Why Jews don't believe in Jesus

Status
Not open for further replies.

Dawie

Puritan Board Freshman
It is important to understand why Jews don't believe in Jesus. The purpose is not to disparage other religions, but rather to clarify the Jewish position. The more data that's available, the better-informed choices people can make about their spiritual path.

JEWS DO NOT ACCEPT Jesus AS THE MESSIAH BECAUSE:

1) Jesus did not fulfill the messianic prophecies.
2) Jesus did not embody the personal qualifications of the Messiah.
3) Biblical verses "referring" to Jesus are mistranslations.
4) Jewish belief is based on national revelation.
5) Christianity contradicts Jewish theology
6) Jews and Gentiles
7) Bringing the Messiah

What exactly is the Messiah?

The word "Messiah" is an English rendering of the Hebrew word "Mashiach", which means "Anointed." It usually refers to a person initiated into God's service by being anointed with oil. (Exodus 29:7, I Kings 1:39, II Kings 9:3)

Since every King and High Priest was anointed with oil, each may be referred to as "an anointed one" (a Mashiach or a Messiah). For example: "God forbid that I [David] should stretch out my hand against the Lord's Messiah [Saul]..." (I Samuel 26:11. Cf. II Samuel 23:1, Isaiah 45:1, Psalms 20:6)

Where does the Jewish concept of Messiah come from? One of the central themes of Biblical prophecy is the promise of a future age of perfection characterized by universal peace and recognition of God. (Isaiah 2:1-4; Zephaniah 3:9; Hosea 2:20-22; Amos 9:13-15; Isaiah 32:15-18, 60:15-18; Micah 4:1-4; Zechariah 8:23, 14:9; Jeremiah 31:33-34)

Many of these prophetic passages speak of a descendant of King David who will rule Israel during the age of perfection. (Isaiah 11:1-9; Jeremiah 23:5-6, 30:7-10, 33:14-16; Ezekiel 34:11-31, 37:21-28; Hosea 3:4-5)

Since every King is a Messiah, by convention, we refer to this future anointed king as The Messiah. The above is the only description in the Bible of a Davidic descendant who is to come in the future. We will recognize the Messiah by seeing who the King of Israel is at the time of complete universal perfection.

1) Jesus DID NOT FULFILL THE MESSIANIC PROPHECIES

What is the Messiah supposed to accomplish? The Bible says that he will:

A. Build the Third Temple (Ezekiel 37:26-28).

B. Gather all Jews back to the Land of Israel (Isaiah 43:5-6).

C. Usher in an era of world peace, and end all hatred, oppression, suffering and disease. As it says: "Nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall man learn war anymore." (Isaiah 2:4)

D. Spread universal knowledge of the God of Israel, which will unite humanity as one. As it says: "God will be King over all the world -- on that day, God will be One and His Name will be One" (Zechariah 14:9).

The historical fact is that Jesus fulfilled none of these messianic prophecies.
Christians counter that Jesus will fulfill these in the Second Coming, but Jewish sources show that the Messiah will fulfill the prophecies outright, and no concept of a second coming exists.

2) Jesus DID NOT EMBODY THE PERSONAL QUALIFICATIONS OF MESSIAH

A. MESSIAH AS PROPHET

Jesus was not a prophet. Prophecy can only exist in Israel when the land is inhabited by a majority of world Jewry. During the time of Ezra (circa 300 BCE), when the majority of Jews refused to move from Babylon to Israel, prophecy ended upon the death of the last prophets -- Haggai, Zechariah and Malachi.

Jesus appeared on the scene approximately 350 years after prophecy had ended.

B. DESCENDENT OF DAVID

According to Jewish sources, the Messiah will be born of human parents and possess normal physical attributes like other people. He will not be a demi-god, (1) nor will he possess supernatural qualities.

The Messiah must be descended on his father's side from King David (see Genesis 49:10 and Isaiah 11:1). According to the Christian claim that Jesus was the product of a virgin birth, he had no father -- and thus could not have possibly fulfilled the messianic requirement of being descended on his father's side from King David! (2)

C. TORAH OBSERVANCE

The Messiah will lead the Jewish people to full Torah observance. The Torah states that all mitzvot (commandments) remain binding forever, and anyone coming to change the Torah is immediately identified as a false prophet. (Deut. 13:1-4)

Throughout the New Testament, Jesus contradicts the Torah and states that its commandments are no longer applicable. (see John 1:45 and 9:16, Acts 3:22 and 7:37) For example, John 9:14 records that Jesus made a paste in violation of Shabbat, which caused the Pharisees to say (verse 16), "He does not observe Shabbat!"

