Thursday, November 4, 2010


My computer crashed. The hard drive is dead, destroyed, kaput! I broke out in hives, how can this be? My world is falling apart! Tried to stay calm, but how could I, when my computer wiz friend told me that all the data is lost? "Hey" I said, "it is my life in there..."

Somehow the day went by, and I went to sleep. Woke up the next morning and lo and Behold the sun was shining. That is weird, I thought to myself, the sun does not supposed to shine when the world is destroyed...Went through the second day somehow, woke up in the morning and by golly, the sun was still shining. Is God telling me something?

Had some extra time (since I could not waste it sitting at the computer), so I put my grand daughter in the stroller and went for a walk around the neighborhood. First thing we heard were the birds singing, then we saw the blue sky and the white fluffy clouds. we saw kids with back-packs hurrying to catch the school bus. Then we saw live horses in the neighbor's barn, and my grand daughter got exited. We saw Joggers, and walkers exercising, greeting each other with a warm good morning.

Let me tell you, it was wonderful seeing God's creation functioning, and right there and then, as I was wiping my grand daughter's nose, I decided to focus on that. I came to the realization that if I Will continue to blog, the world will still continue to function without me. I came to the realization that I don't have to argue theology with every Tom, Dick and Derek. How many of us changed their beliefs as a result of someone Else's arguments? How many of us really understand that we are just wasting our time arguing our man-made doctrines and beliefs, with other man-made doctrines and beliefs? How many of us are still listening?

So, I am choosing to live life worthy of Him. It has been almost two weeks and I had a great time away from the computer. I intend to continue in this path, there is nothing better or worthy in life than to see the sparkle of (Emanuel) My grand daughter's eyes when she sees something new that God created. This is my farewell, my brothers sisters and friends, I will remember all of you fondly, but now it is time to start living the life God wants me to live.

I love you all, and to all who I have offended in any way, please forgive a silly old man.....

Monday, October 11, 2010

Talking about pride?

Without any comment:

Posted: Wed Jul 23, 2008 5:32 am Post subject: The Israeli Pride Parade - By Ben Dror Yemini, Maariv


The Israeli Pride Parade

Israel is one of the leading countries in agriculture, high-tech, medicine and science. Maybe the world needs to be reminded of this.

By Ben Dror Yemini
17 May 2008

Anyone who reads newspapers could be forgiven for thinking that Israel is a dangerous place ruled by violence and corruption. The celebration of Israel's 60th anniversary provides an opportunity to take stock of our achievements. The facts speak for themselves.

The Contribution to Humanity Index

There are quite a few measures by which countries are rated: national product, life expectancy, education, etc. There is no index measuring a specific country’s contribution to humanity. That kind of index is long overdue. Whoever gets confused by facts is in for some surprises. Here is a partial list:

Agriculture: Israel leads the world in developing strains resistant to natural hazards and special crops to withstand harsh weather conditions. Israel invented the drip irrigation system, which saves tremendous amounts of water. Milk yield in Israel is the highest in the world, even double the European average. In Israel, a palm tree produces an average of 182 kg of fruit, compared to 17 kg in the rest of the Middle East.

Since the establishment of the state, the area of agricultural land has increased threefold, but output has increased by a factor of 16. Ashkelon boasts the world’s largest desalination facility – unless Hamas’s rockets manage to hit it, so that they can complain about a water crisis in the Gaza Strip.

High-tech: A significant part of the leading high-tech developments in the world are Israeli inventions. The first disk-on-key was an Israeli innovation. The ICQ instant messaging program, which has become an integral part of every computer the world over, was developed in Israel. The best security software in the world comes from Israel.

Most of the Windows XP operating system that is used in almost every computer worldwide was developed in Israel. VOIP technology (Voice over Internet Protocol, the basis for programs like Skype), making international telephone calls simple, inexpensive and readily available, was developed in Israel. It is no coincidence that every other day we hear about yet another Israeli company being acquired by a conglomerate.

Israel is in second place in the world, after Japan and ahead of the United States, in the number of patents per capita. If you check the effectiveness of the inventions, we actually take the lead. Out of the one hundred most important start-ups selected in Europe last year, ten were Israeli.

Science: Israel is in third place in the world in scientific publications per capita. And, when considering the importance of the publications as opposed to relative quantity, Israel is in 14th place in the world. This includes realms that benefit all of humanity – research in medicine, physics, mathematics and others.

Israel reached fifth place in the number of recipients of special grants for young researchers from the ERC (European Research Council). But, relative to its size, it actually takes first place in the number of winning researchers.

Medicine: Teva is the largest company in the world for generic medicines. There are probably few homes worldwide without some “Made in Israel” medication. Teva and other companies also develop new drugs. Teva developed a drug to treat Parkinson’s disease. Israel participated in developing a treatment to reduce relapses of multiple sclerosis.

Just two years ago, Pfizer, the world’s largest pharmaceutical company, purchased an Israel company’s product that can prevent blindness. Israel leads in the field integrating nanorobotics and medicine.

And this is only a partial list.

Human potential

Not everything is wonderful in Israel. Many people have been left behind. The gaps in Israeli society are among the largest in democratic countries. Too few have control over too much of the capital. Therefore, developing and expanding human potential has to be the national mission of the next decade. The per capita product in resource-scarce Israel is 40% greater than in rich Saudi Arabia. The reason is simple: human resources produce much more than oil resources. And, despite its accomplishments, Israel is still far from fully utilizing its potential.

The Lie Industry

Here we arrive at the biggest paradox of all: even though Israel could be number one in the world in contributing to humanity, were there such an index, it also occupies first place in the hostility index. Israel is perceived, according to many polls (the last of which was a worldwide BBC survey) as the country most dangerous to world peace.

Leading newspapers throughout the world – The New York Times; The Washington Post; Le Monde; and The Guardian – when mentioning Israel's 60th anniversary, chose to completely disregard Israel’s contribution to human development and to emphasize instead “ethnic cleansing and the Palestinian Nakba.” Here as well, they do not let the facts confuse them (see And the World is Lying – the Plight of the Refugees).

The paradox between Israel’s contribution to the world and its image indicates only one thing: the lie industry is winning out over the facts. In fact, the Israel-Arab conflict has wrought the lowest number of victims in the annals of all conflicts. That does not keep the lie industry from spreading the libel that Israel is committing genocide against the Palestinians – even though there is no genocide and never was (see And the World is Silent).

Criticizing Israel is permissible. Not all its actions are praiseworthy. Yet every intellectual and liberal who is still influenced by facts and not by fashion has to admit that the anti-Zionist vogue will go down in history as one of humankind’s lowest trends, matched only by phenomena such as racism and antisemitism. So, it is time to introduce the real Israel – an Israel that can proudly observe its 60th year, due mainly to its enormous contribution to humanity.

Israel does not need a military parade. It needs a parade of its achievements. We could call it a Pride Parade.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Europe, here comes the deluge.

This is a letter to Europe from a Ynet correspondent Avi Rat. The letter was printed in Hebrew but I will do my best in translating it to English:

Good morning Europe!

Hello dear continent, for a long time I wanted to write you a few words, as a close neighbor, from here, the Middle East, as one who love to travel your beautiful landscape, and as one who his parents and his and his people roots are planted somewhere across the continent.

Over all you were our home for thousands of years, especially the last thousand years. We knew beautiful days of good neighborly relations, cultural and spiritual prosperity, and partnership in out lives on the continent, just as we knew, and how we knew, hard times of hatred, expulsion, degradation, and liable.

Somehow we survived. Us, and you. To our sorrow, and to your shame, Our affair with you, dear continent, ended by your choice not ours. We could have lived in good neighborly relations and cooperation for many years, but for reasons you chose to keep for yourself you chose to to end and eliminate this partnership-literally. On your land the plan was hatched, on your land the camps were built, on your land the trains moved, on your land the graves were dug, the blood was flowing into your rivers, and in a short time you cut off a significant Jewish presence of a thousand years. Millions of loyal Jewish citizens were eliminated and expelled from your midst. You eliminated not only their lives, but all their contributions to culture, economics, art, spiritualism, academia, literature, medicine, education, commerce, banking, and life in general.

For a long time I wanted to write you, but the opportunity did not come. But this week, after I saw two things-I decided I really must tell you a few words.

First, I have seen reports by all kind of experts in the field of demography, sociology, etc., who claim that within a few years, you, Europe, will become a Muslim continent. In some European countries already 50% of births are by Muslims. If we add to this the low rate of birth by non-Muslims Europeans and the immigration data, in not so a distant future-some say in 10-20 years-you, white, and Christian Europe, will become a Muslim continent.

It is true that you are trying to somehow fight against this phenomenon-against mosques in Switzerland, against women's veils in France, against immigration, and other minute things, but you also know that this train cannot be stopped. There is a plan to build the world largest Mosque in the center of London, and no one will be able to ban Muslim women from wearing the veil. Liberal enlightened European women, who are permissive, know very well that the day may arrive that radical Islam will gain power and the party will end.

Secondly, I also saw the travel warning of many countries warning their inhabitants not to travel to Europe from fear of terrorism. Someone (non-Jewish) said that it is true that not all terrorists are Muslims, but somehow all (or most) terrorists are Muslims.

Slowly and gradually, dear continent, you are beginning to understand whom you are dealing with, what kind of religion and culture radical Islam brings. Suddenly you discover what hatred is, the culture of the Shahids of intolerance, lack of openness, what is rejection and alienation of true democracy, human rights, and women's rights.

Suddenly, radical Islam is stuck in Europe's throat. Not able to spit it out or swallow. Impossible to spit out because of the politically correctness of racism and human rights with all its usual Blah, but it is also impossible for you to swallow, because European culture and Christian liberal democratic white cannot contain such extreme elements of culture and religion. It will end in an explosion. Literally.

Dear continent, there is no vacuum in the world. You expelled and killed us, and received instead the Muslim world. In the beginning it was nice and cute, little Mediterranean atmosphere, little oriental sea wind, But with it arrived the storm of radical Islam which threatens to sweep you, our dear neighbor.

