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Switch to Forum Live View The book "Kosher Jesus"
2 years ago  ::  May 02, 2012 - 1:12PM #21
Lilwabbit
Posts: 2,761

May 2, 2012 -- 11:12AM, JAstor wrote:


May 2, 2012 -- 9:54AM, Lilwabbit wrote:


May 2, 2012 -- 9:38AM, JAstor wrote:


May 2, 2012 -- 8:22AM, Lilwabbit wrote:


It is true that the Tanakh contains much of the wisdom found in the Gospel. While the Torah contains the commandment of loving God with all one's might and soul (Deuteronomy), as well as loving one's neighbour as oneself (Leviticus), is there anything in the Torah (or the entire Tanakh for that matter) that clearly suggests that these two commandments are the greatest of all commandments? The Gospel is rather clear on this point (Mark 12:28-31). The Gospel also asserts that man should even love his enemy (Matt. 5:43-48).


I haven't found anything in the Tanakh that states such teachings with such clarity and hence I think it is justifiable for Christians to regard them as new. Once more let me point out that I am not saying that loving God and loving one's neighbour are new teachings, but rather the teaching that these two commandments are the greatest of all commandments.


Kind regards,


LilWabbit




Christianity not only took from the Written Torah but from the Oral Torah itself (Paul, who was once Saul, study under the Pharisees). Two of the most famous statements in the Oral Torah are:


-- Rabbi Akiva says: "Love your neighbor as yourself" is the most important principle in the Torah.


-- Hillel says: Don't do unto others as you would not want them to do to yourself (inverse baseline understanding of love your neighbor as yourself) is the essence of Torah. Everything else is commentary. 



Akiva himself post-dates Jesus whereas Hillel was an older contemporary. Who influenced who, there's the question. ;) Whatever the case, scientifically speaking Christianity boasts the oldest manuscripts to that effect and have a valid point in claiming that Jesus influenced Jewish thinking on this point.


Kind regards,


LilWabbit




Hillel predated the standard Christian chronology of the life of Jesus. He died a good two decades before 33 CE. He was the most famous Jew and religious leader for at least a half a century before the standard dating of the life of Jesus, and a well over a century before the earliest claims to the writing down of the Gosepls. 


It is my personal belief that the Christians writers, who came much later, based the personality of their founder on Hillel, and to a lesser degree Rabbi Akiva. Either way, chronologically Hillel comes well beforehand and his aphorisms were part and parcel of teachings in the numerous Torah academies that people like Paul/Saul and the other Jewish disciples of early Christianity would have attended (and even if they didn't attend any of the major academies they would have heard Hillel's sayings said in the sermons delivered by rabbis). 



Hiya Jas,


No doubt this is your belief. :) But it doesn't take away the fact that both the Gospels of Matthew and Mark (the latter being the oldest extant synoptic gospel) considerably predate the Talmud. From a historical-critical perspective one may argue that the rabbis tried to posthumously trivialize Jesus by showing that other Jewish thinkers said similar things. And yet what is recorded is different from the words of Jesus in Mark where Jesus mentions two commandments (not one) as the greatest. And there's no mention of loving one's enemy attributed to Hillel nor Akiva. The emphasis on love in various parts of the gospels is rather poignant in the words of Jesus as compared to the words of Hillel and Akiva in the Talmud. And, in any event, no such emphasis on the two commandments as the greatest seem to exist in the Tanakh. This was the main contention, highlighting a new teaching in the Gospel as compared to the "Old Testament".


Historiographically, it is far more difficult to establish the exact dates of the lives of Jesus, Hillel and Akiva, than it is to establish that the Gospel of Mark far precedes the Talmud.

Regards,


Wabbit

"All things have I willed for you, and you too, for your own sake."
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2 years ago  ::  May 02, 2012 - 1:16PM #22
vra
Posts: 6,327

May 1, 2012 -- 7:13PM, chanceuse wrote:

Hi again!

I'm presently reading Rabbi Schmuley Boteach's new book "Kosher Jesus" and am finding it interesting.
I was just wondering if any of you on this forum agree with him that Jews should learn more about Jesus because he was one of your own.




I think you might be pleasantly surprised to know that there are a significant number of Jews who actually have studied Christianity, especially those at forums like this one.  For example, Howie, who posted earlier, speaks regularly at Christian churches throughout the Dallas/Fort Worth area. 


