“Knock knock” “who’s there?”
“It is I, God”.
Door opens revealing a friendly looking man.
The visitor and the host each take a seat.
“So you say you are God”
“Indeed I am, and you should please bow down to express your reverence to me”
“I think I would feel quite uncomfortable fulfilling your request”
“Is that how you speak to God? If you don’t worship me you will burn in hell forever and ever”
“Hmm, interesting, I’ll tell you what, I’ll step into the other room now, and I will pray to the One God who created heaven and earth, and who continuously sustains all existence, if that will not satisfy you, I’m afraid I’ll have to ask you to leave”
If “A” is not equal to “B”, then “B” cannot be equal to “A”. To word it differently; if “G” is not equal to “J”, then “J” cannot be equal to “G”.
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Yisroel C. Blumenthal
J is equal to G because J proclaims to be The Son of G. Every son is equal to their father in nature and essence, to think otherwise is to bring one’s intelligence into serious question…God bless
Clyde, you have missed the point of the article.
It doesn’t matter if J says he is the same as G. If G never said it, J has no credibility.
Furthermore, as the rabbi writes, if they are, as you say equal “in nature and essence,” then we can pray to G and have no need for J at all.
Hi Clyde and Thomas
Thomas – thank you.
Clyde – First of all – please leave the comments about bringing people’s intelligence into question out of the discussion.
Second – according to your reasoning – is Ephraim also God (Jeremiah 31:8)? or perhaps all of Israel (Deuteronomy 14;1)?
Third – I point you to Thomas’ comment.
Thanks for joining the discussion
Your Pharisee Friend
Do you suppose it could alternatively say:
“Hmm, interesting, I’ll tell you what, I’ll step into the other room now, and I will pray to the One God who created heaven and earth, and who continuously sustains all existence, unless you can repeat my prayer, word for word, I’m afraid I’ll have to ask you to leave”?
My point is that the Christian claim that Jesus is “one and the same” as God – is drivel – and Christians know this. The proof is that when people pray to God they feel that Jesus was left out of the picture.
Rabbi, does the nt text say this? Or is this just something written with christian theology? Just curious, as there are often differences in the two.
It depends who you ask
The rabbis spoke much about the Shekhina, the Divine Presence, corresponding also to the feminine, motherly aspects of God. They taught that the Shekhina went into exile with the Jewish people, suffering with “her” children in foreign lands. According to this concept, God cannot be “whole” again until his people return from their physical and spiritual wanderings and the Temple is rebuilt. The rabbis based this idea on verses that spoke of God being with his people (corporately or individually) in their trouble, distress, and exile (see Mekhilta deRabbi Yishmael, Massekhta dePiskha).
In fact, Rabbi Akiva went as far as saying that, according to the Scriptures, when God redeemed his people, he had, as it were, redeemed himself. Some Hasidic Jews, joining the concept of the Shekhina with the mystical concept of the Sefirot, took this one step further. They believed (and still believe) that the purpose of the performance of the mitzvot is to help the Shekhinah to unite with Tiferet [the Sefira of glory or beauty], the male principle. The sins of Israel hinder this union and prevent the “reunification of worlds,” which is a necessary prerequisite for the coming of God’s kingdom.
The hasidim, in accordance with this belief, adopted the formula (much deplored by their opponents), “For the sake of the unification of the Holy One, blessed be He, and his Shekhinah,” which they recited before the performance of mitzvot.
For now, according to this Hasidic Jewish view, God is in some kind of “disunity.” And you thought that God’s oneness was such an elementary subject! Why should we try to minimize the mystery? These are lofty, spiritual concepts. God’s unity or tri-unity isn’t easily understood. In fact, if you ask ten Christians whether they expect to see three different divine persons in heaven – God the Father, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit – you’ll get many different answers. Why? Because God’s tri-unity is not some neatly spelled out doctrine or a trite little teaching to be explained in thirty seconds or less. It’s like asking a Hasidic rabbi, “Is the Shekhina God?” or, “Is the memraʾ (i.e., the Word) God?”, or, “Are the Sefirot God?
