Answers from an Orthodox Jew


#155

Interestingly, the word “Catholic” means universal. the word “Church from the Greek Ekklesia, and the Hebrew Cahal (The People of God). the People of God are the people all over the world united in Christ. thus a physical Catholic church is a house of prayer, a temple where God dwells, regardless of the DNA of of the people. One doesn’t have to be of a certain race or ethnicity to belong. thus Christ founded His universal Cahal

From the point of view of Catholicism, the Chosen People of the Old Testament were chosen specifically to prepare the world for the coming of the Messiah. it’s not that they were genetically special, rather, they were chosen to be the vehicle through whom God Himself would bring forth the redeemer into the world. Thus God revealed Himslef to Abraham, who begot Isaac who begot Jacob; Jacob’s name was changed to Israel and Israel fathered 12 sons who became the 12 tribes of Israel; the tribes became a nation and the nation became enslaved in Egypt.

Moses is sent to lead the peope of Israel. The angel of death passed over the homes that were marked with the blood of the lamb; Moses leads the people out of Egypt, through the desert for 40 years on their way to the Promised Land, and while in the desert God gives them commandments, setting them apart from all other nations. bringing laws and detailed instructions for the priesthood, sacrifice, etc. shaping, molding, disciplining, preparing the people through whom the promised messiah would come into the world; prophets are sent, prophecies given, all to be fulfilled in the fullness of time.

When one reads the New Testament, all of the “typology” found in the Old Testament is reflected and fulfilled in the New Testament. for example Jesus is the Lamb of God; Jesus spent 40 days in the desert fasting; like the manna which fell from heaven, Jesus says He IS the Bread of Life who came down from heaven, etc. etc… In other words, the Old Testament Was a preparation for what was to come and be fulfilled. The Chosen People were chosen for that reason. Jesus fulfilled all the law and the prophets and through His blood we are cleansed and saved from death and become children of God and inheritors of His kingdom.

Jesus Christ splits history in two, reflected on our calendars today; and the spirit of evil that enslaved man and kept him in bondage with idolatry and sin (like “Egypt”) was broken and set free; empowered to say no to sin and to keep the commandments, to be clothed from on high with the Spirit of God to transform the world itself, reflected in the Judeo-Christian principles that have shaped this entire world for the better. However, Salvation History is still unfolding, and the prophecies that Christ made have been, are being and are yet to be fulfilled…


#156

Aww you two…love it.


#157

In the context of the verse it doesn’t, the entire nation is called priests. Here the priest is in the role of teacher.
Judaism still has a priestly class with their own laws but no longer offer animal sacrifices.


#158

A little paranoid, scarecrow? :wink:
It’s actually very helpful to some people. Maybe you do not have questions about your heritage, but some people find it quite useful.


#159

Oh, I acknowledge it’s cool- my maternal uncle did it, so I have a partial idea of mine.

I wouldn’t say paranoid… Facebook did it, what’s to stop Ancestry/23andme?


#160

There isn’t. You run the risk everytime you shop or shop online


#161

Precisely the reason for my paranoia.


#162

I think you’re both right :wink:


#163

I mean, donating to a government research lab or whatever is one thing…

But, a private, for profit organization having access to and the ability to sell essentially your whole person…
oh, he’s shortsighted?glasses ad
he has a family history of alcoholism? rehab ad
He has ADD? tutoring and Adderall ads

repeat ad infinitum…


#164

Of course it is reflected. The entire premise of the Gospels is to “prove” that he fulfilled the prophecies of the Hebrew Bible. Paul, who was an astute student of the rabbis, was of course aware of this phenomenon of repeated typologies, because it is internal to the Bible. As the Sages say, מעשה אבות סימן לבנים, the actions of the fathers symbolize what will happen to their children. Thus Abraham sojourned in Egypt, and then his descendants after him. Paul and those who came after him cleverly continued this pattern, in fact, it was probably almost second nature in light of what they perceived to be their mission. He also knew how to find the messianic prophecies and to try to make them correspond to the life and actions of his messiah. And I’m not going further into it than this, because we have not set down premises and rules of debate, nor do I want to turn this into a debate, nor do I think it would be productive or useful to debate. Everyone knows both sides disagree, and we have our own arguments, and contrary to the writings of various figures in church history, it is not because of our satanic nature that we reject Christianity, but rather because we believe it loses the arguments, or rather, from the Jewish perspective, the arguments never even start. With all due respect, I actually did not come here to learn about Catholic theology. I also didn’t come here to prove anything or convince anyone that I am right. I saw a great interest in the forums for information about Jewish life, customs, and practice, especially from an orthodox point of view since, with all due respect to meltzerboy, who knows a great deal, the Orthodox are the most engaged in Jewish law, theology, and tradition and I think that intrigues people. And they want to know more about it. So since there is so much misinformation out there on the internet, and because I enjoy presenting a picture of authentic Judaism the way I see it in contrast to much of the garbage that is out there, I came here to lend some of my knowledge to anyone who cares to ask.


