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Archive for May, 2009

Shavu’ot – Pentecost – FirstFruits – – Feast of Weeks – Hag Matan Torateinu (the Festival of the Giving of Our Torah)


As Pentecost/Shavuot approaches, there seems to be some misunderstandings in both the Christian and Messianic venues as to exactly what Pentecost represents in the New Covenant. Most of the applications in cyber land come from Judaism’s traditions, with a Messianic twist. Neither of which are found in the Scriptures, but are interpretations from Rabbinical sources [also known as the “ancient sages]. These sources are not all that ancient, coming mostly from the middle ages and through the Talmud, which should not be a believer’s “handbook” for understanding. The Talmud denies Christ, it is not “for” Him, but against Him.

Below are some quotes referring to Shavuot – the first one from Judaism 101 which shows their traditional understanding and also explains the observation calculation.

“Shavu’ot, the Festival of Weeks, is the second of the three major festivals with both historical and agricultural significance (the other two are Passover and Sukkot). Agriculturally, it commemorates the time when the first fruits were harvested and brought to the Temple, and is known as Hag ha-Bikkurim (the Festival of the First Fruits). Historically, it celebrates the giving of the Torah at Mount Sinai, and is also known as Hag Matan Torateinu (the Festival of the Giving of Our Torah).

The period from Passover to Shavu’ot is a time of great anticipation. We count each of the days from the second day of Passover to the day before Shavu’ot, 49 days or 7 full weeks, hence the name of the festival. See The Counting of the Omer. The counting reminds us of the important connection between Passover and Shavu’ot: Passover freed us physically from bondage, but the giving of the Torah on Shavu’ot redeemed us spiritually from our bondage to idolatry and immorality. Shavu’ot is also known as Pentecost, because it falls on the 50th day; however, Shavu’ot has no particular similarity to the Christian holiday of Pentecost, which occurs 50 days after their Spring holiday.

It is noteworthy that the holiday is called the time of the giving of the Torah, rather than the time of the receiving of the Torah. The sages point out that we are constantly in the process of receiving the Torah, that we receive it every day, but it was first given at this time. Thus it is the giving, not the receiving, that makes this holiday significant.”

http://www.jewfaq.org/holidayc.htm

From a Messianic website:

“Israel came to Mount Sinai on the third day of the third month (Exodus [Shemot] 19:1). The L-rd visited the people three days later (Exodus [Shemot] 19:10-17). Therefore, the Torah was given by G-d in the third month of the biblical religious calendar, which is the month of Sivan, on the sixth day of this month. This day is exactly 50 days from the crossing of the Red Sea.

Shavuot (Pentecost) is called the season of the giving of the Torah (Z’man Matan Toraseinu) in Hebrew because this is the literal day that G-d revealed Himself to the people of Israel as they stood at the base of Mount Sinai.”

http://www.hebroots.org/chap6.html

Another Messianic site:

Join us as we have an awesome night of praise and worship in a variety of formats. We will celebrate the giving of the Torah and the Spirit all night while praising our Messiah and the God of Israel!

http://www.messianicisrael.com/

After surfing through those Messianic websites, and many others – it occurred to me that all the celebrations of Shavuot [Pentecost] revolve around the giving of Torah and the other Rabbinic traditions: eating cheese and dairy foods and deserts, staying up all night, reading the book of Ruth, decorating with flowers, etc —– but include only a couple of lines about the NT Pentecost > the Holy Spirit empowering the disciples to speak in tongues and preach the Gospel. Then the sites and blogs revert back to the central theme of Torah, delving into studies and comparisons of how the original Shavuot was the giving of Torah. The underlying theme is the emphasis on keeping the Law of Moses [Torah] because of these comparisons and additions.

As I have stated many times in articles and posts, Torah is the primary focus of the Messianic venues, not Jesus Christ. It seems that every feast time abounds in all kinds of “revelations” that tie the believer into practicing the traditions and practices of Judaism, with the teeniest notations, if at all, to Jesus Christ. It’s as if the New Covenant is about Torah, instead of the Gospel.

Some even use Shavuot as the actual betrothal/marriage between Israel and God, comparing it to the Jewish Wedding Tradition [see this article: https://fortheloveoftruth.wordpress.com/j…d-rapture/ ]


The Biblical theme of Pentecost, as directed under the old covenant, is bringing the first fruits of one’s crops. This theme is what the NT interprets in regard to Christ, believers, and Pentecost [stay tuned for more on this Smile] . Other parts of the Feast of Shavuot included 2 loaves of bread; drink offerings; meat offerings of lambs, rams, goats, and bullocks that involved the covenant of salt – all the meat was sprinkled with it. Requirements for some of the crops were sacrificial offerings, and other crops designated for eating. The goat offering was the atonement for sin.

I have included the old testament passages regarding Pentecost here, and as you can see, there are no references to all the traditions and concepts that are attached to this festival:

Exodus 34:22 And you shall observe the feast of weeks, of the first fruits of wheat harvest, and the feast of ingathering at the year’s end.
Exo 34:23 Thrice in the year shall all your male children appear before the LORD God, the God of Israel.
Exo 34:24 For I will cast out the nations before you, and enlarge your borders: neither shall any man desire your land, when you shall go up to appear before the LORD your God thrice in the year.
Exo 34:25 You shall not offer the blood of my sacrifice with leaven; neither shall the sacrifice of the feast of the passover be left to the morning.
Exo 34:26 The first of the first fruits of your land you shall bring to the house of the LORD your God. You shall not seethe a kid in his mother’s milk.

Leviticus 2:12 As for the oblation of the first fruits, you shall offer them to the LORD: but they shall not be burnt on the altar for a sweet smell.
Lev 2:13 And every oblation of your meat offering shall you season with salt; neither shall you suffer the salt of the covenant of your God to be lacking from your meat offering: with all your offerings you shall offer salt.
Lev 2:14 And if you offer a meat offering of your first fruits to the LORD, you shall offer for the meat offering of your first fruits green ears of corn dried by the fire, even corn beaten out of full ears.
Lev 2:15 And you shall put oil on it, and lay frankincense thereon: it is a meat offering.
Lev 2:16 And the priest shall burn the memorial of it, part of the beaten corn thereof, and part of the oil thereof, with all the frankincense thereof: it is an offering made by fire to the LORD.

Leviticus 23:15 And you shall count to you from the morrow after the sabbath, from the day that you brought the sheaf of the wave offering; seven sabbaths shall be complete:
Lev 23:16 Even to the morrow after the seventh sabbath shall you number fifty days; and you shall offer a new meat offering to the LORD.
Lev 23:17 You shall bring out of your habitations two wave loaves of two tenth deals; they shall be of fine flour; they shall be baked with leaven; they are the first fruits to the LORD.
Lev 23:18 And you shall offer with the bread seven lambs without blemish of the first year, and one young bullock, and two rams: they shall be for a burnt offering to the LORD, with their meat offering, and their drink offerings, even an offering made by fire, of sweet smell to the LORD.
Lev 23:19 Then you shall sacrifice one kid of the goats for a sin offering, and two lambs of the first year for a sacrifice of peace offerings.
Lev 23:20 And the priest shall wave them with the bread of the first fruits for a wave offering before the LORD, with the two lambs: they shall be holy to the LORD for the priest.
Lev 23:21 And you shall proclaim on the selfsame day, that it may be an holy convocation to you: you shall do no servile work therein: it shall be a statute for ever in all your dwellings throughout your generations.
Lev 23:22 And when you reap the harvest of your land, you shall not make clean riddance of the corners of your field when you reap, neither shall you gather any gleaning of your harvest: you shall leave them to the poor, and to the stranger: I am the LORD your God.

