The Legitimacy of Questioning – by Jim

The Legitimacy of Questioning – by Jim

Is it fair that Jesus call his opponents “sons of the devil” and such names? Is he really just correcting (lovingly) those who were in sin? The Christian apologists here would have us believe that the invective Jesus spits at his opponents is perfectly justified, but let us examine the evidence.

One of the claims that Jesus makes is that the Hebrew scriptures testify to him: “You search the scriptures because you think that in them you have eternal life; and it is they that testify on my behalf. Yet you refuse to come to me to have life” (John 5:39-40). This claim, however, is wholly unsubstantiated.

It is clear that anybody can make any claim for himself. It is another thing to prove the veracity of the claim. How would Jesus be able to substantiate the claim that the scriptures testify to him? This would be an exceedingly difficult claim, and we cannot be surprised that he never makes an attempt to support it. Instead, he browbeats his opponents, claiming, “If you believed Moses, you would believe me, for he wrote about me. But if you do not believe what he wrote how will you believe what I say?” (John 5:46-47). All Jesus has done here is attempt to humiliate his opponents and borrow the authority of Moses for himself, that and vilify his opponents. As is so often his way, he questions their sincerity.

But let us examine his claim. Is Jesus found in the scriptures? Did Moses write about Jesus?

The latter question is the easier to answer. Torah says very little about the Messiah. It is most certainly false that a reading of the Five Books would lead one to the idea that Jesus has propounded, that one should come to the Messiah (or specifically himself) for eternal life. One can see why Jesus did not appeal to one actual scripture. It is not likely he could find one. It is much easier to call people blind for not seeing something than to show it them where it cannot be found. No wonder then that he would rely upon invective rather than instructing the people.

And what about the scripture in general? Do they testify on Jesus’ behalf?

It is unclear what Jesus means that they testify on his behalf. Once again, it is important to note that the person of the Messiah is hardly mentioned. He is not the focus of the Writings or the Prophets anymore than he is the focus of Torah. Certainly nothing in them shows that the Messiah brings eternal life. Even if they did, that would not mean that Jesus brings eternal life, because he had not yet proven himself to be the Messiah.

It can be supposed that Jesus was making reference to the prophecies he was supposed to have fulfilled up to that point. However, if these are the same prophecies used by the Church, then it is no wonder that he referenced none of them. They would carry no weight with a knowledgeable person. And seldom could they be verified.

What could he say? “I was born of a virgin.” This would be an empty claim, because nobody could know that that was the case. The words would be empty without proof. And anybody with knowledge would know that no such prophecy exists. For anybody who knew Isaiah 7:14, it would be clear that Jesus was a confused person. Isaiah 7:14 is about a woman naming her child “Immanuel”. Jesus’ mother did not so name him. Clearly the prophecy had nothing to do with him.

Perhaps he could tell them that he was from Bethlehem. This would be useful, inasmuch as they thought he was just from Galilee (John 7:42). But this would not be proof either. Anybody could say they were from Bethlehem; that does not make it so. He had no birth certificate. Even today, some people question the birthplace of the current American president. Just saying you were born somewhere does not make it so. There were no witnesses to question about the event. It would be just another empty claim. (And certainly not everyone born in Bethlehem is the Messiah.)

Or, he could tell them how God called him out of Egypt. But any knowledgeable person would know that Hosea 11:1 was not about the Messiah. It was about Israel. And the same problem comes up as with the two previous ‘Messianic’ prophecies. Jesus has no witnesses. So, even if the prophecies had been about the Messiah, they would not be able to compare them to Jesus’ life and see how well they matched up.

Of course, I could go on, but all the supposed prophecies Jesus is said to have fulfilled have been tackled elsewhere. They have been shown not to be Messianic prophecies whatsoever, in most cases. And most anything Jesus is supposed to have fulfilled was a private event that could not serve as verification of his claims.

In short, Jesus’ claim that his opponents do not believe Moses is spurious. John does not have Jesus bringing any proofs, and it is obvious why. Jesus is not making a legitimate argument, proving his claims. Instead, he attacks their character. He vilifies his opponents, because he is actually asking for blind faith. He is demanding that people take him at his word. He will tolerate no investigation into his claims. So, rather than show how they are wrong, he attributes evil motives to them.

Jesus is nothing more than a demagogue. He demands belief without evidence. His castigation of them is not an act of love, of kindness. It is hateful and self-serving.

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164 Responses to The Legitimacy of Questioning – by Jim

  1. LB says:

    Previously I have asked Christians who post here why don’t they write thoughtful articles like this one and the answer I got was because the bible speaks for itself. Clearly it does and you brought up some good points. I’ll add this to your book.

    • Jim says:

      Thanks, Larry!

      That’s a really strange response to get from somebody: “The Bible speaks for itself.” Did somebody really tell you that?
      Jim

  2. ChristianPaul says:

    Hi Jim!

    Your arguments does not read history correctly. The burden of proof does not lie on Christianity in its purest form in the Orthodox Church. The burden of proof lies on the religion of the second temple that was destroyed by the hand of God in year 70AD.

    Why 2000 years of suffering and persecution?

    What did Jewish People do to receive such a chastisement?

    Between the first and second temple how many years of punishment? First temple destruction: destroyed by the Babylonians in 586 BCE when they sacked the city.; reconstruction date around 538 BCE completed in 515 BCE.. The delta was 70 years between the destruction of the 1st and the completion of the 2nd temple.

    For 585 years till year 70 AD the second temple stood. Year 70 AD complete destruction till now no new temple… Why is that?

    Could it be that the death of the Messiah cursed the Jewish people for all those years? According to the Gospel of Luke the Messiah said:

    34 Jesus said, “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing.”

    Obviously the plea to forgiveness to the Father Almighty did not prevent Him to destroy the Second Temple. Therefore how can you explain your walk according to the will of God when He chastise you for more than 19 centuries? Can you be sure to walk according to his will?

    In the opposite, Christianity growth was astonishing reaching all the part of the earth. Despite the sins and the corruption the favor of God built the Christian civilization with the emergence of hospitals, universities and system based on the rule of noble blood on the people of the nations. This emergence of Israel in the Church reigning with Christ in the heavens was an accomplishment of a messianic reign not based on magic thinking but based on an harmony between the political powers and the religious powers.

    But the emergence of the Prostitute with the new Political Beast based on Money and Greed will morph Western Societies and the Christian world in a corrupt system predicted by saint John the Apostle, the Theologian and the Prophet…

    15 Then the angel said to me, “The waters you saw, where the prostitute sits, are peoples, multitudes, nations and languages. 16 The beast and the ten horns you saw will hate the prostitute. They will bring her to ruin and leave her naked; they will eat her flesh and burn her with fire. 17 For God has put it into their hearts to accomplish his purpose by agreeing to hand over to the beast their royal authority, until God’s words are fulfilled. 18 The woman you saw is the great city that rules over the kings of the earth.”

    Thank you in advance! Blessings!

    • Christian
      The growth of Christianity was the growth of anti-Semitism – nothing astonishing about that

    • Saul Goodman says:

      Hi Christian,

      “The burden of proof lies on the religion of the second temple that was destroyed by the hand of God in year 70AD.

      Why 2000 years of suffering and persecution?

      What did Jewish People do to receive such a chastisement?”

      When you can not prove your own faith, ask questions that are irelevant. And questions where both sides have their answers.

      “Could it be that the death of the Messiah cursed the Jewish people for all those years? ”

      Could it be because of the Boogie man? You are presuposing what you precisely have to prove.

      “According to the Gospel of Luke the Messiah said:

      34 Jesus said, “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing.””

      There is mss problem here, and many scholars view it as non authentic.

      ” Can you be sure to walk according to his will?”

      Can you? On one side, there is the public and recognized event of Sinai, on the other side, a private ressurection supported by books that confuse Jeremiah and Zachariah. Wich one to choose? Wich one is safer?

      “In the opposite, Christianity growth was astonishing reaching all the part of the earth.”

      How many Orthodox Christians? And 5 centuries ago, where were you? Romanists have more success than you in history. Bad argument. Really bad.

      This is cheap marketing for your Church.

    • ChristianPaul says:

      Peace to you Rabbi and Saul!

      When someone is cursed by God the punishment in the Torah is for more than 3 or 4 generations but 1000 generations. Your banishment for the Land plus the abolishment of the Second Temple Religion and Jewish persecutions was a sign for the Nations that the penalty to murder the Messiah the Son of God was having serious consequences for the perpetrators.

      In the Torah Rabbi and you can confirm it is a grave sin just to handover a fellow Jew to the Gentiles, imagine when it is the King himself. Just that was a grave mistake! Imagine the rest! You question the authenticity of the Christian Holy Scriptures canonized by the Holy Church and you asked to doubt them when it is forbidden in your Law to question even one Yod of the Torah. How can you explained the double standard here?

      Thank you and many blessings! May the truth prevail in all!

      • Saul Goodman says:

        The problem is you do not answer anything but just repeat yourself.

        “You question the authenticity of the Christian Holy Scriptures canonized by the Holy Church and you asked to doubt them when it is forbidden in your Law to question even one Yod of the Torah. How can you explained the double standard here?”

        What is funny, is you are in fact the one using double standards. I’m concistent; the same reason that makes me accept the Torah forces me to reject the NT. If you do not trust the Jews for the NT, why do you trust them for the Torah? Inconcistency.

        By the way, why should i trust your Holy Church when you do not even agree on the OT Canon of Scriptures? “Saint” Philaret of Moscow in the last 19th century denied the deuterocanonicals, but you accept them. This is what happens when you refuse to listen to the Seat of Moses.

        • ChristianPaul says:

          Hi Saul!

          It is evident that you don’t know how the process of the canonization of the Tanakh went. You would be quite astonish to learn it. Be a sport inquires not in one way view but be a seeker of truth have courage.

          Many Blessings!

          https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Development_of_the_Hebrew_Bible_canon

          • Saul Goodman says:

            Christian, your Church TODAY still does not have a unified OT canon. 2000 years of “Holy” Spirit and no canon of Scripture? For real? And you reply with wikipedia? Now you are getting lower and lower every comment. But now it is time for you to reply:

            What is an oecumenical Council? How is it different from a local council? How do we know if a council is oecumenical or not? Please, stop running awat from this.

      • Christian
        We could have been more blessed – but we are still not as cursed as were the followers of Jesus who were cursed with the guilt of 2000 years of hate that still fills the shelves in their libraries

        • ChristianPaul says:

          Hi Rabbi!

          What guilt are you talking about? Are you talking about your friend the pope and his minions the Western Prostitute and all the whores of Protestants sects and the German racists. I would remind you that the Russians gave their lives more than anyone to save Europe and the Jews. The Orthodox Church is not against the sons of Israel but are part of Israel in case you did not know. That is why also 20 millions of Russian Orthodox perish because of anti-Christian propaganda during the Communism. By the way which country had and still have the most Jews: Russia.

          We have been persecuted by the Popes and the Freemasons and all the satanic sects for we love the One True God the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob and we recognize the Son of God the Messiah in the Flesh our Saviour and we recognize that the true Yerusalaim is in the Heavens where will reign with the One Messiah.