#165

Yes, this is why I am fascinated by your responses, which I appreciate; and I am especially interested in discovering what exactly the Orthodox are waiting for in the Messiah. so far all I get is that he’s going to be a military hero that is going to use military force to crush the enemies of Israel. So that’s why I was asking if you meant the current State of Israel. The thought of a military Messiah waging war to secure political peace in the world seems rather disappointing. and does it mean there will be peace all over the world or just for Israel? what about in Africa, Mexico, Asia, what about the drug cartels and the human trafficking, and all the wicked people in the world. What will the world be like after the Orthodox Jewish Messiah arrives? And how will you know it is him? Will everyone agree that he is the Messiah right away of after a huge war, or what? And will he establish a dynasty of sorts? will there be a huge wall where only the chosen people of Israel are walled in from the bad stuff outside? And what about the good people outside the walls? this is what I am wondering and what your thoughts are. Also, how do the Orthodox reconcile the fact that there is no more priesthood or sacrifice being offered.
thanks.


#166

Again, I turn to the words of Maimonides. There are other Jewish theologians who argue with him and expect a more miraculous type of messianic redemption, but the broad strokes, including the repentance of all people and world peace, are agreed upon by all:

Our Sages have said that there is no difference between This World and the Days of the Messiah except (our) subservience to the kingdoms of the world alone. From the plain meaning of the words of the prophets we understand that at the beginning of the days of the Messiah there will be the War of Gog and Magog. Before the War of Gog and Magog, a prophet will arise to correct Israel and prepare their hearts, as it says, “Behold, I will send you Elijah” (Malachi 3:23). He will not come to make the pure impure, nor purify the impure, nor disqualify people who are presumed to have legitimate lineage, nor qualify those who are disqualified. He will only come to bring peace to the world, as it says, “And he shall turn the hearts of the fathers on the children” (Malachi 3:24)…
…neither the order that these events will occur nor their details are fundamental to the religion. Thus, a person must never busy himself with the Aggadoth and not dwell on the Midrashim regarding these matters or similar issues. He must not make them dogma. For these do not result in either love (for G-d) nor fear (of sin). Similarly, one should not calculate the Ends. Our Sages have said that the spirit of those who calculate the Ends will expire. Rather, one is to (simply) wait and believe in the principle of this matter, as we have explained…
The Sages and the Prophets did not long for the days of the Messiah because they wanted to rule the world or because they wanted to have dominion over the non-Jews or because they wanted the nations to exalt them or because they wanted to eat, drink and be merry. Rather, they desired this so that they would have time for Torah and its Wisdom. And there would be no one who would oppress them or force them to be idle (from Torah). This, in order that they may merit the World to Come, as we have explained regarding the Laws of Repentance.
At that time there will be no famines and no wars, no envy and no competition. For the Good will be very pervasive. All the delicacies will be as readily available as is dust. The world will only be engaged in knowing G-d. Then, there will be very wise people who will understand the deep, sealed matters. They will then achieve knowledge of the Creator to as high a degree as humanly possible, as it says, “For the Earth shall be filled of knowledge of the Lord, as the waters cover the sea” (Isaiah 11:9).


#167

Now, if a king should arise from the House of David who is versed in Torah and engages in Commandments, as did David his forefather, in accordance with both the Written and the Oral Torahs, and he enjoins all of Israel to follow in its ways and encourages them to repair its breaches, and he fights the Wars of G-d, then he may be presumed to be the Messiah. If he succeeds in his efforts and defeats the enemies around and builds the Sanctuary in its proper place and gathers the dispersed of Israel, he is definitely the Messiah.
But, if he does not succeed in these matters or is killed, we will know that he was not the one Torah has promised.


