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Author Topic: Messianic Judaism  (Read 32743 times) Average Rating: 0
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« Reply #135 on: December 09, 2009, 11:29:17 AM »

I've noticed, however, that EOs and RCCs sometimes use the word to denote an inner core of leaders such as the Teaching Magisterium of the RCC. This meaning is apparent where I hear Catholics or EOs speak of having the church to guide them and set standards on whether bishops or priests must be celibate. Clearly, average EOs and average members of the RCC don't claim to be part of this powerful, inner core of believers.

Wrong.  The magisterium is a part of the Church, but it does not comprise the whole of Her.  When people speak of trusting what the Church teaches, they are not just talking about their bishop or patriarch.  They are speaking about the Holy Scriptures, the patristic writings spanning two millennia, the ecumenical councils, the apostolic creeds, their bishop, their parish priest, the monastics they know who give spiritual council, their fellow parishioners, and most importantly God the Holy Spirit.
Uhh ohhh. Very Catholic word.  Wink
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« Reply #136 on: December 09, 2009, 04:52:30 PM »

I've noticed, however, that EOs and RCCs sometimes use the word to denote an inner core of leaders such as the Teaching Magisterium of the RCC. This meaning is apparent where I hear Catholics or EOs speak of having the church to guide them and set standards on whether bishops or priests must be celibate. Clearly, average EOs and average members of the RCC don't claim to be part of this powerful, inner core of believers.

Wrong.  The magisterium is a part of the Church, but it does not comprise the whole of Her.  When people speak of trusting what the Church teaches, they are not just talking about their bishop or patriarch.  They are speaking about the Holy Scriptures, the patristic writings spanning two millennia, the ecumenical councils, the apostolic creeds, their bishop, their parish priest, the monastics they know who give spiritual council, their fellow parishioners, and most importantly God the Holy Spirit.

Uhh ohhh. Very Catholic word.  Wink

The point is that The Church has the Authority to teach  doctrine. RC's have a specific word for it.
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« Reply #137 on: December 09, 2009, 07:17:40 PM »

I've noticed, however, that EOs and RCCs sometimes use the word to denote an inner core of leaders such as the Teaching Magisterium of the RCC. This meaning is apparent where I hear Catholics or EOs speak of having the church to guide them and set standards on whether bishops or priests must be celibate. Clearly, average EOs and average members of the RCC don't claim to be part of this powerful, inner core of believers.

Wrong.  The magisterium is a part of the Church, but it does not comprise the whole of Her.  When people speak of trusting what the Church teaches, they are not just talking about their bishop or patriarch.  They are speaking about the Holy Scriptures, the patristic writings spanning two millennia, the ecumenical councils, the apostolic creeds, their bishop, their parish priest, the monastics they know who give spiritual council, their fellow parishioners, and most importantly God the Holy Spirit.

Uhh ohhh. Very Catholic word.  Wink

The point is that The Church has the Authority to teach  doctrine. RC's have a specific word for it.
I know. I am just teasing.
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« Reply #138 on: December 10, 2009, 02:17:50 AM »

Mathetes, are you familiar with the Assyrian Church of the East? They are the historical Nazarenes. Please go to:

http://peshitta.org/

(for the scriptures in the original language MarYah's son Meshikha Eshua spoke)

and also to the forum at : Link to competing forum disabled per OC.net forum policy

Assyrians/Arameans read the scripture in Aramaic (they believe in the Peshitta as the original orthodox text of the bible, and that the Greek is a translation, I myself am a Peshitta primacist). There is much that you would be interested in if you are indeed searching for the truth on these issues. Much history and much in tradition which even my Orthodox brothers are not aware of. If the information I am giving you is a bit too overwhelming once you encounter it, please read the official catechism of the COE here:

http://www.acoeyouth.org/Learn/catechism/cat.html

the catechism will help you out (for now). It was written in part by a Jewish Qasha (priest) by the way.

Just remember: the Nazarenes of old are indeed the Assyrian Church of the East, and its positions are reflective of the doctrine of the 12 Apostles. There are many things in its tradition which you will not immediately understand, but will require diligent study. The COE grew in complete independence from the other ancient bodies of Christendom, within the confines of the Persian empire , so its tradition cannot be declared "un-apostolic" or somehow tampered with by westerners (as is often thrown at the orthodox for example). This is very important, so please read what I have given you with care.

Shlama w'burkate

(peace and blessings in aramaic)
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« Reply #139 on: December 10, 2009, 02:26:27 AM »

Welcome, Rafa!
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« Reply #140 on: December 10, 2009, 02:49:20 AM »

Thank you for the welcome Salpy  Smiley

I hope we can discuss many interesting things here, especially on the topics Nazarene (who sounds suspiciously similar to an acquaintance at Peshitta.org ) brought up.
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« Reply #141 on: December 10, 2009, 06:14:06 AM »

I've noticed, however, that EOs and RCCs sometimes use the word to denote an inner core of leaders such as the Teaching Magisterium of the RCC. This meaning is apparent where I hear Catholics or EOs speak of having the church to guide them and set standards on whether bishops or priests must be celibate. Clearly, average EOs and average members of the RCC don't claim to be part of this powerful, inner core of believers.

Wrong.  The magisterium is a part of the Church, but it does not comprise the whole of Her.  When people speak of trusting what the Church teaches, they are not just talking about their bishop or patriarch.  They are speaking about the Holy Scriptures, the patristic writings spanning two millennia, the ecumenical councils, the apostolic creeds, their bishop, their parish priest, the monastics they know who give spiritual council, their fellow parishioners, and most importantly God the Holy Spirit.

So when the Holy Scriptures require tolerance that your subsequent authorities have eliminated, which authority do you obey? and has it ever occurred to you that the subsequent authorities went too far by demanding uniformity instead of unity?  Undecided
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« Reply #142 on: December 10, 2009, 06:23:10 AM »

Mathetes, are you familiar with the Assyrian Church of the East? They are the historical Nazarenes. Please go to:

http://peshitta.org/

(for the scriptures in the original language MarYah's son Meshikha Eshua spoke)

and also to the forum at : Link to competing forum disabled per OC.net forum policy

Assyrians/Arameans read the scripture in Aramaic (they believe in the Peshitta as the original orthodox text of the bible, and that the Greek is a translation, I myself am a Peshitta primacist). There is much that you would be interested in if you are indeed searching for the truth on these issues. Much history and much in tradition which even my Orthodox brothers are not aware of. If the information I am giving you is a bit too overwhelming once you encounter it, please read the official catechism of the COE here:

http://www.acoeyouth.org/Learn/catechism/cat.html

the catechism will help you out (for now). It was written in part by a Jewish Qasha (priest) by the way.

Just remember: the Nazarenes of old are indeed the Assyrian Church of the East, and its positions are reflective of the doctrine of the 12 Apostles. There are many things in its tradition which you will not immediately understand, but will require diligent study. The COE grew in complete independence from the other ancient bodies of Christendom, within the confines of the Persian empire , so its tradition cannot be declared "un-apostolic" or somehow tampered with by westerners (as is often thrown at the orthodox for example). This is very important, so please read what I have given you with care.

Shlama w'burkate

(peace and blessings in aramaic)


Shalom, Rafa999,

Thanks for your links, and welcome.

