Thursday, December 29, 2016

Judaism is Fundamentally a Religion of Practice

An article I read about an interview with Noam Chomsky inspired me to write this blog. Before I knew anything about Noam Chomsky, I was introduced to the work of his father William Chomsky through his book Hebrew: The Eternal Language. It contains a wealth of knowledge about the culture behind ancient Hebrew words. It wasn’t until I returned to college and began taking linguistics courses that I learned about Noam. He is a professor at MIT and is considered the “Father of Modern Linguistics.” In an awards ceremony at MIT, he was introduced as the “world's most cited living scholar.”  He is also known as “the world's leading political dissident,” which often makes him an unpopular figure to those on the right and left.

In a December 14, 2016 interview with Daily Mirror, Noam Chomsky was asked: “And your views on religion, you were born into a Jewish family and raised . . . .” His answer brought back some old memories for me. I grew up in a town that did not have a synagogue and I did not personally know any Jewish people until I began my research on the Jewish Jesus in my mid-30s. The first Jews I met practiced ultraorthodox forms of Judaism. Since I came from a fundamentalist Protestant Christian background, it seemed to me that we shared a lot of things in common – belief in one God, belief in the Scriptures, etc.

Later, I got to know another group of Jews who made it clear to me that they were atheists. Now I knew a lot of “former Christians” who were atheists, but this group did not identify themselves as “former Jews;” they made it clear they still Jews. But even though that gave me something to think about, what they did simply did not compute – they kept the Shabbat, went to synagogues on Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur, and did other “Jewish” things!

Why would people who didn’t believe in God do those things? It took me a long time to finally understand. Chomsky’s response to the question above reminded me of that period in my life and that’s why I decided to share it with you. (I added underlines to highlight points).

Well, remember that Judaism is fundamentally a religion of practice, more than belief. So, say my grandfather, who was basically still living in the 17th century Eastern Europe was ultra religious. But if I had asked him, did you believe in God? He probably wouldn’t have known what I was talking about. Judaism means carrying out the practices. My father was basically secular, but deeply involved in Jewish life. If you go to a New England church on Sunday morning, you would find people who are deeply religious, but not believers. Religion to them means community, associations, helping each other, having some common values and so on. Religion could be all sorts of things. But to me, it doesn’t happen to be a value; if other people do, that is their business.”

Judaism is “fundamentally a religion of practice.” Keep that in mind when you read about the life and teachings of the Real Yeshua. His message and movement was about what people do, not what they believe.

This has definitely been an exciting and challenging journey. If you found this information useful, please let us know by going to The Real Yeshua Facebook page by CLICKING HERE and “Like it.”

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Jim Myers

Friday, December 23, 2016

Who Founded Christianity? Jesus, Paul or Neither? The Answer Will Surprise You

Nowhere in the New Testament does Jesus or Paul say he is rejecting Judaism and starting a new religion. In fact, the term “Christian” doesn’t appear at all in the Gospels (Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John), which chronicle Jesus’ spiritual mission; and only later, three times in the rest of the New Testament. If Jesus conceived of a new church, why did he spend his life religiously celebrating the major Jewish holidays in the Temple in Jerusalem? And we must remember that throughout the years Jesus prayed, preached, and read from the Torah in a synagogue on the Sabbath. Read the complete blog at --

Thursday, December 22, 2016

"DO TZEDAQAH (righteousness)" - Yeshua’s Primary Message

The following is from a book we highly recommend – There shall be no needy: Pursuing Social Justice through Jewish Law & Tradition by Rabbi Jill Jacobs © 2009; Jewish Lights Publishing, Woodstock, Vermont; pp. 80, 84-85. Rabbi Jacobs is providing information from sources much later than Yeshua, but I have no doubt that he would be in complete agreement with her message. The information below has been edited and highlighted to make specific points related to the teachings of Yeshua.

The theme of JUSTICE remains central to the understanding of TZEDAQAH (righteousness). Support for the poor is understood as an obligation and as a means of restoring justice to the world, and not as an altruistic or voluntary gesture.

If the poor are entitled to the same dignity and quality of life as the wealthy, and if the fortunes of the wealthy and the poor are understood to be interconnected, then it stands to reason that the better off would be expected to care for the needs of the less well-off.