Now you are beginning to eat what you have cooked. Suddenly, you find women in veils, fanaticism in the eyes and mosques under every tree. Suddenly you find yourself having to contend with birth rate, culture that has extreme features, terrorism and violence which you have nurtured and ignored. You cannot deny these facts much longer. The conflict is here. we, unfortunately, are experts at this, although, we have our own naive and self righteous people.

The first time, when the Creator decided to destroy His world because the behavior of His creatures, He agreed to give humanity another chance. He asked Noach to enter the ark to try and establish a new core, and foundation to the world. A core that maybe could produce a more deserving humanity. The ark was the chance of the new world, a shelter for a moment.

Will you, dear Europe, be able to prepare for you in advance, a physical, and cultural ark so you can guard yourself and survive? Or aggression, arrogance and hypocrisy will not allow you to admit disaster which you brought on yourself with your own hands, and became a continent who lives on borrowed time?


The Jewish neighbor from the Middle East.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

To Oneg or not to Oneg

Discussion are going on in our community. Some people say that the Shabbat should remain holy, citing 1 Cor. 11:22; 11:34.

I would like to hear your opinions on the matter, fine blog readers?

Disclaimer: We do Oneg in our community, and will continue doing it.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

שמחת בית השואבה--Simchat beit Hashoeva

Every year at Yom Kippur I do this: I read the greatest repentance Passage in the Bible, Psalm 51 of course.

When Sukkot arrives I always read John 7. There is, for me, something majestic in this passage. We first read Yeshua's brothers urging Him to go to Judea. They said if you are real, then go up to Judea and show your stuff...His own brothers were skeptical of Him. Yeshua rebuked them and told them His time did not yet come, and yet He went up anyway, in secret. The text then tells us that in the middle of Sukkot He went into the Temple and begun to teach. Didn't He say that His time has not come yet? Refusing to go, going up in secret, coming out in the open to teach....

He kept arguing with the Temple attendees and many wondered at His knowledge. Then came the last day of the Sukkot festival.

Sukkot is called also, Chag Ha'asif-the festival of harvest. It was customary to thank God for the produce of the past year, and also to have prayers for the upcoming winter rains. according to the Talmud, there was a custom developed in the second Temple period which was created to illustrate this truth.
A priest would go down to the pool of Shiloam, fill up a pitcher of water and carry it back to the temple. The crowds lined up behind the priest forming a procession. They were dancing, chanting the Hallel Psalm (Ps. 118) as they enter the temple mount.

On each day of Sukkot the processional would circle the altar one time and then the Priest poured the water at the altar. On the seventh and last day, Hoshanna rabah, the processional would circle the altar seven times to magnify the joy. The response of the crowed as the Priest poured the water was so immense that the Talmud says that whoever has not been in Jerusalem for the ceremony of Simchat Beit Hashoevah (The rejoicing of the house of drawing water) has never experienced real joy.

Such a joy for the hope of the coming rain? Let's hear Isaiah who shows us a deeper truth: " Therefore you will joyously draw water from the springs of salvation." (Isaiah 12:3) ושאבתם מים... Simchat beit Hashoeva is pointing to the days of Messianic redemption when the water of the Holy Spirit would be poured out upon all Israel.

So now the reading of John 7 is much more magnified. It happened on the last day of Sukkot, and this young man is confronting all the people and their leaders, speaking of the living water, rivers of living water: " If any man is thirsty, let him come to me and drink. He who believes in Me, as the Scripture said, 'from his innermost being shall flow rivers of living water." How meaningful, how profound, how majestic.

May He dwell in your Sukka all seven days.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Yeshua in context.

I have the book. "Yeshua in context" by Derek Leman.
I actually received it before Rosh Hashannah but waited just before Sukkot to comment, since Sukkot points to Mashiach dwelling with His people. So far I have read about half of the book and by what I read so far I don't think the second half will disappoint me. Thus, my comments.

Let me tell you first what the book is not. The book is not an exegetical study in Christology, meaning a detail study on the Person and work of Yeshua. Anyone who's been looking for that will be disappointed. The book to me is about impressions.

Derek is using a refreshing approach in letting the reader in on his understanding of what the Gospel writers experienced, understood and convey to their readers of certain events in the life and times of Yeshua. For me, the book points to new avenue to consider in my understanding of these certain events Derek chose to convey. After being mired in theological discussions day in and day out, this book is a well worthy pose, it presents, for me at least some spirituality which lately I lack.

I definitely recommend the book and invite whoever read it already to add their comments. ( Derek, I was planning to comment on your blog, but again i cannot get in). I think Derek put together a well written book, that maybe can bring us together. If Yeshua cannot do it, who can?

Well done Derek.

May Messiah be a guest in your Sukka every day, fine blog readers.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Introduction to Yom Kippur

The five years old boy was playing in the back yard when his father came out and said:" Let's go to the Shuk (market) and buy ourselves a Kaparah (atonement) for Yom Kippur." The boy held his Father's hand as they walked to the open market that assembled once a week on the soccer field in the middle of the Moshava (a large village). (all this happened many, many years ago in Israel which at that time was still Palestine).

The Shuk was something to behold. People came from the neigbor Moshavot, and from the surrounding Arab villages, to sell vegetables and fruit they were growing, and many sold livestock, roosters, hens, Chickie's, Calv's, and a cow or two. At that time they did not have yet supermarkets as we have today where one can buy poultry, and meat all nicely wrapped and frozen. To make chicken soup a woman had to buy the chicken live, go to a shochet to slaughter it, pluck all the feathers off it, and then cook it from scratch. After a few rounds among the sellers, the father found a nice fat chicken and announced to the boy, "we got our kapara." The boy was ecstatic, he had a new friend, a chiken named Kapara

As they got home, the boy observed his father takes a rope and tied one of Kapara's legs to the kitchen table leg. Put two bowls in front of her, one with grains, and the other filled with water. It was a few days before Yom Kippur so the boy got to play with Kapara in the kitchen treating her as his pet.

A few days passed. The kid was playing in his room when he heard his father calling him to come to the kitchen. As he entered the kitchen, the boy saw his father holding Kapara with her neck bent backwards in one hand and a razor knife in the other. In one move of his hand, over the kitchen sink, the father proceeded to slash Kapara's neck, the kid watching in horror as the blood was gashing out. The father, then proceeded to wave the rooster around his head as he was chanting the זו חליפתי-זו כפרתי "this is my substitution, this is my atonement, this rooster will go to death and I will enter long, and good life and peace."

By that time the kid was in an advance stage of panic and horror screaming at the top of his lungs: "He killed my Kapara," "he killed my Kapara!!" and then ran to his room to hide.
By now you probably figured out, the young kid was me. The year was 1947. You see, my parents came to Israel in the 30's as חלוצים-pioneers. They came to built up a land for the Jews, but they did not come for religious reasons, their reasons were nationalistic. They, and thousands like them did not have time for God, their task was to built a nation. But somehow, as Jews do for generation all over the world, my father, who smoked on Shabbat, who never went to Shul, somehow, in his own way tried to keep the traditions. Right way or wrong way he knew that keeping tradition is the Jewish way, as secular as he was.

Today, so many years later, looking back it is a bitter-sweet memory, my first introduction to Yom Kippur, and Judaism.

May you all have an easy fast.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

L'shanah Tovah

The high holidays season is upon us again. A time of reflection, search and repentance. As we look back on the year that passed we aspire to restore our relationship with our fellow man. How can we stand in front of our creator and ask Him anything if we are not willing to do the same to our neighbor.

As we love Hashem with all our heart, mind and strength, we cannot forget to love our neighbor as ourselves. Our Master, Yeshua, said that on these two commandments hang all the other. as we begin a new cycle, let me extend my love to everyone here and on the blogsphare, and beyond. To all the people who I might have hurt or offended (there are multitudes of you, so take a number...LOL!) Please forgive my silliness.

Let us make a new beginning. May you all be enveloped in the blessing of the Father, the Son, and ruach Hakodesh. Happy Yom Teruah everyone.

Friday, September 3, 2010

What next, Burkkas?

This is what we can look forward to in a future "Halacha Nation.",7340,L-3944617,00.html

Shabbat Shalom everyone.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010


This is a continuation to my previous blog entry. I am attempting to show that beliefs like Rabbi Shapira's of Israel are embedded deeply in the halacha of the ancient and mid-age Rabbis and Sages. But doing that without quoting the many statements that speak good of Gentiles will only show bias which I am trying to avoid. The fact is, there is much confusion and difference of belief in rabbinic writing on the subject (on every subject for that matter) that leaves us totally dazed asking the question, were these people knew what they were doing? So, I will quote tit for tat.


"R. Jeremiah said: Whence can you know that the Gentile who practice the Torah is equal to the High Priest? Because it says, 'which if A MAN do, he shall live through them' (Lev.18:5). And it says, 'This is the Torah of man' (II Sam.7:19). It does not say: 'The Torah of Priests, Levites, Israelites,' but, 'This is the Torah of man, O Lord God.' And it does not say, Open the gates, and let the Priests and Levites and Israel enter,' but it says, "open the gates that a righteous Gentile may enter' (Isaiah 26:2); and it says, 'This is the gate of the Lord, the righteous shall enter it.' It does not say, 'The Priests and the Levites and Israel shall enter it,' but it says, 'The righteous shall enter it' (Psalm 118:20). It does not say, ;Rejoice ye, Priests, Levites and Israelites,' but it says, ' Rejoice ye righteous' (Psalm 33:1). And it does not say, ;Do good, O Lord, to the Priests and the Levites and the Israelites,' but it says, 'Do good O Lord, to the good' (Psalm 125:4). So even a gentile, if he practises the Torah, is equal to the High Priest." (Sifra 86b; Bava Kamma 38a).

A qualification here: Since the connection is made to Lev. 18:5, it seems that the Torah which is referenced here for a Gentile are only the Moral Laws. Sanhedrin 58b is very harsh on a Gentile who does not become a proselyte but keeps the Shabbat and other ceremonial laws. (As if the shabbat is immoral....).


