TheHOPE ~ התקווה
The New Vision 
for Israel & Zion

Would the Authentic Jesus help save Israel?

Dr. Yitzḥaq (Isaac) Ḥayut-Man 16.04.2017 03:43
Would the Authentic Jesus help save Israel? - Kabbalah - Messiah - New Israel - Jewish Future

A New Jesus who would be accepted by the Jews and breed new Tribe(s) for the revived Israel

Dr. Yitzḥaq (Isaac) ayut-Man

The common view among the Evangelical Christians who support Israel is that in his forthcoming "Second Coming" (supposedly after the rule of the Antichrist who shall fake the Messianic vision), Jesus would become recognized as the Messiah of Israel and the Jews would either accept Jesus as the Messiah-Son-of God or perish in the upcoming Apocalyptic wars of "Gog and Magog". To clarify, this is not the belief of this writer. But what may happen is that the genuine, Jewish, Jesus can still save the State of Israel.

What is meant by "the Genuine Jesus" is the view of Jesus that has been emerging from the modern studies of the historic Jesus, of several historians (mainly Jewish). The list includes David Flusser (who wrote that "Jesus was born as a Jew, lived as a Jew and died as a Jew), Hugh Schonfield (who claimed that Jesus planned his Crucifixion and Revival) and James Daniel Tabor (who wrote several books about Jesus and Paul, whose views of Jesus are quite different from the Jesus revered by his selected disciples). This Jesus is not that of the Pauline creed, not "the Only Son of God" and the savior from "the Original Sin" (if not the creator of heaven and earth of the Gospel of John) - but a man who believed to be himself the Messiah which was expected among the Jews of his time.

The Israeli "Catch 67"

A bright young Israeli scholar, Mikha Goodman, recently published a book named "Catch 67", which presents a dire vision for Israel through the contesting belief systems of the "Right" and the "Left" of Israeli politics. Whereas the vision of the Right would soon lead to a Muslim majority and end of Zionism, the vision of the Left, of "The two State Solution", would lead to radical Islamic terrorism until Israel is destroyed.

Is this really the sure collapse of Israel? The Muslims do believe in this, but need the Jews think so? In the superb movie "Me and the Colonel", Danny Kaye portrays a Jew, Jacobovski, stuck with an anti-Semite Polish colonel, who again and again comes to a dire situation where the man of honor, he claims, has but an either-or choice of two possibilities. On each such occasion Jacobovski says "my father always told me that there must be a third way" - and this way is found. So let's apply this maxim – is there a Third Way, or a Third element that can relive our dire situation? How about Jesus, not the Jesus of Christian legend, but the genuine Jewish one?

Revival of the Twelve Tribes of Israel.

One aspect of Jesus' endeavour that has not been much appreciated is that he apparently tried to revive the Twelve-Tribe pattern (Amphictyony) of ancient Israel that is expected to become established in the prophecy of Ezekiel. Jesus appointed twelve disciples, no more and no less, representing the Twelve Tribes (with himself as the central element that ties the twelve together). This pattern was apparently very important for Jesus and the disciples, as after Jesus and Judas died, the 11 remaining disciples met to appoint a twelfth member. The twelve tribes are mentioned in the Book of Revelation and there is a Christian tradition that the disciples divided the known world to twelve sectors, with one of the twelve apostles sent to each one of the sectors. This would imply that the tribes would not consist only of Jews but of converts from among all the nations.

Shim'ọn-Peter as the base rock for Jesus' Synagogue/Church

In the lists of the Twelve Apostles of Jesus (Matthew 10:2-4, Mark 3:14-19, and Luke 6:13-16), the first who was listed, "the first among equals" was Simon, namely Shim'ọn. This Shim'ọn was the first disciple that Jesus enlisted and who was soon later renamed by Jesus "Petrus" (Peter in English), which means "Rock" (Matthew 16:18). As Jesus is quoted, "And I tell you, you are Petrus, and on this rock (petrus) I will build my church" ("Church" comes from the Greek Ecclesia which is a later translated from the Hebrew word for Synagogue).

