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Thursday, February 10, 2011

The Hebrew Roots Movement & Sacred Name Movement

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Posted by Friday, April 2, 2010

Hebrew Roots/Messianic Christian Zionism Warning

The Hebrew Roots Movement & Sacred Name Movement

I would really like to thank the lady who wrote up her first-hand experience with the Hebrew Roots Movement & Sacred Name Movement here for us so we could benefit -

“I wanted to share with you why I feel that the Hebrew Roots Movement & Sacred Name Movement is just as dangerous as the The Latter Rain Doctrine. Coming out of both I feel confident in saying so. I grew up in the Assembly of God church, one that did not teach Latter Rain/Dominion poison. After my husband and I were married (he grew up Baptist) we began searching for something deeper ( I think that is how you get sucked into Latter Rain etc., you feel like there just has to be something more, sadly the Word of God is not enough). We began attending a non-denominational church which would turn out to be one of many disastrous church experiences.

This church was heavy Dominionist and were really into the sheperding thing so that they knew everything about everyone and would use it as a form of control. This was our first experience with the prophetic movement and we were drawn in by it. After leaving there because of the control issues (we did not notice the theology was twisted because we were deceived) we continued on in the prophetic circles including attending Bill Hamon’s church when we were able to travel there and reading everything we could from all the big NAR’s. Well after about 10 years of this running after new revelation (we had a huge box of tapes with personal prophecies!). We became really disallusioned with the hypocrisy, lawlessness and cheap grace attitudes. We decided to leave the Apostolic/Prophetic church that we were attending. This did not set well with the “Apostle”. In these types of churches you do not leave unless you are “sent out” by the Apostle which never happens by the way.

After leaving we were contacted by a couple that had left a few months before we had. Before visiting with them, I remember really clearing going to my bookshelf and taking a book off the shelf that was a study on Galatians, I know now the Lord was trying to warn me but sadly I put the book back without taking a look at it. Well we began to meet with this couple and we shared our frustrations about the lawlessness, etc. that we had left (at the time I did not know anything about Latter Rain and how it was connected to the Prophetic/Apostolic movement, it would have explained so much).

They gave us a book by Lew White called Fossilized Customs. The book has some facts but much twisted truth. We took the bait though. The whole book is about how the name Jesus is supposedly pagan along with a lot of other extreme ideas! Thus Sacred Name. These people believe that you can only use the name Yahweh when referring to God, the Father and Yeshua (some use Yahushua) all else is pagan and Satan has deceived all christians into using the name Jesus and that Jesus really means Zeus! And this has been revealed to only the remnant (notice the Gnostic elitism) which is funny because they pride themselves on staying away from anything remotely Greek!

Well this began a four year journey with these people. We backed off a bit of the Sacred name only but began studying many Jewish writings. You must understand that this was all very gradual and the leader of this group was very skilled at studying things and presenting it to us.

Sadly to say we drifted more and more from the new testament, the new covenant and the cross of Christ. That is the danger of the Hebrew Roots movement. You want so desperately to return to the Word of God but in the end it takes you away from it in it’s entirety. The leader began planting seeds such as” the new testament was not totally flawless since it had been written in Greek there were many different texts and some may not be accurate”. He began to pick and choose and before we ended up leaving he had pretty much thrown out Galatians and John because it did not reconcile to his theology! He taught that the Virgin birth was just a doctored up Catholic version of the Word. He taught that Jesus was Joseph and Mary’s natural born son even though he could not prove this scripturely that is why he brought into question the accuracy of the translations.

You are probably saying “how could you stay?” All I can say is that deception does not happen over night it is gradual, we became emotionally tied to these people and looked to them as a mother and father (I think that is why many stay in abusive churches).

We participated in the feasts of the Bible and of course we observed Sabbath religiously every Saturday (what got me is that instead of us resting we had to go to the leader’s home early that morning to hear hours of his twisted teaching!). He began to teach that we became righteous through the law and that was why Yeshua came to show us how to keep the law. He actually began to teach that we needed to keep as much of the Law of Moses that we could and it was lawlessness not to do so. In essence you basically had to convert to Judaism even though we literally did not.

We started to get a clue about a year before we actually cut all ties and we started to question him about some of the laws in the old covenant and how we were uncomfortable with some about slavery for instance, of course he came up with some justification about it. Around this time he began making references to having more than one wife. My husband and I were really uncomfortable with these continuous comments and so one day we confronted him (his wife was not present and by the way it was obvious this journey was taking it’s tole on her as well by this time.) He told us he was one of those that could love more than one woman! (There is double standard because it is unthinkable for a woman to have more than one husband in their eyes!). We told him “what about the words of Jesus (in the beginning God made male and female, etc.) but what was obvious to us was not to him. If it wasn’t in “Torah” then it didn’t count!

Well that was it, I cried all weekend and we just began to think about everything and the path that we had been on and how far we had strayed from the gospel and it was heartbreaking! I take full responsibility for allowing myself to be deceived but I must say that man really messed with my mind! He was skilled in twisting scripture and to this day I still struggle with some things. I almost lost my faith in God because of my involvement with these people. My husband came through a little easier than myself.

I have to say there are many sects within the Hebrew Roots movement and not all believe what I have shared. But the core belief is that the church has strayed from it’s Hebrew roots and that God is restoring this revelation (the same theme of the Latter Rain) but only to a select few and the rest of the church is pagan. Because of this belief you begin to cut yourself off from the Body of Christ and before you know it you are isolated. You are no longer the salt of the world. You do not witness or share the gospel anymore because you don’t believe the gospel anymore!

The very thing that you think is bringing you closer to God (returning to His word) takes you further away because it is a twisted perception of the Word of God. My heart goes out to anyone caught up in this deception because it leaves you so confused. I praise God that he opened our eyes to this and for His grace and mercy and for the blood of Jesus which is our true Redeemer!”


To Embrace Hebrew Roots: Part I

There is a growing movement within Christianity, which contends that Christians need "to return to their Hebrew Roots." The leaders of this movement purport to be teaching believers the "Hebrew Roots of Christianity" through the study of the Jewish foundational teachings. Having been enjoined to study "Hebrew Roots", it is only reasonable that one must take a close look at the teachings of the Messianic and Hebrew Roots movements, as well as the Hebrew faith itself.

We are reminded in Colossians 2:6-9:

"As ye have therefore received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk ye in Him: Rooted and built up in Him, and stablished in the faith, as ye have been taught, abounding therein with thanksgiving. Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of the world, and not after Christ. For in Him dwelleth all the fulness of the Godhead bodily."

Is the Hebrew Roots, as some might suggest, merely the study of the Old Testament, which Christians already study in light of the New Testament?

What do the Hebrew foundational teachings expound with regard to the New Testament, the Messiah, the divinity of Jesus Christ, the Persons or Manifestations of God, the Bible and the character of God?

I could never accept the concept of being spoon-fed answers to my questions from those promoting the movement or belief that is questionable. To embrace the Hebrew Roots theology without a full review and understanding of its teachings, would be blindness on our part and lead to ignoring the many warnings we find in the Word of God.

2 Timothy 3:13-17:

"But evil men and seducers shall wax worse and worse, deceiving and being deceived. But continue thou in the things which thou hast learned and hast been assured of, knowing of whom thou hast learned them: And that from a child thou hast known the holy scriptures, which are able to make thee wise unto salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus.

All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: That the man of God may be throughly furnished unto all good works."

We know that many of the Hebrew Roots ministries are connected with each other and with various other types of ministries. This obligates us to investigate them even more thoroughly. By examining the HR teachings, those of the Jewish faith and it's mystical exponent, Kabbalism--which is indeed the concerning root of the Hebrew Roots movement--we will then see if what is taught upholds the Word of God.


Those who have challenged the Hebrew Roots teachings in the past have been dealt with swiftly and with the utmost hostility. For example, a response was forwarded to me that came from one of the Hebrew Roots leadership. This retort was in response to information sent out by another person on various Hebrew Roots issues. This well-known leader, who incidentally, never addressed any of the issues, attacked with the words:

" You have to be one of the most arrogant/ignorant *** on this earth!!!! You are a total danger to society and to God Himself. Your day will not be what you think it will be!! I would not wish to be in your shoes. You are a deceiver and liar!!!!! You pervert the facts and you totally distort the truth. May God one day forgive you of your stupidity!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!"

This is hardly what one would expect from a "man of God," who claims to belong to Jesus Christ.

Paul admonished Timothy in 2 Timothy 2:24, that:

"And the servant of the Lord must not strive; but be gentle unto all men, apt to teach, patient."

In James 3: 17,18 we are reminded:

" But the wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, and easy to be intreated, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality and without hypocrisy. And the fruit of righteousness is sown in peace of them that make peace."

In James 3: 8-10 we see:

"But the tongue can no man tame; it is an unruly evil, full of deadly poison. Therewith bless we God, even the Father; and therewith curse we men, which are made after the similitude of God. Out of the same mouth proceedeth blessing and cursing. My brethren, these things ought not so to be."

Scripture tells us in Matthew 12:37:

" For by thy words thou shalt be justified, and by thy words thou shalt be condemned."

Those who question this movement have often been accused of anti-semitism. Does the presentation of various Jewish doctrines obtained from Jewish sources constitute anti-Semitism? It seems unreasonable to conclude that the facts, presented objectively, are inherently anti-Semitic. Moreover, this writer has no bias against the Jews, but looks forward to the salvation of any through Jesus Christ.

This is a search for truth. The information that will be used is from the very beliefs and teachings that we are being asked to embrace.

John 3:20-21

"…For everyone that doeth evil hateth the light, neither cometh to the light, lest his deeds should be reproved. But he that doeth truth cometh to the light, that his deeds may be made manifest, that they are wrought in God."

Promoters of Hebrew Roots

This search for truth must test all those involved against such passages as:

James 3:13-16:

"Who is a wise man and endued with knowledge among you? Let him show out of a good conversation his works with meekness and wisdom. But if ye have bitter envying and strife in your hearts, glory not, and lie not against the truth. This wisdom descendeth not from above, but is earthly, sensual, devilish. For where envying and strife is, there is confusion and every evil work."

It seems fitting, then, that we examine the teachings of prominent leaders such as Peter Michas of Messengers of Messiah, Avi ben Mordechai of Torah Talk & the B'ne Torah Movement; Jacob Prasch of Moriel, Larry Rowland of Messengers of Truth and James Trimm of the Society for the Advancement of Nazarene Judaism. We must consider these and the many groups linked to them which are advocating the Hebrew Roots cause. Not all of the individuals and groups mentioned are claiming connections to the Messianic or Hebrew Roots movement, and these distinctions will be noted.

For example, Avi ben Mordechai, a "Nazarene (messianic) halacha" teacher, as stated on his website, ( in the article Halacha, is very influential within the Hebrew Roots and Messianic leadership. Mr. Mordechai made this pronouncement in an email to Mr. Ed Tarkowski, dated May 8, 1998:

"…I am not a proponent of the "Jewish Roots" or "Hebraic Roots" movement as you or they define the terms. I am a proponent of Torah observance for both Jews and non-Jews which takes "Jewish Roots" information and engages it to become a lifestyle. In other words, it's not Jewish information that I'm teaching in and of itself; It's Jewish information with an associated lifestyle that I uphold…"

"I am an Orthodox Sephardic Jew. I believe fully in the written and oral Torah of Moshe and of Y'shua, hence the term, the "Mesorah of Y'shua HaMashiach." Furthermore, I am not connected to the Messianic movement which generally (and I say GENERALLY) only accepts the written Torah and usually rejects the oral Torah and then makes the written Torah optional equipment for the faith which is fully counter to Y'shua's and Sha'ul's teachings."

" Nor am I connected to the Christian church which outright rejects both the written and oral Torot as being replaced with new Mesorah (traditions) that also violate the very heart of Y'shua HaMashiach's teachings. Rather, I am connected to the B'ne Torah movement which is a fast-growing sect of Judaism that happens to believe that Y'shua is HaMashiach, Ben Elohim and our Mesorah perfectly lines up with Moshe, Y'shua, and Sha'ul in their teachings of the Torot, oral and written."

For More on Avi ben Mordechai see: Avi ben Mordechai & Millennium 7000

In promoting their cause, Hebrew Roots leaders give us many reasons why we must or should become involved. For example, Larry Rowland of Messengers of Truth believes that the Bible is a book about the Jewish people, and should be studied as such:

"…In order to correctly understand the Newer Testament, it is beneficial to have a working knowledge of the world from which it was birthed. Most of the Bible, from Genesis to Revelation was written by Jews, for Jews, about Jews, or with Jews in mind. Even the Gospel of Luke and part of the Book of Acts, while probably written by Gentiles, nonetheless addressed Jewish issues and concerns on behalf of an early Jewish Church."

" Today, a travesty is occurring within the body of Christian believers. The Church, as well as Christians themselves, have a lack of knowledge concerning their Jewish heritage. Without that knowledge, Christians are burning their bridges at an alarming rate. They have forgotten the foundation on which their faith was originally founded."

"Only the knowledge of our Hebraic Roots, will allow us, as Christians, to span the bridge of time linking yesterday to today; allowing us to understand the full richness of Scripture. Remember, what you miss, don't see or comprehend in Scripture you can't have and Yeshua's desire was that we, as believers in Him . . . have it all!"1.

We have always understood that the Bible was a revelation of God himself. It encompasses His unending love, mercy, justice, patience and most of all, His plan for humanity and our salvation through Jesus Christ.

An organization in Colorado Springs for the propagation of a new kind of church is The Open Church Ministries. It promotes a "prophecy" written by Dean Cozzens regarding the Hebrew Roots movement. This "prophecy" discloses that the Hebrew Roots movement as the last of a series of movements designed to change the direction of the church, the previous movements being the Pentecostal, Charismatic and Word of Faith. Part of this prophecy declares this:

"… The critical turn in thinking [which Christians must make] is a shift away from the Greek corruptions of the past and back toward the center line God-ordained Hebrew runway, down which Jesus Himself came and landed perfectly. Jesus Himself was the airship, and the terminal where He had been loading since His first coming has been the world into which He has come. . . The runway then is all the Old Testament, i.e. all of the Old Testament Hebrew truth and revelation, and much of the Hebrew culture and custom that came with it…"

"We'll leave on the same runway Jesus landed on-Old Testament Hebrew revelations and prophecies, and Hebrew ways of thinking and living. That's who God revealed Himself to be, and Who Jesus also showed Himself to be when He lived here on this planet in the flesh."

"Many errors were incorporated into the early church in order to please and accommodate the Greek culture, and to escape anti-Hebrew persecutions from the Romans. These early corruptions are what we mean by the Hebrew-to-Greek shift. The correction of this past mistake is the turning of that great airliner in what is called the Greek-to-Hebrew shift, or the Hebrew Movement. It is what God now expects from us before He more fully empowers us, and thrusts us into His glory. It's what we need to do to make Him more comfortable about openly identifying Himself with us in His full approval of glory and power…" 2.

Do we indeed have to become Jewish in thought and custom in order to fully understand the Word of God and be pleasing before Him? Are we to accept that we have been lacking and even deliberately misled as some will say, by the New Testament and many orthodox teachings? The implications could indeed be overwhelming if this were a possibility. What of the needed reconciliation between Jews and Gentiles they say will take place if we embrace our Hebrew Roots? Is there any truth to the charges of anti-Semitism towards Jews on the part of Christians in general, and from the New Testament?

Does this teaching of Jew and Gentile reconciliation change the meaning of the Scripture found in:

Galatians 3:26-29 ?

"For ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus. For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ. There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus. And if ye be Christ's, then are ye Abraham's seed, and heirs according to the promise. "

What of the divine inspiration of the Bible? Is Scripture sufficient in itself and considered the inerrant Word of God? Are Peter Michas and others correct when they state that we must go back to the Hebrew or Aramaic writings and look to the Oral traditions for the interpretation of Scripture?

Another issue Hebrew Roots teachers bring forward is the need to rewrite the English versions of the Word of God with Jewish names as done in the book, "Holy to Yahveh,"

"…. which is bringing revelation, illuminating the importance of the Hebrew name of the Father and the Son; magnification of the holy Hebrew roots of Scripture and Christianity; scriptural truths that reveal many faulty religious doctrines and traditions; Anti-semitism exposed and shattered; and "the reconciliation of Jews and Gentiles to a holy God and one another…"

"Holy to Yahveh" author, Terrye Goldblum Seedman and her husband, desire all to be "searching into the Scriptural pure holy Hebrew roots of Christianity".

Their brochure: "Messianic Revelation, Spiritual Revival" further states:

"The Mighty One, the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, is wooing a remnant, both Jews and Gentiles, to be reconciled to Him and one another." 3.

Jacob Prasch maintains that we need the knowledge of the Midrash, the rabbinical commentary on scripture, to rightly understand the Bible. Many advocates of the Hebrew Roots doctrine would have us believe that the Talmud, a compendium of oral traditions, is divinely inspired and of benefit to those involved in Judaism, the Hebrew Roots movement and Christianity.

What evidence is there of the alleged connections between the Talmud, the Kabbalah [Jewish mysticism] and Freemasonry? While many deny any connections and state that the Kabbalah is not used, connected nor promoted, there are facts which indicate otherwise.

Many Hebrew Roots and Sacred Name advocates are decrying that the name, 'Jesus Christ', is invalid, mistranslated or unacceptable for whatever reason. One has to ask which Name do these people wish us to use if not the name of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ? Which of the numerous "only Sacred Name," are we to use?

We must also ask, what is the acceptable Name of the Father? Many of the groups are promoting the changing or rejecting of the English translation of Jehovah and even Lord, stating that His name is also translated inaccurately. Is their translation the Name which Theosophists and Kabbalists call the Ineffable Name or Tetragrammaton and should we embrace it?

Would changing the name of our Savior and embracing another name become the rejection of Jesus Christ and His salvation?

It is imperative that we understand the significance of the Sacred Name issue, for

Scripture tells us in John 14:6,

"Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me."

Acts 4:12:

"Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved."

Also promoted is the occult symbol, the Star of David, which we must consider as part of the fulfillment of Bible prophecy.

Besides removing or changing the Name of Jesus Christ, many would eliminate the term Christianity. Uri Marcus, of Nehemiah Trustees Covenant Fund, in an email regarding "A Vote For "Jesus"?, insists that converted Jews must retain their Jewish identity and refuse the Christian name so as not to offend their fellow Jews:

" ...a Jew cannot reasonably hope to identify with this metamorphasized name and expect that other Jews are going to want to run in and find out how they too can believe. Our only hope is re-establish our Jewish Identity in light of our Beliefs in the Jewish Messiah. In other words, we must restore the Jewishness to the Gospel…"

" I did not say that I would not want to be considered "Christian" amongst others in the Body of Messiah. I only said that with regard to our own people, the Jews, we cannot afford this association…"4.

Do other Jewish people view Christianity in the same manner? If we embrace the Hebrew roots and traditions, will the Jewish people, people who do not accept Jesus Christ or the New Testament, then accept us?

Will reconciliation take place between Jews and Christians, and is this objective of the Hebrew Roots movement desirable? Do the various Jewish groups view the Messianic or Hebrew Roots movement in a favorable way? If we embrace all the rituals, ceremonies, feasts and beliefs, do we fall under the Law, or become proselytes of Judaism? Where do the Noahide laws fit into the Hebrew Roots doctrine? These laws, which are acceptable to Jews and Muslims alike, are intended to govern those who are not born "into the faith".

We must ask, are these Messianic and Jewish leaders able to now provide, Truth, which has been hidden, from Gentiles and Christians all this time? Do they hold the knowledge that the rest of us lack, as suggested by so many?

Is it possible, as Peter Michas has stated, that even the conception and birth of Christ are different than what we have been taught?

Is Jesus' length of ministry on earth recorded incorrectly in the New Testament? Or is this part of the Antichrist's plan to changing times and dates that we understand as truth?

Have these spiritual leaders been given unique and new insight that they alone are able to dispense, to those who embrace the "Hebrew Roots of Christianity"? Is this movement of God, or does it come from something else?

These, then, are some of the questions that need to be addressed. The next articles will reveal many answers, which will lead to an understanding of the nature of the Hebrew Roots movement. My conclusions about this movement are based on my belief in the inerrancy of the Word of God alone, and that there is salvation in only One Name--the Lord Jesus Christ.

1 Corinthians 3:18:

"Let no man deceive himself. If any man among you seemeth to be wise in this world, let him become a fool, that he may be wise."

As we evaluate the teachings of the Hebrew Roots or messianic movements, we must understand these teachings in their historical context. Clearly there are many people who love the Lord Jesus Christ, whose hearts' desire is to follow Him, serve Him, and share Him. However, we would be naïve to think that all who say they belong to Him, are true believers. Seeking the truth about the "Hebrew Roots of Christianity" means carefully weighing all pertinent information according to the Word of God.

Ephesians 5:17:

"Wherefore be ye not unwise, but understanding what the will of the Lord is."

To Embrace Hebrew Roots: Part II

The Bible & The Talmud

Please note: Research into the Hebrew Roots & Messianic movements constitutes research into Judaism as well as the occult. We fully respect each persons right to believe or utilize what resources they choose. We however, see a clear distinction in believing the Messiah has come versus utilizing resources which still await His coming. That is how and why we must evaluate all to Christ and the New Testament as well as the Tenach. We do not wish to edit or criticize Judaism, but recognize it as distinct from our Christian beliefs, just as many in Judaism also see a distinction and separateness from our beliefs, and we jointly have mutual respect for our differences and each other.

A Personal Note: Although the research on Hebrew Roots issue has encompassed material that I have found disturbing, it in no way has changed my feelings about those involved, especially the Jewish people. I hold no anger, resentment or animosity toward any. However, I have felt a deep sense of grief because of many things. What I feel very strongly is that all the issues addressed were dealt with at the cross. Truly, His grace is sufficient. What I do have, is a strong sense or desire to see deceptions--regardless of who propagates them--exposed. This issue is very large and complex. Not all that is said about one group's views can necessarily be applied to all. However, an overview must be established and various thoughts and attitudes tested to Scripture. I do not necessarily agree with the theological positions of some sources I quote from. In fact, some I strongly disagree with. However, I have tried to establish all pertinent facts with at least one or more other sources, each saying the same or similar things and then have chosen which stated the issue with the most clarity.


This article explores the teaching of the Talmud in relation to the Bible. It evaluates the push for other transcripts other than the Received Greek Texts, and evaluates the teachings of , for example, Peter Michas and Jacob Prasch, and other advocates of Hebrew translations who postulate that the Greek manuscripts hold error.

It evaluates the need for Midrash, Mishnah, Haggadah, Halakah, and the use of the "Ancient Wisdom" versus the teaching of the New Testament and the sufficiency of Scripture with the teaching of the Holy Spirit. It shows who the scribes and Pharisees were, the Biblical view of oral traditions and the difference between New Testament beliefs versus Global Halacha and acceptance of the oral traditions.

2 Peter 1: 20-21:

"Knowing this first, that no prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation. For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man: but holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost."

What of the Bible? Is Scripture sufficient in itself and considered by the Hebrew Roots ministries to be the inerrant Word of God? Are the Old and New Testament the complete revelation of God's will for the salvation of man? Do they constitute the divine and only rule of Christian faith and practice? Or is it true as stated by Peter Michas that we must return to the Hebrew or Aramaic writings and the Oral traditions of Judaism for New Testament doctrine?

"Is The New Testament Hebrew/Aramaic or Greek? by Peter Michas"

"…since existing New Testament manuscripts are Greek, written to express Hebraic concepts, why be limited to the Greek or English translations when we have Hebrew,… The New Testament is in the pattern of the Jewish traditional work of Torah, Mishnah, Haggadah, Halakah, Talmud and Midrash, but inspired by God Himself for the common people."

"These Hebraic works as well as the Inspired Scriptures were quoted from by Jesus and all the writers of the New Testament… to have full comprehension, we must read the scriptures in the proper Hebraic context… the New Testament is Hebrew/Aramaic and not Greek or English in origin or thought… Most all of the Judaic writings have been preserved for us and now translated into proper English directly from the Hebrew, as well as explained in true Hebraic manner…" 1.

In an email dated1/19/99, James Trimm of the "Society for the Advancement of Nazarene Judaism" responded to questions regarding the sources of manuscripts for the Semitic New Testament Project (SNTP), on which he is working.

"…It is such a delight to spend so much time buried in the text in its original language... The SNTP is based on Hebrew and Aramaic rather than Greek manuscripts…the Aramaic text makes much more sense than the Greek text…This is just one example from this project which I believe will revolutionize New Testament understanding…"

2 Peter 3:16:

" As also in all his epistles, speaking in them of these things; in which are some things hard to be understood, which they that are unlearned and unstable wrest, as they do also the other scriptures, unto their own destruction."

Orthodox scholars agree that the New Testament was originally written in Greek.

"The New Testament writings were composed in Greek." 2.

Unger's Bible Dictionary states:

"Despite the critical claim that Matthew wrote the gospel in Aramaic, this contention has never been proved. If there was an Aramaic original it disappeared at a very early age. The Greek gospel, which is now the Church's heritage, was almost beyond doubt written in Matthew's lifetime." 3.

"By whom the gospel of Matthew was given in our present Greek form is unknown, but probably by himself. The consensus of critical scholars is that it is not a mere translation but an original composition." 4.

John 17:17:

"Sanctify them through thy truth: thy word is truth."

Hyam Maccoby, grandson to the famous Rabbi Haim Zundel Maccoby, the Polish Kamenitzer Maggid, [spirit guide], propounds the view of Peter Michas and other Hebrew Roots advocates that the Gospels were written in an era of extreme prejudice and hatred towards the Jews and that this anti-Semitism was reflected in the New Testament. Hyam Maccoby impugns the accounts of Mark and Luke:

"… the Gospel of Mark, … the Gospel in which the lines of policy were laid down by the Gentile-Christian Church; a policy of condemnations of the Jews as an accursed people."

"…What had been the history of the Christian Church since the death of Jesus? The bulk of the New Testament which purports to give this history is The Acts of the Apostles; but this is a Gentile-Christian composition written about 100 A.D. by Luke, giving a Gentile-Christian slant to the events of those years. By reading between the lines of Acts, by following using a supplementary sources such as Josephus, the Talmud and early Christian historians, we can reconstruct the true history of the early church." 5.

Scripture tells us many times that God's Word is pure.

Psalm 12:6,7:

"The words of the Lord are pure words: as silver tried in a furnace of earth, purified seven times. Thou shalt keep them, O Lord, thou shalt preserve them from this generation for ever."

Error in the Bible

Other HR and related groups make the excuse that there is error in the Bible, which must be eliminated. Promoting their NEW Translation called "The Book of Yahweh," the House of Yahweh stated this regarding the Scriptures,

"… Many phrases have been deliberately mistranslated in order to hide their true meaning, so that Scripture would not bring to light the deceitful teaching of the established, and popular, religious organizations. The alteration of Yahweh’s Scriptures, either by untranslating or mistranslating, has caused the True Work, which His Prophets spoke of, to be hidden in most translations of the Scriptures, and has been damaging to those who are searching the Scriptures for the way to Eternal Life."

"However, the most damaging error in all the Scriptures, was the error of removing YAHWEH’S NAME from the very scriptures He inspired to be written, and writing in its place the pagan titles of GODS, and SATAN HIMSELF! Because of this grave error, those who are calling upon the names of gods and Satan, even though ignorantly, are actually worshiping the gods and Satan—for they are not calling upon, and with, The NAME of YAHWEH!" 6.

Psalm 119:104,105

"Through thy precepts I get understanding: therefore I hate every false way. Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path."

In his article, Explaining the Midrash, Jacob Prasch stated that we need the knowledge of the Midrash and Jewish thought to rightly understand the Bible.

"…But Matthew appears to take the passage out of all reasonable context and twist it into talking about Jesus. We have to ask, is Matthew wrong? or is there something wrong with our Protestant way of interpreting the Bible? There is nothing wrong with Matthew, and there is nothing wrong with the New Testament. But there is something wrong with our Protestant mentality…They were reading a Jewish book as if it were a Greek book… The first step is going back to reading the Bible as a Jewish book, instead of as a Greek one." 7.

Referring to the Midrash, Mr. Prasch said:

" It takes the wisdom of the ancients to really understand these things." 8.

"Wisdom of the Ancients" bears an uneasy resemblance to Ancient Wisdom, which is the esoteric term used by occultists for Gnosis or Mysticism. William Kingsland wrote of this wisdom in his book, " THE GNOSIS OR ANCIENT WISDOM IN THE CHRISTIAN SCRIPTURES: OR THE WISDOM IN A MYSTERY":

"...when I speak of the Gnosis, I do not refer specifically to the Greek or Coptic variety, but to that 'Ancient Wisdom' which can be discovered as a thread of gold running through allegories and myths and fables from the very earliest times of which we have any literary records, and which has more recently been somewhat more fully expounded to us by some of the existing Masters of that Wisdom." 9.

Are Christians unable to understand the Bibles teachings without this Ancient Wisdom?

Psalm 19: 7-11:

"The law of the Lord is perfect, converting the soul: the testimony of the Lord is sure, making wise the simple. The statutes of the Lord are right, rejoicing the heart: the commandment of the Lord is pure, enlightening the eyes. The fear of the Lord is clean, enduring forever: the judgments of the Lord are true and righteous altogether. More to be desired are they than gold, yea, than much fine gold: sweeter also than honey and the honeycomb. Moreover by them is thy servant warned: and in keeping them there is great reward."

What about other sources of Jewish thought regarding the Messiah, the kingdom of God, sin and salvation? How do teachings expounded from the "Ancient Wisdom" compare with the New Testament teachings? What differences may be found between the inspired Old and New Testament and the "Mishnah, Haggadah, Halakah, Talmud and Midrash?" Has the Holy Spirit equally inspired these sources?

Perhaps Peter Michas is correct in saying that we need to understand the original concepts from history and as they are taught now —particularly from these books and the Jewish people themselves. Obviously, they would hold the keys to the Hebrew Roots of Christianity as taught by the Jewish sages.

Avi ben Mordechai, an Orthodox Sephardic Jew, concurs with Hebrew Roots teachers that the ancient Jewish teachers of the Law hold the answers:

"…Since Sha’ul followed Messiah Y’shua, who also taught the Oral and Written Torah, I submit (at this time in my life) that we should be following in the footsteps of Judaism’s great teachers of G-d’s Law,… I believe that Judaism’s ancient scholars and sages were far more knowledgeable on the Oral Traditions than we could ever hope to be." 10.

For More on Avi ben Mordechai see: Avi ben Mordechai & Millennium 7000

In other words, the rabbinical scholars are saying much the same thing as the leaders of the Hebrew Roots/Messianic movements. According to these eminent scholars, the Bible is in error and insufficient in itself, and therefore not easily or correctly understood without the aid of select knowledge and insight from the written and oral traditions of the Hebrew rabbis and scribes of old. Among the ancient Jewish writings which we are urged to study, the Talmud is regarded by the Jewish people as equal to the Scriptures and by some even more important than the Scriptures.

Many are teaching that one must also utilize "PaRDes as a tool for Torah study," with the qualifier, "that this would be within normative rabbinic Judaism (and should be in ours), not necessarily just Kaballah, that is why the rule for being 40 years of age and extensively schooled in Torah was the original prerequisite for understanding Sod." and in order to understand the meaning of the Scriptures. However, kabbalah will be discussed and it needs to be understood that Pardes is an acronym for the understanding of Scriptures via kabbalistic means.

It's noteworthy that an article published in the final print edition of the Jerusalem Perspective, written by David Bivin of the Jerusalem School of Synoptic Research (JSSR) and who is so popular within the Hebrew Roots movement, is not accepted by many within the Hebrew Roots or Messianic movements or Christians embracing these teachings, because of their not understanding or denying the source of kabbalah or Pardes:

“... students of the Kabbalah speak of Pardes ...which is an acronym derived from the initial letter of each of the four terms (p-r-d-s)....According to the late Professor Gershom Scholem, pioneer researcher in the field of Kabbalah, Moses ben Shem Tov of Leon was the first known writer to mention the acronym Pardes. He did so about 1290 in a composition called Sefer Pardes. Moses ben Shem Tov also wrote The Zohar, which became the most influential work of the Spanish Kabbalists...The Kabbalists were mystics par excellence, and they pursued vigorously Scripture's concealed meanings. They aspired to an elevated spiritual awareness by gaining access to concealed knowledge through scrutinizing each letter of the biblical text and through ecstatic ascents into heaven...Their longing for esoteric knowledge may be traced back in part to earlier Gnostic speculations. Such speculations left their imprints on the Kabbalah...The acronym Pardes belongs exclusively to the domain of the Kabbalah.”

Quoted from an article titled:

“Medieval Jargon on First-century Lips”
Author: David Bivin
Jerusalem Perspective
Page 33
July-September 1999 #56

A book published in 1984 by David Bivin (Director of the JSSR) and Roy Blizzard has formed the basis of much Hebrew Roots' doctrine. The following excerpts from Understanding The Difficult Words Of Jesus represent the JSSR viewpoint on the lack of originality of the Greek New Testament:

"...Our reasons for writing this book are not only to show that the original gospel was communicated in the Hebrew language; but to show that the entire New Testament can only be understood from a Hebrew perspective. 2.

"It cannot be overemphasised, that the key to an understanding of the New Testament is a fluent knowledge of Hebrew and an intimate acquaintance with Jewish history, culture, and Rabbinic Literature."

Jesus Christ is identified by the JSSR as being "like other Jewish sages of that time". Please see Jacob Prasch & The Jerusalem School of Synoptic Research for more on the JSSR

We are reminded in 1 Corinthians 2:5:

"That your faith should not stand in the wisdom of men, but in the power of God."

James 1:5:

"If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him."

Primacy of the Talmud

Author, Nesta Webster quotes Talmud translator, Michael Rodkinson's view of the importance of the Talmud in Jewish life:

" The modern Jew is the product of the Talmud."¹ 11a.

She goes on to mention the lesser importance of Scripture given by the Talmud:

" The Talmud itself accords to the Bible only a secondary place. Thus the Talmudic treatise Soferim says: 'The Bible is like water, the Mischna is like wine, and the Gemarah is like spiced wine.'" 11.

One can verify these statements in the Talmudic treatise Soferim, in the tract Sopherim XV, 7, fol.13b. This teaching regarding the inferior status of the Bible is echoed in the tract Babha Metsia, fol. 33a:

"Those who devote themselves to reading the Bible exercise a certain virtue, but not very much; those who study the Mischnah exercise virtue for which they will receive a reward; those, however, who take upon themselves to study the Gemarah exercise the highest virtue. " 12.

The author, Rev. I.B. Pranaitis, reiterates the high esteem with which the Talmud and its writers are held, either placing it on a level with Scripture or surpassing it:

"In the tract Erubhin, f.13b, where it is related that there was a difference of opinion between the two schools of Hillel and Schamai, it is concluded that:

"The words of both are the words of the living God."

In the book Mizbeach, cap. V, we find the following opinion:

"There is nothing superior to the Holy Talmud." "Contemporary defenders of the Talmud speak of it almost in the same way." 13.

"…The following is a well-known and highly praised opinion in the writings of the Rabbis:

"My son, give heed to the words of the scribes rather than to the words of the law."

The reason for this is found in the tract Sanhedrin X, 3, f.88b:

"He who transgresses the words of the scribes sins more gravely than the transgressors of the words of the law." 14.

From the Babylonian Talmud we read that rabbis can debate God---and win:

Baba Mezia 59b. A rabbi debates God and defeats Him. God admits the rabbi
won the debate. 15.

Maimonides defines the various ways one would be considered a denier of the Law, meaning not the Bible, but the oral law as set down by the sages:

Rabbi Maimonides, in Hilkhoth Teschubhah (III, 8) gives the list of those who are considered as denying the Law: "There are three classes of people who deny the Law of the Torah: (1) Those who say that the Torah was not given by God, at least one verse or one word of it, and who say that it was all the work of Moses; (2) Those who reject the explanation of the Torah, namely, the Oral Law of the Mischnah, and do not recognize the authority of the Doctors of the Law, like the followers of Tsadok (Sadducees) and Baithos; (3) Those who say that God changed the Law for another New Law, and that the Torah no longer has any value, although they do not deny that it was given by God, as the Christians and the Turks believe. All of these deny the Law of the Torah." 16.

Scribes and Pharisees

Who are the scribes whose words or oral law must be listened to and obeyed above all the written law? Quoting again from Hyam Maccoby’s, Revolution in Judaea, is the following explanation of the terms Pharisee, Sadducee, scribes and rabbis, at the time of Christ.

"These [the Pharisees] were the members of the body of ‘Comrades’ (Haverim) as they called themselves. Their leaders were called ‘Wise Men’ (Hahamin), and they were later given the title ‘Master" (Rabbi) before their names. These leaders were also sometimes known as the ‘Scribes’ after the title of Ezra and his followers in late Biblical times. Pharisees, in fact, regarded Ezra as the founder of their movement, and they regarded themselves as the heirs of the Prophetic tradition." 17.

The term Pharisee was used at the time of Jesus, and eventually became replaced completely with rabbi, who was often a lay teacher. Rabbi Maccoby explains the differences between the Pharisees and Sadducees at the time of Christ.

"The central religious distinction between the Pharisees and the Sadducees was on the question of the ‘Oral Law’. The Pharisees held that in addition to the revealed word of God in Scripture ( i.e. the Old Testament, as Christians later called, and especially the five books of Moses known as the Torah or ‘Teaching’) there was an oral tradition consisting of interpretations and enactments supplementing and developing the Written Law." 18.

"…The Sadducees, on the other hand, held that the whole of Judaism lay in the Written Law which was a closed and final revelation with no need of interpretation or development. The Sadducees, ...wanted to keep Judaism simple. They wanted it to be centered around three great institutions, the Scripture, the Priesthood, and the Temple…" 19.

