Rabbi Schneider - Does God Have a Son?
God bless you, and Shalom, beloved ones. My name's Rabbi Schneider. Welcome today to this very important episode of Discovering the Jewish Jesus. I am in the third part today of a series that I'm calling The Separation of Judaism and Christianity. Again, I'm not gonna take the time to review everything that I've covered. I really urge you to get this series. It's so informative. There's so much here that will help you put everything together. But the premise is this, if Jesus never came to start a new religion, but instead came to fulfill that which had already been given to Moses and the prophets, why today do we think of Judaism and Christianity as two totally distinct and separate religions? How could this have come about?
What I am doing in this series, beloved ones, is I'm going back to the origins of this separation to help you understand how we got to the place that we're at today. And in doing so, I hope also to help Jewish people understand the Jewishness of faith in Jesus, and to help Gentile believers understand how Judaism and the Hebrew Scriptures are actually the foundation of their faith in Jesus. You see, in the Book of Luke, chapter, 24, Jesus brought His apostles on a journey through the Law of Moses and the prophets, showing them in the Holy Scriptures all the things that had been written in the Tanakh or in the Old Testament concerning Himself.
You see, the Bible tells us that Christ, that Messiah Yeshua, is the aim of the law. He fulfills it all. This is why Jesus said, If you believe in Moses, you'd believe Me. So I'm gonna pick up right now, that was all review, and I'm gonna continue on the reasons that these two movements separated from each other. Last week I talked about the jealousy of the Pharisees; that the Pharisees, we read in John, 11:53, sought to put Jesus to death because they were jealous of Him. When the miracles started happening, when Jesus raised Lazarus from the dead, Jewish people started leaving the Pharisees to follow Jesus instead. And the natural human reaction is, we've got to stop this 'cause we don't want to lose what we have.
And so the Bible says that from that point forward the Pharisees sought as to how they could put Yeshua the Messiah to death. Here's the point that I ended with last week. Modern day Judaism, which is called Rabbinic Judaism, was actually created by these same Pharisees and their sons that wanted to put Jesus to death because they were jealous of Him. And so through osmosis this anti-Jesus mindset is passed on to every generation of Jews from the time of the Pharisees in 90 A.D. when they wrote Rabbinic Judaism or when they created it, or when we should say the origins of it are. From 90 A.D. the origins of Rabbinic Judaism has been passed on to every succeeding generations of Jews down to this very day.
In other words, let me say it another way. Orthodox Judaism today is based on the concepts and mindset of the Pharisees that wanted to put Jesus to death 2,000 years ago because they were jealous of Him. These same Pharisees, they saying it this last time that put Jesus to death are the Pharisees that created Rabbinic Judaism in 90 A.D. And so Jewish people like myself, we grew up in our homes and we're just taught Jews don't believe in Jesus. We don't understand that one of the reasons we don't believe in Jesus is because 2,000 years ago there were some Pharisees that were jealous of Him because they were losing their place. And so they wanted to put Him to death. And that mindset that they had out of insecurity has been passed on to us even today.
So we sometimes are rejecting Jesus as Jewish people without realizing that one of the reasons we're rejecting Him is because of the insecurity of the Pharisees. The Pharisees hadn't examined the Scriptures to see whether Jesus had fulfilled them. They didn't approach it with an open mind and an open heart. They were just concerned, beloved, about losing their place because the Jewish people began to follow Jesus and were being led astray from them. Or not led astray, I should say, led away; not led astray, led away. They thought they were being led astray but in truth they were being led away to the true Messiah.
I want to continue on with the next important foundation as to why today Jewish people reject Jesus as being a Jewish, a Jewish Messiah. It has to do, beloved, with theology. You see, Jesus really rocked the Jewish people when He claimed to have the relationship with Father that He had. I'm gonna read now in the Gospel of John, and I'm gonna go now to John, 10, verse 32. Here's what we read: Jesus answered them, I showed you many good works from the Father; for which of them are you stoning Me? Verse 33: The Jews answered Him, For a good work we do not stone You, but for blasphemy; and because You, being a man, make Yourself out to be God. And so Jesus claiming to be equal with God, claiming to be the Son of God, He continued on. In verse 36, He said: You are blaspheming because I said, I am the Son of God?
Often times Jesus was referred to as the Son of God, and is referred to as the Son of God in the New Testament. And Jesus said, I and the Father are One. This was heretical to the Jewish people, because as Jewish people we believe in one God. In fact, the most famous declaration of the Jewish people today is what we call the Shema. It goes: Hear, O Israel, the Lord our God, the Lord is One. We say, "Sh'ma, Yisra'eil Adonai Eloheinu Adonai echad". Once again, we speak of the oneness of God. So when Jesus comes claiming to have authority like God's authority, in other words, when He did miracles, you know, they, they, they said, Who are You that says they can forgive sins?
