claim to have predicted the future in some vague way.

            How come Jesus’ death atones and John’s does not? What about James’ death? James the brother of Jesus actually has the benefit of being a blood relation of David from two human parents! He actually (if the family of Jesus was Davidic) actually has more of a halachic basis for being a son of David than his brother Jesus! Why isn’t he messiah?

  4. Dina says:

    Also, the overwhelming number of Christians today and throughout history worship Jesus as a God, which perverts the Torah’s message of monotheism.

    • Dina says:

      I mean majority. I researched the percentages, and it was something like 2% are Unitarian types.

    • CP says:

      And a large percentage of Jews are Atheists so what? If we are to judge Judaism by the same standards you judge Christianity, we can condemn Orthodox Judaism on the basis of larger percentage of Reform and Conservative beliefs.

      • Dina says:

        You said Christianity excelled at spreading God’s true nature. I’m just pointing out that it excelled at perverting the understanding of monotheism.

        • Dina says:

          In other words–and man, oh man, I don’t have time for this–the numbers show that Christianity failed to do a good job at spreading a correct understanding of how to worship God. While Judaism has claimed that only a small remnant of Jews would remain righteous and loyal.

        • CP says:

          Dina,
          What I said was Christianity stepped up and provided people with what they needed. It wasn’t the message of the oneness of God that won people over. It was the message that God loved them.

          • Dina says:

            No, it was the message that Jesus loved them.

          • CP says:

            Dina,
            The Truth cannot be held to account for those who change it. Yet this is what you do, hold the Truth of Yeshua accountable for those who changed it.
            I can do the same with Judaism, but consider it intellectually dishonest and therefore a waste of my time.

  5. Concerned Reader says:

    If we grant major Christian exegetical premises, why isn’t John the Baptist the true messiah?

    According to Christians themselves, the messiah is supposed to be a priestly king: John has matralineal descent from David through saint Elizabeth Mary’s cousin, and through his paternal lineage is a priest through his father Zechariah.

    According to the Christians the messiah will teach the knowledge of G-d and the kingdom: Jesus himself spring boarded his movement off of John’s preexisting ministry.

    According to the Christians the messiah had to die to atone for the sins of humanity before the second temple was destroyed.

    John himself was beheaded merely for preaching the kingdom of G-d and the importance of Torah observance.

    John the baptist is also heralded as a messianic figure among the Mandeans (an Iraqi ethno religious group.)

    My question is for Christians. If Jesus can be the messiah, why can’t John be? John died at the alleged appointed time,(and may still be alive,) he too taught gentiles a notion of G-d, and he has an actual genetic connection to both David and the priesthood through biological parents (as Torah requires.) Why are his bonafides less than Yeshua’s?

    • CP says:

      Concerned Reader,
      Long time no read from, hope you had a happy thanksgiving, assuming your in the US.

      Why Yeshua over John? Five obvious things come to mind; 1) John denied being Messiah but pointed to Yeshua as greater than himself. 2) Resurrection account of Yeshua. 3) Healings, Exorcisms Miracles. 4) Gift of the Holy Spirit at Pentecost. 5) Predicted future events.

      • everyone even john the baptist is greater than john the baptist in “kingdom of heaven” but jesus on earth clearly admits he is lesser than john the baptist

        11Truly I tell you, among those born of women there has risen no one greater than John the Baptist. Yet even the least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he

      • Concerned Reader says:

        Reasons to consider John the messiah over Jesus.

        1. John has the halachic right to be a priest because of his father biologically, IE he can serve in the temple. Jesus has no such halachic link to the priesthood. John would also have intimate knowledge of the temple service which Jesus would not be privy to. John would also have access to legitimate anointing oil (being a priest.)

        2. John is just as much related to David through his mother as Jesus is through his mother. (Zechariah 6 therefore fits John way better than it does Jesus contextually where a priest is on a throne.)

        3. If Isaiah 53 and Daniel 9 are indeed messianic texts, John fits them just as well as Jesus if not better since he was also killed for righteousness sake before the destruction of the second temple.

        4. Jesus built his movement off of momentum from John’s movement. IE without John baptizing Jesus, no holy spirit would rest on Jesus. Jesus claimed that John was Elijah (or in his spirit and power.) John vehemently denied this. Silence is not grounds for dismissal of messianism in the case of Jesus as per Christian people’s claims and Jesus messianism, so applying that same standard to John’s words means he may not have explicitly said, “I am moshiach” either, but may in fact have been.IE the messianic secret.

        5. In contrast to Jesus, the religious leadership was receptive to John’s message (as per Josephus.) This means that John was more like Moses than Jesus as per Exodus 3:16-17 which is where G-d instructed Moses to go to the elders 1st. John was also killed by the corrupt herodians.

        6. John’s disciples became Mandeans and became a movement that spread in Iraq. That means that John too fits the prophecy of being a light to the gentiles.

        What would make it wrong to believe in John? Knowing all that.

        Mr. Heathcliff, that’s the point, Jesus rests his entire movement on the godliness of John. John fits the prophecies Christians use t as well as Jesus does, and better in a couple cases. An editor could have easily claimed that Jesus and not John fit the words better.

  6. Dina,
    what you describe above is Marcionism- and yes, many “Christian Churches” today are preaching that false message without realizing it.

    What happened is that Marcion declared in 144 A.D. that Paul alone was the true apostle for the era of grace; the twelve apostles, in particular their gospel of Matthew, were tainted by legalism; the Jesus of the twelve belonged to the God of the Old Testament; and the Jesus of Paul represented the son of a loving Father who now accepted us by faith alone.

    In Marcion’s book known as the Antitheses, which exists only in fragments quoted by others, we find endorse­ment of everything Pauline, including faith alone. Marcion’s primary antithesis involved faith and law. On one hand, there was the Law given Moses, which the apostolic twelve endorsed in Matthew’s gospel. On the other hand, there was the faith alone doctrine of Paul. To solve this antithesis, Mar­cion invented the idea that Christ had two personages — the one of the twelve and the one presented by Paul. The Jesus of the twelve represented the Creator-God of the Old Testament. The Jesus of Paul represented the Good God or the Father of the New Testament. The Antitheses of 144 A.D. reads:

    18.The Jewish Christ [of Matthew et al] was designated by the Creator [i.e., the God of the Old Testament] solely to restore the Jewish peo­ple from the Diaspora; but our Christ [present in Paul’s writings] was commissioned by the good God [of the new testament] to liberate all mankind.

