Historical Reliability of the Talmud

(Vili) #1

Hi all
Recently just trying to share my faith with a new friend that is from a Jewish background, but is more of an atheist, and had stated that he is open to other faiths, hence the sharing of my own. During our conversations, he mentioned the Talmud and how it states the coming of the Messiah, and some other Jews of today that claimed that they were the Messiah. So I wanted ask, is there some way to prove the Talmud is inaccurate, or does it reconcile with the Bible, and if so, how? Also, can someone give me some evidence towards the ressurrection? I already know it, I just need some references and books.

Thanks
AlphaOmega

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(Kathleen) #2

Hi, @AlphaOmega! Amazing that you’re doing kibbutz in Israel right now. I bet it’s been fascinating! Continuing to pray for your time there. :slight_smile:

As for the Talmud, I don’t think it’d serve you well in your conversation with your friend to go after it’s reliability. If Wikipedia is correct, then it is…

…the central text of Rabbinic Judaism and the primary source of Jewish religious law and theology… The entire Talmud consists of 63 tractates, and in standard print is over 6,200 pages long. It contains the teachings and opinions of thousands of rabbis (dating from before the Common Era through to the fifth century) on a variety of subjects, including halakha, Jewish ethics, philosophy, customs, history, lore and many other topics. The Talmud is the basis for all codes of Jewish law, and is widely quoted in rabbinic literature.

It’s a rich source of history, if anything, and it’d be interesting to know what it teaches! If your friend is familiar with it, maybe you could get him to explain it to you? That way you could evaluate if/how it reconciles to our Scriptures.

Side note: it is not surprising to learn that there are others in Jewish history, who claimed to be the Messiah. I don’t necessarily think that it was a common thing to do, but awaiting ‘the consolation of Israel’ or the ‘kingdom of God’ seemed to be a thing that the NT writers acknowledged. (Think Simeon the prophet in Luke 2 and Joseph of Arimathea in Luke 23.) :slight_smile:

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(Vili) #3

Hi @KMac
Thank you for your prayers and your response. Unfortunately, I was unable to talk with my friend as he left today for either Jerusalem or Tel Aviv. However; I have been reading about testimonies like Nabeel Qureshi experiencing a dream/encounter from God himself, so maybe you could pray for him (Michael is his name) as he travels (I asked him if he had the time to read the Gospel of John and to say a prayer asking if God is there, to reveal Himself to him).

But a seperate question for me personally is for how can I strengthen my faith. I recently watched a video from Premier Christian Radio that interviewed Os Guinness and how he came to faith in Christ, and it seems to me that the more one actually puts themselves in trials to grow in their faith, the better they trust and therefore grow closer the God. What sort of trials as a believer that just came into the scene last year (like me) would be able to provide me such growth? Or is this something that God just provides?

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(Carson Weitnauer) #4

Hi @AlphaOmega,

I think that is a great question! In my context, Christianity has, oddly, become a protection against suffering. It is a way of avoiding suffering. I think this stands in contrast to the posture of, for instance, 1 Peter.

Please consider with me these verses from chapter 4:

Beloved, do not be surprised at the fiery trial when it comes upon you to test you, as though something strange were happening to you. But rejoice insofar as you share Christ’s sufferings, that you may also rejoice and be glad when his glory is revealed. If you are insulted for the name of Christ, you are blessed, because the Spirit of glory and of God rests upon you. But let none of you suffer as a murderer or a thief or an evildoer or as a meddler.Yet if anyone suffers as a Christian, let him not be ashamed, but let him glorify God in that name.

This is a good Scriptural basis for what Os was sharing in that interview on Premier Christian radio. Resolve, through prayer and meditation upon the Scriptures, that you will count it a joy and a blessing to suffer for the name of Christ. Then, boldly love others who are not Christians, and also share the gospel with them.

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(Kathleen) #5

Hello, @AlphaOmega! I realise you wrote this a while back, but I still wanted to take the opportunity to reply. :slight_smile: Trials are interesting things. I’ve certainly learned much more through stepping out and doing hard things rather than insulating myself with comfort. The anguish does come, and it is anguish. When I’m out of my comfort zone, I am exposed and vulnerable. God can do amazing things in you and through you in those spaces, but do know that God is not asking you to be masochistic. Pain and suffering do not need to be glorified. I do encourage you, though, to keep asking Him to be challenged. As long as your living life, the trials will come; there’s no need to manufacture them. :wink:

At your young age, I would encourage you to continue gaining perspective - esp. a global one - on life and faith. God is working in a myriad of ways all around the world, which I’m sure you’re seeing, so do be curious to go and find out about it. Be an explorer and an adventurer. And don’t just observe…engage. The stuff of life is in those dynamic relationships. :slight_smile:

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