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Judaism vs. Christianity (split from Nature of Islam topic)


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a man ?

But Jesus called Himself the "Son of God", He died on the cross for the sins of all Humanity, and He rose from the dead... if He was merely a man like any other, none of that makes sense. Why was he called the "Son of God" if He was just a man? How could an ordinary man take upon himself all the sins of mankind? How could a man rise from the dead?

Christianity only makes sense if Jesus was special - unique - in some way. In what way was He unique? The early Christians concluded that He must have been part of God.

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I'm not going to argue about whether Jesus is God's son or not.  I've agreed to that.  Just want to list some scriptures which are various instances of men who God calls his son(s).

Exodus 4:22-23

22 And thou shalt say unto Pharaoh: Thus saith HaShem: Israel is My son, My first-born.

23 And I have said unto thee: Let My son go, that he may serve Me; and thou hast refused to let him go.

The collective Israel is called God's son often in the Hebrew Bible, including this mention in Exodus. 

I Chronicles 22:9-10

9 Behold, a son shall be born to thee, who shall be a man of rest; and I will give him rest from all his enemies round about; for his name shall be Solomon, and I will give peace and quietness unto Israel in his days.

10 He shall build a house for My name; and he shall be to Me for a son, and I will be to him for a father; and I will establish the throne of his kingdom over Israel for ever.

God says Soloman shall be a son to Him, and He a father to Soloman.

Psalms 2:6-7

6 'Truly it is I that have established My king upon Zion, My holy mountain.'

7 I will tell of the decree: HaShem said unto me: 'Thou art My son, this day have I begotten thee.

Here in Psalms David declares what God has said to him, that he is God's son.

It is often used to describe people who were just a man or just men.

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"But Jesus called Himself the "Son of God""

Actually, the closest words he uses are "Son of Man", according to the writers of the NT. It is assumed that this is a reference to terminology in the OT. The problem, though, is whether he actually used this precise forumla or whether this is an extrapolation by the writers from a claim to be just a human being.

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Son of man is another interesting phrase.

The first place it shows up in the Hebrew Bible is Numbers 23:19

"19 G-d is not a man, that He should lie; neither the son of man, that He should repent: when He hath said, will He not do it? or when He hath spoken, will He not make it good?"

It is used a number of times, sometimes by Job, sometimes by David, sometimes by others to describe a paralell to "man" to describe humanity as a whole.

In fact, in the book of Ezekiel son of man is used about 90 times by the divine being speaking to Ezekiel to describe Ezekiel.

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Literary, all believers are often called "children of God". Even Jesus does so, in example (and accordance with the quoting fashion which seems to blossom here ;) ) during his well-known hill speach (Mt 5,9).

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Simply put, the Trinity concept states that there is one God with some sort of a collective mind. If Jesus wasn't part of God, then what was He?

Putting on my Heretical Christian hat, here are my personal conclusions about the nature of Jesus:

Based upon the New Testament Jesus Christ was the first-born of God

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But Jesus called Himself the "Son of God", He died on the cross for the sins of all Humanity, and He rose from the dead... if He was merely a man like any other, none of that makes sense. Why was he called the "Son of God" if He was just a man? How could an ordinary man take upon himself all the sins of mankind? How could a man rise from the dead?

Christianity only makes sense if Jesus was special - unique - in some way. In what way was He unique? The early Christians concluded that He must have been part of God.

Rising from the dead... hmm, you're taking a lot for granted here. It could be said that people took his body from the grave, and upon seeing this lack of a body the writer(s) of NT took that as Jesus rising from the dead (like before, since Jesus was assumed to be the messiah, then according to the OT he must've risen from the dead). Aside from that, anything else could make sense for Jesus to be a man. It actually makes more sense as to the "dying on the cross for all of our sins" because if he is the son of God, and he would rise from the dead, then the significance of him dying for us becomes much less. For a mortal man that will not rise from the dead and will just die and stay dead, to die for our sins is much more significant and has much more of an impact.

In Islam, I believe that Mohammed is a central character in the Quran and is the most important figure (besides Allah), and yet is just a man. He is not some strange offshoot of Allah that is Allah but isn't, he is a prophetic man with many teachings. Why can't Jesus be the same as that? Christianity wouldn't change significantly. It is not central to Christianity that Jesus be God.

I also have a question, where was Jesus during the three days of being dead? Naturally, with all of the sins on him he would be in hell yes?

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Thank you, Acriku!!

