Jesus and the Romans

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SaulChanukah

Jesus and the Romans

Post by SaulChanukah » Mon Apr 28, 2008 9:02 am

By Rabbi Shmuley Boteach.


Either the night before Passover, or the Seder night itself, is the time Christians believe to have been Jesus' Last Supper. So, as I sat on Pessah rereading the New Testament in preparation for an upcoming debate in the UK on whether belief in Jesus is compatible with Judaism, I was struck by a powerful insight made by the brilliant British-Jewish scholar Hyam Maccoby.

I shall sum it up, as he does, in a single word: Romans. How could it be that Jesus, the man who defended the innocent and condemned the wicked, the man who drove the moneychangers out of the Temple with a whip, the man who declared it his objective to be the light of the world, never opened his mouth against the Romans? Here was Jesus, a man impassioned in his commitment to justice, a man of extreme sensitivity to the sufferings of others, condemning the Jews, but never the Romans.

The Romans were some of history's cruelest despots. They invaded and occupied countries for no other reason than to expand their empire and extract a crushing tribute from the innocent peoples whom they enslaved. Resistance brought in its wake punishments so severe that the human mind bristles till today from their brutality. Even Nazi Germany never implemented a death as ruthless as crucifixion, where a body is left to die of thirst and starvation, and where the limbs are slowly pulled apart by the body's own weightiness.

Could it really be that Jesus, while living in the shadow of one of the most oppressive regimes in history, had no harsh words for the hated occupiers? Yet, as portrayed in the Gospels, with the rarest of exceptions, he does not even criticize them.

FROM THE time of Moses, the Hebrew prophet had been at the forefront of the fight against oppression and injustice. Moses himself led the Jews out of slavery, from the very maws of a tyrant. His successors, too, railed and fought against the succession of oppressors that rose up to tyrannize innocents and brutalize the helpless. In modern times, Martin Luther King, Jr. breathed new life into the Bible's ancient call for justice by using its powerful verses to dismantle segregation.

Was it really possible that Jesus, who cast himself in their mold, would not criticize the Roman army of occupation? Could it really be that as Pontius Pilate crucified tens of thousands (and some say hundreds of thousands) of Jesus' fellow countrymen, he would turn his scorn away from the murderous Romans and inveigh instead against the afflicted Jews?

The book of John quotes Jesus as saying of the Jews, "You are of your father the devil, and your will is to do your father's desires. He was a murderer from the beginning." (8:44) But how could a just prophet accuse the victims of Roman oppression of being in league with the devil, but let the Romans themselves off the hook? It beckons a deeper understanding of why the Gospels seem to excoriate the Jews while vindicating the Romans.

The Romans hardly feature in the Gospels at all. When they do, it's as benign onlookers or else, at the climax of Jesus' passion, as hapless tools of the manipulating Pharisees. In fact they seem almost gentlemanly, simply doing their best to keep things running in an orderly manner, a civilizing force amidst a tribe of primitive and stubborn Jewish extremists.

Aside from the injustice of this portrayal, it is utterly unhistorical.

NOWADAYS WE tend to have a somewhat rosy view of the Romans. In an ancient world populated with barbaric hordes and frenzied cults, what was the Roman Empire if not civilization on the march? We owe the Romans the decorum of the Senate and the beauty of surviving ancient monuments.

In truth, however, the Romans were a warlike people whose principal axiom was that might made right. They lived by the sword, ruled by the sword, and made others die by the sword. The real Rome was not the splendor of the Coliseum, but the barbaric gladiatorial combat that took place within it. The real Rome was to be found not in the carved images of the Arch of Titus, but in the thousands of captured slaves who were dragged in chains through its marble.

Yes, the Romans had a civilized outer veneer, borrowing heavily from the beloved culture of the Greeks, to lend them an air of artistic, poetic and architectural superiority. But scratch the surface and you had an empire whose principal engine consisted of brutal soldiers imposing the Roman will on weaker adversaries.

If Jesus had lived in Nazi Germany and, during the years of 1940 to 1945, focused his preaching exclusively on matters of faith while ignoring completely the gas chambers and blitzkrieg that was all around him, would we have considered him a righteous leader?

In fact, is this not precisely the argument brought against Pope Pius XII, the man said to be his human representative on earth, nearly two millennia later, when he was utterly silent during the Nazi Holocaust? In his passivity he severely compromised his own moral integrity.

The gospels relate that Jesus famously proclaimed, "Render unto Caesar the things which are Caesar's, and unto God the things that are God's."

In my view, this is an incredible statement. Would Jesus really endorse the greed of the Roman emperor by endorsing his right to exact cruel and unjust tribute as he enslaved peoples throughout the world? Would Jesus really have made himself party to the Roman occupation by directly endorsing the Romans' right to invade and occupy Judea and mercilessly slaughter the patriotic Jews who battled the occupation?

Surely a man as great as Jesus would be on the side of the victims rather than of their oppressors, and would never have advocated blindly accepting Roman rule.

IT IS for this reason that we have to rethink Jesus' mission and what he was trying to accomplish. I have written many articles arguing that it is time for the world Jewish community to reclaim the Jewish Jesus by understanding his original mission and his great love for his people before his story was later edited by Pauline writers and before he was made into an enemy of the Jews and a friend of the Romans.

In my next column on this subject I intend to summarize Maccoby's conclusions that will, based on the sources, make the real Jesus known not as an enemy of Judaism but as a Jewish patriot who sought to win Jewish independence from Rome, and who was thus cut off mercilessly by Pontius Pilate for his act of rebellion.

The writer is currently completing a book on the Jewishness of Jesus.

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Post by Ralph » Mon Apr 28, 2008 9:11 am

Okay, can't wait for the next column.

Boteach should also come to understand the enormous positive transformation Rome in its days of glory brought to the world.
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Post by david johnson » Mon Apr 28, 2008 9:55 am

Boteach is, conveniently for his apparent position, misleading folks and spinning stuff in a clumsy manner.

Perhaps he should read the book of Romans -
'ALL have sinned', including romans.

'Moses himself led the Jews out of slavery, from the very maws of a tyrant. His successors, too, railed and fought against the succession of oppressors that rose up to tyrannize innocents and brutalize the helpless. In modern times, Martin Luther King, Jr. breathed new life into the Bible's ancient call for justice by using its powerful verses to dismantle segregation.

Was it really possible that Jesus, who cast himself in their mold'

Obviously backwards, mlk, jr came along two thousand years too late for Jesus to 'cast Himself' into that mold. King would have tried to emulate Jesus in some ways, not the other way around.

Moses himself did NOT lead the Israelites out of Egypt. How could a Jewish writer have such disdain for the Yahweh he should be presenting to the world?

Boteach is a dingbat.

dj
Last edited by david johnson on Mon Apr 28, 2008 9:56 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Post by keaggy220 » Mon Apr 28, 2008 9:56 am

Jesus' mission was not focused on the temporary, but the eternal; His primary goal was making the unseen seen and to bring understanding in matters of spiritual law, which transcends time, not civil law.

He had only three years to deliver this message so any sort of focus on a sensational subject such as the social injustice of the Roman Empire would have most likely consumed His mission.

Obviously the path He chose had an impact far greater than anyone who has ever walked the earth - so I humbly believe He chose wisely.

Even without this condemnation against the Roman Empire He was tried for being a rebel against Caesar.
Last edited by keaggy220 on Mon Apr 28, 2008 10:08 am, edited 1 time in total.
"I guess we're all, or most of us, the wards of the nineteenth-century sciences which denied existence of anything it could not reason or explain. The things we couldn't explain went right on but not with our blessing... So many old and lovely things are stored in the world's attic, because we don't want them around us and we don't dare throw them out."
— John Steinbeck, The Winter of Our Discontent


"He has shown you, O mortal, what is good.
And what does the LORD require of you?
To act justly and to love mercy
and to walk humbly with your God."
- Micah 6:8

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Post by BWV 1080 » Mon Apr 28, 2008 9:59 am

Lets ask the good Rabbi what the 1st Century Jews gained by trying to rebel against Rome.

They would have been much better off giving Caesar his due.

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Post by Ralph » Mon Apr 28, 2008 10:08 am

Boteach has strayed from his clear area of expertise. His bestselling book(?) is "Kosher Sex,."
Image

"Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and I'm not sure about the former."