Numbers 28:26 Also in the day of the first fruits, when you bring a new meat offering to the LORD, after your weeks be out, you shall have an holy convocation; you shall do no servile work:
Num 28:27 But you shall offer the burnt offering for a sweet smell to the LORD; two young bullocks, one ram, seven lambs of the first year;
Num 28:28 And their meat offering of flour mingled with oil, three tenth deals to one bullock, two tenth deals to one ram,
Num 28:29 A several tenth deal to one lamb, throughout the seven lambs;
Num 28:30 And one kid of the goats, to make an atonement for you.
Num 28:31 You shall offer them beside the continual burnt offering, and his meat offering, (they shall be to you without blemish) and their drink offerings.

*************************

It’s interesting to note that when Jesus Christ instructed and informed the disciples about what to expect after His ascension, He never gave any reference to the giving of Law. He spoke clearly – the disciples would be baptized with the Holy Spirit and endued with power from on high to preach the Gospel:

Acts 1:4 And, being assembled together with them, commanded them that they should not depart from Jerusalem, but wait for the promise of the Father, which, said he, you have heard of me.
Act 1:5 For John truly baptized with water; but you shall be baptized with the Holy Ghost not many days hence.
Act 1:8 But you shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come on you: and you shall be witnesses to me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and to the uttermost part of the earth.
Act 1:9 And when he had spoken these things, while they beheld, he was taken up; and a cloud received him out of their sight.

The Holy Spirit endued the disciples on Pentecost with tongues like fire and a mighty rushing wind that filled the house where they were. Notice that the text states, Pentecost was FULLY come – fulfilled. It’s interesting that God chose that day – for Jerusalem was filled with Jews from all over come to celebrate the feast!

Acts 2:1 And when the day of Pentecost was fully come, they were all with one accord in one place.
Act 2:2 And suddenly there came a sound from heaven as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting.
Act 2:3 And there appeared to them cloven tongues like as of fire, and it sat on each of them.
Act 2:4 And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.
Act 2:5 And there were dwelling at Jerusalem Jews, devout men, out of every nation under heaven.
Act 2:6 Now when this was noised abroad, the multitude came together, and were confounded, because that every man heard them speak in his own language.

Looking further into Acts 2 during Peter’s profound preaching under the power of the Holy Spirit, the first thing he mentions is the fulfillment of Joel 2 to explain the tongues praising God, and then immediately begins to preach the Gospel, telling them of Jesus Christ. The hearts of the Jews were pricked when they heard that Jesus was crucified. They repented of their sins and were baptized. Still no mention of some kind of celebration of the giving of Torah, or instructions as to how to keep it from then on. Pentecost involved a sacrifice for sin. I am sure all there understood clearly what the feast required as they had come in obedience to the command. Now they were free from that! The Jews must have been awestruck at the news!

Acts 2:41 Then they that gladly received his word were baptized: and the same day there were added to them about three thousand souls.
Act 2:42 And they continued steadfastly in the apostles’ doctrine and fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers.
Act 2:43 And fear came on every soul: and many wonders and signs were done by the apostles.
Act 2:44 And all that believed were together, and had all things common;
Act 2:45 And sold their possessions and goods, and parted them to all men, as every man had need.
Act 2:46 And they, continuing daily with one accord in the temple, and breaking bread from house to house, did eat their meat with gladness and singleness of heart,
Act 2:47 Praising God, and having favor with all the people. And the Lord added to the church daily such as should be saved.


The New Testament shows us that Jesus Christ is the First Fruits:


Romans 11:16 For if the first fruit be holy, the lump is also holy: and if the root be holy, so are the branches

1 Corinthians 15:20 But now is Christ risen from the dead, and become the first fruits of them that slept.
1Co 15:21 For since by man came death, by man came also the resurrection of the dead.
1Co 15:22 For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive.
1Co 15:23 But every man in his own order: Christ the first fruits; afterward they that are Christ’s at his coming.


What I find amazing are the number of verses in the New Testament that refer to fruit – the fruit that we must manifest through the Holy Spirit, which can be viewed as the first fruit of our sacrifices to God – proving that by His indwelt Spirit, by the fruit of the Spirit that we are His, sealed forever.

Mark 4:20 And these are they which are sown on good ground; such as hear the word, and receive it, and bring forth fruit, some thirty times, some sixty, and some an hundred.

Luke 3:8 Bring forth therefore fruits worthy of repentance, and begin not to say within yourselves, We have Abraham to our father: for I say to you, That God is able of these stones to raise up children to Abraham.

John 15:4 Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, except it abide in the vine; no more can you, except you abide in me.
Joh 15:5 I am the vine, you are the branches: He that stays in me, and I in him, the same brings forth much fruit: for without me you can do nothing.
Joh 15:8 Herein is my Father glorified, that you bear much fruit; so shall you be my disciples.

Romans 6:22 But now being made free from sin, and become servants to God, you have your fruit to holiness, and the end everlasting life.

Romans 7:4 Why, my brothers, you also are become dead to the law by the body of Christ; that you should be married to another, even to him who is raised from the dead, that we should bring forth fruit to God.

Romans 8:23 And not only they, but ourselves also, which have the first fruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting for the adoption, to wit, the redemption of our body.

2 Corinthians 9:10 Now he that ministers seed to the sower both minister bread for your food, and multiply your seed sown, and increase the fruits of your righteousness;)

Galatians 5:22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, long-suffering, gentleness, goodness, faith,
Gal 5:23 Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law.
Gal 5:24 And they that are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with the affections and lusts.
Gal 5:25 If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit.

Ephesians 5:9 (For the fruit of the Spirit is in all goodness and righteousness and truth;)

Philippians 1:11 Being filled with the fruits of righteousness, which are by Jesus Christ, to the glory and praise of God.

Colossians 1:5 For the hope which is laid up for you in heaven, whereof you heard before in the word of the truth of the gospel;
Col 1:6 Which is come to you, as it is in all the world; and brings forth fruit, as it does also in you, since the day you heard of it, and knew the grace of God in truth:

Hebrews 12:11 Now no chastening for the present seems to be joyous, but grievous: nevertheless afterward it yields the peaceable fruit of righteousness to them which are exercised thereby.

Hebrews 13:15 By him therefore let us offer the sacrifice of praise to God continually, that is, the fruit of our lips giving thanks to his name.

James 1:18 Of his own will begat he us with the word of truth, that we should be a kind of first fruits of his creatures.

James 3:17 But the wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, and easy to be entreated, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality, and without hypocrisy.

Revelation 14:4 These are they which were not defiled with women; for they are virgins. These are they which follow the Lamb wherever he goes. These were redeemed from among men, being the first fruits to God and to the Lamb.

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In this document, I will discuss some of the writings of traditional Judaism that intentionally denigrate, as well as openly blaspheme the finished work of Jesus Christ. I feel the need to do this evaluation, because many of these texts are now being quoted by television evangelists such as Perry Stone, Steve Monsey, Benny Hinn and others. They are also used in the works of Christian book authors such as Grant Jeffreys, who appeared on the Benny Hinn show, as well as by some Pastors in their teachings to the people in their congregations. Some of the texts that I will discuss are the Talmud, the Toldoth Yeshu, the writings of the Jewish mystical system known as Kabbalah, as well as the Shem Tov book of Mathew, which is part of the Jewish writing titled Even Bohan.

