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Thread: Why should I believe in Jesus and the NT?

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    tWebber Avraham Ibn Ezra's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by robrecht View Post
    Recall, that I said Judaen/Jews; I did not say that the word could never mean Jew.
    You did indeed.

    Why speculate that no pharisees were among the sanhedrin members or elders that may have been involved in the judgment or execution of Jesus? We simply do not know.
    I didn't say that some were not involved. I merely made note that the Pharisees aren't mentioned. We don't have to speculate about who was there. They are listed to varying accounts. We have to speculate as to the extent that in named parties are involved. That is assuming the NT account is accurate of course.
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    tWebber robrecht's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Avraham Ibn Ezra View Post
    You did indeed.

    I didn't say that some were not involved. I merely made note that the Pharisees aren't mentioned. We don't have to speculate about who was there. They are listed to varying accounts. We have to speculate as to the extent that in named parties are involved. That is assuming the NT account is accurate of course.
    Actually, the gospel of Mark does claim that the chief priests, scribes and elders had involved some pharisees in their attempts to challenge Jesus' authority (11,27 12,12-13; cf already Mt 21,45; 22,15) and attributes to some Pharisees a desire to destroy Jesus as early as Mk 3,6 (also Mt 12,24), while Luke, on the other hand, mentions that some Pharisees tried to protect him from Herod (13,31). Matthew even places some Pharisees with the chief priests going to see Pilate (27,62) and John places some Pharisees with Caiaphas and the chief priests at a sanredrin judging it expedient to put Jesus to death (11,47-57). I view these texts only as a direct historical source for the beliefs within the evangelists' communities and of the dynamics with other sects and parties of the various Judaisms that were contemporary to the evangelists. I do think it is plausible that some Pharisees numbered among Jesus' followers and others opposed him, as we see disagreements among the schools of Shammmai and Hillel. But something more serious than that would be needed to plausibly explain Jesus' execution. It's a very interesting historical question to pursue.
    βλέπομεν γὰρ ἄρτι δι᾿ ἐσόπτρου ἐν αἰνίγματι, τότε δὲ πρόσωπον πρὸς πρόσωπον·
    ἄρτι γινώσκω ἐκ μέρους, τότε δὲ ἐπιγνώσομαι καθὼς καὶ ἐπεγνώσθην.

    אָכֵ֕ן אַתָּ֖ה אֵ֣ל מִסְתַּתֵּ֑ר אֱלֹהֵ֥י יִשְׂרָאֵ֖ל מוֹשִֽׁיעַ׃

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    tWebber Avraham Ibn Ezra's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by robrecht View Post
    Actually, the gospel of Mark does claim that the chief priests, scribes and elders had involved some pharisees in their attempts to challenge Jesus' authority (11,27 12,12-13; cf already Mt 21,45; 22,15) and attributes to some Pharisees a desire to destroy Jesus as early as Mk 3,6 (also Mt 12,24), while Luke, on the other hand, mentions that some Pharisees tried to protect him from Herod (13,31). Matthew even places some Pharisees with the chief priests going to see Pilate (27,62) and John places some Pharisees with Caiaphas and the chief priests at a sanredrin judging it expedient to put Jesus to death (11,47-57). I view these texts only as a direct historical source for the beliefs within the evangelists' communities and of the dynamics with other sects and parties of the various Judaisms that were contemporary to the evangelists. I do think it is plausible that some Pharisees numbered among Jesus' followers and others opposed him, as we see disagreements among the schools of Shammmai and Hillel. But something more serious than that would be needed to plausibly explain Jesus' execution. It's a very interesting historical question to pursue.
    You raise a good point. However I have to ask the question regarding the accounts. Some verses explicitly name the groups who wanted Jesus tried and executed.

    Luke 22:52

    1.chief priests
    2. Temple guards
    3. Elders

    Matthew 27:20

    1. Chief priests
    2. Elders

    John 19:6

    1. Chief priests
    2. Temple guards

    Mark 14:53-54

    1. High priest
    2. Chief priests
    3. Temple guards
    4. Elders
    5. Scribes

    So which account are we going with? The only ones that repeat in the theme narrative are Chief priests, temple guards, and Elders. Could some Pharisees have been there, sure it's possible but, the text indicates explicitly who and which groups by a vast majority wanted him tried and executed.