Mr. Maccoby goes on to develop the Pharisaical view of the Torah as a dynamic document, subject to new interpretations by themselves, according to the Oral Law:

"… To the Pharisees, however, this policy was, in their own graphic phrase, ‘to put Torah into a corner’. [B.Kiddushin, 66a.(Talmud)] The Torah was to them, a living thing which must continually encounter and grapple with new circumstances, thus, giving rise to new decisions which became part of the developing Oral Law. This does not mean the Pharisees regarded the Bible as imperfect. It was the Word of God, revealed to Moses and the Prophets. But new circumstances were continually drawing out of it new depths of meaning; its content was inexhaustible. This growing knowledge of the possibilities of the Torah, revealed through time in the processes of history, was the Oral Law. In other words, the place of the Torah was ‘not in heaven, but in the hands of men’; [B.B.Metz, 59b. (Talmud)] and the Oral Law was thus the working, human reality of the divine revelation." 20.

"The Pharisees, however, always claimed that the Oral Law, of which they were supporters and champions, went back to the origins of Judaism and that the Sadducees, in denying the Oral Law, were heretics who were attempting to abolish a fundamental religious principle. " 21.

In the volume, Josephus, the historian, also contrasts the views of the Pharisees and Sadducees regarding the Oral Law:

"…the Pharisees have delivered to the people a great many observances by succession from their fathers, which are not written in the law of Moses; and it is for this reason that the Sadducees reject them, and say that we are to esteem those observances to be obligatory which are in the written word, and not to observe what are derived from the tradition of our forefathers. " 22.

In defense and support of the Pharisees, Hyam Maccoby adds this tribute to their preservation and multiplying of religious rituals and traditions:

"The Pharisees added new Festivals (Chanukah and Purim) to the Jewish religious year; they added to the canon of Scripture…they added new doctrine to Judaism…they added new rites to the Temple worship…as well as being continual creators of new prayers and ceremonies in the synagogue." 23.

Indeed, the authority and respect attributed to rabbis is so great, that it is taught within the Babylonian Talmud, section Hagigah 27a., that no rabbi will go to hell.

The Pharisees and Sadducees were both believers in the word given by God to man, but the Pharisees added extra-Biblical oral teachings as authority over the written Word of God. They called the Sadducees heretics for not doing so. Those in the Hebrew Roots movement parallel the Pharisees in that they look to these extra-Biblical works for their guidance---and wish all to follow suit.

Jesus refuted the teachings of the Sadducees:

Mark 12:24:

"And Jesus answering said unto them, Do ye not therefore err, because ye know not the scriptures, neither the power of God?"

Exclusiveness of the Talmud

Why would the leaders of the Hebrew Roots, Nazarene movements want us to study the Talmud, and so on, when the Talmud itself teaches that it's precepts are only for the Jews??

P.L.B. Drach states in his " De l' Harmonie entre l'Eglise et la Synagogue,"

"… the Talmud is not a law of righteousness for all mankind, but a meticulous code applying to the Jew alone ....In the Talmud and ... as Drach points out, "the precepts of justice, of equity, of charity towards one’s neighbor, are not only not applicable with regard to the Christian, but constitute a crime in anyone who would act differently ... The Talmud expressly forbids one to save a non-Jew from death, restore lost goods, etc., to him, to have pity on him." 24.

The exclusiveness of the Talmud is commonly understood among the Jews. In the footnote regarding these quotes it is noted that Drach was:

"Quoting the treatise Aboda-Zara, folio 13 verso, and folio 20 recto; also treatise Baba Kamna, folio 29 verso. Drach adds: "We could multiply these quotations to infinity"

It should be noted that Mr. Drachs knowledge comes firsthand. Accordingly,

"…The Jewish Encyclopædia has an article on Drach in which it says he was brought up in a Talmudic school…" 25.

Furthermore the Talmudic view of the Gospels and those who own them are as follows:

" In the Talmud those who possess books called the Gospels are heretics [Minim]. Thus in Schabbath (116a) it says: "Rabbi Meir calls the books of the Minim Aven Gilaion [iniquitous volumes] because they call them Gospels." 26.

What Scripture supports the idea that we must hold to Hebrew thought that the Gospels are iniquitous and those who believe them are heretics? Is this what Larry Rowland means by "understanding in order to grasp all that scripture has to offer"? Is this oral tradition committed to the writings of the Talmud, to be embraced as truth and supporting what Christ himself taught?

Or did Jesus say in Matthew 15:6:

"Thus have ye made the commandment of God of none effect by your tradition."

James 2:9:

"But if ye have respect to persons, ye commit sin, and are convinced of the law as trangressors."

Considering the great importance of the Talmud in Hebrew thought and Hebrew Roots teachings, we need to understand exactly what the Talmud is and what it contains.

The Talmud

Many involved in Judaism and the Hebrew Roots movement embrace the idea that the Talmud is divinely inspired and of benefit to Christianity. In the past, not surprisingly, some Jews have viewed the Talmud as an obstacle, preventing reconciliation between the groups.

We know that many people, Jewish and non-Jewish, do not consider the New Testament to be of God.

However, Avi ben Mordechai redefines the gospel as the Oral Torah:

"…When Paul says, "I marvel that ye are so soon removed from him that called you into the grace of Christ unto another gospel" you need to see the definition of Gospel in light of the Mishnah of Mark 1:1ff. It's a direct connection to the Torah of Moshe- Oral and Written…" 27.

It has been established that the oral traditions of the Pharisees, which were committed to the Talmud, take authority and precedence over the Old Testament, as Judaism's holiest book. The Talmud contains material accumulated over several centuries. A complete collection consists of 63 books in 524 chapters. The main elements of the Talmud are the Mishna, the Gemara (Babylonian and Palestinian) and the Midrashim or Midrash. The Mishna and Gemara compose the Jerusalem Talmud, which was revised in the third to fifth century and later named the Babylonian Talmud, the one commonly used today. Credit is given to Rabbi Judah the Prince for the compilation of the Mishna around 200 A.D.

The Talmud itself confirms, again, the authority of the Talmud teachings in Erubin 21b (Soncino edition):

"My son, be more careful in the observance of the words of the Scribes than in the words of the Torah (Old Testament)." 28.

In Judaism on Trial, Hyam Maccoby quoted Rabbi Yehiel ben Joseph, who insists that it is indispensable to understanding Scripture:

"Further, without the Talmud, we would not be able to understand passages in the Bible...God has handed this authority to the sages and tradition is a necessity as well as scripture. The Sages also made enactments of their own... anyone who does not study the Talmud cannot understand Scripture." 29.

From Fabre d' Olivet, author of La Langue He'braique, we learn not only the true source of the Hebrew Oral Tradition, which is Egypt, but its future transmission into the great body of Jewish mysticism called the Kabbalah:

"…According to Fabre d'Olivet, Moses, who was learned in all the wisdom of the Egyptians, "drew from the Egyptian Mysteries a part of the oral tradition which was handed down through 'the leaders of the Isrealites."¹. That such an oral tradition, distinct from the written word embodied in the Pentateuch, did descend from Moses and that it was later committed in writing in the Talmud and the Cabala is the opinion of many Jewish writers." ². 30.

From the "Kabbalah in English", we may glean factual information about the Hebrew Sacred books, whose Gnostic (hidden) meanings were later developed into the Kabbalah:

"…But the Scripture alone can not show the meanings within. Rabbinic hermeneutics could find a wealth of meaning in the subtlest details of the text, a characteristic that Kabbalistic writing took over… The Talmud is actually two works in one… The core work is the Mishnah, a codification of Jewish Law from the second century CE, together with transcriptions of debates, discussions, and teachings of various sages in the next two to three centuries, organized around the Mishnah, called the Gemara. The Talmud thus shares the same structure of the Mishnah--a tractate by tractate enunciation of Jewish law; but, being in form the record of oral teaching, the Gemara wanders far and wide. There are two versions of the Gemara, based on the work of the Academies of Babylonia (Babylonian Talmud/Talmud Bavli) and Palestine (called the Palestinian Talmud or Talmud of the Land of Israel; in Hebrew the title is Talmud Yerushalmi, or Jerusalem Talmud). Not every tractate of the Mishnah accumulated a Gemara, and some tractates have Gemara in one recension but not the other… the standard complete translation of the Bavli is that of Soncino Press, originally done in the 1930s… The Hebrew contains various commentaries normally printed with the Talmud, but these are not translated…"31.

Regarding the Midrash, The Kabbalah in English, notes the legendary character of its content, and further explains the more important authors and their commentaries.

"…The Midrash, stemming from the same period as the Talmud, but more concerned with supplying context and elaboration of the Biblical text. Much legendary material is archived here. Midrashim exist on the Torah, the books of Ruth, Lamentations, Ecclesiastes, Esther, Song of Songs (together referred to as the five Megillot), and Psalms. Usually all but the last are grouped together as Midrash Rabbah, and an multivolume translation from the Soncino Press is available…"32.

"Ancillary to this is Rashi and Rambam. Rashi is Rabbi Shlomo ben Yitzchak, author of the most important, because most widespread, commentary on the Bible and the Talmud; even the most uneducated of Jews in premodern times knew what Rashi said about a passage in the Bible, and his glosses are to be found on almost every page of the Talmud… His commentary generally distills the Talmudic teaching, and draws on the Midrash heavily; and in turn lies at the foundation of many later commentators… Rambam is Rabbi Moses ben Maimon (another acronym), usually called in English by his Greek name, Maimonides. He wrote the first definitive compilation of Jewish law since Talmudic times, the Mishneh Torah, but for the student of Kabbalah it is the Guide for the Perplexed, Moreh Nebuchim…" 33.

Peter Michas, Jacob Prasch and others in the Hebrew Roots, also favour the Midrash. Hyam Maccoby notes that The Haggada of the Midrash is composed of Jewish fables:

"The Haggada (found mainly in the Midrash) is the poetical side of Pharisaism, and comprises folktales, parables, quaint fancies and metaphysical speculations." 34.

God issues this warning in the Scriptures found in Titus 1:14:

" Not giving heed to Jewish fables, and commandments of men, that turn from the truth."

Jewish Education and "Halacha"

Project Genesis, found at, is connected to such Hebrew Roots sites as Larry Rowlands, Messengers of Truth. Part of its purpose includes education about Jewish roots:

"Project Genesis promotes further Jewish education about our Jewish roots, as represented in Jewish sources…"

According to their Facts,

"Our teachers are Orthodox, so they approach the tradition from a traditional perspective (which is logical, after all). But our program so carefully avoids labels and politics that Conservative and Reform Rabbis have actively expressed their support of the program to their congregants and colleagues." 35.

One of their online Torah projects is the Hypertext Halacha, which is a translation of selections of the Mishna. The Hypertext Halacha:

"is a translation of the Shulchan Aruch and Mishna Berurah as distributed by Project Genesis " 36.

The term Halacha is used frequently when discussing the Midrash, Mishnah and Talmudic teachings, and needs to be defined. According to one authority,

"Halacha means "Way" or "Path". Halacha is the application of the Law (Torah) to everyday living. The traditional viewpoint is that Halacha should be decided by those who are most knowledgable in all aspects of Jewish law. Since the Halacha of each generation is decided by its greatest Torah scholars, and the Torah doesn't change, there is usually little change in the Halacha from one generation to the next. The development of Halacha is most evident when new situations arise for which rulings must be made, such as the destruction of the Temple, the development of electricity, and the increasing complexity of modern food processing technology. Since the non-traditional viewpoint is that the Torah itself was written by people, both the interpretation of the Law and its application are re-evaluated in each generation, using the interpretations of the past to serve primarily as non-binding guidance in how to continue this process. Both viewpoints encourages all Jews to study halacha, and apply it to their daily lives in order that they be brought closer to G-d." 37.

The Halacha List Home page cites that the teachings of the Mishna Berurah (like Project Genesis) are provided with the intended aim, " to familiarize the general public with various Halachic situations which are relevant to our everyday life." 38.

With that in mind we see from the Hypertext Halacha, distributed by Project Genesis , a list of topics from these Sacred Jewish books, relevant to everyday life. Just a small portion of these includes the following examples.

"Siman 11. The Laws of Tzitzis The Laws of the Tzitzis String, 12. Things that Invalidate Tzitzis [Fringes] … Siman 20. Laws of Tzitzis in a Cemetary… Siman 26. The Law for Someone Who Has Only One "Tifila"… Siman 28. The Laws of taking off the Tefillin… Siman 35. The Law Concerning the Number of Lines (in the Torah Passages of Tefilin)… Siman 39. Which People are fit to write Tefilin and …" Siman 43 The laws of tefilin when entering a bathroom(cont.)… Siman 45 The Laws of Tefillin in a graveyard and bathhouse… Siman 73 How one who sleeps with his wife and children should act… Siman 75 One should be careful about [a woman's] uncovered hair and a woman's [singing] voice when reading the Shema, and also not to read it in the presence of nakedness… Siman 76 To Be Careful of Excrement While Saying the Shema … Siman 79 One who comes across excrement when reading the Shema (continued)…Siman 89 The Laws of Prayer and Their Proper Time… Siman 100 One must concentrate upon all of the blessings, and one can pray in any language [Shmoneh Esrei]… Siman 103 Someone who needs to flatulate in the middle of praying…. Siman 114 The law of mentioning wind, rain and dew." 39.

The Jewish writer, Solomon Maimon, wrote in 1792, to expose what he called "absurd questions" which are discussed with utmost seriousness and explicit detail in the Talmud.

". . .the oddest rabbinical conceits are elaborated through many volumes with the finest dialectic, and absurd questions are discussed with the highest efforts of intellectual power: for example, how many white hairs may a red cow have, and yet remain a red cow; what sort of scabs require this or that purification; whether a louse or a flea may be killed on the Sabbath-the first being allowed, while the second is a deadly sin; whether the slaughter of an animal ought to be executed at the neck or the tail; whether the high priest put on his shirt or his hose first; whether the Jabam, that is, the brother of a man who died childless, being required by law to marry the widow, is relieved from his obligation if he falls off a roof and sticks in the mire." 40.

Global Unity and the Halacha

Avi ben Mordechai, an Orthodox Sephardic Jew, indicates that we need to incorporate the Jewish "halacha" teachings in order for "believers" to be unified globally. His intention is that Jewish teachers and eventually a Jewish high court should be in place in order to teach us the truth.

"…As I see it today… Nazerean (Messianic) halacha should be in place to help us as a global community of believers in Y’shua HaMashiach properly interpret the written code of Sinai for the community at-large. Not only is this good government (i.e., "the kingdom of G-d on earth") but this is also the commandment of Y’shua.…"

"The council in Acts Chapter 15 led by it Nasi (Prince) Ya’acov HaTzadeq (James) and his Av Bet Din (Father of the House of Judgment) Kefa (Peter), was built on Y’shua’s Mishnah and Gemara and on the principle that biblical Jewish government must include the halachic jurisdiction of a Bet Din or high court ( Mattityahu 18). Consequently, I believe we have the responsibility and privilege to establish another authority like the one recorded in Acts 15, and ideally, it should be seated in Y’rushalayim! "

"… first century halacha is not what it used to be. Furthermore, since there is no official high court to represent the halachic interests of believers in Y’shua, what are we to do with our own disputes, judgments, and need for legal rulings? Do we turn to the established traditions of the Sephardim? [Kabbalists] The Ashenazim? [Mystics] The Conservatives or some other body of Judaism?…I believe that Judaism’s ancient scholars and sages were far more knowledgeable on the Oral Traditions than we could ever hope to be. So, what do we do? Where do we stand today since we do not have our own high court and have not had one for nearly two millennia?" 41.

Both the Sephardim and the Ashkenazim are gnostic sects of Judaism. The Sephardim are credited with the dissemination of the Cabala throughout Europe after the Jews were expelled from Spain.

Since the Talmud is considered to be above the Bible, it behooves us to know what things it teaches about the very foundations of our Christian beliefs. Since we are admonished we are not able to understand the Word of God without it and we need to be taught by Jewish sages, that is to whom we will turn, to see what is believed and taught.

Psalm 119: 16:

"I will delight myself in thy statutes: I will not forget thy word."

I Corinthians 1:19:

"For it is written, I will destroy the wisdom of the wise, and will bring to nothing the understanding of the prudent."

All Scripture quotes from the Authorized King James Bible

Next Section:

To Embrace Hebrew Roots: III-- The Talmud & Jesus Christ

Previous Section: To Embrace Hebrew Roots Introduction


Peter Michas, http://www.ez/com/~peterm/HB.GK.RF.HTML
Fitzmyer, "Responses to 101 Questions on the Dead Sea Scrolls; p.104 ; as Cited in Andrew Goulds SOME DISTURBING ASPECTS OF THE SO-CALLED "HEBREW ROOTS' MOVEMENT, AND THEIR IMPLICATIONS"
Unger's Bible Dictionary p. 706, Ibid.
Ibid p.422 Ibid.
Hyam Maccoby; "Revolution in Judaea: Jesus and the Jewish Resistance"; p. 230, ii. Ocean Books; 1973
House of Yahweh,
Jacob Prasch; Explaining the Midrash;]
Kingsland, William. THE GNOSIS OR ANCIENT WISDOM IN THE CHRISTIAN SCRIPTURES: OR THE WISDOM IN A MYSTERY; London: George Allen & Unwin Ltd., 1954 (1937), Kingsland, p.83
Avi ben Mordechai;
Michael Rodkinson (i.e. Rodkinssohn), in Preface to the translation of the Talmud, Vol. I. p. x. ; as Cited in: Nesta H. Webster, p. 370-371., "Secret Societies and Subversive Movements" Omni Publications, Eighth edition, 1964
Rev. I.B. Pranaitis; The Talmud Unmasked: The Secret Rabbinical Teachings Concerning Christians; The Talmud;
Michael A. Hoffman II & Alan R. Critchley, The Campaign for Radical Truth in History;
Pranaitis, op.cit.
Maccoby, op.cit., p.77-78
Ibid., p. 74
Ibid., p.74-75
Ibid., p.75
Ibid., p..76
Ibid., p.77
Ibid., p.281
P.L.B. Drach, De l’Harmonie entre l’Elise et la Synagogue, I. 167. Cited in: Nesta H. Webster, op. cit. p.371 Note: probable typo in Book. Should be De l’Harmonie entre l’Eglise et la Synagogue, as cited on other pages in the book
Webster, Ibid., p.11-12
Rev. Pranaitis;
Avi ben Mordechai, email to Ed Tarkowski, May 1998
Michael A. Hoffman II & Alan R. Critchley, op. cit.
1. Fabre d' Olivet, La Langue He'braique, p.28 (1815); 2. According to the Jewish view God had given Moses on Mt. Sinai alike the oral and the written Law, that is, the Law with all it’s interpretations and applications."-Alfred Edersheim, The Life and Times of Jesus the Messiah,I.99 (1883)quoting other Jewish authorities; as Cited in Nesta H. Webster; Ibid., p.6
Kabbalah in English,
Maccoby, op.cit., p. 281
Project Genesis,
Hypertext Halacha;
Torah and Halachic Authority (3/12) - What is "Halacha?" How is it determined?;
Hypertext Halacha;
Solomon Maimon: an Autobiography, translated from the German by J. Clark Murray, p. 28 (1888). The original appeared in 1792. As Cited in: Webster ; op.cit. p. 7
Avi ben Mordechai, Halacha;


To Embrace Hebrew Roots: Part III

The Talmud & Jesus Christ

Please note: Research into the Hebrew Roots & Messianic movements constitutes research into Judaism as well as the occult. We fully respect each persons right to believe or utilize what resources they choose. We however, see a clear distinction in believing the Messiah has come versus utilizing resources which still await His coming. That is how and why we must evaluate all to Christ and the New Testament as well as the Tenach. We do not wish to edit or criticize Judaism, but recognize it as distinct from our Christian beliefs, just as many in Judaism also see a distinction and separateness from our beliefs, and we jointly have mutual respect for our differences and each other.

Since we are asked to embrace the teachings of the Talmud and various other writings and teachings of the Jewish people, we should start by inquiring as to what these teach about our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.

I John 5: 10- 13

"He that believeth on the Son of God hath the witness in himself; he that believeth not God hath made him a liar; because he believeth not the record that God gave of his Son. And this is the record, that God hath given us eternal life; and this life is in his Son. He that hath the Son hath life; and he that hath not the Son hath not life. These things have I written unto you that believe on the name of the Son of God; that ye may know that ye have eternal life; and that ye may believe on the name of the Son of God."

From a Jewish article about Jesus we learn that the Talmud slanders our Savior, Jesus Christ.

"... the Jewish Encyclopœdia admits that Jewish legends concerning Jesus are found in the Talmud and Midrash and in " the life of Jesus ( Toledot Yeshu) that originated in the Middle Ages. It is the tendency of all these sources to belittle the person of Jesus by ascribing to Him illegitimate birth, magic, and a shameful death. " 1.

Upon scrutiny one also finds that Jesus is maligned as a false teacher:

"… He [Jesus] is referred to in the Talmud as Otho Isch- "That man," i.e. the one who is known to all. In the tract Abhodah Zarah, 6a, we read: "He is called a Christian who follows the false teachings of that man, who taught them to celebrate the feast on the first day of the Sabbath, that is, to worship on the first day after Sabbath…Talui, -"The one who was hanged"…" 2.

Many people believe that the name for Jesus in Hebrew is Jeschua or Yeshua. However, the complete,

"…name in Hebrew would be Jeschua Hanotsri--Jesus the Nazarene. He is called Notsri from the city of Nazareth… In the Talmud Christians are also called Notsrim. (Amongst other things). 'Since the word Jeschua means 'Savior,' the name Jesus rarely occurs in the Jewish books. It is almost always abbreviated to Jeschu…"3.

In the Talmud, the name "Jeschu [Ieschu]" can apparently be translated:

"…as if it were composed of the initial letters of the three words Immach SCHemo Vezikro-- (meaning)- -'May his name be blotted out.'" 4.

That translation could only be accomplished by the use of Gematria a tool of Kabbalists. Hebrew Roots proponents might say that these teachings are in the past. However, a review of various sources reveals the same or similar teachings.

The Talmud and Cabala teachings of the Toledot Yeshu-- (or Tolodoth Ieschu or Sepher Toldoth Jehoshua) represent various teachings regarding Christ, which may be shocking to many. A brief overview of these teachings refers to writings that quote the Talmud, (treatise Sabbath, folio 104, treatise Sanhedrim, folio 107, and Sota, folio 47) which presents this falsified account of Jesus:

"...the Toledot Yeshu relates with the most indecent details that Miriam, a hairdresser of Bethlehem,4. affianced to a young man named Jochanan, was seduced by a libertine, Joseph Panther or Pandira, and gave birth to a son whom she named Johosuah or Jeschu. According to the Talmudic authors of the Sota and the Sanhedrim, Jeschu was taken during his boyhood to Egypt, where he was initiated into the secrets doctrines of the priests, and on his return to Palestine gave himself up to the practice of magic. 5. The Toledot Yeshu, however, goes on to say that on reaching manhood, Jeschu learnt the secret of his illegitimacy, on account of which he was driven out of the Synagogue and took refuge for a time in Galilee."

"Now, there was in the Temple a stone on which was engraved the Tetragrammaton [YHWH] or Schem Hamphorasch, that is to say, the Ineffable Name of God; this stone had been found by King David when the foundations of the Temple were being prepared and was deposited by him in the Holy of Holies. Jeschu, knowing this, came from Galilee and, penetrating into the Holy of Holies, read the Ineffable name, which he transcribed on to a piece of whom parchment and concealed in an incision under his skin. By this means he was able to work miracles and to persuade the people that he was the son of God foretold by Isaiah. With the aid of Judas, the Sages of the Synagogue, succeeding in capturing Jeschu, who was then lead before the Great and Little Sanhedrim, by whom he was condemned to be stoned to death and finally hanged." Such is the story of Christ according to the Jewish Kabbalists ..." 5.

This false witness to the person of Jesus in the Talmud is also confirmed by Rev. I. B. Pranaitis in his online report, The Talmud Unmasked: The Secret Rabbinical Teachings Concerning Christians, and other sources" 6.

More importantly Daniel Lapin, an Orthodox Jewish Rabbi, stated in "Protesting Gibson's Passion Lacks Moral Legitimacy":

"...Do we really want to open up the Pandora's Box of suggesting that any faith may demand the removal of material that it finds offensive from the doctrines of any other faith? Do we really want to return to those dark times when Catholic authorities attempted to strip from the Talmud those passages that they found offensive? Some of my Jewish readers may feel squeamish about my alluding to the existence of Talmudic passages uncomplimentary toward Jesus as well as descriptive of Jewish involvement in his crucifixion. However the truth is that anyone with Internet access can easily locate those passages in about ten seconds. I think it far better that in the name of genuine Jewish-Christian friendship in America, we allow all faiths their own beliefs even if we find those beliefs troubling or at odds with our own beliefs. This way we can all prosper safely under the constitutional protection of the United States of America..." [September 22, 2003; Rabbi Daniel Lapin, "Protesting Gibson's Passion Lacks Moral Legitimacy"; President, Toward Tradition;]

Another Jesus?

In his email circulated article, "Some Disturbing Aspects of the So-called 'Hebrew Roots' Movement and Their Implications" Andrew Gould presents the Hebrew Roots doubtful view concerning the validity of the Gospel account of Jesus.

"…It has been widely accepted in "Hebrew Roots" circles that Jesus spoke Hebrew and that the Gospels were originally written in Hebrew. Most "Hebrew Roots" ministries have been influenced in this notion by the output of a body called the Jerusalem School Of Synoptic Research, [JSSR] and most especially due to the widespread influence of the book "Understanding The Difficult Words Of Jesus" published by David Bivin (Director of the JSSR) and his partner Roy Blizzard. in 1984 and reprinted in 1994 and 1995…" 7.

According to the JSSR, there is a more authentic Life of Jesus than the gospel accounts:

"… There was an original Hebrew 'Life of Jesus', from parts of which our canonical Greek Gospel Texts are mere compilations and translations. The individual words of the Greek texts that we have are standard Greek equivalents used to translate Hebrew documents into Greek, therefore we can retranslate back into Hebrew to discover what Jesus really said. Failure to appreciate the Hebraic origins of the Gospels has led to mistranslation, misinterpretation, spiritually damaging error and doctrinal confusion." 8.

Toledot Yeshu, with its various components, is one of the Hebrew or Jewish views of Jesus for those who rejected him as God come in the flesh. It has been established that the original manuscripts for the New Testament were composed in Greek. If one accepts Jewish thought regarding who Jesus was according to Judaic writings and teachings, then Jesus was not divine. It is also conveyed that He was not viewed as divine by his disciples, but was viewed as the human Messiah. This subject will be pursued in the next section on Jewish Thought.

Sir James Frazer, author of The Golden Bough, mentions that to cast doubts on the historical reality of Jesus, would be hardly less absurd than it would be to doubt Mohammed and so on. Other historians reiterate that the existence of Christ is an historic fact. However, Rene' Guenon,"who writes with inside knowledge" of Theosophy in Le Theosophisme (1921), cites a reference to the occultic Le Lotus of 1887 which states that Jesus Christ of the New Testament never existed, but the Jesus of the Talmud did exist:

"... Madam Blavatsky's writings, on the person of Christ, ... 'For me, Jesus Christ, that is to say the Man-God of the Christians, copy of the Avatars of all countries, of the Hindu Chrishna as of the Egyptian Horus, was never a historical personage.' Hence the story of His life was merely an allegory founded on the existence of the 'a personage named Jehoshua born at Lud.' But elsewhere she asserted that Jesus may have lived during the Christian era or a century earlier 'as the Sepher Toldoth Jehoshua indicates.'

"And Madame Blavatsky went on to say of the savants who deny the historical value of this legend, that they- 'either lie or talk nonsense. It is our Masters who affirm it. If the history of Jehoshua or Jesus Ben Pandera is false, then the whole of the Talmud, the whole of the Jewish canon law, is false. It was the disciple of Jehoshua ben Parachai, the fifth President of the Sanhedrin since Ezra, who re-wrote the Bible .... This story is much truer than that of the New Testament, of which history does not say a word." 9.

Is it possible that Jehoshua Ben Pandera of the Talmud, who was initiated into the secrets doctrines and gave himself up to the practice of magic, is Jehoshua or Yeshua or Jeschu whom the Hebrew Roots ministries worship?

Please note, the question was asked in regard to the Talmudic descriptions. Yeshua [short form] for Joshua or Yehoshua [long form], translates into Greek as Iesous. Jesus is a transliteration of Iesous [Greek] and it came about from the Hebrew/Aramaic. We have no problem with the Name Yeshua, as it means Salvation in Hebrew.

What we have a problem with, is those who try to deny the Name of Jesus, a Name that billions have attained salvation using, and try to tell other believers that YAHshua, or numerous other variations, a name that is not even found in the Old Testament, is the only name of the Messiah. For more on the sacred name movement please see the series Taking the Name, the Mark and the Number.

For an in-depth discussion from a reader about the various Names, please see: Yahshua, Yehoshua, Y'shua, Yeshua, Iesous, Iesus, or Jesus The Sacred Name or True Name

The following is a portion of an e-mail exchange dated 1/28/99 between the writer and Uri Marcus of Nehemiah Trustee Covenant Fund:

Vicky Dillen: The name Jesus Christ is known world wide and synonymous with Christianity. That is a historical fact.

Uri Marcus: Today, yes. 200+ years ago it was synonymous with nothing. How naive you are of history...

Vicky Dillen: The Jewish people reject that Jesus Christ was divine and believe that He was not God come in the flesh. I believe on the other hand that He is all of that. Where do you stand Uri? In the Jewish belief or in what Christ himself said and what is taught in the New Testament?

Uri Marcus: I believe in the Jewish belief. But your definition is somewhat lacking. Doesn't look like you would understand it, since its already been explained, and it just goes right over your head.

From the La Science des Esprits, by the 19th century occultist, Eliphas Levi, we learn that the Cabalistic Toledot Yeshu and similar Talmudic teachings were purposely hidden from Christians.

"…the Toledot Yeshu, or the Sepher Toldos Jeschu, described here as originating in the Middle Ages…belongs in a much earlier period. Eliphas Levi asserts that 'the Sepher Toldos, to which the Jews attribute a great antiquity and which they hid from the Christians with such precautions that this book was for a long while unfindable, is quoted for the first time by Raymond Martin of the Order of the Preaching Brothers… This book was evidently written by a Rabbi initiated into the mysteries of the Cabala 1.'" 10.

History reveals that The Talmud itself was put on trial and ordered to be burned, by King Louis IX in June of 1242, because of the various slanders against Christ, and Christianity. It was stated that The Talmud contained such things as it being acceptable to deceive a Christian without any scruple; that it was permitted to break a promise, and so on.

The stories contained in Toledot Yeshu and similar teachings were known in Jewish circles, but did not come into the hands of 'Gentiles' or 'Christians' until Raymond Martin translated the Toledot Yeshu into Latin. Later, Martin Luther summarized it in German under the name Schem Hamphorasch and his expose can be found in French in Gustave Brunet's, Evangiles Apocryphes. 11.

According to Geschichte der Juden, by Jewish historian Heinrich Graetz, the image of Jesus Christ is simply as an offshoot of Essenism and Jesus was just performing what any adept in the mysteries could do.

"…Thus the Jewish historian Graetz declares that Jesus simply appropriated to himself the essential features of Essenism, and that primitive Christianity was "nothing but an offshoot of Essenism"2" 12a.

Nesta Webster summarizes the Christ of the Talmud:

". . . So after representing Christ as a magician in the Toledot Yeshu and the Talmud, Jewish tradition seeks to explain His miraculous works as those of a mere healer-an idea that we shall find descending right through the secret societies to this day… if the miracles of Christ were simply due to a knowledge of natural laws and His doctrines were the outcome of a sect, the whole theory of His divine power and mission falls to the ground…" 12.

Many sources state that when the teachings regarding Jesus Christ in the Toledot Yeshu and other Jewish books were discovered in the early 1600's, there were serious repercussions. A Jewish synod in Poland in 1631, ordered the offending passages to be expunged, to be replaced by circles which the Rabbis were to fill in orally when giving instructions to young Jews. This is documented by P.L.B Drach:

"Drach, op.cit. I.168, 169. The text of this encyclical is given in Hebrew and also in translation, thus: " This is why we enjoin you, under the pain of excommunication major, to print nothing in future editions, whether of Mischna or of the Gemara, which relates whether for good or evil to the acts of Jesus the Nazarene, and to substitute instead a circle like this O, which will warn the Rabbis and schoolmasters to teach the young these passages only viva voce. By means of this precaution the savants amongst the Nazarenes will have no further pretext to attack us on this subject. Cf, Abbe'Chiarini, Le Talmud de Babylone, p. 45 (1831)." 13.

These passages are said to have been reinserted since then, although such offensive passages would not necessarily be in any English translations or newer editions. 14.

These then, are some of the Hebrew Roots - a significant part of which are the teachings and thought within the Talmud regarding our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.

Some might say, that the views presented from the past regarding Jesus Christ do not apply today, or have no effect on our studying Jewish tradition, teachings or thought within the Hebrew Roots movement. That perhaps, the above information is no longer taught. We must ask ourselves, then, what was and is today, Jewish thought regarding the Messiah, salvation, sin, the Son of God, and the divinity of Christ? Do these Jewish terms mean the same as what we think?

John 14:6

"Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me."

Acts 4:12

"Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved."

In his volume, The Talmud, Joseph Barclay confirmed the writings of Drach, a talmudist turned Catholic whose writings were never refuted by Jews, that Jesus was a sorcerer:

" … Abominable calumnies on Christ and Christianity occur not only in the Cabala but in the earlier editions of the Talmud. In these, says Barclay - "Our Lord and savior is "that one", "such an one", "a fool", "the leper", "the deceiver of Israel", etc. Efforts are made to prove that He is the son of Joseph Pandira before His marriage with Mary. His miracles are attributed to sorcery the secret of which He brought in a slit in His flesh out of Egypt. He is said had been first stoned and then hanged on the eve of the Passover. His disciples are called heretics and opprobious names. They are accused of immoral practices, and the New Testament is called a sinful book. The references to these subjects manifest the most bitter aversion and hatred." 15.

Jewish & Christian Terms

Knowing that there is much diversity of thought inside Judaism with four [some say three, under different terms] basic groups: Orthodoxy, Conservative, Reform, and Reconstructionist Judaism, it is difficult to present their respective ideas as being in agreement with one another. However, there are some underlying beliefs that appear to remain constant and accepted by most Jews regarding Christ, the Messiah, salvation, sin, and so on.

Jesus and Messiah

Dr. Lawrence J. Epstein, considered a Conservative Jew, explains some of today's thinking pertaining to "The Differences between Judaism and Christianity":

In "THE JEWISH VIEW OF JESUS", Dr. Epstein gives Jesus credit for being a good teacher, but not God:

"To Christians, the central tenet of their religion is the belief that Jesus is the Son of God, part of the trinity, the savior of souls who is the messiah. He is God's revelation through flesh. Jesus was, in Christian terms, God incarnate, God in the flesh who came to Earth to absorb the sins of humans and therefore free from sin those who accepted his divinity. To Jews, whatever wonderful teacher and storyteller Jesus may have been, he was just a human, not the son of God (except in the metaphorical sense in which all humans are children of God). In the Jewish view, Jesus cannot save souls; only God can. Jesus did not, in the Jewish view, rise from the dead." 16.

The "Jews for Judaism" web site explains Jesus as a false prophet predicted in the Old Testament.

"…Jesus the Nazarene, who imagined that he would be messiah and was killed, is alluded to in the book of Daniel, as it is said, `And the sons of the transgressors among thy people will rise, in order to establish a vision, and will stumble' (Dan. 11:14). Can there be a greater stumbling then this? All the prophets said that messiah will be a redeemer and a savior to the Israelites, will bring together their outcasts, and will strengthen their obedience to the Divine precepts, but he (Jesus) caused destruction by the sword to Israel, the dispersion of those left, and their humiliation. He changed the law, and misled many people to worship a being beside G-D…." 17.

Rabbi Hyam Maccoby, in Revolution in Judaea, written in 1973 and still proclaimed accurate today, defines the Jewish view of Messiah as an anointed one, and angel or king, but not divine:

"The title "Messiah' (Greek-Christos) was not a divine title among the Jews. It simply means ' anointed'. It was given to two Jewish officials, King and the High Priest… every Jewish king of the house of David was known as Messiah, or Christ…" 18.

"The 'Son of Man', was not a Messiah. He was an angel identified with the Guardian Angel of Israel, with Metatron, with the angel who guided the Children of Israel in the wilderness…" 19.

"…There is hardly any reference in the Prophetic writings of the Old Testament to the Messiah as a person. There is no splendid shining figure judging mankind, sitting at the right-hand of God and coming very near to eclipsing God Himself by His glory." 20.

"Messiah…in Jewish eyes, belonged to royalty, not divinity. Even the title 'Son of God" was to Jews (but not to the Gnostics) a human title applied at various times in the Hebrew Scriptures to Kings such as King David…"Son of Man" also was not a divine title…far better known as a mode of address to a prophet…to mean simply 'human being'." 21.

The Jews for Judaism web site explains the historical "Jewish Belief in Messiah," from the Mishna (Torah) by Maimonides:

"... In his monumental work Mishneh Torah, Maimonides (1135-1204) spelled out the fundamental Jewish concept of the messiah as it was handed down to us, generation after generation, from the time of the prophets…"

"…from the Mishneh Torah, Hilchot Melachim XI - XII. The King Messiah will in some future time come, restore the kingdom of David to its former power, build the Temple, bring together the scattered of Israel, and all the ancient laws will again be in force. Sacrifices will be offered, and years of release and Jubilees will be kept as prescribed in the Torah. Whoever does not believe in him, or does not hope for his coming, shows a lack of faith not only in the prophets, but also in the Torah…" 22.

