An Early Christmas Gift For My Christian Friends

Ancient inscription points to Jewish past for early Christian site

Well, yeah.  I’m always jarred by the newspapers’ spin on ancient finds that have to do with the overlap of Hebraic and early Christian/Gospel period culture.


Yes.  Jesus was a rabbi.  He taught over there.  So why wouldn’t people continue being Jewish?

Yes, eventually there was a new religion built around the teachings of Jesus, and Jesus’ teachings themselves were built around the teachings of HIS teachers, just like we have done for 5000 years and counting.

So this new find is good news for everybody, because it gives us a much better picture of how people lived together way back in the days of the Second Holy Temple, up on the eastern shores of the Kineret, which is Hebrew for the Sea of Galilee.  There are some mighty good fish in there, but you have to watch out because the Jordan River flows under there and creates extremely dangerous (deadly) currents.

OK, so read the article and let me know what you think!

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  1. Midwestern Plant Girl

     /  December 21, 2015

    Ok… I read it. Am I daft or did you understand what they were saying? Maybe cuz it wasn’t news to me that Jesus was a Jew? I also don’t keep track of religion overlaps, so to speak.
    You’ll have to dumb this down for me, if you truly want me to grasp the concept. 😍

    • Oh, there really wasn’t much to understand, other than the style of the letters and the use of Aramaic, and the type of masonry dates it approximately several hundred years before the birth of Jesus. That area of the Galilee is mentioned numerous times in the New Testament, which might indicate that this might be a synagogue that the early Christians also used. Does that make any more sense, or have I just confused things further???

      • Midwestern Plant Girl

         /  December 22, 2015

        Ok. So you’re saying the Christians and Jews used to play nice together before Jesus came? 😨 (just kidding)
        I have studied the bible many moons ago. (The writing and translation) I didn’t study the ‘true history’ of the areas the bible may have been written about.
        I kinda feel that although I do believe Jesus existed, I really don’t believe in the religion anymore.
        Things like the topic of your post, brings too much doubt about something so faith driven.

        • Waaaallll…I like being a rabble rouser. I’ve been through lots of stuff lately that has me examining myself for signs of faith. Just about when I have decided that for sure I don’t have any, well, something clicks in, and I think what’s going on is that the past ten years of study are circulating like a radiator through all the levels of my soul 5 levels). I’m sure Jesus was a real dude. There are other rabbis who have their own devoted followings, and I have gotten in trouble more than once by suggesting that they are doing the same things the early Christians did, elevating their rabbi above human stature. Well, I’ve known some really amazing Christians, the ones who really practice the art of emulating their rabbi. It’s all about sincerity, honesty, that kind of stuff, to me.

          • Midwestern Plant Girl

             /  December 23, 2015

            I think bad situations are when we all question our faith… are we being taught a lesson, have we been ‘bad’ or even just stumbled into some bad lighting 😉
            I question Christianity or any religion for that matter, for the reason you’ve said, “elevating their Rabbi (or other leader) above human stature”.
            I have always believed the victor writes the history. There were many books of the Old Testament that were ommitted from the final copy we read now. Who was the grand editor there? God? Did God deliver down the bible books via a flaming shrubbery, his favorite delivery service? No, it was some human editor that decided what was in or out.
            Lastly, here’s my take home message:
            In the future, say 1000 years. When we dig up buried cities of the Southern U.S., we will never find anything suggesting there was slavery or anything related to the civil war. We will have wiped that history off our pages. I’m sure there will be some happy story made up to cover up any lingering doubts, just like the traditional thanksgiving story we are told now.
            I do have faith tho. Faith in myself. It is the only faith I can control.

