Friday, August 18, 2006

"Properly Educated Jews Won't Believe in Jesus"

How often have you heard this? Often. Now stricly speaking, this isn't true. See my interview with Bob Mendelsohn for a counter-example.

It makes it sound as though properly educated religious Jews are safe from the buffets of the outside world. So imagine my surprise when I discovered a book which discusses why Observant Jews leave Judaism and what to do about it.

Now, I don't want gloat over this situation.

I am hoping that crass and simplistic statements like the title of this post will eventually fade away. People make up their own minds for a variety of reasons, even Orthodox Jews.

Some who professed belief in Y'shua no longer believe in the Messiah. Some who were Orthodox Jews no longer are. Some atheists are now believers in Y'shua. Some are now something completely different. Some are still atheists.

I've heard similar comments from other faith communities besides the Orhtodox Jewish, to be fair.

I think the comment is subconsciously intented to make people feel better about people rejecting something you believe to be true. "Those people believe in because they didn't truly understand what they were leaving." Maybe. Maybe not.

The truth of my faith is grounded upon the veracity of Scripture and the death and Resurrection of Y'shua. People may believe. They may fall away. They may have been educated in the faith. Maybe not. That doesn't affect whether my faith is true or not.

Here was a good comment from a review of the book:
One of her findings is that there is no single all- encompassing reason why observant Jews cease to be so. It can be the coolness of their own observant parents to religion, or the difficulty they have with teachers in school. It can come from their own sense of the religion's simply 'not working' for them. There are many , many reasons. And the author is honest enough to say that she has no formula for any specific case.

6 Comments:

Anonymous Moshe ben Avraham said...

Yes some educated Jews convert to jews for Jesus, just like some educated Jews convert to atheism. But the vast majoroty of Jews that convert to jews for Jesus are not educated about what Judaism means. Do you know there are reform Jews who have not read the whole Tenakh? (I have not read the whole thing myself, but I will get around to it) Even in the conservative communities their children are not obligated to continue their Jewish education past a bar/bat mitzvah. I do not consider these educated Jews. Yet, despite the lack of effort by the less observant commuities, they still refuse to convert to messianic Judaism. The vast majority of Jews (excluding Israelis and Russians for reasons I will not go into) even in the observant areas have no interest in your organization. Even the Reconstructionists speak out against you. When have Jews ever completely agreed on anything? Rarely, but in this Jews are showing their uniformity.

8/18/2006 11:24:00 AM  
Blogger geoffrobinson said...

They are only showing complete uniformity if you exclude Jews who believe in Jesus from being considered.

And even if you did exclude them...so what? What's that show?

If an atheist Jew and a Reconstructionist Jew and a JuBu (Jewish Buhdist) and an Orthodox Jew agree, what are they agreeing on the basis of? It's not the authority of God's Word. What would be the basis of what constitutes Jewish identity?

And then I would ask the atheistic Jew on what basis and authority he makes that determination? I would ask the Orthodox Jew how can you call a Jew who believes in the Messiah and all of the Tanakh not Jewish when someone who believes the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob is a fairy tale is still considered a Jew.

If it is uniform, it would be uniformily arbitrary and inconsistent.

And, yes, I know there are a lot of Jews who haven't read the whole Tanakh. I wish there were more so there would be more who would learn about the Messiah Jesus.

8/18/2006 03:14:00 PM  
Anonymous Moshe ben Avraham said...

I think you are making an error in understanding what being Jewish means. It is very common among non-Jews. There are two types of Jews. Those by faith and those by blood. An atheist Jew is still Jewish because he was born one. No matter what he does he is still Jewish, just not on a religious level. A Jew that believes in Jesus is still Jewish, but not religiously. Does that clarify anything?

8/21/2006 12:56:00 PM  
Blogger Chad said...

<<< I think you are making an error in understanding what being Jewish means. It is very common among non-Jews. There are two types of Jews. Those by faith and those by blood. An atheist Jew is still Jewish because he was born one. No matter what he does he is still Jewish, just not on a religious level. A Jew that believes in Jesus is still Jewish, but not religiously. Does that clarify anything? >>>

It's interesting to see that Moshe ben Avraham believes something that what we Jews for Jesus have always said: we were born as Jews and we remain Jews.

8/22/2006 05:55:00 PM  
Blogger darren said...

QUOTE It's interesting to see that Moshe ben Avraham believes something that what we Jews for Jesus have always said: we were born as Jews and we remain Jews. endQUOTE

Ethnically speaking, but not religiously if you dive into mainstream Christianity which rejects the covenant at Sinai which was "forever" -- not just until Jesus comes. By Jews converting to mainline Christianity they are "following a god they nor their fathers have known," thus effectively going from a biblical faith to a pagan one. If they accept Yeshua as Messiah without rejecting his Torah, then they are both ethnically and religiously Jews. Otherwise, they are a Catholic in a tallit -- no matter what denomination the claim.

9/13/2006 12:57:00 AM  
Blogger geoffrobinson said...

Darren,

Your blog makes it pretty clear you are a fellow believer. Your statement that those who disagree about the nature of Torah observance today are "following another god"... quite frankly that statement is shameful and an insult to fellow believers who are in mainstream Christian churches. To their own Master they stand or fall (Romans 14:4).

You rob someone of their identity without Scriptural warrant. You say about your brothers in Messiah, who you have an important disagreement with you, follow another god. We are all Torah breakers. You are bothering your brothers about minor things (civil, dietary etc) compared to what you are breaking.

And by the way, if memory serves "forever" is translated from the word olam. And olam is a duration defined by context, not necessarily forever.

Here are rabbinic Jewish pushbacks to the Torah being forever:
http://www.christian-thinktank.com/not_maimed.html

9/13/2006 07:17:00 PM  

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