    I agree it is an interesting historical question to ponder on. Many scholars, I believe, are still trying to piece it all together and get a full sense of what may have happened.
    Last edited by Avraham Ibn Ezra; 06-09-2014 at 08:49 PM.
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    tWebber robrecht's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Avraham Ibn Ezra View Post
    You raise a good point. However I have to ask the question regarding the accounts. Some verses explicitly name the groups who wanted Jesus tried and executed.

    Luke 22:52

    1.chief priests
    2. Temple guards
    3. Elders

    Matthew 27:20

    1. Chief priests
    2. Elders

    John 19:6

    1. Chief priests
    2. Temple guards

    Mark 14:53-54

    1. High priest
    2. Chief priests
    3. Temple guards
    4. Elders
    5. Scribes

    So which account are we going with? The only ones that repeat in the theme narrative are Chief priests, temple guards, and Elders. Could some Pharisees have been there, sure it's possible but, the text indicates explicitly who and which groups by a vast majority wanted him tried and executed.

    I agree it is an interesting historical question to ponder on. Many scholars, I believe, are still trying to piece it all together and get a full sense of what may have happened.
    From an historical point of view, I don't think we should go with any single account, and various historical reconstructions are plausible. I think his teachings made some people angry, his view of the forgiveness of sins and practice of eating with tax collectors and sinners didn't help. The accusation of his being a glutton and drunkard might reflect this ministry to sinners and perhaps a lax approach to purity laws. It is more politically correct these days to see Jesus and all of his early followers as strictly orthodox, but I have never found this persuasive, as it does not help explain the very early mission to the Gentiles and the disputes about circumcision and food offered to idols. Was Jesus lawless enough to incite some very zealous types to violence? Perhaps if he had enough of a following. Or perhaps his preaching of the nearness of the Kingdom of God was perceived as a political threat by the sanhedrin in Jerusalem and Pilate. Perhaps some combination of these two components. I don't think we will know until we all meet again in the world to come and work out all our differences or at least learn to understand and appreciate our different perspectives. I try to get started on this task sooner rather than later. If not now, when?
    Last edited by robrecht; 06-09-2014 at 10:05 PM.
    βλέπομεν γὰρ ἄρτι δι᾿ ἐσόπτρου ἐν αἰνίγματι, τότε δὲ πρόσωπον πρὸς πρόσωπον·
    ἄρτι γινώσκω ἐκ μέρους, τότε δὲ ἐπιγνώσομαι καθὼς καὶ ἐπεγνώσθην.

    אָכֵ֕ן אַתָּ֖ה אֵ֣ל מִסְתַּתֵּ֑ר אֱלֹהֵ֥י יִשְׂרָאֵ֖ל מוֹשִֽׁיעַ׃

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    Why should I believe in Jesus and the NT?
    Because the OT testifies of him.

    http://www.letusreason.org/juda13.htm

    How so? Name one teaching that was "new" that the Pharisees didnt discuss or teach. My reading of the NT doesn't show a divergent Jesus. IMO he was an observant Jew.
    I agree that Jesus was an observant Jew. He didn't teach a lot that was new, but rather he focused on correcting wrong interpretations of the Torah. Many of his parables used elements and styles that are found in other Jewish teachings. The significance was more about who he was and what he accomplished.

    Can you cite where Jesus said he obliterated the mosaic covenant? As far is I can tell he said he "did not come to destroy the law or the prophets but to fulfill." Nothing about "obliterating" here. In fact, he said the opposite. His later followers, I.E. Paul, did teach what you are saying.
    There is a difference between the laws of the Torah and the Mosaic covenant. Jesus brought a new covenant, but did not destroy the law. I think Paul was Torah observant his entire life and never taught against keeping it.
    "Faith is nothing less than the will to keep one's mind fixed precisely on what reason has discovered to it." - Edward Feser

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    tWebber Avraham Ibn Ezra's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Soyeong View Post
    Because the OT testifies of him.

    http://www.letusreason.org/juda13.htm
    The Tanakh talks about a lot of things. Can you be more specific as to what you mean by this.



    I agree that Jesus was an observant Jew. He didn't teach a lot that was new, but rather he focused on correcting wrong interpretations of the Torah.
    The Talmud is replete with Rabbis arguing and correcting each other over interpretation of the Torah. Each pointing the finger at the other for being incorrect in their interpretation. This is nothing new and not exactly a revolutionary focus on the Torah. As for the rest I agree.

