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Yeshua appeared to me last night and he said to me…

April 1, 2015

jc-ghostLast night Yeshu (that’s how he introduced himself, quite strangely, instead of “Yeshua” or “Jesus”, or even “Iēsous”) appeared to me in a dream and spoke to me. The vision was unsettling, since in all of my years of worshiping him he never appeared to me or spoke to me even once. For years I used to wonder what was wrong with me, since most of my Christian and Messianic friends had, what seemed like, regular visions and messages from him. But back to the vision. Yeshu greeted me with a simple “shalom”, to which I answered “hi”. He was wearing some sort of gray tunic, but otherwise he didn’t appear in any way remarkable. His English (for some reason I expected him to speak to me in Aramaic, perhaps Hebrew or at least in my native Russian) seemed to me quite good, with no discernible accent. He looked short to average height, medium build, cropped dark hair and longish beard. In the “by-the-way” sort of way I remarked to him that he certainly didn’t look like any god or even an angel. He said, “well, yes, and that’s why I am here”.

Then he proceeded to explain that he was sent back up, like Samuel to Saul, to tell me how much he was appalled and ashamed of being worshiped as a deity. He said to me, “Gene, I really enjoyed your yesterday’s blog post. You have a gift, young man”. I raised my eyebrows: “you have broadband down there???” Yeshu then told me that he was especially pained by the sight of Jews, particularly those who were raised without much in the way of Jewish education, singing him praises and calling “lord”, “god” and “savior”. It is quite humiliating and painful to him, he told me, but that he wasn’t responsible for this sort of idolatry. He said that he only wanted to be a Torah teacher to the poor and nothing more, but that some of his followers got carried away and started telling anyone who would listen that he was the messiah. He tried to stop them but to no avail. Their excessive enthusiasm soon led to him being apprehended by the Romans and executed as a rebel, along with some of his followers. But he never ever claimed to be G-d or accepted anything even resembling worship, he said very emphatically. In fact, he told me, he could hardly recognize any of the words attributed to him in the Christian bible as his own. I asked him if he was really a Pharisee as some suppose today? He said, well, he never had any formal religious education beyond learning to read Hebrew and some Torah basics that went along with that (his parents couldn’t afford to send him to full time study), but as a young man he would frequent lessons given by traveling Pharisaic teachers at various local synagogues. I then asked him what he thought of this man Paul and his teachings…. his face contorted in great pain. I nodded, “I understand, you don’t have to answer that one”. I then asked him if he, by some chance, could tell me who wrote the New Testament book of Hebrews? He was about to say something, but as quickly as he appeared, Yeshu was gone. I hope he comes again.

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54 Comments leave one →
  1. Keith permalink
    April 1, 2015 10:44 am

    April Fools?

  2. April 1, 2015 10:44 pm

    You better believe it, Keith:)

  3. Concerned Reader permalink
    April 2, 2015 5:21 am

    Even if this s an April fools Joke, it’s very pognient. Just ask yourself a question our dearest (Christian readers.) Based on all of the “worship” Jesus receives (including prayers, declarations of love in songs, dance, weddings, gatherings, bible studies, general culture etc. from Mormons, Jehovah’s witnesses, Pentacostals, Eastern Orthodox, Baptists, Catholics, etc. why is he not pleased with you? Why is his kingdom of mercy, love, and peace not clearly manifest among you?

    Consider, Jesus’ teachings on his needed atoning death and impending resurrection were only ever clear to his inner circle, (and that was only after he explained it to them at length.) This fact is clear to any people who read the NT. Not even Peter was prepared when Jesus said he had to die.

    Everyone else among the populace that Jesus taught only heard his message in obscure parables and though there were albeit more clear ethical teachings, the death and resurrection weren’t clear to people at large until pentacost. Even now, Christians still must cover vast ground to spread the gospel.

    Do any of you truly realize that the New Testament makes it clear that only a few people ever heard (and actually understood) that Jesus’ deity and dying was important while he lived?

    All past and present historic Christian sects have some sort of Christology as a result of this. Even Arian Christians (who do not accept Christ’s deity directly) still sing praises to Jesus as the unique son of G-d. Systematic Theology is covered in every single seminary course, (and even in secular religious studies courses.) Most people as a result have some idea of this formerly obscure parabolic teaching on the atoning death and divinity of the Christ. Modern Christians know today what the ancients barely understood, although It took nearly 300 years before the deity of Christ was fully codified.

    Yet despite the cries of Maranatha (a plea for the lord to come, as well as a declaration of his 1st visitation, see Wikipedia) the Christian description of the kingdom is not yet Made manifest. Where are the greater things that Jesus’ students were to accomplish according to Jesus’ word? Could it be that Jesus’ intention was for godly action and not creed and a personal declaration of adoration?

    Could it be that he wants you to serve his father as he himself did? You all focus on him a ton. Where is the sentiment of Jesus’ that says the lord is G-d and him only shalt thou serve? Where is the sentiment of Christ that the Shema is the most important commandment? Where are the exhortations to care for the poor, the widows, and orphans? The gospel says Christ will hand the kingdom to the father, yet Christians reject the efforts of those who (like Jesus) already serve as sons of the commandments. You engage in reverse Judaizing (systematic de judaization.) The Judaizers from James said the gentiles had to become Jews, and were castigated by Paul, but now you my brethren rebuild the same wall of enmity by telling the world, “you must be Christians.”

    It’s time to stop focusing on your theology and be a son of G-d’s commandments the way your master and teacher Jesus was. Your apostle tells you in 2 Thessalonians that the false Christ claims deity, does miracles, and requires submission to his mark. How do you know what the real Jesus was like? The true Jesus observed G-d’s commandments and told us to follow them like he did. He never wanted your prayers or songs of love, your devotion, etc. he said he wants life expressed in the commandments.

  4. April 2, 2015 10:15 am

    Since we are talking about Jesus, his afterlife and in honor of the (now past) April Fools, I thought I would throw in this joke:


    St. Peter was guarding the Pearly Gates, waiting for new souls coming to heaven. He saw Jesus walking by and caught his attention. “Jesus, could you mind the gate while I go do an errand?”

    “Sure,” replied Jesus. “What do I have to do?”

    “Just find out about the people who arrive. Ask about their background, their family, and their lives. Then decide if they deserve entry into Heaven.”

    “Sounds easy enough. OK.”

    So Jesus manned the gates for St. Peter. The first person to approach the gates was a wrinkled old man. Jesus summoned him to sit down and sat across from him. Jesus peered at the old man and asked, “What did you do for a living?”

    The old man replied, “I was a carpenter.”

    Jesus remembered his own earthly existence and leaned forward. “Did you have any family?” he asked.

    “Yes, I had a son, but I lost him.”

    Jesus leaned forward some more. “You lost your son? Can you tell me about him?”

    “Well, he had holes in his hands and feet.”

    Jesus leaned forward even more and whispered, “Father?”

    The old man leaned forward and whispered, “Pinocchio?”

  5. Concerned Reader permalink
    April 2, 2015 12:00 pm

    Ahahaha :)

  6. April 11, 2015 12:57 pm

    Hi Gene. Is this the kind of Judaism that you teach?

  7. April 11, 2015 9:56 pm

    “Hi Gene. Is this the kind of Judaism that you teach?”

