Monday, April 25, 2016

Jewish counter-missionary thinks Paul condemns the Jews in I Thessalonians 2:14-15

COUNTER-MISSIONARY COMMENT:  Seems to me Paul condemns the Jews in I Thessalonians 2:14-15.  How do you feel about that?

MESSIANIC RESPONSE:   Let’s please read this passage in context through Hebrew rather than Greek eyes: 

I Thessalonians 2:14. For you, my Brothers, became assimilated to the assemblies of Elohim in Judaea, the persons who are in Y’shua the Mashiyach in that you so suffered, even you from your own countrymen as also they from the Jews, 15. the persons who slew our Master Y’shua the Mashiyach and persecuted their own prophets and us; and they please not Elohim and are made hostile to all men;  16. and they forbid us to speak to the Gentiles[1] that they may have life; to fill up their sins at all times. And wrath comes on them to the uttermost.[2]  (AENT) 

FOOTNOTES:

[1]   Many Rabbis warn Jews to not teach Torah to the Gentiles; they forbid it because according to their religious perspectives, they’ve concluded that Gentiles would “only mess it up” – proving again that Jewish humor is indeed alive and well!  Most Christians have never had opportunity to learn Torah, just like most Jews have strictly been warned away from Y’shua Mashiyach. Had Rabbinical Judaism taken an active role to make Torah available (understandable) to everyone, there would be much less anti-Semitism in the world.  Rather than viewing Jews as “the Christ-killers”, a healthy portion of the two billion Christians on earth would better understand that Jews and Gentiles are part of Mashiyach’s Universal family and congregation.

[2]   Congregation of Elohim” from eidta d’Alaha is preferred over “church of God” as this is the true meaning of the Aramaic phrase, nearly identical to the Hebrew phrase adat YHWH that is used in the Tanakh to describe Israel (Numbers 27:17, 31:16; Joshua 22:16).  Paul makes the point that the conduct of these men against Torah is at fault, not their ethnicity! Certainly, it was an abomination for Jewish ancestry to persecute the prophets of YHWH and bow down to paganism and idols. 

It is arrogant for religious Jews to reject Gentiles and not include them as equals in the Malchut Elohim. All this and more is what constituted the collection of Jews who became known as “the assembly of satan.” After all, Torah commands that there is ONE Torah for Jew and ger (sojourner); so then on what authority do the Pharisees and their cohorts deny YHWH and say no to Mashiyach? 

Y’shua said these men hold the keys to salvation but will not enter into the Kingdom themselves, nor will they permit others to enter. However, to extrapolate that Paul lays blame on all Jews for these crimes shows profound ignorance of basic human reality and Jewish cultural fact. 

On another note, it wasn’t until Marcion “the heretic” that an all-Gentile “Christian church” prohibited Jewish attendees. The word “Church” has its origin with “Circe or Circ” pronounced “Kirch.”  Circe was the daughter of Helios, a Greek goddess and sun deity.  The halo (circle) of light that Christians painted over the heads of “the saints” formerly belonged to Circe.

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