No, I'm not familiar with your church, but I'll check out the links. If you've given me a lot of information, I'll need some time, especially since I have a family and a full-time job.  Smiley

Shalom in the Messiah Yeshua,
Mathetes



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« Reply #143 on: March 21, 2010, 02:18:55 PM »

gosh they r so cool. im following this messianic jewish lady on twitter & she has all sorts of interesting tweets about her religion. plus they have a fabulous ashram/kibbutz or whatever thingy in israel that i'd like to go to one day.  too bad the real jews dont consider them as authentically jewish.  anyways yeah, i think they r way cool.
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« Reply #144 on: March 21, 2010, 02:31:57 PM »

gosh they r so cool. im following this messianic jewish lady on twitter & she has all sorts of interesting tweets about her religion. plus they have a fabulous ashram/kibbutz or whatever thingy in israel that i'd like to go to one day.  too bad the real jews dont consider them as authentically jewish.  anyways yeah, i think they r way cool.

It depends which Jews. Reform Jews generally consider Messianic Judaism a legitimate sect of Judaism, whilst Orthodox Jews (who consider Reform Jews heretics) do not. But where this is concerned it must be remembered that they distinguish between "Jews" and "Judaism". All Rabbinical Jews consider a person who's mother is Jewish (i.e. ethinically) to be Jewish (again ethnically) as well, regardless of their faith. (IMO this has no basis in the Torah because YHWH made His covenant with Abraham not Sarah, and the ethnicity is actually "Hebrew" not "Jewish"). So while Orthodox Jews acknowledge that Messianic Jews are "Jews" they don't identify Messianic Judaism with their faith.

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« Reply #145 on: March 27, 2010, 12:37:09 AM »

Nazarene, I at least feel like I understand more where you are coming from now.  But it's not as though you are a part of the Orthodox Church and trying to create a rite to help Hebrew converts.  You have to understand this from the perspective of the Orthodox, where to them you are going through their traditions with a fine-toothed comb and arbitrating what matches your understanding of being of apostolic origin and what is not.  You have to try to understand why that is going to be offensive, considering that the Orthodox consider their faith to be the most complete form of the Christian faith; one which was delivered from Christ Himself.  Whether or not that understanding is historically accurate in all of the particulars, it's still their understanding.

Perhaps so that we are more clear about the problems with the Orthodox liturgy, you could let us know what aspects do not receive the stamp of apostolic authenticity.  Because Messianic Judaism in general seems to be an outgrowth of the (Ana)Baptist churches, I am curious if these elements would be a part of the liturgy and devotions you are constructing:

Veneration of and communion with the saints, especially the Virgin Mariam.

Prayer for the recently reposed.

Real Presence of "Yeshua Messiah" in the Eucharist.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Also, while I am thinking of it, why the Hebrew name Yeshua rather than Yahoshua?

Nazarene, can you address this post?
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« Reply #146 on: March 27, 2010, 04:57:27 AM »

Nazarene, I at least feel like I understand more where you are coming from now.  But it's not as though you are a part of the Orthodox Church and trying to create a rite to help Hebrew converts.  You have to understand this from the perspective of the Orthodox, where to them you are going through their traditions with a fine-toothed comb and arbitrating what matches your understanding of being of apostolic origin and what is not.  You have to try to understand why that is going to be offensive, considering that the Orthodox consider their faith to be the most complete form of the Christian faith; one which was delivered from Christ Himself.  Whether or not that understanding is historically accurate in all of the particulars, it's still their understanding.

Perhaps so that we are more clear about the problems with the Orthodox liturgy, you could let us know what aspects do not receive the stamp of apostolic authenticity.  Because Messianic Judaism in general seems to be an outgrowth of the (Ana)Baptist churches, I am curious if these elements would be a part of the liturgy and devotions you are constructing:

Veneration of and communion with the saints, especially the Virgin Mariam.

Prayer for the recently reposed.

Real Presence of "Yeshua Messiah" in the Eucharist.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Also, while I am thinking of it, why the Hebrew name Yeshua rather than Yahoshua?

Ozgeorge pointed out in a thread a while back that Jews have prayers for the departed.  It's known as "yizkor."  From wikipedia...

Quote
Yizkor ("remembrance") prayers are recited by those that have lost either one or both of their parents. There is a custom that those who do not recite the Yizkor prayers leave the synagogue until the completion of Yizkor; the symbolic reason for this is to respect the life of one's living parents. Some rabbinic authorities regard this custom as a superstition.

The Yizkor prayers are recited four times a year, and are intended to be recited in a synagogue with a minyan; if one is unable to be with a minyan, one can recite it without one. These four Yizkor services are held on Yom Kippur, Shmini Atzeret, on the last day of Passover, and on Shavuot (the second day of Shavuot, in communities that observe Shavuot for two days). In the Yizkor prayers God is asked to remember and grant repose to the souls of the departed.

In Sephardic custom there is no Yizkor prayer, but Hashkabóth are recited on Yom Kippur for all members of the community who have died during the last year. A person called up to the Torah may also request the reader to recite Hashkabah for his deceased parents.
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« Reply #147 on: March 27, 2010, 06:26:01 AM »

Nazarene, I at least feel like I understand more where you are coming from now.  But it's not as though you are a part of the Orthodox Church and trying to create a rite to help Hebrew converts.  You have to understand this from the perspective of the Orthodox, where to them you are going through their traditions with a fine-toothed comb and arbitrating what matches your understanding of being of apostolic origin and what is not.  You have to try to understand why that is going to be offensive, considering that the Orthodox consider their faith to be the most complete form of the Christian faith; one which was delivered from Christ Himself.  Whether or not that understanding is historically accurate in all of the particulars, it's still their understanding.

Perhaps so that we are more clear about the problems with the Orthodox liturgy, you could let us know what aspects do not receive the stamp of apostolic authenticity.  Because Messianic Judaism in general seems to be an outgrowth of the (Ana)Baptist churches, I am curious if these elements would be a part of the liturgy and devotions you are constructing:

Veneration of and communion with the saints, especially the Virgin Mariam.

Prayer for the recently reposed.

Real Presence of "Yeshua Messiah" in the Eucharist.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Also, while I am thinking of it, why the Hebrew name Yeshua rather than Yahoshua?

Nazarene, can you address this post?

The proper pronunciation for Messiah's name is debated almost as much as the proper pronunciation for the Tetragrammaton. Hebrew just like every other language has changed over the centuries, so the pronunciation and spelling of names have changed throughout the centuries too. Paleo-Hebrew is not the same as the "Hebraized Aramaic" that was spoken in the first century, or the Mishnaic Hebrew of the Masoretic Text, or modern Hebrew which is spoken today (and that's not even getting into the issue of dialects). The current scholarly consensus is that the Saviour's name was spelled "Yeshua" in the first century, though the Galilean dialect of Aramaic tended to drop the last "ah" when it came to vocal pronunciation (hence the Greek transliteration Iesous which would be Yeshu). So while the Galileans pronounced His name as "Yeshu" they still spelled it as "Yeshua". However the older form, Yehoshua, was still in use in the 1st century and both Yeshua and Yehoshua mean the same thing (Salvation of YHWH/YHWH Saves). Think of the names Alexis and Alexa (and their other variants), they are both spelled and pronounced differently but mean the same thing (protector/defender of man).

For more on Yeshua vs. Yehoshua, see this: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yeshua_%28name%29
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« Reply #148 on: March 27, 2010, 01:41:12 PM »

Nazarene, I was looking for a response to this in particular:

Because Messianic Judaism in general seems to be an outgrowth of the (Ana)Baptist churches, I am curious if these elements would be a part of the liturgy and devotions you are constructing:

Veneration of and communion with the saints, especially the Virgin Mariam.