          The second temple has been replaced by Orthodox churches
          The second temple liturgy has been replaced by the Divine Liturgy of the Church
          The showbread of the Presence is still on the altar
          The Levites are still serving the Divine Liturgy
          The Holy Doctrine is still held by the Orthodox Council
          The Holy Tradition is always alive

          I hope ye will seek the truth and drop the reign of confusion for still ye live in Sodom and Egypt and your bondages must be broken. I hope for ye and pray for ye and one day all our brother Jews will see the Truth and live free.

          Many blessings!

          • Christian The Russian Orthodox Church has a lot of blood on their hands And your ideas about the Temple being replaced contradicts Scripture – God chose the place in Jerusalem forever (Psalm 78:69; 132:14)

          • Saul Goodman says:

            What is hilarious, is while attacking the westerners, you have a typical westerner view. No eastern European would believe such nonsense lol. If i show your comment to my mother(a nominal Orthodox Christian from eastern Europe), she will laugh a lot.

            “I would remind you that the Russians gave their lives more than anyone to save Europe and the Jews. ”

            Russians didn’t care about Europe or Jews, Staline shot any soldier who would turn back lol. And since when USSR loved Europe and Jews? Come on.

            “We have been persecuted by the Popes and the Freemasons and all the satanic sects”

            So, when the communists in Transylvania destroyed the Eastern Catholic Church and gave all its property to the Orthodox Church it was papist freemason persecution of Orthodox? Or was it communist-autocephalous alliance against the papists? Think about it.

            Anyway this is really silly.

    • Jim says:

      C. Paul,

      If anyone comes to you and says that he is a prophet or that he is the son of god then the onus of proof is indeed on him. He owes you his credentials, especially if he is going to demand obedience. We demonstrate why Christianity is false. You can only assert that it is true and appeal to irrelevancies. The majority of your comment is not a response to what I have written but a distraction. You attempt to change the topic, I suspect, because you can give no substantive answer.

      Jim

    • Jim says:

      C. Paul,

      I am not interested in your distraction, but I do think it important to note that it is easy for Christians to ask: “Why have you suffered for 2,000 years?” while putting the Jew to the rack. But the question could easily be asked, “Where is your king for the past 2,000 years?” Jesus said he would return while his generation yet lived. Paul (full of wind, I am sure) wrote that the time had grown short, so that people ought no longer seek to be married, unless they cannot help themselves (I Cor. 7). So the question is, why don’t we hear the final trumpet sounding? Cup your hand to your ear. What is that you hear? Crickets. No Jesus. Perhaps he got lost on the way back down.

      Jim

    • Sharbano says:

      Are you calling Daniel a liar regarding the timeline. The time was specific, 490 years.

    • Sharbano says:

      We can say from historical accounts that Xtianity were murderers from the beginning. THIS has been the heritage by Xtianity from its most earliest times.

      • ChristianPaul says:

        Sharbano Peace to you!

        Christians were persecuted from the beginning. I find you accusation unjust. Where do you get such distortions of history. Before the Roman Christianization, Christians were not persecutors. Sadly after when in power the human nature and the seduction of riches corrupt and compromise most Christians. But still the Saints were being produced for the Glory of the One God.

        Like in your Orthodox Assemblies not all Orthodox Jews are Holy but some sages and just emerge higher than the rest. Therefore your critic is bias and with two type of scale. I find your judgement liking respect and justice. I might be mistaken and I hope I am but if not it is sad to see such false characterization. Let us pray the Just One to give us the spirit of discernment to judge rightly and see his ways; and may He gives us the strength to accomplish his holy will.

        Many blessings for you and may the Truth prevail in all!

      • David says:

        Sharbano,

        “Xtianity were murderers from the beginning.”

        Just who did Christians “murder” in the beginning?

        Perhaps you meant to say that from the beginning Christians were “murdered.” And this has been the legacy of Christianity from its most earliest times.

        But we can say most definitively from Hebrew Scriptures that the Israelites were murderers from the beginning. My only question is, were they successful in their genocidal attempts or not? Some say yes, some say no.

        By the way, you know don’t you who were the slave laborers who built the first Temple? So it looks like the Jews owe a debt of gratitude to the people of Canaan. If you found a descendant alive today would you thank them and then apologize for the attempted genocide?

        • Sharbano says:

          I suppose you want to use the, “they weren’t real Xtians” tactic to absolve those followers for all the millions they put to death, by fire and sword. It wasn’t long after the Churban that this began. Of course, in usual fashion it begins with restrictive laws at first.

          • David says:

            Sharbano,

            No, I want to use the “were they real Israelites” who turned their children into bastards whom they fathered from Canaanite women and then sent them and their mothers away upon the return of the exiled Israelites. Their excuse for their deplorable behavior was a new found zeal for God.

            So, were they real Israelites when they disowned their own children turning them into fatherless bastards and leaving the mothers without support, or instead was it the “real Israelites who supported their foreign wives and children?

            At which point do you see the “real Israelites”?

            Was it the real Israelites who slaughtered innocent children in their conquest for the land of the Canaanites?

            Was it the real Israelites who put foreigners, namely Canaanites to slavery as had been done to them?

            Tell me, did the real Israelites ever have a foreign nation such as Rome take on Judaism as their own official religion and then in the name of that religion commit atrocities? Or have the real Israelites been spared that horror?

            It’s easy to point the accusatory finger. But try instead to self exam, ask forgiveness for Israel’s ancestral atrocities, and then thank God for the blessings you’ve been given, and which have been deprived to others.

          • Sharbano says:

            So, you are justifying Xtian atrocities over the centuries, that they were doing the will of G-d. So, when the Crusaders were carrying their crosses, and herded Jews into synagogues and set fires, they were doing the bidding of Jsus, since Jsus says to slay those who will not have me reign over them.

  3. remi4321 says:

    ChristianPaul says:

    Why 2000 years of suffering and persecution?

    Maybe because too many believed in Jesus!

    Or maybe the scripture explains it too well for you to believe.

    But he (Israel) was pierced because our (nations) transgressions, he was crushed because of our iniquities.

    Or are you like Job’s friends telling him (israel) that he must have sinned to deserve such an exile?

  4. dan1el2 says:

    One of the things Messiah explicitly claimed Moses wrote about him was the episode of the Serpent Moses raised up in the wilderness [Jn 3]; I’ve heard teachings at Chabad.org that agree (the Serpent refers to Messiah). One of their reasons is that the Gematria is the same for both “Serpent” and “Messiah”. According to Rabbi Mendel Kaplan, the episode is a foreshadow of the resurrection from the dead (inexorably linked to Messiah), because the men were “as good as dead”, and God saved from death by granting access to a power greater than normative life (in order to thwart the power of death which thwarts normative life) to anyone who would but look to the Serpent with faith in God. I would assume that the thing Rabbi Kaplan explained would be another reason it was thought that the Serpent referred to Messiah.

    I believe it was along these lines that Yehoshua meant Moses “wrote” of him–not “by name”, per se.

    • Jim says:

      dan1el2,

      Thank you for your response.

      There is a sense in which I think that we can say that Jesus has similarities to the bronze serpent, but it would be absurd to say that the story is about Jesus, and certainly not about the Messiah. It may benefit us to study the story and its similarities to Jesus, so I will do so below.

      But first I think we must recognize that your answer is not sufficient to justify Jesus’ castigation of “the Jews” for not believing on him. Let us assume that he did point them to the bronze snake, as proof that he was from God. When he says that Moses wrote of him, he says what? “That story about the snake was a hint about me”? That is not verification of anything. That would just be another unsubstantiated claim. Let us say he even pointed to the gematria. This would be entirely useless. He would say that serpent and messiah have the same numerical value. What would you say if some random man approached you and told you that you needed to believe on God because Torah pointed to him. When you ask him for proof, he offers this explanation, relying on the gematria. You would likely say to him, “That is an interesting gematria, but that does not establish your credentials as Messiah.” If this is the proof Jesus brought, it is no proof at all. He is really only telling people to take him at his word, and castigating them when they do not. Instead of answering their legitimate questions, he offers flimsy and meaningless appeals to irrelevant passages of scripture and abuses the questioners. Your explanation solves nothing.

      And I am not sure that Jesus would actually point to the bronze snake. In fact, it seems rather unlikely. When he references it in John 3, he does not say that Moses was really writing about him, Jesus. He only makes a metaphor between himself and the bronze serpent, both being lifted up.

      Unfortunately, the metaphor does not work the way Jesus would like it to. The bronze serpent had no power to heal. As you mentioned, the people were to put their faith in God. Numbers does not say that the serpent saved the people. It says that they looked upon it and lived. But Jesus is claiming something different for himself. He is saying that people must believe in himself.

      This is an idolatrous idea, and it does mirror the serpent better than he realized. In 2 Kings 18, we see that people had begun to make offerings to the bronze serpent. They turned it into an idol. Hezekiah broke it into pieces and put an end to this practice. Now, people have turned Jesus into an idol in the same way. Just as a bronze serpent is not a god and has no divine power, so with Jesus, a man. Yet many have worshiped him, looking to him as a source of life. And just as a messiah, King Hezekiah, destroyed the idol, someday, when the true messiah comes, people will see that it is not Jesus, and they will no longer worship a false god. In that day, “God will be one and His Name one,” and “the knowledge of God will cover the world as the water covers the seas.”

      Hopefully it is clear that I am not saying that Numbers 21 is really about Jesus. I only wished to show two things. The first is that if Jesus had made a claim that the bronze serpent was a hidden reference to himself, this would have been an entirely unproveable claim, and therefore useless. It could not be used to substantiate any claim about him being from God. The second is that the parallel between Jesus and the snake is much stronger than he realized. Neither was divine, though people worshiped Jesus as such.

      Jim

      • dan1el2 says:

        Jim,
        1. There is a sense in which I think that we can say that Jesus has similarities to the bronze serpent, but it would be absurd to say that the story is about Jesus, and certainly not about the Messiah.
        1a. Whether you believe it is about Jesus or not, since Jesus proclaimed himself Messiah he would take all of the allusions Moses wrote about Messiah (this is only one of them) as being things Moses wrote about him. The author asserted that Moses had never written about Jesus, and I just came to respond and possible clarify in what sense it was Moses had written of him (because it seemed like maybe that was needed).
        1b. As I’ve already said before, the Chabadniks will disagree with you when you say the copper serpent is not about Messiah: you have a problem not just with my interpretation but also with those interpretations belonging to Orthodox Jews.
        Interestingly enough, the Tanya teaches that the body is like a serpent’s skin (and the soul a princess trapped inside)! The copper serpent was made *in the likeness* of the actual serpents though it was made of a different material to start with; when the men beheld the copper serpent, the actual serpents (to which the copper serpent correlated) lost their power to do harm. Jesus was fashioned into a human body (though he was not originally made of the same substance–material, but not the same material: flesh, but not sinful flesh), and those who look to him with faith in God will be saved from the death which was brought about through sin (sin is “living for the whims of the flesh”) so as to “bring the sinful flesh to nothing” [Ro 6:6, 7:24, 25]—or, in the words of Rabbi Mendel Kaplan, “render the serpents… inanimate objects”.