Albert Einstein

Ted

Post by Ted » Mon Apr 28, 2008 10:19 am

I shall sum it up, as he does, in a single word: Romans. How could it be that Jesus, the man who defended the innocent and condemned the wicked, the man who drove the moneychangers out of the Temple with a whip, the man who declared it his objective to be the light of the world, never opened his mouth against the Romans?
If you substitute Obama for Jesus and the Rev Wright for the Romans, you don't even need to tune to your favorite cable news channel

SaulChanukah

Post by SaulChanukah » Mon Apr 28, 2008 10:23 am

keaggy220 wrote:

Obviously the path He chose had an impact far greater than anyone who has ever walked the earth - so I humbly believe He chose wisely.
Check out Abraham.

Jesus had no 'impact' at all in the world. He just generated a lie that got momentum and following by the pagan world who knew no better, just see what Muhamed did..

Yes, a lie can have great influence and its not that hard to sell to the masses who dont know any better.

Abraham and Moses the spiritual towers are the most influential people that walked the world. They were saints and servants of God that didnt invent mythological paganisitic ideas about virgin birth gods.

Read the Ten commandments clearly and youll see who was the most influential person that ever walked the earth.

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Re: Jesus and the Romans

Post by jbuck919 » Mon Apr 28, 2008 10:42 am

SaulChanukah wrote:
The gospels relate that Jesus famously proclaimed, "Render unto Caesar the things which are Caesar's, and unto God the things that are God's."
Unfortunately we cannot also attribute to him any statement about the futility of beating a dead horse.

There's nothing remarkable about it. All one has to do is hit the right keys at the right time and the instrument plays itself.
-- Johann Sebastian Bach

Ted

Post by Ted » Mon Apr 28, 2008 11:01 am

Saul writes:
Jesus had no 'impact' at all in the world.
Time to take your meds Saul

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Post by keaggy220 » Mon Apr 28, 2008 11:25 am

SaulChanukah wrote:
keaggy220 wrote:

Obviously the path He chose had an impact far greater than anyone who has ever walked the earth - so I humbly believe He chose wisely.
Check out Abraham.

Jesus had no 'impact' at all in the world. He just generated a lie that got momentum and following by the pagan world who knew no better, just see what Muhamed did..

Yes, a lie can have great influence and its not that hard to sell to the masses who dont know any better.

Abraham and Moses the spiritual towers are the most influential people that walked the world. They were saints and servants of God that didnt invent mythological paganisitic ideas about virgin birth gods.

Read the Ten commandments clearly and youll see who was the most influential person that ever walked the earth.
Fortunately my faith only requires me to tell people who Jesus is to me, but does not require me to convince anyone.

Abraham and Moses are very influential in my life. My wife and I recently taught our 8 year old to memorize the Ten commandments. However, I believe the Ten commandments reveals to us our Creators character not Moses' character.
Last edited by keaggy220 on Mon Apr 28, 2008 11:51 am, edited 1 time in total.
"I guess we're all, or most of us, the wards of the nineteenth-century sciences which denied existence of anything it could not reason or explain. The things we couldn't explain went right on but not with our blessing... So many old and lovely things are stored in the world's attic, because we don't want them around us and we don't dare throw them out."
— John Steinbeck, The Winter of Our Discontent


"He has shown you, O mortal, what is good.
And what does the LORD require of you?
To act justly and to love mercy
and to walk humbly with your God."
- Micah 6:8

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Post by Werner » Mon Apr 28, 2008 11:33 am

And so it's your right to state your faith, Keaggy, and allow me to compliment you on the way you put it.
Werner Isler

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Post by BWV 1080 » Mon Apr 28, 2008 11:51 am

SaulChanukah wrote:
keaggy220 wrote:

Obviously the path He chose had an impact far greater than anyone who has ever walked the earth - so I humbly believe He chose wisely.
Check out Abraham.

Jesus had no 'impact' at all in the world. He just generated a lie that got momentum and following by the pagan world who knew no better, just see what Muhamed did..

Yes, a lie can have great influence and its not that hard to sell to the masses who dont know any better.

Abraham and Moses the spiritual towers are the most influential people that walked the world. They were saints and servants of God that didnt invent mythological paganisitic ideas about virgin birth gods.

Read the Ten commandments clearly and youll see who was the most influential person that ever walked the earth.
So who had the greatest influence on Judaism after Moses?

Image

Think about it Saul, you would still be sacrificing animals in a temple were it not for this guy.

SaulChanukah

Post by SaulChanukah » Mon Apr 28, 2008 2:02 pm

BWV 1080 wrote:
SaulChanukah wrote:
keaggy220 wrote:

Obviously the path He chose had an impact far greater than anyone who has ever walked the earth - so I humbly believe He chose wisely.
Check out Abraham.

Jesus had no 'impact' at all in the world. He just generated a lie that got momentum and following by the pagan world who knew no better, just see what Muhamed did..

Yes, a lie can have great influence and its not that hard to sell to the masses who dont know any better.

Abraham and Moses the spiritual towers are the most influential people that walked the world. They were saints and servants of God that didnt invent mythological paganisitic ideas about virgin birth gods.

Read the Ten commandments clearly and youll see who was the most influential person that ever walked the earth.
So who had the greatest influence on Judaism after Moses?

Image

Think about it Saul, you would still be sacrificing animals in a temple were it not for this guy.
Its like saying :" You would still have to feed your children and pay for their expenses were it not for the criminal that murdered them".

You have a pea instead of a brain.

SaulChanukah

Post by SaulChanukah » Mon Apr 28, 2008 2:04 pm

keaggy220 wrote:
SaulChanukah wrote:
keaggy220 wrote:

However, I believe the Ten commandments reveals to us our Creators character not Moses' character.
If reading the entire Torah doesnt teach you about Moses' character then your understanding of the Torah is close to zero.

SaulChanukah

Post by SaulChanukah » Mon Apr 28, 2008 2:06 pm

Ted wrote:Saul writes:
Jesus had no 'impact' at all in the world.
Time to take your meds Saul
Again like a little fool you attack on a personal level without bringing any other points of view. I guess youre the "odd one" in your family...

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Post by david johnson » Mon Apr 28, 2008 3:17 pm

SaulChanukah wrote:
Ted wrote:Saul writes:
Jesus had no 'impact' at all in the world.
Time to take your meds Saul
Again like a little fool you attack on a personal level without bringing any other points of view. I guess youre the "odd one" in your family...
Saul, he's correct. You are not thinking straight today. How can you believe such a preposterous statement? It doesn't matter what one does or does not believe as far as religion or lack of...the impact (with or without quotes) is here and has been for quite some time.

dj

Ted

Post by Ted » Mon Apr 28, 2008 3:59 pm

Saul, here’s my POV
Do you understand that your words are insulting and hurtful to people who hold Jesus dear to their hearts as you do Moses?

Or are you so deranged that you are in dire need of pharmacological assistance

I fear the answer is yes to both

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Post by Ralph » Mon Apr 28, 2008 4:14 pm

Ted wrote:Saul, here’s my POV
Do you understand that your words are insulting and hurtful to people who hold Jesus dear to their hearts as you do Moses?

Or are you so deranged that you are in dire need of pharmacological assistance

I fear the answer is yes to both
*****

He's neither "deranged" nor in need of drugs. He represents the extremist wing of fundamentalist Jewry-those folks who will follow their rebbes to any level of dedicated ignorance. Look at his photos and paintings and listen to his compositions-this is a very bright man, perhaps in some ways the most creative participant on this board. But he's trapped in a world of dogma with answers for everything and solutions for nothing.
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Albert Einstein

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Post by Corlyss_D » Mon Apr 28, 2008 4:31 pm

Jesus, if he ever existed and if he was crucified, came a cropper with the Romans because of his ability to rouse the rabble. The size of the crowds he was able to attract scared Herod and the Romans were smart enough to recognize a threat of political unrest when they saw it.
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Post by BWV 1080 » Mon Apr 28, 2008 4:36 pm

Corlyss_D wrote:Jesus, if he ever existed and if he was crucified, came a cropper with the Romans because of his ability to rouse the rabble. The size of the crowds he was able to attract scared Herod and the Romans were smart enough to recognize a threat of political unrest when they saw it.
Sure but the political unrest they were afraid of could just as easily been from the orthodox jewish establishment. The Romans could simply of executed a local heretic to appease the larger population of Israel and the priesthood.
Last edited by BWV 1080 on Mon Apr 28, 2008 4:41 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Post by Corlyss_D » Mon Apr 28, 2008 4:40 pm

