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Yeshua in Context » Law, Torah

Pharisees

The Pharisees were saying to him, “Look, why are they doing what is not lawful on the Sabbath?” -Mark 2:24 You may have heard, wrongly, that the Pharisees were the rabbis and that they basically ran the show in Yeshua’s time. You may have heard that the Pharisees . . . were all hypocrites made up 613 rules which were oppressive led the synagogues and governed the way Jews lived for God. … Read entire article »

Filed under: Background to Gospels, Beginners, Josephus, Law, Torah, Pharisees

Greece, Rome, Israel #3

And the chief priests and the scribes heard it and sought a way to destroy him; for they feared him, because all the multitude was astonished at his teaching. –Mark 11:18 The gospel did not just happen. The events which marked the onset of a new stage in the world’s redemption happened in a time and place with three main cultural backdrops. Parts 1 and 2 introduced Greek and Roman influences on these events, both in Yeshua’s time and the later time the gospels were written. What about conditions and social structures in Israel itself? What are some basics readers need to know about conditions and groups in Israel? What about Jewish concerns in the times of the evangelists? … Read entire article »

Filed under: Aims of Yeshua, Background to Gospels, Beginners, Formation of the Gospels, Gentiles, Ideal Israel Theme, Identity of Yeshua, Judaism Today & Yeshua, Law, Torah

Notes on the Sabbath Grain-Field Controversy

Mark 2:23-28 is a passage worthy of an entire book and much has been said about it. It is a riddle wrapped in a riddle smothered in enigma. Questions include everything from the mundane to the mysterious. Did Yeshua’s disciples actually break the Sabbath? Did they merely break an interpretation of the Sabbath rules according to some Pharisees? Is this ultimately about the Peah or corners of the field issue in Jewish law? Since the example of David is not a perfect match for what happens with the disciples, why does Yeshua use it? What does it mean, in the context of Second Temple Judaism, that the Sabbath is made for humankind? Is the Son of Man in vs. 28 Yeshua or humanity in general? … Read entire article »

Filed under: Applying the Gospels, Background to Gospels, Discipleship - Formation, Judaism Today & Yeshua, Law, Torah, Teaching of Yeshua

Yeshua’s Attitude Toward the Pharisees’ Lawkeeping

Curiously, people have gotten the idea that Yeshua felt many Pharisees were too rigid in their lawkeeping. Actually, he decried a tendency toward laxity in lawkeeping as well as an inclination to misplaced priorities. Whether or not the Pharisee in the famous (and dangerous for its readers and hearers, since the parable tempts us to judge the Pharisee) Pharisee and Tax Collector parable (Luke 18:9-14) was supposed to be prototypical or not, Yeshua has more to say about Pharisees being lax in lawkeeping than rigid. In the Sermon on the Mount, Yeshua says he comes to fill up the Torah (Matthew 5:17, “fulfill” is a misleading translation best done away with). … Read entire article »

Filed under: Erasing Anti-Judaism, Law, Torah, Pharisees

Yeshua and Sacrifices

A curious question to ask is whether Yeshua ever offered sacrifices in the Temple? It’s a curious question because the gospels never depict him doing so. Our off-the-cuff answer to the question may reveal a lot about our assumptions concerning Yeshua. Another question might be, “Why don’t the gospels ever depict Yeshua offering a sacrifice or mention that he did so?” … Read entire article »

Filed under: Background to Gospels, Erasing Anti-Judaism, Featured, Law, Torah, Sacrificial System, Temple and Torah