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Ben Asher

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Ben Asher last won the day on May 22

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About Ben Asher


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    Philology, hermeneutics, Intercultural studies, Classical Hebrew, modern Japanese, and language acquisition.


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  1. Sounds accurate. Most congregations around the world follow the yearly Cycle to read (actually chant the Sefer Torah/Torah Scroll) through the PARASHAH/section a few congregations follow a three year plan. If it is an orthodox congregation I sure they will also read a Siddor (prayer book) during the service and study the oral law contained in the Talmud and/or Mishneh Torah or the Shulchan Aruch. This sounds odd to me as most Orthodox congregations that I am aware of also read the sections from the prophets called the haftarah each week. Of, course how else can one take part in the communal reading of the Torah (the five books of Moses). Reminds me of what teacher Hillel said, "...A brute has no fear of sin nor can one who is ignorant be devout.." (Pirkei Avot 2:5). and A quote often pseudo-attributed to great poet חיים נחמן ביאליק (Hayim Nahman Bialik) actually Bialik said: “One who knows Judaism only in translation is the same as a one who kisses his mother through a handkerchief." But, the fake quote above is so famous and well received because it reflects an opinion that many can agree with. I wonder is should would be more family with the terms ruach ha-kodesh or the Shekinah? Wow!. I have yet to try pork bacon, my wife and her family are basically vegetarian. I do eat meat on occasion. I have had turkey bacon before. Well thank you for sharing @Benji !!!
  2. Shalom (Peace) @Benji I am curious have you shared your theology with your nephew and his wife?
  3. Greetings @Benji The above is a point we both see eye to eye on. It is always mystifying to me whenever Christian claim "to be longer under the law"? It is like a high school student claiming "to be no longer president of the U.S.A" . In other-words you can't claim to be something (or to have been doing something) you never where. Actually, Galatians 2:16 reads differently than the above English translation, for the above English translation completely ignores the present of ἐὰν μὴ (if not) Robert Young's Translation published in 1862 renders this verse thus "having known also that a man is not declared righteous by works of law, if not through the faith of Jesus Christ," I take it that Paul believed that Christian's are declared righteous because of Jesus the Christ/Moshiach observance of the Torah/Law of God. Thanks for defining your terms. This is very useful in understanding the message you are trying to get across as well as meaning that English translators may have in mind. Personally, I find that terms Old Covenant and Old Testament and Law are being conflated as if they mean the same thing. My assumption was that Old Testament = the Tanach/Hebrew Bible and/or the LXX Old Covenant = the 613 commandments in the Torah(Pentateuch) or maybe a subset of them like the ten words. The Law = The Torah (The Pentateuch) as a whole. It would seem (at least to me) that Paul felt that there was a lot more than simply nuggets of truth in Old Testament see 2 Timothy 3:14 -17 Excellent! I wish more Christians would visit Orthodox Shuls (congregations) and batei midrash (places of study). חסד ושלום Grace and Peace
  4. Thanks @Even So so do I! Shortly after I became a believer some individuals tried to use 2 Corinthians 3:14,15 to claim that the Tanakh/OT was some how useless or that it was some how responsibly for blinding people. Given that Paul say nothing of the short I always found their arguments to be contradictory and logical. That is not picky that is simply correct. Early on this thread a similar point was made that "the Torah/Pentateuch never once speaks of an eternal salvation, nor is the term 'eternal life' ever once used. Only in in Genesis 3:22 is the the concept eternal life ever once 'clearly hinted at and then it is not in relation to the 613 commandments of the Law." Yes, but we can not have the literature of NT without the OT text, For, the NT bases most on it's testimony on the OT, the NT by default assumes that the testimony of the OT about the Messiah as well as other areas of theology is true and reliable. If the text of the OT is not valid how can one trust that NT which makes its Messianic claims on the text of the OT? That would depend on the the context one winds the word. In the text under consideration 'harden minds are equated with a 'veil over hearts by virtue of being in parallel with each other.
  5. Thank you @th1bill I think what you are getting at is sometime that the NT is actually very clear on; the importance of the Jewish Scriptures/Hebrew Bible in the Christian life. Take for example: (1) Paul wrote the above to Timothy before the there was a completed NT (2) Paul references to Scriptures that Timothy was acquainted with from his childhood which in contact can obviously not be referring to not yet completed NT scriptures/canon. (3) Paul's claim is that Jewish Scriptures can lead on to Christ/Messiah Jesus(Yeshua) (4) Paul list some educational and practical benefits of studying the Jewish Scriptures/OT. Yes, today Christians can apply this verse to the completed 66 books of the Bible, however I think we should not forgot that in the original context it spoke of the OT/Hebrew Bible. Another verse that I believe is well worth mentioning (1) hardened minds = veil over hearts. The issue that Paul mentions here is not something within the old covenant but something that is within the hearts/minds of men and women. (2) When on turns to the Lord or I assume when one becomes a Christian the veil /Harding is removed. Now, if the above is true and I believe that it is then there is more reason for the Christian to study the old covenant because he/she can now read/see clearly with the veil or Harding. Grace and Peace
  6. Greetings @th1bill This is correct, the Torah/Pentateuch never once speaks of an eternal salvation, nor is the term 'eternal life' ever once used. Only in in Genesis 3:22 is the the concept eternal life ever once 'clearly' hinted at and then it is not in relation to the 613 commandments of the Law. It is usually called by the Biblical term Torah (meaning instruction). On this thread I have used 'Mosaic Law' simply for the sake of sticking to common parlance rather than using terms like Torah she-bi-khtav, Sifrei Torah, Tikkun, or Ḥamishah Ḥumshei Torah. Grace and Peace
  7. Unfortunately, the "many ways" might actually represent what is taught in some Sunday School and Wednesday evening Bible classes in the states. I have heard reports from friends in the states that at some so called Bible studies all the participants are able to voice their own unique opinions on the verse and at the end the leader reassures each participant that their varying/differing opinions are each correct. Of course I am not sure if the reports from my friends are 100% actuate.