For example, let me say it again. Jesus said to someone, He said, Man your sins are forgiven. And they cried out, Blasphemy! And Jesus said, they said, Who are You that can forgive sins? And then Jesus said, Is it easier for Me to say, Your sins are forgiven, or to say, and then He looked at the man, He said, Man take up your pallet and walk. And then immediately the man was healed, and he got up and he started walking. And everyone was amazed. So Jesus was proving that He had authority to forgive sin. And He said, the Son of Man has been given authority on earth to forgive sin.
So again, this was not something that the Jewish people, that the religious leaders of Jesus' day could wrap their heads around because they only thought of God's oneness in terms of a singular unity. And so to think of God as God the Father, and God the Son, again was outside of their paradigm. But I want to show you something now in the Hebrew Bible, in the Book of Daniel, where all the way back in the Hebrew prophets before Jesus' time we see the reality of Father God having a Son. I'm going now to the Book of Daniel, chapter number 7, and I'm looking at verse number 13. This is a prophetic, a vision that Daniel was given that spoke of the end times, of the end of days. In fact, Jesus referred to Daniel's writings in Matthew, 24, when He talked about the time of the end and the time of His return.
Daniel said this: I kept looking in the night visions, And behold, with the clouds of heaven, listen now, One like a Son of Man was coming. And He came up to the Ancient of Days and was presented before Him. And to Him was given dominion, glory and a kingdom that all the peoples, nations, and men of every language might serve Him. His dominion is an everlasting dominion which will not pass away; and His kingdom is one which will not be destroyed. What's going on here? Daniel is seeing Father turn over the world to Him, turn over the kingdom to Him. And Daniel says this Son of Man was given a kingdom that will never pass away and it's everlasting.
And so all the way back, beloved church, in the Hebrew writings we see the prophecy of the Son of God, the Son of Man, given dominion over the earth and reigning even as God. This is why Jesus said, All that the Father gives Me shall come to Me, and he that comes to Me I will in no wise cast out. Why? Because He was doing the will of the Father. You see, the Father created the world through His Son. The Father saves people through His Son. And the Father's gonna reign over the world through His Son. The Bible says, All things came to being by Him, and apart from Him nothing that's come into being has come into being. And so Jesus said, I and the Father are One.
But again, when we're confronted with information that's unfamiliar to us, it can scare us, and it can threaten us. And this is what happened in the days that the New Testament was written. And this same phenomenon, beloved ones, is still taking place on earth today in the minds of the traditional Jewish community. You see, as a traditional Jew, I understand, being raised as a traditional Jew, that you know, we believe in one God. And so when a Christian says, I believe in one God. I believe in the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, to most traditional Jews this doesn't make sense.
You say you believe in one God, and yet now you're saying you believe in the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit, and that the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit are distinct. That doesn't sound like one. That sounds like three. But this leads us, beloved, to the mystery of what the church fathers coined as the Trinity; that God is one, yet He's manifest in three persons. The paradigm that I want to help you to understand the Trinity through is the paradigm of what we see God doing in the very beginning of creation. What did God do? In the very beginning of the Book of Genesis, we read this: The Lord said, Let Us make man in Our image.
So when the Lord said, Let Us make man in Our image, we have to ask ourselves, who was He referring to? Who was He speaking to when He said, Us, and who was He speaking to when He said, Our? Now some Rabbis teach that He was speaking to the angels. But the truth is, beloved, we aren't made in the image of the angels. We're made, God said, in His image. So the only one that God could have been speaking to, beloved, was Himself. Now what do I mean that God was speaking to Himself? Listen, here's the mystery. Within God there is relationship. Most of you would agree with me that God is love. And by definition love needs an object.
So if God has always been before anything was created, and by definition He is love, who could He have loved before anything was created? Beloved, He loved the Son, who the Bible tells us in the Gospel of John has always been, get it now, in His bosom. And so from the very beginning, the Father had an object of affection which is His Son, and the Son is eternal just like the Father. And the Spirit is what holds everything together. And so this concept of God being One is not violated by a Christian's belief in the Father, Son and the Holy Spirit.
Even as God said this in the Torah, He said, A man shall leave his father and mother, cleave to his wife, and the two shall become one. What happens? Two separate, husband and wife, man and woman, come together and they become one. It is a compound unity rather than a singular unity. It's two parts coming together as one. And the same thing exists within the Godhead; that within God, beloved ones, is relationship and the Son has always been in His bosom, and the Spirit holds everything together, and is the, the vehicle, or there's not really a proper name, is, is the One through whom God moves, the Spirit is the One through whom God moves. And we actually see a manifestation of this threefold manifestation of the Godhead when Jesus was baptized.