    Lighten up, Alfredo.

  8. Julian permalink
    April 16, 2015 9:12 am

    Hi Gene,

    Can you witness before HaShem that you have actually asked Him who Yeshua was?

  9. April 16, 2015 9:20 am

    “Can you witness before HaShem that you have actually asked Him who Yeshua was?”

    Yes, Julian, of course. I opened HaShem’s holy word and there it was, right in front of me:

    If what a prophet proclaims in the name of the L-rd does not take place or come true, that is a message the L-rd has not spoken. That prophet has spoken presumptuously, so do not be alarmed. (Deuteronomy 18:22)

    So, HaShem told me via Moses and his prophets that Jesus (Yeshua) was a false prophet, since he prophesied and failed to deliver.

    HaShem also showed me (again, in His word) that Jesus is an idol.

  10. April 16, 2015 10:47 am

    I was never a christian and I never will be, so maybe this is just something that I’ll never understand, but what is the deal with christians always saying that they “came to jesus” through some prayer to G-d about “Is jesus your son?” or “do you have a son?”

    Why don’t christians ask G-d if He has a daughter while they’re at it? The question of “is jesus your son” doesn’t really have any significance because G-d states that all of Israel is “G-d’s son.” Exodus 4:22 says that Israel is G-d’s “first born son.”

    So such a question to ask G-d really doesn’t make any sense if you’re familiar with what the Torah teaches about G-d’s “son.” I’m convinced that people who ask such a question to G-d already have convinced themselves of who they think jesus is. The question itself is a horrible litmus test for truth and really makes no sense outside of an established christian mindset…

  11. April 16, 2015 11:01 am

    Yehuda, I never understood it either, even while I was a Christian/Messianic (which was for quite a while). G-d never spoke to me in any discernible way (and I never spoke in “tongues” either, which is a common “miraculous” sign of a “true Christian” among charismatic Christians). Perhaps I was too honest with myself to imagine otherwise and to just start pretending.

    Speaking of this Evangelical/Messianic method of finding out truth directly from above. Mormons do it too (and probably many other Christian groups). One time, when I was just starting out in Christianity, I got a phone call from Mormon missionaries (who earlier stopped by to give me their Book of Mormon). They told me on the phone to pray and ask the holy spirit to reveal to me that the Book of Mormon was true (which is the same thing Evangelical Christians told me about Jesus). I prayed as instructed, but heard nothing. I was not surprised in the least. So, I was left to decide on my own. (Do the “false Christians” Mormons also get a direct communication from Jesus? Or, do they know it’s all bogus, but that the proselytized person’s imagination will hopefully do the trick regardless?)

  12. Julian permalink
    April 16, 2015 2:23 pm

    Hi Gene,

    I have no problem with the Mormons instructing you to ask HaShem about Mormonism, either. If you have asked Him who Yeshua was, then it is now between you and HaShem. I have nothing further to say.

  13. April 16, 2015 2:28 pm

    ” I have nothing further to say.”

    And here I thought we were just getting warmed up:)

  14. Julian permalink
    April 16, 2015 2:56 pm

    Nope. I know better than to try come between HaShem and His child. You’re in His hands.

  15. Concerned Reader permalink
    April 16, 2015 6:23 pm

    The ‘deal” with that “question” guys is that certain branches of Protestantism, (Evangelicals and Pentacostals mostly,) in their theology emphasize charisma and being “filled with the spirit.” Ie usually this means, if you do not believe as they do, you OBVIOUSLY LOL aren’t spirit filled. ;) Julian seems to be a tad more open minded maybe?

    I’ve had street preachers ask me that question many many times as long ask can remember, (though the fact that I was baptized at age seven, didn’t seem to matter.) These Christians are trying to fulfill the gospel directive of missions work, albiet while being very very heavy on the zeal sauce.

    Even when you are a Christian, there are times you know intuitively that there are religious compatriots to be very wary of, such as the people’s temples and reverend moons of the world.

    There is no rhyme or reason to the mission effort, it’s a religious directive that they feel an emotional need to express. I remember some guys that traveled clear from Oklohoma all the way to the west coast to our university just to preach.

    I remember honestly asking them, “Do you two honestly believe that there is anyone left in the US who doesn’t know who Jesus is? Anyone in Latin America, or in Europe?” Not a chance! The Christians missionoze each other between their sects just as much as they do outsiders, it’s hard to believe. It seems crazy to non Christians, and even to converts, how anyone could be so so concerned, but it’s only fueled by their constant eschatological speculations.

  16. April 16, 2015 6:35 pm

    For Evangelical missionaries to the “lost” (which includes Catholics, not just Jews), their chief concern is saving people from eternity of conscious suffering in hell. I’ve done this myself when on missions to Eastern Europe – we would approach Eastern Orthodox grandmas who went to churches daily and ask them if they were absolutely certain that they are going to heaven. We felt so sorry for them when they would say that they HOPED to end up there but only if G-d wills. We, on the other hand, KNEW without a shadow of a doubt that WE were going to heaven…. After all, we had the right beliefs, trusted in the right sort of Jesus, that is the one who paid for our sins, unconditionally (well, one condition was that one must continue to believe in him… otherwise prepare to go the way of the “goats”).

  17. Concerned Reader permalink
    April 17, 2015 1:44 am

    There is a massive difference between the Eastern Orthodox and Evangelicals I feel bad for those grandmas. While it certainly isn’t Judaism, if more Christians were Eastern Orthodox, it would go a long way to tempering the religion. Eastern Orthodox view the question of “saved” as involving a lifelong process of repentance and a matter between people and G-d, so they don’t have the hell fire or Jesus Vaccine issue that other Christians have.

  18. Julian permalink
    April 17, 2015 10:56 am

    I agree. I see one of the major problems with most of Protestant Christianity as the doctrine of Penal Substitutionary Atonement, where our guilt is transferred onto Yeshua and he is punished in order to satisfy rebributive justice. I do not believe that the New Testament actually teaches this.

  19. April 17, 2015 11:11 am

    “Penal Substitutionary Atonement”

    Julian, this is based in part on Paul’s statement in Galatians 3:13:

    “Christ redeemed us from the curse of the law by becoming a curse for us — for it is written, Cursed is everyone who is hanged on a tree.””

    and also on 1 Peter 3:18 (by anonymous author writing in Peter’s name):

    “For Christ also died for sins once for all, the righteous for the unrighteous, that he might bring us to God.”

    Of course, I could easily find statements in the NT that could lead to a vastly different conclusion, but that’s because the NT doesn’t suffer from consistency.

  20. Julian permalink
    April 17, 2015 11:36 am

    Yes, Gene, I understand what PSA is based on. I think there are other ways of interpreting those verses. But when it comes to the NT’s understanding of atonement, I think there is quite a bit of consistency.

  21. Concerned Reader permalink
    April 17, 2015 3:26 pm

    Julian the biggest issue is that repentance is more important in the Bible than any sacrifices, and the only Christians who remotely get this, are the Eastern Orthodox. They are the only group that rejects Augustine’s original guilt doctrines. Christianity does not (as a whole) grasp this. If an otherwise just non Christian person goes to hell while a murderous thieving “Christian” goes to heaven, because he has a magic blood covering, it’s the depth of injustice and evil.

