Jesus seeks Jews who are lost – “What do you think? If a man has a hundred sheep, and one of them has gone astray, does he not leave the ninety-nine on the mountains and go in search of the one that went astray? And if he finds it, truly, I say to you, he rejoices over it more than over the ninety-nine that never went astray ~ Jesus Christ (Matthew 18:12-13).
Jesus came not to abolish but to fulfill the Law and the Prophets – “Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them. For truly, I say to you, until heaven and earth pass away, not an iota, not a dot, will pass from the Law until all is accomplished. Therefore whoever relaxes one of the least of these commandments and teaches others to do the same will be called least in the kingdom of heaven, but whoever does them and teaches them will be called great in the kingdom of heaven. For I tell you, unless your righteousness exceeds that of the scribes and Pharisees, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven” ~ Jesus Christ (Matthew 5:17-20).
Jesus came to reveal the foundation of the Law and the Prophets: Love – “But when the Pharisees heard that he had silenced the Sadducees, they gathered together. And one of them, a lawyer, asked him a question to test him. ‘Teacher, which is the great commandment in the Law?’ And he said to him, ‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the great and first commandment. And a second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself. On these two commandments depend all the Law and the Prophets’” ~ Jesus Christ (Matthew 22:34-40).
Jesus rejected those Jews who rejected him and proclaimed God’s abandonment of the house of Israel – “O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, the city that kills the prophets and stones those who are sent to it! How often would I have gathered your children together as a hen gathers her brood under her wings, and you would not! See, your house is left to you desolate. For I tell you, you will not see me again, until you say, ‘Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!’” ~ Jesus Christ (Matthew 23:37-39).
Jesus proclaimed and foretold the destruction of the Jewish temple in Jerusalem – “Jesus left the temple and was going away, when his disciples came to point out to him the buildings of the temple. But he answered them, ‘You see all these, do you not? Truly, I say to you, there will not be left here one stone upon another that will not be thrown down’” (Matthew 25:1-2).
Jesus proclaimed both his humanity and his divinity and he proclaimed that nothing would ever destroy his Church, which he would build – “Now when Jesus came into the district of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, ‘Who do people say that the Son of Man is?’ And they said, ‘Some say John the Baptist, others say Elijah, and others Jeremiah or one of the prophets.’ He said to them, “But who do you say that I am?’ Simon Peter replied, ‘You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.’ And Jesus answered him, ‘Blessed are you, Simon Bar-Jonah! For flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but my Father who is in heaven. And I tell you, you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it’” ~ Jesus Christ (Matthew 16:13-18).
Jesus foretold his being delivered up for execution by Jews (i.e. Israel) who rejected him – “When Jesus had finished all these sayings, he said to his disciples, ‘You know that after two days the Passover is coming, and the Son of Man will be delivered up to be crucified.’ Then the chief priests and the elders of the people gathered in the palace of the high priest, whose name was Caiaphas, and plotted together in order to arrest Jesus by stealth and kill him. But they said, “Not during the feast, lest there be an uproar among the people’” (Matthew 26:1-5).
Jesus died – “And Jesus cried out again with a loud voice and yielded up his spirit. And behold, the curtain of the temple was torn in two, from top to bottom. And the earth shook, and the rocks were split. The tombs also were opened. And many bodies of the saints who had fallen asleep were raised, and coming out of the tombs after his resurrection they went into the holy city and appeared to many. When the centurion and those who were with him, keeping watch over Jesus, saw the earthquake and what took place, they were filled with awe and said, ‘Truly this was the Son of God!’” (Matthew 27:50-54).
Jesus was buried and his tomb secured – “When it was evening, there came a rich man from Arimathea, named Joseph, who also was a disciple of Jesus. He went to Pilate and asked for the body of Jesus. Then Pilate ordered it to be given to him. And Joseph took the body and wrapped it in a clean linen shroud and laid it in his own new tomb, which he had cut in the rock. And he rolled a great stone to the entrance of the tomb and went away. Mary Magdalene and the other Mary were there, sitting opposite the tomb.The next day, that is, after the day of Preparation, the chief priests and the Pharisees gathered before Pilate and said, ‘Sir, we remember how that impostor said, while he was still alive, ‘After three days I will rise.’ Therefore order the tomb to be made secure until the third day, lest his disciples go and steal him away and tell the people, ‘He has risen from the dead,’ and the last fraud will be worse than the first.’ Pilate said to them, ‘You have a guard of soldiers. Go, make it as secure as you can.’ So they went and made the tomb secure by sealing the stone and setting a guard” (Matthew 27:57-66).
