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Exodus Insight by Rabbi Sacks (of blessed memory)
#1
I am reading Rabbi Sacks Covenant & Conversation series book titled "Exodus: The Book of Redemption" for the weekly parsha.

I thought I would share what I see as a contrast between contrast between Judaism and Christianity.

It's a bit long but well worth the read.

In the introduction to Exodus Rabbi Sacks says and I quote (page 14) -

"This leads us to the great subtext of the Exodus narrative. On the surface, it is about how the Israelites were slaves and G-d brought them to freedom by a series of signs and wonders. The Israelites played no part in this process. They were pawns in the hands of Pharaoh on the one hand, G-d on the other. History is a script written by G-d, and it is for us to leave our destiny entirely in His hands. This is the plain meaning of the text.

But there is a subtext which is nuanced differently. A careful examination reveals that Exodus contains a number of double narratives, whose significance becomes clear when we put them together. So, for example:

1 - There are 2 sets of battles one immediately before, the other immediately after, the crossing of the Reed Sea, the first against Pharaoh and his chariots, the second against the Amalekites.

2 - There are 2 sets of stone tablets recording the revelation at Mt. Sinai, one before the episode of the Golden Calf (broken by Moses on his descent from the mountain), the second after the people have been forgiven for the Calf.

3 - There are 2 times that G-d is revealed in a cloud of glory, once at Mt. Sinai, the other, at the end of Exodus, in the Tabernacle (40:34-35).

4 - The Sinai covenant was declared twice, once by G-d, the second time by Moses, reading from "the book of the covenant" he has written to record G-d's words)

5 - There are 2 accounts of the construction of the Tabernacl, one before (25-30), the other (35-40) after the Golden Calf.

If we examine each pair carefully we will see that they share a common feature. In each case, the first is the work of G-d alone, while the second involves human contribution.


I am skipping a few paragraphs that go into more detail to get to the main point I want to bring out where Rabbi Sacks says - "It is not what G-d does for us, but what we do for G-d, that changes us"

So here is the contrast I see -

I am around many Christians who always want me to "hear their testimonies", about how "G-d changed me and my life".

I believe the exact opposite as Rabbi Sacks writes - "but what we do for G-d, that changes us"



So G-d doesn't change us, we change our selves under G-d's direction if we choose to use our free will to do so!
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#2
Shalom. I think I got a little insight in Judaism by reading through this forum. Reading Books is always far less interesting than hearing from people. A big part of this forum deals with Christianity and with Christians. Please keep things simple. Christianity can not be approached or judged by complicated thoughts. I tried that for years, it doesn't work. 

That's why Christians share their stories... only the heart can grasp the secret. That shall not mean that there is no logic. Everything falls in place and the intellect is satisfied. But this is second.
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#3
I disagree vehemently regarding reading books. Less interesting than hearing from people? Maybe to you. I hate listening to people tell stories because I generally doubt the veracity of what they tell me. I love reading books and prefer to read someone's story in a book, where things are written down, where they are a sort of testimony that you can return to and check the facts.

There is no real secret truth of Christianity that one will grasp with the heart. It contradicts reality. It contradicts Judaism. It contradicts truth. The intellect will be satisfied with anything when you are in denial and ignore truth. Do you think that Mormons feel intellectually dissatisfied with their religion? Think again.
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#4
As far as I know the Hebrew Bible was passed on orally for hundreds of years. Smile 

Until later maybe, I have to work again.
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#5
(01-10-2021, 08:04 PM)Blue Bird wrote: That's why Christians share their stories... only the heart can grasp the secret. That shall not mean that there is no logic. Everything falls in place and the intellect is satisfied. But this is second.

Not according to G-d's words.


Numbers 15 -

39 - This shall be fringes for you, and when you see it, you will remember all the commandments of the Lord to perform them, and you shall not wander after your hearts and after your eyes after which you are going astray. (emphasis mine).


Hosea 4 -

6 - My people were silenced for lack of knowledge; because you have rejected knowledge, I will also reject you from being a priest to me; seeing that you have forgotten the Torah of your God, I, too, will forget your children.
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#6
(01-11-2021, 03:19 PM)searchinmyroots wrote:
(01-10-2021, 08:04 PM)Blue Bird wrote: That's why Christians share their stories... only the heart can grasp the secret. That shall not mean that there is no logic. Everything falls in place and the intellect is satisfied. But this is second.

Not according to G-d's words.


Numbers 15 -

39 - This shall be fringes for you, and when you see it, you will remember all the commandments of the Lord to perform them, and you shall not wander after your hearts and after your eyes after which you are going astray. (emphasis mine).


Hosea 4 -

6 - My people were silenced for lack of knowledge; because you have rejected knowledge, I will also reject you from being a priest to me; seeing that you have forgotten the Torah of your God, I, too, will forget your children.

Yes you are right, I agree 100%. What I ment was not to trust our own hearts. I was talking about the mistery of the living God and of course Jesus and the Holy Spirit in us. The satisfaction we gain in and through him and everything falls in place because we believe him and receive power from him. 

It's only then, when I'm justified and loved that I start reading the law with joy. You might consider me a heath or an idol worshiper. Yes, I'm not a Jew and I know very litte of the Hebrew language. But I do love your part of the Bible and I spend at least one hour a day reading it.
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#7
(01-11-2021, 06:37 PM)Blue Bird wrote:
(01-11-2021, 03:19 PM)searchinmyroots wrote:
(01-10-2021, 08:04 PM)Blue Bird wrote: That's why Christians share their stories... only the heart can grasp the secret. That shall not mean that there is no logic. Everything falls in place and the intellect is satisfied. But this is second.