Sanhedrin 59b posted opposite opinions on the matter. We read the first one that a Gentile who studies the Torah is likened to a High Priest. Here is the opposite opinion:

"R Jochanan said: ' A Gentile who studies the Torah deserves death, for it is written, " Moses commanded us the Torah as an inheritance, it is OUR inheritance, not Theirs.'" (Sanhedrin 59b).

the Rabbis of course had all the answers. In order to settle these conflicting statements the Talmud answers:

"In this case he is engaged in the seven Noachide commandments. (Sanhedrin 59b). The Tosaphot on Avoda Zara 3a adds that a Gentile is permitted to study those specific seven Noachide commandments-and if he learned more than this, he is punishable by death.

The Rambam gave it his own stamp of approval:

"A Gentile who engaged in Torah is punishable by death. he should not engage in anything other than their seven commandments alone." (The Laws of Kings chapter 10, halacha 9).

So, fine blog readers (Judah do I have to pay royalties?)here you have it. Please let me know if you would have liked to read some more.

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Another rabbinic controversy in Israel...(what else is new?...)

News item:

Rabbi Yithak Shapira suspected of incitement against non-Jews.

Yitzhar rabbi arrested on suspicion of incitement to violence against non-Jews after his book " Torat Hamelech" (The kings Torah) says, "There's no prohibition against killing a Goy (Gentile) who violated Laws of Noah."

Rabbi Yitzhak Shapira of Yitzhar was arrested on Monday on suspicion of incitement to violence against non-Jews. Shapirah was probed following the publication of his book "Torat Hamelech" which addresses questions related to harming non-Jews.
He was arrested at the end of a joint Israel Police and Judah and Samaria District police investigation, and under the order of Attorney General Yehudah Weinstein.

Shapirah wrote in his book, "When we encounter a Goy who has violated the Seven Laws of Noah and kill him out of concern for upholding the seven mitzvot, no prohibition has been violated."

According to the rabbi,
"Anywhere where the presence of a gentile poses a threat to Israel, it is permissible to kill him, EVEN IF IT IS A RIGHTEOUS GENTILE WHO IS NOT RESPONSIBLE FOR THE THREATENING SITUATION." (YNET news).

The Orthodox Rabbis in Israel are split over this. Some are protesting that the book set a stage for unruly racial incitement, and was drenched in racist messages that discriminate between people based solely on race and nationality. Many others are asking why all the noise, Shapirah only Parroting what the Halacha already set down as laws, and therefore the authorities should arrest many other Rabbis and sages including Rashi, and the Rambam.

So here is where I come in, I would like to check and see who is right here. Is Israeli Orthodoxy racist, or the whole thing is a storm in a tea cup?

Let me start with one for each camp:

"R. Johanan said, quoting Jerem. 30:6, 'all faces are turned into paleness.'...God says, ' both these (i.e. the Gentiles)and these (i.e. Israel) are my handiwork; why should I let the former perish because of the latter?"( San. 98b.)

And now this, where we clearly see that the halacha using different weights and measures in dealing with the life of a Jew as compared to the life of a goy:

"A Gentile is put to death by ONE judge and by ONE witness, even if he was not forewarned, by a testimony of a man and not of a woman, and even of a family member. In the name of Rabbi Ishmael they said: even for (the killing of) a fetus." (Sanhedrin 57b).
Rambam also wrote concerning this:
"A Jew is not put to death for killing a fetus as it is stated in chapter 5 of tractate Niddah, mishnah 3: "a one-day old baby becomes impure by discharge...and one who kills him is liable...."

They have an answer to everything those rabbis, don't you think?

I let you fine blog readers (as Judah says on his blog)ponder this for a while, as I continue to dig and bring you evidence that those modern rabbis in Israel are only standing of the shoulders of the old Sages when it comes to discriminating against Goyim.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Isaiah 11:6: " And the wolf will dwell with the lamb..." Part II

In Part I we saw the beginning of the shift to define the Term GER as religious instead of social as designated in the Tanach.

But first I want to relate to some comments Rabbi Joshua expressed on his Yinon blog that show that he is reading his own agenda into Scriptures. He writes: " Another example is the laws of Kashrut. According to Deuteronomy 14:21:

"You shall not eat anything that dies naturally, you may give it to the GER who is within your gates, that he may eat it...."

But it is also written:

" When ANY person eats an animal which dies or is torn by beasts, whether he is a native or a GER, he shall wash his clothes and bathe in water, and remain unclean until evening; then he will become clean." (Levit. 17:15).

This seeming contradiction only emphasizes that the term GER is not a cookie- cutter term.

In another place Rabbi Joshua quotes Exodus 12:48"

"And when a GER dwells with you and wants to keep the Passover of the L-rd, let all his males be circumcised, and then let him come near and keep it, and he shall be as native-born (Exodus 12:48)."

Then he adds: "in this way, the Ger is brought into the peoplehood..."

In the book of Joshua, chapter 5, God asks Joshua to circumcise all the males who were not circumcised before the entry into the Land. All those uncircumcised males where already a part of the peoplehood (by the designation Bnei Israel-the children of Israel), all before they were circumcised, which of course shows that circumcision was never a means to get INTO a peoplehood.

In the decades after the destruction of the temple the teaching prevailed that the Torah which is the means for establishing a covenant membership is applicable only for Jews. Gentiles who want to join have first to become Jews, and the "ritual of a proselyte" was born.

There is no ritual of conversion found anywhere in the Tanach. There is no reference source in existence that indicates the biblical authors, whether of the Tanach or New Testament, ever thought that one could change his/her nationality status by means of a religious ritual.

Scriptures clearly teach that covenant membership is attained through acceptance of the God of Israel and His Messiah. The result of this is submission to God's Torah. Scriptures also teach that covenant membership is not come on the basis of ethnic status.

We also have to understand that the term "proselyte" was given a new meaning by the Rabbis contrary to what it meant in Scriptures. The fact that the term even appears in the New testament shows that according to the writers, a proselyte does not become ethnically Jewish. If they are Jews, why call them proselytes?


גיור--gyur--is not from God. It is a man-made invention witnessed by the mess we see in the State of Israel, where the Rabbis succeeded to botch it up permanently.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Isaiah 11:6; "And the wolf will dwell with the lamb." Part I

וגר זאב עם כבש --veGAR Zeev im Keves.

Note the emphasis on veGAR, which comes from the root גור-GUR-from the same root the word GER comes from also.
So, the question is asked:

1) In order for the wolf to dwell with the lamb, does the wolf need to undergo a ritual of conversion?

2) If yes, does the wolf then becomes a lamb?

3) Does he remain a wolf?

4) Does he become a wolf in sheep clothing?....

I thought I should ask.....

All this would have been funny if it would not be so serious...

In his fine blog YINON, Rabbi Joshua speaks of conversion in early Judaism. He identifies the term "conversion" by the Hebrew word "גיור "-(gyur). He then writes:
"it is true that the Torah and the earliest portion of the Tanach do not mention conversion clearly."
Well, The Torah and ALL portion of the Tanach do not mention the term "conversion"-gyur--AT ALL. There is no place in the whole Hebrew Scriptures that any formal ritual of conversion (gyur) was in place in the time of Moses, not in the era of the prophets. Even in the historical narrative and the prophetic literature of post exilic time, there is no ritual of conversion mentioned or implied. The GER "sojourner" became a covenant member on his own word, declaring his/hers willingness to confess to the God of Israel. The GER proved it by conforming to the Torah of Israel. He/she then received all the privileges along with the responsibilities that were enjoyed by the common Israelite. The GER became a part of Israel. He did not become a Jew, he remained as one chosen from the nations.

There is no evidence that circumcision was a part of any "ritual of conversion" in ancient times. That circumcision is singled out in Ex. 12 is understandable, since Passover points to the redemption from Egypt for God's covenant people. It would be silly to keep the Passover without being part of the covenant people. But circumcision did not make a person a covenant member, it only proved that the person was willing to obey God. Circumcision is a sign of the covenant just like the Shabbat is. A GER who broke the Shabbat would also be prohibited from participation in the Passover (Numb. 15).

The "ritual of conversion" is not documented until late in the second Temple era. Since covenant status had been changed, meaning there is only covenant blessing to the Jew,they came up with the brilliant idea that any Gentile who submits to the ritual, automatically is identified as a Jew...Covenant membership was available only to Jews.....

More later....

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Ester 8:17; what is the meaning of מתיהדים Part 2

There is another clue in the book of Ester that hints the מתיהדים were not גרי- צדק --righteous proselytes (which is also a late term),but were people that wanted to attach themselves socially to the people of Israel, without taking the yoke of the Torah. In the description of determining the days of Purim for all generations it is written:

קימו וקבלו היהודים עליהם ועל זרעם ועל כל הנלוים עליהם

" the Jews established and made a custom for themselves, and for their descendants, and for those who ALLIED themselves with them..." (Ester 9:27 NASB)

Who were those "Allies?" Could they be the מתיהדים who were now ATTACHED (Isaiah 14:1)? JOINED (Isaiah 56:3)? If they were all גרי אמת-true Gerim, they would have been Jews already and there was no need to designate them as "Allies."

BTW, the same goes with the term "Proselyte" in the New Testament (Matt. 23:5, Acts 2:5-10; 13:43; 16:3;), why call them proselytes if they were already Jews?

The phenomenon of JOINED, ATTACHED, Etc. is not something new. Note the "mixed multitude" in EX. 12:38. According to the Sages these Multitudes-ערב רב - were the cause of the sin of the golden calf, and other sins in the desert years. (one can always rely on what the Sages teach, right?....) Also see Num. 11:4 the term RABBLE--אספסוף .

More examples for "useful attachment" can be found back in the days of Kings David, and Solomon: " So David gave orders to gather the foreigners who were in the land of Israel, and he set stonecutters to hew out stones to build the house of God." (1 Chron.. 22:2)

"And Solomon numbered all the aliens who were in the land of Israel, following the census which his father David had taken, and 153,600 were found. And he appointed 70,000 of them to carry loads, and 80,000 to quarry stones in the mountains, and 3,600 supervisors to make the people work." (2 Chron. 2:17-18).