Jesus rose from the dead, lives forevermore, and proclaims the good news of God’s salvation, which is offered to all peoples (Jew and Gentile) of all nations – “Now after the Sabbath, toward the dawn of the first day of the week, Mary Magdalene and the other Mary went to see the tomb. And behold, there was a great earthquake, for an angel of the Lord descended from heaven and came and rolled back the stone and sat on it. His appearance was like lightning, and his clothing white as snow. And for fear of him the guards trembled and became like dead men. But the angel said to the women, ‘Do not be afraid, for I know that you seek Jesus who was crucified. He is not here, for he has risen, as he said. Come, see the place where he lay. Then go quickly and tell his disciples that he has risen from the dead, and behold, he is going before you to Galilee; there you will see him. See, I have told you.’ So they departed quickly from the tomb with fear and great joy, and ran to tell his disciples. And behold, Jesus met them and said, ‘Greetings!’ And they came up and took hold of his feet and worshiped him. Then Jesus said to them, ‘Do not be afraid; go and tell my brothers to go to Galilee, and there they will see me.’ While they were going, behold, some of the guard went into the city and told the chief priests all that had taken place. And when they had assembled with the elders and taken counsel, they gave a sufficient sum of money to the soldiers and said, ‘Tell people, ‘His disciples came by night and stole him away while we were asleep.’ And if this comes to the governor’s ears, we will satisfy him and keep you out of trouble.’ So they took the money and did as they were directed. And this story has been spread among the Jews to this day.Now the eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain to which Jesus had directed them. And when they saw him they worshiped him, but some doubted. And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age’” (Matthew 28:1-20).
This writer’s hope and belief – “I believe in the risen Christ – the Son of the living God – who is the living savior of all humankind. I believe that this good news of our salvation, which comes to us only through Jesus Christ our risen Lord, is for both Jew and Gentile. I believe that anyone who hears and willfully rejects this great offer of salvation, who willfully refuses to turn away from doing evil, and who willfully refuses to do good works, is forever and rightfully damned to receive the eternal punishment of almighty God, because I believe what Jesus, in the Gospels, has said. My hope is that all – both Jew and Gentile – will repent of (turn away from) their evil deeds (sins), believe in the resurrected Christ (have faith), and begin doing good for all peoples everywhere (good deeds) so that all might be saved and so that none should ever be damned. This is the only way we, together, can do God’s will, which is to love one another, as a human community on earth, just as his will is being done by the community of angels and saints who are in heaven.” ~ A. J. MacDonald, Jr.
Scapegoating – People who blame Jews in general (as a people group) for all the evils of the world are making scapegoats of them, which means such people are falsely blaming all Jews for evil acts which they did not actually commit.
Accusations of crimes committed – People who accuse certain Jews (or Gentiles) in particular (individuals) for evils which they are suspected to have committed are not placing blame upon them falsely, because such people are accusing these individuals of evil acts (crimes) which they may in fact have actually committed.
According to today’s usage of the word, a scapegoat is a person (or persons) innocent of evil doing who has had the sins of others (i.e., evil doers) wrongly placed upon them.
According to Jesus, a goat is: an evil doer.
Lies – Speaking lies about Jews (or about anyone) that are born from a hatred of others, which improperly blames innocent Jews (or anyone) for evil acts they have not committed, can properly be call: hate-speech. (This is also slander and, if written: libel.)
Truth – Speaking the truth about evil acts committed by Jews (or by anyone) is to take a stand for justice and for truth, which cannot properly be called: hate-speech (or “anti-semitic” hate-speech).
“And he shall take from the congregation of the people of Israel two male goats for a sin offering, and one ram for a burnt offering. Aaron shall offer the bull as a sin offering for himself and shall make atonement for himself and for his house. Then he shall take the two goats and set them before the LORD at the entrance of the tent of meeting. And Aaron shall cast lots over the two goats, one lot for the LORD and the other lot for Azazel. And Aaron shall present the goat on which the lot fell for the LORD and use it as a sin offering, but the goat on which the lot fell for Azazel shall be presented alive before the LORD to make atonement over it, that it may be sent away into the wilderness to Azazel” (Leviticus 16:5-10).
“And when he has made an end of atoning for the Holy Place and the tent of meeting and the altar, he shall present the live goat. And Aaron shall lay both his hands on the head of the live goat, and confess over it all the iniquities of the people of Israel, and all their transgressions, all their sins. And he shall put them on the head of the goat and send it away into the wilderness by the hand of a man who is in readiness. The goat shall bear all their iniquities on itself to a remote area, and he shall let the goat go free in the wilderness” (Leviticus 16:20-22).
Holy Scripture – Jesus separates the sheep from the goats: Which are you?
“When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, then he will sit on his glorious throne. Before him will be gathered all the nations, and he will separate people one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats. And he will place the sheep on his right, but the goats on the left . . . Then he will say to those on his left, ‘Depart from me, you cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels. For I was hungry and you gave me no food, I was thirsty and you gave me no drink, I was a stranger and you did not welcome me, naked and you did not clothe me, sick and in prison and you did not visit me.’ Then they also will answer, saying, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or sick or in prison, and did not minister to you?’ Then he will answer them, saying, ‘Truly, I say to you, as you did not do it to one of the least of these, you did not do it to me.’ And these will go away into eternal punishment, but the righteous into eternal life.” (Matthew 25:31-33; 41-46).
