The Flames Are Still Burning

(c) 1998, Rabbi David Markel Hall 
The following are excerpts from an e-letter I received from B.R. His comments are in fixed width and underlined font. My comments are in variable width font.

He is among the thousands of misguided and misinformed Christians that make it so difficult to spread the truth among our people. The doctrines of separatism and anti-Semitism have strewn many boulders in the fields of Judaism. The spirit which is exhibited here is raw, unadulterated Anti-Semitism.
Like it or not, Yeshua (Jesus) was and is an observant Jew (practicing the customs and traditions of His people). When He returns; he will be a Jewish king, sit on the throne of His father David, and rule the world from the Jewish state of Israel.

... regarding the 'woes' and the 'bewares' that Jesus proclaimed, about 70% of these Jesus was warning Christians
There were no "Christians" in Yeshua's day. He was speaking to a 100% Jewish crowd. Christians were first called Christians at Antioch. (Acts 11:26) Remember that while Jesus was alive there was nothing to define a "Christian", i.e. to believe in a "risen savior."
.... no words were harsher than those spoken of the Scribes and Pharisees. Words like, 'you fools', 'you blind guides', 'woe unto you', and 'white washed sepulchers.'
Yeshua (Jesus) was a Pharisee along with Nicodemus and Joseph of Arimathaea, who buried him. He was addressing the Pharisees using Pharisaic praxis (i.e., expressing a strong point of view in an emotional and firm way). The "doctrine of the Scribes and Pharisees" which you are attacking, were primarily those of the temple crowd, Herodians, who were in alliance with Herod and Ceasar. In almost all references to "the Pharisees" you will find members of the false priesthood (who were placed into their positions by Herod and Ceasar), or the temple scribes, standing there with them. The statements in Matthew 23, were made at or in the Temple (see Matthew 24:1 "And Jesus went out, and departed from the temple.").
Moreover, the apostle Paul, referring to the destructive nature of the doctrines which the Scribes and Pharisees propagated...
Regarding the "destructive nature of the doctrines", Which doctrines? When the Torah tells us, to remember the Sabbath to keep it holy and do no servile work in it, if I were a doctor, would I be breaking the Sabbath to assist someone with a medical emergency? The teachings of the Pharisees clarify this statement so I can know that it is okay to render acts of mercy and kindness on the Sabbath, otherwise I would probably do nothing to assist someone based on the Torah alone.
... giving the fact that much of the New Testament teachings deal with the destructive nature of the laws, doctrines and traditions of the Jews (Judaism)...
This is erroneously lumping together laws, doctrines, and traditions. These three are not one.

In the last days, when Yeshua returns to sit on His throne, He will enforce upon the gentiles the feast of tabernacles or booths (Zech 14:16-21 the supposedly "Jewish custom", "Jewish Doctrine", or "Jewish law" of Sukkot). He will even punish the gentiles who refuse to come up to observe this "law, doctrine and tradition of the Jews (Judaism)"

...would it be good to learn exactly what these laws, doctrines and traditions were?
Before "laying the ax to the tree", we should find out if the tree is evil or not. Hence, we definitely should study Judaism before attacking it (2 Tim 2:15). The apostles even indicated that it would be okay for Christians to go to the synagogues to learn Torah (Moses, inferred from Acts 15 note verse 21).
...Christians are beginning to incorporate Judaism into Christianity. Thus telling Jews, you do not need to change your Jewish heritage or traditions, you only need to accept Jesus as the Messiah.
The perception here is as taught by mainstream anti-Semitic theologians, who take the words of the Bible out of context and use them to cut down and rip to pieces anyone or anything they do not understand.

Acts 21:17-26 tells us that the Apostles were more than aware of the "thousands of Jews" who were doing exactly what is being preached against. They actually gave support to the Jews being "zealous of the law". Paul himself did not argue with them when they confronted him. He did not say, "I do not keep the law any longer." On the contrary, he went with the men who had a vow (in which they shaved their heads, i.e., the nazerite vow), he paid their charges and participated in the ritual (Was this a tradition or law?). The nazerite vow was for the purpose of working in the temple. They would not only be involved with the temple rituals, but offering sacrifices along side the Levites. Paul would not have done this if he was in any way against Judaism.

However, this mixture of Judaism and Christianity, if one was to accept the teachings of Jesus, Paul and the other apostles, one would see that mixing Judaism and Christianity together is like mixing oil and water, they do not mix, and never will.
Paul not only encouraged the practice of Judaism among the Jews, he did so himself. As for the other "Apostles", you can see how firm they were about these matters by reading Acts 15. They gave special instructions to the gentiles, much of which originated in the "Pharisaic teachings" (i.e., Noahide Law). Timothy was circumcised and Peter wrongfully avoided contact with believing gentiles in the company of Jews as was pointed out in Gal 2. John taught the Jews (Paul was the Apostle to the gentiles the others were apostles to the Jews) that breaking the Torah is sin (1 John 3:4), etc. etc..
Contrary to that, which is commonly taught, Judaism is not an emulation of the Old Testament. Instead, the rabbinical teachings known as the Babylonian Talmud are the real essence of Judaism.
Talmud teaches us how to comply with "Old Testament" law (Torah). The commandments say of the Sabbath "… no manner of work shall be done in it…" When a farmer milks a cow for a living, is it wrong for him to milk the cow on the Sabbath? According to the Talmud, it is not wrong because stopping the milking of the cow will create pain in the animal and reduce or eliminate the production of milk.

Yeshua used "Pharisaic doctrine" (Talmudic principles) to reveal the truth about healing on the Sabbath (Mark 3:4, Luke 13:15, 14:1-6, etc., etc.). He used these wicked, evil, perverted doctrines on many other occasions as well. Therefore, what is so wicked, evil or perverted about them? Any doctrine can be twisted to be made evil even if it is not inherently so by nature. Witches use the Psalms quoting them in reverse to pronounce curses. Does this mean the Psalms are evil? Of course not.

The Babylonian Talmud addresses even more issues which are difficult to resolve like;

  • When does the Sabbath begin in Texas? Jerusalem time or local time?
  • Being so far from Jerusalem, which day do we observe in keeping the Sabbath?
  • Which day should be observed for various holy days?
This is why, for most holy days, we observe two days in the Diaspora but only one in Jerusalem.
And these doctrines and traditions (Talmudic teachings) of present day Judaism are those same teachings, which Jesus so boldly warned us to stay away from.
The Talmud of today did not exist in Yeshua's day. The *Babylonian Talmud was compiled around *500CE to clarify questions of Torah observance that the *Jerusalem Talmud (compiled around *400CE) did not cover. The earliest writings of the Talmud were compiled around *200CE by Rabbi Judah, and are called Mishnaoth. The word Talmud is derived from lomed which means "study", and is referring to the study of the  Torah and MishnaothMishnaoth means "study of traditional law by oral repetition."

* from Jewish Literacy by Rabbi Joseph Telushkin, Chapter 83, Babylonian Talmud, Jerusalem Talmud and Mishnah.