    19. The Good [God] [of Paul’s Jesus] is good toward all men; the Creator [God of the Jesus of the twelve], however, promises salvation only to those who are obedient to him [i.e., legal­ism]. The Good [God of Paul’s Jesus] redeems those who believe in him, but he does not judge those who are disobedient to him; the Creator [God of the twelve’s Jesus], however, redeems his faithful and judges and punishes the sinners.

    SOURCE:
    http://www.jesuswordsonly.com/recommendedreading/56-marcionism.html

  7. Concerned Reader says:

    So guys, I’m not being sarcastic or trying to be polemical here. I’m seriously asking you.

    What if a person in the second temple period believed in good conscience that John the Baptist, and not Jesus of Nazareth was the messiah or the prophet like unto Moses who also happened to be a messianic figure? I mean, here you guys are claiming that Paul co-opted Jesus’ messianic movement and altered his message. Is it not equally possible that people could have believed in John as a messiah and not Jesus, and that Yeshua’s followers co-opted John’s movement?

    John died a horrible death just like Jesus, and in the same time frame before the temple was destroyed. What if his death was an atonement?

    Jesus hid his messianic identity from many people. What if John did the same?

    If we assume that at least some Christian readings of scripture were correct, (such as a Messiah described as a priestly king who dies,) what do you make of the fact that John fits that prophecy far better than Jesus of Nazareth?

    John was a priest on his father’s side, and if Jesus had Davidic lineage through his mother, so did John through his mother Elizabeth.

    What I’m getting at guys is this. You are all here trying to piece together a coherent picture of the historical Jesus, trying to say he is the messiah, trying to get Jews to believe he was, and you are all also trying to parse truths about him from alleged distortions by Paul of Tarsus.

    The problems I am having are manifold. One issue is that all the major prophecies that you claim Jesus is supposed to have fulfilled could easily be said to have been fulfilled by others who were his contemporaries, namely John the Baptist for one.

    Another issue I have is that Christians and general Jesus believers always say the non Christian is condemned to hell, even though Jews still live by the very ethics and lifestyle that Jesus would find commendable. Even if individual Christians deny this, the New Testament and words of Jesus confirm it.

    For instance, Jesus taught love of enemy and turning the other cheek. In light of the historic Christian treatment of the Jewish people, i would say that Jews have actually practiced that ethic of Jesus very well with flying colors, while Christians have failed totally. Are you supposed to believe these people will be punished by G-d? The New Testament says he who does not believe in the son is condemned already, and those who do not bend the knee are to be killed in front of Jesus. Luke 19:27

    Prophecies like the atoning death of a messiah are not exhaustive, they are not exclusive. How could anyone be blamed for thinking Jesus doesn’t fit these alleged prophecies, but a John or a rebbe might? My question stands all the more important because the New Testament itself tells you to avoid Jesus doubles, look alike messiahs, fake miracle workers, and to be very cautious of others who claim to be G-d incarnate (revelation 13) etc.

    Even if I were to believe as accurate every concept a Christian teaches about Jesus, it still doesn’t add up to accepting him. The Christian Bible says “believe Jesus died for you but nobody else,” “believe he is unique son of G-d and nobody else,” some say “believe he is G-d incarnate, but don’t believe this about anyone else.” Is G-d so vindictive and mean? So convoluted?

    A person has no way to know which way is up.

    • Eleazar says:

      Perhaps I can put together a narrative where Shimon Bar Kochba really WAS the messiah, that he fulfilled the prophecies in part, and the rest of the prophecies are just waiting for Bar Kochba’s second coming? Maybe his defeat was really just part of the bigger plan, and there is a time gap between the preliminary victory and the final victory? Maybe he was “messiah Ben Joseph” the first time and he will be “messiah Ben David” next time? After all, Shimon Bar Kochba was a better messianic fit with Jewish scripture than Jesus was. The only problem was that he was defeated and killed. But if the symbolic “messiah Ben Joseph” was supposed to die, then that is not a problem, is it?

      No sarcasm intended. Just making a point.

      • Concerned Reader says:

        Yes, Eliazer, that was the whole point with what I already wrote. John the baptist is a fit for those prophecies, bar kochba could fit, etc.

        Must have been confusing in the second temple period.

        • Concerned Reader says:

          Schneerson could fit, rebbe nachman, Shabbatai tzbi, etc. (Rather than suffering, sabbateans thought messiah had to become apostate to innaugurate redemption.) The point is, even if we granted that these passages were messianic, it wouldnt prove anything conclusive.

          Thats why Judaism focused on mutually exclusive and exhaustive prophecies.

  8. CP says:

    Concerned Reader,
    I hesitate to respond to this post because it appears another of inferior intellect has hacked your avatar. But just in case it is you, here we go.

    U write;
    “What if a person in the second temple period believed in good conscience that John the Baptist, and not Jesus of Nazareth was the messiah or the prophet like unto Moses who also happened to be a messianic figure?”

    Comment;
    What do you mean “What if……”? There is no “What if” because it happened and the incident was recorded.

    “19 Now this was John’s testimony when the Jewish leaders in Jerusalem sent priests and Levites to ask him who he was. 20 He did not fail to confess, but confessed freely, “I am not the Messiah.” 21 They asked him, “Then who are you? Are you Elijah?” He said, “I am not.” “Are you the Prophet?” He answered, “No.” 22 Finally they said, “Who are you? Give us an answer to take back to those who sent us. What do you say about yourself?” 23 John replied in the words of Isaiah the prophet, “I am the voice of one calling in the wilderness, ‘Make straight the way for the Lord.’ ” 24 Now the Pharisees who had been sent 25 questioned him, “Why then do you baptize if you are not the Messiah, nor Elijah, nor the Prophet?” 26 “I baptize with water,” John replied, “but among you stands one you do not know. 27 He is the one who comes after me, the straps of whose sandals I am not worthy to untie.” 28 This all happened at Bethany on the other side of the Jordan, where John was baptizing.”

    Not only does John the Baptist deny messiahship, he goes further and identifies who he is in relation to Messiah, then goes further and saying the Messiah will come after him.

    U write:
    “John died a horrible death just like Jesus, and in the same time frame before the temple was destroyed. What if his death was an atonement?

    Comment;
    No, John did Not die “just like Jesus”. John was beheaded, Jesus crucified. (Deut 21:23 ….the one who is left exposed on a tree is cursed by God)

    John’s death was an atonement, just like the deaths of the Prophets and Taziddiks before him.

    U write:
    “Another issue I have is that Christians and general Jesus believers always say the non Christian is condemned to hell, even though Jews still live by the very ethics and lifestyle that Jesus would find commendable. Even if individual Christians deny this, the New Testament and words of Jesus confirm it.”