  22. Julian permalink
    April 17, 2015 3:44 pm

    I agree with you, CR, that repentance is more important than sacrifice. So anyone who repents will br forgiven by HaShem. I think the point of the sacrifice is to cleanse us of sin. It is how sin is taken away from us and we are made whole. I think the animal sacrifices were a symbol of what the Messiah would accomplish by his death.

  23. April 17, 2015 3:51 pm

    Julian, the christian assertion that Israel cannot atone for sin without “jesus blood”/”jesus death” couldn’t be farther from the truth…Nowhere in the Tanach does it even hint that “jesus blood” is needed for Israel to receive forgiveness of sin from Hashem.

    Leviticus 17:11 states that blood animal sacrifice is one way to atone for sin. However, it does not state that blood sacrifice is the only way to atone for sin…(also, note that “jesus blood” is also not mentioned here…Only animal blood!)

    The prophet Daniel stood righteous before Hashem without a Temple. He didn’t need “jesus blood” or jesus in any fashion on order to stand righteous before Hashem.

    Ezekiel 14:14 even if these three men–Noah, Daniel and Job–were in it, they could save only themselves by their righteousness, declares the Sovereign LORD.

    You see, Daniel received forgiveness for his sins INDEPENDENT of jesus during the first exile. He did this by praying and sincerely repenting before Hashem. Daniel 6:11 states that he even did this in the face of death! Clearly, Daniel knew that his sincere repentance to Hashem brought him back to righteousness.

    He was simply following the words of Jeremiah!

    The context of Jeremiah 29 concerns what G-d expects of us during the exile in order to merit the rebuilding of the Holy Temple. Consider what is said in Jeremiah 29:12-14

    Jeremiah 29:12. And you shall call Me and go and pray to Me, and I will hearken to you.

    Jeremiah 29:13. And you will seek Me and find [Me] for you will seek Me with all your heart.

    Jeremiah 29:14. And I will be found by you, says the Lord, and I will return your captivity and gather you from all the nations and from all the places where I have driven you, says the Lord, and I will return you to the place whence I exiled you.

    G-d expected that the Israelites would pray to Him while in Babylon. The result of their prayers and repentance allowed them to return to the land and rebuild the Holy Temple.

    This is precisely what Daniel did…

    And this is precisely what Orthodox Jews do today! Hosea gives us a similar message:

    Hosea 3:4. For the children of Israel shall remain for many days, having neither king, nor prince, nor sacrifice, nor pillar, nor ephod nor seraphim.

    Hosea 3:5. Afterwards shall the children of Israel RETURN, and seek the Lord their God and David their king, and they shall come trembling to the Lord and to His goodness at the end of days.

    How do we return to Hashem if we do not have any sacrifices? Hosea tells us in Hosea 14:2-3!

    Hosea 14:2. RETURN, O Israel, to the Lord your God, for you have STUMBLED IN YOUR INIQUITY.

    Clearly, the subject of the next verse explains HOW Israel is supposed to RETURN to Hashem so that OUR INIQUITIES WILL BE FORGIVEN. Of course, the next verse explains just that!

    Hosea 14:3 Take WORDS with yourselves and RETURN TO THE LORD. Say, “YOU SHALL FORGIVE ALL INIQUITY and teach us [the] good [way], and let us render [for] bulls [the offering of] our lips.

    Even though we have stumbled in our iniquity and have been put into exile, we still have a means of returning to Hashem though our sincere PRAYERS. We take our words and return to Hashem by saying; “FORGIVE ALL INIQUITY.” Nothing in Hosea 14:2-3 indicates that we need the blood of animals in order to atone for our sins during the exile. And most importantly, NOTHING in Hosea 14:2-3 says we need the blood of jesus!

    This is why Daniel was able to stand righteous before Hashem, praying three times a day, despite the fact that he knew he would be thrown into a pit of lions if he continued to do so. Yet he continued to do so in the face of death! (Daniel 6:11)

    If the Jewish people did not need “jesus blood” to merit the rebuilding of the Holy Temple during the first exile, then why would we need it now?!

    Hebrews 9:22 is a false statement. It erroneously claims that “without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness of sin.”

    Lets take a look at II Chronicles 30:16-20 where it is HEZEKIAH’S PRAYER and NOT BLOOD which ATONES for the sins of the people…

    II Chronicles 30:16. And they stood in their station as was their custom, according to the Torah of Moses, the man of God; the priests sprinkled the blood from the hand of the Levites.

    II Chronicles 30:17. For there were many among the congregation who had not consecrated themselves, and the Levites were in charge of the slaughter of the Passover sacrifices for everyone who was unclean, to make it holy for the Lord.

    II Chronicles 30:18. For a multitude of the people, many from Ephraim and Manasseh, Issachar and Zebulun, had not purified themselves, for they ate the Passover sacrifice not as it is written, for Hezekiah had PRAYED**for them, saying, *”MAY THE GOOD LORD ATONE FOR*

    II Chronicles 30:19. anyone who has set his whole heart to seek God, the Lord, the God of his forefathers, though [he be] not [cleaned] according to the purity that pertains the holy things.”

    II Chronicles 30:20. And THE LORD HEARKENED TO HEZEKIAH and HEALED the people.

    The Hebrew word יְכַפֵּר is used in verse 18. It means ATONE! Here we see that in the case of Hezekiah’s passover, many of his Israelite guests DID NOT cleanse themselves with BLOOD according to the Law of Moses. In order to ATONE for the sins of his people, King Hezekiah PRAYED TO HASHEM that he should grant ATONEMENT for all those in his Kingdom who truly turned their hearts to Hashem. Now, to further expand on this…In verse 16, it clearly states that the Levites were in charge of sprinkling BLOOD to purify Israel as it is stated in the Torah of Moses…Now, verses 17 and 18 say that there were many in Israel WHO DID NOT PURIFY THEMSELVES WITH THE BLOOD AS IT IS WRITTEN IN THE TORAH! When someone disobeys a Law in the Torah, what do we call that? We call it a SIN! Here, there were individuals who SINNED by NOT being purified by the LEVITICAL PRIESTS OF THE HOLY TEMPLE with BLOOD! Now, according to Hebrews 9:22, the only way to ATONE FOR SIN is through BLOOD! But here, the sin that was committed was that they DIDN’T use blood for atonement…So how is this sin atoned for?

    According to Hebrew 9:22, it has to be blood! But is that how this sin was atoned for? NO! Their sins were atoned for in this manner:

    II Chronicles 30:18 Hezekiah had PRAYED**for them, saying, *”MAY THE GOOD LORD ATONE FOR*

    II Chronicles 30:19. anyone who has set his whole heart to seek God, the Lord, the God of his forefathers, though [he be] not [cleaned] according to the purity that pertains the holy things.”

    II Chronicles 30:20. And THE LORD HEARKENED TO HEZEKIAH and HEALED the people.

    The sin of those not purified with the blood was atoned for through PRAYER! Thus, Hebrews 9:22 is an inaccurate statement…

    And if you are still skeptical about atonement without blood, The Hebrew word יִּרְפָּא is used in verse 20 for the word “healed.” The root of this word is רְפָּא which means heal. Amazingly, this same root is used in Isaiah 53:5
    Isaiah 53:5. But he was pained because of our transgressions, crushed because of our iniquities; the chastisement of our welfare was upon him, and with his wound we were HEALED.