        2. “But first I think we must recognize that your answer is not sufficient to justify Jesus’ castigation of “the Jews” for not believing on him.”
        2. That’s irrelevant, since it wasn’t even the issue I was addressing.

        3. “And I am not sure that Jesus would actually point to the bronze snake. In fact, it seems rather unlikely. When he references it in John 3, he does not say that Moses was really writing about him, Jesus. He only makes a metaphor between himself and the bronze serpent, both being lifted up.”
        3. Really? Are you just disagreeing for the sake of disagreeing at this point; not even considering what you’re writing? There is an inextricable link between Jesus claiming Moses wrote about him (the Messiah), and the fact that he cites one of Moses’s writings to explain the way God would save through him.
        It’s really straightforward. Nothing “spooky” or “mysterious” going on there. Take it or leave it. You can tell me up and not up but that is your problem not mine.

        4. “Unfortunately, the metaphor does not work the way Jesus would like it to. The bronze serpent had no power to heal. As you mentioned, the people were to put their faith in God. Numbers does not say that the serpent saved the people. It says that they looked upon it and lived. But Jesus is claiming something different for himself. He is saying that people must believe in himself.
        This is an idolatrous idea, and it does mirror the serpent better than he realized. In 2 Kings 18, we see that people had begun to make offerings to the bronze serpent. They turned it into an idol. Hezekiah broke it into pieces and put an end to this practice. Now, people have turned Jesus into an idol in the same way. Just as a bronze serpent is not a god and has no divine power, so with Jesus, a man. Yet many have worshiped him, looking to him as a source of life. And just as a messiah, King Hezekiah, destroyed the idol, someday, when the true messiah comes, people will see that it is not Jesus, and they will no longer worship a false god. In that day, ‘God will be one and His Name one,’ and ‘the knowledge of God will cover the world as the water covers the seas.'”
        4a. This is not the only metaphor which he would not expect us to take and apply point-for-point: he compares himself to Jonah [Mt 12:40], who was derelict in his duty to God. Was Jesus really teaching that he had disobeyed God? Irrespective our personal opinions about him, no, he was certainly not teaching that about himself. He was merely borrowing an aspect of the narrative of Jonah to teach what his mission would be like.
        4b. Jesus always said he could do nothing of himself, but only what the father gave him the ability to do [Jn 5:30, 8:28]; he, furthermore, explains that whoever believes in him DOES NOT believe in him but in the one who sent him [Jn 12:44]. Was there anything wrong with the people believing in “the L-rd and in His servant Moses” [Ex 14:31]? No? Well, nothing wrong here either then.
        4c. The “trinity” or “the divinity of Messiah” wasn’t the topic.

        5. “…if Jesus had made a claim that the bronze serpent was a hidden reference to himself, this would have been an entirely unproveable claim, and therefore useless. It could not be used to substantiate any claim about him being from God. The second is that the parallel between Jesus and the snake is much stronger than he realized. Neither was divine, though people worshiped Jesus as such.”
        5a. Again, the reply I submitted was only for clarification as to what sense Jesus was claiming Moses had written of him. Whether it is substantiable or not is not the issue.
        5b. As far as the “parallel” being “stronger than he realized”: as I explained before, the allusion was fitting, but it was you who took the parallel too “strongly”.

        • Sharbano says:

          I think you have completely misinterpreted what Chabad says on this matter. This is why there are Rabbis who say nothing of Kabbalah should be put online. Without a proper foundation it cannot be understood. One can put it this way. What is said, or written, is not exactly what it means. Or to put it another way, it can be a method to understand the unified field theory using Torah. How are the two related. If you can define that, then, maybe, you would have a foot to stand on. But to try and use Kabbalah in the same way the Xtian text does is nothing short of dishonesty. I haven’t heard One Single Xtian who has Ever given Kabbalah any credence. If one is going to use that as a method of authority then he would Also have to give it the same authoritative measure as Tanach. Otherwise it is nothing short of a tactical ploy.

          • dan1el2 says:

            Sharbano,
            I think you’ve misunderstood what I had to say, so allow me to try to clarify.

            All I was saying was that the sense in which Jesus meant Moses wrote of him was that Moses wrote about the Messiah (generally speaking) and that Chabad would agree that the “nahash nehoshet” was one instance. Whether it proves Christianity, in particular, is not the issue.

          • Sharbano says:

            You’ve repeated the Same thing again which was the intent of my reply by saying “Chabad would agree”. I can unequivocally state that Chabad would indeed NOT agree.

          • Sharbano says:

            I’ll put it this way. The purpose of the Jew, and the Mitzvot in particular, is to take the physical and elevate it to the spiritual. This is done by sanctification, which permeates all of Judaism, which detractors call legalistic, Mashiach, and the age of Mashiach, will sanctify the world and the result will be the end of the Yezter Hara and the Nachash which is the embodiment of it. This is how the Gematria relates. This was NOT accomplished with Jsus. The Yezter Hara is still with us and had much influence with the legacy of Xtianity. Jsus may have said, go and sin no more, and that leaves intact the inclination. By his own admission he didn’t fulfill Chabad teachings and thus is not and cannot be Mashiach.

          • dan1el2 says:

            Sharbano,
            Since you’re saying that Chabad would not agree with me, do you want me to get an explicit statement from them (via AskTheRabbi)? I think I’ll do just that and you can take it up with them and stop making me look like a liar.

          • Sharbano says:

            Are you going to ask them if it can apply to Jsus. It was your contention that Jsus is the one applicable.

          • dan1el2 says:

            Sharbano,
            Just as within Judaism, the sin of some (or even the majority) does not reflect the authenticity of Moses’s message so it is with those who claim to believe in G-d’s Messiah. There has always been a remnant amidst a larger group who are merely nominally G-d’s people.

          • Sharbano says:

            You began by using the serpent as what Jsus MEANT when saying Moshe spoke of him. Well, how is that phrased. If he says “spoke” then it would not be in mystical terms. It says, if you do not believe his writings. He was telling his followers something that is direct. Your entire premise from the beginning is faulty and it is disingenuous to attempt to use Rabbinic teachings to further that argument.

        • dan1el2 says:

          Sharbano,
          1. “You began by using the serpent as what Jsus MEANT when saying Moshe spoke of him.”
          1. It is one example.

          2. “If he says ‘spoke’ then it would not be in mystical terms.”
          3. Like I said, Orthodox Jews would disagree with you.

          3. “It says, if you do not believe his writings.”
          3. On various levels. The wisdom even of humans is multi-faceted; how much more G-d’s?

          4. “He was telling his followers something that is direct. Your entire premise from the beginning is faulty and it is disingenuous to attempt to use Rabbinic teachings to further that argument.”
          4. OK So I reject your premise (i.e., “Jesus”–about whom you know nothing–“could only have meant that Moses wrote about him in the way that I say”) as it is faulty.

          This will be my last response to you here as I can see you don’t have any basis in logic but will just drag this out due to your emotions.

          • Sharbano says:

            1. It IS the example You chose.
            2. You are trying to mix Pardes and Pshat.
            3. The point of Jsus was to believe “him” the same as in Moshe.
            4. The heart of the problem is Jsus didn’t really fulfill the role of Mashiach. Therefore all manner of techniques have to be used in order to make some type of convincing argument. With the “Jewish Mashiach” this will simply Not be an issue. Circumstances will arise that there will be no question. The prophecies that Do Specifically point to this individual are clear and pointed. These, there can be no doubt. On those, even Xtians will agree. And This is what We have to rely upon. We dare not rely on vague references, and types and shadows to determine our future.

        • Jim says:

          dan1el2,

          Since you are not addressing what I wrote but creating your own topic, it is not my comments that are irrelevant, but your own. I, as the author of the article to which you are providing a counter-argument, was not discussing allusions to the messiah in general, but in the context of John 5, where Jesus is claiming that any who believe Moses would believe in Jesus, because Moses wrote about Jesus. This claim demands substantiation, which Jesus does not offer. You, by avoiding that issue, have decontextualized both my article and John 5.

          Jesus claims that the reason the Jews do not believe in Him is because they do not believe in Moses. This ugly accusation stands on nothing. Imagine in that context that he said what you have said, that he is alluded to in the copper snake. Such a reference would give nobody any reason to believe on Jesus for eternal life, which is what Jesus is talking about. That is the context of John 5. It is not a general question about whether or not the Messiah is alluded to in Torah.

          This second set of comments directed to me is full of much nonsense, but since you are not actually responding to the article but a figment of your imagination, I am not going to unravel it. If you are so inclined, you could reread my original article, your response, my response to you and then your second response, and I am sure you will see that you have badly misunderstood what I wrote. You stripped the discussion of all context and put words in my mouth that I never said. Normally, I would go over the errors, but since you are writing about a second topic based on an imagined statement of mine, and I have limited time, I am disinclined to go over each point.

          Jim

          • dan1el2 says:

            Jim,
            1. I simply thought “Moses wrote about Messiah” might have needed a little bit of explanation; so, that was all I was writing about. It wasn’t an attack on your article, but was merely a comment. In fact, I could even have been an Orthodox Jew and made the very same statement.

            2a. Regarding the Copper Serpent, Jesus actually *does* share that passage with a Jewish leader (Nakdimon / Nicodemus) while relating the details of his mission [Jn 3]!
            2b. When Jesus says that they do not believe Moses’s writings, he means it on various levels–not just on one or another–so it would include the episode of the Copper Serpent. The nearest example he gives (to prove that they do not have G-d’s Word abiding in themselves [Jn 5:38]) is that they still believe the lie (a lie is the opposite of the Truth–a lie is not “G-d’s Word” or “Moses’s writings”) that they are praiseworthy, thus give themselves the green light to indulge in the sinful desire to receive praise from one another [Jn 5:44], which naturally leads them to look at others with contempt (whereas the Truth of the Law would have condemned them as sinful people [undeserving of praise] who were in need of deliverance from themselves [Ro 7:24]–told told them “shut your mouth [Jn 8:7; Ro 3:19,20]–both from boasting you are good, and from condemning your neighbor you think you are better than” [Lk 18:9-14]). In case you’d like to know what a person receiving Moses’s words would look like, Romans 7:5-24 would be a good start.
            2c. As I’d said before, Orthodox Jews would disagree with you on the point about the Copper Serpent and Messiah, so you reject their pov not only my own.

            3. One last point: the fact is that you really *don’t* believe Moses. For instance, even though Moses says not to say, “‘because of our righteousness’… for you are a stubborn people [the *opposite* of compliant / obedient]… for you provoked the L-rd [this was specifically due to the fact that your hearts “went after your idols” Ez 20:16]” [Dt 9:6-25] (e.g., provoking G-d with *unceasing* idol-worship, beginning in Egypt and proceeding onwards [Ez 20:7-32; Amos 5:25,26]–and you can even “boast” that you managed to make Sodom appear righteous by comparison to the depth of your depravity and wickedness, whereby you made G-d depart from His Temple [Ez 16:51], and gave vindication for Isaiah’s statement, “If the L-RD of hosts had not left us a few survivors, we should have been like Sodom, and become like Gomorrah.”), the Orthodox Jewish opinion is that Jews can’t really sin or separate from G-d because is inwardly holy irrespective what he does outwardly (I literally saw this teaching on Chabad.org). Yes, Tel Aviv has been voted #1 gay destination in the WORLD (you find yourselves, yet again, in the illustrious position of outpacing the entire Gentile world–as in most other things–in sinning), yet the place is full of Jews who can’t sin! Tell me, again, how it was that your religion believes the Truth. If you were “wise” you would obey G-d’s Law [Dt 4:6], but God calls you a “senseless and foolish nation” [Dt 32:6]; therefore, *that* is what you should call yourselves–instead, you heap praise upon yourselves (just as Jesus said [Jn 5:44]–and don’t tell me Talmudic Judaism doesn’t), even teaching that Isaiah deserved to die for daring to say he dwelt amidst a people of “unclean lips”. This is all a result of closing your hearts to Moses’s words. This is only one example.