    Comment;
    At this point your post begins attacking Gentilized Christianity; don’t expect me to offer a defense here, just let it be known not everyone falls for this guise. As for ethical Jews; while I agree there are ethical Jews, to lump them all together as you lump Christians together brings nothing meaningful to the discussion. My personal opinion on this is: Just as Gentile Christianity has embraced a form of lawlessness through the perversion of Pauline writings, so has Orthodox Judaism embraced a form of legalism through the Talumds. The former subtracting from Torah and the latter adding to.

    U write;
    “A person has no way to know which way is up.”

    Comment;
    I agree, which is why we require super natural help. This is why many teach some form of the impossibility of getting to know God on your own merit without his help. Faith needs to put into practice if it is ever to become more than a mental exercise.

  9. Eleazar says:

    “Not only does John the Baptist deny messiahship, he goes further and identifies who he is in relation to Messiah, then goes further and saying the Messiah will come after him.”

    How do you know that wasn’t added to the text by the author in order to dismiss the claim regarding John the Baptist as messiah and as a means to lift up Jesus? What proof do you have that John the Baptist even said that? CR’s point is still valid. Just as you believe Paul’s movement co-opted and changed the narrative of Jesus, why is it not possible that this statement, allegedly made by the John the Baptist, was not a purposeful misquoting by Jesus the Jesus movement?

    “I agree, which is why we require super natural help. ”

    And of course, since you are the only one who holds your specific view of theology, then God only supernaturally helps you. What of the millions of other Christians, among the thousands of denominations, who all say they received their truth, which is contradictory to yours and each other’s, by the same means? Because if there is one thing I learned as a Christian, it is that every Christian ( or some variant thereof) who debates doctrine eventually claims he/she receives a special spirit-guidance from God, which the opponent lacks.

    • Concerned Reader says:

      I hesitate to respond to this post because it appears another of inferior intellect has hacked your avatar.

      Why do people always do this? Answer or dont, leave insults at home.

      • Dina says:

        Con, you did not deserve that disrespect from CP. When someone’s position is weak, it’s easier to engage in ad hominem attacks because the position cannot be defended. Your argument is unassailable.

      • CP says:

        Dina & Concerned Reader,
        Good grief, get a sense of humor.
        Typically your posts are very informative. The post about John the Baptist lacks your usual flair and if had been anyone else, I wouldn’t even replied.

        • Concerned Reader says:

          You said someone of inferior intellect may have hacked my account. That isn’t funny. I’m using your own standards of evidence, a similar theory as the one you have about Paul, and I can back up what I’ve said. I laugh when things are funny. I don’t laugh at mocking someone’s intelligence, even if its meant in Jest.

          The reason i don’t laugh at that stuff is because it normalizes narrow thinking, bigotry, and all other social ills in the name of humor. Humor that is hurtful isn’t humor.

          • CP says:

            Concerned Reader,
            If you look to take offense you’ll find it. I mocked your post, not your intelligence. In other words I did not mock your person, only that from all I’ve read of yours, this post seemed out of character for you. However it is you who plays the victim as an excuse to degrade my person. You have attacked the person, something I’ve never done to you.
            But that’s okay, I’m not offended.

      • CP says:

        I did respond point by point TWICE and you ignored every response TWICE.

        It wasn’t a personal insult, it fact it is a compliment.

        Why do people always do this, post points never intending to interact with those who respond?

        • Concerned Reader says:

          I’m not ignoring your response.

          The fact that Jesus was crucified (and that its a cursed death) would actually help a John messianic, and hurt a Jesus messianic if the two groups interacted in antiquity.

          The whole point of an atonement (as expressed in scripture,) is a blemish less offering. A cursed death could be (note I said could be) perceived as a huge blemish, whereas John was brutally beheaded for giving some advice about marriage piety. We know from Josephus that John was positively perceived,but he was killed due to wickedness.

          What do you make of the possibility that John was edited out as a candidate?

          • CP says:

            Concerned Reader,
            Sure, John’s candidacy is dismissed in Scripture either by the author or a later hand. But it he hardly compares to Yeshua when it comes to identifying miracles, teachings, type of death, resurrection and prophecy later fulfilled. All you’ve come up with is he’s a cousin so genealogy works, born around the same time and place,preached repentance and was killed. You’re going to need to do better than that because Yeshua does better.

            The idea of atonement needing to be “without blemish” is from a Christian perspective. The atonement of a completed Tzaddik need not be perfect.

      • Jim says:

        Concerned Reader,

        Indeed you did nothing to deserve insult. Nor did you deserve to be blamed for not having a sense of humor. You deserve an apology, but it does not look like one is forthcoming.

        Unfortunately, CP has learned the lessons of the NT too well. In resorting to insult and mockery, he follows in the footsteps of Jesus. Jesus did not tolerate disagreement or questioning, as you know, and readily harangued his interlocutors. He may have taught to turn the other cheek, but he seldom if ever practiced it. Rather he insulted and denigrated his opponents.

        WWJD? Just as CP has done. Insult those with whom he is in disagreement.

        Jim

        • CP says:

          Jim,
          This is typical of your approach to see the glass half full or empty depending on your disposition. I’ve explained numerous times it was really a compliment to Concerned Reader that I typically expected so much more from his posts. But if ya’ll want to stand around beating a dead horse, I’ll loan you some sticks, cause it’s rather entertaining to watch and it doesn’t hurt the horse.

        • Dina says:

          Jim, how true. And how sad is the lack of self-awareness on the part of those who mock, impelling them to further mock and denigrate those who call them out on their ugly behavior.

    • Concerned Reader says:

      Read what Eleazer wrote CP. How do you know that John’s subservience to Jesus isnt a textual addition by a later editor? That was precisely my point.

    • CP says:

      Eleazar,
      If we are to adopt your logic of determining truth are we then to expect every single adherent of Judaism to believe the exact same thing?

      Your redaction theory is suspect, if John the Baptist were really a contender, he wouldn’t be included in the text at all, that is If we are considering a redaction of the type your suggesting.

      • Concerned Reader says:

        Sure John would be included CP. The New Testament does not shy away from mentioning contemporary messiah claimants, because the authors clearly believed it strengthened Jesus’ own messianic claims. Theudas was mentioned, and the Egyptian was alluded to. Jesus himself clearly stated that John was indeed great and very important.

        The reasons this redaction theory is not outlandish are manifold.

        Mark, the earliest synoptic source does not denigrate John’s role in the way other synoptic texts do. (the other texts play John down) That tells me they knew his movement had steam and they couldn’t simply dismiss him. John was Jesus’ cousin which means for Jesus to build on his movement would be easier, not harder.