OTOH, as you've seen, there are some who may only have a marginal interest at best since Jesus was only one Jew living at one time way back when. 


Shalom

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2 years ago  ::  May 02, 2012 - 2:27PM #23
JAstor
Posts: 3,960

May 2, 2012 -- 1:12PM, Lilwabbit wrote:


May 2, 2012 -- 11:12AM, JAstor wrote:


May 2, 2012 -- 9:54AM, Lilwabbit wrote:


May 2, 2012 -- 9:38AM, JAstor wrote:


May 2, 2012 -- 8:22AM, Lilwabbit wrote:


It is true that the Tanakh contains much of the wisdom found in the Gospel. While the Torah contains the commandment of loving God with all one's might and soul (Deuteronomy), as well as loving one's neighbour as oneself (Leviticus), is there anything in the Torah (or the entire Tanakh for that matter) that clearly suggests that these two commandments are the greatest of all commandments? The Gospel is rather clear on this point (Mark 12:28-31). The Gospel also asserts that man should even love his enemy (Matt. 5:43-48).


I haven't found anything in the Tanakh that states such teachings with such clarity and hence I think it is justifiable for Christians to regard them as new. Once more let me point out that I am not saying that loving God and loving one's neighbour are new teachings, but rather the teaching that these two commandments are the greatest of all commandments.


Kind regards,


LilWabbit




Christianity not only took from the Written Torah but from the Oral Torah itself (Paul, who was once Saul, study under the Pharisees). Two of the most famous statements in the Oral Torah are:


-- Rabbi Akiva says: "Love your neighbor as yourself" is the most important principle in the Torah.


-- Hillel says: Don't do unto others as you would not want them to do to yourself (inverse baseline understanding of love your neighbor as yourself) is the essence of Torah. Everything else is commentary. 



Akiva himself post-dates Jesus whereas Hillel was an older contemporary. Who influenced who, there's the question. ;) Whatever the case, scientifically speaking Christianity boasts the oldest manuscripts to that effect and have a valid point in claiming that Jesus influenced Jewish thinking on this point.


Kind regards,


LilWabbit




Hillel predated the standard Christian chronology of the life of Jesus. He died a good two decades before 33 CE. He was the most famous Jew and religious leader for at least a half a century before the standard dating of the life of Jesus, and a well over a century before the earliest claims to the writing down of the Gosepls. 


It is my personal belief that the Christians writers, who came much later, based the personality of their founder on Hillel, and to a lesser degree Rabbi Akiva. Either way, chronologically Hillel comes well beforehand and his aphorisms were part and parcel of teachings in the numerous Torah academies that people like Paul/Saul and the other Jewish disciples of early Christianity would have attended (and even if they didn't attend any of the major academies they would have heard Hillel's sayings said in the sermons delivered by rabbis). 



Hiya Jas,


No doubt this is your belief. :) But it doesn't take away the fact that both the Gospels of Matthew and Mark (the latter being the oldest extant synoptic gospel) considerably predate the Talmud. From a historical-critical perspective one may argue that the rabbis tried to posthumously trivialize Jesus by showing that other Jewish thinkers said similar things.



I used the term "Talmud" for simplicity's sake. The Rabbi Akiva quote is actually a Sifrei, whose writing down was contemporary with the Mishnah, and whose existence even in written form was much earlier. 


Anyone who has studied the Talmud knows that its dedication to preserving oral traditions is unprecedented, and confirmable wherever possible (e.g. when archaeologists find ancient tefillin, mikvahs, tzitzis, etc. they reflect accurately hundreds if not thousands of details known only through the Oral Tradition). This includes countless statements by Hillel. It is far-fetched to say it preserved the others but made up this. 


It is more likely that Hillel's teachings existed and were not only preserved in detail among the scholars but that the masses knew his more popular aphorisms, such as the one quoted.


Add to this that Hillel is recorded as saying many other sayings similar to this theme, such as "Be like disciples of Aaron, loving peace and pursuing peace" and "If I am only for myself, what am I?" and "Better that a person loses a great deal of money than that Hillel should get angry." All his other teachings are consistent with his emphasis on the Love your neighbor quote in Leviticus. To say these were later attributed polemics aimed at Christianity is far-fetched to anyone who knows the full picture of Judaism's traditions about what Hillel said. 


May 2, 2012 -- 1:12PM, Lilwabbit wrote:


And yet what is recorded is different from the words of Jesus in Mark where Jesus mentions two commandments (not one) as the greatest.