BWV 1080 wrote:
Corlyss_D wrote:Jesus, if he ever existed and if he was crucified, came a cropper with the Romans because of his ability to rouse the rabble. The size of the crowds he was able to attract scared Herod and the Romans were smart enough to recognize a threat of political unrest when they saw it.
Sure but the political unrest they were afraid of could just as easily been from the orthodox jewish establishment. The Romans could simply of exectuted a local heretic to appease the larger population of Israel and the priesthood.
I think that was part of the political unrest the Romans feared. If one is to believe the NT reports, as modified by the scant contemporary evidence, Jesus was the biggest and most influential local heretic.
Corlyss
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SaulChanukah

Post by SaulChanukah » Mon Apr 28, 2008 4:45 pm

david johnson wrote:
SaulChanukah wrote:
Ted wrote:Saul writes:
Jesus had no 'impact' at all in the world.
Time to take your meds Saul
Again like a little fool you attack on a personal level without bringing any other points of view. I guess youre the "odd one" in your family...
Saul, he's correct. You are not thinking straight today. How can you believe such a preposterous statement? It doesn't matter what one does or does not believe as far as religion or lack of...the impact (with or without quotes) is here and has been for quite some time.

dj
Can you please explain what "impact" did Jesus have?

All of his teaching were of Jewish origin, he invented nothing new.

It was Paul who Hijacked the teachings of Jesus that were of Jewish origins and added pagan ideas and then sold it to the pagan masses.

So you could claim that Paul was the one that had an impact on the world by selling a religion of strong pagan motifs.


Or you can claim that without Abraham's faith Jesus and Paul would have nothing to sell to begin with.

So you wanna attach the "creation" of the Christian faith to Jesus? I allready explained that Jesus had nothing to do with that, it was Paul.


So let's hear from you, what "impact" did Jesus have on the world?
Last edited by SaulChanukah on Mon Apr 28, 2008 4:48 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Ted

Post by Ted » Mon Apr 28, 2008 4:46 pm

Ralph writes:
But he's trapped in a world of dogma with answers for everything and solutions for nothing.
Ergo my gobbledygook retort —a fitting response considering your assessment for which there is no rational or logical remedy

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Post by BWV 1080 » Mon Apr 28, 2008 4:53 pm

Ralph wrote:perhaps in some ways the most creative participant on this board.
Given the professional composers and musicians that post here, that is some claim

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Post by david johnson » Mon Apr 28, 2008 4:56 pm

SaulChanukah wrote:
david johnson wrote:
SaulChanukah wrote:
Ted wrote:Saul writes:
Jesus had no 'impact' at all in the world.
Time to take your meds Saul
Again like a little fool you attack on a personal level without bringing any other points of view. I guess youre the "odd one" in your family...
Saul, he's correct. You are not thinking straight today. How can you believe such a preposterous statement? It doesn't matter what one does or does not believe as far as religion or lack of...the impact (with or without quotes) is here and has been for quite some time.

dj
Can you please explain what "impact" did Jesus have?

All of his teaching were of Jewish origin, he invented nothing new.

It was Paul who Hijacked the teachings of Jesus that were of Jewish origins and added pagan ideas and then sold it to the pagan masses.

So you could claim that Paul was the one that had an impact on the world by selling a religion of strong pagan motifs.


Or you can claim that without Abraham's faith Jesus and Paul would have nothing to sell to begin with.

So you wanna attach the "creation" of the Christian faith to Jesus? I allready explained that Jesus had nothing to do with that, it was Paul.


So let's hear from you, what "impact" did Jesus have on the world?
my Lord, you're serious. i might engage you when i quit laughing!

meanwhile, please show where paul (saul the pharisee) -

'added pagan ideas and then sold it to the pagan masses'.
and was 'selling a religion of strong pagan motifs'.

dj

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Post by keaggy220 » Mon Apr 28, 2008 5:00 pm

Ted wrote:Saul, here’s my POV
Do you understand that your words are insulting and hurtful to people who hold Jesus dear to their hearts as you do Moses?

Or are you so deranged that you are in dire need of pharmacological assistance

I fear the answer is yes to both
It really doesn't bother me coming from Saul. I admire his passion. Sure, his passion could be tempered by brotherly kindness, but that comes with the slow workings of maturity. Indifference, however, drives me crazy, but that's not something Saul is capable of... :)
"I guess we're all, or most of us, the wards of the nineteenth-century sciences which denied existence of anything it could not reason or explain. The things we couldn't explain went right on but not with our blessing... So many old and lovely things are stored in the world's attic, because we don't want them around us and we don't dare throw them out."
— John Steinbeck, The Winter of Our Discontent


"He has shown you, O mortal, what is good.
And what does the LORD require of you?
To act justly and to love mercy
and to walk humbly with your God."
- Micah 6:8

Brendan

Post by Brendan » Mon Apr 28, 2008 5:06 pm

In Jesus' time Judea was basically occupied territory. Perhaps armed resistance would be futile, stupid and unGodly. And he wasn't a general nor soldier: every human expectation is overturned and transformed in Christ's Incarnation and Resurrection.

As for never standing up to the Romans, perhaps he was the inspiration for non-violent resistance. Worht a thought, anyway. As Robert Funk points out in Honest to Jesus concerning the famous blow to the cheek:

A blow to the right cheek would require a left-handed slap, which would be intended not to injure but to humiliate. The left hand was not used publicly in Jesus’ society, since it was used for unclean tasks. At Qumran to gesture with the left hand was punishable by ten days of penance. So a backhanded slap to the right cheek was an insult delivered from a superior to an inferior, as Walter Wink has so brilliantly shown: master to slave, husband to wife, parent to child, Roman to Jew. Its message: Get back in your place. Don’t put on airs.

To turn the other cheek under the circumstances was an act of defiance. The left cheek invited a right-hand blow that might injure. The master, or husband, or parent, or Roman would hesitate. The humiliation of the initial blow was answered with a nonviolent, very subtle, but quite effective challenge. The act of defiance entailed risk; it was symbolic to be sure, but for that reason appealed to those who were regarded as subservient inferiors in Jesus’ world.


The advice to give your shirt and to walk another mile were similarly provocative and anti-authoritarian in the world Jesus lived in.
Last edited by Brendan on Mon Apr 28, 2008 5:07 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Post by BWV 1080 » Mon Apr 28, 2008 5:07 pm

If Saul was a Southern Baptist and this obnoxious I do not think anyone here would defend him.

There must be some sort of 12-step program for religiopathy that he could join.

Ted

Post by Ted » Mon Apr 28, 2008 5:16 pm

Steve writes:
If Saul was a Southern Baptist and this obnoxious I do not think anyone here would defend him.
Agreed 100% There is a huge double standard here

keaggy Writes:
It really doesn't bother me coming from Saul. I admire his passion. Sure, his passion could be tempered by brotherly kindness, but that comes with the slow workings of maturity. Indifference, however, drives me crazy, but that's not something Saul is capable of...
Your charity notwithstanding, Saul is Osama Bib Laden in a Yarmuka

SaulChanukah

Post by SaulChanukah » Mon Apr 28, 2008 5:23 pm

david johnson wrote:
SaulChanukah wrote:
david johnson wrote:
SaulChanukah wrote:
Ted wrote:Saul writes:
Jesus had no 'impact' at all in the world.
Time to take your meds Saul
Again like a little fool you attack on a personal level without bringing any other points of view. I guess youre the "odd one" in your family...
Saul, he's correct. You are not thinking straight today. How can you believe such a preposterous statement? It doesn't matter what one does or does not believe as far as religion or lack of...the impact (with or without quotes) is here and has been for quite some time.

dj
Can you please explain what "impact" did Jesus have?

All of his teaching were of Jewish origin, he invented nothing new.

It was Paul who Hijacked the teachings of Jesus that were of Jewish origins and added pagan ideas and then sold it to the pagan masses.

So you could claim that Paul was the one that had an impact on the world by selling a religion of strong pagan motifs.


Or you can claim that without Abraham's faith Jesus and Paul would have nothing to sell to begin with.

So you wanna attach the "creation" of the Christian faith to Jesus? I allready explained that Jesus had nothing to do with that, it was Paul.