        John has many parallels in his own life with the life of Jesus his cousin as I have already mentioned. In fact, John was born in Jerusalem according to Christian tradition, so nobody had to invoke a census to get John to be born in Jerusalem or to put it another way, very close to Bethlehem.

        The Clementine recognitions even have a stanza called ” the disciples of John refuted,” where an alleged follower of the Baptist makes the exact claim that John was the messiah and not Jesus.

        The mandean sect also venerated the Baptist and viewed Jesus as a failed disciple of John.

        Here is the point CP. You yourself are invoking special knowledge, and you are speculating (with others) that Paul co-opted Jesus’ movement. I’m saying that it is at least just as possible that John’s movement was co-opted by Jesus.

        Josephus mentions that Herod lost a battle, and that the people blamed the loss on the unjust murder of John. This tells me that people were just as sorrowful and introspective about John’s death as they were about the death of Yeshua. IE his death could atone too.

        The fact that the New testament warns Christians not to follow Jesus doubles shows that they knew doubles existed and would exist in the future.

        It seems to me that you saying “it couldn’t be John” is more emotionally driven than based on honest appraisals of alleged prophecies.

        The fact is that you want people to accept these beliefs about your specific version of Jesus, but not about another person who may have fit the same prophetic picture at least as well as Jesus did.

        The reason Jews don’t believe in Jesus is simple. You can apply the Jesus prophecies to several different people. Even Christians admit there are prophecies left unfulfilled.

        Christians say the Rebbe cant be Messiah, they say John cant be, etc. ONLY JESUS

        Even if Jews agreed with your exegesis, you would still have a problem if they doubted that this reading applied to Jesus. That shows you aren’t interested in an honest approach open to possibilities, but are focused on proving Jesus at all costs.

        You said I usually right good stuff. The reason that its good is because I try to keep an open mind. I don’t have to argue with Christians about how they interpret a verse or two. I can grant your interpretation, but it still doesn’t ONLY point to Jesus.

        • CP says:

          Concerned Reader
          U write;
          “That shows you aren’t interested in an honest approach open to possibilities, but are focused on proving Jesus at all costs.”

          Comment,
          I’ve given you a number of hard cold facts not affected by redaction. You repeatedly fail to address these facts showing Yeshua a better candidate than John. Yet I’m the one accused of dishonesty and closed mindedness?

          • Concerned Reader says:

            I have not attacked your person CP, it is you who lowered the discussion into mockery. However, on to the discussion.

            I do not find Jesus’ alleged miracles to be of any real import because he himself told people “do not believe in me unless i do the work of my father.”He also said “believe on the evidence of the work, as opposed to the signs themselves.

            In one episode from the gospels He was being flocked to because of allegedly feeding people.

            The gospel said he withdrew himself because they wanted to make him king by force. (Due to miracles.) So please, dont think I’m back handedly dismissing NT claims of a miraculous nature.

            I do it because According to your own teacher, it doesnt validate him.

            Jewish people are just as capable of being holy as are believers in Jesus. Faith in Jesus is meaningless in a discussion of whether a person is godly or not. This is the point CP.

            Jews and Christiabs can meet each other on common ground on the basis of ethics, but belief clouds perceptions.

            My point in bringing up the baptist was that you could impute signs and wonders of the dame magnitude to both men. It doesnt make either of them anything special.

            Jesus is not a profound figure historically because of miracles, but because his movement inspired people to embrace the biblical ethic. That is a profound achievement, but it doesnt mean he was the messiah.

          • Concerned Reader says:

            You havent demonstrated that anything is free of redaction. In fact, because you believe Paul corrupted Jesus the entire corpus of Christian writings are suspect.

            The only reason belief in Jesus left Judea is because of Saul. If he was a liar, then we have no reason to trust books preserved by his churches. Even if I agree that some kernels of Jesus’ teachings remain, the fact is that the Pauline Church persecuted and redacted the Jewish movement out of existence.

            Scholars know that Paul wrote the 1st Vhristian writings. If he is false, the NT is highly suspect.

          • CP says:

            Concerned Reader,

            U write;
            “You havent demonstrated that anything is free of redaction.”

            Comment;
            Yes I have , and I think this will be the 5th time! But whose counting.
            1) Resurrection
            2) Healings & Miracles
            3) Type of Death
            4) Torah Teachings
            5) Fulfillment of things predicted

            U write;
            “In fact, because you believe Paul corrupted Jesus the entire corpus of Christian writings are suspect.”

            Comment;
            You misunderstand. For example it may be Paul’s writings have been corrupted. The bottom line is Hellenistic thought and Philosophy have crept into the Writings. Using Torah and Culture as filters it is not that big of a deal to spot what is suspect.

            U write
            “The only reason belief in Jesus left Judea is because of Saul.”

            Comment;
            This is pure speculation; all that can be said is Saul left Judea first.

            U write;
            “If he was a liar, then we have no reason to trust books preserved by his churches. Even if I agree that some kernels of Jesus’ teachings remain, the fact is that the Pauline Church persecuted and redacted the Jewish movement out of existence.”

            Comment;
            Here you commit the fatal error of millions before you; thinking the remnant must be a identifiable denomination. I’m and those I know are living proof it is not so. We still exist and people like you have always accused people like us, the only difference in the past is; you would have us killed as heretics.

            U write;
            “Scholars know that Paul wrote the 1st Vhristian writings. If he is false, the NT is highly suspect.”

            Comment;
            Scholars know nothing of the sort. All they know is Paul’s letters were distributed very early. Scholars speculate the material for the Gospels was written first as notes, perhaps even while Yeshua was speaking.

            You want to prove John the Baptist is a better candidate for Messiah than Yeshua, you’re wasting your time unless your goal is to convince only those ignorant of the subject. Besides 2000 years of history has already pointed to the best 2nd Temple candidate. So far all you’ve been able to base your case on is a handful of things John has in common with Yeshua.

          • Concerned Reader says:

            So CP, the truth comes out. You are part of a faithful remnant of Jesus believers who knows the truth while all other Christians, and Jews are wrong.

            FYI I dont think anyone should be killed as a heretic , because I know reading the scripture yeilds subjective results. No New Testament scholars believe the synoptic gospels are 1st generation accounts based on anyones notes. Tye disciples were illiterate.

            The closest thing we have to very early testimony is Paul’s letters that were written in the 50s.

            What dont you understand about miracles not proving anything? Its scriptural to state that signs prove nothing.

            Jesus dying a cursed death of crucifixion does not have any more significance than John being beheaded for his faith. Martyerdom is martyrdom. And atonment via the death of a tzaddik does not require one form of death over another.

