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The Hijacking of Jesus. Paulianity and the Middle of the Road Doctrine

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posted on Mar, 27 2008 @ 05:40 AM
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Originally posted by mageofzhalfir
Jesus wasn't even close to living like a monk.



I know, and thanks to biggie smalls on page 1 of the thread, we already found this out;

Some believed that Jesus, although tied indirectly to Qumran, however was of another group of Essenes. Things were complicated in those days.

No, Jesus did not live like a monk;


The purpose of this article is to provide evidence that YAHSHUA (JESUS) WAS PRIMARILY ASSOCIATED WITH THE ESSENES OF MOUNT CARMEL IN NORTHERN ISRAEL, not the Essenes of Qumran in Southern Israel. Certainly, Yahshua and the Northern Essenes had ongoing contact with their brethren in the South, but he was not "raised and trained at Qumran" like many in the modern Essene movement believe.

www.essene.org...




posted on Mar, 27 2008 @ 06:34 AM
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The Ebionites are, from what I can find online, the remnants of the Zealots who followed the path which Jesus had pointed out during his time. Sounds like an over-all term for anyone not bowing down to the Roman Way as Paul suggested.

That there is a modern Ebionite group is interesting as well.


Old Time Ebionites;


Ebionites [Aramaic,=poor], Jewish-Christian sect of rural ancient Palestine, of the first centuries after Jesus. There were two groups, according to Origen. The Judaic Ebionites held closely to Mosaic law and regarded Jesus as a miracle-working prophet and St. Paul as an apostate. Gnostic Ebionites believed Christ to be a spirit, invisible to men, giving him the title "Prophet

www.encyclopedia.com...



Josephus reports four main sects or schools of Judaism: Pharisees, Sadducees, Essenes, and Zealots. The earliest followers of Jesus were known as Nazarenes, and perhaps later, Ebionites, and form an important part of the picture of Palestinian Jewish groups in late 2nd Temple times.

The Ebionite/Nazarene movement was made up of the mostly Jewish/Israelite, followers of John the Baptizer, and later Jesus, who were concentrated in Palestine and surrounding regions, and led by “James the Just,” oldest brother of Jesus, flourishing between the years 30-80 CE.

www.ancientpaths.org...



In The Other Gospels, Cameron makes the following observations: "The Gospel of the Ebionites (Gos. Eb.) is a gospel harmony preserved in a few quotations in the writings of Epiphanius (a church writer who lived at the end of the fourth century C.E.). The original title of this gospel is unknown. The designation customary today is based on the fact that this was the gospel probably used by the Ebionites, a group of Greek-speaking Jewish Christians who were prominent throughout the second and third centuries. Epiphanius incorrectly entitles this the 'Hebrew' gospel, and alleges that it is an abridged, truncated version of the Gospel of Matthew. Whereas the Gospel of the Ebionites is indeed closely related to Matthew, examination of the extant fragments reveals that much of the text is a harmony, composed in Greek, of the Gospels Matthew and Luke (and, probably, the Gospel of Mark as well). Although Irenaeus (late in the second century) attests to the existence of this gospel, we are dependent solely upon the quotations given by Epiphanius for our knowledge of the contents of the text."

www.earlychristianwritings.com...


Modern Ebionites


The Ebionite Community is the living continuation of the Jewish religious movement of Jesus. Christianity is the religion of Paul and others, and not part of the biblical faith and revelation of the God of Israel nor is it of Jesus. (Please note that we have used "Jesus" to clarify for our Christian readers. We call him Yeshua or Yahshua, and will use Yeshua from this point on in the site.)

We declare the man Paul of Tarsus, the false teacher against the mark of Covenant and God's Torah, to be outside of the Way taught by Yeshua, the anointed, son of Maria and Yosef. The Ebionite Community is the only real "mission to the gentiles."

We call upon the gentiles to repent, to abandon paganism and the perverse testament, and enter into true covenant through Torah, circumcision, and immersion in order to submit and prepare for the Reign of God as brothers exhibiting good works. (How can you talk about accepting God or His "kingdom" at some future event or time if you reject His rules clearly given now?)

www.ebionite.org...