    The Hebrew word נִרְפָּא is used in verse Isaiah 53:5 for the word “healed.” This shares the SAME ROOT with יִּרְפָּא as shown above. In both cases, (Isaiah 53:5 and II Chronicles 30:20) a form of the word רְפָּא is used for the word “healed.”
    Clearly, there are circumstances in which atonement can be made through PRAYER, particularly when blood sacrifice is not immediately available…

    II Chronicles 33:9-13 demonstrates this same principle:

    II Chronicles 33:9-13: “And Manasseh led Judah and the inhabitants of Jerusalem astray to do what was evil, more than the nations whom the Lord had destroyed from before the Children of Israel. And the Lord spoke to Manasseh and to his people, but they did not listen. And the Lord brought upon them the generals of the king of Assyria, and they seized Manasseh with hooks and bound him with copper chains and brought him to Babylon. And when he was distressed, he entreated the Lord his God, and he humbled himself greatly before the God of his fathers. And he PRAYED to Him, and He accepted his prayer, and He heard his supplication and He restored him to Jerusalem to his kingdom, and Manasseh knew that the Lord was God.”

    Here we see that Manasseh used PRAYER to receive forgiveness of his sins as well. We see that when blood sacrifice is not available, prayer is a valid method of atonement for sin. Also keep in mind that under Manasseh’s rule, the kingdom of Judah was more idolatrous than it had ever been in the past! Clearly, Manasseh’s prayer served as a means of forgiveness/atonement without blood sacrifice and most importantly, without jesus!

    Here we have a cause and effect: King Manasseh says a prayer asking for forgiveness and G-d accepts his prayer and restores him as King of Judah. No blood sacrifice was used to atone for King Manasseh as there is nothing in the text that would indicate such.

    This proves that Hebrews 9:22 is a false statement. Blood sacrifice is not the only way to atone for sin. Your jesus has nothing to with our atonement.

    May Israel merit the rebuilding of the Holy Temple and the reinstatement of the Levitical sacrificial system through our sincere prayer and repentance, speedily in our days!

    Shalom

  24. Julian permalink
    April 17, 2015 4:07 pm

    Hi Yehuda, if you read my reply to Concerned Reader (which is just before your last comment) I think we either agree or are close to agreeing. Anyone who repents and asks HaShem for forgiveness will be forgiven. The point is how to cleanse and heal us of the sin. I think that is what the Messiah was sent to accomplish.

  25. Concerned Reader permalink
    April 17, 2015 5:56 pm

    Julian, you are respectfully missing the point being made. Blood DOES NOT cleanse anyone from sin, not even the Torah’s sacrifices.

    There is only one thing that ever atones for a brazen sin, (an infraction you commit when you know from scripture that your behavior is wrong,) and that is your repentance. Exiles like Daniel had no blood, and no temple sacrifices or temple system, but G-d saved them anyway because they repented with godly behavior. Sin is not cleansed by any blood, only by repentance and changing behavior.

    Jesus’ death can’t atone for another person’s sins. Read Ezekiel carefully. Only the one who sins shall die. The High priest must bring sacrifices for his own sins, AND THEN for those of the people.

    We are told in books like Macabees, and in the Talmud about priests who were not good priests, so even sacrifices that they brought were not effective, not for themselves, or for the people. Cain and Abel both brought sacrifices, but only Abel’s was accepted because he was a godly person.

    The northern kingdom brought sacrifices on their alters to G-d, but those weren’t accepted.

  26. Julian permalink
    April 17, 2015 7:23 pm

    Hi CR, yes, it turns out that we might disagree after all. I think we agree on these two aspects: repentance is all that is needed for forgiveness from HaShem. And without repentance, sacrifices are of no effect. But I think we may disagree about why there is a need for sacrifice.

    I see the scapegoat of Yom Kippur as the prime example of what the sacrifice is all about. The high priest lays his hands on the goat, confessing the sins of the people. Then the goat is driven out into the wilderness. When the man who drove the goat out into the wilderness returns, he washes himself and his clothes. Meanwhile, the people are said to be clean. The implication is that the goat has absorbed the sins of the people and removed them to the wilderness. The man must wash off any contamination of sins that he may have from coming into contact with the goat. No blood was necessary for this act of cleansing. The innocent goat has been able to take onto itself the sins of the people, and they are considered clean.

    The blood comes into play in cleansing the Temple and the altar.

    We might disagree on whether Isaiah 53 is about the Messiah, and whether, even if it is, that it refers to Yeshua, but if Isaiah 53 is about the Messiah, then it seems the Messiah is to have the function of making himself an offering for sin.

    Followers of Yeshua believe that they are each now a temple, indwelt by the Spirit of HaShem. Thus, when they sin, they must confess (and repent) their sin, and HaShem is faithful to forgive them and to cleanse them of sin by the blood of Yeshua.

  27. KAVI permalink
    April 17, 2015 8:50 pm

    Friends,
    If repentance was all that was required to make ourselves perfectly “clean” before HaShem– why could not Adam and Chava repent and be found perfect before Him?

  28. Concerned Reader permalink
    April 17, 2015 9:14 pm

    The word used in Isaiah is Asham, the sacrifice you would bring for the unwitting sins you commit, the guilt offering. Even if Isaiah 53 is about messiah, spilling blood has nothing to do with it.

  29. Concerned Reader permalink
    April 18, 2015 5:09 am

    Kavi, Adam and Eve did not repent when G-d offered them the chance to. Think about it. why else would G-d ask: “Adam! Where are you?”

    G-d knew perfectly well where he was, but he was offering him a chance at repentance in that question, which he refused by blaming Eve his wife, prompting his expulsion.

    Also, consider that Peter says, “Repent” and be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. Every historic Christian sect, with the exception of the docetics believed in Jesus’ death, and other central Christian theological questions, but the Orthodox did not regard them as really “saved.”

    Jesus himself never says “love, sing, and pray to me to be saved,” he says if you loved me you will keep my commandments. It wasn’t ever the death of Jesus itself that caused atonment or redemption for anyone, it was your repentance in light of the knowledge of his death.

    Why try to get your Observant Jewish brothers and sisters to embrace Jesus, when they already live their lives closer in their actions than anyone else to how Jesus actually lived while he was here?

    Making people Christians and Jesus believers will not heal the world if you don’t do a mitzvah.

    Zechariah 12-13 enlightens us as to the true original meaning of the notion that The death of the righteous is bringing atonement to people. The people mourn for him, feel sorrow for their sin that caused the righteous one to suffer and or die, and so people do Teshuvah.

    It hasn’t got anything to do with a sacrifice of Jesus’ blood. Paul even said, “I must fill up in my flesh what is lacking in Christ’s afflictions. What was lacking? Solid food, ie godly behavior among the people.

    I promise you, halachic Judaism can teach Christians things about their own Faith that you wouldn’t ever learn in a Church, simply because churches just don’t know. It wasn’t about trinity, blood, etc. to early Christians, it was about the repentance and faith that this man’s whole life inspired.

  30. Julian permalink
    April 18, 2015 6:40 am

    Hi CR,

    I’m a Sabbath-breaker, but out of respect for Gene, I’ll refrain from further subjecting his blog to my comments until sundown. I do like and agree with much of what you just said, though.