          • CP says:

            Concrened Reader,

            U write;
            “So CP, the truth comes out. You are part of a faithful remnant of Jesus believers who knows the truth while all other Christians, and Jews are wrong.”
            Comment;
            I’ve never hid my faith in Yeshua as Messiah. As for who is wrong and who is right; who cares? If you think I think a persons eternal destiny and standing before God is dependent on doctrine, you’d be wrong.

            U write;
            FYI I dont think anyone should be killed as a heretic , because I know reading the scripture yeilds subjective results.
            Comment;
            That’s good to know! However it puts you into the minority among religious leaders.

            U write;
            No New Testament scholars believe the synoptic gospels are 1st generation accounts based on anyones notes. Tye disciples were illiterate.
            Comment;
            This is entirely untrue, and you of all people should know better!
            Scholars speculate on a “Q” document for the Synoptics and a “Miracle” document for John. To declare the disciples as “illiterate” is highly irresponsible for a man with your credentials. There were at least 72 disciples and one of the 12 was a tax collector, but you know them all to be illiterate on what basis?

            U write;
            The closest thing we have to very early testimony is Paul’s letters that were written in the 50s.
            Comment;
            So what? “The closest thing WE HAVE” kinda says it all, don’t you think? Besides where do you see Paul EVER quoting Yeshua? Paul is a DIFFERENT textual stream!

            U write;
            What dont you understand about miracles not proving anything? Its scriptural to state that signs prove nothing.
            Comment;
            Really? Then why are they foretold in Tanach? What you don’t understand, is it isn’t miracles in general it is specific kinds of miracles that identify. FYI, those miracles specific to Messiahs first coming have been fulfilled and no longer applicable. Thre is a new set of miracles which define Messiah’s second coming, every Jew knows them.

            U write;
            Jesus dying a cursed death of crucifixion does not have any more significance than John being beheaded for his faith. Martyerdom is martyrdom. And atonment via the death of a tzaddik does not require one form of death over another.
            Comment,
            This is just plain wrong. According to Jewish tradition and the Rabbis, the greater the righteousness of the Tzaiddik and the worse the death; the greater atonement potential.

          • “There were at least 72 disciples and one of the 12 was a tax collector, but you know them all to be illiterate on what basis?”

            72? first time i heard of this. tax collector? what type? some roles just required adding , not expert greek.

          • CP says:

            Mr.heathcliff,
            “72? first time i heard of this. tax collector? what type? some roles just required adding , not expert greek.”

            72 Disciples = Luke chapter 10.

            (Matthew the tax collector). And some roles required writing, expert Greek is a later polish and there are speculations Matthew penned a Gospel in Hebrew.

          • 72? how come only 12 get enthroned? are you sure the numbers have grown in the retelling ?
            or do you believe some were more special than others? maybe the un-special ones were doing the inventions and attributing them to jesus?

  10. TRM says:

    “If you think I think a persons eternal destiny and standing before God is dependent on doctrine, you’d be wrong.”

    On what does it depend then?

    if they believe Yeshua to be the messiah and if you keep G-d’s commandments?
    if they believe Yeshua to be the messiah without having to keep G-d’s commandments?
    if you keep G-d’s commandments?

    If you have to believe in Yeshua, then it really depend on your understanding of Scriptures, AKA doctrines. If you do not have to believe in Yeshua, then those who don’t, have a better chance of not committing idolatry by accepting a false messiah as messiah…

    • CP says:

      TRM,
      Thank you for not letting that one get by!

      To explain:
      By definition God is God, there is none like Him. Our total fate relies on Who God is. It is the Nature of God on which we rely. Out of love God has given instructions in the best interest of us. God has also instructed us it is mercy rather than sacrifice which He values. Therefore if this being God’s position, do you think He will hold us to nothing except absolute perfect doctrine when we do our best but fail understanding doctrine? Or do you think God values something else in us?

      • TRM says:

        As Jesus said: “unless you believe in me you shall die in your sins”.

        CP, you must believe then that regardless how good, or merciful someone may be, he will die in his sin if he does not believe in Yeshua. How can a merciful G-d be so unmerciful and ask to believe in someone to be forgiven their sins. Many do not know Yeshua. Many have a hard time to even open the new testament, because they really think it would go against G-d’s to have send their messiah. I am not even talking about all the atrocities done in the name of Jesus, and I think it is a fair reason why people (Jews) won’t even open the new testament. And as per Jesus, they will die in their sins.

        If I take Ezekiel 18 and rely on the fact the “If the wicked turns from his wicked ways, he will not die” and do not include “but you must believe in Santa”, then my G-d is merciful as he wants us to be merciful. I blew up as many others, and I still blow up big times, but I don’t understand why I have to believe in miracle Jesus to have G-d forgives my sins! I still don’t want to believe in a god who wants to send everybody to hell/lake of fire for the fact of not believing in the lamb of gods. I still think that the god of the new testament is hard, just like Dina said. ..

        It is still a doctrine issue. Or you believe in Yeshua and you will live in the mansion made by him for those who are his disciples, or you will burn in the lake of Fire because you denied the only mean of salvation. Take any New testament books and that’s the message. You may want to add the Torah, or other requirement to be justified, but all believer in Yeshua believe that Yeshua died as atonement for the sin of the world, and you need to believe in that sacrifice to have your sins forgiven. Now, if you say that’s not doctrine, I beg you the questions, what is it? You got the doctrine of who Jesus is “false” of “true” messiah right and you got a ticket to heaven. And by the way, isn’t it selfish to owe your devotion to a god, just because if will give you heaven? The Muslims do the same and they are ready to do way more to have a ticket for the ride!

        • CP says:

          TRM;
          U write;
          “As Jesus said: “unless you believe in me you shall die in your sins”.”

          Allow me to ask you some questions;
          If Yeshua never uttered a word how could anyone believe in him?
          Does it matter to believe he was sent by God if he has no message?
          In light of what I just asked; What are you supposed to believe?
          Maybe his message of repentance?

          • TRM says:

            You are reinventing a new message CP. Or at least, you forgot half of it! Repent and believe in the gospel (AKA Jesus died for your sins). Yeshua would not have said “remove that cup from me” if he did not need to die for the sins of everybody. And if what you say is true, then I don’t really have any problem, I don’t believe in Jesus, but I still want to repent… Why should I still believe in that man?

            If Yeshua never uttered a word how could anyone believe in him?
            Why would anybody have to believe in him? Did any of the prophet say “believe in me”, or did they say “Thus said HaShem”

            Does it matter to believe he was sent by God if he has no message?
            If he has not message, he is not sent by G-d. If he was sent by G-d, but have no message, then nobody could know if was sent by G-d, and it would really not matter anyway, because he had nothing to say in the first place!

