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How Do the Mainstreams of Christianity Look MJ As?

Discussion in 'Messianic Judaism' started by Yusuphhai, Sep 27, 2012.

  1. yedida

    yedida Ruth Messianic, joining Israel, Na'aseh v'nishma!

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    Is there a book (readable to a (very) lay person) on how that was decided? That would be interesting to learn, how/what they were thinking when they did that. And found on a city's library shelf? (I just can't afford books.)
     
  2. mishkan

    mishkan There's room for YOU in the Mishkan! Supporter

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    To be honest, I've never probed the topic very deeply. I know the who and the when, but have no idea of the why or the how.

    This article contains a decent summary of what happened. I'll let you know if I find anything about the reasoning or the circunstances.

    It was the Archbishop of Canterbury who created the chapter divisions in 1227. I have no idea what rationale or methodology he employed.

    The versification was created by a rabbi a couple hundred years later. But, again, I have no idea regarding his approach, either. He seems to have adopted the Christian chapter breaks, for the most part. There are only a handful of passages were he deviated, while inserting his own verse divisions in the Tanakh.
     
  3. yedida

    yedida Ruth Messianic, joining Israel, Na'aseh v'nishma!

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    Thanks! And thanks for reminding me about GotQuestions. Computer crashes have a habit of making me forget things I'd had on my "favorites" list.
     
  4. ananda

    ananda Early Buddhist

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    Interestingly, I see this letter, and specifically both chapters 12 & 13 in 2Cor, as written by Paul to defend his apostolic status & ministry. Apparently, the Corinthians (and believers in Asia Minor) were questioning him & his credentials (13:3, cf 1:8-10, 3:1, 10:5-12, 12:15, 12:19, 13:6,7, 13:10, 2Tim 2:15), after the apostles (11:5, 18, 22-23) sent a competing gospel message (11:2-33) of trust & obedience (11:12,15,18). He presents himself and his multiple presences as proof of his ministry (13:1-2).

    I don't think that 2Cor 13:1 was referring to 12:18. In the immediate context of 13:1 & 2, he uses such words as "third time", "previously said," "say beforehand", "present the second time", etc. He was referring to himself. Also, there is no evidence that Titus nor the unknown brother were first-hand witnesses to Paul's alleged apostolic commissioning.

    Paul presents the following allegations as proof of his apostleship:

    1. 12:1-6: a claim that he was brought into heaven,
    2. 12:7-10: a claim that he was not only persecuted by the Corinthians in their allegations (v10), but also by a demon (v7). Interestingly, he didn't have the power to cast it out, even though such power was given to the Apostles by Messiah (Lk 10:19, Mt 10:1).
    3. 12:11: a claim that he should have been exalted like the other apostles
    4. 12:12: a claim that he performed signs, wonders, and powers as evidence of his apostleship, even though Messiah stated that this was not evidence of such (Mt 24:24).
    5. 13:1-2: a claim that he taught them multiple times, and this thus fulfills the need for two or more witnesses.

    In 12:13-18, by Paul's statement, we can infer that the Corinthians were possibly claiming that Paul & his associates took advantage of them (cf 8:9-9:10, 11:8). He claims that he speaks for Elohim in Messiah (v19). He perceives their rejection of him as strife, jealousy, wraths, factions, backbitings, whisperings, swellings, and tumults (v20). He personally threatens repercussions against those who rebel against him (13:2). He commands them to test themselves, if they are actually in Messiah, and frightens them with the possibility that Messiah is not in them if they fail certain tests (13:5), even though Paul himself might appear as if he failed such tests (13:7)!
     
    Last edited: Oct 22, 2012
  5. Avodat

    Avodat Contending for Biblical truth

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    Some scholars see 1 & 2 Corinthians as 7 separate letters for which the 'top and tail' greetings / salutations have been largely lost except those currently shown.
     
  6. Avodat

    Avodat Contending for Biblical truth

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    In a number of places the earlier and latter parts of The Book are one verse number out - either with each other in their numbering and/ or in the logical reading of the passages. Not sure how / why this came about but it does account for some very odd beginnings and endings to sections of text.
     