  31. April 18, 2015 9:48 pm

    Concerning Isaiah 53, in order to determine who the servant is, we need to look at the context. Isaiah 49:3-6 is a good place to start.

    Isaiah 49:3. And He said to me, “You are My servant, Israel, about whom I will boast.”

    Isaiah 49:4. And I said, “I toiled in vain, I consumed my strength for nought and vanity.” Yet surely my right is with the Lord, and my deed is with my God.

    Isaiah 49:5. And now, the Lord, Who formed me from the womb as a servant to Him, said to bring Jacob back to Him, and Israel shall be gathered to Him, and I will be honored in the eyes of the Lord, and my God was my strength.

    Isaiah 49:6. And He said, “It is too light for you to be My servant, to establish the tribes of Jacob and to bring back the besieged of Israel, but I will make you a light of nations, so that My salvation shall be until the end of the earth.”

    So how is this reconciled? How can Israel bring back Israel? The answer is simple! Isaiah
    49:3 refers to a specific part of Israel, namely the righteous remnant. (G-d promised a righteous remnant of Israel throughout all generations.) Verse 5 refers to the remnant bringing back the rest of Israel back to righteousness. And finally, verse 6 refers to the newly restored Israel being “light to the nations” through the revelation of truth through Hashem.
    In other words, this is a two step process:

    1. The righteous remnant of Israel will bring back the rest of Israel to righteousness. (Isaiah 49:3-5)

    2. The newly restored nation of Israel will serve to be a “light to the nations.” (Isaiah 49:6)
    So ultimately, the nation of Israel is the servant who will be “a light unto the nations.”

    However, in order to get to that point, the righteous remnant of Israel will first gather back the rest of Israel back to Torah. It’s a two step process.

    The servant is the righteous remnant of ISRAEL.

    Isaiah 51:7. Hearken to Me, you who know righteousness, a people that has My Torah in their heart, fear not reproach of man, and from their revilings be not dismayed.
    This is yet another verse which highlights the suffering of G-d righteous servant, Israel. Isaiah 54 even refers to the “SERVANTS of the Lord”!

    Isaiah 54:17. Any weapon whetted against you shall not succeed, and any tongue that contends with you in judgment, you shall condemn; this is the heritage of the SERVANTS OF THE LORD and their due reward from Me, says the Lord.

    Isaiah 52:15 describes the gentiles kings who will shut their mouths because of their astonishment of Israel’s vindication by Hashem:

    Isaiah 52:15 So shall he cast down many nations; kings shall shut their mouths because of
    him, for, what had not been told them they saw, and [at] what they had not heard they gazed.

    Micah 7:16-17 echoes this sentiment:

    Micah 7:16. Nations shall see and be ashamed of all their might-they shall place a hand upon their mouth; their ears shall become deaf.

    Micah 7:17. They shall lick the dust as a snake, as those who crawl on the earth. They shall quake from their imprisonment; they shall fear the Lord, our God, and they shall fear you.
    Also, Isaiah 60:14 speaks of the future Israel who was previously despised by the nations as being vindicated at the end of days, also echoing in line with the suffering/despised servant of Isaiah 53:

    Isaiah 60:14 And the children of your oppressors shall go to you bent over, and **THOSE WHO DESPISED YOU** shall prostrate themselves at the soles of your feet, and they shall call you ‘the city of the Lord, Zion of the Holy One of Israel.

    So there you have it. The suffering servant of Isaiah 53 ultimately is the nation of Israel.

    **Please note that the Messiah is a part of Israel**

    Shalom

  32. KAVI permalink
    April 19, 2015 1:28 am

    Shalom,

    CR has presented an interesting line of reasoning regarding Isaiah 53 which should be examined fairly.

    On initial review, when Isaiah 49 and 53, it seems very difficult connect “the Servant” to a remnant of Yisrael.
    _____________________________
    Isaiah 53:5-6
    ****”But he was pierced for our transgressions;
    he was crushed for our iniquities;
    upon him was the chastisement that brought us peace,
    and with his wounds we are healed.”

    All we like sheep have gone astray;
    we have turned—every one—to his own way;
    and the Lord has laid on him
    the iniquity of us all.”

    A couple difficulties are:
    — The pronouns cannot be extricated and explained
    — All “we” have strayed and sinned [the prophet includes himself]

    _____________________________
    Isaiah 53:8-9
    ****”By oppression and judgment he was taken away;
    and as for his generation, who considered
    that he was cut off out of the land of the living,
    stricken for the transgression of my people?

    And they made his grave with the wicked
    and with a rich man in his death,
    although he had done no violence,
    and there was no deceit in his mouth.”

    Here, we see that that:
    — This chosen one would be killed
    — This Mashiach was sinless

  33. Concerned Reader permalink
    April 19, 2015 6:36 am

    Kavi, “sinless” according to what biblical standard? G-d doesn’t ever say that he requires sinlessness from people. If he wanted sinless people as in your usage, he wouldn’t have placed the tree of knowledge in the garden at all, and wouldn’t have let the serpent be there.

    HE MADE EVERYTHING AS HE SAW FIT, and as intended. G-d wants a contrite heart and our best effort as he plainly told Cain in Genesis. HE TOLD HIM, YOU MAY MASTER YOUR SIN.

    As to the question of who the servant in Isaiah 53 Is, let’s ask Mary, Jesus’ mother.

    50 And HIS MERCY IS FOR THOSE WHO FEAR HIM,
    from generation to generation.
    51 He has shown strength with his arm;
    he has scattered the proud in the thoughts of their hearts;
    52 he has brought down the mighty from their thrones
    and exalted those of humble estate;
    53 he has filled the hungry with good things,
    and the rich he has sent away empty.
    54 He has helped HIS SERVANT ISRAEL
    in REMEMBERENCE of his mercy,
    55 as he spoke to OUR FATHERS,
    to Abraham and TO HIS OFFSPRING FOREVER.”

    The disciples (including Paul,) being Jews themselves, saw the suffering servant as a righteous collective entity with collective responsibility To be a faithful remnant of the people of Israel. Hence Paul’s metaphor of the whole congregation being the “body” of Christ. ;)

    In other words, they too believed in the same rabbinic interpretation of Isaiah 53 as Yehuda has shared.

    Jesus, (as the messiah claimant) was included by them in this number, but it’s not exclusively about him by any means. Even Paul saw his own sufferings as “filling what was lacking in Christ’s afflictions.”

    Also, read Jesus’ words very carefully. He always used an “I” as a “we all” dynamic in his speech. IE I am the light becomes YE are the light. I have done great things becomes YE WILL DO GREATER THINGS, I am son of G-d becomes YE Shall Be Sons of the most high. See what I mean? The whole premise of scripture is covenant promise to covenant nation. The whole thing is collective in context.

  34. Julian permalink
    April 19, 2015 10:50 am

    The only reason I brought up Isaiah 53 was to point out that whoever the suffering servant is, the servant offers himself as an asham. If it is about the Messiah, then the Messiah offers himself as an asham. Mark Kinzer expressed what I think is the best way of understanding who the servant is: It is Israel, and since the Messiah is Israel par excellence, it is most completely about the Messiah.