            In light of what I just asked; What are you supposed to believe?
            I should believe he is not a prophet, because he asked for people to believe in him instead of G-d!

            Maybe his message of repentance?
            That I agree…

          • CP says:

            TRM,
            U write;
            “Did any of the prophet say “believe in me”, or did they say “Thus said HaShem””

            During the 2nd Temple period it was thought prophecy had ceased, therefore it would be politically incorrect to say such a thing. However that aside, Yeshua doesn’t make the claim of a mere prophet, but claims Messiahship.

          • TRM says:

            And how do you know he was a true messiah? It’s a serious matter… anybody can claim that he is the messiah, how can we make sure that he is? Even more serious when that “messiah” requires for you to believe in him to have eternal life!

          • Concerned Reader says:

            CP, the messiah is a king. Kings were subject to prophets who are subject to the Torah. So when you say “he’s no mere prophet he is messiah,” you are applying replacement Christian theological notions without even realizing it.

            You have no unambiguous proof that Jesus is even the messiah.

            This fact is proved by the ability to apply several key Christian prophecies to people other than Jesus.

          • CP says:

            Concerned Reader & TRM,

            First the question is raised concerning the vernacular of Yeshua. I point out his vernacular is consistent with his claim of Messiahship. Then you want to discuss his claim without addressing the answer given to you. This is no different than discussing with the typical door to door missionary. Btw, Messiah holds office of priest and King.

  11. TRM says:

    Good point CR! Yeshua rebuked those who wanted proofs. I think it is just normal to want to have proofs. It’s not praiseworthy to follow the first person without any evidence. I just want sufficient evidence, but nobody seems like they can provide those “proofs”. They are all somewhat ambiguous and have to be believed by faith. And usually, they tell me that “satan” is blinding me. CP, can you show with enough evidence that Yeshua was not a false messiah? The burden of the proof is on him I think!

    • CP says:

      TRM,
      In your position with preconceived ideas (we ALL have them) I’d suggest trying to start from a neutral position. Anyone can nitpick a thing to death, so without nitpicking, what did Yeshua do or say in the general context of his life and teachings that would qualify him as a false Messiah according to Torah?

      • Concerned Reader says:

        Btw, Messiah holds office of priest and King.

        Jesus has no legitimate claim to be a priest as per Torah, as his dad is not a kohen. So, If you want a messiah who was a kohen, at least John the baptist has the proper halachic credentials for that.

        Jesus only has descent from David through his mother, ie he is not literally of David’s seed, and he has no bioligical paternal connection to the priesthood which disqualifies him from service in the Temple.

        • Concerned Reader says:

          For Jesus to be both a priest and a king, he would need to have proper paternal descent from both a priestly family, and a Davidic one.

          If Joseph was Jesus’ biological dad then he may indeed be a son of David in the proper sense, but he would still also need to have a paternal priestly connection which he doesnt have. So no, Jesus cant be a priest and a king.

          As for any claims about a melchizadek priesthood, that would involve changing or annuling the Torah of Moses.

          Thats why I pointed out that if you wanted a priestly king prophetically, your best bet would be to believe in John, because he fits that ambiguous prophecy better than Jesus.

        • CP says:

          If Yeshua is Joseph’s son he has lineage. If Yesuha is born of a virgin, through the Holy Spirit the point is mute.

          • Concerned Reader says:

            No the point is not moot. If he was really born of a virgin, he has no right to be called a son of David according to the flesh. Matralineal lineage is not how the Torah reckons tribal affiliation or Torah role and responsibilities .

            Your whole reason for accepting Jesus seems to just be about miracles.

            If it were the case that only true prophets could do miracles, I would say you have an argument. Unfortunately neither the Torah, nor the Christian Bible make that assumption.

            If yeshua is the messiah, pray for him to come and finish his Job, rather than trying to convince Jews they must believe in him before he has done his job.

            His miracles dont establish him as a messiah any more than anyone elses miracles would establish them.

          • TRM says:

            “If it were the case that only true prophets could do miracles, I would say you have an argument.”

            Well, not even. Nobody alive can attest of these miracles. It’s really easy to say that somebody performed a miracle, but it does not mean that it really happened. Look at Muhammad, he supposedly had a broad range of miracles just like Jesus. How could that be if he is not a true prophet? Well, the writers of the Quran invented them. Could the writers of the New testament have done the same? Why couldn’t they have done it? Why don’t Christians believe in the Quran if they actually have the same kind of miracles as the new testament? And for those who reject Paul’s writing, why? He performed miracles too, and that should suffice to prove him as a true prophet if we use the same logic as for Jesus…

      • Jim says:

        CP,

        The neutral position would not start with the hypothesis that Jesus is the messiah and that he is to be accepted as such until proven false.

        But, he is shown to not be Messiah by:

        1. Improper Lineage
        2. False Prophecy
        3. Adding to the Torah
        4. Taking from the Torah.
        5. Not Being a King.

        If one accepts your definition of Messiah as a king and priest:

        6. Improper Lineage Again
        7. Not Being a Priest

        Jim

        • CP says:

          Jim,
          It’s quite easy to make accusations, another to prove. All you did was write a bunch of stuff. As for priest and King, Messiah is to come from the tribe of Judah so if there is to be a Presitly connection you’re going to have o think outside the box.

          • Jim says:

            CP,

            Your reply is absurd in that it ignores months of writing.

            Jim

          • Dina says:

            Jim, CP is right. You did write “a bunch of stuff.” A bunch of very, very good stuff, backed to the hilt by Scripture and tight, solid, argumentation based on pure logic. Keep writing, Jim!

          • Concerned Reader says:

            CP, If jesus was virgin born, he had no halachicly valid connection to David through a male line. Its so simple to understand.

            The Alma of Isaiah 7 gave birth to children in chapter 8. Almah does not convey anything about ones virginity or lack thereof. Mathew got it wrong.

            Simply put, there is no true reference to a virgin birth.

          • Concerned Reader says:

            CP, have you ever gone by the name Eli Lion? Something strikes me as familliar with your style of argument.

          • Dina says:

            Con, it’s fascinating that you should ask. It makes sense to think that, but I’ll tell why they can’t be the same person. Lion is not a native speaker of English. In fact, based on the way he used certain words I quickly picked up on the fact that he is a French speaker. I would be very surprised to learn that CP is not a native English speaker. If he is not, then he has mastered American usage and idioms to a tremendous degree.

