Blog Re’eh 30 Av 5776      פרשת רְאֵה ל” אב, תשע”ו

I have tried over these past many years and am still diligently working on bringing our Messiah Yeshua not only to my own Jewish people but also to the non-Jews.  There is a great misunderstanding by both communities about who Yeshua really is. However, if we take the time to closely examine his Sermon on the Mount in Matthew we clearly see that Yeshua was given a special role to fulfill – to bring his people back to the Torah; not to create a new Torah, neither to destroy it nor to undo it. What Moses began by bringing the Ten Commandments to the Jews, Yeshua would continue and make it more universal. Christian theologians refer to Yeshua as “Moses Redivivus” – Moses Resurrected. They called him Jesus Christ and in so doing they created a completely different persona. We see that Moshe and his brother, Aaron were simple human beings with failures and limitations. If Yeshua is called Moses Redivivus then he too must be regarded as a human being with problems and limitations but the idea of Yeshua’s divinity has been indelibly imprinted upon the minds of people.  

Today in the 21st century many of the great Orthodox rabbis and Jewish scholars are re-examining Yeshua’s true identity, calling him Yeshua “our brother” and the greatest Jew who ever existed throughout history.  Once we remove the prejudice about him that has grown over the past 1700 years and examine the facts, we find the true Yeshua.

Deuteronomy 13 warns the Jewish people not to follow other gods which they have not known even if a prophet arises among them performing miracles, signs and wonders telling them about other gods.  This answers the very common question — “Why don’t you Jewish people believe in Jesus Christ?”  We were instructed from the beginning not to believe in other gods.  We have heard and read that Yeshua performed miracles, signs and wonders. Didn’t the prophets Elijah and Elisha do the same yet they were not considered to be gods? Did Yeshua himself ever tell us to worship another god? Did Yeshua himself ever say that he was God? If he was a Torah observant Jew this was something that he could never do. He did however say that he was “one” with his Father meaning he was one in purpose with Him.  He was made to do the will of his Father. Almost two thousand years of changes, misquotes, misinterpretations in the NT have sealed these untruths well into the minds of the people. One of these is that Yeshua a.k.a. Jesus Christ is the founder of a new religion and others say that Rav Shaul a.k.a. Apostle Paul did that.  I tell you that neither one did such a thing.  

Allow me now to address the Gentiles:  Yeshua never spoke at that time to Christians (Christianity did not exist at that time!). Nor did He speak to the Gentiles. He spoke to his own people, specifically to the organized religion, to those who were leading the people away from the Torah.  He spoke to the Perushim (Pharisees), the Tsadukim (Sadducees) – Cohanim (Priesthood) telling them that they did not have the right to change the Torah given to Moshe for all the people of Israel who were to be light to the world. They created another Torah, the Sheve’al Peh – the Oral Torah.   We Jews are so quick to accuse the Christians of creating another god and writing another book. Why don’t we look at ourselves first?  This second Torah can be made to say whatever they want it to say and even to contradict the true Torah. The Oral Torah had been given more authority than the written Torah of Moshe. This is what Yeshua came to undo.  It is written in Deut. 4:2 we must not add nor take away from His Word.

When Yeshua taught his talmidim to pray he said “Our Father in Heaven, Holy is your name…”  He never said “pray to me”.  This is an example of how gossip has destroyed Yeshua’s image as our messiah forcing him to be someone that he was not. It is important for us not to put words into his mouth that Yeshua never said.   

Deuteronomy 13 was used by Rabbinic Judaism to ostracize and denigrate the name of Yeshua yet he would never lead anyone to any god other than the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.  The Rabbis disrespectfully called him Yeshu –  ישו  which is an acrostic of: Yimach Shemo V’zikhro  ימח שמו וזכרו  – ‘may his name and all his memory be obliterated’ – instead of Yeshua – ישוע a common name at that time or nickname of Yehoshua.

The Yeshua who was a Jewish Rabbi is not the same as Jesus Christ. Moshe was totally human; he blamed his brother and he blamed the people of Israel. Our rabbi, prophet and messiah Yeshua was also a man who committed mistakes.  Did he not lose his temper turning over the tables of the money changers?  When he said take up your sword, did he not really mean that? Stop defending him; he doesn’t need to be defended.

I agree with the new Jewish scholars who say that Yeshua was the greatest Jew that ever lived. He is the only Jew who changed history forever and through him the Goyim Tsadikkim the righteous Gentiles have been included in God’s promises to Israel. Once we accept his humanity we truly find a leader whose example we can follow.