Riding the Light – Excerpt from Seventh Response to D.L.

The greatest light is God’s truth. The greatest happiness of humanity is to receive that light – and God promised that humanity will one day merit to receive that light (Isaiah 60:3). At the time of creation, God planted certain basic truths into the hearts of human beings. This is our ability to sense right from wrong, to enjoy truth and to be repulsed by falsehood. God also chose a nation for Himself, and He planted certain truths into the heart of this nation (Deuteronomy 4:35). For many centuries the Jewish people walked with this truth, but their Gentile neighbors did not appreciate it. The miracles that God performed for Hezekiah represented a turning point in history. From that point on, the Gentile nations began to seek the God of Israel (Isaiah 19:18). The phenomena of Gentiles seeking the God of Israel continued to grow – until the time of the eclipse.

Christianity came and rode the light in order to spread the darkness.

Christianity is not entirely evil, if it would be, it wouldn’t be so evil. If Christianity were completely evil, no-one would give it a second glance, and it would have harmed no-one. Christianity took some of the truths that God gave the world, and claimed them for herself. There are some truths, or half-truths, that Christianity does share with the world, but it wants the world to credit her; Christianity, as the source of light. It is like someone who steals all of your money and wants you to be his eternal slave when he returns some of it back to you.

There are three primary truths that Christianity twisted for the detriment of all men; the witness nation, the Messianic hope and the relationship that God shares with every one of His creations. (There are actually several more, but I will try to keep it brief.)

The Jewish people are God’s witness nation. There is no question that we disappointed God time and time again, but God’s purpose can never be thwarted. God taught us who it is that we are to worship, and who it is that all of mankind will one day worship (Deuteronomy 4:35, Isaiah 54:5). After more than 3000 years, the word; “Jew”, is still associated with the worship of the One Creator of all – and the word; “Jew” is still associated with a repudiation of the worship of any other entity.

The world began learning this truth from us – particularly after the spectacular destruction of the Assyrian army.

Along came Christianity and taught the world that the Jewish people are “false witnesses”. The Jewish people testify that they were taught by God who it is that we are to worship – but Christianity declares – “Don’t believe them”. Christianity rode the reputation of our prophets, but Christianity shut the mouth of those who ratified the authenticity of those same prophets. Christianity rode the glory that was added to David’s throne through Hezekiah, but they taught the world that Hezekiah was a failure.

That is the first eclipse of Christianity – they eclipsed the testimony of God’s witnesses.

The next truth distorted by Christianity is the Messianic hope. God told the Jewish prophets that He has a plan of peace for all mankind (Zephaniah 3:9). The Jewish prophets planted a seed of hope in the heart of mankind – a hope that inspired many to persevere through the greatest trials. This hope is God’s love for all mankind.

Along came Christianity and usurped that hope for itself. Christianity invented a concept of a “new election” – an election that the prophets said nothing about (and I challenge you Dalton, show me ONE verse from the Jewish Scriptures which indicates that there will be a new election on the basis of devotion to an individual). Christianity taught the world that if you want the Messianic hope – you must worship our Jesus. Christianity stole the hope that rightfully belongs to all of mankind and tries to persuade people that the only place it can be purchased is in their store.

(It always struck me as odd, that the election of Israel according to the Bible means greater responsibility and greater punishment (Amos 3:2), while the Christian “election” is a free ticket to “eternal life”.)

That is the second eclipse of Christianity – Christianity eclipsed the universal truth of the Messianic hope.

The most important truth that Christianity eclipses is the relationship that God shares with every one of His creations.

When Jesus said: “No-one comes to the Father, but through me”, it seems like he was saying something about himself, but he was not. Jesus was making a statement about you and about me and about every man and woman that inhabit God’s earth.

Jesus was teaching that you cannot have a direct relationship with your Creator. Jesus falsely taught that there is a barrier between the Creator and His creations – and he offers himself as the only way to overcome this otherwise “insurmountable barrier”. This teaching is false.

The deepest need of every human being is the need for a relationship with God. The inner core of our being yearns to connect to its Creator. Our Creator knows this (obviously). Just as He provided for our physical needs; we have air to breath, water to drink and food to eat – He provided us with our deepest need. All we need to do is to open our hearts a little. We would then recognize in every beat of our hearts – a caress from God. We would feel every breath as an embrace, and we would recognize that He carries us constantly as a mother cradles her infant. After all, it is He who gave us existence to begin with, it is He who designed our heart and keeps it beating and it is He who constantly and lovingly sustains every aspect of our lives. There is nothing closer to us than our Creator. All we need to do is to recognize these truths and call upon Him with sincerity – but Christianity came and eclipsed this truth.

Now Dalton, I recognize that you may find it difficult to reject the man who taught you to see it as if all of your inalienable rights are coming from him. But I am not asking you to reject him. Just do what the Jewish people have been doing for the past 2000 years – ignore him. If you ignore him long enough – he will go away. He only thrives on your attention. In fact, as it is with every idol, his entire existence is only the product of the attention that the worshipers pay to him.

Dalton, I encourage you to join the swelling ranks of Jews and Gentiles who direct all of their religious devotion to our common Creator and to Him alone. We stand together, Jew and Gentile, with one heart, a heart filled with a pure and unadulterated love for God that is not eclipsed in any way. A dedication that is predicated on God’s universal principles of justice and charity -Jeremiah 9:23; 22:16; Micah 6:8; Isaiah 9:6 (7). The Jewish prophets predicted that eventually all of mankind will stand shoulder to shoulder in service of the One God of Israel. There is no reason for you to wait. It is your inalienable right.

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51 Responses to Riding the Light – Excerpt from Seventh Response to D.L.

  1. Annelise says:

    The sincerest Christian, who is close to God and lives in His light as much as Christianity has appropriated it, still has something huge to learn even from barely-religious Jews! And even more from those Jews who really seek God wholeheartedly. It’s time for humility and the willingness to listen to these witnesses… because to ignore anything about which they are right is to be truly part of the nations’ darkness.

  2. Dina says:

    So inspiring, thank you for this!

  3. junzey says:

    My Dear Rabbi Yisroel, “There are some truths, or half-truths, that Christianity does share with the world, but it wants the world to credit her; Christianity, as the source of light”.

    That statement is absolutely false! The Truth of believing in Yeshua comes with HIM being the light of the world (John 8:2). You might not believe He Is the light, but those who believe in Him do not credit themselves they look to Him as The Light.

    Isaiah 42 is the Song of the Gentiles for The LORD God of Israel and also for Jewish believers like myself. He Is The Light to Lighten the Gentiles and The Glory of His people Israel.

    Psalm 27:1 is also a Scripture to show the attention of those who believe in Yeshua goes to Him and then affects us! The LORD Is my light and my salvation, whom shall I fear? The LORD is the strength of my life, of whom shall I be afraid?

    You have somewhat of a victory to your case with Matthew 5:14-16 where Yeshua encourages those who follow His teachings and His Life that they too are the light of the world.

    These examples are just a few – there could be pages of Scriptures to show your statement is made in error!

    Israel was called to be that light as well and one day she will be fulfill what was spoken to her by The Holy One, The LORD God of Israel. I look forward to that day, as I know you do as well. With Respect,

    June

    • Annelise says:

      June, the teachings of Yeshua are a part of Christianity. Rabbi B’s statement is just as true if you say “There are some truths, or half-truths, that Christianity does share with the world, but it wants the world to credit Yeshua as the source of light.” He is not the source of it. Read the above blog post as if it said that, because there isn’t really a difference; it is fair to use the word Christianity to describe Yeshua’s teaching, at least to a certain degree.

    • Dina says:

      June, it’s a crying shame that you have accepted Christianity without first rigorously studying Hebrew Scripture in its original language–and barring that, at least with someone who can read it in Hebrew. How can you have done that, June? How can you have made such a careless, uninformed, uneducated decision, thus placing your precious soul in jeopardy?

      June, you identify as a Jew (or Jewess, if you prefer) only because your ancestors made great sacrifices to cling to Judaism. You must surely realize that, as with all other Jews who have abandoned Judaism and embraced Christianity, in several generations your descendants will no longer identify as Jewish or even know that they have Jewish blood. As with others in whose footsteps you follow, they will completely assimilate. Does this not trouble you? Can you sleep easy at night, knowing this?

      May God Who is the Father of us all lead us in the light of His truth.

      Peace and blessings,
      Dina

    • Yedidiah says:

      Christianity is about the belief in Yahshua or Jesus and not about God. So therefore it is about crediting Christianity, belief in Jesus a man, and not “Him” meaning God who is not a man and therefore not Jesus/Yeshua. Jesus was nowhere around during the time Isaiah or Psalms was written, because God existed at that time & Israel was His servant. Israel, it’s people, it’s king, it’s prophets served God.

      Isaiah 41:13 For I, the Lord your God, hold your right hand;it is I who say to you, “Fear not, I am the one who helps you.” That means God and not some some other being by some other name like Zeus or Apollo or Yeshua or Fred or Jesus. That is why Isaiah then writes about idols by some other name before once speaking again about God’s servant, Israel, the original audience of these words, whose “hand” God holds. There is no other who comes between God & Israel, His Servant, His Light reflected back to Him and also out to the dark world that knows names other than YHWH.

      • Yedidiah says:

        By reading Jesus into the story, one is reading people out. God does not need to hold Jesus by his hand, it is the hand of people, of Israel, that needs holding. God does not need to tells us that God is a servant of God, but that we need to read that people, or Israel, need to serve God and no other master. We are servants or else we are nothing to God. We serve no purpose.

  4. junzey says:

    Now Dalton, I recognize that you may find it difficult to reject the man who taught you to see it as if all of your inalienable rights are coming from him. But I am not asking you to reject him. Just do what the Jewish people have been doing for the past 2000 years ignore him. If you ignore him long enough he will go away. He only thrives on your attention. In fact, as it is with every idol, his entire existence is only the product of the attention that the worshipers pay to him.

    Dalton, I encourage you to join the swelling ranks of Jews and Gentiles who direct all of their religious devotion to our common Creator and to Him alone. We stand together, Jew and Gentile, with one heart, a heart filled with a pure and unadulterated love for God that is not eclipsed in any way. A dedication that is predicated on Gods universal principles of justice and charity -Jeremiah 9:23; 22:16; Micah 6:8; Isaiah 9:6 (7). The Jewish prophets predicted that eventually all of mankind will stand shoulder to shoulder in service of the One God of Israel. There is no reason for you to wait. It is your inalienable right.

    By the way, Rabbi – I assume Dalton Lefsey is the one you are referring to in writing your seventh exchange??? He is a personal friend of ours :)

    With Respect,

    June

  5. Yedidiah says:

    There is very strong evidence that early Christianity arose from and was influenced by pagan myths, including Buddhism and Hinduism which influenced the Therapeutae in Alexandria Egypt and the Essenes in Egypt and Judah from Christianity arose. This evidence is primarily provided by the early church fathers and later Christian & Biblical scholars. Here a just a few quotes from numerous studies on the primary sources of the “light of Jesus” and why Christianity began to prosper by use of the sword after the Roman Emperor Constantine. Many disparage Constantine, but if it weren’t of him and the next few Roman emperors it is highly likely no one would even know about Jesus or “Yeshua” today.

    “Their chief doctrines had been held for centuries before (their time) in many of the cities of Asia Minor. There, it is probable, they first came into existence as ‘Mystæ,’ upon the establishment of a direct intercourse with India under the Seleucidæ and the Ptolemies. The colleges of Essenes and Megabyzae at Ephesus, the Orphics of Thrace, the Curetes of Crete, are all merely branches of one antique and common religion, and that originally Asiatic.” And, “The introduction of Buddhism into Egypt and Palestine affords the only true solution of innumerable difficulties in the history of religion” (meaning Christian history). ___King “Remains of the Gnostics”.