A Catholic viewpoint


By this name were designated one or more early Christian sects infected with Judaistic errors.

www.newadvent.org...



posted on Mar, 27 2008 @ 06:55 AM
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Originally posted by masqua
Did Paul hijack the teachings and story of Jesus for political reasons?

I have a confession .... I have never really liked St. Paul. Something about him just didnt' give me the warm fuzzies. He really didn't get along with the apostles at all and even publically picked fights with Peter (and then boasted of them, and boasted of 'winning'). He seemed rather arrogant to me. I could be wrong .. but ...

I am completely open to your suggestion on this. I'm reading your thread and will give it some thought.



Originally posted by CyberTruth
I always felt that Jesus (from what I interpreted from the gospels) was very anti church. ... was not dependent on a church or church leader.


Matthew 16:18 kinda goes against that. It seems clear that he set up 'his church' and that Peter was the leader.

That's my interpretation. Please feel free to disagree with that.



posted on Mar, 28 2008 @ 10:06 AM
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reply to post by FlyersFan
 


I'm looking forward to your input, FF.

 

On a side note, I have been in contact with Barrie Wilson over a number emails now and find him to be a most agreeable person. This is a welcome contrast to many professionals whom I have dealt with in the past.

I've linked to this thread in one email (to Barrie Wilson) in the hope that he might, one day, choose to join our community and add his input here. Unfortunately, he graciously declined and I respect that decision. This does not mean, though, that he may at some point change his mind. One can only hope. The manner in which this thread develops will naturally be a determining factor.

Further to that, I have received permission from the author to quote small portions of his book (with proper accreditation) in the hope of clarifying his stance on the issues.

In my next post, I will try to set the stage as to what was going on in Israel just prior to the destruction of the Temple in Jerusalem in 70AD. Who were the various sects, how did they interact with their Roman rulers and what was the outcome of those tumultuous years?

It can, in many ways, explain WHY the idea that Paul had made so much sense at the time and, hopefully, also provide clues as to how it made the Jesus Movement, after the crucifiction of Jesus, an enemy to be hunted and destroyed.

Stay tuned.



posted on Mar, 28 2008 @ 02:15 PM
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First of all, mention needs to be made in regard to the actions of a man who decided to toss the proverbial 'monkey wrench' into the affairs of the nation of Israel. His name was Antiochus Epiphanes (the original Wicked Priest?) and his ruthless edict in 168 BC which then set the mood for the tempest that would eventually follow almost two centuries later.


He first entered Jerusalem amicably; then suddenly turning upon the defenseless city, he murdered, plundered, and burnt through its length and breadth. The men were butchered, women and children sold into slavery, and in order to give permanence to the work of desolation, the walls and numerous houses were torn down. The old City of David was fortified anew by the Syrians, and made into a very strong fortress completely dominating the city. Having thus made Jerusalem a Greek colony, the king's attention was next turned to the destruction of the national religion. A royal decree proclaimed the abolition of the Jewish mode of worship; Sabbaths and festivals were not to be observed; circumcision was not to be performed; the sacred books were to be surrendered and the Jews were compelled to offer sacrifices to the idols that had been erected. On Kislew (Nov.-Dec.) 25, 168, the "abomination of desolation" (Dan. xi. 31, xii. 11) was set up on the altar of burnt offering in the Temple, and the Jews required to make obeisance to it. This was probably the Olympian Zeus, or Baal Shamem.See Abomination of Desolation.

www.jewishencyclopedia.com...



www.bible-history.com...
www.bibleonly.org...

Antiochus was quickly defeated by the Maccabees for his rashness since all of the Jews retaliated with vigour in response to those horrible crimes and the desecration of the Temple. Afterwards, there arose four sects among the people;

The Sadducees, Pharisees, Essenes and Zealots.

 


Sadducees


They became the dominant priestly party during the Greek and Roman period of Jewish history, and the name, whether bestowed seriously or in irony, originated doubtless in their pretensions to the descendants of Sadoc, the high-priest prominent in the times of David and Solomon (1 Kings 1:8, 26, 32; 2:35; 1 Chronicles 29:22; cf. Ezekiel 40:46; 42:19; etc.). As a prominent political party they first appear in the reign of John Hyrcanus (135-105 B.C.).