Prayer for the recently reposed.

Real Presence of "Yeshua Messiah" in the Eucharist.

Thank you for the explanations surrounding Yeshua versus Yehoshua.
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« Reply #149 on: March 27, 2010, 08:20:23 PM »

Actually to my personal knowledge the name "Yeshua" is not in the Aramaic scriptures. Eshoo Meshiha is in scriptures. Jews did not speak Hebrew 2000 years ago, they spoke Aramaic. It's like saying Christ would have his name in old English while everybody was speaking English, and that this would be considered a normal thing. Again you need to be careful. The Galileans did not say Yeshu, that is an offensive acronym, they said "Eshoo" and that would be Eshoo Meshiha for us.
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« Reply #150 on: April 13, 2010, 03:03:24 PM »

Nazarene, I was still waiting for this reply, if you could:

Nazarene, I was looking for a response to this in particular:

Because Messianic Judaism in general seems to be an outgrowth of the (Ana)Baptist churches, I am curious if these elements would be a part of the liturgy and devotions you are constructing:

Veneration of and communion with the saints, especially the Virgin Mariam.

Prayer for the recently reposed.

Real Presence of "Yeshua Messiah" in the Eucharist.
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« Reply #151 on: April 13, 2010, 03:36:08 PM »



I just bought this today. I heard really good things about it, so I picked up a copy from my church bookstore. I'll let you guys know how it relates to this topic.
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« Reply #152 on: July 12, 2010, 04:36:19 PM »

Hello, I was reading in Haaretz today about diversity in the Jewish Community, and would like to ask how close Messianic Jews are to the Jewish Community. I read a site called "The Messiah Conspiracy," suggesting that if Jesus' followers had restricted their fellowship to Jews, then they would have been accepted as a Jewish sect. I think Lubovich Hassidism, for example, is a big part of the Hassidic Community.



Who is the 'we' that the Jewish community stands for?

By Jay Michaelson, The Forward , 02.07.10
http://www.haaretz.com/jewish-world/who-is-the-we-that-the-jewish-community-stands-for-1.299631

Peoplehood — the notion that we are all united purely by dint of being members of the Jewish people — does not have a geographic or ideological center. It does not have a particular end in mind, except more peoplehood and more continuity. And it has very little actual content. This, as I’ve explored in these pages, is both its great strength, as it unites everybody, and its potential great weakness, since it is low on direction and inspiration.

One of the values of peoplehood is inclusion: creating a Jewish community where participation is open to people of different generations, different nationalities, different levels of education and so forth. But if we want a community that stands for something — for example, support for the existence of the State of Israel — then we are by definition excluding those who do not share that value.

Of course, this principled conflict begs the question of who calls the shots — that is, who the “we” is. Who determines what the “Jewish community” stands for? We don’t actually take a vote of everyone who identifies as Jewish, right? In practice, we heavily weight the votes of those who affiliate more, organize more and, of course, write big checks. This, too, may be the right decision: Without those big checks, our Jewish institutions would not exist, and so it makes perfect sense to care more about what philanthropists think than about what some vaguely disaffected average Jew on the street thinks. But let’s be clear that this prioritization is also a de facto decision.

The point, however, is not that such decisions are right or wrong, entitled or not — only that they are diametrically opposed to the promotion of Jewish peoplehood.

Though this may seem obvious, it clearly isn’t, judging by the way this intra-communal conflict has played out on the ground. For example, I recently participated in a panel in the Bay Area called “Perspectives on Zionism.” In helping to assemble a diverse panel, I ran into problems.

In a way, the choice between inclusion of all Jewish people and shared communal values is a very old one. Long ago, our community leaders decided that Jewish Christians (and before them, Israelite pagans) did not have a place at the Jewish communal table. Since then, Jewish institutions have banned rationalist philosophers, nationalist zealots, messianists, communists, proselytizers and heretics. As long as there have been synagogues, there have been doors and locks put on them. And, of course, there have always been donor walls, too.


But there are new elements, as well. There is indeed a shifting of climate within and beyond the Jewish world. Outside, once radical views are now commonplace.

And inside the Jewish community, we’ve seen both the rise of moderate groups such as J Street and a hardening of conservative positions among the Jewish “establishment.” This has led to some curious results: As my colleague J.J. Goldberg wrote recently, to express critical views openly in America might get you fired. So there is much that is old, and much that is new, in our historical moment.
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« Reply #153 on: November 14, 2010, 12:53:09 PM »

I believe the Torah was given to Israel, and I'm not of Jewish ancestry myself (so it doesn't really make any difference to me), but I've often wondered what Jesus meant when He said:

Think not that I've come to destroy the Law and the Prophets, I have not come to destroy but to fill full. For truly I say to you that not a jot or stroke will pass from the Law till everything comes to pass.

I've got the first part (He filled it full by living it, showing us how to love God and Man, and being our Passover sacrifice), but the second part seems to imply that Jews (or at least unconverted Jews, who are not yet new creatures in Christ) would be under some obligation to keep the Torah until God wraps things up at the second coming.

Paul also seems to be saying something like that in Romans 2:12.

For as many as have sinned without the law will be judged without the law, and as many as have sinned in the law will be judged by the law.

My question is "would an irreligious, non-observant jew (like Marx or Freud) who converted to Orthodoxy, have to confess his breaking of the law (working on the Sabbath, eating on Yum Kipur, not keeping kosher, etc. etc.) to an Orthodox priest befor receiving absolution and Chrismation?"
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« Reply #154 on: November 14, 2010, 03:27:25 PM »

My question is "would an irreligious, non-observant jew (like Marx or Freud) who converted to Orthodoxy, have to confess his breaking of the law (working on the Sabbath, eating on Yum Kipur, not keeping kosher, etc. etc.) to an Orthodox priest befor receiving absolution and Chrismation?"
Christians also have a rule to observe the sabbath, have fasting, have canons against eating blood. However, I don't think that it is considered a "sin" to break them.

Fasting from sin is more important than physical fasting.

Consequently, you ask a deep question. The right answer might be hard to find, but a mistaken answer treated lightly won't hurt you too much, I think.
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« Reply #155 on: November 15, 2010, 09:53:35 AM »

After watching the video,it seems they are very close in practice,to modern day Pentacostals,and also a question for Nazarene,do you practice both Baptism and Circumcision?
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« Reply #156 on: November 15, 2010, 10:46:35 AM »

I believe the Torah was given to Israel, and I'm not of Jewish ancestry myself (so it doesn't really make any difference to me), but I've often wondered what Jesus meant when He said:

Think not that I've come to destroy the Law and the Prophets, I have not come to destroy but to fill full. For truly I say to you that not a jot or stroke will pass from the Law till everything comes to pass.

I've got the first part (He filled it full by living it, showing us how to love God and Man, and being our Passover sacrifice), but the second part seems to imply that Jews (or at least unconverted Jews, who are not yet new creatures in Christ) would be under some obligation to keep the Torah until God wraps things up at the second coming.

Paul also seems to be saying something like that in Romans 2:12.

For as many as have sinned without the law will be judged without the law, and as many as have sinned in the law will be judged by the law.

My question is "would an irreligious, non-observant jew (like Marx or Freud) who converted to Orthodoxy, have to confess his breaking of the law (working on the Sabbath, eating on Yum Kipur, not keeping kosher, etc. etc.) to an Orthodox priest befor receiving absolution and Chrismation?"