In contrast with philanthropy or charity, TZEDAQAH (righteousness) specifically refers to financial support for the poor. Other kinds of giving – to communal institutions such as synagogues, museums, schools, and cultural organizations – are important responsibilities, but are not necessarily considered TZEDAQAH (righteousness).

The goal of TZEDAQAH (righteousness) is, first and foremost, to lift individual people out of poverty and to create a more equitable world. At the same time, giving TZEDAQAH (righteousness) should also increase our own awareness of the world around us, and should arouse in us compassion for those in need.

Conditioning ourselves to give TZEDAQAH (righteousness) can bring us into a closer relationship with God and has the potential to increase the sense of divine compassion in the world as a whole.

TZEDAQAH (righteousness) is obligatory upon every member of the community, even those who themselves accept TZEDAQAH (righteousness):

(1) A person who has lived in a community for thirty days becomes obligated to contribute to the fund used to provide food for the hungry.

(2) Someone who has lived in the community for three months must donate to the fund that gives financial assistance to the poor.

(3) Someone who buys a home, thus declaring an intention to stay in a given community, becomes obligated to contribute to these funds immediately (Talmud, Bava Batra 8a).

Every member of the community of the community is required to contribute according to his or her ability. Specifically, there is an expectation that each person should give at least 10 percent of his or her yearly income to TZEDAQAH (righteousness).

According to traditional sources, you should not give more than 20 percent of your income to TZEDAQAH (righteousness), lest you find yourself dependent on the communal fund.

The message of Yeshua can be summed up in two words: DO TZEDAQAH!

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Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Have You Met Rabbi Yeshua?

Is understanding Yeshua as a rabbi more important than "believing in Jesus"? The role of Yeshua as a messianic figure gets much more attention than his role as a rabbi. The Synoptic Gospels, however, provide a wealth of information and highlights his activities as a rabbi. Interestingly, and as surprising as it may seem, we have a record of more of the sayings and the deeds of Yeshua than any other 1st century rabbi. Learn more about Rabbi Yeshua at -- 

Thursday, December 15, 2016

Go and Learn What This Means

Over the past 2000 years there have been many opinions about Yeshua, but I believe almost everyone will agree that he was a good teacher. His followers were known as “disciples,” which Dr. Ike Tennison likes to call “learners.” “Go and learn what this means” has to be a clue about something that was very important to Yeshua, and something he wanted his disciples to learn. What did he want them to learn? Was it the meaning of this – I desire mercy and not sacrifice?” Click here to find out --

Friday, December 9, 2016

Who were the Poor in Spirit?

Dr. James H. Charlesworth, is the George L. Collord Professor of New Testament Language and Literature and Chairperson of the Department of Biblical Studies at the Princeton Theological Seminary. In his book, Jesus Within Judaism: New Light from Existing Archaeological Discoveries, he provides very important insights into the meaning of two technical terms Yeshua used in his teachings – the Poor in Spirit and the Poor. The follow is from his book, which I highly recommend.

Some passages suggest that Jesus may have been influenced in a positive fashion by the Essenes. The very first beatitude in the Sermon on the Mount is “Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven” (Mt 5:3). The meaning is now supplied in the Dead Sea Scrolls.

The terms, “poor in spirit’’ and “poor,” are technical terms used only by the Essenes to describe themselves. 1

The Poor in Spirit” and “the Poor” signified that they had renounced all worldly possessions and dreams so that they might be members of God’s lot, and the remnant of God’s chosen elect.

According to our existing sources, the Qumran community and no other group used these technical terms to refer to itself.

For our present purposes it is not necessary to discern whether Jesus uttered a blessing upon “the poor in spirit,” as in Matthew, or upon “the poor,” as in Luke. Studies of these passages suggest that the traditions arise ultimately from Jesus. We are confronted, thence, with an intriguing possibility:

Was Jesus referring to the Essenes, “the Poor,” and praising their absolute allegiance to God and desire to be purified and holy?

The first beatitude would be in harmony, then, with many of Jesus’ sayings regarding the cost of discipleship; for example, Mark 10:21, “go, sell what you have, and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow me.” Like the Essene, such a follower would have become poor for the sake of God’s Kingdom.

It is conceivable, therefore, that Jesus could have been positively influenced by the Essenes’ dedication. Perhaps the first beatitude originally meant something like the following:

“Blessed are you Poor — who like the Essenes live only for God — for you already possess God’s Kingdom.” 2

Jesus Within Judaism: New Light from Existing Archaeological Discoveries By James H. Charlesworth © 1988; Doubleday, New York, NY.
1 page 68
2 page 70

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Wednesday, December 7, 2016

What Kind of Jew was Yeshua?