For a minute there, this was starting to feel like "The Emperor's New Clothes" fable.  I started to wonder am I the only one who can see the reality?  It seems so clear to me, "the Emperor's naked," but everyone wants to go through great lengths to pretend he wears clothes.

I digress.  Point is, I'm glad you seem to get what I'm saying. :)

The authors were not speaking only to people on the street but also to some who were deep into Hellenic ideas. They tried to convince everyone they could, so it means to speak in their language as well: do not expect only simplistic ideas out of a complex context (like Hellenic influence).

It's a bit like business management. It's simple: be efficient! ;)

They still do a complete MBA about it. So of course some parts of the authors will adapt to the context (of that time), with a bunch of consequences. I do not think it is only Emperor clothes, even if it can happen as anywhere.

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"It is not central to Christianity that Jesus be God."

Depends whom you ask. I think part of the idea is that we are able to get into heaven not because we're above average - we're all sinful, apparently, and therefore cannot enter heaven - rather, all of our sins are transferred to Jesus during his time on the cross (for which period, some would argue, he was 'disconnected' from god - hence crying "why have you forsaken me?"). If Jesus was not divine, then it doesn't quite make sense.

"It could be said that people took his body from the grave"

Questions: Who? Why?

Consider also the appearances to disciples and others post-disappearance.

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The authors were not speaking only to people on the street but also to some who were deep into Hellenic ideas. They tried to convince everyone they could, so it means to speak in their language as well: do not expect only simplistic ideas out of a complex context (like Hellenic influence).

It's a bit like business management. It's simple: be efficient! ;)

They still do a complete MBA about it. So of course some parts of the authors will adapt to the context (of that time), with a bunch of consequences. I do not think it is only Emperor clothes, even if it can happen as anywhere.

To say it otherwise: what did God before the creation? Made hell for those who give bad questions.

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"It is not central to Christianity that Jesus be God."

Depends whom you ask. I think part of the idea is that we are able to get into heaven not because we're above average - we're all sinful, apparently, and therefore cannot enter heaven - rather, all of our sins are transferred to Jesus during his time on the cross (for which period, some would argue, he was 'disconnected' from god - hence crying "why have you forsaken me?"). If Jesus was not divine, then it doesn't quite make sense.

Instead of being "connected to god" then "disconnected from god" why not say he was not part of god at any point in time? It raises so many more questions, and complications, when we talk of Jesus being God (especially to be able to be God and then not be God, as you mentioned). Transferring all of our sins to God is kind of pointless (after all, sins are merely disobeyances of God). Transferring all of our sins to a man who sacrifices his body and soul so that we may get into heaven is so much more significant and powerful. It kind of makes sense that way.
"It could be said that people took his body from the grave"

Questions: Who? Why?

Consider also the appearances to disciples and others post-disappearance.

Jesus' disciples, his fans, who knows. Why? Well it certainly makes him resurrecting more plausible. From the article I linked, it seems Matthew fit Jesus into the messiah picture by assuming some of what he did using the OT, why not assume resurrection simply because the body is gone?
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Tanakh: Isaiah 9:5-6

"5. For a child is born unto us, a son is given unto us; and the government is upon his shoulder; and his name is called Pele-joez-el-gibbor-Abi-ad-sar-shalom (Wonderful in council is God the Mighty, the Everlasting Father, the Ruler of peace);

6. That the government may be increased, and of peace there be no end, upon the throne of David, and upon his kingdom, to establish it, and to uphold it through justice and through righteousness from henceforth even for ever. The zeal of HaShem of hosts doth perform this."

So basically you're saying that the scripture in question is improperly translated in the King James version and that in the proper translation Mighty God, Everlasting Father, and Ruler of Peace are all referencing God, not the Messiah. 

What a perfect example of how confusion can arise over reading the same text but translating it a completely different way.  It's a wonder their aren't more sects and schisms.

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It's a "name" of this son/king, but the "name" spoken to denote him is made up of various praises of God, and some of his abilities.  I say "name" because it isn't literally his name, as the man described is King Hezekiah.  But Hezekiah looks to God's council when shaping his kingdom, and is blessed for it throughout his reign.  He abolishes all the things from his father's reign that sins against HaShem.  And his kingdom was founded on the return to worship of HaShem and HaShem only, and as such is blessed immensely, and at one point there is even peace in Judah.

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In Islam, I believe that Mohammed is a central character in the Quran and is the most important figure (besides Allah), and yet is just a man. He is not some strange offshoot of Allah that is Allah but isn't, he is a prophetic man with many teachings. Why can't Jesus be the same as that? Christianity wouldn't change significantly. It is not central to Christianity that Jesus be God.