No
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« Reply #157 on: November 21, 2010, 11:55:18 PM »

I was wrong : "Yeshua" is the proper pronunciation, "Eshoo Meshiha" is a more modern Assyrian pronounciation which as evolved over time.
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« Reply #158 on: November 24, 2010, 08:12:27 AM »

I have a couple of questions, Do those who hold to Messianic Judaism,are they in a sense Judaizers? I know that this movement has become very popular, especially within Protestantism. Isn't this the very thing the Early Church spoke against?
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« Reply #159 on: November 24, 2010, 09:57:04 AM »

Do those who hold to Messianic Judaism,are they in a sense Judaizers? I know that this movement has become very popular, especially within Protestantism. Isn't this the very thing the Early Church spoke against?

I wonder that too... especially when I see people with absolutely no Jewish background becoming Messianic Jews. I guess I am confused on when it's Judaizing and when it's not.

This has been a really interesting thread! I grew up with a church that was involved with Jews for Jesus, and I'm on another message board that has a lot of Messianic Jews - so I am very curious about all this. I recently finished Fr. James Bernstein's book "Surprised by Christ." It was a very good read and really made the OT come alive for me. I highly recommend it though he doesn't really get into all of the questions I've seen raised in this thread.
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« Reply #160 on: November 25, 2010, 07:45:15 AM »

Do those who hold to Messianic Judaism,are they in a sense Judaizers? I know that this movement has become very popular, especially within Protestantism. Isn't this the very thing the Early Church spoke against?

I wonder that too... especially when I see people with absolutely no Jewish background becoming Messianic Jews. I guess I am confused on when it's Judaizing and when it's not.

This has been a really interesting thread! I grew up with a church that was involved with Jews for Jesus, and I'm on another message board that has a lot of Messianic Jews - so I am very curious about all this. I recently finished Fr. James Bernstein's book "Surprised by Christ." It was a very good read and really made the OT come alive for me. I highly recommend it though he doesn't really get into all of the questions I've seen raised in this thread.


I will give it a look,and yes this is an interesting thread.
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« Reply #161 on: November 26, 2010, 02:34:25 PM »

Lizzy,

I would love to hear about Father Bernstein's book from you! Like what was it that made him become Christian, and which OT prophecies did he find predicted Christ's resurrection?

Second, regarding Messianic Judaism, look at the Council of Jerusalem in the book of Acts. The Council decided that Christian Jews would continue their customs, while non-Jewish Christians would be free from some of them. St Paul makes explanations of why non-Jewish Christians are free from some customs of the OT law. Further, it seems like both groups in Christianity would be free from some OT customs, like animal sacrifice.

At least on the face of it, non-Jews starting to obeying certain OT laws like ritual circumcision would go against St Paul's view. On the other hand, the Council of Jerusalem sounds like our Orthodox Church should make space for Jews who wish to continue the practice.
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« Reply #162 on: November 26, 2010, 03:33:56 PM »

Messianic Judaism is a heretical sect.
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« Reply #163 on: November 26, 2010, 03:39:27 PM »

Lizzy,

I would love to hear about Father Bernstein's book from you! Like what was it that made him become Christian, and which OT prophecies did he find predicted Christ's resurrection?

Second, regarding Messianic Judaism, look at the Council of Jerusalem in the book of Acts. The Council decided that Christian Jews would continue their customs, while non-Jewish Christians would be free from some of them. St Paul makes explanations of why non-Jewish Christians are free from some customs of the OT law. Further, it seems like both groups in Christianity would be free from some OT customs, like animal sacrifice.

At least on the face of it, non-Jews starting to obeying certain OT laws like ritual circumcision would go against St Paul's view. On the other hand, the Council of Jerusalem sounds like our Orthodox Church should make space for Jews who wish to continue the practice.

There has been plenty of time for The Church to realize the error you suggest. Protestants may constantly reevaluate ancient customs and change them. However, the Orthodox Church has been consistent in it's understanding of these matters, your personal insights into the OT and Paul's writings not withstanding.
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« Reply #164 on: November 27, 2010, 12:26:12 AM »

Marc,

Protestants and Orthodox have been able to change customs, like wearing veils in church.

You are right that the Orthodox church has had a long time to change its views on Jews continuing certain Mosaic practices, and you are right that it is my personal view that it has changed its views. My personal view is that the original view was the Council of Jerusalem's decision to allow Jews to uniquely keep some of their ways. Since it appears that the Orthodox Church doesn't have Jews continuing their unique practices anymore, it appears to me that the Orthodox Church has indeed changed its views.

Would you happen to know when, how, and where exactly the Orthodox Church changed its views on the topic, if it did? Was there an explanation or justification ever given that took into account that allowing Jews to continue some unique customs was the original view of the Council of Jerusalem?

Health and Happiness to you, my friend.
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« Reply #165 on: November 27, 2010, 12:34:19 AM »

Marc,

Protestants and Orthodox have been able to change customs, like wearing veils in church.

You are right that the Orthodox church has had a long time to change its views on Jews continuing certain Mosaic practices, and you are right that it is my personal view that it has changed its views. My personal view is that the original view was the Council of Jerusalem's decision to allow Jews to uniquely keep some of their ways. Since it appears that the Orthodox Church doesn't have Jews continuing their unique practices anymore, it appears to me that the Orthodox Church has indeed changed its views.

Would you happen to know when, how, and where exactly the Orthodox Church changed its views on the topic, if it did? Was there an explanation or justification ever given that took into account that allowing Jews to continue some unique customs was the original view of the Council of Jerusalem?

Health and Happiness to you, my friend.

So are you suggesting that Jews have a Church outside of the One Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church? One where they keep the OT Holy Days and practices? If so, that is a far cry from anything suggested by the Council of Jerusalem.

Judaizing Christiniy has long been recognized as a heresy. Perhaps you can start a new religion more to your liking.
 
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« Reply #166 on: November 27, 2010, 03:18:30 PM »

Would you happen to know when, how, and where exactly the Orthodox Church changed its views on the topic, if it did? Was there an explanation or justification ever given that took into account that allowing Jews to continue some unique customs was the original view of the Council of Jerusalem?

Health and Happiness to you, my friend.

So are you suggesting that Jews have a Church outside of the One Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church? One where they keep the OT Holy Days and practices? If so, that is a far cry from anything suggested by the Council of Jerusalem.

Judaizing Christiniy has long been recognized as a heresy. Perhaps you can start a new religion more to your liking.
 

Dear Marc,

1) I humbly request that you try to answer my last question if possible.

Was there an explanation or justification ever given that took into account the possibility that allowing Jews to continue some unique customs was the original view of the Council of Jerusalem?

2) I am not suggesting that Jews should form a separate group outside the One Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church. To me, it seems that union with Christ and brotherhood with eachother is more important than issues of custom: wearing veils, calendar differences, whether trinitarian Christian converts should join by Chrismation or rebaptism, or whether Jews should uniquely continue some of their unique practices like ritual circumcision. (I favor wearing veils and joining by Chrismation).

3) You are right that breaking with the church over such a customary issue would be "a far cry from anything suggested by the Council of Jerusalem." And you are right that "Judaizing Christiniy has long been recognized as a heresy." That is, it has been recognized as a heresy to demand nonJewish Christians to follow some unique Mosaic customs. However, it seems to me that allowing Jews to continue some of their unique practices hasn't been condemned as a Judaizing heresy.

