Torah-observant Christian?

Prober

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Do you think the concept of being a torah-observant Christian would be silly?

Would you describe or provide a good link for the yearly Jewish feasts and what a person does on them?
 

dauer

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Prober,

By Judaism, a torah-observant Christian would be a noahide. Separate category of mitzvot, etc. And there is noahide lit out there, including by noahides, who are probably more qualified to discuss the issue than I. Although some of the noahide lit is also coming from fairly ultra-orthodox circles and can sometimes be a little restrictive. I know for example that Chabad's now working around that, and they even talk about, I forget the term they use, I think it's hasidic gentiles.

There are also so-called "messianic Jews" which isn't really a correct name, Christian group that adopt Jewish practices. When it's done as a way of getting back to Christianity's roots or closer to Jesus or something like that I say great. Go for it. I don't mind the syncretism. I think it's a healthy and natural thing for all religions to some degree. But those groups who do it to try and convert Jews, that bothers me.

If you're looking for info on the various Jewish festivals and holy days, I think the best resource is really

MyJewishLearning.com: Week of January 15, 2007: Jews and Blacks, Martin Luther King Da

So you go there and pick a special day, tu bishvat for example, and to me the best way to go about it is follow the guided learnings in the left hand column, starting with the simplest and moving forward. That way you get as much or as little info as you want, and it's all written by different people from all different backgrounds, often excerpted from published books. The one thing not under holidays is Shabbat, which (imo quite rightly) is under Daily Life & Practice.

There's also Judaism 101. One author so it's a little more concise, but it's also representing only one viewpoint because of that, and also has less info, although there is quite a bit there, and all of the most important stuff.

Dauer
 

Quahom1

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Do you think the concept of being a torah-observant Christian would be silly?
. Yep. Can't observe the 613 mizhvat, and still be Christian. Because the laws aren't required...oh and there are jews for jesus. Can't take that away from them. That would be vain...
 

dauer

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Q,

oh and there are jews for jesus. Can't take that away from them. That would be vain...


I'm not exactly sure what you mean by that, but Jews for Jesus is a Christian evangelical group that disguises itself as Judaism in order to try and gain converts. Not really sure what you meant though.

Dauer
 

Quahom1

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I should have checked with you before I posted. I'm in error and I apologize.

I thought they were Jews who discovered Christ as the savior. They kept their roots but had a revelation...again, I appologize.


v/r

Joshua
 

Phyllis Sidhe_Uaine

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I should have checked with you before I posted. I'm in error and I apologize.

I thought they were Jews who discovered Christ as the savior. They kept their roots but had a revelation...again, I apologize.


v/r

Joshua

Or checked with bb (JforJ is his "favorite" subject [be sure to have plenty of cute ferrets with you as an apology.])

Anyway, twenty lashes with a wet linguine (along with a couple of cute :kitty:s and a few cute ferrets.)

Phyllis Sidhe_Uaine
 

bananabrain

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HARRUMPH.

josh - feel free to do a search on any of my posts on the subject of those duplicitous, dishonest heretical groups that refer to themselves as "messianic jews" and come back to me. otherwise, what dauer said about noahides.

b'shalom

bananabrain
 

Prober

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Thanks all!

I was thinking about Jesus' being a Jew and wondering if he really meant for his views to become this giant new thing (religion) or if he was just adding meaning to (as he said) "the law and the prophets".

Maybe he expected his listeners to view their religion with "new eyes".

I'm not trying to change your opinion or preach, just thinking...

So, if I think that way, am I a Hasidic Gentile?

Can you believe in Jesus and be a Jew or is that too far off the track?

Again, thanks.:)
 

Prober

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Okay. A couple more questions...

01. Is any discussion of Jesus offensive? Is it something that should be left alone?

02. I'm reading on a noahide page that non-Jews are not allowed to keep Sabbath. Is that true? Comments?

Thanks.
 

Prober

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And another one...Is it the responsibility of all Jews to share and teach the truth to hasten the coming of the Moshiach?
 

dauer

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So, if I think that way, am I a Hasidic Gentile?

The hasidic gentile thing is a chabad thing. They're a very orthodox hasidic group that do a lot of missionizing to to people less religious that we should all be orthodox. The way they understand it I think it has more to do with being a strict noahide who accepts Judaism as having gotten it right but feels they don't belong as a jew, and they're very anti-Christianity. So no, I don't think that term would be appropriate.

You're probably a noahide by default. If you accepted being a noahide because you thought it was the right thing to do as per Torah, and not just because you happen to be fulfilling it, that would be more of the path of the whole noahide movement. But the noahide movement also rejects jesus' divinity in all corners afaik.