-snip-

During this period and down to the destruction of Jerusalem the Sadducees were naturally unpopular with the masses because of their marked tendency to side closely with the ruling power

www.newadvent.org...


www.jewishencyclopedia.com...

Pharisees


Party representing the religious views, practises, and hopes of the kernel of the Jewish people in the time of the Second Temple and in opposition to the priestly Sadducees. They were accordingly scrupulous observers of the Law as interpreted by the Soferim, or Scribes, in accordance with tradition. No true estimate of the character of the Pharisees can be obtained from the New Testament writings, which take a polemical attitude toward them (see New Testament), nor from Josephus, who, writing for Roman readers and in view of the Messianic expectations of the Pharisees, represents the latter as a philosophical sect.

www.jewishencyclopedia.com...


www.newadvent.org...

Essenes


Among the virtues the Essenes cultivated especially obedience, truthfulness, continence, justice, and temperance; they paid great attention to the sick, respect to the aged, and showed marked kindness and hospitality to strangers. All men were regarded as equal, and slavery was regarded as contrary to nature. Those guilty of great crimes were punished by long exclusion or complete excommunication which, since they were not allowed to eat anything prepared by outsiders, entailed always great hardship and often death. Philosophy was rejected as useless and beyomd man's capacity, but ethics was studied with zeal.

www.newadvent.org...


www.jewishencyclopedia.com...

Zealots


Zealous defenders of the Law and of the national life of the Jewish people; name of a party opposing with relentless rigor any attempt to bring Judea under the dominion of idolatrous Rome, and especially of the aggressive and fanatical war party from the time of Herod until the fall of Jerusalem and Masada. The members of this party bore also the name Sicarii, from their custom of going about with daggers ("sicæ") hidden beneath their cloaks, with which they would stab any one found committing a sacrilegious act or anything provoking anti-Jewish feeling.

www.jewishencyclopedia.com...


www.geocities.com...

The Sadducees were the richest Jews in Jerusalem, had the best houses, the best real estate location and had a hand in all the affairs concerning the running of the Temple. Think of the Temple in Jerusalem as you would Washington DC... everything that mattered in relation to Israel had its roots in the Temple. As such, these Jews were well placed to financially gain from all those who wished to do business there. So consider the White House, Wall Street, the FBI,CIA etc., the Pentagon... all based into one giant complex and run by the Sadducees. They had it made as long as they didn't interfere with the REAL rulers of Israel; the Romans, who, of course, had a garrison of soldiers living in a small corner of the Temple.

Because the Sadduccees had it so good, they went to great lengths to keep things 'smooth' by placating their Roman bosses and thusly were rewarded with the root of all evil- money, cash, shinola, grease (I'd go on, but you get the idea).

The Pharisees, however, didn't like them very much. As the scribes and educators of the Jews, they preferred the Law of Moses to remain intact and practiced in the old 'standard' way. They saw what kind of butt-kissing these Sadducees were up to, allowing lots of foreign cults to worship on the Temple grounds and, as a result, they hated (a mild term, really) them for it with a deep passion. The Pharisees saw themselves as the 'moral majority' by keeping the Covenant with God and didn't like these Dionysian drunks getting naked and partying around the Temple much, as you can imagine. There were some really famous mass murders between the two, committed entirely over their over their 'differences in opinion', but let's just suffice it to say there was no love lost between them. Picture the occasional public slaughter of thousands... men, women and children, simply because of their hatred towards each other.

The Essenes and Zealots, however, intermingled with the Pharisees who could be found in various smaller cities and towns as well as places of learning in Jerusalem. The differences between these three groups were there, but not really so divisive as to keep them from talking to each other. The Essenes, a loosely organized bunch, headed out into the wilderness areas and set up communities away from Jerusalem where they were left alone to do as they wished (like copy the books the Torah.
Qumran was a main center for them, but there were other communities of Essenes all over the countryside of Israel.

The Zealots themselves could be found among the bot essenes and Pharisees. They were the ones who wanted to get in there and mix it up with the Sadducees and Romans, no doubt expressing that age old sentiment "Kill 'em all, let God sort them out'. They wanted blood and they want it yesterday.

So, when you get to the nub of it all, there were three main distinct groups; Roman rulers, rich Sadducees who sucked up to them and the Pharisees, who had any number of off-shoot 'parties' affiliated with them, mainly characterized as Essenes or Zealots.