    “The Essenes were called physicians of the soul, or Therapeutæ; being resident both in Judea and Egypt, they probably spoke or had their sacred books in Chaldee. They were Pythagoreans, as is proved by all their forms, ceremonies, and doctrines, and they called themselves sons of Jesse.” Godfrey Higgins in “Anacalypsis, vol. i. p. 747; vol. ii. p. 34″. He goes on to say that if the Pythagoreans were Buddhists, then the Essenes were Buddhists. And he goes on, “The Essenes had missionary stations or colonies … established in Rome, Corinth, Galatia, Ephesus, Phillippi, Colosse, and Thessalonica, precisely such, and in the same circumstances, as were those to whom St. Paul addressed his letters in those places.”

    “… the priestly religion of Babylonia, Palestine, Egypt, and Greece were undermined by certain kindred mystical societies organized by Buddha’s missionaries under the various names of Therapeutes, Essenes, Neo-Pythagoreans, Neo-Zoroastrians, &c. Thus Buddhism prepared the way for Christianity.” Arthur Lillie in “Buddha and Early Buddhism, p. vi”

    The famous church historian Eusebius quotes Philo of Alexandria concerning the Essenes and he seems to take it for granted that they and the Christians were one and the same. And according to Eusebius, “It is very likely that the commentaries (Scriptures) which were among them (the Essenes) were the Gospels, and the works of the apostles, and certain expositions of the ancient prophets, such as partly that epistle unto the Hebrews, and also the other epistles of Paul do contain.”

    I don’t want to belabor this point since there are too many quotes from too many early Christian leaders that I could use, such as Clement of Rome, Melito, Justin Martyr, Tertullian, Epiphanius, among others.

    The very ancient and Eastern doctrine of an “Angel-Messiah” or an emanation from God or the incarnation of the gods was a part of the belief of the Essenes and quite a few other “Christs” (and/or saviors, the paraclete, or comforters) in the pagan world before, during, and after the life of the Yeshua Christ. Some as found in the doctrine of Basilides and in the “persons” of the Samaritans Simon Magus and Menander, the Greek “son of Apollo”, Apollonius, Montanus, Terebynthus of Babylon, Manes of Persia, etc. Even the Roman historians Tacitus and Suetonius (and collaborator Josephus) speak about the “messiah” who will be the emperor of the world, but they considered the Roman Generals (later Emperors) Vespasian and Titus to be what some might term, “the human, yet divine Christ”.

  6. Yedidiah says:

    I assume we all know about confessions of lying or deception by “authors” in the NT, like Paul, right? It was a common thing among the early Christian Fathers and “saints” to lie and deceive, if their lies and deceits “helped the cause” of their Christ. Well, below are some quotes by Biblical scholars or by early Christian leaders (or a summation of their “confessions”).

    Paul of Tarsus, supposedly preached that which had already been preached to every nation on earth (a lie or an exaggeration? Or most likely his teachings came from ancient sources besides the Hebrew bible). He preached a principle of deceiving the common people and when “caught” by his own converts, he was only “being crafty and catching them with guile, abounding to the glory of God”. He then wonders why he is called a sinner.

    Lactantius, in the fourth century, said, “Among those who seek power and gain from their religion, there will never be wanting an inclination to forge and lie for it.”

    Gregory of Nazianzus, writing to St. Jerome, says, “A little jargon is all that is necessary to impose on the people. The less they comprehend, the more they admire. Our forefathers and doctors have often said, not what they thought, but what circumstances and necessity dictated.”

    Eusebius, Bishop of Cæsarea, and friend of Constantine the Great, who is our chief “historian” of the early Church, confessed that he was by no means scrupulous to record the whole truth concerning the early Christians in his various works. The historian Edward Gibbon said about him, “The gravest of the ecclesiastical historians, Eusebius himself, indirectly confesses that he has related what might redound to the glory, and that he has suppressed all that could tend to the disgrace of religion.”

    The Apostolic Father, Hermas, (from The Vision of Hermas) supposedly a fellow-laborer & contemporary of the apostle Paul and whose writings are quoted as being of divine inspiration, confessed that lying was, as someone said, “the easily-besetting sin of a Christian”. Hermas prayed, “O Lord, I never spake a true word in my life, but I have always lived in dissimulation, and affirmed a lie for truth to all men, and no man contradicted me, but all gave credit to my words.” The angel supposedly replies to him that he “had better keep it up, and as in time it would come to be believed, it would answer as well as truth.”

    M. Daille (On the Use of the Fathers, pp. 36, 37) wrote, “This opinion has always been in the world, that to settle a certain and assured estimation upon that which is good and true, it is necessary to remove out of the way, whatsoever may be an hinderance to it. Neither ought we to wonder that even those of the honest, innocent, primitive times made use of these deceits, seeing for a good end they made no scruple to forge whole books.”

    The theologian Beausobre, in his “Histoire de Manichee,” wrote, “We see in the history which I have related, a sort of hypocrisy, that has been perhaps, but too common at all times; that churchmen not only do not say what they think, but they do say the direct contrary of what they think.”

    Mosheim, another church historian, wrote, “It was held as a maxim that it was not only lawful but praiseworthy to deceive, and even to use the expedient of a lie, in order to advance the cause of truth and piety.”

    There is much more out there like the above and from some better known writers and I did not just search until I could find a “little bit of dirt” and try to make a “mountain out of it”. I just want to give folks a taste of some of what I have studied for the last decade. Some other Christian folks just don’t know about the history of their religion or their sacred texts and some try to overlook or purposely avoid looking at their beliefs. One British author purposely wrote a thesis of the above (& similar) subject matter in Latin for the clergy to study, so that the lay person would not become disturbed by seeing truth. As it was put, “too much light is hurtful for weak eyes”. I seen that there is a different philosophy about education in Judaism.

  7. George33 says:

    Jesus said in Mark12:29-30, The first of all the commandments is, Hear, O Israel; The Lord our God is one Lord: And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength: this is the first commandment. And the second is like, namely this, Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself. There is none other commandment greater than these.

    First of all, Jesus acknowleged that there is only one God, not three and His greatest message is love; namely love God first and love your neighbor as yourself. This is why I cannot understand why so many here hate Jesus and Christianity. I think I would turn my hatred toward some other religion that really hated me rather than to Christianity (whose total message is love & turn the other cheek). Is the message of Christianity too easy to pick on and another religion is not?

    The only thing I see here is that the hatred stems from wanting man (Rabbis and Hebrew scholars and Bible prophets), to interpret the Scriptures instead of allowing God to interpret them for you. Only God can interpret His Word. Man can think this is what the Word is saying, but man is also a liar as attested to in the Scripture verse many here like to quote, “God is not a man that He should lie.” Many use this verse to state that God is not a man, and therefore Jesus could not be God because He is a man. But the rest of the verse implies that every man is a liar and God is not like a man, because man is a liar.

    You do not understand who the Jewish Messiah is because you are too busy looking for ways to put Him down. Yes, Jesus is the true Jewish Messiah, but you will never understand Him until you seek Him with all your heart. And you will never fully understand your Jewish Scriptures until you acknowledge Jesus as Messiah.

    Jesus Himself even acknowledged that God is one Lord, so why do you keep accusing Him of being a liar. Is it simply because you can not perceive or understand how God could take a part of Himself to redeem fallen man? Are we not all offspring of that one fallen man (Adam) and have inherited his sin nature? Why should we think that God, who made a man from the dust of the ground, and made him in God’s own image – do we put God into our own little box and say, well God, you cannot make a man from from a substance of yourself, and use that substance as the seed to inseminate a virgin who was betrothed to be married? (If you understand the Jewish espousal period of the Jewish wedding ceremony, you would understand how this could happen).

    There is no Scripture that limits God from making a Man from another source than from dust – tell me one. Why then are you limiting God and saying that He could not make a Man (Jesus)from a substance of His own Essence and also make that Godly substance into the image of a human man? I cannot understand that reasoning of someone hating the Jewish Messiah who promotes love and also promises to prove Himself to anyone if they will only allow Him.

    God is not three people – God is one God – Jesus is not a created being – He is a part of the Father and came down to this earth directly from heaven. And, like man whom God said must return to where he came from – the dust of the gound. Jesus also had to return to where He came from. The only thing was, He was from heaven, therfore He had to return to heaven.

    • Dina says:

      Hi George.

      I am moved by your lecture that is so filled with love and respect for the Jewish people.

      What I mean to say is, I am moved by your lecture to ask you a few questions. Why do you feel so comfortable telling the Jewish people to worship one in whose name they were forced to live in degraded conditions, expelled, tortured, and killed? Who are you to lecture of love to a people who harmed no one yet for millennia were treated worse than animals?

      My dear, loving friend, the Scripture we both hold in common tells us exactly Whom to worship–and whom not to worship. Can you point to a single verse that directs us to worship the messiah as God? Can you point to a single verse that instructs us to worship a human being?

      And finally, why have you not fully studied the Jewish response and tried to really, really understand it, before mounting your little pedestal to lecture us benighted ones?

      May God Who is the Father of us all lead us toward the light of His truth.

      With love,
      Dina

      • George33 says:

        I am sorry you took it that way Dina. Sometimes you also need tough love to get a point accross. I do not believe you realize what or who a Christian is from your remarks, so allow me to go over some things.

        A Christian is not born a Christian as a Jew is born a Jew. An individual is not a Christian, because his or her parents were Christians. Going into a church building or asking to join a denomination does not make one a Christian. Belonging to every Christian denomination on earth does not make a person a Christian. A priest, the pope, a pastor or anyone else can make you a Christian. There is only one way to become a Christian and that is through repentance and asking Jesus to become the Lord of your life and serve Him for the rest of your life.

        If someone did you wrong on purpose and said they were a Christian, and they did not repent for doing it, and tell you they were sorry, they most probably were not a Christian. Do not merely take someones word when they say they are a Christian, there are many make-believers out there today. However, anyone can become a true Christian believer by putting a fleece out to God and challenging Him that if Jesus is really God in the flesh, to prove it to you and He has to. Or you can continue believing as you do because you have a free will to make choices in life. Just don’t depend your life on what someone else tells you – prove it for yourself.

        Oh one more thing, the way that God will prove Himself to you is by the other entity of the Trinity of God – the Holy Spirit. But I do not think Jews believe in Him either.

        With love to you too Dina.
        George

        • Dina says:

          George, I don’t know what’s in people’s hearts, I only know what they tell me. If someone tells me he’s a Christian, I believe him. Likewise, if someone tells me he had a powerful spiritual experience in whatever religion he adheres to, I believe him.

          The sad fact is that today’s Christians continue to misunderstand the Jews not only because they aren’t listening to what the Jews have to say. They continue to misunderstand the Jews because they fail to study the history of Christian-Jewish relations from the beginning.

          While Jews are painfully aware of Christianity’s dark and bloody past, today’s Christians are all too ignorant. Therefore, they respond defensively to the charge I presented you with, claiming that those weren’t real Christians.

          My response is, really? Then do you know that there weren’t any real Christians until say, about the 1960s? The overwhelming majority of Christendom hated Jews, and the writings of venerated Christians whose works are still earnestly studied by theology students incited this deadly hatred. I’m talking about John Chrysostom. Origen. Justin Martyr. Later, Martin Luther.

          George, the last great atrocity against the Jewish people was over just 69 years ago. Tell me, where were the real Christians while their Jewish neighbors–their neighbors, George!–were dragged out of their homes to be shot or deported for nothing more than the crime of being born Jewish? I will tell you where they were, George. They were either actively participating or standing by silently. How is it that even the United States (and I love my country, don’t get me wrong) turned back refugee ships loaded with men, women, and children to their certain deaths?

          Where were all the Christians then, George? WHERE WERE THEY?

          I am shouting at you because my own relatives are now ashes in Europe, thanks to the non-intervention of their Christian neighbors.

          And I am shouting at you because it sickens me that two billion people revere a sacred text that demonizes my people and that throws Hitler’s six million innocent victims into hell, while their Christian murderers are in heaven.

          A half a century of good will, while gratefully received, is not enough to wipe out nearly 2000 years of history.

          One more point, George. Christianity promised to lead its followers down a path that was supposed to be morally superior to Judaism. In two thousand years, we have seen her failure soak the pages of history with wars and bloodshed, not just through persecution of Jews but also with each other. We have seen how she has kept the poor downtrodden, while the Jews in her midst clung to their God and their Torah, performed acts of kindness for each other, and focused on surviving in spite of her.