Note, both words "foreigners," and "aliens" are designated in the Hebrew by the term GER.

The title that was attached to Mordechai's name also raises some difficulties for the commentators:

" Now, there was a JEW in Susa the capital whose name was Mordechai, the son of Jair, the son of Shimei, the son of Kish, a BENJAMITE." (Ester 2:5 NASB).

The term JEW which is so spread in our days is found in the Tanach in only a few books, later period books (2 Kings; Zechariah; Nehemiah; Ester; Chronicles). In preexilic times the term was attached only to sons of the tribe of Judah, only later, after the exile it was understood to mean for all Israel. But we still don't know if Mordechai was a JEW or a BENJAMITE....Rashi is inclined after the PESHAT, explaining that the term JEW was attached to Mordechai even before he was exiled with the tribe of Judah, but right after, Rashi adds: "and our Rabbis interpret the way they interpret..." This comment points that the writings of the Sages sometimes deviates from the PESHAT of Scriptures. Some sages took the easy way: "his father was from Benjamin, and his mother from Judah..." ( Megilla 12:72).

The term יהודים appears in the book of Ester forty-four times, six times the word is written with two Yods-יהודיים . What is the meaning of this phenomenon? In their interpretation the Sages do not give a clear picture. Some dismiss this occurrence as just some typo, other give it more credence saying that these are the people who attached themselves to Israel.

And today, the question of "who is a Jew" still is not settled and causes great controversy.

Monday, August 16, 2010

Ester 8:17; What is the meaning of מתיהדים Part 1

".ורבים מעמי הארץ מתיהדים כי נפל פחד היהודים עליהם ..."

"...And many among the peoples of the land became Jews, for the dread of the Jews had fallen on them." ( NASB).

In the Hebrew the verse states : עמי הארץ--a term used in Scriptures mostly, not always, a multitude of strangers, or for regular people with no identifiable nationalistic or social standing ( Deut. 28:10; Josh. 4:24; 1 Kings 8:60). The term is also used to distinguish between the lower, and higher rungs of society ( 2 Kings 11:14).
The Sages also used the term עם הארץ to describe a lower status within the society (Bava Batra 8:71; Pesachim 49:72). This hard approach by the Sages demonstrates the complexities they encountered and the lack of patience they display. Many, many followed their interpretation of the term without really examine these complexities, especially the Sages' disdain from the pluralism of society of their times.

Rashi, in his interpretation, and commentary of the book of Ester, refers to the term מתיהדים as a process of changing one's religion. He uses the term מתגירים --to denote conversion. But his interpretation is not at all conclusive since the Term גיור-conversion as we know it today was not known in Bible era. The term לגייר-to convert, does not exist in Scripture. On the other hand, we can find many mentions of the term גר -with all its obscure interpretations. Rashi interpret גר in ( Ex. 22:20) as "A person who was not born in the same nation, but came from another nation to live there." It is of course inconclusive to interpret גר as someone who changed his/her religion. (For more on גר see Tim Hegg's Fellow heirs).

The LXX interprets מתיהדים as "circumcised themselves". Josephus expounded on that and wrote "Many from other nations circumcised themselves from the fear of the Jews" ( Antiquities of the Jews 11,6,13).

To join the people of Israel ("to become Jewish" as allegedly the Ester verse is interpreted) Out of fear, not from love, does not correlates with the views of mainstream Judaism which insists on גיור לשמו -conversion for the sake of conversion, not from any other outside motives. (Yevamot 24:72).

The difficulty to acknowledge converts who converted from fear led some commentators to interpret that מתיהדים only means "profess to be Jews," but were not true GERIM.
Eban Ezra interprets the verse: Ones who return to the Torah of Judah or are attached to Judah to save themselves." Other commentators interpret the term as "who made themselves to look like Jews, changed their clothing, but really are not full Gerim."

More to come.....

Friday, August 13, 2010

Shabbat Shalom

One of my favorites:

Shlomo Gronich Is my Favorite Israeli singer of all time. Here is something he wrote and sings from the Shabbat Siddur:

Have a great Shabbat you all. Isn't having God in our life great?

Thursday, August 12, 2010

And a convert shall lead them.....

Disclaimer: This blog is not written from Malicious purposes. It was designed to make people think.

So, on my daily stop at Derek Leman's blog, he point me to another blog, Ovadia's, Here:
Since Derek's wish is my command...I hurry to click and arrive at Ovadia's blog where I read quite an interesting, and ambitious plan from a convert who wants to teach Jews how to be Jews. Kind of like teaching the father how to make children....

Among others Ovadia writes: "I believe the way forward for Messianic Judaism is the way back to the roots of the broader, deeper, more ancient pattern of K'lal Israel, not forward into more of what Messianic Judaism has been doing the last 30-40 years."
Hmmm...And I thought that Messianic Judaism before 40 years was part of K'lal Church, not K'lal Israel?

In his ambitious plan, Ovadia, likes to rearrange a whole shopping list of Jewish liturgy (I wonder how this is going to play with Kinzer and the gang...)
One Item on Ovadia's list is the Siddur. In the Shacharit part of the siddur there is a blessing that goes like this:" Blessed are you Hashem our God, for not having made me a Gentile." I wonder what goes in Ovadia's and Derek's mind when they encounter this blessing every morning. Are they satisfied with a Judaism that has this in their liturgy?

I know that there is a rabbinic ruling for them to simply avoid saying the blessing, but I would like to know what goes in their minds and heart, also other converts?

Monday, August 9, 2010

What is a "sect?"

Shaye Cohen's definition of a "sect":

"A sect is a small, organized group that separates itself from a larger religious body and asserts that it alone embodies the ideals of the larger group because it alone understands God's will." ( From the Maccabees to the Mishnah P. 120).

I like this definition. So the questions rise:

Is Messianic Judaism UMJC style a sect?

Is messianic Judaism MJAA style a sect?

Is MJTI a sect?

Is Hashivenue a sect?

Is One Law a sect?

Is the "Divine Invitation" group a sect?

Is the Two-House group a sect?

Care to have a discussion?

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Is a meaningful dialoge possible? You bet!

8 years ago we bought a new house. I remember when the walk through the day before we moved in. Four months we were watching the house being built and now the time has come. As we toured the house along with the Customer service representative. we could smell the fresh paint and the aroma of a new carpet, and the next day we moved in with joy.

As the days passed we discovered the true meaning of the phrase, not everything that glitters is gold. It seems that every day we discovered another defect or imperfection. countless calls to the customer service office yield nothing, they promise to come but never did. Hey, what did they care, we have already bought the house. Calls to the corporate office were never returned. With the time we found out that the problem is not only with us, many of our neighbors went through the same thing.

Then, one day, the sun came out shining. The company replaced the existing incompetent CS representative with a new one. The new guy was like a breath of fresh air, his attitude was magnificent, he did not leave one stone unturned. He went from house to house and solved all problems. He even identified defects in our house we weren't aware of.

It turned out that this beautiful person is a Mormon. When he found out that I am a Messianic we hit it off. It led to a great friendship were we used to talk a lot, mostly theology. That is were the mistake was, discussing theology led to a parting of the ways.
But God in His mysterious ways had another plan. About two years later, arriving home one day we discovered a note stuck in the door from my old friend. He asked me to call him and of course I did, the friendship was resumed. As we met again we agreed to talk about the things that unite us, not the things that divide us that led to us parting ways. It is now about two years since then, we meet every Thursday in my house, we pray together, study together, mostly the Tanach, since as a Mormon he hardly had any exposure to the Hebrew Scriptures. It has been just great.

This is not the end of the story. Not by a long shot. A while after we resumed our meetings the Church our community was renting a space from for our services lost their lease and we had to leave. We were assembling at our house as we searched for another place. We were rejected by 31 Churches in town. Some wanted high rent that we could not afford, other Churches did not want anything to do with Messianics. I related this in passing to my LDS friend. Two weeks later he told me that he spoke to the leaders of his church an they would like to meet with us. They said that they would be honored to have us worship in their Church, they cannot charge us any rent, and what else can they do for us. We were in shock of course but gladly accepted their offer.

I don't know what God is doing here, and what is His plan in all this, but today, in the LDS church near our house, there is an ark with a Torah scroll, I teach Hebrew to a class that is predominantly Mormons, and in our last Passover seder (which was conducted in the LDS church) we had close to a hundred LDS people as our guests. They were so blessed, since none of them attended a passover seder before.

Yes, God works in mysterious ways and with Him everything is possible, even a meaningful dialogue between us poor Messianics...Yes, I can have a civil, meaningful dialogue with Kinzer, Rudolph, Derek, and Yahnatan. Gene Shlomovitch? Ehh...Just kidding, you too Gene. All we need is to find the things that unite us and discuss them first. We all seem to understand this and we keep dancing around it, afraid to engage, so I have a suggestion.

The first thing on the list on things that unite us is of course, our Master, Yeshua. He is the center of our faith. We all know that Derek's book on the life and times of Yeshua will be published soon. Why don't we follow the J-bom Model and start a D-Bom club (don't swell up Derek..LOL!) Let us discuss the book as we read it. Can there be anything better than discussing the life and times of our Messiah Yeshua?

Let us make the turn, start working toward unison, not division, And the blessings of God will follow. Do you guys think I am naive?

Monday, August 2, 2010


Some years back in his response to Tim Hegg's "Is the Torah for Jews?" Russ Resnik wrote:

"Finally, Hegg faults me for describing Messianic Judaism as a " Jewish people movement for Yeshua." I use this phrase to draw the contrast with believers' movement for Torah. Such a movement may be a LEGITIMATE AND BIBLICAL EXPRESSION, but reflects a different vision from Messianic Judaism as we understand it. (Emphasis mine).

Hammm...Is there anyone in BE/DI movement today who agrees with Mr. Resnik?