THAT is the country which Jesus was born into. A volatile mix, ready to explode at any moment and at the least provocation. Their 'world' was teetering on the edge of a precipice and the Messianic message; declaring the immediacy of the 'End of Days', the Apocalypse and the imminent coming of 'The Kingdom of God' seemingly just around the corner.

Like today.
Woot!

 


On a side note;

Danged if the situation in Tibet isn't similar in a way. The subjegation of Tibetans for nearly 1000 years by the powerful influence of the Chinese coming to a head over a bunch of Greek games.

Go figure.

 


spelling and grammar edit


[edit on 28/3/08 by masqua]



posted on Mar, 28 2008 @ 02:47 PM
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there are a few questions that are niggling at my gut in relation to this thread.

if jesus taught a strict adherence to mosaic law, how do we decide which parts of the gospel are correct and which parts are incorrect, considering jesus' lack of adherence to mosaic law?

if there are large parts of the gospels that have been fabricated, who could have fabricated them and why?

critically speaking, are these parts referenced in the other gospels or are they in non-synoptic gospels?

are there texts in the DSS that mirror the teachings of jesus as we know them?

i've looked into these questions with a view to your thread, masqua, but i'm looking a wall and am hoping you might be able to point me in the right direction.



posted on Mar, 28 2008 @ 04:33 PM
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if jesus taught a strict adherence to mosaic law, how do we decide which parts of the gospel are correct and which parts are incorrect, considering jesus' lack of adherence to mosaic law?


The basis for the Hebrew Bible is The Covenant as expressed in the first 5 books... Genesis, Exodus,Levidicus, Numbers and Deuteronomy. The Covenant is an agreement between God and his people that, if they keep the Laws of Moses, that they will eventually inherit the 'Kingdom of God', a world free of suffering and death and where all the faithful will live happily ever after.

Jesus, as a Messianic Jew, taught this. However, this went against the Sadducees, who prefered a watered down Hellenized version, and later on another diminished Romanized interpretatation of the Torah (those first 5 books).

The DSS are the oldest surviving pieces of that original bible... other than a few lost bits and pieces, easily filled in, we can see by reading them just exactly what Jesus was telling the people who flocked to hear him speak. Jesus never deviated from that message and that's how we know he allied himself with the Pharisees/Essenes. After all, he taught in the countryside, not Jerusalem until the final days of his life.

Jesus only criticized the Pharisees for not being strict enough in following the letter of The Law of Moses (Matthew 5:19)

Deviations?(Matthew 5:17-18)


if there are large parts of the gospels that have been fabricated, who could have fabricated them and why?


Political convenience? That is what this thread is trying to eventually get pegged down... and it is a learning experience for me as well, as I go along. I'm like the tortoise, not the hare.

The premise, initially, is that Paul, wanting to establish a new concept which combined the message of the Covenant in the Torah as Jesus taught, but with a new twist, as is suggested by having him physically 'resurrected' from death. This was not acceptable to the Greek way of thinking, nor did it follow the Jewish way. The 'Kingdom of God' Jesus promised was after the 'End of Times', not concurrent. The dead would rise after the Great Battle and only then. Having Jesus physically resurrected was a major deviation hated by both the Jesus Movement as well as the rest of the Jews who, to this day, will not go along with the notion.

What parts of, say, Galatians or Luke are deviations and which are a true record of what Jesus said is hard to find, but he did speak in parables. Parables are not an easy thing to change. Like the story Jesus told in answering a lawyer who asks "who is a neighbour?" is by the telling of the story of the Good Samaritan. It's as if fairy tales are used to show good morals.

Such things are timeless and can never be altered since they live on in the oral tradition and not just in books. It would be safe to say that the parables you find in the bible, no matter where, are the truest words of Jesus.

The Lords Prayer, also, is undoubtedly correct, especially with the words, "Thy Kindom Come, they will be done, on earth as it is in heaven". Pure Messianic words, within of the Law of Moses, and definitely, imo, the words of Jesus.

It's in the Letter to Galatians that Paul really shows his hand and, no doubt, it's going to be a big part of this thread eventually, but I want to make sure my ducks are in a row before tackling that issue, even though Barrie Wilson has done much of the legwork in his book already. I want to find credible sources backing up what he says as well.