          Which society was the morally superior? Study history, study it real well, George, and then come back and see if you dare to preach to us.

          That’s my challenge to you, if you seek the truth with an open mind.

          Good luck, peace, and blessings,
          Dina

          • George33 says:

            Well Dina, If you believe anyone when they tell you they are a Christian that is up to you. I have been in both positions, but I did not understand the difference until I made a decision. Because Hitler said he was a Christian, many believed him and Christianity suffered. Satan deceived Eve in the Garden, and she believed him too.

            There is nothing more I could add to my previous reply so I will resign myself that you shall go on resenting Christians no matter what I could say – except I am sorry about what happened to your people in the past. May G-d be with you.

            Still with love and blessings,
            George

          • Dina says:

            George, you seem like a nice guy, but you weren’t really listening to what I had to say. I wasn’t talking about the Hitlers in history. I was talking about the John Chrysostoms and Martin Luthers. If they weren’t Christian, who is?

            Anyway, the immoral behavior of Christians throughout history is by itself not the reason I reject Christianity. I only brought it up because you were preaching about love, which to me is just ironic, given my knowledge of history–which I am sorry to say you sorely lack. Are you a truth seeker, George, or have you made up your mind based on your emotional/spiritual experience?

            If you seek the truth with an open mind, you will investigate my claims to see if they are true.

            What kind of moral legacy does Christianity represent, compared with the moral legacy of Judaism? My study of history shows me that Christianity failed where Judaism succeeded. What does your study show you?

            How is it that you have no problem revering a book that demonizes one group of people–to such an extent that it is the direct cause of the persecution they suffered at the hands of those who revered this book? I have been reading your scripture, George, and the stuff that it says about Jews isn’t very nice (to understate the case).

            I hope you are willing to at least consider looking into this. It’s a rare Christian who engages in this type of soul searching.

            Best wishes,
            Dina

          • Annelise says:

            I used to be a Christian, and most of the people I know in Christianity are sincere, kind ‘real Christians’ who care about specifically about Jewish safety and just about other humans in general. I agree with Dina’s point here. I would also agree with her that there are many other reasons why Christianity is wrong to believe and it doesn’t just come down to the history of the churches and of European antisemitism. Take the thoughts here as one strand of many, some of which are not so possible to find an exception about…

    • Jim says:

      George,

      Have you ever known someone “in love” with another person who was just no good for them? It doesn’t matter what you say to the one in love, they won’t hear it. Any bad behaviors of their lover don’t matter. To them, they hardly even exist. They will excuse boorish behavior. They will excuse neglect. They will excuse selfishness. And they do this, because they love this other person so much, they cannot even believe what they’ve seen with their own eyes. Their lover can do no wrong.

      The mistake they’ve made is letting fantasy run away with them. They did not take the time to know what kind of person their lover really is. They’ve built up an untrue picture of that person, and it is that image they are in love with. But they should have discovered the truth first. And then, if this was a good person, then they should have loved them for that. They should have loved them according to their merits. Instead they’ve invented merits that don’t exist, and they cannot see the real person. They don’t love their lover; they love their own imagination.

      Christians are guilty of this. They’ve invented an image of Jesus that is just so pleasing to themselves, they cannot rightly assess his qualities. Because they already worship him, they can find no fault in him. They go through incredible mental gymnastics in order to prop up their object of devotion.

      But he was only a man. And we have little reason to believe he was a very good one. The devotion of the Christian is misplaced. He should know from the very prophets whereby he attempts to prove that Jesus is divine that he cannot be. God says that there is no Savior beside Him. He tells us not to direct our worship to any other than Himself as revealed at Sinai.

      You admit that he taught that one should worship only the God of Israel. And then, without even recognizing that you are in a terrible contradiction, you go on to worship him. If you had heeded his words, you would never have devoted your worship to a man, any man.

      Similarly, when you quote Ezekiel 18, as in our other conversation, you mock the words of God and embrace the words of Paul. You are so blinded by your affection for Jesus, that you never investigated the possibility that he isn’t what you think he is. If you had studied the Torah first, so that you could know God, then you would understand His words. But instead, you contradict the very passages from which you quote to prop up your “blind love”. You cannot accept their proper meaning because then your devotion would be proven to be misplaced.

      Do not take your vitriol out on the Jewish people. They are only doing you a kindness by pointing out the flaws of your lover. The earlier we know that we have dedicated ourselves to a fantasy, the more quickly we can devote ourselves to Him Who is true.

      Jim

      • George33 says:

        Jim,

        I only know what I was the first 38 years of my life – it wasn’t pretty. I was not a Christian in those years either. However, the one God, and Lord and Savior made Himmself real to me. because I was a mess and challenged Him that if He thought He could do anything with me, to go ahead and try. In reality, I figured it would take Him at least ten years or more, but it was instantanious. This happened on my way to work early one cold Dec. morning. That was many years past and it is even more real to me now as it was then.

        Why am I writing this to you. I don’t know. You will merely say it is fantasy or whatever. And that is alright, you have a life of your own to live the way you see fit. If you don’t like Christians, I doubt anything I can say would change that. I will add you to my prayer list though, who knows – maybe someday?

        George

        • Jim says:

          George,

          I don’t know what makes you think I don’t like Christians. I’ve said nothing against Christians, only against Christian teaching. It is the truth that is my concern. In all honesty, I sympathize with Christians. I was one for 31 years. But that nothing to do with truth.

          Your claim that Jesus changed your life is not unique to Christianity. Adherents to every religion claim that it changed their life. Even non-religious systems have people who claim it changed their lives. If you are going to claim your personal experience as a proof of your faith, you will have to accept it as proof from Mormons, Muslims, Hindus, Buddhists, etc. Perhaps you should become a Hare Krishna. That’ll really change your life.

          In fact, Jesus is a placebo. So are many other religions. Is this nice to say? No. But in investigating the truth, we must deal with the facts. It’s not nice to hear one has cancer, but one cannot prepare without knowledge.

          It is not my business if you want to worship Jesus. If you maintains steadfastly that your personal experience proves to you that Jesus is a god, that’s your business. I’m not in charge of you. But you can’t expect me to believe in Jesus based on your personal experience, anymore than you believe in Joseph Smith because Glenn Beck’s life was transformed through the Mormon Church. Maybe your experience is legitimate. Maybe his is. I cannot know. So both of you go believe what you want, but don’t tell me I should believe it too.

          If, on the other hand, you tell me that Jesus fulfilled the prophecies of the Tanach, you have given me every right to criticize. Now I have something to investigate. And any such investigation shows that your beliefs are unfounded and contradictory. If that offends you, then don’t come to me and teach me your beliefs. But if you care about the truth, then you should weigh the arguments. But, if you can’t hear disagreement with your beliefs, then don’t teach them. Then no one will contradict you. You can practice them privately without opposition.

          Jim

          • George33 says:

            Jim,
            Hey, I don’t know where I go that idea that you don’t like Christians – how wrong of me. I can appreciate that you thought you were a Christian for 31 years, because I too, thought I was one for 38 years. However, that all changed when…, well – you know. But of course that was not real. And Jesus is merely a myth anyway. I have been following my vain imaginations for umpteen years now with nothing to show for it – right? Well Jim, may I wish you the best in you endeavor to stamp out Christianity after these 2000 years, and may the one whom you worship, be kind to you.

            George

  8. Sophiee says:

    “[This is what you must do] if your blood brother, your son, your daughter, your bosom wife, or your closest friend secretly tries to act as a missionary among you, and says, ‘Let us go worship a new god. LET US HAVE A SPIRITUAL EXPERIENCE PREVIOUSLY UNKNOWN BY YOU OR YOUR FATHER.’ 13:8 [He may be enticing you with] the gods of the nations around you, far or near, or those that are found at one end of the world or another. 13:9 Do not agree with him, and do not listen to him.”

    The key phrase here is LET US HAVE A SPIRITUAL EXPERIENCE PREVIOUSLY UNKNOWN BY YOU OR YOUR FATHER

    or gods “YOU DID NOT KNOW” (Devarim 11).

    When did “our fathers”, present at Sinai, have a spiritual experience with Jesus? Was Jesus “known” to them? Did they pray to Jesus or through Jesus? Of course not! Jesus was unknown to them.

    Ergo G-d warned us against both Christianity and Islam — any spiritual experience not known to us at Mount Sinai is false. It is not the Rabbis who have “changed” or turned to avodah zarah — it is those apostate Jews who pray to or through a man and put that man above the G-d of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.

  9. George33 says:

    Dina,
    I guess somewhere I lost you in this conversation. You are right, I am not a history buff, but know enough to rumage through. I do not like to look back because looking back usually causes strife and so I want to press forward in my walk with G-d. I do have a high knowledge of the New Testament though and have found nowhere that it condemns the Jew. Maybe you could enlighten me on that. If you are talking about Jesus admonishing or scolding the Pharisees, Sadducees, scribes and lawyers for their wrong interpretations – that is not pursecution. I see nowhere that it states that the Jews were responsible for killing Christ, but the book does tell me who really did kill Jesus in 1 Corinthians 2:8. This same verse also reveals why the word Jesus or the word Trinity is not found in the Old Testament part of the Christian Bible.

    I know the Bible says the Jews called out kill Him, but Jesus even said in John 10:17 & 18 that no man takes His life, but He lays it down willingly of Himself. He said He has the power to lay it down and to take it up again and got that power from the Father. So Jesus did not condemn the Jew for His death. In reality we should all be found guilty becuase He died for those of us who sinned so we could have right standing before G-d once again. But in reality, none of us are guilty, because He did it willingly, out of love for us.

    I do not look at what man may have done in the past. I am able to discern if he or she is a good or bad by what the Bible tells me. A good tree produce good fruit and a corrupt tree brings forth evil fruit. You shall know them by their fruits. If somewhere says they are a Christian but is doing evil or things contrary to what the Bible states, then I look that he or she is probably corrupt. I am not judging, but discerning and take note of their behavior and be aware of them.

    I understand the Jews have been persecuted much and it is even written that God would disperse them into the nations to be persecuted because of their iniquity and stubbornness. But, maybe you need to do a history study on the persecutions of Christians also if you want to see persecution of a people. Even today more Christians have been persecuted than any time in history. Just in the last couple of months in Pakistan and Egypt were churches burned down or blown up and many killed or wounded while they were worshiping. In Iran, China and elsewhere many Christian pastors and ministers and members are in prison merely for exercising their belief in Christ. And the United States is not far behind as they want to ban any mention of God or Jesus and among other issues they continue to chip away.

    What is the Christian’s part against those who persecute them? Should we as Christians pour out our revenge upon them? No, but to love our enemy and bless them that curse us, and do good to them that hate us, and despitefully use us and persecute us so we may be the children of our Father, which is in heaven. (Matthew 5:44-45)

    You are right Christianity and Judaism are two different entities. If revenge is what your book is teaching you, I don’t want any part of it. There is too much of that in the world. I will set my sights on teaching what my Lord God and Savior has taught me to do.

    Blessings,
    George

    • Dina says:

      Hi George.

      I’d like to discuss the following points touched upon in your comment to me, plus a point you addressed to Jim:

      1. The importance or irrelevance of studying history.
      2. Anti-Judaism in the New Testament.
      3. The persecution of Christians today.
      4. Taking revenge.
      5. Using spiritual experience to convince Jews to convert.

      THE IMPORTANCE OF HISTORY

      George, you justify your ignorance by suggesting that such study increases strife. In fact, your ignorance is inexcusable. History teaches us important lessons, such as “history repeats itself.” If we study history we can learn how to avoid repeating some of the mistakes of the past. But in the context of our particular discussion, you could not be more wrong. If all Christians would study the history of Christian Jewish relations, they would take a giant step forward in healing our relationship. They would finally understand where we are coming from and approach us with greater sensitivity and compassion. They would also finally understand why it is so insulting and demeaning to Jews to continue to try to proselytize them, they would have less contempt and more respect for the Jewish position, and our mutual respect would increase.