As was said, What's true ain't new, what's new ain't true.


May 2, 2012 -- 1:12PM, Lilwabbit wrote:


And there's no mention of loving one's enemy attributed to Hillel nor Akiva.



Tolstoy (Anna Karenina) actually says that Christianity's emphasis on this as the great ideal is extremely flawed. Loving those who hate you, he wrote, is not nearly as hard as loving those whom you hate. 


Be that as it may, the concept was written down long beforehand in both the Torah and Proverbs, and in much more specific and practical forms:


Exodus 23:4-5 -- If you meet your enemy's ox or his donkey going astray, you shall bring it back to him. If you see the donkey of one who hates you lying under its burden, you shall refrain from leaving him with it, you shall help him to lift it up.


Proverbs 25:21 - If your enemy is hungry, give him bread to eat; and if he is thirsty, give him water to drink.


If it's true, it ain't new. If it's new, it ain't true. 

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2 years ago  ::  May 02, 2012 - 2:37PM #24
Lilwabbit
Posts: 2,761

Whether the maxim proposed by Jesus is flawed or not, it is decidedly Christian and non-Jewish. Jesus remains much more poignant in his emphasis on God's love and human love (including enemies) than any of the passages you cite. And no, not everyone who reads the Talmud is convinced by an allegedly flawless methodology of oral transmission. Not even every Jew.


The fact remains, the Gospel of Mark way predates the earliest parts of the Talmud. That's all that matters for an unbiased observer when it comes to establishing whether a certain doctrine is closer to Christianity than it is to Judaism.


Kind regards,


LilWabbit

"All things have I willed for you, and you too, for your own sake."
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2 years ago  ::  May 02, 2012 - 2:50PM #25
vra
Posts: 6,327

We should remember that what we see written back then, whether it's the gospels, the Talmud, etc., were written later than they events they covered by people who had no intention of being objectively accurate. 


Secondly, I honestly don't think that the Christian movement had any significant effect in the area of having us accept their teachings since adversarial groups tend not to like the doctrines of the opposition just because of where they came from.  The "love" emphasis was already well incorporated within the Pharisee movement, especially with what are sometimes called the "liberal Pharisees" (OK, Howie, I won't call them "love Pharisees" just to please you; however...). 

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2 years ago  ::  May 02, 2012 - 3:19PM #26
Lilwabbit
Posts: 2,761

May 2, 2012 -- 2:50PM, vra wrote:


We should remember that what we see written back then, whether it's the gospels, the Talmud, etc., were written later than they events they covered by people who had no intention of being objectively accurate. 


Secondly, I honestly don't think that the Christian movement had any significant effect in the area of having us accept their teachings since adversarial groups tend not to like the doctrines of the opposition just because of where they came from.  The "love" emphasis was already well incorporated within the Pharisee movement, especially with what are sometimes called the "liberal Pharisees" (OK, Howie, I won't call them "love Pharisees" just to please you; however...). 




But can you offer objective evidence that the "love" emphasis was already equally pronounced in the Pharisee movement prior to Jesus?

"All things have I willed for you, and you too, for your own sake."
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2 years ago  ::  May 02, 2012 - 4:35PM #27
JAstor
Posts: 3,960

May 2, 2012 -- 3:19PM, Lilwabbit wrote:


May 2, 2012 -- 2:50PM, vra wrote:


We should remember that what we see written back then, whether it's the gospels, the Talmud, etc., were written later than they events they covered by people who had no intention of being objectively accurate. 


Secondly, I honestly don't think that the Christian movement had any significant effect in the area of having us accept their teachings since adversarial groups tend not to like the doctrines of the opposition just because of where they came from.  The "love" emphasis was already well incorporated within the Pharisee movement, especially with what are sometimes called the "liberal Pharisees" (OK, Howie, I won't call them "love Pharisees" just to please you; however...). 




But can you offer objective evidence that the "love" emphasis was already equally pronounced in the Pharisee movement prior to Jesus?



First, Christianity was wrong for emphasizing love at the expense of awe/fear. There needs to be a balance.


Second, for all its talk of love, Christianity has been the bloodiest religion in history.


Third, all the necessary statements about love existed in the Written Torah (not to mention the Oral Traditions as mentioned). These include, but are not limited to:


Leviticus 19:18: “‘Do not seek revenge or bear a grudge against one of your people, but love your neighbor as yourself. I am the LORD."