Many Jews have believed there would be many Messiahs. At the time of Christ, Hyam Maccoby states:

"… Any leader who succeeded in driving out the Romans and setting up an independent Jewish state would have little difficulty in being recognized as the Messiah. His very success would prove his claim. Thus Bar Kochba was recognized as the Messiah by Rabbi Akiva even though there was no evidence of his descent from David." 23.

From the Jewish Guardian of 1924, we read that the great messianic prophecy, Isaiah 53, refers to the sufferings of Israel, rather than Christ:

"… an article in the Jewish Press,… according to the teaching of the "Liberal Jewish Synagogue," the beautiful passages in the fifty-third chapter of Isaiah concerning " the Man of Sorrows acquainted with grief, "usually supposed by Christians to relate to the promised Messiah, are interpreted to modern Jewish youth as relating to Israel and signifying that Israel's " sufferings were caused by the sins of other nations," who thus "escaped the suffering they deserved." Consequently, "Israel was offered for the sake of the whole world.2. " 24.

Messiah and Peace

According to Dr. Lawrence J. Epstein, current Jewish teaching excludes Jesus because it is unanimously believed that the Messiah will bring peace:

"Jesus is not seen as the messiah. In the Jewish view, the messiah is a human being who will usher in an era of peace. We can tell the messiah by looking at the world and seeing if it is at peace. From the Jewish view, this clearly did not happen when Jesus was on Earth or anytime after his death." 25.

Hyam Maccoby considers Jesus to be a rebel, but misrepresented by the gospel accounts out of fear of reprisals by Rome:

"…Jesus was executed as a rebel, against Rome, not as a blasphemer against the Jewish religion, and that the Gospel's misrepresentations on this point are politically motivated--I regard as strongly established…" 26.

Hyam Maccoby, author, is considered a classical scholar and Rabbi of Reform Judaism, and has in recent years been director of the library at the Leo Baeck College of Judaistics in London. His books appear to present accepted ideas regarding Christ, Christianity and the New Testament and the Jewish thought. Clarifying the various Jewish thought and Christian misconceptions redefines Jesus' mission:

"…The phrase 'the kingdom of God'…meant the reign of God (not His heavenly territory) and referred to a projected return to a Jewish system of theocracy…" 27.

"….He [Jesus] had campaigned among 'the lost sheep of Israel', calling them to repentance, because he felt that the coming of God's Kingdom was being held back by Israel's sin's. Pharisee writings often stress that God's promises to Israel are not automatically fulfilled; they depend on Israel's worthiness and co-operation ... " 28.

"…Jesus' mission as a prophet was exclusively directed towards the Jews, not towards the Gentiles. The idea that Jesus rejected the Jews and transferred the Old Testament 'promises' to the Gentiles was a later invention of the Gentile-Christian Church…" 29.

"… Some believed that the Messiah would inaugurate a new era for the whole world; that the nations of the world would acknowledge the One God and his Temple in Jerusalem; that the Jews would be revered as the chosen priests of the One God; and that an era of world peace would begin when, in the words of Isaiah's wonderful internationalist vision, the swords would be beaten into plowshares and the wolf would lie down with lamb. Some, however, did not believe that the coming of the Messiah would necessarily bring about an era of international peace. There might be many Messiahs - many more sorrows and comfortings, defeats and victories - for the Jewish people before that happened. After all, there had been Messiahs before and none had brought everlasting peace. The vision of Isaiah was acknowledged by every Pharisee, as the word of God but it was not necessarily attached to the expectation of the coming Messiah who would defeat the Romans." 30.

In The Traditions of the Jews, from the Talmud (treatises Baba Bathra folio 74b, Pesachim folio 32, Bekhoroth folio 57 and Massektoth Ta'anith folio 31), J.P Stehaln presents a glorious scenario of the Messianic era - without Jesus Christ as the Messiah:

"… when the Messianic era arrives. After the return of the Jews from all nations and parts of the world… the Messiah, we are told in the Talmud, will entertain them at a gorgeous banquet, where they will be seated at tables and regaled with wine from Adam's wine-cellar. The first course is to consist of a roasted ox named Behemoth, so immense that every day it eats up the grass upon a thousand hills; the second of a monstrous fish Leviathan; the third of a female Leviathan boiled and pickled; the fourth of a gigantic roast fowl known as Barjuchne, of which the egg alone was so enormous that when it fell out of the nest it crushed three hundred tall cedars and the white overflowed threescore villages. This course is to be followed up by "the most splendid and pompous Dessert," that can be procured, including fruit from the Tree of Life and "the Pomegranates of Eden which are preserved for the Just."

"At the end of the banquet "God will entertain the company at a ball"; He Himself will sit in the midst of them, and everyone will point Him out with his finger, saying: "Behold, this is our God: we have waited for Him, we will be glad and rejoice in His salvation." 31.

Sin and Salvation

Romans 3:23

"For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God."

From "The Differences between Judaism and Christianity, we see the great partition between Jewish and Christian thought on sin confirmed.

"Judaism does not accept the notion of original sin, the idea that people are bad from birth and cannot remove sin by themselves but need an act of grace provided by the sacrificial death of Jesus as atonement for all of humanity's sins. For Christians, there are no other forms of salvation other than through Jesus." 32.

Dr. Epstein goes on to explain that Jewish thought about sin and atonement. The sinner may seek forgiveness from God through human works:

"He [Jesus] also did not absorb the sins of people. For Jews, sins are removed not by Jesus' atonement but by seeking forgiveness. Jews seek forgiveness from God for sins against God and from other people (not just God) for sins against those people. Seeking forgiveness requires a sincere sense of repenting but also seeking directly to redress the wrong done to someone. Sins are partially removed through prayer which replaced animal sacrifice as a way of relieving sins. They are also removed by correcting errors against others. " 33.

Hyam Maccoby explains:

"... There was no concept of a Suffering Messiah who would die on the cross to purge mankind of sin…. To the Jews salvation was a physical not a purely spiritual concept. The Messianic age, to the Jews, was to be the culmination of human history on earth. 34.

Also, regarding prayer Maccoby believes that it is possible for man to approach God in a sinless condition:

"…The belief in the efficacy of prayer was very strong among the Pharisees…. Only the most concerted beam of concentration, directed from Gethsemane to God, could obliterate the traces of the sins of Israel, and bring about the hour of redemption. Jesus alone was not sufficient…This explains why Jesus narrowed down his company to the Twelve on that night. He wanted the company of those on whom he could most rely, for the power of sinless prayer would be far more important than the strength of mere number." 35.

Heaven and Hell

The writings of Dr. Epstein present the Jews' overly spiritualized and less severe view of the afterlife:

"...Traditionalists gave the name Gehenna to the place where souls were punished. Many Jewish thinkers noted that since, essentially, God is filled with mercy and love, punishment is not to be considered to be eternal. There are, similarly, many varying conceptions of paradise, such as that paradise is the place where we finally understand the true concept of God. It is also possible that there is no separate Heaven and Hell, only lesser or greater distance from God after death. In addition, punishment might be self-determined on the basis of suffering in kind the suffering the person brought about. That is, Judaism doesn't have a clear sense of Heaven and Hell, with different places in Hell for different punishments. Rather, the idea is that God uses the afterlife to provide ultimate justice and for the wicked to seek some sort of final redemption." 36.

Note Scripture says:

Romans 6:20-23:

"For when ye were the servants of sin, ye were free from righteousness. What fruit had ye then in those things whereof ye are now ashamed? For the end of those things is death. But now being made free from sin, and become servants to God, ye have your fruit unto holiness, and the end everlasting life. For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord. "

Hebrews 9:27:

"And as it is appointed unto man once to die, but after this the judgment.

Oneness Doctrine & the Trinity

Dr. Epstein summarizes the Jewish doctrine of "oneness" as opposed to the "Trinity" or Christian doctrine of three Persons in one God.

"Judaism insists on a notion of monotheism, the idea that there is one God. As Judaism understands this idea, God cannot be made up of parts, even if those parts are mysteriously united. The Christian notion of trinitarianism is that God is made up of God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit. Such a view, even if called monotheistic because the three parts are, by divine mystery, only one God, is incompatible with the Jewish view that such a division is not possible. The Jewish revolutionary idea is that God is one. This idea allows for God's unity and uniqueness as a creative force. Thus, for Jews, God is the creator of all that we like and all that we don't. There is no evil force with an ability to create equal to God's. Judaism sees Christianity's trinitarianism as a weakening of the idea of God's oneness." 37.

Peter Michas, of Messengers of Messiah, asserted in an email discussion this belief in the "oneness" doctrine.

"… Yet the minute I saw the Hebrew thinking of the oneness and the rest of it, it was never unclear to me again." 38.

In his book, THE ROD OF AN ALMOND TREE IN GOD'S MASTER PLAN, Peter. Michas expands upon his approval of the Hebrew viewpoint of God and the Trinity.

"The unity of Yeshua HaMashiach with God the Father and the Holy Spirit has never been clearly understood from the doctrine of the Trinity..." 39.

"To understand the true relationship of God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit, it is essential to preserve the concept of oneness..." 40.

"The aspect of the Father may be simply understood as the Will of God. The aspect of the Son may be understood as the Word of God. The aspect of the Spirit of the Holy One may be understood as the Power of God..." 41.

"To say God is three 'persons' opens the door to misunderstanding God. God is Spirit and cannot be reduced to the concept of a person..." 42.

"The Spirit of the Holy One is the very essence of the power of God the Father and not some separate entity." 43.

Peter Michas refers to the Godhead as three "aspects" and the Holy Spirit as an "essence" rather than a Person. It is already established by the Jewish people themselves that the Judaic teachings reject the doctrine of three Persons in one God. They do not believe God would manifest in the flesh as Jesus Christ nor do they believe that He is God. Their oneness doctrine is that there cannot be a Father, Son and Holy Spirit, which means the rejection of Jesus Christ as divine Savior and Lord.

There is no Trinity concept in Judaism, unless, however, one embraces the Jewish Kabbalah.

"M. Vulliaud quotes Isaac Meyer's assertion that, "the triad, of the ancient Cabala is Kether, the Father; Binah, the Holy Spirit or the Mother; and Hochmah, the Word or the Son." But in order to avoid the sequence of the Christian Trinity this arrangement has been altered in the modern Cabala of Luria and Moses of Cordovero, etc." 44.

The Jewish Encyclopœdia clarifies that the Cabalistic trinity is not to be confused with Christianity.

"... The Jewish Encyclopœdia…goes on to say that what appears to be Christian in the Cabala is only esoteric doctrine." 45.

2 John 7:

"For many deceivers are entered into the world, who confess not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh. This is a deceiver and an antichrist."

2 John 9:

"Whosoever transgresseth, and abideth not in the doctrine of Christ, hath not God. He that abideth in the doctrine of Christ, he hath both the Father and the Son."

Christians & the Chosen People

Jewish people characterize Christians in terms different from what we may think.

Avi ben Mordechai states that Jews are specifically called to proselytize:

"… He said to go out into all the world (as you go) and make talmidim of all the goyim. …we are His talmidim or students of His Oral Traditions which is the proper definition of the term "Gospel." We are to follow His Mishnah and Gemara, i.e., His Talmud, and take it to the goyim, teaching them to observe all that He commanded us!…" 46.

Isn't this precisely the ministry of Peter Michas, Jacob Prasch and other Hebrew Roots teachers: taking the Talmud to the goyim. The term "goyim" which Mr. Mordechai uses needs to be understood in its historical context. Citing information from the Kabbalistic book, the Zohar, a part of the Jewish mysticism which Avi ben Mordechai teaches, we note:

"… the Chosen People…forms the basis of all Talmudic and Cabalistic writings. …According to the Zohar, "All Israelites will have a part in the future world," and on arrival there will not be handed over like the goyim (or non-Jewish races) to the hands of the angel Douma and sent down to Hell.5. Indeed the goyim are even denied human attributes." 47.

For More on Avi ben Mordechai see: Avi ben Mordechai & Millennium 7000

According to The Emek ha Melek, the work of the Cabalist Naphtali, a disciple of Luria, the goyim are of the devil:

"…Thus the Zohar again explains that the words of the Scripture "Jehovah Elohim made man", mean that He made Israel. 6. The seventeenth-century Rabbinical treatise Emek ha Melek observes: " Our Rabbis of blessed memory have said: "Ye Jews are men because of the soul ye have from the Supreme Man (i.e, God). But the nations of the world are not styled men because they have not, from the Holy and Supreme Man, the Neschama (or glorious soul) but they have the Nephesch (soul) from Adam Belial, that is the malicious and unnecessary man, called Sammael, the Supreme Devil." 7" 48.

Another way of saying or spelling goyim, is Goi. Rev. I. B. Pranaitis, in his online work, The Talmud Unmasked, notes that this term has been removed from recent editions:

"Goi - Race, or people. The Jews also call a man a Goi - a gentile; they call a gentile woman a Goiah. ... It is mostly applied to non-Jews, or idolators. In Jewish books which treat of Idolatry, worshippers of idols are often called by this single word Goi. For this reason, in more recent editions of the Talmud the use of the word Goi is purposely avoided and other words for non-Jews are substituted.

It is well known that in the Jewish language, the Jews call Christians among whom they live, Goim. Nor do the Jews deny this.

Sometimes in their popular magazines they say that this word means nothing harmful or evil. But the contrary can be seen in their books written in the Hebrew language. For instance, in Choschen Hammischpat (34, 22), the name Goi is used in a depraved sense:

"Traitors and Epicureans and Apostates are worse than Goim"49.

Indeed the whole idea of gentiles or "goyim" studying the Jewish oral law as suggested by Jacob Prasch, Peter Michas, Avi ben Mordechai and others, is in direct disobedience to the proclamations in the Talmud. Even a Christian who is found studying the Law of Israel merits death. Sanhedrin (59a) states:

"Rabbi Jochanan says: A Goi who pries into the Law is guilty to death. "Even a Christian who is found studying the Law of Israel merits death."

It seems very perplexing indeed that leaders of the Hebrew Roots movement would direct our thoughts to the teachings of the sages in the Talmud, Mishna and Midrash, when these same sages have been teaching the Jewish people to destroy the writings of the Christians including the New Testament.

"Shabbath 116a. Jews must destroy the books of the Christians, i.e. the New Testament."

Christian Jews

The organization, Jews for Judaism, "the Worlds foremost countermissionary organization", insinuates that the Jews are not fooled by Christians who assume a Jewish image to proselytize them. Even Jews recognize the great divide between Judaism and Christianity.

"… Though Hebrew Christianity claims to be a form of Judaism, it is not… It deceptively uses the sacred symbols of Jewish observance (i.e. community Passover seders, menorahs, messianic services, etc.) as a cover to convert Jews to Christianity, a belief system antithetical to Judaism… Hebrew Christianity is not a form of Judaism and its members, even if they are of Jewish birth, cannot be considered members of the Jewish community. Hebrew Christians are in radical conflict with the communal interests and the destiny of the Jewish people. They have crossed an unbreachable chasm by accepting another religion. …"

"… practice of any other religious tradition has been understood to lead to the loss of rights to full participation in the Jewish community…Our history has clearly shown that when confronted with a group of Jews which has adopted another faith and seeks to convert others, we must stand firm in asserting that this other faith is not Judaism and that its adherents have forfeited their privileges as Jews. Jewish tradition believes that the opportunity to return to participation in the Jewish community is always open. When this occurs, all privileges are restored." 50.

This repudiation of those who apostatize from Judaism is stronger in the Talmud teachings of the Oral law of the sages. Hilkhoth Akum (X, 2) states that defectors must be killed.

"These things [supra] are intended for idolaters. But Israelites also, who lapse from their religion and become epicureans, are to be killed, and we must persecute them to the end. For they afflict Israel and turn the people from God." 51.

Non-Jews or converted Jews who affect a Jewish demeanor or compromise Christian doctrine, meaning inclusion of New Testament doctrine, to appeal to the Jewish mindset are surrendering the precious pearl of Jesus Christ who alone leads to salvation. The ecumenical approach does not lead Jews to Jesus Christ, but patronizes their religion of dead works, and results in the Christian's acceptance of religion on Jewish terms.

Galatians 5:1-8

"Stand fast therefore in the liberty wherewith Christ hath made us free, and be not entangled again with the yoke of bondage. Behold, I Paul, say unto you, that if ye be circumcised, Christ shall profit you nothing. For I testify again to every man that is circumcised, that he is a debtor to do the whole law. Christ is become of no effect unto you, whosoever of you are justified by the law; ye are fallen from grace. For we through the Spirit wait for the hope of righteousness by faith. For in Jesus Christ neither circumcision availeth any thing, nor uncircumcision; but faith which worketh by love. Ye did run well; who did hinder you that ye should not obey the truth? This persuasion cometh not of him that calleth you.

Common Ideas

Contemporary Jewish thought reflects the same aversion to Jesus Christ as historical Judaism:

"Jews vary about what they think of Jesus as a man. Some respect him as an ethical teacher who accepted Jewish law, as someone who didn't even see himself as the messiah, who didn't want to start a new religion at all. Rather, Jesus is seen by these Jews as someone who challenged the religious authorities of his day for their practices. In this view, he meant to improve Judaism according to his own understanding not to break with it." 52.

Hyam Maccoby sums up Jewish thought regarding Jesus as this:

"With the composition of the Gospels, then, a fictitious Jesus was created, suitable for the needs of the Hellenistic Gentile-Christian Church. The Prophet King, human and Jewish, who was revered but not worshiped by the Jewish-Christian Church was turned into a Divine Sacrifice. Jesus, who was, in reality, an apocalyptic Pharisee rabbi who claimed the titles of Prophet and King, was turned into a pagan god." 53.

Dr. Epstein concludes:

"Whatever the Jewish response is, one point is crucial. No one who is Jewish, no born Jew and no one who converts to Judaism, can believe in Jesus as the literal son of God or as the messiah. For the Jewish people, there is no God but God." 54.

We could elaborate further on the Jewish thought regarding the New Testament, the writings of Paul, who was viewed as a heretic, and the disciples. We could expand the idea that many Jews believe that James and Peter were Pharisaic Rabbis, who believed in the Jewish idea of the Messiah-- that Jesus was not divine.

We could expand on the theory that James, believed to have been the head of the Nazarene movement, was not in any way in conflict with the teachings of the Pharisees, but was devout in promoting them. We could expand on the Jewish idea that Paul, not Jesus, is viewed as the originator of Christianity, of the concept of Jesus being divine, and that notion came from Greek paganism. We could, but one only has to go to Jewish sites and see that their beliefs are diametrically opposed to Christianity. Sadly, we would also see the denial of the virgin birth and condemnation of all connected to Christ. They are devout in their convictions.

While the Hebrew or messianic movements urge us to embrace "our foundational Hebrew roots", Scripture tells us that our foundation is none other than Jesus Christ:

I Corinthians 3:11:

"For other foundation can no man lay than that is laid, which is Jesus Christ. "

If Jewish teachers or teachings cannot entertain the idea of a divine Christ or Messiah, sin, salvation, eternity, and other issues, what then? How are we to learn the 'True Meaning' of Scripture from them, unless we reject the very truths of Jesus Christ, salvation, sin and the rest of the New Testament?

As stated above, "No one who is Jewish, no born Jew and no one who converts to Judaism, can believe in Jesus as the literal son of God or as the messiah."

Jewish convictions proclaim a Christian cannot be considered Jewish or adopt the Jewish beliefs, rituals and ceremonies, and still remain a Christian. It would be like becoming a Christian Muslim or a Christian Mormon -- an impossibility.

Romans 2:28-29 : "For he is not a Jew, which is one outwardly; neither is that circumcision, which is outward in the flesh: But he is a Jew, which is one inwardly; and circumcision is that of the heart, in the spirit, and not in the letter; whose praise is not of men, but of God."

Galatians 3:2

"This only would I learn of you, Received ye the Spirit by the works of the law, or by the hearing of faith?"

We cannot be both. Cultural heritage and genealogy cannot take precedence over our faith and obedience to Christ. If it does, we are not serving Him, as we should.

If the Talmud and other Jewish works are upholding the doctrines as described above, from the past and today, what business do Christians have embracing these teachings, rituals and ceremonies and the reasons for them?

Reason tells us that the theology of the Jewish Rabbis and teachers, which are opposed to the very foundations of our beliefs, influences every aspect of their sacred books…and their teachings. We need to explore the instructions within the Talmud further.

Next: To Embrace Hebrew Roots IV: The Talmud & Demonology

All Scripture Quotes from the Authorized King James Bible


Jewish Encyclopædia, article on Jesus; as Cited in: Nesta H. Webster," Secret Societies and Subversive Movements", p. 20; Omni Publications, 1964
Rev. I. B. Pranaitis; The Talmud; Part One, ch.1, Jesus Christ in the Talmud;
cf. Baring-Gould, op.cit., quoting Talmud, treatise Sabbath, folio 104, (S. Baring-Gould, The Counter Gospels, 1874); 5. Ibid., p.55, quoting Talmud, treatise Sanhedrim, folio 107, and Sota, folio 47; Eliphas Levi, La Science des Esprits, pp.32,33. As Cited in Nesta H. Webster, op.cit., p..20
Rev. I. B. Pranaitis; op.cit. Part One, Ch. 1, Jesus Christ in the Talmud
Rene Guenon, Le Theosophisme, (1921) p.193, quoting Le Lotus for December, 1887; as Cited in: Nesta H. Webster, op.cit.,p.299.
Elipha Levi, La Science des Esprits, p. 40; as Cited in: Nesta H. Webster, Ibid., p.20.
The book was translated in Latin by Raymond Martin; German by Luther under the name Schem Hamphorasch; French by Gustave Brunet, Evangiles Apocryphes; as Cited in: Nesta H. Webster, Ibid., p.21.
2. Graetz, Geschichte der Juden, III. 216-52 as Cited in: Nesta H. Webster, Ibid., p. 23
Nesta H. Webster, Ibid., p.20
Ibid., p.22.
Joseph Barclay, The Talmud, pp.38,39; cf Drach , op.cit I. 167 as Cited Webster, Ibid. p. 18-19.
Dr. Lawrence J. Epstein; "The Differences between Judaism and Christianity"; The Conversion to Judaism Home page:
Jews for Judaism,
Hyam Maccoby; "Revolution in Judaea: Jesus and the Jewish Resistance"; p. 100; Ocean Books; 1973
Ibid., p.101-102.
Ibid.,p. 128.
Jews for Judaism, http://www.jewsforjudaism
Hyam Maccoby, op. cit., p.100.
Jewish Guardian for January 25,1924; as Cited in: Nesta H. Webster, op.cit.,p. 375.
Dr. Lawrence J. Epstein, op.cit.,
Maccoby, Ibid. , acknowledgements.
Ibid., p. 147-148
Ibid., p. 194
Ibid., p. 149
Ibid., p. 102-103
J.P Stehaln, The Traditions of the Jews, II.215-20, quoting from the Talmud treatises Baba Bathra folio 74b, Pesachim folio 32, Bekhoroth folio 57, Massektoth Ta'anith folio 31. The Zohar also refers to the female Leviathan (section Bô, de Pauly's trans., III.167) Drach shows that amongst the delights promised by the Talmud after the return to Palestine will be the permission to eat pork and bacon. --De l'Harmonie entre l'Eglise et la Synagogue, I. 265, 276, quoting treatise Hullin, folio 17, 82. As Cited in, Pg. 372, "Secret Societies and Subversive Movements" by Nesta H. Webster; Omni Publications, Eighth edition, 1964.]
Dr. Lawrence J. Epstein, op.cit.,
Maccoby, op. cit., p. 105.
Maccoby, Ibid., p. 194-195
Dr. Lawrence J. Epstein, op.cit.,
Peter Michas; Ha-Talmidim Trinity Discussion; also see Rod of the Almond Tree.
Peter Michas, THE ROD OF AN ALMOND TREE IN GOD'S MASTER PLAN, WinePress Publishing, (Mukilteo, WA 98275) Chapter 14. p. 255-56.
Ibid. p. 256.
Ibid. p.257.
Ibid. p.257.
Ibid. p.257.
Paul Vulliaud, La Kabbale Juive: histoire et doctrine, Vol. II. p. 411, as Cited in Nesta H. Webster, op.cit., p.15.
Jewish Encyclopœdia, article on Cabala, p.478; Cited in: Webster, Ibid. p. 15.
Avi ben Mordechai, Halacha,
Zohar, treatise Toldoth Noah, folio 59b, (De Pauly trans., I, 347; 5. Zohar, treatise Lekh-Lekha, folio 94a (De Pauly trans., I, 535); as Cited in: Nesta H. Webster, op.cit.,p.13.
Zohar, treatise Bereschith, folio 25a (De Pauly trans. I, 161); 7. The Emek ha Melek is the work of the Cabalist Naphtali, a disciple of Luria; as Cited in Ibid.,p.13
Rev. I. B. Pranaitis; The Talmud Unmasked;
Jews for Judaism,
Pranaitis, op.cit.
Dr. Lawrence J. Epstein, op.cit.,
Maccoby, op. cit., p. 246.
Dr. Lawrence J. Epstein, op.cit,

To Embrace Hebrew Roots: Part IV

The Talmud & Demonology

Please note: Research into the Hebrew Roots & Messianic movements constitutes research into Judaism as well as the occult. We fully respect each persons right to believe or utilize what resources they choose. We however, see a clear distinction in believing the Messiah has come versus utilizing resources which still await His coming. That is how and why we must evaluate all to Christ and the New Testament as well as the Tenach. We do not wish to edit or criticize Judaism, but recognize it as distinct from our Christian beliefs, just as many in Judaism also see a distinction and separateness from our beliefs, and we jointly have mutual respect for our differences and each other.

Psalms 1:1-2

" Blessed is the man that walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly, nor standeth in the way of sinners, nor sitteth in the seat of the scornful. But his delight is in the law of the Lord; and in his law doth he meditate day and night."

In order to fully understand what the Talmud sages believe and teach in their expansive Sacred Jewish books, we need to seek information and weigh it to the Word of God. Investigating the Hebrew Roots movement, which promotes the study of the writings of the Talmud, Midrash and Mishnah, we find the common thread of Jewish Mysticism.

The well-respected Gershom Scholem's "On the Kabbalah and Its Symbolism" gives some insight into the subliminal process through which mystics of all religions use Scripture to justify their aberrant exegesis of Scripture:

"...not my intention to discuss mystical exegesis in its concrete application to the Bible. Vast numbers of books have been written by Jewish mystics attempting to find their own ideas in, or read them into, the Biblical texts... Many productive minds among the Kabbalists found this a congenial way of expressing their own ideas, while making them seem to flow from the words of the Bible. It is not always easy, in a given case, to determine whether the Biblical text inspired the exegesis or whether the exegesis was a deliberate device, calculated to bridge the gap between the old and the new vision by reading completely new ideas into the text. But this perhaps is to take too rationalistic a view of what goes on in the mind of a mystic. Actually the thought processes of mystics are largely unconscious, and they may be quite unaware of the clash between old and new which is of such passionate interest to the historian. They are thoroughly steeped in the religious tradition in which they have grown up, and many notions which strike a modern reader as fantastic distortions of a text spring from a conception of Scripture which to the mystic seems perfectly natural. For one thing can be said with certainty about Kabbalists is this: they are, and do their best to remain, traditionalists, as is indicated by the very word Kabbalah, which is one of the Hebrew words for 'tradition.'" 1.

Some will argue that mysticism is far removed from the Judaic writings. Hebrew Roots leaders advocating the study of the Mishnah or Midrash would most likely not provide information on occultism so that we might compare. However, history reveals that mysticism has had a profound influence in Judaism, and is chiefly conveyed in the sacred writings.

"Mysticism and mystical experiences have been a part of Judaism since the earliest days. The Torah contains many stories of mystical experiences, from visitations by angels to prophetic dreams and visions. The Talmud considers the existence of the soul and when it becomes attached to the body. Jewish tradition tells that the souls of all Jews were in existence at the time of the Giving of the Torah and were present at the time and agreed to the Covenant…"2.

"The Sacred Books of the Jews, shows that the Rabbis who contributed to the Talmud did not maintain pure Biblical teachings.

"The Rabbis of the Talmud speculated on these mysteries, particularly when they were commenting on Genesis and the visions of Ezekiel. The speculations were later embroidered by new ideas that entered Jewish thought from the Syriac Greeks, the Zoroastrian Babylonians, and the Gnostic sect of the Byzantium Christians. From these foreign and domestic concepts and myths, the Jews wove into their mysticism ideas of upper and neither worlds, angels, and demons, ghosts and spirits - ideas that had been unknown or of little importance to the Jews until then." 3.

We find that even the renowned Avi ben Mordechai teaches Jewish mysticism. An email from James Trimm of SANJ, announced "Torah Talk" with Avi ben Mordechai as planning to teach Genesis from the esoteric or mystical point of view:

"…we are going to be addressing Genesis Chapter 1 in relation to the creation story... You’ll also get an introduction into what is called by the Jewish Mystics "Ein Sof" and "Nothingness," concepts taught by Paul in Colossians 1:15 and by Yochanan in the book of Yochanan 1:1-3. This is part of our program for January 16, 1999, on Torah Talk, as we unveil the Creation Story at its Scientific and Mystical levels." 4.

For More on Avi ben Mordechai see: Avi ben Mordechai & Millennium 7000

Ein Sof is the theosophical designation of god of infinity who is "primordial nothingness" and "the annihilation of thought", according to The Essential Kabbalah, by Daniel C. Matt.

"The first sefirah [emanation of Ein Sof] …is sometimes referred to as Ayin, Nothingness…In [the] primal state, God is undifferentiated being, neither this nor that, no-thingness… In the depths of Binah [second sefirah] lies Hokhmah, Wisdom. The mystic is nourished from this sphere. Profound and primal, it cannot be known consciously, only absorbed. In the words of Isaac the Blind, one of the earliest kabbalists of Provence, 'The inner, subtle essences can be contemplated only by sucking, not by knowing.' Beyond Hokhmah is the Nothingness of Keter, the annihilation of thought. In this ultimate sefirah human consciousness expands, dissolving into infinity." 5.

Scripture tells us that God is approachable and knowable through Jesus Christ:

John 14: 6,7

"Jesus saith unto him, " I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me. If ye had known me, ye should have known my Father also: and from henceforth ye know him, and have seen him."

John 14:21:

"He that hath my commandments, and keepeth them, he it is that loveth me: and he that loveth me shall be loved of my Father, and I will love him, and will manifest myself to him."

John 14:23:

"Jesus answered and said unto him, " If a man love me, he will keep my words: and my Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with him."

Talmudic Magic

The Talmud encompasses specific teachings involving demonology, legends and myths. Regarding demonology in Europe author and historian, Nesta Webster shows the preoccupation of the Talmudic rabbis with demons.

"…demonology in Europe was essentially a Jewish science…Thus the Talmud says: " if the eye could perceive the demons that people the universe, existence would be impossible. The demons are more numerous than we are: they surround us on all sides like trenches dug round vineyards. Every one of us has a thousand on his left hand and ten thousand on his right. The discomfort endured by those who attend rabbinical conferences ...comes from the demons mingling with men in these circumstances. Besides, the fatigue one feels in one's knees in walking comes from the demons that one knocks up against at every step. If the clothing of the Rabbis wears out so quickly, it is again because the demons rub up against them. Whoever wants to convince himself of their presence has only to surround his bed with sifted cinders and the next morning he will see the imprints of cock's feet.1". 6.

The Talmud teachings are entwined with magical practices and superstition.

"The same treatise goes on to give directions for seeing demons by burning portions of a black cat and placing the ashes in one's eye: "then at once one perceives the demons2." The Talmud [treatise Hullin] also explains that devils particularly inhabit the water spouts on houses and are fond of drinking out of water-jugs, therefore it is advisable to pour a little water out of a jug before drinking, so as to get rid of the unclean part.2" 7.

Another section of The Babylonian Talmud provides these warnings about demons, sex, and epileptic children:

"Gittin 70a. The Rabbis taught: "On coming from a privy (outdoor toilet) a man should not have sexual intercourse till he has waited long enough to walk half a mile, because the demon of the privy is with him for that time; if he does, his children will be epileptic." 8.

Recognized as 'pro-Semite' writer, Hermann L. Strack, is quoted from his book "The Jews and Human Sacrifice":

"…A strongly "pro-Semite" writer quotes a number of Jewish medical writings of the eighteenth century, republished as late as the end of the nineteenth, which show the persistence of these magical formulae amongst the Jews…as follows: "For epilepsy kill a cock and let it putrefy." "In order to protect yourself from all evils, gird yourself with the rope with which a criminal has been hung."…"Fox's blood and wolf's blood are good for stone in the bladder, ram's blood for colic, weasel blood for scrofula," etc.--these to be externally applied." 9.

An article on Teutonic Magic by F. Hälsig in "Hastings' Encyclopœdia on Religion and Ethics" provides some insight on past Jewish magical practices in the Talmud.

"… [The] article on Magic in Hastings' Encyclopœdia goes on to say that the magical formulae handed down in Latin in ancient medical writings and used by monks were mainly of Eastern origin, derived from the Babylonish, Egyptian and Jewish magic…2."

"…if we turn to the Talmud [tract Sabbath] we shall find cures recommended …For example: The eggs of a grasshopper as a remedy for toothache, the tooth of a fox as a remedy for sleep, viz. the tooth of a live fox to prevent sleep and of a dead one to cause sleep, the nail from the gallows where a man was hanged as a remedy for swelling.3." 10.

In the Babylonian Talmud, we find further directions for superstitious and occultic practices:

"Gittin 69a . To heal his flesh a Jew should take dust that lies within the shadow of an outdoor toilet, mix with honey and eat it." 11.

"Gittin 69b. To heal the disease of pleurisy ("catarrh") a Jew should "take the excrement of a white dog and knead it with balsam, but if he can possibly avoid it he should not eat the dog's excrement as it loosens the limbs." 12.

Galatians 5:20-21 states:

"Idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies, Envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God."

Since the Talmud is steeped in superstition and occult lore, it should be no surprise to us that those propagating its use would also be promoting occult superstition. Peter Michas sent an email with a list of recommended books deemed necessary in order to study under him, and this book list includes the Talmud. Mr. Michas occasionally sends out chain letters for "good luck". It should also be noted that, that besides occult leanings, Peter has a penchant for sending out to his email list--his students-- tasteless and vulgar jokes, (i.e. bar humor, sexual or suggestive and so on), which can easily be verified.

"In a message dated 1/23/99 3:47:42 PM Mountain Standard Time, writes:

" The origination of this letter is unknown, but it brings good luck to everyone who passes it on. Just forward it to five of your friends to whom you wish good luck. You will see that something good happens to you four MINUTES from now if the chain is not broken. You will receive good luck in four minutes…"

This is from a "leader" who is being esteemed to lead the flock of Jesus Christ to understand "Truth" and become "Holy". Nowhere can such a precedent be found in Scripture of a man of God indulging in superstition and coarse jesting. On the contrary we read:

Ephesians 5:3-4:

"But fornication, and uncleanness, or covetousness, let it not be once named among you, as becometh saints; Neither filthiness, nor foolish talking, nor jesting, which are not convenient: but rather giving of thanks."

Philippians 4:8: tells us what we are to focus on

"Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things."

Scripture reminds us in Matthew 12:37:

" For by thy words thou shalt be justified, and by thy words thou shalt be condemned."

What a person says, promotes and calls "good" is a clear indication of their character. We are admonished to be holy.

1 Peter 1:14-16:

"As obedient children, not fashioning yourselves according to the former lusts in your ignorance: But as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation; because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy."

Talmudic Demonology

Deuteronomy 18:10-12a:

"There shall not be found among you any one that maketh his son or his daughter to pass through the fire, or that useth divination, or an observer of times, or an enchanter, or a witch, Or a charmer, or a consulter with familiar spirits, or a wizard, or a necromancer. For all that do these things are an abomination unto the Lord…"

The Talmud obviously has much in it that would not be acceptable for those who really believe the word of God. The issue of demonology and related topics in the Talmud crosses over into Kabbalistic teachings. The Jewish Kabbalistic beliefs about demons are found in one of its main books, the Zohar. Future sections will discuss the Kabbalah and its influence on Judaism and the Talmud.

The respected Jewish scholar, Gershom Scholem, provides this education on demons according to the Talmud and the transition of Talmudic demonology to the Zohar:

"According to Talmudic tradition, demons are spirits made in the Friday evening twilight, who, because the Sabbath has intervened, have received no bodies. From this later authorities drew the inference (which is perhaps implicit in the Talmudic sources) that the demons have been looking for bodies ever since, and that this is why they attach themselves to men. This entered into a combination with another idea. After the murder of Abel by his brother, Adam decided to have no further dealings with his wife. Thereupon female demons, succubi, came to him and conceived by him; from this union, in which Adam's generative power was misused and misdirected, stem a variety of demons, who are called nig'e bn Adam, 'Spirits of harm that come from man.'1. …practices are systematized in the Zohar, which develops the myth that Lilith, Queen of the demons, or the demons of her retinue, do their best to provoke men to sexual acts without benefit of woman, their aim being to make themselves bodies from the lost seed." 13.

In his article on "Jewish Magic" M. Gaster states:

"…These ideas [Talmud demonology] received a fresh impetus from the publication of the Zohar, which, a Jewish writer tells us, " from the 14th century held almost unbroken sway over the minds of the majority of the Jews. In it the Talmudic legends concerning the existence and activity of the shedhim (demons) are repeated and amplified, and a hierarchy of demons was established corresponding to the heavenly hierarchy… Manasseh [ben Israel]'s Nishmat Hayim is full of information concerning belief in demons ...1." 14.

Further reference to the Zohar teachings reveals that men and women have sex with demons during their sleep.

