Friday, March 12, 2010

The Roots of Christianity

Over the past couple of months, I have been receiving emails explaining the Parsha which I understand is the weekly Sabbath reading for the Jews.

Aside from giving me more knowledge of  the Torah (the Pentateuch, the first five books in the Old Testament, often referred to in Scripture simply as "Moses"), I am being introduced to the Talmud, for which I don't think a Christian counterpart exists.  Maybe the Catholic Catechism and the Code of Canon Law, but don't quote me on that!

It is very interesting.

What is most evident to me is just how rooted in history are the liturgical practices of Christianity, at least as found in Catholicism (of which I have the most experience).  Communal study of Scripture on the Sabbath is to be made available to Jewish communities.  They are restricted from many activities. Catholics are reasonably required to attend Mass (which is a type of Scripture so much more!) on all Sundays and Days of Obligation.  They are also to refrain from unnecessary labour.  Jews have restrictions on what they may or may not eat.  Catholics are asked to fast and abstain from time to time, and the elements that go into the confection of the Eucharist, are very clearly defined.

From another source I learn that the materials to be used in Jewish worship, such as the garments the rabbi wears, are to be of the best materials.  A similar admonishment is found in Catholic liturgical documentation, as well, with regards to the materials used in the Sanctuary and during Mass

It amazes me that some are so quick to dismiss some practices of Catholicism as being wasteful, elitist, imperialistic, impractical, extravagant etc. when there is such base for these practices in Judaism, from which we sprout.


Anders Branderud said...

Quote: “ if we have not drifted to far from the Jewish moorings of the Christian faith.”

I want to comment on this.
Le-havdil, A logical analysis (found in ( is the website of the only legitimate Netzarim-group)) of all extant source documents and archeology proves that the historical Ribi Yehosuha from Nazareth and his talmidim (apprentice-students), called the Netzarim, taught and lived Torah all of their lives; and that Netzarim and Christianity were always antithetical.
The original words of the pro-Torah teacher Ribi Yehoshua were redacted by Roman Hellenists, and the redaction is found in the “gospels”. J…. is described in the “gospels”, and le-havdil the teachings of the historical Torah-teacher Ribi Yehoshua from Nazareth are found in the reconstruction (using a logical and scientific methodology to create the reconstruction), Netzarim Hebrew Reconstruction of Hebrew Matityahu (NHM).

The historical Jew Ribi Yehoshua is not the same as the Christian Jzus The historical Ribi Yehoshua was a human.

The above website proofs that the roots of Christianity are Hellenism, not Judaism.

JP said...

Hi Anders

I thank you for your comment.

I found the website that you posted to be extremely awkward to read. It needs editing. Just a suggestion.

Also, I found what I read to mis-represent Christian teaching, as taught by the Catholic Church.

I think the bit on "displacement theology" is in need of some serious re-working.

It is interesting to note that the Catholic Church is starting to work at rediscovering our Jewish roots. I wouldn't deny for a minute that there are Hellenistic influences in Christianity. But to say that we do not (or perhaps 'no longer') extend from Judaism is just plain wrong.

And who calls the Torah "The Law of Sin and Death"? I've never heard that before...and I've been a practicing Christian my entire life.

During the Easter Vigil, which is the most solemn Mass of the year, we read from the Torah, as well as other books of the Hebrew Scripture/Old Testament. It is most definitely considered part of the Salvation History!

It's quite easy to see if you study liturgy (and I suspect that with your Baptist origins you do not know a great deal about liturgy. Nothing personal. Just experience talking).

So many Catholic practices have direct connections to Judaic practices. There is continuity, even if earlier Christians tried to distance themselves from that. A serious and open-minded look, which doesn't have to be a long one, makes this visible.

I pray that you continue to draw closer to Christ and His Truth.

JP said...

By the way, Anders, where did you draw your quote from? I can't find it in my article.