4) Further, I agree with your avoidance of "starting a new religion more to your liking." It isn't necessary, because issues of custom like veils and calendars are secondary to communion. Further, we are able to discuss the issue of allowing Jews to continue some unique customs among eachother, and ask the Church to reconsider its opinion if it turns out it opposes Jews keeping some unique customs. Finally, you may recall from our discussion on Palestinian Christians Wanting to Keep Their Homes that Archpriest Abraham, who serves the Holy Land's Hebrew-speaking community, tried to join in a holiday like Hanukah in the Israeli State while wearing priestly attire. Consequently, from an Orthodox Christian perspective, it is acceptable for Jews who are faithful Christians to celebrate Hanukah and some other pre-Christian Jewish holidays.

Shalom.
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« Reply #167 on: November 27, 2010, 03:33:53 PM »

I believe the Torah was given to Israel, and I'm not of Jewish ancestry myself (so it doesn't really make any difference to me), but I've often wondered what Jesus meant when He said:

Think not that I've come to destroy the Law and the Prophets, I have not come to destroy but to fill full. For truly I say to you that not a jot or stroke will pass from the Law till everything comes to pass.

I've got the first part (He filled it full by living it, showing us how to love God and Man, and being our Passover sacrifice), but the second part seems to imply that Jews (or at least unconverted Jews, who are not yet new creatures in Christ) would be under some obligation to keep the Torah until God wraps things up at the second coming.

The Fathers say that by saying not one iota would be.. they were speaking of the law of the decalogue. The law that is now written in the hearts of all men.
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« Reply #168 on: November 27, 2010, 03:37:43 PM »

Further, I agree with your avoidance of "starting a new religion more to your liking." It isn't necessary, because issues of custom like veils and calendars are secondary to communion. Further, we are able to discuss the issue of allowing Jews to continue some unique customs among eachother, and ask the Church to reconsider its opinion if it turns out it opposes Jews keeping some unique customs. Finally, you may recall from our discussion on Palestinian Christians Wanting to Keep Their Homes that Archpriest Abraham, who serves the Holy Land's Hebrew-speaking community, tried to join in a holiday like Hanukah in the Israeli State while wearing priestly attire. Consequently, from an Orthodox Christian perspective, it is acceptable for Jews who are faithful Christians to celebrate Hanukah and some other pre-Christian Jewish holidays.

Shalom.

Not according to the canons. One who joins in with celebrations of the Jews is excommunicated.

Quote
Canon XLV of the Holy Apostles:

"Let any Bishop, or Presbyter, or deacon that merely joins in prayer with heretics be suspended, but if he had permitted them to perform any service as Clergymen, let him be deposed."

Canon LXV Of the Holy Apostles:

"If any clergymen, or laymen, enter a synagogue of Jews, or of heretics, to pray, let him be both deposed and excommunicated."

Canon IX of Laodicia (Also approved by the Ecumenical Synods):

"Concerning the fact that those belonging to the Church must not be allowed to go visiting the cemeteries or the so called martyria of any heretics, for the purpose of prayer or of cure, but, on the contrary, those who do so, if they be among the faithful, shall be excluded from communion for a time until they repent and confess their having made a mistake, when they may be readmitted to communion."

Canon I of the Second Ecumenical Synod:

"Let not the Symbol of Faith be set aside…but let it remain unchanged: and let every heresy be given over to anathema…"

Canon VII of the Third Ecumenical Synod:

"Let no one be permitted to bring forward, or write or compose a different faith besides that defined by the holy Fathers who assembled with the Holy Spirit in the city of Nicaea. And whoever dares to compose a different faith, or present, or offer [one] to those wishing to turn to the knowledge of the truth…let such, if they be bishops or belong to the clergy, be alien-bishops from the episcopate, and clerics from the clergy—and if they be laymen, let them be given over to anathema."

Canon I of the Fourth Ecumenical Synod:

"We have acknowledged it as just to keep the canons of the holy Fathers set forth at each synod till now."

Excerpt from Divine Prayers and Services of the Catholic Orthodox Church of Christ, compiled and arranged by the Late Reverend Seraphim Nassar (Englewood, NJ: Antiochian Archdiocese of N. America, 1979), p. 1031.:

Now since the Church is one, and that oneness consists primarily and universally of perfect agreement in Orthodox doctrines, it necessarily follows that all those who do not conform to those Orthodox doctrines, whether by addition or omission, or by any innovation of their own, thus changing the truth, are outside this one Holy Church, as one may also ascertain from a review of the sixth and seventh canons of the Second Ecumenical Council, and the first canon of St. Basil the Great.

Canon I of the Sixth Ecumenical Synod, in Trullo:

"…we decree that the faith handed down to us by the eyewitnesses and ministers of the Word, the divinely chosen Apostles, and, further, by the three hundred and eighteen holy and blessed Fathers…who assembled in Nicaea, be preserved inviolate from innovations and changes… Likewise, we also maintain the confession of faith proclaimed by the one hundred and fifty holy Fathers, who assembled in this reigning city under the great Theodosius, our emperor…Likewise, we also seal…the teaching set forth by the two hundred Godbearing Fathers, who assembled the first time in the city of Ephesus under Theodosius, our emperor, the son of Arcadius…

"Likewise, we also confirm in Orthodox manner the confession of faith inscribed by the six hundred and thirty divinelychosen Fathers in the provincial city of Chalcedon under Marcian, our emperor… And further, we also recognize as uttered by the Holy Spirit the pious utterances of the one hundred and sixtyfive Godbearing Fathers, who assembled in this reigning city under Justinian, our emperor of blessed memory, and we teach them to our posterity… And we bind ourselves anew to preserve inviolably…the confession of faith of the Sixth Synod that came together recently under our emperor, Constantine of blessed memory, in this reigning city... Speaking briefly, we enact that the faith of all of the men who have been glorified in the Church of God...be kept steadfastly, and that it abide until the end of the age unshaken, together with their divinely handed down writings and dogmas... If anyone at all does not maintain and accept the aforementioned dogmas of piety, and does not think and preach so, but attempts to go against them: let him be anathema, according to the decree previously enacted by the aforementioned holy and blessed Fathers, and let him be excluded and expelled from the Christian estate as an alien."

Canon I of the Seventh Ecumenical Synod:

"For those who have received the priestly dignity, the inscribed canons and enactments serve as testimonies and directions, which we, gladly receiving, sing together with the divinely inspired David unto the Lord, saying: In the way of Thy testimonies have I found delight, as much as in all riches (Psalm 118:14). Likewise, Thou hast ordained as Thy testimonies... righteousness for ever; give me understanding and I shall live (Psalm 118:138, 144). And if the prophetic voice commands us to preserve the testimonies of God forever, and to live in them, then it is manifest that they abide indestructible and unshakeable. For Moses the Godseer also speaks thus: It is not fitting to add to them, nor is it fitting to take away from them (Deuteronomy 12:32). And the divine Apostle Peter, boasting in them, cries: which things the angels desire to look into (I Peter 1:12). Likewise the Apostle Paul also says: But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed [literally, let him be anathema] (Galatians 1:Cool. Inasmuch as this is true, and attested unto us, rejoicing over this, as one that has found great spoil, we receive the divine canons with delight, and we maintain wholly and unshakably the enactment of these canons set forth by the allpraised Apostles, the holy trumpets of the Spirit, and by the six holy Ecumenical Synods, and those assembled locally to issue such commandments, and by our holy Fathers. For they all, being enlightened by one and the same Spirit, ordained what is beneficial. And whomever they give over to anathema, those we also anathematize; and whomever to expulsion, those we also expel, and whomever to excommunication, those we also excommunicate; and whomever they subject to penances, those we likewise subject."