            • Right on, m’dear. The Jordanian WAKF has been very busy excavating evidence of the Holy Temple and burying it in places that, of course, are being closely observed😄

              I haven’t had a go at the OT in English except an occasional foray into the Gideon bible when my luggage has been lost and there’s nothing else to read…the reason I learned Hebrew was to see what it really said in there. And it really is fantastic. I’ll have to write a post on this later, but in short, the written bible is only one small part of what is largely an oral tradition handed down from teacher to student over thousands of years, with layer after layer after layer of interpretation and commentary. So while the poor Christians are stuck with this seemingly illogical, cut-and-paste antiquity, “Jews Who Learn” (and Learning is done on a daily basis, sometimes full-time, like I did for four years) live in a world enlivened and enlightened by immersion in Torah. Just regular people, you know, not necessary rabbis.

              Yup, I see where the history books are already being scrubbed clean of our collective crimes against humanity. But no worries. I watched a bunch of TED talks on oceanography last night, and came away with the happy knowledge that we, as a planet, are screwed. In ways that no one could have imagined, just totally, irreparably screwed. So now would be the time to build your greenhouse so you can grow your veggies and have air.

  2. I have always known that Jesus was a Jew but I have never been able to figure out how Christianity came about. I really don’t care what religion anybody is but I’ve always wished that I could see Calvary and walk where Jesus walked. How could anybody look on the site of the crucifixion and not feel changed…not matter what their belief?

    • Well, if you want to visit the burial place of Jesus and walk the path that he walked to the Mount of Olives (where some people think the place known as Calvary was), you can go to the Christian Quarter in the Old City of Jerusalem and do that very thing! An interpretive guide is recommended.

      And if you want to see where the First and Second Holy Temples stood, you can go up there with a guide also. And if you want to see where the Tabernacle that was built by Moses stood, in Shiloh, you can go there too.

      Right now there’s a problem with people getting stabbed by Muslim teenagers, both male and female, who believe that these places, which are sacred to many peoples, should only be accessible to them. The first time I went up to the Temple Mount, I was attacked with a soccer ball that had been filled with something heavy. It almost broke my neck and I had a grand mal seizure that night. But I went back twice more. I will not be deterred by hate.

      • If I only had somebody to go with, I would risk it. Are any of those places, the wailing wall? I have always wanted to go there. I’m not Jewish but I have/have had so many Jewish friends. I have always been their “little mensch” as they put it.

        • Well, the “wailing wall” is something I have a big problem with. Many people consider it holy, and nowadays it’s been designated an outdoor synagogue.

          But what do people wail for?

          For being kept out of the Temple complex, is why.

          We call it the Western Wall, because there is a belief that it is the Western-most wall of the Temple. It is not. It is the Western-most retaining wall of the Temple Mount, built by King Solomon, son of King David.

          The Romans conquered the Hebrews in the year 70 C.E., and by that time most of the Temple had been razed.

          There are many groups to go with from anywhere in the world, and you can choose a group based on your interest, whether religious, archeological, cultural, or a mix. My first trip in 2005 was called “in the footsteps of King David,” and we toured many places where David hid out from his uncle King Saul, who had the gift of prophesy and knew that David would take the kingship from him. But David refused to kill Saul and instead lead him a merry chase all over the Land! It was a great time and I knew then that I had to come back and stay.

          • They re-built the temple, didn’t they? That was one of the “signs” of the end of the world. I could carry on a pretty intelligent conversation about the bible..thanks to my granny…and I used to want to be a nun. I was so disappointed when I found out that I had to be a Catholic. LOL.
            I don’t know why I’ve always been drawn to those Biblical places but I have. I remember as a little girl, all I wanted was a chance to touch the face of God. Childish wishes and dreams.

            • After the first destruction it was rebuilt. After the Roman destruction it has not (yet) been rebuilt. There are numerous prophesies concerning the Third Holy Temple. I would include a link here to The Temple Institute, a beautiful educational website by the rabbi who gives the Temple tours. For us it is extremely important not to walk on the ground where the Temple stood, because of rites of purification that we don’t have access to at this time, but will in the future. You can learn all about it at The Temple Institute site. In fact, if you go to the Jewish Quarter in the Old City, the Temple Institute has many replicas of the description in the Bible of the implements used for the various services. I’m sure that’s a prime target, so that’s all I can say about this.