Can you believe in Jesus and be a Jew or is that too far off the track?

Well, if you believed Jesus was somehow divine, that could be a problem. However, and what I say now might be disagreeable to some, we do have for example Rebbe Nachman of Bratslav who said that if you visit his tomb in Uman and you say this special arrangement of psalms that he said was very powerful, and then you give even the smallest amount of tzedakah, he'll even grab you by your peyos, your sidecurls, to pull you out of gehenna. Sounds very Christian, no? A rebbe who can save people, in that sense. But he's also not thought of as divine. However his hasidim still find a connection to him via his writings and the practices he suggested. So I don't think someone could believe Jesus was divine and be a Jew. I'm not even quite sure someone could go as far as the breslovers, just because of the history Judaism and Christianity have had, and the fact that they've separate. But if a Jew thought of Jesus as a wise teacher, that is probably less of a problem.

01. Is any discussion of Jesus offensive? Is it something that should be left alone?

No. Evangelizing is offensive. Discussion of Jesus is no different than discussion of any other historical figure. I think there's a false idea some people have that Jews hate Jesus or are absolutely offended by any talk about him. He's not really relevant to Judaism as a religion, but tthere's nothing wrong with talking about him.

02. I'm reading on a noahide page that non-Jews are not allowed to keep Sabbath. Is that true? Comments?

Yes. Going by halachah. If a non-Jew wanted to keep shabbos they would have to make at least one small violation, maybe doing a small type of melachah before nightfall on Saturday. That's also what converts do, before they finish the process.

And another one...Is it the responsibility of all Jews to share and teach the truth to hasten the coming of the Moshiach?

Well, personally, I don't believe in the traditional concept of the moshiach. However, going by the traditional concept the general answer would be no. More about being an example by behavior. If the moshiach really comes and everything is fulfilled, there will be no question in anyone's mind. So it's not really necessary to go around trying to convince people of something.

Dauer
 

Prober

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Yes. Going by halachah. If a non-Jew wanted to keep shabbos they would have to make at least one small violation, maybe doing a small type of melachah before nightfall on Saturday. That's also what converts do, before they finish the process.
Dauer

I'm a Seventh-day Adventist since birth (aside from falling away during my teens, etc) so I keep the Sabbath, in the manner in which I was taught - starting Friday night at sundown until Saturday at sundown, no work, as little cooking and cleaning as possible, etc.

Since I'm probably not keeping it in an exactly Jewish way, am I correct in assuming that I'm probably making some kind of error which would be the "melachah".

Is that correct?

Is it to keep people from doing holy things in a "profane" way?

Thanks, again for your comments.
 

dauer

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Prober

Since I'm probably not keeping it in an exactly Jewish way, am I correct in assuming that I'm probably making some kind of error which would be the "melachah".

Yes. Melachah is a Hebrew word that's generally only used for the types of work forbidden for Shabbos. Some say the word refers to creative work, that is works that are actively manipulating the world around us, others say maybe a better way to understand it would be delagatable work, but there are a whole number of categories, each with different acts that would be related to it, of melachah.

Is it to keep people from doing holy things in a "profane" way?

Well I mean I suppose that's one way you could look at it. But I think you could say the same thing about doing anything in a manner perscribed as opposed to a manner that is not supposed to be done. What it really has to do with traditionally is that Shabbos is something that, according to the Torah, was given to the Jewish people, not the world, for them to keep and follow. The covenant with noah, and the noahide laws contained, do not mention shabbos. What makes Judaism Judaism according to Judaism is a particular relationship with God that is defined by the 613 mitzvot.


Dauer
 

juantoo3

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Kindest Regards, all! especially Prober for the OP, and Dauer for this response:

There are also so-called "messianic Jews" which isn't really a correct name, Christian group that adopt Jewish practices. When it's done as a way of getting back to Christianity's roots or closer to Jesus or something like that I say great. Go for it. I don't mind the syncretism. I think it's a healthy and natural thing for all religions to some degree. But those groups who do it to try and convert Jews, that bothers me.
It's taken me a little while, and some thoroughly unexpected backlash from our resident curmudgeon whose opinions I hold in the highest of esteem, to realize what Dauer said is true. When I first came to CR, I considered myself sympathetic to the concept of messianic judaism, completely unaware of the political connotations attached. I am still sympathetic to the underlying concept minus the conversion tactics, and I can appreciate the term "hasidic gentiles," as well as *now* understanding the chagrin of those who are targeted by a conversion campaign.

