Devotion to a Distinct Personality by Annelise
the worshipers of Jesus who want to share their beliefs with others try to
separate three ideas, which actually can’t stand independently in this
conversation. First, that there can be an ‘incarnation’ of God; not just
that He is working through something in creation but that He personally is
standing in that place. Second, that God has ‘compound unity in Himself’ and
relationship between Himself, somehow mystically (but knowable to humans
through revelation). Third, that a particular man who was described in the
Christian gospels was actually our Creator ‘with us’. Although nothing in
the heavens or earth in our day and age ‘is God’ or deserves our hearts to
be bent to it in the affection and honour that are only personally for our
God, they say that ‘one of us’ did deserve it in time past.
this is expressed in terms of just the first two ideas. People have said,
“Let’s not talk about the idea of compound unity in Him. Just tell me, could
God take the form of a man if He chose to?” We might respond that if that
were so, wouldn’t it just be a created body and soul, with the Uncreated One
working through it? And how is that different from the way He works through
other things and people in the world, which don’t deserve our worship? Also,
people have said, “Forget about the incarnation for a moment. Doesn’t it
limit God to say that we are sure He has no relationship or infinite
complexity within Himself? Didn’t He create relationships and complexity to
begin with?” Such a thing would be beyond anything revealed to us, and the
words would in fact be meaningless, because in our vocabulary relationship
and complexity are, in the end, the attributes of finite
the issue goes much deeper than that. No worshiper of Jesus is ever just
talking about God ‘having some mystical relationship in Himself’. Why would
you speculate on that? No one is ever just talking about God making Himself
experience humanity. What would that even mean to Him, different from the
rest of the way He works in creation and intimately knows it. The whole argument is
trapped by the pull of a person’s heart to the gravity of the person of ‘Jesus’.
is a man who was a Jew, born to a Jewish mother, and therefore a part of the
covenant nation. He was circumcised and he was bound to follow Torah and to
live within it as a marriage relationship to our Creator. His very existence
as a man was to be as a servant of the Creator and a testimony to “I am
Hashem your God, who brought you out of Egypt.” The Christian gospels record
him as a person who submitted to this and who prayed during his life; in
other words, just like so many humans before and after him, he had a
relationship with God.
numerous writers in the Christian scriptures also wrote that he claimed “I
and the Father are one” and that he as ‘messiah’ was the very manifestation
of the glory of God, many people began to worship him as God incarnate. Why
were they not content to consider him to be a created being through which
God showed His presence, such as the burning bush, the cloud and fire, the
Israelites when they crossed the sea, and the ark of the covenant? It was
because he, unlike these things and unlike a national collective, was a
person; not an ‘it’, but a ‘he’. And because they loved him as a teacher and
a friend, in fact as their messiah whom they hoped would be utterly
glorified. It was a highly personal level of connection. If he was to be
worshiped, then this could never be just a case of ‘God incarnate’; their
relationship with him was different from their relationship with an
invisible God, because it included all his personal attributes and the
elements of his soul, his human fortitude or kindness, even his face and his
hands; finite and created things. And because he prayed, he will never be
understood to be the “Hashem echad” to which we give our hearts in simple,
childlike singularity, not knowing what He is but knowing Him through the
complexity of this world.
Never separate the Christian ideas of an incarnation of God and ‘revealed complexity’ in God. They do not stand alone in the heart of a worshiper of Jesus; rather, they are only meaningful to anyone as threads in the bigger picture of devotion to a distinct personality.
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Yisroel C. Blumenthal
I fully agree. All Christian beliefs refer to a “God” who actually is a Greek “theos”. But all Jewish scriptures refer to a Hebrew ELOHIM. Theos may be trinitarian (I don’t know) but ELOHEYNU ECHAD. When I was a Christian I asserted a lot of weird ideas that I couldn’t understand but I was convinced that I believed them. I loved a pagan tri-une theos with all my heart, and with all my soul, and with all my might. But this, for sure, was not HaShem’s idea. HE actually forbade to worship the Christian “God”.
Theos had to rely on Jesus when creating the world. It is pretended that Jesus was preexistent. But Jesus was a liar when he said; “Before Abraham was I was.” He must have said; “Before Adam was, I was,” but he didn’t. So I imagine a partmighty divinity who in order to create the world needs
> a Jewish son
> who obtained his brit milah on the eighth day (Luke 2:21) and attended a synagoge on every Shabbat (Luke 4:16)
> and at the same time is a divine incarnation.