You mentioned "large parts being fabricated" in the Gospels. I would suggest the opposite. It was the 'small parts' that changed the whole texture of the NT. The devil, once again, seems to be in those damned details.





critically speaking, are these parts referenced in the other gospels or are they in non-synoptic gospels?


Are you speaking to the Synoptic 'problem" with John in particular?


Matthew, Mark, and Luke present the basic story of Jesus in similar ways, including the order of the material, the stories told, the sayings of Jesus, even using many of the same words in parallel accounts. For this reason they are called the Synoptic Gospels. On the other hand, while the Gospel of John sometimes resembles the other three Gospels, it tells the story of Jesus in significantly different ways, including a different order of events, different perspectives and points of emphasis, and with its own unique vocabulary and style. Those differences can be understood in terms other than literary relationships between the Gospels, which is the reason John is not included in the Synoptic Problem.
www.cresourcei.org...


Matthew, Mark and Luke are the most closely related, however, in Luke, we also see a Paul's influences becoming apparent as they are in the Acts of the Apostle. Big few posts coming on that part too.

Things get deviated just a tad here and there, but the overall effect can be quite profound, you know? Just like changing a word here and there in the Consitution of a country can.


are there texts in the DSS that mirror the teachings of jesus as we know them?


Yes... especially in the study of the Two Paths (righteousness and wickedness), and, of course, the Messainic Message of the End Times and the hoped for Kingdom of God on earth.


i've looked into these questions with a view to your thread, masqua, but i'm looking a wall and am hoping you might be able to point me in the right direction.


Reading the material in the DSS, in relation to the events/players of the first century AD, coupled with the effects of Paul's revelations as seen in the NT, these are the ways in which we can penetrate those thick walls.

It's not going to be easy, even though much has already been written about the problems we're seeing. Getting 'our collective heads around it' might be a challenge. I know I'm being challenged.


If I'm able to point anything new and astounding out at all, it would take an act of God, since I'm still hopelessly confused about a lot of things. But, I'm trying, and, like I said before, I'm learning as I go along.

There are three things that jump out at me, though, just before I quit writing this post and hit 'Post Reply';

1- I am now, more than ever before, convinced of a historical Jesus.

2- That the Bible, even if flawed in some way by the manipulations of men like Paul and others, it is still the most important bit of literature in the western world, especially now that the DSS are available to the public. I wouldn't have said that just weeks ago.

3- I remain an agnostic, completely free of any of the dogma which is the baggage of organized religions. What I am doesn't change the importance of the messages that Jesus has for me personally. In fact, it makes my belief stronger, if anything.

 


BB Code edit

[edit on 28/3/08 by masqua]



posted on Mar, 28 2008 @ 07:04 PM
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hi. ya..haha ..i just had to post this..unless it has changed now you know when you go into "my ats"..and it says how many replys and how many flags next to the name of the thread..

well it said 66 replys and 6 flags...

maybe its a sign!!?? haha..j/k

just had to kill it.lol


anyway


thought it was a great thread


good job op



posted on Mar, 28 2008 @ 07:07 PM
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reply to post by abelievingskeptic
 


O.0

Scary indeed. Thanks for undoing that hex on the thread.

May the angels kiss your forehead as you sleep.




posted on Mar, 28 2008 @ 07:46 PM
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reply to post by masqua
 



1- I am now, more than ever before, convinced of a historical Jesus.

2- That the Bible, even if flawed in some way by the manipulations of men like Paul and others, it is still the most important bit of literature in the western world, especially now that the DSS are available to the public. I wouldn't have said that just weeks ago.

3- I remain an agnostic, completely free of any of the dogma which is the baggage of organized religions. What I am doesn't change the importance of the messages that Jesus has for me personally. In fact, it makes my belief stronger, if anything.


I congratulate you, although you may not need it. I feel your strength. My term for you would be; a spiritual scientist like I call myself. It may be newer to you, but you are growing spiritually and it sounds like "the ring of truth" is important to you.

