In response to yesterday’s blog about Mashiach, I received a few questions about Jezeus, the heralded Xtian messiah, so before continuing with our discussion about the true Jewish Mashiach, I will try to shatter this terrible Xtian myth that has plunged mankind into darkness for the last 2000 years. Hopefully, this knowledge will give you the ammunition you need should you encounter one of the Jews for Jezeus missionaries who are crawling like cockroaches all over the globe in search of hapless Jewish victims.
It is explained in the Talmud that the first missionary, the “one from Nazereth,” was a student of Rabbi Yehushua ben Prachia, one of the great Sages of the time and leader of the Great Assembly. Traveling together on a journey, they stopped at a lodge along the way. After a lady innkeeper attended to their needs in a diligent fashion, Rabbi Yehoshua ben Prachia praised her for honoring Torah scholars in the appropriate manner. Pure and saintly as he was, he remarked in an innocent fashion, “How pleasant this innkeeper is.” The commentator Rashi explains his remark as referring to, “her deeds.” However, the “Nazereth” jumped up and exclaimed, “But her eyes aren’t pretty!”
When Rabbi Yehoshua ben Prachia heard his student say this, he proclaimed, “Evil person! You are preoccupied with this!?” meaning looking at women. And he drove him away in the most severe manner, as the Talmud records, “He thrust the Nazereth away with both hands” (Sotah, 47A).
In his lectures about the Mashiach at the Mercaz HaRav Yeshiva in Jerusalem, Rabbi Tzvi Yehuda HaKohen Kook, of blessed memory, explained that the Sages of the Talmud deliberately stated that Rabbi Yehoshua ben Prachia “thrust the Nazereth away with both hands,” as opposed to pushing him away with the left hand and drawing him close with the right, in the usual educational manner. Rabbi Yehoshua ben Prachia reacted in this emphatic way in thrusting the “Nazereth” away to show that he was clearly not the Mashiach.
The task of the Mashiach (or the Messiah, as he is known in English) is to save the Jews from its enemies and rebuild the Nation of Israel, yet the followers of Jezeus have slaughtered millions and millions of Jews and done everything in their power to keep Israel lowly and weak. Referring to Christianity’s renegade founder, the great Jewish Torah Sage, the Rambam (also known to the English-speaking world as Maimonides), writes:
“Can there be a greater stumbling block than this one? All of the Prophets spoke of the Mashiach as the redeemer of Israel, and as its savior, who would gather their dispersed, and strengthen their observance of the commandments, while this one caused the annihilation of Israel by the sword, and caused their remnants to be scattered and scorned. He caused the Torah to be altered, and brought the majority of the world to err, and to serve a god other than the Lord” (Rambam, Laws of Kings and Their Wars, 11:4, see the uncensored edition of Mossad HaRav Kook Publications).
Thus, if you come across a missionary for Jezeus, you have permission from the Talmud and from the Rambam to thrust him away with both hands.
The prohibition against idol worship tops the list of the Ten Commandments. No one is allowed to make or worship a graven image. As the Rambam explains, “The essential principle concerning idolatry is that people are not to worship anything created – neither angel, planet, star, the elements, or something derived from them” (Rambam, Laws of Idol Worship, Ch.9).
This includes great golden Buddhas, Hindu monkey gods, totem poles, statues of Jezeus, and the like. I would post a few photos in illustration, but it is even forbidden to gaze upon the picture of an idolatrous figure, as it says, “Turn not after their idols” (Vayikra, 19:4. See Rambam, 2:2, loc. cited).
In his writings on Christianity, which he calls, “Minut,” Rabbi Avraham Yitzhak HaKohen Kook explains that it began as a breakaway sect of Judaism which grew in influence and ultimately led the world astray with its doctrines. He categorizes it as idol worship, and says that its founder brought the majority of the world to err by serving a god other than the Almighty. By abandoning the mitzvot, Christianity enshrouded the world in a seemingly legitimate offshoot of idol worship. While imitating many of Judaism’s values and beliefs, Christianity actually led the world away from the true service of God.
Rabbi Kook writes: “The foundations of Christianity, which mocked the words of the Rabbis, caused havoc in the Nation of Israel, but because of the mighty hand of God which fills the life of the Jewish Nation, it failed to destroy the foundations of Israel. Nevertheless, it spun its webs which succeeded in becoming a tapestry like a quilt of false shelter over many nations” (Orot, Israel and its Revival, Ch.15).
Much of modern Western culture, which Rabbi Kook terms a culture which “praises itself with melodious lies” (Orot, Ch.2:4), is an outgrowth of Christianity, whether in its adoption of Christianity’s teachings, or in rejecting the Christian dogma, and subsequently rejecting any allegiance whatsoever to God. By usurping the role of the Jewish People, and by casting the Torah and the Divine commandments aside, Christianity brought darkness to the world. By saying, “Come to us – we will save your souls and bring you close to God without have to elevate yourselves by bearing a yoke of Divine laws and commandments – just confess, accept Jezeus, believe in the gospels, and be miraculously healed” – Christianity led mankind away from the true faith and onto a path of falsehood. Therefore, Rabbi Kook writes: “The world must come to recognize that not through a single utterance of abstract belief alone is it sufficient for a person to fly into Paradise while the entire arsenal of evil, murder, and licentiousness, which is embedded in man’s unrefined spirit and flesh is allowed to remain intact” (Ibid).