          • dan1el2 Can you explain Numbers 23:21? or Isaiah 26:2?

          • dan1el2 says:

            Jim,
            You’re right about one thing: time is limited. I’ve tried to help here but I will be leaving the discussion shortly.

          • dan1el2 says:

            re: 2b
            To give some context to what this instance of belief in the “truth” / “G-d’s Word” / “Moses’s writings” WOULD HAVE been: one of the only instances of someone believing the “truth” given in John was the woman who admitted the truth that she was living in sin [Jn 4:18]; by contrast, when Jesus tries to tell the Jews that they sin, they accuse him of having a demon and eventually try to kill him [Jn 8:31-59]. If they *really* believed God’s Word (which accused them of being evil willful transgressors of what was holy), they would not have rejected the words of Jesus when he told them the same truth; they would have received the truth just as the Samaritan woman did.

          • dan1el2 says:

            yourphariseefriend,
            See, you choose one verse and ignore all the others.

            “No misfortune” was with respect to “there is no enchantment against Jacob,
            no divination against Israel”: Balaam’s ability to curse.

          • dan1el2 On what basis do you accuse me of “ignoring all the others”? Your interpretation of Numbers 23:21 is clearly wrong – it says that God did not behold iniquity IN Israel not AGAINST Israel try again

          • dan1el2 says:

            yourphariseefriend,
            Or do you *really* believe there has been nothing bad has ever befallen Israel?!

          • dan1el2 I explained what I believe in the article entitled “Good, Bad and Both”

          • dan1el2 says:

            Everyone,
            I’m so glad yourphariseefriend has chimed in, here, so that you would know that I wasn’t lying when I said that Talmudic Judaism taught the myth that Jews could never sin.

            yourphariseefriend,
            Yes, it is impossible for Jews to sin, but you were capable of making Sodom appear righteous by your sin. Do you even understand the meaning of what it is to sin? Sin is the enslavement of the spirit to do the unctions of the flesh (which will always result in breaking G-d’s Law). That is what sin is; the slavery in Egypt was only a foreshadow of this greater reality. “Inside” you is your “inward man”, or “spirit and mind”; if you tell me you do not “sin”, (I mean no offense) you are lying. It’s as simple as that. The teaching is that a man can only sin when he is overcome with a spirit of insanity. Why? Because he transgresses even knowledge in his mind. Why? Because your inward man is being put to slave labor to work desires which you would rather not do. This is true of any and all sin–whether physical action is involved or not. “There is no death without sin”, yet “there is not one man who does not sin” according to Solomon: all men are spiritually enslaved and are in need of deliverance.

          • dan1el2 And where does the Talmud teach that Jews cannot sin? Jesus certainly made Sodom look good – as far as I can tell no one in Sodom claimed to be God or claim to be sinless – and Jesus was a Jew

          • LB says:

            Dan1&2
            I thought San Francisco wan number 1. You forgot to mention that the Christian nation has just approved gay marriage. How about how the Christian nation harvest human baby body parts for sale and profit. Who’s the senseless and foolish nation? Yes the Christian nation has a lot to offer for advise.

          • Jim says:

            dan1el2,

            In response to your comments here: https://yourphariseefriend.wordpress.com/2015/08/05/the-legitimacy-of-questioning-by-jim/#comment-21835 .

            Your whole comment about Moses writing about Messiah is irrelevant, because I never said he did not. But you did not reread what I wrote, or else you would have noticed this.

            Regarding your point 2a, you did not reread this, either. You are too busy being outraged to understand the writing of others. I did not deny that he referenced the passage. Do not be so dense. I wrote that he did not say it was about him, but that he used it as a metaphor to himself. If you cannnot understand the difference between the two, let me know.

            Your point 2b only shows that Jesus is abusive. Any who do not believe in him, he attributes wicked motives to them. (John 5.44). Why do they not accept his unsubstantiated claims? Because they are wicked. Anybody can say that. Any cult leader would. But notice the one thing he does not do is bring proof of his claims. He just excoriates his opponents.

            Perhaps that is where you learned it.

            Regarding your use of Chabad. When you like what they say, they are a big authority. When you do not like what they say, you cannot believe they would say such a thing, then they are the representatives of all that is wrong with Judaism. Suddenly they cannot be trusted. They are just more arrogant Jews. What happened to their great authority, with which you hoped to pummel us?

            It is amazing to me how sensitive you Christians are. You do not mind calling Jews liars, arrogant, self-righteous, legalistic, sons of the devil with murder in their heart. This you call love. But let someone point out that the NT is rife with Torah abuse or that Jesus broke the Sabbath or did not honor his parents, then you scream bloody murder. You make this out to be the greatest antipathy to Jesus that ever was. Never mind that you can write such self-righteous invective like the Jews heap praise upon themselves. How thin-skinned you all are for people who do not mind telling off the other guy for not worshiping your false God.

            By the way, I am not a Jew. Do not attack them on my account. I am a ben Noach. I have accepted upon myself the Seven Laws. But I am not a part of that blessed nation that God gave as a light to the nations.

            Before you attack that noble people, you ought to read the story of Balaam. Consider well that he was not to curse God’s people. Though Numbers records several instances of error in the Jewish people, when Balaam goes to curse them, God only allows him to bless them. Consider well the beauty of those that have maintained Torah in the face of Christian oppression for 2,000 years. Consider well, Israel’s dedication to his God. Yes, some have fallen away. Israel is not perfect. But who among the nations will throw the first stone?

            Jim

          • Sharbano says:

            I watched that entire video from Chabad with R’ Kaplan and what was said about it is misleading. When one listens with half an ear, or is looking for confirmation of a belief, invariably they miss the contextual teaching. The other links also didn’t comport with what was claimed either.

          • dan1el2 says:

            yourphariseefriend,
            “dan1el2 On what basis do you accuse me of ‘ignoring all the others’?”

            1. When you play word-games with, and over-accentuate a single idea and end up invalidating the rest of G-d’s Truth: if it were true that you never sinned inwardly, you would never break G-d’s Law (since G-d’s Law rules over the very mind and spirit of man), but would always love G-d and your neighbor (these are Commandments which are to govern your very spirit–they do not involve physical deeds–and I’ve heard rabbis rightly say they were not sure it could be done) yet G-d exiled you for that very thing: breaking His Law. This means that Jews DO sin inwardly: there is no other definition of “sin” than the inward person / spirit connecting itself with idols / demons [Dt 32:17; Ps 106:37], and doing deeds pleasing to an idol, which always entails breaking G-d’s Law (e.g., “…because they rejected my rules and did not walk in my statutes, and profaned my Sabbaths; FOR THEIR HEART WENT AFTER THEIR IDOLS.” [Ez 20:16]).
            “The heart is deceitful above all else” [Jer 17:9]–“heart” is metaphorically referring to the inward person; Rashi says this inward person is full “of pretext and deceit of all evil”!
            You cannot do anything outwardly unless it is inside of you–just as a cup cannot overflow with wine unless it is full of wine–so when people sin outwardly it is because that is what is in their heart inwardly.

            2. As far as the Hebrew of Numbers 23, I will have to get back to you on it (you know how much ado can go into that). I’ve heard none other than Rabbi Tovia Singer say there were 9 main variations of the Tanakh–so when your doctrine relies on a squiggle, and seems to go against clear Truth enumerated time and again I will justifiably reject it.

          • dan1el2 And where did I accentuate a single idea and invalidate the rest of God’s truth? And when did I say anything about not sinning inwardly? And Numbers 23:21 does not stand alone – try Psalm 44:18 or Song of Solomon 4:7 – note I am not accentuating these passages – I am just pointing out that you are ignoring them

          • Sharbano says:

            ” When you play word-games with, and over-accentuate a single idea ”

            THIS is Exactly what the Xtian text does all over the place, time and time again, especially with prophecies.

          • dan1el2 says:

            LB,
            1. Well, you’d be wrong and everyone would know it: San Francisco has been overshadowed by Tel Aviv a number of times in recent years.

            2a. The US is not and has not been a Christian nation since the revolutionaries, who were occultists, took it over and made its laws. The idol of America is “Columbia”, the no-goddess of liberty, and that is and has been the measuring line–Christians do not get to form the Laws here. This should be obvious to you since Christians are coming under increasing political persecution (e.g., IRS scandal, etc.,) due to our stances on morality. Therefore, even if San Francisco was #1, it would prove nothing.
            2b. Even if San Francisco was #1, that would prove nothing: Christians do not claim sinlessness but say if anyone says they have not sinned they make G-d out to be a liar [1 Jn 1:10].

          • Sharbano says:

            “The US is not and has not been a Christian nation since the revolutionaries, who were occultists, took it over and made its laws.”

            This sounds a great deal like the Masonic conspiracies.

          • dan1el2 says:

            Jim,
            You’ve already stated that you weren’t interested in a discussion so I won’t invest myself.

            yourphariseefriend,
            “Jesus made Sodom look good”
            I can see you’ve been overcome with a spirit of insanity due to the truth. Go worship yourself.

          • dan1el2 Did you bring any truth here? – did the people in Sodom claim to be divine? did they claim to be sinless?

          • dan1el2 says:

            Jim,
            “It is amazing to me how sensitive you Christians are. You do not mind calling Jews liars, arrogant, self-righteous, legalistic, sons of the devil with murder in their heart. This you call love.”

            Actually, I am descended from the Jews who fled Spain, and am currently awaiting an mtDNA test (my mother took) to help verify maternal lineage. If you think it is wrong to say G-d’s Truth, you’re deluded. The prophets all had a hard time dealing with the nation (they even tried to kill none other than Moses!). Here is the love Isaiah shows them:

            Isaiah 59:9They hatch adders’ eggs; they weave the spider’s web; he who eats their eggs dies, and from one that is crushed a viper is hatched.

            He calls them serpents!

          • dan1el2 Isaiah considered himself one of them

          • Jim says:

            dan1el2,

            Huff and puff and blow that straw man down! Who said that Jews do not sin? You have created a charge that makes it comfortable for you to speak to the Jewish people with the great disdain you clearly hold them in. No one here said that the Jewish people did not sin.

            Who cares if you found some Jew who said that they do not sin? (I doubt you understood what he meant.) This does not make him representative of the Jewish people. What folly!

            Here you have the Jewish Bible, which records the sins of the Jewish people. They admit it openly. There you have the Christian books, which attempt to claim that their leader was sinless. It is truly absurd that you have taken this line of attack.