"See the Zohar, treatise Bereschith, folio.54b, where it is said that all men are visited in their sleep "by female devils." These demons never appear under any other form but that of human beings, but they have no hair on their heads…In the same way as to men, male devils appear in dreams to women, with whom they have intercourse." 15.

We find further correspondences between Talmudic and Kabbalistic sources concerning demons and the succubi mentioned above. These unholy unions are found in historical accounts of witches' confessions, i.e., The Witch Cult in Western Europe, Historie de la Magie en France and in, Hastings' Encyclopedia of Religion and Ethics, article on Jewish Magic by M. Gaster.

"…the vile confessions made by both Scottish and French peasant women accused of witchcraft concerning the nocturnal visits paid them by male devils 2. find an exact counterpart in passages of the Cabala, where it is said that, "the demons are both male and female, and they both endeavor to consort with human beings- a conception from which arises the belief in incubi and succube.3." 16.

Biblically, we know that to embrace sorcery or witchcraft and such, is an abomination before God. Despite Old Testaments warnings, the Talmud provides 'solutions' for protecting oneself from the onslaught of demonic attack and disease, as seen for example, in treatise Berakhoth, folio 6:

" … The Talmud also gives directions on the manner of guarding against occult powers and the onslaught of disease. The tract Pesachim declares that he who stands naked before a candle is liable to be seized with epilepsy. The same tract also states that "a man should not go out alone on the night following the fourth day or on the night following the Sabbath, because an evil spirit, called Agrath, the daughter of Ma'hlath, together with one hundred and eighty thousand other evil spirits, go forth into the world and have the right to injure anyone they would chance to meet." 17.

The Talmudic Myth of Lillith

2 Timothy 1:7:

"For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love and of a sound mind."

When studying the various teachings in the Talmud about demons, one immediately comes across reference to the name Lilith. This is significant because today, there is a movement worldwide that speaks of "Lilith rising."

The previous information regarding the Sabbath, Agrath, the daughter of Ma'hlath, and the demons are connected to Lilith in the Talmud, Midrash and Zohar.

Lilith is equated with a "first Eve", the feminine dark side of the divine and goddesses such as Isis, Astarte, the Black Madonna or Queen of Demons and other false gods. The myth of Lilith involves a total perversion of Biblical Creation and Adam and Eve.

The Jewish, "LILITH Magazine", presents "All you ever Wanted to Know about Lilith", which was originally printed in their premier issue in the fall of 1976, and provides this insight to the identity of Lilith.

"Commentators have often translated "lilith" as "night-monster," associating the name with layil, the Hebrew word for night; thus, Rabbi Hanina forbids men to sleep alone in a house at night lest they fall prey to her (Shabbat 151b). (The Akadian "lilitu," a female spirit wind, is probably a more accurate etymology, however.)" 18.

It becomes apparent that there are many versions of Lilith, but author, Judy Weinberg, presents two of the most common teachings as they are found in the Talmud and Midrash.

"Two separate and distinct beings-Lilith of the Talmud and Eve 1 of the midrash-came together into one, to become Lilith, Adam's first mate. We can see this process of integration in the Alphabet itself. In the beginning of this account, Lilith is characterized as a woman (ishah). By the end of the story, however, her children are called demons (sheydim) and she herself has powers that can only be warded off by the mystical means of an amulet. Thus, having equated his protagonist with Lilith of the Talmud, the author was forced to assign her the characteristics attributed to her by that work." 19.

"…The first available version of the Creation story which associates the name Lilith with a "first Eve" is included in the Alphabet of Ben-Sira , a work probably written sometime in the Gaonic period (600-1000 C.E.). This account merges into two separate and distinct traditions-that of the Lilith of the Talmud and that of the "first Eve" of the midrash (legends)." 20.

Talmudic Myth in the NIV

It is difficult to determine exactly why Lilith materialized in the Talmud, since there is no record of her in the Torah. "LILITH Magazine" states:

"The personality called "Lilith" in the Talmud shows no connection with Adam at all. From the four specific references to Lilith in the Babylonian Talmud, we learn only that she is a wild-haired and winged creature with nymphomaniac tendencies (Erubin 100b, Niddah 24b, Shabbat 151b); and the mother of demons (Bava Batra 73a )." 21.

Lilith Magazine also declares that Lilith is mentioned in the Bible.

"Such a characterization of Lilith may have been drawn from the single Biblical mention of "lilith" (Isaiah 34:14):

The wild creatures of the desert shall meet with the jackals, the goat demon shall call to his fellow, the lilith shall also repose there and find for herself a place of rest." 22.

Upon attempting to verify this verse in the Authorized King James Bible, we see no such mention of Lilith, or the goat demon, but rather this.

" The wild beasts of the desert shall also meet with the wild beasts of the island, and the satyr shall cry to his fellow; the screech owl also shall rest there, and find for herself a place of rest."

It should be noted that the NIV translation allows for the interpretation of the previous quote of this verse to include demons and the Lilith teachings.

Desert creatures will meet with hyenas, and wild goats will bleat to each other; there the night creatures will also repose and find for themselves places of rest.

The footnotes to this verse include reference to… " Desert creatures...hyenas ... wild goats. Sometimes connected with demons… night creatures. Outside the Bible a related Semitic word refers to a "night demon."

From the web site, "Lilith and the Talmud," we learn that one would find Lilith and related topics covered in these sections of The Babylonian Talmud,

"b. Erubuin 18b: "Rabbi Jeremia ben Eleazer said, "During those years (after their expulsion from the Garden) in which Adam, the first man Was separated from Eve, he became the father of ghouls and demons and lilin." Rabbi Meir said, "Adam, the first man, being very pious and finding that he has caused death to come into the world, sat fasting for 130 years, and separated himself from his wife for 130 years, and wore fig vines for 130 years. His fathering of evil spirits, referred to here, came as a result of wet dreams." 23.

"Section b. Erubin 100b, refers to Lilith growing long hair; B. Nidda 24b refers to Lilith as a demoness with a human appearance except that she has wings;" 24.

b. Shab. 151b of The Babylonian Talmud states:

" One may not sleep alone in a house, for Lilith takes hold of whoever sleeps alone in the house." 25.

b. Baba Bathra 73-b continues with:

" Rabba bar bar Hana said, " I once saw Hormin, a son of Lilith, running on the battlements of Mahoza…. When the demonic government heard of it, they killed him [for showing himself]." 26.

Talmudic Bestiality

The Babylonian Talmud, the accepted and preferred version, further teaches that Adam committed bestiality.

"Yebamoth 63a. States that Adam had sexual intercourse with all the animals in the Garden of Eden." 27.

That seems to imply that Adam stayed in the Garden and was not expelled after the original sin, or that he was busy committing these acts before the record of events in Genesis involving the sin that caused both he and Eve to be expelled.

According to one source, who summarizes the quotes, the Talmud further promotes such uncleanness through obscene teachings regarding bestiality and sex with children.

"Yebamoth 59b. A woman who had intercourse with a beast is eligible to marry a Jewish priest. A woman who has sex with a demon is also eligible to marry a Jewish priest." 28.

"Sanhedrin 55b. A Jew may marry a three year old girl (specifically, three years "and a day" old)." 29.

"Sanhedrin 54b. A Jew may have sex with a child as long as the child is less than nine years old" 30.

Kethuboth 11b. "When a grown-up man has intercourse with a little girl it is nothing." 31.

Note: Please see James Trimm Responds for a response to these quotes.

There is no Scripture to support these unholy teachings. One can't help but wonder when, or if, people like Peter Michas, Jacob Prasch, Avi ben Mordechai and the myriad of other Hebrew Roots leaders promoting the study of these "Sacred Books", would have unveiled these very select teachings to Christians.

God warns that we are not to add to or take away from His holy, perfect word and that we are to become pure in thought and action.

Matthew 5:8:

"Blessed are the pure in heart: for they shall see God."

1 John 1:6:

"If we say that we have fellowship with him, and walk in darkness, we lie, and do not the truth."

Makhlath and Agrath

Angelo Rappoport in, "The Story of Lilith" from Ancient Israel: Myths and Legends, shows the relationship of Makhlath and Agrath to Lilith and the Sabbath, mentioned previously.

The she-demon Makhlath (the dancer) and her daughter Agrath 4. are two female demons who live in strife with Lilith. Lilith is accompanied by four hundred and eighty hosts of evil spirits and destroying angels, and she is constantly howling. Makhlath is accompanied by four hundred and seventy-eight hosts of evil spirits. She and her daughter Agrath, from the Zend word Agra = beating, are in constant enmity with Lilith.

Constant war is waged between them, and they meet on the day of atonement. Whilst they are thus engaged in quarrel and strife, the prayers of Israel ascend to Heaven, whilst the accusers are absent, being otherwise engaged.5." 32.

"Agrath commands hosts of evil spirits and demons, and rides in a big chariot. Her power is paramount on Wednesdays and Saturdays, for on these days Agrath, the daughter of Makhlath, roves about in the air accompanied by eighteen myriads of evil spirits.6." 33.

Psalm 40:4:

"Blessed is that man that maketh the Lord his trust, and respecteth not the proud, nor such as turn aside to lies."

The Midrash: Lillith and Creation

The Midrash, promoted by many leaders in the Hebrew Roots movement such as Jacob Prasch, carries the concept of Lillith as being associated with the "First Eve."

"The midrash (legends) of Genesis Rabbah discusses a "first Eve" but does not mention Lilith. According to Rabbi Hiya, she "returned to dust" (22:7). Judah, son of Rabbi Hiya, states that in the beginning God created Eve for Adam, but when Adam saw her being made with sinews and blood, he grew disgusted and became alienated from her. Thereupon God caused this first Eve to return to nothingness and proceeded to create a second Eve for Adam (18.4)." 34.

Angelo Rappoport provides the most common version of Lillith, which perpetuates the idea that Lilith became the consort of Adam and their union started a line of demons:

"…She is supposed to have been the first wife of Adam. She had been one of the wives of Sammael, but of a wild, heroic and passionate nature she left her spouse and joined Adam. From their union issued the demons or Shedim, who rode about in the world as wicked spirits…Lilith, like Adam, had been created from the dust (Adamah) of the earth. But as soon as she had joined Adam they began to quarrel, each refusing to be subservient and Submissive to the other. "I am your lord and master," spoke Adam, "and it is your duty to obey me." But Lilith replied: "We are both equal, for we are both issued from dust (Adamah), and I will not be submissive to you…. And when Lilith saw this she spoke the Ineffable Name of the Creator and soared up into the air. Thereupon Adam stood in prayer before the Creator and thus he spake: " O Lord of the Universe, the woman Thou hast given me has fled from me."

"And the Holy One, blessed be His name, sent at once three angels whose names were Senoi, Sansenoi, and Sammangelof, to fetch and bring Lilith back to Adam…but she refused to return. And the angels spake to this rebel, this she-demon: "We will drown thee in the sea." But she made answer: "Know ye not that I have been created for the purpose of weakening and punishing little children, infants and babes. I have power over them from the day they are born until they are eight days old if they are boys, and until the twentieth day if they are girls." She swore to them in the name of the living God that whenever she came and saw the names or images or faces of these three angels, Senoi, Sansenoi, and Sammangelof, upon an amulet or cameo in the room where there was an infant, she would not touch it. But because she did not return to Adam, every day a hundred of her own children or spirits and demons die." 35.

Mr. Rappoport cites other authors who relate that the myth of Lilith perpetuated the use of incantations, amulets and cameos for protection against the demon.

"…The legend of Lilith and the message of the three angels is found in several sources of Rabbinical lore in some of which it is quoted from the Alphabetum Siracidis.2.

The book known as the Sefer Rasiel describes the formula to be written upon amulets or cameos and to be placed in the rooms where there are new-born babes. It refers to Lilith as the first Eve, and conjurers her in the name of the three angels and the angel of the sea to whom she had sworn not to harm the babes in whose rooms she found written on paper the names of the three angels.2.

Lilith is thus a female night demon, and is also known under the name of Meyalleleth or the howling one. 2." 36.

Isaiah 5:20:

"Woe unto them that call evil good, and good evil; that put darkness for light, and light for darkness; that put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter."

The Talmud & Kabbalah: Adam the Bisexual

According to author Judy Weinberg, the Talmud, Midrash and Zohar present Adam as a hermaphrodite or bisexual:

"The Zohar (the central work of Jewish mysticism) develops a theory that Adam originally comprised both male and female elements. This is based on Talmudic and midrashic statements that "Adam, who was the first man, had two full faces" (Brachot 61a, Erubin 18b). Rabbi Samuel ben Nachman said: "When the Holy One, blessed be He, created the first man, he created him as a hermaphrodite." Rabbi Levi said the same thing:

"When man was created, he was created with two body fronts, and He sawed him in two, so that two bodies resulted, one for the male and one for the female (Lev. Rab. 14:1)." 37.

Weinberg shows how Adam's "bisexuality" links to Lilith.

"The Zohar picks up on this theme of Adam's bisexuality but now draws the connection with Lilith:

"The female was attached to the side of the male until God cast him into a deep slumber... God then sawed her off from him and adorned her like a bride and brought her to him, as it is written, "And He took one of his sides and closed up the place with flesh. " I have found it stated in an old book that the word "one" here means "one woman" to wit the original Lilith, who was with him and conceived from him. Up to that time, however, she was not a help to him, as it is written, "but for Adam there was not found a helpmeet for him." (134b)."

"Other references in the Zohar describe Lilith as a competitor to "the female affixed to his side."(see III 19a, II 276b, I 19b). " 38.

When we look to Genesis, we see no reference to this occult teaching. A review of what is being taught through Planned Parenthood, in Public Health, Mental health institutions, the educational system and many liberal churches would reveal the foundational New Age teachings of bisexuality and androgyny. Getting in touch with one's feminine or masculine side is the esoteric cliché found in psychology today.

Proverbs 28:4:

"They that forsake the law praise the wicked: but such as keep the law contend with them."

Controversies over giving credit to Lilith vs. the other demons seems to consume the intellectual and spiritual capabilities of Jewish scholars.

"….Kabbalistic tradition has numerous portrayals of Lilith as a demon, often linking her to other such female spirits as Naamah, Machlah and Agrat. In fact, Lilith is often confused with them. Yaalkut Re'uveni claims, for instance, that both Lilith and Naamah had intercourse with Adam and brought forth "plagues to the world." However, elsewhere the Zohar identifies Naamah as "the mother of demons" while Lilith, it seems, only functions as their governess: "

"Naamah "goes forth and makes sport with men and conceives from them through their lustful dreams."...[The offspring] all go to the ancient Lilith who brings them up. She goes out into the world and seeks her little ones and when she sees little children she cleaves to them in order to kill them and insinuate herself into their spirits (Zohar III, 76b)." 39.

The tradition of Lilith as a slayer of children is seen in the midrash in Numbers Rabbah: " Lilith, who, when she can find no strange children, slays her own" (16:25). This Lilith seems to resemble the Babylonian demon Labartu or Lamashtu, for the child-slayer image has no foundation in the Talmud and certainly no connection with the first Eve. Since scholars differ widely as to the dating of Numbers Rabbah, it is difficult to determine whether the author of the Alphabet based his portrayal of Lilith as the evil spirit who harms babies on this source, or whether both drew from a common antecedent. In any case, the unity of the motifs of promiscuity and child-slaying does not occur until the time of the Zohar (see Zohar 119b)…" 40.

Creation, as we understand it in the Bible, takes a definite perverted twist in the Talmud, Mishna, Midrash and Zohar, by introducing Lilith, demons, bisexuality and other esoteric concepts.

Through the study of Biblical truth, we know that Lucifer and demons exist. There is no question on that. However, no where in Scripture are found the ideas, myths, perversion of Scripture or blatant witchcraft which are presented in the very writings of the "sages", whom Hebrew Roots leaders recommend.

Teachings of the Sages or Ancient Wisdom

Some might suggest that these teachings are ancient, outdated and no longer apply. However, it is exactly these sources of teachings--the Talmud, Midrash, the Mishnah---the Oral teachings of the Sages--which we are encouraged to study to find understanding of our Hebrew Roots.

Avi ben Mordechai calls "the Gospel" what Jesus called "traditions of men."

"…It is halacha that was recognized during the First and/or Second Temple periods. …Understanding the concept that a Jewish talmid is a student of the rabbis’ Mishnah and Gemara (Mishnah is the Oral Tradition and the Gemara is the commentary and discussion, i.e., Mishnah + Gemara = Talmud, hence "talmidim"), I also recognize that our Rabbi Y’shua also had His Gemara (discussion and teaching) on the rabbinic Mishnah and the written code of Sinai. Thus, we are His talmidim or students of His Oral Traditions which is the proper definition of the term "Gospel." We are to follow His Mishnah and Gemara, i.e., His Talmud…"41.

In "Explaining the Midrash" Jacob Prasch promotes The Midrash, or Ancient Wisdom, as an important element of New Testament scholarship.

"…The clearest set of guidelines in Midrash are the Seven Midroth attributed to Rabbi Hillel, the founder of the Pharisaic School of Hillel, where Rabbi Shaul (St. Paul) was educated as a rabbi by Rabbi Gamaliel, the grandson of Hillel….A classical work of Midrash in Judaism is the Midrash Rabba on Genesis (Berashith). Another is Lamentations Rabba. …Both of these kinds of midrashim are haggadic. There are also wide bodies of midrashic literature which are halakik, but these are of less importance to New Testament scholarship…"

"It takes the wisdom of the ancients to really understand these things…not the wisdom of the 16th century, but the wisdom of the first century…"42.

What would make any teachings more or less important---we need to clearly see the foundations of all these teachings. To do less would be to disobey God. My research reveals that these commentaries and teachings have rarely changed in scope and intent, but rather have just been supplemented.

According to Peter Michas, since Jesus quoted from these writings of old, these works are worthwhile and able to help us fully comprehend the Bible. His e-mail messages are posted to "Ha-Talmidim" or The Students, meaning just as Avi ben Mordechai has stated, students of the Talmud's Mishnah and Gemara.

"… The New Testament is in the pattern of the Jewish traditional work of Torah, Mishnah, Haggadah, Halakah, Talmud and Midrash, but inspired by God Himself for the common people. These Hebraic works as well as the Inspired Scriptures were quoted from by Jesus and all the writers of the New Testament. But even now, to have full comprehension, we must read the scriptures in the proper Hebraic context…Most all of the Judaic writings have been preserved for us and now translated into proper English directly from the Hebrew…" 43.

When were these Hebrew Roots leaders going to divulge the teachings in the rest of the Talmud, Mishna and Midrash that directly pertain to Christians and the Talmud?

"Rosh Hashanah 17a. Christians (minnim) and others who reject the Talmud -Will go to hell and be punished there for all generations." 44.

"Sanhedrin 90a. Those who read the New Testament ("uncanonical books") -Will have no portion in the world to come." 45.

It has already been established that Jesus Christ was rejected and condemned in many Jewish writings including the Talmud. These major works include teachings that uphold occult practices. What Scripture recommends that we study the Jewish traditions or practice the occult???

Israel had been warned, as are we in Isaiah 32:6:

"For the vile person will speak villany, and his heart will work iniquity, to practice hypocrisy, and to utter error against the Lord, to make empty the soul of the hungry, and he will cause the drink of the thirsty to fail." [villany- wicked, detestable, or disgraceful things]

If we go again to the writings in the Talmud being advocated and supported by Peter Michas, Jacob Prasch, James Trimm, Avi ben Moredechai and so many others we read these unholy teachings that are so contrary to the word of God.

"Baba Kamma 113a. Jews may use lies ("subterfuges") to circumvent a Gentile." 46.

Proverbs 12:22:

"Lying lips are an abomination to the Lord: but they that deal truly are his delight."

Scripture asks and we must ask ourselves in Amos 3:3:

"Can two walk together, except they be agreed?"

2 Peter 3:17:

"Ye therefore, beloved, seeing ye know these things before, beware lest ye also, being led away with the error of the wicked, fall from your own stedfastness."

We can see that there are many connections between the Talmud, Midrash, Mishna and the Kabbalah. If we conclude that Jewish mysticism, which is diametrically opposed to the Bible, determines these teachings, why would we follow them?

Jeremiah 49:16 speaks of those who think they are hiding in the Rock, and are deceived by their own hearts.

"Thy terribleness hath deceived thee, and the pride of thine heart, O thou that dwellest in the clefts of the rock, that holdest the height of the hill: though thou shouldest make thy nest as high as the eagle, I will bring thee down from thence, saith the Lord."

Some have suggested that the Kabbalah is simply a facet of otherwise positive Jewish mysticism that is totally misunderstood by Christians, and these teachings are not of the occult. Many would deny any connections and state that the Kabbalah is not used, connected nor promoted, while others would agree with the following.

A Jewish Encyclopedia offered by Messengers of Messiah and promoted by Larry Rowland claims in its introduction to contain "the essential teachings of Judaism." However, the reader is informed that those teachings include The Apocrypha and the Kabbalah.

"…the introduction to the book "Encyclopedia of Jewish Concepts,"…You can read the intro. for yourself and make up your own minds. I would like to add, in its defense that some of the best known Jewish book sellers advertise it in their catalogues, i.e. Jonathan David Co., Menorah Publications, Source for Everything Jewish to name but a few. Jonathan David Co. writes: "Encyclopedic in scope, this work by one of the foremost contemporary scholars provides an interesting, lucid overview of the basic, universal concepts of Judaism. …" …NOTE: -: For those interested, it can be obtained at a better price from Messengers of Messiah Intl. Min; Pastor Peter A. Michas; P.O. Box 125; Troy, IL., 62294.)…" 47.

"INTRODUCTION: Encyclopedia of Jewish Concepts

The purpose of this book is to provide in a single handy volume the essential teachings of Judaism. It is written for those who want an up-to-date and easily intelligible account of basic Jewish concepts, a knowledge of which brings meaning to what may otherwise seem empty phrases …. Knowledge of Jewish values has reached an abysmally low point. It is of the utmost importance that the Jewish heritage be looked upon as a whole, not as a mere series of precepts and concepts linked together. Its study must not be the prerogative of specialists, but should be shared by the multitudes…"

"In all ages the rich literature of Judaism had a certain number of books of permanent value, which were a source of enjoyment to every class of Jews. There has not been a single period which did not make some permanent contribution to posterity. Each era deposited behind it a sort of layer. For thousands of years our people thought and felt and expressed itself in various styles and forms. The Bible, the Apocrypha, the Talmud, Philosophy, Kabbalah, Poetry, Ethics, Hasidism-each of these represents an entire era with its own atmosphere and character." 48.

The Jewish Encyclopœdia, in an article on the Cabala, provides these observations.

"... The fact is that the main ideas of the Zohar find confirmation in the Talmud. As the Jewish Encyclopœdia observes, " the Cabala, is not really in opposition to the Talmud," and "many Talmudic Jews have supported and contributed to it.4" 49.

Adolphe Franck's fundamental study of Jewish Mysticism in La Kabbale,

"…does not hesitate to describe it as "the heart and life of Judaism…5" 50.

P. Vulliaud, in his work, La Kabbale Juive: histoire et doctrine, quotes Greenstone from The Messiah Idea, who states;

"The greater number of the most eminent rabbis of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries believed firmly in the sacredness of the Zohar and of the infallibility of it's teaching. 6." 51.

What exactly is the Kabbalah? Where did it come from, and why is The Zohar being sold door to door in places where it was once forbidden literature? Why is the Cabala now being presented to children in the United States through such programs as the Jr. Great Programs for gifted children grades 4-8. In their revised Jr. Great Books Program, beginning Sixth graders will be reading "The Mysteries of the Cabala" by Isaac Bashevis Singer. This book is promoted as acceptable because, as stated to an inquiring parent by a representative of the Junior Great Books program, "it is mysticism, not occultism." A follow-up phone call yielded little information:

"I talked with the same person, Tom Kershner (I'm guessing on the spelling). He remembered our previous conversation but didn't want to talk to me and quickly sent me on to a woman who is one of the Great Books editors. Her name is Ann Speltz (guessing on spelling). I asked why they chose the story called THE MYSTERIES OF THE CABALA by Isaac Bashevis Singer. She told me it matches their criteria. I asked what that was. She said she could send me a two page write-up on that. I asked her to tell me. She told me it is a story of very high literary quality. It was written by a Nobel Prize winner. It is discussible because the meaning is not obvious. The meaning is not explicit, therefore 'everybody pools what they notice about the story'. The better readers help the not so good readers to understand. I asked her if the fifth and sixth graders will be curious about the Cabala after they read this. She said they won't because they'll be interested in the character (the boy). I said the boy is interested in the Cabala so won't the readers be too? Then she said a mouthful. She told me they won't be interested because the Cabala is about Judaism -- and then she acted like she had said too much and quickly told me that someone had come in that she had to talk to and asked for my address to mail me the 2-page criteria." 52.

Ephesians 5: 6--11:

"Let no man deceive you with vain words: for because of these things cometh the wrath of God upon the children of disobedience. Be not ye partakers with them. For ye were sometimes darkness, but now are ye light in the Lord: walk as children of light: [For the fruit of the Spirit is in all goodness and righteousness and truth;] Proving what is acceptable unto the Lord. And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove them."

All Scripture Quotes from the Authorized King James Bible

Next Section:

To Embrace Hebrew Roots V: The Kabbalah


Gershom Scholem, On The Kabbalah and Its Symbolism, p.33, Schocken Books, New York, 1996,1965.
Harry Gersh "The Sacred Books of the Jews,"
James Trimm, The Society for the Advancement of Nazarene Judaism:
Daniel C. Matt, The Essential Kabbalah, Harper Collins, 1996, p. 7,8,11.
Talmud, treatise Berakhoth, folio 6; as Cited in Nesta H.Webster, p. 80, Secret Societies and Subversive Movements" Omni Publications, Eighth edition, 1964.
Talmud, treatise Hullin, folios 143,144; as Cited in Webster, Ibid. p. 80.
Michael A. Hoffman II & Alan R. Critchley, The Campaign for Radical Truth in History;
Hermann L. Strack, The Jews and Human Sacrifice, Eng. Trans. pp. 140,141 (1900) as Cited in Webster, op. cit., p. 82.
(2). Hastings' Encyclopœdia, article on Teutonic Magic by F. Hälsig.; 3. Talmud, tract Sabbath; as Cited in Webster, Ibid., p. 82.
Michael A. Hoffman II & Alan R. Critchley, op. cit.
Gershom Scholem, "On The Kabbalah And Its Symbolism," p.154, Schocken Books, 1965/1996
Hastings' Encyclopedia of Religion and Ethics, article on Jewish Magic by M. Gaster as Cited in Webster, op. cit., p. 80-81.
As Cited in Webster; Ibid., p. 81.
Footnote: 2. Margaret Alice Murray, The Witch Cult in Western Europe, and Jules Garinet, Historie de la Magie en France, p. 163 (1818) ; 3. Hastings' Encyclopedia of Religion and Ethics, article on Jewish Magic by M. Gaster. As Cited in Webster; Ibid., p. 81.
Webster, Ibid.p.80.
Judy Weinberg, "All you ever Wanted to Know about Lilith", "LILITH Magazine" original printed Fall of 1976. ;
Lilith in the Talmud; "Talmud citations are informed by the translations of I. Epstein. (The Babylonian Talmud .. London: Socino Press, 1978) and Raphael Patai, Patai81,pp.184f.). Cited on:
Michael A. Hoffman II & Alan R. Critchley, op. cit.
4. Pesachim,112b; Numbers Rabba, 12; 5. Yalkut Chadash, s.v. Keshaphim, No.56.; Angelo Rappoport, The Story of Lilith from Ancient Isael: Myths and Legends;
6. Pesachim, 112b., Rappaport, Ibid.
Lilith Magazine, op.cit.,
Rappoport, op. cit.,
Alphabetum Siracidis (Sepher Ben Sira), edit. Steinschneider, 1858. See on Lilith. Gaster, in Monatsschrift fuer Gesch. u. Wissenschaft d. Judent., Vol. XXIX (1880), pp. 553-555. 3. Elia Levita, Tishbi s.v. Lilith.; As Cited, Ibid.
Lilith Magazine, Ibid.,
Avi ben Mordechai, Halacha,
Jacob Prasch; Explaining the Midrash;
Peter Michas, http://www.ez/com/~peterm/HB.GK.RF.HTML
Michael A. Hoffman II & Alan R. Critchley, op. cit.
"Larry G. Rowland" ; uJEWI7: (fr. Larry R) The Kabbalah 4-15-98;
"Encyclopedia of Jewish Concepts," Ibid.
Jewish Encyclopœdia, article on Cabala; as Cited in Nesta H. Webster, op.cit.,p. 9.
Adolphe Franck, La Kabbale,p. 288; as Cited Ibid. p. 9.
P. Vulliaud, La Kabbale Juive: histoire et doctrine, I. 256, quoting Greenstone, The Messiah Idea, p. 229; as Cited in Webster, Ibid. p. 9.
Connie Spillman, phone conversation 2/1/99 with Great Books Foundation,

To Embrace Hebrew Roots: Part V

The Kabbalah

Please note: Research into the Hebrew Roots & Messianic movements constitutes research into Judaism as well as the occult. We fully respect each persons right to believe or utilize what resources they choose. We however, see a clear distinction in believing the Messiah has come versus utilizing resources which still await His coming. That is how and why we must evaluate all to Christ and the New Testament as well as the Tenach. We do not wish to edit or criticize Judaism, but recognize it as distinct from our Christian beliefs, just as many in Judaism also see a distinction and separateness from our beliefs, and we jointly have mutual respect for our differences and each other.

Deuteronomy 18:10-12a:

"There shall not be found among you any one that maketh his son or his daughter to pass through the fire, or that useth divination, or an observer of times, or an enchanter, or a witch, Or a charmer, or a consulter with familiar spirits, or a wizard, or a necromancer. For all that do these things are an abomination unto the Lord…"

Biblically we see over and over in the Old Testament where the Hebrew people fell from obeying the Law and embraced witchcraft and sorcery, Baal worship and all manner of idolatry. Throughout the Old Testament we encounter the obedience, disobedience, repentance and constant struggle of the Jewish people to remain faithful to God and the Law. Their tenacity and desire to obey the Law cannot be disputed. The question will be addressed whether the Jew's disobedient practices were, and are, taught in the oral traditions which evolved into the Talmud and Kabbalah and which are referenced by various Hebrew Roots leaders.

Jewish Mysticism

The Kabbalah itself consists of a large body of speculation on the nature of divinity, the creation, the origin and fate of the soul and also the role of human beings. It generally is subdivided into four sections: meditative, devotional, mystical and magical. It is for this reason that Kabbalah is regarded as an esoteric offshoot of Judaism.

Many are teaching that one must also utilize "PaRDes as a tool for Torah study," with the qualifier, "that this would be within normative rabbinic Judaism (and should be in ours), not necessarily just Kaballah, that is why the rule for being 40 years of age and extensively schooled in Torah was the original prerequisite for understanding Sod." and in order to understand the meaning of the Scriptures.

It needs to be understood that Pardes is an acronym for the understanding of Scriptures via kabbalistic means. It's noteworthy that an article published in the final print edition of the Jerusalem Perspective, written by David Bivin of the Jerusalem School of Synoptic Research (JSSR) and who is so popular within the Hebrew Roots movement, is not accepted by many within the Hebrew Roots or Messianic movements or Christians embracing these teachings, because of their not understanding or denying the source of kabbalah or Pardes:

“... students of the Kabbalah speak of Pardes ...which is an acronym derived from the initial letter of each of the four terms (p-r-d-s)....According to the late Professor Gershom Scholem, pioneer researcher in the field of Kabbalah, Moses ben Shem Tov of Leon was the first known writer to mention the acronym Pardes. He did so about 1290 in a composition called Sefer Pardes. Moses ben Shem Tov also wrote The Zohar, which became the most influential work of the Spanish Kabbalists...The Kabbalists were mystics par excellence, and they pursued vigorously Scripture's concealed meanings. They aspired to an elevated spiritual awareness by gaining access to concealed knowledge through scrutinizing each letter of the biblical text and through ecstatic ascents into heaven...Their longing for esoteric knowledge may be traced back in part to earlier Gnostic speculations. Such speculations left their imprints on the Kabbalah...The acronym Pardes belongs exclusively to the domain of the Kabbalah.”

Quoted from an article titled:

“Medieval Jargon on First-century Lips”
Author: David Bivin
Jerusalem Perspective
Page 33
July-September 1999 #56

A book published in 1984 by David Bivin (Director of the JSSR) and Roy Blizzard has formed the basis of much Hebrew Roots' doctrine. The following excerpts from Understanding The Difficult Words Of Jesus represent the JSSR viewpoint on the lack of originality of the Greek New Testament:

"...Our reasons for writing this book are not only to show that the original gospel was communicated in the Hebrew language; but to show that the entire New Testament can only be understood from a Hebrew perspective. 2.

"It cannot be overemphasised, that the key to an understanding of the New Testament is a fluent knowledge of Hebrew and an intimate acquaintance with Jewish history, culture, and Rabbinic Literature."

Jesus Christ is identified by the JSSR as being "like other Jewish sages of that time". Please see Jacob Prasch & The Jerusalem School of Synoptic Research for more on the JSSR

The gnosis of the Kabbalah has been well recognized by Jewish scholars. From an article cited in the Jewish Enclyclopœdia, we see the intimate relationship between Gnosticism and the Cabala:

"... The Jewish Encyclopœdia quotes the opinion that "the central doctrine of Gnosticism -a movement closely connected with Jewish mysticism-was nothing else than the attempt to liberate the soul and unite it with God;" but as this was apparently to be effected 'through the employment of mysteries, incantations, names of angels,' etc… it will be seen how widely even this phase of Gnosticism differs from Christianity and identifies itself with the magical Cabala of the Jews. Indeed, the man generally recognised as the founder of Gnosticism, a Jew commonly known as Simon Magus, was not only a Cabalist mystic, but avowedly a magician… instituted a priesthood of the Mysteries and practiced occult arts and exorcisms…" 1

M. Matter states in Histoire du Gnosticisme, that Jewish scholars fully understand that the secret oral traditions of the Cabala were previous to any Christian gnosticism.

"The Cabala is anterior to the Gnosis, an opinion which Christian writers little understand, but which the erudites of Judaism profess with a legitimate assurance." 2.

D.F. Ranking in " Some Notes on Various Gnostic Sects and their Possible Influence in Freemasonry" remarks that the secret oral tradition of the Cabalists confirms them as being Gnostics.

"This claim to the possession of a secret oral tradition, whether known under the name of [similar to yvwois only in Greek]…or of Cabala, confirms the conception of the Gnostics as Cabalists and shows how far they had departed from Christian teaching. For if only in this idea of " one doctrine for the ignorant and another for the initiated," that Gnostics had restored the very system which Christianity had come to destroy."3.

Author Nesta Webster concurs with M. Matter and other historians that Gnosticism involved an attempt to cabalize Christianity.

"... M. Matter is therefore right in saying that Gnosticism was not a defection from Christianity, but a combination of systems into which a few Christian elements were introduced. The result of Gnosticism was thus not to Christianize the Cabala, but to cabalize Christianity by mingling its pure and simple teaching with theosophy and even magic." 4.

Jacob Prasch of Moriel, however, does not seem to recognize Jewish mysticism as Gnosticism:

"People began reinterpreting the Bible, not using the Jewish method of midrash, but using Greek methods. Typology and allegory Midrash uses typology and allegory-symbols-in order to illustrate and illumine doctrine…"

" The symbolism illustrates the doctrine, which is itself stated plainly elsewhere in Scripture…In the Gnostic world of Greek thinking, the opposite happens. Gnostics claim to have received a subjective, mystical insight-called a gnosis-into the symbols. They then reinterpret the plain meaning of the text in light of the gnosis. For Gnostics, symbolism is the basis for their doctrine, contrary to the ancient Jewish methods…" 5.

In The Sacred Books of the Jews, Harry Gersh certifies the early origins of Jewish mysticism,

"Jewish mysticism began in Biblical days, long before the term Kabbalah was invented. By the first century it had become a proper subject for scholarly study. Philo Judaeus speculated on the Platonic idea of emanations as intermediaries between God and the physical world. The Roman philosopher Plotinus (205-270) traveled in the East and returned to combine Indian, Persian, Greek, and Jewish mystic theories into a systematic structure of these emanations." 6.

"…H. Loewe, in an article on the Kabbala in Hastings' Encyclopœdia of Religion and Ethics, says: "This secret mysticism was no late growth. …we can be fairly certain that its roots stretch back very far and that the mediæval and Geonic Kabbala was the culmination and not the inception of Jewish esoteric mysticism. …" 7.

It cannot be assumed that the Kabbalah came from only Jewish sources and ideas.

"As the Kabbalah evolved, it came to share certain ideas with other ancient mystical systems, including those of the Gnostics and Pythagoreans. The Kabbalah did not restrict itself solely to instruction on the apprehension of God but included teachings on cosmology, angelology, and magic." 8

Despite God's many warnings to the contrary, the Jews incorporated paganism into their traditions which contradicted the Word of God.

"… In spite of the imprecations against sorcery contained in the law of Moses, the Jews, disregarding these warnings, caught the contagion and mingled the sacred tradition they had inherited with magical ideas partly borrowed from other races and partly of their own devising. At the same time the speculative side of the Jewish Cabala borrowed from the philosophy of the Persian Magi, of the Neo-Platonists, and of the Neo-Pythagorean. There is, then, some justification for the anti-cabalists contention that what we know today as the Cabala is not of purely Jewish origin." 9.

Harry Gersh shows the migration of the mid-eastern Kabbalists throughout Europe:

"From Babylonia and Palestine, Jewish mysticism moved into the Jewish communities of Europe and blossomed there. Every community produced its own mystic literature, mystic belief, and mystic practices. There were distinctive Spanish, French, Italian, and German Kabbalahs. Some were mainly 'practical', dealing in magic; others were mainly 'speculative', emphasizing philosophical explanations; many combined practical and speculative Kabbalah in equal parts." 10.


