Tag Archives: Judaism

Yeshua and the Angel of the Lord

One to the blogs I follow is a Jewish blog called 1000 Verses.  The blog is written by an Orthodox Rabbi who is working to combat Christianity’s attempts on Judaism.  I started following the blog when I read his posts that were debating Dr. Michael Brown, who is a Jewish follower of Yeshua (Jesus).  I enjoyed reading what Dr. Brown wrote about the Jewish messianic beliefs and was curious to read the beliefs of an Orthodox Rabbi to see where Christians made assumptions that were not true and Judaism.

I have a lot of respect for what Rabbi Blumenthal writes on his blog.  While I do not agree with all of what he writes, I desire respectful conversations with him and his followers about what I believe versus what they perceive Christians as believing.  We don’t all think the same.

Rabbi Blumenthal put out a new post titled “The Angel of the Lord” where he compares Christian thoughts on the Angel of the Lord who had an encounter with Abraham versus what Jewish perspectives on the encounter.  To cut to the chase, Jewish people do not think that the Angel of the Lord was Yeshua (Jesus).

In his post, Rabbi B notes that Rashbam and Ibn Ezra consider this person to be an “angel who is called by God’s name”.  The commentators mention this as this character is referred to as ‘adonay or Master in the Masoretic Texts and this term is reserved for God alone.

This is why Christians will seize on this event and claim that the third person was a preincarnate Christ.  Rabbi B does point out that nowhere in this passage did Abraham worship this character in order to show that he was not God.

Now Rabbi B will continue to make his argument that this is not Yeshua as other passages detail how God used angels as his messengers at other times, such as Numbers 22 where the angel of the Lord appeared and spoke for God but was entirely separate from God.  I agree with him.  Nowhere does this angel claim to be God or referred to with the term ‘adonay, thus he was not God.  That does not prove that the entity that had the encounter with Abraham was or was not God.

Now I want to point out that I do not see where Yeshua was worshipped either prior to His assent to the throne.  Does that mean He was not God?

One of the big debates about the divinity of Christ has to do with His role as the everlasting offering before God.  My stance is that no created being could ever be holy enough to be an everlasting offering.  Unblemished animals were only good for a year and human sacrifices where prohibited, so if Yeshua was the Christ and His death was the final atoning work, what else could He be but God in the flesh?

Now I have no proof to this, but that is why people keep arguing about religion and what things mean.  Give Rabbi B a read sometime, but be respectful and do not just throw out Christian’s views as responses to his writings.

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Filed under Bible, Christianity, Religion, Soteriology

German Court Rules Religious Circumcision on Boys an Assault

by AFP

Circumcising young boys on religious grounds amounts to grievous bodily harm, a German court ruled Tuesday in a landmark decision that the Jewish community said trampled on parents’ religious rights.

The regional court in Cologne, western Germany, ruled that the “fundamental right of the child to bodily integrity outweighed the fundamental rights of the parents”, a judgment that is expected to set a legal precedent.

“The religious freedom of the parents and their right to educate their child would not be unacceptably compromised, if they were obliged to wait until the child could himself decide to be circumcised,” the court added.

The case was brought against a doctor in Cologne who had circumcised a four-year-old Muslim boy on his parents’ wishes.

A few days after the operation, his parents took him to hospital as he was bleeding heavily. Prosecutors then charged the doctor with grievous bodily harm.

The doctor was acquitted by a lower court that judged he had acted within the law as the parents had given their consent.

On appeal, the regional court also acquitted the doctor but for different reasons.

The regional court upheld the original charge of grievous bodily harm but also ruled that the doctor was innocent as there was too much confusion on the legal situation around circumcision.

The court came down firmly against parents’ right to have the ritual performed on young children.

“The body of the child is irreparably and permanently changed by a circumcision,” the court said. “This change contravenes the interests of the child to decide later on his religious beliefs.”

The decision caused outrage in Germany’s Jewish community.

The head of the Central Committee of Jews, Dieter Graumann, said the ruling was “an unprecedented and dramatic intervention in the right of religious communities to self-determination.”

The judgment was an “outrageous and insensitive act. Circumcision of newborn boys is a fixed part of the Jewish religion and has been practiced worldwide for centuries,” added Graumann.

“This religious right is respected in every country in the world.”

Holm Putzke, a criminal law expert at the University of Passau, told the Financial Times Deutschland that the ruling was “enormously important for doctors because for the first time they have legal certainty.”

“Unlike many politicians, the court has not allowed itself to be scared off by charges of anti-Semitism or religious intolerance,” added Putzke.

The World Health Organisation has estimated that nearly one in three males 15 or over is circumcised. In the United States, the operation is often performed for hygiene reasons on infants.

Thousands of young boys are circumcised every year in Germany, especially in the country’s large Jewish and Muslim communities.
The court specified that circumcision was not illegal if carried out for medical reasons.

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Filed under Politics, Religion