The Talmud speaks negatively of Jesus in various books that comprise its writings. The Talmud is a rabbinic commentary on the Torah, which Christians know as the first five books of the Old Testament. Recently, some in Judaism have tried to state that the Talmud is speaking of another person(s) named Jesus, and not Jesus Christ, but conervative rabbi’s such as Daniel Lapin have clearly stated that the Talmud does in fact denigrate Jesus. Here is a quote by Mr Lapin that can be found on his website:

“Do we really want to open up the Pandora’s Box of suggesting that any faith may demand the removal of material that it finds offensive from the doctrines of any other faith? Do we really want to return to those dark times when Catholic authorities attempted to strip from the Talmud those passages that they found offensive? Some of my Jewish readers may feel squeamish about my alluding to the existence of Talmudic passages uncomplimentary toward Jesus as well as descriptive of Jewish involvement in his crucifixion. However the truth is that anyone with Internet access can easily locate those passages in about ten seconds. I think it far better that in the name of genuine Jewish-Christian friendship in America, we allow all faiths their own beliefs even if we find those beliefs troubling or at odds with our own beliefs. This way we can all prosper safely under the constitutional protection of the United States of America.

http://www.towardtradition.org/article_Mel_Gibson.htm

In the Talmud, great measures are taken so that Jesus is never referred to by His actual Hebrew name of Yeshua, because His name itself means He is Salvation, and is a description of His finished work. Jesus is referred by many othe names and titles such as Otho Iysh, which is translated in the English version as “that man”.  In Abhodah Zarah, 6a, it is stated that “He is called a Christian who follows the false teachings of that man, who taught them to celebrate the feast on the first day of the Sabbath, that is, to worship on the first day after the Sabbath”.

Jesus is also referred to as Peloni , which is translated as “A Certain One.” In Chagigah, 4b, we read:
“Mary…the mother of a certain one, of whom it is related in Schabbath…” (104b)

Jesus is also referred to as Naggar bar naggar – “the carpenter son of a carpenter”, also Ben charsch etaim – “the son of a wood worker.”

He is also called Talui – “The one who was hanged.” and him who was hanged, as well as “the one who was hanged on his banner.”

Below are some Talmudic passages that denigrate Christ:

Sanhedrin, 67a ~ Jesus is referred to as the illegitimate son of Pandira, a Roman soldier.

Sanhedrin 106a . Says Jesus’ mother was a whore

Sanhedrin 106 ~ Revels in the early age at which Jesus died

Sanhedrin 43a ~ Says Jesus (“Yeshu” / Yeshu “the Nazarene”) was executed because he practiced sorcery.

Gittin 57a ~ States that Jesus is being boiled in “hot excrement.”

Sanhedrin 43a . Jesus deserved execution: “On the eve of the Passover, Yeshu was hanged…Do you suppose that he was one for whom a defense could be made? Was he not a Mesith (enticer)?”

Abhodah Zarah II ~ Also referred to as the son of Pandira, a Roman soldier.

Schabbath XIV~ Again referred to as the son of Pandira, the Roman.

Schabbath, 104b ~ Called a fool and no one pays attention to fools.

Sanhedrin, 103a. ~ Suggested corrupts his morals and dishonors self.

Sanhedrin, 107b. ~ Seduced, corrupted and destroyed Israel.

Abhodah Zarah, 21a — Reference to worship of Jesus in homes unwanted.

Orach Chaiim, 113 — Avoid appearance of paying respect to Jesus.

Iore dea, 150,2 — Do not appear to pay respect to Jesus by accident.

Abhodah Zarah (78c) — Festivals of followers of Jesus regarded as idolatry.

Kallah, 1b. (18b) ~ Illegitimate son and conceived during menstruation.

Sanhedrin, 67a ~ Hanged on the eve of Passover.

Sanhedrin, 43a ~ On the eve of Passover they hanged Jesus.

Sanhedrin 90a ~Those who read the New Testament  will have no portion in the world to come.

Shabbath 116a (p. 569) ~Jews must destroy the books of the Christians, i.e. the New Testament.

Rosh Hashanah 17a ~ Christians (“minim”) and others who reject the Talmud will go to hell and be punished there for all generations.

Sanhedrin 105ab ~ “Jesus fornicated with his jackass.

Gittin 57a ~ Jesus is in hell and is being punished by being boiled in semen. Christians are boiled in dung.

Talmudic passages are also used as the basis for the writing titled Toledot Yeshu, which translated means The Geneaology of Yeshu. This writing reports a distorted view of who Jesus was, with many blasphemous statements directed towards Him, claiming that he was the rebellious illegitimate son of a Roman soldier (Pantera) born of unclean conception or niddah, who practiced witchcraft by speaking the sacred or ineffefable name of God who tried to lead Israel astray. In this writing, it is also stated that he set up a brick and worshipped it, and that he was hung, which denies the blood atonement, and His finished work on the cross. The actual Biblical name for Jesus in Hebrew is spelled Yod-Shin-Vav-Ayin which is Yeshua (H3442~H3443), a shortened form of Yehoshua (H3091). Yeshua means He is salvation or He saves. By shortening the name to Yeshu, they effectively deny His work of redemption. In order to get the name Yeshu, the ayin is dropped from His Biblical Hebrew name. All Hebrew letters represent something in Judaism. As an example, the lettter represents the hand. The letter ayin in the Hebrew language, is  known to be representative of the eyes. Here is an excerpt from the Toldoth Yeshu:

Miriam gave birth to a son and named him Yehoshua, after her brother. This name later deteriorated to Yeshu.

The above quote from the Toldoth Yeshu tells us that His name deteriorated to Yeshu. Deteriorated is a term that obviously does not have a positive connotation. It should be noted that informed believers object to the name Yeshu, because they understand it as a rabbinically modified form of the name Yeshua, and In some versions of the Toledot Yeshu, the name “YeSHU” is used as an acronym for “Yemach Shemo U’zikhro” which translated means “May his name and memory be blotted out”. Yemach comes from the root word Machah (H4229) meaning to blot, Shemo from the root word shem (H8034) which means name or reputation, and zikhro from the root word zayker (H2143), which means a memorial or remembrance. This statement is spoken in the form of a curse, because to erase the name and memory of a person is to erase all knowledge of their being. It should also be noted, that this phrase, or a shortened version is often used in Jewish writings when the name of a despised individual (Hitler, Amalek, Hayman, etc) has been mentioned. This could be a possible allusion to Psalms 109:13-15, where king David curses the enemies of Israel:

13 let his posterity be cut off; let their name be blotted out (yimach shemam) in the following generation;
14 let the iniquity of his fathers be remembered to YHWH; and let not the sin of his mother be blotted out;
15 let them be always before YHWH, so that He may cut off the memory of them from the earth; (v’yak’rat ma’erets zikram)

It could also be fashioned after the Biblical curses found in the Torah, that were placed on the enemies of Israel, such as Exodus 17:14 and Deuteronomy 25:19. In Exodus we find “machoh emche et zeykher Amaleq mitachat hashamayim” translated as “I will utterly blot out the remembrance of Amalek from under heaven”. Amalek is also cursed in Deuteronomy 25:19 as well.

In the Shem Tov Matthew, in many places the name of Jesus is also written in the Hebrew as Yeshu. The Shem Tov Matthew is a theologically altered middle ages manuscript (1390 ce), which was copied from a Latin text that originated from the Greek making it a third generation altered copy at best. This anti-Christian version of the book of Matthew was included in the writing titled “Even Bohan” which translates as “The Touchstone.” The Shem Tov Matthew has modified passages in some chapters that use Talmudic references, as well as some references from the Toldoth Yeshu.

This document was authored by Shem Tov, who resided in Spain during the fourteenth century.  He was an anti-Christian Jewish writer, who wrote this in an attempt to stop the Jewish people from accepting Christianity as their faith. The Shem Tov Matthew has anti-Christian polemical commentary written by him throughout the document. There are a handfull of Shem Tov manuscripts available, but many of them are not in agreement with each other.  Before his death, Shem Tov attempted to also translate a theologically altered version of the book of Mark, as he had done with Matthew, but the work was never completed.