I would not call you an agnostic. An agnostic is one who technically believes; you cannot prove God does not exist, nor can you prove that he does. So they do not take an stand either way. They have a somewhat lukewarm stance until they have a "spiritual awareness or spiritual awakening." That is why they are on the fence. They do not have the integrity that I am hearing from you, nor the thirst for accurate knowledge.

Anyway, I commend you!



posted on Mar, 29 2008 @ 06:41 AM
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Originally posted by masqua
Jesus only criticized the Pharisees for not being strict enough in following the letter of The Law of Moses (Matthew 5:19)


in mark 7ish he argues with the pharisees over washing your hands as the elders did, and in 8 he tells the deciples to "beware the leaven of the pharisees" after they had asked for a sign.
in mathew he is even more critical, around 12 he tells them they are an evil and adulterous generation and in 15 accuses them of breaking the laws of god and then calls them blind and says they are planting plants that are not from god, in 16:12 we have clarification of 8 in mark, jesus tells them to beware the teaching of the pharisees. in 23 he is scathing in his critism of them.

i could go on like this but i think the above makes my point, almost every mention of the pharisees in the gospels involves jesus arguing or criticizing them, why would you say they were allied?


Deviations?(Matthew 5:17-18)


jesus breaks the sabbath, healing (mark 3:3) and reaping (mark 2:23), he also blasphemes (mark 14:62) and says that only those that love him above their mother and father can follow him (matthew 10:37) , he also condemns divorce as adulterous (mathew 19:8).



Are you speaking to the Synoptic 'problem" with John in particular?


sorry, i made a boo-boo, i should have said canonical/non-canonical, not synoptic, as in the gospels with-in and outside of the bible. although the synoptic issue is a valid concern.



posted on Mar, 29 2008 @ 07:57 AM
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Masqua,
>>Most of our Bible teachers have seen to a limited degree the distinction between Paul's ministry and that of the twelve, but have taught at the same time that Paul labored under the so-called "great commission" given to the other apostles, that the church of this age began at Pentecost with Peter and the eleven, that "the gospel of the grace of God" was proclaimed before Paul, etc. This failure to grasp fully the distinctive character of Paul's apostleship has contributed much to the confusion that exists among fundamental believers and has left a great deal still to be clarified for those who desire "the full assurance of understanding."

www.welcometograce.com...

Understanding minestry of Paul is difficult topic..how does that relate to Isreal? I think "rightly dividing" is a tool that helps us understand this better. May shed some light or even new questions either way it is interesting



posted on Mar, 29 2008 @ 09:43 AM
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reply to post by pieman
 



in mark 7ish he argues with the pharisees over washing your hands as the elders did, and in 8 he tells the deciples to "beware the leaven of the pharisees" after they had asked for a sign.


The Gospel of Mark is the most reliable account of what Jesus taught since it was written about or shortly after the destruction of the Temple (70 AD) and about 40 years after the crucifixion. We don't know who 'Mark' really was, since it was only attributed to him.

Mark shows us some tantalizing instances of Jesus disagreeing with those arrogant scribes who determined the Law of Moses in all aspects of common life, including the ritual washing of hands. When Jesus broke the bread, Pharisees noticed their dirty hands and rebuked Jesus for the obviously broken law. However, consider the situation; they were in the wilderness. Jesus tells those arrogant scribes off in no uncertain terms;

(Mark 7)
6- He answered and said unto them, "Well has Esaias prophesied of you hypocrites. This people honoureth me with their lips, but their heart is far from me.

7- Howbeit in vain they worship me, teaching for doctines the commandments of men.

8- For laying aside the commandment of God, ye hold the tradition of men, as the washing of pots and pans: and many other things that ye do.

and, best of all;

15- there is nothing from without a man, that entering can defile him: but the things which come out of him, those are they that defile the man.

Jesus is dismissing the dogma surrounding the Law of Moses. Dogma comes from interpretations writ into law. Something the Pharisees were guity of.

The Talmud is a record of those interpretations of the Law of Moses (Septuagint) which was compiled much later (200 AD), but still were being worked on, especially by the Pharisees. That Jesus disagreed with their interpretations is entirely part of those ongoing debates.



in mathew he is even more critical, around 12 he tells them they are an evil and adulterous generation and in 15 accuses them of breaking the laws of god and then calls them blind and says they are planting plants that are not from god, in 16:12 we have clarification of 8 in mark, jesus tells them to beware the teaching of the pharisees. in 23 he is scathing in his critism of them.