Resnik continued with this:

"Hegg seems to picture Messianic Judaism as a Jewish-Gentile believers movement for Torah or for Jewish roots. WE DO NOT NECESSARILY OPPOSE SUCH MOVEMENT, but are called to foster a Jewish movement for Messiah because Scripture gives the warrant for an ongoing Jewish identity." (Emphasis mine).

I do not think that Resnik consulted Gene Shlomovitch on the matter....LOL! But I have the feeling that now, as the rift has grown Resnik would have liked to take some of his words back? What do you think?

In his fine article " Paul's "rule in all the Churches...." David Rudolph writes his interpretation to 1 Cor. 7:19:

"What were the "commandments of God" for Gentile believers? Given that Luke portrays Paul as delivering the apostolic decree to Gentile believers, and the likelihood that Paul wrote 1 Cor. after the Acts 15 Jerusalem Council decision (Acts 18:1-18), it is reasonable to assume (from a canonical perspective) that keeping the commandments of God included the responsibility to "obey the regulations", the four "requirements" listed in the apostolic decree." ( See note 39 Pg. 10).

In his response to Baruch Maoz's " Is Judaism Jewish," a few years back Mark Kinzer commented on 1 Cor. 7:19:

"...But keeping the commandments of God." Paul acknowledges with these words that the Torah commands Jews to be circumcised and to keep the Mitzvot given to Israel, but expect non-Jews to keep only those commandments given to all human beings.

Two different opinions coming out from the MJTI?

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Holding my sides.....

I just discovered this. Some of you might have read it before. I think it is hilarious. Reminds me of some of our arguments....


Tim Perry

Suppose you're traveling to work and you see a stop sign. What do you do? That depends on how you exegete the stop sign.

1. A postmodernist deconstructs the sign (knocks it over with his car), ending forever the tyranny of the north-south traffic over the east-west traffic.

2. Similarly, a Marxist sees a stop sign as an instrument of class conflict. He concludes that the bourgeoisie use the north-south road and obstruct the progress of the workers on the east-west road.

3. A serious and educated Catholic believes that he cannot understand the stop sign apart from its interpretive community and their tradition. Observing that the interpretive community doesn't take it too seriously, he doesn't feel obligated to take it too seriously either.

4. An average Catholic (or Orthodox or Coptic or Anglican or Methodist or Presbyterian or whatever) doesn't bother to read the sign but he'll stop if the car in front of him does.

5. A fundamentalist, taking the text very literally, stops at the stop sign and waits for it to tell him to go.

6. A preacher might look up "STOP" in his lexicons of English and discover that it can mean: 1) something which prevents motion, such as a plug for a drain, or a block of wood that prevents a door from closing; 2) a location where a train or bus lets off passengers. The main point of his sermon the following Sunday on this text is: when you see a stop sign, it is a place where traffic is naturally clogged, so it is a good place to let off passengers from your car.

7. An orthodox Jew does one of two things:
1) Take another route to work that doesn't have a stop sign so that he doesn't run the risk of disobeying the Law.
2) Stop at the stop sign, say "Blessed art thou, O Lord our God, king of the universe, who hast given us thy commandment to stop," wait 3 seconds according to his watch, and then proceed.
Incidentally, the Talmud has the following comments on this passage: R[abbi] Meir says: He who does not stop shall not live long. R. Hillel says: Cursed is he who does not count to three before proceeding. R. Simon ben Yudah says: Why three? Because the Holy One, blessed be He, gave us the Law, the Prophets, and the Writings. R. ben Isaac says: Because of the three patriarchs. R. Yehuda says: Why bless the Lord at a stop sign? Because it says: "Be still, and know that I am God." R. Hezekiel says: When Jephthah returned from defeating the Ammonites, the Holy One, blessed be He, knew that a donkey would run out of the house and overtake his daughter; but Jephthah did not stop at the stop sign, and the donkey did not have time to come out. For this reason he saw his daughter first and lost her. Thus he was judged for his transgression at the stop sign. R. Gamaliel says: R. Hillel, when he was a baby, never spoke a word, though his parents tried to teach him by speaking and showing him the words on a scroll. One day his father was driving through town and did not stop at the sign. Young Hillel called out: "Stop, father!" In this way, he began reading and speaking at the same time. Thus it is written: "Out of the mouth of babes." R. ben Jacob says: Where did the stop sign come from? Out of the sky, for it is written: "Forever, O Lord, your word is fixed in the heavens." R. ben Nathan says: When were stop signs created? On the fourth day, for it is written: "let them serve as signs." R. Yeshuah says: ... [continues for three more pages]

8. A Pharisee does the same thing as an orthodox Jew, except that he waits 10 seconds instead of 3. He also replaces his brake lights with 1000 watt searchlights and connects his horn so that it is activated whenever he touches the brake pedal.

9. A scholar from Jesus seminar concludes that the passage "STOP" undoubtedly was never uttered by Jesus himself, but belongs entirely to stage III of the gospel tradition, when the church was first confronted by traffic in its parking lot.

10. A NT scholar notices that there is no stop sign on Mark street but there is one on Matthew and Luke streets, and concludes that the ones on Luke and Matthew streets are both copied from a sign on a completely hypothetical street called "Q". There is an excellent 300 page discussion of speculations on the origin of these stop signs and the differences between the stop signs on Matthew and Luke street in the scholar's commentary on the passage. There is an unfortunately omission in the commentary, however; the author apparently forgot to explain what the text means.

11. An OT scholar points out that there are a number of stylistic differences between the first and second half of the passage "STOP". For example, "ST" contains no enclosed areas and 5 line endings, whereas "OP" contains two enclosed areas and only one line termination. He concludes that the author for the second part is different from the author for the first part and probably lived hundreds of years later. Later scholars determine that the second half is itself actually written by two separate authors because of similar stylistic differences between the "O" and the "P".

12. Another prominent OT scholar notes in his commentary that the stop sign would fit better into the context three streets back. (Unfortunately, he neglected to explain why in his commentary.) Clearly it was moved to its present location by a later redactor. He thus exegetes the intersection as though the stop sign were not there.

13. Because of the difficulties in interpretation, another OT scholar emends the text, changing "T" to "H". "SHOP" is much easier to understand in context than "STOP" because of the multiplicity of stores in the area. The textual corruption probably occurred because "SHOP" is so similar to "STOP" on the sign several streets back that it is a natural mistake for a scribe to make. Thus the sign should be interpreted to announce the existence of a shopping area.

14. A "prophetic" preacher notices that the square root of the sum of the numeric representations of the letters S-T-O-P (sigma-tau-omicron-pi in the Greek alphabet), multiplied by 40 (the number of testing), and divided by four (the number of the world--north, south, east, and west), equals 666. Therefore, he concludes that stop signs are the dreaded "mark of the beast," a harbinger of divine judgment upon the world, and must be avoided at all costs.

Monday, July 26, 2010

On the subject of a "unique calling"

" 4 Although I myself might have confidence even in the flesh. If anyone else has a mind to put confidence in the flesh, I far more: 5 circumcised the eight day, of the nation of Israel, of the tribe of Benjamin, a Hebrew of Hebrews; as to the Law, a Pharisee; 6 as to zeal, a persecuter of the Church; as to the righteousness which is in the Law, found blameless. 7 But whatever things were gain to me, those things I have counted as a loss for the sake of Messiah. 8 More than that, I count all things to be loss in view of the surpassing value of knowing Yeshua Hamashiach my Lord, for whom I have suffered the loss of all things and count them but rubbish in order that I may gain Messiah. (Philip. 3:5-8, NASB).

Allowing Scriptures to interpret Scriptures the text speaks for itself. Paul is proud of his heritage and pedegree, but count it all rubbish for the sake of Messiah. What things were gain to Paul? Can we include Rom. 9:4-5 in the list? One does not need a special long commentary to understand what the plain meaning of the text say: Paul does not consider one's "original calling" as something "unique."

Let's look at other passage in the same context:

"17 Only as the Lord has assigned to each one, as God has called each, in this manner let him walk. And thus I direct in all the churches. 18 Was any man called already circumcised? Let him not become uncircumcised. Has anyone been called in uncircumcision? Let him not be circumcised. 19 Circumcision is nothing, and uncircumcision is nothing, but what matters is the keeping of the commandments of God. 20 Let each man remain in that condition in which he was called." (1 Cor. 17-20, NASB).

Again, allowing Scriptures to interpret themselves without performing all kind of theological gymnastics V. 19 is clear: circumcision is nothing, and uncircumcision is nothing. Once again we can see that for Paul one's "unique calling" does not have any meaning.

Messianic Judaism UMJC style affirm Paul's admonition to remain In one's original calling, but then they fall in the mud of "do what we say, but don't do what we do."
By sunctionig Conversions for Gentiles they openly show their disregard for Paul's "rule for the Churches." How can they convert people and still teach that one should remain in his/her "original calling?" Their answer, the way I see it is, anytime some sticky issue arises, the Three organizations who are all under the UMJC Umbrella (MJTI, Hashivenue, and the MJRC)are divesting themselves from each other. Of course it does not solve problems. It is obvious that something in their theology smells.

Derek Leman says that the term "rule" means "generally" and that David Rudolph who is a friend is supporting his decision. then, maybe I did not quite understand Rudolph's question in the 1st page of his article? "Should a teaching that Paul considered IMPORTANT ENOUGH TO BE UNIVERSAL RULE be almost universally neglected by contemporary Christians?" (Emphsize mine).

So there we have it (or maybe I should say "I have it"). Having said all this, I just want to join others in commanding David Rudolph for writing an article that provoks us to think.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

The time has come?

Here is an amazing article written by a non-Jew. As an Israeli Jew it certainly grabed my attention. Is this the time to built the Temple? What are you readers think?

Jews, Take me to Your Leader... and to His House

The following powerful and eloquent statement, written by a righteous Gentile, is beautiful proof that the entire world of G-d fearers anxiously awaits, prays for, and works toward the rebuilding of the Holy Temple, "a house of prayer for all nations." (Isaiah 56:7)

So what's a nice non-Jewish girl like me, living in the heart of the Bible-belt, doing mourning the destruction of the Temple? I'm mourning because somewhere deep inside, I get it. At least to the point that a non-Jewish girl living in the heart of the Bible-belt can get it. And just what exactly do I get? That the Temple is the key to everything. And I mean EVERYTHING. Want to save the planet? Build the Temple.