3) MISTRANSLATED VERSES "REFERRING" TO Jesus

Biblical verses can only be understood by studying the original Hebrew text -- which reveals many discrepancies in the Christian translation.

A. VIRGIN BIRTH

The Christian idea of a virgin birth is derived from the verse in Isaiah 7:14 describing an "alma" as giving birth. The word "alma" has always meant a young woman, but Christian theologians came centuries later and translated it as "virgin." This accords Jesus' birth with the first century pagan idea of mortals being impregnated by gods.

B. CRUCIFIXION

The verse in Psalms 22:17 reads: "Like a lion, they are at my hands and feet." The Hebrew word ki-ari (like a lion) is grammatically similar to the word "gouged." Thus Christianity reads the verse as a reference to crucifixion: "They pierced my hands and feet."

C. SUFFERING SERVANT

Christianity claims that Isaiah chapter 53 refers to Jesus, as the "suffering servant."

In actuality, Isaiah 53 directly follows the theme of chapter 52, describing the exile and redemption of the Jewish people. The prophecies are written in the singular form because the Jews ("Israel") are regarded as one unit. The Torah is filled with examples of the Jewish nation referred to with a singular pronoun.

Ironically, Isaiah's prophecies of persecution refer in part to the 11th century when Jews were tortured and killed by Crusaders who acted in the name of Jesus.

From where did these mistranslations stem? St. Gregory, 4th century Bishop of Nazianzus, wrote: "A little jargon is all that is necessary to impose on the people. The less they comprehend, the more they admire."

4) JEWISH BELIEF IS BASED SOLELY ON NATIONAL REVELATION

Of the 15,000 religions in human history, only Judaism bases its belief on national revelation -- i.e. 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.

Throughout history, thousands of religions have been started by individuals, attempting to convince people that he or she is God's true prophet. But personal revelation is an extremely weak basis for a religion because one can never know if it is indeed true. Since others did not hear God speak to this person, they have to take his word for it. Even if the individual claiming personal revelation performs miracles, there is still no verification that he is a genuine prophet. Miracles do not prove anything. All they show -- assuming they are genuine -- is that he has certain powers. It has nothing to do with his claim of prophecy.

Judaism, unique among all of the world's major religions, does not rely on "claims of miracles" as the basis for its religion. In fact, the Bible says that God sometimes grants the power of "miracles" to charlatans, in order to test Jewish loyalty to the Torah (Deut. 13:4).

Maimonides states (Foundations of Torah, ch. 8):

The Jews did not believe in Moses, our teacher, because of the miracles he performed. Whenever anyone's belief is based on seeing miracles, he has lingering doubts, because it is possible the miracles were performed through magic or sorcery. All of the miracles performed by Moses in the desert were because they were necessary, and not as proof of his prophecy.

What then was the basis of [Jewish] belief? The Revelation at Mount Sinai, which we saw with our own eyes and heard with our own ears, not dependent on the testimony of others... as it says, "Face to face, God spoke with you..." The Torah also states: "God did not make this covenant with our fathers, but with us -- who are all here alive today." (Deut. 5:3)

Judaism is not miracles. It is the personal eyewitness experience of every man, woman and child, standing at Mount Sinai 3,300 years ago.

5) CHRISTIANITY CONTRADICTS JEWISH THEOLOGY

The following theological points apply primarily to the Roman Catholic Church, the largest Christian denomination.

A. GOD AS THREE?

The Catholic idea of Trinity breaks God into three separate beings: The Father, the Son and the Holy Ghost (Matthew 28:19).

Contrast this to the Shema, the basis of Jewish belief: "Hear O Israel, the Lord our God, the Lord is ONE" (Deut. 6:4). Jews declare the Shema every day, while writing it on doorposts (Mezuzah), and binding it to the hand and head (Tefillin). This statement of God's One-ness is the first words a Jewish child is taught to say, and the last words uttered before a Jew dies.

In Jewish law, worship of a three-part god is considered idolatry -- one of the three cardinal sins that a Jew should rather give up his life than transgress. This explains why during the Inquisitions and throughout history, Jews gave up their lives rather than convert.

B. MAN AS GOD?

Roman Catholics believe that God came down to earth in human form, as Jesus said: "I and the Father are one" (John 10:30).

Maimonides devotes most of the "Guide for the Perplexed" to the fundamental idea that God is incorporeal, meaning that He assumes no physical form. God is Eternal, above time. He is Infinite, beyond space. He cannot be born, and cannot die. Saying that God assumes human form makes God small, diminishing both His unity and His divinity. As the Torah says: "God is not a mortal" (Numbers 23:19).