In an excerpted article from the Jewish Encyclopedia quoted below, this was stated about Shem Tov, the author of Even Bohan, which includes the Shem Tov Matthew:

“…As a Talmudic scholar he carried on a correspondence with Sheshet. At Tarazona he completed his “Eben Bohan” (May, 1380 or 1385), a polemical work against baptized Jews…”

[IBN SHAPRUT (SHAFRUT, By : Richard Gottheil ;  Meyer Kayserling

http://www.jewishencyclopedia.com/view.jsp?artid=43&letter=I&search=shem%20tov%2″,,-1,0,,,,]

From the American Academy for Jewish Research (AAJR) of Brandeis Hebrew University, a well recognized school of traditional Jewish learning, we find this dissertation by student Joshua Levy. Mr. Levy is a doctoral candidate in the department of Hebrew and Judaic Studies at New York University, studying medieval Jewish history. His dissertation, titled “Sefer Milhamot Hashem, Chapter Eleven: The Earliest Jewish Critique of the New Testament”, is an examination of medieval Jewish criticisms of the Gospel of Matthew:

“This study will begin with a critical edition of one chapter of an early and important medieval Hebrew polemical text, chapter eleven of Jacob ben Reuben’s Sefer Milhamot Hashem. The critical edition will be accompanied by a translation and commentary. Additionally, the dissertation will examine subsequent Jewish and Christian reactions to this pathbreaking text. Written by Jacob ben Reuben, a Jew living in southern France in the late twelfth century, Sefer Milhamot Hashem is one of the earliest extant Jewish polemical texts. Sefer Milhamot Hashem, as a whole, presents Christian, biblically-based arguments for the truth of Christianity and the subsequent Jewish counterarguments. Chapter eleven strikes at the heart of Christianity: it is a Jewish critique of the Gospel of Matthew. My work on this chapter will lead to an examination of the influence that this chapter had on later authors. Shem Tov ibn Shaprut, a Spanish Jewish author of the late fourteenth century, used the criticisms of Jacob ben Reuben in his own translation of the Gospel of Matthew; I will examine his translation to see how Jacob’s attacks were adopted and modified. Nicholas de Lyra, a Franciscan friar of the early fourteenth century, was the first Christian to write a refutation to Jacob’s criticisms. I will use his refutation to understand how the Church responded to Jewish attacks.” [http://www.brandeis.edu/ajs/dissertations.php?id=28]

Some other articles by Joshua Levy can be found here:

http://www.myjewishlearning.com/history_community/Medieval/TheStory6321666/Christendom/Crusades.htm

As we can see from the article quoted above, Jacob ben Reuben was a Jewish rabbi who lived in Spain, who wrote polemical writings against Christianity during the twelveth century. He wrote a book titled the Sefer Milhamot Adonai or Book of the Wars of the Lord as a response to attacks by the convert Petrus Alphonsi. This book was comprised of twelve chapters. In it was refutations of the Christian arguments demonstrating Jesus as the promised Messiah of the TaNaKh (Old Testament), coupled with a written criticism of the Gospels as well as the book of Acts, in which he attempted to point out what he viewed as contradictions within the Book. This was the main foundation that Shem Tov built his own writings on. We can clearly see some of these theological alterations implemented by Shem Tov Ibn Shaprut, by simply comparing passages from the Shem Tov Matthew against any of the standard translations:

These passages fail to identify Jesus as the Christ/Messiah/Annointed one who was predicted in the Hebrew Scriptures (OT).

Mat 1:1 “…the generation of Jesus Christ…”

Shem Tov “…the generations of Jesus…”  [Jesus is written in the Hebrew text as Yeshu]

Mat 1:18 “…now the birth of Jesus Christ…”

Shem Tov “…birth of Jesus…”  [Jesus is written in the Hebrew text as Yeshu]

In these passages His ability to forgive the sin of His people is eliminated, which denies His Deity:

Mat 1:21 “…thou shalt call his name JESUS: for he shall save his people from their sins”

Shem Tov “…you will call his name Jesus because he will save my people from their sins.”

Mat 9:2 ” And, behold, they brought to him a man sick of the palsy, lying on a bed: and Jesus seeing their faith said unto the sick of the palsy; Son, be of good cheer; thy sins be forgiven thee.”

Shem Tov  “9:2, “They brought to him one who was sick with contractions, that is, paralitico, lying upon his bed. Jesus saw their faith and said to the sick man: Have courage my son. It is by the faith of God that your sins have been forgiven.”   [Jesus is written in the Hebrew text as Yeshu]

In this passage Jesus is made equal to the earthly scribes or sages.

Mat 7:29  “For he taught them as one having authority, and not as the scribes.”

Shem Tov “because he was preaching to them with great power, not as the rest of the sages

The part of this passage which stresses His Deity is eliminated:

Mat 28:20 – Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and,  lo ” I am with you always, even unto the end of the world ” Amen

Shem Tob – and teach them to carry out all the things which I have commanded you forever.

In this passage the coming of a future Kingdom is eliminated

Mat 6:10 “Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven.”

Shem Tov “may your kingdom be blessed; may your will be done in heaven and on earth”

In this passage the preaching of the gospel is eliminated.

Mat 11:5 “The blind receive their sight, and the lame walk, the lepers are cleansed, and the deaf hear, the dead are raised up, and the poor have the gospel preached to them.”

Shem Tov “the blind see, the lame walk, the lepers are cleansed, the deaf hear, the dead are revived and the poor are acquitted.”

In this passage the temple is exalted above Christ

Mat 12:6 “But I say unto you, That in this place is one greater than the temple.”

Shem Tov “Truly I say to you that the temple is greater than this

In this passage the behavior of the Pharisees is questioned, and not their false doctrine.

Mat 16:12  “Then understood they how that he bade them not beware of the leaven of bread, but of the doctrine of the Pharisees and of the Sadducees.”

Shem Tov “beware of the behavior of the Pharisees and the Saducees…”  [This does not have the verses broken up by number. There is a group of verses listed as 9-12 , with no verse 6, 7, or 8a.]

Mat 16:9-12  9 Do ye not yet understand, neither remember the five loaves of the five thousand, and how many baskets ye took up? 10 Neither the seven loaves of the four thousand, and how many baskets ye took up? 11 How is it that ye do not understand that I spake it not to you concerning bread, that ye should beware of the leaven of the Pharisees and of the Sadducees? 12 Then understood they how that he bade them not beware of the leaven of bread, but of the doctrine of the Pharisees and of the Sadducees.

Shem Tov  16:9-12, “Do you remember the five loaves and four thousand men how many seahs were left over? Therefore you should understand that I am not speaking of natural loaves but I am saying to you that you should (beware) of the behavior of the Pharisees and Sadducees.”

In this passage Elijah becomes the savior.

Mat 17:11  “And Jesus answered and said unto them, Elias truly shall first come, and restore all things. 12 But I say unto you, That Elias is come already, and they knew him not, but have done unto him whatsoever they listed. Likewise shall also the Son of man suffer of them. 13 Then the disciples understood that he spake unto them of John the Baptist.”

Shem Tov   “11. He answered them and said: Indeed Elijah will come and will save all the world. 12 “I say to you, he has already come, they did not know him, and they did to him according to their desire. (So) they will do to the Son of Man. 13 “Then the disciples understood that regarding John the Baptizer he was saying this””

Mat 18:11 “For the Son of man is come to save that which was lost.”

Shem Tov  18:11, “and the Son of Man has stopped saving the enemy.”

In these passages the Deity of Christ is eliminated.

Mat 19:28 “And Jesus said unto them, Verily I say unto you, That ye which have followed me, in the regeneration when the Son of man shall sit in the throne of his glory,…”

Shem Tov  “Jesus said: Truly I say to you who follow me, in the day of judgement when man sits upon the throne of his glory you also will sit upon the twelve thrones of the twelve tribes of Israel.”  [Jesus is written in the Hebrew text as Yeshu]

Mat 20:30 “…when they heard that Jesus passed by, cried out, saying, Have mercy on us, O Lord, thou son of David.”

Shem Tov  “…It was said to them: The prophet Jesus from Nazareth is coming. Then they cried out saying: Son of David, have mercy on us.” [Jesus is written in the Hebrew text as Yeshu]

Mat 28:9 “.. Jesus met them, saying, All hail. And they came and held him by the feet, and worshipped him.”