Remember Yeshua came to the Jordan River, and as soon as He comes out the Jordan River, what happens? The Spirit appears above His head as a dove, right. The Father speaks from heaven and said, This is My beloved Son in whom I am well pleased. So the Spirit is there. The, the Father's there. And Jesus, Himself, is the Son. Well, I want to help you to understand, beloved, by understanding this. We shouldn't expect to understand the mystery that God is one, yet within Him is the Spirit, and the Son, and the Father, in the same way that we can't understand how it's possible that God could have always been.
In other words, when we try to understand how it's, how God has always been, that He has no cause, we can't grasp that at all. We always want to ask ourself, Well where did God come from? It doesn't make any sense. It doesn't make sense that God has always been. He had to come from somewhere, huh? How could He be and have always been without being caused? You see, the truth is, church, that we can only think in terms of cause and effect. We can't think in terms of an eternal being that's always been, that has no first cause. And in the same way that we can't even touch on grasping the reality that there's a God that's always been, that has no first cause, that nothing created Him, that nothing made Him, but that He's always been, we can't understand that.
We think He had to come from somewhere. Where did He come from? How could He have always been? In the same way that we don't get that, neither should we expect to understand the mystery that within God there is relationship; the mystery of the Father, Son and the Holy Spirit. And even in the Hebrew Scriptures we see this mystery being revealed. I just showed you Daniel, 7:13. Once again, listen, Daniel said there: I kept looking in the night visions, And behold, with the clouds of heaven One like a Son of Man, this is the term that Jesus so often used to describe Himself. He said, One like a Son of Man was coming, listen now, and He came. Who came? The Son of Man, the term that Jesus used to describe Himself. And He came, the Scripture says, up to the Ancient of Days. Who's the Ancient of Days? The Father.
So we see here in Daniel 7:13, we see the Father and we see the Son. And other places in Scripture we, we see verses like: Grieve not my Holy Spirit. And so God now is revealing the part of Him that is described as His Holy Spirit. And so this has been a stumbling block, again, to many, many Jewish people on the earth. And it was a stumbling block to the Pharisees of Yeshua's day. And beloved, it's still a stumbling block to, to traditional Jewish people, even, even down to this very day. And it's one of the reasons that the two movements of traditional or Rabbinic Judaism and Christianity have separated from each other.
Closely connected to this concept, beloved, is the concept of the fact that we as Christians believe that Jesus is God in the flesh. We're not saying that God is a man. But rather what we're saying is that God clothed Himself in humanity. And so we read in John, chapter 1, verse 1-5, and then verse 14: In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, listen now, and the Word was God. And in the 14th verse: And the Word became flesh. And so in the beginning was the Word. God's always been as the Word. And the Word was with God. Jesus has always been with God in the bosom. The then it says, And the Word was God. And then it says, And the Word became flesh; that God clothed Himself with humanity.
That concept is very difficult for traditional Jewish people to grasp and to receive. Even in Jesus' day, it was very, very difficult as it is down to this very day. And it's one of the reasons that Rabbinic Judaism and the Christian movement separated from each other. But once again, going back to the Torah, to the writings of Moses, to the first five books of our Bible, we read about how God appeared to Abraham in the flesh at the Oaks of Mamre. We read that three angels stood before Abraham at the Oaks of Mamre and one of those angels is Yud Hay, Vav, Hay, we read in the original language, which is actually God's sacred name Yahweh.
So this is what was called a theophany. It was a pre-incarnate appearance of Christ. It was a time before Jesus was manifest in the flesh 2,000 years ago when God manifested Himself clothed in flesh in the world. And He did that, beloved, even back in the Torah. And so there are reasons and there are explanations, beloved, for all these concerns that traditional Jewish people have today. And my hope and my prayer is that I will help some of my beloved Jewish brothers and sisters see and understand that believing in Jesus really isn't so Jewish after all. And I'm hoping that my Gentile brothers and sisters today will understand, beloved, that the mother of your faith is Judaism.
You should love Jewish people because your faith in Jesus comes out of Judaism. After all, Jesus Himself said, Salvation is from the Jews. And Paul said to the Gentile church, Don't be arrogant against that which supports your faith. And church, what supports your faith? It's the people of Israel, right, the prophets that came before. It's the writings that came out of Israel, the Old Testament. And finally, the Messiah Himself, Jesus of Nazareth, King of the Jews. I hope to bring Jew and Gentile together in love. God bless you today. Until next week, Shalom and we'll see you then.