Reconcile with Judaism

Hi Gabe,

I have a very interesting book called “The Messiah Texts - a major new book of revelation expressing the age-old dream of a great people” by Raphael Patai. It is NOT from a Christian perspective at all, but a Jewish one. Included in the book are legends and beliefs about the Messiah, which the Jewish people have held for centuries.

One chapter is called “The Suffering Messiah”. (which is one aspect of the messiah that some Jewish scholars believe in - also called “The Suffering Servant” – some scholars say this is an independent person, whereas other Jewish scholars think the “Suffering Servant” is Israel itself.)

Here is a quote from the book about the Suffering Messiah:

According to one of the most moving, and at the same time psychologically most meaningful, of all Messiah legends, God, when he created the Messiah, gave him the choice whether to accept the sufferings for the sins of Israel. And the Messiah answered: I accept it with joy, so that not a single soul of Israel should be lost."

Although the means of this suffering is different than the Christian concept, the Suffering Messiah is an aspect of Jewish belief, however, not too prevalent. (although Christians don’t believe the Messiah is a “creation”…but that’s another topic all together)

Christians would say that the Suffering Messiah can be seen in Isaiah chapter 53, as well as Psalm 22. We believe that Jesus fulfilled these prophecies.

We also believe in a 2nd coming of this same Messiah. He will at that time fulfill the things you mentioned–as believed by the Jewish people and noted in your post.

However, the Second Coming is not a Jewish concept but a Christian one. Further, the vast preponderance of Jewish scholars believe that the “Suffering Servant” is Israel itself and does not refer to the Messiah. One of the reasons is the text and context of the Book of Isaiah and another reason is the notion that an individual need take on the sins of the people through his suffering and, particularly, death for the purpose of their salvation is foreign to Jewish belief.

Keating argues the for the ‘proof text’ approach for some arguments with Protestants but it’s always seemed a rather Protestant approach to me and, when used by Catholics, often involves something of a dependence on Protestant apologists. :wink:

As a Christian, we can see where some in Judaism are, based on the OP’s link, but I wouldn’t consider it anything more than that. IOW, it’s hardly a threat to Christianity or its beliefs. :wink:

I’ve often wondered about the approach of defending against Christian proselytisers by meeting them half way, ie the whole ‘why Jesus didn’t fulfil prophecy’ business which, as a lawyer might say, ‘assumes facts not in evidence’.

We know far more about Jesus than that.

I guess I was wrong about Gabe… we are entering page 2 on this thread and there’s no acknowledgment from him that he indeed is seeking an actual response… guess, he has answered his own curiosities…

Maran atha!


One thing we know for sure about the Messiah is that he was (for Christians) – or will be (for Jews) – born of the royal line of David. However, with the destruction of the Second Temple, which is where all the records were kept, there is no longer any way of verifying anyone’s Davidic lineage. So… the Messiah, whether He be Jesus or someone else, had to have been born prior to the destruction of the Second Temple.

[quote=“Acts 5:34-39”]34 But a Pharisee named Gamaliel, a teacher of the law, who was honored by all the people, stood up in the Sanhedrin and ordered that the men be put outside for a little while. 35 Then he addressed the Sanhedrin: “Men of Israel, consider carefully what you intend to do to these men. 36 Some time ago Theudas appeared, claiming to be somebody, and about four hundred men rallied to him. He was killed, all his followers were dispersed, and it all came to nothing. 37 After him, Judas the Galilean appeared in the days of the census and led a band of people in revolt. He too was killed, and all his followers were scattered. 38 Therefore, in the present case I advise you: Leave these men alone! Let them go! For if their purpose or activity is of human origin, it will fail. 39 But if it is from God, you will not be able to stop these men; you will only find yourselves fighting against God.”

After 2000 years, I think it’s safe to say that “their purpose or activity is not of human origin” :slight_smile:

Hi, Erich!
…so you subscribe to a theology of currency?

Maran atha!