*An Important Point to Keep in Mind: All of the Apostles and most all of the early followers of (and believers in) Christ were Jews
“Hear another parable. There was a master of a house [God] who planted a vineyard and put a fence around it and dug a winepress in it and built a tower and leased it to tenants [Jews], and went into another country. When the season for fruit drew near, he sent his servants [prophets] to the tenants to get his fruit. And the tenants took his servants and beat one, killed another, and stoned another. Again he sent other servants, more than the first. And they did the same to them. Finally he sent his son [Jesus] to them, saying, ‘They will respect my son.’ But when the tenants saw the son, they said to themselves, ‘This is the heir. Come, let us kill him and have his inheritance.’ And they took him and threw him out of the vineyard and killed him. When therefore the owner of the vineyard comes, what will he do to those tenants?” They said to him, “He will put those wretches to a miserable death and let out the vineyard to other tenants [Gentiles]who will give him the fruits in their seasons.” Jesus said to them, “Have you never read in the Scriptures: “‘The stone that the builders rejected has become the cornerstone; this was the Lord’s doing, and it is marvelous in our eyes’? Therefore I tell you, the kingdom of God will be taken away from you [Jews] and given to a people [Gentiles]producing its fruits. And the one who falls on this stone [Jesus] will be broken to pieces; and when it falls on anyone, it will crush him.” When the chief priests and the Pharisees heard his parables, they perceived that he was speaking about them. And although they were seeking to arrest him, they feared the crowds, because they held him to be a prophet (Matthew 21:33-46).
The Pharisees – The Law, Traditions, and Commandments Without Love
“Then Pharisees and scribes came to Jesus from Jerusalem and said, ‘Why do your disciples break the tradition of the elders? For they do not wash their hands when they eat.’ He answered them, ‘And why do you break the commandment of God for the sake of your tradition? For God commanded, ‘Honor your father and your mother,’ and, ‘Whoever reviles father or mother must surely die.’ But you say, ‘If anyone tells his father or his mother, ‘What you would have gained from me is given to God’, he need not honor his father.’ So for the sake of your tradition you have made void the word of God. You hypocrites! Well did Isaiah prophesy of you, when he said: ‘This people honors me with their lips, but their heart is far from me; in vain do they worship me, teaching as doctrines the commandments of men’” (Matthew 15:1-9).
What Defiles a Person? Unclean Foods? Or an Unclean Heart?
“And he called the people to him and said to them, ‘Hear and understand: it is not what goes into the mouth that defiles a person, but what comes out of the mouth; this defiles a person.’ Then the disciples came and said to him, ‘Do you know that the Pharisees were offended when they heard this saying?’ He answered, ‘Every plant that my heavenly Father has not planted will be rooted up. Let them alone; they are blind guides. And if the blind lead the blind, both will fall into a pit.’ But Peter said to him, ‘Explain the parable to us.’ And he said, ‘Are you also still without understanding? Do you not see that whatever goes into the mouth passes into the stomach and is expelled? But what comes out of the mouth proceeds from the heart, and this defiles a person. For out of the heart come evil thoughts, murder, adultery, sexual immorality, theft, false witness, slander. These are what defile a person. But to eat with unwashed hands does not defile anyone’” (Matthew 15:10-20).
The Faith of a Canaanite (i.e., Palestinian Gentile) Woman
“And Jesus went away from there and withdrew to the district of Tyre and Sidon. And behold, a Canaanite woman from that region came out and was crying, ‘Have mercy on me, O Lord, Son of David; my daughter is severely oppressed by a demon.’ But he did not answer her a word. And his disciples came and begged him, saying, ‘Send her away, for she is crying out after us.’ He answered, ‘I was sent only to the lost sheep of the house of Israel.’ But she came and knelt before him, saying, ‘Lord, help me.’ And he answered, ‘It is not right to take the children’s bread and throw it to the dogs.’ She said, ‘Yes, Lord, yet even the dogs eat the crumbs that fall from their masters’ table.’ Then Jesus answered her, ‘O woman, great is your faith! Be it done for you as you desire.’ And her daughter was healed instantly” (Matthew 15:21-28).
The Cleansing of the Temple
“And Jesus entered the temple and drove out all who sold and bought in the temple, and he overturned the tables of the money-changers and the seats of those who sold pigeons. He said to them, ‘It is written, ‘My house shall be called a house of prayer,’ but you make it a den of robbers’” (Matthew 21:12-13).
“Then Jesus said to the crowds and to his disciples, ‘The scribes and the Pharisees sit on Moses’ seat, so practice and observe whatever they tell you—but not what they do. For they preach, but do not practice. They tie up heavy burdens, hard to bear, and lay them on people’s shoulders, but they themselves are not willing to move them with their finger’” (Matthew 23:1-4).