If I could take exception to only one teensy bit of Dauer's comment; I don't personally see "hasidic gentile / messianic jew" as some form of syncretism. To me, it is a point of returning to the basis, the *real* fundamentals. If Jesus was born a Jew, to a Jewish mother, raised by a Jewish father in an observant Jewish home, having been taught Jewish tradition and having kept Jewish Kosher and observances, teaching Jewish law to Jewish followers, and having died a Jewish criminals death as a Jewish scapegoat and substitute Jewish sacrifice to satisfy Jewish ritual, then to me the return to Jewish roots is a no brainer. It is the unloading of all of the *pagan* trappings that have been piled high onto the fundamentally radical Jewish teachings of the man Christians call Christ. Indeed, this is a fundamental teaching of Jesus, specifically to do away with the traditions of men. I haven't made an effort to count the times this was said, but I seem to recall this lesson being made on more than one occasion. It scarcely seems logical to me, to dump the Jewish "traditions" in favor of pagan ones.

So if I do have some conflict remaining in my soul and in my search, it is how much Jewish tradition to maintain. I suppose, in the eyes of Judaism, as a Noahide I am free not to maintain any Jewish tradition. I have been told so much as the 613 are not for me anyway, that I would be effectively stupid to take them up without full conversion to the Jewish faith. Which of course, from my point of view, would defeat the purpose.

So I wander in a no man's land...too Jewish to be Christian, too Christian to be Jewish...and neither side is very sympathetic. So I will listen to my heart and follow where G-d leads me.
 
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dauer

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Juantoo,

Thank you for speaking so openly about this subject. There hasn't been much voiced simpathy on this matter, and it really helps. And I would take it a step further even than what you said, it's not just that it's a conversion campaign. When evangelicals write tracts based around OT scripture to target Jews, that's even a separate matter, and one that while I still don't like, I don't find offensive in the same way. It is the dressing of one tradition in another's clothing for the explicit reason of subversion that really upsets me. To me, it's all very dishonest, and it shows a lack of respect for the tradition being infiltrated.

I do want to address one thing you said, if only to clarify. I don't think there's anyone who would say a gentile is stupid for taking on the 613 mitzvot. There are in fact certain areas that in the developing noahide works, (and this is from the far right side) noahides are being encouraged to look into, primarily ethical things like the mitzvot around speech, around tzedakah, and modesty. And hanukah for example, is a holiday that among active noahides who are doing the not-jewish jewish thing is a really big deal, because it's post-biblical and thus not related to the brit with Israel, the covenant with Israel, and so that has become a big focus. And there are also noahides who do practice shabbos for example, maybe turning a light on early. More than anything, that's a nod of respect to Judaism, recognizing that it is something to be taken seriously, and not frivolously. I just wanted to clarify, no enmity from our end about it. It's just related to a particular contractual agreement between two parties. For the same reason I can't claim ownership to a business that does not belong to me.

Now of course including the NT you could then say that you're included now via an extension of the brit, and thus you are able to operate within those boundaries, and under different terms than the previous agreement. And myself, I would not be one to discourage that. If it's what works for you (and I do not know this is the approach you take) regardless of your beliefs about the nature of God then I think that's great. You've found something that works and that in itself is a blessing. But I have been speaking to the traditional ways in which Judaism relates to these things.

Dauer

Edit: And on the other side, I think you would find simpathy among those messianics who are not in it to convert Jews, but for the other reasons that have been discussed here and possibly in the other thread. I don't understand why Jews for Jesus would find simpathy among Christians, but a group doing the same without interest in active conversion of Jews would not.
 

juantoo3

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Kindest Regards, Dauer, and thank you for the considerate response!
I do want to address one thing you said, if only to clarify. I don't think there's anyone who would say a gentile is stupid for taking on the 613 mitzvot.
I don't want to seem to be putting words in people's mouths, "stupid" was my term. I forget now exactly how the conversation unfolded, but it was made pretty clear to me I was barking up the wrong tree, at least in that person's opinion. Of course, I didn't listen to my own father's opinion until as I got older he seemed to get wiser, another subject for another day...

Now of course including the NT you could then say that you're included now via an extension of the brit, and thus you are able to operate within those boundaries, and under different terms than the previous agreement. And myself, I would not be one to discourage that. If it's what works for you (and I do not know this is the approach you take) regardless of your beliefs about the nature of God then I think that's great.
This is very close to how I have grown to see things. Consider...the "Anglo" side of my heritage is likely descended from the ten lost tribes of the House of Israel. The Irish side of my heritage is descended from one of the daughters of the last king of Judah taken by Nebuchadnezzer into bondage in Babylon, carried to Ireland by the prophet Jeremiah, evidenced by the Stone of Scone. The Traditions of Glastonbury suggest the first Christian church ever built, was built in the south of England, "Brit"ain, the land of the covenant, by Joseph of Arimathea the tin trader and uncle to Jesus. All of these point to my heritage being...umm, black sheep cousins...to the Jewish faith. The more reason in my mind to find agreement, respect and a harmonious relationship with the Jewish tradition.