    The significance was more about who he was and what he accomplished.
    I know who you claim he was but what are you claiming he accomplished beyond getting himself killed?


    There is a difference between the laws of the Torah and the Mosaic covenant.
    That is patently false. The Torah is the covenant with Moshe Rabbeynu. You can't just separate the two with a blanket statement and hope I accept your premise. Please prove your assertion here with some credible evidence from the Torah.

    Jesus brought a new covenant, but did not destroy the law.
    So which part of Jeremiah 31:30-35 did Jesus bring? This is the only explicit description of the New covenant that I can think of in the Tanakh. Please enlighten me.

    I think Paul was Torah observant his entire life and never taught against keeping it.
    His observance is debatable given his own life narrative. That being said can you explain Galatians 3. He seems to take a lovely tone towards the Torah in this chapter.
    אברהם אבן עזרא

    Avraham Ibn Ezra

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    The Tanakh talks about a lot of things. Can you be more specific as to what you mean by this.
    "Chapter X.—The Old Testament Scriptures, and those written by Moses in particular, do everywhere make mention of the Son of God, and foretell His advent and passion. From this fact it follows that they were inspired by one and the same God.

    1. Wherefore also John does appropriately relate that the Lord said to the Jews: “Ye search the Scriptures, in which ye think ye have eternal life; these are they which testify of me. And ye are not willing to come unto Me, that ye may have life.”3916 How therefore did the Scriptures testify of Him, unless they were from one and the same Father, instructing men beforehand as to the advent of His Son, and foretelling the salvation brought in by Him? “For if ye had believed Moses, ye would also have believed Me; for he wrote of Me;”3917 [saying this,] no doubt, because the Son of God is implanted everywhere throughout his writings: at one time, indeed, speaking with Abraham, when about to eat with him; at another time with Noah, giving to him the dimensions [of the ark]; at another; inquiring after Adam; at another, bringing down judgment upon the Sodomites; and again, when He becomes visible,3918 and directs Jacob on his journey, and speaks with Moses from the bush.3919 And it would be endless to recount [the occasions] upon which the Son of God is shown forth by Moses. Of the day of His passion, too, he was not ignorant; but foretold Him, after a figurative manner, by the name given to the passover;3920 and at that very festival, which had been proclaimed such a long time previously by Moses, did our Lord suffer, thus fulfilling the passover. And he did not describe the day only, but the place also, and the time of day at which the sufferings ceased,3921 and the sign of the setting of the sun, saying: “Thou mayest not sacrifice the passover within any other of thy cities which the Lord God gives thee; but in the place which the Lord thy God shall choose that His name be called on there, thou shalt sacrifice the passover at even, towards the setting of the sun.”3922

    2. And already he had also declared His advent, saying, “There shall not fail a chief in Judah, nor a leader from his loins, until He come for whom it is laid up, and He is the hope of the nations; binding His foal to the vine, and His ass’s colt to the creeping ivy. He shall wash His stole in wine, and His upper garment
    474

    in the blood of the grape; His eyes shall be more joyous than wine,3923 and His teeth whiter than milk.”3924 For, let those who have the reputation of investigating everything, inquire at what time a prince and leader failed out of Judah, and who is the hope of the nations, who also is the vine, what was the ass’s colt [referred to as] His, what the clothing, and what the eyes, what the teeth, and what the wine, and thus let them investigate every one of the points mentioned; and they shall find that there was none other announced than our Lord, Christ Jesus. Wherefore Moses, when chiding the ingratitude of the people, said, “Ye infatuated people, and unwise, do ye thus requite the Lord?”3925 And again, he indicates that He who from the beginning founded and created them, the Word, who also redeems and vivifies us in the last times, is shown as hanging on the tree, and they will not believe on Him. For he says, “And thy life shall be hanging before thine eyes, and thou wilt not believe thy life.”3926 And again, “Has not this same one thy Father owned thee, and made thee, and created thee?”3927"

    (ANF01. The Apostolic Fathers with Justin Martyr and Irenaeus)

    http://www.ccel.org/ccel/schaff/anf01.ix.vi.xi.html

    The Talmud is replete with Rabbis arguing and correcting each other over interpretation of the Torah. Each pointing the finger at the other for being incorrect in their interpretation. This is nothing new and not exactly a revolutionary focus on the Torah. As for the rest I agree.
    The main issue of contention was areas where the oral law conflicted with the written law.