“They do all their deeds to be seen by others. For they make their phylacteries broad and their fringes long, and they love the place of honor at feasts and the best seats in the synagogues and greetings in the marketplaces and being called rabbi by others” (Matthew 23:5-7).
“But you are not to be called rabbi, for you have one teacher, and you are all brothers. And call no man your father on earth, for you have one Father, who is in heaven. Neither be called instructors, for you have one instructor, the Christ. The greatest among you shall be your servant. Whoever exalts himself will be humbled, and whoever humbles himself will be exalted” (Matthew 23:8-12).
“But woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you shut the kingdom of heaven in people’s faces. For you neither enter yourselves nor allow those who would enter to go in. Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you travel across sea and land to make a single proselyte, and when he becomes a proselyte, you make him twice as much a child of hell as yourselves” (Matthew 23:13-15).
“Woe to you, blind guides, who say, ‘If anyone swears by the temple, it is nothing, but if anyone swears by the gold of the temple, he is bound by his oath.’ You blind fools! For which is greater, the gold or the temple that has made the gold sacred? And you say, ‘If anyone swears by the altar, it is nothing, but if anyone swears by the gift that is on the altar, he is bound by his oath.’ You blind men! For which is greater, the gift or the altar that makes the gift sacred? So whoever swears by the altar swears by it and by everything on it. And whoever swears by the temple swears by it and by him who dwells in it. And whoever swears by heaven swears by the throne of God and by him who sits upon it” (Matthew 23:16-22).
“Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you tithe mint and dill and cumin, and have neglected the weightier matters of the law: justice and mercy and faithfulness. These you ought to have done, without neglecting the others. You blind guides, straining out a gnat and swallowing a camel! (Matthew 23:23-24).
“Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you clean the outside of the cup and the plate, but inside they are full of greed and self-indulgence. You blind Pharisee! First clean the inside of the cup and the plate, that the outside also may be clean” (Matthew 23:25-26).
“Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you are like whitewashed tombs, which outwardly appear beautiful, but within are full of dead people’s bones and all uncleanness. So you also outwardly appear righteous to others, but within you are full of hypocrisy and lawlessness” (Matthew 23:27-28).
“Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you build the tombs of the prophets and decorate the monuments of the righteous, saying, ‘If we had lived in the days of our fathers, we would not have taken part with them in shedding the blood of the prophets.’ Thus you witness against yourselves that you are sons of those who murdered the prophets. Fill up, then, the measure of your fathers. You serpents, you brood of vipers, how are you to escape being sentenced to hell? Therefore I send you prophets and wise men and scribes, some of whom you will kill and crucify, and some you will flog in your synagogues and persecute from town to town, so that on you may come all the righteous blood shed on earth, from the blood of innocent Abel to the blood of Zechariah the son of Barachiah, whom you murdered between the sanctuary and the altar. Truly, I say to you, all these things will come upon this generation” (Matthew 23:29-36).
Jesus’ Lament over Jerusalem and his Proclamation of Judgement upon Israel
“O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, the city that kills the prophets and stones those who are sent to it! How often would I have gathered your children together as a hen gathers her brood under her wings, and you would not! See, your house is left to you desolate. For I tell you, you will not see me again, until you say, ‘Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord’” (Matthew 23:37-39).
The Object and Doctrinal Teaching of the First Gospel – Catholic Encyclopedia
Immediately after the descent of the Holy Ghost upon the Apostles, Peter preached that Jesus, crucified and risen, was the Messias, the Saviour of the World, and proved this assertion by relating the life, death, and resurrection of the Lord. This was the first Apostolic teaching, and was repeated by the other preachers of the Gospel, of whom tradition tells us that Matthew was one. This Evangelist proclaimed the Gospel to the Hebrews and, before his departure from Jerusalem, wrote in his mother tongue the Gospel that he had preached. Hence the aim of the Evangelist was primarily apologetic.
He wished to demonstrate to his readers, whether these were converts or still unbelieving Jews, that in Jesus the ancient prophecies had been realized in their entirety. This thesis includes three principal ideas:
Jesus is the Messias, and the kingdom He inaugurates is the Messianic kingdom foretold by the prophets; because of their sins, the Jews, as a nation, shall have no part in this kingdom the Gospel will be announced to all nations, and all are called to salvation.
