Why Don’t Jews Believe In Jesus | The difference between …

Jewish Beliefs About Jesus And Jews For JesusFor 2,000 years, Jews have rejected the Christian idea of Jesus as messiah.Why?

It is important to understand why Jews dont believein Jesus. The purpose is not to disparage other religions, but rather toclarify the Jewish position. The more data thats available, thebetter-informed choices people can make about their spiritual path.

Intro:(What exactly is the Messiah?)

MORE RESOURCES+ JUDAISM & OTHER RELIGIONS (AT BOTTOM)

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The word Messiah is an English rendering of the Hebrew word Mashiach, which means Anointed. It usually refers to a person initiated into Gods 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 Lords 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.

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

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

B. Gather all Jews back to the Land of Israel (Isaiah43:5-6).

C. Usher in an era of world peace, and end allhatred, oppression, suffering and disease. As it says: “Nation shall notlift up sword against nation, neither shall man learn war anymore.” (Isaiah2:4)

D. Spread universal knowledge of the God of Israel,which will unite humanity as one. As it says: “God will be King over all theworldon that day, God will be One and His Name will be One” (Zechariah14:9).

The historical fact is that Jesus fulfilled none ofthese messianic prophecies.

Christians counter that Jesus will fulfill these intheSecond Coming, but Jewish sources show that the Messiah will fulfill theprophecies outright, and no concept of a second coming exists.

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Jesus was not a prophet. Prophecy can only exist inIsrael when the land is inhabited by a majority of world Jewry. During thetime of Ezra (circa 300 BCE), when the majority of Jews refused to move fromBabylon to Israel, prophecy ended upon the death of the last prophetsHaggai, Zechariah and Malachi.

Jesus appeared on the scene approximately 350 yearsafter prophecy had ended.

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 fathers sidefrom King David (see Genesis 49:10 and Isaiah 11:1). According to theChristian claim that Jesus was the product of a virgin birth, he had nofatherand thus could not have possibly fulfilled the messianicrequirement of being descended on his fathers side from King David!(2)SEE THE CATHOLIC CHURCHS RESPONSE TO THIS QUESTION

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

Throughout the New Testament, Jesus contradicts theTorah and states that its commandments are no longer applicable. (see John1:45 and 9:16, Acts 3:22 and 7:37)For example, John 9:14 records that Jesus made a paste in violation ofShabbat, which caused the Pharisees to say (verse 16), “He does not observeShabbat!”

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Biblical verses can only be understood by studyingthe original Hebrew textwhich reveals many discrepancies in theChristian translation.

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

The verse in Psalms 22:17 reads: “Like a lion, theyare at my hands and feet.” The Hebrew word ki-ari (like a lion) isgrammatically similar to the word “gouged.” Thus Christianity reads theverse as a reference to crucifixion: “They pierced my hands and feet.”

Christianity claims that Isaiah chapter 53 refers toJesus, as the “suffering servant.”

In actuality, Isaiah 53 directly follows the theme ofchapter 52, describing the exile and redemption of the Jewish people. Theprophecies are written in the singular form because the Jews (“Israel”) areregarded as one unit. The Torah is filled with examples of the Jewish nationreferred to with a singular pronoun.

Ironically, Isaiahs prophecies of persecution referin part to the 11th century when Jews weretortured and killed by Crusaderswho acted in the name of Jesus.

From where did these mistranslations stem? St.Gregory, 4th century Bishop of Nazianzus, wrote: “A little jargon is allthat is necessary to impose on the people. The less they comprehend, themore they admire.”For further reading on the “suffering servant”: jewsforjudaism.org/ss

Of the 15,000 religions in human history, onlyJudaism bases its belief on national revelationi.e. God speaking to theentire nation. If God is going to start a religion, it makes sense Helltell everyone, not just one person.

Throughout history, thousands of religions have been started by individuals, attempting to convince people that he or she is Gods 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 showassuming they are genuineis that he has certain powers. It has nothing to do with his claim of prophecy.

Judaism, unique among all of the worlds majorreligions, does not rely on “claims of miracles” as the basis for itsreligion. 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 miracleshe performed. Whenever anyones belief is based on seeing miracles, he haslingering doubts, because it is possible the miracles were performedthrough magic or sorcery. All of the miracles performed by Moses in thedesert were because they were necessary, and not as proof of his prophecy.