Today, almost everyone agrees that Jesus was a Jew and an increasing number of people understand that his name was actually “Yeshua.” People often describe him as an “observant Jew.” When asked what that means, people usually reply by describing what it means to be an observant Jew today as a member of Rabbinic Judaism in American democracy. There are three very big problems with that understanding of Yeshua.

(1) Rabbinic Judaism didn’t exist at that time.

(2) America did not exist.

(3) Judea wasn’t a democracy.

Yeshua lived during the final decades of the Israelite Temple Period, which began with the portable Tabernacle of Moses and ended with the destruction of the Second Temple of Jerusalem about forty years after he was crucified. There was no separation of church and state. Jerusalem wasn’t viewed as a religious center. Yeshua was a member of an Israelite Temple nation that was occupied and controlled by the Roman Empire.

The best example I can think of that reflects how Yeshua and his fellow Judeans would have understood their world is by viewing Jerusalem this way.

Picture Washington D.C. with a complex that houses the equivalent of the Vatican, Congress, Supreme Court and Federal Reserve System under the occupation and control of a foreign nation.

It is a grave mistake to view the role of the Temple as simply a religious center, Judea as an independent state or Yeshua’s movement as a religious movement like American Rabbinic Judaism. Yeshua’s teachings focused on areas that we would call religious, political and economic.

The primary goal of his movement was to create SHALOM on earth – totality, health, wholesomeness, harmony, success, the completeness and richness of living in an integrated social milieu. He taught that as a result of doing acts of that created SHALOM on earth, people would enter eternal life at the final judgment. His mission and message is summed up in this line from the prayer he taught his disciples –

Your will shall be done in heaven and on earth.”

This would be a good motto for Christians and churches today. It would definitely transform their understanding of their mission and make lives much more SHALOM. This is what Yeshua would not only want -- he would expect it of his followers.

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Friday, December 2, 2016

The Real Ten Commandments

Think about the Ten Commandments. How many sermons have been preached, books have been written, movies have been made, monuments have been constructed and court cases tried in which the focus was on the Ten Commandments. Now what would you say if I told you they weren’t about the actual Ten Commandments. Are you ready for a surprise?

What they called the Ten Commandments in the examples above were not the commandments written on the two stone tablets Moses received at the top of Mount Sinai and brought down to the Israelites! If you are willing to follow Moses up and down Mt Sinai, you will discover when he received the stone tablets and what was written on them. The journey begins by going to –

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Monday, November 28, 2016

The origin of Rabbinic Judaism

Rabbi Burton L. Visotzky serves as Appleman Professor of Midrash and Interreligious Studies at the Jewish Theological Seminary. He has been featured on Bill Moyers’ Genesis and Christiane Amanpour’s “Back to the Beginning.” The author of ten other books, including Sage Tales: Wisdom and Wonder from the Rabbis of the Talmud, he has been named to “The Forward 50” and repeatedly to the Newsweek/Daily Beast list of “The 50 Most Influential Jews in America.” His latest book is Aphrodite and the Rabbis: How the Jews Adapted Roman Culture as We Know ItWe highly recommend this book, and after reading the except below about the origin of Rabbinic Judaism, you will understand why. Underlines have been added for highlights.

There is a great deal of debate about what Judaism looked like in that post-Temple period of the first centuries of the Common Era, and I vacillate on whether I should even call it Judaism or, perhaps better: Judaisms

It took quite a few more centuries for Judaism to find a singular expression as “rabbinic Judaism.” In what follows, I speak of Judaism and the Jewish practices of those fellows we call “the rabbis” as though they were one and the same thing. When I refer to Judaism, I am referring to ‘rabbinic Judaism.” This form of Judaism, so overwhelmingly prevalent today, did not become the normative flavor of Judaism until a mere eight hundred or so years ago. I will refer to other forms of Judaism; but the literature of the rabbis and their practices have stuck with us, and that very stickiness, along with the fact that I am a rabbi, leads me to speak of Rabbinic Judaism as “Judaism” in the pages that follow, without further qualification.