  7. mishkan

    mishkan There's room for YOU in the Mishkan! Supporter

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    Tehillim definitely evidences this tendency in several places. This often occurs when the Jewish tradition includes the superscription as part of the text, and assigns it a verse number.

    Sometimes, the differece is a matter of assigning a transitional statement to one side or the other of the major break.

    The passage that really blew my mind when I first encountered it was Malachi 4. The Christian Bible contains 3:1-18, and 4:1-6. But the Jewish Bible contains 3:1-24. They drop the entire 4th chapter heading! This issue is observable in many years, when Parsha Tzav coincides with Shabbat Hagadol, just before Pesach. The Haftarah for Shabbat Hagadol is Malachi 3:4-18.
     
  8. LittleLambofJesus

    LittleLambofJesus Hebrews 2:14.... Pesky Devil, git! Supporter

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    Not sure what you mean by 7 seperate letters along with "top and tail". Can you elaborate? Thks

    ..
     
  9. mishkan

    mishkan There's room for YOU in the Mishkan! Supporter

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    He is suggesting that what we today regard as two letters are actually composited from between 4 and 7 distinct original communications.

    We know pretty well for sure that there are at least 2 more letters than what we have preserved for us. "First" Corinthians mentiones a previous letter in 5:9. Then, "Second" Corinthians mentions a "sorrowful letter", which doesn't seem to fit the tone of "First" Corinthians. So, it seems that what we have is actually Second and Fourth Corinthians, not First and Second--unless they remain somehow embedded in our current texts.

    In addition, some believe that there are other fragments that have been integrated into what we have today.

    The "top and tail" refers to the opening salutation from one letter, and the closing of another.
     
  10. Avodat

    Avodat Contending for Biblical truth

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    I thought that was quite explicit.

    Paul, in his letters, gives a greeting and a few words at the end. Some scholars believe that in 1 & 2 Corinthians there are 7 letters between the opening greeting in 1 Corinthians and the final words at the end of 2 Corinthians.

    I think the two letters are actually just one long letter.
     
    Last edited: Oct 22, 2012
  11. Gxg (G²)

    Gxg (G²) Pilgrim/Monastic on the Road to God (Psalm 84:1-7) CF Ambassadors Supporter

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    It is interesting and something to consider...and by the way, "Tortured for Christ" is truly an amazing read :) :clap: Powerful to see the attitude that man went through for the Lord.

    IMHO, it should never be the "point" for the body of Christ in any parts to absorb and obliterate all diversity of opinion, but rather we can have unity within that diversity: by realizing that our unity doesn't come from uniformity, but from a shared experience under the crucified and risen Messiah:
    There is one body and one Spirit—just as you were called to one hope when you were called—one Lord, one faith, one baptism; one God and Father of all, who is over all and through all and in all.
    -Ephesians 4.4-6
    You know that you may be interested in hitting up one of my brothers in the Lord named Lionel Woods---as he's one of my dear brothers in the Lord and I've dialouged with him on a myriad of occasions. We're vastly different theologically and yet we love one another deeply in the Lord and are pretty much on the same page when it comes to trying to keep the main thing the main thing. And as he said best in Lowest Common Denominator: A Case For An Ecumenical Hope ( ):
    One of my favorite subjects in school was Math! I loved it, the numbers came easy, I used to be in the little math contest in school and actually was allowed to participate in a special program in 7th and 8th grades in which I went to a special school for math and took the SAT for placement in a special program in high school. I did well in Jr. High, but if you look at my testimony, well high school didn’t go to well and I was later removed! Anyway, back in 3rd, 4th grade we learned Common Denominators. The objective was this to find out what a group of numbers had in common. Such as in the picture above you want to find a multiple that you can divide a group of numbers into and the objective is to find the lowest possible number: 2,3,4,6=12!

    You probably know by now and by the title that 4th grade math is not my objective in this post. So what is? Let me ask how often do you ask the following questions “what’s your eschatology, what’s your polity, what do you believe about the gifts, what’s your position on baptism, is it a Covenant of Grace or Works (neither LOL), Calvinism? Arminian?, Southern Baptist or Methodist? Emerging or Pentecostalism?