So let's hear from you, what "impact" did Jesus have on the world?
my Lord, you're serious. i might engage you when i quit laughing!

meanwhile, please show where paul (saul the pharisee) -

'added pagan ideas and then sold it to the pagan masses'.
and was 'selling a religion of strong pagan motifs'.

dj
If you don’t know,

The early Christians were composed of Jews. It was a Jewish sect. This sect had two different camps. The first camp was of Jesus' Brother , James. The second camp was of Paul, who by the way had never met Jesus personally.

James wanted to continue the path of his Brother, Jesus, by following strictly the Jewish law, thus giving this sect a Jewish character. For Jesus had never claimed that he was the son of God nor did he ever claim that he was a product of a virgin birth.

Paul on the other hand saw that trying to sell this sect to the Jewish orthodox Community is impossible, therefore he set through an adventure by giving this Jewish sect a more pagan nature by incorporating in its theology elements of classical pagainistic ideas, such as virgin births, and gods impregnating virgins.

So it was these two very opposing camps that composed the early heretic Christian movement. These two camps of James and Paul had fought each other bitterly, each trying to impose its own version of their religion.

The end result was that after the Roman assault on Israel, the majority of James' camp was destroyed, but Paul's camp stayed intact. From then on , since they had no more objections from James' followers, they had decided to advance their new found religion based on the version that Paul had set for them.

Thus, Paul began focusing on the Pagan world. His job was easy for he had already altered Christianity with Pagan motifs, enabling the Pagan world to embrace this new exotic faith, without compromising their own idolatrous customs, traditions and practices. Holidays, such as Christmas, with the tree, Santa Claus and Rudolf the deer, and Halloween have nothing Jewish about them, they are classic pagan symbols and beliefs, that Paul had added to his new found religion.


But the original followers of Jesus, those who actually had met him and spend time with him, his closest students, were left out of the picture, for they were more Jewish in nature, for Jesus' brother James, knew very well that Jesus wanted to stay faithful to the law of Moses and actually said :" Those who will keep the law of Moses will be high in the kingdom of Heaven, and those who will not keep the law of Moses will be the least in the Kingdom of Heaven".

People forget that the Christian bible was not written by Jesus himself, and many times throughout history, the book of James was considered for exclusion from the Christian Bible, because he after all represents the more Jewish side of Christianity. In fact Martin Luther, the infamous German reformer wanted to do just that.

What do we got here then?

The Christian faith today is a product of a highjacker (Paul) who disregarded the closest family members and students of Jesus, and went along to cut off Christianity from its original Jewish roots, by first adding an infusion of Pagan elements to its theology and rituals, and by writing books such as ' John' that are filled with vituperative anti-Semitic rhetoric, trying to still further the gap between Christianity and Judaism with classic anti Semitism.

I am surprised, that you don't know these extremely basic historic events. You as a Christian should investigate and learn about the history of those that you follow.

Brendan

Post by Brendan » Mon Apr 28, 2008 5:31 pm

The idea that Pauline thought is largely Pagan has been thoroughly debunked in recent years. Try Pauline Christology by Gordon Fee or any of the works of N.T. Wright or James Dunn or Anthony Thistleton or . . .

Paul constantly quotes the OT (as Christians see it) in his epistles: he just includes Christ in the Shema - not a something a Pagan would think to do or have as the basic statement of faith.

In Pauls’ remarkable restatement of the Jewish Shema [1 Cor 8.6], Christ the Son assumes a role alongside the Father in God’s identity, as the preexistent divine agent of creation as well as the historical agent of redemption. Thus he is also seen as present with Israel in the wilderness, as the One who supplied Israel with water and as the One whom they spurned in their rebellion.
Fee, Gordon – Pauline Christology [Hendrickson, 2007 p. 147]

Please stop gibbering about a subject you know nothing about and distort offensively every time you post about it.

SaulChanukah

Post by SaulChanukah » Mon Apr 28, 2008 5:50 pm

Brendan wrote:The idea that Pauline thought is largely Pagan has been thoroughly debunked in recent years. Try Pauline Christology by Gordon Fee or any of the works of N.T. Wright or James Dunn or Anthony Thistleton or . . .

Paul constantly quotes the OT (as Christians see it) in his epistles: he just includes Christ in the Shema - not a something a Pagan would think to do or have as the basic statement of faith.

In Pauls’ remarkable restatement of the Jewish Shema [1 Cor 8.6], Christ the Son assumes a role alongside the Father in God’s identity, as the preexistent divine agent of creation as well as the historical agent of redemption. Thus he is also seen as present with Israel in the wilderness, as the One who supplied Israel with water and as the One whom they spurned in their rebellion.
Fee, Gordon – Pauline Christology [Hendrickson, 2007 p. 147]

Please stop gibbering about a subject you know nothing about and distort offensively every time you post about it.
I think that I had provided an accurate account of the situation between the two camps of the sect. You on the other hand only said that Paul didn’t embrace pagan motifs because he added the Shema prayer.

If you didn’t know you just shot yourself in the foot.

How can Paul add the Shema which is the most famous Jewish announcement of God's complete undivided and singular unity , and yet continue to believe in the trinity and that Jesus was a product of a virgin birth?

You cant tell your wife that you love her while your hugging your mistress in front of her now could you?

If Paul wants to add the Shema, let him forget about the paganistic ideas of trinity and virgin births.

James who happened to be Jesus' brother did not believe that Jesus was a product of a virgin birth. It was entirely Paul's new addition from the pagan world. Any Christian that doesn’t want to accept this very basic fact, that Paul embraced Pagan ideas and added them to his theology, is living in la la land.

Brendan

Post by Brendan » Mon Apr 28, 2008 5:56 pm

That Paul does include Christ in the Shema at 1 Cor is beyond dispute.

By the very nature of things, the Pauline letters serve chiefly not as theological, but as pragmatic, documents; nonetheless, they are full of theological presuppositions, assertions, and reflections of a kind that allow us to describe them theologically. At the heart of these descriptions lies the mystery of the Trinity, but it does so in a presuppositional, experiential way, not by reflective theologizing. By that I mean that Paul expresses his experience of God in a fundamentally Trinitarian way, but never grapples with the theological issues that this experience raises. It is common among scholars, therefore, to deny that Paul was a Trinitarian at all and to contend that such an understanding belongs to a later time, when the influences of Hellenistic philosophy began to predominate among those who were doing the theologizing.
. . .
But despite the frequency of the demurrers, and for want of a better term, Pauline theology can hardly be examined without wrestling with the fundamental issues of Trinitarian theology, because Paul himself, an avowed monotheist, nonetheless spoke of Christ as the preexistent Son of God (see on Gal 4:6-7) and attributed every imaginable activity to him which Paul’s Judaism reserved for God alone. . . . Thus, the two basic issues of Trinitarianism are traceable to Paul (and the rest of the early church as well, of course): that God is one; that God is now known and experienced as Father, Son and Holy Spirit, each distinct from the other, yet as only one God.

Fee, Gordon – God’s Empowering Presence: The Holy Spirit in the Letters of Paul [Hendrickson, 1992, 2004, p. 827-828]

That Jews do not accept the Trinity is also not in dispute, nor that the early (Jewish) Christians worshipped in the name of Father, Son and Holy Spirit. They are not the same religion. Your ignorance and insulting drivel is not helping anyone.

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Post by Corlyss_D » Mon Apr 28, 2008 6:07 pm

SaulChanukah wrote:The Christian faith today is a product of a highjacker (Paul) who disregarded the closest family members and students of Jesus, and went along to cut off Christianity from its original Jewish roots, by first adding an infusion of Pagan elements to its theology and rituals
So? Both owe a lot more to Mediterranean mystery religions than either acknowledge.
and by writing books such as ' John'


What's your authority for that claim?
trying to still further the gap between Christianity and Judaism


Well, there was that whole circumcision thing . . . very down from a marketing point of view.
with classic anti Semitism.
Are you sure you aren't imputing to Saul the sentiments of later authors who used his writings to justify their anti-Semitism?
Corlyss
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SaulChanukah

Post by SaulChanukah » Mon Apr 28, 2008 6:10 pm

Brendan wrote:That Paul does include Christ in the Shema at 1 Cor is beyond dispute.