    But why an asham? Contrary to CR’s interpretation,Michael Brown states it’s because an asham is offered for sins that have been committed knowingly. If you fast forward to the 1:30 mark of this video, you can hear what he has to say about it:

    https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=ScicQXfFBqs

    As to CR’s objection concerning the blood: I think there are three main ways that the blood of the sacrifice was used: At the instigation of the covenant with Israel, the blood is sprinkled on the Torah and on the people. At the Passover, the blood is placed on the doorposts and lintels, to ward off the angel of death. And in the sacrifices, the blood is placed on the altar and other articles in the Temple. This was especially significant for sin offerings, as a way of cleaning the altar and the other articles in the Temple that had been contaminated by the sins of Israel.

    All three ways are referred to in the NT and connected to Yeshua’s blood. (1) At the last supper, he says that his blood is for the new covenant. (2) He is referred to as the Passover lamb, whose blood redeems us in the same way the blood of the Passover sacrifice redeemed us. (3) And the followers of Yeshua are told that they are each a temple in whom the Spirit of Hashem now resides. Thus the blood of Yeshua would clean them (assuming confession and repentance) of their sins, the same way the blood of the sin offerings would cleanse the articles in the Temple.

    But I agree with much of CR had to say about the need to obey the commandments as a way of achieving atonement. I think NT teaching, both by Yeshua and the apostles, makes it clear that the work of Messiah Yeshua is of no effect if we do not work at it, also. Paul’s statement in Philippians says it best: “Work out your own salvation is fear and trembling, because it is G-d who is at work in you, both to will and to do His good pleasure.”

  35. April 19, 2015 11:38 am

    Oy vey…Now Julian is “Dr. Michael Brown nosing.”

    Julian, Dr. Michael Brown is a very disingenuous apologist. I have a personal debate that I had with him about blood sacrifice which is available on youtube concerning blood sacrifice and the “Melchizedek priesthood.” I urge you to watch the whole thing. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=61rvvdG1Yh4

    I always find it ironic when christian’s like Julian and Kavi, in their attempt to restrict the servant Isaiah 53 to be exclusively about their jesus, try to hyper literalize pronouns and the “asham” and “singular death” parts of Isaiah 53, despite the fact that the servant songs in their entirety use exquisite poetic language to describe the servant throughout.

    Hey Julian and Kavi, do you see this verse as being hyper-literal as well?

    Isaiah 53:10 And the Lord wished to crush him, He made him ill; if his soul makes itself restitution, **HE SHALL SEE CHILDREN,** he shall prolong his days, and God’s purpose shall prosper in his hand.

    So Julian and Kavi, since you believe that Isaiah 53 refers to a literal “human asham” of your jesus in his death on the cross, you must also take Isaiah 53:10 literally when it says that the servant will “see children.”

    So who were jesus’s literal children?!

    See your inconsistency?

    We have metaphorical language all over the servant songs. Here’s another example:

    Isaiah 51:17 Awaken, awaken, arise, Jerusalem, for you have drunk from the hand of the Lord the cup of His wrath; the dregs of the cup of weakness you have drained.

    Is this a literal “cup of wrath” that Jerusalem drank from G-d’s literal “hand”?

    If not, then why do you insist that the servant of Isaiah 53 can only refer to one individual, Kavi and Julian?

    Contextually, we know that Isaiah 53 refers to Israel, Messiah included. Isaiah 53 does not refer to one individual’s death and only one individuals death which served as a literal asham. No…Rather it is a poetic metaphor for Israel’s suffering throughout the millennia.

    So you can stop using Isaiah 53 is a “proof text” for your false messiah, jesus.

    It doesn’t impress us and it shouldn’t impress you…

    Shalom

  36. Concerned Reader permalink
    April 19, 2015 7:08 pm

    Kavi, according to no less important Christian figures than Origen, and Augustine, the Asham atones for venial sins ie your unintentional, often unwitting , hence venial sins. (Theological Dictionary of the Old Testament, By G. Johannes Botterweck, Helmer Ringgren p. 431-432.)

    A more literal translation Courtesy of the NASB: But the LORD was pleased To crush Him, putting Him to grief; IF HE WOULD RENDER HIMSELF AS A GUILT OFFERING, He will see His OFFSPRING He will prolong His days, And the good pleasure of the LORD will prosper in His hand.

    The author says he should render himself as a guilt offering in order to see offspring and prolong his life.

    Here is Rashi on this verse.

    10And the Lord wished to crush him, He made him ill; if his soul makes itself restitution, he shall see children, he shall prolong his days, and God’s purpose shall prosper in his hand. יוַיהֹוָה חָפֵץ דַּכְּאוֹ הֶחֱלִי אִם תָּשִׂים אָשָׁם נַפְשׁוֹ יִרְאֶה זֶרַע יַאֲרִיךְ יָמִים וְחֵפֶץ יְהֹוָה בְּיָדוֹ יִצְלָח:
    And the Lord wished to crush him, He made him ill: The Holy One, blessed be He, wished to crush him and to cause him to repent; therefore, he made him ill.

    If his soul makes itself restitution, etc.: Said the Holy One, blessed be He, “I will see, IF HIS SOUL WILL BE GIVEN and delivered with My holiness to return it to Me as restitution FOR ALL THAT HE BETRAYED ME, I will pay him his recompense, and he will see children, etc.” This word אָשָׁם is an expression of ransom that ONE GIVES TO ONE AGAINST WHEN HE SINNED, amende in O.F., TO FREE FROM FAULTS, similar to the matter mentioned in the episode of the Philistines (I Sam. 6:3), “Do not send it away empty, but you shall send back with it a GUILT OFFERING (אָשָׁם).”

    In 1 Samuel 5 & 6, the philistines captured the Ark of the covenant, and experienced sufferings and feelings of dread as a result of their sin, prompting them to feel terror and GUILT, and thus return it, WITH AN ASHAM. This sacrifice is an acknowledgement you make between HUMANS AND HUMANS of wrongdoing, it doesn’t heal sins of man against Hashem. THEIR ACT OF REPENTANCE WAS THE THRUST OF THE SACRIFICE IN THAT CASE.

    I’ve already given you a very plausible explanation of what J’s death did likely mean to those early students of his. His death stimulated Teshuvah, but nothing about his actual blood or suffering is literally sacrificial. YOU YOURSELF SAID, IF YOU DONT DO TESHUVAH ITS MEANINGLESS AND INEFFECTIVE, ERGO REPENTANCE IS MORE CENTEAL THAN SACRIFICE.

  37. Concerned Reader permalink
    April 19, 2015 7:14 pm

    The response above was for Julian, not Kavi, typo, sorry. But Kavi, if you would like to read it too no worries.

  38. KAVI permalink
    April 20, 2015 2:53 pm

    Shalom,

    It would seem that the most straight-forward reading of Isaiah 52:13-15 and Isaiah 53 is that the Mashiach is one person, not more than one:

    — the Hebrew pronouns are in the singular person;

    — as iniquities cannot be borne by a blemished sacrificial animal, so HaMashiach is found sinless by HaShem in order to “bear the iniquities of the people”;

  39. April 20, 2015 4:08 pm

    Kavi, it would seem that the most straight forward reading of Isaiah 54:1-4 is that it speaks of a singular barren woman, not more than one person.