  3. Both Christianity and Islam have their roots firmly in Judaism. Happy Hanukkah. We all worship the same God. That God loves us all (so I believe).

    • Islam has no Jewish roots. The supposed progenitor of the people who originated Islam was Ishmael, who was the son of Hagar, an Egyptian. Jewishness is passed through the mother. Thus Ishmael was not Jewish to begin with.

      Secondly, the Jewish People are called the Children of Israel. Israel is the name that God gave him after he successfully fought the Angel. Israel means “Servant of God.” His more familiar name is Jacob. The twelve sons of Jacob were the progenitors of the Twelve Tribes. Ishmael was not part of that, since he was sent on his own path.

      Islam arose on the Arabian Peninsula in the 7th Century C.E., and the Q’ran is not Jew-friendly.

      All three of these religions do have their roots in Abraham, so they are called the Abrahamic religions. Christianity divorced itself from Judaism by nullifying most of the 613 commandments given at Mount Sinai.

      Here in the mountains of North Carolina, and other places, Christians have told me in all sincerity that Jesus took over being God. Hmmm, what happened to the Ten Commandments?

      “I am GOD.
      “You shall have no other GOD except Me.”

      And in a separate verse,

      “I am your GOD. I do not change.”

      So that becomes problematic when people find ways of justifying the substitution of Jesus for God, and later when the Church arose, breaking God up into the Trinity, which I understand, based on the story of Jesus’ conception.

      I do wish that everyone would get along, since we are at least cousins. I read the Torah and am at once frightened by the portrayal of a terrible God who creates and destroys worlds, and on the other hand expects us to use our free will to bring the world into its perfection.

      This has no chance of happening unless we all get together and make it happen.

      So you’ve given me a good start on my next “Jewish Genealogy” post😆

      Chanukah was a couple of weeks ago. It caught me in the middle of a crashing depression which was exacerbated by total isolation. HaShanah HaBah BiYerushalayim (Next year in Jerusalem)!!!!

      Happy Christmas to you! I hope you are all in better shape so you can enjoy it!!

      • I’ll accept that we are cousins, then. When I studied in a multi-denominational Christian seminary, we learned Hebrew (I do not recall much) and studied the Hebrew bible. Yes, Jesus did toss out most of the commandments. He was a heretic. So am I in many ways. I do not know if Jesus was divine. I’m far from a fundamentalist. I look for the meta-message our stories tell.

        I enjoy the posts you write about Judaism and about Israel, and have tremendous respect for your faith and practice of your faith.

  4. Thank you Laura. I checked several other sources in an attempt to learn more but I guess that’s all there is for now. It makes sense. I love the reference to Mary and a possible cult that worshiped her. I hope they find more. It will throw light on a little known era. Anne

    • Look up the Marist sect. I think you’ll find it interesting, at the very least!!!

    • Clearly, Mary (actually the two Marys, which is something I find fascinating–the origination of the virgin-whore dichotomy that has served as an archetype for many. There are other notable “holy whores” in Scripture, like Rahav, who ran a house of prostitution in Jericho and hid Joshua in her roof thatch, enabling him to spy out the situation. And Tamar, who tricked Yehudah into impregnating her, posing as a prostitute. (These interesting trysts were necessary to ensure the eventual birth of King David). I love these racy Biblical stories! Another seed for a post, I think! How are you, Anne?

      • Sorry, I missed your post. Actually Mary has been in my thoughts a lot lately. I’ve gone back to Catholicism. It’s the ritual that I love. I can’t get it elsewhere and the Basilica here in Asheville is a warm home for me. The fact that Mary has to be a virgin to be acceptable is frustrating to me. It’s either virgin or whore and nothing in between. There isn’t a healthy expression of sexuality anywhere in the New Testament. I’ll check out the ladies you mention. Maybe it will give me an idea.
        I’m fine to answer your question. Getting older.