By the very nature of things, the Pauline letters serve chiefly not as theological, but as pragmatic, documents; nonetheless, they are full of theological presuppositions, assertions, and reflections of a kind that allow us to describe them theologically. At the heart of these descriptions lies the mystery of the Trinity, but it does so in a presuppositional, experiential way, not by reflective theologizing. By that I mean that Paul expresses his experience of God in a fundamentally Trinitarian way, but never grapples with the theological issues that this experience raises. It is common among scholars, therefore, to deny that Paul was a Trinitarian at all and to contend that such an understanding belongs to a later time, when the influences of Hellenistic philosophy began to predominate among those who were doing the theologizing.
. . .
But despite the frequency of the demurrers, and for want of a better term, Pauline theology can hardly be examined without wrestling with the fundamental issues of Trinitarian theology, because Paul himself, an avowed monotheist, nonetheless spoke of Christ as the preexistent Son of God (see on Gal 4:6-7) and attributed every imaginable activity to him which Paul’s Judaism reserved for God alone. . . . Thus, the two basic issues of Trinitarianism are traceable to Paul (and the rest of the early church as well, of course): that God is one; that God is now known and experienced as Father, Son and Holy Spirit, each distinct from the other, yet as only one God.

Fee, Gordon – God’s Empowering Presence: The Holy Spirit in the Letters of Paul [Hendrickson, 1992, 2004, p. 827-828]

That Jews do not accept the Trinity is also not in dispute, nor that the early (Jewish) Christians worshipped in the name of Father, Son and Holy Spirit. They are not the same religion. Your ignorance and insulting drivel is not helping anyone.

Just listen to yourself how you are shooting yourself in the foot.

Let me clear things for you.

Paul was an Orthodox Jew together with Jesus and James and all their early followers. Non of them ever believed in trinity or virgin birth or things of this sort. But since Paul later on in his life decided to become a heretic, he embraced things that even Jesus himself never claimed to be, for instance the Idea of trinity has nothing Jewish in it, nor did Jesus ever embraced it. Trinity and virgin births were pagan beliefs, period.

Therefore Paul by understanding that he cant fool the Jews with his new heretic sect, had decided to attack the pagan world with conversion. How did he do that?

He told them :

Come join our new religion, look, we also believe in virgin births and trinity just like you, so don’t worry.

And the Pagans joined him for after all Paul embraced their ideas.

But to claim that Paul had these very famous pagan motifs without Pagan support and influence is like saying, that Dairy Ice cream can be dairy without milk.

I really advice you to seriously begin to learn your history instead of believing Christians "scholars" who follow Paul for your information.

I am bringing to your attention some critical problems that exist in the Christian religion, yet until now your response was very poor.

Brendan

Post by Brendan » Mon Apr 28, 2008 6:30 pm

I have studied Pagan religion for years as well, and Christianity is very different indeed. Try The Mystery Religions by Sam Angus for a start. I am well aware oif the religious history of the time, and suggest you do some reading outside your rabbinical school.

[As Dodd, art. Cit., p. 15, points out,] no Hellenistic thinker would see a climax in the Incarnation, just as no Gnostic would triumphantly proclaim that the Word had become flesh.
Brown, Raymond E. – The Gospel According to John I-XII – A New Translation with Introduction and Commentary [Anchor Bible, Doubleday 1966 p 24]

That they lived in the Graeco-Roman world means that some things were expressed in such cultural terms as their audience could understand. But Christians were persecuted by the Romans for their religion (irreligion towards the Roman gods and understanding of divinity), and was not simply another form of paganism amongst many. It was closer to Greek philosophy than religion.

SaulChanukah

Post by SaulChanukah » Mon Apr 28, 2008 7:26 pm

Corlyss_D wrote:
SaulChanukah wrote:The Christian faith today is a product of a highjacker (Paul) who disregarded the closest family members and students of Jesus, and went along to cut off Christianity from its original Jewish roots, by first adding an infusion of Pagan elements to its theology and rituals
So? Both owe a lot more to Mediterranean mystery religions than either acknowledge.
and by writing books such as ' John'


What's your authority for that claim?
trying to still further the gap between Christianity and Judaism


Well, there was that whole circumcision thing . . . very down from a marketing point of view.
with classic anti Semitism.
Are you sure you aren't imputing to Saul the sentiments of later authors who used his writings to justify their anti-Semitism?
Corlys, there are big disagreements and confusions about the identity of the author of John. As wikipedia writes:

Identifications
Main article:

Authorship of the Johannine works
Some modern scholars[2] distinguish at least three different authors. The creator of the Gospel of John and the First Epistle of John is known as John the Evangelist, John the Theologian or John the Divine. The Second and Third Epistle of John had the same author, who calls himself the presbyter; he has been identified with the enigmatic John the Presbyter. The Book of Revelation was written by John of Patmos. Most evangelical Christians continue to hold that all New Testament "John" books were written by John the son of Zebedee. The apocryphal 2nd century Gnostic text called Secret Book of John was also attributed to John though not by the established orthodox Christian traditions. The Gospel of John contains references to the "disciple whom Jesus loved". Traditionally this was taken as a self reference by the author, and therefore a reference to John the Apostle.


Me claiming that it was Paul who wrote John is no more adding or decreasing from the present confusion that Christians have about which "John" wrote "John".

This is a most unbelievable and phenomenal problem that Christians posses, for they cant even correctly identify the authors of their own 'holy scriptures. But on the other hand we Jews have no disagreement or confusion about who wrote what in the Tenach.


About your other questions,

Paul clearly made anti Semitic comments and he hated the Jews faithful to the Torah. He even waged a war with James' camp that wanted to stay faithful to the laws of Moses.

Paul was a heretic who failed miserably to convert his own people, therefore he targeted the wider world population. His failure made him use anti Semitic description about the Jews, and generated within him feelings of hate and contempt about his own people.

Others who followed later on were anti Semitic in nature and just used Paul's inflammatory rhetoric against the Jews to inflame the hate that they had before.

Just read Martin Luther's book "The Jews and their lies", its the most disgusting book ever written against the Jews. His hate knew no bounds and I cant imagine that this hate was only of Paul's doing, for a rotten soul such as his needed only an excuse to hate, and he did find it in Paul's comments, but these comments only added up to his previous hate and animosity towards the Jews.

Also Paul's preaching to stop one of the most pivotal commandments that God had commanded, the circumcision. The commandment that Abraham Isaac and Jacob so carefully observed for that was the only commandment that distinguishes a Jew from a Gentile, further adds to the falsity of his delusional heresy. For how can any thinking human being believe that the God of Israel will ban one of the most important and vital commandments in the Torah? The commandment that the Jews had to perform in order to have the merit to exist Egyptian bondage and exit to freedom? How can anyone believe that God will contradict himself?

Clearly Paul was a delusional dreamer and a sinner that wanted to destroy Judaism and that wanted to impose a religion that he created in his own heart , void of anything divine or G-dlly.

Paul as you know had never met Jesus personally, he only claimed that he "saw" Jesus in a "vision". How can thinking rational people base their entire theology and religion on one man's dream would forever remain a mystery for me.

To sum it up, Christianity of today is based on one man's claim of a dream that no one has any power, ability or way to tell if he indeed had that ' vision'.

Take away Paul's "vision" of meeting Jesus, and all of Christianity falls down and crumbles. For Paul had never met Jesus and all of his claims are personal without any shred of any evidence to support it.

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Post by greymouse » Mon Apr 28, 2008 7:36 pm

SaulChanukah wrote: This is a most unbelievable and phenomenal problem that Christians posses, for they cant even correctly identify the authors of their own 'holy scriptures. But on the other hand we Jews have no disagreement or confusion about who wrote what in the Tenach.
I don't understand this comment. Who wrote Genesis? How about Job and Esther and Deuteronomy and the 1 Chronicles? Pardon me that I'm using the Christian names for these books since I don't know the Hebrew names, but I think you know which ones I'm referring to. Are there really Jewish scholars who claim the authorship of these books is unambiguous?

SaulChanukah

Post by SaulChanukah » Mon Apr 28, 2008 7:51 pm

greymouse wrote:
SaulChanukah wrote: This is a most unbelievable and phenomenal problem that Christians posses, for they cant even correctly identify the authors of their own 'holy scriptures. But on the other hand we Jews have no disagreement or confusion about who wrote what in the Tenach.
I don't understand this comment. Who wrote Genesis? How about Job and Esther and Deuteronomy and the 1 Chronicles? Pardon me that I'm using the Christian names for these books since I don't know the Hebrew names, but I think you know which ones I'm referring to. Are there really Jewish scholars who claim the authorship of these books is unambiguous?
Job was written by Moses, Ester was written by Mordechi, Genesis is the first book of the 5 books of the Torah which existed before God had created the universe, later on The God of Israel had commaded Moses to write the Torah, under his direction.