Who were those rabbis, and what was their Judaism? When the Jerusalem Temple and its priesthood came tumbling to the ground, it could not be put together again. What I have called the Israelite religion of pre-70 CE, when those Temple and cultic institutions still existed, was replaced after 70 by other religious phenomena: what is called today Judaism. It has long been a given that Christianity arose from the Roman Empire, assimilated its culture, and became Western Civilization. In this book I will show that Judaism had a similar arc. When the Israelite Temple cult ended, it was replaced by Judaism — ultimately a religion that was shaped and defined by rabbis, who themselves were comfortable denizens of the Roman world

Those ancient rabbis are the forebears of the modern rabbis of all varieties and denominations who still lead Jewish institutions to this very day. At the outset, the rabbis confronted the loss of the Jerusalem Temple with determination, originality, courage, and panache. In the face of the loss of the sacrificial cult and exile from Jerusalem, this small group of sages and their disciples in each generation built Judaism — a Roman religion that fit comfortably in the broader culture and so was able to survive for the ages

The earliest leaders of the “rabbinic” Jewish community are portrayed in later texts as having come to leadership roles while the Second Temple still stood, around the turn of the millennium. Hillel the Elder, his colleague Shammai, and Gamaliel are names we associate with the beginnings of Judaism. Hillel and Shammai are not called rabbis, but each is given the title “elder.” When we refer to Hillel the Elder, it is not because there was some younger guy also named Hillel running around at the same time. “Elder” was Hillel’s title, as it was the title for Shammai and Gamaliel. In the religious community, the title “elder” persists in the church in its Greek usage: presbyter.

When the rabbis look back at Hillel, they note that he was originally a Babylonian. Yet the earliest generations of rabbis lived and taught in Roman Palestine. The rabbinic movement expanded eastward into Iraq, or Jewish Babylonia, only from around 220 CE. I emphasize that the Judaism of the rabbis was a product of the Land of Israel in its beginnings and was only later exported to the Diaspora. When the rabbis themselves narrate their origins, they always recall that Hillel — one of their founding fathers — was Babylonian, as though it were foreordained that rabbinic Judaism would flourish there, too. It didn’t have to be that way, especially since what became a major center of Judaism, Babylonia, flourished under a different political empire and different culture than either the Jerusalem Temple or the earliest rabbis. 

I tell you again and again in this book that the rabbis were Greco-Roman Hellenists, I should also disclose that the rabbis of Babylonia certainly inherited aspects of Hellenism from their rabbinic forebears but lived in the Sasanian Empire, where the dominant culture was Zoroastrian. Jews are nothing if not complicated folks. 

Yet for all that, from 70 CE to approximately 200 CE, the rabbis remained a fairly small group of men with no more than a dozen or so leaders in any given generation. I like to remind my own rabbinical students that on any given day there are more rabbis in-house at the Jewish Theological Seminary than there were in any given generation of the early centuries of rabbinic Judaism.  Each rabbi back then had a circle of disciples, and some of these students traveled from rabbi to rabbi in order to master the oral traditions they transmitted. 

Aphrodite and the Rabbis: How the Jews Adapted Roman Culture as We Know It, by Burton L. Visotzky © 2016; St. Martin’s Press, New York, NY; pp. 8-10.

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Saturday, November 26, 2016

What does Jesus want Christians to do -- “Believe Him” or “Believe In Him”?

The Sermon on the Mount is one of the most important blocks of the teachings of Yeshua (the real name of Jesus) to have survived the 2000 year journey of being passed down from one generation to the next by non-Jews from a variety of non-Jewish cultures. The problem is that people who did not understand the Jewish culture or the Hebrew Scriptures of Yeshua have copied the manuscripts that have been used to make English translations of his teachings and created the Belief Systems through which over 2 billion Christian view and understand Yeshua's life and teachings. This toxic mix has produced crusades, inquisitions, indulgences, the holocaust, an immunity to the suffering of others, and an estimated 40,000 Christian denominations and paradenominations in America today!

Are the above things Yeshua had in mind for his followers to be actively involved in as he taught his disciples on the mountain that day? This is the Christians today must answer. The bottom line is that it all comes down to one question -- which of the following did Yeshua teach:  

  ● “BELIEVE ME” -- Go and do what I taught.

  ● "BELIEVE IN ME” -- Believe I existed or believe man-made theologies about me.