        • Hi Anne, it feels good to me that you’ve returned to Catholicism. Sometimes we have to go exploring in order to know where home is. In order to come back, we first have to go away! This happens all the time in Judaism. I was just reading one of those Buddhist magazines I picked up at Greenlife, and it had all these interviews with current Buddhist leaders, and half of them are Jewish. You’d think there were billions of Jews in the world, to be Buddhist.

          Likewise I’m a secret Sikh, so I listen to all this modern Sikh chant, and damn if half of them aren’t Cohns or Rosenbergs.

          Have you checked out the Mary Knoll Sisters? I worked with a pair of them doing outreach healthcare to migrant farm workers. They were wonderful. The Mary Knolls at that time in the 70’s were very engaged in social justice and serving the disenfranchised. One of my dearest friends, a Spanish (exiled by Franco) Jesuit priest, was killed in El Salvador along with seven Mary Knoll Sisters, in 1987.

          Anyway. I’m glad you’ve found your spiritual home. I sure miss mine, so I have an understanding how good it must feel to you, to be home again!

          I’ll be around for another couple weeks, looks like, so we should do tea together….?

  5. Wow. In those comment there seems to be a fair bit of misunderstanding and I have no wish to delve too deep. I am Christian with a bit of a Jewish background and was brought up in a Catholic v Protestant town and now I am old I’m just leaving it up to God in the end without worrying too much about deep and intricate theological who haa. Thanks for the Christmas wishes and thanks for sharing your blog with me.

    • I would love to hear your perspective, if you feel moved to contribute to the conversation. Since I’m Jewish and have devoted many years to studying Jewish texts, my knowledge of Christianity is limited, and I always appreciate new views…But as you probably know, if you get two Jews together you’ll have three arguments😉. Actually more, because there are a minimum of ten arguments to each hypothetical of Jewish law in the Talmud. I think that might be why there are lots of Jewish lawyers!


      • Part of my conflict is in my fictional story “The Holocaust Box”
        And I know Jesus was a Jew and that is why I am on the side of the Jews although I think Israel is a little less sympathetic to the surrounding enemy that has vowed to destroy them. My questioning was to the comment by Laurel when she said she couldn’t understand how Christianity came about. But she is implying an acceptance of an historical Jewish Rabbi called Jesus. It is only if one believes that there was a post crucifixion resurrection that Christianity can make sense. If one does not believe that then we are left with an heretical Jewish sect.
        Secondly I was a bit amused by the contradictions of Nth Carolina Christians who say Jesus took over being God because that is so totally contrary to the doctrine of the Trinity.
        But as you say put two devout Jews together with a devout Christian and a sympathetic skeptic and the wine will flow and the arguments will last for another two thousand years.

        • Hmmm, lots to think on here. I think there is one more distinction that makes Christianity make sense, and that is the acceptance of virgin birth via the Holy Spirit. That’s a very un-Jewish concept, because in Judaism the child is created through a different trinity partnership: mother, father, and God. Therefore not only does virgin birth violate this central Jewish belief that every conception is a re-creation of the original Act ofn Creation, but it flies in the face of another central Jewish belief, which is that every person is the direct Child of God. I have had this explained to me by Christian friends: virgin birth rectifies Original Sin.

          However, in Judaism there was no sin, but a mistake. And since the mistake was also created by the Creator, then this world is the template upon which we, all of us, rectify the mistake and earn eternal life in spirit form. If there had been no mistake, there would be no reason to have a world in its generations.

        • Oh yeah, I had previously read your amazing, amazing story. I wanted to leave a comment on your page, but for some reason WP wanted me to sign in again, then it wouldn’t even let me “like” and certainly not comment. Hmph. I love your story.