Moses wrote every single letter under the direct order and command of God. Chronicles was written by Ezra and Nechamia.

Here is the entire list of the Books of the Jewish Tanach and their Authors:

http://www.torahtots.com/torah/tanach_facts.htm

Brendan

Post by Brendan » Mon Apr 28, 2008 7:57 pm

So St John the Evangelist, the Beloved Disciple, is actually Paul, who never knew Jesus.

Most of here can spot the delusional one.

Also, try Richard Eliot Friedman's Who Wrote the Bible?. At the very least 4 authors are needed and have been identified by schiolarship since the 19th C: J (Yahwist), E (Elohist), D (Deuteronomist) and P (Priestly). Moses did not write a word of it, as most scholars are well aware.

SaulChanukah

Post by SaulChanukah » Mon Apr 28, 2008 8:10 pm

Brendan wrote:So St John the Evangelist, the Beloved Disciple, is actually Paul, who never knew Jesus.

Most of here can spot the delusional one.

Also, try Richard Eliot Friedman's Who Wrote the Bible?. At the very least 4 authors are needed and have been identified by schiolarship since the 19th C: J (Yahwist), E (Elohist), D (Deuteronomist) and P (Priestly). Moses did not write a word of it, as most scholars are well aware.

Are you out of your mind?

Moses wrote the entire Torah word by word from God, this is one of the most fundamental and important teachings of the Jewish faith.

Now I know that you worship something else and you believe your "scholars". But your "Scholars" for me are nothing. They don't have any authority or knowledge to teach the Jewish people about their religion and history. We have our own Prophets and Great Rabbis and real scholars and historians who know their history and Torah , as it was transmitted from one generation to another all throughout the ages.

Wanna reach your right ear with your left hand?be my guest, but I will always rely on the source. The Idea that others can teach us Jews about our history and who wrote our own Holy Books, is the most ludicrous thing in the whole world.

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Post by david johnson » Mon Apr 28, 2008 8:15 pm

'The early Christians were composed of Jews. It was a Jewish sect. This sect had two different camps. The first camp was of Jesus' Brother , James. The second camp was of Paul, who by the way had never met Jesus personally.'

Partially correct. Saul met the Lord on the way to Damascus.

'Thus, Paul began focusing on the Pagan world. His job was easy for he had already altered Christianity with Pagan motifs, enabling the Pagan world to embrace this new exotic faith, without compromising their own idolatrous customs, traditions and practices. Holidays, such as Christmas, with the tree, Santa Claus and Rudolf the deer, and Halloween have nothing Jewish about them, they are classic pagan symbols and beliefs, that Paul had added to his new found religion.'

Paul knew Rudoplh? :shock: er...try Gene Autry and his song about 2000 yrs. later.
You want to be taken as informed on this?
Paul added Santa and Rudolph?
My God, you have actually said Paul added this to his new found religion??
:lol: :lol:

Oh, help, it hurts!

dj

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Post by greymouse » Mon Apr 28, 2008 8:25 pm

SaulChanukah wrote: Wanna reach your right ear with your left hand?be my guest, but I will always rely on the source. The Idea that others can teach us Jews about our history and who wrote our own Holy Books, is the most ludicrous thing in the whole world.

Fine, but that's kind of what you're doing so it's hypocritical. A lot of Christians will claim that the similarity in the words used between John 1 and the Gospel of John (such as heavy themes of light, darkness, and love) show they were probably written by the same cat and that he has a more serene tone than the harsher Paul. So why is it a stretch to think there was a separate guy who just wrote the book?

At least when Christians speak of the Old Testament texts, they're referring to texts they revere and have studied albeit without knowing the language. And so which sounds harder to swallow - that Moses wrote of his own death, or that John was an actual person who wrote some of his own books?

SaulChanukah

Post by SaulChanukah » Mon Apr 28, 2008 8:28 pm

david johnson wrote:'The early Christians were composed of Jews. It was a Jewish sect. This sect had two different camps. The first camp was of Jesus' Brother , James. The second camp was of Paul, who by the way had never met Jesus personally.'

Partially correct. Saul met the Lord on the way to Damascus.

'Thus, Paul began focusing on the Pagan world. His job was easy for he had already altered Christianity with Pagan motifs, enabling the Pagan world to embrace this new exotic faith, without compromising their own idolatrous customs, traditions and practices. Holidays, such as Christmas, with the tree, Santa Claus and Rudolf the deer, and Halloween have nothing Jewish about them, they are classic pagan symbols and beliefs, that Paul had added to his new found religion.'

Paul knew Rudoplh? :shock: er...try Gene Autry and his song about 2000 yrs. later.
You want to be taken as informed on this?
Paul added Santa and Rudolph?
My God, you have actually said Paul added this to his new found religion??
:lol: :lol:

Oh, help, it hurts!

dj
Paul had never met Jesus. He only claimed that he had a "vision" or a "dream" where he "saw" Jesus. Its like saying that I had never met you in real life but only had a "dream" about you. For some people that is a huge difference.

About the Christmas tree and Rudolf.. and the rest of the Pagan things...

These were not "Original" Christian inventions but they are all pagan. Paul didnt mind that his new converts would continue celebrating their pagan holidays. This proves my point that Paul embraced Pagan ideas and used them to convert the pagans.

There is nothing funny about it, and you have not said anything to counter I said.

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Post by greymouse » Mon Apr 28, 2008 8:39 pm

Paul didn't start Christmas trees, Rudolph, holly wreaths, or any of this other stuff. Seriously, that stuff came centuries later. That's the contribution of Scandinavian dudes who got drunk all winter. Same basically goes for Halloween. Later they would invent death metal - you get the idea; the winters get kind of long there. You can't find anything in Paul's epistles that supports these phenomena or even mentions them because there is a massive culture gap.

Brendan

Post by Brendan » Mon Apr 28, 2008 8:48 pm

SaulChanukah wrote:
Brendan wrote:So St John the Evangelist, the Beloved Disciple, is actually Paul, who never knew Jesus.

Most of here can spot the delusional one.

Also, try Richard Eliot Friedman's Who Wrote the Bible?. At the very least 4 authors are needed and have been identified by schiolarship since the 19th C: J (Yahwist), E (Elohist), D (Deuteronomist) and P (Priestly). Moses did not write a word of it, as most scholars are well aware.

Are you out of your mind?

Moses wrote the entire Torah word by word from God, this is one of the most fundamental and important teachings of the Jewish faith.

Now I know that you worship something else and you believe your "scholars". But your "Scholars" for me are nothing. They don't have any authority or knowledge to teach the Jewish people about their religion and history. We have our own Prophets and Great Rabbis and real scholars and historians who know their history and Torah , as it was transmitted from one generation to another all throughout the ages.

Wanna reach your right ear with your left hand?be my guest, but I will always rely on the source. The Idea that others can teach us Jews about our history and who wrote our own Holy Books, is the most ludicrous thing in the whole world.
I am not out of my mind: I read the texts and the scholarship instead of hurling insults from a position of total ignorance and one-eyed bigotry.

It is instructive to read the biblical text itself. It is long and a little boring, but this is one of the most crucial passages of the Bible.

II Kings 22:8 - 23:25 [NRSV]: The high priest Hilkiah said to Shaphan the secretary, “I have found the book of the law in the house of the LORD.” When Hilkiah gave the book to Shaphan, he read it. Then Shaphan the secretary came to the king, and reported to the king, “Your servants have emptied out the money that was found in the house, and have delivered it into the hand of the workers who have oversight of the house of the LORD.” Shaphan the secretary informed the king, “The priest Hilkiah has given me a book.” Shaphan then read it aloud to the king.

When the king heard the words of the book of the law, he tore his clothes. Then the king commanded the priest Hilkiah Ahikam son of Shaphan, Achbor son of Micaiah, Shaphan the secretary, and the king’s servant Asaiah, saying, “Go, inquire of the LORD for me, for the people, and for all Judah, concerning the words of this book that has been found; for great is the wrath of the LORD that is kindled against us, because our ancestors did not obey the words of this book, to do according to all that is written concerning us.”

. . .