    At our Sunday Morning group we have been studying through Corinthians. After reading and rereading the book and attempting to Chart the book (charting is a way to summarize a book, I will attempt to attach something at the bottom) and get a one theme title I came up with”A Peace Treaty of Love”. The protagonist and antagonist of the book of Corinth is division and unity!

    There is but one church in all of Corinth or at least this is what many commentators say. So as you read the book all of this is going on “Under One Roof”! The apostolic alignment, the secret knowledge, the dude with his stepmother (some wanted to extend grace others knew there was a problem), there is division on head coverings, division at the Table where unity is the focus, there is division on gifts, there is division on tongues, there is division on silence on women, there is division on the resurrection and there is division on baptism for the dead. To put it simply Paul asks “Is Christ Divided” (which I believe to be a key to the entire epistle).


    Chapter 13 is Paul’s resolution. Again remember all of this is happening in one gathering. If this is true, this would make a church split look like a wedding! So what is Paul’s remedy? To show that we are Christ’s body (Chapter 12) which answers the question “Is Christ divided” and without love (Chapter 13) EVERYTHING we do is “worthless” as a matter of fact he says “your are no one”! So we can do a bunch of nothing and do it with all of our energy, we can do it and be labeled successful in this world, you can be invited to conferences, can write hundreds of books, can exposit the text with surgeon like precision but without love you are nothing and what you do profits nothing.
    So let me add to that!

    Schisms/Divisions/Divisiveness (Galatians 5)/Sectarianism all are the opposite of love! So can our energized pursuit of exclusiveness or spiritualcentricity actually be what Paul calls “nothing”?! Absolutely. Let me say this. To look for something to divide on, to find ways where we are different (for the reason to disengage) to have the heart to deal with who Christ has redeemed indifferently to continually have a sectarian all or nothing Christianity is to be outside of the Spirit of God. It is to grieve the Spirit, it is to answer Paul’s question to the Corinths “is Christ divided” with an emphatic yes! Yes, yes Paul we are divided and we are proud of it!

    Paul says something that is another key to unity in 1 Corinthians 15 where I want to rest at:
    3 For I delivered to you as of first importance what I also received: that Christ died for our sins in accordance with the Scriptures, 4 that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day in accordance with the Scriptures, 5 and that he appeared to Cephas, then to the twelve. 6 Then he appeared to more than five hundred brothers at one time, most of whom are still alive, though some have fallen asleep. 7 Then he appeared to James, then to all the apostles. 8 Last of all, as to one untimely born, he appeared also to me.


    Unity is found in the simplicity of the Gospel of Jesus Christ! That He was born, that He died for our sins and that He rose from the dead and upon raising appeared to the disciples and later to Paul. This is our Gospel the one and only Gospel. Those other distinctive, as biblical as you think they may be are contrary to Paul’s Gospel! Yes you heard me correctly. So let me scream it. YOUR DISTINCTIVES ARE CONTRARY TO PAUL’S GOSPEL! Why? Paul’s Gospel unifies because Christ unifies (Col 3, Eph 2, John 17). Christ came that we may be one, our disctintives split us! If disunity comes by them then what we are doing is not of God regardless of how well you can defend it biblically (truth be told we both can come to the same scriptures and be 100% divided on the same text using languages or not).

    I am fighting for an Ecumenical hope! Yes, you may be convinced that your little theological club is correct (shoot I do) but if that club becomes exclusive and becomes THE CLUB then what you have done is taking a machete to Christ’s body. You have divided the indivisible Christ! You have pulled the arm of Jesus off and I will let you know that such a division is of Satan not of the Living and Holy God revealed in the person and work of Jesus Christ.