What then was the basis of [Jewish] belief? TheRevelation at Mount Sinai, which we saw with our own eyes and heard withour 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 notmake this covenant with our fathers, but with uswho are all here alivetoday.” (Deut. 5:3)

Judaism is not miracles. It is the personaleyewitness experience of every man, woman and child, standing at Mount Sinai3,300 years ago.

See “Did God Speak at Mount Sinai” for further reading.

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

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

Contrast this to the Shema, the basis of Jewishbelief: “Hear O Israel, the Lord our God, the Lord is ONE” (Deut. 6:4). Jewsdeclare the Shema every day, while writing it on doorposts (Mezuzah), andbinding it to the hand and head (Tefillin). This statement of Gods One-nessis the first words a Jewish child is taught to say, and the last wordsuttered before a Jew dies.

In Jewish law, worship of a three-part god isconsidered idolatryone of the three cardinal sins that a Jew shouldrather give up his life than transgress. This explains why during theInquisitions and throughout history, Jews gave up their lives rather thanconvert.

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

Maimonides devotes most of the “Guide for thePerplexed” to the fundamental idea that God is incorporeal, meaning that Heassumes no physical form. God is Eternal, above time. He is Infinite, beyondspace. He cannot be born, and cannot die. Saying that God assumes human formmakes God small, diminishing both His unity and His divinity. As the Torahsays: “God is not a mortal” (Numbers 23:19).

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

The Catholic belief is that prayer must be directedthrough an intermediaryi.e. confessing ones sins to a priest. Jesushimself is an intermediary, as Jesus said: “No man cometh unto the Fatherbut by me.”

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

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

By contrast, Judaism believes that God created thephysical world not to frustrate us, but for our pleasure. Jewishspirituality comes through grappling with the mundane world in a way thatuplifts and elevates. Sex in the proper context is one of the holiest actswe can perform.

The Talmud says if a person has the opportunity totaste a new fruit and refuses to do so, he will have to account for that inthe World to Come. Jewish rabbinical schools teach how to live amidst thebustle of commercial activity. Jews dont retreat from life, we elevate it.

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Judaism does not demand that everyone convert to thereligion. The Torah of Moses is a truth for all humanity, whether Jewish ornot. King Solomon asked God to heed the prayers of non-Jews who come to theHoly 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 bullofferings, corresponding to the 70 nations of the world. The Talmud saysthat if the Romans would have realized how much benefit they were gettingfrom the Temple, theyd never have destroyed it.

Jews have never actively sought converts to Judaismbecause the Torah prescribes a righteous path for gentiles to follow, knownas the “Seven Laws of Noah.” Maimonides explains that any human being whofaithfully observes these basic moral laws earns a proper place in heaven.

For further study of the Seven Laws of Noah:The Seven Laws of Noah

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Maimonides states that the popularity of Christianity(and Islam) is part of Gods plan to spread the ideals of Torah throughoutthe world. This moves society closer to a perfected state of morality andtoward a greater understanding of God. All this is in preparation for theMessianic age.

Indeed, the world is in desperate need of Messianicredemption. War and pollution threaten our planet; ego and confusion erodefamily life. To the extent we are aware of the problems of society, is theextent we will yearn for redemption. As the Talmud says, one of the firstquestions a Jew is asked on Judgment Day is: “Did you yearn for the arrivalof the Messiah?”

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

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

The Messiah can come at any moment, and it alldepends on our actions. God is ready when we are. For as King David says:”Redemption will come todayif you hearken to His voice.”

by Rabbi Shraga SimmonsLargely adapted fromAish.com

Moses Nachmanides and TheDebate in Barcelona, Spain, 1263

Themost famous of all Jewish-Christian disputations was between the apostateJew Pablo Christiani and Moses Nachmanides (the Ramban).

Nachmanidesargued that the central issue separating Christianity and Judaism wasnot the issue of Jesus messiahship, but whether or not Jesuswas divine. There was no basis in Judaism, Nachmanides said, forbelieving in the divinity of the Messiah or, indeed, of any man.To Nachmanides, it seemed most strange “that the Creator of heavenand earth resorted to the womb of a certain Jewess and grew there fornine months and was born as an infant, and afterwards grew up and wasbetrayed into the hands of his enemies who sentenced him to death andexecuted him, and that afterwards he came to life and returned tohis original place. The mind of a Jew, or any other person, cannottolerate this.” Nachmanides told the Spanish monarch, “Youhave listened all your life to priests who have filled your brain andthe marrow of your bones with this doctrine, and it has settled withyou because of that accustomed habit.” Had King James heardthese ideas propounded for the first time when he was already an adult,Nachmanides implied, he never would have accepted them.

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