Shem Tov “As they were going Jesus passed before them saying: May the Name [HaShem} deliver you. They came near to him, bowed down to him, and worshipped him”     [Jesus is written in the Hebrew text as Yeshu]

In this passage preaching of the Gospel of Jesus Christ becomes, “the Anti-Christ” and “abomination of desolation.”

Mat 24:14-16 “And this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come. When ye therefore shall see the abomination of desolation spoken of by Daniel the prophet, stand in the holy place, (whoso readeth, let him understand Then let them which be in Judaea flee into the mountains: ”

Shem Tov “And this gospel, that is, evungili, will be preached In all the earth for a witness concerning me to all the nations and then the end will come. This is the Anti-Christ and this is the abomination which desolates which was spoken of by Daniel [as] standing in the holy place. Let the one who reads understand. Then those who are in Juda, let them flee to the mountains.”

In the passages below, Jesus is hanged in accordance to what is written in Talmudic writings and the Toldoth Yeshu, instead of being crucified. This eliminates His blood atonement and His finished work on the cross. The same Hebrew word is used to describe the death by hanging of Judas Iscariot in reference to being hanged by a rope.

Shem Tov

Matt 26:2

Do you not know that after two days will be the Passover and the Son of Man will be delivered into the hand of the Jews for the gallows.

KJV

Matt 26:2

Ye know that after two days is [the feast of] the passover, and the Son of man is betrayed to be crucified.

Shem Tov

Matt 27: 22,23

Pilate said to them: If so, what shall I do with Jesus who is called Messiah?  All of them answered that he should be hung. Pilate said to them:  What evil has he done?  Then they vigorously cried out: let them hang him, let them hang him, let them hang him.

KJV

Matt 27:22,23

Pilate saith unto them, What shall I do then with Jesus which is called Christ? [They] all say unto him, Let him be crucified. And the governor said, Why, what evil hath he done? But they cried out the more, saying, Let him be crucified.

Shem Tov

Matt 27:26

Then he released Barabbas (to them), and delivered to them Jesus for beating and affliction that they might hang him.

KJV

Matt 27:26

Then released he Barabbas unto them: and when he had scourged Jesus, he delivered [him] to be crucified.

Shem Tov

Matt 27:31

When they had mocked him (much), they stripped the robe from him, and dressed him in his own clothes, and gave orders to hang him.

As they were going out from the city, they met a man whose name was Simon the Canaanite.  They compelled him to carry the gallows, that is, “The Cross”.

27:35

When they had placed him on the gallows they divided his garments by lot

27:38

Then two thieves were hung with him, one on his right and one on his left.

KJV

Matt 27:31,32

And after that they had mocked him, they took the robe off from him, and put his own raiment on him, and led him away to crucify [him].

And as they came out, they found a man of Cyrene, Simon by name: him they compelled to bear his cross.

35 And they crucified him, and parted his garments, casting lots: that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophet, They parted my garments among them, and upon my vesture did they cast lots.

38 Then were there two thieves crucified with him, one on the right hand, and another on the left.

If Jesus were hung, He would have not been thirsty, because medical science has determined that it is impossible to drink or speak when one is being hung. This would then eliminate all of the words that are recorded in the Gospels that He spoke while on the cross, and He would have never been able to say “It is finished”. Also If He was hung, then there would have been no need for the soldier to pierce his side, because He would have been dead almost instantly,  which would deny His suffering. This errant translation of these passages denies all of His finished work, and also denies the cross and His finished work, because there is no blood shed during hanging, hence no redemption.

Yeshu is currently the name that many people refer to Jesus as when speaking modern Hebrew in Israel.

I would admonish anyone who has been using any of the above writings that I have evaluated as a source of learning and wisdom, to turn away from them immediately. In the NT writings we are told that Christ and Belial have no fellowship, therefore we need to understand that it is impossible to learn about who Jesus is and what He has done, from those who have not only openly denied Him and His finished work on the cross, but also have intentionally and deliberately blasphemed Him

********************************

posted with permission

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The Jewish Wedding and the Rapture

Understanding the Rapture from Jewish Wedding Traditions

Introduction

The title of this article speaks of what many are being taught. That being, Jewish Wedding traditions, parallel the Church as the Bride of Christ and the Groom, Christ, coming for His Bride as depicted within these traditions. The Jewish Wedding traditions being discussed are the rabbinic teachings found within the Talmud and Kabbalah. That means they come from those who had rejected Jesus Christ and which same writings denigrate and blaspheme Him. They are not a source for believers. Despite what many many are doing to inculcate Christian beliefs with them.

Many are being lured into Hebrew Roots by such ways as this. There is nowhere in Scripture where we are to take Jewish traditions as a way to interpret Scriptures. While these teachings concerning the Jewish Wedding traditions are much used by Messianic Jews, they are also found within the Christian community and those who specifically parallel them to the Rapture and as a way to attempt to confirm the rapture belief.

Some Jewish sites have stated that very little is provided in the Torah with regard to the procedures of a marriage, and therefore, the Talmud provides the method for providing a spouse, the form of the wedding ceremony, and the nature of the marital relationship.

Many become interested in Hebrew Roots and then involved with Hebrew Roots because of this issue, and with it the road is paved to accepting more false teachings and error. If you were to peruse most pre-trib forums and some Messianic ones, this teaching is being discussed and promoted time and again. And it is found written about on many websites.

As we will see with the various sources directly from Judaism -orthodox, reform, chasidic -the Jewish wedding ceremony is virtually the same. Some have different interpretations of meaning, with some more openly kabbalistic, but the source of the Jewish Wedding is defined by the Talmud, which all sects of Judaism follow. Understand that Judaism rejects Jesus Christ as Messiah, Savior and Lord.

It will be shown that the Jewish wedding ceremony and beliefs do not have, nor were they ever intended to have, anything to do with Jesus Christ. On the contrary, as stated from the one source, “You are hereby sanctified to me with this ring according to the Law of Moses and Israel.”. In other words, missing throughout the various descriptions is any part of the Jewish wedding ceremony being compared to, or a parallel to Christ, or a rapture. They do not exist. There is absolutely nothing anywhere in Judaism that points to a surprise wedding day scenario. And no where do we see anything that suggests He surprises–as a thief in the night– the bride and brings her to His fathers house where He has added a room for her.

What is being done by those who have taken snippets of the various Jewish wedding traditions, is they have taken pieces from one source, rearranged and reinvented the content and events and then made the declaration that the Jewish wedding tradition is really the story of Christ and the rapture, and attempt to match it to Scripture and or their opinion of particular Scripture or possible events. When the Jewish wedding in fact, does no such thing. It is entirely different than any scenario being declared as proving the rapture or the bride of Christ and so on. And the manipulation of these things goes against the very Scriptures said to be concerning all subjects involved.

It’s almost like the telephone game only worse. If I might make it clearer, its like reading one story and conveying a word or two from that first story, into a second and totally different story, and then saying it is identical to the first story. And then saying it is identical to a third and totally different story that uses a few of the same words.

As we will see with the various sources directly from Judaism -orthodox, reform, chasidic -the Jewish wedding ceremony is virtually the same. Some have different interpretations of meaning, with some more openly kabbalistic, but the source of the Jewish Wedding is defined by the Talmud, which all sects of Judaism follow. Understand that Judaism rejects Jesus Christ as Messiah, Savior and Lord.If one looks at the NT, we see one specific reference to a Jewish wedding where Jesus turned the water into wine. And the gist of the celebration was that it was normal for attendees to drink much wine, and after such was when the worst wine would have been served. Obviously that has nothing to do with Jesus Christ returning, regardless of what one believes concerning when Christ will return.

The following is a presentation of rabbinic thoughts, ie. from the Talmud and Kabbalah which all branches of Judaism use, and what some are declaring that this is how the Jewish wedding parallels the rapture, Christ and the Bride of Christ.