    Isaiah 54:1 “Sing you barren woman who has not borne; burst out into song and jubilate, you who have not experienced birth pangs, for the children of the desolate one are more than the children of the married woman,” says the Lord.

    Isaiah 54:2 Widen the place of your tent, and let them stretch forth the curtains of your habitations, do not spare; lengthen your cords and strengthen your stakes.

    Isaiah 54:3 For right and left shall you prevail, and your seed shall inherit nations and repeople desolate cities.

    Isaiah 54:4 Fear not, for you shall not be ashamed, and be not embarrassed for you shall not be put to shame, for the shame of your youth you shall forget, and the disgrace of your widowhood you shall no longer remember.

    So Kavi, since you are so keen on the “straight forward reading” of Isaiah 52:13-15 and Isaiah 53, how about you give me your interpretation of who this “barren woman” refers to.

    So how about it, Kavi? Who is this mysterious barren women spoken of in Isaiah 54? Who is she?

    I am eager to hear your honest response.

    Shalom

  40. Julian permalink
    April 20, 2015 5:46 pm

    Hi Yehuda, if you re-read what I wrote, I said that I agreed with Mark Kinzer’s interpretation of Isaiah 53: it is about Israel, but since the Messiah is Israel par excellence, it is most completely about him. Yes, Israel’s sufferings throught the centuries have been for redemptive for the nations. And I believe that Messiah’s sufferings have been redemptive for everyone. But I don’t offer Isaiah 53 as a proof text. I was merely trying to point out that whoever it is about, it is someone who offers their soul as an asham.

    By the way, the word isn’t “children,” but “seed.” And I believe that Isaiah uses that word figuratively in another verse.

    I think Michael Brown accepts the Penal Substitutionary view of Atonement, which I think is profoundly mistaken. However, I’m willing to bet he is correct about the meaning of asham.

  41. Julian permalink
    April 20, 2015 5:56 pm

    Hi CR, I’m not sure how anything you quoted disproves Michael Brown’s point, that an asham is for certain sins that were committed knowingly.

    We agree that HaShem forgives based upon repentance. We agree that without repentance, sacrifices have no effect. We agree that without our trying to obey HaShem, sacrifices have no effect. However, that does not mean that sacrifices are not important. They are HaShem’s way of healing us of sin; of making us whole; of delivering us from death; of putting into effect the new covenant, where His commandments are written on our hearts, so that we will both will and do His commandments.

    I don’t think I can prove to anyone that Yeshua is the Messiah. However, I can see how, if Yeshua is the Messiah, his death and resurrection fit into the same view of sacrifice and atonement that we find in the Tanach. If someone reads the NT and asks HaShem who Yeshua was, I will leave it up to HaShem to show them if he is the Messiah. If HaShem doesn’t show them that, then I don’t think I should try to show them, myself.

  42. Concerned Reader permalink
    April 20, 2015 5:57 pm

    Julian, making the choice of literal vs figurative meaning is the entire problem with your interpretations. Who chooses? Judaism has a rule. The figurative meaning does not over ride the plain meaning. Christians by and large do not merely believe Jesus is the servant par excellence, but Divine, the “only way to the father.” This is in no way in the plain meaning of the Bible. It’s interpretation built on interpretation ad infinitum. G-d would not stake your life on types and shadows.

    The only thing Torah gives as its berometer is the commandments.

  43. April 20, 2015 6:07 pm

    Julian, it’s pretty clear to me that my point flew over your head…

    Listen to me carefully: I am pointing the fact that your hyperliteral interpretation of Isaiah 53 concerning this “asham” is a double standard concerning your willingness to pass off the “seed/children” of the servant as being “figurative seed/children.”

    Here you are, insisting that this servant must serve as a “literal asham” and all the while, you flippantly dismiss the “seed/children” of this servant as being “figurative seed/children.”

    That is why I posted above concerning Isaiah 54. I will pose the same challenge that I gave to Kavi also to you, Julian.

    It would seem that the most straight forward reading of Isaiah 54:1-4 is that it speaks of a singular barren woman, not more than one person.

    Isaiah 54:1 “Sing you barren woman who has not borne; burst out into song and jubilate, you who have not experienced birth pangs, for the children of the desolate one are more than the children of the married woman,” says the Lord.

    Isaiah 54:2 Widen the place of your tent, and let them stretch forth the curtains of your habitations, do not spare; lengthen your cords and strengthen your stakes.

    Isaiah 54:3 For right and left shall you prevail, and your seed shall inherit nations and repeople desolate cities.

    Isaiah 54:4 Fear not, for you shall not be ashamed, and be not embarrassed for you shall not be put to shame, for the shame of your youth you shall forget, and the disgrace of your widowhood you shall no longer remember.

    So Julian and Kavi, since you are so keen on the “straight forward reading” of Isaiah 52:13-15 and Isaiah 53, how about you give me your interpretation of who this “barren woman” refers to.

    So how about it, Julian and Kavi? Who is this mysterious barren women spoken of in Isaiah 54? Who is she?

    I am eager to hear your honest response.

    Shalom

  44. April 20, 2015 6:23 pm

    Concerned Reader,

    You really hit it right on the money. Julian and Kavi may not realize it yet, but as you have come to realize yourself, christian beliefs about jesus are completely based upon contextual abuse of esoteric passages in the Tanach, with the bulk of the passages coming form the prophets. They twist the words of the prophets and rip the out of context in order to develop new and foreign doctrines and false assertions concerning Messianic prophesies and how they relate to jesus.

    But if they just had a better understanding of the Torah itself, they would know that their rigid interpretation concerning Isaiah 53 and other passages in the Tanach referring to or “pointing to” their jesus and the NT’s portrayal of him, are actually interpretations which are contradictory to Hashem’s Torah!

    I think Julian knows that christianity has relied on Isaiah 53 as a “proof text” for many years and has been trying to push this on Jews as of the late to an absurd degree. Otherwise, he wouldn’t have brought it up in defense of his position in desperation. I’ve seen this too many times with christians. I put them into a corner concerning the fact that blood sacrifice is not needed for atonement during exilic times…And of course, Isaiah 53 comes to the surface as a strawman argument, just as Julian did here.

    So while he may deny that he was using Isaiah 53 as a “proof text” it is the most commonly used supposed “proof text” used by christians today in order to trick Jews into accepting their false messiah and false god, jesus…

    But many of us Jews know better, and even the gentiles are starting to awaken. We will continue to teach the truth about Torah and the falsehood of jesus to all who question.

    Shalom

  45. Concerned Reader permalink
    April 20, 2015 7:01 pm

    “for certain sins that were committed knowingly.”

    Certain known sins committed unwittingly, not ever brazenly. The Asham is not an offering that atones the way that Jesus’ death is said to by the Church.

  46. Concerned Reader permalink
    April 20, 2015 8:10 pm

    “They twist the words of the prophets and rip the out of context in order to develop new and foreign doctrines and false”

    With much respect Yehuda, I don’t believe they do this maliciously, so I don’t call it twisting, it’s merely that they are working from the only vantage point they know of, which is like only having access to the lord of the rings, and treating it like solid well defined bible commentary. so, naturally, their conclusions will be drawn in their very appocalyptic types and shadows kind of way. The aliens in the movie galaxy quest illustrate the problem well.