  6. Hey friend
    You got the conversation going and heating up. I have studied Christianity and Islam yet what little I know about being Jewish is from the Bible. My thoughts are whatever religion you follow, you must follow what is expected in order to fulfill your journey afterlife. It’s simplistic when my energy is very low. I’m interested in all religions, the more we know about others, the better we can live together in understanding. Not some ISIS bullshit that they are following the Quran and the Quran promotes terrorist. I read the Quran as a study tool and there is a distinctest difference between Jihad and Terrorist who’s goal is to kill everyone but those who share their beliefs. Doesn’t sound like what I read in Quran. There is my 2 cents, maybe less.
    I hope you are doing well and good karma has come your way.
    Have you prayed at Wailing Wall? I would love to spend time understanding by walking the same roads, visualize the world, Jewish and Christian. The wall is a top of Bucket List. I believe your body would experience sensations of all who came before you.
    Be safe. Lyme has me pinned in a choke hold, the reason for much less conversations.

    • Hi, so good to hear from you! I was wondering where you’d got to. Lyme. Ugh. My simple antibiotic recipe might help: turmeric extract 95% curcuminoids, 2 caps 2x day with food/snack, plus Boswellia Serrata at least 100 mg, more is better, same dosing schedule. Takes about a month to feel effects. It’s the only thing that relieves my excruciating joint pain. Ticks are from hell.

      Yes, I’ve been to the Wall many times. I stopped going, because I believe it is more an impediment than an asset to our people. There is nothing intrinsically holy about the Wall. It’s a retaining wall that holds up part of the earthworks of the Temple Mount. It’s a symbol of exile, to me. I need to write a post on my experience going up to the Temple Mount. Put that one on your bucket list, and since you are not Jewish you will be allowed into the Dome of the Rock, where they have covered up the Foundation Stone, which was where Jacob laid his head and when he awoke and perceived the extreme holiness of the place, he said “This is the place of God, and I did not know it!” You have only to go up on the Mount and look down at all the people so earnestly praying at the Wall, and it is clear that they are in jail. And it’s our own fault, for giving it back to Jordan in 1967. But there are those who say the time is not yet ripe for rebuilding the Holy Temple, and I believe that is so, as you say. There is too much contentiousness and not enough righteousness among our people. As you say, there are principles, and in our case laws, that must be followed, even in a minimal way, to create a moral and just society that would be worthy of the Third (and final) Temple.

      Gentle hugs…

      • I want to see everything spoke of in the Bible. Which includes a great deal of learning about Jewish laws. I thought the wall was a place Christians, Jews and Muslims share in some way. Who knows where I heard that. I’m enjoying reading the Quran, so many people in Bible mention and admired. I’m not a politician, no desire but I want our world to change for us and children, the future leaders.
        I’ll gather all the info possible when I can go. I could have another 5 years to get well. FUN!

        • Unfortunately, Jews are not welcome on the Temple Mount. The Wall is the only place we are permitted to pray. In order to visit the Mount we must submit to being searched for any religious items like prayer books, prayer shawls, even Star of David necklaces. We must give our identity cards to the Jordanian guard to hold, because if we are caught praying we can be sent to jail. Israeli jail!

          Because the Wall is designated as an Orthodox synagogue, Christians are welcome to visit and pray, put notes in the cracks between the stones (a tradition, especially asking for healing), but because of many acts of terrorism and disruption, Muslims are requested to pray in the mosques on the Temple Mount. In recent years they have objected to our praying at the Wall, saying that Mohammed once tied his horse there on one of his trips to heaven and therefore the Western Wall also belongs to them. So far we have been able to retain that tiny piece of real estate, but who knows what lunacy is in the future.

          • Crazy, I have much to learn. I didn’t know anything about how Jordan got in the picture. I feel strongly about being Christian, became ordained this year, but he tied his horse there so it’s ours? Maybe I need to spend more time learning about the people in charge to teaching Quran after Mohammed died. I thought highly of him. It probably like everything in life that’s pure, over time everyone is an expert as if they where there.
            Shame. Why can’t all religious sites be for everyone to respect. Disrespect is a different story. Not being able to pray there. That in no way sounds like God, as each believes in. These days maybe Muslims. Shame.