It is if central to Christianity is the worship of Jesus, and if Jesus is a mere man, a man closer to God then no other but still a man, then shurely worship would not be permissible. Therefore it would greatly affect Christianity.

I have been told by many Christians when I ask them "if the 3 Gods are one, why shouldnt we worship the God in heaven ?" to which I  have been told basically that the best God to worship is Jesus, as he came down to us, was amogst us, died for us...etc... Also as he said that no one gets to the father but through him, so we must worship him.

All in all, I think Jesus worship is central to Christianity...

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God has a peer? But that's far closer to polytheism than the Trinity concept!

Again, very polytheistic... Besides, didn't Satan fall precisely because he was an archangel who wanted to be elevated to God's status?

The Trinity states that Jesus is God.  My hypothesis states that Jesus is a glorified angel, one exalted over his peers to sit at the right hand of God.  He is still a creation of God, he has a beginning, by nature he is not God.  Even in his exalted position, He is not God.  Think of it this way, God appointed him as King of kings and Lord of lords, but not as God.  And when Jesus

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I have an arm, and I have a leg, and I have a thorax.. and they're all my body. Weird, impossible?

[me=Egeides]gets Neo and Trinity from the wardrobe to see if the calculator still counts 2, or if it's now 3 by the addition of "them" as third... oh it's funny, I have 3 arms per side and am growing a third eye with all that. Polybody fits for polytheist. ;)[/me]

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Pardon me, but why is the worship of Jesus central to Christianity?  Jesus seemed to advocate the worship of God, not himself.  (Luke 4:6-8).  There are some cases where the Greek word proskuneo is used with reference to Jesus.  Sometimes the word is translated as worship, but the word also means to bow down, do obeisance, prostrate oneself.  These are all acceptable forms of honoring a King without being accused of actually worshipping him. 

Isnt this whole debate been about, certainly at this point, the fact that Jesus is/isnt God. Trinity isnt polytheism...etc... ?

Well if Jesus is God, doesnt he get worshipped as well ? Why is there statues of jesus all around ? Why are Christians calling me to pray to Jesus ? Why is all prayer directed at Jesus ? Isnt that worshipping him ?

As far as I can see, despite what you say might be written, the Christians of today worship Jesus, who I believe was not a God and thats my issue with Christianity.

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I want to make it clear that while Hezekiah fulfilled some of the prophecies, he was certainly not the moshiach.  Moshiach hasn't been fulfilled.  Interestingly enough, the Christian identification of the beast such as described in Revelation is almost a direct ripoff of the prophecies of the Tanakh.  A.K.A. the Judaic moshiac = the Christian "beast".

Christian beast:

- Rebuild the Temple

- Reinstate the sacrifices

- Create world peace

- Setup a one world religion

- Conquer the Jews' enemies possibly through war

Mashiach in Tanakh

- Rebuild the Temple

- Reinstate the sacrifices

- Create World peace

- Make G-d known to everyone

- Conquer the Jews' enemies possibly through war

The difference is Christianity believes the Jews will worship moshiach, when the Tanakh clearly says never to worship a man.  The Jews will never worship a man.  This is an interesting belief to me considering the Jews have refused to worship a man for 2,000 years, yet they some how think Jews will throw down their Bibles and God and worship the man known as the beast.

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Paul greater then Jesus and Moses ?

After Jesus returned to Heaven, the Rich and Powerful Paul claimed to have spoken to Jesus and then added to much of the later part of the GOspel we have today

Although we see from Paul's writings, that he often differs from the Teachings of Moses and Jesus, and seems to have a hidden Motive for adding to the Gospel

Paul said:

"but to others I say, yes, I, not the lord

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Curious Purge, is that your interpretations or was it from a link? (if so what is that link?)

I'm also curious about one thing. The New Testament was created as we see it (in the big picture, not specific wordings) from the Council of Nicea, where people voted on what to put into it. How was the tanakh/torah created?

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  • 4 weeks later...

Well it's quite common for one religion to grow from another, and not just among the Abrahamic faiths. Buddhism "piggy backed" on Hinduism too.

I think Buddhism was based on atheism of some sort, original Buddhism even teach not to worship idols, and there was not race division in Buddism like the original Hiduism, though I did not study those religions as much, but this I think most people would agree with me, and if I make a mistake understanding these religions, I apologize.

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