The Gospel of Matthew is an entirely different kind of fish (pardon the pun). It contradicts itself and reeks of political chicanery.

Composed after the death of Paul and after the Gospel of Mark, we see a trend developing. Matthew speaks both of following the Torah and departing from it. The words he puts into the mouth of Jesus are even less dependable and tend to be more of a 'he said, she said' commentary. Also, it criticises Paul for his anti-Torah position but yet rails against the Pharisees who wish to uphold the Torah.

Remember that this was written after the destruction of the Temple and that all of the Jews were making themselves very scarce. This Gospel was likely written in Greece or Syria.


from How Jesus Became Christian by By Barrie Wilson (Random House Canada ISBN 978-0-679-31493-6)

pg186

For all the antagonism expressed by Matthew toward the Pharisees, there still remained substantial common ground. Both groups agreed on the neccessity for keeping the law, and in this they were closer than Matthew would have been to Paul's Christ Movement. Matthew and the Pharisees parted company on how the law should be interpreted...

pg 188-189

Matthew's assault on the Pharisees was itself inconsistent, if plain not hypocritical. The curses against the Pharisees were laced with anger, and these sentiments Matthew attributed to the historical Jesus. This was the same person who is portayed earlier in Matthews writing as having preached the higher righteousness, extending the commandment "do not murder" to include "do not give way to anger." Mathew - or Jesus - seems to have forgotten this injunction in his raging attack on the Pharisees.



i could go on like this but i think the above makes my point, almost every mention of the pharisees in the gospels involves jesus arguing or criticizing them, why would you say they were allied?


I hope you see mine too... that Jesus perhaps took on the Pharisees in debate is quite likely. Jesus hated the useless and restrictive dogma as it 'divided the Kingdom' (Mark 3:24-25) and yet, Matthew seems to be paraphrasing what Jesus says and using the muddied results to 'spin things. This is why it's so important to study the DSS, because in them is written much of the 'dogma' that Jesus likely disagreed with.

On the subject of Canonical/non-Canonical books... I'm sure they will all figure into the mix upon occasion, but I'd like to concentrate initially on the relationships that were happening during the first century AD for the time being.

I will, however, include this-


from The Other Bible by Willis Barnstone (Harper Collins ISBN 0-06-250030-9)

We may find three conflicting views of a single event. Thus, after Jesus Christ is crucified the Jews think him another man and go on seeking the messiah, the Christians proclaim the crucified Jesus both man and God, and the Gnostics take on the Docetic view that Jesus was only a simulacrum on the cross, for God is always God. In fact, in the Gnostic works The second Treatise of the great Seth and The Apocalypse of Peter, Jesus stands above the cross, laughing at the ignorance of his would-be executioners who think that man can kill God.



I'll wait a bit before wading into that swamp... stronger legs may be needed for that soggy path.



posted on Mar, 29 2008 @ 09:46 AM
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I will be following this thread with particular attention. (Not because I have found the bickering so common in many CiR threads, but because I have not.) I take this as an educational opportunity, since I need to have a better basic understanding of the material to adequately do my job in these forums.

I am indebted to the reasoned approach taken here, and thank all who have so far contributed to this oasis of learning.




posted on Mar, 29 2008 @ 09:48 AM
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reply to post by BlackProjects
 


Thank you for that post.


I'll have to study what you present here and do some research prior to reponding. However, it may not be posted until Monday evening since I'm shortly heading out for the weekend.

Just letting you know that I'm not ignoring you.



posted on Mar, 29 2008 @ 10:05 AM
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Originally posted by NGC2736
I take this as an educational opportunity, since I need to have a better basic understanding of the material to adequately do my job in these forums.




As do I. I'm learning a lot as I go along since my pre-judgements are of little value, so it seems.


I am indebted to the reasoned approach taken here, and thank all who have so far contributed to this oasis of learning.


Ditto. Perhaps it's the aura of my moderator position, perhaps not, but the civility and reasoned questions raised so far are testament to the importance of this debate. It seems to have brought out the best in all involved so far.