The answers Christians choose define the purposes of their lives and the priorities of Christianity. Read the complete article by going to --

Monday, November 21, 2016

The 18th Century New Evangelicals

The new Evangelicals were New Light or Separate Baptists from New England, whose leaders began to sift into North Carolina and Virginia in the 1750s, and who soon began to establish their own churches and create new ones. Baptists had appeared in the South earlier in the century – Charleston had had a Baptist congregation since 1695 – but they were quiet, well-mannered folk who were not active proselytizers.

The New Lights, however, were neither quiet nor well-behaved even by Evangelical Presbyterian standards, for they openly attacked the Anglican clergy, ordained semiliterate men as ministers, stubbornly refused to apply for licenses to preach, and valued emotional outbursts in their meetings as a sign of God’s presence and favor.

Through these actions, the Baptists managed to attack most of the underpinnings of colonial order. They denied the authority of the Crown to direct the moral life of the community through the Church of England, as well as the right of the Crown to legitimate religious leadership.

The Separate Baptists did not insist that education should be a prerequisite for ordination. They were scornful of traditional prerequisites for spiritual leadership and did their best to repudiate all traditional forms. The New Light Baptists taught there were three distinguishing characteristics of the true Christian.

(1) A personal religious experience of overpowering emotions rooted in a specific time and place.  So powerful were the emotions released at Separate Baptists meetings that they were often characterized by seizures, convulsions, and uncontrollable weeping.

(2) The immersion in living water of adults who professed faith in Christ Jesus.

(3) Submission to the authority of the church to scrutinize carefully the personal as well as public life of each Christian.

Within four years of their settling in North Carolina, the Separate Baptists had converted enough people to enable six churches to form an association on New Light principles.

SOURCE: Religion in the Old South by Donald G. Matthews © 1977; The University of Chicago Press; Chicago, IL; pp. 22-24.

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Thursday, November 17, 2016

Yeshua’s Values or Paul’s Secret Gospel?

Yeshua required his disciples to do things, not believe things. What kind of things did Yeshua want his disciples to do?

(1) Learn – The word “disciple” comes from the Latin word discere which means "to learn." The educational model in Yeshua’s movement involves being engaged in face-to-face interactive discussions. Yeshua would have been much more interested in the quality of a disciple’s questions than answers.

(2) Time-Tested Values – Yeshua didn’t use the word values, but that is the best word in our language, in my opinion, that describes what he taught. He lived in a world dominated by Late Second Temple Period Israelite culture. It was not a democracy. There was no “separation of religion and politics.” Rabbinic Judaism didn’t exist. Yeshua didn’t focus on religious rituals or prayers. His teachings were about relationships: relationships of people to Yahweh & relationships of people with each other. The values he taught were about how to have those relationships. They fall into two categories: TZEDAQAH (righteousness) and MISHPAT (justice). They are introduced in the opening accounts of Genesis and are repeatedly taught throughout the Hebrew Scriptures. They are time-tested values.

(3) Eternal Life Based on Actions – Matthew 25:31-46 records Yeshua’s “Salvation Message,” meaning how to have eternal life. According to Yeshua, those who do TZEDAQAH (the righteous) will enter eternal life. What did they do? They fed the hungry, clothed the naked, visited the sick, etc. They did what Isaiah taught in chapter 58, Ezekiel taught in chapter 34, and many other places in his Scriptures. For the Creator, taking care of human life was his top priority and that was the top priority of Yeshua too.

(4) Religious rituals are useless without TZEDAQAH and MISHPAT – This is another theme that appears in Yeshua’s teachings, a theme that is also repeated throughout the Hebrew Scriptures. Cain and Abel were involved in a religious ritual and that led to the first murder. The people in Isaiah 58 were involved in religious rituals – fasting and prayer -- while at the same time ignoring the living conditions of those around them. Without acts of TZEDAQAH, their rituals and prayers were ignored.

Paul taught a Gospel that he claimed he had been chosen -- before he was born -- to deliver to mankind. He made it clear that Yeshua didn’t teach it and Yeshua’s apostles didn’t know it. It was a Gospel of Glorification.

(1) Glorification -- A mysterious process by which people with flesh and blood living or resurrected bodies will be transformed into Spirit-Beings with glorious spiritual bodies and become spirit-beings with citizenships in heaven, where they will live forever.

(2) God foreknew and predetermined those who will be glorified. -- God foreknew and predetermined those who will be glorified to share the likeness of the image of his Son, in order that he might be the first-born among many brothers (Romans 8:29-30).

