Dare to consider Judaism

Hi all!

I really don’t know where to start, so I’m just going to dive in.
I’m 20 years old, born and raised Catholic in a strong Catholic house that
practices.

My whole life I have followed my beliefs without much question, but until
recently.

I have been blessed to encounter Jews in my life recently over the course of attending college. After talking with one friend
in particular (Benjamin), I got curious/serious about what they actually believe
regarding God and Jesus, and I’ve been researching for a couple months now.

I have to say, from what I have seen so far, the cards are not stacked in Jesus’
favor that he was the Messiah by jewish definition (from what I’ve found).
Doubts are also beginning to surface for me on why/how God would become a man,
why a follower of this man (Paul) would say Gentiles don’t have to follow the
Torah, and why the concept of a Trinity could ever exist (“Hear, Israel…The
Lord is One”).

Things I find attractive about Judaism are many:
I’ve always been pulled toward the sense of family that they seem to share, even
among the less religious or even secular jews. I don’t see that among Christians
which is sad. I love the idea that the Torah was revealed to all of them/their
ancestors in front of their faces (as opposed to an upper room, a temple
corridor, a mountain cave [Muhammed/Islam, Joseph Smith/LDS]).
I love the view that sin is a very personal matter between God and the sinner to
be worked out between just these two entities. I love the respect they have for
God’s Word and Presence, all among other things.

Well, I don’t know what type of response I’m even expecting, so just reply as
you want and we can discuss from there. I’m just curious what a former Jew would
say to a Catholic looking seriously at Judaism. Or if there are any Jews or former Jews here I could talk with? thanks :slight_smile:

Isaiah 53

I’ve read that this passage isn’t a Messianic prophecy, and doesn’t agree with Jewish thought since one man can’t atone for another’s sins… (according to Judaism)

Zechariah 9:9

Quickly-I’m not Jewish.

I actually know what you mean though, I hold their faith and their practices in the highest regard. There religion has alot of truth to it.

Remember though, it all depends on how you view the man Christ. As a Catholic, I assume that you’ve been told that He was the son of God, etc. That you know this (hopefully) is good for you-you know the truth. Please don’t turn from it.

The people of Abraham, if I may say it, are the beloved older brothers and sisters in the Lord and have their own plan of salvation. I don’t claim to know anything about it, but the Jews were here first, and we, as Christians, need to know that, and remember it.

Christians also need to realize that we have blood on our hands. The anti-semitism that we, as Christians, have been guilty of is nothing less than horrific. We owe the people of Israel a huge apology, and we will never fully clean of the stain of our sins.

I am a proud Catholic, and I am also a proud supporter of Israel. I have the flag of the Holy Land proudly hanging in my house, (in fact, it’s the first thing people see when they enter my home) and one day I hope to see my brothers and sisters in the Lord with me in Paradise.

My plan of salvation includes Christ, and I think yours might too.

But in Daniel 7:13 he comes on clouds :shrug:

I must ask why is that when we talk about atrocities committed against our Jewish brethren ie. the horrible acts commited during the Nazi regime it was at the hand of Christians? No real Christian would knowingly allow or aid in the methods of those satanic criminals.

Yes to the first part, but I’m not sure of it.

And in Revelation he comes in the clouds as well. That is the fulfillment of the great Day of the Lord. Which has not happened yet.

FollowYeshua-

Your right about the holocaust, no real Christian would ever do what those horrific monsters did.

But there have been alot of other horrible acts of anti-semitism commited by Catholics, Protestants, etc, etc.

I do believe you’re right but what Christian in his right mind would commit that grave sin against our God’s Abrahamic promise.

Brother, my prayers are for you and are with you. Every man must run his route till their day with God. It looks like you’re well versed in the messianic prophecies and we cannot cram them down your throat. Seek the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob with all your heart and all your soul and the messiah will be revealed to you. You must run your route.

Amen…be in peace my brother.

I had the exact same thing happen to me. I started reading about Judaism and the incoherence of a God-savior-man type figure in Jewish thought came up.

