The Shema

We all know that the Torah was given to the Israelites on Mt. Sinai. This very Torah contained the very commandments of Yahweh for his people to live a holy, prosperous life. But there is one commandment that Rabbi Yeshua called "the greatest". This commandment, as called by many Rabbis, is the "Shema". But, what is "Shema"?

Shema, which mean to "hear and obey", is a very powerful word that carries power punching meaning. Shema is recorded in many scriptures. One place is Duet 6, with emphasis on verse 4. It states,"Hear, O Israel! Yahweh is our God, Yahweh is one!"

The scripture there is telling us to listen to something, with the intents on carrying out the command of what we heard. Verse 5 tells us what we are commanded to do,"You shall love Yahweh your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might". How does one love Yahweh as Torah states? 1 John 5:3 states,"For this is the love of Yahweh, that we keep His commandments; and His commandments are not burdensome". Loving Yahweh as Torah states means to obey what he told us to listen to---HIS VOICE! which says "keep my commandments".

So, we now know exactly what Shema means. Yeshua used it all the time. One place where Yeshua used the Shema is in Matthew 13:43,"Then THE RIGHTEOUS WILL SHINE FORTH AS THE SUN in the kingdom of their Father He who has ears, let him hear". Notice the phrase,"He who has ears, let him hear".

That phrase there, Yeshua is saying Shema. Why? Because He wants us to hear and obey. In Greek thinking, as the New Testament tends to put forth the majority of the time... when I want you to have ears to hear, then it would mean just that, unless I expound on it to let you know that I want you to take action. This is not so with Hebrew. Hebrew language is an ACTION driven language and NOT an idea driven language. So, according to the Hebraic mindset, if I say Shema, then get ready to obey what I say.

What is Yeshua telling us in Matthew 13:43 concerning his Shema? Notice the phrase in caps,"THE RIGHTEOUS WILL SHINE FORTH AS THE SUN". In basic understanding, One must walk in obedience to Torah, and place faith in Yeshua to enter into eternal life. Works ARE APART OF YOUR SALVATION AFTER YOU CONVERT.

It is utterly impossible for one to enter eternal life with faith, but without works(obedience to Torah), and its utterly impossible for one to enter life without faith in Messiah, but with works(obedience to Torah) A Gentleman asked Yeshua,"What must I do to enter eternal life?" What did Yeshua say? He said KEEP THE COMMANDMENTS! Faith & Works are neccessary for salvation. You CANNOT have one without the other. So, that is what Yeshua says here in the sense of Shema. We must listen, and then obey his words. Amen.

The Trinity

The Trinity is not a new doctrine to the Church of Yeshua, or the Israelites. They've been dealing with Polytheism ever sense their inception. Their forefathers, namely, Abraham, was a polytheist before he came to faith in Yahweh the one true God. Yahweh told Abraham that he will call him out, and create a nation from him. This nation will be a holy nation to Yahweh, a kingdom of Priests..

When Shema was spoken to the Israelites, it was declaring 3 things.

1) Yahweh alone is God.
2) Yahweh is unified, unlike the near eastern pagan gods.
3) Yahweh is not a Trinity.

When Moses spoke the Shema to Yahweh's people, He was speaking the words of Yahweh. He was telling them that despite the many gods of their surroundings, Yahweh alone is God. He proved that He alone was Elohim when he demoralized the Egyptians, and destroyed all their gods via plaques. Moses was familiar with polytheism, so Shema was very personal to him. It is Yahweh who is THEE only God, and there are no other gods before, or after him. Israel had to make up in their hearts that Yahweh is true.

Moses also said that Yahweh is unified. This also is very important, because as I stated above, Israel's neighbors were very polytheistic--- similar to Hinduism. Baal, Murdock, Tammuz, etc, were many famous gods of ancient Israel's neighbors, and they all had some sort of attribute. Similar to Roman & Greek gods, each god has an attribute. There is NO one God that has it all as Yahweh does.

In the ancient near eastern world, there was a god for water, air, clouds, youth, health, sex, fertility, rain, thunder, etc. These were cosmic gods of the near eastern world. Shema states that YAHWEH has ALL POWER. HE IS the creator. Yahweh makes lame, gives sight, restores health, created sex, rides on the clouds, etc. YAHWEH IS UNIFIED! All the Torah is summed up in this commandment, and we should conduct our lives accordingly

Shalom Aleichem,
James Pierce

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Replies to This Discussion

James,

Your so call studies are ridiculous... So in your theology, Jesus is a skitso talking to himself at His Baptism... He is praying to Himself OR do you believe Jesus is not God; he is just a man, a great prophet, to be heard but not worshipped?