Not according to G-d's words.


Numbers 15 -

39 - This shall be fringes for you, and when you see it, you will remember all the commandments of the Lord to perform them, and you shall not wander after your hearts and after your eyes after which you are going astray. (emphasis mine).


Hosea 4 -

6 - My people were silenced for lack of knowledge; because you have rejected knowledge, I will also reject you from being a priest to me; seeing that you have forgotten the Torah of your God, I, too, will forget your children.

Yes you are right, I agree 100%. What I ment was not to trust our own hearts. I was talking about the mistery of the living God and of course Jesus and the Holy Spirit in us. The satisfaction we gain in and through him and everything falls in place because we believe him and receive power from him. 

It's only then, when I'm justified and loved that I start reading the law with joy. You might consider me a heath or an idol worshiper. Yes, I'm not a Jew and I know very litte of the Hebrew language. But I do love your part of the Bible and I spend at least one hour a day reading it.


We understand your viewpoint about Jesus and the holy spirit as many here are former Christians.

So what happens when 3 different Christians have 3 different opinions, all who say it was from the holy spirit?

We have satisfaction and gain from G-d's words of instruction from the Hebrew bible. Yes, we are all born with the soul that has the power to make decisions, whether good or bad, whether from the heart or from the heart with logic and knowledge.

Everything is in place, just as we need it. King Solomon expresses this very well in Ecclesiastes -

12: 13 - The end of the matter, everything having been heard, fear God and keep His commandments, for this is the entire man. 14 - For every deed God will bring to judgment-for every hidden thing, whether good or bad.


So it all goes back to what I said in the opening post -

It is not what G-d does for us, but what we do for G-d, that changes us.
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#8
No you can't understand the mistery of the Spirit in us. No one can. Like Mozart, you can talk about his music theory for hours and miss the music.

Of course we disagree, even on serious matters. A brother said to me recently that God showed him that Jerusalem is the whore of Babylon. This is manipulation because it allowes no other interpretation.

Why is it such an issue for you to prove that Christ is not Christ? I am a reborn Christian for 29 years and I never cared about Islam or Judaism in the intensity like you care about Christianity.
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#9
(01-11-2021, 07:50 PM)Blue Bird wrote: No you can't understand the mistery of the Spirit in us. No one can. Like Mozart, you can talk about his music theory for hours and miss the music.

Of course we disagree, even on serious matters. A brother said to me recently that God showed him that Jerusalem is the whore of Babylon. This is manipulation because it allowes no other interpretation.

Why is it such an issue for you to prove that Christ is not Christ? I am a reborn Christian for 29 years and I never cared about Islam or Judaism in the intensity like you care about Christianity.

So no one can understand the "mystery" of the holy spirit but true Christians have it in them and can all disagree. So who should I believe? If the spirit is in all of you, shouldn't it be sending the same message?

Where do you see that I was trying to prove that "Christ is not Christ" (which doesn't really make sense since the word for Christ simply means messiah)?

All I did was show a contrast to what the Hebrew bible teaches as opposed to what Christianity does.

How do you know the "intensity I care about Christianity"??

I was merely replying to your posts as I usually do whenever someone says something that I believe may be in disagreement with what G-d teaches us in the Hebrew bible.

It's not a matter of caring about Christianity, it's a matter of stating the facts.

I do care about people, no matter what they believe.
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#10
(01-11-2021, 08:30 PM)searchinmyroots wrote:
(01-11-2021, 07:50 PM)Blue Bird wrote: No you can't understand the mistery of the Spirit in us. No one can. Like Mozart, you can talk about his music theory for hours and miss the music.

Of course we disagree, even on serious matters. A brother said to me recently that God showed him that Jerusalem is the whore of Babylon. This is manipulation because it allowes no other interpretation.

Why is it such an issue for you to prove that Christ is not Christ? I am a reborn Christian for 29 years and I never cared about Islam or Judaism in the intensity like you care about Christianity.

So no one can understand the "mystery" of the holy spirit but true Christians have it in them and can all disagree. So who should I believe? If the spirit is in all of you, shouldn't it be sending the same message?

Where do you see that I was trying to prove that "Christ is not Christ" (which doesn't really make sense since the word for Christ simply means messiah)?

All I did was show a contrast to what the Hebrew bible teaches as opposed to what Christianity does.

How do you know the "intensity I care about Christianity"??

I was merely replying to your posts as I usually do whenever someone says something that I believe may be in disagreement with what G-d teaches us in the Hebrew bible.

It's not a matter of caring about Christianity, it's a matter of stating the facts.

I do care about people, no matter what they believe.

We should be sending the same message  Cool Actually we do when it comes to Christ. You know the message, don't you? We are all sinners and lost the glory of God, he gave his blood for our justification. Paul often sais "in Christ Jesus we have...." So Christ is simply a shortcut to say: our saviour, Son of God and so on.

This thread is started by you and it shall show the contrast between us. Many many other threads contain more or less hard discussions. That's how I came to the conclusion that this topic is kind of oversized in a Jewish Forum. 

I read many of your answes and I appreciate them all. 

I am slow in writing because a cat sleeps on my right arm and the left hand isn't that fast.
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