            • You are ordained? Congratulations! Which flavor 😉

              Well, Muslims are people just like everybody else, and I have good friends who are Muslim. The politics in Israel are just crazy. Jordan was one of the five countries that attacked Israel in 1967. We won, and pushed the border of Jordan back over the River Jordan, where it is today. Before that, all of the Old City was occupied by Jordan. In a bid for peace, Israel put the Temple Mount under the “supervision” of the WAKF, which is Jordanian Muslim governing agency. They are in charge of making sure Jews are prevented from praying there. Can you imagine the furor that would occur in the UN if Jews prevented Muslims from praying at their holy sites? In fact there is a movement to declare Rachel’s Tomb a mosque! What does Rachel have to do with Islam??? She is one of our holiest Matriarchs. In order to get to her tomb, which is located near the formerly Christian, now Muslim city of Bethlehem, we had to build a bomb proof tunnel because Jews going to pray at Rachel’s Tomb were being firebombed. It’s just nuts.

              • Sounds like were all getting a short stick somehow. I converse with several Muslims how are great and have shown only peace on their blog.
                Think about it, Muslims good and not so want to make Rachel’s grave as Mosque. Sounds like a few influential people think whatever they can justify in there mind, like ISIS, is up for grabs. No one the other hand, Jews good and bad start declaring holy sites as Temples. Holy shit!!!!! Is Iran involved in these moves behind the scenes. They appear the only country how are don’t come here, go to prison and we’re not showing any cards. I have spent years studying out of interest yet feel clueless.
                My other issue to understand someday is the conflict with Isreal and Palestine. All I know it looks like war zone and very crazy. I would think if everyone including leaders, for that matter new leaders could find sort of peace, everyone is better off. Only the leaders of each country seem unaffected where as the people on one side or another are punching bags.
                Some many questions, not enough time.
                Ordained Non-Denominational. I’m not looking to preach, it’s for Pastoral care connected to the charity.

                • I haven’t heard of Jews designating any holy sites as “temples,” apart from our First and Second Holy Temple that stood on the Temple Mount. Can you explain?

                  Issues in the Middle East are rarely reported accurately in the West, if at all. If you’re interested in learning more, hop over to the MEMRI website and see what their team of linguists translate from the Arab media. Doesn’t look a bit like Al-Jazeera in English! I have managed to pick up a bit of spoken Arabic, since of course Hebrew and Arabic are both in the Semitic language group, so I can verify that MEMRI is not just cooking up their translations. Really, the situation is terrible, but not nearly so terrible as Syria, Iraq, Afghanistan, and other places where the Sunni-Shi’ite wars get little to no coverage, either. Our world is insane.

                  On the other hand, the prophet Samuel’s tomb has a synagogue at one end and a mosque at the other. It’s a bit tense, but there is coexistence, and I wish that could happen more. It does happen, sort of, at the Cave of the Patriarchs in Hevron, where Abraham/Sarah, Ishmael, Isaac/Rebecca, Jacob/Leah are buried. Rachel died along the road to Bethlehem, and Jacob buried her there. So there are two halls, the Hall of Ishmael and the Hall of Isaac, and Jews and Muslims pray in their respective Halls. Holy days to each faith are honored accordingly, but each in their own hall. Usually this works out.

                  • All the fighting and infighting and terrorist in multiple countries in Middle East is insane.
                    At times , many times I question what we’ve accomplished going to war for the peoples freedom. Are the people in any of the countries better off?
                    I feel for the refugees, so many women and children.

                    • I very much doubt that anything is better. There must be some economic gain for the U.S., Great Britain, and wasn’t Australia also involved in those wars?

                    • I’ve lost track of Obama’s bullshit!

                    • Yikes, the whole thing scares me to death. Like, we really have no idea what’s actually going on, anywhere.

                    • I don’t think our Administration. had the backbone to deliver on any promise. I will have a heart attack and go live in woods if Trump gets any where near White House.
                      The thought makes my stomach ill.

                    • Go live in the woods sans heart attack, please. I have coronary angina, so I get to feel the edges of what a heart attack feels like. Not at all fun.