    Mark 7:5-13 And the Pharisees and the scribes asked him, “Why do your disciples not walk according to the tradition of the elders, but eat with defiled hands?” 6 And he said to them, “Well did Isaiah prophesy of you hypocrites, as it is written,

    “‘This people honors me with their lips,
    but their heart is far from me;
    7 in vain do they worship me,
    teaching as doctrines the commandments of men.’
    8 You leave the commandment of God and hold to the tradition of men.”

    9 And he said to them, “You have a fine way of rejecting the commandment of God in order to establish your tradition! 10 For Moses said, ‘Honor your father and your mother’; and, ‘Whoever reviles father or mother must surely die.’ 11 But you say, ‘If a man tells his father or his mother, “Whatever you would have gained from me is Corban”’ (that is, given to God)[d]— 12 then you no longer permit him to do anything for his father or mother, 13 thus making void the word of God by your tradition that you have handed down. And many such things you do.”

    I know who you claim he was but what are you claiming he accomplished beyond getting himself killed?
    Jesus' death removes our sin and guilt:

    Isaiah 53:6 All we like sheep have gone astray;
    we have turned—every one—to his own way;
    and the Lord has laid on him
    the iniquity of us all.

    It turns God's wrath into favor:

    Romans 3:21-26 But now the righteousness of God has been manifested apart from the law, although the Law and the Prophets bear witness to it— 22 the righteousness of God through faith in Jesus Christ for all who believe. For there is no distinction: 23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, 24 and are justified by his grace as a gift, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus, 25 whom God put forward as a propitiation by his blood, to be received by faith. This was to show God's righteousness, because in his divine forbearance he had passed over former sins. 26 It was to show his righteousness at the present time, so that he might be just and the justifier of the one who has faith in Jesus.

    It removes our alienation from God and reconciles us to Him:

    Romans 5:6-11 For while we were still weak, at the right time Christ died for the ungodly. 7 For one will scarcely die for a righteous person—though perhaps for a good person one would dare even to die— 8 but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. 9 Since, therefore, we have now been justified by his blood, much more shall we be saved by him from the wrath of God. 10 For if while we were enemies we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, now that we are reconciled, shall we be saved by his life. 11 More than that, we also rejoice in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have now received reconciliation.

    It redeems us from our captivity to sin:

    1 Peter 1:18-19 knowing that you were ransomed from the futile ways inherited from your forefathers, not with perishable things such as silver or gold, 19 but with the precious blood of Christ, like that of a lamb without blemish or spot.

    It defeated the power of Satan:

    Colossians 2:13-15 And you, who were dead in your trespasses and the uncircumcision of your flesh, God made alive together with him, having forgiven us all our trespasses, 14 by canceling the record of debt that stood against us with its legal demands. This he set aside, nailing it to the cross. 15 He disarmed the rulers and authorities[b] and put them to open shame, by triumphing over them in him.[c]

    He died in our place:

    Isaiah 53:5 But he was pierced for our transgressions;
    he was crushed for our iniquities;
    upon him was the chastisement that brought us peace,
    and with his wounds we are healed.

    That is patently false. The Torah is the covenant with Moshe Rabbeynu. You can't just separate the two with a blanket statement and hope I accept your premise. Please prove your assertion here with some credible evidence from the Torah.
    The Torah contains several covenants, such as with Adam, Noah, Abraham, and Moses. It also contains many things that aren't covenants, such as the story of Joseph and the exodus from Egypt.

    So which part of Jeremiah 31:30-35 did Jesus bring? This is the only explicit description of the New covenant that I can think of in the Tanakh. Please enlighten me.
    The main difference between these covenants is that Jesus is a far superior mediator.

    His observance is debatable given his own life narrative. That being said can you explain Galatians 3. He seems to take a lovely tone towards the Torah in this chapter.
    The majority of Christians would disagree with me on that point, so I agree it's debatable, but over the past few years I've come to appreciate just how thoroughly Jewish the NT is. I think this article does a good job of explaining Galatians:

    https://www.eliyah.com/galatianskjv.html
    Last edited by Soyeong; 06-11-2014 at 07:55 AM.
    "Faith is nothing less than the will to keep one's mind fixed precisely on what reason has discovered to it." - Edward Feser

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    tWebber Avraham Ibn Ezra's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Soyeong View Post
    "Chapter X.—The Old Testament Scriptures, and those written by Moses in particular, do everywhere make mention of the Son of God, and foretell His advent and passion. From this fact it follows that they were inspired by one and the same God.