St. Matthew has shown that in Jesus all the ancient prophesies on the Messias were fulfilled. He was the Emmanuel, born of a Virgin Mother (1:22-23), announced by Isaias (7:14); He was born at Bethlehem (ii, 6), as had been predicted by Micheas (v, 2), He went to Egypt and was recalled thence (ii, 15) as foretold by Osee (11:1). According to the prediction of Isaias (40:3), He was heralded by a precursor, John the Baptist (iii, 1 sqq.); He cured all the sick (viii, 16 so.), that the Prophecy of Isaias (53:4) might be fulfilled; and in all His actions He was indeed the same of whom this prophet had spoken (xiii, 1). His teaching in parables (13:3) was conformable to what Isaias had said (6:9). Finally, He suffered, and the entire drama of His Passion and Death was a fulfilment of the prophecies of Scripture (Isaiah 53:3-12; Psalm 21:13-22). Jesus proclaimed Himself the Messias by His approbation of Peter’s confession (16:16-17) and by His answer to the high priest (26:63-64). St. Matthew also endeavours to show that the Kingdom inaugurated by Jesus Christ is the Messianic Kingdom. From the beginning of His public life, Jesus proclaims that the Kingdom of Heaven is at hand (4:17); in the Sermon on the Mount He promulgates the charter of this kingdom, and in parables He speaks of its nature and conditions. In His answer to the envoys of John the Baptist Jesus specifically declares that the Messianic Kingdom, foretold by the Prophets, has come to pass, and He describes its characteristics: “The blind see, and the lame walk, the lepers are cleansed, the deaf hear, the dead rise again, the poor have the gospel preached to them.” It was in these terms, that Isaias had described the future kingdom (35:5-6). St. Matthew records a very formal expression of the Lord concerning the coming of the Kingdom: “But if I by the Spirit of God cast out devils, then is the kingdom of God come upon you” (xii, 28). Moreover, Jesus could call Himself the Messias only inasmuch as the Kingdom of God had come.
The Exclusion of Jews as a Nation (i.e., Israel) from Christ’s Messianic Kingdom
The Jews as a nation were rejected because of their sins, and were to have no part in the Kingdom of Heaven. This rejection had been several times predicted by the prophets, and St. Matthew shows that it was because of its incredulity that Israel was excluded from the Kingdom, he dwells on all the events in which the increasing obduracy of the Jewish nation is conspicuous, manifested first in the princes and then in the hatred of the people who beseech Pilate to put Jesus to death. Thus the Jewish nation itself was accountable for its exclusion from the Messianic kingdom.
The Universal Proclamation of the Gospel
That the pagans were called to salvation instead of the Jews, Jesus declared explicitly to the unbelieving Israelites: “Therefore I say to you that the kingdom of God shall be taken from you, and shall be given to a nation yielding the fruits thereof” (xxi, 43); “He that soweth the good seed, is the Son of man. And the field is the world” (xiii, 37-38). “And this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in the whole world for a testimony to all nations, and then shall the consummation come” (xxiv, 14). Finally, appearing to His Apostles in Galilee, Jesus gives them this supreme command: “All power is given to me in heaven and in earth. Going therefore, teach ye all nations” (xxviii 18, 19).
The Inverted and Perverted – But Very Popular – False Teaching of Judaized American Evangelical Christianity: Christian Zionism.
SHOCKING VIDEO – Judaized American Evangelical Christian Zionist Pastor John Hagee teaches – contrary to Holy Scripture – the Jews never refused to believe that Jesus was Messiah, because Jesus never claimed to be Messiah; therefore the Jews cannot be blamed for rejecting Jesus as Messiah. (WTF?!)
VIDEO – Christian Zionism Exposed
Christian Zionism – Roadmap to Armageddon?
Christian Zionism – The 100 Year-Old Duping of American Evangelical Christianity
Jews Who Reject Zionism – True Torah Jews Against Zionism
“So for the sake of your tradition you have made void the word of God. You hypocrites! Well did Isaiah prophesy of you, when he said: “‘This people honors me with their lips, but their heart is far from me; in vain do they worship me, teaching as doctrines the commandments of men’” ~ Jesus Christ (Matthew 15:6-9).
Those hypocritical Pharisees and Jews who rejected Christ and survived the judgment and destruction of Jerusalem, which Jesus proclaimed and foretold, having made void the word of God, codified their vain worship “teaching as doctrines the commandments of men” in the Talmud and in what eventually became known as: Judaism. “The Pharisees held the Jews together after the destruction of the Temple in 70 AD. The sect continued into the 2nd century, working on the redaction of the Talmud and looking for the restoration of Israel through divine intervention” (see: Pharisees).
According to The Jewish Encyclopedia, Jesus was often accused by the Talmudists of performing magic.