            Jim

          • dan1el2 says:

            Jim,
            “actually I am descended from the Jews who fled Spain”: in other words, there is no anti-Semitism in my words.

            yourphariseefriend,
            I already explained how you would invalidate the rest of God’s Truth: G-d’s Law is to rule over the very spirit of man (the inward person, variously referred to as his “heart” and “liver” and “kidneys”), and every instance of breaking it is an instance of sinning with the inward man.

          • dan1el2 So what did I say that goes against this?

          • dan1el2 says:

            Jim,
            For a person who wasn’t going to engage in a conversation, you sure do talk alot.

            I guess I’ll have to go dig that video link (where it was taught that Jews do not sin inwardly) up for you guys too.

          • Jim says:

            dan1el2,

            I did not say that I was disinterested in a discussion. I said I was disinterested in repeating myself, and it would be more helpful to me if you reread what I wrote, because your response has nothing to do with it. For example, I did not say that Torah says nothing about the Messiah. This is an error on your part and the impetus of your first response. Moreover, you did not pay attention to the context, so your comments had no bearing on the conversation.

            Jim

          • dan1el2 says:

            youphariseefriend,
            I answered you with a lengthy response, and you answered emptily by accusing Jesus of making Sodom look good. Was that an instance of you “bringing truth”? You’re offended by the truth because the truth doesn’t bode well for you and you worship yourself.

          • dan1el2 I found your response so foolish – do you really believe that Jews believe that Jews cannot sin? What do we think about Jesus or Karl Marx?

          • LB says:

            Dan1@2
            Your right I just googled it. Tel aviv is popular, I tend not to keep up with that stuff. You trying to tell us something here? Anyway 83 percent of Americans consider themselves Christian so when you claim America is not a Christian nation, 83 percent would disagree with you.
            Maybe all those Christian churches are filled with occultist. Maybe that’s why they use so many occult pagan symbols.

          • dan1el2 says:

            Jim,
            I already told you the first comment I made was only to clarify something, and you took it as an attack on your article, and attacked me. When I explained it was just a comment to help clarify, you said the comment was (paraphrase) “pointless”. That should be left up to readers to decide. You’ve misunderstood me from the get-go, and when I’ve tried to clarify, you’ve only attempted to defend your misinformed responses to me (rather than admit you were wrong), so I won’t waste anymore time with you.

          • Jim says:

            dan1el2,

            What an ugly thing to say to R’ Blumenthal. He disagrees with you, so you accuse him of self-idolization. You do not argue the point. In fact, you ignore what he said. He did not make an unfounded accusation. Jesus is an idol. If he claimed deity, then he led many away from God. Rather than counter the point, you attack his character. Disgusting.

            Jim

          • dan1el2 says:

            Jim,
            “you trying to tell us something here?”
            Really? The reason I know is because I listen to Dr. Michael Brown and he covers the radical gay agenda and works to counteract it. This ridiculous statement of yours shows you have lost your mind with respect to this conversation.

          • LB says:

            Dan1@2
            Jim didn’t lose his mind, your not reading clearly again. You should apologize to him.

          • Jim says:

            dan1el2,

            I did not ask, “you trying to tell us something here?”

            Jim

          • dan1el2 says:

            Jim & LB,
            Your avatars are both a shade of green and your names are short: I apologize for accidentally attributing the insanity of LB to Jim. Jim has his own insanity to answer for but this is not one instance of it.

          • dan1el2 says:

            As far as the fact that Talmudic / Orthodox Judaism teaches Jews cannot sin inwardly, look no further than yourphariseefriend’s defense of the myth.

            I will try to get the link for you.

          • Jim says:

            dan1el2,

            I did not take it as an attack. I did take it as a counter-argument. And that argument countered something I did not say. Nor did I attack you. I argued against your statements which were ill-considered and ill-informed. When you told me that my response was irrelevant because you were not actually responding to what I wrote, then I did say that your response was the irrelevant one because it has no bearing on the conversation. The only personal attacks I have seen are those you have made on the Jewish people generally and on R’ Blumenthal personally. (This is his blog. Do none of you Christians learn how a guest should treat a host?)

            I still assert that your comment is irrelevant because it attempts to clarify a statement that does not even appear in the article. Moreover, it had nothing to do with the topic.

            Waste your time on me or not, that is your choice.

            Jim

          • dan1el2 says:

            Jim,
            1. I meant “attack on your article” as a synonym of “objection to your article”.
            2. It was merely a clarification of the way in which it was meant that Moses wrote of him (in case it was needed). Again, it wasn’t a response to the entire article, but a comment (of course, the nature of the comment was that it disagreed with a single statement made in your article)–and I went on to prove, in the face of your objections, that that comment was correct.

          • dan1el2 says:

            Jim,
            I’m satisfied that the responses I’ve given so far have proven my point and that you have already made the objections to those points that you have wanted to made–that there is nothing to add to a conversation concerning that original comment I’d made (which really didn’t even require a response on your part), so I’m done here.

            As far as the video teaching that Jews “do not really sin”, I’m not going to invest more time looking for it (I’ve spent many hours already doing similar work for responses here): the fact that yourphariseefriend is defending the myth should be enough to prove they believe it; however, in case you’re willing to trudge through the video material, I remember that the Rabbi’s name was Moishe New.

          • dan1el2
            And where did I defend this myth?

          • dan1el2 says:

            yourphariseefriend,
            Wasn’t that your point in pointing to Numbers 23?

          • dan1el2 it wasn’t – I explained my belief on the matter in my most recent article

          • dan1el2 says:

            yourphariseefriend,
            If you’re really denouncing it I may have to find the video.

          • dan1el2 says:

            yourphariseefriend,
            I will look for the video, but will ask you in the meantime; since I am going to assume–until you tell me otherwise–that it is permissible for you to lie as long as it is not an outright lie (it would be in keeping with Rashi on Gn 27:24–“And he said, ‘I am.’: He did not say, ‘I am Esau,’ but ‘I am.’ [From Num. Rabbah 10:6]) I will ask you outright:

            Do you, Rabbi Yisroel Blumenthal believe (as I am purporting Rabbi Moishe New has taught) that a person we will call a “Jew” (defined as a person you would consider a “child of God”–anyone with a Jewish soul from the storehouse of Jewish souls, who was present with the nation at Mt Sinai when the entire nation became converts) is able to separate himself from G-d at his or her most fundamental level (inwardly connecting himself or herself to, and becoming a slave of, a spiritual entity other than G-d [indulging in sinful passions, which things are actually the Torot of idols, so that he or she, as a result, breaks G-d’s Torot as a matter of course Ez 20:16])?

            I am asking some other Rabbis what they believe, and will report back with that, and hope that that will bring the discussion to a conclusion.

          • dan1el2 Your understanding of Jewish law and ethics is seriously lacking To answer your question – yes – a Jew could sin to the degree that he is enslaved to an entity other than God be it an idol, money, himself etc. The teaching that you are talking about means something very different than what you make it out to be

          • dan1el2 says:

            yourphariseefriend,
            I will respond when I get the video link.

          • dan1el2 says:

            Reader,
            You be the judge whether what I reported regarding Rabbi Ginsburgh’s Kabbalistic belief about the Mashiach being the Serpent was true or not (I took a picture of it and underlined his words, so that you don’t have to do any work at all except looking at the page): http://www.mafiastorage.com/f75b039f867a7294 .

            The rest I will not be bothered with (except the video I will bring where Rabbi Moishe New teaches Jews don’t really sin in their inward / most fundamental beings, but if they sin it is just that they are “confused” and are really always connected with G-d). I’ve spent enough time proving everything from various videos and Scripture.

          • Sharbano says:

            That comes from the Zohar and is referring to Mashiach ben Yosef and the battle against Amalek. It is more allegorical than anything. It is no different than Shir HaShiim (Song of Songs) being about Torah, Jews and the relationship to G-d. That is why a person is suppose to have a thorough and complete knowledge of Torah BEFORE even beginning with Zohar and Kabbalah.
            Watching a video is Not the way to gain knowledge in this area. It is in this manner that people have claimed all kinds of evils in the Talmud. I once had a woman bring this to my intention with a number of these because she couldn’t believe Jews were so evil. Her fears were laid to rest when she found out what was Really being taught.
            Therefore it is Highly Dishonest to copy a few lines of text and post it without having any knowledge of the subject. This is the tactic Xtianity has been using for some time to disparage anything related to Judaism since they cannot coerce Jews, whether by force or words, to believe in a man-god. When a person can come with a full knowledge of the Rashi, Then, they might have the beginning of knowledge before endeavoring into these realms.

          • LB says:

            Dan1@2
            That’s a meaningless post. You took a picture supposedly, and posted it in mafia storage/ saved it? Is this supposed to mean something to me? It supposed to be proof of something? if so proof of what?

          • dan1el2 says:

            yourphariseefriend,
            I’ve searched through about fifteen of Rabbi Moishe New’s videos so far; I haven’t found the exact video I was referring to yet. One that I’ve found (21:20 – 24:29 of http://www.chabad.org/multimedia/media_cdo/aid/1635901/jewish/Yom-Kippur-and-the-Real-You.htm) is close:
            “…there is a part of the soul that we [Jews] all possess (it’s called the yechida–the “soul essence”) that is incorruptible, that is forever one with G-d, that can’t be tainted or stained, and can never be severed from G-d. So, we can disconnect on all kinds of conscious levels (mind, heart, behavior)… but there’s a part of me that was always connected [to G-d] in the deepest way which I was never in touch with. …this is the core of the heart–the simple heart of every Jew: always faithful, never detached, today revealed.”

            This idea that Jews are “always faithful, never detached [from G-d]” on the “deepest level”, and that they “never can be severed from G-d”, is nothing less than rebellion against the humbling Truth of G-d that we really are “evil” [Jer 13:10], and that when a person sins he is committing *spiritual* adultery [Ez Jer 3:20], and is connecting with demons [2 Ch 36:14]–which connection to another entity is necessarily spiritual unfaithfulness and disconnection from G-d. Now, because what Rabbi New teaches *really is a denial of the truth about sin* it should come as no surprise that he, in the video of his (which, G-d-willing, I will find) I referred to earlier, *literally denies that Jews ever “truly” sin*.

            The Talmudic and Chassidic foundations for this teaching are as follows:
            “Firstly, our Sages [Tractate Sanhedrin 44:1] state: ‘A Jew (Yisroel) even though he sins, he remains a Jew (Yisroel).’ The Alter Rebbe, founder of Chabad, is quoted in Hayom Yom of Tamuz 25, ‘A Jew, neither wants not can he be torn asunder from G-dliness’.”

            LB,
            re: “That’s a meaningless post.”
            1. http://www.inner.org/blog/protecting-our-sanity-from-the-serpents-venom is the link to Rabbi Ginsburgh’s is site;
            2. http://www.mafiastorage.com/f75b039f867a7294 is the screenshot of the notes section (of the 1st link) for those who look at the link and don’t see where he says he believes Messiah is the holy serpent.