You've found something that works and that in itself is a blessing.
Well, I won't know until I get there...will I? That shred of doubt keeps me on my toes.

But I have been speaking to the traditional ways in which Judaism relates to these things.
Indeed, and I would encourage you to continue.

And on the other side, I think you would find simpathy among those messianics who are not in it to convert Jews, but for the other reasons that have been discussed here and possibly in the other thread. I don't understand why Jews for Jesus would find simpathy among Christians, but a group doing the same without interest in active conversion of Jews would not.
JforJ are a fringe group at best, I don't think mainstream Christianity even gives them a second thought. Other than the occasional debate over the merits of Paul, I don't think there has been any more than random consideration of the subject discussed on the Christianity boards. Especially if one were to discount my posts, which have been deliberately presented as non-conformist conformity, rather than espousing any "one" particular way. If anything, considering conversion, I would think a group "missionizing" would garner support among mainstream Christianity that a group that just seemed oddly heretical would not. So there is a political element to be considered, and for that I am grateful to BB for opening my eyes. It was never at any time since I have been on CR to attempt to convert anybody. I simply wander where my heart and the Good Lord leads... :D
 

Prober

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So I wander in a no man's land...too Jewish to be Christian, too Christian to be Jewish...and neither side is very sympathetic. So I will listen to my heart and follow where G-d leads me.

Many thanks. You have described what I was thinking.

I'm trying to get back to the roots to really be what G-d wants me to be.

I don't know that I can give up Jesus' divinity. If that's what G-d wants me to do, I'm sure he'll let me know.

Truth or conditioning?

Thanks again,
Mark
 

juantoo3

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Kindest Regards, Prober!

Apologies for having missed this earlier.
Many thanks. You have described what I was thinking.

I'm trying to get back to the roots to really be what G-d wants me to be.
China Cat said something recently that has me thinking...something about not seeing the value in either syncretic mixing of faiths, or in reducing them to their original essence (my butchered paraphrase, of which maybe I missed his point altogether?). In some sense, I think he has a point. I don't personally see any value to comingling faiths, or picking and choosing smorgasbord. I have long thought returning to the essence might hold value.

I also find that without a guide, it is a tough row to hoe. Frankly, I haven't been very good at it. There are subtle nuances to the 613 I do not understand, or am honestly ignorant of. Some as a matter of practicality I have given up on (Linsey-woolsey). Of course, I don't think I own a single piece of clothing with both cotton and wool together, but just try finding an inexpensive (read that: something a poor man can realistically afford) dress shirt that isn't some poly-cotton blend of synthetic garbage.

I kept Kosher as well as I understood for many years, until recently I married and my wife occasionally eats pork. She is learning English, and my Chinese sucks, so what am I supposed to do? Insult my wife by not eating her meals she has prepared for me? I still do not generally go out of my way to look for pork, and frankly no longer care for the taste. I used to love the smell of bacon cooking, now it turns my stomach. But that's me... Pretty much the same story with shellfish, haven't eaten in years until recently...still don't care for it, but if the wife cooks it for me, I'm not going to insult her.

Some things like not eating "a kid cooked in its mother's milk" I have come to view a little differently than is Jewish tradition. I see it very much the same as "kicking a man when he is down." But again, that's my interpretation as Spirit has led me.

I don't know that I can give up Jesus' divinity. If that's what G-d wants me to do, I'm sure he'll let me know.
I'm very torn on this as well. I know great miracles have been brought to pass calling on the name of Jesus. Yet, I also know that is not His name. I don't know the subtleties of the language, but I think Yahshua is His Hebrew name, translated properly into English would be Joshua, not Jesus. His Aramiac name, if I've got the story straight, is more like Y'shua, or Yeshua. The Greek is Iesus, (which corresponds with Zeus). There wasn't even a "J" in the English alphabet until 1555 AD. King James, of KJV Bible fame, was born the following year. So are we even calling on the correct person when we call on the name of Jesus? Don't get me wrong, I think G-d does consider intent, especially when there is legitimate ignorance. Hence, why there are miracles done in the name of Jesus. But if one knows that is not His name, (and is no longer legitimately ignorant) does that name still carry the same weight?

Truth or conditioning?
Both.

The trick is in being able to sort it out. Some of it is tied together pretty stoutly. Makes the Gordian knot look like child's play.
 
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