I know, I know. This is not a very popular idea among many people. Excuses abound. Theologies contradict. Religious factions threaten. Modern-day intellectuals dismiss. But, really, there is only One opinion that counts. G-d chose Jerusalem as His abode forever. Forever didn't expire in 2010, so I think it's safe to assume that He still wants a Temple.

For some Jews, the idea of the Temple is antiquated. They believe ideas such as: That was then, this is now. We are too sophisticated for a Temple. In our day and age the Temple is just a spiritual concept, therefore a physical structure isn't needed. The animal sacrifices performed at the Temple are outdated and barbaric. The Temple will simply drop down from Heaven when the time is right. Nothing should be done until the Messiah is revealed, etc.

For many Christians, the idea of the Temple is just a means to an end. They believe ideas such as: The Temple is only important regarding the prophetic time clock. The Temple will be built, but only so the apocalyptical figure, the anti-Christ, can make it his throne. We are the Temple of G-d so there is no need for a physical structure. Animal sacrifices are no longer needed, so why have a Temple? Who cares about the Temple, I'm due to be raptured any minute, etc.

Yet, despite all of the excuses and diverse beliefs, G-d asked for a house on earth. Even King Solomon was a little surprised by such a request. The King of the Universe wants a house on a mount in Israel? "But even the heavens can't contain you, much less this house I've built," he said. He was right, kind of. Yes, this entire universe is like a quark, the smallest particle known, compared to the vastness of G-d. But the thing is, G-d likes to interact with humans. How does He do that? By allowing us to experience His presence. And He designated one specific spot on earth for the majority of His presence to be felt and experienced. The Temple.

If G-d wants a Temple to house His presence, who are we to argue? He left blueprints for the house. King David bought the "lot" for the house. (I suspect Dayan might have gotten a bit of a tongue-lashing after departing this world for giving partial control of the lot back into the hands of, ahem, how shall we say, the "neighbors.") But the point is, Israel, you have the blueprints, you have the lot, so what are you waiting for? If you build it, His presence will come. That is why the Temple is the key to EVERYTHING. "Sing and be glad, Israel, for behold I am coming and I will dwell in your midst. Many nations will join themselves to Me on that day... Hashem will choose Jerusalem again."

Every human carries a divine spark within them. Some make choices that continually diminish that spark, while others make choices that continually expand that spark. We all have the potential to be vessels of Hashem's presence. What is the result of His presence within us? Peace, genuine love, generosity, mercy, kindness, forgiveness . . . you know the feeling. The feeling of doing the right thing, of governing your life with wisdom, of divine love shaping your relationships; all resulting from His presence in our lives. But we are only human, therefore we are capable of housing only so much of His presence. There is a need for so much more of His presence in the world. But where is the vessel to contain that presence? It is missing. It is the Temple.

The Temple will be the focal point of all of G-d's presence, or at least as much as this physical world can contain. The intensity of His presence will change everything. There will be no a question of Who the One true G-d is. There will be no question of who the land belongs to, much less what the borders to that land are. Our striving to know G-d, to focus on Him and the things that really matter will become so much easier.

Our souls run on batteries, so to speak, that continually need to recharge. And thankfully we have the guidance of G-d's Word and the teachings of the sages to show us how to recharge. But when the Temple is here, it will be THE power station. It will be the place where G-d's energy is directly poured onto the earth, which will then emanate to the every square inch of the earth. People from all over the world will travel to Jerusalem to experience His presence first-hand, "It will happen, the mountain of the Temple of G-d will be firmly established as the head of the mountains, and it will be exalted and all nations will stream to it. Many peoples will say, 'Come, let us go up to the Mountain of Hashem, to the Temple of the G-d of Jacob, and He will teach us of His ways and we will walk in the paths.' For from Zion will the Torah come forth, the word of Hashem from Jerusalem. He will judge among the nations, and will settle the arguments of many peoples. They shall beat their swords into plowshares and their spears into pruning hooks, nation will not lift sword against nation and they will no longer study warfare."

People flocking to Israel, world-wide problems being solved, warfare ending; all for a reason. Because the Temple is rebuilt. Do most Jews view Isaiah's vision as a fairytale or as an allegory? Because the majority of Jews don't seem to be rushing to build the Temple. Nor do they regularly visit the place that the Temple once stood. Even the secular voices of the Israeli police and intelligence community have expressed what an impact it would be for Jews to visit the Temple Mount. Authorities said, "If only more Jews would visit the Temple Mount on a regular basis, the entire balance of power would shift. There would be a paradigm shift; the attitude of the government and the police would be different towards the Jewish visitors on the Temple Mount. The Muslim terror would be abated." They ended by saying, "Many Jewish people visiting the Temple Mount would be the cure to the overall security situation." I don't know if it would be the overall cure, but at least it would be a very good start.

Jews, it's time for you to recognize and fulfill you role, (which some of you are doing with all of your heart and soul). You are special. You are chosen. You are the designated builders of the throne of The King of the Universe. But the job isn't getting done, therefore He asks, "Is this the time for you to sit in your own houses, while my House is in ruins?" That's a powerful question that deserves to be answered. Groups like Habit for Humanity build a house in a few days for homeless people. How long has G-d been homeless in Jerusalem? Nearly two thousand years. It's time for a Habitat for Hashem. His presence has been homeless for far too long.

I hope and pray that this will be the last year that anyone mourns on the 9th of Av. "Hashem, Master of Legions says: The fast of the fourth month and the fast of the fifth month will be to the House of Judah for joy and gladness and for happy festivals... In those days it will happen that men, of all the different languages of the nations, will take hold, they will take hold of the corner of the garment of a Jewish man, saying, 'Let us go with you, for we have heard that G-d is with you!'" I've grabbed ahold. Now are you going to start moving? Take me to your Leader. Take me to where He lives. We, the nations, are waiting. So is He.

This article was written by Camie Davis.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

On the subject of conversion

The subject of conversion is up again on the blogsphare. Within the Messianic Jewish camp they put a high degree of importance to conversion. They seem to think that ethnicity can be changed with one cut. If this were the situation, then millions of Arabs would be Jews today.....

I know, I know, some of you would say: " Hey, Dan, circumcision is not the only component of conversion, there is acceptance of the Mizvot, immerssion, and acceptance of God's sovereignty." You are right of course, so let's imagine what would have happened if Ruth the Moavite would have requested to attain Israeli citizenship, where conversion-Giyur- is a political football for decades now.

Taken from an article by Reuven Hammer in the Jerusalem post 6/1/2009:

"...Please show us your conversion certificat. What rabbinical court issued it? What Jewish community does it represent? No beit din? So who converted you? Where did you study and what? Was the program a year long, and did it consist of at least 360 hours? No course at all? You said something about "your people, my people, your God my God" and that was it? What is this, a joke? Did you remain in the Moave Jewish community for a year afterwards? No? You say you had a Jewish husband-OK- but he is dead so that does not give you any rights. No, mothers-in-law don't count. Look, it is pretty obvious that you are simply one of those foreign workers looking for a job in agriculture that pays better than what you could earn in Moav. That is exactly what we're afraid of. Back to Moav with you.

So much for David and the Messiah! Obviously at the time of the writing of the book of Ruth, conversion as we know it did not exist-although later interpretations sought to read it into the book. See, for example, Yevamot 47b. The Torah envisions non-Israelites living in the land and after a period of generations some of them could become part of "the community of the Lord" (Deut. 23:4). The book of Ruth seems to posit this happening immediately when a person actively desire it. During and after the Second Temple period Jewish law gradually CREATED conversion as we know it, with a formal ceremony before the court."

So there you have it. And since in Israel Orthodox Judaism has control (see Agudat Harabbanim decision from 1997 where they decided that Reform, and Conservative are out of the sphare of Judaism), I don't think that Derek Leman's conversion is worth the paper it was written on.

Another point that Hummer says just put me in stitches...

" "After all, fancifully and anachronistically our tradition has even read conversion much further back than Ruth in our history. It asserts that Abraham and Sarah led conversion classes. He taught men, she the women. (Genesis Rabba 39:5)."

Can you hear him Gene Shlomovich? This guy is a Jew, and he is not One-Law....

Monday, July 12, 2010

What next?

Musing on the subject of Jews and Gentiles in the body of Messiah.

The line in the sand has been drawn. The battle lines has been marked. The arguments have been long and drawn out, mostly in an un-civil manner. (guilty as charged). Now the time has come for an assessment, at least for me at this point.

Messianic Judaism as we know it today was formed as a JEWISH, I repeat, a Jewish organization. Note the emphasis is on the word Jewish. A communist JEWISH organization or a satanic JEWISH organization are first, and foremost a JEWISH organizations, and as such Messianic Judaism as a Jewish organization has the right to operate along Jewish lines. It means they can deny non-Jews an equal standing in their congregations, or if they want they can exclude Gentiles completely from their midst. It is their right. Just like the state of Israel has the right as a Jewish state to refuse Aliyah to non-Jews.

The fact that Messianic Judaism is erring according to Scriptures, or that their aim (to become a part of mainstream Judaism) is laughable, or that some gullible Gentiles are willing to be treated as second class citizens, is another matter. What matter at this moment in the history of "Messianism" is that Messianic Judaism UMJC, and MJTI style are a Judaism and it is their right to discriminate against non-Jews.

So where do we go from here?
I, as a Jewish person am appalled by this racist, prideful attitude. Years ago, when we saw in our community what is coming, we changed our title from a "Messianic Jewish congregation" to a "Messianic Torah community." We agreed that we will not be caught dead identifying with such an abomination. So let us, who reject the "Deja-Vu all over again" error of the book of Acts, form our own organization, an organization where Jew and Gentile can truly be fellow heirs, and not be counted within an organization where Jews are more "fellow" and Gentiles are less "heirs."