Exodus 23:4-5: If you meet your enemy's ox or his donkey going astray, you shall bring it back to him. If you see the donkey of one who hates you lying under its burden, you shall refrain from leaving him with it, you shall help him to lift it up.


Proverbs 25:21: - If your enemy is hungry, give him bread to eat; and if he is thirsty, give him water to drink.


Lamentations 3:30 - “Let him offer his cheek to one who would strike him” 




Exodus 34:6: "And he passed in front of Moses, proclaiming, “The LORD, the LORD, the compassionate and gracious God, slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness..."


Numbers 14:18: "The LORD is slow to anger, abounding in love and forgiving sin and rebellion. Yet he does not leave the guilty unpunished..."


Deuteronomy 6:5: "Love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength."


Deuteronomy 30:6: "The LORD your God will circumcise your hearts and the hearts of your descendants, so that you may love him with all your heart and with all your soul, and live."


1 Chronicles 16:34: Give thanks to the LORD, for he is good; his love endures forever.


Psalm 6:4: "Turn, O LORD, and deliver me; save me because of your unfailing love.


Psalm 25:6: "Remember, O LORD, your great mercy and love, for they are from of old.


Psalm 25:7: "Remember not the sins of my youth and my rebellious ways; according to your love remember me, for you are good, O LORD."


Psalm 33:22: "May your unfailing love rest upon us, O LORD, even as we put our hope in you."


Psalm 36:5: "Your love, O LORD, reaches to the heavens, your faithfulness to the skies."


Psalm 40:11: "Do not withhold your mercy from me, O LORD; may your love and your truth always protect me."


Psalm 42:8: "By day the LORD directs his love, at night his song is with me— a prayer to the God of my life."


Psalm 69:13: "But I pray to you, O LORD, in the time of your favor; in your great love, O God, answer me with your sure salvation."


Psalm 69:16: "Answer me, O LORD, out of the goodness of your love; in your great mercy turn to me"






Psalm 85:7: "Show us your unfailing love, O LORD, and grant us your salvation."


Psalm 86:5: "You are forgiving and good, O Lord, abounding in love to all who call to you."


Psalm 94:18: "When I said, “My foot is slipping,” your love, O LORD, supported me."


Psalms 103:10-12 He does not deal with us according to our sins, nor repay us according to our iniquities. For as high as the heavens are above the earth, so great is his steadfast love toward those who fear him; as far as the east is from the west, so far does he remove our transgressions from us.


Psalm 107:31: "Let them give thanks to the LORD for his unfailing love and his wonderful deeds for men."


Psalm 119:64: "The earth is filled with your love, O LORD; teach me your decrees."


Psalm 130:7:"O Israel, put your hope in the LORD, for with the LORD is unfailing love and with him is full redemption."


Psalm 138:8: "The LORD will fulfill his purpose for me; your love, O LORD, endures forever— do not abandon the works of your hands."


Proverbs 3:12"...because the LORD disciplines those he loves, as a father the son he delights in."


Isaiah 54:10: "Though the mountains be shaken and the hills be removed, yet my unfailing love for you will not be shaken nor my covenant of peace be removed,” says the LORD, who has compassion on you"


Jeremiah 31:3: "The LORD appeared to us in the past, saying: “I have loved you with an everlasting love; I have drawn you with loving-kindness."


Lamentations 3:22: "Because of the LORD’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail."


Hosea 3:1: "The LORD said to me, “Go, show your love to your wife again, though she is loved by another and is an adulteress. Love her as the LORD loves the Israelites, though they turn to other gods..."


Joel 2:13: "Rend your heart and not your garments. Return to the LORD your God, for he is gracious and compassionate, slow to anger and abounding in love, and he relents from sending calamity."


Jonah 4:2: "...you are a gracious and compassionate God, slow to anger and abounding in love, a God who relents from sending calamity."


Zephaniah 3:17: "The LORD your God is with you, he is mighty to save. He will take great delight in you, he will quiet you with his love, he will rejoice over you with singing.”


Proverbs 10:12: Hatred stirs up dissension, but  love covers over all wrongs.




Proverbs 13:24 Those who love their children care enough to discipline them.


Proverbs 15:17 A bowl of vegetables with someone you love is better than steak with someone you hate.


Proverbs 17:9  Love prospers when a fault is forgiven, but dwelling on it separates close friends.