(3) Paul’s Gospel required for Glorification -- God will call those he predetermined to be glorified through Paul as he proclaims his Gospel.

(4) Righteousness by answering Paul’s call. -- God will justify (make righteous) those who answer Paul’s call. It is a mystical experience done to a believer.

(5) At some unknown date in the future God will glorify the justified. – This will take place when Christ descends from heaven. The dead in Christ will rise along with the justified that are alive. They will all be caught up together in the clouds and experience, simultaneously, a transforming immortalization and receive their new glorified spiritual bodies.

(6) The justified will go to heaven. -- The glorified will then be taken to heaven where they will live with God forever. Nothing is said about everyone else or what happens on earth.

Later Christians removed the “foreknew and predetermined” part of Paul’s message and replaced it with things like freewill, church membership, correct beliefs, having an emotional experience, etc. Today, there are thousands of Christian denominations, many more independent churches and even more individualized Christians who have Buffet Belief Systems (they pick and choose what they want from other Belief Systems and create their own) – and obviously they do not agree on what to believe.

We have had almost 2000 years of Christian religions based on modified versions of Paul’s Gospel that produced crusades, inquisitions, endless protests, heated conflicts and church splits over beliefs. Needless to say, if Christians had followed the teachings of Yeshua and adopted his values which place the protection and preservation of human firstthose things would not have taken place. So why is Paul’s Gospel still so popular?

(1) Most Christians aren’t aware of the histories of their religion or Values of Yeshua.

(2) No church that I know of teaches Yeshua’s Values Message as their Salvation Message.

(3) Paul’s Gospel is easy! A person doesn’t have to do anything but “believe” to go to heaven.

Of course, the serpent in the Garden of Eden persuaded Eve and Adam that all they had to do to become like God was take a bite of a piece of fruit!

What does Yahweh care about? It is you and your life, and the lives of everyone else. What does he want people to do? Based on what Yeshua taught, our conclusion is that he wants people to reveal his image through their words and actions in their daily lives by doing acts of righteousness and justice.

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Jim Myers

Thursday, November 10, 2016

What kind of believer are you?

Rabbi Jeffrey Leynor's video -- What kind of believer are you? -- is a must see for every believer. Why are there so many conflicts between people who claim to be worshipers of the same God? Do you really think Jesus intended to create all of those different denominations of Christians who can't agree on what should be believed, much less work? They do not event teach what Jesus taught about how to enter eternal life? 

That old way of thinking -- and controlling Christians lives -- is changing rapidly in the information age. Christians of the future will demand transparency from their church leaders & each other, beginning with the origins of their belief systems. Rabbi Leynor's video addresses this in a way you have never heard at church -- but that is about to change. Churches of the future will make this a top priority -- if they want to grow and survive. 

View Rabbi Leynor's short video at --

We are in the process of setting up a new Facebook page for Christians who understand the importance of transparency, the importance of understanding the teachings of the Real Yeshua, and grasp the urgency of finding common ground to incorporate their values in real life. If you are interested in this and would like to be kept up to date on our activities and new information, please go to the Christians for TOV Facebook page and like it --

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

If your brother becomes poor

In America, predator lenders target the poor and charge them the highest interest rates of all. Predator merchants charge them the highest prices for their basic needs, including food. What would Yahweh think about this? The answer is found in Leviticus 25:35-38:

If one of your brethren becomes poor, and falls into poverty among you, then you shall help him, like a stranger or a sojourner, that he may live with you.

(1) Take no usury or interest from him; but fear your God, that your brother may live with you.

(2) You shall not lend him your money for usury.

(3) You shall not lend him your food at a profit.

I am Yahweh your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, to give you the land of Canaan and to be your God.

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Sunday, October 2, 2016

Rosh Hashanah begins at sundown today (October 2, 2016)

Rosh Hashanah occurs on the first and second days of Tishri. In Hebrew, Rosh Hashanah means, literally, "head of the year" or "first of the year." Rosh Hashanah is commonly known as the Jewish New Year. This name is somewhat deceptive, because there is little similarity between Rosh Hashanah, one of the holiest days of the year, and the American New Year midnight partying and drinking bash followed by a day of football games. Below are two links that will explain much more about this special celebration. L'shanah tovah ("for a good year").

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

When Did the Real Yeshua Become the Son of God?