    I close with this. Christ is not divided because He is indivisable! He is one “there is one Lord, one Faith, one baptism” Ephesians 4 makes this clear! Jesus only made “one new man” Jesus does not endorse any dividing walls! Jesus does not cosign our zeal to divide and to “uphold truth” (don’t go quoting John 14:6). Jesus’ prayer proves this beyond a shadow of doubt “I pray that they are one”. Who are we to counteract Jesus??!! Paul also makes a plea in the Philippian Church in chapter 2 verse one. I leave you with this verse of “one accordness”! Being Ecumenical is the heart of Jesus Christ and divisiveness is of the “Evil one”!
    2:1 So if there is any encouragement in Christ, any comfort from love, any participation in the Spirit, any affection and sympathy, 2 complete my joy by being of the same mind, having the same love, being in full accord and of one mind.


    Pray that it blessed you, Bruh....

    Often, it seems that in everywhere else but the West there seems to be a desire for Unity---but that may be due to how the circumstances are radically different than in the West where we're often given so much room to disagree that we don't care to actually discuss/focus on keeping the main thing the main thing and learning how to Glorify Christ and the Centrality of the Gospel.

    Conversation that leads toward Biblical Unity seems to often happen under strict circumstances. And As my dear brother in the Lord said best, from his site entitled Agonizing Over Church Membership/Fellowship ( )
    I have a theory. Or should I say a premise? The theory or premise is that persecution eliminates or, at the very least, diminishes division in the body of Christ.

    Let’s say that tomorrow it was declared that all U.S. citizens who professed to be Christians had to report to the nearest major sports facility (coliseum, remember the one in Rome in the first century?) to be interviewed by the government. Let’s say that the ones who did not report were turned in by those who knew that they professed to be Christians and then were rounded up by law enforcement. So let’s take it for granted that they got all professing Christians together in each individual county. Let’s say that the initial interview consisted of threats of death if you held true to your faith. Now let’s assume that every member of every group which is considered a cult group refused to affirm Christ as Savior and Lord and escaped. So after days of interviews, everyone who held firm ends up on their respective areas’ football field, baseball diamond or basketball court. Now let me ask a few questions:
    1. Would there only be Calvinist there? Only Arminians? Or how about only Cessasionist? Or only Charismatics? Or only Trinitarians? Or only Oneness?

    2. Would we be surprised to see that brother or sister who holds that other position there? If so, would you believe that their martydom meant absolutely nothing because they believed in tithing? or baptized babies? or thought they chose Christ?

    3. Would there be any theological debates going on? Or would anybody be preaching an ”Are you sure your saved” sermon?

    4. Would we clique up in our groups that day? Would we care so dearly about our denominational distinctives? Would the blacks be only with the blacks and the whites only with the whites and so on?

    5. If that brother or sister standing near you began to pray and suddenly broke out in tongues, would you move away? Or would you join hands with them and just pray the way you pray?

    6. If they allowed us to have our bibles (a miracle it would be in itself) would we argue over which version was the correct one?

    7. Would anyone be monitoring what another had on?

    8. WOULD WE HAVE UNPRECEDENTED AND UNPREJUDICED FELLOWSHIP WITH ONE ANOTHER?
    I believe we would. And that is my point. How can all of these things suddenly be a non-issue in the face of death? How is it that all I would suddenly be able to see in you is another brother or sister in Christ? There would be no interviews to see if you would affirm some ancient creed or confession, would there? We would be encouraging one another to stand firm in the face of death while we anticipate the joy of seeing our Saviour face-to-face!
    Why can’t this happen every Sunday while we’re safe and sound? Why can’t a brother who is not a 5 point Calvinist stand and give an exhortation in your church (Dr. White or you who are reading this)? Why can’t he be a member of your church? Is it because it’s more your church than Christ’?

    Somebody needs to help me with this dilemna. What am I missing here?
    __________________



    __________________
     
  12. Gxg (G²)

    Gxg (G²) Pilgrim/Monastic on the Road to God (Psalm 84:1-7) CF Ambassadors Supporter

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    United in Christ takes time to walk out in reality.