Proverbs 17:17 A friend loves at all times, and a brother is born for adversity.

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2 years ago  ::  May 02, 2012 - 5:33PM #28
vra
Posts: 6,327

May 2, 2012 -- 3:19PM, Lilwabbit wrote:


May 2, 2012 -- 2:50PM, vra wrote:


We should remember that what we see written back then, whether it's the gospels, the Talmud, etc., were written later than they events they covered by people who had no intention of being objectively accurate. 


Secondly, I honestly don't think that the Christian movement had any significant effect in the area of having us accept their teachings since adversarial groups tend not to like the doctrines of the opposition just because of where they came from.  The "love" emphasis was already well incorporated within the Pharisee movement, especially with what are sometimes called the "liberal Pharisees" (OK, Howie, I won't call them "love Pharisees" just to please you; however...). 




But can you offer objective evidence that the "love" emphasis was already equally pronounced in the Pharisee movement prior to Jesus?





The "equally" part would be impossible for me to deal with, but the "love" part was well established.  J may not like this but I tend to think that the Hellenistic influence that was strong in the coastal areas and near Galilee may also have had the influence as well since that viewpoint tended to be less parochial.  I think this gets played out in his more inclusion positions. 


Also, what complicates dealing with the "equally" part is that the Pharisee movement was not at all monolithic, and one of my sources says that archaeologists and historians have identified at least four groups of Pharisees, and at least some of the variability dealt with the application of Torah.  I think even Wikipedia has something along those lines if you search "Pharisees" there.


I say the above not to try and diminsh what Jesus appears to have taught along this line, so it's possible that we may just be talking about a matter of degrees.  Jesus was a Pharisee, by all indications, and he seems to have more of the "liberal Pharisee" stance.  Now, whether he saw himself as such I simply cannot say. 

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2 years ago  ::  May 02, 2012 - 5:35PM #29
Bunsinspace
Posts: 5,900

May 2, 2012 -- 10:39AM, chanceuse wrote:


From what I understand, Rabbi Schmuley doesn't want Jews to take a look at Jesus as a God but as the man he was before the interpretations started, a Jew.




BS"D


That, apart from the Christian holy texts, is an historical impossibility.

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2 years ago  ::  May 03, 2012 - 2:10AM #30
Lilwabbit
Posts: 2,761

May 2, 2012 -- 4:35PM, JAstor wrote:


May 2, 2012 -- 3:19PM, Lilwabbit wrote:


May 2, 2012 -- 2:50PM, vra wrote:


We should remember that what we see written back then, whether it's the gospels, the Talmud, etc., were written later than they events they covered by people who had no intention of being objectively accurate. 


Secondly, I honestly don't think that the Christian movement had any significant effect in the area of having us accept their teachings since adversarial groups tend not to like the doctrines of the opposition just because of where they came from.  The "love" emphasis was already well incorporated within the Pharisee movement, especially with what are sometimes called the "liberal Pharisees" (OK, Howie, I won't call them "love Pharisees" just to please you; however...). 




But can you offer objective evidence that the "love" emphasis was already equally pronounced in the Pharisee movement prior to Jesus?



First, Christianity was wrong for emphasizing love at the expense of awe/fear. There needs to be a balance.


Second, for all its talk of love, Christianity has been the bloodiest religion in history.


Third, all the necessary statements about love existed in the Written Torah (not to mention the Oral Traditions as mentioned). These include, but are not limited to:


Leviticus 19:18: “‘Do not seek revenge or bear a grudge against one of your people, but love your neighbor as yourself. I am the LORD."


Exodus 23:4-5: If you meet your enemy's ox or his donkey going astray, you shall bring it back to him. If you see the donkey of one who hates you lying under its burden, you shall refrain from leaving him with it, you shall help him to lift it up.


Proverbs 25:21: - If your enemy is hungry, give him bread to eat; and if he is thirsty, give him water to drink.


Lamentations 3:30 - “Let him offer his cheek to one who would strike him” 




Exodus 34:6: "And he passed in front of Moses, proclaiming, “The LORD, the LORD, the compassionate and gracious God, slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness..."


Numbers 14:18: "The LORD is slow to anger, abounding in love and forgiving sin and rebellion. Yet he does not leave the guilty unpunished..."


Deuteronomy 6:5: "Love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength."


Deuteronomy 30:6: "The LORD your God will circumcise your hearts and the hearts of your descendants, so that you may love him with all your heart and with all your soul, and live."