Eighth Proceeding of the Seventh Ecumenical Synod:

Mansi, Sacrorum Conciliorum Nova et Amplissima Collectio [1960], vol. 3, p. 416). Quoted by Dr. Constantine Cavarnos in Orthodox Tradition and Modernism, p. 37.

"If anyone breaks any ecclesiastical tradition, written or unwritten, let him be anathema"

From the Synodicon of the Holy Spirit:

Note: This is subtitled, "A confession and proclamation of the Orthodox piety of the Christians, in which all the impieties of the heretics are overthrown and the definitions of the Catholic Church of Christ are sustained. Through which the enemies of the Holy Spirit are severed from the Church of Christ." This Synodicon (a decision, statement, or tome either originating from a synod possessing conciliar authority) is attributed to Patriarch Germanos the New (1222-1240).

"To those who scorn the venerable and holy ecumenical Synods, and who despise even more their dogmatic and canonical traditions; and to those who say that all things were not perfectly defined and delivered by the synods, but that they left the greater part mysterious, unclear, and untaught, ANATHEMA."

"To those who hold in contempt the sacred and divine canons of our blessed fathers, which, by sustaining the holy Church of God and adorning the whole Christian Church, guide to divine reverence, ANATHEMA."

"To all things innovated and enacted contrary to the Church tradition, teaching, and institution of the holy and ever-memorable fathers, or to anything henceforth so enacted, ANATHEMA."

Just posted for discussion's sake, not condemning anyone, here. :-)
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« Reply #169 on: November 27, 2010, 05:02:51 PM »



Dear Marc,

1) I humbly request that you try to answer my last question if possible.

I humbly suggest that you ask loaded questions.

Was there an explanation or justification ever given that took into account the possibility that allowing Jews to continue some unique customs was the original view of the Council of Jerusalem?


Someone else will have provide a timeline for you.

At first the Church consisted of Jews who were not yet certain if they were to be a sect of Judaism or a new Religion

Then, there was a mix of Jews and Gentiles.

Then, there were only a few Jews who were Christians

And Then, there were virtually none.

Now, there are more Jews becoming Christians

You are suggesting that is similar to step one above.

It is not. It is well established in the Church by many great Saints and Theologians, not the least of which is St. John Chrysostom, that mixing Jewish practices with Christian practices is "heretical", an error, which is detrimental to the spiritual health of Christians..   

2) I am not suggesting that Jews should form a separate group outside the One Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church. To me, it seems that union with Christ and brotherhood with eachother is more important than issues of custom: wearing veils, calendar differences, whether trinitarian Christian converts should join by Chrismation or rebaptism, or whether Jews should uniquely continue some of their unique practices like ritual circumcision. (I favor wearing veils and joining by Chrismation).

That appears to me to be a Protestant type view of The Church, Perhaps you would be happier if you were a Protestant. In that way you could .try to reformulate age old Traditions to make new comers more comfortable
" yeah sure go ahead and be circumcised unto the Old Law...what the heck, if it gets someone to join up, why not?"..............

3) You are right that breaking with the church over such a customary issue would be "a far cry from anything suggested by the Council of Jerusalem." And you are right that "Judaizing Christiniy has long been recognized as a heresy." That is, it has been recognized as a heresy to demand nonJewish Christians to follow some unique Mosaic customs. However, it seems to me that allowing Jews to continue some of their unique practices hasn't been condemned as a Judaizing heresy.

That smacks of Ghettoizing Jews. CLEARLY, The Church has not separated out Jewish converts. Perhaps you can find a Protestant Sect where that's okay.

4) Further, I agree with your avoidance of "starting a new religion more to your liking." It isn't necessary, because issues of custom like veils and calendars are secondary to communion. Further, we are able to discuss the issue of allowing Jews to continue some unique customs among eachother, and ask the Church to reconsider its opinion if it turns out it opposes Jews keeping some unique customs. Finally, you may recall from our discussion on Palestinian Christians Wanting to Keep Their Homes that Archpriest Abraham, who serves the Holy Land's Hebrew-speaking community, tried to join in a holiday like Hanukah in the Israeli State while wearing priestly attire. Consequently, from an Orthodox Christian perspective, it is acceptable for Jews who are faithful Christians to celebrate Hanukah and some other pre-Christian Jewish holidays.


Um  Youre rambling...

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« Reply #170 on: November 27, 2010, 11:47:27 PM »

Lizzy,

I would love to hear about Father Bernstein's book from you! Like what was it that made him become Christian, and which OT prophecies did he find predicted Christ's resurrection?

It's been a few months since I read the book so hopefully I'll get the details straight. Fr. Bernstein's grandparents were what he calls "ultra-Orthodox" though I don't believe his parents were quite so "ultra."

When he was a teenager he read the New Testament and became mesmerized by the descriptions of Christ. He writes that he "was confronted with a major decision: what to do with Christ." He tried to approach the issue as logically as he could and he continued to read through the NT which he found very compelling. But ultimately it was an encounter with God that sealed the deal and caused him to know that indeed Jesus was God.

He walks through a number of OT prophecies as well, and he also discusses the Jewish view of these verses. He says that before recent times, many rabbis did believe that Scriptures presented a Messiah who would come, suffer and die for his people, but that view has obviously changed quite a bit.

One of my favorite parts of the book (and there really were quite a few) was where Fr. Bernstein discusses the purpose of sacrifice. The prevailing Western view (both Protestant and Catholic) is that of substitutionary atonement: “Christ is a sacrifice by God on behalf of humanity, taking humanity’s penalty for sin upon himself, and propitiating God’s wrath. In other words, God imputed the guilt of our sins to Christ, and he, in our place, bore the punishment that we deserve.” When one accepts this kind of view, it’s hard not to see God the Father as an angry God who can only be appeased through death of either us or His perfect Son. The Orthodox view – both Christian and Jewish – is entirely different. God doesn’t punish us for our sin; instead He rescues us from it.

From the book:

Quote
As I researched the subject, I discovered an essential aspect of the sacrificial system described in the Old Testament: the outer act of sacrifice should reflect the inner state of the offerer seeking personal reconciliation with God. The goal of the sacrifice was to gain interior cleansing and change of heart, not to change God. This contrasts with the pagan view, in which the efficacy of the sacrifice is not at all dependent on the state of the individual offering it. Its purpose is not to change the state of the offerer, but to appease and change the deity… [the pagan] goal has a materialistic and utilitarian motivation; its goal is not to gain interior change, healing or love, but instead to gain control over other people and objects...

When Orthodox read a verse like ‘Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures’ (1 Corinthians 15:3), it is understood to mean that Christ died for us – to heal us, to change us, to make us more godlike – not that He died instead of us. The ultimate purpose of His death is to change us, not to avert the wrath of God.

Anyway, I highly recommend the book. Some of the autobiographical parts are a bit slow, but overall it is packed with great information.
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« Reply #171 on: November 28, 2010, 01:18:10 AM »

Lizzy,

I would love to hear about Father Bernstein's book from you! Like what was it that made him become Christian, and which OT prophecies did he find predicted Christ's resurrection?

It's been a few months since I read the book so hopefully I'll get the details straight. Fr. Bernstein's grandparents were what he calls "ultra-Orthodox" though I don't believe his parents were quite so "ultra."