"One" in the bible is obviously used in more than one way. There is a "simple one"... and there is a "complex one" or what we call "unity".

The members of the Godhead are one not in a "simple way" but in a "complex way.".. Notice what Jesus says in his prayer Joh 17:11 And now I am no more in the world, but these are in the world, and I come to thee. Holy Father, keep through thine own name those whom thou hast given me, that they may be one, as we are.

Jesus clearly states that his disciples are to be one in the same way that He and the Father or one. So as believers cannot be a simple one, neither is God.

Poly Theism = more than one God. Trinitarians believe in "ONE GOD". However, what is obvious is that you and Trinitarians have two different definitions of the term "ONE".

Your idea of "ONE" is not in keeping with the biblical definition of "ONE" as it pertains to God. From the very beginning of Torah, God sets forth HIS chief definition and usage of the term "ONE" in the Marriage of Adam and Eve... and the two shall become one flesh. This is a complex "ONE", existential unity, rooted in purpose, means, order, etc.
Yuri,

It is ridiculous because your studies are NOT rooted in Torah. For you to say what you said reveals to me your lack of understanding WHY Moses spoke Shema to his people. Moses was NOT speaking the Shema to show the Israelites how Yahweh, Yeshua, and the Holy Spirit are ONE. There was NO Messiah Yeshua at the time. So, you are in error to believe such.

Without understanding cultural context, you will have a hard time understanding Shema, especially if your studies are ONLY rooted in the New Testament. My understanding of ONE is truly inline with the HEBRAIC understanding, rather than a Christian's understanding of it.

I am very familiar with how Yeshua used the term ONE, but its truly different in context than the Shema. I need you to understand that. The Shema was not showing the Israelites how one in purpose Yahweh is, rather, one in majesty, versus the pagan gods. The trinity = 3 in 1. That's NOT Hebraic. But, if you want to continue to believe the way lawless Christianity wants to believe, then go ahead.
So again you prove yourself to have no answers... but only conjectures, speculations, and assertions. In Torah, one does not always mean a simple one... this is from the very beginning... IN MARRIAGE 2=1... Look at Genesis 1... Let "US" make man in "OUR" image.
Yuri,

Its a plurality of majesty. Israel did not know a Trinity as in father, son, and spirit. How foolish of you to believe so. Study Torah, and you'll see. Yahweh is NOT speaking to ANYONE, but himself. Its a plurality of majesty. There are no speculations in Torah, because my heart is in the study and practice of Torah, and the Prophets, and the NT. YOU only have the Nt as your foundational source, but thats the biggest error you are in.
Sir, this "plurality of majesty" garbage is nothing but more eisogesis. When a King employs the "plural of majesty" linguistic device, he is speaking on behalf of the entire Kingdom. In Genesis 1 man is not created in the image of "all heaven"; he is created in the image of God alone. So the "plurality of majesty" usage here would not consist with its normal use.

I am clear that the Jews did not understand the mystery of the Triune Godhead. This is made clear in Joh 5:18

Therefore the Jews sought the more to kill him, because he not only had broken the sabbath, but said also that God was his Father, making himself equal with God.

There are many things the Jews did not get until the fullness of the revelation of Jesus Christ occurred.

And James it is you who err by trying to interpret in the dem light of OT when the brilliant light of the NT has unveiled those secret things of the OT about God.
Yuri,

Ok, if you want to promote eisegesis, then go ahead. Nothing will change the that Shema promotes Soley "One God", and that he IS a compound unity. But, of what? Re-read my statements concerning that. Your failure to understand the cultural background of the Shema causes you to imply eisegesis. Moses was promoting, apart from his paganistic enviroment, that Yahweh is one, and NOT 3. He alone is God, and is the ONLY God.

This compound unity is only understood in its cultural context. Near eastern people were very polytheistic. They had Gods for EVERYTHING, similar to Hinduism. Yahweh has ALL power in heaven and earth. THAT is what Shema is saying. But, if you want to believe some paganistic trinity, promote lawlessness, then go ahead. For the spirit of God awakens the spirit of those who HUNGER for truth.
The simple proof of your error is that I clearly noted a verse (term) that demonstrated the plurality of the Godhead. You answered with an improvable assertion (i.e. plural of majesty), which I in turn disproved by pointing out that the use here would be "inconsistent" with its normal use. Now you essentially cannot prove otherwise, so now you go into a BLAB FEST of nothing-ness.