To get to Gan Eden, it isn’t enough to say “I believe!” and dangle a little crucifix from the rear-view mirror of your car while you commit adultery with your neighbor’s wife in the back seat. In order for a person to refine his evil character traits, he must set his life in life with the laws of the Torah (for non-Jews this means the 7 mitzvot of the Sons of Noah) and engage on a lifelong path of inner cleansing, as set forth by our holy Jewish Sages. As Rabbi Kook writes:
“Christianity abandoned the Divine Law and rooted itself in the trait of mercy and illusionary love, undermining the foundations of the world and destroying it” (Ibid, Ch.3).
Ever since the Roman Empire adopted the banner of Christianity, its doctrines were imposed, often with ruthless violence, throughout the world. Christian morality became the foundation of Western civilization. Tragically, the Church’s dogmas demand more from man than he is able to achieve. Under the guise of holiness, Christianity demands from humanity an unnatural saintliness. Man’s powerful passions are banned, instead of being refined, tempered, transformed and channeled into constructive paths. Mankind cannot adhere to the repression of character traits which Christianity teaches, because it does not provide man with the means to attain true holiness and moral refinement. Cut off from the Torah, the mitzvot, and Judaism’s moral teachings and the ladder to achieve them, Christianity breeds a culture which dooms man to darkness and guilt, and a festering inner rage whose only outlet is violence, sexual corruption, and wars.
This rejection of the One and Only true God of Israel leaves mankind to develop a civilization empty of Divine Truth and God’s Divine Laws for mankind. Instead, man is left to evolve his own apostate system of values, and his own measures of right and wrong, with as many different measures and moralities as there are opinions and philosophies, until almost everything becomes permitted, or repressively forbidden, and every individual becomes his own conscience and judge. This is the path to moral anarchy, where God is given a backstage role, shoved behind the curtain so as not to interfere with the lewd cabaret on stage.
This is the culture of Edom which Christianity bred and which rules over the Western world today. The Midrash compares it to a pig (Vayikra Rabbah, 13:5). In order to be kosher, an animal has to have split hooves and also chew its cud. The pig has split hooves, but he does not chew the cud. He holds out his forelegs as if to say, “Look at me- I’m kosher!” On the inside, however, he is thoroughly trafe. This is the culture of Christianity which proclaims, “Look at me – I’m pure.” It seduces mankind with the Name of God on its lips, but beyond its outer pompous façade, it is rancid with impurity and lies. From the beginning of its foundation, when it turned its back on the Torah and the Jewish People, it called out to God with the sweet Psalms of David, which it stole from the Jews, while blasphemy blazed in its heart. As Rabbi Kook writes:
“From the beginning of its foundation, and throughout its entire development, it is nothing but the counsel of lies and a masquerade of intricate evil… forgetters of God in their innards, and carrying his Name on their lips and tongues” (Orot, Ch.2:8. For a full discussion of this theme, see the book, “War and Peace in the Teachings of Rabbi Kook,” by Rabbi David Samson and Tzvi Fishman).
So beware, my friends, of all of those sweet-talking missionaries who swear that they love you and want to save your souls. The very opposite is the truth. They hate you, as Rabbi Kook states as clear as can be:
“Christianity knows very well that if its outer pagan façade and ostentatious show of holiness be abandoned, its framework could no longer command a place in the world, and it would be compelled to be spiritually reabsorbed in Judaism, its source. Therefore, Christianity strives to protect its existence and is filled with a deadly hatred toward Judaism and its faithful guardians – the Jews” (Orot, Orot HaTechiya 3).
Although Rabbi Kook was unequivocal in his writings on Christianity, it is important to note that he never encouraged open conflict against its doctrines. In the spirit of all of his teachings, he advocated that other religions be enlisted in the universal task of leading the world to God. He writes:
“As to alien faiths, I will tell you my opinion, that it is not the goal of Israel’s light to uproot and destroy them, just as we do not aim for the general destruction of the world and all of its nations, but rather for their correction and elevation, the removal of their dross, and that they themselves will join the source of Israel, where dew drops of light will flow over them, as it states, ‘And I will take away his blood out of his mouth, and his detestable things from between his teeth, and he too shall remain for our God’ (Zechariah, 9:7). This applies to idolatry, and therefore even more so to religions whose foundations are partly based on the light of Israel’s Torah” (Letters of Rabbi Kook, 112).
But all this is nothing new. After all, this is what we affirm several times a day in the concluding “Aleynu” prayer. The following verse is deleted in many prayer books used in the Diaspora, but here in Israel, we say it concerning all those who have erected false gods, instead of serving the One and Only true God of Israel: “They bow down to vanity and emptiness, and pray to a god that cannot save.”
The “Aleynu” prayer expresses our heartfelt wish that idol worship be uprooted from the earth, and that the world come to understand that God alone is the One and Only King, “We hope, therefore, Lord our God, soon to behold Your majestic glory, when the abominations will be removed from the earth, and the false gods exterminated; when the world will be perfected under the reign of the Almighty, and all mankind will call upon Your Name, and the wicked of the earth will be turned to You. My all the inhabitants of the world realize and know that to You every knee must bend and every tongue vow allegiance….”
Amen. May it be soon.Tzvi Fishman
About the Author: Tzvi Fishman was awarded the Israel Ministry of Education Prize for Creativity and Jewish Culture for his novel "Tevye in the Promised Land." A wide selection of his books are available at Amazon. His recent movie "Stories of Rebbe Nachman" will be available soon as a DVD.The author's opinion does not necessarily reflect the opinion of The Jewish Press.
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