    Even Yeshua experienced the same. Jesus came into a context that was divided along lines/polarities like that what we can often see today with political parties (i.e. right vs left, religious right vs secular right, liberal left vs. Christian Left, Independent, Radical Middle, etc). Jews in the second temple period believed that God would act to rescue and restore Israel. The issue then became, “Who is True Israel?”, i.e., what do we do to demonstrate in the present that we are part of the community that God will rescue in the near future? Some of the answers came in these ways:

    • Zealots, who believed that God wanted them to physically rise up against the oppressive tyrant of Roman occupation,
    • Herodians/Sadduccees, who believed that God had sided with Rome, or that amassing political power within the Roman system was the way forward,
    • Essenes, who advocated complete withdrawal from society,
    • Pharisees, who scapegoated “the sinners” in society, believing that God would act to rescue Israel from the oppressors if they increased the morality of society by strict adherence to the Mosaic Law.
    And so we arrive at Jesus. He steps in to this context, and I suggest that if we can’t make sense of Jesus within this context, we’re probably misunderstanding or limiting the meaning of his words and actions. Here’s what I see when I look at Jesus: he did not play into any of the competing narratives of the day, but subverted them all. He rejected violence (”Turn the other cheek”), assimilation (”seek first the kingdom of God and his justice”), withdrawal (”give to Caesar what is Caesar’s”), and scapegoating (”let he who is without sin cast the first stone”), in favor of a completely new way of being “true Israel” - through generosity, selflessness, embrace of “the other” (indeed even “the sinner”!) and care for the poor.

    Of course, there were many things he quoted that came directly from the aformentioned camps---for the Lord was not against acknowledgement of truth in camp you may not fullu belong to. For he did not say things within a vaccum and the camps he fought against were often the same ones whom he'd support the next minute (As discussed here in #408 ). Nonetheless, as the Lord himself shared similarities with the other camps in Judaism of his day, he also chose to stand apart from them...creating a group that'd go against the norm.

    When looking at the very group of disciples he chose from, they all came from a very diverse background--and this diversity was reflected within the very make-up of the early church. Seeing how even the people Christ chose as his inner circle were among those who came from DIFFERENT Camps of VASTLY DIFFERENT IDEOLOGIES--some who were against GOVERNMENTS and others that were all for it, as seen when HE simultaneouly chose both ZEALOTS and TAX-Collectors to be apart of His inner circle---despite how BOTH sides had significant issue with the other, with Zealots wishing to overthrow Rome and feeling as if Tax-Collectors had "Sold out"...
    Luke 6
    The Twelve Apostles
    12One of those days Jesus went out to a mountainside to pray, and spent the night praying to God. 13When morning came, he called his disciples to him and chose twelve of them, whom he also designated apostles: 14Simon (whom he named Peter), his brother Andrew, James, John, Philip, Bartholomew, 15Matthew, Thomas, James son of Alphaeus, Simon who was called the Zealot, 16Judas son of James, and Judas Iscariot, who became a traitor.-Mark 3 /
    Matthew 10
    "
    Matthew 9:9
    [ The Calling of Matthew ] As Jesus went on from there, he saw a man named Matthew sitting at the tax collector's booth. "Follow me," he told him, and Matthew got up and followed him.
    Of course, one must also factor in the Pharisees who were divided because of him in John 7 and how many followed him in that camp as well, such as Nicodemus and Josephus. I think it's very much intentional that the gospel writers portray Jesus' disciples as backstabbing, betraying, cowardly, dense, poor, uneducated, blue-collar, "terrorist" (as in, plotting against the government), criminal (as in, stealing from people in the name of the government)...and that they didn't always agree with each other.

    Just another example of unity within diversity/disagreement.