Judaism says that the Messiah will be born of human parents, and possess normal physical attributes like other people. He will not be a demi-god, and will not possess supernatural qualities. In fact, an individual is alive in every generation with the capacity to step into the role of the Messiah. (see Maimonides - Laws of Kings 11:3)

C. INTERMEDIARY FOR PRAYER?

The Catholic belief is that prayer must be directed through an intermediary -- i.e. confessing one's sins to a priest. Jesus himself is an intermediary, as Jesus said: "No man cometh unto the Father but by me."

In Judaism, prayer is a totally private matter, between each individual and God. As the Bible says: "God is near to all who call unto Him" (Psalms 145:18). Further, the Ten Commandments state: "You shall have no other gods BEFORE ME," meaning that it is forbidden to set up a mediator between God and man. (see Maimonides - Laws of Idolatry ch. 1)

D. INVOLVEMENT IN THE PHYSICAL WORLD

Catholic doctrine often treats the physical world as an evil to be avoided. Mary, the holiest woman, is portrayed as a virgin. Priests and nuns are celibate. And monasteries are in remote, secluded locations.

By contrast, Judaism believes that God created the physical world not to frustrate us, but for our pleasure. Jewish spirituality comes through grappling with the mundane world in a way that uplifts and elevates. Sex in the proper context is one of the holiest acts we can perform.

The Talmud says if a person has the opportunity to taste a new fruit and refuses to do so, he will have to account for that in the World to Come. Jewish rabbinical schools teach how to live amidst the bustle of commercial activity. Jews don't retreat from life, we elevate it.

6) JEWS AND GENTILES

Judaism does not demand that everyone convert to the religion. The Torah of Moses is a truth for all humanity, whether Jewish or not. King Solomon asked God to heed the prayers of non-Jews who come to the Holy Temple (Kings I 8:41-43). The prophet Isaiah refers to the Temple as a "House for all nations."

The Temple service during Sukkot featured 70 bull offerings, corresponding to the 70 nations of the world. The Talmud says that if the Romans would have realized how much benefit they were getting from the Temple, they'd never have destroyed it.

Jews have never actively sought converts to Judaism because the Torah prescribes a righteous path for gentiles to follow, known as the "Seven Laws of Noah." Maimonides explains that any human being who faithfully observes these basic moral laws earns a proper place in heaven.

7) BRINGING THE MESSIAH

Maimonides states that the popularity of Christianity (and Islam) is part of God's plan to spread the ideals of Torah throughout the world.

This moves society closer to a perfected state of morality and toward a greater understanding of God. All this is in preparation for the Messianic age.
Indeed, the world is in desperate need of Messianic redemption. War and pollution threaten our planet; ego and confusion erode family life. To the extent we are aware of the problems of society, is the extent we will yearn for redemption. As the Talmud says, one of the first questions a Jew is asked on Judgment Day is: "Did you yearn for the arrival of the Messiah?"

How can we hasten the coming of the Messiah? The best way is to love all humanity generously, to keep the mitzvot of the Torah (as best we can), and to encourage others to do so as well.

Despite the gloom, the world does seem headed toward redemption. One apparent sign is that the Jewish people have returned to the Land of Israel and made it bloom again. Additionally, a major movement is afoot of young Jews returning to Torah tradition.

The Messiah can come at any moment, and it all depends on our actions. God is ready when we are.

For as King David says: "Redemption will come today -- if you hearken to His voice."

by Rabbi Shraga Simmon

Source
 

Contra_Mundum

Pilgrim, Alien, Stranger
Staff member
Of course. The issue was, and continues to be, who understands, who rightly appropriates the Jewish Scriptures? We say, it was the Jews the Twelve Disciples, Paul, the thousands of first Christians, virtually every one which was Jewish, until Paul's mission to the Gentiles.

This Rabbi, and Maimonides, and many others are religious heirs of the Pharisees, the haters of the Jesus who claimed to be Messiah. Their own religion is a new and different one even from the Judaism of Jesus day. It has to be, because there is no more Mosaic ritual. Nor can there be again, unless there be 1) a new Temple, and 2) a new revelation that will enable the priesthood to be reconstructed.

There are a number of *factual* errors in the article, as well as misunderstandings of the Christian position on a few things. Of course, we are guilty of misunderstandings in the other direction. However, it has to be pointed out that some of the statements simply mislead the reader, as though there were deliberate misrepresentations of Scripture rather than difference in interpretation of the admitted data.