It is much more than a concept and it will be revealed at the appointed time, known only to God.
It also is much more than a notion.
He, is also much more than an individual.
(Strangely, your use of the personal pronoun ‘their’ in the absence of a clear plural subject as antecedent would indicate all of humanity is implied – and that means any one at all. You place your thought in historical context however, indicating that your vision of humanity possibly does not extend beyond Jews or Jewish belief at least in so far as your response is concerned.)
If one ponders the mystery of the incarnation in greater depth he will be led to understand more fully why the unity of all humanity as a supposed condition is why Jesus is Messiah and God even according to the standards of the website introduced in the OP.

For example, the website reads,

“Of the thousands of religions in human history, only Judaism bases its belief on national revelation – that is, God speaking to the entire nation. If God is going to start a religion, it makes sense He’ll tell everyone, not just one person.”

Jesus spoke to the entire nation. He went out of his way to visit everyone.
I have pity here for the writer of the quoted remark.
The dilemma seems to be a refusal to take Jesus seriously.
The question is the same:
Why don’t Jews believe that Jesus is the Messiah?
The answer is always the same:
Because Jews don’t believe Jesus is the Messiah.

The writer means that G-d spoke to the entire nation from Mount Sinai at the same time. The issue of the Messiah is much more complex than you might realize. As I noted in a prior post on this thread, it might be informative for you and others to listen to or read the debates between Rabbi Tovia Singer and Dr. Michael Brown (a Messianic Jew) to gain a better appreciation of the intricacies involved.

I know what the writer meant. The writer means that the communication between God’s thunder and Moses took place in front of the people. That the 10 commandments were spoken by God also is stated, but (the writer of) Exodus hesitates. Immediately after the 10 commandments are spoken, Moses is accepted as mediator and the Israelites “move back”. It is as if the 10 commandments have not been spoken to them at all, but rather, are presented so as to be taken on faith in the book that describes them and in Moses himself, who is immediately accepted/announced as mediator.
All of Israel might not have gathered around Jesus at the same time, but his message was consistent across the time of his ministry and like God’s 10 commandments, the words are unmistakably His and given in a context devoid of a fear so incapacitating as to possibly affect judgment, memory, and ability to later tell of them in written form in a clear and concise manner.
For me the psychological issues affecting this discussion are really the Christian understanding of the Living Word. Jewish writers apparently don’t acknowledge the place of the living word in their proscriptive logic of the Messiah’s appearance.
How can so many people who profess in the living word of God presume to declare him unclean?

Jews believe that the living Word of G-d is the Torah. They also believe that the Messiah is not the equivalent of G-d but rather a human being, exceptional as he may be. Thirdly, while the coming of the Messiah is important since it is one of the thirteen principles of faith according to Maimonides, it is not the main preoccupation of Judaism. The main focus is behaving in a just and moral manner toward others according to the guidelines of the Law.

If I wake up tomorrow in Israel, world peace has broken out and the Christian, Islamic, Hindu etc press all has headlines to the effect of “Looks like the Jews had it right all along!” then I don’t think it will be a question of worrying about testing Messiah’s DNA.

Lev 26:23-
“If with all this, you still do not accept my discipline and continue hostile to me,
I, too, will continue to be hostile to you and I, for my part, will smite you for your sins sevenfold. I will bring against you the sword, the avenger of my covenant…”

Part of the Christian living word is a warning about hell. It is enough as a reminder, it would seem, of the Torah’s capability.

I infer however, from what you say that the Jews reject the Messianic prophesies (they are not God’s living word?) because they preach a gentle Messiah, one who is willing to pass over these verses from Leviticus in the interests of peace on earth.
If the prophesies pertaining to the Messiah (Isaiah, Jeremiah, Ezekiel, et al.) are not living word according to Judaism, why do your Jewish scholars attempt to use them to bolster their denial of Jesus?

Hi, Meltzerboy!
I mean no disrespect, but its been my experience (several sites and “Jewish” posters on this and other sites) that Jews do not have any respect for Christianity (well, yes, on the diplomatic level there could be some civility)… you can easily experience this from the wording on this particular thread… so how would reading/listening to the denial of Jesus’ Incarnation (Immanuel, Messiah, Savior…) offer anything but the Jewish (is it orthodoxy?) understanding of God and Salvation?