    What I wish more Christians knew about, is how their esoteric notions actually developed over time. Biblical scholarship knows well about traditions in books like 1 Enoch of “one like a son of man” who is an angelic figure, identified as a messiah, but Christians don’t realize how fringe these ideas were, or indeed the very shaky exegetical methods used to come to these interpretations.

    I won’t insult their intelligence and say these ideas are unknown to their day in 2nd temple times, but I will for sure say that only the commandments act as a truth berometer.

    http://www.yutorah.org/lectures/lecture.cfm/810990/_Ari_Lamm/Like_a_Son_of_Man_-_Sefer_Daniel,_the_Gospels_and_the_Bookshelf_of_Bayit_Sheni

  47. KAVI permalink
    April 20, 2015 8:32 pm

    Shalom,

    YI,

    I am glad to hear back from you! You are to be highly commendable for examinig more than one part of the Tanakh and form a cohesive understanding.

    [a] Isaiah 53
    It does not appear that any of us is saying that Isaiah 53 can be read P’shat– however, Rashi’s interpretation looks to take these passages well beyond Sud to the point of being illogical :(

    [b] The Isaiah 54 “Challenge” :)

    Rav Sha’ul addressed this issue ( I am sorry for the lengthy quote)–

    ****Galatians 4:21-31
    Tell me, you who desire to be under the law, do you not listen to the law?

    For it is written that Abraham had two sons, one by a slave woman and one by a free woman. But the son of the slave was born according to the flesh, while the son of the free woman was born through promise.

    Now this may be interpreted allegorically: these women are two covenants.

    One is from Mount Sinai, bearing children for slavery; she is Hagar. Now Hagar is Mount Sinai in Arabia; she corresponds to the present Jerusalem, for she is in slavery with her children. But the Jerusalem above is free, and she is our mother.

    For it is written,
    “Rejoice, O barren one who does not bear;
    break forth and cry aloud, you who are not in labor!
    For the children of the desolate one will be more
    than those of the one who has a husband.”

    Now you, brothers, like Isaac, are children of promise. But just as at that time he who was born according to the flesh persecuted him who was born according to the Spirit, so also it is now.

    But what does the Scripture say? “Cast out the slave woman and her son, for the son of the slave woman shall not inherit with the son of the free woman.” So, brothers, we are not children of the slave but of the free woman.
    ______________________________________________

  48. April 20, 2015 9:50 pm

    Kavi, so you believe that this “barren women” refers to Hagar?

    Is that your final answer?

    Your response is convoluted and unclear.

    Answer me plainly and clearly:

    Who is the barren woman mentioned in Isaiah 54:1-4?

    Shalom

  49. Concerned Reader permalink
    April 21, 2015 3:46 am

    I agree. I see one of the major problems with most of Protestant Christianity as the doctrine of Penal Substitutionary Atonement, where our guilt is transferred onto Yeshua and he is punished in order to satisfy rebributive justice. I do not believe that the New Testament actually teaches this.

    In that case Julian, I’d recommend that find yourself an Eastern Orthodox Church. FYI It isn’t “a problem with Protestantism,” it’s THE PROBLEM WITH IT.

    Among the problems Protestant sects have is

    1. Faith only, where “faith” means merely a tacit assent to Jesus.

    2. Once saved always saved. (This doctrine allows many people who don’t actually study to treat Jesus as neo sporn for every single sin, WITHOUT ANY EFFORT TO CHANGE FOR THE BETTER.)

    3. There is ZERO organizational structure in Protestant congregations.

  50. KAVI permalink
    April 21, 2015 8:51 am

    Shalom!

    Yehuda Yisrael,

    Allegorically, the woman of Isaiah 54 is the Yerushalayim in Heaven. “She” is represented on this earth as the “barren” woman, Sarah, who only conceived through Emunah (faith).

    Sarah’s son, Isaac, was the child of promise– the child of Emunah. Likewise, those who believe in Yeshua HaMashiach as their Redeemer also become her children through Emunah. Through Emunah, Abraham blesses the many nations.

    ****Isaiah 54:1
    “Sing, O barren one, who did not bear;
    break forth into singing and cry aloud,
    you who have not been in labor!
    For the children of the desolate one will be more
    than the children of her who is married,” says the Lord.”

    –>The Yerushalayim in Heaven was “barren” and never physically gave birth to anyone.

    ****Isaiah 54:2-3
    ““Enlarge the place of your tent,
    and let the curtains of your habitations be stretched out;
    do not hold back; lengthen your cords and strengthen your stakes.
    For you will spread abroad to the right and to the left,
    and your offspring will possess the nations and will people the desolate cities.”

    –>The Yerushalayim in Heaven will be populated with “children” of faith.

    ________________________________________________

  51. April 22, 2015 10:45 pm

    Kavi, here’s what I find ironic about your interpretation of the “barren women” mentioned in Isaiah 54:

    You immediately say “allegorically,” to describe this barren woman. It is interesting how quick you are to describe this barren woman in a figurative manner.

    But concerning Isaiah 53, would you never consider the fact that the servant could be allegorically representing something?

    Not according to what you said a few days ago! Here’s what you said:

    “It would seem that the most straight-forward reading of Isaiah 52:13-15 and Isaiah 53 is that the Mashiach is one person, not more than one”

    Well Kavi, it would seem that the most “straight forward reading” of Isaiah 54:1-4 does not give us any indication that G-d is speaking about “Jerusalem in heaven.”

    My point is to demonstrate your double standard in your interpretation. You want to hyperliteralize Isaiah 53 to the T, (save for the verse about the servant having literal seed) yet you are lenient on understanding this “barren woman” as a literal barren woman, but instead allegorize this woman to be “Jerusalem in heaven.”

    Jerusalem also represents a plurality of people. Interesting that you are willing to interpret the woman in Isaiah 54 as representing the plurality of “Jerusalem in heaven,” but will you will not even entertain the possibility that the suffering servant of Isaiah 53 could also be representative of a plurality of people.

    So now that your double standard has been exposed, can you understand why we cannot take you seriously, Kavi? Your interpretation of Isaiah 53 abuses the context of the surrounding chapters which clearly refer to the suffering servant ultimately as Israel.

    Shalom

  52. April 22, 2015 11:15 pm

    “Allegorically, the woman of Isaiah 54 is the Yerushalayim in Heaven.”

    KAVI does it because he simply repeats what Paul wrote in Galatians 4:25-27. There’s no such thing as “Jerusalem in heaven” anywhere in the Hebrew Bible, not even as allegory. Paul made it all up from whole cloth, in order to contrast it with the Jewish people, with Israel, the so called “earthly Jerusalem” (“Jerusalem” is frequently a stand-in for the nation of Israel in the Jewish scriptures). Paul equated the Mosaic Covenant with Hagar the slave, and the Jewish people who remained obedient to their Covenant and who refused to believe in Paul’s new demigod and Paul’s “gospel” with Hagar’s children (and thus slaves just like her).

  53. Samuel Allen permalink
    December 12, 2015 11:56 am

    I haven’t any doubt that His Majesty Prince Lucifer sent one of his dark angels disguised as Yeshua to further his mission.

  54. December 12, 2015 9:43 pm

    Samuel Allen – you should have doubts, many doubts. Did you happen to notice the date of this post?

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