          • dan1el2 I would take the time to explain it to you – but I don’t see the point. the fact is that Jews believe that people like Jesus and Karl Marx were grievous sinners. We believe that every human being is created in the image of God and has a soul breathed into them by God – but they can still be sinners If you are looking for theological problems – you have more than enough to deal with in Christianity that you don’t need to spend your time watching videos of another religion Start with idolatry

          • Sharbano says:

            As a means of understanding, I suggest you go to a medical school and pick up a book on anatomy. Read the entire book. Once you have completed it go to the local hospital and tell them you are prepared to operate on the first appendicitis patient, telling them, you are fully qualified having studied the book of anatomy.
            We can take this a step further to diagnosis. The word “malaria” comes from and has the meaning of “bad air”. At the time people thought the air in swamps is what caused this illness. That expelled gas was methane. It never occurred to people that it was a mosquito transmitted illness, since many had been bitten by mosquitoes with little effect. The only viable conclusion was the air in those areas.
            The increased knowledge is what brought about the realization that it was Not “bad air” but a mosquito born pathogen.
            It is in the same way when a person visits a Jewish site dealing in the mystical and attempts to draw conclusions without any foundation of Torah. You are relying on “bad air” to draw conclusions.

          • dan1el2 says:

            yourphariseefriend,
            If I were committing idolatry, I would be away from G-d; I could not be in G-d’s presence, could not experience G-d’s ineffable kindness, and His delight in me which makes me delight in Him.

            Thanks

          • dan1el2 God is good to all (Psalm 145:9) even idolaters

          • dan1el2 says:

            Ps 7:11
            God is a righteous judge, and a God who feels indignation every day.
            Ps 138:6
            For though Y–H is high, he regards the lowly, but the haughty he knows from afar.
            Is 57:15
            For thus says the One who is high and lifted up, who inhabits eternity, whose name is Holy: “I dwell in the high and holy place, and also with him who is of a contrite and lowly spirit, to revive the spirit of the lowly, and to revive the heart of the contrite.

            I’m sure you know Scripture well enough to know that that really could not explain it. G-d is angry with sinners (every sinner is an idolater), not delighted with them; He is far from the proud, and not near to them. What is “pride”? Idolatry. Idolaters are not near to G-d but are far from Him.

            I pray the G-d of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob will have mercy and bring you perceive and honor His Truth so that you also will finally know Him.

            Have a good weekend.

      • dan1el2 says:

        Jim,
        My reply to you has a few typos; let me know if you require any clarifications.

        • Dina says:

          Daniel,

          In Genesis 3 the serpent represents Satan. In Numbers 21 it represents Jesus. Just sayin’.

          By the way, Jim is not taking the parallel “too strongly.” You are cherry picking. You present the parts that seem to match Jesus, while discarding the passages that don’t fit. It’s like what Christians do with Psalms 41 and 69: they apply to Jesus the verses that talk about the one who broke bread with the subject and then betrayed him or the subject was given vinegar to drink, while ignoring the verses in the same chapters that mention the sins of the same subject.

          The divinity of the messiah and the trinity are highly relevant even if you didn’t touch on that topic because believing in Jesus requires this idolatrous belief as well for the vast and overwhelming majority of Christians. And it is this idolatry that we absolutely and categorically reject.

          • dan1el2 says:

            Dina,
            I’ve already responded to this objection: Jesus, himself, clearly applies only certain aspects of certain passages while leaving others out (e.g., “as Jonah”).

            “Divinity of Messiah” is not completely irrelevant; it’s only irrelevant as far as clearing up what he meant when he said Moses wrote of him.

          • Dina says:

            Dan,

            “Jesus, himself, clearly applies only certain aspects of certain passages while leaving others out.”

            Yes, he clearly does. That was exactly my point. Thanks for confirming.

          • dan1el2 says:

            Dina,
            Besides, the copper serpent wasn’t a serpent; it was only fashioned into the likeness of a serpent: Jesus was fashioned into “the likeness of sinful flesh” [Ro 8:3] but was not really sinful flesh. The sinful flesh is compared to a serpent because it does the will of the serpent. About this Rabbi Yehoshua Gordon, who teaches Tanya, would agree: the flesh “loves 7-layer cake not G-d”.

          • Sharbano says:

            Are you aware that by using the words of people to justify a belief that those person would vehemently disagree with on the interpretation is a form of “Theft”. You would need permission to draw those conclusions.

          • dan1el2 says:

            Sharbano,
            Are you Ashkenazic? Aren’t Ashkenazic Jews supposed to be smart? Why can’t you understand that I am not using Rabbi Yehoshua Gordon’s words to justify belief in Jesus? What can I say to get you to see I’m not doing that? What is wrong with you?

          • Sharbano says:

            You started out by saying “the Serpent IS Messiah” and then try to corroborate that with Chabad rabbis.

          • David says:

            Dina,
            “In Genesis 3 the serpent represents Satan. In Numbers 21 it represents Jesus. Just sayin’.”

            And in I Chronicles 21:1 Satan is representing the God YOU worship right? Just sayin (compare with II Samuel 24:1)

            By the way, I’ve always wondered why it bothers Jews such as you on this blog that Jesus and John the Baptist compare hypocritical Pharisees with serpents, since you hold the serpent in the Garden and Satan to be the servant of God, only doing his will; therefore, Satan is not evil. Hear no evil, see no evil, speak no evil, right? Stick your head in the sand and it doesn’t exist.

          • Sharbano says:

            What is written in Samuel and Chronicles has no difference than what is written in Job.

            The difference in Xtianity is how they view the Serpent, S’tan, and call him the devil, Which is entirely different from Judaism. Xtianity says he is a fallen angel who did battle with G-d and banned from heaven. As in many instances Xtianity and Judaism use the same word but meanings are wholly different. Therefore, there is no comparison whatsoever.

          • LB says:

            Dan1@2
            You keep making comments about rabbis but not giving a link to what they said, how can anyone respond without the link. How can anyone keep up? I am confused by much you say.

          • dan1el2 says:

            Dina,
            So, according to your reasoning, we should expect that when David calls G-d his “shepherd” [Ps 23], it would be “cherry-picking” to fail to extrapolate that G-d is earning a living from shepherding His “sheep” (He has need of being sustained by having a job), and milks David and sometimes kills some of His people so that He can eat their flesh (and receive sustenance, or else He couldn’t do His job because He didn’t eat enough “protein”: G-d will become weak unless He sustains Himself with the proper nutrition), and G-d sacrifices some of them to His G-d sometimes–and any and every other suitable point-for-point comparison right?

            That is blasphemous. G-d forbid we should read the way you want us to.

          • Dina says:

            Dan,

            I do not think you know what “cherry picking” means or you would not have written such utter nonsense.

          • dan1el2 says:

            LB,
            I will copy + paste for you the response I already provided you with:

            “Please let me know which things, specifically, if I do not cover them:

            1. I believe I mentioned one Rabbi so far: Mendel Kaplan’s ‘Practical Parsha’ on Chukat’ (http://www.chabad.org/multimedia/media_cdo/aid/1524426/jewish/Healing.htm) says the episode of the serpent really is a foreshadow of techiyas hameisim. By extension, it must be about Messiah without whom there is no resurrection.

            2a. ‘A prime example of this is that the gematria (numerical value) of the Hebrew word for “snake,” nachash, is equivalent to the value of the word Moshiach. Moshiach will bring an end to exile and repair the damage done to the world through the sin of the Tree of Knowledge, which was caused by a snake.’
            -http://www.chabad.org/theJewishWoman/article_cdo/aid/2591249/jewish/Hidden-Good.htm
            2b. Another Kabbalist (whether or not Rabbi Ginsburgh is a Chabadnik is immaterial: [addition: both he and they are Kabbalists, thus base their beliefs on the same things; and] the point is that it is a view held by Orthodox Jews), Rabbi Ginsburgh, says, ‘Mashiach (מָּשִׁיחַ) [is] the holy snake (נָחָשׁ)… both have the same numerical value of 358’ (http://www.inner.org/blog/protecting-our-sanity-from-the-serpents-venom).

            3. Rabbi Yehoshua Gordon talks about the body being comparable to ‘a serpent’ at http://www.chabad.org/multimedia/rabbigordon_cdo/aid/1195087/jewish/Tanya-Chapter-47.htm from minute 5:05 to 5:33 (as well as many other places).”

          • dan1el2 says:

            Dina,
            It goes without saying that you can “think” what ever you want; regardless, my comments will be there for any reader who is open to the truth to see and derive benefit.

          • Dina says:

            Same here.

            BTW you seem to be confusing the term “cherry picking” with “literal reading.” The two are not synonymous.

          • dan1el2 says:

            Dina,
            Reading things “overly-literally” and “cherry picking” are two peas in the same pod: both involve the over-accentuation of existing ideas and neglecting of other existing ideas.
            When David calls G-d his Shepherd, the hearers are to “understand” something inferred and are to go no further than this inference.

          • Dina says:

            Nope, not the same thing at all, Dan. Next week when I have more time I can explain why, if you like.

            Ironic you should pick an example that demonstrates Christian belief. Yes, Christians do believe that God the Shepherd sacrificed one of His own sheep to Himself (they call Jesus the lamb, after all), and there is a cannibalistic theme in the ritual of the Eurcharist. All of which is, of course, an abomination to God.

            Anyway, like I said, this week I’m too busy to debate (which is unusual for me) but I will try to get back on track next week, God willing.

          • dan1el2 says:

            Dina,
            Cherry-picking and hyper-literal reading exist on the same continuum.
            Both the cherry-picker and the hyper-literalist are presented with an array of ideas, and then wrongly over-accentuate some and under-accentuate others.

            In this way, the same thing you complain is wrong with my reading is the same thing that would be wrong with reading Psalm 23 in the way I described.

          • dan1el2 says:

            Dina,
            In other words, there’s nothing inherently wrong with our method of applying certain realities and leaving others out; the only question is as to whether the particular application of the logic is legitimate: not every instance of applying certain realities while leaving others out is an instance of “wrongly over-accentuating some ideas and under-accentuating others” (e.g., when we understand that David calls God a “shepherd” for a limited number of reasons / comparison points amidst a vast array of possible reasons / comparison points).

          • dan1el2 says:

            Dina,
            “In this way, the same thing you complain is wrong with my reading is the same thing that would be wrong with reading Psalm 23 in the way I described.”

            Meaning that if we applied your erroneous logic (“every possible instance of applying only a limited number of comparison points while leaving others unapplied is committing an error”) to the reading of Psalm 23, it would result in an error you have said you would reject. Rather, is that it is *not* always fraudulent, but is many times warranted, to do so; and whether the practice of it is right or wrong must be determined on a case-by-case basis.

          • dan1el2 says:

            re: typos
            Apologies

          • dan1el2 says:

            Dina,
            1. It’d be fine with me if you chose to read Ps 23 that way (though I’d disgree with your), since it would just be an example of you agreeing with me (it isn’t a perfect metaphor: some parts would have to be left unapplied).