#168

The answer would require a long article to be properly treated, and has been discussed on these forums before. Atonement was never solely predicated on animal sacrifice, and in the case of intentional sin, sacrifices never even applied, as is clear from numerous verses, and when it is impossible for us to bring sacrifices, we repent and do good deeds in their stead. This all has sources. We also impute mystical and metaphysical significance both to reciting the verses of sacrifice, as well as in-depth learning of the sacrificial laws.


#169

Nope, as indicated by my quote from Maimonides, there will be no more “bad stuff outside,” and “the wolf shall dwell with the lamb,” which is a messianic prophecy that has not yet been fulfilled, as far as I know.


#170

It seems to me that most Jews don’t actually read or study the New Testament but only comment based on what they have been taught about it from Rabbis, whose job is to discredit the Gospels. I think about lawyers, where there’s a case and all the evidence is there, but their job is to refute the evidence with argument no matter what. When I read the Talmud, with the way it speaks about Jesus, how it demonizes Him and His mother, it has the feel of lawyers interested in tearing down and winning an argument. One thing is for sure, the beauty and truth of the Old Testament is reflected in the beauty and the truth of the New Testament.


#171

So no more drug cartels? No more nuclear weapons, no more human injustice? yay! But, this will come from a military figure? as you said earlier, a mere man? Will a military army be used to force people to be good? And does this mean that those who refuse to be good will be put in prison? or will they be sent to camps to be put to death? Or will all the bad and wicked hearts be suddenly converted into good and holy people? If so how will this be accomplished? I know that you keep quoting from Maimonides, but he was just a Spaniard in the Middle Ages speculating on things. Do Jews put their faith in Maimonides and his teachings as infallible truth? If not, isn’t this hinging a lot on one commentator from the Middle Ages?


#172

I could say the same, in reverse… Most Christians (not you of course) are utterly ignorant about the spirit and themes of the Jewish Bible, which they call the OT, and only read the bits quoted in the NT or by their leaders from the pulpit.

That is highly dubious: http://talmud.faithweb.com/articles/jesusnarr.html

Ignorant comment.

Maimonides distilled the scattered teachings of the Bible, Talmud and Midrash into clear and concise terms, which is why it’s convenient to use him. All his writings are sourced and well-documented. As I indicated, other scholars disagree with him on details. The broad principles are accepted not because Maimonides wrote them, but because they are known to be true to the body of Talmudic scholars.
That being said, he is acknowledged to be in the top handful of pre-eminent Jewish scholars in the last 2000 years.

Nothing hinges on him, because as is the case with all works of Jewish law, his writings have been scrutinized, analyzed, criticized, picked apart and put back together by every generation that came after him. Jewish scholarship is quite critical. We come to our own conclusions.

Yes

God will inspire the world with a spirit of holiness and yearning to hear His word, which they will seek from the teachings of the messiah.

I found an interesting entry on Maimonides in the Catholic Encyclopedia: http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/09540b.htm
The focus is much more on his theological philosophy and not his legal philosophy.


#173

you mean the whole world will choose to be good based on his teachings? What kind of teachings? About love for one another and forgiveness? What about the Satanic Mexican drug cartels with all their torture and dismemberment of limps and that kind of stuff; will that cease by them merely hearing his teachings? or all the greedy or pornography industry and the sex trade; will they all will just down their drugs and forget the cartels? Or is it just some. if it is just some, what happens to those who don’t? Will all wickedness wsimply stop in the world After the Messiah teaches his ways, and will it happen overnight? And his teachings, will he teach through the mass media or internet, blogs, etc.?

I’m not trying to be flippant, I’m trying to picture what it is you are saying. Will it be like a new event covered on CNN, Fox News, etc.? Will the Messiah use a cell phone, text people, Twitter, etc etc? how long will the full conversion of the entire planet take? And most importantly, what will happen to the Messiah, say after 25 years of doing this. Will he die? And then who takes his place? Will physical suffering and death go away? What about all the disease in Africa and the dire poverty and slums? Also will he live in Jerusalem and govern the whole world? What will people do for money and buying things and what about natural disasters and the terrible devastation that brings? Will that stop too? this is interesting. Thanks for your reply.


#174

Interesting questions. I’ll try to write a bit more after the Sabbath. The general rule is that the specific details and mechanisms of the Messianic era have not been revealed. Obviously, no miracle of a change in the human spirit is beyond God.


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