Are many Churches preaching “Another Jesus”?
In the posting on “Are the Rabbi’s right to not believe in “Jesus” as Messiah”, we discussed some fundamental issues regarding the nature of the Messiah. The main issue was the passage in the Torah that specifically states - if a prophet comes doing great signs & wonders, and denies or tries to eliminate the Torah, the person is to be killed (as a false prophet). We also noted that in the B’rit Chadasha (Newer Testament) the sign of the anti-Messiah is he will try to change “times and seasons” (Shabbat & Feasts), and be the “lawless one” (without Torah).
So if the scriptures specifically say that changing or eliminating Torah (translated poorly as Law) is forbidden, than how can many denominations say the Torah is done away with. The answer is many groups obsession with Paul. Paul, known more correctly to his Hebrew audience as Rabbi Sha’ul, as the “Apostle to the Gentiles” is seen as the final authority by many in the church. It was noted in Derek Leman’s fine book, Paul didn’t eat Pork (www.mtolivepress.com), that 90% of sermons at a large church of one major denomination where from the Letters of Paul (an Epistle is a letter).
So most Churches get the majority of their teachings from letters Paul wrote. There are many points we need to consider:
1. Several groups did not recognize the authority of Paul, this includes entire church bodies such as the Ethiopian Church & the Ebonite’s. While we are not suggesting removing Paul’s letter from Cannon, we do need to understand they are not universally accepted.
2. Kefa (Peter) himself, as 1 of the 3 Elders forming the ruling council of Apostles, said Paul’s letters were hard to understand, and were used by many to their own destruction.
3. The letters of Paul are just that, letters, giving ½ of the conversation. Mark Nanos & Derek Leman have both written excellent works on these letters and how the Church has failed to interpret them correctly. We must understand who is being addressed, who the participants in the discussion are, and the historical and cultural background to rightly interpret his words.
4. Paul’s letters, when incorrectly understood, directly contradict Yeshua’s teachings, as well as the other Apostles. For instance, if Paul really is speaking of the Torah being a curse (as opposed to the true meaning of the passage, the curses of the Torah, i.e. the curses for failing to keep Torah), he would be directly contradicting 1 John 3 where John speaks of keeping Torah to have a proper relationship with G-d.
In effect the church is tossing out 90% of all scripture, which Sha’ul himself said was good for doctrine, reproof, teaching, etc. and getting it’s doctrine from only 10% of the Bible!
If Sha’ul is teaching people to do away with Torah, then, by definition, he is a false prophet as seen in the passage in Deuteronomy!
We do not believe Paul was a false prophet, but that his writings have been terribly mistranslated, interpreted and taught for over 1800 years. See www.bethhamashiach.com for more information on correctly understanding Paul.
What then of Churches and Denominations that teach Yeshua (Jesus) did away with the Law (Torah), or that Paul renounced the Torah? The answer is simply this, they are teaching another Jesus! They are not teaching the G-d of Abraham, Isaac & Jacob. They have fallen into one of the first Heresies the early believers faced, Marcionism & Gnosticism.
This leaves one question unanswered. Who do you follow?