It is the tendency of all these sources to belittle the person of Jesus by ascribing to him illegitimate birth, magic, and a shameful death …
Magic may have been ascribed him over against the miracles recorded in the Gospels …
The sojourn of Jesus in Egypt is an essential part of the story of his youth. According to the Gospels he was in that country in his early infancy, but Celsus says that he was in service there and learned magic …
According to Celsus (in Origen, “Contra Celsum,” i. 28) and to the Talmud (Shab. 104b), Jesus learned magic in Egypt and performed his miracles by means of it; the latter work, in addition, states that he cut the magic formulas into his skin. It does not mention, however, the nature of his magic performances (Tosef., Shab. xi. 4; Yer. Shab. 18d); but as it states that the disciples of Jesus healed the sick “in the name of Jesus Pandera” (Yer. Shab. 14d; Ab. Zarah 27b; Eccl. R. i. 8 ) it may be assumed that its author held the miracles of Jesus also to have been miraculous cures. Different in nature is the witchcraft attributed to Jesus in the “Toledot.” When Jesus was expelled from the circle of scholars, he is said to have returned secretly from Galilee to Jerusalem, where he inserted a parchment containing the “declared name of God” (“Shem ha-Meforash”), which was guarded in the Temple, into his skin, carried it away, and then, taking it out of his skin, he performed his miracles by its means. This magic formula then had to be recovered from him, and Judah the Gardener (a personage of the “Toledot” corresponding to Judas Iscariot) offered to do it; he and Jesus then engaged in an aerial battle (borrowed from the legend of SIMON MAGUS), in which Judah remained victor and Jesus fled.
The accusation of magic is frequently brought against Jesus. Jerome mentions it, quoting the Jews: “Magum vocant et Judaei Dominum meum” (“Ep. 1v., ad Ascellam,” i. 196, ed. Vallarsi); Marcus, of the sect of the Valentinians, was, according to Jerome, a native of Egypt, and was accused of being, like Jesus, a magician (Hilgenfeld, “Ketzergesch.” p. 870, Leipsic, 1884). The accusation of magic is frequently brought against Jesus … As Balaam the magician and, according to the derivation of his name, “destroyer of the people”, was from both of these points of view a good prototype of Jesus, the latter was also called “Balaam” …
“Jesus performed all his miracles by means of magic…” ~ The Jewish Encyclopedia (26)
VIDEO – Jesus teaching in the temple, casting out demons (from Franco Zeffirelli’s film: Jesus of Nazareth)
“In this scholarly and deeply considered work, the author documents his provocative thesis that Judaism is not the religion of the Old Testament, but the newly formalized belief system of the Pharisees, which arose in Babylon with the commitment of the formerly oral “tradition of the elders” to writing, in the wake of the crucifixion of Israel’s Messiah and the destruction of the Temple. Basing his findings on authoritative Judaic sources, Hoffman demonstrates that Judaism is a man-made religion of tradition and superstition, which represents the institutionalized nullification of Biblical law and doctrine. Liberating the reader from the accumulated shackles of decades of misinformation, this book shows that Judaism’s God is not the God of Israel, but the strange gods of Talmud and Kabbalah, and the racial self-worship they inculcate.”
See: “Judaism’s Strange Gods” by Michael Hoffman: http://downloads.umu.nu/Books/Hoffmanstrange.pdf
The place and value of the gospel miracles – Catholic Encyclopedia
In studying the Gospel miracles we are impressed by the accounts given of their multitude, and by the fact that only a very small proportion of them is related by the Evangelists in detail; the Gospels speak only in the most general terms of the miracles Christ performed in the great missionary journeys through Galilee and Judea. We read that the people, seeing the things which He did, followed Him in crowds (Matthew 4:25), to the number of 5000 (Luke 9:14) so that He could not enter the cities, and His fame spread from Jerusalem through Syria (Matthew 4:24). His reputation was so great that the chief priests in council speak of Him as one who “doth many miracles” (John 11:47), the disciples at Emmaus as the “prophet, mighty in work and word before God and all the people” (Luke 24:19), and St. Peter describes Him to Cornelius as the wonder-working preacher (Acts 10:38). Out of the great mass of miraculous events surrounding our Lord’s person, the Evangelists made a selection. True, it was impossible to narrate all (John 20:30). Yet we can see in the narrated miracles a twofold reason for the selection.
(1) The great purpose of the Redemption was the manifestation of God’s glory in the salvation of man through the life and work of His Incarnate Son. Thus it ranks supreme among the works of God’s Providence over men.
This explains the life and teaching of Christ; it enables us to grasp the scope and plan of His miracles. They can be considered in relation to the office and person of Christ as Redeemer. Thus they have their source in the hypostatic union and follow on the relation of Christ to men as Redeemer. In them we can see references to the great redemption work He came to accomplish. Hence the Evangelists conceive Christ’s miraculous power as an influence radiating from Him (Mark 5:30; Luke 6:19), and theologians call the miracles of Christ theandrical works.
Their aim is the glory of God in the manifestation of Christ’s glory and in the salvation of men, as e.g. in the miracle of Cana (John 2:11), in the Transfiguration (Matthew 17), the Resurrection of Lazarus (John 11:15), Christ’s last prayer for the Apostles (John 17), the Resurrection of Christ (Acts 10:40). St. John opens his Gospel with the Incarnation of the Eternal Word and adds, “we saw his glory” (John 1:14). Hence Irenaeus (Against Heresies V) and Athanasius (Incarn.) teach that the works of Christ were the manifestations of the Divine Word who in the beginning made all things and who in the Incarnation displayed His power over nature and man, as a manifestation of the new life imparted to man and a revelation of the character and purposes of God. The repeated references in the Acts and in the Epistles to the “glory of Christ” have relation to His miracles. The source and purpose of the miracles of Christ is the reason for their intimate connection with His life and teaching. A saving and redeeming mission was the purpose of the miracles, as it was of the doctrine and life of the eternal Son of God.