      I know that most evangelical Christians are kind and loving and very supportive of the Jewish people. But even my friends who are Christian have this little undercurrent of contempt for our faith. That doesn’t help, in any kind of relationship, to increase the love.

      ANTI-JUDAISM IN THE NEW TESTAMENT

      Books have been written on this subject. Although I have a lot to say, because of my time constraints I will refer you to this study, which I hope you will take the time to review (it won’t take you long). Here it is: http://thejewishhome.org/counter/AntiJewishNT.pdf

      THE PERSECUTION OF CHRISTIANS TODAY

      Since we are discussing Christian-Jewish relations, I can hardly see how Muslim persecution of Christians is relevant. Nevertheless, I agree with you that what is going on in Muslim countries is reprehensible on the part of Muslims and tragic for the innocent Christians living in their midst. I am also sympathetic to your statement about the treatment of Christian expression in the public sphere by secular liberals. I find it obnoxious and I wish they would stop it!

      TAKING REVENGE

      You wrote that you want no part of my religion if it teaches me to take revenge. Where did you get that idea from? Where did you hear me say that I want to take revenge on Christians? The book that I revere says not to take revenge or even bear a grudge (Leviticus 19:18)! Forgive me, but I find this argument of yours totally bizarre.

      [I will add that the Christian Copts in Egypt might not appreciate your turning the other cheek on their behalf. I think they’d rather that you did something active to stop their persecution.]

      USING SPIRITUAL EXPERIENCE

      I have also had transforming spiritual experiences and continue to have powerful ones on a regular basis that add so much richness and joy to my life that I think I would shrivel up and die if you took them away. I have a meaningful and fulfilling life both in my personal relationship with God and my relationship with the people in my life. But I don’t try to convince anyone to join my religion on that basis. That’s because how are you going to win this one? Whoever one-ups the other with the most and the coolest spiritual experiences?

      If we are going to debate religion, it can only be on rational grounds. You had better be prepared to defend your religion logically and show how it harmonizes with, rather than contradicts, Hebrew Scripture. Are you prepared to engage with me on that level?

      Wishing you the best,
      Dina

      • George33 says:

        Dina.
        I did finally find that website about anti-Jewish NT. I see a little clearer why you feel such about Christianity. I would suppose there is also much written elsewhere concerning this issue. If Jews base there feelings upon such writings, I can see their bitterness. I also saw the choice words used to magnify that bitterness, like anti-Semiticism, anti-Jewish, atrocities against the Jewish people, Christian scholars and leaders agree about the defamatory remarks, ect. I guess I could write ten times more pages regarding what I saw wrong with what was written in that article. But let me first start off by saying, if Jesus was really G-d in the flesh, then His admonishment of the Jewish leaders in His day was no more than what G-d scolded them for in the Old Testament. Should we get mad at God for His rebukes? If Jesus is truly God in the flesh, then He wrote the Old Testament through those He appointed to write them. If He was not God in the flesh, He still was telling them the same thing.

        This article had no mention of why Jesus scolded those Jewish leaders. What the article did was only cherry pick passages to show discord. Why did Jesus admonish the Jewish leaders in the NT? For not obeying the laws God commanded them and changing the laws to fit their own preference. When the Jewish leaders got after Jesus for healing on the Sabbath, Jesus asked them, “If someone had an ox or animal that fell into a hole on the Sabbath, should they not get the animal out of the hole and not leave it in the hole until the next day?” Those leaders didn’t want anyone to do any work at all on the Sabbath, but the article never mentioned that.

        I don’t know how to impress this on you, but it matters not is someone is the head Professor scholar of the largest Christian University of Theology in the world, or if he is the pope – if he is not Born-again, he is not a true Christian no matter how much he argues he is and no matter how convincing he seems. Anyone can write books and articles about anything and get a following – that does not make him a true Christian. Jesus called the Jewish leaders hypocrites. I know what He meant, because I also was a Christian hypocrite for 38 years. Because my parents brought me up in a certain denomination, I thought I was a Christian, but I was as unrighteous as they come. You know what Psalms 1:4-6 says – the ungodly are like the chaff the wind blows away and the way of the ungodly shall perish – that was me. The difference between a person who merely thinks he or she is a Christian and the Christian who has been Born-again is that a Born-again Christian will never leave Christianity, because God’s Holy Spirit lives within his or her heart.

        A separation took place when Adam disobeyed God, and God’s Spirit left Adam. Becoming Born-again is the reuniting of God’s Spirit with your spirit. You can read about it in John chapter 3, Romans chapter 8 and other places. My advise is to read everything for yourself and ask God to show you what He is saying in each passage, and don’t allow a man, who has the capacity to lie or deceive you, to teach you – ask God for wisdom (Proverbs 2:6 & 3:5-6). Always check the things of the Bible for yourself, ask G-d for wisdom and understanding and don’t rely on what they tell you, but what God tells you.

        I have seen many who twist passages of the Bible so bad, it is sad. People read it and believe it. IF God doesn’t show you, no one can. Like I mentioned in a previously reply; yes, the Jews killed Jesus, but they were not responsible for it – all we who sin are, but that does not matter either, because Jesus did not have to die. He told us that – “No man takes My life, I have power from the Father to lay it down and to take it up.” A verse in Romans states that “God commended His love towards us in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.” That means He loved us before we even knew who He was. He loved us first, not the other way around.

        The Apostles were Jews. They followed Jesus for over three years. They heard all He said, saw all the healings and miracles He did and in the end, all but John died a martyrs death (John was sentenced to die on the Isle of Patmos). If Jesus was a false prophet, why would the Apostles and hundreds of disciples die for someone who lied to them?

        You can see the things God called the Jews in the Old Testament, – hypocrites in Isaiah 33, Ezekiel 16, abominations, whoredoms, provoking God to anger, – rebellious in Isaiah 65:2 as well as other things in the rest of the chapter. The Old Testament is full of God’s admonishments of the Jewish people. If Jesus is God, He had the right to say those things. If He wasn’t God, He wasn’t wrong for saying them. Did not God even call the Jew a stubborn and stiffnecked people? Didn’t they make a golden calf, didn’t God tell Elijah He had reserved 7000 who did not worship Ba-al (only 7000)? Didn’t the Jews get so mad at Stephen in the Book of Acts and they stoned him to death and he cried out to God to forgive them for they know not what they do? Didn’t they want to kill Peter and Paul, but God made a way for them to escape? Didn’t Paul start out by killing Christians in the name of God? Didn’t Paul say in Romans chapter 11 that he wished he was accursed for his peoples sake so they (the Jew) could be converted? Is that hate? Paul said salvation is to the Jew first then to the Gentile. That is why a Jew becomes a completed Jew and is adament in telling other Jews about Jesus. He has became Born-again.

        Pllease understand, I cannot save a bug. All I can do is tell others about Jesus. Before Jesus ascended into heaven, He told the Disciples to go into all the world and tell them about what they saw and heard. If they (Disciples) did not tell us, no one whould know and Jesus would have died in vain, because no one would have even heard about Him. We do not single out the Jew only, but attempt to tell the world about Him. A Christians position is to tell about Him – it is up to the hearer to use his or her free will, to either accept or reject the message, and it is the responsibility of the Holy Spirit to convert them to Christ (if that is their desire and decision). There is so much more I could bring up, but I know this is long so I shall stop here and allow you to reply.

        George

        • Jim says:

          George,

          When you correct your child, do you do it openly, in front of his friends, humiliating him, or do you pull him aside and talk to him privately? One of these is the way of the NT and one of these is the way of the prophets.

          Many times, God corrects the Jewish people throughout Tanach. At times, it is sounds very harsh. The words are very strong. But the words are delivered by the Jewish prophets to the Jewish people. It is a private conversation. And God does not leave them without hope.

          The NT is the very opposite of this. If Jesus said these words, he spoke them to the Jewish people. But then the books were given to the other nations. They have been given ammunition, an arsenal whereby they can judge unfavorably the Jewish people. The private rebuke is made public. So, even if what he spoke was correct—and I do not say that it was—it was done incorrectly, publicly, humiliating the Jewish people.

          The harsh invective of the NT has echoed through the ages. Jesus tells us that they shall be held responsible for the blood of all the righteous. They will be condemned even for the death of “righteous Abel” (Mt. 23.35). Of course, there was no Jewish nation at the time of Abel’s death. Nor did they descend from Cain. (I only mention that because Jesus is holding “this generation” responsible for sins “their fathers” committed. Cain is not their father.) And this was handed over, not to the Jews, but to the nations of the world, leaving them with the idea that the Jews are truly evil. It makes me shudder to even type the words.

          The story of the NT is as bad as the invective. The image of crazed Jews calling for the blood of an innocent man—“Crucify him! Crucify him!”—while asking for the release of a criminal is a horrible but powerful image. So is what comes next. The Roman murderer, Pontius Pilate, can see what they cannot, and is reluctant to kill this man. And the Jews accept responsibility for them and their children. This has stuck with the Church through the ages. This is the picture of the Jews, willing to kill, not just one of their own, not just a good man, but a divine being, while the poor Roman oppressor has his hands tied by the Jewish people. He is their reluctant proxy. They are the wicked ones.

          You can say that we all killed Jesus, not the Jews, and I know you believe that. I know you are sincere. You do not hate the Jewish people. But I ask you to review the NT and see if it says just that and leaves it at that. Surely you can see that it doesn’t. In Matt. 23, Jesus tells the Jews that they are the children of murderers, and that the reason he sends prophets is so that they may take the weight of all the innocent blood shed on the earth. A few chapters later, he is crucified at their command. The NT clearly holds the Jews responsible for his death and all the righteous throughout history. He asks them how they can escape hell in Matt. 35:33 for the deaths of the prophets. How much more will they suffer for his death?

          I know that Christian theology teaches that Jesus had to die, even that he came to die. But then, look what he says to Judas. He tells Judas that it would be better that he had never been born. By your logic, Judas should never have been told that. He was only doing what Jesus came for. In fact, it had to happen to fulfill prophecy. So, Jesus should have comforted Judas, told him it was necessary, not to kill himself. Instead, he says that Judas would have been better to never have been born.

          The responsibility the NT puts at the feet of the Jewish people is basically the same as that Judas has. They too killed Jesus, according to the NT. And for this and other crimes they won’t escape Hell.

          And because of these passages and others, for 2,000 years the Church has oppressed the Jewish people. They have burned their books. They have evicted them from their cities. They have forcibly converted them. And all the horrible invective they have brought against the Jewish people finds its origin in the NT.

          The NT does talk frequently of love. I do not deny it. But I will say this: It is a book of hate against the Jewish people. One can preach one thing and do another. One can give contradictory messages. And the NT is guilty of this in spades.

          With respect,

          Jim

          • George33 says:

            Jim,
            Thank you for your kind words. I am sure you, Dina and the rest all love God and are sincere in your endeavors. You see, I have been a Christian for some time; and yet, unaware any of this existed. I must admit you do make a powerful argument with your position, however if you would forgive me if I seem a little blunt sometimes in my reply. You are right I do love the Jews and have aided in support of Isreal in the past.

            What you wrote seemed resonable at first, but after closer analysis, I must question some issues. You indicate that the prophets handed this to only the Jew, and it should stay with the Jew. Don’t you think that after the Jews were dispersed into the nations in 70 AD, that the nations would have found out about it then anyway? Regarding Judas and Jesus hugging him, the Scripture in Luke 22:3 and in John 13:26-27 says Satan entered into Judas. Should Jesus be hugging on Satan? Jesus also made mention in your Mt. 23 chapter that the Jewish leaders strained at a gnat, and swallowed a camel. Is that not true? They strain and built mountains of little things, but swallow the biggest lies of Satan. Are they not still a stubborn and stiffneck people as G-d said? Is it not – turn the other cheek, but still and eye for an eye and tooth for a tooth, or in simple terms, get even, get revenge? (Forgive me again Jim, I told you I might be blunt).

