FROM: CHRISTIAN MESSIANIC ANALYSIS AND APOLOGETICS
BY: Steve Daskal
The Jewish faith, as was being taught & practiced in Jesus’ day, was no longer a single unified faith focused on “the Law and the Prophets,” but was made up of several sects that at best disdained or ignored each other, each following its own particular interpretations that suited them.
The Sadducees denied that anything beyond Torah [The Law, Pentateuch, Five Bks of Moses] was inspired of or delivered from God. So, they didn’t accept that there would be a Messiah at all. The Torah references frequently cited, such as Gen 3:15 and in Deuteronomy when Moses tells them that a Prophet like himself will come to lead Israel back to God after they have “fallen away,” point to from the perspectives of Christians, and of Pharisees, but they aren’t unambiguous/direct statements. The Psalms & the Prophets were considered by the Sadducees the way we’d consider books by C.S. Lewis or G.K. Chesterton — good reading, edifying, but neither inspired nor authoritative for doctrine. The Kohanim [the priesthood-by-descent] and many of the other Levites were Sadducees. They controlled the Temple in Jesus’ day and had a sizeable presence on the Sanhedrin which was the religious court that had been granted ultimate socio-religious authority for the Jews of Judea under Roman rule.
No one has any control as to where they were born or to whom they were born. We are raised by parents who identify with a particular faith and that faith was transmitted to us. Some of us were then sent to religious schools where we were further indoctrinated into that faith. All faiths have variations within them. Movement within these variations can often cause at a minimum verbal conflict or shunning. In contemporary Christianity movement between Orthodox, Catholic, Traditional Protestant, Baptist and Evangelical occurs often without fear of physical repercussions. This cannot be said about Islam. Movement between Shi’a and Sunni groups can often end in violence. A Sunni who is a Salafi could never accept a relative or friend becoming Shi’a. This is so because Shi’ites are viewed as heretics. Judaism is extremely diverse. Rabbinical Judaism encompasses Ultra-Orthodox, Orthodox, Khabad Lubavitch, Conservative, Reform and Reconstructionist. Khabad Lubavich is one of several kHasidic [or, more commonly, Chasidic or Hasidic] sects which are a branch within what would be considered ultra-Orthodox [kHeredim] Judaism. Khasidim have a different worship style [more music, more dancing, more spontaneity than other kHeredim], but equally strict social and lifestyle rules and similarly insular [avoiding contact with non-Kosher-keeping people who are viewed as ceremonially unclean]. Modern Orthodox Jews keep most of the same rabbinic laws, but will work and do business with, and to a large degree socialize with, non-Jews and secular Jews.
25 But I know my living Redeemer,
and He will stand on the dust at last.
26 Even after my skin has been destroyed,
yet I will see God in my flesh.
27 I will see Him myself;
my eyes will look at Him, and not as a stranger.
My heart longs within me.
Analysis: Before the advent of the prophets Job posed an interesting question. Will the Lord actually stand upon the earth? Will those who have died be resurrected to see the Lord? It was clear from the prophetic books of the Tenakh [but not from Torah] that there would be a resurrection of the [“righteous”] dead in the Last Day, and that God would again be among the people as He was in Eden. The Pharisees accepted this, as do modern or rabbinical Orthodox Jews, though they often add to this the belief that only after the Jews “clean up the world” and become more faithful will Messiah come. [This is not too different from Muslim beliefs about the Mahdi, which are probably drawn from this.]
In this post we continue our journey from non-belief through polytheism. The family of Abraham was also polytheists. From this Abraham heard a lone voice and brought monotheism to the family of humankind. Today the physical descendents of Abraham through Isaac and Jacob practice, to different degrees, Rabbinical Judaism. This is the Judaism that developed during the early Christian era. Yeshua (Jesus) was raised into a traditional Jewish family. As the Roman era initiated after the conquest of Palestine in 63 B.C. the Romans, through their general Pompey, slaughtered all of the Jewish priestly class. From this point forward the Romans appointed the Chief priest to administer Temple ritual. These appointments were usually made through another Jewish sect called the Sadducees. The Sadducees differed from the descendents of the Hasideans, who were the Pius Ones and observed the traditions of the Fathers, by only recognizing the first five books of the Tenakh as scripture. The Sadducees also did not believe in the resurrection of the dead. The Pharisees believed in the totality of the Jewish Bible but interpreted it through the prism of Jewish oral tradition.
No one can doubt that Apostolic faith is found in the Book of Acts. Those who believe and practice their faith like the Apostles are practicing that kind of faith. To Catholics and most traditional Protestants and Orthodox Christians, Christianity is no more than just a ritual to please God, performed for an hour on Sunday, and at big events like baptism, confirmation, weddings, and funerals, and then returning to one’s life. Apostolic faith is faith in the Messiah with a mission and a ministry. It is meant to challenge those who read it to understand that faith in Yeshua is active, not passive. It should not be left up to priests or ministers to become fishers of men. The full community of Christians should have a ministry and be much more than a group of people just believing that God exists. Continue reading
The information that I will refer to in this posting comes from the internet:
This is a website that champions the Orthodox Jewish point of view. Their issue is with Jesus, his immediate followers, the New Covenant scriptures, Christian interpretation of the Jewish Bible, behavior of professing Christians, and Christian doctrine. One of the reasons most Orthodox Jews want nothing or very little to do with Christians is because of Christianity. As they understand it they feel that it is their duty to ensure that Jews do not entertain any ideas of seeing the claims of Jesus as an alternative to rabbinical faith. Why? Jesus cannot be the Son of God, his followers falsified their testimony, the New Covenant is a distortion of traditional Jewish understanding regarding the messiah, the application of messianic prophecies to Jesus are inaccurate, through the ages professing Christians promoted anti-Semitism, persecuted and murdered unknown numbers of Jews for non-conformity. The rabbis also claim the doctrines of original sin, Trinity, redemption only through the shedding of blood, and salvation through grace do not abrogate strict adherence to the Torah. In short, the Orthodox Jews are right about all these issues and the Christians are wrong or at least misguided. Continue reading
1. The Jewish Bible does not have a Messianic “installment plan” where the Messiah comes, fails in his mission, and then returns thousands of years later to finally succeed. If Jesus actually made these statements recorded in the Gospel, then he was advocating idolatry, with himself as the deity. If this is true, is there any wonder that Jews never accepted him either as prophet, rabbi or teacher? The Jews had one major objection to the Christian Messiah, and that was the fact that he had been unsuccessful. Judaism had always taught that the Messiah would redeem Israel in a political sense, and Jesus had failed to accomplish this task. Instead, he had been scourged and humiliated like a common rebel, and finally crucified along with two ordinary thieves. How could the career of Jesus be reconciled with the glorious picture of the Messiah as taught by the Prophets of Israel? Continue reading