What happened, however, was that, even though Simon-Peter became the first Bishop of Rome (the enemy and destroyer of Jerusalem), the teachings became not what the authentic Jesus championed, but the Pauline doctrines – and not the twelve-fold pattern but the hierarchical organization of the Catholic Church, borrowed from the imperial Rome.   

Shim'ọn Bar Yoḥay and his Second Coming

About a hundred years after the death of Shim'ọn-peter as Saint Paul, there appeared in the devastated Judea a sage named Shim'ọn Bar Yoḥay. This Shim'ọn gained the greatest reputation, and after his death there grew the most amazing legends about him. For example, that he lived with his son in a cave for 12 years hiding from the agents of the Roman emperor Hadrian. There, the two learned the secrets of the Torah from Elijah the prophet. Or that when Elijah announced that the Emperor died, the father and son emerged and their gaze could burn anything, so that they had to return to the cave for another year till his gaze would put down any fire that his son would still burn in his gaze. This means that he was transformed from Judgment to Clemency. Another legend then tells that he headed a Jewish delegation to Rome to repeal the cruel anti Jewish measures that Hadrian enacted and he managed to do this through extracting a demon that inflicted the new emperor's daughter. In fact, he was quoted to claim that he and his son could rid the entire world of harsh judgments.  

But it seems that Rabbi Shim'ọn Bar Yoḥay (called by the acronym 'Rashbi') greatest achievement of the reputed authorship of the third cannon of Judaism – the Book of the Zohar, which is a radical novel interpretation of the Torah. The book tells of his teachings as if given in the Galilee (Jesus' birthplace) to a group of known sages (even though belonging to several periods). However the Zohar appeared publicly only since the late 13th century and in Castile, Spain and whereas most orthodox believe in his authorship, there were doubts from the start and modern scholars believe it was written by a group of Kabbalah sages (Liebes, Idel,…). Still, there is a special aura and charm to this literature that won it the greatest respect in several periods of the variegated Jewish history. So since this is a tangible product attributed to him, it can be claimed that, in a sense, he had his "Second Coming"a thousand years after his death.

·       <Add something about Kabbalah teachings about the dynamics of resurrections>.

Shim'ọn Bar Yoḥay as greater than Moses – or Jesus?

The Zohar tells of the creative discoveries of Rashbi and his disciples, where he appears as a giant messianic figure, who could work miracles. He is described as even greater than Moses (something like that was also told of his teacher, Rabbi Akiva). Unlike Jesus who had to make do with rather simple and uneducated disciples, Rashbi, whether of the 3rd or 13th century, was a teacher and leader for the sages.   

A Bold Proposal

What does all that lead us? Like the legend makers of the past, who gave us an exalted Jesus and an exalted Shim'on, let's engage in some creative, even if anachronistic, enterprise – to merge the figures of Jesus' Messianic disciple and the miraculous Mishnaic sage. Consider that this was the Simon that Jesus would have craved to build his church upon. Or better still, to make a doctrine for the use of those interested in the genuine Jesus as a guide for today. 

A remarkable fact about this Shim'ọn is that his name is that of a historical tribe of ancient Israel. This name also means "listening" (Shemi'ah) and "Responding" (Ma'ane), the requisites for fruitful conversation. So Be'ẹzrat haShem (literally 'by the help of the Name') let's make not a new church but a revived tribe for the renewed Israel and the service of the entire world. This could be a new "Tribe of Shim'ọn", informed by a process of creative teamwork (as exemplified by the Zohar). But unlike the Zohar that grew in a period of sore antagonism between Christians and Jews, in our time he may appear (his "Third Coming", if you will), or be the inspiration to participate in what would become the common ground. And if so, we are free to guess and get inspired from a new Rashbi, who moved from Judgment to compassion, as Jesus would have surely loved. 

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