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1:05 AM
Q: Down votes for duplicates

user613If there's a question that's been asked a lot and could've been easily found through a search of the site, but the actual question is a very good question; while it should be flagged, is it alright to down vote or not?

1:22 AM
What is it?
Why is not the same thing?
What does this add?
1:33 AM
Hi everyone.
Am I mistaken in believing that the reason Jewish people don't make sacrifices anymore is because the Temple was the only place where sacrifices could be made according to Mosaic law?
Q: Why don't Jews sacrifice animals anymore?

android.nickCorrect me if I'm wrong, but Jews do not currently sacrifice animals like ancestors long ago. Why do Jews not currently sacrifice animals? Will there be a time when sacrificing returns once again? How are sins forgiven if an animal is not sacrificed to cover for those sins?

1:48 AM
@DoubleAA Thanks! I finally got something right!
2:05 AM
Q: What should I do to avoid causing offense due to my relative ignorance of Judaism?

Wad CheberI'm an atheist, and I grew up in the Methodist church, albeit with incredibly decent parents who taught me to love my fellow human beings and judge people based on how they treat others, not their religion, race, ethnicity, or sexual orientation. I have many problems with Christianity, not lea...

12 hours later…
2:04 PM
Blog post promoting Days of Awe - Mi Yodeya? and the rest of our stuff: dafaleph.com/home/2015/8/18/days-of-awe-by-mi-yodeya
@mi_yodeya thank YOU for the tremendous resource!
3:07 PM
I have a question for anyone who is willing to listen. In the last hour or so, I have come across several articles written by Jews about why Jesus wasn't the messiah. I totally agree with this assessment, and that isn't the problem.
The problem is that a few of these articles included something illogical in their reasons for rejecting Jesus as a messiah, and an answer on this very site did this. The problem is this: In the reasons for Jesus being disqualified from messianic status, the authors write "The messiah will be a descendant of David, through his father's side of the family, but Jesus didn't have a human father"
This makes absolutely no sense to me. If you don't believe Jesus was the messiah, why would you believe that he was the son of G-d?
Of course he had a human father. He was just some normal guy, not the messiah, and certainly not the son of G-d. It makes much more sense to say "The genealogies of Jesus in the gospels are wildly inaccurate", because they totally are inaccurate.
I am well aware that the idea that Jesus was the messiah is absurd, but so is the idea that he didn't have a human father. I think you could make the argument just as effectively by saying "He wasn't the messiah because the messiah will be totally triumphant in life, whereas Jesus was tortured, humiliated, and brutally murdered by heathens, and nothing he did, and nothing that has happened since then, suggests that he was anything other than a normal human being."
@WadCheber Presumably, such discussions are addressing the character Jesus from Christian scripture as a whole.
3:43 PM
@IsaacMoses That's kind of my point. It doesn't make sense to make reference to the Christian scriptures if you believe they are erroneous.
It especially doesn't make sense to use the most questionable parts of Christian scriptures.
The whole argument is that Jesus wasn't what the gospels suggest, so building an argument based on those gospels is illogical.
It all but concedes the point to the Christians.
And if there's one thing I don't like to do m it's conceding a point to the Christians. :)
@WadCheber OK. I think I agree. Based on that it makes little sense to even address the question "According to Judaism, could [Christianity's] Jesus have been the Messiah?" because Christianity's Jesus, as such, is a character whose existence is incompatible with Judaism.
3:59 PM
@IsaacMoses Exactly.
@IsaacMoses Or another example: Imagine a Christian trying to convince a Jew that Christianity is better. The Jew says "But Jesus is called G-d, so Christianity is blasphemous". So the Christian replies "But according to Jewish belief, Jesus isn't G-d, so it isn't really blasphemous". It doesn't make sense. You're granting your opponent a point that you don't really agree with.
Or if a Jewish person said "Jesus couldn't have been the messiah because after he was resurrected, he didn't do the things that the messiah is supposed to do". Since Jesus obviously wasn't resurrected, the argument doesn't make any sense.
@WadCheber Not sure which point you're saying doesn't make sense. If the question is "According to Judaism, should Jews accept Christianity?" that is a question that can be addressed, with the answer being "no," and one of the reasons being "Christianity includes the belief that Jesus was God, which is incompatible with Judaism."
@IsaacMoses What I'm saying is that it is logical to explain why you reject Christianity based on the problems with Christianity. It isn't logical to reject it by saying something that amounts to "Jesus' father was G-d, so he obviously wasn't the messiah".
@IsaacMoses Or saying that Jesus can't be the messiah because he was resurrected. If you don't believe in Jesus' alleged divinity, you also don't believe that he was resurrected, right?
Look at this answer:
A: Why don't Jews think Jesus is the messiah?