Hope to hear from you my fellow heirs.

P.S. If some in the MJ camp think I am a bit harsh here, well, I meant to be.

Thursday, July 8, 2010


I am reading Shaye Cohen's "From the Maccabees to the Mishnah." A very detailed and fascinating journey into the history, and theology of the Judaism of these periods. I find that at least for myself, every chapter requires a second and sometime a third reading in order for me to grasp all the nuances of each period.

In Chapter 5 Cohen is quoting Josephus on the subject of Fate.

"Now at this time there were these schools of thought among the Jews, which held different opinions concerning human affairs; the first being that of the Pharisees, the second that of the Saducees, and the third that of of the Essenes. as for the Pharisees, they say that certain events are the work of Fate, but not all; as to other events, it depends upon ourselves whether they shall take place or not. The sect of the Essenes, however, declares that Fate is the mistress of all things, and that nothing befalls men unless in accordance with her decree. But the Saducees do away with Fate, holding that there is no such thing and that human actions are not achieved in accordance with her decree, but that all things lie within our own power."

This is interesting at least for me since I did not know of such divisions on the matter of Fate. How do you readers feel about it? Any opinions?

It will be also interesting to find out if in today's Judaism there are differences between the branches on the subject.
Another question to ponder, does Fate stands in the way of faith?

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

We cannot forget who is the Boss.

We aregue beliefs, and theology, sometimes in uncivil manner I have to admit. But there is one thing that unite us, and that is the centrality of Yeshua in our faith. This is one thing we cannot forget.

For sometime, Derek Leman is presenting podcasts on Yeshua in context and now he is coming up with a book by that name. I did not follow all the podcasts, but I think Derek has something to offer. I know, many of you would not believe it, but I intend to purchas a copy.

Here is where you can find more about it:

Any book on the life and times of our master is worth reading.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Going to the dogs.....

We have two dogs. We got the first one at 8 Mts. old from a family where she has been very much neglected. We renamed her Netanya. She is a pure bread Bichon Frise and looks like it. We got our second Dog later on, at 2 yer. old. We kept her name Sweetpea. She came with papers from the kennel club that certify her as a pure bread Bichon Frise. Turned out she is not. She is a mix Bichon and Poodle. A Bichon wannabe......

The other day I was observing the two, remembering their history in our house. When Sweetpea arrived, Netanya did not receive her warmly, in a matter of fact she was down right hostile to the point of terrorizing Sweetpea. And I got to thinking, Netanya is used to be the only kahoonah in our house. By now she thinks, either she is a human, or we are Bichons. She somehow senses that Sweetpea is different. In her rants and raves could Netanya be saying to Sweetpea: "Hey, you are not like us, you are different, you do not belong here. If you stay here and we follow your ways there is the danger for us to become poddles like you.....You are not welcomed here go and find yourself another home where they have poodles like you...can't you see, if you stay here after a while we are all going to become mutts......

Today, of course, it is different. Both dogs learned to live together under the same roof, eat the same food, share the same toys, and follow the same house rules.

The assemblies that the Apostle Paul started were comprised of Gentiles and Jews. Were they housed in two separate buildings, one for Jew and the other for Gentile? When he admonished Jew and Gentile to "come as you are," what did Paul mean by that?

Was he at all concerned "how will it play in Jerusalem?"

Did Paul knew how to pronounce "bilateral ecclesiology?"

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Is there any difference?

One of the reasons I posted the Nakba article was to show the similarities between the so-called "Palestinians" bogus claims and the so-called "two-house-Ephramite" bogus claims.

Just like the Nakba-the story of the "Palestinian refugees"-is a complete fraud, so are the fantastic claims of the "two house Ephramites." The fraud that is perpetrated on unsuspecting believers is enjoing some measures of success whithin Messianic circles. The "Ephramites" managed to deceive a sizable amount of Messianic believers that they somehow hold the right of return to 10/12 part of the land of Israel.

Just as the so-called "Palestinians" cannot prove there was ever a "Palestinian" sovereign state with its own government, so the "ephramites" cannot prove they are "Ephramites" and will tell you this with a straight face. But of course they know precisely who is from the tribe of Judah.

Both groups deny my people and my country. They could not get through the door with the hazy "British Israelite" debacle (Herbert armstrong's church just disintegrated), so now they try to get in through the window with this "two house" meshugas...

Maybe the so-called "Palestinians" and the so-called "Ephramites" can form their own state? after all, both have the same beliefs about Israel and the Jews. I think they desrve each other, how about you?

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Because people need to know the truth.

I will just post this with no further comments:

Nakba Day and the Fraud

Ben-Dror Yemini

The Palestinians have been holding the title of “refugees” for over six decades w They have succeeded in creating a unique historical narrative for themselves w This myth is growing, so it should be shattered and the real facts presented: the Palestinian population before the first Aliya was sparse, hundreds of thousands of Jews were also expelled from Arab countries, and there is no precedent anywhere in the world for the right of return w

The Nakba - the story of the Palestinian refugees - is the greatest success story in the history of modern times, a success that is a complete fraud. There is no other group of “refugees” in the world that has gotten such broad global coverage. Not a week goes by without a conference, another conference, about the wretched state of the Palestinians. There is not a campus in the West that does not devote countless events, conferences and publications, each year or each month to the issue of the Palestinian refugees. They have become the ultimate victims. A million calamities and injustices and expulsions and population exchanges and acts of genocide and slaughter and wars have befallen the world since the Arabs, among them the Palestinians, declared a war of annihilation on Israel - but the Nakba of the Palestinians takes up most of the space. A visitor from another planet would think that it was the greatest injustice suffered by the entire universe since the Second World War. So it is best to shatter this lie. It is best to present the real facts. It is best to expose the fraud.

The Jews came to the area of the Land of Israel, which was part of the Ottoman Empire, in many small waves, back before the First Aliya. Did they really expel millions of Arabs? Well, there is no debating the fact that in those years there were no “Palestinians” and there was no “Palestine” and there was no “Palestinian identity.” And, mainly, there was no real boundary between Arabs from Syria, Egypt or Jordan. There was a steady stream of people. In the years in which Muhammad Ali and his son conquered this region in 1831 - 1840, they sent many Arabs from Egypt to Gaza, Jaffa and other cities. The Jews who also arrived in Jaffa during those years helped to develop the city as well.

Forgotten research findings

There is a debate among historians over the number of Arabs who lived during those years in the area of “Palestine,” which, in effect, was composed of districts (Sanjaks) that were subject to Damascus or Beirut, as part of the Ottoman Empire. The most serious testimony about what existed before the First Aliya is a forgotten one. It's known to many scholars, but it doesn't exist in the public discourse. It was made by a delegation of British researchers - the Palestine Exploration Fund - which traveled through the western Land of Israel in 1871 - 1878, from Dan to Beer Sheba, and published a precise and authentic map of settlements in 26 parts, which is rare for its size, type and authenticity. The researchers found a small number of sparse settlements here. The journalist Zeev Galili published a comprehensive investigation following publication of the map, and found that Haifa, for example, was a settlement of 440 x 190 meters. No more than that. Acre and Nazareth were larger settlements, whose area was 600 x 300 meters. The size of Jaffa was 540 x 240 meters. Jerusalem was situated between the walls, and was relatively huge, about 1,000 meters x 1,000 meters. There were a total of about 100,000 residents. A rare collection of photographs of the Land of Israel in those years clarifies the size of the settlements, and gives another fascinating look at those times.

There are those who bring up the famous tour of the Land of Israel in 1891 by Achad Ha’am, who also found cultivated and flourishing fields. It seems, however, that the impressions of Achad Ha’am are dwarfed by a series of well-established findings from that era. Another visitor, like Achad Ha’am, was Mark Twain, who toured the land in 1865. "....A desolate country whose soil is rich enough, but is given over wholly to weeds... a silent mournful expanse… A desolation is here that not even imagination can grace with the pomp of life and action. We reached Tabor safely... We never saw a human being on the whole route. Palestine sits in sackcloth and ashes… desolate and unlovely… these unpeopled deserts, these rusty mounds of barrenness…that melancholy ruin of Capernaum; this stupid village of Tiberias slumbering under its six funereal plumes of palms” Of the same mind was Henry Baker Tristram, who made several visits to the Holy Land during those same years, and his descriptions are very close to those of Twain’s.

More well-established testimonies are given in the book of James Finn, the British consul in Jerusalem for 17 years (1845-1862), who traveled the length and breadth of the country and published a book describing the land, which was settled with appalling sparseness, waiting for residents that would redeem it. In a memorandum that he sent in 1857, he noted that “Palestine is mostly empty of residents.”

It appears, however, that the findings of the research delegation are above any dispute. These were not chance visitors. They were researchers who stayed here for years, researched the land, went from settlement to settlement, measured every mountain, settlement and hill, and published six volumes. One of the researchers, Arthur Penrhyn Stanley, said about the Judea region that “mile after mile not a living thing is to be seen.”

Despite these findings, there is a sharp debate among researchers, historians and demographers about the number of Arabs who lived in the area before the First Aliya. The estimates range from 100,000 according to the British research delegation and hundreds of thousands according to other researchers. There is another dispute on the question of the extent of Arab immigration to Israel following the advent of Zionism. This issue also occupied other researchers, among them Moshe Braver and Moshe Sharon.

Winston Churchill said in 1939, “Despite the fact that they were not persecuted, masses of Arabs streamed into Palestine and multiplied there until the Arab population increased more than all the Jews of the world could have added to the Jewish population.” There are dozens of information sources on both the sparse Arab population before the First Aliya and on the Arab immigration, the size of which is in dispute, after the advent of Zionism.


The book by Joan Peters, From Time Immemorial, which provides a great deal of data on Palestinian immigration, is very controversial. Some of the findings that appear in the book have been refuted, but more serious researchers, such as Arieh Avneri (who refutes the claim of eviction and colonialism) and Fred Gottheil present a reliable picture which actually establishes most of the claims made by Peters. When this is added to the testimony of the research delegation, and to the book and memorandum by Finn - the result is unequivocal: before the First Zionist Aliya, there was an appallingly sparse population in the Land of Israel.