The answer to the “Son of God” question is the key to understanding the conflict that divided the Jewish followers of the Real Yeshua and the mixed group of followers of Paul called “Christians.” The importance of knowing “when” Yeshua became the “Son of God” is not understood by Christians today. But, I have no doubt that it was at the heart of many debates between the followers of Yeshua and those of Paul well into the second century. Why is this still so important?

The validity of Paul’s apostleship, his gospel and many of the salvation messages
taught by Christian institutions today are linked to it.

In order to accurately understand the verses that provide the answer to this important question we must have a quick vocabulary lesson. The first vocabulary word is “gospel.” When we read the word “gospel” in English translations, it isn’t a reference to a book like those we call “Gospels” in the New Testament today. The Jewish audience would have understood it to mean something like “good tidings” or “good news” – “a proclamation that came from Yahweh.” This is clearly seen in the words of Isaiah (61:1a):

The Spirit of the Master Yahweh is upon me, because Yahweh has anointed me to proclaim good tidings to the poor . . .

The “gospel” in this verse is described as “good tiding to the poor.” If you want to read more about that “gospel,” read Isaiah 56 through 61.

Yeshua quoted this verse when he stood before the members of his home synagogue in Nazareth and announced that he was the “Anointed One” prophesied by Isaiah. Three very important clues about Yeshua and his movement are revealed in the quote and his Jewish audience would have wanted to know the answers to the following questions:

(1) When did the spirit of Yahweh come upon Yeshua?

(2) When did Yahweh anoint Yeshua?

(3) What good tidings did Yahweh give Yeshua to proclaim?

The next vocabulary terms are “Anointed One” and “Son of God.” Their meanings are found in
Psalm 2 and 2 Samuel 7. In Psalm 2:2 we read:
The kings of the earth set themselves, and the rulers take counsel together, against Yahweh and against His Anointed One.” (Psalm 2:2)

Yet I have set My King on My holy hill of Zion.
I will declare the decree:
Yahweh has said to me, `You are My Son, today I have begotten you.’” (Psalm 2:6-7)

The “Anointed One” and “My (Yahweh’s) Son” are titles of the “King of Israel.” The above Psalm was part of the coronation ceremony ancient Israel. In order to fully understand the meaning of “Son of God” we must also be aware of Yahweh’s covenant with King David. It is found in 2 Samuel 7:12-14:

When your (David) days are fulfilled and you rest with your fathers, I (Yahweh) will set up your seed after you, who will come from your body, and I will establish his kingdom. He shall build a house for My name, and I will establish the throne of his kingdom forever. I will be his Father, and he shall be My son.” 

Now, let’s put all the pieces and vocabulary terms together so we better understand them and their relationship to each other before we continue:

(1) The “Anointed One” is the “King of Israel.”

(2) The “Anointed One” is the “Son of Yahweh.”

(3) The “Son of Yahweh” is a “descendant of King David” and  part of David’s Covenant with Yahweh.

(4) He became the “Anointed One,” “King of Israel” and “Son of Yahweh” at the coronation ceremony.

Now let’s turn to the New Testament Gospels and discover when Yeshua became “Son of God (Yahweh).” I will begin with Matthew 3:16-17 and underline the vocabulary terms discussed above:

When he had been baptized, Yeshua came up immediately from the water; and behold, the heavens were opened to him, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and alighting upon him. And suddenly a voice came from heaven, saying, `This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.’”

In Matthew Yeshua became the “Son of God” at his “baptism.” Next, let’s see what Mark (1:9-11) says:

It came to pass in those days that Yeshua came from Nazareth of Galilee, and was baptized by John in the Jordan. And immediately, coming up from the water, he saw the heavens parting and the Spirit descending upon him like a dove. Then a voice came from heaven, `You are My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.’”

In Mark Yeshua became the “Son of God” at his “baptism.” Next, let’s see what Luke (3:21-22) says:

When all the people were baptized, it came to pass that Yeshua also was baptized; and while he prayed, the heaven was opened. And the Holy Spirit descended in bodily form like a dove upon him, and a voice came from heaven which said, `You are My beloved Son; in you I am well pleased.’”

In Luke Yeshua became the “Son of God” at his “baptism.” Next, let’s see what John (1:32-34) says”

And John bore witness, saying, `I saw the Spirit descending from heaven like a dove, and it remained upon him. I did not know him, but He who sent me to baptize with water said to me, ‘Upon whom you see the Spirit descending, and remaining on him, this is he who baptizes with the Holy Spirit.’ And I have seen and testified that this is the Son of God.’”