          • Concerned Reader says:

            CP, maybe I can explain to you why I dont find miracle claims all that important to determing whether a thing is true.

            According to both Christians and Jews, when hashem made the world, he made it very good. 1 man made the call to say he knew better than G-d, and then humans ever since have been struggling. Now Christians stress that people cant make this world G-dly on their own, so they believe G-d sends a savior named Yeshua to do it, or to empower you to do it.

            I want you to think about what I am about to say carefully.

            We know G-d said he created the world very good, ie whether we messed it up or not, G-d was still the author of a very good world, at least conceptually.

            Consider for a moment that humans today could (if they chose to be better people)

            1. Split or fuse the atom and create renewable clean non polluting energy for everyone, (due to knowledge of laws of nature.)

            2. We could feed every hungry person today (if money and power didnt cloud our thinking.)

            3. Jews, Christians, Muslims, and Hindus, et al could work together in common good if we allowed our ethics to drive our interactions rather than our theological dognas.

            4. If humanity placed its effort into studying medicine and not killing or war, we could cure any disease we were confronted with.

            5. Every child could have access to the sum total of written human knowledge to learn and grow.

            We would be able to do all this because G-d built all that wisdom into the world when he 1st created it for us humans to find. We find it, but we choose not to apply it. We do good and bad with the truth we find instead of using that truth as it is.

            Everything humans know about curing dieease, about technologies, etc. All the wisdom and natural laws behind those phenomenon and how they work were true and present at the begining of time, hashem just needs us to apply it.

            As scripture says, there is nothing new under the sun.

            The reason miracle isnt proof, is because we see miracles (and the potential for miracles) daily, but we choose not to apply them.

            We look at a miracle as the proof, rather than what the miracle is teaching. A miracle is only as valuable as the teaching it conveys.

            Jesus may well have fed 5000, but thats peanuts.

            what humans know about agriculture today (because of natural laws) could feed everyone, not just 5000 people, and the miracle is that G-d put the wisdom and means to accomplish that particular feat into the very fabric of reality when he created it.

            Ie the world doesnt need a miracle working Jesus to save it. The world, (and all in it) is itself the miracle, but we humans choose not to see it.

            Remember the lesson of the flood? G-d wiped out everything. (It was the tanakh equivalent of a christian end times scenario.)

            But Did hashem’s miraculous intervention, his sovreign act independent of humans innaugurate the redemption back then?

            NO! five minutes off the boat and Noah made the wrong choices.

            The flood story teaches you (or it should if you are paying attention,) that G-d can work miracle all day, bail you out all day, but it does you no good if you still resign yourelf to bad actions. The responsibility for a better world is on you. Its on me. Its not on G-d to bail us out with a savior.

            Christians think that by accepting Jesus, somehow sin will magically be vanquished. G-d will have intervened and it will be a clean slate.

            WE SEE DAILY THAT THIS DOESNT HAPPEN. Christians and Jesus believers sin as much now as ever.

            Christians fail to realize that G-d tried a celestial bailout once already, and it didnt work.

            An end time eschatology ran its course once already. G-d intervening did not kill sin back then

            It didnt work because humans didnt want to DO, they wanted G-d to do for them.

          • Dina says:

            Wow, Con, this is powerful stuff!

          • Supposedly “five minutes off the boat and Noah made the wrong choices. ” ????
            What a slanderous exaggeration against our great Patriarch Noah !

            How about more like decades, maybe hundreds of years off the boat, Noah made ONE wrong choice that we know of? You think you can begin a vineyard from scratch, cultivate new vines, grow grapes, and make wine in 5 minutes? (Jesus could do that if he wanted to – but not Noah….. ) 🙂

          • Dina says:

            Matthew, in fairness to Con, he did not mean five literal minutes. He is just saying that it didn’t take long. That could mean, yes, a couple of years.

          • LarryB says:

            Really good, for some time now. Im thinking about getting him a book going.

          • Or it COULD mean a couple HUNDRED years….. 😉
            This exaggeration shows contempt for Noah, and his godly legacy and achievements, and if you read the story, you will see this kind of contempt brought a curse…….

          • CP says:

            Concerned Read,
            Your logic is absurd and borderline atheist. Using your logic we can give credit to England and the UN for Israel getting her land back while God was on the other side of the Universe taking a nap.

            TRM
            You say we can’t know for sure Yeshua performed any miracles, why don’t you apply the same logic to Moses? Where are the Egyptian records? Didn’t your mother ever teach you; people living in glass houses shouldn’t throw rocks?

            Jim,
            1)Messiah came before the destruction of the Temple.
            2) Messiah made himself known through miracles and teaching Torah as foretold in Tanach
            3) Messiah was rejected and murdered, dying the death of a Completed Tzaddik as foretold in Tanach
            4) Messiah prophesied the destruction of Jerusalem.
            5) Messiah rose from the dead and Messiah is coming again.
            6) Messiah is bringing the lost tribes back spreading Torah through out all the world.
            7) Messiah will unite all the tribes and rule the world when he returns
            8) This Messiah is Yeshua.
            Jim, I know it looks like wrote a bunch of stuff without backing it up, but consider my months of previous writing as proof.
            (What’s good for the goose is good for the gander)

          • LarryB says:

            CP
            There must have been a reason most people did not believe in Jesus.
            http://www.miraclesceptic.com/conjurerjesus.html

          • Jim says:

            CP,

            The difference between my list and your list is that I have substantiated my claims. Yours remain unsubstantiated. In fact, you have on many occasions refused to substantiate them, arguing that you did not come to convert anyone and are therefore under no obligation to offer proof or argument in favor of your assertions.

            One of the biggest points of disagreement, the resurrection, for example, you merely assert to have happened. Yet you have failed to provide any evidence of any such event. You have been forced to admit that the sign of a resurrection was not made public, i.e. a walking talking Jesus after the crucifixion, and appealed instead to the tongues of fire on the Day of Pentecost, which are not a sign of a resurrection. (Nor are they the gift promised by Jesus.) Even the NT admits that he never presented himself publicly.

            The only points from my list that I have not previously argued are Jesus’ lineage, which I do not expect to be a point of contention. The NT claims that Jesus was not descended from David on his father’s side, nor from the tribe of Levi. And I also did not argue that he was neither king or priest, because this is evident and obvious to all. The other points I have already demonstrated, and they are the points of biggest contention. You, have not done the same. The points of greatest contention from your list are mere assertions on your part.

            Jim

          • TRM says:

            CP
            ” You say we can’t know for sure Yeshua performed any miracles, why don’t you apply the same logic to Moses? Where are the Egyptian records? Didn’t your mother ever teach you; people living in glass houses shouldn’t throw rocks?”