Their motive was mercy. Most of Christ’s miracles were works of mercy. They were performed not with a view to awe men by the feeling of omnipotence, but to show compassion for sinful and suffering humanity. They are not to be regarded as isolated or transitory acts of sympathy, but as prompted by a deep and abiding mercy which characterizes the office of Saviour. The Redemption is a work of mercy, and the miracles reveal the mercy of God in the works of His Incarnate Son (Acts 10:38).
Hence we can see in them a symbolical character. They were signs, and in a special sense they signified by the typical language of external facts, the inward renewal of the soul. Thus, in commenting on the miracle of the widow’s son at Naim, St. Augustine says that Christ raised three from the death of the body, but thousands from the death of sin to the life of Divine grace (Serm. de verbis Dom., xcviii, al. xliv).
The relief which Christ brought to the body represented the deliverance He was working on souls. His miracles of cures and healings were the visible picture of His spiritual work in the warfare with evil. These miracles, summarized in the answer of Jesus to the messengers of John (Matthew 11:5), are explained by the Fathers of the Church with reference to the ills of the soul (ST III:44). The motive and meaning of the miracles explain the moderation Christ showed in the use of His infinite power. Repose in strength is a sublime trait in the character of Jesus; it comes from the conscious possession of power to be used for the good of men. Rousseau confesses “All the miracles of Jesus were useful without pomp or display, but simple as His words, His life, His whole conduct” (Lettr. de la Montag., pt. I, lett. iii). He does not perform them for the sake of being a mere worker of miracles. Everything He does has a meaning when viewed in the relation Christ holds to men. In the class known as miracles of power Jesus does not show a mere mental and moral superiority over ordinary men. In virtue of His redeeming mission He proves that He is Lord and Master of the forces of nature.
Thus by a word He stills the tempest, by a word He multiplied a few loaves and fishes so that thousands feasted and were filled, by a word He healed lepers, drove out demons, raised the dead to life, and finally set the great seal upon His mission by rising from death, as He had explicitly foretold. Thus Renan admits that “even the marvellous in the Gospels is but sober good sense compared with that which we meet in the Jewish apocryphal writings or the Hindu or European mythologies” (Stud. in Hist. of Relig., pp. 177 203).
Hence the miracles of Christ have a doctrinal import. They have a vital connection with His teaching and mission, illustrate the nature and purpose of His kingdom, and show a connection with some of the greatest doctrines and principles of His Church. Its catholicity is shown in the miracles of the centurion’s servant (Matthew 8) and the Syro-phoenician woman (Mark 7). The Sabbatical miracles reveal its purpose, i.e., the salvation of men, and show that Christ’s kingdom marks the passing of the Old Dispensation. His miracles teach the power of faith and the answer given to prayer. The central truth of His teaching was life. He came to give life to men, and this teaching is emphasized by raising the dead to life, especially in the case of Lazarus and His own Resurrection. The sacramental teaching of the miracles is manifested in the miracle of Cana (John 2), in the cure of the paralytic, to show he had the power to forgive sins [and he used this power (Matthew 9) and gave it to the Apostles (John 20:23) ], in the multiplication of the loaves (John 6) and in raising the dead. Finally, the prophetic element of the fortunes of the individual and of the Church is shown in the miracles of stilling the tempest, of Christ on the waters, of the draught of fishes, of the didrachma and the barren fig tree. Jesus makes the miracle of Lazarus the type of the General Resurrection, just as the Apostles take the Resurrection of Christ to signify the rising of the soul from the death of sin to the life of grace, and to be a pledge and prophecy of the victory over sin and death and of the final resurrection (1 Thessalonians 4).
(2) The miracles of Christ have an evidential value. This aspect naturally follows from the above considerations. In the first miracle at Cana He “manifested His glory“, therefore the disciples “believed in Him” (John 2:11). Jesus constantly appealed to His “works” as evidences of His mission and His divinity. He declares that His miracles have greater evidential value than the testimony of John the Baptist (John 5:36); their logical and theological force as evidences is expressed by Nicodemus (John 3:2). And to the miracles Jesus adds the evidence of prophecy (John 5:31). Now their value as evidences for the people then living is found not only in the display of omnipotence in His redeeming mission but also in the multitude of His works. Thus the unrecorded miracles had an evidential bearing on His mission. So we can see an evidential reason for the selection of the miracles as narrated in the Gospels.