And the abuse of Gregory of Nazianzus is simply execrable. No excuse for that. R.Simmon may have to answer for an abuse of the 9th Commandment regarding that one.
 

Stomata leontôn

Puritan Board Sophomore
Old Testament Judaism promised salvation in Christ who was to come. Modern Judaism removes Christ and his covenant, so that it is no longer Judaism. Modern Jews are gentiles who call themselves Jews.

Of course the real reason Jews don't believe in Jesus is the same reason as for everyone else: they believe they are autonomous.
 

Contra_Mundum

Pilgrim, Alien, Stranger
Staff member
While on the road this summer (vac.) I recently heard RCSproul preach a really good message from Acts (text?) where he hit this issue straight on. Whose "Old Testament" is it? Ours. It's a disagreement at the most fundamental level.
 

Dawie

Puritan Board Freshman
In what way, if any, are modern Jews in covenant relationship with God?

They used to have the privilege of being the type of the invisible Israel (eternal elect).

That privilege is now on the church.

The reprobate Jews however never understood they were merely a type of a spiritual people. And until today they see themselves as chosen people after the flesh, i.e. their flesh is extremely important before God (whereas other flesh isn't).

They have a wrong concept of what true election is about, and its types on earth.

I think they have a satanic role currently in service of antichrist on earth. Their "messiah" is actually antichrist.

1Jn 2:22 Who is a liar but he that denieth that Jesus is the Christ? He is antichrist, that denieth the Father and the Son.

Look at how their prophecies are intertwined with our antichrist:

1) Jesus DID NOT FULFILL THE MESSIANIC PROPHECIES

What is the Messiah supposed to accomplish? The Bible says that he will:

A. Build the Third Temple (Ezekiel 37:26-28).
2Th 2:4 Who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is worshipped; so that he as God sitteth in the temple of God, shewing himself that he is God.

B. Gather all Jews back to the Land of Israel (Isaiah 43:5-6).

Already happening.

C. Usher in an era of world peace, and end all hatred, oppression, suffering and disease. As it says: "Nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall man learn war anymore." (Isaiah 2:4)

Dan 8:24 And his power shall be mighty, but not by his own power: and he shall destroy wonderfully, and shall prosper, and practise, and shall destroy the mighty and the holy people.
Dan 8:25 And through his policy also he shall cause craft to prosper in his hand; and he shall magnify himself in his heart, and by peace shall destroy many: he shall also stand up against the Prince of princes; but he shall be broken without hand.

Mat 10:34 Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword.

1Th 5:3 For when they shall say, Peace and safety; then sudden destruction cometh upon them, as travail upon a woman with child; and they shall not escape.

D. Spread universal knowledge of the God of Israel, which will unite humanity as one. As it says: "God will be King over all the world -- on that day, God will be One and His Name will be One" (Zechariah 14:9).

Rev 13:5 And there was given unto him a mouth speaking great things and blasphemies; and power was given unto him to continue forty and two months.
Rev 13:6 And he opened his mouth in blasphemy against God, to blaspheme his name, and his tabernacle, and them that dwell in heaven.
Rev 13:7 And it was given unto him to make war with the saints, and to overcome them: and power was given him over all kindreds, and tongues, and nations.
 
Last edited:

calgal

Puritan Board Graduate
Dawie:

That is an interesting concept and I think it is a valid description of a certain sect of Jews (I find "ultra orthodox jews" as creepy as the FLDS for different reasons: they are racist, mysoginistic (praying thank you for making me a boy as a standard morning prayer is cute) and outright unpleasant cultic human beings. I had an encounter with these folks prior to being saved (I was "searching" or so I thought for God and was in a new age frame of mind. The "reps" at Jews for Judaism (for some reason the Jews for Jesus staff upsets them :lol:) wanted to make sure I had the "right bloodline" before they would converse with me. I was kind of sickened since this was the same logic the SS used in reverse to select THEIR members. :worms: :eek: As you can guess, God used these prideful arrogant men to draw me to Him.

Now that being said, there is a large semi affiliated culturally Jewish and disconnected from (and mortally embarassed by) the above mentioned "whack jobs." I can assure you that these new agey folks are more Jewnitarian (Jews and Unitarians) than anything else (being raised by such folks) and God was a historical oddity at best (and forget reading the Bible). Their kids are "marrying out" of the "tribe" and need some outreach other than the Jews for Jesus. "]This ministry is a good solid Reformed group BTW.