            2. Isn’t this a case of the pot calling the kettle black?
            I just heard Rabbi Yehoshua Gordon teaching (in his daily Chumash class) that when Isaac said “the voice of Jacob but the hands of Esau,” what it meant was “Jacob’s gift was prayer and Esau’s gift was warfare”. What? That was not the context. The context was Jacob trying to fool Isaac, and Isaac hearing Jacob’s voice but feeling Esau’s hands. That’s the context. Yet he brings it up over and over to prove his point that Jacob’s gift was prayer but Esau’s was warfare.
            And there are a million other examples just like this that we could find, if we spent the time, of the Jewish religion doing the very thing you are accusing us of doing–except any instance of Judaism finding a “hint” in the text is totally acceptable to you whereas any instance of our doing so is totally unacceptable.
            Get a grip.

          • dan1el2 I addressed your fallacy in The Elephant and the Suit in the section entitled “Volume 4 versus Volume 5” I also addressed this in Supplement to Contra Brown in vol. III point #4 and vol. IV point #1

          • LB says:

            Dan1@2
            You mentioned Rabbi Yehoshua Gordon, do you have link?

          • dan1el2 says:

            LB,
            A few places that come to mind (though I am virtually certain there are a few others, it would take far too much time to wade through all of that video material) would be:
            1. Parshah Toldot, where Isaac blesses Jacob (36:45 – 38:17 of http://www.chabad.org/multimedia/rabbigordon_cdo/aid/1045036/jewish/Rabbi-Gordon-Toldot-5th-Portion.htm), Rabbi Gordon says, “This, by the way, became a very famous axiom in life [note: this is the very root of the axiom]–that ‘Jacob’s weapon is his voice (the Jewish people always like to pray, negotiate; we always like to deal in conversation, diplomacy; we make speeches); Esav[‘s weapon is] his ‘gun’… (shoot first ask questions later)’: ‘the voice is the voice of Jacob, the hands are the hands of Esav’. … [if somebody steals something,] the world at large says [to] shoot him, [to] arrest him, [to] bring him to court; Jews sing… Jews are very into the voice.”

            2. Parshah Chukat, where Israel wants to pass by Edom via the King’s Highway (7:19 – and 13:30 – 14:00 of http://www.chabad.org/multimedia/rabbigordon_cdo/aid/1244567/jewish/Rabbi-Gordon-Chukat-4th-Portion.htm), Rabbi Gordon says, “Because our forefather, [Isaac], gave us a blessing, [saying], “The voice is the voice of Jacob.” (the Jewish people were given a blessing that whenever they have problems they cry out to G-d);” and, “‘You [Jacob] pride yourselves with the ‘voice’ that your forefather bequeathed to you… I [Esau] will come out to you with [the ‘sword’] my forefather bequeathed to me… .'”

            3. Parshah Matot/Massei, where Israel wages war against Midian (53:26 – 53:56 of http://www.chabad.org/multimedia/rabbigordon_cdo/aid/943924/jewish/Rabbi-Gordon-Matot-Massei-1st-Portion.htm), Rabbi Gordon says, “[Esav] came at the Jewish people using [the Jews’] weapon (which is prayer, and pleading with HaShem)–[Esav] came and cursed them [through Balaam]–so they (the Jewish people) took [Esav’s] … weapon: they used the sword.”

            Notes:
            i. Again, Rabbi Yehoshua Gordon says that the axiom leaned upon in Chukat and Matot/Massei (and other places Esav’s descendants are interacted with) is founded on the interpretation of the passage in Toldot.
            ii. I would disagree that Jacob is particularly gifted with (the “voice”) what is not a “sword”: “86 percent of the world’s most violent cities are based in Latin America” (http://www.insightcrime.org/news-analysis/latin-america-dominates-list-of-worlds-most-violent-cities), which (Central and Southern American) cities are in countries Sephardic Jews were known to have fled to from the Iberian Peninsula. Jewish blood is thick in these places. What this would prove would be that Jews excel at everything, for better (e.g., winning Nobel Prizes–it is generally thought to be “good”, though I question if it really is anything “good” [wouldn’t the world have been better off without the atomic bomb?]) or worse (murdering one another in Latin America); that there is not necessarily a special gift of diplomacy for Jacob (a. Israel was even commanded to fight in many wars, and b. David was a great Jewish warrior who “slayed his tens of thousands” [1 Sam 18:8]).

          • dan1el2 says:

            Dina,
            If you want to call me on a technicality (one is termed “cherry-picking”, while the other is “hyper-literlism”), I will concede that a person would not necessarily be called a “cherry-picker” (rather, a “hyper-literalist”) for reading Ps 23 in the way I described: the ideas in mind (which I should have tried harder to express with clarity) were basically that the two errors would share an essential nature (“wrongly over-accentuating and/or under-accentuating comparison points in an array of comparison points”).

          • dan1el2 says:

            Dina,
            re: “technicality”
            I shouldn’t have used the term “technicality”, since your objection is legitimate as far as the employment of the particular labels would go; having said that, I still say your objection is superficial and all but irrelevant to the larger point being made (as I said: my point was that the two errors would share the same essential nature).

    • LB says:

      Dan1&2
      Do you have links to what you have heard from the chabadnics so I can see what you are saying?

      • dan1el2 says:

        LB,
        Please let me know which things, specifically, if I do not cover them:

        1. I believe I mentioned one Rabbi so far: Mendel Kaplan’s “Practical Parsha” on “Chukat” (http://www.chabad.org/multimedia/media_cdo/aid/1524426/jewish/Healing.htm) says the episode of the serpent really is a foreshadow of techiyas hameisim. By extension, it must be about Messiah without whom there is no resurrection.

        2a. “A prime example of this is that the gematria (numerical value) of the Hebrew word for “snake,” nachash, is equivalent to the value of the word Moshiach. Moshiach will bring an end to exile and repair the damage done to the world through the sin of the Tree of Knowledge, which was caused by a snake.”
        -http://www.chabad.org/theJewishWoman/article_cdo/aid/2591249/jewish/Hidden-Good.htm
        2b. Another Kabbalist (whether or not Rabbi Ginsburgh is a Chabadnik is immaterial: the point is that it is a view held by Orthodox Jews), Rabbi Ginsburgh, says, “Mashiach (מָּשִׁיחַ) [is] the holy snake (נָחָשׁ)… both have the same numerical value of 358” (http://www.inner.org/blog/protecting-our-sanity-from-the-serpents-venom).

        3. Rabbi Yehoshua Gordon talks about the body being comparable to “a serpent” at http://www.chabad.org/multimedia/rabbigordon_cdo/aid/1195087/jewish/Tanya-Chapter-47.htm from minute 5:05 to 5:33 (as well as many other places).

  5. Dina says:

    Following.

  6. David says:

    Jim,

    You are the one who is “invective” when you falsely attribute to “your opponent” Jesus, your unfounded anti-Christian lies and character assassinations. Your speech is “invectiveness” at its worst.

    Secondly, are you claiming to be a mind reader also? How would you know what was in the mind of Jesus for you to make the claim that he was “hateful” or trying to “humiliate” those who unjustly opposed Him, God’s word and God’s people.

    Thirdly, why are you cherry picking out Jesus for your rant? Why not instead go off on Moses and other characters of the Hebrew Scripture? But of course, that wouldn’t fit with your anti-Christian program of evading the truth by sticking your head in the sand to that reality.

  7. Alan says:

    “You search the scriptures because you think that in them you have eternal life; and it is they that testify on my behalf. Yet you refuse to come to me to have life” (John 5:39-40).

    John 13:18 –
    “I am not referring to all of you; I know those I have chosen. But this is to fulfill this passage of Scripture: ‘He who shared my bread has turned against me (Psalm 41).’

    I’m asking any Christian – please tell me how this verse in Psalm 41 testifies on Jesus’ behalf?

    The subject of this verse says that a close friend that he used to invite over for meals turned against him for no good reason. Is this such a rare occurrence that it can serve as a good sign whereby to identify a specific person in a prophecy? It’s almost as good a prophetic sign as the prophetic statment: “My children give me no respect”. Great sign to identify someone in a prophecy. Ah, Harry Finkelstein’s kids give him no respect, so the prophet must be talking about Harry Finkelstein! Harry Finkelstein must be the Messiah! Abd to top it off, Jesus’ use of this verse as testimony about himself is supremely ironic because the rest of the psalm contradicts the main doctrines of the NT.

  8. KAVI says:

    Alan
    Rather than my words, Dr. Brown has addressed this question in his series of books…

    Listed below are portions quoted from “Answering Jewish Objections to Jesus”, Volume 3, Question 4.26

    “If you are familiar with at all with the Talmud and the Midrash, you will now that the Rabbis applied all kinds of obscure verse to the Messiah and to the Messianic era, often taking them totally out of context…for the most part,, these Jewish sages clearly were not looking at an entire portion of Scripture– a whole Psalm or chapter– when they cited the verses in question. Rather, what got their attention was a word association, or an association of ideas, or an even more distant link connecting the given verse or phrase with the Messiah.”

    “…there is a simple principle behind the Messianic interpretation of these important Psalms: As with David, so it is with the Messiah.

    ” In other words, there are striking parallels between the life of King David and the life of King Messiah, and it is these parallels that are highlighted in the New Testament’s quotation of certain Psalms.”

    “For example, just as David was betrayed by one of his closest friends, so also the Messiah was betrayed by one of his closest friends…But it is obvious the details of the betrayal don’t have to be the same.”

    ________________________

    • Alan says:

      Dr. Brown’s words are as usual smooth sounding. It sure sounds like he knows what he’s talking about. But it’s all false. When Midrashim make a connection between seemingly unrelated verses and particular people or events – they do not mean it literally; they are only trying to teach a moral or ethical lesson. The Midrash doesn’t say the connection is a fulfillment of prophecy. Jesus said it’s a literal fulfillment of prophecy. And you believe Jesus was a prophet so when he said this about himself he meant it literally. And let’s say that even though he said it’s a fulfllment of scripture – which is not the way Midrash speaks – that he only meant it midrashically to teach a moral lesson. Please tell me what that moral lesson is? I would say the moral lesson he was teaching his followers was that the scriptures testify to his messiahship. This is not a moral lesson but an abuse of a verse that has absolutely nothing to do with the messiah simply in order to deceive the unlearned into believing in him.

      • KAVI says:

        Alan,
        You write,
        “When Midrashim make a connection between seemingly unrelated verses and particular people or events – they do not mean it literally; they are only trying to teach a moral or ethical lesson. The Midrash doesn’t say the connection is a fulfillment of prophecy.”

        Q: So, when we find in the Midrash Rabbah speaking of Messiah ben David in Genesis 3, what is the moral or ethical lesson to be learned?
        _______________________

        • Alan says:

          “Q: So, when we find in the Midrash Rabbah speaking of Messiah ben David in Genesis 3, what is the moral or ethical lesson to be learned?”

          Which midrash speaks about Moshiach in Genesis 3? Can you please quote it for me?

          • Alan says:

            I found the Midrash. It’s in Midrash Genesis Rabbah ch. 23, section 5. It’s a commentary on the verse Genesis 4:25-
            Adam knew his wife again, and she gave birth to a son and named him Seth, saying, “God has granted me another child (seed/offspring) in place of Abel, since Cain killed him.”

            Rabbi Tanchuma said in the name of Rabbi Shmuel: A particular child (seed/offspring) was perceived (by Eve), one that is coming from another place. Which one? This is the King Messiah.