Colin Low in his Kabbalah FAQ, indicates the origins of Kabbalah date from remote antiquity.

"…Kabbalah is a mystical and magical tradition which originated nearly two thousand years ago and has been practiced continuously during that time. It has been practiced by Jew and non- Jew alike for about five hundred years. On the Jewish side it has been an integral and influential part of Judaism. On the Hermetic side it has created a rich mystical and magical tradition with its own validity, a tradition which has survived despite the prejudice generated through existing within a strongly Christian culture." 11.

Michael Sidlofsky of Toronto, writing on "Kabbalah and Jewish Renewal" states that "Kabbalah,

"…is the most commonly-used term for the Jewish mystical tradition, especially the kind which originated in twelfth-century France and spread through Europe, the Middle East and eventually world-wide, to this day. The two main varieties of pre-kabbalistic Jewish mysticism are called Maaseh Merkavah and Maaseh Bereshit (more on these below), and the particular variety emerging in eighteenth-century Eastern Europe and continuing among Ashkenazic Jews until today is called Hasidism." 12.

Most scholars concur that these secret oral traditions were first committed to writing around the thirteenth century. Dr. Christian Ginsburg in "The Kabbalah" states:

"…The first date at which the Zohar is definitely known to have appeared is the end of the thirteenth century when it was committed to writing by a Spanish Jew, Moses de Leon…." 13.

Pico della Mirandola, a major Renaissance Gnostic, Hermeticist and Cabalist, was described by Vicomte Léon de Poncins’ in Judaism and the Vatican:

"Pico de Mirandola, who died in Florence, Italy in 1494, was a hebraiser who devoted himself to studying the Cabbala under the direction of Jewish masters such as Jehuda Abravanel:

It was in the princely house of Pico de Mirandola that the Jewish scholars used to meet….The discovery of the Jewish Cabbala, which he imparted to various enlightened Christians contributed far more than the return to Greek sources to the extraordinary spiritual blossoming which is known as the Renaissance. About half a century later, the rehabilitation of the Talmud was to lead to the Reformation….Pico de Mirandola had understood that the indispensable purification of Christian dogma could only be effected after a profound study of the authentic Jewish Cabbala." 14.

James Webb, author of the Occult Underground, wrote of Renaissance scholar Pico della Mirandola, a student of Marsillo Ficino, founder of the neo-Platonic Academy of Florence, Italy. Pico de Mirandola "...conceived of Hermes and Plato as aids to persuading those to religion who would not accept Scripture alone."

"This reasoning appears eventually to have been endorsed by the Church in the case of Pico, who joined to his Hermetism a 'Christian Cabala,' and concocted a universal system in which Cabalistic ideas played a considerable part. Although condemned by a tribunal, Pico's synthesis was rehabilitated in 1493 by Alexander VI, whose recognition of the Cabalist as a loyal son of the Church seemed to give some authority to Pico's position. It should be remembered in this context that Sixtus IV (Pope, 1471-84) had himself translated seventy Cabalistic books into Latin, and that the concept of the 'Christian Cabala' was not peculiar to Italian thought. Reuchlin, the foremost Orientalist of the time, and the author of the first Hebrew grammar, came nearest to success in the attempt to transform the Cabala into Christian philosophy - although his pupil Widmanstadt considered the Jewish tradition as 'a Trojan horse introduced into the Church. But the Hermeticists and Cabalists of the Renaissance were always maintaining their orthodoxy." 15.

Drach's "De l'Harmonie entre l'Eglise et la Synagogue, II," confirms that Pico della Mirandola received instruction in the Kabbala. Mirandola imagined that it held the doctrines of Christianity and therefore caused Pope Sixtus IV to order the Latin translations for the use of divinity students. 16.

Quoting from the Jewish Encyclopœdia's articles on Cabala and Reuchlin, we see the history of the influx of Cabalism into Catholicism and Christianity.

"At the same time the Cabala was introduced into Germany by Reuchlin, who had learnt Hebrew from the Rabbi Jacob b. Jechiel Loans, court physician to Frederick III, and in 1494 published a Cabalistic treatise De Verbo Mirifico, showing that all wisdom and true philosophy are derived from the Hebrews. Considerable alarm appears, however, to have been created by the spread of Rabbinical literature, and in 1509 a Jew converted to Christianity, named Pfefferkorn, persuaded the Emperor Maximilian I to burn all Jewish books except the Old Testament. Reuchlin, consulted on this matter, advised only the destruction of the Toledot Yeshu and of the Sepher Nizzachon by the Rabbi Lipmann, because these works " were full of blasphemies against Christ and against the Christian religion," but urged the preservation of the rest. In this defence of Jewish literature he was supported by the Duke of Bavaria, who appointed him professor at Ingoldstadt, but was strongly condemned by the Dominicans of Cologne. In reply to their attacks Reuchlin launched his defence De Arte Cabalistica, glorifying the Cabala, of which the " central doctrine for him was the Messianology around which all its other doctrines grouped themselves.1." 17.

"His whole philosophical system, as he himself admitted, was in fact entirely Cabalistic, and his views were shared by his contemporary Cornelius Agrippa of Nettesheim. As a result of these teachings a craze for Cabalism spread amongst Christian prelates, statesmen, and warriors, and a number of Christian thinkers took up the doctrines of the Cabala and " essayed to work them over in their own way. " Athanasius Kircher and Knorr, Baron von Rosenroth, author of the Kabbala Denudata, in the course of the seventeenth century " endeavoured to spread the Cabala among the Christians by translating Cabalistic works which they regarded as most ancient wisdom." "Most of them," the Jewish Encyclopœdia goes on to observe derisively, " held the absurd idea that the Cabala contained proofs of the truth of Christianity…. Much that appears Christian [ in the Cabala ] is, in fact, nothing but the logical development of certain ancient esoteric doctrines.2" 18.

S.L. McGregor Mathers', Introduction to the Kabbalah Unveiled is actually Mathers' English translation of Baron von Rosenroth's Kabbala Denudata, mentioned above. It was used to propagate the 'absurd idea' as stated by the Jewish Encyclopœdia, of a Christian Cabala, and as one peruses the contents, these ideas are affirmed.

"…At the present time a powerful wave of occult thought is spreading through society; thinking men are beginning to awake to the fact that "there are more things in heaven and earth than are dreamed of in their philosophy;" and, last but not least, it is now felt that the Bible, which has been probably more misconstrued than any other book ever written, contains numberless obscure and mysterious passages which are utterly unintelligible without some key wherewith to unlock their meaning. THAT KEY IS GIVEN IN THE QABALAH. Therefore this work should be of interest to every biblical and theological student."

"Let every Christian ask himself this question: "How can I think to understand the Old Testament if I be ignorant of the construction put upon it by that nation whose sacred book it formed; and if I know not the meaning of the Old Testament, how can I expect to understand the New?"

"Were the real and sublime philosophy of the Bible better known, there would be fewer fanatics and sectarians. And who can calculate the vastness of the harm done to impressionable and excitable persons by the bigoted enthusiasts who ever and anon come forward as teachers of the people? How many suicides are the result of religious mania and depression! What farragos of sacrilegious nonsense have not been promulgated as the true meanings of the hooks of the Prophets and the Apocalypse! Given a translation of the sacred Hebrew Book, in many instances incorrect, as the foundation, an inflamed and an ill-balanced mind as the worker thereon, what sort of edifice can be expected as the result?"

"I say fearlessly to the fanatics and bigots of the present day: You have cast down the Sublime and Infinite One from His throne, and in His stead have placed the demon of unbalanced force; you have substituted a deity of disorder and of jealousy for a God of order and of love; you have perverted the teachings of the crucified One. Therefore at this present time an English translation of the Qabalah is almost a necessity, for the Zohar has never before been translated into the language of this country, nor, as far as I am aware, into any modern European vernacular." 19.

Perusing the contents further we see the presentation of a Trinity, alongside other "Christian" statements but it is clearly not Christian in content. The way to heaven is described through the use of Gematria.

"Thus the Qabalah is called ChKMh NSThRH, Chokhmah Nesthorah, "the secret wisdom;" and if we take the initials of these two words Ch and N, we form by the second kind of Notariqon the word ChN, Chen, "grace." Similarly, from the initials and finals of the words MI IOLH LNV HShMIMH, Mi Iaulah Leno Ha-Shamayimah, "Who shall go up for us to heaven?" (Deut. xxx. 12), are formed MILH, Milah "circumcision," and IHVH, the Tetragrammaton, implying that God hath ordained circumcision as the way to heaven." 20.

Gematria is based on the relative numerical values of words. Words of similar numerical values are considered to be explanatory of each other. In other words, it is lettered numerology which explains that circumcision is the way to heaven.

Galatians 5:2-6:

" Behold, I Paul say unto you, that if ye be circumcised, Christ shall profit you nothing. For I testify again to every man that is circumcised, that he is a debtor to do the whole law. Christ is become of no effect unto you, whosoever of you are justified by the law; ye are fallen from grace. For we through the Spirit wait for the hope of righteousness by faith. For in Jesus Christ neither circumcision availeth any thing, nor uncircumcision; but faith which worketh by love."

Influence of Kabbalah

Mysticism is met with varied reactions within the Jewish community.

"…Like most subjects of Jewish belief, the area of mysticism is wide open to personal interpretation. Some traditional Jews take mysticism very seriously. Mysticism is an integral part of Chasidic Judaism, for example, and passages from kabbalistic sources are routinely included in traditional prayerbooks." 21.

"Other traditional Jews take mysticism with a grain of salt. One prominent Orthodox Jew, when introducing a speaker on the subject of Jewish mysticism, said basically " it's nonsense, but it's Jewish nonsense, and the study of anything Jewish, even nonsense, is worthwhile." 22.

Jewish historian Graetz claimed that the Cabala is at variance with Orthodox Judaism. Other anti-cabalists like Theodore Reinach declare that the Cabala is:

"…a subtle poison which enters into the veins of Judaism and wholly infests it.; Salomon Reinach calls it "one of the worst aberrations of the human mind." 23.

Michael Sidlofsky in "Kabbalah-A Brief History" shows that the Kabbalah has fluctuated in open popularity.

"The history of Jewish mysticism has taken some dramatic turns, from elite, secretive club to mass movement to object of scorn and back and forth. Right now the Kabbalah seems to be enjoying unprecedented popularity. Will it become, either in its Orthodox or Jewish Renewal forms, the Judaism of the future? It is premature to say so, but one thing seems clear: given the trend towards easier and faster mass communication and the increasing hunger for genuine spirituality, Jewish mysticism as a widespread phenomenon is here to stay this time." 24.

Kabbalah is also making a huge influx into North America. Michael Sidlofsky goes on to show the trend for mysticism has risen dramatically.

"…A more traditional American Orthodox rabbi, Aryeh Kaplan, spent the seventies and early eighties reconstructing the forgotten Jewish meditative tradition by researching long-neglected kabbalistic texts, many only extant in manuscript. He boldly disregarded the centuries-old rabbinic ban on the dissemination of kabbalistic practices among those under forty and unschooled in Bible and Talmud--a result of the Shabbetai Tzvi tragedy--by teaching Jewish meditation classes and publishing practical manuals and source readers on the subject. Thanks largely to Kaplan's efforts, many Orthodox rabbis and lay people have taught and written about Kabbalah, recognizing its appeal to non-practicing Jews searching for spiritual guidance." 25.

Israeli journalist, Hannah Newman, wrote Masters of the Blinding Light to warn fellow Jews of the infiltration of New Age mysticism, aka Kabbalah, into Judaism. The door-to-door sale of the Zohar throughout Israel will no doubt lead to replacement of the Torah with Kabbalah. As Jesus said to the Pharisees: "Your traditions have made the Word of God of none effect:":

"In a similar development on the mystical side of Judaism, NA spokesmen applaud orthodox Jewish teachers for recently releasing Kabbalah from the restricted access imposed on it by past generations of Jewish sages, making its teachings available to all, and even encouraging free exploration without rabbinic supervision. In Israel the Zohar (a major Kabbalistic work) is even being sold door-to-door. [This is strictly forbidden under the 'old order' of Judaism, but NAers are not concerned with proper understanding of the teaching, since Kabbalah is simply one path to their goal of getting as many people as possible, as quickly as possible, into 'contact with the spirit realm']. These teachers are being hailed as 'co-conspirators' who are furthering the NA Plan. [not stated whether deliberately or unknowingly, but the results will be the same.] From the NA standpoint, however, the value of Jewish Kabbalah lies only in its teachings which overlap "the other ancient occult doctrines", specifically: reincarnation; traffic with angels, demons and departed human spirits; 'monism' (light and darkness, good and evil, are all sides of G-d); attributing 'secret messages' or 'hidden meanings' to words or statements which mean something else at face value; self-induced trances, resulting in visions or 'astral' (out-of-body) travels; and harnessing of superhuman powers by pronouncing sacred names. [It is noteworthy that none of these can be supported by a clear (pashat or darash) Torah passage, while some are expressly forbidden; yet they are arguably the best-known elements of Kabbalah today. The fact that they are accepted by so many Torah Jews in spite of their dubious relevance to Torah, only supports the claims of the NA missionaries.] The NA goal is to promote a Kabbalah in the Jewish community which goes through successive 'transformations' until it is finally severed from all links with the Torah, thus 'recovering' its 'purity'." 26.

Jewish writer H. Loewe, in an article on the Kabbalah in Hastings' Encyclopœdia of Religion and Ethics has declared this:

"[Kabbalism] has contributed to the formation of modern Judaism, for, without the influence of the Kabbala, Judaism today might have been one-sided, lacking in warmth and imagination. Indeed, so deeply has it penetrated into the body of the faith that many ideas and prayers are now immovably rooted in the general body of orthodox doctrine and practice. This element has not only become incorporated, but it has fixed its hold on the affections of the Jews and cannot be eradicated." 27.

What is Kabbalah?

Deuteronomy 29:29:

"The secret things belong unto the Lord our God: but those things which are revealed belong unto us and to our children for ever, that we may do all the words of this law."

According to "The Kabbalah Unveiled" website, the Kabbalah is Jewish esoteric doctrine.

"The Qabalah may be defined as being the esoteric Jewish doctrine. It is called in Hebrew QBLH, Qabalah, which is derived from the root QBL, Qibel, meaning 'to receive'. This appellation refers to the custom of handing down the esoteric tradition by oral transmission, and is nearly allied to 'tradition'." 28.

Another website, "Kabbalah: The Misunderstood Doctrine," discloses that the Talmud alludes to a secret wisdom for an elect group of students.

"The Talmud contains vague hints of a mystical school of thought that was taught only to the most advanced students and was not committed to writing…" 29.

It was Pico della Mirandola's thesis that the secret oral tradition of the Rabbinic sages were no less divinely inspired than the Law given to Moses. There appears to be a slight contradiction on the hereditary oral transmission of these secrets. Mirandola states that because they were not written they were passed through a 'regular succession of revelations.'

"In exactly the same way, when the true interpretation of the Law according to the command of God, divinely handed down to Moses, was revealed, it was called the Kabbalah, a word which is the same among the Hebrews as `reception' among ourselves; for this reason, of course, that one man from another, by a sort of hereditary right, received that doctrine not through written records but through a regular succession of revelations....In these books principally resides,… the spring of understanding, that is, the ineffable theology of the supersubstantial deity; the fountain of wisdom, that is, the exact metaphysic of the intellectual and angelic forms; and the stream of knowledge, that is, the most steadfast philosophy of natural things." 30.

Gerry Rose, author of, "The Venetian Takeover of England and Its Creation of Freemasonry" presents the idea that this Ancient Wisdom was passed down from Moses to the elite disciples and that only the initiated could understand Kabbalah.

"According to tradition "...the Kabbalah was the fount of ancient wisdom that Moses passed down to elite disciples, an esoteric doctrine that only an elect can interpret." 31.

"The Authenticity of Kabbalah" ascribes to the Kabbalah the secrets of life which are supposedly hidden in the Torah.

The Kabbalah " uncovers many of the infinite layers of the secrets of life, of Creation, of the soul, of the heavenly spheres. It penetrates beyond the garments and the body of the Torah. It is the very core and soul of Torah, the ultimate revelation of Divinity - exposing the inner meaning, effects and purpose of Torah and mitzvot. The illumination emanating from the Kabbalah ignites the soul of man, setting it on fire in the awareness of a deeper and higher reality. Its study and insights are themselves mystical experiences. The Kabbalah is all this - but always and exclusively within the context of Torah." 32.

Moses warned Israel in Deuteronomy 4:2:

"Ye shall not add unto the word which I command you, neither shall ye diminish ought from it, that ye may keep the commandments of the Lord your God which I command you."

Oral Traditions

The term Qabalah," in Hebrew signifies "reception", or "a doctrine orally received" and in which the "speculative, philosophical and theosophical doctrines of Israel are to be found. " These were originally contained in two books, the Sepher Yetzirah and the Zohar". 33.

The first Book, the Sepher Yetzirah is believed to be contemplations of Abraham. This is in contradiction then, of the belief that the oral traditions were taught by God to angels and then transmitted to Adam.

"…The Sepher Yetzirah, or Book of Creation, is [believed to be]…" a monologue on the part of Abraham in which, by the contemplation of all that is around him, he ultimately arrives at the conclusion of the unity of God"…" 34.

The second and main work of the Kabbalah is called the "Zohar." From Adolphe Franck and other sources, incuding Zohar treatises, we see slightly different renditions and contradictions of how the Zohar was conceived.

"… The immense compilation known as the Sepher-Ha-Zohar, or Book of Light, is… of greater importance to the study of Cabalistic philosophy. According to the Zohar itself, the " Mysteries of Wisdom" where imparted to Adam by God whilst he was still in the Garden of Eden, in the book delivered by the angel Razael. From Adam the book passed to Seth ...Enoch ...Noah... Abraham, and later to Moses, one of its principal exponents.4. Other Jewish writers declare… that Moses received it…first time on Mount Sinai…to the Seventy Elders… to David and Solomon… Ezra… Nehemiah and finally to the Rabbis of the early Christian era.5" 35.

The Jewish mysticism authority, Adolphe Franck, and author Drach, relate from Talmud treatises how the secret oral teachings of the Zohar were developed and then written down.

"…the Zohar had remained a purely oral tradition… written down by the disciples of Simon ben Jochai. The Talmud relates that for twelve years the Rabbi Simon and his son Eliezer concealed themselves in a cavern, where sitting in the sand up to their necks, they meditated on the sacred law and were frequently visited by the prophet Elias.6. In this way, Jewish legend adds, the great book of the Zohar was composed and committed to writing by the Rabbi's son Eliezer and his secretary the Rabbi Abba.7" 36.

According to the Introduction to The Kabbalah Unveiled by McGregor Mathers, who was the co-founder of the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn in 1888, this secret oral tradition of the sages was believed to have been taught by God to angels, who then taught it to fallen humans. Abraham is viewed as a mystic who taught the Egyptians some of their occult doctrine.

"The Qabalah was first taught by God himself to a select company of angels, who formed a theosophic school in Paradise. After the Fall the angels most graciously communicated this heavenly doctrine to the disobedient children of earth, to furnish the protoplasts with the means of returning to their pristine nobility and felicity."

"From Adam it passed over to Noah, and then to Abraham, the friend of God, who emigrated with it to Egypt, where the patriarch allowed a portion of this mysterious doctrine to ooze out. It was in this way that the Egyptians obtained some knowledge of it, and the other Eastern nations could introduce it into their philosophical systems. Moses, who was learned in all the wisdom of Egypt, was first initiated into the Qabalah in the land of his birth, but became most proficient in it during his wanderings in the wilderness, when he not only devoted to it the leisure hours of the whole forty years, but received lessons in it from one of the angels. By the aid of this mysterious science the law-giver was enabled to solve the difficulties which arose during his management of the Israelites, in spite of the pilgrimages, wars, and frequent miseries of the nation. He covertly laid down the principles of this secret doctrine in the first four books of the Pentateuch, but withheld them from Deuteronomy. Moses also initiated the seventy elders into the secrets of this doctrine, and they again transmitted them from hand to hand." 37.

Speculative & Practical Kabbalah

Gershom Scholem was a renowned professor of Jewish mysticism at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem until his death in 1982. He was considered the pioneer of the modern study of Jewish mysticism and his many writings explain these concepts in the Talmud, Zohar and the Kabbalah.

In "Zohar, the Book of Splendor: Basic Readings from the Kabbalah", Scholem describes the importance and authority of the Zohar to Judaism.

"The book of Zohar, the most important literary work of the Kabbalah, lies before us in some measure inaccessible and silent, as befits a work of secret wisdom…To have determined the formation and development over a long period of time of the religious convictions of the widest circles in Judaism, and particularly of those most sensitive to religion, and, what is more, to have succeeded in establishing itself for three centuries, from about 1500 to 1800, as a source of doctrine and revelation equal in authority to the Bible and Talmud, and of the same canonical rank---this is a prerogative that can be claimed by no other work of Jewish literature." 38.

Gershom Scholem explains the contents of the Zohar, and the various components, including "the Midrash ha-Neelam (The Secret Midrash) and Sitre Torah (Secrets of the Torah), which is a large number of Pentateuch portions…"39.

According to Scholem, the latter is a deeply mystical treatment of the Torah:

"The Secret Midrash…avoids genuinely mystical and theosophical trains of thought…The Secrets of the Torah, on the other hand, which in the main was composed without the use of Midrash form or the addition of names, represents the transition from philosophical-eschatological allegory to genuinely mystical exegesis. The Idra Rabba (The Great Assembly) describes, … the mystical 'figure' of the Deity in the symbol of the Primal Man…" 40.

Scholem expounds the belief that the Zohar, composed of contradictions and folk-tales, is the anonymous work of centuries, "like the Bible"

".. the Zohar has been regarded…as a work without unity…in which the most varied and often contradictory forces of the kabbalistic movement found expression…Moses de Leon was…regarded as the redactor of ancient writings and fragments…The theory that "primitive" sources and documents have been preserved in the revised form is today widespread. Thus the Zohar…would really be, even in its external beginnings, a deposit of the creative folk-spirit and, like the Bible and Talmud, the anonymous work of centuries…" 41.

The Bible, unlike the secret oral traditions and teachings, is neither an anonymous work nor is it comprised of contradictions, myths, or fairytales.

2 Timothy 3:16:

"All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness; That the man of God may be throughly furnished unto all good works."

Psalm 119:160:

"Thy word is true from the beginning: and every one of thy righteous judgments endureth forever."

Proverbs 30:5-6:

"Every word of God is pure: He is a shield unto them that put their trust in Him. Add thou not unto His words, lest He reprove thee, and thou be found a liar."

Gershom Scholem states that the "Secret Midrash" writings of the Zohar were in all probability the earliest part of the work. His profile of the Jewish mystic who authored the Kabbalah begins with his education in the Talmud:

"Behind the whole stands the living personality of a mystic who, starting with philosophical and talmudic education of his time, lets himself be ever more deeply drawn to the mystical and gnostic ideas of the Kabbalah, and finally gives up his philosophical interests altogether, developing instead a truly astonishing genius for mystical homiletics…such is the author of these most important parts of the Zohar--no redactor or collector but a homiletic genius. It was Kabbalah, as it had developed before his time, and having become his spiritual home, which he, with unexpected and impressive power, constructed from out of the text of Scripture and the ancient haggadic motifs of the Midrash…" 42

Out of the Abundance of the Heart

"Ancient haggadic motifs of the Midrash" constructed out of the text of Scripture also comprise an esoteric volume titled, "Hebrew Myths: The Book of Genesis" by Robert Graves and Raphael Patai. Robert Graves wrote The White Goddess and I, Claudius. The White Goddess is frequently studied by people involved in the occult and witchcraft. Raphael Patai also wrote many books and was Director of Research of the Theodor Herzl Institute in New York and also Director of the Palestine Institute of Folklore and Ethnology. The book says he was a Biblical scholar.

In a private correspondence this writer received the following description of the book's thesis that Genesis was a collection of haggadic myths:

"…The premise of the book seems to be that the Bible is a book of myths, very much like the Greek myths. And the authors attempt to show how Hebrew myths and Greek myths are related. In the course of writing about the book of Genesis they quote extensively from writings such as the Talmud, The Gospel of Saint Thomas, Midrash, apocryphal books, pagan myths, the Kabbala and various kabbalistic works, The Book of the Dead, Cave of Treasures, Sepher, Enuma Elish, Sephir Hadar Zeqenim (midrashic explanations to the Bible), Imre Noam, the Koran, Mishna, Massekhet Soferim, Megilla, Mekhilta,, Midrash Alphabetot attributed to Rabbi Akiba (second century A.D.) but actually compiled much later, lots of sephers including "Sepher Raziel, a kabbalistic work on the secrets of Heaven, creation, angels, amulets, etc", Sode Raza "a Kabbalistic work by Eleazar ben Judah of Worms,, Targum this and that, the Zohar which the authors say is the "Bible of the Kabbalists, written by the Spanish Kabbalist Moses de Leon, in Aramaic, during the thirteenth century. It is a commentary on the Bible, pseudepigraphically attributed to Rabbi Simeon ben Yohai, the famous Mishna-teacher. First printed at Mantua, 1558-60, in three volumes.", and other Zohars…." 43.

The authors suggest that there are missing sacred documents which contain a more accurate record of creation than Genesis:

"The book's authors write that "All pre-Biblical sacred documents in Hebrew have been either lost or purposely suppressed...Post-Biblical sacred documents are abundant. In the thousand years after the Bible was first canonised, the Jews of Europe, Asia and Africa wrote prolifically. Theirs were either attempts to clarify the Mosaic Law; or historical, moralistic, anecdotal and homiletic comments on Biblical passages....although the canonical books were regarded as written by divine inspiration and the least taint of polytheism had therefore to be exorcised from them, the apocryphal books were treated more leniently. Many suppressed myths were also allowed to re-emerge in the unquestionably orthodox context of the post-Biblical midrashim....Lilith, Eve's predecessor, has been wholly exorcised from Scripture, though she is remembered by Isaiah as inhabiting desolate ruins. {but not in the King James Version, only in some modern versions]. She seems, from midrashic accounts of her sexual promiscuity, to have been a fertility goddess..."

The correspondent of this information remarked, "So, it seems that these two authors have used these Kabbalistic writings to make their case that the Bible is a book of myths and in quoting from these writings they reveal to the reader just how low-down and wicked the writers of the Kabbala and the Midrashim, etc. were. And so I wonder how anyone who has read this awful stuff would want to urge others to read it and give it respectability." 44.

Luke 6:45

"A good man out of the good treasure of his heart bringeth forth that which is good; and an evil man out of the evil treasure of his heart bringeth forth that which is evil: for of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaketh."

In "An Explanation of Midrash", Jacob Prasch refers to "A classical work of Midrash in Judaism is the Midrash Rabba on Genesis (Berashith). Another is Lamentations Rabba". He also upholds the Talmud as an authority for knowing what the Bible contains. "The Talmud tells us there are multiple interpretations" and "It takes the wisdom of the ancients to really understand these things…not the wisdom of the 16th century, but the wisdom of the first century." 45.

In another article, Mr. Prasch states that Midrash of the Jewish sages at the time of the second temple period is wisdom we can turn to with full confidence as these sages never deny the authenticity of the Biblical accounts.

"We have, along this line, advocated that Christians familiarize themselves with the works of those who have understood this from Alfred Edersheim to Arnold Fruchtenbaum. We have also tried to re-acquaint the church with the lost art of Jewish hermeneutics in terms of New Testament uses of Midrash, and the illustrative Hebraic models of typology and allegory …What is perhaps most absurd is the fact that contrary to both New Testament Christianity and Orthodox Judaism… In the Judaic midrashim we similarly never see a denial of the historical authenticity of biblical accounts.

"…any early examples of Judaic Midrash... It is these early examples of rabbinic midrashic writings that are closest in time frame to the authorship date of the New Testament. Having looked at New Testament narrative from a Midrashic perspective for years and read every major Christian scholar who addressed the subject …" 46.

Are we to understand that Mr. Prasch is referring to the same Genesis Midrash and Talmud referenced by Graves and Patai's "Hebrew Myths: The Book of Genesis"? Our correspondent continues to be amazed that the teachers of the Hebrew Roots of Christianity would promotes such works:

"What I find interesting is that the excerpts from these sources are so wicked. The "fleshing out of the Bible" that is done by these writings not only have many variations but have the persons written about in the Bible doing very evil things that we have never read about in the Bible. And God is written about as saying and doing all sorts of things that are out of character and never written about in the Bible. Very evil motives and actions are attributed to God in these writings. I am not surprised that the authors of this book who obviously do not believe the Bible is truthful would make their case using such writings, but I am perplexed that many of the Hebrew Roots people who claim to be Christians would also be using these wicked writings. 47.

Peter Michas informs us further that Jesus quoted the Midrash and the Talmud, apparently with approval:

"… The New Testament is in the pattern of the Jewish traditional work of Torah, Mishnah, Haggadah, Halakah, Talmud and Midrash, but inspired by God Himself for the common people. These Hebraic works as well as the Inspired Scriptures were quoted from by Jesus and all the writers of the New Testament. But even now, to have full comprehension, we must read the scriptures in the proper Hebraic context…Most all of the Judaic writings have been preserved for us and now translated into proper English directly from the Hebrew…" 48.

Avi ben Moredechai also references the Oral law, separate and distinct from the written Bible, as having been taught by Paul and Jesus:

"Rabbi (Haham) Sha’ul was a scholarly teacher of Torah, both of the Oral and Written codes. Not only did he order his life by it, but he also taught it to others, born Jews and born Gentiles alike. Since Sha’ul followed Messiah Y’shua, who also taught the Oral and Written Torah, I submit (at this time in my life) that we should be following in the footsteps of Judaism’s great teachers of G-d’s Law… I also recognize that our Rabbi Y’shua also had His Gemara (discussion and teaching) on the rabbinic Mishnah and the written code of Sinai. Thus, we are His talmidim or students of His Oral Traditions which is the proper definition of the term "Gospel." We are to follow His Mishnah and Gemara, i.e., His Talmud…ancient scholars and sages were far more knowledgeable on the Oral Traditions than we could ever hope to be." 49.

From 'Hebrew Myths: The Book of Genesis', Genesis Rabba and folios from the Talmud and Midrash are cited excerpts regarding Adams bestiality and the myth of Lilith and other unscriptural teachings. (cf. Part IV)

"Chapter 10

page 65 (b) Some say that God created man a woman in His own image on the Sixth Day, giving them charge over the world, [as in the Bible] but that Eve did not yet exist. Now, God had set Adam to name every beast, bird and other living thing. When they passed before him in pairs, male and female, Adam-- being already like a twenty-year-old man-- felt jealous of their loves, and though he tried coupling with each female in turn, found no satisfaction in the act. He therefore cried: 'Every creature but I has a proper mate', and prayed God would remedy this injustice. from Gen. Rab. 17-4; B. Yebamot 63a"

(c) God then formed Lilith, the first woman, just as He had formed Adam, except that He used filth and sediment instead of pure dust. From Adam's union with this demoness, and with another like her named Naamah, Tubal Cain's sister, sprang Asmodeus and innumerable demons that still plague mankind. Many generations late, Lilith and Naamah came to Solomon's judgment seat, disguised as harlots of Jerusalem. from Yalqut Reubeni ad. Gen. II 21: IV. 8

Then Lilith deserts Adam because she didn't want to lie beneath him during sex because she was his equal. Adam complained to God who sent angels after her. They found her beside the Red Sea where she had been bearing demons (more than 100 a day) The angels told her to return to Adam or they would drown her. She argues with them and tells them that God has ordered her to strangle babies . She also seduces dreaming men. Then God makes Adam another mate but Adam is disgusted by the sight of her creation. God knew that he had failed once more, and took First Eve away. (God failed?) God tried a third time, and made her out of Adam's rib, braided her hair and adorned her with 24 pieces of jewellery before waking Adam up. Adam approved. Gen Rab 161"

"Some say God created Eve from a tail ending in a sting which had been part of Adam's body . God cut this off, and the stump-- now a useless coccyx-- is still carried by men. Gen Rab 134 B. Erubin 18a "

"Others say that God;s original thought had been to create two human beings, male and female; but instead He designed a single one with a male face looking forward, and a female face looking back. B. Erubin 18a"

"Still others hold that Adam was originally created as an androgyne of male and female bodies joined back to back. This made walking difficult and conversation awkward, so God divided the androgyne, and gave each half a new rear. These separate beings He placed in Eden, forbidding them to couple. Gen Rab 55 Lev Rab 14.1 and other sources" 50.

Can the esteemed teachers of the Hebrew Roots of Christianity be saying these writings do not contradict the Word of God?

Matthew 12:33

"Either make the tree good, and his fruit good; or else make the tree corrupt, and his fruit corrupt: for the tree is known by his fruit."

There are many questions in my mind as one who was invited to partake of these teachings, and look to the Hebrew Roots, Messianic leadership as described above. If the leadership upholds and promotes the teachings of the Jewish sages and mystics, with the support of "flocks of sheep" who willingly follow their teachings--does that mean that these teachings may not be publicly scrutinized and critiqued for the edification and warning of the Body of Christ?

Matthew 7:15-20:

"Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves. Ye shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles? Even so every good tree bringeth forth good fruit; but a corrupt tree bringeth forth evil fruit. A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither can a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit. Every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire. Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them."

Next Section:

To Embrace Hebrew Roots Part VI: Kabbalah Initiation

All Scripture Quotes From the King James Bible


Jewish Encyclopœdia, article on Cabala; as Cited in Nesta H. Webster, op.cit., p.29.
Matter, Histoire du Gnosticisme,I.44, (1844)a s Cited: Webster, Ibid. p.28.
D. F. Ranking; Some Notes on Various Gnostic Sects and their Possible Influence in Freemasonry,republished from Ars Quatuor Coronatorum (Vol. XXIV, p. 202, 1911) in pamphlet form, p.7.; as Cited Webster, Ibid. Pg. 32
Nesta H. Webster; op. cit. p. 29.
Jacob Prasch, Explaining the Midrash;
Harry Gersh "The Sacred Books of the Jews,"
Webster, op.cit., p.10
Ancient Wisdom and Secret Sects ;
Webster; op.cit., p.11
Harry Gersh, The Sacred Books of the Jews
Kabbalah Faq, Colin Low, 1996;
Michael Sidlofsky, Kabbalah-A Brief History;
Dr. Christian Ginsburg, The Kabbalah,pp.172,173; as Cited in Webster, Ibid., p. 9.
Joshua Jehuda, L’antisemitisme, Miroir du Monde ["Anti-Semitism, Mirror of the World"-p. 164]
James Webb, The Occult Underground, Open Court Press, 1976, p. 221.
Drach (De l'Harmonie entre l'Eglise et la Synagogue,II.p.30) says that Picco della Mirando paid a Jew 7000 ducats for the Cabalistic MSS. from which he drew his thesis.; Webster,op.cit.,p.85]
(1)-Jewish Encyclopœdia, articles on Cabala and Reuchlin;Webster,op.cit.p.86
(2)-Jewish Encyclopœdia.,article on Cabala; Webster,op.cit.p.86
Introduction To Kabbalah Unveiled By S.L. McGregor Mathers; ]
Introduction To Kabbalah Unveiled By S.L. McGregor Mathers; ]
Kabbalah: The Misunderstood Doctrine;
Vulliaud,p. 20, quoting Theodore Reinach, Historie des Israelites,p.221 and Salomon Reinach, Orpheus, p. 299. As Cited in Webster, p.9]
Michael Sidlofsky, Kabbalah-A Brief History;
Michael Sidlofsky, Kabbalah-A Brief History;
Hannah Newman; Masters of the Blinding Light
Hastings' Encyclopœdia of Religion and Ethics; article on the Kabbala by H. Loewe; Webster,op.cit.,p.374
The Kabbalah Unveiled;
Kabbalah: The Misunderstood Doctrine;
Pico della Mirandola ;
Gerry Rose ,"The Venetian Takeover of England and Its Creation of Freemasonry"
"The Authenticity of Kabbalah";
Nesta H. Webster; p.7, "Secret Societies and Subversive Movements" Omni Publications, Eighth edition, 1964.
Ibid, p.7.
(4). Zohar, section Bereschith, folio 55 and section Lekh-Lekha, folio 76 (de Pauly's trans., Vol. I pp.431, 446; 5. Adolphe Franck, La Kabbale, p. 39; J.P. Stehelin, The Traditions of the Jews, I. 145 (1748); as Cited in Webster, Ibid., p. 8.
(6). Adolphe Franck, op.cit.,p.68, quoting Talmud treatise Sabbath folio 34; Dr. Christian Ginsburg, The Kabbalah,p. 85; Drach, De l' Harmonie entre l'Eglise et la Synagogue, I. 457; 7. Adolphe Franck, op.cit., p. 69; as Cited in Webster, Ibid., Pg. 8
McGregor Mathers, Introduction to The Kabbalah Unveiled
Gershom Scholem, "Zohar, the Book of Splendor: Basic Readings from the Kabbalah", p. vii
Ibid., p. xi
Ibid., p. xii
Ibid., p. xiii
Ibid., p. xv-xvi
HEBREW MYTHS: The book of Genesis by Robert Graves and Raphael Patai. 1964 Doubleday and Co., Inc. It is copyrighted1963. ;private email correspondence,Feb2, 199 re:Hebrew Myths
Jacob Prasch, Explaining the Midrash;
Jacob Prasch; Satans Seduction of the Hebrew Root Movement
Private email correspondence, Feb 2, 199 re: Hebrew Myths
Peter Michas, http://www.ez/com/~peterm/HB.GK.RF.HTML
Avi ben Mordechai, Halacha,
HEBREW MYTHS: The book of Genesis by Robert Graves and Raphael Patai.; Ch10,p. 65; Doubleday and Co., Inc. 1964 It is copyrighted 1963.