This divinity later sacrificed his son in order to save the world from it’s sin but the world has not the foggiest idea what that sin could be. A Jew sins when he keeps the Sunday and breaks the Shabbat and a Christian sins when he does vice versa. Now, which sin was “J.” killed for? You really feel exalted when you believe Christian mysticism but it is a false Roman Catholic teaching – that’s it.
ELOHIM became his own creation (man) – we must exclude that. But in Greek mythology we find multitudes of demigods and divinities with human mind set and behavior. Zeus, the father of the gods, once killed god Phaeton, son of sun divinity Helios and the Goddess Eos in order to save the world because Phaeton had made a mistake. Thus you know where the idea of the Holy Crucifix of Calvary comes from. God becomes man and kills himself in shape of his son – that’s simply crazy.
I’ve heard it said that Jesus came to show us how godly we should act. That he is the example of G-d’s perfection.
Then he definitely shouldn’t be worshiped *as* God.
Anyway, there are lots of reflections of God’s glory in the world. None is ‘complete’ but all are worth so much as He communicates with us through creation. And we can then focus on Him.
Some time ago I, too, would have said that we have to act as godly as “Jesus” did. I well remember the missionary campaign “WWJD” (What would Jesus do?). In the US they were successful as they were in no other country in the world.
But – did “Jesus” himself act godly? “Jesus'” disciples were armed with two swords when he was taken captive; thus every Christian worldwide should be armed in order to act “godly”. I ask myself whether this was “God’s” perfection. Which perfection did “Jesus” embody – the perfection of ELOHIM or of Theos? (both divinities were translated as “God”) “Jesus” kept the Sabbath (Luke 4:6) and he taught that he did not come to destroy the Torah nor the Prophets (Mat 5:17) – do Christians act “godly” when they keep the Sunday and refuse the Torah?
In Devarim (Deu) 4:1-2 I read that we do not have to add a “New Testament” to the Torah and in Ch. 6 I read that ELOHEYNU is ECHAD. Now, when ELOHEYNU is ECHAD – where is Jesus, Yeshua, Mary, Paul, John, Theos etc? I tell you: they’re nowhere! Neither serve them nor worship them. When I see a “holy crucifix” I see a graven image – that’s what “Jesus” really is but now Evangelical may believe this. An invisible crucifix idol is an idol even when it is invisible. Annelise used the expression “incarnate” – can you imagine HaShem incarnate in an idol?
Whenever G-d speaks as אֱלֹהִ-ים ĕlohim is the subject of וַיֹּאמֶר vayomer “and he said”, which is a singular form. G-d is always SINGULAR (one)!
HaShem is one, very right, but “God” is not. The “New Testament” makes us believe that a Greek Theos is one (or three in one which is the same) and the same divinity (God), too. Yet, truth is that Theos is anonther divinity (do not worship nor serve him) and that Theos goes along with all divinities in Greek mythology like Zeus, Helios etc. They may not be found in our mouths. When you use the word “God” (G-d) you should keep in mind that a Christian does not believe in the same concept as you do.
The same phenomenon we can see with “Jesus”. In the Christian “Old Testament”, Yud-He-Vav-He was replaced with “LORD” and in the “New Testament” a graven Idol in a manger and on a crucifix (Jesus) is the Lord. Some Christians actually believe that “J.” is no idol because they don’t see it; they assert that Jesus is alife because auf resurrection and assention. Thus they serve him as an invisible idol and think they please “God”. I am sure that they don’t please HaShem this way. They actually believe that the Torah is expired and invalid. “We do not believe in the God of the Jews, we do believe in the God of the Christians”. This I once read in a Christian chat room by user “Trinity” when quoting the Shma Israel.
G-d IS one — that is very clear. By whatever term we call Him — HaShem, Father, G-d, Judge — He is the same and He is unchanging. It little matters that Trinitarians are bad at math and thing 3 is the same as one and that “how” is a mystery. . . G-d Himself is clear that He is One and He is unchanging. G-d is not a man Bamidbar / Numbers 23:19