    In regards to the issue of having unity within Diversity, Simon the Zealot is someone who stands out on the issue (IMHO). Simon was called a "Zealot" in his lifestyle before ministry with Jesus, probably a member of the Zealot party, which was a party determined to overthrow Roman Domination in Palestine. Interestingly enough, the "Zealot" term is still used for the man AFTER Christ rose from the Grave Acts 1:13, Acts 1:12-14 Acts 1 .IMHO, it gives room to indicate that even after being in the midst of Jesus, that which he may have been known for was probably with him to one degree or another---such as still possibly wishing for Rome to be overthrown or having sympathies for those against Roman Oppression. When considering how the man died, some say he was martyred---whereas others say that he was involved in a Jewish revolt against the Romans, , which was brutally suppressed in A.D 70. If knowing of the work by Robert Eisenman (Eisenman 1997 pp 33-4), he pointed out the contemporary talmudic references to Zealots as kanna'im "but not really as a group — rather as avenging priests in the Temple." For more info, one can look up the work entitled James the Brother of Jesus : The Key to Unlocking the Secrets of Early Christianity and the Dead Sea Scrolls. (Viking Penguin). But on Simon, when Jesus called him, nowhere is there sign that there was an immediate change over night..especially considering how often they argued amongst themselves...

    By all logical means, things SHOULD HAVE FAILED with the group of men He chose to work together/form the core of his leadership. But again, it's very much intentional that the gospel writers portray Jesus' disciples as acting in a MYRIAD of ways----yet they had to learn how to work with one another in order for Kingdom Power to be demonstrate. Praying for the day when that can be shown across the boards in the Body of Christ.
     
  13. Gxg (G²)

    Gxg (G²) Pilgrim/Monastic on the Road to God (Psalm 84:1-7) CF Ambassadors Supporter

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    Having a lot of events that build team and common ground, like simply fellowshipping and living life togethe, can really do a lot as it concerns unity:)
     
  14. visionary

    visionary Your God is my God... Ruth said, so say I. Supporter

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    How is this uplifting the MJ perspective.?
     
  15. Gxg (G²)

    Gxg (G²) Pilgrim/Monastic on the Road to God (Psalm 84:1-7) CF Ambassadors Supporter

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    Unless it's not MJ talking on the need for unity in the faith/supporting one another and discussing how persecution tends to unite others, there's really no issue to be made. Of course, if you have an issue, define MJ perspective and show where MJs have not already noted the same (in light of where many have noted the same thing multiple times already)...be it on persecution or not causing divisions where Christ never warranted or the mentioning of the book "Tortured for Christ" by Rev. Richard Wurmbrand (who is known in differing Messianic Jewish circles due to how he spoke in them often as an international Messianic Jewish leader in the body, more here and here)...and it was in light of what Dennis noted on Richard's book on his experiences of being tortured during the Communist regime, as it was his focus on who Christ really was across all lines that helped him in his work for spreading the Gospel. From the USA he organised and controlled an underground missionary network covering all the Communist countries and later spreading to the Arab world, Asia, Africa and Latin America. Through his organisation he even reached the most remote islands in the Pacific Ocean.

    Although he was deeply concerned about the salvation of all mankind, he worked with a special zeal to introduce Jews all over the world to the gospel of Jesus Christ....and it was a focus that included working with others from a myriad of backgrounds to proclaim Messiah. Anytime believers suffer for the faith, that is a MJish issue since that is a part of what Christ took seriously---regardless of where they were. It's why RIchard, as Jewish believer, founded the international organization Voice of the Martyrs, which continues to aid Christians around the world who are persecuted for their faith.





    Unity in the faith and focusing on Yeshua in hard times when working with other believers has always been a part of the heart of the Lord---and in the post you quoted, others who've said the same have often been in he Messianic movement. One can start with Dan Juster or Asher Intater amongst many others:


    Again, there are plenty of others in the Messianic movement who've noted what you quoted earlier. However, something doesn't have the have buzzwords in it such as "Torah" or "Law" or "Messianic Judaism" in order to be consistent with what has been said in the movement, no different than you talking on God's creation/referencing images that other believers outside the movement have done in consistency with the same principle---or others talking on the need for believers to be wise on who they vote for in the election coming up....and the need to be prepared for times of persecution for the Lord or politics and a host of other topics.

    It's not beneficial to the body of Messiah when people, be it within the Messianic movement or outside of it, are unable to work together and forgetting of the many around the world who unite in hard times when they're able to keep the main thing the main thing: Yeshua :)
     
    Last edited: Oct 22, 2012
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