Where is your proof James? Where is it? All you do is make assertions that can't stand the critical test... If you want to believe that you have to drag cows to the cook off to be save and all that... then do it... but stop telling other people stuff you can't substantiate.

Your g-d must be on a journey... maybe he is relieving himself... but what is apparent is that in whatever this foolishness you are promoting... God is not showing up in it.

I thank God for you... I enjoy pounding on you... people have been saved because of you... You think me debating with you is about winning you... it ain't... it is about showing your ignorance of the word of God by destroying your silly unbiblical arguments. God said, I raised up Pharaoh for this very purpose, that I may put my power on display...

Here's the fact, somebody got to go to Hell so that we who are saved may know the extent of God's wrath though we will never experience it. It might as well be you...
Yuri,

Ha ha dont judge, Yuri. Yeshua does not appreciate that. But, I'll be the bigger man and apologize concerning the plural of majesty. I had to think about it, and that does not line up with "The Shema", but what does line up with it is my argument concerning why it was said, and why it was proclaimed. Moses was not proclaiming a godhead in the Shema.
Yuri,

Actually you have not destroyed any of my arguments. If anything, I completely destroyed all of your assertions concerning Torah & The Prophets. You cant even prove in Torah where it says that Torah will be done away. In fact, YOU HAVE NOT even addressed my articles on the new covenant & its decrees, and Acts 15.

You simply dodged those and started to rant off at the mouth about what you THINK the Torah was, and is now. You have yet to prove to me that my argument concerning the cultural context of Shema is wrong.

All you're doing is riding on what i said concerning the "plural of majesty". I can ADMIT that you may be correct about that. What YOU cannot admit is that YOU are wrong concerning Torah & the Prophets.

Your down fall here is that you cant disprove what I say about Shema FROM the OT. You always resort to the NT(as you were taught). If you can prove to me that what I say concerning the cultural context of Shema is wrong FROM TORAH & PROPHETS, or even the cultural context itself, then you will have a case.

I would never say I enjoy pounding on someone. I am seeing YOUR true colors. PRIDE & ARROGANCE. Maybe all of those degrees you have are getting to you, or something, but God WILL humble you if you do not knock down your own pride.

I am also seeing your judgemental self. Why judge me? You claim to want to save people, but yet judge them. How hypocritical. You are just like a Pharisee, for they too were lawless. You said people have been saved because of me? I can only imagine the LAWLESSNESS that you are feeding them. You are leading your own congregation astray(much like the majority of Christianity).

All those degrees you have amount to nothing, because you have NO foundation in Torah & The Prophets. You couldnt even have a civil debate concerning Torah & The Prophets without resorting to your beloved NT. Return to Torah. I know you think about what would happen to your relationships, your congregation, and your reputation if you obey Torah, But YAHWEH wants obedience. Yahweh WILL provide you with all you need. If you obey not Torah, YOU WILL be told to depart to eternal death.

I personally love the NT just as much as the Tanakh. If I need to prove the new covenant, then my first place to start are the Prophets. You quickly resort strickly to Yeshua, but more so, Paul. Most Christians resort to Paul, because they think he was Trinitarian, and anti-torah.

If It came down to YOU following Yeshua who kept Torah, or Paul who supposidly didnt keep Torah, who would YOU follow??
Yuri,

Isaiah 2:2-3,"It shall come to pass in the latter days that the mountain of the house of Yahweh shall be established as the highest of the mountains, and shall be lifted up above the hills; and all the nations shall flow to it, and many peoples shall come, and say: Come, let us go up to the mountain of Yahweh, to the house of the God of Jacob, that he may teach us his ways, and that we may walk in his paths. For out of Zion shall go the Torah and the word of Yahweh from Jerusalem".

Isaiah 66:22-23,"For as the new heavens and the new earth that I make shall remain before me, says Yahweh, so shall your offspring and your name remain. From new moon to new moon, and from Sabbath to Sabbath, all flesh shall come to worship before me, declares Yahweh".
You still have not proven that there is no plurality of persons in the Godhead. You cannot substantiate your claim. You are weak and sorry! Back up your claim and stop jumping from text to text acting like it says something it does not say.

Hell is for a person who wants to believe what they want to believe regardless of the evidence to the contrary.

It might as well be you!
Yuri,

I just had to put those verses from Isaiah to PROVE to you that we WILL observe Torah in the Messianic era. Jesus upheld Torah, his Apostles did, the earliest Church did, and ALL who are truly under the new covenant will observe it. :)

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