  8. Hello @Benji (1) Thank you for your quick response. (2) Thank you for the spirit in which your responded (3) I agree with your contention that Christians are not under the Torah(the mosaic law). Also, I assume that even before the average individual converted to Christianity that he or she was not actually observing the Torah or its 613 commandments. This makes since to me for according to the Pentateuch The Mosaic law was given to Israel and her descents(Deuteronomy 29:28) not to the world in general. History also testifies to this for we do see any other nations adopting classical Hebrew, reading the Pentateuch in Hebrew (and other Hebrew literature), and attempting to observe the 613 commandments. Smile and be of good cheer! For the above only applies to you If you are a member of ancient Israel. However, most likely the Torah was neither given to you nor to your ancestors at mount Sinai. You can not be removed from fellowship if you were never a member! Really? Wow, so does that mean that "first one" would even apply to number # 6 in my list of covenants in post # 7 of this thread? I am not sure I fully understand your point of view, but thank you for sharing. Personally I take τὴν πρώτην the term translated as "first one" to be an accusative adjective singular and as mirroring Καινήν the term translated as "new covenant" although it only means "new" and is also a singular. Then I find that πεπαλαίωκεν the indicative perfect active verb describing the "first one" as becoming old is also a singular. This leads me to speculate that two singular covenants are being contrasted with each other in some way. Of, course this view only represents my opinion on the matter. Grace and Peace
  9. Greetings @Benji (1) First nice to meet you! (2) Is the issue you raise an issue in the congregation you belong to? Or, this an issue you believe greater Christendom is struggling with? (3a) Thanks for appealing to the Scriptures (3b) What do the term/s 'first one' in the above quote refer to? Does that term refer to: (1) Noahic Covenant and the seven mitzvot of the children of Noah /שבע מצוות בני נח / הברית עם נוח? (2) The various Abrahamic covenants הברית עם אברהם? (3)Aseret ha'Dibrot (the ten words/saying) or the Ten commandments In both Exodus chapter 20 and Deuteronomy Chapter 5? (4) Mosaic Covenant ברית משה and the Torah (Instruction / Law)'s 613 commandments? (5) Davidic Covenant ברית דוד? (6) The covenant mentioned in the book of Jeremiah chapter 31:31 ~ 31:40 ברית חדשה the ברית עולם הבא??? (7) The Hebrew Bible or rather the whole (Mikra) מקרא or rather the (Tanakh)תנ"ך or the Old Testament literature? (9) Two or more of the above? (1) None of the above. Other? Please explain, (8) None of the above, other?  Grace, Peace, an Truth
  10. Amen and Amen! In Japan fluency in modern Japanese actually a prerequisite to becoming naturalized citizen. And, actually, even to obtain Permanent Residence one is expected to have an intermediate knowledge of the modern Japanese. Great! This is not just for those applying for citizenship, but all immigrants wishing to reside in the UK! Yes, I think this should be the law in every Nation. In the major cities here in Japan one can easily find western immigrants who never bothered to learn Japanese and just stuck in their English or other European language bubbles. Mind you I have not conducted any surveys on this phenomenon in Japan but in my experience (and assumption) the majority of disgruntled, depressed, and unhappy expats tend to be those who never put forth the effort to learn Japanese language and culture. Of course there maybe those who know Japan and are unhappy about something, but I doubt that any of those who learned Japanese ever regretted doing so!!! On the other hand I am very sure that many of those who did not learn the language deeply regret it from time to time.