Dawie, an off topic question: Do you know a Reverend Hennie VanWyk by any chance? I think he is a GKSA pastor.

Gail
 

Dawie

Puritan Board Freshman
Dawie, an off topic question: Do you know a Reverend Hennie VanWyk by any chance? I think he is a GKSA pastor.

Gail

Hi Gail

I don't know him personally, but I have spoken to him on one occasion (I think it could be the same person - coincidence).
 

py3ak

Unshaven and anonymous
Staff member
The point about Isaiah 53 was really rather weak. Throughout that whole section there is a tension in the use of the word "Israel" because it is used of the head and the members: without that understanding, Isaiah 40-66 becomes nonsense. You have to recognize Jesus as ultimate Israel.
 

calgal

Puritan Board Graduate
Dawie, an off topic question: Do you know a Reverend Hennie VanWyk by any chance? I think he is a GKSA pastor.

Gail

Hi Gail

I don't know him personally, but I have spoken to him on one occasion (I think it could be the same person - coincidence).

Funny how Providence works! Reverend VanWyk did his doctorate on cults and we had some conversations. That reminds me that I owe an email or two to him.
 

Jimmy the Greek

Puritan Board Senior
In what way, if any, are modern Jews in covenant relationship with God?


Good question. I say as a nation they are apostate and in their current Jewish faith they are apostate. I don't see how they are the people of God in any sense. The only covenant relationship with God since Christ is through Christ. :eek:
 

Dawie

Puritan Board Freshman
The point about Isaiah 53 was really rather weak. Throughout that whole section there is a tension in the use of the word "Israel" because it is used of the head and the members: without that understanding, Isaiah 40-66 becomes nonsense. You have to recognize Jesus as ultimate Israel.

I have listened to some Jewish rabbis' lectures (antichristian apologetics) and they really are either very ignorant of the NT, or intentionally beguiling people.

I think the crucifixion of Christ is a terrible burden on them, one they'd do anything to be free of, the only way (according to them) being to eviscerate the Name of Christ from the planet forever, so they can be free.

Rom 11:10 Let their eyes be darkened, that they may not see, and bow down their back alway.

Mat 27:25 Then answered all the people, and said, His blood be on us, and on our children.

But they have not all as a people been reprobated - there is a remnant - that is good news for them.

Rom 11:5 Even so then at this present time also there is a remnant according to the election of grace.

Grace indeed.

Rom 11:15 For if the casting away of them be the reconciling of the world, what shall the receiving of them be, but life from the dead?

Backsliding modern church following same route as old Israel.

Rom 11:20 Well; because of unbelief they were broken off, and thou standest by faith. Be not highminded, but fear:
Rom 11:21 For if God spared not the natural branches, take heed lest he also spare not thee.
 

calgal

Puritan Board Graduate
The point about Isaiah 53 was really rather weak. Throughout that whole section there is a tension in the use of the word "Israel" because it is used of the head and the members: without that understanding, Isaiah 40-66 becomes nonsense. You have to recognize Jesus as ultimate Israel.

I have listened to some Jewish rabbis' lectures (antichristian apologetics) and they really are either very ignorant of the NT, or intentionally beguiling people.

I think the crucifixion of Christ is a terrible burden on them, one they'd do anything to be free of, the only way (according to them) being to eviscerate the Name of Christ from the planet forever, so they can be free.

Rom 11:10 Let their eyes be darkened, that they may not see, and bow down their back alway.

Mat 27:25 Then answered all the people, and said, His blood be on us, and on our children.

But they have not all as a people been reprobated - there is a remnant - that is good news for them.

Rom 11:5 Even so then at this present time also there is a remnant according to the election of grace.

Grace indeed.

Rom 11:15 For if the casting away of them be the reconciling of the world, what shall the receiving of them be, but life from the dead?

Backsliding modern church following same route as old Israel.

Rom 11:20 Well; because of unbelief they were broken off, and thou standest by faith. Be not highminded, but fear:
Rom 11:21 For if God spared not the natural branches, take heed lest he also spare not thee.


There is a high level of fear among the rabbis and they actually ban the use of Jesus' name as anything other than a swear word. :eek:
 

Scott1

Puritanboard Commissioner
It is important to understand why Jews don't believe in Jesus.

Not quite. Some do. Some have, including some very important Christians (e.g. the Apostle Paul).

It's a fact the broad majority of people with some Jewish ancestory in Israel today consider themselves "secular," not, in their reasoning, embracing any religion, including Judaism. I'm sure there is a long list of justifications why that is as well.
 
Status
Not open for further replies.
Top