To Embrace Hebrew Roots: Part VI

Kabbalah Initiation

Please note: Research into the Hebrew Roots & Messianic movements constitutes research into Judaism as well as the occult. We fully respect each persons right to believe or utilize what resources they choose. We however, see a clear distinction in believing the Messiah has come versus utilizing resources which still await His coming. That is how and why we must evaluate all to Christ and the New Testament as well as the Tenach. We do not wish to edit or criticize Judaism, but recognize it as distinct from our Christian beliefs, just as many in Judaism also see a distinction and separateness from our beliefs, and we jointly have mutual respect for our differences and each other.

Deuteronomy 7:26:

"Neither shalt thou bring an abomination into thine house, lest thou be a cursed thing like it: but thou shalt utterly detest it, and thou shalt utterly abhor it; for it is a cursed thing."

The fact that a prominent Sephardic Jew like Avi ben Mordechai teaches the mysticism of the Kabbalah along with preaching the Gospel should impress us that Kabbalism and the kabbalizing of Christianity is not past history --but a present day reality. Were it not for the propagation of this esoteric doctrine through the various media - although it is still regarded as "secret" - this writer would not have accessed so much information so easily. Make no mistake, the information that is promulgated is not all that Kabbalah contains, nor are lay people receiving all the information or plans that reside within the inner circle of adepts. The Kabbalah is being disseminated for a purpose. For More on Avi ben Mordechai see: Avi ben Mordechai & Millennium 7000

Benjamin Creme wrote in The Reappearance of the Christ & The Masters of Wisdom:

"Through the Masonic initiation and certain esoteric groups will come the process of initiation. In this coming age millions of people will take the first and second initiation through these transformed and purified institutions." 1.

Initiation: Human and Solar, by Alice Bailey, reveals the plan for universal initiation within the established churches:

"Before many centuries pass, the old mysteries will be restored, and an inner body will exist in the church - the church period of which the nucleus is already forming - wherein the first initiation will become exoteric, in this sense only, that the taking of the first initiation will, before very long, be the most sacred ceremony of the Church performed exoterically as one of the mysteries given at stated periods, attended by those concerned." 2.

Age of Initiation

We find that many references and teachings in the Talmud are also in the Kaballah. Some might suggest that one really has nothing to do with the other or that there is no problem with either. Further, it is suggested that although this was considered a "secret oral wisdom" -- and still is -- there was a certain age that initiates must attain before studying it.

At one time there was great controversy on the study of the Kabbalah, although it was taught regularly with certain restrictions. There had been,

"…the centuries-old rabbinic ban on the dissemination of kabbalistic practices among those under forty and unschooled in Bible and Talmud-…" 3.

Other Jewish writers confirm these statements.

"… Kabbalah and Jewish mysticism, were traditionally not even taught to people until the age of 40, when they had completed their education in Torah and Talmud." 4.

Colin Low states that many of the adepts started at an early age:

"…Kabbalist R. Isaac Luria (1534-1572), began the study of Kabbalah at the age of seventeen and died at the age of thirty-eight! His equally famous contemporary R. Moses Cordovero (1522-1570) began at the age of twenty…" 5.

Mr. Low explains that the age restriction was not widespread, but put forward by the Ashkenazic Jews. Sephardic Jews did not hold to this thinking.

"….This prohibition has come from Ashkenazic (East European) Jews and has never applied to Sepharidic (Middle Eastern) Jews. The historical basis for the 'rule' comes from opponents of Kabbalah within Judaism who (successfully) attempted to restrict its study. At the root of this was the heresy of false messiah Shabbatai Tzevi (17th. C) which resulted in large numbers of Jews leaving the orthodox fold…" 6.

In a 1996 article, Colin Low cited the Rabbi Ariel Bar-Zadok, an Orthodox Sephardic Jew (like Avi ben Mordechai) who declared his support of the lower age:

" …I am not sympathetic to anything that is not pure, authoritative Kabbalah. Remember, Kabbalah means "to receive". I am an Orthodox Sephardic Rabbi, ordained in Jerusalem. I teach only from the true texts,… By the way, according to the Chief Rabbi of Israel, Rabi Ovadiah Yosef (Yehaveh Da'at 4,47) quoting Rabbi Moshe Cordovero, one only has to be 20 years old to study Kabbala, and not 40. THIS IS THE HALAKHA!!" 7.

The term halakha, previously mentioned in Part 2, refers to the "Way or Path".

"Halacha means 'Way' or 'Path.' Halacha is the application of the Law (Torah) to everyday living. The traditional viewpoint is that Halacha should be decided by those who are most knowledgeable in all aspects of Jewish law. Since the Halacha of each generation is decided by its greatest Torah scholars, and the Torah doesn't change, there is usually little change in the Halacha from one generation to the next. " 8.

The Apostle Paul warned in Acts 20: 29-30:

"For I know this, that after my departing shall grievous wolves enter in among you, not sparing the flock. Also of your own selves shall men arise, speaking perverse things, to draw away disciples after them."

Transition from Talmud to Kabbalah

The connection between the Talmudic teachings and the Kabbalah is confirmed in the "Hypertext Halacha" of Project Genesis, which is disseminated by Orthodox Jews, and also linked to such Hebrew Roots sites as Larry Rowland's Messengers of Truth. 9. For example, in the meticulous instructions regarding women's hair we read this from the Mishnah:

"Siman75. One should be careful about [a woman's] uncovered hair and a woman's [singing] voice when reading the Shema, and also not to read it in the presence of nakedness." 10.

Many paragraphs later in this same Siman in the Mishnah of the Talmud we read a reference from the Zohar giving more detailed instructions.

MB 14: Pokes out etc. - He means to say that apart from a hat on her head she has a hairband which is a piece of material that binds the hair together tightly so that it does not come out; and it this small amount of hair that is impossible to contain and pokes out of the hairband on which the Rashboh is lenient (Chasam Sofer Siman 36 see there).

The Zohar [a mystical commentary on the Torah of Mishnaic origin, compiled by Rabbi Shimon Bar Yochai] on Sidra Noso is extremely strict that not one hair of a woman should be visible as "it brings poverty on her household, renders her children of no account in their generation and causes an evil spirit to abide on her house. And all the more so [does this apply] if she goes like this in public. Therefore we require that a woman should not permit even the beams of her house to see one hair of her head. And if she conducts herself thus, then it is written [in Psalms] "your children [shall be] like olive plants" - just as the olive [does not shed its leaves either in winter or summer but always retains its superiority over other trees, so] her children will excel over all other children; her husband will, moreover, receive blessings from above and from below, will be blessed with riches, with children and children's children". This is a brief version of the words of the Zohar. And the Magen Avrohom writes that one should conduct oneself according to the Zohar. And in Tractate Yoma they mention a particular woman who merited by her extreme modesty, in that the beams of her house did not see [any of her hair], that [seven] High Priests descended from her. " 11.

In Jewish Mystical Traditions, Zos Imos explains the student's transition from Talmudic "haggadah" to very potent mystical experiences which spread like the revival "fire" throughout the Diaspora, leading to the full Kabbalah:

"…The study of these mysterious visions and symbols, according to the Talmudic *haggadah* or commentary on the 'tellings' or narratives of the Tanak (sacred scriptures), tells of the descent of this same 'fire' on the expositor of the prophetic scrolls when in a holy state of contemplation. In contrast, such meditation could lead to an 'ascent' (in imitation of Elijah) which could lead astray the unprepared, but could, as in the case of R. Akiva, lead to ascent and descent in 'perfect peace' (Scholem, 1991)."

"This journey of the sage through the higher realms (often seven levels) was guided by prayer, fasting and the recitation of sacred psalms. It also required the knowledge of the various 'names of the angels' so that a 'seal' or incantation could be said to facilitate the journey (Wald, 1988). The apex of this ascent is a vision of the Throne of Glory and thereby *kedushah* or 'sanctification' by the Divine Presence. Yet, this Presence remains something apart, a reality so Holy that the vision of its presence was the highest sanctification, so that man and G-D remain distinct, and the vision of the *sar ha-panim* 'prince of the divine face' was supreme blessing. This was symbolized as the *kavod* or Glory of G-D. This early development was then carried throughout the Diaspora to Jewish communities far and wide. By the 10th century, the *Sefer Yezirah (1987)* had been composed, that mystic guide to all Jewish contemplatives for over the last thousand years. In this book we find mention of the Ten Sefirot, the 'Book of Creation' where the paths of wisdom and the '22 elemental letters' give the sage access to divine knowledge. This work, along with the Merkabah tradition set the stage for the emergence of a full-blown meditative tradition known as Kabbalah (Bischoff, 1985; Verman, 1992)…" 12.

1 John 4:12a: "No man hath seen God at any time…"

John 5:37: "And the Father himself, which hath sent me, hath borne witness of me. Ye have neither heard his voice at any time, nor seen his shape."

John 6:46: "Not that any man hath seen the Father, save he which is of God, he hath seen the Father."

1 Timothy 6:16: "Who only hath immortality, dwelling in the light which no man can approach unto; whom no man hath seen, nor can see: to whom be honour and power everlasting. Amen."

The term the "Talmudic *haggadah* " stated above is noteworthy. According to Hyam Maccoby :

"The Haggada (found mainly in the Midrash) is the poetical side of Pharisaism, and comprises folktales, parables, quaint fancies and metaphysical speculations." 13.

Peter Michas acclaims the New Testament to be similar to the traditional Halakah and Haggada writings mentioned above:

"…The New Testament is in the pattern of the Jewish traditional work of Torah, Mishnah, Haggadah, Halakah, Talmud and Midrash, but inspired by God Himself for the common people." 14.

The "Merkabah" mentioned above, is in reference to the Mystics who were the precursors of the medieval Qabalists, and who worked with planetary powers or astrology. 15.

On The Kabbalah And Its Symbolism, by Gershom Scholem, explains a portion of the ritual of the Kabbalists and the Merkabah mystics thus:

"… In line with the general principles here set forth, the Kaballists strove from the very first to anchor the ritual of Rabbinical Judaism in myth by means of a mystical practice. The first attempts applied primarily to the liturgy and everything connected with it. The ecstatic rites, by which the early Jewish merkabah mystics of Talmudic times effected the ascent of the soul to God, were replaced, through the medium of kavvanah, by the ritual of prayer, which soon revealed dangers and abysses unsuspected by the naive worshiper." 16.

Scripture tell us that none have seen God, or ascended to Heaven, except Jesus Christ, who said:

John 3:13:

"And no man hath ascended up to heaven, but he that came down from heaven, even the Son of man which is in heaven."

1 Timothy 6:16 refers the seeker of God to Jesus Christ:

"Who only hath immortality, dwelling in the light which no man can approach unto; whom no man hath seen, nor can see: to whom be honour and power everlasting. Amen."

In spite of this spiritual danger, people are urged by men like Jacob Prasch, Peter Michas and others to study the Midrash, the Haggadah and these various books. We must ask ourselves "Why?", when these studies are simply stepping stones into mysticism and practical occultism.

Kabbalist Colin Low asserts that by the 12th century, the doctrine of the "sephiroth", or the esoteric view of the way which God manifests, was established and that this secret doctrine is almost identical to that which is taught today.

"By the early middle ages further, more theosophical developments had taken place, chiefly a description of 'processes' within God, and a highly esoteric view of creation as a process in which God manifests in a series of emanations. This doctrine of the 'sephiroth' can be found in a rudimentary form in the Yetzirah, but by the time of the publication of the book Bahir (12th century) it had reached a form not too different from the form it takes today." 17.

This obviously goes entirely against God's commandment.

Deuteronomy 18:10-12a

"There shall not be found among you any one that maketh his son or his daughter to pass through the fire, or that useth divination, or an observer of times, or an enchanter, or a witch, Or a charmer, or a consulter with familiar spirits, or a wizard, or a necromancer. For all that do these things are an abomination unto the Lord…"

Feminine and Masculine God

Kabbalists teach that God is masculine and feminine, and that when speaking of 'man' they are always referring to two faces. Adam Kadmon is androgynous, according to the Kabbalah interpretation of Genesis "male and female created he them" as cited in Blavatsky's Theosophical Glossary or in The Secret Doctrine:

"Adam, as the supposed great 'Progenitor of the human race' is, as Adam-Kadmon, made in the image of God - a priapic image, therefore. The Hebrew words Zakhar and Neqebah are, literally translated, linga (phallus) and yoni, notwithstanding their transliteration in the Bible as 'male and female.' As said there: 'God creates 'Man in his own image' the image of God created he him, male and female created he them,' *the androgyne Adam-Kadmon. Now this Kabbalistic name is not that of a living man, nor even of a human or divine Being, but of the two sexes or organs of procreation, called in Hebrew Zakhar and neqebah; these two being, therefore, the image under which the 'Lord God appeared usually to his chosen people. That this is so, is now undeniably proven by almost all the symbologists and Hebrew scholars as well as by the Kabala. Therefore Adam is in one sense Jehovah." 25.

In his book, The Rod of an Almond Tree in God's Master Plan, Peter Michas states that Adam was created as a whole being, which meant that he contained a balance of male and female.

"Adam was created as a whole being, complete in form containing a balance of male-female and a balance of logic-emotion."26

He then mentions two Adams,

"Then God separated from Adam another Adam as a helpmate (Genesis 2:2-22; Genesis 5:2)." 27.

This is reminiscent of the dualistic concept of the Hasidic Adam in the physical realm whose spiritual counterpart Adam-Kadmon inhabited the celestial realm. (As above, so below.) It may be that Peter learned this occult correspondence through the Hasidic Chabbad Lubavich, where he studied the Hebrew Roots of Christianity, as stated in the Preface of his book:

"I ended up going into a place call Chabbad House which was run by the Lubavich, the ultra-orthodox rabbis. This was the beginning of my education in the Hebraic roots of the Bible. as my knowledge of the Hebraic context of Scripture grew, my God was being revealed to me in ways that cannot even be explained. I realize that if God had not preserved the Jewish people and their books (including the Bible), most spiritual truth and surely all of the culture of Scripture would have been lost to traditions of men." 28.

Returning to Peter's account of creation, the reason for the Fall is explained as a lack of male/female unity:

"Adam named her Eve and they were designed to work together as one complete being...Because Adam and Eve failed to act as a unit, they became vulnerable and succumbed to darkness and disobedience to God." 29

Every student of Scripture knows that, in the Genesis account, God did not fault Adam and Eve for failing to "act as a unit" but precisely for their unity in rebellion against Him. However, Jacob Boehme, whose contribution to theosophy is universally recognized, repopularized the theory that the androgynous primal Adam experienced an internal rebellion, the feminine against the masculine...

"The Judeo-Christian myth and theology of the androgyny of the primal man were successfully reinterpreted and revalorized by Jakob Boehme (1575-1624).
For this great mystic and theosophist, Adam's sleep represents the first fall: Adam separated himself from the divine world and 'imagined himself' immersed in nature, by which act he lowered himself and became earthly. The appearance of the sexes is a direct consequence of this first fall...Another fundamental idea of Boehme, Gichtel, and other theosophists was that Sophia, the divine virgin, was originally part of the primal man. When he attempted to dominate her, the virgin separated herself from him." 30

All of history is viewed by the esoteric schools as the return of mankind to the condition of androgyny--the perfect state. As the archetype of Adam Kadmon, so is the concept of male and female being one soul. It is also taught that each soul and spirit start as a united male/female, which splits, and when a couple unites in marriage, it is the reuniting of that male/female soul.

From "The Hebrew Zohar", we learn the Kabbalah concept of androgyny:

"Each soul and spirit prior to its entering into this world, consists of a male and female united into one being. When it descends on this earth the two parts separate and animate two different bodies. At the time of marriage, the Holy One, blessed be He, who knows all souls and spirits, unites them again as they were before, and they again constitute one body and one soul, forming as it were the right and left of one individual." 31.

"The Kabbalah Unveiled" explains "androgyny" teachings by referring to the unification of the masculine and feminine side of God.

"And when They are conjoined together, They appear to be only one body.

"Hence we learn that the Masculine, taken alone appeareth to be only half the body, so that all the mercies are half; and thus also is it with the Feminine. 'But when They are joined together, the (two together) appear to form only one whole body. And it is so.' So also here. When the Male is joined with the Female, They both constitute one complete body, and all the Universe is in a state of happiness, because all things receive blessing from Their perfect body. And this is an Arcanum." 32.

McGregor Mathers in "Introduction to Kabbalah Unveiled", states:

"41. Now, we find that before the Deity conformed Himself thus, i.e., as male and female that the worlds of the universe could not subsist…" 33.

Mathers explains that the Sephiroth contain the development and attributes of God, with some being male while other are female. The Holy Spirit is referred to as Ruach or the Spirit meaning "feminine" or Mother. Kabbalists believe that it is the union of the Father (masculine) and Mother (feminine) union of God that "begat the Son".

"40. Among these Sephiroth, jointly and severally, we find the development of the persons and attributes of God. Of these some are male and some are female. Now, for some reason or other best known to themselves, the translators of the Bible have carefully crowded out of existence and smothered up every reference to the fact that the Deity is both masculine and feminine. They have translated a feminine plural by a masculine singular in the case of the word Elohim. They have, however, left an inadvertent admission of their knowledge that it was plural in Gen. iv. 26; "And Elohim said: Let Us make man." Again (v. 27), how could Adam be made in the image of the Elohim, male and female, unless the Elohim were male and female also? The word Elohim is a plural formed from the feminine singular ALH, Eloh, by adding IM to the word. But inasmuch as IM is usually the termination of the masculine plural, and is here added to a feminine noun, it gives the word Elohim the sense of a female potency united to a masculine idea, and thereby capable of producing an offspring. Now, we hear much of the Father and Son, but we hear nothing of the Mother in the ordinary religions of the day. But in the Qabalah we find that the Ancient of Days conforms Himself simultaneously into the Father and the Mother, and thus begets the Son. Now, this Mother is Elohim. Again, we are usually told that the Holy Spirit is masculine. But the word RVCh, Ruach, Spirit, is feminine, as appears from the following passage of the Sepher Yetzirah: "AChTh RVCh ALHIM ChIIM, Achath (feminine, not Achad, masculine) Ruach Elohim Chiim: One is She the Spirit of the Elohim of Life." 34.

Ten Sefirot

We turn again to McGregor Mathers for an introduction to the very important sefirot of the kabbalah and the "Tree of Life".

"39. I must now explain the real meaning of the terms Sephira and Sephiroth. The first is singular, the second is plural. The best rendering of the word is "numerical emanation." There are ten sephiroth, which are the most abstract forms of the ten numbers of the decimal scale, i.e., the abstract forms of the ten numbers 1, 2, 3,4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10. Therefore, as in the higher mathematics we reason of numbers in their abstract senses, so in the Qabalah we reason of the Deity by the abstract forms of the numbers; in other words, by the SPIRVTh, Sephiroth. It was from this ancient Oriental theory that Pythagoras derived his numerical symbolic ideas." 35.

A brief review of the Sefirots and Tiferot is found on the web site "The Ten Sefirot of the Kabbalah. 36. The ten sefirot or emanations are interrelated, generally one sefirot linking to the next. There is of course, much more to the Talmudic and Kaballastic teachings of the Ten Sefirot. Part of the concept of the sefiroth and the ascent through the gates or ladders of wisdom refers to the Kabbalistic Tree of Life that matches the Sufi mystic teachings. Due to space the following list does not encompass all the sefirot and relationships, but presents comparisons between certain of the Kabbalistic sefirot and the Kundalini chakras on the Tree of Life.

The parallels with Kundalini come from A Kabbalistic View of the Chakras by Rebekah Kenton who explains the chakras in terms of Jacob's ladder:

"…The chakras are connections between the physical and psychological bodies… their reflections can also be perceived as whirling discs in front of the body…The reference for the parallels comes from 'Kundalini Tantra by Swami Satyananda Saraswati' and all quotations are from this book…" 37.

"…from the Kabbalistic point of view it is more interesting to concentrate on the psychological aspect and evolving consciousness, and as such the chakras should be seen on the Jacob's Ladder on the psychological or Yeziratic Tree of Life." 38.

Very briefly, and without showing all the Sefirot, nor all the deep, secret meanings of these emanations of the Kabbalists' G-d, we may arrive at some understanding of Avi ben Mordechai's use of these terms.

"Tiferet represents the ideal balance of Justice and Mercy needed for proper running of the universe. This Sefirah unites all the upper nine powers…."

"Tif'eret is the offspring of Hokhmah and Binah.;

"It is often symbolized as a bridegroom or prince who strives to be united with the Shekhinah. Their union produces the human soul." 39.

The analogy to the stated Tiferet refers to the unification of Hokmah and Binah which means, "… their union produces the human soul" according to A Kabbalistic View of the Chakras by Rebekah Kenton. 40

"Manipura Chakra (Navel or Solar Plexus); Tiferet. In the same way that the sun continually radiates energy to the Planets…Manipura or Tiferet is the Self, the midpoint of the psyche…"

"'When the consciousness evolves to Manipura, one acquires a spiritual perspective.' This refers to the position of Tiferet as the Kingdom of Heaven. In Mooladhara and Swadhisthana the consciousness is still preoccupied with personal matters and resolving old karmas, but in Manipura one starts to realize the possibilities in becoming truly human…" 41.

From the Ten Sefirot the initiate attains to God's wisdom:

"Hokhmah: Wisdom

"Hokhmah represents the contemplative, synthetic aspects of God's thought.

"It is the primordial point of creation from which all knowable reality originates."

"There are 32 ways of Wisdom." 42.

The Binah of the sefirot is said to unite with Hokhmah and give birth to the seven lower Sefirot, mentioned also by Avi ben Mordechai.

"Binah: "Understanding, Discernment "

"Binah refers to the analytic, distinguishing aspects of God's thought."

"It is the uppermost feminine element in the Godhead, and is symbolized as the mother of the Shekhinah. Many of the symbols associated with Binah are therefore identical to those of the Shekhinah."

"Having received the seed from Hokhmah, Binah conceived and gave birth to the seven lower Sefirot. "; "There are fifty "Gates of Understanding."

"…Supernal Mother, Supernal Shekhinah…Palace…Womb…Repentance ("Return," Teshuvah)…A river branching out into seven streams…Supernal Jubilee…The Hebrew Alphabet…" 43.

According to Rebekah Kenton Binah-Hokhmah refers to the opening of the third eye.

"Ajna Chakra (The Third Eye); Binah-Hokhmah Ajna is the chakra of higher intellect. 'Ajna is the witnessing centre where one becomes the detached observer of all events, including those within the body and mind. Here the level of awareness is developed whereby one begins to 'see' the hidden essence underlying all visible appearances. When Ajna is awakened, the meaning and significance of symbols flashes into one's conscious perception and intuitive knowledge arises effortlessly."

"Up until Ajna chakra awakens, we are under delusions. It is only after awakening of Ajna chakra that the laws of cause and effect can be known. Thereafter your whole philosophical attitude and approach to life changes... As said, it is very important to develop the qualities of Binah and Hokhmah already at the very beginning of one's spiritual journey. "Only those who have reason and understanding are able to cope." 44.

"Paradoxically, the awakening of the chakras should start as high as Ajna or the Third Eye. One needs a degree of Wisdom and Understanding, a certain philosophical outlook and detachment, to be able to cope with the psychic phenomena that follow the awakening of the lower chakras.

"It would seem that the awakening of the Ajna chakra follows the sequence of the Lightning Flash, activating first the Binah and then the Hokhmah aspect of this level. It is said that from Ajna there is only a short way to Sahasrara or enlightenment; from Hokhmah we would see how to get there." 45.

Dr. Cathy Burns explains how the proper alignment and awakening of the chakras leads to spiritual enlightenment - the opening of the third eye - or advanced psychical powers:

"In the Hindu/yoga world of 'reality', they believe, as do much of the occult and New Age meditators, that the body contains seven basic energy centers, known as chakras. When these centers are properly aligned by practicing yoga and meditation, there will then occur a 'merging' of the spinal chakra (the serpent of Kundalini) together with Shiva, located in the frontal chakra (psychic third eye) and this 'spiritual union' is believed to increase extrasensory and psychic powers.75." 46.

The Lightening Flash has occult meaning referring to Lucifer, and is also found in Scripture:

Luke 10:18

"And [Jesus] said unto them, I beheld Satan as lightening fall from heaven."

The Yesod sefirot is the equivalent of the male phallus:

"Yesod is the channel through which Tiferet strives to unite with the Shekhinah and pass on the creative and benevolent divine forces."

"This Sefirah is symbolized as the male phallus, sanctified through the covenant of circumcision. " 47.

The explanation of the Kundalini parallels what has been presented above for the sefirot Yesod.

"Mooladhara Chakra (Base); Yesod "…Mooladhara is at the root of the chakra system and its influences are at the root of our whole existence. In tantra, Mooladhara is the seat of kundalini, the basis from which the possibility of higher realization arises…"

"All the passions are stored in Mooladhara, all the guilt, every complex and every agony has its root in Mooladhara chakra. It is so important for everybody to awaken this chakra and get out of it. Our lower karmas are embedded there, as in lower incarnations, one's whole being is founded on the sexual personality…" 48.

The Shekhinah, also in the Talmud, is often referred to as the feminine side to God and speaks of the longing of the male and female elements of the Godhead to be united.

"The Shekhinah is a Talmudic concept representing God's dwelling and immanence in the created world. It was equated with the "Keneset Yisrael," the personified spirit of the People of Israel."

"According to a Rabbinic tradition, the Shekhinah shares in the exiles of the Jewish people.

Therefore, the redemption of the people of Israel is inextricably linked to the remedying of an alienation within God him/herself, introducing a bold new element into traditional Jewish Messianic eschatology."

"It is through the Shekhinah that humans can experience the Divine."

"The passivity of the Shekhinah is often emphasized (equated with its femininity), as the recipient of forces from the higher Sefirot."

"The Shekhinah is often portrayed as a bride or princess whose male lover is the composite of the nine upper sefirot, represented by the prince/bridegroom Tiferet.

The erotic and romantic phrases of the Song of Songs and Prophetic imagery is evoked to represent the longing of the male and female elements of the Godhead." 49.

Isaac Meyer, states in The Qabbalah, regarding the male and female elements of the sefirot, that Solomon's idolatry involved worship of such deities:

"Early Hebrew prophecy and Bacchism are similar in some aspects. The Qabbalists called the Holy Spirit, the mother, and the Church of Israel, the daughter. Solomon engraved on the walls of his Temple, likenesses of the male and female principles, to adumbrate this mystery; such it is said, were the figures of the cherubim. This was, however, not in obedience to the words of the Torah. They were symbolical of the Upper, the spiritual, the former or maker, positive or male, and the Lower, the passive, the negative or female, formed or made by the first." 50.

Further on the Tree of Life is, "The Anahata Chakra (Heart); Gevurah-Hesed" which involves the "ability to determine one's own destiny, and escape a preordained fate",51. and each upward move on this ladder evokes a Lightning Flash on the Tree of Life.

Psalm 37:23 states otherwise:

"The steps of a good man are ordered by the Lord: and he delighteth in his way."

The Vishuddhi is paralleled to the knowledge aspect in Kabbalah.

"The more abstract aspect of Vishuddhi is the faculty of higher discrimination… any communication received telepathically can be tested here for its correctness and accuracy…allows us to differentiate between realization coming into our consciousness from the higher levels of knowledge, and the mere babblings of our unconscious mind and wishful thinking…When Vishuddhi is awakened the divine fluid is retained and utilized, becoming the nectar of immortality. The secret of youth and regeneration of the body lies in the awakening of Vishuddhi chakra. At this state of awareness the poisonous aspects and experiences of life are absorbed and transformed into a state of bliss." 52.

Probably of most importance on the Kabbalistic Tree of Life, the sefirot and the movement up the ladders into these concepts, is this statement by Rebekah Kenton:

"…In Kabbalah, an individual whose all chakras have fully and permanently awakened would be called the Messiah." 53.

Daniel 8: 23-25:

"And in the latter time of their kingdom, when the transgressors are come to the full, a king of fierce countenance, and understanding dark sentences, shall stand up. And his power shall be mighty, but not by his own power: and he shall destroy wonderfully, and shall prosper, and practice, and shall destroy the mighty and the holy people. And through his policy also he shall cause craft to prosper in his hand; and he shall magnify himself in his heart, and by peace shall destroy many: he shall also stand up against the Prince of princes; but he shall be broken without hand."

All Scripture From the Authorized King James Version

Next Section:

To Embrace Hebrew Roots VII: Kabbalah Connections


Benjamin Crème; The Reappearance of the Christ & The Masters of Wisdom, Tara Center, 1980, p. 84.
Alice Bailey, Initiation: Human & Solar, Lucis Pub., 1922, p. 9.
Kabbalah, A Brief History, Michael Sidlofsky;
Kabbalah: The Misunderstood Doctrine;
Colin Low; Kabbalah Faq; February 1996;
Torah and Halachic Authority (3/12) - What is "Halacha?" How is it determined?;
Hypertext Halacha;
Ibid., Siman 75,
Zos Imos, Jewish Mystical Traditions;1995;
Hyam Maccoby, op. cit,.p.281
Peter Michas, http://www.ez/com/~peterm/HB.GK.RF.HTML
Dance of the Seven Veils-Jewish Astrology;
Gershom Scholem, "On The Kabbalah And Its Symbolism," p.133, Schocken Books, 1965/
Colin Low, "cabalah.cln"; Kabbalah,
Avi ben Mordechai, email to Mr. Ed Tarkowski, dated May 8, 1998:
Gershom Scholem,On The Kabbalah And Its Symbolism; op.cit., p.123-124.
McGregor Mathers, "Introduction to Kabbalah Unveiled",
ENCYCLOPEDIA OF HASIDISM, editor, Rabinowicz, Tzbvi M., p. 8.
Gershom Scholem, "On The Kabbalah And Its Symbolism," p.104, Schocken Books, 1965/1996
Ibid., p.112
Ibid., p.114
Blavatsky, The Secret Doctrine, Vol. II, p. 467
Peter Michas, p. 48, Rod of an Almond Tree in God's Master Plan, WinePress Pub., 1997
Ibid. p. 48
Ibid. p.19
Ibid. p. 48
Mircea Eliade, ENCYCLOPEDIA OF RELIGION, Vol. I, NY: Simon & Schuster MacMillan, 1995, p.279
The Hebrew Zohar;
The Kabbalah Unveiled;
S. L. McGregor Mathers;, "Introduction to Kabbalah Unveiled",
The Ten Sefirot;
A Kabbalistic View of the Chakras by Rebekah Kenton; .
Rebekah Kenton; op.cit.
Rebekah Kenton; op.cit
Dr. Cathy Burns, Masonic and Occult Symbols Illustrated, Sharing, 1998, p. 128.
Rebekah Kenton; op.cit;
Isaac Myer, The Qabbalah ;
Rebekah Kenton; op.cit;

To Embrace Hebrew Roots: Part VIII

Literal Kabbalah: Gematria & Numerology

Please note: Research into the Hebrew Roots & Messianic movements constitutes research into Judaism as well as the occult. We fully respect each persons right to believe or utilize what resources they choose. We however, see a clear distinction in believing the Messiah has come versus utilizing resources which still await His coming. That is how and why we must evaluate all to Christ and the New Testament as well as the Tenach. We do not wish to edit or criticize Judaism, but recognize it as distinct from our Christian beliefs, just as many in Judaism also see a distinction and separateness from our beliefs, and we jointly have mutual respect for our differences and each other.

Psalm 50:16-17

"But unto the wicked God saith, What hast thou to do to declare my statutes, or that thou shouldest take my covenant in thy mouth? Seeing thou hatest instruction, and castest my words behind thee."

Gematria & Numerology

The basis of the Hebrew Roots Movement is the belief that Christians need to understand the Word of God through Jewish thought and teachings and that without the wisdom of the ancient sages they cannot truly grasp Scriptural truth. The question must be asked, what methods were used to obtain the oral traditions of the ancients and are they Biblically sound?

Gershom Scholem states that in all religions," mystics are men who by their own inner experience and their speculation concerning this experience discover new layers of meaning in their traditional religion." If their new revelations do not cause them to break away from the old traditions, they generally determine a way to cause the needed change for their interpretations to become dispensed within the tradition. 1.

Jacob Prasch's Midrash

As with all gnostics, Kabbalists had to overcome many obstacles in order for their teachings to be regarded as sacred texts. Gershom Scholem relates that the vehicle of choice for mystics to bring their gnostic view into harmony with their own traditions was allegory or midrash.

"It is generally known that allegorical interpretations arise spontaneously whenever a conflict between new ideas and those expressed in a sacred book necessitates some form of compromise. What is true of allegorical interpretation is still more applicable to the specifically mystical interpretation of such texts…Vast numbers of books have been written by Jewish mystics attempting to find their own ideas in, or read them into, the Biblical texts. A large part of the enormous Kabbalistic literature consists of commentaries of Books of the Bible, especially the Pentateuch, the Five Scrolls, the Psalms, the Song of Songs, the Book of Ruth, and Ecclesiastes. Many productive minds among the Kabbalists found this a congenial way of expressing their own ideas, while seeming to make them flow from the Bible. It is not always easy, in a given case, to determine whether the exegesis was a deliberate device, calculated to bridge the gap between the old and the new vision by reading completely new ideas into the text…"2.

The Kabbalah in English verifies that the Kabbalists reinterpreted large portions of the Old Testament midrashically in order to inject Judaism with gnosticism:

"The Midrash, stemming from the same period as the Talmud, but more concerned with supplying context and elaboration of the Biblical text. Much legendary material is archived here. Midrashim exist on the Torah, the books of Ruth, Lamentations, Ecclesiastes, Esther, Song of Songs (together referred to as the five Megillot), and Psalms. Usually all but the last are grouped together as Midrash Rabbah, and a multivolume translation from the Soncino Press is available. 3

Mr. Jacob Prasch of Moriel recommends the classical Jewish works mentioned above, Midrash Rabba and Lamentations Rabba, as the preferred resources for the study of Scripture:

"Midrash interprets prophecy as a cyclical pattern of historical recapitulation (prophecies having multiple fulfillment), with an ultimate fulfillment associated with the eschaton, which is the final focal point of the redemptive process. A classical work of Midrash in Judaism is the Midrash Rabba on Genesis (Berashith). Another is Lamentations Rabba.

" The clearest set of guidelines in Midrash are the Seven Midroth attributed to Rabbi Hillel, the founder of the Pharisaic School of Hillel, where Rabbi Shaul (St. Paul) was educated as a rabbi by Rabbi Gamaliel, the grandson of Hillel.

Midrash makes heavy use of allegory and typology to illustrate and illuminate doctrine, but never as a basis for doctrine. It sees multiple meanings in Bible texts found in strata, but this is very different in certain fundamental respects from the gnostic and Alexandrian uses of figurative interpretation associated with Philo and Origen, reflecting more of Hebraic, rather than Helenistic philosophical world-view and view of theology. 4.

Hillel was one of the sages referred to in Part 7 of this series, whose teachings contributed deeply to the Talmud, Mishnah and other works. It is common knowledge that the Talmud holds over 300 differences of opinion between Hillel and Shammai, another famous Talmudic sage. In every dispute over their interpretations and teachings, Hillel invariably prevailed.

The apostle Paul was a Pharisee, who before his conversion, persecuted Christians according to the instructions of the Pharisees. After his conversion, he was inspired by God to write extensively about the change in his beliefs and their incompatibility with the Pharisee's teachings that had caused their rejection of Jesus Christ. Peter also addressed the issue of fables or allegory in his epistles.

2 Peter 1:16

"For we have not followed cunningly devised fables, when we made known unto you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but were eyewitnesses of his majesty."

For an indepth treatment of a Scriptural view of allegory or Fables, see the article "Have Nothing to Do With Fables and Old Wives Tales,"

"The Kabbalah and Jewish Mysticism" identifies the doctrine of creation and the throne of God, as the two primary subjects of ancient mystical thought which were consistently interpreted midrashically by the sages.

"The Talmud contains vague hints of a mystical school of thought that was taught only to the most advanced students and was not committed to writing. There are several references in ancient sources to ma'aseh bereshit (the work of creation) and ma'aseh merkavah (the work of the chariot (of Ezikiel's vision), the two primary subjects of mystical thought at the time." 5.

Gershom Scholem explains Kabbalistic interpretation of the written Torah as theosophy. The use of allegory to interpret Scripture on a consistant basis, was considered dangerous.

What Kabbalistic exegesis discovers behind the literal meaning of the Bible or of the Talmudic interpretations of the Bible was something very different. What the Kabbalists looked for in the Bible was not primarily philosophical ideas, but a symbolic description of the hidden process of divine life, as it unfolds in the manifestations and emanations of the sefiroth. Their primary interest in the Bible may be termed theosophical. As for allegory proper, we find very different attitudes among the Kabbalists. So outstanding an authority as Nahmanides deliberately avoided the allegorical interpretations of the philosophers in his commentary on the Torah. He was well aware of the danger that might accrue to the observance of Jewish ritual from a pure spiritualization of the Torah such as a consistent application of allegorical method would apply. He expressly warned against this danger in a passage in his commentary on Deuteronomy 29:29…" 6.

Jacob Prasch states that Midrash follows various forms of Hebraic interpretation of the Scriptures and can therefore only be understood by a student of Judaism or theology:

" Midrash follows certain formats. One is the Mashal/Nimshal format seen in Proverbs or the parables, where physical things are representative of things spiritual. Figurative midrashic exposition in the New Testament is viewed, for instance, in Jude's epistle or Galatians 4:24-34. It is Midrash which accounts for the manner in which the New Testament handles the Old Testament…Another format is the parashiyot; sections opening with a petihah in which a base verse is followed by commentary.