  11. Greetings @HisNameJesus Thanks for the added preface for clarification. I haven't done run any surveys nor done any research to verify the average level of Christian maturity, Biblical knowledge, or theological education amongst Christian in your country (I assume the USA) nor that matter those in the country I live in. However I am curious as to what percentage of Christendom is made up of 'advanced Christians' or 'Christians of mature status'?has on I can only speak for myself as one who still has a lot more digging to do I know my journey into all truth has only just begun. If, the above represents what people are actually saying then it hard to fathom how those arguments could actually be persuasive. Grace and Peace
  12. With pleasure @Origen Some of early readers of the Hebrew Bible (OT) felt a contention (and what seemed to be almost a contradiction) between prophetic texts accepted as being Messianic in nature. To resolve the contrasting threads of though in the Messianic text they then grouped the prophetic texts into what they considered to be two main types prophetic texts referring to the Messiah. Those two types of text were described as being Messiah (Moshiach) Ben Yosef texts and Messiah (Moshiach) Ben David texts. Messiah Ben Yosef texts are those that refer to a particular suffering servant who vicariously suffers in place of the people of Israel and others. The name Yosef (Joseph) was chosen (I believe) because the Biblical Joseph suffered because of his brother's actions and through no fault of his own. The Lord was with Joseph and although he suffered ever thing he did prospered and eventual be because 2nd only to the Pharaoh, and the Pharaoh ruled through him in many ways. God also saved Joseph's family and people through Joseph. Messiah Ben David texts are those that refer to a particular individual in Israels who comes triumphantly and victoriously in the name of YHWH the Lord. The name David was chosen (I believe) because the name David is used in a lot of the Messianic prophecies even though it is clear that the texts can not be speaking of King David, and also because of the role Kind David represented. Historical most interpreters (but not all) thought of Messiah Ben Yosef and Messiah Ben David as being two different Messiahs, but Christians know that there is only one Messiah who fulfills both roles without contradiction. It is also interest that Jesus/Yeshua's adoptive father name was actually Joseph/Yosef. Grace and Peace
  13. Hello @HisNameJesus I use the term simply to refer to the belief that the messianic texts referring to the Moshiach Ben Yosef (or the suffering servant) have been completely fulfilled, but the the Messianic texts referring to Moshiach Ben David, have not yet been entirely fulfilled or rather entirely come to realization. I may be using and defining the term partial preterism very differently that how the Theologians use the term. Excellent point. In my opinion we would all do better if we all acknowledge that we each continue to only see in part. My assumption (like the one you expressed) is that the understanding we have about God, the Scriptures, and theology continues to be finite. In my opinion people in general can 'at some level' can read and comprehend translations of the scripture in their native language provided that they are literate and posses some sort of analytical skills. However, even when confronted with the same pericope of scripture, It is my experience that, people can come to vastly different understandings and or conclusions about the pericope. One example of this phenomenon might be how various members on these forums disagree on the interpretation of Romans chapter 11 especially verse 11:25 to 36. Even though I am not reformed I find myself in agree with the Westminster Confession on this matter: Westminster Assembly. The Westminster Confession of Faith: Edinburgh Edition. Philadelphia: William S. Young, 1851. Print. And thank you this is a lot fun GRACE and PEACE
  14. Agreed! I recall my high school history teacher remarking "History doesn't repeat its self, it rhymes" . The same people aren't reincarnated again and again to do the exactly some things, but people with very similar (or even identical) ideologies continue to pop up throughout history to do virtual the same types of things often while thinking they have come up with something original. Yes and Yes! False teachings (or teachings contrary to Scripture) as well as various differing opinions are present within any local congregation as well as Christendom otherwise there would not be nearly as many denominations of Christianity as there are today. I doubt that there was ever a time in history when 'the Church' or rather earthly Christendom were totally in agreement. Individuals who try to persuade me to accept the Pope's authority often use a very similar argument "what did the historic Church believe until the reformation when it broke up into thousand of denominations?" . However those individuals forget or over look the fact that there was something called The great East–West Schism of 1054. When the Roman Catholic church and the eastern Orthodox churches officially went their separate ways. Leading up to the great Schism there were numerous discussions and debates at the various councils and even in the NT times everyone even among the faithful did not agree. While it is good and even a must to learn from Christian continuity or the Christian stream of thought throughout the ages I will never blindly accept everything wholesale just because some in history may have believed XYZ for just as we are of various opinions today so was the early congregations. For example before, the 1900's those in the churches seem to have believed Slavery was okay, does not mean that we should accept slavery because some Christians in the past did? Even after the 1900's some in the church continued to look down on other races because of their interpret the so called 'curse of ham'. Does that then mean we should do the same? Of course not! (at lest in my opinion). For, Just as we continue to see in part today so did the early congregations. And just as our interpretations of scripture can be fallible today so could those of the early Christians. Now, in matters like these I tend to lean more on what for lack of a better name I call Ad Fontes (literally: to the sources) than I do on the creeds, confession, theologies or on what the church did in the past. Grace and Peace
  15. Excellent point @HisNameJesus !!! Yes, Yes, and Yes! I believe there would be a lot less division in Christendom today if more people would realize the point above and admit it! On one hand I believe to a certain extent we are all 'partial preterist' in that we do believe that the prophecy concerning the Jesus/Yeshua's role as the 'suffering servant' have been completely fulfilled. But, it is also pretty clear that the world (or this age) has not ended as of yet. On the other hand similarly to you I personally reject replacement theology (or Supercessionism) or at least thus far I personally have found the arguments for that opinion on the so called meaning of scripture to be highly unpersuasive. Very well said! Thank you for kind comments and even more so for taking the time to articulate your understanding here on these forums. Grace and Peace
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