This selection was guided by a purpose to make clear the main events in Christ’s life leading up to the Crucifixion and to show that certain definite miracles (e.g., the cure of the lepers, the casting out of demons in a manner marvelously superior to the exorcisms of the Jews, the Sabbatical miracles, the raising of Lazarus) caused the rulers of the Synagogue to conspire and put Him to death.
Thus, for us, who depend on the Gospel narratives, the evidential value of Christ’s miracles comes from a comparatively small number related in detail, though of a most stupendous and clearly supernatural kind, some of which were performed almost in private and followed by the strictest injunctions not to publish them. In considering them as evidences in relation to us now living, we may add to them the constant reference to the multitude of miracles unrecorded in detail, their intimate connection with our Lord’s teaching and life, their relation to the prophecies of the Old Testament, their own prophetic character as fulfilled in the development of His kingdom on earth.
Jesus’ Exorcism for a Gentile Child – An Atheist’s Perspective (See also: “The Faith of a Canaanite (i.e., Palestinian Gentile) Woman” (above) and Matthew 15:21-28)
The following quote, which is taken from an atheist’s perspective, is something I can agree with and I think the author, here, makes some very good and very important observations regarding the differences between Christ’s healing miracles performed upon Jews (= all) and upon Gentiles (= only two), although I would disagree with his article regarding other points. Remember: Jesus said, “I was sent only to the lost sheep of the house of Israel” (Matthew 15:24).
“Jesus’ fame is spreading beyond the Jewish population and on to outsiders — even beyond the borders of Galilee. Tyre and Sidon were located to the north of Galilee (in what was then the Province of Syria) and were two of the most important cities of the ancient Phoenecian empire. This was not a Jewish area, so why did Jesus travel here?
Perhaps he was attempting to find some private, anonymous time away from home but even there he couldn’t be kept secret. This story involves a Greek (thus a Gentile rather than a Jew) and a woman from Syrophenicia (another name for Canaan, the region between Syria and Phoenicia) who hoped to get Jesus to perform an exorcism on her daughter. It’s not clear whether she was from the region around Tyre and Sidon or from somewhere else.
Jesus’ reaction here is odd and not entirely consistent with how Christians have traditionally portrayed him. Instead of immediately showing compassion and mercy towards her predicament, his first inclination is to send her away. Why? Because she isn’t Jewish — Jesus even likens non-Jews to dogs who should not be fed before his ‘children’ (Jews) have had their fill.
It is interesting that Jesus’ miraculous healing is done at a distance. When he heals Jews, he does so personally and by touching; when he heals Gentiles, he does it at a distance and without touching. This suggests an early tradition whereby Jews were given direct access to Jesus while he was alive, but Gentiles are given access to the risen Jesus who helps and heals without physical presence.” ~ Austin Cline
The Faith of a (Roman Gentile) Centurion
“When he [Jesus] entered Capernaum, a centurion came forward to him, appealing to him, ‘Lord, my servant is lying paralyzed at home, suffering terribly.’ And he said to him, ‘I will come and heal him.’ But the centurion replied, “Lord, I am not worthy to have you come under my roof, but only say the word, and my servant will be healed. For I too am a man under authority, with soldiers under me. And I say to one, ‘Go,’ and he goes, and to another, ‘Come,’ and he comes, and to my servant, ‘Do this,’ and he does it.’ When Jesus heard this, he marveled and said to those who followed him, ‘Truly, I tell you, with no one in Israel have I found such faith. I tell you, many will come from east and west and recline at table with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob in the kingdom of heaven, while the sons of the kingdom will be thrown into the outer darkness. In that place there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.’ And to the centurion Jesus said, ‘Go; let it be done for you as you have believed.’ And the servant was healed at that very moment” (Matthew 8:5-13).
Come to Me, and I Will Give You Rest
“At that time Jesus declared, ‘I thank you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, that you have hidden these things from the wise and understanding and revealed them to little children; yes, Father, for such was your gracious will. All things have been handed over to me by my Father, and no one knows the Son except the Father, and no one knows the Father except the Son and anyone to whom the Son chooses to reveal him. Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light’” (Matthew 11:25-30).
The Sermon on the Mount
“Seeing the crowds, he went up on the mountain, and when he sat down, his disciples came to him.”
“And he opened his mouth and taught them, saying:
Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted.
Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth.
Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be satisfied.
Blessed are the merciful, for they shall receive mercy.
Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.
Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God.
Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness’ sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
Blessed are you when others revile you and persecute you and utter all kinds of evil against you falsely on my account. Rejoice and be glad, for your reward is great in heaven, for so they persecuted the prophets who were before you” (Matthew 5:1-12).
Love Your Enemies
“You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ But I say to you, Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, so that you may be sons of your Father who is in heaven. For he makes his sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust. For if you love those who love you, what reward do you have? Do not even the tax collectors do the same? And if you greet only your brothers, what more are you doing than others? Do not even the Gentiles do the same? You therefore must be perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect” (Matthew 5:43-48).