            Are you not also doing what Jesus did by slandering Christianity and feeding it to the nations? But that’s alright, because Jesus told us that if they persecuted Him they will persecute us too, and that when we are persecuted for His name sake that great are our rewards in heaven. But again, I must say thanks to the Jew for opening the door for not only the Jewish believer, but also the Gentile nations and the whole world to be saved. However, that door, according to the NT, will only be opened a while longer as God is about to return to the Jew again (Luke 21:24, Romans 11:25 and Revelations 7:4-5) I believe this is the time when Ezekiel 38-39 happens and the Rapture of Jesus’ people (the Church) takes place. So even the Jew who accepted Jesus as Lord will be in heaven at that event.

            There are enough Scriptures about Jesus in the OT to convince me of His deity, let alone in the NT. However, all of them have been turned into fables by Jews, Muslims, atheists, and even so-called make-believe Christian scholars who say these Scriptures do not mean what they actually say, but they mean whatever whosoever tells you they mean. For instance, “That’s not Jesus in Isaiah 52-53, that’s Israel who took away the iniquity of us all (53:6), and was marred more than any man (52:14).” Could this not be the same reason Jesus scolded them so harshly in Matthew 23?

            Jim, I’m kind of interested – as I stated previously – I thought i was a Christian for 38 years, you say you were one for 31 years – did you truly make a repentance, did you really make Jesus you Lord, Savior and Master of your life and made a commitment to serve Him for the rest of your life, no matter what? Did resentment from your people make you change? I say that because once a person is Born-again, he or she cannot become un-Born-again. Could also those people you call Christians who persecuted Jews – could maybe they have just called themselve Christians, but never made the New Covenant commitment to leave everything for Christ? Just wandering.

            Hey, I guess I got off on a rant here – sorry.
            Jim, here’s hoping your day goes well.

            Blessings from the G-d we serve,
            George

          • Jim says:

            George,

            You have no need to apologize for being blunt. I prefer direct speech and writing. I like to deal with the issues, and they are hard to understand when they are so couched in niceties that what is being said is being lost. Rather, I thank you for your bluntitude.

            I’m not sure, however, that I followed all your arguments. They were not very clear to me. Allow me this opportunity to answer your disagreements as best as I understand them, please. And then, if I have misunderstood, perhaps you can clarify for me the points I do not understand.

            You write that the dispersal of the Jewish people would put the prophets into the hands of the non-Jew anyway. But this misses the point. There is a world of difference between correcting someone privately and doing so publicly. Even though someone might later hear about the correction done privately, they were not invited to see the humiliation of the one being corrected. And if they feel superior to the one being corrected, that is not the fault of the one doing the correction. However, if one corrects another publicly, he humiliates them, and he becomes responsible for the superiority those who witnessed the correction feel over those who received the correction. And those bully and mock the one who was corrected do wrong in either instance, but public correction invites such behavior.

            The NT offers strong and even unjust correction to the Jews. And then it hands it to the non-Jews. It’s largely written to the non-Jew. These criticisms are public and have invited the hatred of the nations. The words of the prophets, on the other hand, were given to the Jewish people themselves. If, in the Diaspora, the other nations of the world read the prophets and concluded that the Jewish people were worthy of their hatred, that would be their mistake for eavesdropping. There is a vast difference between giving them those criticisms directly and them taking it out of the hands of the Jewish people.

            Regarding Judas, it seems I did not make my point clear. The point is not that Jesus should hug Judas. The point is that if Judas is to be held culpable for the death of Jesus for his direct role in it, then it allows the Church to hold the Jews responsible too. It’s all well and good to say that, “We all killed Jesus,” but that’s not reflected in the story the gospels tell. They tell us that Judas and the Jewish leadership killed Jesus, not just through their sin as we did, but because they are evil. You bring up that John says Satan had entered Judas. But John also calls Jews the children of Satan, whom he calls a murderer from the beginning. And he says that the Jews want to do Satan’s desires (John 8:37-46.) Do you not see that the NT has called the Jews murderers? It has called them evil.

            One can easily claim that the NT is a message of love, if one cherry picks verses. We can point out that he said that loving one’s neighbor was second only to loving God among the commandments. We can extol the Golden Rule. We can point out that he says that one who calls his brother a fool is in danger of hellfire. But we cannot ignore that he also called the Jews the sons of the devil and held them responsible for deaths predating the nation. The full picture is not one solely of love. It is one of the most horrible hate. And that hate was written down for and disseminated to the non-Jewish nations. This is not loving correction. This is hateful invective.

            So, if the story wanted to be consistent with the message that Jesus came die, and it was not the fault of those who performed the act, then yes, he should have had soft words for Judas. If Judas isn’t at fault, because he’s been possessed, all the more reason not to say that it’s better that he never lived. He could have instead cast Satan out of him and then gone to die anyway.

            A whole other problem is introduced by saying that Judas was inhabited by Satan, by the way. He may no longer have had free will. But those who are Satan’s children, they want to kill him. This is the horrible conclusion that we must draw from the NT. “Father forgive them, for they know not what they do” only goes so far when you’ve already called them willful murderers who are responsible for the murder of every righteous individual murdered from the very first one.

            Regarding the straining of gnats and swallowing camels, you ask: “Is that not true?” No, it’s not. The Jewish people have devoted themselves to the study of God’s Holy Torah. And they have looked into all its implications. No, I do not see that they have strained at gnats while swallowing camels.

            If anything, the writers of the NT did not understand Torah at all. They attempt to make the Pharisees look petty all they can, but they only reveal their own ignorance. In Matt. 12, for example, the disciples are plucking grains and eating them, which the Pharisees question. I don’t want to get into the full discussion. The real way Jesus wins the debate is by healing someone on the Sabbath to prove he’s right. And the Pharisees, that is to say, Torah observant Jews are made to look petty and foolish.

            But they are not petty. The disciples had a responsibility to have prepared for the Sabbath ahead of time. And how do I know this? Do I need to go to the Mishnah? Do I read Talmudic commentaries? No, I am no Torah scholar. But I can see, that when God sent the Jewish people manna in the desert, he sent them enough for two days when Friday rolled around. This way they would not have to work on the Sabbath. But what is so hard about picking up manna from the ground? This certainly doesn’t sound much like work, but on the other hand, they weren’t to do it. So, threshing individual grains might not seem like work. This might sound like the Pharisees are straining at gnats. However, what this really reflects is a devotion to the Holy Torah of Hashem.

            You bring up another instance of the NT writers not understanding Torah when you bring up “eye for an eye.” First, if Jesus were to be offering an improvement, who’s law would he be improving? It was not Moses who came up with “eye for an eye.” It wasn’t the prophets to come later. It wasn’t the Pharisees. It was God. This was God’s law. I cannot believe that God created a bad law, so Jesus could not possibly improve upon it.

            But as I say, Matthew didn’t understand the law anyway. It isn’t about vengeance. The law is about compensatory damages awarded by a court. For this also, I do not need the Oral Torah. The topic of the “eye for an eye” passage in Exodus is compensation for various assaults, beginning with Exodus 21:18-19: “If men contend with each other, and one strikes the other with a stone or with his fist, and he does not die but is confined to his bed, if he rises again and walks about outside with his staff, then he who struck him shall be acquitted. He shall only pay for the loss of his time, and shall provide for him to be thoroughly healed.” Note that nothing is said of striking the assailant in return. Various other circumstances are listed, culminating in the “eye for eye, etc.”. All of these leading up to the phrase are about payment to make good the damage done. For Matthew (or Jesus) to make it about revenge only shows that he did not understand the law he was criticizing.

            Now, you ask if I am not publicly correcting Christians as I lament being done to the Jewish people in the NT. Am I not in fact, a hypocrite? This is a fair question.

            What I am doing and what the NT does are two very different things. You will not hear me say for example that Christians are evil, sons of the devil, etc. You will hear me say that Christian teaching is false. The doctrine is incorrect. I will gladly show someone how the NT misrepresents the holy words of Tanach, but I do this so that people will not feel compelled to follow what is false. I do not demonize Christians. The NT, however, does demonize the Jewish people, openly without apology.

            It is strange to me that you should think this is persecution at any rate. My disagreeing with your doctrine is not persecution. I have not burned your Bible. I have not dragged you into the street and beaten you. I have not killed you or your family. The worst I have done is said that you devoted your attention to a man rather than God. This is not persecution.

            In fact, I would not be doing this, if Christians did not proselytize. True story: a missionary told me that he didn’t want to hear my perspective. Think about the irony. He’s a missionary, who by definition walks about teaching his religion. But he did not want to hear someone else teach religion. So, away he goes to South America to preach Jesus, but he cannot be confronted with another viewpoint. Well, that’s his choice. I’m certainly not going to make him listen to me. But then, I don’t think he should expect anyone to listen to him, either.

            I do not go out and proselytize. I lend my voice to one counter-missionary blog. I sometimes have lengthy but friendly discussions with Christians in person about this, but only when they approach me to teach me about Jesus. I only answer those who attempt to convert me or others. That’s all.

            I should make it clear that I am not Jewish. I follow the seven Noahide laws. That’s all. I am not Jewish, nor do I in anyway represent the Jewish people. I only try to talk about what’s true. Because this comment is so long, I shall have to save for another comment why I am no longer a Christian.

            With respect,

            Jim

          • George33 says:

            Jim,

            Yes, you answered my questions and were on target concerning what I presented. I now have a better understanding of your position than when I first encounted this group. There was one thing I would like to present here though, about Jesus calling Jews children of the devil. John, who wrote in his Gospel that Jesus told the Jewish leaders they were “children of the devil,” also wrote the same, but to the Christian, in 1 John 3:8, as he states that “He that commits sin is of the devil.” We know that he is writing this to the Church, because in the previous verse he states, “Little children, let no man deceive you” and nowhere in his Epistle is there a hint of this being to the Jew, but this statement is to humanity (or the world) in general. I personally am not ashamed to admit that I am a sinner and therefore in need of a way to have my sins forgiven. If not by Jesus, then who? Some man? Every man is a sinner just like Me and I do not believe a man could pay my penalty for sin, which is death. I am not offended as a Christian or as a non-Christian, that John said those things to me. In regards to the one written to the Jew in John’s Gospel – I have always looked to that verse as talking to me anyway, and not only to the Jewish leaders.

            Yes, I would be interested regarding my inquiry about why you left Christianity. I don’t know where I got the impression you were Jewish though. By the way, what are Noahide laws?

            I’ll probably be winding up here on this issue. It’s been good, though Jim. I guess it helped both our causes – to dig in a little more into the Word and study a little more. I know it did me. In any case,
            I will be looking forward to hearing your Christian testimony and Noahide laws. G-d bless and have a great week ahead.

            George

          • Jim says:

            George,

            I’m a little bit ashamed of my story of why I left the Church, because it shouldn’t have taken me so long. So, I usually try to gloss over it a little. But, I’ll go ahead and tell you, and if I look foolish, well that’s my fault.

            I usually say it began when I was 31, which is true, in a way. In another way, it’s more true to say it began when I was about 13 or 14. At that time, I read Josh McDowell’s “Evidence that Demands a Verdict”. The chapter that bothered me is his chapter on the prophecies Jesus is supposed to have fulfilled. See, I looked them up and read them in context, and I found it troubling.

            Around the same time, I got a New King James Bible that had footnotes. I was very excited. And I would, just as with McDowell’s book, go look up the footnotes.

            If you read Matthew 2, you’ll find that Matthew says that baby Jesus went to Egypt to fulfill what is written “through the prophet, saying, ‘Out of Egypt I have called my son” (v. 14). And there will usually be a footnote that tells you this is from Hosea 11:1. But if you read Hosea 11:1 it says, “When Israel was a child I loved him, and out of Egypt I have called my son.” It’s not talking about the Messiah. It’s not talking about Jesus. It’s talking about Israel.

            And it’s not this one verse. Just about any verse you read quoted in the NT is warped. Hosea 11:1 most people consider small potatoes. But it’s one of the first ones I looked up, and it has stuck with me. But this is all over, and they get worse. When John says that Jesus fulfilled the scripture that says that he would eat bread with the one who betrayed him, there’s a real problem. That same psalm says that the person who is being betrayed has sinned. But Jesus is not supposed to have sinned. It’s no good to apply one verse from a passage, or a few words, and then ignore the rest of it. Nothing in the psalm would let you know it’s about the Messiah. The most natural reading makes it about Jesus.

