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Showing posts from June, 2008

The real hometown of Yeshua?

The traditional town of Nazareth does not meet the description of Nazareth given in the Bible. This document explains why, and then shows photographs of an unexcavated town in Galillee that fits the Bible's description of the real Nazareth. Check it out!

Fled Naked?

As Yeshua was arrested, the gospel of Mark says: "Now a certain young man followed Him, having a linen cloth thrown around his naked body. And the young men laid hold of him, and he left the linen cloth and fled from them naked" ( Mark 14:51, 52).

Some believe that was Mark's way of putting himself into the story, showing that he knew the things of which he wrote. Others believe that the young man represented the disciples "fleeing from Yeshua." Still others agreeing that the young man was symbolic, think that he represented the future followers of Yeshua, willing to forsake everything and follow "naked."Of course, an understanding of a Hebrew idiom aids in understanding this verse. The prophet Amos, speaking the words of Yah, said:

Amo 2:11 And I raised up from your sons prophets, and Nazarites from your young men. Is this not even so, O sons of Israel? declares Yahweh. 12 But you gave the Nazarites wine to drink, and you commanded the prophets, s…

The disciple whom Jesus loved

The phrase the disciple whom Jesus loved or Beloved Disciple is used several times in the Gospel of John. It is the Beloved Disciple who asks Yeshua during the Last Supper who it is that will betray him. Later at the crucifixion, Yeshua tells his mother "Woman, here is your son"; that he indicates the Beloved Disciple is the common interpretation. To the Beloved Disciple he says, "Here is your mother." When Mary Magdalene discovers the empty tomb, she runs to tell the Beloved Disciple and Simon Peter. Since the Beloved Disciple does not appear in any of the other New Testament gospels, it has been traditionally seen as a self-reference to John the Evangelist, and this remains the mainstream identification.

Apart from John, there have been numerous attempts to identify the "Beloved Disciple" using any number of interpretations. However, all fail to recognize and understand a simple semitic idiom which is important in helping to zero in on the correct identi…

Do this as my memorial.

Truth, belief, and knowledge. These three epistemological concepts play an important role in our religion. However, how they interact in modern Christianity is not quite the same as the ancient understanding of their roles and importance. In fact, during the time of Yeshua, the theory of knowledge was well developed. Plato, who, by that time, was an ancient philosopher had profoundly impacted the understanding of this area of study.

What we believe is true and what is, in fact, true are not the same. Further, what we believe is true and what we know to be true represent distinct sets as well. Ancient Hebrews understood "knowledge" (da'ath) to be a subset of our beliefs, namely, those beliefs, which had been vindicated or borne out (shafat) by experiences. Frankly, unlike many modern Christians, ancient Hebrews had little regard for mere beliefs. Their focus was on knowledge.

Unfortunately, while ancient people had adequate means for transmitting their belief's, as …

"Sons" of Shem

Genesis 10:22 sets out the "sons" of Shem as: Elam, and Asshur, and Arpachshad, and Lud, and Aram.

While almost all scholars accept this putative genealogy as a description of the root Semitic cultures known by the Hebrews at the time, there are many, many descriptions of what two of these names mean. Aram, Asshur and Elam are known definitively as the cultures of those respective cities, the Elamites of present-day Southwest Iran, the Assyrians of the upper Tigris river valley, and the Arameans of Northern Syria.

The name Lud is accepted by many scholars to refer to the Lydians of the (now) Manisa region turkey. However, the Lydians were not semitic speakers, but instead spoke an Anatolian language. It is therefore highly unlikely that the Hebrew scholars would have listed them as "sons of Shem" (i.e., Semitic). In fact, Lud more likely represents a corrupted spelling of the city, Lubdi, a city well known from cuneiform script and situated between the upper Tig…