    1. Wherefore also John does appropriately relate that the Lord said to the Jews: “Ye search the Scriptures, in which ye think ye have eternal life; these are they which testify of me. And ye are not willing to come unto Me, that ye may have life.”3916 How therefore did the Scriptures testify of Him, unless they were from one and the same Father, instructing men beforehand as to the advent of His Son, and foretelling the salvation brought in by Him? “For if ye had believed Moses, ye would also have believed Me; for he wrote of Me;”3917 [saying this,] no doubt, because the Son of God is implanted everywhere throughout his writings: at one time, indeed, speaking with Abraham, when about to eat with him; at another time with Noah, giving to him the dimensions [of the ark]; at another; inquiring after Adam; at another, bringing down judgment upon the Sodomites; and again, when He becomes visible,3918 and directs Jacob on his journey, and speaks with Moses from the bush.3919 And it would be endless to recount [the occasions] upon which the Son of God is shown forth by Moses.

    (ANF01. The Apostolic Fathers with Justin Martyr and Irenaeus)

    http://www.ccel.org/ccel/schaff/anf01.ix.vi.xi.html
    I shortened this here but left the link to save space and allow for me to post information also.

    This was a cute posting from the website but what I would be looking for is something in te Hebrew bible that says something about Jesus. Can you provide that?



    The main issue of contention was areas where the oral law conflicted with the written law.

    Mark 7:5-13 And the Pharisees and the scribes asked him, “Why do your disciples not walk according to the tradition of the elders, but eat with defiled hands?” 6 And he said to them, “Well did Isaiah prophesy of you hypocrites, as it is written,

    “‘This people honors me with their lips,
    but their heart is far from me;
    7 in vain do they worship me,
    teaching as doctrines the commandments of men.’
    8 You leave the commandment of God and hold to the tradition of men.”

    9 And he said to them, “You have a fine way of rejecting the commandment of God in order to establish your tradition! 10 For Moses said, ‘Honor your father and your mother’; and, ‘Whoever reviles father or mother must surely die.’ 11 But you say, ‘If a man tells his father or his mother, “Whatever you would have gained from me is Corban”’ (that is, given to God)[d]— 12 then you no longer permit him to do anything for his father or mother, 13 thus making void the word of God by your tradition that you have handed down. And many such things you do.”
    The discussion you are describing concerning “Al Netilat yadayim” is nothing new. IMO, there are a great deal many things missing from the discussion in the NT, such as the response of the Pharisees he was discussing this matter with. Imagine I wrote a book about the events surrounding the Romney-Obama debates and recorded Romney’s question on everything to Obama and Obama’s response to them but, I did not include Romney’s rebuttals that was made afterward. The person reading the book would have to conclude that Obama won the day and even silenced his opponent.

    Now the Talmud on the other Hand records even he dissenting opinions in the Gemara discussions. The issue of “Al Netilat Yadayim” was debated before and during Jesus’ time. In the Mishnah in Berachot 8:2-8 we can see Beit Hillel and Beit Shammai debating when it is proper to wash the hands. Based on the discussion in this Mishnah he was probably debating those who held to the School of Shammai based on the question asked and assuming the question was recorded accurately. A further discussion on the Mishnah is in the Gemara of Berachot 51b – 52b. There are even discussions in the Talmud which indicate that here were those Pharisees who did not see a need to wash the hands at all.

    This discussion is not something that is new nor does it show him supposedly “correcting” a wrong interpretation. It merely shows him in the foray of an already raging debate over the matter of Al Netilat Yadayim.

    Jesus' death removes our sin and guilt:

    Isaiah 53:6 All we like sheep have gone astray;
    we have turned—every one—to his own way;
    and the Lord has laid on him
    the iniquity of us all.