            Now we come to the part of which I’m ashamed. I didn’t let it bother me. I didn’t ask questions. I didn’t continue to investigate. Instead, I assumed that there were really good explanations. I accepted all the testimonies of those whose lives were changed by Jesus in McDowell’s book. I told myself that if these were real problems, then someone would have noticed by now, and the Church wouldn’t have lasted for 2,000 years. (This is terrible logic, since every false religious system is full of contradictions, but some of those are older than Christianity. And some are still growing today. And obviously I don’t hold that all of those are true, and I didn’t then.)

            What’s worse, is that I freely quoted these as proofs that Jesus was the Messiah and divine. When I witnessed to people, I talked about all the proof the prophecies offer. I would ask how people living hundreds of years before Jesus could have predicted the things that would happen to him. I would love to say that I had this doubt in the back of my mind, gnawing on me for years and years. But I didn’t.

            It wasn’t until I was 31 that I really gave things an honest look. At that time I had been in conversations with a couple friends of mine regarding religion. I got to thinking that I wasn’t being fair. I wanted them to convert to Christianity. I was hoping they’d really investigate their beliefs and see that they couldn’t be true. But I wasn’t being fair. I wasn’t examining my beliefs to ensure they were sound. I decided that I needed to check my own faith and see if it was consistent.

            And I knew where to start. I started going through the NT again, looking up the sources and seeing if they really match up. It didn’t take long to see that they don’t. I couldn’t say Jesus fulfilled any of these prophecies, if these prophecies are being misrepresented. I started to get nervous. I bought Lee Strobel’s “The Case for Christ”. I carefully went over the book. It’s a poor case. I picked up other Christian apologetics. I quickly unravelled them.

            In studying the NT’s claims about Jesus, I had a framework. I knew that the OT was assumed to be true by the NT writers. Therefore, everything they wrote had to agree with the OT. And that’s the problem. Virtually nothing they write agrees with the OT. It misrepresents it at every turn. I realized that they are untrustworthy, either liars or ignorant. I don’t know which. I only know that the faith in which I was raised cannot be true. My faith was misplaced.

            I could have known this much sooner. I ignored the question. I did not logically walk through the arguments of apologists. I read C.S. Lewis religiously, and I often quoted from “Mere Christianity”. But I hadn’t checked his logic. Going over his arguments, I realized they are not sound.

            Once I’d destroyed my own faith, I wasn’t sure what that meant. Was the OT true? Was there even a god? So, I kept studying, investigating these questions. The short answer is that I found the Torah to be true.

            So, then I didn’t know: do I need to convert to Judaism? And through study I found that no, I don’t. God gave commandments to Noah that are universally applicable. Anyone can have a relationship with God, not just the Jewish people. Now, I would like to convert to Judaism one day, if I am afforded the opportunity, but it isn’t necessary.

            The seven categories of the Noahide commandments are:

            1. Do not commit idolatry
            2. Do not commit blasphemy
            3. Do not murder
            4. Do not steal
            5. Do not have forbidden sexual relations
            6. Do not eat the limb of a living animal
            7. Establish court of law

            You asked once, if I’d truly repented. I have now. I have left behind the worship of a man. And I pray to the One God, the Creator of the Universe. I study those parts of the Torah applicable to me as a non-Jew. And I find Ezekiel 18 so comforting. One can leave his old ways and turn to God, and he will be counted righteous. Forgive this for being so long. Even so, I’ve obviously truncated it.

            Be well,

            Jim

          • Annelise says:

            Hi Jim, I would love to hear in more detail your reasons for accepting Torah after rejecting the worship and following of Jesus. If it would take us off track here, my email is anneliseholwerda@gmail.com

          • Dina says:

            Jim, may I be in on this too? If you don’t mind, my email is dinabucholz@gmail.com.

            I found your story moving.

            Best,
            Dina

          • Dina says:

            George, I’m sorry you’re leaving the conversation. Just when things were starting to really heat up, too! I guess it’s exhausting debating three people at once, I don’t blame you.

            I have a lot to say, but I’m limiting myself to one point. You wrote that you don’t listen to anything anyone says but you examine scripture and draw your own conclusions. And you concluded how sad it is that people (meaning, those who disagree with your theology) twist scripture and take it out of context.

            It’s astonishing to me that you think you have nothing to learn from the wisdom, understanding, and perspective of anyone other than yourself. You are your own highest authority. Yet you demonstrate your own ignorance and lack of understanding by pointing to “an eye for an eye” as a teaching on revenge. And you dare to sneer at the words of God. Jim explained this clearly and thoroughly, so I hope you now understand your mistake.

            I’m sure you don’t mean to come across this way, but your writing shows that you believe your understanding of Scripture is perfect and you know better than God. Hmm.

            My question to you is, how objectively are you reading Hebrew Scripture in the first place? You admitted that you had a powerful spiritual experience. Are you sure that you are not reading Scripture and seeking validation for that experience? Surely you realize that that would color your understanding?

            Your own scripture is guilty of scripture twisting, as Jim has shown. Is there any point in discussing it with you? Will you change your mind and listen to what others have to say, after all? Are you interested in an objective search for the truth?

            Here’s hoping.

            Peace and blessings,
            Dina

  10. Sophiee says:

    Whoever wrote the Christian bible and “put words in Jesus’ mouth” and the mouths of his followers are rabidly anti-Jewish. Plenty of Jews have separated themselves from their fellow Jews and Judaism — consider the golden calf incident or those Jews who worshiped Ba’al. Pablo Chrstiani who debated with the famous Ramban was a former Jew who converted to Christianity. . . so to use the excuse that Jesus was a Jew so could not be anti-Jewish fails at the start. One only need read the Christian bible to see that it reeks with anti-Jewish fervor.

    From Jews for Judaism article entitled “How can the Gospel of John be called anti-Jewish when Jesus and his Disciples were all Jews?”

    The author of the Gospel of John clearly places himself, and those whom he represents, as separated from the Jews. He speaks of “the Passover of the Jews” (John 2:13, 6:4, 11:55), the religious rules of the Jews about purification (John 2:6), a religious festival of the Jews (John 5:1), the Festival of Tabernacles of the Jews (John 7:2), the Day of Preparation of the Jews (John 19:42), and the way in which Jews prepare a body for burial (John 19:40).

    And quite as clearly he regards Jesus as not “a Jew.” In talking to the Jews, Jesus speaks of “your Law” (John 7:19, 8:17, 10:34) and “your circumcision” (John 7:22). Abraham is “your father” (John 8:56). When the Jews say to him, “Our ancestors ate manna in the desert” (John 6:31), Jesus replies, “What Moses gave you (not “us”) was not the bread from heaven” (John 6:32), and later on says, “Your ancestors ate the manna in the desert” (John 6:49).

    It is true that twice Jesus is called a Jew: by the Samaritan woman (John 4:9) and by Pilate (John 18:35). But in both instances the term is used in its sense of “person of Judah,” contrasted with the Samaritan and the Roman. The same applies in John 4:22, where Jesus says to the Samaritan woman, “You [Samaritans] do not really know whom you worship; we [Jews] know whom we worship, for salvation is from the Jews.” For John’s Jesus, “Salvation is from the Jews” does not refer to the Jewish people per se. “Salvation” is now the inheritance of the true worshiper of God as defined by Jesus (John 4:23).

    Apart from those two instances, it is only in John 1:11 that Jesus is identified as a Jew, in the statement that he comes to “his own country,” but “his own people” did not receive him. This passage, however, does not go against the Gospel as a whole, in which Jesus is shown as not being a part of “the Jews.” Jesus appears as no longer a member of the Jewish people or its religion but speaks to the Jews as if he were a non-Jew. The Fourth Gospel is not about a Jew or written for Jews and expresses contempt for Jews and Judaism.

    • George33 says:

      Sophiee,
      Just happen to be passing by here Sophiee, and saw this. Maybe I can help you.

      If you read all the Gospels completely, instead of pulling out various passages to dispute His Jewishness, you will find that Jesus was born of a Virgin Birth, by the Holy Spirit overshadowing Mary in Luke 1:31 & Luke 1:35, and Jesus even told us He came direct from Heaven in John 6:38 and other places. Therefore, although He was considered a Jew, because His mother and foster-father were, He was of His Father in Heaven made through the Holy Spirit. I hope that helps.

      Thanks for allowing me to butt in Sophiee.

      George

      • Sophiee says:

        George — if Jesus was born of a virgin birth you’ve just disqualified him from being the messiah. The messiah has to be a descendant of Kings David and Solomon through their FATHER’s line — and G-d is not a descendant of either one of them.

        It helps if you read the original text (the T’nach) and don’t get confused by the errors in the Christian bible.

        • Sophiee says:

          BTW — all those people who worshiped Ba’al were born Jews, too. They turned their backs on G-d. So did those who enabled the building of the golden calf. They were killed (3000 of them) for that sin against G-d. Just being born a Jew doesn’t mean that turning to false gods is “ok” — quite the opposite is true!

        • George33 says:

          Sophiee,
          We seem to be seeing each other a lot today.

          Are you saying that the T’nach teaches that a man will inherit the throne of David and become the Messiah? Wasn’t David a sinner? Do you know of any man who has never sinned? The OT says in Habakkuk 1:13, “Thou (G-d) art of purer eyes than to behold evil, and canst not look on iniquity.” How is a man going to be God’s Messiah if he is prone to sin? How does he get cleansed, and how many times will he have to be cleansed? Only God is perfect, that is why only Jesus would be eligible to be the Messiah. He never sinned, because He is not of the dust of the ground or from Adam (from whom we inherited sin), but from a Virgin Birth and that direct from Heaven through the Holy Spirit.

          George

          • Dina says:

            Some questions, George.

            Where does it say in Hebrew Scripture that the messiah has to be sinless? Where does it say that his job is to cleanse us of sin? Where does it say that he can’t be a man but must be a god?

  11. Sophiee says:

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

    Moses and the prophets never did such outrageous things.

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

    It is the exact opposite of what Jesus does in the Christian bible — and to compare wholesale condemnation (all Jews are guilty of ALL crimes ever committed up to and including the murder of Cain — long before there were even Jews alive!) can in now way be compared to prophets trying to get Jews to be good people and return to G-d.

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

    Unlike Jesus.

    The message of the prophets repeatedly is that those who sin should repent, become better people and return to G-d. The message of the prophets is always: be good people because this is what G-d wants from you.
    “The wicked should forsake his ways, and the evil person should forsake his plans, and return to HaShem, Who will have mercy on him, for He forgives abundantly.” (Isaiah 55:7).
    Jesus’ lack of forgiveness seems to be eternal: one weeps. One gnashes one’s teeth. One burns in eternal torment. ETERNAL.

    “Anyone who says, ‘You fool!’ will be in danger of the fire of hell.” (Matthew 5:22)
    The message of Jesus is that if you don’t believe in him you are damned eternally.

    “He who is not with me is against me, and he who does not gather with me scatters. 31And so I tell you, every sin and blasphemy will be forgiven men, but the blasphemy against the Spirit will not be forgiven.” (Matthew 12:30-32)
    But as I already wrote — it is hypocritical for a Christian to support Jesus’ evil words and deeds by saying “someone else did it, too.” This is reminiscent of a petulant child who does something bad and says “but all the kids are doing it.” The bad behavior of others is not an excuse for bad behavior by Jesus.

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

    Likewise you said that Jesus condemned the Pharisees for being hypocritical — and yet the Pharisees were trying to get Jesus to follow the mitzvot G-d tells us are ETERNAL. This is the opposite of hypocrisy — and shows Jesus’ own hypocrisy by his very words. For example, Jesus’ followers break the Sabbath and the Pharisees ask why Jesus allows them to do so — and Jesus just blows of G-d’s eternal mitzvot and says “cause I say so!” Hypocrisy and egotism along with it!