Cara the concept of One G-d to ALL Jews is very simple, its exactly that, one G-d! Not a Trinity of G-ds, not a man coming in the form of G-d, just plain and simple one omnipresent all powerful G-d of the universe! The same G-d the Abraham Isaac and Jacob prayed to. The same G-d that every Jew prays too!
Jews may have their differences, but its this simple strong understanding that all Jews have of the concept of One G-d, that unites all Jews as one nation. It is also why try as they like Messianic’s will always remain Christians, and will never be accepted as Jews, no matter how much they want to be identified as Jews.
Those theological arguments are a smokescreen. Idolatry is not a philosphical abstract – it is a sin of the heart. Those Christians who worship Jesus have the same feelings in their heart whether they spout those theological excuses or not – bottom line – it is love of a man – theological justifications or lack thereof notwithstanding.
Well J had plenty of proof for His claims.
What “proof” could make “a” equal “b” but not “b” equal “a” ? – And Tal – do you realize how much proof ther is against the claims of Jesus? – https://yourphariseefriend.wordpress.com/2010/08/31/1000-verses/
“philosphical abstract”? “theological excuses”?
Go ahead – judge the gentiles of idolatry, but how long after the law was given did Israel do exactly that? How abstract & theological were their excuses then? Israel (i.e. the children of) is in the unenviable situation of thousands of years of recorded problematic theological reasoning. Can we trust you now? When will you truly be “a light to the world”? …yes, “the WORLD” – no, not just within your own secluded communities, the WORLD. Is that really God’s purpose for Israel? Anti-semitism makes it hard, etc, etc? An average of 171,000 Christians worldwide are martyred for their faith per year. 45.5 million in the last century. http://www.releaseinternational.org
Why do Jews seem to avoid the unpleasant writings of the prophets – why where the prophets so unpopular? Do you expect “thus saith the Lord” to be any more popular when delivered by the Messiah rather than the prophets?
Would you bother to try and understand the following, spoken by Him that you deride & mock?
“And this is life eternal, that they might know thee the only true God, and the one whom you sent – Jesus the Messiah.” John 17:3.
No, my pharisee friend.
You might enjoy this post – https://yourphariseefriend.wordpress.com/2011/06/26/supplement-to-an-open-letter/
In any case – why do you say that we “avoid” the unpleasant writings of the prophets – we coanonized them – didn’t we? when did the Church ever canonize anything that was critical to them? – Jesus taught the Church by example – criticize your enemies and consider yourself sinless
I’ve studied his claims in depth. I truly pity you
Nothing to pity – I worship the God of Israel – if anyone feels left out – pity them
Reading all of this reminds me of my repeated perception when listening to the prayer of a christian. It is very confusing….who are you guys talking to anyway? I even heard one gent very careful not to leave anybody of the “committee” out of the prayer so as to not offend either the father, son or holy ghost!!
The thing I noticed repeatedly over the years of study (55+, yeah, I was a christian once, by default) is that not even christian scripture supports the trinity concept with any consistency. Not even Jesus did when he prayed “And this is eternal life, that they may know you Father, the only true G-d and Jesus Christ who you have sent. “(John 17, as I recall!) Keep the confusion! I KNOW Who G-d is, and I know His Name… and what His Name is not! And it’s NOT JESUS!
The L-rd He is G-d; There is NO OTHER!
so do I 🙂
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Hi Rabbi Yisroel… I think that the idea in this blog post can be expanded to illustrate your recent one “A New Set of Feelings”.Imagine if, God forbid, the person did decide that they need not put all visible things out of mind when praying to Hashem, but could do so by speaking with the man who had knocked on the door. A new set of feelings would certainly be kindled in his or her heart. Are these feelings appropriate in the relationship between us and Hashem, or do they turn aspects of finite conduits to knowing Him into the actual focus of worship?
And on another topic… what could the visitor possibly say to incite someone faithful to God to allow him to stay??
Though for most converts to Christianity these days it must be a combination of real truths in Christianity and the idolatrous allure of the heart to descriptions of a man (some people don’t know to have their guard up) that persuade them.
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