            I don’t throw rocks to atheist… In the end, they might have somewhat a good reason not to believe in anything. Can I prove Moses? No, sure not! There is a part of “faith” in all religions, and I do not deny that. The main problem with Jesus is that he wants to proclaim himself messiah/a god. True, I cannot prove or disprove Judaism with the miracles, I cannot prove or disprove Christianity with the miracles, but to worship a man with flesh and bone as a god, that’s something.

            You see, I would not say anything to an atheist, I do believe that he has some reasons not to believe anything. Those are genuine and, because we cannot prove what we believe, then what do I have to say against them? But to bow to a man? You need some serious proofs! Do you have any?

        • ” Messiah was rejected and murdered, dying the death of a Completed Tzaddik as foretold in Tanach”

          naaa don’t think isaiah had in mind a jesus who avoids death all the time until he is caught off guard and taken away .i think isaiah would have said to jesus ” you aint been persecuted enough”

        • LarryB says:

          CP
          i once saw a magic trick where the magician let an audience member pick a card and then put it back in the the deck. The audience member wrote down what the card was on a piece of paper. The magician then threw the deck of cards at a window where the card in question stuck to the window on the inside of the other room and the rest of the cards bounced off the window in the room the magician was standing in. I would put that trick up against a man raising some from the dead any day.

  12. Pharisee Friend, in your original post above, “The Ultimate Truth” you wrote, QUOTE:
    “It was to Israel, and to Israel alone that God revealed that: “… the Lord He is the God, there is none else” (Deuteronomy 4:35). Israel is called upon to stand as God’s witness throughout history and to testify that: “… I (the Lord) am He, before Me nothing was created by a god, nor will there be after Me” (Isaiah 43:10).”

    Looking at all the Scripture references in your article, I noticed that the earliest quotes are from Deuteronomy, (there are no quotes at all from the first 4 Books of Torah), and then you move forward from there, quoting Isaiah and Ezekiel…. Almost as if Moses was the real “Adam”, and no one else anywhere for the previous 2500 years really knew anything about God – certainly nothing specific that was written down…….

    • Matthew Perri I don’t know why I need to read Scripture for you – – Exodus 20:19

      1000 Verses – a project of Judaism Resources wrote: >

      • Pharisee Friend,
        Exodus 20:19 is a record of what certain “people” said one time. Just because they said it doesn’t mean it’s true. Even if it did apply to them, that doesn’t necessarily mean that it applies to all people in the world with the exception of Moses.
        You can see Exodus 24:9-11. Aaron and the seventy elders did not die when they saw God and ate and drank in God’s presence.

        Anyway, this is still about the Sinai event – what about the 2500 years or so before then?

        • Jim says:

          Matthew,

          I do not like to ask questions, because I do not think the forum suitable for them. However, I am going to make an exception for you this one time:

          From what book does the greatest commandment come?

          Jim

          • Jim,
            Deuteronomy – and I am quite sure that Jesus quoted more from Deuteronomy and Isaiah than from any other books.

            .1) Moses insinuating that the Golden Calf was really Aaron’s fault instead of his own,
            .2) Moses taking all the credit for making the Ark of the Covenant himself, and erasing Bezalel from the history,
            .3) Moses marginalizing Aaron’s authority given to Aaron by Yahweh-
            these are not “the Law” even though they are in the text of chapters 9 and 10 of Deuteronomy. They are the voice of Moses, not the voice of God.

          • Matthew Perri All of your points are based on the ridiculous assumption that Moses expected Deuteronomy to be read outside of the context of the first four books – take any one chapter out of any one book and you could come to silly conclusions

            1000 Verses – a project of Judaism Resources wrote: >

        • Matthew Perri In my book – Exodus 20:19 are the words of God to Moses as for the first 2500 years – why don’t you go to the people who preserved those records outside of the community of people who look up to Moses and Joshua?

          1000 Verses – a project of Judaism Resources wrote: >

          • Pharisee Friend,
            I look up to Moses and Joshua – and David – but I don’t idolize them.
            Exodus 20:18-19 shows “the people” speaking to Moses. That is what is in the text.
            To read into it that this is “the words of God to Moses as for the first 2500 years”….. that is a huge leap, and I just don’t get it.

          • Matthew Perri In my Bible Exodus 20:19 begins with the words “And the Lord spoke to Moses…” I see that in the Christian Bibles they put the chapter break elsewhere so they cot it at verse 22

            And Matthew there is no question that Adam, Noah and others knew God – but where has their knowledge been preserved outside of the community that sees Moses and Joshua as great people and not petty scoundrels – your opinion of these two prophets makes them smaller than many people I know

            1000 Verses – a project of Judaism Resources wrote: >

  13. “NO! five minutes off the boat and Noah made the wrong choices.”

    but what about when he was making the boat? what about this verses

    even if these three men–Noah, Daniel and Job–were in it, they could save only themselves by their righteousness, declares the Sovereign LORD.

    their righteousness could save them in any type of danger.

    • Concerned Reader says:

      My point wasnt to slander a patriarch. The fact that this is what was focussed on says it all.

      My point was that Christians expect redemption to come purely as an act of G-d’s own volition independent of human effort through a savior and without works, and that this view is alien to the Torah.

      Noah made the choice to get drunk after being through the whole ordeal. He literally had the embodiment of a Christian redemptive experience where he was saved by grace largely because hashem did this great miracle. Noah did the work of building the ark, and also the work of being godly in his generation very true, but my point is, G-d erased the whole world and sin was still not eliminated. It says right in Torah, Noah found Chen (grace) in the eyes of hashem.

      The message of the story was that problems of life cannot be solved by someone choosing and doing the right thing for you. A free gift can inspire much, but the determination to do for ourselves (and i speak knowing this from experience,) is not one of them.

      Deuteronomy echoes the same lesson again when it says it is in your mouth and in your heart that you may do it

      Noah resigned himself. He said, ok G-d, I will build the boat while you punish the sinners.

      Abraham interceded for the sinners, but more importantly he saw potential for them to reform themselves.

      G-d expects humans to work stuff out, as it says in the verse you posted, Daniel, Job. And Noah could save only themselves by their own righteousness.

      The fact that I was called borderline atheist because I noted that G-d gave us the means through nature to make creation better says it all. An atheist does for free what G-d rewards a theist for.

      There is so much need for Christians to hold on to Jesus, that they ignore that he himself said, “you will do greater things than I have done.”

      Here we live in the fruit of 2000 years of Jesus’ teachings, and we still have all the ills he said he came to fix, even among Christians.

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