                      If Trump gets in the white house we will all be lost, the world will devolute at light speed, and things will look like any of a number of dystopian novels. I’m glad I’ve got my camper. Even if I have to drive it till it runs out of gas in the middle of the forest, at least I will have my little pod. My Ruger .22 pistol has a 7 inch barrel, which will have to stand in for a rifle since my skeleton can no longer stand the recoil. Oh, I do love to camp😄

                    • Australia has been fighting in the Middle East since 1915. We were there then to help our so called Mother country England during WW1. And in WW2. And during the Suez crisis and so on and so on. At one stage we stopped going there to give assistance to England and started giving assistance to the US. We changed to giving assistance to the US as a way of paying our debt to the Americans for helping us against the Japanese in WW2. And like most debts the interest keeps accruing. It’s a long and complicated and untidy story.

                    • Yikes, does it ever end? Why not have young men and women care for the elderly and disabled, rather than sending them off to destroy and be destroyed…

  7. Really enjoyed this post, Laura. I will have to look up the others you have written. I have some thoughts of my own regarding the Mary’s that I hold..this was a fascinating comment section. Thank you for this post. xx

    • Hi CC, glad you enjoyed it! Wanna share your Mary, Mary thoughts?

      • Hi Laura,
        Again, I thought this comment section was so informative and interesting to was your post.
        I almost hesitate to give any views. It has been years since I studied or even read anything outside of the religion of my birth.
        It is evident that you are very well versed in your background.
        Though I feel I could quote the Bible verse by verse, I have been agnostic for many years.
        That does not mean that I do not have a sense or feeling that something bigger is out there.
        My feeling on the Mary’s or I should say Mary Magdalene is that she was Jesus’ wife. The one he called “his beloved”.
        I read The Gospel of Mary at one time in translation, of course, and other things regarding her.
        I also have an admiration for many women in the Bible.
        I hesitate now, to know which parts are true texts and which are not.
        I very much enjoyed learning all you wrote about Judaism. I will continue to read your posts on it.

        • I think there have been some recent archeological finds to support that Mary Magdalene was Jesus’s wife. Rabbis are generally required to be married (as are Jewish men in general). I find it interesting that Joshua married the prostitute Rahav, and MM was supposed to have been a prostitute as well. Now what I’d like to know is, did Jesus and Mary Magdalene have any children? It’s not mentioned in Scripture, but not everything that actually happened got into the Books! I’m sure that question would, and might already have, get me in trouble with some of my readers! Yet it seems to me that unless they actually were celibate, by the age of 30 it would be likely that they would have at least one child. Jewish law prescribes that a man must father at least one boy and one girl.

          • I have read that Jesus did not die on the cross and they went to France and did have a family..and I agree everything did not get into the Books..I love how you put that…:)
            There are sites there where MM was worshipped..I am not going by the DaVinci
            That was another reason I myself concluded they were married, the wedding at Cana, bc of please correct me, Jewish tradition, where the bridesgroom is the only one who would povide the wine…it would have been an insult for Jesus to have intervened..but I am not nearly as versed as you in any way on this…
            It is a fascinating subject to me …
            As well as what I was reading on your blog.. 🙂

            • Hmmm, did not know about the groom pouring the wine, but then I’ve only ever gone to Orthodox weddings, where men and women are separated by a tall divider. So I have no idea what the men do over there….But in Ashkenazi tradition, the groom does serve as bartender in a pre-wedding toast. I’m very interested in early Hebraic culture and customs…now you’ve got me burning up to learn about ancient weddings!

              Have you read The Red Tent? It’s highly controversial from the orthodox point of view, but I have never shied away from controversy. It’s a fascinating hypothetical on what life might have been like for women in the time of Jacob. Anita Diamant is the author.

              • I have not read that book, no. That is interesting about the Orthodox weddings.
                I learned about the tradition I am speaking of when studying some gnosticism. The older Jewish customs came up during that and some Hebraic cultures. Not enough that I would call myself an expert in any way, but enough that I became sure that they were married.
                I can see that we could have some exciting conversations. I, too, do not shy away from controversy. I just have not studied anything for many years. You have peaked my interest again. Thank you.