"In addition to exegetical midrash, there are homiletic midrashim, arranged in topically argued pisaqaot. These frequently follow a yelammedenu rabbenu format used by Jesus in the gospels. Both of these kinds of midrashim are haggadic. There are also wide bodies of midrashic literature which are halakik, but these are of less importance to New Testament scholarship.

Unless someone has been educated in Judaism, Hebrew, or theology, it is easier to demonstrate midrash than to explain it. " 7.

According to Gershom Scholem, the use of allegory or Midrash by the sages was a mystical interpretation leading to higher levels of esoteric thought such as theosophy.

"…But not all the Kabbalists were so reserved toward allegory. Many regarded it as a legitimate instrument. The author of the Zohar, though interested primarily in a mystical and symbolic description of the Godhead, did not refrain from interpreting certain Bible passages allegorically. Thus the Book of Jonah and also the story of the Patriarchs in Genesis become allegorical accounts of the human soul--though this does not prevent the author from giving a purely mystical (and more far-reaching) interpretation of these same stories of the Patriarchs. Once the esoteric interpretation of Scripture had assumed two different aspects --the one allegorical, the other mystical---the way lead open to the doctrine of the four levels of meaning. While for example, Joseph ibn Aqnin, contemporary of Maimonides, speaks, throughout his commentary on the Song of Songs, of three such levels of interpretation--literal, Aggadic, and philosophico-allegorical--the Kabbalists added a fourth, that of theosophical mystery in the sense defined above. This level the Zohar terms raza de-mehemanutha--understanding according to the 'mystery of faith.' " 8.

Jacob Prasch states we need a demonstration of Midrash unless we have been trained in Judaism, Hebrew or theology. In other words, lay people cannot understand Midrash or Biblical truth, without the help of teachers such as himself. 9.

We have seen that Jacob Prasch recommends the Midrash Rabbah which the Kabbalah in English states, includes the Midrash on the Book of Ruth. Midrash on the Book of Ruth is used repeatedly throughout Kabbalistic thought and it contains the earliest representations of the four mystical levels of interpretation of the Bible. Referring to the Zohar Hadash, Scholem demonstrates this Midrash:

"The earliest reference to the four levels is to be found in the Midrash ha-Ne'elam to the Book of Ruth, one of the earliest works of the author of the Zohar. In it he writes:' The words of the Torah are likened to a nut. How is this to be understood? Just as a nut has an outer shell and a kernel, each word of the Torah contains outward fact (ma'aseh), midrash, haggadah, and mystery (sod), each of which is deeper in meaning than the preceding.' This passage is remarkable in several ways…Haggadah seems to refer to some allegorical or tropic form of interpretation, while by midrash is meant the hermeneutic method by which the halakhists, or legalists, of the Talmud derived their definitions from Biblical text. The comparison of the Torah with a nut is not new in Jewish literature. It was already employed by the German and French Hasidism of the early thirteenth century, especially in connection with the merkabah…" 10.

Certainly, as demonstrated by Jewish scholars and sages, Midrash or allegory would damage beliefs and understanding of the written Bible. The allegory of the sages was intended to change the traditional thinking. Mr. Prasch acknowledges that changing the meaning of Scripture is wrong.

Whenever you have a change in world-view, you're going to have a change in theology… Redefining the gospel instead of re-explaining what the Bible means, redefinition changes what the Bible means. That is wrong…. " 11.

Mr. Prasch defines theosophy, which clearly applies to the sages he upholds, but then applies his definition to Greek and not Jewish thinking.

"People began reinterpreting the Bible, not using the Jewish method of midrash, but using Greek methods."

"Typology and allegory. Midrash uses typology and allegory-symbols- in order to illustrate and illumine doctrine. "

"These methods first started to creep into the Church through people who were influenced by Philo. His teachings progressively entered into Roman Catholicism, … Instead of recontextualising, they were redefining Scripture. They were reading a Jewish book as if it were a Greek book. That was a mistake…. " 12.

However, Gershom Scholem and many other Hebrew scholars are clear that the Midrash and other oral teachings are derived through theosophical interpretations. Mr. Prasch disregards information that is common knowledge of the mysticism of the sages and their influence and understanding of Jewish Midrash. Gershom Scholem states that the mystic interpretations of the Jewish sages were paralleled in the works of Philo and were only developed through esoteric practices.

"…many Jewish philosophers identified the inner meaning of the Torah with philosophical allegory. And indeed many of their explanations smack strongly of Philo… But allegory in this sense was by no means the cornerstone of the Kabbalistic exegesis, which was strictly symbolic." 13.

The Midrash or allegory and typology of the sages was the gnosticism Mr. Prasch wishes to only apply to the Church, Greek thinking and Catholicism. He points out that Midrash uses typology and allegory--"symbols", which he has stated is not a part of Jewish thought, but rather a method of Gnostics.

"In the Gnostic world of Greek thinking, the opposite happens. Gnostics claim to have received a subjective, mystical insight -called a gnosis-into the symbols. They then reinterpret the plain meaning of the text in light of the gnosis. For Gnostics, symbolism is the basis for their doctrine, contrary to the ancient Jewish methods." 14.

Jacob Prasch of Moriel also states that Christians today are bound by the thinking of the Reformers, and that we must shed any hindrances to exegesis we have assimilated from their teachings, and embrace the much more accurate Jewish thought, found not only in the Midrash, but in the Talmud.

"The problem with the Reformers is that they only went so far. They made rules governing the application of their grammatical-historical system in order to refute medieval Roman Catholicism, and many of those rules are still taught in theological seminaries today. One such rule is this: There are many applications of a Scripture but only one interpretation. That is total rubbish! The Talmud tells us there are multiple interpretations. Who did Jesus agree with? The Reformers? Or the other rabbis? …" 15.

Although Jacob would have us believe that Jesus agreed with the rabbis, it is a matter of Scriptural fact that Jesus spoke often against the Rabbis who were referred to at that time as the Pharisees.

In his scathing rebuke to the Rabbis and Pharisees, Jesus warned his disciples not to follow their pernicious and hypocritical ways Matthew 23:6-8

" And love the uppermost rooms at feasts, and the chief seats in the synagogues, And greetings in the markets, and to be called of men, Rabbi, Rabbi. But be not ye called Rabbi: for one is your Master, even Christ; and all ye are brethren."

Jacob's reference to the allegorical interpretation of Jonah, conveniently omits the introductory verses which are Matthew 12:38-39:

"Then certain of the scribes and Pharisees answered, saying, Master, we would see a sign from thee.

But he answered and said unto them, An evil and adulterous generation seeketh after a sign; and there shall no sign be given to it, but the sign of the prophet Jonas:"

After responding to the Pharisees and the scribes of Jerusalem, Jesus again rebuked them for their teachings in, Matthew 15:7-9:

"Ye hypocrites, well did E-sai-as prophesy of you, saying, This people draw nigh unto me with their mouth, and honoureth me with their lips; but their heart is far from me. But in vain they do worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men."

The comparison to the Old Testament teaching that Jesus referred to on this issue, is found in, Isaiah 29:13-14:

"Wherefore the Lord said, Forasmuch as this people draw near me with their mouth, and with their lips do honour me, but have removed their heart far from me, and their fear toward me is taught by the precept of men. Therefore, behold, I will proceed to do a marvelous work among this people, even a marvelous work and a wonder: for the wisdom of their wise men shall perish, and the understanding of their prudent men shall be hid."

We can see that the ancient sages either (1) understood the danger of Midrash and avoided it; (2) totally embraced its use for disseminating their esoteric beliefs; (3) rejected the New Testament and Jesus Christ; or (4) used Kabbalist definitions and applications as well as the Babylonian Talmud to reinterpret the Word of God. To which of these groups of sages are we to turn? And since there are no Jewish Midrash teachings of the New Testament in any of the oral or written works of the sages of old, whose ancient wisdom is Mr. Prasch promoting for interpreting the New Testament?

Proverbs 3:5

"Trust in the Lord with all thine heart, and lean not unto thine own understanding."

Do we need the teaching or methods of men who reject Jesus Christ?

Does Scripture state that we need men to tell us what a passage means, or that its meaning is really something entirely different than what is in the written words of the New and Old Testament?

1 John 2:26-27

"These things have I written unto you concerning them that seduce you. But the anointing which ye have received of him abideth in you, and ye need not that any man teach you: but as the same anointing teacheth you of all things, and is truth, and is no lie, and even as it hath taught you, ye shall abide in him."

Jewish Gnosticism

Do scholarly authorities agree with Jacob Prasch's teaching that although the Gnostics read their subjective, mystical insight into symbols, this is not true of ancient Jewish methods of interpretation?

M. Matter in Histoire du Gnosticisme, erroneously presents Gnosticism as an extension of Christianity.

"... In its purer forms Gnosticism aimed at supplementing faith by knowledge of eternal verities and at giving a wider meaning to Christianity by linking it up with earlier faiths."

"The belief that the divinity had been manifested in the religious institutions of all nations"¹ thus led to the conception of a sort of universal religion containing the divine elements of all." 16.

Such misinformation is in contrast with the Jewish Encyclopœdia, which states that Gnosticism, as Jewish mysticism, predated Christianity:

"... Gnosticism, however, as the Jewish Encyclopœdia points out, "was Jewish in character long before it became Christian." ² M. Matter indicates Syria and Palestine as its cradle by which it was influenced at the time of its alliance with Christianity. This influence again was predominantly Jewish. Philo and Aristobulus, the leading Jewish philosophers of Alexandria, "wholly attached to the ancient religion of their fathers, both resolved to adorn it with the spoils of other systems and to open to Judaism the way to immense conquests." ³ 17.

In "Gnosis: The Nature & History of Gnosticism," Kurt Rudolph exposes the true character of Gnosticism as a heresy that infiltrates and destroys Christianity from within:

" ... The process, which is plain from the New Testament itself, is twofold, the Christianising of Gnosis and the gnosticising of Christianity. The result of both processes is the canonizing of Christianity as an orthodox Church on the one hand, and the elimination of Gnosis as a heresy on the other. Gnosis as we meet it in the New Testament is understood less as an alien pagan religion; " rather, it is only dealt with so far as it is a phenomenon within Christianity." The gnostics feel themselves as Christians and present themselves as such in the young Christian communities. Thus it is a danger of more from inside than from outside about which Paul is already said to have given warning. (Acts: 20:29)" 18.

Gnosticism, according to Rudolph, aims at "the acute secularisation of Christianity," meaning its Hellenization. The Jewish contribution to Gnosticism is duly noted by one historian:

" ... the work of Adolf von Harnack (1851-1930)… set the treatment of Gnosticism under the programmatic heading: "The intent of the gnostics was to create an apostolic doctrine of faith and a Christian theology, or: the acute secularisation of Christianity." In this way he lead the basis for an assessment of Gnosis from the point of view of church history...but which now first clearly emerged and became normative for almost half a century thereafter. Gnosis is the Hellenisation of Christianity (that is what Harnack understood by "secularisation"); it was kept at a distance from the church by orthodoxy. Harnack later showed himself open to newer insights. For example, he made room for the Jewish contribution to the origin of Gnosis, and indeed recognised an extra-Christian Gnosis, but he regarded this as "a Syrian vulgar-Gnosis" and assigned to it no significance for the history of Christianity. This shows he wanted to treat Gnosis only within this church-historical framework…" 19.

Two separate authors, M. Matter and S. Baring-Gould agree that the Gnostics sought to replace the Christian Scriptures with their own.

"... By way of systematically perverting the doctrines of the Christian faith the Gnostics claimed to possess the true versions of the Gospels, and professed belief in these to the exclusion of all the other..." 20.

Kabbalist James Trimm, of the Society for the Advancement of Nazarene Judaism, who is allied with Avi ben Moredechai, the Qumran Bet webring, and Yair Davidy's Lost Tribes (which publicly rejects Jesus Christ) is in the process of writing his own version of the New Testament called, "Semitic New Testament". Many others are involved in similar projects.

M. Matter identifies the esoteric methods through which the Gnostics purveyed their secret doctrine:

"... From all this M. Matter concludes that: 1.The Gnostics professed to hold by means of tradition a secret doctrine superior to that contained in the public writings of the apostles. 2. That they did not communicate this doctrine to everyone… 3. That they communicated it by means of emblems and symbols … 4.That in these communications they imitated the rites and trials of the mysteries…" 21.

Literal Kabbalah Interpretations

The Kabbalists, who believed themselves to be Orthodox Jews, believed that the Torah holds interpretations that are deciphered and accessible to the sages or prophets alone. The oral Torah of the sages is their esoteric interpretation of the written Torah. That interpretation relies on the Literal Kabbalah teachings, which involves the idea that every letter and space of the written Torah holds magical meanings and that there are layers of meaning within the written Torah.

"Most if not all Kabbalistic speculation and doctrine is concerned with the realm of the divine emanations or sefiroth, in which God's creative power unfolds…two most important kinds of symbolism used by the Kabbalists to communicate their ideas. They speak of the attributes and of spheres of light ; but in the same context they speak also of divine names and the letters of which they are composed." 22.

Kabbalists believe that unless one goes beyond the literal, or first layer of the written Torah, one has not really understood much of value.

"The word zohar means literally radiance. According to him [Hayim Vital], the radiance of the Torah's divine light is reflected in the mysteries of this book. But when these mysteries are shrouded in the literal meaning, their light is darkened. The literal meaning is darkness, but the Kabbalistic meaning, the mystery, is the zohar that shines in every line of Scripture. This devaluation of the simple literal meaning is no invention of the later Kabbalists. It is clearly stressed in certain passages of the zohar itself." 23.

Citing from passages of the Zohar, Nesta Webster states that once the Cabala initiates solved the magical significance of the Hebrew alphabet their students learned truths that they would never have known through the study of the written Word of God. One of these new revelations was that Noah was lamed for life.

"According to the Cabala, every letter in the scriptures contains a mystery only to be solved by the initiated.4. By means of this system of interpretation passages of the Old Testament are shown to bear meanings totally unapparent to the ordinary reader. Thus the Zohar explains that Noah was lamed for life by the bite of a lion whilst he was in the ark…5" 24.

Co-founder of the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn and Kabbalist, S.L. McGregor Mathers explained in, Introduction to the Kabbalah, the significance of the Hebrew alphabet to the Kabbalist:

"…To Jewish mystics, every letter in the Hebrew alphabet was a channel to the life force of God and possessed of sacred meaning. Hebrew numbers were also represented by letters so that names and words had numerical values. Finding associations of words with the same value revealed a complex series of hidden meanings beneath the text of the Torah, the book of law attributed to Moses. In fact, the entire Torah can be considered to be a single long word spelling out one of the names of God. The significance of the name of God goes back to ancient Egypt where knowing the name of a god allowed one to gain power over that god." 25.

Gematria and Numerology

McGregor Mathers in the "Introduction to the Kabbalah Unveiled" categorized the various parts of Kabbalah:

"The Qabalah is usually classed under four heads:

The practical Qabalah.[Talismanic and ceremonial magic]
The literal Qabalah. [Gematria]
The unwritten Qabalah.[Secret oral teachings kept hidden]
The dogmatic Qabalah. [The doctrinal portion]
"…The literal Qabalah is referred to in several places, and therefore a knowledge of its leading principles is necessary. It is divided into three parts: GMTRIA. Gematria; NVTRIQVN, Notariqon, and ThMVRH, Temura." 26.

Gershom Scholem's "On the Kabbalah and its Symbolism" explains the changing terms referring to Gematria in (around) the years 1280. Gematria was added to the four methods of interpreting the hidden and esoteric meanings of Scripture, that is: outward fact (ma'aseh), midrash or allegory, Haggadah (which is also allegory), and sod (mystery) or theosophy.

"…The old term haggadah is replaced by the new term remez, which in medieval Hebrew had come (under Arabic influence) to designate allegory…in addition to the above mentioned four levels of meaning [of the Torah], a fifth is mentioned, namely gematria, or interpretation through the numerical value of the Hebrew letters, which elsewhere is not regarded as an independent level of meaning." 27.

Jacob Prash compares Midrash, which we know was derived through esoteric means, to an equation that must be solved by the wisdom of the ancients.

"Midrash is like a quadratic equation or a very complex second order differential equation, a thirteen or fourteen step equation. Some people take the first step of grammatical-historical exegesis and think the equation is solved. There is nothing wrong with what they do, but there is plenty wrong with what they don't do. The equation is not solved. There is nothing wrong with grammatical-historical exegesis. It is a necessary first step, it is a necessary preliminary, and it is okay for reading the Epistles. But that is all.

It takes the wisdom of the ancients to really understand these things-Let him that hath understanding count the number of the beast... (Revelation 13:18)-not the wisdom of the 16th century, but the wisdom of the first century." 28

In her Theosophical Glossary, H.P. Blavatsky defined Gematria as she received it by special request from her colleague, William Wynn Westcott, who was Secretary General of the Rosicrucian Society and Praemonstrator of the Kabalah to the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn:

"Gematria (Heb.). A division of the practical Kabbalah. It shows the numerical value of Hebrew words by summing up the values of the letters composing them; and further, it shows by this means, analogies between words and phrases. [w.w.w.] One of the methods (arithmetical) for extracting the hidden meaning from letters, words and sentences." (Theosophical Pub. Co., 1982, p. 127)

S. L. McGregor Mathers, who in 1888 co-founded with William Wynn Westcott the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn, provides an understanding of the very complex application of Gematria and its various equations, modes and forms.

"Gematria is a metathesis of the Greek work grammateia. It is based on the relative numerical values of words…Words of similar numerical values are considered to be explanatory of each other, and this theory is also extended to phrases. Thus the letter shin, Sh, is 300, and is equivalent to the number obtained by adding up the numerical values of the letters of the words RVCh ALHIM, Ruach Elohim, the spirit of the Elohim; and it is therefore a symbol of the spirit of the Elohim…."

"… Notariqon is derived from the Latin word notarius, a short-hand writer. Of Notariqon there are two forms. In the first every letter of a word is taken for the initial or abbreviation of another word, so that from the letters of a word a sentence may be formed. Thus every letter of the word BRAShITh, Berashith, the first word in Genesis, is made the initial of a word, and we obtain from it BRAShITh RAH ALHIM ShIQBLV IShRAL ThVRH, Berashith Rahi Elohim Sheyequebelo Israel Torah: "In the beginning the Elohim saw that Israel would accept the law."

Note: The term Berashith in the second paragraph, refers to the Genesis Rabbah promoted by Jacob Prasch as a classical work of Judaism. "A classical work of Midrash in Judaism is the Midrash Rabba on Genesis (Berashith)."

"The second form of Notariqon is that exact reverse of the first. By this the initials or finals, or both or the medials, of a sentence, are taken to form a word or words. Thus the Qabalah is called ChKMh NSThRH, Chokhmah Nesthorah, "the secret wisdom;" and if we take the initials of these two words Ch and N, we form by the second kind of Notariqon the word ChN, Chen, "grace." Similarly, from the initials and finals of the words MI IOLH LNV HShMIMH, Mi Iaulah Leno Ha-Shamayimah, "Who shall go up for us to heaven?" (Deut. xxx. 12), are formed MILH, Milah "circumcision," and IHVH, the Tetragrammaton, implying that God hath ordained circumcision as the way to heaven. " 29.

By applying the various forms of Kabbalistic gematria and numerology to the Bible, entirely heretical meanings can be promoted as also is demonstrated with the process of Temura or permutation of the Scriptures:

"Temura is permutation. According to certain rules, one letter is substituted for another letter preceding or following it in the alphabet, and thus from one word another word of totally different orthography may be formed. Thus the alphabet is bent exactly in half, in the middle, and one half is put over the other; and then by changing alternately the first letter or the first two letters at the beginning of the second line, twenty two commutations are produced. These are called the "Table of the Combinations of TzIRVP," Tziruph".

"…There are 22 methods of combinations, plus the modes ABGD and ALBM… Then comes the "Rational Table of Tziruph," another set of twenty-two combinations… There are also three "Tables of the Commutations," known respectively as the Right, the Averse, and the Irregular…."

Besides all these, there is the method called ThShRQ, Thashraq, which is simply writing a word backwards. There is one more very important form, called the "Qabalah of the Nine Chambers,"…"

Besides all these rules, there are certain meanings hidden in the shape of the letters of the Hebrew alphabet; in the form of a particular letter at the end of a word being different from that which it generally bears when it is a final letter, or in a letter being written in the middle of a word in a character generally used only at the end; in any letter or letters being written in a size smaller or larger than the rest of the manuscript, or in a letter being written upside down; in the variations found in the spelling of certain words, which have a letter more in some places than they have in others; in peculiarities observed in the position of any of the points or accents, and in certain expressions supposed to be elliptic or redundant." 30.

The introduction of Bible Codes is nothing less than the mainstreaming of gematria in the Christian churches. For further explanations and examples of gematria, see The Kabbalah Unveiled, at:

Gematria Applications

Deuteronomy 12:32:

"What thing soever I command you, observe to do it: thou shalt not add thereto, nor diminish from it."

The Hebrew alphabet is the very basis of Kabbalistic and Hassidic teachings.

"According to Qabalistic and Hassidic tradition, the material aspect of the world (=universe) rests on the structure of the Hebrew aleph-beth (cf., e. g., the 'Sepher Yetsirah', where, having stated that"... the world was created through 32 paths or ways, the 10 primordial numbers and 22 fundamental letters...", the text goes on to expound in detail the relationship between the letters and the body, the letters and the directions arisen from the primordial point-instant, etc…" 31.

Using the Kabbalistic practice of gematria, Mr. Peter Michas has expanded upon the literal meaning of Scripture in his book "The Rod of an Almond Tree in God's Master Plan.

"Rabbinical understanding also reveals the light of Genesis 1:4 to be associated with Messianic fulfillment. By study of the numerical equivalence of the Hebrew words (gematria) the light of creation is shown to be related to the light of Torah, God's instructions according to the 613 commandments given in the first five books of the Bible.7" 32.

By applying Gematria, Peter Michas expounds on the remedy for Adam's Fall:

"The human race would now need the full manifestation of the Light that God placed into the earth realm for redemption." 33.

In this chapter, Peter has previously explained that the Light of Genesis 1:3,4 refers to "Primeval Light," which is illumination or enlightenment:

"The Hebrew word, 'or', is translated 'light' in the above verses. The literal meaning of this word is 'illumination' or 'luminary.' Its root means 'to be, cause, or make luminous' and 'enlighten,' and may be used literally and/or metaphorically..." 34.

"Metaphorically" seems to be the Hebraic Roots euphemism for gnostically or mystically. In fact, there is no indication that these verses refer to anything but physical light. Peter continues to exegete these verses using the occult method of gematria, which leads to the interpretation that Yeshua is identical with the Torah:

"By study of the numerical equivalence of Hebrew words (gematria), the light of creation is shown to be related to the light of Torah. God's instruction according to the 613 commandments given in the first five books of the Bible. In John 1:1, Yeshua is referred to as the Word, the meaning of which is identical to Torah. Again this is a direct reference to Yeshua as the Light and the Word (Torah) of God..." 35.

Rabbinical understanding rejects Jesus Christ. Gematria is a Kabbalist esoteric teaching. Peter Michas references John 1, saying 'The Word" is the same as "Torah" and that Torah is the same as Light. However, "The Word" in John 1 means "Logos" (#3056), not Torah, as indicated in Strong's Exhaustive Concordance of the Bible.

Since the Torah (first five books of the Old Testament) is not the whole revelation of Scripture, students of HRM are bereft of full revelation of Jesus Christ. Peter's conclusion to the matter is that this Messiah was and will be the Primeval Light or knowledge, wisdom, illumination or enlightenment (gnosis) that is restored to the world:

"Delving deeper into the Hebrew of Genesis 1:3, we find that there are two Hebrew words translated 'let there be light.' The word meaning 'light' has already been discussed. [ed. enlightenment] The other Hebrew word literally means 'let be.' The word 'there' does not appear in the original Hebrew but has been added for clarification. In fact, the Hebrew word that means 'let be' is a masculine form and therefore refers to 'him', rather than 'it.' Therefore, the Hebrew can validly be translated as 'Let Him be Light.' In this way, Messiah is revealed in the original Hebrew words! An expanded translation of Gen. 1:3-5, including its metaphorical meanings, is:.." 36.

To appreciate the total changing or permutation of the Scriptures that is taking place through Peter's application of Gematria, please note his spiritualization of Genesis 1:3,4 of the KJV:

Genesis 1:3: "And God said, Let there be light: and there was light."

Peters gematria rendition: "v. 3 And Elohim said, 'Let Him be Light [life, natural and spiritual; prosperity; honor; joy and all manner of happiness in this world and the next, encouragement; comfort; hope in adversity; the saving knowledge of Elohim and of the Messiah]' and He was Light." 37.

Genesis 1:4: "And God saw the light, that it was good: and God divided the light from the darkness."

Peters gematria rendition: "v. 4 "And Elohim saw [the revelation of] the Light that [the knowledge and wisdom of it] was good. And Elohim separated the Light from the darkness [spiritual darkness, spiritual ignorance, spiritual discernment]." 38.

Genesis 1:5: "And God called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night. And the evening and the morning were the first day."

Peters gematria rendition: "v. 5 "And Elohim spoke, 'You will be the light' [Messiah; Word of God], until darkness [Lucifer; spiritual darkness] is defeated..." 39.

"God expressed Himself through this Primeval Light when He commanded the Light to be revealed. By his Word, God's knowledge, wisdom, and purpose for this world burst across the chaotic waters in a blinding revelation of God's glory...[And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters v.2]God gave this light as the knowledge of Himself...God's first words to the world contained the knowledge of Himself, the very essence of Himself, the Word of God. This was the light that shone so brilliantly on Day One. It was the gift of the Light of God, the Primeval Light that was revealed to a world which had been consumed in chaos and darkness." 40.

If we evaluate Peter's teaching about creations' light and darkness, the implication is that Christ was created. The teaching also places Christ or God, as an equal and opposite to Lucifer. This concept is not new but is the classic occult doctrine of dualism. In her expose of Jay Gary, The Millennium Doctor, Dr. Cathy Burns quotes David Spangler's Reflection on the Christ: "Lucifer and Christ are twin sides of the demiurgic power of the manifest universe..." (Scotland Findhorn Publication, 1997). This is the gnostic concept of dualism which contradicts Scriptural truth.

There is none equal to God. Nor is there any Scriptural reference that Lucifer was created on Day 1.

When Peter states that God expressed himself through this Primeval Light, he is actually referring to the Kabbalistic concept of the Torah as a living organism which is an extension of God or the wisdom of God. "Primordial Torah", also referred to as "primordial wisdom," is actually the second sefiroth, Hokhmah or wisdom, and the Torah is viewed by the Kabbalist as emanations of God and His wisdom. Gershom Scholem explains this concept.

"In other words, the secret life of God is projected into the Torah; its order is the order of the Creation. This most secret aspect of the Torah, or one might say, the Torah in its occult form, is sometimes referred to in the Kabbalistic literature of the thirteenth century as torah kedumah, the primordial Torah, and is sometimes identified with God's hokhmah (sophia), His 'wisdom', the second emanation and manifestation of the divine power, which sprang from the hidden 'nothingness'.3. We shall see in the course of our discussion how certain Kabbalists conceived the state of the Torah when it was still contained in the mystical unity of God's wisdom. ..."

From the Footnotes of that passage we read: "3: Sophia as the primordial Torah ...:The primordial Torah is the name of God". " 41.

Gershom Scholem decribes in, On the Kabbalah and it Symbolism, a teaching that parallels that of Peter Michas. The following is from an expansion of a Talmudic theme.

"…Abraham bar Hiyya writes: "Every letter and every word in every section of the Torah have a deep root in wisdom and contain a mystery from among the mysteries of [divine] understanding, the depths of which we cannot penetrate… 'The meaning of the holy text cannot be exhausted in any finite number of lights and interpretations, and the number seventy stands here of course to for the inexhaustible totality of the divine word. Moreover, the light and the mystery of Torah are one, for the Hebrew word 'or, light, and the word raz, mystery, have the same numerical value, 207. When God said, Let there be light,' he meant, as the author of the Midrash ha-Ne'elam puts it, the mystery that shines in Torah. And it was this hidden primordial light of Creation, which was so noble that it could not be abased to the use of creatures, that God enclosed the Torah." 42.

We shall at this point turn to H.P. Blavatsky's Secret Doctrine for another look at the Kabbalist interpretation of the Genesis account of creation. The term "Primeval Light" is a frequent usage of Blavatsky and the Kabbalists from whom she derived her "secret doctrine" (as a search on the Internet will reveal). Note the exposition of Genesis 1:3 from her foundational theosophical work, which identifies the light as "Spiritual light" created by a "second god" who is the eternal Law (Torah):

"Let anyone read the first verses of chapter i of Genesis and reflect upon them. There 'God' commands another 'god' who does his bidding -- even in the cautious English Protestant translation of James the First's authorised edition...

"'And God said, Let there be a firmament. . .'(i,6), and 'God,' the second, obeyed, and 'made the firmament' (i,7). 'And God said let there be light,' and 'there was light.' Now the latter does not mean light at all, but in the Kabala, the androgyne 'Adam-Kadmon,' or Sephirah (Spiritual light), for they are one: or, according to the Chaldean book of numbers, the secondary angels, the first being the Elohim who are the aggregate of that 'fashioning' god. For to whom are those words of command addressed? And who is it who commands? That which commands is the eternal Law, and he who obeys, the Elohim..." 43.

According to Mme. Blavatsky and Peter Michas, the light of Genesis 1:3 was Spiritual light created by a secondary god, who is himself the eternal Law (Torah). Elsewhere Peter states "In Jewish thought, the Word (Torah) of God is the same as God." 44. This is a Kabbalistic teaching which a perusal of works like Gershom Scholem's reveals.

"From here it was only one more step to saying that God Himself is the Torah…He explains this by saying that the letters are the mystical body of God, while God, in a manner of speaking, is the soul of the letters...The principle that the Torah is a living organism falls in with several lines of Kabbalistic thought. The reference to body and soul …suggests such a conception, and the notion that the Torah is woven of holy names is merely a metaphoric way of saying that it is a living fabric...This conception of the Torah as an organism is also fundamental to the Zohar…the position of the Zohar: 'Scripture is like a man and has flesh [according to the literal meaning], soul [according to the allegorical interpretation] and spirit [in accordance with the mystery].' " 45.

"The author of the Tikkune Zohar, who wrote only a few years after the completion of the main body of the Zohar, also declares: 'The Torah has a head, a body, a heart, a mouth and other organs, in the same way as Israel.'1.

Here we have the parallel between the two mystical organisms: the Torah and Israel…The mystical organism of the Torah, which embodies the name of God, is thus correlated with the mystical body of the Community of Israel, which the Kabbalists regarded not only as the historical organism of the Jewish people, but also as an esoteric symbol for the Shekhinah, its members being, as it were, the 'members of the Shekhinah.'2 …" 46

Changing the Word of God

In a similar teaching of Avi ben Mordechai: "Understanding the New Testament in Light of the Torah" Mr. Mordechai also teaches that Jesus=Torah=Light. In fact, Mr. Moredechai acknowledges that he is changing Scripture and that it is "fun" to do so.

"Proverbs 6:23 …29:18… In Deuteronomy 32:46 …

In these three passages, the English word translated law is the Hebrew word Torah (Tow-Rah) which literally means teaching. In other words, the Torah is G-d's teaching. In the Hebrew of Deuteronomy 32:46, the phrase, "words of this law" is "Divra HaTorah." This is really wonderful and inspiring because now we have a true biblical definition for the term Torah. It is simply, "The Words" or in its more conversationally Hebrew form, "The Word." "Torah Is light…" 47

Strongs Exhaustive Concordance of the Bible reveals Torah, "towrah" or "to-rah" to mean not a person, but a law or teaching: 8451: from 3384; a precept or statute; espec. The Decalogue or Pentateuch - law."

3384: yarah, (yawrah); or (2 Chr 26:15) yara, yaw-raw ; a prim. root; prop. to flow as water (i.e. rain); trans. to lay or throw (espec. an arrow, i.e. to shoot); fig. to point out (as if by aiming the finger), to teach: (+)archer, cast, direct, inform, instruct, lay, shew, shoot, teach (-(-er, -ing), through.

Mr. Mordeachai continues with his lesson on how to change the Word of God.

"..Also, in Proverbs 6:23, …"For the commandment is a lamp, and the teaching is light." In the Hebrew, the word translated teaching is Torah and therefore Torah is defined as light. With these definitions, let us look at Psalm 119:105, … "Thy word is a lamp to my feet, and a light to my path." To King David, who wrote Psalm 119:105, the Torah was considered a lamp and a light." 48.

To the Hebrew people the Torah is the first five books of the Bible. Mr. Mordechai is teaching that those first five books alone are the "light".

" Now, we are going to have some fun! Let us go to the Brit Chadashah (New Testament) and to the words of the Messiah, who was a Jew and understood the significance of His usage of the word "light." In Yochanan (John) 12:46 we read, "I have come as light into the world, that everyone who believes in Me may not remain in darkness. "In Yochanan 12:35-36, we read, "...For a little while longer the light is among you. Walk while you have the light, that darkness may not overtake you; he who walks in the darkness does not know where he goes. While you have the light, believe in the light, in order that you may become sons of light." In Yochanan 9:5, "While I am in the world, I am the light of the world."

Now go back over each of these verses and where you see the term light read it as Torah. And remember what Torah is? It is the The Word!

So, with this biblical definition, we are not just going to have some fun. We are going to have BIG FUN!

Let us go back to Deuteronomy, which is called in Hebrew, Dvarim or Words and turn to Chapter 18, verse 18… Now go forward to the Brit Chadashah (now you know why G-d gave you fingers!) And to the words of Yshua who said in Yochanan 14:24…" In Yochanan 1:14 it was written concerning the Messiah, "and the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us; and we beheld His glory, glory as of the only begotten from the Father, full of grace and truth." In this passage we learn that Yshua, the light and the Torah of the Mosaic Covenant, is also G-d's grace and truth. This is where we progress beyond BIG FUN! We are going into the realm of excitement beyond words! We are going to biblically define grace and truth."

"Torah is truth."

"In Psalm 119:42 we read, "Thy righteousness is an everlasting righteousness, and Thy law is truth." In this passage the term "law" is the Hebrew word Torah. So, King David is simply saying, Thy Torah (or Word) is Truth. Does this sound familiar? In the garden of prayer of Yshua, yochanan 17:17, He says, "Sanctify them in the truth; Thy word is truth." Oy Vey! Did you hear that?!!! Yshua is praying to the Father, saying on behalf His talmidin (disciples) and 2,000 years later, that The Torah sanctifies us, sets us apart and makes us holy! And then in Psalms 119:64 King David says of G-d His Torah, "The earth is full of His lovingkindness, O Lord; teach us Thy statutes." In the Hebrew, this is astounding! The word translated lovingkindness or in some translations mercy is the Hebrew "Chesed" which means "grace" in English. And notice, King David links G-d's grace with His statutes which is from the Hebrew root word Choq, one of five specific descriptions of the commandments of Torah! And you thought grace and law were two different concepts? Not on your life - grace and law are the same!"

"Now, let us return back to chanan 1:14, "And the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us and we beheld His glory, glory as the only begotten from the Father, full of grace and truth." If I was doing the translating it would say something like this, "And the Torah of Moses, the Sinatic Law of G-d became flesh and tabernacled among us and we beheld His glory, glory as of the unique one from the Father, full of grace (chesed) and the teaching of G-d's Torah."

"I know for many this news is shocking. Right about now you ought to be having a spiritual seizure trying to reconcile the words of Paul to the Galatians, Romans, Ephesians, Colossians, etc. … " 49.

What Mr. Mordechai had fun doing is simply the application of gematria and kabbalistic thinking to Scripture. However, please realize that Avi ben Mordechai literally changed the Word of God. Instead of sticking with the true definition of "words of this law" referring to the Torah - "words" - Avi made the change to "Word" with a capital letter. He took "The Word" "in its more conversational Hebrew form". All of the WORDS of Scripture are called the WORD. The Word in John 1 means Logos, not Torah. The Word or Logos was already defined.

By taking "The Word" "in its more conversational Hebrew form" he then took the leap that since Jesus is The Word, and The Torah is The Word, then Jesus is The Torah. Then he made his substitutions.

Mr. Mordechai has, through the use of gematria corrupted the text in the New Testament. This departure from the Word of God which redefines Jesus as the Torah is supposed to "restore" Christians to their so-called Hebraic or Jewish Roots, although Mr. Mordechai denies association with the Hebrew Roots.

Furthering his "FUN", Mr. Mordechai proclaims that since Jesus came as Torah and grace, then "GRACE AND LAW ARE ONE AND THE SAME!" That completely contradicts Romans 3:21 and many other Scriptures which state that Law and Grace are mutually exclusive.

"But now the righteousness of God without the law is manifested".

Those who accept Avi ben Mordechai's teachings over the written Word of God, are brought back under the law and have rejected the message of grace in Jesus Christ.

In order to test Mr. Mordechai's formulas, we shall apply them to the book of Galatians, as did Ed Tarkowski in May of 1998 before retracting his defense of the Gospel.

Galatians 5:4: Christ is become of no effect unto you, whosoever of you are justified by THE LAW; ye are fallen from GRACE.

Mr. Mordechais teaching of substitution: Galatians 5:4 Christ is become of no effect unto you, whosoever of you are justified by GRACE; ye are fallen from THE LAW. Galatians 5:4: Torah is become of no effect unto you, whosoever of you are justified by CHRIST; ye are fallen from Grace.

Romans 6:14: For sin shall not have dominion over you: for ye are not under THE LAW, but under GRACE.