Dudethere are a few reasons 1) the Messiah must be a human descendant from the linage of King David on his fathers side and he apparently didn't have a human father 2)belief in G-d as a human being is heresy. G-d is infinite and putting him in a body incarnate limits his being. In Christianity when J...

in Jaami'at StackExchange al-Islamyya, Feb 8 '13 at 21:01, by TRiG
@AlUmmat "The Trinity doesn't make sense" is not, in itself, a good argument against the Trinity. Plenty of things which don't make sense are, nonetheless, true. Quantum mechanics, for a start.
"Apparently [Jesus] didn't have a human father". This is the worst argument imaginable against Jesus being the messiah.
If you argue that Jesus didn't have a human father, you are basically agreeing with the Christians.
4:14 PM
@WadCheber Not exactly the highest-voted of the answers there, I'll note.
@TRiG How about "The Trinity is not monotheistic, it is polytheistic"? :)
@IsaacMoses And we should all be grateful for that.
But I saw the same argument on several Jewish apologetics sites.
@WadCheber OK. And I agree with @TRiG that "that other religion doesn't make sense on its own terms" is not worthwhile in the context of a discussion about Judaism.
@WadCheber Rhetoriticians gonna rhetoriticize.
The fundamental Jewish position on Jesus, if I'm not mistaken, is that he definitely had human parents, and there was nothing unusual about him, aside from possibly being a heretic. He was neither immortal, nor messianic, nor even a prophet. He was just some dude.
When I imagine a conversation between a follower of Jesus and a Jew, I picture the Jew walking away as soon as the Jesus follower says "He was the messiah, and the Romans crucified him"
@WadCheber ... assuming he existed, which he probably did. There are multiple narratives in the Talmud that may or may not be about him, and none of them are about being immortal, messianic, or a prophet.
@IsaacMoses I don't believe much of what is said about Jesus, but it is pretty much certain that the Jesus story is based on a real person.
I used to be 50/50 on the issue, but the evidence is pretty compelling.
4:21 PM
@WadCheber I guess what I mean is that Judaism may or may not have anything to say about him at all as a historical figure.
Sorry, @Trig. an historical
@IsaacMoses understandable. His followers have had a nasty record in regards to Jews.
Although one of the only things I will say in his defense is that he would definitely be disgusted by the way his so called followers have treated his fellow Jews.
We have to put the blame where it belongs - on the shoulders of Paul and the later gospel writers. They made Christianity anti-Semitic, not Jesus.
@TRiG Father Son and Holy Ghost. Three distinct divine figures.
And Catholics pray to Mary more often than they pray to G-d or Jesus.
It isn't true monotheism.
@WadCheber Two non-Jewish atheists walked into a Judaism chatroom and started debating the monotheicity of the Christian Trinity ...
@IsaacMoses Eh, it happens.
in Jaami'at StackExchange al-Islamyya, Feb 9 '13 at 2:36, by El'endia Starman
...an atheist and a Christian just discussed Jewish law in a chat room for Islam. Awesome. :P
4:30 PM
@TRiG - There are plenty of Muslims and Jews who think that the Trinity is polytheistic, and I have to agree.
I once argued with a Jew about the historicity of Jesus in a chat room for the Science Fiction and Fantasy SE.
I should have stopped as soon as he said that Aramaic wasn't spoken in Galilee in the first century.
He also had trouble translating a simple phrase (bar enash) despite his insistence that he spoke Aramaic fluently.
@WadCheber Eh. I agree that Judaism's perception of the Trinity is what's relevant here. I don't think that the Trinity is polytheistic on its own terms. Not without fairly severely stretching the definition of the word polytheistic, anyway.