Part 1:

Many believe that the laws and customs relating to the Jewish wedding ceremony and all that surround it, date back to the giving of the Torah at Mt. Sinai. For many the Talmud is merely those things written down.

According to various sites and if one were to peruse the Talmud, the belief is that Adam and Eve were created as a single being, as siamese twins. Others say with two faces. God then separated them, making them husband and wife. Prior to marriage, it is believed that neither a man or woman is complete until they marry and become one whole being again. The wedding then is the unification of the two halves making them complete. This theme is repeated at every Jewish marriage. [15]

And just as Eve was brought to Adam (Genesis 2:22), so to the bride is brought to the groom. “Eve, who was created later, was shown thereby to be the higher life form of the two, because the potential of future life lies with her. Therefore, Adam was not complete until Eve was brought to him.” [8]

*** Note — Eve was brought to Adam. Adam did not go to get her.***

The Jewish wedding ceremonies are in several parts. The seven nuptial blessings speak of paradise regained, the miracle of God’s creation, and the creation of man and woman, so that mankind might endure, and specifically the continuity of the Jewish people. The sixth blessing refers to marriage in the scheme of creation: “Make these beloved companions as happy as were the first human couple in the Garden of Eden.” The joy of the Creator’s blessing is invoked at the inception of every Jewish home.

***Note, the seven blessings obviously have nothing to do with Jesus Christ or His return. If they are said over the cups of wine, then the significance of the cups means nothing as well to Christians.***

The thought is presented that if God created man, woman, and their marriage relationship; and if the creation of man and woman is good and marriage a blessing; then God is a conscious, albeit silent, partner in the marriage. Thus the ideal Jewish marriage is a triangle composed of two human beings and their Creator.

*It should be noted that the Jewish sources being accessed for this information also quote the Zohar for these wedding teachings ie the Kabbalah.

*** Note–the bride is taken to the groom. The groom does not come for the bride. Which is contrary to the claim of the parallel of this to Christ returning to rapture the church. While I am not going to cover all the ceremony and details, I will cover some very significant parts. ***

Many believe that Tuesday is the best day to be married because God said the third day was good twice, during creation, not just once like the other days. [23] From the Talmud, it is also said, “Wednesday is the appointed wedding-day for virgins, and Thursday for widows “. [22]

***That flies in the face of only God knowing the day or hour for the return of Christ. Some paralleling the rapture also state that the groom always came at midnight, therefore Christ will come at midnight, which again goes against that Scripture. Others state that the “catching away of the bride” or rapture is understood by knowing their Jewish roots which they believe means that Christ will come for His Bride on Rosh Hashanah. ***

Many marriages were arranged from childhood. The couple may not have met prior to the betrothal or wedding. The betrothal was a legal marriage and could only be dissolved by a formal divorce, yet the woman remained in her father’s house. The betrothal constituted the actual “purchase” of the bride, and her eventual move to the groom’s house, the “delivery” of the purchased “property.” That was when the actual wedding took place. [1, 12]

*** Note: the marriage was formal at the point of the signed ketuba- marriage contract- which was signed at the betrothal, not at the wedding itself, and requires a divorce to break it. This is contrary to the rapture parallel which states that the wedding ceremony in Heaven– after the rapture– formalizes the marriage. The Jewish wedding considers the bride a wife BEFORE the wedding. That belief is also found in Deuteronomy.***

Historically, the mohar was the original purchase price of the bride paid by the father of the groom to the father of the bride. The marriage in those times was an agreement between families not two individuals. Until the Middle Ages, a marriage consisted of two ceremonies, with celebrations and an interval between. The betrothal and the later wedding. The wedding meant that the betrothed woman was brought with a colorful procession, from her father’s house to the house of the groom. After the marriage was complete, the groom would have a small area or nook for his new bride in his father’s house.

Part 2:
The division of marriage into the two events originated in very ancient times when the marriage was an outward purchase and because women were viewed as chattel. By talmudic times, a betrothal celebration followed the signing of the marriage contract (ketubah). The groom drinks and then the bride drinks from the wine as part of the betrothal ceremony. The groom gave the bride an object valued at less than a small coin and in the presence of two witnesses, declared: “Be thou consecrated to me, be thou betrothed to me, be thou my wife.” The betrothal meant sanctification or setting apart and suggests a spiritualization of the original property transaction. [12]

*** Note the father ‘sells’ the bride to the groom. The groom does not redeem the bride. The bride’s father arranges a dowry to give to the groom. It is a business transaction between the groom and or father of the groom and the father of the bride, although normally the bride gives consent. Who is the Bride of Christ’s father?***

The wedding was about a year later, and the date was agreed upon in advance. The actual wedding was preceded by a lively procession-including the brides family and friends– escorting the bride to the home of the groom, where the rest of the invited guests have assembled. [8] The huppah or marriage canopy was originally a decorated pavilion in the house of the groom or his father, where the seven blessings were recited over a cup of wine.

-…It has become customary for the groom to veil his bride prior to the Chupah ceremony…When the groom walks into the room escorted by all the men, it is the first time he and his bride have seen each other in a week. [9]

-It is customary for the Bride and Groom not to see each other for three days to a week before the wedding. The groom will not see the bride until just before the ceremony, at the veiling of the bride.[10a]

***Note, the wedding date was set and agreed upon by all involved, and the bride and groom saw each other between the betrothal and up until the week before the wedding. For that week they did not see each other. Contrary to what many proclaim as equivalent to Christ returning with a shout, and not knowing when, as a thief in the night. And contrary to the suggestion that the bride was waiting for a year with her wedding gown on…never knowing when he might arrive for her. And contrary for all Christians who not only have the indwelling of the Holy Spirit, which is the Spirit of Christ, we have ongoing communion with Him.

In other words we are not separated from having access to Him.

Heb 13:5 Let your conversation be without covetousness; and be content with such things as ye have: for he hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee.

Many are teaching that a shofar is sounded and a shout and such and the groom arrives at midnight to abduct the bride, but to date, not only have the Jewish sources researched not stated that as a practice, one specifically refuted that belief and wanted to know where the idea came from, as it was not a Jewish tradition.[2]The bride is not seen by the groom until AFTER she has arrived at the groom’s father’s house and the veiling of the bride takes place, after the receptions.

While the concept of abducting the bride is not found in any Jewish resources to date, the concept of abducting the bride was part of both Greek and Roman wedding rituals. Generally speaking the celebrations started at the bride’s parents home and just before leaving for the groom’s parents home, after the marriage ceremony, part of leaving was the bride being grabbed by the wrist and pulled from the parents, portraying the abduction and change from her childhood, while something was recited. A procession took place with family and friends lighting the way to the groom’s residence, which was often within his parent’s home. [21]

The Jewishencyclopedia.com has an article which states that: “…After betrothal the bride was subject to the same restrictions as a wife (Deut. xxii. 23-24)…central features in later times were the wedding-procession and the wedding-feast. The bridegroom in festive attire and accompanied by his friends went to the home of the bride, whence she, likewise in bridal garments, veiled, and accompanied by her companions, was led to the house of his parents (Isa. lxi. 10; Judges xiv. 10-11; Jer. ii. 32; Isa. xlix. 18; Ps. xlv. 8-15). The procession was enlivened with songs by, or in praise of, the bride and bridegroom, and was lighted, if in the evening, by torches or lamps (Jer. vii. 34, xvi. 9, xxv. 10; I Macc. ix. 37-39; Matt. xxv. 1-12; comp. Ps. xlv. and the Canticles, possibly representing such wedding-songs)….” [19]

Unfortunately none of the references, Scriptural or extra biblical state that the groom went and abducted the bride and the wedding date was unknown.. On the contrary, for example, Samson went with his parents to the woman’s father’s house and made a feast and they celebrated there for seven days. The Maccabees citation shows the bride and family traveling to the groom’s home–during the day– where he and his family and friends went out to meet them. Some cited references are merely speaking of the voice of the bride and groom no longer being there because God will deal with the disobedience. Also note, the bride was not surprised by the apparent arrival of the groom and friends, but was ready with all her companions. She knew he was coming and when, if that rendition is true. [19]

Some rapture parallels suggest that when the groom approached the bride’s home, he would shout and blow the shofar (ram’s horn trumpet) so that she had some warning to gather her belongings to take into the wedding chamber. The groom and his friends would come into the bride’s house and get the bride and her bridesmaids. Again, to date, Jewish tradition does not contain these ideas or practices.