The king commanded the high priest Hilkiah, the priests of the second order, and the guardians of the threshold, to bring out of the temple of the LORD all the vessels made for Baal, for Asherah, and for all the host of heaven; he burned them outside Jerusalem in the fields of the Kidron, and carried their ashes to Bethel. He deposed the idolatrous priests whom the kings of Judah had ordained to make offerings in the high places at the cities of Judah and around Jerusalem; those also who made offerings to Baal, to the sun, the moon, the constellations, and all the host of the heavens. He brought out the image of Asherah from the house of the LORD, outside Jerusalem, to the Wadi Kidron, burned it at the Wadi Kidron, beat it to dust and threw the dust of it upon the graves of the common people. He broke down the houses of the male temple prostitutes that were in the house of the LORD, where the women did weaving for Asherah. He brought all the priests out of the towns of Judah, and defiled the high places where the priests had made offerings, from Geba to Beer-sheba; he broke down the high places of the gates that were at the entrance of the gate of Joshua the governor of the city, which were on the left at the gate of the city. The priests of the high places, however, did not come up to the altar of the LORD in Jerusalem, but ate unleavened bread among their kindred. He defiled Topheth, which is in the valley of Ben-hinnom, so that no one would make a son or a daughter pass through fire as an offering to Molech. He removed the horses that the kings of Judah had dedicated to the sun, at the entrance to the house of the LORD, by the chamber of the eunuch Nathan-melech, which was in the precincts: then he burned the chariots of the sun with fire. The altars on the roof of the upper chamber of Ahaz, which the kings of Judah had made, and the altars that Manasseh had made in the two courts of the house of the LORD, he pulled down from there and broke in pieces, and threw the rubble into the Wadi Kidron. The king defiled the high places that were east of Jerusalem, to the south of the Mount of Destruction, which King Solomon of Israel had built for Astarte the abomination of the Sidonians, for Chemosh the abomination of Moab, and for Milcom the abomination of the Ammonites. He broke the pillar in pieces, cut down the sacred poles, and covered the sites with human bones.

Moreover, the altar at Bethel, the high place erected by Jeroboam son of Nebat, who caused Israel to sin – he pulled down that altar along with the high place. He burned the high place, crushing it to dust; he also burned the sacred pole. As Josiah turned, he saw the tombs there on the mount; and he sent and took the bones out of the tombs, and burned them on the altar, and defiled it, according to the word of the LORD that the man of God proclaimed, when Jeroboam stood by the altar at the festival; he turned and looked up at the tomb of the man of God who had predicted these things. Then he said, “What is that monument that I see?” The people of the city told him, “It is the tomb of the man of God who came from Judah and predicted things that you have done against the altar at Bethel.” He said, “Let him rest; let no one move his bones.” So they let his bones alone, with the bones of the prophet who came out of Samaria. Moreover, Josiah removed all the shrines of the high places that were in the towns of Samaria, which kings of Israel had made, provoking the LORD to anger; he did to them just as he had done at Bethel. He slaughtered on the altars all the priests of the high places who were there, and burned human bones on them. Then he returned to Jerusalem.

The king commanded all the people, “Keep the passover to the LORD your God as prescribed in this book of the covenant.” No such passover had been kept since the days of the judges who judged Israel, or during all the days of the kings of Israel or of the kings of Judah; but in the eighteenth year of King Josiah this passover was kept to the LORD in Jerusalem.

Moreover Josiah put away the mediums, wizards, teraphim , idols, and all the abominations that were seen in the land of Judah and in Jerusalem, so that he established the words of the law that were written in the book that the priest Hilkiah had found in the house of the LORD. Before him there was no king like him, who turned to the LORD with all his heart, with all his soul, and with all his might, according to all the law of Moses; nor did any like him arise after him.


Josiah was young, about eighteen, and known to be an enthusiastic follower of priestly instructions. The Pharaoh Neco of Egypt killed Josiah at Megiddo (Armageddon), so the LORD couldn’t have been that impressed with all his sacrifices. His son Jehoahaz reigned three months, doing evil in the sight of the LORD, and was captured by Neco, who set up his successor Jehoiakim, who also did evil in the sight of the LORD. Then King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon besieged and captured Jerusalem and began the Exile, in the eighth year of Jehoiachin’s reign.

We can see from the text that either the Law had been lost and disobeyed for centuries, or the Law did not exist as we know it until 621 BCE (or thereabouts). The Jews worshipped other gods, to the extent of including their artefacts and followers in the temple of the LORD.

In other words, for most of Jewish history before Josiah, they worshipped many gods. The echoes of these beliefs can be found through the Old Testament, from the Pentateuch to Hosea. Interestingly, they then had to invent a new adversary for God: Satan. The Christian devil doesn’t rate much of a mention in the Old Testament. For the most part, Yahweh worship in the old testament concerned the worship of Baal and Asherah.

The point is important because it demonstrates to us from the biblical text itself that the Bible as we know it was not written from start to finish by one author at a time under divine inspiration. Important bits (what was more important to a Jew of antiquity than the Law?) were added well into the chronology of the Jewish faith. Many scholars think that the book of law ‘found’ and given to Josiah was the book of Deuteronomy.

SaulChanukah

Post by SaulChanukah » Mon Apr 28, 2008 9:21 pm

greymouse wrote:
SaulChanukah wrote: Wanna reach your right ear with your left hand?be my guest, but I will always rely on the source. The Idea that others can teach us Jews about our history and who wrote our own Holy Books, is the most ludicrous thing in the whole world.

Fine, but that's kind of what you're doing so it's hypocritical. A lot of Christians will claim that the similarity in the words used between John 1 and the Gospel of John (such as heavy themes of light, darkness, and love) show they were probably written by the same cat and that he has a more serene tone than the harsher Paul. So why is it a stretch to think there was a separate guy who just wrote the book?

At least when Christians speak of the Old Testament texts, they're referring to texts they revere and have studied albeit without knowing the language. And so which sounds harder to swallow - that Moses wrote of his own death, or that John was an actual person who wrote some of his own books?
There is nothing hypocritical about anything I said, where did you get this idea.? I think that its crystal clear that the Christians can't agree on which 'John' wrote 'John'.

About Moses' writing his own death.
You need to understand that the Torah is divine and contains every single detail of all creation and all of the history and events and happenings that took and will take place until the end of time.

There is a famous story about the Famous medieval Rabbi Moses Ben Nachman of Spain about how one of his students had decided to become a heretic and leave the Jewish faith. When the Rabbi asked his student what had prompted his unfortunate decision, the student replied that it was something that he once had taught him. The Rabbi asked what was the thing. The student replied that he just cant accept the fact that the history of every single person on earth is written and hinted in the letters of the Torah. The Rabbi told him that he still stands by his statement and he wishes he could even prove it. The Student asked the Rabbi to reveal to him where in the Torah his situation is recorded. The students name was Avner. The Rabbi quickly scanned the entire Torah in his mind and found the verse in Deuteronomy where the third letters of the verse talks about his student's faith and makes up the Hebrew letters for the name AVNER, for letter ALEF VIET NOON AND REISH. The Rabbi revealed to the student what will be his end for his sin of leaving his faith, and so it happened exactly as the Verse described and the student met his bad end.

The Torah in its entirety is composed of the letters of God's name. Originally it was written by God simultaneously without any pauses, but once it was given to the Jewish people, it had to be given in way that would be understandable to humans.

The Torah describes the young boy of 13 years old Bezalel Ben Uri from the Tribe of Judah as the appointed architect of the Desert Tabernacle. This young boy as the verse says was filled with the wisdom of God. He knew the secrets of the Hebrew letters and its mystical combinations. You need to understand that the entire universe was created by God by different combinations of the Hebrew letters. This young boy knew these secrets and thus was able to head the construction of the Tabernacle. The Talmud says that the Tabernacle and the Temple of Jerusalem are in fact a small model for the entire build up of the universe.

Thus, the Torah is not only a record of the historic events that took place in those days, but it is also the blueprint and the map for the entire universe and contains within every single detail of the entire universe. Therefore Moses was writing a divine and G-dlly information that contained within it all the events that will take place with every single thing that exists in the universe.

The Jewish Laws of writing the Sefer Torah are very strict and there are many books written about it beginning with the Shulchan Aruch and the Talmud. There are laws on what leather to write on, which inks to use, what kind of a person should write it, who can write it and who cant write it, what does the person who writes needs to think about before and while he writes it.

Did you know that even if one single letter is missing from the Torah scroll , the Torah is unfit and one cant read from it? Because when one single letter is missing, that scroll is not Torah anymore.