(That said, I was brought up in one of the very few branches of Christianity which does not teach the Trinity; I still don't think that the doctrine is to be found in the Bible, though I no longer care about that one way or t'other; and I never claimed to be able to properly understand the teaching, though I strongly suspect no one else does either.)
@TRiG According to the interpretation of the proto-Orthodox faction in early Christianity. But they only said it wasn't polytheistic because it would be really bad if they didn't.
@TRiG It was mostly a later development, but the seeds of the idea are present in John.
The kinks were ironed out at the Council of Nicea, in response to the Arian Controversy. A bishop named Arius had been teaching that Jesus was subordinate to G-d, and everyone got all uppity about it.
But even though the Trinity itself is not explicitly described in the bible, it is made clear that it is a polytheistic concept. Jesus says "My G-d, why have you abandoned me?, so he is obviously talking to someone else. If you say Jesus is divine, you just created two divine beings.
The only way around this problem is to suggest that Jesus was talking to himself: "Me, why have I abandoned myself?" "Me, into my hands I commend my spirit".
I just made myself laugh.
4:58 PM
@WadCheber this isn't granting their premise as true; it's using the most favorable (to them) position and showing why it's still false. "Suppose, for the sake of argument, we grant your claim; then he isn't because...".
We don't accept the claim; we just say that their theology is inconsistent -- if they say Jesus doesn't have an earthly father then, demonstrably, his father isn't from David's line. In addition there are tons of other reasons their guy isn't the moshiach. Their wrong ideas needn't concern us beyond the point where they use them to cause trouble for us.
@MonicaCellio I don't disagree, but I think that all the other reasons why Jesus couldn't possibly be the messiah are more valid than "his dad was G-d".
@WadCheber oh I agree; that's just one of many points against the claim.
For example, the two genealogies don't match up, and one of them skips several generations.
We don't need to spend time critiquing their texts to find reasons the claim is false.
@MonicaCellio This is true. The easiest way to disprove the claim is "The messiah was expected to overthrow the Roman occupation, but instead, the Romans tortured Jesus to death."
Or "The messiah will usher in the kingdom of G-d, and Jesus didn't do that, so he definitely wasn't the messiah"
Or "The messiah will make all people realize that Judaism is correct, and Jesus was the unwitting inspiration for millennia of anti-Semitism and hatred towards Jews".
5:12 PM
Those are generally the arguments I use. He didn't satisfy the job description, so it wasn't him.
@MonicaCellio That reminds me of another question I've debated over a few times. Is "G-d" a proper name, or something like a job title?
@WadCheber well, technically it's a translation. So if people, when using it, mean the name that it's standing in for, then it's a name. If they're talking about the concept of a god in general (e.g. comparing with other peoples), they usually don't capitalize it. When I see "God" (or "G-d") I interpret it as a name.
5:36 PM
@MonicaCellio I used to manually undo the capitalization of G-d, but I eventually gave up. It isn't important enough to warrant the effort.
My iPad can capitalize what it wants.
Oh, yeah, auto-correct is sometimes auto-incorrect.
2 hours later…
8:28 PM
@MonicaCellio Like when i have a capital i, that's usually why. ;)
@Scimonster ah, I had wondered. :-)
2 hours later…

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