Monday, December 28, 2015

“Did Rav Shaul call Torah rubbish in Philippians 3:3-8?”

Someone wrote to our website this morning, asking the following question:  “Did Rav shaul call Torah rubbish in Philippians 3:3-8?”  It was a great question and we found the answer in some footnotes of the Aramaic English New Testament: 

Philippians 3:3. For we are the (real) circumcision who worship Elohim in spirit and glory in Y’shua the Mashiyach, and place no reliance on the flesh,[1]  4. And though I might place reliance on the flesh. For, if any one thinks that his reliance should be on the flesh, I might (do so) more than he.  5. Circumcised when eight days old; of the stock of Israel; of the tribe of Benjamin; a Hebrew, descendant of Hebrews; as to Torah, a Pharisee;  6. as to zeal, a persecutor of the assembly (of Messianic believers); and as to the righteousness of the (Oral) Torah,[2] I was without fault.  7. But these things which had been my mastery, I have accounted a detriment because of the Mashiyach.  8. And now also I account them all a detriment, because of the superiority of the knowledge of Y’shua the Mashiyach my Master; for the sake of whom I have parted with all things and have accounted (them) as dung that I might gain the Mashiyach[2]  (AENT)


[1] Torah teaches that we must not rely on our flesh (for dust you are, and to dust shall you return), but that we obey our Father YHWH as His children.  We are the real circumcision if we obey YHWH and do His will.  Circumcision counts for nothing if we are unwilling to turn to YHWH’s instructions and follow in the steps of His Mashiyach (Jeremiah 9).  Rav Shaul repeatedly teaches that circumcision of the heart must come first; circumcision of the flesh can never begin to substitute the perfect work of the Ruach haKodesh.

[2]  By including Pharisaic tutelage, Rav Shaul is specifically referencing the “Oral Law” in which he was without fault.  Y’shua rebuked the Pharisees (contrary to popular Christian opinion), for not keeping the Torah of Moshe, but for superseding Torah with their traditions (Matthew 15:1-20).  Y’shua clearly advocates Torah observance (Matthew 5:17-20).  Rav Shaul never referred to the Torah of YHWH as anything detrimental to Faith (Romans 3:31, 7:12).  Rav Shaul quotes extensively from Torah – indeed, from all the Tanakh – to uphold every teaching he puts forth!  There is nothing Paul upholds which is not based in the Torah of YHWH, so those who preach Paul must not be unbelievers, but also follow what Paul taught, which is the Torah of YHWH, not the traditions of men.

[3] Because Rav Shaul knew that the halacha (way to walk) of Y’shua was superior to that of the Pharisees.  It was not that Y’shua abandoned Torah, Elohim forbid! But that Y’shua understood, clarified and revealed Torah far better than any other teacher that Rav Shaul knew, and Paul associated with the greatest souls within Judaism! (Luke 24:44-45).  Sadly, many have never even been able to enter into the discussion as it pertains to Y’shua, Paul and Torah, as they’ve been led to believe by false religion that Paul was anti-Torah!


  1. From the Greek based translation one could draw that conclusion. The Aramaic helps greatly. It is amazing you posted this. I was listening a few hours ago to Andrew Gabriel Roth teaching Phillipians 3 in an audio recording at his website that is a free teaching. It will compliment this post and he goes into more detail than the notes in the AENT. Here is the link:

    1. Andrew's teachings are absolutely AWESOME! :)


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