  12. George33 says:

    Sorry again Sophiee – passing through again,

    Yeah, I can’t appologize for what Jesus said. I do know that there were 12 Apostles who saw everything He did (Miracles & healings) and what He said (those hard statements – like “If you do not believe I am He, ye shall die in your sins.”) and for over 3-years they saw Him, even after He arose from the dead and I imagine the biggest astonishment of all, was when He was talking to them and He arose up into Heaven. That alone would make anyone believe. Then after that, when the time finally came for them to denounce Jesus, they were all willing to die for Him rather than deny Him.

    So yeah, I cannot make appologies for His statements. I however, do have to make a choice in this life just like everyone else who also passes through, and that is to either accept what He said as truth; or deny Him and consider His statements as lies and take my chances to see what awaits me on the other side. This issue confronts us all, not just the Jew. We all have free-wills and make many choices everyday. But this one choice is perhaps the biggest choice we will ever be confronted with. For that reason, I did not listen to what the other people said when making my choice, and I still don’t. I did a careful and thorough study of the Scriptures (both OT & NT) to make up my mind about this issue. I wanted to be absolutely sure what my outcome would be. I suggest everyone do that and not pull certain passages out of context to fit an agenda. We are weighed in the balances; and hopefully Sophiee, those scales will tip in the right direction.

    Shalom
    George

  13. Sophiee says:

    You can’t apologize for Jesus’ hatred and are in total denial. From beating people to dishonor in his parents he was not the loving man you pretend him to be.

  14. Sophie Saguy says:

    Jesus dying for your sins is non-Biblical. “No man can by any means redeem his brother, or give to G-d a ransom for him” (Psalms 49:7).

    George — the authors of the Christian bible are all anonymous and “after the fact.” There is zero proof of any of Jesus’ miracles up to and including his resurrection — but it wouldn’t matter if all of it were true as Jesus fulfilled not one of the messianic prophecies. Miracles do not a god or messiah “make.”

    HilkhotYesodei Hatorah, 8,1-2 (the Rambam): “The Jewish people did not believe in Moshe our teacher because of the miracles he performed. If one believes in something because of miracles, he may suspect that they were performed through sleight of hand or sorcery…We believe in Moshe because of what happened at Mount Sinai. Our own eyes saw, not a stranger’s, our own ears heard, and not another’s…The revelation at Sinai is the only real proof that Moses’ prophecy was true and above suspicion.

    What is our source of belief in Him?

    The revelation at Mount Sinai. Our own eyes, not some stranger’s, saw; our own ears and not another’s heard … the voice spoke to him and we heard, “Moshe, Moshe, go tell them the following….

    How is it known that Mount Sinai alone is proof of the truth of Moses’ prophecy that leaves no apprehension? (Sh’mot / Exodus 19:9):

    Behold! I will come to you in a thick cloud, so that the people will hear Me speaking to you, so that they will believe in you forever. It appears that before this happened, they did not believe in him with a faith that would last forever, but rather with a faith that allowed for suspicions and doubts….

    Moshe our teacher knew that one who believes in a person because of miracles has apprehensions in his heart, and that he has doubts and suspicions. Therefore he sought to be released from the mission saying,

    “They will not believe in me”

    until the Holy One Blessed be He informed him that these wonders were only intended as a temporary measure until they left Egypt. After they left, they would stand on this mountain [Sinai] and all the doubts which they had about him would be removed….This is what is meant by (Exodus 3:12):

    This will be your sign that I sent you: when you take the people out of Egypt, you will serve G-d on this mountain.

    Thus we do not believe in any prophet who arises after Moshe because of the miracles that he performs alone, as if to say: If he performs a miracle we will listen to everything he has to say. Rather, [we listen to him] because it is a Mitzvah which we were commanded by Moshe who said: if he performs a miracle listen to him.”

    • George33 says:

      Sophie,

      I am a little hazy on your point here. I see in your quote of Psalms 49:7 that says no man can redeem his brother or give G-d a ransom for him. My question to you is: If a man cannot redeem His brother, or a man cannot give G-d a ransom for his brother, who will? An angel? A beast? or G-d Himself? If your answer is G-d Himself, then let me inject this piece of Scripture to you.

      Did not G-d tell Moses that no man can look upon His face and live? (Exodus 33:20). And, did not the people tell Moses to speak to them and they will hear, but let not G-d speak with us , lest we die? (Exodus20:19). In other words, they would die if they merely heard G-d’s voice and then G-d told Moses they would die just by looking upon His face. My question is – how is G-d going to ransom them if they will never see Him, or if they can never hear Him? Is God going to keep talking through a man, such as Moses? Will a man of the throne of David come along and redeem or give a ransom? No, because Psalms 49:7 says no man can redeem another man. So, what is the answer?

      Is this not the reason Jesus (G-d), came from Heaven to earth, in the form of a man – for the very purpose to redeem the Jew and that the Jew (or whomever) could look upon His face and hear His voice without dying as soon as they saw Him and heard Him? In light of the Scriptures in Exodus, how else could a Messiah be among us if that Messiah is not a man? The answer is: G-d is able to do anything He wants to do – He made a man from the dust of the ground – why can He not take the most important part of Who He is and make it into a Man, whereby we can see Him and hear Him without dying? Or, is it easier to listen to men who say, “Hey, God could never do that – that does not fit our way of thinking.” Or- “Don’t listen to that nonsense, it doesn’t seem to be the way G-d would do anything.” Yeah right, look at all the things He did do in the OT that baffled our minds – like parting the Red Sea among hundreds of other things.

      One other issue Sophiee. Allow me to go back a little bit on this one. I don’t know if you and Sophiee and Sophie are the same person, but I just noticed and thought I would inject another reply to a vicious untruth.

      This was about forgiveness – that Jesus was the most unforgiving Person who ever lived. Forgiveness Sophiee? To say Jesus never forgave reveals to me that you have never studied the NT, but only listen to what others tell you. Jesus set the example for forgiveness. He told the Jews that “if they did not forgive others their trespasses, their Father in Heaven would not forgive them of their trespasses.” (Matthew 6:14-15 & Matt. 18:34). Even the prayer example He gave in “The Lord’s Prayer” mentions it, “Forgive us our sins, for we also forgive every one that is indebted to us.” (Luke 11:2). And many other places He admonishes us about the necessity of forgiveness.

      And, as the example He set – after they pounded His face and back into raw flesh, – and bruised and battered, and humiliated Him – and condemned Him as an innocent man whose only guilt was of accusing the Jews of adding to the law of Moses and making up their own laws, which the Pharisees and Sadducees made to fit their own agenda, – and then they set a murderer free instead of this innocent man, – and in His weakness, made Him carry a heavy cross until no longer able, and nailed Him to that cross, and in the end, before He died, He cried out to Heaven and said: “Forgive them Father, for they know not what they do.” And you say – “Jesus did not understand about forgiveness.” I guess this is the biggest beguilement I have encountered on this page to date.

      Sophiee, you should read the NT yourself and make judgment, I certainly would not base my eternity on hear-say, but would find out the facts for myself. If after you examine them for yourself and you remain satisfied they are as your were lead to believe, then go back to the T’nach and Torah. But, never trust hear-say, because it has been found that hear-say is the biggest liar there ever was – except Satan of course.

      George

  15. Sophiee says:

    George, you asked “If a man cannot redeem His brother, or a man cannot give G-d a ransom for his brother, who will? An angel? A beast?” The answer is in the Torah. You yourself are responsible for your own sins. This lesson is repeated over and over and over again in the T’nach.

    Realize that the Torah and its mitzvot are eternal — this is also repeated over and over and over again. Thus when you read the Christian bible, or the Koran, or the Book of Mormon, you must ask yourself — “did they change anything?” The answer in all cases is a resounding YES — and none more than the Christian bible which tells you things like you need blood to be forgiven for your sins and that Jesus can somehow die for your sins.

    From an article by Rabbi Michael Skobac. (I can print the entire article, but it is lengthy, I’m just posting the pertinent bits):
    WHAT DOES THE BIBLE SAY ABOUT VICARIOUS ATONEMENT?

    One wonders why throughout the four Gospels, Jsus never speaks about his death serving as a sacrifice to atone for the sins of the world. Is the idea that an innocent person can be killed instead of those who are guilty consistent with what the Bible teaches? After the sin of the Golden Calf, G-d expressed His intention to destroy the Jewish people. Moses intercedes, and offers to die in their place. In response, G-d says

    “Whoever has sinned against Me, I will blot him out of My book!” (Exodus 32:32-33). Throughout the Bible, G-d says that one person cannot die for the sins of another:

    “Fathers shall not be put to death for their sons, nor shall sons be put to death for their fathers; everyone shall be put to death for his own sin” (Deuteronomy 24:16, II Kings 14:6).

    “But everyone will die for his own sin; each man who eats sour grapes, his teeth will be set on edge” (Jeremiah 31:30).

    “The person who sins will die. The son will not bear the punishment for the father’s iniquity, nor will the father bear the punishment for the son’s iniquity; the righteousness of the righteous will be upon himself, and the wickedness of the wicked will be upon himself” (Ezekiel 18:20).

    “No man can by any means redeem his brother, or give to G-d a ransom for him” (Psalms 49:7).

    “So you shall not pollute the land in which you are; for blood pollutes the land and no expiation can be made for the land for the blood that is shed on it, except by the blood of him who has shed it!” (Numbers 35:33).

    Although Romans 4:5 says that Jsus justifies the ungodly, the Tanach teaches that “He who justifies the wicked, and he who condemns the righteous, both of them are an abomination to HaShem” (Proverbs 17:15).

    If indeed, Jsus came as the final sacrifice to atone for the sins of the world, why does the Tanach predict that the Temple will be rebuilt and sacrifices resumed?

    “Even those I will bring to My holy mountain, and make them joyful in My house of prayer. Their burnt offerings and their sacrifices will be acceptable on My altar; for My house will be called a house of prayer for all the peoples.” (Isaiah 56:7). “From beyond the rivers of Ethiopia My worshipers, My dispersed ones will bring My offerings.” (Zephaniah 3:10)

    “All the flocks of Kedar will be gathered together to you, the rams of Nebaioth will minister to you; they will go up with acceptance on My altar, and I shall glorify My glorious house.” (Isaiah 60:7)

    “And I will make a covenant of peace with them; it will be an everlasting covenant with them. And I will place them and multiply them, and will set My sanctuary in their midst forever.” (Ezekiel 37:26)

    “And He will sit as a smelter and purifier of silver, and He will purify the sons of Levi and refine them like gold and silver, so that they may present to the L-rd offerings in righteousness. Then the offering of Judah and Jerusalem will be pleasant to the L-rd, as in the days of old and as in former years.” (Malachi 3:3-4)

    “And every cooking pot in Jerusalem and in Judah will be holy to the L-rd of hosts; and all who sacrifice will come and take of them and boil in them.” (Zechariah 14:21) “And it shall be the princes part to provide the burnt offerings, the grain offerings, and the libations…to make atonement for the house of Israel.” (Ezekiel 45:17)

    The Chrstian claim that our sins can only be forgiven if blood is shed on our behalf also seems to limit the power of G-d. It’s ludicrous to say that G-d`s ability to forgive us is dependent on anything. One of the most basic teachings in the Bible is that since G-d is merciful, He often forgives us simply because He is merciful. “Who is a G-d like You, who pardons iniquity and passes over the rebellious act of the remnant of His possession? He does not retain His anger forever, because He delights in unchanging love.” (Micah 7:18; cf.Psalm 103:7-18). Even when we don’t seek G-d appropriately, He has the ability to reach out to us with love and forgive us:

    “Their heart was not steadfast toward Him, nor were they faithful in His covenant. But He, being compassionate, forgave their iniquity…remembering that they were but flesh.” (Psalms 78:36-39)

    “You have not brought Me the sheep of your burnt offerings…or the fat of your sacrifices, but you have burdened Me with your sins…Nevertheless, I will wipe out your transgressions for My own sake, and I will not remember your sins.” (Isaiah 43:23-25)

  16. Sophiee says:

    One of the clearest indications that Christian it is off base in its insistence on the centrality of blood sacrifices is that none of the prophets speaks about it. There isn’t one instance in the prophetic books where the Jewish people are told that in order to get right with G-d they need to get covered by the blood. If that’s the case, what is the fundamental teaching of the Tanach on the issue of atonement? What theme is reiterated time and again by the holy prophets in the Jewish Bible?