There are 600.000 letters in the Torah, the same number of Jews that Stood on mount Sinai. Each Jewish soul is connected to a particular letter within those 600.000 letters that make up the Torah.

This is not just some book, its not some pages filled with historic events, its a divine Book , directed from God and created by God 2000 generations prior to the creation of the universe. In this Torah the God of Israel looked as a map and a blueprint to create the universe.
Last edited by SaulChanukah on Mon Apr 28, 2008 9:41 pm, edited 1 time in total.

SaulChanukah

Post by SaulChanukah » Mon Apr 28, 2008 9:34 pm

Brendan wrote:
SaulChanukah wrote:
Brendan wrote:So St John the Evangelist, the Beloved Disciple, is actually Paul, who never knew Jesus.

Most of here can spot the delusional one.

Also, try Richard Eliot Friedman's Who Wrote the Bible?. At the very least 4 authors are needed and have been identified by schiolarship since the 19th C: J (Yahwist), E (Elohist), D (Deuteronomist) and P (Priestly). Moses did not write a word of it, as most scholars are well aware.

Are you out of your mind?

Moses wrote the entire Torah word by word from God, this is one of the most fundamental and important teachings of the Jewish faith.

Now I know that you worship something else and you believe your "scholars". But your "Scholars" for me are nothing. They don't have any authority or knowledge to teach the Jewish people about their religion and history. We have our own Prophets and Great Rabbis and real scholars and historians who know their history and Torah , as it was transmitted from one generation to another all throughout the ages.

Wanna reach your right ear with your left hand?be my guest, but I will always rely on the source. The Idea that others can teach us Jews about our history and who wrote our own Holy Books, is the most ludicrous thing in the whole world.
I am not out of my mind: I read the texts and the scholarship instead of hurling insults from a position of total ignorance and one-eyed bigotry.

It is instructive to read the biblical text itself. It is long and a little boring, but this is one of the most crucial passages of the Bible.

II Kings 22:8 - 23:25 [NRSV]: The high priest Hilkiah said to Shaphan the secretary, “I have found the book of the law in the house of the LORD.” When Hilkiah gave the book to Shaphan, he read it. Then Shaphan the secretary came to the king, and reported to the king, “Your servants have emptied out the money that was found in the house, and have delivered it into the hand of the workers who have oversight of the house of the LORD.” Shaphan the secretary informed the king, “The priest Hilkiah has given me a book.” Shaphan then read it aloud to the king.

When the king heard the words of the book of the law, he tore his clothes. Then the king commanded the priest Hilkiah Ahikam son of Shaphan, Achbor son of Micaiah, Shaphan the secretary, and the king’s servant Asaiah, saying, “Go, inquire of the LORD for me, for the people, and for all Judah, concerning the words of this book that has been found; for great is the wrath of the LORD that is kindled against us, because our ancestors did not obey the words of this book, to do according to all that is written concerning us.”

. . .


The king commanded the high priest Hilkiah, the priests of the second order, and the guardians of the threshold, to bring out of the temple of the LORD all the vessels made for Baal, for Asherah, and for all the host of heaven; he burned them outside Jerusalem in the fields of the Kidron, and carried their ashes to Bethel. He deposed the idolatrous priests whom the kings of Judah had ordained to make offerings in the high places at the cities of Judah and around Jerusalem; those also who made offerings to Baal, to the sun, the moon, the constellations, and all the host of the heavens. He brought out the image of Asherah from the house of the LORD, outside Jerusalem, to the Wadi Kidron, burned it at the Wadi Kidron, beat it to dust and threw the dust of it upon the graves of the common people. He broke down the houses of the male temple prostitutes that were in the house of the LORD, where the women did weaving for Asherah. He brought all the priests out of the towns of Judah, and defiled the high places where the priests had made offerings, from Geba to Beer-sheba; he broke down the high places of the gates that were at the entrance of the gate of Joshua the governor of the city, which were on the left at the gate of the city. The priests of the high places, however, did not come up to the altar of the LORD in Jerusalem, but ate unleavened bread among their kindred. He defiled Topheth, which is in the valley of Ben-hinnom, so that no one would make a son or a daughter pass through fire as an offering to Molech. He removed the horses that the kings of Judah had dedicated to the sun, at the entrance to the house of the LORD, by the chamber of the eunuch Nathan-melech, which was in the precincts: then he burned the chariots of the sun with fire. The altars on the roof of the upper chamber of Ahaz, which the kings of Judah had made, and the altars that Manasseh had made in the two courts of the house of the LORD, he pulled down from there and broke in pieces, and threw the rubble into the Wadi Kidron. The king defiled the high places that were east of Jerusalem, to the south of the Mount of Destruction, which King Solomon of Israel had built for Astarte the abomination of the Sidonians, for Chemosh the abomination of Moab, and for Milcom the abomination of the Ammonites. He broke the pillar in pieces, cut down the sacred poles, and covered the sites with human bones.

Moreover, the altar at Bethel, the high place erected by Jeroboam son of Nebat, who caused Israel to sin – he pulled down that altar along with the high place. He burned the high place, crushing it to dust; he also burned the sacred pole. As Josiah turned, he saw the tombs there on the mount; and he sent and took the bones out of the tombs, and burned them on the altar, and defiled it, according to the word of the LORD that the man of God proclaimed, when Jeroboam stood by the altar at the festival; he turned and looked up at the tomb of the man of God who had predicted these things. Then he said, “What is that monument that I see?” The people of the city told him, “It is the tomb of the man of God who came from Judah and predicted things that you have done against the altar at Bethel.” He said, “Let him rest; let no one move his bones.” So they let his bones alone, with the bones of the prophet who came out of Samaria. Moreover, Josiah removed all the shrines of the high places that were in the towns of Samaria, which kings of Israel had made, provoking the LORD to anger; he did to them just as he had done at Bethel. He slaughtered on the altars all the priests of the high places who were there, and burned human bones on them. Then he returned to Jerusalem.

The king commanded all the people, “Keep the passover to the LORD your God as prescribed in this book of the covenant.” No such passover had been kept since the days of the judges who judged Israel, or during all the days of the kings of Israel or of the kings of Judah; but in the eighteenth year of King Josiah this passover was kept to the LORD in Jerusalem.

Moreover Josiah put away the mediums, wizards, teraphim , idols, and all the abominations that were seen in the land of Judah and in Jerusalem, so that he established the words of the law that were written in the book that the priest Hilkiah had found in the house of the LORD. Before him there was no king like him, who turned to the LORD with all his heart, with all his soul, and with all his might, according to all the law of Moses; nor did any like him arise after him.


Josiah was young, about eighteen, and known to be an enthusiastic follower of priestly instructions. The Pharaoh Neco of Egypt killed Josiah at Megiddo (Armageddon), so the LORD couldn’t have been that impressed with all his sacrifices. His son Jehoahaz reigned three months, doing evil in the sight of the LORD, and was captured by Neco, who set up his successor Jehoiakim, who also did evil in the sight of the LORD. Then King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon besieged and captured Jerusalem and began the Exile, in the eighth year of Jehoiachin’s reign.

We can see from the text that either the Law had been lost and disobeyed for centuries, or the Law did not exist as we know it until 621 BCE (or thereabouts). The Jews worshipped other gods, to the extent of including their artefacts and followers in the temple of the LORD.

In other words, for most of Jewish history before Josiah, they worshipped many gods. The echoes of these beliefs can be found through the Old Testament, from the Pentateuch to Hosea. Interestingly, they then had to invent a new adversary for God: Satan. The Christian devil doesn’t rate much of a mention in the Old Testament. For the most part, Yahweh worship in the old testament concerned the worship of Baal and Asherah.

The point is important because it demonstrates to us from the biblical text itself that the Bible as we know it was not written from start to finish by one author at a time under divine inspiration. Important bits (what was more important to a Jew of antiquity than the Law?) were added well into the chronology of the Jewish faith. Many scholars think that the book of law ‘found’ and given to Josiah was the book of Deuteronomy.
This is the most concentrated rubbish I have seen posted in one place while all along claiming scholarly abilities which adds to the lunacy of the comments. Dude.. as they say.. you have no idea whatya talkin about...

Brendan

Post by Brendan » Mon Apr 28, 2008 9:49 pm

If you have nothing to say, just say that.

The text is clear, which you cannot deny.

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