I offer you one simple passage of Scriptures (though, if you are resolute, I’ve little doubt that you will reject it even without studying it):

21 Jesus saith to her: Woman, believe me, that the hour cometh, when you shall neither on this mountain, nor in Jerusalem, adore the Father. 22 You adore that which you know not: we adore that which we know; for salvation is of the Jews. 23 But the hour cometh, and now is, when the true adorers shall adore the Father in spirit and in truth. For the Father also seeketh such to adore him. 24 God is a spirit; and they that adore him, must adore him in spirit and in truth. (St. John 4:21-24)

Scriptures are meant to guide us into Fellowship with God, to demonstrate His Omnipotence, Omniscience, and Omnipresence… but not to limit God to our understanding or to what has been Reveal in Sacred Writings.

To hold on to a belief that God cannot do other than what the Jewish understanding of what God is means to relegate God to man’s finite being.

Maran atha!


Hi, Meltzerboy!
…and that is all good… except that there are changes in the form of worship that have been implemented which basically makes the teachers and followers flawed, if not openly defiant and deceptive:

42 “For the generations to come this burnt offering is to be made regularly at the entrance to the tent of meeting, before the Lord. There I will meet you and speak to you; 43 there also I will meet with the Israelites, and the place will be consecrated by my glory. (Exodus 29:42-43)

Since the Temple was dismantled (razed) on 70 AD, how is that Command being met in Jewish Worship?

Maran atha!


…isn’t that part of the problem? …we, Jews and others, continue to seek to know God through human dna (the finite searching the infinite but focusing on the narrow)!

There are passages that clearly demonstrate that the Jews only had some of if right:

13 The Lord says:
“These people come near to me with their mouth
and honor me with their lips,
but their hearts are far from me.
Their worship of me
is based on merely human rules they have been taught.
14 Therefore once more I will astound these people
with wonder upon wonder;
the wisdom of the wise will perish,
the intelligence of the intelligent will vanish.” (Isaiah 29:13-14)

13 And the Lord said: Forasmuch as this people draw near me with their mouth, and with their lips glorify me, but their heart is far from me, and they have feared me with the commandment and doctrines of men: 14 Therefore behold I will proceed to cause an admiration in this people, by a great and wonderful miracle: for wisdom shall perish from their wise men, and the understanding of their prudent men shall be hid. (Isaiah 29:13-14)

…and the changes in Worship/Fellowship are Revealed:

11 For thus saith the Lord God: Behold I myself will seek my sheep, and will visit them. 12 As the shepherd visiteth his flock in the day when he shall be in the midst of his sheep that were scattered, so will I visit my sheep, and will deliver them out of all the places where they have been scattered in the cloudy and dark day. 13 And I will bring them out from the peoples, and will gather them out of the countries, and will bring them to their own land: and I will feed them in the mountains of Israel, by the rivers, and in all the habitations of the land. 14 I will feed them in the most fruitful pastures, and their pastures shall be in the high mountains of Israel: there shall they rest on the green grass, and be fed in fat pastures upon the mountains of Israel. 15 I will feed my sheep: and I will cause them to lie down, saith the Lord God. (Ezekiel 34:11-15)

11 I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd giveth his life for his sheep. (St. John 10:11)

20 Our fathers adored on this mountain, and you say, that at Jerusalem is the place where men must adore. 21 Jesus saith to her: Woman, believe me, that the hour cometh, when you shall neither on this mountain, nor in Jerusalem, adore the Father. 22 You adore that which you know not: we adore that which we know; for salvation is of the Jews. 23 But the hour cometh, and now is, when the true adorers shall adore the Father in spirit and in truth. For the Father also seeketh such to adore him. 24 God is a spirit; and they that adore him, must adore him in spirit and in truth. (John 4:20-24)

Maran atha!


No, the problem was in the mind of the poster to whom I was responding.

Makes sense, given that Christians believe that the First Coming already happened :slight_smile:

Not sure what you mean by that. When I google [theology of currency] I get hundreds of thousands of links having to do with money.

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