In Matthew, Mark, Luke and John Yeshua became the “Son of God” at his “baptism,” which means he also became the “Anointed One” at the same time. You may remember from earlier articles that English translators translated “Anointed One” as “Christ.” So, at his baptism he became the “Christ.” So what would the Jewish audience of Yeshua have thought when he was called “Yeshua the Anointed One?” It would be something like this – Yeshua the Anointed One, Son of David, Son of Yahweh and King of Israel!

Now let’s see what Paul says about when Yeshua became the “Son of God.” We find his view recorded in Romans (1:1-4):

Paul, a bondservant of Yeshua the Anointed One, called to be an apostle, separated to the gospel of God which He promised before through His prophets in the Holy Scriptures, concerning His Son Yeshua the Anointed One our Master, who was born of the seed of David according to the flesh, and declared to be the Son of God with power according to the Spirit of holiness by the resurrection from the dead.” 

Paul specifically points out that Yeshua was a “descendant of David.” But, for Paul, Yeshua became the “Son of God” “by the resurrection from the dead,” not at his “baptism.” What are the implications of Paul’s view?

(1) Everything Yeshua taught and did before the resurrection was done before he became the “Son of God” and the “Anointed One”(Christ).

(2) Paul is the only apostle called after Yeshua became the “Son of God.”

(3) Paul’s gospel is the only gospel given by Yeshua the “Son of God.”

The differences between the Real Yeshua’s gospel and Paul’s gospel are reflected in how members of their movements understood their roles and taught “the way of salvation.”

Yeshua’s gospel was about creating a kingdom of people who were actively engaged in doing acts of TZEDAQAH (righteousness) and MISHPAT (justice). In Matthew 25, Yeshua’s message reflects this very clearly. Those who did TZEDAQAH (the work of the Creator in making the world whole) – fed the hungry, gave drink to the thirsty, clothed the naked, took strangers into their homes, visited the sick, etc., entered into eternal life.

Paul’s gospel requires people to “BELIEVE” what it says. It does not require people to do anything for anyone else – “For I am not ashamed of the gospel of the `Anointed One,’ for “it (Paul’s gospel) is the power of God to salvation” for everyone who BELIEVES.” (Romans 1:16).

Yeshua’s gospel was about makings lives better, repairing them and making them whole. Paul’s gospel was about “believing an exclusive  revelation that God only revealed to him.” Paul said he had been called “from his mother’s womb to proclaim it.” He said that no other apostle, even the existing head of the Yeshua Movement, Yeshua’s brother named Jacob (James), was let in on it.

Here are some final points about Yeshua’s gospel.

(1) It doesn’t require anyone to believe in anyone or about anything.

(2) It doesn’t require anyone to convert to Judaism or Christianity.

(3) It doesn’t restrict the good things being done to Christians only.

I want to leave you with two very important questions in closing:

(1) What would happen if the 70% of the American population that identifies themselves as “ChristiansdidYeshua’s Gospel” instead of believedPaul’s gospel”?

(2) What if the churches of the over two billion Christians on the earth today became centers committed to doing and teachingYeshua’s Gospel” instead of trying to persuade people to believe one of many and differing creeds and official doctrines?

I created a TOV Team called “Christians for TOV.” It is a way for Christians, past Christians, people with Christian or Biblical Heritages to interact with others and create relationships; learn how to use the TOV Values upon which Yeshua built his message and movement; and when you do, your life, the lives of those around you, and many others will be better, happier, healthier, safer and whole.

I believe that there are many other Christians who “feel the importance of this message in their hearts,” especially pastors. If you feel with heart or reason with your mind the importance of what I have been discussing and would like learn more, go to our website – .

Why is it so important for Christians to understand that the Real Yeshua taught "actions" not "beliefs"? Remember the face and the statistics below:

Hitler came to power in a democratic nation with a 94% Christian population. If they had understood Yeshua’s TOV gospel, things would have been different.  The importance of increasing the number of Christians for TOV in America today must not be overlooked!

Christians for TOV is a new option for Christians that value the teachings of the Real Yeshua more than the doctrines of religions. Make sure you visit our new webpage by clicking here.

Jim Myers