  8. Not read the article, but without Judaism, there’d be no Christianity, and actually, Jesus didn’t want to start a new religion anyway. The main reason for his coming was to try to get people to live correctly, with their hearts, and not in a legalistic way. But us humans are a stubborn bunch. You just have to read the book of the Acts of the Apostles to see how Saints Peter and Paul fought like a couple of cats in a sack….

    • Well, the rabbinic tradition has always involved a main teacher, with a lot of students, and they all disagreed. One reason they disagreed was to work out every possible facet of a problem, and thereby, we learn that we also should not pass judgement based on a single opinion. As far as Jesus intending to become the guru of his own religion, I think the time was ripe for that. Roman oppression had forbidden every outward sign of Jewishness, including kosher slaughter, including circumcision. Women were secretly circumcising their sons, and Passover Seders were held in basements. Death was the penalty for teaching Torah in public. In addition to Jesus, there were ten famous martyrs who had followers. The abandonment of the 613 commandments (mitzvot) lightened the load for Jews who were just exhausted with the struggle. But Jesus taught Torah in public, and that was a capital crime by the Romans. Based on the abandonment of mitzvot and the Sermon on the Mount, he could have been called a heretic, but crucifixion is not part of Jewish law, and in Jewish law it is close to impossible to sentence anyone to death. Also, the Sanhedrin (70 wise men) had been disbanded by the Romans, and since they were the judges, there was no way of even carrying out a trial. Therefore, I personally debunk any possibility of Jewish influence in JC’s death. I’m more than a little sensitive about that, as you can see…I grew up being called “Christ-killer” and nice things like that 😕

      • Getting to see all sides of the problem is a good thing.

        The Gospels and the book of Acts were written a good 50 or so years after the death (and resurrection) of Jesus, and it is thought by some that they were written with a particular slant to paint Rome in a better light in the hope it might stop feeding so many people to its wild animals. Hence all the attacks on the Jewish leaders. And of course, humans are pretty stupid and some take things literally when they’re written down. Just think, in a thousand years, someone finding a copy of 50 Shades of Grey might think it’s a religious text (heaven forbid).

        • Aaaaagh! What a thought! Bring on the wild animals, at least I’d have a chance with them…..

          • I think it didn’t have much effect in that regard. I suspect that Rome was suspicious of anyone who believed in YHWH.

            • I suspect that Herod was most interested in the prodigious amount of gold in the Temple and its Implements. Have you read Josephus? Pretty incredible to have an eye-witness chronicle of Second Temple politics.

              • I’ve not, but I know I must at some point. Too many kings/rulers have been interested in the monetary value of items held in religious establishments over time, haven’t they?

                • Er…….the Vatican?

                  • I was thinking more along the lines of the assorted exiles to Babylon, and more recently the likes of Henry VIII, but you may be right. Even my dear old CofE isn’t entirely innocent.

                    • Ah. What’s interesting to me about the Babylonian exile is that the Babylonian Talmud was worked out there. Unlike the Romans, the Babylonians didn’t seem to mind scholarship and debate regarding the minutiae of Jewish Law. And I am not entirely sure of the dates, but soon after the return to Jerusalem, the Jerusalem Talmud was redacted. Since the thinkers behind each version were engaged in working out the “how” of performing the commandments, it’s interesting to see how different the conclusions drawn in exile are to The ones arrived at by the returnees to Jerusalem. And to add to your list, the treasures confiscated by the Nazis (may their names be erased), and also the North Africans when they exiled their Jews, would fill many museums. I understand that Austria has made some efforts to return religious items (like Torah scrolls) to congregations, but for the most part they’ve been “disappeared.”

  9. If we are all of one faith if that the drift I am getting trust me we will never hear about the findings

  10. Prayers and blessings to you
    My hopes for you are high
    All My love
    As always Sheldon


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