            I don’t know what Rabbi Shmuel was trying to teach us by this Midrash. My guess is that the concept of the Messiah and Messianic age was a foundation for creating the world and finally with Seth the Messiah would be able to eventually come into the world because Seth was somehow different than Cain and Abel.

            This has nothing to do with Jesus nor is it similar in any way to how Jesus said he fulfilled the verse ” my goog friend betrayed me”.

          • KAVI says:

            Alan,
            The reason I specified this text was to indicate that not all Midrash were meant to teach “moral or ethical” lessons.

            In this case, the writer does indeed appear [as you mention] to describe a foundational truth about Messiah rather than simply presenting something moral or ethical, i.e., he sees something that goes well beyond P’shat.
            ___________________

          • Alan says:

            Kavi,
            On the contrary, the author of this Midrash, Rabbi Shmuel, is teaching a moral lesson about the purpose of creation. This is what it seems to me. Adam and Eve could have thought that the world would never return to Gan Eden but Eve perceived through the birth of Seth that there was again hope. Do you think I’m saying that this Midrash is trying to identify who Moshiach is?

          • Alan says:

            Kavi,
            Rabbi Shmuel doesn’t even mean that Eve had a literal prophecy that Moshiach would be descended from Seth. Rabbi Shmuel is not claiming to know such a thing. Rabbi Shmuel just wants us to know that with Seth, the purpose of creation got back on track. This is only my own interpretation. But this is how I was taught to read Midrashim. Rabbi Shmuel is not saying any scripture was fulfilled or was being fulfilled with Seth. Do you see the difference between this and what John did with psalm 41?

          • KAVI says:

            Alan,
            Perhaps were dealing with a simple difference in semantics…

            Did you not write, “I don’t know what Rabbi Shmuel was trying to teach us by this Midrash.”?

            ________________________

          • Alan says:

            I don’t know what this Midrash means. I can only make an educated case which is what I did.

            How do you understand this Midrash? How do Christians understand it?

        • KAVI says:

          Alan,
          You write,
          “Rabbi Shmuel is not saying any scripture was fulfilled or was being fulfilled with Seth. Do you see the difference between this and what John did with psalm 41?”

          I absolutely understand the concept behind the Midrashim as well as your line of thoughts about prophecy…it is a perfectly legitimate question you and the Rabbi raise…but one which also has a ready answer founded in Tanakh.

          If you don’t mind, I will respond to the Rabbi in due time…
          _____________________________

          • Alan says:

            Kavi,
            I am curious how you knew about that Midrash. I didn’t know about it. Did you know about that Midrash from messianic writings? What did the messianic writings do with this midrash?

          • Alan says:

            I did some research on this midrash and it’s use by messianics. They do indeed use the midrash as support for Jesus. But what they do is take this midrash which is a commentary on Genesis 4:25 and instead say it is a commentary on Genesis 3:15 –
            I will put enmity between you and the woman,
            and between your offspring (seed) and her offspring (seed);
            he shall bruise your head,
            and you shall bruise his heel.”

            Kavi, this is why you referred to the midrash on Genesis ch. 3. But there is no midrash about Moshiach on ch. 3. It’s on chapter 4 but that didn’t stop the messianics from saying it’s on ch. 3!

          • KAVI says:

            Alan,
            Yes, I am aware of R.Kimchi’s commentary on Genesis 3…

            I am also aware of Rabbi Shmuel’s midrash…

            BTW> My version of Midrash Rabbah is by Rabbi Harry Freedman, Soncino Press, 1961.

            ______________________

          • Alan says:

            Kavi,
            How do you feel about the fact that the midrash is on 4:25 and not 3:15.

            I don’t know about R’ Kimchi’s commentary on ch 3. What does he say?

          • Alan says:

            Kavi,
            I looked up R’ Kimchi on Genesis 3:15. First, please before you rely on what the rabbis say, make sure it is a coming from a reliable source. R’ Kimchi doesn’t say at all that the seed of the woman is referring to Moshiach. He just says that in the days of Moshiach there will no longer be hatred between people and snakes! He doesn’t say the snake is satan and he doesn’t say her seed is messiah! How do you feel about this? The messianics lied to you!

          • KAVI says:

            Alan,
            R.Kimchi’s commentary regarding Messiah is a different subject matter than the point I was trying to make about R.Shmuel’s Midrash– namely, Midrash do not always teach morals and ethics.

            However, if you are saying that “moral and ethics” includes “fundamental tenets” of Messiah, then you and I have no disagreement at all.

            __________________________

          • Alan says:

            Morals and ethics includes philosophy of Judaism.

            How do you feel that the midrash is really on 4:25 when they told you it was on 3:15?

          • KAVI says:

            Alan,
            I brought to your attention Midrash Rabbah and you bring up R.Kimchi?

            Is it really so impossible that I cannot have researched Midrash Rabbah, Page 196, R.Freedman, Soncino Press, 1961?

            I purposely had a very narrow point to make and, after discussing it a bit, we perhaps might be in agreement regarding the Midrashim. Why would that be impossible?
            ________________________________

          • Alan says:

            Kavi,
            I didn’t bring up R’ Kimchi, you did! Go back and take a look at what you wrote.

            How do you feel about the messianics lying to you about rabbinic writings?

    • Kavi I have addressed Dr. Brown’s arguments in Supplement to Contra Brown and in The Elephant and the Suit. In short – The rabbis never claimed that their allegorical readings were “fulfillment of prophecy” and they didn’t base their theological construct on these renditions 1000 Verses – a project of Judaism Resources wrote: >

      • KAVI says:

        Rabbi,
        As you suggested, I examined your Contra Brown Supplement and think it may be best to start with what I see as some agreement between you both.

        You write,
        The prophets compare the Messiah to David (Jeremiah 30:9, Ezekiel 34:23, 37:24, Hosea 3:5). It is obvious that the comparison does not apply to every peripheral activity of David (such as being thirsty). Rather, the prophets are pointing to the central features of David’s personality in order to give us an understanding of the Messiah. David was constantly praising God (Psalm 34:2), David’s love for God, reverence for God, and gratitude towards God, fill the Psalms. David is described as the sweet singer of Israel (or – the one who gives pleasantness to Israel’s songs – 2Samuel 23:1). David’s love for God’s law (Psalm 119:97), and his awareness of his own sins (Psalm 51:5) were a constant and integral part of David’s life. In order to give expression to his total love for God, David put aside his own honor as king of Israel (2Samuel 6:14).”

        Although I may not agree with your conclusion [which I will explain at a later day], I do agree with your statements listed above….

    • Kavi Was Jesus a prophet or a talmudist? Where do the prophets quote the prophets in this way?

      1000 Verses – a project of Judaism Resources wrote: >

  9. KAVI says:

    Alan,
    I am puzzled as to why are you fighting this issue so hard?

    So, let me recap:
    [] I disagreed with your statement that Midrashim are “only trying to teach a moral or ethical lesson”.
    [] In order to disagree, I brought up Midrash Rabbah and Messiah.
    [] You then, without actually mentioning “Radak”, referenced the messianics’ use of his “commentary on Genesis 3:15.
    [] I, knowing messianics do indeed use Radak’s commentary, actually mention his name.

    Nowhere do I write that I support the claims of messianics in conjunction with their reference to R.Kimchi’s commentary…
    _____________________________

    So, now that I hope the record is straight, let me repeat my point about Midrash…

    If you are saying that “moral and ethics” of the Midrashim includes “fundamental tenets” of Messiah, then you and I have no disagreement at all.

    __________________________

    • Alan says:

      Kavi,
      Do messianics use the midrash genesis rabbah to explain Genesis 3:15 to be referring to Messiah?

      Do messianics use R’ Kimchi on 3:15 as proof that the rabbis really know that 3:15 is referring to the Messiah?

      Yes or no?

      Moral and ethical lessons include Torah philosophy.

  10. KAVI says:

    Alan,
    So, it seems we have come to an apparent agreement about Midrashim!

    That being made clear, we now can move towards the heart of the discussion which, as R.Blumenthal writes, “The rabbis never claimed that their allegorical readings were “fulfillment of prophecy” and they didn’t base their theological construct on these renditions.”

    My answer, based on Tanakh, might similarly be unexpected…or, maybe not…
    __________________

    • Alan says:

      Kavi,

      Why should I continue our discusiion when you don’t give me the courtesy of answering my questions?

      • Alan Kavi is getting his “information” from Tzachi Shapira – just search for his name on the search button – try “Polar Bear” or The School of Matthew 1000 Verses – a project of Judaism Resources wrote: >

        • KAVI says:

          Rabbi,
          When I viewed your comment, I was surprised because I was only vaguely familiar with a connection between the name Shapira and someone who wrote a fairly controversial messianic book– after doing an internet search, I then could confirm the book was “Return of the Kosher Pig” [which, yes, I have heard of– but have not read].

          I’m sorry…but I am not familiar enough with Tzachi Shapira to really comment on his writings…however, if there are similarities, that would be intriguing.
          _____________________________

          • Dina says:

            A while back, CP quoted this same “commentary” from Radak on Genesis 3:15. He actually produced the quote, which was made up. Radak never said whatever it was that the quote CP produced said he said. I don’t remember what the quote was, but anyway–the point is, Kavi is probably getting his information from the same unreliable source.

            But Christians who have an agenda to pursue other than the truth are seldom troubled by these lies…

          • KAVI If you didn’t get it from Shapira you got it from a similar source – you weren’t sitting around reading Kimchi’s commentary on Genesis Shapira is only taking Matthew to new lows – but he is fully in line with the tradition of Christianity – that is to warp Scripture (OT) and/or rabbinic writings to suit their own purpose. Just look at the “honorable” approbations that Shapira got for his silliness. 1000 Verses – a project of Judaism Resources wrote: >

      • KAVI says:

        Alan,
        I just got back from speaking with my Father [Father’s Day in the U.S.], dinner, and miscellaneous other things…

        Since I’ve honestly never been able to verify to my satisfaction R.Kimchi’s commentary in conjunction with claims of Messianics, I am simply unable to comment…

        I am sure you would do the same if I asked you a similar question…it would be illogical to do otherwise.

        And, let’s say I did more research work and came to the same conclusion as you [which is conceivably possible]… we would still find ourselves in agreement– and, if so, I’m still puzzled why it would make any difference?
        _______________________________

        On the other hand, there is plenty to discuss about R.Blumenthal’s comment, “The rabbis never claimed that their allegorical readings were “fulfillment of prophecy” and they didn’t base their theological construct on these renditions.”

        Being as late as it is, I will probably need to write sometime later [perhaps tomorrow evening] since I need to work tomorrow and there are a few other issues on the Rabbi’s blog I would like to address beforehand…

        Even so, I very much see the Rabbi’s comment strongly related to our discussion about Midrash– and the question you and he raises is reasonable….so if you can bear with me patiently, then you both will perhaps have a better opportunity to “battle” with full vigor…sound fair?
        _______________________________

        • Alan says:

          That’s fair. But don’t ignore these messianic abuses of rabbinic writings. I didn’t know about them until today. I read them both in the original Hebrew.

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