1 Chronicles 16:34: Give thanks to the LORD, for he is good; his love endures forever.


Psalm 6:4: "Turn, O LORD, and deliver me; save me because of your unfailing love.


Psalm 25:6: "Remember, O LORD, your great mercy and love, for they are from of old.


Psalm 25:7: "Remember not the sins of my youth and my rebellious ways; according to your love remember me, for you are good, O LORD."


Psalm 33:22: "May your unfailing love rest upon us, O LORD, even as we put our hope in you."


Psalm 36:5: "Your love, O LORD, reaches to the heavens, your faithfulness to the skies."


Psalm 40:11: "Do not withhold your mercy from me, O LORD; may your love and your truth always protect me."


Psalm 42:8: "By day the LORD directs his love, at night his song is with me— a prayer to the God of my life."


Psalm 69:13: "But I pray to you, O LORD, in the time of your favor; in your great love, O God, answer me with your sure salvation."


Psalm 69:16: "Answer me, O LORD, out of the goodness of your love; in your great mercy turn to me"






Psalm 85:7: "Show us your unfailing love, O LORD, and grant us your salvation."


Psalm 86:5: "You are forgiving and good, O Lord, abounding in love to all who call to you."


Psalm 94:18: "When I said, “My foot is slipping,” your love, O LORD, supported me."


Psalms 103:10-12 He does not deal with us according to our sins, nor repay us according to our iniquities. For as high as the heavens are above the earth, so great is his steadfast love toward those who fear him; as far as the east is from the west, so far does he remove our transgressions from us.


Psalm 107:31: "Let them give thanks to the LORD for his unfailing love and his wonderful deeds for men."


Psalm 119:64: "The earth is filled with your love, O LORD; teach me your decrees."


Psalm 130:7:"O Israel, put your hope in the LORD, for with the LORD is unfailing love and with him is full redemption."


Psalm 138:8: "The LORD will fulfill his purpose for me; your love, O LORD, endures forever— do not abandon the works of your hands."


Proverbs 3:12"...because the LORD disciplines those he loves, as a father the son he delights in."


Isaiah 54:10: "Though the mountains be shaken and the hills be removed, yet my unfailing love for you will not be shaken nor my covenant of peace be removed,” says the LORD, who has compassion on you"


Jeremiah 31:3: "The LORD appeared to us in the past, saying: “I have loved you with an everlasting love; I have drawn you with loving-kindness."


Lamentations 3:22: "Because of the LORD’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail."


Hosea 3:1: "The LORD said to me, “Go, show your love to your wife again, though she is loved by another and is an adulteress. Love her as the LORD loves the Israelites, though they turn to other gods..."


Joel 2:13: "Rend your heart and not your garments. Return to the LORD your God, for he is gracious and compassionate, slow to anger and abounding in love, and he relents from sending calamity."


Jonah 4:2: "...you are a gracious and compassionate God, slow to anger and abounding in love, a God who relents from sending calamity."


Zephaniah 3:17: "The LORD your God is with you, he is mighty to save. He will take great delight in you, he will quiet you with his love, he will rejoice over you with singing.”


Proverbs 10:12: Hatred stirs up dissension, but  love covers over all wrongs.




Proverbs 13:24 Those who love their children care enough to discipline them.


Proverbs 15:17 A bowl of vegetables with someone you love is better than steak with someone you hate.


Proverbs 17:9  Love prospers when a fault is forgiven, but dwelling on it separates close friends.


Proverbs 17:17 A friend loves at all times, and a brother is born for adversity.




In other words, you admit Christianity empasizes love more than Judaism while Judaism recognizes better the importance of fear. Therefore, Christianity has a whole different orientation than Judaism. Whilst you do not have to agree with such a religious orientation, it nevertheless exists and stands (among other things) between your two faiths. Now, whether or not the Christians have been perfect at practicing their message of love in the annals of history is a whole different discussion. But since unconditional love and forgiveness are specially emphasized in the NT, the Christians are indeed right to call theirs the "New Testament". They are right to say that their main message, that of unconditional love as the unequivocal over-arching commandment, is not based on Judaism as we know it in the Tanakh. Christians do not deny that the Tanakh discusses love, often even in very similar terms. They deny that the Tanakh emphasizes it the way Jesus does.


Kind regards,


LilWabbit

"All things have I willed for you, and you too, for your own sake."
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