Let me save you a lot of time and reading here and say this:

– Catholics allege that after Jesus came and died, in the medieval times, Jews changed their expectations of the messiah greatly so as to assure that no wavering Jew would convert to Christianity. In other words, Catholics allege that after Jesus came, the Jews changed their understanding of “messiah” and what they expected of him so as to exclude Jesus.

– Jews say that this is total garbage and that their expectations of the messiah have not changed since Moses himself. Jews say that they did not change Jewish theology to exclude Jesus. They say that Jesus simply did not fulfill all of the requirements that had been long established in scripture and Jewish traditions.

If you don’t me asking, what is keeping you from committing to the Christian faith?

The other problem I’m having is that there are so many sources, I don’t know which to consult on both sides

**You have a long life to live, don’t rush into anything, be patient.
**
Read St. Augustine’s Confessions, at your age he was in an adulterous relationship and fighting against the Church.

He eventually opened his heart to God and accepted the Truth of Jesus Christ!

Our Jewish brothers and sisters are our heritage, but they are missing out on the perfect Love that is Jesus Christ, our Lord and Savior!

**Listen to all sides, check out the teachings of former Jews who have found Jesus!

(hebrewcatholic.org/index.html ) (motherofisraelshope.org/) **

Sancta Maria, Mater Dei, Ora Pro Nobis Peccatoribus! (Miriam was a Jewish mother!)

mark

a) Christianity is based in Judaism. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t have a problem with Judaism at all but I simply don’t see how the God of Judaism should be accepted over the Gods of Ancient Egypt or Rome, etc… At the time, every society had it’s own deity/deities and it’s own creation story. Egyptians believed this, Romans believed that, and the Palestine nations had their own. What makes the story of creation and the deity of the Jews any more real than the story of creation and deity of the Greeks? Judaism is completely unremarkable. Every ancient society had some sort of deity and some sort of creation story to accompany it. Palestine was no different and thus no more validated.

B) The only reason that Christianity is so widespread is because it had a powerful empire to back it. If Christianity did not have the Romans, nobody would be practicing it right now. If Islam did not have Arabia, nobody would practice it. And to think…if the Romans decided to accept Taoism instead, everyone on these forums would be talking about the Tao Te Ching! :stuck_out_tongue:

C) Other religions. I see other religion’s claims as just as valid as Christianity’s. I don’t see why I should become a Christian when Islam is claiming salvation as well.

D) The Christian Right is invading American culture and taking trying to take away our liberties. I want us to be a free society. God gave us free will for a reason. By giving people the choices to sin, we are merely enacting God’s diving plan to accept or reject him. When government says that gays cannot marry, they are not letting God’s will of Free Will be done.

E) Why trust the bible over the Koran or Upshanids? All claim to have divine authority.

Overall, I see Christianity as unremarkable. It’s a good religion though. And filled with hope. Christian conservatives make it bad though, trying to institute an atmosphere of hate and oppression.

The problem, friend, is that you don’t know what it is like to live without Jesus. I wasn’t raised Christian and spent four years in a Orthodox Jewish community on my college campus. The organization was Chabad and they do a lot of outreach to college students on campus. The faith is beautiful, the family values are strong, and the community is amazing, however, on the spiritual level it is not enough. The summer following graduation and before I entered law school, I went thru a spiritual hell and none of the Jewish traditions or anything that I had picked up from the community could save me. The more I prayed for release, the closer I grew to Christ. Since I have become Christian I have received an unshakable spiritual strength that I never had before. Since you were born Christian, you do not know what it is like not to have it. If you leave the Christian faith, you will lose that spiritual connection to God. You must remember that although reason is compatible with faith, no amount of theology, scripture or reason will ever replace the call to God that lies in the silence of your heart. I therefore cannot explain theology to you ( i am just not qualified) but I can explain the tremendous effect that my conversion has had on my physical and spiritual well-being.
With that being said, what you see on campus is not representative of the Jewish community. Orthodox Jews still hold on to the spiritual aspects of their faith. But they are few and far between. 60% of Jews no longer practice. I am sorry that your view of Christian family is in the negative. You must make allowances to the fact that some people do not know what they have and they squander it. I have been blessed to see very strong Christian families. But how other people act should not influence how you relate to God. We are all sinners.

alexsandra

Please provide a source for this remark. What prominent Catholic argues this?