    It turns God's wrath into favor:

    Romans 3:21-26

    It removes our alienation from God and reconciles us to Him:

    Romans 5:6-11

    It redeems us from our captivity to sin:

    1 Peter 1:18-19

    It defeated the power of Satan:

    Colossians 2:13-15

    He died in our place:

    Isaiah 53:5 But he was pierced for our transgressions;
    he was crushed for our iniquities;
    upon him was the chastisement that brought us peace,
    and with his wounds we are healed.
    That is a wonderful spin but that isn’t what we see the Messiah as doing. Did he do any of the below.
    *
    Hilchot Melachim U’Milchmoteihem 11 Halacha 4:

    If a king will arise from the House of David who diligently contemplates the Torah and observes its mitzvot as prescribed by the Written Law and the Oral Law as David, his ancestor, will compel all of Israel to walk in (the way of the Torah) and rectify the breaches in its observance, and fight the wars of God, we may, with assurance, consider him Mashiach.

    If he succeeds in the above, builds the Temple in its place, and gathers the dispersed of Israel, he is definitely the Mashiach.

    He will then improve the entire world, motivating all the nations to serve God together, as Tzephaniah 3:9 states: 'I will transform the peoples to a purer language that they all will call upon the name of God and serve Him with one purpose.'

    If he did not succeed to this degree or was killed, he surely is not the redeemer promised by the Torah. Rather, he should be considered as all the other proper and complete kings of the Davidic dynasty who died. God caused him to arise only to test the many, as Daniel 11:35 states: 'And some of the wise men will stumble, to try them, to refine, and to clarify until the appointed time, because the set time is in the future.'

    If he did not then there is no forseeable reason that I should believe in him.

    The Torah contains several covenants, such as with Adam, Noah, Abraham, and Moses. It also contains many things that aren't covenants, such as the story of Joseph and the exodus from Egypt.
    So what if it tells us about prior covenants. That still doesn't negate what I stated.

    The main difference between these covenants is that Jesus is a far superior mediator.
    Where is that in Jeremiah 31:30-35 again? Please copy, paste and highlight where this is found in that text.


    The majority of Christians would disagree with me on that point, so I agree it's debatable, but over the past few years I've come to appreciate just how thoroughly Jewish the NT is. I think this article does a good job of explaining Galatians:

    https://www.eliyah.com/galatianskjv.html
    Are you seriously making a point via website? Please break down a synopsis in The thread.
    אברהם אבן עזרא

    Avraham Ibn Ezra

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    Quote Originally Posted by Avraham Ibn Ezra View Post
    I didn't say that some were not involved. I merely made note that the Pharisees aren't mentioned. We don't have to speculate about who was there. They are listed to varying accounts. We have to speculate as to the extent that in named parties are involved. That is assuming the NT account is accurate of course.
    Elders are mentioned. The Elders are likely the Sanhedrin.

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    I'm not sure if this thread is still active but as to the point of compelling all nations to serve God:

    Isaiah 11:10 And in that day there shall be a root of Jesse, which shall stand for an ensign of the people; to it shall the Gentiles seek: and his rest shall be glorious.

    I think there's something to be said about over half the world believing in the God of Israel AND in Jesus, albeit with different views in Islam and in Christianity.

    Versus according to some statistics, .2% of the world being Jews not believing in Jesus and of them, perhaps over half not even believing in the God of Israel, identifying as Jews ethnically not religiously.

    What is it about Jesus that causes such great belief in the God of Israel, and being without Jesus causes disbelief?

    I'm one of those who don't see Jesus, Paul, or anyone in the NT abolishing Torah for Jews. Jesus said it stands until heaven and earth pass, which according to Revelation happens at Judgment when death is no more, indicating that at least some of the Laws regarding the death penalty are no longer relevant.

    That perception exists mainly because Paul is such a primary character in the NT and his mission was to Gentiles who aren't compelled to observe all Torah either in Christianity or Judaism, a rough sketch of Noahide being found in Acts 15.

    I'm not certain any Messianic prophecies claim that all Jews must first be united under God, then come all the Gentiles to belief, especially since things have moved in an opposite direction to that on a global basis.

    I think my post in the virgin birth thread also gives some compelling reasons, and overall questions the idea that if one is killed he can't be Messiah, since this dismisses the possibility of resurrection to complete the mission. I'm not aware of any prophecy restricting that, or any time limit imposed as to whether it should take 2 or 2000 years. Some Jews are certainly waiting for Elijah to return to complete his mission, for example.

    I'll offer those two topics to start.

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