For Christians the Scriptures state that when Christ returns, there will be only a warning which happens, in a twinkling of an eye. There won’t be time to gather anything. ***

Part 3:
Traditionally, a bride takes her first trip to the mikveh (ritual bath) the day before the wedding. This is when she is believed to be cleansed and this mikveh immersion signifies rebirth and reflects the upcoming change in personal status. [9, 11]

According to the Talmud, the ultimate source of all water is the river that emerged from Eden. By immersing themselves in the mikveh, people participate in the wholeness of Eden and are reborn as pure as Adam and Eve.

***If the bride did not know the date of the wedding, she would not have taken the mikveh the day before. Although the Jewish Wedding allegory replaces baptism with the mikveh, they are different procedures. Baptism requires a pastor or leader to submerge one backwards under the water [usually up to waist deep] and raise them up out of the water. Mikveh requires a deep [a little over chest deep] fresh water source in which one is completely naked and alone.. One must be physically clean before one does a mikveh and must shower with soap and water beforehand…It is a mystic experience and not a “baptism” as an outward expression from sin and into Messiah. It is a ritual process to purify one’s self from uncleanness [tamei]. This does not refer to a sinful condition, but Talmudically defined impurity. The purification system of the OT Temple is not rendered as a “mikveh” – although Judaism teaches this. Mikveh, in the OT text, is used only as a body of water. It appears to be a Rabbinic addition [middle ages].

Joh 7:38 He that believeth on me, as the scripture hath said, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water.

For Christians, we have no righteousness in ourselves and our righteousness comes from Christ. No ceremony can make us clean before God. It is only because of Christ that we become a sweet savor to God, when we accept Him as Savior and Lord, and are cleansed from all unrighteousness.

If the groom ie Christ has already come for the bride, how can the bride be purified after she is in heaven? Are the unclean to be in heaven?

1Jn 1:9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.

The mortal and imperfect cannot enter heaven.

1 Corinthians 15:49-54 And as we have borne the image of the earthy, we shall also bear the image of the heavenly. 50. Now this I say, brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God; neither doth corruption inherit incorruption. 51. Behold, I shew you a mystery; We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed, 52. In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed. 53. For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality. 54. So when this corruptible shall have put on incorruption, and this mortal shall have put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written, Death is swallowed up in victory. ***

The day of the wedding the groom and bride fast and repent of their sins, and they are guaranteed that if they do so, all their sins are forgiven.

Thus, they start out their new life together with a clean slate. [2, 3, 7, 8, 9 etc]

*** To every Christian who has accepted that the rabbinic Jewish wedding parallels the rapture and the Bride of Christ and Christ–what does this say about our Lord and Savior if you want to make this parallel? ?

What Scriptures tells you that Jesus Christ needs to repent of His sins?

2Co 5:21 For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him.

1Jn 3:5 And ye know that he was manifested to take away our sins; and in him is no sin.

1Co 6:11 And such were some of you: but ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God.

Heb 10:22 Let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience, and our bodies washed with pure water.
* meaning washed by Christ, the living and pure water.

Rev 1:5 And from Jesus Christ, who is the faithful witness, and the first begotten of the dead, and the prince of the kings of the earth. Unto him that loved us, and washed us from our sins in his own blood, ***

Part 4:
A traditional Jewish wedding begins with separate receptions for the groom and the bride. The marriage contract is often read at the grooms reception. Traditionally this is followed by a bedeken ceremony, where the groom covers the brides face with a veil. Some suggest it is to make sure the bride is the betrothed woman, and to prevent the sort of switch that Laban perpetrated against Jacob, in Genesis 29. The groom and his entourage enter the women’s section, and the groom will place the veil on his wife. Others take a more mystical view.

***Jesus said Joh 10:27 My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me.
He doesn’t need to check the bride. He already knows who the bride is. ***

The groom and wife are then separate again as preparations are completed. The groom then dons white garments and ashes are placed on his head to fulfill. “If I forget you, O Jerusalem… if I do not place Jerusalem above the crown of my joy…” (Psalms 137:5) They are reminded that their joy cannot be complete ” until G-d’s kingdom is complete, until all of Israel is brought back from exile and the Holy Temple is rebuilt.”[8] White is reminiscent of shrouds (burial linens), and reminds the groom of the cycle of life, prompting him to repent, if he hasn’t already. [8]

***If the bride arrives at the grooms home where they are put in separate rooms, and the groom goes to the brides room to put a veil on her after their separate receptions, then leaves her, again, what Scripture can this parallel? Aren’t we to be with Jesus forevermore? Isn’t this saying that the groom is not ready for the marriage ceremony, but must change to new clean white clothes, and if going by what some rapture parallels have taught, the bride arrived in her wedding gown–worn for a year….how clean would she be? If the groom is unready and needing to make the changes after the bride has arrived….isn’t the parallel really stating the groom isn’t fully ready for the bride? And isn’t that contrary to the Scriptures concerning Christ coming back? It is we who are to be spiritually ready for Christ’s return.***

The marriage ceremony is conducted under a huppah or marriage canopy, which is supposed to signify the new home they are creating, and that their home is to be open to others. Both the groom and the bride are escorted separately to the huppah by two escorts, which some suggest is paralleling Moses and Aaron, and Israel’s marriage to God, and or “just as Adam and Eve were escorted by angels to their wedding.”[8]

The groom “is brought to the chupah first, and the bride is brought to him, just as Eve was brought to Adam (Genesis 2:22). Eve, who was created later, was shown thereby to be the higher life form of the two, because the potential of future life lies with her. Therefore, Adam was not complete until Eve was brought to him” [8]

***Note–the bride is escorted to the waiting groom for the marriage ceremony. This does not parallel the Scriptures concerning Christ coming for His Bride. That aside from, Adam and Eve being married and escorted together by angels to their wedding, of which we have no record. The chuppah signifies that they create a new home TOGETHER – but we do not help create a new Home – God does. Jesus went to prepare a place for us, and also said there are many mansions. Is Jesus escorted to His Home to get ready?. ***

Technically, the couple were married if two proper witnesses observed them perform the ceremony together with complete consent. The bride circles the groom seven times. The groom places the ring on the bride’s finger, reciting “You are hereby sanctified to me with this ring according to the Law of Moses and Israel.” [8] The marriage contract is read at this time to show the distinction between this part of the ceremony and the next.

***Note If we belong to Jesus Christ, then what purpose is the wedding ceremony, with a wedding ring and contract? aren’t we already covenanted with Him having been sealed by the Holy Spirit? Isn’t His shed blood the symbol by which we know we are His? Aren’t we already “contracted” to Christ through the New Covenant of His blood in which the Law now has no hold? We can only be sanctified by Christ. ***

The actual wedding, the second part of the Chupah Ceremony, is where, the Seven Blessings are recited. At most weddings, various Rabbis or relatives are called upon to recite the various blessings. Again, it starts with the blessing over wine. That is the first of the seven blessings…[8]

As stated previously, the seven nuptial blessings speak of paradise regained, the miracle of God’s creation, and the creation of man and woman, so that mankind might endure. The sixth blessing refers to marriage in the scheme of creation…

The groom breaks a glass to remember that even during their most joyous occasions they must mourn the destruction of the Holy Temple. As mentioned above, they must always remember that God’s kingdom is not complete until the Holy Temple is rebuilt. [8]

***Note This points to the fact that the cup of wine cannot be what Christ is giving the Bride for He is the Temple and was resurrected. God’s Kingdom is not of this world, so a rebuilt temple is a moot point. God’s Kingdom was never incomplete.***

The couple are escorted to a private room, which the groom has taken possession of earlier. The escorts stay outside the door for a few minutes and then go back to the celebrations. They are not fully married until this seclusion takes place. This is when the couple eats a small snack to break the pre-wedding fast, and then in a very short time -usually about a half hour- they rejoin the guests, the dance commences…. [8, 10a]

*** Note. The couple do NOT consummate the marriage as many are teaching in the parallel to the rapture. Again, the couple do not have sex at this time. They ate a snack and rejoined the guests for a meal, dancing and celebration.