Below I quote from a very learned Anglican Bishop on the beginnings of Christianity and its relationship to Judaism with regards to Resurrection beliefs:

"Jesus had not done what Messiahs were supposed to do. He had neither won a decisive victory over Israel’s political enemies, nor restored the Temple (except in the most ambiguous symbolic fashion). Nor had he brought God’s justice and peace to the world; the wolf was not yet lying down with the lamb. But the early gospel traditions are already shaped by the belief that Jesus was Israel’s Messiah; Paul regularly calls him Christos, and if that term had become for him merely a proper name (which I dispute) that only goes to show how firmly Jesus’ messianic identity was already established by Paul’s day. For Revelation, Jesus is the Lion of the tribe of Judah. The historian is bound to face the question: once Jesus had been crucified, why would anyone say that he was Israel’s Messiah?

Nobody said that about Judas the Galilean after his revolt ended in failure in AD 6. Nobody said it of Simon bar-Giora after his death at the end of Titus’s triumph in AD 70. Nobody said it about bar-Kochbar after his defeat and death in 135. On the contrary. Where messianic movements tried to carry on after the death of their would-be Messiah, their most important task was to find another Messiah.14 The fact that the early Christians did not do that, but continued, against all precedent, to regard Jesus himself as Messiah, despite outstanding alternative candidates such as the righteous, devout and well-respected James, Jesus’ own brother, is evidence that demands an explanation. As with their beliefs about resurrection, they redefined Messiahship itself, and with it their whole view of the problem that Israel and the world faced and the solution that they believed God had provided. They remained at one level a classic Jewish messianic movement, owing fierce allegiance to their Messiah and claiming Israel and the whole world in his name. But the mode of that claim, and the underlying allegiance itself, were drastically redefined.

The rise of early Christianity, and the shape that it took in two central and vital respects, thus presses upon the historian the question for an explanation. The early Christians retained the Jewish belief in resurrection, but both modified it and made it more sharp and precise. They retained the Jewish belief in a coming Messiah, but redrew it quite drastically around Jesus himself. Why?"

You can read the entire article here along with others the good bishop has posted on his site. His views for the veracity of the Resurrection of Jesus Christ have been praised by many prominent Catholics as well in journals such as First Things

ntwrightpage.com/Wright_Jesus_Resurrection.htm

If I may be so blunt, you completely misread history. Judaism is completely remarkable not unremarkable as you aver. Unlike the other religions you allude to, the Jewish people were the first on all of God’s green earth to link monotheism with morality. They invented (or God gave to them) Ethical Monotheism. Neither the Greeks, Egyptians, Hindus, Chinese, Romans ever had something like this. The Egyptians may have founded briefly monotheism during the cult of Akhenaten in 1350 B.C., but the belief of the Egyptians was in a god, Aten, without any moral code which the Jews accepted with their monotheism. I repeat, in history, the Jews are unique in that they are the founders of Ethical Monotheism, and hence their religion is of a different kind not degree from the ancients that surrounded them.

As a Catholic, I believe that Jesus Christ is unique, in that into this Jewish world, God did send, when the time in history was right, his only begotten Son, Jesus, to redeem all of mankind. Christianity brings into the world the message of a God so full of love for all of us that He willed that His Son suffer and be crucified for our sins and, consequently, offer the Gift of Eternal Life and Hope to all who follow Him in word and deed, and that each and every human life, from the poorest and weakest to the strong is loved by God and has a purpose. This is where Christianity is unique.

Unlike Hinduism and Buddhism we believe in a Personal God, and not an impersonal force, god, gods as practiced by the Eastern religions. Unlike Islam, Christianity has a theology of Redemption which Islam does not.

If you would like to learn more of the history of the Jews I suggest you read a work completed by a prominent Roman Catholic historian Paul Johnson, very carefully researched and thought out amazon.com/History-Jews-Paul-M-Johnson/dp/0060915331

It is no use for you to go throwing all religions together without at least noting some of the root differences. God Bless.:slight_smile:

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