I make this promise;

To take all well-intended questions raised to those individuals most qualified to answer them; from among a wealth of books that I have accumulated over the decades as well as what also may be gleaned from websites specifically dedicated to serious Theology and try to keep my personal bias at bay in the responses put forward.



posted on Mar, 29 2008 @ 01:47 PM
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bickering about religion, never. who'ld do such a thing.

i so see your point, i'm just not quite ready to concede it, i know how politically driven the gospels are, which is why i look for corroboration from other sources where i can and thats why i bought up the non-canonical gospels.

the gospel of thomas is a collection of sayings with no qualification and is generally spiritually orientated, so i would say it is unlikely to be politically motivated and a good reference in the absence of Q.

if we compare matthew and mark it is easy to assume a progressive bias towards the pharisees, however if we use the gospel of thomas, which is possibly older than mark, as a reference point, we see that saying 39 and 102 are strong criticisms of the pharisees and the other sentiments in matthew are echoed in sayings 40 and 28. i am slow to dismiss this fact.

also i want to add another possibility for corroboration, that it was mere expedience that kept mark from criticizing the pharisees openly, i admit that this is just conjecture and reading between the lines on my part, but my first clue to this was one very interesting passage that is mirrored in both mark and luke, after i noticed it, it changed the way i read the gospels, and you and i agree that the devil is always in the details.

in mark 14 we are told that jesus is in the house of simon the leper and he is anointed by a woman with costly oils, in luke 7:36-50 we hear of a very similar event, however simon becomes a pharisee. could it be, given lukes reliance on mark, that it was common knowledge among early christians that the pharisees should be viewed as spiritual lepers by the followers of jesus? is it possible that mark might have used an understood cultural reference to the pharisees to avoid difficult repercussions arising from open criticism and by the time luke was written, after the fall of the temple, it became less difficult to openly admonish them?

weather simon is a leper or a pharisee makes very little difference to the message of the passage, and as i read it with the stated view in mind, it makes more sense if the house is that of a pharisee than it does in the house of a leper.



posted on Mar, 30 2008 @ 03:23 AM
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I think it is entirely possible that Paul may have coopted Jesus' teachings and made them more palatable to the masses.

Imposing "pointless" laws on people (circumcision etc) when there is actually no good reason other than "God says so" is pretty difficult when you have the sort of cultural history the Greeks did (a history of basically doing as you please). Especially when they had already listened to the Jewish god and accepted him as part of their pantheon under the name Adonis.



posted on Mar, 30 2008 @ 08:49 PM
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Well, I hope I'm not too far off base here since I don't have my books (wha wha), but I believe Paul's instruction was to take the message of Messiah to the gentile nations. Jesus, having "come not to change the law, but to fulfill the law" would be the reason the gentiles were not considered to be under the Mosaic law.

The other apostles, all Jews, would understand and continue to obey the law. Paul, on the other hand, was given a vision which brought him to a belief in Christ. We don't know what that vision entailed exactly, but if Jesus fulfilled the law, there would be no reason for gentiles to practice all the Mosaic laws. Jesus broke all the Mosaic laws down into two. Love God first with all your heart, and love they neighbor as thyself.

This is the basis of today's Christianity, although I know it has been corrupted over time. I'm speaking, of course, strictly from the Biblical New Testament texts.

I have, however, often wondered if we are not supposed to also follow with strict adherence to the full Judaic law. But I have since decided not, since most of the 613 laws given were mostly about cleanliness, sacrifices, germs, etc. Sacrifices, as we know, ceased with Jesus' crucifixion, and again, Jesus came to fulfill the law with his own sacrifice of himself for us all.



posted on Mar, 31 2008 @ 07:54 AM
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reply to post by idle_rocker
 


i think the thing that mesqua's getting at is that this seperation from judeic law isn't a teaching from jesus but from paul, and as such we have to question its validity. jesus didn't seem to be against sacrifice as such, so he may have felt those laws were applicable to christians.

for instance the new covenant idea may be at odds with jesus' statement that "not one stroke of the law can be changed" (paraphrased).

now that we're discussing this idea, i'm seeing little conflicting details, hints and nudges that point in this direction scattered throughout the gospels, i may try to get a list together, for discussion in this thread or a new one, up to the op. i'll start it this evening if i have time to cross referance and plow through.



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