With regard to the immigration, we should add that as long as the government was Arab or Muslim, the people sought a better place to live. The Arabs of the region were under Egyptian and Jordanian rule for two decades (1948-1967), and they never demanded a state for themselves. They lived under a cruel régime (a subject for a separate article) and made every effort to emigrate to other countries. The change began in 1967. The Israeli government caused another attraction. That is the reason that many Palestinians prefer to return to the territories of Judea and Samaria, and that is the reason that many of them want to immigrate to Israel and become citizens (hundreds of thousands have already done so).


Throughout the years of the British Mandate, there were two populations here - Jews and Arabs. The original area of the Mandate, according to the Balfour Declaration, included the eastern side of the Jordan. As mentioned, the area was very sparsely populated. The establishment of a national homeland for the Jews would not have caused any injustice because there was no state here and there was no nation here. That was the real background to the Balfour Declaration. In 1922, the League of Nations cut off part of the promised area to give to the Hashemite family, and one year later the Golan Heights was also cut off to give to the French government in Syria.

Harassment of Jews also existed during the Ottoman period, and increased during the time of the British Mandate. The opposition was led by the Supreme Muslim Council, headed by Haj Amin Al-Husseini. The Palestinian leader attached himself to the Axis countries. He preached hatred and extermination of the Jews and spent World War II in Berlin. “The Mufti and Hitler have a common enemy - the Jews,” declared a German film clip about a meeting between the two. The Mufti did more than just talk - he also acted. He established the Muslim Hanzar Brigades, which were sent into action in the service of Hitler.

The only remaining refugees

Parallel to the UN resolution on partition, the Arab countries declared a war of annihilation on Israel. The result is well known. The declaration of war led to hundreds of thousands of Arabs being forced to move to neighboring countries. Many of them fled. Many testified that they were forced to leave under pressure of their leaders. There were also some who were evicted in the heat of battle. About 600,000 people became refugees.

The experience undergone by the Arabs became the “Nakba,” a story that has inflated over the years. They became the only exiled people among all the disputes in the world. And there is no greater lie than that. First of all, because the “Jewish Nakba” occurred at the same time. With the same background, in the same conflict, more Jews in Arab countries - over 800,000 people - were forced to face eviction and expulsion. And they did not declare a war of annihilation on the countries in which they lived. Second, and even more important, more than 50 million people have undergone population exchanges as a result of national conflicts or the creation of new nation states. There is no difference between the Arabs of Palestine and the rest of the refugees, including the Jewish refugees. Just in the decade after World War II, and in Europe alone, more than 20 million people experienced population exchanges. That also happened later, in conflicts between Turkish Cyprus and Greek Cyprus; between Armenia and Azerbaijan (the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict), between the states that were created as a result of the breakup of Yugoslavia and in many other conflicts around the world.

But only the Palestinians, out of all those groups, have held the title of “refugees” for over six decades. They have succeeded in creating a unique historical narrative for themselves. This myth is also growing with the help of UNRWA, a group dedicated to taking care of the Palestinian refugees, separate from the care given to all the other refugees in the world by the UNHCR. Many countries, including Israel, help to maintain the UNRWA, which deals not only with assisting and perpetuating the refugee problem, but also with incitement. The tragedy is that if the Palestinians were to receive such treatment from the international community, their situation today would be far better.

The fraud that is called the right of return

In the many discussions in which I have participated, I asked my colleagues, devotees of the Palestinian narrative, when have deportees who declared war, and lost that war, been granted the “right of return?” Is there one among the dozens of groups and the tens of millions who experienced expulsion in the past century that has been granted a “right of return” in a manner that caused the political annihilation of a nation state? To this day I have not received an answer. Because there is no such right.

The Palestinian Authority presents a document which claims that there are precedents for a “right of return.” The most serious example presented there is the Dayton Agreement of 1995 which allows the return, for example, of Serbs to Croatia. The circumstances, however, are different. First, the return was never implemented. Croatia allowed the return of Croatians but placed barriers on the return of Serbs. Second, even if it had been implemented, the return would not have undermined the existence of Croatia as the national state of the Croatian people. Another example presented by the Palestinians is an agreement from 1997 regarding Azerbaijan. This is also a fraud because a report from 2002 shows that the Muslims who were exiled to Azerbaijan did not return to Armenia, and the Armenians who arrived as refugees did not return to Azerbaijan. In effect, the Armenian constitution grants the right of return only to Armenians (similar to the Israeli Law of Return, which exists in other countries around the world). The other examples presented by the Palestinians, from Africa and South America, are also irrelevant to the many population exchanges around the world and certainly to the population exchanges between the Arab countries and Israel.

The most serious reference to the issue of the right of return is in the Cypress agreement initiated by former UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan. The agreement does not recognize the right of return, despite the fact that the European Court of Human Rights recognized the rights of petitioners on the Greek side of Turkey to return and to the restoration of property. In other words, not every legal precedent becomes a political truth. The agreement was welcomed by the international community in general and by the European Union in particular. There is a reason why the Palestinians do not mention the Cypress precedent because the right of return there was limited so that the Turkish majority, on the Turkish side, would always be at least eighty percent.

The Palestinians are also relying on resolution 194, so it should be recalled that the Arabs presented a united front in opposition to the resolution. They knew why. Because it is a resolution which, in effect, is based on recognition in a previous resolution - the partition resolution - which grants international legitimacy to recognition of the Jewish state. There are other stipulations in that resolution, such as the creation of suitable conditions and pre-agreement to the fact that candidates for return must agree to live in peace with their neighbors. Needless to say, the Palestinians are insisting on non-recognition of the Jewish state, which shows that the conditions have not been created and certainly that the return is for the purpose of eliminating the Jewish entity and not for the purpose of peace. And as Abu-Mazen stated in May 2009, he does not recognize the Jewish state because it is liable to prevent the return of the masses.

Is there a Palestinian people?

Azmi Bishara has stated in the past that “There is no Palestinian people. That is a colonial invention. There were never Palestinians.” Bishara is right. It is even happening to him. Even the third Arab Congress in 1920, which was held in Jaffa, stated that Palestine is southern Syria and that there is no separate Palestinian identity. Ahmad Shukieri, the first chairman of the PLO, stated that “Palestine is just a part of Syria.” The president of Syria, Hafez al Assad, said in 1976 that Palestine was part of greater Syria. Many spokesmen have admitted, exactly like Bishara and Assad, time after time, that there is no separate Palestinian identity. Without Zionist immigration, masses of immigrants would not have come here from Muslim countries, and no Palestinian identity would have been created. But the fact that this does not involve a nation, but rather immigrants from neighboring countries, does not rule out the right of the Palestinians to self-determination. They see themselves as a nation, they have created a separate national identity, and their wishes should be respected.

One of the Palestinian claims is that for the purpose of resolving the conflict, the Palestinian Nakba must be recognized, and primarily the Israeli responsibility for the refugee problem. The truth is the opposite. Cultivating the myth of the Nakba is not what is delaying resolution of the conflict, because the Palestinians are busy reinforcing the problem, inflating it and insisting that it is different from any international precedent. They are forgetting that they are the ones who preferred to support the Nazi axis of evil. They are the ones who refused the partition proposal. They are the ones who declared a war of annihilation. They are the ones who started the war. They are forgetting that a greater number of Jews were persecuted, dispossessed and expelled from Arab countries. As long as they continue the myth of the Nakba, and delete the basic facts, they only perpetuate their suffering. And despite all this, the Palestinians deserve respect, freedom and independence. But alongside of Israel. Not instead of Israel. And not by means of the Nakba, which is no more than a political fraud and that a historical fraud.
* * *
Ben-Dror Yemini is a senior columnist in Maariv, daily newspaper

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Are the Rabbis descendants of the Pharisees?

Following the on-going debate on the subject, I stumbled on this:

"..Avot and Avot de Rabbi Nathan offer first a list of the 'Zugot"-"pairs" up to Hillel and Shammai, all of whom are interconnected back to Moses by the reception and transmission of the Torah. There is a break after Hillel and Shammai; after them, only Yohanan ben Zakkai is described in the same language of tradition (qibbel-massar), while the appended list of patriarchs and the enumeration of the other rabbis does not employ this typical terminology. This illustrates the desire to link Yohanan with the "pairs", i.e. to connect the rabbinic with the Pharisaic tradition." ( introduction to the Talmud and Midrash-H.L.Strack, Gunter Stemberger, P. 4).

I discussed it with a "prominent" anti-missionary, he said that there is an answer to this but never provided one.

I wonder if anyone has some thoughts or comments?

Thursday, June 10, 2010

How come I never knew about this?....

Let us address the contention that it is virtually impossible to faithfully observe the laws of shmirat halashon for more than a day or two:
Even if this were correct, is it reason enough to ignore this mitzvah? Imagine a person walking along the seashore, who sees that the sea has washed ashore precious gems. Would such a person-even if he were wealthy- refrain from picking up any gems because he knows it will be impossible to gather them all?

It is exactly the same regarding shmirat halashon. It is well known that the Vilna Gaon (in his famous letter) quotes the midrash which says that for each moment in which a person refrains from speaking the forbidden, he merits a hidden light that no angel can fathom. Note that the midrash does not speak of refraining from forbidden speech for a month, a week, or an hour-but for only a moment!
Scripture states: "if you will seek it like silver and hunt for it like hidden treasure, then you will understand the fear of HASHEM, and knowledge of God you will find" (Mishlei 2:4-5). One must strive to attain spiritual goals in the way that he would seek the greatest valuables that this world has to offer. This is the intent of the statement, "do not distance yourself from a quality that is without limit." avoiding forbidden speech brings infinite merit; if we will only pursue this quality, and not tell ourselves that it is out of our reach, than we will have achieved that which no angel can fathom. Chofetz Chaim (Sefer Shmirat Halashon).

I intend to pursue this quality.