When he was a teenager he read the New Testament and became mesmerized by the descriptions of Christ. He writes that he "was confronted with a major decision: what to do with Christ." He tried to approach the issue as logically as he could and he continued to read through the NT which he found very compelling. But ultimately it was an encounter with God that sealed the deal and caused him to know that indeed Jesus was God.

He walks through a number of OT prophecies as well, and he also discusses the Jewish view of these verses. He says that before recent times, many rabbis did believe that Scriptures presented a Messiah who would come, suffer and die for his people, but that view has obviously changed quite a bit.

One of my favorite parts of the book (and there really were quite a few) was where Fr. Bernstein discusses the purpose of sacrifice. The prevailing Western view (both Protestant and Catholic) is that of substitutionary atonement: “Christ is a sacrifice by God on behalf of humanity, taking humanity’s penalty for sin upon himself, and propitiating God’s wrath. In other words, God imputed the guilt of our sins to Christ, and he, in our place, bore the punishment that we deserve.” When one accepts this kind of view, it’s hard not to see God the Father as an angry God who can only be appeased through death of either us or His perfect Son. The Orthodox view – both Christian and Jewish – is entirely different. God doesn’t punish us for our sin; instead He rescues us from it.

From the book:

Quote
As I researched the subject, I discovered an essential aspect of the sacrificial system described in the Old Testament: the outer act of sacrifice should reflect the inner state of the offerer seeking personal reconciliation with God. The goal of the sacrifice was to gain interior cleansing and change of heart, not to change God. This contrasts with the pagan view, in which the efficacy of the sacrifice is not at all dependent on the state of the individual offering it. Its purpose is not to change the state of the offerer, but to appease and change the deity… [the pagan] goal has a materialistic and utilitarian motivation; its goal is not to gain interior change, healing or love, but instead to gain control over other people and objects...

When Orthodox read a verse like ‘Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures’ (1 Corinthians 15:3), it is understood to mean that Christ died for us – to heal us, to change us, to make us more godlike – not that He died instead of us. The ultimate purpose of His death is to change us, not to avert the wrath of God.

Anyway, I highly recommend the book. Some of the autobiographical parts are a bit slow, but overall it is packed with great information.


Thank you for the quote! Very insightful.

As for the acts of the Apostles canons, they have been debated within traditional Christianity.
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« Reply #172 on: November 28, 2010, 08:55:17 PM »

With all due respect to Father Bernstein, whose views I admire, I don't 100% agree with his exclusion of a certain atonement idea, when he writes:

Quote
When Orthodox read a verse like ‘Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures’ (1 Corinthians 15:3), it is understood to mean that Christ died for us – to heal us, to change us, to make us more godlike – not that He died instead of us. The ultimate purpose of His death is to change us, not to avert the wrath of God.
Father Bernstein's view of 1 Corinthians 15:3 could be 100% correct.

But on the other hand, Isaiah 53, which says Christ took the stroke which was due to us or to God's people, suggests that Christ died in our place.

In other words, I think that there is probably either an element of atonement, or at least of Christ suffering in our place. And probably Fr. Bernstein would agree, but he wants us to focus more on the healing and theosis parts of Christ's mission.
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« Reply #173 on: November 28, 2010, 09:26:13 PM »

In other words, I think that there is probably either an element of atonement, or at least of Christ suffering in our place. And probably Fr. Bernstein would agree, but he wants us to focus more on the healing and theosis parts of Christ's mission.


In the book he goes more in-depth about the penal substitutionary theory of atonement, the purpose of the sacrificial system, propitiation vs. expiation, etc. I think that the piece quoted is one part of a much bigger picture.
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« Reply #174 on: November 28, 2010, 09:46:43 PM »

In other words, I think that there is probably either an element of atonement, or at least of Christ suffering in our place. And probably Fr. Bernstein would agree, but he wants us to focus more on the healing and theosis parts of Christ's mission.


In the book he goes more in-depth about the penal substitutionary theory of atonement, the purpose of the sacrificial system, propitiation vs. expiation, etc. I think that the piece quoted is one part of a much bigger picture.

Sure. Apparently there is a difference between Calvinist (or perhaps general Protestant) Penal Substitution Atonement and just good old-fashioned Substitution Atonement.
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« Reply #175 on: November 29, 2010, 12:26:18 AM »

In other words, I think that there is probably either an element of atonement, or at least of Christ suffering in our place. And probably Fr. Bernstein would agree, but he wants us to focus more on the healing and theosis parts of Christ's mission.


In the book he goes more in-depth about the penal substitutionary theory of atonement, the purpose of the sacrificial system, propitiation vs. expiation, etc. I think that the piece quoted is one part of a much bigger picture.

Sure. Apparently there is a difference between Calvinist (or perhaps general Protestant) Penal Substitution Atonement and just good old-fashioned Substitution Atonement.

Sure. Substitution Atonement = We were going to die/suffer, Christ took our place. He took our fallen humanity on himself so that we wouldn't have to suffer it.

Penal Substitution: The consequences of our fallen humanity were directly imputed as punishment from the Father.
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if Christ does and says x. And someone else does and says not x and you are ever in doubt, follow Christ.

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« Reply #176 on: December 06, 2010, 12:24:07 AM »

issues of custom like veils and calendars are secondary to communion. we are able to discuss the issue of allowing Jews to continue some unique customs among eachother, and ask the Church to reconsider its opinion if it turns out it opposes Jews keeping some unique customs. from an Orthodox Christian perspective, it is acceptable for Jews who are faithful Christians to celebrate Hanukah and some other pre-Christian Jewish holidays.

Quote
Canon XLV of the Holy Apostles:



Canon IX of Laodicia (Also approved by the Ecumenical Synods):  

Canon I of the Second Ecumenical Synod:

Canon VII of the Third Ecumenical Synod:

Canon I of the Fourth Ecumenical Synod:Canon I of the Sixth Ecumenical Synod, in Trullo:

Canon I of the Seventh Ecumenical Synod:

Eighth Proceeding of the Seventh Ecumenical Synod:

From the Synodicon of the Holy Spirit:



Nigula,
1. The Canons of the Holy Apostles' authenticity as an ecumenical and/or writing of the first apostels is seriously doubted by Christian scholars. One reason is that the earliest practice on reception of trinitarian converts, as came down to Pope St Stephen's time, wasn't rebaptism, but the "Canons of the Holy Apostles" demands rebaptism.

2. The other documents you cite don't mention Jewish Christians or their unique practices like circumcision, rather they only go against heresies, without mentioning whether or not it would be a heresy to practice such unique customs.

3. I'm not affirmatively advocating that Jewish Christians should celebrate Jewish customs with nonChristians in violation of any Church rules, but I am saying that if Jewish Christians wish to keep some of their unique customs that Jewish Christians did in the first-second centuries, they should be allowed to do so.

Regards.
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« Reply #177 on: December 06, 2010, 12:54:23 AM »



Dear Marc,

Was there an explanation or justification ever given that took into account the possibility that allowing Jews to continue some unique customs was the original view of the Council of Jerusalem?[/size]

At first the Church consisted of Jews who were not yet certain if they were to be a sect of Judaism or a new Religion

Then, there was a mix of Jews and Gentiles.

Then, there were only a few Jews who were Christians

And Then, there were virtually none.

Now, there are more Jews becoming Christians


Marc,

I am glad that you speak positively about more Jews becoming Christians. You gave a timeline that sounds like an attractive, noncontroversial explanation.

