Jesus Was A Jew – So What is That To You?

by Steve Ray on June 20, 2018

The Jewish Jesus – like he really was

Jesus was a Jew…

This fact may escape the casual reader of the New Testament, but it is crucial to understanding Jesus and the book written about him—the Bible. Unhappily, in 21st century America we are far removed from the land of Israel and the ancient culture and religion of Judaism followed by Jesus and his Jewish ancestors.

Let me ask you a few questions. Were you born and raised in Israel? Did you study the Torah with the rabbis from an early age? Have you traversed the rocky hills and dusty paths to celebrate the mandatory feasts in Jerusalem?

Do you speak Hebrew, Greek and Aramaic? I haven’t found anyone in my Catholic parish who has these credentials. Without this background, we are at a great disadvantage when studying the Bible and its central character — Jesus himself.

When we open the pages of our English Bible, we find a Jewish book! The setting revolves around Israel and the worship of Yahweh.

With one exception, the more than forty biblical writers were all Jews, and the exception was most likely a Jewish proselyte.  (Do you know who the only non-Jewish author in the Bible is? I’ll give you a few hints: he was a physician, one of St. Paul’s co-workers, and he wrote the first history of the Church.)

The point is, how can we understand the Bible and the teaching surrounding our Lord Jesus and salvation without understanding his people, his culture, and his Jewish identity?

For the whole article click here.

{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

Barry Wright May 24, 2015 at 5:41 AM

Great article Steve. Thank you for the list of resources.

Another resource I would highly recommend is ‘Jesus in Context’ by Darrell Bock. It is a fantastic resource for understanding Jesus in his first century Jewish context. It goes through each Gospel story and provides background readings from Jewish sources that shed light on Jesus and his actions. Some of the sources used include Joesphus, The Dead sea scrolls, The Mishnah, Talmud, OT Pseudepigrapha etc. The format of the book makes it very easy to use. It really is a wonderful reference work.

P.s the non Jewish author is Luke.

Kevin May 25, 2015 at 2:32 AM

Luke is My Guess!

Steve I have a question what is the technical name of The Apostles converting from Jews to Catholics this was a Long Process. They were caught between practicing their Jewish faith and adhering to their new Catholic Practices. I heard it a few years back and I cannot recollect where I heard this technical name!

Have a great experience with your Pilgrims!

Thanks for being a beacon of Hope in Jesus name in this dark world of Today!

STEVE RAY HER FROM ASSISI: They are “Completed Jews” or “fulfilled Jew”

Andre Villeneuve June 20, 2016 at 9:29 AM

Great article, Steve. Except that it is not Pius XII who said “spiritually we are all Semites” but Pius XI in 1938. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pope_Pius_XI_and_Judaism

Monique White April 7, 2019 at 10:47 PM

Hello Steve,

I just gave your information to a woman of our bible study to check out the claims of the Catholic Church as being the TRUE BRIDE OF CHRIST. So many misunderstanding about the CC.
My short story:
Walking with HIS WORD wherever HE leads me, HE brought me out of the Evangelical Church (Speak the Word Church in Mpls MN) with these words: "Everybody praises ME and NOBODY does what I say! LEAVE!" I was shocked, but being obedient I immediately grabbed my pink Living Bible, got my 2 kids out of Sunday School. and LEFT! Next step: "Seed of Abraham" – Messianic Rabbi Ed Rothman – followed by "Shalom Scripture Studies", both in St. Louis Park MN. I also made connection with a Jewish woman who brought me to an Orthodox Synagogue to get my dishes blessed (and receive the Mikeh = JewishPurification Bath) before my first Kosher Shabbat on 6.19.1998. Not having any income because I lost my lease to my Jewelry Store and having 2 children to support, I had to do EVERYTHING the LORD asked of me. The day before "Thanksgiving" in 1996, HE spoke audibly to me : "DO YOU TRUST ME?" "DO YOU TRUST ME?" I was in my bathroom and HE said it twice. It took me a second or two to realize that the LORD was actually speaking audibly with me, but when I heard HIS VOICE the second time, I shouted : "Of course I trust you. Who else can I trust?" Now back to September 1998, the Messianic Congregation Shalom Scripture Studies split over doctrine. Lost my place of worship again, but the LORD said to me : "NOW YOU GO BACK TO THE ORTHODOX SYNAGOGUE – KNESSET ISRAEL CONGREGATION, St. Louis Park, MN. Rabbi Chaim Goldberger, where I received the 1st of 5 Mikvehs betwee 98 and April 99. Why 5 I asked HIM: HE said: to Purify My Wounds…. Thus started my introduction to Judaism till Nov. 1999, when a Police Chaplain Tony called me at the Rabbi's request and threat of arrest if I showed up again. The reason: I asked the Rabbi to accept Yeshua as Messiah, quoting Saul turned Paul : Saul, Saul, Rabbi Goldberger, why are you persecuting ME? … Now the LORD said to me : NOW YOU GO BACK TO THE CATHOLIC CHURCH ! I said : "Please LORD, NOT the Catholic Church! I go anyplace, but the Catholic Church!" HE said: THE CATHOLIC CHURCH. I obeyed! Did I tell you that the LORD gave me $ 8000 to get my house out of foreclosure on 12.31.98, 5 hours before I was losing my house forever? I had to put everything on the LINE for HIM – my Jewelry Store, my house, my heart & soul. So much more to say, but if you are interested to hear more, please contact me at unique4848@gmail.com (4.8.48) is my birthday – or call my cell : 612.325.2235… I am presently at the Catholic Church (still); Eucharistic Adoration is the key; but HE also has me in a Conservative Synagogue worshiping with HIS brethren again on Saturday morning. This year Pesach/Passover & Good Friday/Resurrection Sunday fall on the same day, followed by DIVINE MERCY SUNDAY which is MOST important this year falling on 4.28.2019. My Twin brother died that day but 10 years ago, while I was in Eucharistic Adoration praying for him. Divine MERCY SUNDAY follows the end of the 8th Day of Passover. A plan? A plan? YES. A BIG PLAN. My name is Monique – Please call me or get in touch with me. This is the year, the LORD will open the eyes of the Jewish People to HIMSELF (as HE told me so clearly)…. Ezekiel 37:16-28, but verse 22 is the key… PS you are a very inspired teacher and speaker. May HE bless you richly.
Shalom to JerUSAlem & the World with Yeshua Ha-Mashiach in the heart of ALL people. Amen.
Monique

unique4848@gmail.com
http://www.watchandpray.love GOD'S LOVE STORY written over 20 years ago in form of Poetry…

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