Some are teaching that the groom would take his bride, immediately after getting her, to the wedding chamber where they would spend seven days. The groom’s friend would wait outside the door and when the marriage was consummated, the groom would tell his friend through the door. The friend would then announce it to the assembled guests. The guests would celebrate for seven days until the bride and bridegroom emerged from the wedding chamber. This is so blatantly false that one wonders who invented these things and with such bias.***

The wedding feast follows which is a commanded meal, accompanied by good food, dancing, and singing, where it is a commandment to help the couple rejoice. After the feast, the grace after meals is recited over one cup of wine, and the seven blessings over another. The two cups of wine are poured into a third, from which bride and groom drink. For the next week the couple traditionally feast at the homes of friends and relatives, repeating the seven blessings after each meal. [8]

***Any ideas how this parallels Christ and Scripture? As stated previously, the seven blessings have nothing to do with Jesus Christ or His return. If they are said over the cups of wine, then the significance of the cups means nothing to Christians as well.

The bible tells us not to add to scripture, or take away from it. Once you start doing this you are walking on thin ice and you are leaving yourself wide open to error.

Nowhere does the Bible tell us to interpret scripture by looking to man’s traditions.

It is only God’s word that is inspired, not traditions. You can’t cherry pick parts of this parallel and leave other bits out as those do who are promoting this teaching. It is no different than those who claim the talmud and kabbalah can be used by believers. They neglect to inform that the writers rejected Jesus Christ, denigrate and blaspheme Him because they do not believe He is the Messiah and God manifest in the flesh. That means beliefs and interpretations are going to be far different than those who believe Christ and read the OT in light of the NT, which is fully rejected by those who believe the Talmud and kabbalah.

When this tradition is held up to Scripture – it fails miserably – it is not compatible with Scripture and therefore not compatible with Christian beliefs.

Titus 1 13- 14 KJV
This witness is true. Wherefore rebuke them sharply, that they may be sound in the faith; Not giving heed to Jewish fables, and commandments of men, that turn from the truth.

———————————————————————

Bibliography:

Some Rapture sites promoting Jewish Wedding Traditions and the Rapture:

The Rapture and the Jewish Wedding > JEWISH WEDDING AND THE RAPTURE : Only a Pre-Tribulation Rapture will fit into this scenario. http://bridalcovenant.com/wedding1.html

THE BRIDE OF CHRIST BY PERRY STONE >

http://melqoshrain.wetpaint.com/page/THE+BRIDE+OF+CHRIST+BY+PERRY+STONE”.

Jewish Wedding Traditions & Rapture Study > http://www.his-forever.com/jewish_weddings_rapture.htm

A CHRISTIAN LOVE STORY The Glorious Future of the Believer! (Understanding the Rapture, through the Jewish Wedding!) By Zola Levitt > http://www.rr-bb.com/showthread.php?t=71107

The Jewish Wedding Ceremony and the Bride of Christ > http://bibleprophesy.org/rapturewedding.htm originally from http://www.ReturnToGod.com

Chuck Missler > http://www.khouse.org/articles/2003/449/printBehold the Bridegroom Comes by Charles L. Monk http://www.believersweb.org/view.cfm?ID=801

Jewish Marriage Customs : Behold, The Bridegroom Comes!  by Dr. Renald Showers, Chairman of the Pastoral Studies Dept. Philadelphia College of Bible (year unknown) Distributed by, The Friends of Israel Gospel Ministry, Inc., W. Collingswood, N.J. http://www.biblestudymanuals.net/jewish_marriage_customs.htm

Arnold Fruchtenbuam’s teaching which is found being used by people like Tommy Ice> raptureready. http://www.ariel.org/ffruit.htm#top > The Jewish Wedding System and the Bride of Messiah

The Ancient Jewish Wedding Parallels, The Rapture and Rosh HaShannah http://curtis.loftinnc.com/Rosh_HaShannah.htm.

Footnotes/Bibliography

1. Medieval Jewish civilization By Norman Roth pg 424

http://books.google.com/books?id=eUp9OcC…utput=html

2. http://www.jewishwedding.info/jewish-wed…f-overview , talmud, complete human being, fast, white robe, not see for a week, separate receptions, veiling, chupah, escorted, bride circles, wine, wedding ring, according to law of moses quote, reading of contract, seven blessings, breaking of glass, seclusion, eat, rejoin and meal., eat at others homes for a week, blesssings at each meal.

2. http://en.allexperts.com/q/Israel-211/Je…ustoms.htm

3. http://www.chabad.org/library/article_cd…edding.htm forgiven of sins, fast,
4. http://www.chabad.org/multimedia/livingt…Part-1.htm groom escorted first, then bride, bride circles seven times
5. http://www.chabad.org/library/article_cd…-Souls.htm orthodox wedding
6 http://www.chabad.org/library/article_cd…eiling.htm separate recetptions, rebecca/laban,
7 http://www.chabad.org/library/howto/wiza…-Panim.htm separate receptions, sins forgiven, dont see each other for a week prior, see again at the veiling. ketubah

8. http://www.beingjewish.com/cycle/wedding.html

9. http://www.bellaonline.com/articles/art8262.asp

10 a. http://www.bnaimitzvahguide.com/jewish.w…itions.php

10. http://society.indianetzone.com/weddings…edding.htm

11. http://www.myjewishlearning.com/life/Lif…kveh.shtml

12. http://www.myjewishlearning.com/life/Rel…iage.shtml

13. http://www.myjewishlearning.com/life/Rel…iage.shtml

14 http://www.jewish-wedding-rabbi.com/jewi…emony.html

15. http://www.jewish-history.com/minhag.htm siamse twins, etc http://ohr.edu/ask_db/ask_main.php/104/Q1/

16. http://mobile.myjewishlearning.com/lifec…ncient.htm

17 http://mobile.myjewishlearning.com/lifec…rriage.htm

18. http://mobile.myjewishlearning.com/lifec…Custom.htm

19. http://www.jewishencyclopedia.com/view.j…3&letter=M

20. http://www.aish.com/literacy/lifecycle/G…edding.asp

21. Greek weddings >> http://ablemedia.com/ctcweb/consortium/a…dings.html
>> http://ablemedia.com/ctcweb/consortium/a…ings1.html
>> http://ablemedia.com/ctcweb/consortium/a…ings2.html
>> http://ablemedia.com/ctcweb/consortium/a…ings3.html
Roman weddings >> http://ablemedia.com/ctcweb/consortium/a…ings5.html
>> http://ablemedia.com/ctcweb/consortium/a…ings6.html
>> http://ablemedia.com/ctcweb/consortium/a…ings7.html

22. wednesday http://www.jewishencyclopedia.com/view.j…&artid=189

23. tuesday http://scheinerman.net/judaism/life-cycle/marriage.html

Also > A guide to the Zohar By Arthur Green pg 75
> http://books.google.ca/books?id=mdp1mDia…ry_s&cad=0

The Zohar By Daniel Chanan Matt >
http://books.google.ca/books?id=gHXqB_IT…t&resnum=3


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