One problem though is that it simply isn't true that after some time, there were "virtually no" Christians of Jewish descent. They didn't all simply physically die or convert to Islam. Nor is it true that the Holy Land was empty of Jews from the 5th century to the end of WWII. You can find alot of stories of Jewish groups living in the Holy Land from the 2nd century to the 7th century. And we know that in the 5th-6th centuries, most of the Holy Land was Jewish.  The 1906 Jewish Encyclopedia, heading "Apostates", refers to Jews becoming Christian in the Holy Land at that time.

Quote
It is well established in the Church by many great Saints and Theologians, not the least of which is St. John Chrysostom, that mixing Jewish practices with Christian practices is "heretical", an error, which is detrimental to the spiritual health of Christians..

My question to you was "Was there an explanation or justification ever given that took into account the possibility that allowing Jews to continue some unique customs was the original view of the Council of Jerusalem?"

Quote
2) I am not suggesting that Jews should form a separate group outside the One Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church. To me, it seems that union with Christ and brotherhood with eachother is more important than issues of custom: wearing veils, calendar differences, whether trinitarian Christian converts should join by Chrismation or rebaptism, or whether Jews should uniquely continue some of their unique practices like ritual circumcision. (I favor wearing veils and joining by Chrismation).

That appears to me to be a Protestant type view of The Church, Perhaps you would be happier if you were a Protestant. In that way you could .try to reformulate age old Traditions to make new comers more comfortable
" yeah sure go ahead and be circumcised unto the Old Law...what the heck, if it gets someone to join up, why not?"..............

You haven't understood what I've been saying. The early church had some practices like women wearing veils, and Old Calendar, and trinitarian converts joining without rebaptism. You don't need a "Protestant type view of the church" to know that the Church has had some less-important customs in its first few centuries that have been changed in the last few centuries, or earlier.

The point of allowing women to wear veils if they want to, or some Jewish Christians to retain certain special customs wouldn't be to make new comers comfy, but to simply allow continuance of some apostolic customs given and confirmed in several books of the New Testament.


3) You are right that breaking with the church over such a customary issue would be "a far cry from anything suggested by the Council of Jerusalem." And you are right that "Judaizing Christiniy has long been recognized as a heresy." That is, it has been recognized as a heresy to demand nonJewish Christians to follow some unique Mosaic customs. However, it seems to me that allowing Jews to continue some of their unique practices hasn't been condemned as a Judaizing heresy.

That smacks of Ghettoizing Jews. CLEARLY, The Church has not separated out Jewish converts. Perhaps you can find a Protestant Sect where that's okay.
[/quote]

Go back to Acts, where the Council of Jerusalem, James and Peter and others, decide to allow nonJews to avoid some OT customs the explanation is that nonJewish Christians are saved too. There is a sense of community, eating at the same table, communion, whether one is a Jewish Christian or a Greek Christian.

Clearly, eating and close contact with nonJews went against some OT rules that separated Jews and nonJews. Consequently, you are right that the Church has not separated Jewish converts or tried to "ghettoize" Jewish Christians as you fear. The early church was Jewish Christian and they did not "Separate" out nonJewish Christians. Rather, Jewish Christians achieved common unity with nonJewish Christians with communion and unity in Christ, eating together at one table. Rather than Separation, they even intermarried, and their descendants are the native Christians of the Holy Land today.

Blessings to you and yours, this Advent.
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« Reply #178 on: December 06, 2010, 10:46:42 AM »

issues of custom like veils and calendars are secondary to communion. we are able to discuss the issue of allowing Jews to continue some unique customs among eachother, and ask the Church to reconsider its opinion if it turns out it opposes Jews keeping some unique customs. from an Orthodox Christian perspective, it is acceptable for Jews who are faithful Christians to celebrate Hanukah and some other pre-Christian Jewish holidays.

Quote
Canon XLV of the Holy Apostles:



Canon IX of Laodicia (Also approved by the Ecumenical Synods):  

Canon I of the Second Ecumenical Synod:

Canon VII of the Third Ecumenical Synod:

Canon I of the Fourth Ecumenical Synod:Canon I of the Sixth Ecumenical Synod, in Trullo:

Canon I of the Seventh Ecumenical Synod:

Eighth Proceeding of the Seventh Ecumenical Synod:

From the Synodicon of the Holy Spirit:



Nigula,
1. The Canons of the Holy Apostles' authenticity as an ecumenical and/or writing of the first apostels is seriously doubted by Christian scholars. One reason is that the earliest practice on reception of trinitarian converts, as came down to Pope St Stephen's time, wasn't rebaptism, but the "Canons of the Holy Apostles" demands rebaptism.

2. The other documents you cite don't mention Jewish Christians or their unique practices like circumcision, rather they only go against heresies, without mentioning whether or not it would be a heresy to practice such unique customs.

3. I'm not affirmatively advocating that Jewish Christians should celebrate Jewish customs with nonChristians in violation of any Church rules, but I am saying that if Jewish Christians wish to keep some of their unique customs that Jewish Christians did in the first-second centuries, they should be allowed to do so.

Regards.

Why ?

 You haven't understood what I've been saying. The early church had some practices like women wearing veils, and Old Calendar, and trinitarian converts joining without rebaptism. You don't need a "Protestant type view of the church" to know that the Church has had some less-important customs in its first few centuries that have been changed in the last few centuries, or earlier.

Like??

 Bar Mitzvoh? Like fasting on Yom Kipper ? Like being buried separately from non Jews?

Or do you mean eating Potatoes Pancakes around this time of year?
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Your idea has been debunked 1000 times already.. Maybe 1001 will be the charm
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« Reply #179 on: December 06, 2010, 04:28:07 PM »

Marc,

Like??

 Bar Mitzvoh? Like fasting on Yom Kipper ? Like being buried separately from non Jews?

Or do you mean eating Potatoes Pancakes around this time of year?
Father Bernstein in his book surprised by Christ gives examples of practices by Jewish Palestinian Christians in the Holy Land, like circumcision, keeping the sabbath, food rules. They also sometimes went to nonChristian synagogues. For example, Acts mentioned that the early Christians went to nonChristian synagogues to preach about Jesus the Messiah. In fact, they were willing to undergo persecution to preach in the synagogues and pray in the Temple.

To give another example, it was a tradition to go to Jerusalem for Passover. It was a tradition that came down among Palestinian Orthodox Christians, who are descendents of Jews, so that they yearn to visit Jerusalem today during Passover or "Paskha", although the permit restriction system only allowed 10-20% of Palestinian Christians to visit Jerusalem during last year's Passover.

Father Bernstein's explanation in Surprised by Christ is that as the Roman empire and surrounding lands like Armenia and the Middle East became Christian, the number of non-Jewish Christians greatly outnumbered the Jewish Christians, who lived in Galilee and Jordan among other places.

So almost 2000 centuries of intermarriage and assimilation explain why the Palestinian Christians, who are descended mainly from Jews (those of the circumcision"), but nevertheless to a lesser extent with others like Greeks, Aramaics, Samaritans, don't keep separate customs like circumcision today.

So even if their was some kind of absolute ban on all unique Jewish practices, which there wasn't, and then a hypothetical counter-church Jewish Christian sect still would have intermarried and assimilated itself.

Father Bernstein's explanation is that most lists of heretical sects from the 1st-6th centuries don't mention Jewish Christian sects, not because they didn't exist, but because the compilers, like Filaster who made a list of 156 heretical groups, didn't consider them to be a heretical group outside the church.

Meanwhile, St Jerome spoke positively about Jewish Christians who kept the unique customs.

Shalom.
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