    “That every man will turn from his evil way, then I will forgive their iniquity and their sin.” (Jeremiah 36:3).

    “Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts, and let him return to the L-rd, and He will have compassion on him; and to our G-d, for He will abundantly pardon.” (Isaiah 55:7).

    “I acknowledged my sin to You, and my iniquity I did not hide; I said, `I will confess my transgressions to the L-rd’, and You did forgive the guilt of my sin.” (Psalm 32:5).

    “And if My people who are called by My name humble themselves and pray, and seek My face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.” (II Chronicles 7:14). “But if the wicked man turns from all his sins which he has committed and observes all My statutes and practices justice and righteousness, he shall surely live; he shall not die. All his transgressions which he has committed will not be remembered against him; because of the righteousness which he has practiced he shall live…When a wicked man turns away from his wickedness which he has committed and practices justice and righteousness, he will save his life…Repent and turn away from all your transgressions, so that iniquity may not become a stumbling block to you (Ezekiel 18:21- 22,27,30).

    “By loving kindness and truth iniquity is atoned for…” (Proverbs 16:6).

    “If you return to G-d you will be restored; if you remove unrighteousness far from your tent…then you will delight in G-d…” (Job 22:23-27).

    “Depart from evil, and do good, so you will abide forever.” (Psalm 37:27, cf. Ezekiel 33, Zechariah 1:3, Jeremiah 26:13).

    The central teaching of the Bible is that only a break with our past and a sincere turning in repentance can restore our relationships with G-d. If I go off the path, I have to put myself back on track, and G-d will forgive me. Even when sacrifices were offered, they in and of themselves didn’t effect atonement. The sacrifice was part of the process, it helped bring us to the core of atonement which is achieved by TESHUVAH, returning to G-d by forsaking our evil ways and praying for forgiveness. One of the main teachings of the prophets was to chide Jewish people who thought that sacrifices were the essential element of atonement:

    “What are your multiplied sacrifices to Me? says the L-rd. I have had enough of burnt offerings of rams, and the fat of fed cattle. And I take no pleasure in the blood of bulls, lambs, or goats…Wash yourselves, make yourselves clean; remove the evil of your deeds from My sight. Cease to do evil, Learn to do good; seek justice, reprove the ruthless, defend the orphan, plead for the widow. Come let us reason together says the L-rd, `Though your sins are as scarlet, they will be white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they will be like wool, if you consent and obey…” (Isaiah 1:11-18).

    “The sacrifice of the wicked is an abomination to the L-rd.” (Proverbs 15:8).

    “To do righteousness and justice is more acceptable to the L-rd than sacrifice.” (Proverbs 21:3). “For I delight in loyalty rather than sacrifice, and in the knowledge of G-d rather than burnt offerings.” (Hoseah 6:6).

    “Has the L-rd as great a delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices as in obeying the voice of the L-rd? Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice, and to hearken more than the fat of rams.” (I Samuel 15:22).

    “With what shall I come to the L-rd, and bow myself before the G-d on high? Shall I come to Him with burnt offerings, with yearling calves? Does the L-rd take delight in thousands of rams, in ten thousand rivers of oil? Shall I present my firstborn for my rebellious acts, the fruit of my body for the sin of my soul? He has told you, O man, what is good; and what does the L-rd require of you but to do justice, to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your G-d.” (Micah 6:6-8,cf. Amos 5:22- 24, Jeremiah 7, Psalm 69:31-32).

    Since repentance, and not blood is the Biblical form of atonement, we now understand how in I Kings 8, Solomon explained that even if the Jewish people don’t have access to the Temple, they still have access to G-d. This will illuminate a famous story found in the book of Jonah. G-d sends Jonah to the evil city of Ninveh to warn them of their impending destruction. Jonah doesn’t come into the city and tell the people that unless they begin offering sacrifices they are doomed. Their response to his warnings is to repent: they fast, pray, and turn from their evil. What is G-d’s response?

    “When G-d saw their deeds that they turned from their wicked way, then G-d relented concerning the calamity which He had declared He would bring upon them, and He did not do it.” (Jonah 3:10).

    In similar fashion, Daniel advised king Nebuchadnezzar on how to atone for his transgressions:

    “Therefore, O king, may my advice be pleasing to you: Redeem your sins by doing righteousness, and your iniquities by showing mercy to the poor.” (Daniel 4:27).

    This principle will also help explain a passage in the book of Hoseah. Hoseah was a prophet to the 10 northern tribes in the kingdom of Israel during a time when there was a civil war going on between them and the two tribes of the kingdom of Judah in the south. Because of the strife, the tribes up north couldn’t get to the Temple in Jerusalem to offer sacrifices. Did this leave them with no way of atoning for their sins? The prophet advises:

    “Return, O Israel, to the L-rd your G-d, For you have stumbled because of your iniquity. Take words with you and return to the L-rd. Say to Him, `Take away all iniquity, and receive us graciously, for we will render as bullocks the offerings of our lips’.” (Hoseah 14:1-2).

    We are able to approach G-d directly with prayer, which is possible at all times; and G-d assures us that sincere prayer can achieve forgiveness for our sins:

    “Deliver me from bloodguiltiness, O L-rd, the G-d of my salvation. And my tongue shall sing aloud of Your righteousness. O L-rd, open my lips, and my mouth shall show forth Your praise. For You do not delight in burnt offerings. The sacrifices of G-d are a broken spirit, a broken and contrite heart. These, O G-d, You will not despise.” (Psalms 51:14-17, re:II Samuel 12:13).

    “I will praise the name of G-d with a song, and will magnify Him with thanksgiving. This shall please the L-rd better than an ox or bullock that has horns and hoofs.” (Psalm 69:30-31).

    “For You, L-rd, are good, and ready to forgive, and abundant in lovingkindness to all who call upon You. Give ear, O L-rd to my prayer, and give heed to the voice of my supplications.” (Psalm 86:5-6).

    “And listen to the supplications of Your servant and of Your people Israel, when they pray toward this place; hear from heaven Your dwelling place, hear and forgive.” (II Chronicles 6:21).

    Are Chrstian s consistent with the Jewish Bible when they claim that atonement is only possible with a blood sacrifice? Did the Rabbis just make up the idea that we can restore our relationship with G-d through prayer and repentance? YOU DECIDE!

    https://www.jewsforjudaism.org/knowledge/leviticus_17_11/

  17. Sophiee says:

    George — you keep asking me to read the Christian bible and not “believe what others tell me.” That is a bit insulting to my intelligence. I have read the Christian bible many times — probably more thoroughly than you have — because I read it IN CONTEXT and see how small minded and mean spirited Jesus is portrayed — even as he spoke “nice words” (some times — not always). My experience is that it is Christians who don’t know the real Jesus. They have a fairy tale image of Jesus as “Santa Clause” — all sweetness and light. This is NOT how he is portrayed in the Christian bible itself.

    Jesus insulted a gentile woman by calling her a dog (Matthew 15:22-27). This is hardly befitting righteous and holy people. Whatever his pedagogical purpose, such a designation is inappropriate.

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

    “Honor your father and mother” (Exodus 20:12). Jesus ignored his mother when she came to visit. “Someone told him, ‘your mother and brother are standing outside, wanting to speak to you’ He replied to him, ‘who is my mother, and who are my brothers?’ Pointing to his disciples, he said, ‘Here are my mother and my brothers” (Matthew 12:47-49).

    Jesus caused his parents a whole day of worrying. His parents returned from Jerusalem, assuming Jesus was with them. In fact, Jesus stayed in Jerusalem without informing his parents. They returned to Jerusalem to look for him.

    “His mother said to him, ‘Son, why have you treated us like this? Your father and I have been anxiously searching for you?’ (Luke 2:48).

    I highly recommend you read BEHOLD THE MAN: THE REAL JESUS by R’ Aryeh Kaplan (z”L) but I doubt you will do so. http://messiahtruth.yuku.com/sreply/7144/Why-Jews-Know-Jesus-was-a-false-messiah

  18. Sophiee says:

    Wow — 4th post in a row — I’m somewhat monopolizing this page! George asked “My question is – how is G-d going to ransom them if they will never see Him, or if they can never hear Him?” First of all the entire Jewish nation heard G-d speak (you knew that, right?). “Do not remove this memory from your heart all the days of your life. Teach your children and your children’s children about the day that you stood before HaShem your G-d at Horev [Mount Sinai]…G-d spoke to you from the midst of the fire, you were hearing the sound of words, but you were not seeing a form, only a sound. He told you of His covenant, instructing you to keep the Ten Commandments, and He inscribed them on two stone tablets.’ (Deavrim / Deut.4:9-13)

    The Torah tells us (repeatedly) that G-d spoke to the entire nation of Israel.

    SPOKE TO.

    THE ENTIRE NATION (some 3,000,000 people).

    And not some anonymous people that someone mentions in a book (like all those people who saw Harry Potter kill Voldemort, or those who saw Jesus rise from the dead). No, these are our FATHERS. Our ancestors. Each father told his son. Each mother told her daughter.

    Prophecy is communication directly with G-d. Every prophet spoke to G-d — not just Moses. Moses spoke to G-d directly and other prophets such as Isaiah, Ezekiel, Jeremiah and others communicated directly with G-d through dreams and visions. Not ONE of those prophets changed anything in the Torah — they re-enforced the message and commandments in the Torah. Jesus did the opposite — and it is one of many ways we know he was a false prophet and a false messiah. . .

    G-d continues to speak to us through His Torah. And in that Torah he told us how to tell the fake from the real. The Torah tells us how to tell and it has nothing to do with miracles or signs and wonders. We are actually told that this is NOT a sign of a prophet.

    Read Devarim / Deuteronomy 13: “The entire word that I command you, that shall you observe to do; you shall not add to it and you shall not subtract from it. [2] If there should stand up in your midst a prophet or a dreamer of a dream, and he will produce to you a sign or a wonder, [3] and the sign or the wonder comes about, of which he spoke to you, saying “Let us follow gods of others that you did not know (at Sinai) and we shall worship them. [4] do not hearken to the words of that prophet or to that dreamer of a dream, for HASHEM, your G-d, is testing you to know whether you love HASHEM, your G-d with all your heart and with all your soul. [5] HASHEM, your G-d, shall you follow and Him shall you fear; His commandments shall you observe and to His voice shall you hearken; Him shall you serve and to Him shall you cleave. [6] And that prophet and that dreamer of a dream shall be put to death, for he had spoken perversion against HASHEM, your G-d Who takes you out of the land of Egypt, and Who redeems you from the house of slavery to make you stray from the path on which HASHEM, you G-d, has commanded you to go; and you shall destroy the evil from your midst. (Artscroll) Devarim / Deuteronomy 13)

    R’ Tovia Singer has a saying “Everything good in the New Testament isn’t new and everything new in it isn’t good.” You quoted some nice sayings from Jesus — they are “ripped off” from the Jewish bible. “The meek shall inherit the earth” is Psalms 37:11. “Let him offer his cheek to him who smites him” (turn the other cheek) is Lamentations 3:30. “If your enemy is hungry, give him bread to eat, and if he is thirsty, give him water to drink” (be good to your enemy) Proverbs 25:21.

    But you know what, George? It wouldn’t matter if Jesus had been a wonderful man — he was not G-d and he was not the messiah. It doesn’t matter that he was tortured. Do you have any idea how many Jews the Romans crucified? They crucified 50,000 AT ONE TIME. Yet Christians only seem concerned that Jesus was crucified! R’ Akiva (who lived around the same time Jesus supposedly lived) suffered a much worse death at the hands of the Romans — they flayed his skin off of his body with hot combs! He died not asking if G-d had deserted him (as Jesus did), but with a prayer to G-d on his lips (the Sh’ma — “Listen O’ Israel — the L-rd your G-d is the ONE AND ONLY G-d.” D’varim / Deuteronomy 6:4.

    G-d still speaks to us, George. Do you listen for Him? And you can speak to G-d. No blood sacrifice required. Speak with G-d and He will hear you.

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