Mr. Mordechais' teaching of substitution: Romans 6:14 For sin shall not have dominion over you: for ye are not under GRACE, but under THE LAW.

Those that believe the New Testament know that righteousness without the law was by the grace given to us in God in His sending Jesus Christ. They are clearly NOT the same--if one believes the New Testament.

Remembering that Avi ben Mordechai has presented the "fun" of changing Scripture we can take his teachings to fruition. If his doctrine were valid, then Jesus=Torah= the Law= Grace are all interchangeable in all Scriptures. This technique can totally destroy who Christ is and salvation in the New Testament.

Romans 3:21 But now the righteousness of God without THE LAW is manifested, being witnessed by THE LAW and the prophets.

Mr Mordechais technique: Romans 3:21 But now the righteousness of God without JESUS is manifested, being witnessed by Torah and the prophets.

Galatians 3:1-2: "O foolish Galatians, who hath bewitched you, that ye should not obey the truth, before whose eyes Jesus Christ hath been evidently set forth, crucified among you? This only would I learn of you, Received ye the Spirit by the works of THE LAW, or by the hearing of faith?"

Mr. Mordechais technique: Galatian 3:1 "O foolish Galatians, who hath bewitched you, that ye should not obey the truth, before whose eyes THE LAW hath been evidently set forth, crucified among you? This only would I learn of you, Received ye the Spirit by the works of JESUS Christ, or by the hearing of faith?"

Galatians 3:10: " For as many as are of the WORKS OF THE LAW are under the curse: for it is written, Cursed is every one that continueth not in all things which are written in the BOOK OF THE LAW to do them.

Mr Mordechais technique 3:10: "For as many as are of the works of JESUS are under the curse: for it is written, Cursed is every one that continueth not in all things which are written in the Torah to do them."

Galatians 3:11 "But that no man is justified by THE LAW in the sight of God, it is evident: for, The just shall live by faith.

Mr Mordechais technique: 3:11 "But that no man is justified by JESUS in the sight of God, it is evident: for, The just shall live by faith."

Galatians 3:12 And THE LAW is not of faith: but, The man that doeth them shall live in them.

Mr Mordechais technique: 3:12 "And JESUS is not of faith: but, The man that doeth them shall live in them."

Galatians 3:13 Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of THE LAW, being made a curse for us: for it is written, Cursed is every one that hangeth on a tree:

Mr Mordechais technique 3:13 "THE LAW hath redeemed us from the curse of JESUS, being made a curse for us: for it is written, Cursed is every one that hangeth on a tree:"

Galatians 3:14: That the blessing of Abraham might come on the Gentiles through Jesus Christ; that we might receive the promise of the Spirit.

Mr Mordechais technique 3:14; That the blessing of Abraham might come on the Gentiles through Torah; that we might receive the promise of the Spirit.

Galatians 2:16: " Knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law, but by the faith of Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Jesus Christ, that we might be justified by the faith of Christ, and not by the works of the law: for by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified.

Mr Mordechais technique : 2:16 "Knowing that a man is not justified by the works of JESUS, but by the faith of THE LAW, even we have believed in THE LAW, that we might be justified by the faith of THE LAW, and not by the works of JESUS: for by the works of JESUS shall no flesh be justified."

And finally: Ephesians 2:8 "For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:"

Mr Mordechais technique: Ephesians 2:8 "For by The Law are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:"

God clearly warned in Deuteronomy 4:2:

"Ye shall not add unto the word which I command you, neither shall ye diminish ought from it, that ye may keep the commandments of the Lord your God which I command you."

For More on Avi ben Mordechai see: Avi ben Mordechai & Millennium 7000

Nesta Webster states that M. Matter was correct in his assessment that gnosticism had the effect of kabbalising Christianity through mixture, rather than developing a system separate from Christianity.

"... M. Matter is therefore right in saying that Gnosticism was not a defection from Christianity, but a combination of systems into which a few Christian elements were introduced. The result of Gnosticism was thus not to Christianize the Cabala, but to cabalize Christianity by mingling its pure and simple teaching with theosophy and even magic." 50.

Corinthians 2:17

" For we are not as many, which corrupt the word of God: but as of sincerity, but as of God, in the sight of God speak we in Christ."

We are reminded in 1 John 1:6:

"If we say that we have fellowship with him, and walk in darkness, we lie, and do not the truth."

All Scripture Quotes from the Authorized King James Bible

Next Section:

To Embrace Hebrew Roots IX: Practical Kabbalah


Gershom Scholem, On the Kabbalah and Its Symbolism, op.cit., p.32
Ibid., p. 33
The Kabbalah in English;
Jacob Prasch, Explaining the Midrash,
Kabbalah and Jewish Mysticism;
Gershom Scholem, op.cit., p. 53.
Jacob Prasch, op.cit.
Gershom Schoelm, op.cit., p.53
Jacob Prasch, op. cit.
Gershom Scholem; op cit., p. 54
Jacob Prasch; op cit.
Gershom Scholem, p. 52
Jacob Prasch, op. cit.
Nesta H. Webster; "Secret Societies and Subversive Movements," p.42, Omni Publications, 1964.
2)Jewish Encyclopœdia, article on Cabala;
(3)Matter, op. cit., II.58.; as Cited in Webster, Ibid., Pg.28.
Kurt Rudolph, "Gnosis: The Nature & History of Gnosticism",p.300, Harper & Row, Publishers, 1977
Rudolph, Ibid., p. 31
Matter, as Cited in: Webster, op.cit., p.31
Matter, op. cit., Cited in: Webster, Ibid.p.32
Gershom Scholem; op.cit., p. 36
Ibid., p. 63
Cited in Webster, op.cit., p. 12
McGregor Mathers, Introduction to the Kabbalah Unveiled
Gershom Scholem, "On The Kabbalah And Its Symbolism," p.56, Schocken Books, 1965/1996
Jacob Prasch; op. cit.
McGregor Mathers, Introduction to the Kabbalah
Alchemy texts archives-Ars Notaria; Alcnemy Forum
Peter Michas, p. 43, Rod of an Almond Tree in God's Master Plan, WinePress Pub., 1997
Ibid. p. 49.
Ibid., p. 42
Ibid., p. 43
Ibid., p. 44
Ibid., p.45
Ibid., p. 45
Ibid., p. 45
Ibid., pp.44,45,47
Gershom Scholem; op. cit., p. 41
Ibid., p. 63
H.P. Blavatsky, The Secret Doctrine, Vol. I., Theosophical Publishing House, 1888, p. 337
Peter Michas; op.cit, p.253
Gershom Scholem, op cit., p. 44-46
Ibid., p. 47
Email, From:Ed Tarkowski,April 19, 1998,Subject:NEW DISCUSSION LIST OPENED ***TODAY***: HEBRAIC ROOTS 4-19-98
Nesta H. Webster, p. 29.,"Secret Societies and Subversive Movements", Omni Publications, 1964

To Embrace Hebrew Roots: Part IX

Talismans & Masters of the Name

Please note: Research into the Hebrew Roots & Messianic movements constitutes research into Judaism as well as the occult. We fully respect each persons right to believe or utilize what resources they choose. We however, see a clear distinction in believing the Messiah has come versus utilizing resources which still await His coming. That is how and why we must evaluate all to Christ and the New Testament as well as the Tenach. We do not wish to edit or criticize Judaism, but recognize it as distinct from our Christian beliefs, just as many in Judaism also see a distinction and separateness from our beliefs, and we jointly have mutual respect for our differences and each other.

1 Timothy 4:1-2:

"Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils; Speaking lies in hypocrisy; having their conscience seared with a hot iron."


To help us understand clearly whether we are indeed seeing in the Hebrew Roots Movement and Kabbalah the techniques of magic, sorcery, witchcraft and so on, we need to understand what matters constitute those practices. This writer has no wish to present various occult practices in detail. There has been much already in these articles, for those who are believers, that has been difficult to look upon.

As stated previously, according to S. L. McGregor Mathers in the "Introduction to the Kabbalah Unveiled":

"The Qabalah is usually classed under four headings:

The practical Qabalah.
The literal Qabalah.
The unwritten Qabalah.
The dogmatic Qabalah.
"The practical Qabalah deals with talismanic and ceremonial magic…" 1.

Nesta Webster cites 17th century Cabalist and English Rosicrucian, Robert Fludd, who defined the various forms of magic.

"In dealing with the question of Magic it is necessary to realize that although to the world in general the word is synonymous with necromancy, it does not bear this significance in the language of occultism, particularly the occultism of the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. Magic at this date was a term employed to cover many branches of investigation which Robert Fludd, the English Rosucrucian, classified under various headings, of which the first three are as follows: (1) "Natural magic,…that most occult and secret department of physics by which the mystical properties of natural substances are extracted"; (2) Mathematical Magic, which enables adepts in the art to "construct marvellous machines by means of their geometrical knowledge"; whilst (3) Venefic Magic "is familiar, with potions, philitre, and with various preparations of poisons."1" 2.

"…all these have passed into the realms of science and are no longer regarded as magical arts; but the further categories enumerated by Fludd and comprised under the general heading of Necromantic Magic retain the popular sense of the term. These are described as (1) Goetic, which consists in "diabolical commerce with unclean spirits, in rites of criminal curiosity, in illicit songs and invocations, and in the evocation of the souls of the dead"; (2) Maleficent, which is the adjuration of the devils by the virtue of Divine Names; and (3) Theurgic, purporting "to be governed by good angels and the Divine Will, but its wonders are most frequently performed by evil spirits, who assume the names of God and of angels." (4) "The last species of magic is the Thaumaturgic, begetting illusory phenomena; by this art the Magi produced their phantoms and other marvels." To this list might be added Celestial Magic, or knowledge dealing with the influence of the heavenly bodies, on which astrology is based." 3.

David Conway states in "Ritual Magic", that there are many manuscripts related to the esoteric teachings referred to in the Talmud and more importantly the writings of Kabbalah. Most involved in "traditional" kabbalah, believe the teachings to be divinely inspired:

"Besides The Zohar, the other chief book of the Kabbalists "the Sefer Yetsirah, or Book of thought to date from the 6th century....Another important work is the Sefer-hab-Bahir, or Book of Bahir, which was probably written in the 6th century by Isaac the Blind. Supporters of the Kabbalah insist, however, that it can be nothing less than divinely inspired." 4.

The chief book of the Kabbalah, the Sepher Yetzirah (Book of Creation) is considered to be older than the Talmud, simply "…by the fact that in the Talmud the Rabbis are described as studying it for magical purposes…" 5.

As stated previously, it is believed by various Jewish leaders, that only those who have full understanding of Jewish sacred teachings would or should be taught the Kabbalah. It is suggested that Sages in the past have taken great pains to protect the teachings from the uninitiated and those of other faiths.

Today we see that certain books are considered necessary for initiation into Kabbalah. Dr. Philip Berg, founder of The Kabbalah Learning Center, is considered to be a radical by "traditional kabbalists." Berg, whose influence is growing, includes such titles as "Inner Space" by Aryeh Kaplan, which he states is "a must read." Kaplan's works are also highly recommended by traditional Kabbalists. Next, Berg recommends the works, "Practical Guide to Qabalistic Symbolism" Vols. I & II, and "The Square", which compare and expand on the eastern disciplines of Yoga, and then the proper paths of the "Tree of Life." Listed as well is "The True and Invisible Rosicrucian Order", which presents the Rosicrucian system of initiation and the methods for understanding mystical and holy texts through Gematria. Added to that is the book, "The Tarot", which is a deep analysis of the "Tree of Life" including descriptions of the Tarot keys and their relationships to those paths. 6.

Dr. Berg lists as Reference Books, The Holy Bible, with this disclaimer:

"Both Kabbalists and Qabalists will require The Torah, Qabalists will need Gospels, as well, as Jesus was both a Rabbi and a Master Kabbalalist. I can not not suggest a particular version, as they are all filled with error. You will have to fight the deception, yourself. You may wish to avail yourself of a good Jewish Linear Torah." 7.

Dr Berg also lists the "Sefer Yetzirah: The Book of Creation" by Aryeh Kaplan and "The Zohar", as do traditional Kabbalists, who would also recommend Jewish prayer books. It should be noted that Aryeh Kaplan is repeatedly used as a source in Peter Michas' book "The Rod of An Almond Tree In God's Master Plan."

Various Jewish, secular, Kabbalist or other sources would say that Jesus Christ our Lord was a Kabbalist or a member of the Essenes, who are considered by some to have been Master Kabbalists of the highest order. There are teachings that suggest that Jesus handed down a secret oral tradition and that is why some Qabbalists willingly disseminate a perversion of the Gospels with their occult doctrine. We know that Jesus held no "secret" oral traditions that were passed on to an elect few.

John 18:20-21

"Jesus answered him, I spake openly to the world; I ever taught in the synagogue, and in the temple, whither the Jews always resort; and in secret have I said nothing. Why askest thou me? ask them which heard me, what I have said unto them: behold, they know what I said."

Rituals and Shofars

1 Corinthians 3:20-21

"And again, The Lord knoweth the thoughts of the wise, that they are vain. Therefore let no man glory in men. For all things are yours;"

The Kabbalist attitude towards most rituals is governed by four fundamental principles, which are applied with many variants. Gershom Scholem states these principles to be:

Harmony between the rigid powers of judgment and the flowing powers of mercy.
The sacred marriage, or conjunctio of the masculine and feminine.
Redemption of the Shekhinah from its entanglement in the 'other side.'
Defense against, or mastery over, the powers of the 'other side' " 8.
"The blowing of the shofar on New Year's Day, for example, is explicitly associated with the first and fourth purposes. The rituals of the great festivals and particularly the Sabbath are related to the sacred marriage. Often a single ritual represents the whole sefirotic world in all its aspects." 9.

Scholem states that Kabbalists went to great extremes to anchor all their actions and expression into a sacred ritual. From the "Shema Yisrael" to the sabbath and feasts, "the Kabbalists strove from the very first to anchor the ritual of Rabbinical Judaism in myth by means of a mystical practice." [emphasis in original] 10.

The mainstreaming of many of these rituals is reflected in the "revival" that is sweeping worldwide. It is becoming matter of course for many groups, from Messsianic and HR, to the Pope's mass, for example, to blow a shofar. Some use it to proclaim victory over the enemy, or as in the case of Promise Keepers at Stand in the Gap, to bring in the "Spirit of God" as announced in the PK promotional for the 1997 Sacred Assembly in Washington, DC:

"...But before the day begins, a large instrumental call to worship will kick off the assembly. "At sacred assemblies in Scripture, often it would say, 'Blow the trumpet,' Schlafer said. "In the Old Testament, the shofar (a ram's-horn trumpet) was blown prior to battles to signify the army of God. Our host people, the Native Americans, blew flute, and other people groups used trumpets. So, we will use numerous instruments to invoke the Spirit of God to consecrate the event." he said, "As we blow the horns to start the program, we will be announcing the arrival of royalty, the Lord of Lords and King of Kings." 11.

We know that in the Old Testament the Israelites blew the shofar by direct command of God, and in obedience to Him. To 'invoke' the presence of any spirit by the blowing of an instrument is called shammanism. There are no connections between the Old Testament blowing of the shofar and the idolatrous practice of invoking a spirit, upon which Spiritualists of old and the Promise Keepers were calling.

Since the Holy Spirit indwells each Christian, "announcing" the arrival of the Lord in these settings is not Biblically sound. According to the Word of God, the 'arrival' of the King of Kings and Lord of Lords, will take place like this:

Revelations 1:7

"Behold, he cometh with clouds; and every eye shall see him, and they also which pierced him: and all kindreds of the earth shall wail because of him. Even so, Amen. "

The Jewish belief in blowing of the Shofar is discovered to be for various reasons and in this case is referring to that "awesome day". An article distributed by the Jerusalem Reclamation Project provides understanding of this modern belief. The blowing of the Shofar signifies "the Divine speaking from within him" and is the "catalyst which frees his soul from its bonds."

"The Shofar signals both the birth and the future of the Nation of Israel. In the words of the prophet Isaiah, "You revealed Yourself to Your holy people in the cloud of Your glory in order to speak to them, You revealed yourself to them in thunder and lightning, and You appeared to them through the sound of the Shofar." (as quoted in Shmona Esrei Musaf of Rosh Hashana.) [Note: this reference of the prophet Isaiah is unable to be correlated in the book of Isaiah]

"…. Rabbi Elchanan, the sainted author of the "Netana Tokef" prayer of Musaf: "A great Shofar blast shall sound, and a small still voice will be heard." If a great Shofar is blown, how can the sound be of a small still voice? And why? The answer is that on that awesome day, man hears an inner voice, the voice of his soul, the Divine speaking from within him. The Shofar blast is the catalyst which frees his soul from its bonds and allows man to listen to it, "And a small still voice will be heard." 12.

Talismans and Incantations

Isaiah 44:24-25:

"Thus saith the Lord, thy redeemer, and he that formed thee from the womb, I am the Lord that maketh all things; that stretcheth forth the heavens alone; that spreadeth abroad the earth by myself; That frustrateth the tokens of the liars, and maketh diviners mad; that turneth wise men backward, and maketh their knowledge foolish."

The sages viewed the written Torah as having magical meanings, which they obtained using gematria.

"…In the practical Cabala this method of "decoding" is reduced to a theurgic or magical system in which the healing of diseases plays an important part and is effected by means of the mystical arrangements of numbers and letters, by the pronunciation of the Ineffable Name, by the use of amulets and talismans, or by compounds supposed to contain certain so-called occult properties. " 13.

Davila in "Ancient Magic" reveals historical evidence of the Jewish occult practices, including the magic use of amulets for such things as exorcism, domination of others and protection from demons.

"…from roughly the fourth to seventh centuries, come the Jewish Aramaic incantation bowls (along with Syriac and Mandaic bowls), found in Iraq and Iran... These bowls contain inscribed spells, usually in a spiral inside the bowl, mostly having to do with protection from demons and other nuisances…. From roughly the same time period come Jewish amulets inscribed on metal (usually lead, copper, or silver) in Aramaic. These have been found mostly in Syria-Palestine and Asia Minor…published thirty-two of them in their two volumes of magical texts. The purposes of these amulets are typical and include healing, exorcism, domination of others, protection of pregnant women, etc…" 14.

Incantations are used in order to accomplish the "magic" associated with invoking the "Name of God." The dictionary definition of incantation is: "a set of words spoken as a magic charm or to cast a magic spell…sorcery…chant a magic formula against…" 15.

If we turn to practicing Kabbalists we see that incantations, talismans and amulets are used and still play a significant role in their rituals. Colin Low in his 'Kabbalah Faq' explains that a combination of the signing of the cross (like Catholic sign), the pentagram and certain incantations are also part of certain rituals. 16.

Star of David

The Star of David plays an important role in kabbalism and the occult. The misuse of it as the symbol of something positive for Israel, Hebrew Roots and Messianic groups needs to be corrected. There never was a star symbol connected to the reign of David. This symbol is very ancient and was always called by various other names and always in connection to the occult. Hitler--who was heavily involved in theosophy-- used this occult symbol to attempt to shame the Jewish people.

The double triangle is [currently and historically] the symbol for the "chakras of Hinduism" and corresponding sefiroth of kabbalists and also, for witchcraft, sorcery and magicians. It is also referred to as the "male/female triangle", the Crest or Seal of Solomon, the Shield of David, and the hexagram, which is the most wicked symbol in witchcraft. 17.

Dr. Cathy Burns relates that the hexagram is linked with spiritualism in such matters as consulting the dead, reincarnation, the calling up of demons and in some sorcery, is viewed as the footprint of certain demons. The list of its applications includes the Hindu gods and goddesses and many others. 18.

According to the 1972 Edition of the Encyclopaedia Judaica, under the article, Magen David, this hexagram symbol is known under various names: “Hebrew…Shield of David…hexagram or six-pointed star.” In this Jewish article, the six-pointed star or hexagram is mentioned many times and acknowledged as being a magical symbol:

“In Arab sources the hexagram…was widely used under the designation “seal of Solomon,” a term which was also taken over by many Jewish groups…It is not clear in which period the hexagram was engraved on the seal or ring of Solomon, mentioned in the Talmud (Git.68a-b) as a sign of his dominion over the demons instead of the name of God, which originally appeared…In Arabic magic the “seal of Solomon” was widely used, but at first it’s use in Jewish circles was restricted to relatively rare cases. Even then, the hexagram and pentagram were easily interchangeable and the name was applied to both figures.”

“Between 1300 and 1700 the two terms shield of David and seal of Solomon, are used indiscriminately, predominately in magical texts…

[Encyclopaedia Judaica; 1972 Edition, Article: Magen David ]

Those who think that the hexagram is the real symbol of Israel--which is in fact, the 7 candle menorah,-- are uninformed. Even Judaic anti-missionaries suggest it came from Babylonian pagan worship, but in the same breath say that doesn't matter. God dealt with the star of remphan/chiun/molech that some in Israel went after...

Acts 7:41 And they made a calf in those days, and offered sacrifice unto the idol, and rejoiced in the works of their own hands.42 Then God turned, and gave them up to worship the host of heaven; as it is written in the book of the prophets, O ye house of Israel, have ye offered to me slain beasts and sacrifices by the space of forty years in the wilderness? 43 Yea, ye took up the tabernacle of Moloch, and the star of your god Remphan, figures which ye made to worship them: and I will carry you away beyond Babylon. See also: Deuteronomy 4:19; 17:3; 2 Kings 17:16; 21:3; Psalm 81:12; Jeremiah 19:13; Ezekiel 20:25,39; Amos 5:25-26; Romans 1:24; 2 Thessalonians 2:11

Kabbalists throughout history have also adopted it as the symbol for the Talisman of Saturn and involves the worship of the god Remphan, which is referred to in the Bible (Acts 7:37-43). It is also referred to in Scripture as the star of Molech (Amos 5:26-27) -- an abomination to God. Solomon became involved in this paganism and built an altar to Molech. An occult source presents a complete history of the Talisman of Saturn or Remphan and its connection to kabbalists at:

Please note also the connection of the Star of David and the mark of the beast, Talismans and astrology. One man, a believer in Christ and of Hebrew descent, said this regarding the occult connections of the Star of David in those articles:

"... Your expose' on the six pointed star again clearly reveals the true nature of this abomination. I asked some leading rabbis in Israel about it, and they confessed that it was not a traditional seal of Israel and its origin was only sketchy at best. We also talked a bit about the Kaballah; with my staunch denunciation of it. Israel is in bondage under that abominable sign and even the sincere don't realize it, and worse even the saved!!

"I had a real uneasiness about it and purged any sign of it from the house a couple of years ago. My wife had a fit, and thought I was crazy for listening to a former Illuminist witch who swore the magen David was extremely evil. I followed my convictions, and your site sealed it for me tonight. I had not realized its direct link to the star of Egypt, and now I know!!" 19.

The Star of David symbol also has sexual significance for occult practices. In the book "Masonic and Occult Symbols" by Dr. Cathy Burns we read:

"…Phallicism is symbolized in witchcraft as a point with an circle and also as the unity of two triangles making a hexagram. These are represented in the Washington Monument and the Star of David. The Mexican Indians used the hexagram as a symbol of their phallic worship. For 300 years the Star of David or Hexagram was known as the "Crest of Solomon." It is used to conjure up demons and is the most evil sign in witchcraft. It means "to hex" or to put a spell on someone."

"When the male triangle penetrates the female triangle, it forms the six-pointed crest of the Seal of Solomon or hexagram, the most wicked symbol in witchcraft". 20.

It should be noted that the Promise Keepers Sacred Assembly was held before the Washington Monument, an obelisk which is a phallic symbol built by the Freemasons.

Further connections become apparent as stated by the Masonic J.D. Buck, who explains that the Star of David and "six-pointed star" or hexagram symbol of the House of Theosophy are identical to the compass of Freemasonry.

"The perfect equilibrium of spirit and matter is symbolized by the six-pointed star, which is again only another form of the Square and Compass, each having a base-line from which to form a triangle." 21.

Pagan symbolism has infiltrated many denominations that fly the banner of Christianity and as a matter of historical fact, this writer presents the following argument against symbols. If we believe the Bible is the true Word of God--we must start with what God said. In Deuteronomy 4:14-19; 23; 7:25-26, God reminds us to avoid anything connected with false gods, images, idolatry or necromancy. Certainly many other verses referring to witchcraft, sorcery and astrology are listed as abominations to God.

We are to have nothing to do with promoting or embracing any symbolism that is associated with that wickedness. This was not written for the Jews of the Old Testament only, but must also apply now. There is nothing that man can create, that may become an emblem or symbol of God.

Acts 17:29

"Forasmuch then as we are the offspring of God, we ought not to think that the Godhead is like unto gold, or silver, or stone, graven by art and man's devices."

It is no surprise that many Christians have inadvertently adopted occult symbolism who should never have done so. We find that many religious groups use crosses such as the squared red (and other colors) cross, which was the symbol for the Knights Templar and other occult groups. Many wear jewelry, which, according to Cathy Burns, has its origins in the occult and was worn generally for protection as cited above or other similar ideas. From gemstones and birthstones, which are based on the occult, to cross necklaces, pendants and nativity charms, to the star of David, we see Christians adopt paganism that is forbidden to all. 22.

Isaiah 42:8

"I am the Lord: that is my name: and my glory will I not give to another, neither my praise to graven images."

The physical symbol of the cross, often with a crown, and in various forms has also been used as an occult symbol.

"...In Gaul we find the cross to have been a solar symbol when it had equal arms and angles; to the Phoenicians it was an instrument of sacrifice to their god, Baal; and to the Egyptians, the crux ansata was his symbol of eternal life…" 23.

We need no symbolism. We have Jesus Christ and the Word of God as a daily reminder. We are to abstain from even the appearance of evil.

1 Thessalonians 5:21-22

"Prove all things; hold fast that which is good. Abstain from all appearance of evil."

Kabbalah Hexagrams Today

Deuteronomy 18:10-12

"There shall not be found among you any one that maketh his son or his daughter to pass through the fire, or that useth divination, or an observer of times, or an enchanter, or a witch, Or a charmer, or a consulter with familiar spirits, or a wizard, or a necromancer. For all that do these things are an abomination to the Lord."

While the information presented has spoken of historical manuscripts and clearly Kabbalist websites, the question must be answered as to whether talismans, amulets, incantations and other occult practices are being further mainstreamed, in Jewish culture and adapted for use by Messianic or Hebrew Roots organizations. From the Spring 1999, "THE SOURCE FOR EVERYTHING JEWISH catalogue, we see some of the items which reflect today's interest in these practices.

Filigree Hand Amulet Pendant. "Hamsa amulet is said to offer protection from the "evil eye." [An inquiry re: Hamsa, --a customer was told by the Jewish salesperson that the protection wasn't guaranteed but she wears several to keep evil away and, "they only work if you believe in them" & "… it's the same deal with Christians who wear crosses."]

Celestial Star Pendant [a star of David necklace]

Three Symbols Amulet Pendant - "Hamsa (the Arabic word for "five") -- symbolizing the protective hand of the Almighty -- holds Magen David [Star of David] and Chai (the Hebrew word for "life") "

"The Haggadah of Passover with Pop-up Spreads": "Adapted from the Bird's Head Haggadah, dating back to 13th century Germany. That historic manuscript was known for its illustrations showing the Hebrews with Birds' heads." 24

In the book section of this current catalogue, under the heading of "Meditation & Healing," we find the promotion of meditation techniques and many "New Age" concepts:

"Sterling "Healing Hand" Pendant :" The symbol originated in ancient India and represents the henna patterns of India and Africa. Energy radiates out from the central symbol-- in this case, a Star of David-- which sends healing energy where it is needed most."

"Everyday Kabbalah, A Personal Guide To Jewish Meditation, Healing and Personal Growth." by Melinda Ribner. Step-by-step manual integrating the spiritual teaching and meditation lessons of the Musar, Hasidic and Kabbalistic schools.

"Meditation--From The Heart of Judaism" "Edited by Avram Davis. In their own words, 22 masters of meditation-- rabbis, scholars, psychologists, teachers-- explain both the "how" and the "why" of their techniques."

"Minding The Temple of the Soul" by : " Tamar Frankel and Judy Greenfield. Tap the power of the Jewish tradition to awaken the body, balance the mind, and connect the soul. Simple exercises and movements, meditations and visualizations …"

"Star of David Harmony Bell": "Since its creation in ancient times, the chiming sphere has served as a meditative device effective in reducing stress. Listening to its melodious sound while holding the metal sphere in the palm of your hand is a truly soothing experience."

"Satin Finish Sterling Protective Amulets" : "…protection against the "evil-eye." "Guard Us" Pendant Hebrew calligraphy translates as-- "GUARD US FROM ALL EVIL, FROM ALL FEAR AND FROM ALL ILLNESS."

"Sterling El-Shaddai Amulet Pendant": "Mystical object is meant to offer protection to the wearer. "SHADDAI-- one of the names of the Almighty-- appears in many Kabbalistic formulas."

"Hebrew-English Ruby Amulet Rings" : "14k gold and sterling silver with ruby gemstone. According to Kabbalah, the ruby offers the wearer special protection from the "evil eye," preserves health of body and soul, guards in pregnancy and childbirth, and protects from bad dreams..


The question that must be asked is: Why are Hebrew Roots, Messianic and many other "religious" organizations using the hexagram as the symbol for their logo, often with a book, presumably a Bible or Talmud, laid open upon it, or portrayed with other Hebrew figures or symbols within it? How many will continue to do so, even if warned? How many in HR leadership are sporting such articles as hexagram pendants or amulets and rings for the very purposes listed above. These things are not sold for any other purposes, but those listed in the Jewish Catalogue.

Modern Dissemination of Magic

Although rejected by many "traditional Kabbalists", Dr. Philip S. Berg, mentioned above, is significant in today's dissemination of kabbalah teachings to the general public. From the CHRISTIAN NEWS, of Monday, February 1, 1999 we read that Dr. Berg's influence through the Kabbalah learning Center is widespread:

1)The Kabbalah Learning Center (KLC) has attracted national attention for its celebrity studded events and participation (including the singer Madonna and comedienne Roseanne). But increasingly the organization is the center of attention and criticism for its effort to rework traditional Jewish Mysticism for modern Jewish and non-Jewish seekers. Anti-cultists and Jewish watchdog group "Jews for Judaism" have claimed that the KLC engages in unethical behavior. KLC's founder Rabbi Phillip Berg is alleged to have advised members to pay the group large sums of money and divorce their spouses under his "divine" direction. The KLC is also partaking in the current millennial fervor: Berg teaches the world's end might arrive on September 11,1999. If, however, mankind takes to "sharing" more and studying kabbalistic texts, the species may be spared." (Source: FactNet Newsletter, October/December; Sunday NewYork Times Magazine, December 27). Religion Watch, P.O. Box 652, North Bellmore, N.Y. 11710)"

Isaac B. Singer, author of, "Great Mysteries of the Cabala," (which is being promoted for Grade six children through the Jr. Great Books program) has also been mentioned. A brief Review and some quotes from, A DAY OF PLEASURE: STORIES OF A BOY GROWING UP IN WARSAW, allows some insights into the upbringing of this Kabbalist author.

"… The Singers were Hasidic Jews. Singer's mother's father was the Rabbi of Bilgoray, near Lublin (Poland) His mother cut her hair short and wore a wig (matron's wig) as do the other married women of the Hassidim. (they still do) As a child, he studied the Talmud for his schoolbooks and was taught mostly religion. His father sat throughout the day studying the Talmud. In his home, his father had a rabbinical court. Isaac was taught that if the Jews conducted themselves piously, the Messiah would come and they would all return to Israel. Theodore Herzl (Zionist) died the year Singer was born. Herzl preached that Jews must not wait for the coming of the Messiah but should start to build Palestine by themselves. (the land belonged then to the Turks) There were revolutionaries on his street who wanted to get rid of the Tsar of Russia (Communists). His father would tell stories about miracles performed by rabbis; of ghosts, devils and imps. "In this way he wanted to strengthen our belief in God and in the good and evil powers who reign in the world." "In our home there was always talk about spirits of the dead that possess the bodies of the living, souls reincarnated as animals, houses inhabited by hobgoblins, cellars haunted by demons." "One day, when I was about eight, he[father] told us a story found in one of the holy books - by Rabbi Eliyahu Graidiker - [adept kabbalist] or one of the other Graidiker sages. The story was about a girl possessed by four demons. They could be seen crawling around in her intestines, blowing up her belly - slithering into her legs...The Rabbi of Graidik had exorcized the evil spirits with the blowing of the ram's horn, with incantations, and the incense of magic herbs." …His mother took him to be blessed against the evil eye…Singer boasts that, "Not only could I read a page of the Talmud by myself, I kept trying my father's volumes of the Cabala, still without understanding much" [at age 10] His friend Mendel was, "richer than any Rothschild." He told a friend, "I know the Cabala...I can recite a spell and fly up in the air...There is one spell that if you utter it..." "Neighbors...spit to ward off the evil eye" "The Talmud says it is wrong to consider David a sinner..." "The world is full of transmigrant souls..." 26.

The secret gnostic doctrines of kabbalah are perversions of the true doctrines of Scripture, of which, "…they that are unlearned and unstable wrest, as they do also the other scriptures, unto their own destruction." (II Pet. 3:16)

We know that God does not contradict Himself. When God said to not be involved in sorcery, magic, astrology and paganism, because they were an abomination to Him, this writer believes He meant it.

Galatians 5:19-21

"Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, Idolatry, witchcraft, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies, Envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God."

The Tetragrammaton

Isaiah 26:4

"Trust ye in the Lord for ever: for in the Lord Jehovah is everlasting strength:"

Much of the interpretation and mystical practices of the oral Torah are related to the Name of God. The Tetragrammaton or Schem Hamphorasch refers to what Kabbalists and many Orthodox Jews call the Ineffable Name. The four-lettered name of God, in Hebrew is, "yod, he, vau, he", or in English capitals YHVH, although some occult sources say it's IHVH. Others also state that the YHVH is "yood, hey, vood, hey." According to various writings, the true ancient pronunciation is now unknown since it has been believed that the Name was too sacred to be written or pronounced by the profane. In reading the sacred writings, the term 'Adonai' was substituted for that reason. That teaching is also why Hebrew Roots and Messianic adherents write God as "G-d."

We read in Exodus 33:19 and then 34:5-6

"And the Lord descended in the cloud, and stood with him there, and proclaimed the name of the Lord. And the Lord passed by before him, and proclaimed, The Lord, The Lord God, merciful and gracious, longsuffering, and abundant in goodness and truth."

And in the New Testament: Philippians 2:10 -11

"That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth; And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father."

Quoting various sources, Nesta Webster states that the 'real' Name of God was hidden from the people for the reasons stated above.

"…The Tetragrammaton might only be uttered once a year on the Day of Atonement by the High Priest in the Holy of Holies amid the sound of trumpets and cymbals, which prevented the people from hearing it. It is said that in consequence of the people thus refraining from its utterance, the true pronunciation of the name was at last lost. The Jews further believed that the Tetragrammaton was possessed by unbounded powers. "He who pronounces it shakes heaven and earth and inspires the very angels with astonishment and terror."2. "The Ineffable Name thus conferred miraculous gifts; it was engraved on the rod of Moses and enabled him to perform wonders, just as, according to the Toledut Yeshu, it conferred the same powers on Christ…" 27.

From other information, we know that the sages, who promoted this belief, were mystics, many of whom also believed the entire Torah was the Name of God. Through gematria permutations and other practices, "72 names of God" could also be discovered. The Divine or Ineffable Name is believed to be known only by those adepts that qualify for that secret initiation and knowledge and these are believed to become endowed with "magical powers" by uttering or writing it.

Freemason, Albert Mackey, associated the Ineffable Name of God with the point within the circle or the male/female principle, as quoted in Cathy Burns' HIDDEN SECRETS OF FREEMASONRY:

"The Ineffable Name of God in Hebrew, being read Cabalistically, included within itself the male and female principle, the generative and prolific energy of creation; and here we have, again, the widely-spread equivalent, the point within the circle, and another pregnant proof of the connection between Freemasonry and the ancient Mysteries." 28.

Cathy Burns again quotes Albert Mackey, who refers to the male/female aspect of God as represented by the Tetragrammaton:

"[The Tetragrammaton] supposed to denote the hermaphroditic essence of Jehovah as containing within himself the male and female principle." 29.

From articles such as, Kabbalah and Jewish Mysticism, we learn of legends in the Talmud and Zohar about rabbis who uttered or wrote the Tetragrammaton and thereby "created an artificial man." There are also Talmudic and Kabbalist stories of rabbis creating animals for food and other such legends by use of the "Name".

"The Talmud and other sources ascribe supernatural activities to many great rabbis. Some rabbis pronounced a name of G-d and ascended into heaven to consult with the G-d and the angels on issues of great public concern. One scholar is said to have created an artificial man [Golem] by reciting various names of G-d. Much later stories tell of a rabbi who created a man out of clay and brought it to life by putting in its mouth a piece of paper with a name of G-d on it. However, this area of Kabbalah is known by very few, and practiced by even fewer." 30.

Many sources claim that these "golem" did not have a real soul, because that would be unacceptable—to create what only God is able to do. These acts were considered permissible and are not considered to be the same as those involved in Black magic, although no explanation is given as to the difference. Some suggest it simply showed the adept's ability to be close to God's wisdom and creative ability. These sages are considered to be Holy men and above reproach. Others state that these 'creations' were a form of initiation and proved the adepts knowledge of the Name and other issues.

Gershom Scholem suggests that while many created the "golem" from the earth, others were able to produce the "creature" by "influx of the alphabet"--out of thin air. Many stories recount that the "golem" was made to "work" or accompany the adept, although few "golem" are reported to have the ability of "speech". Polish stories particularly focus on the 'golem' as a mute worker who was able to follow commands. According to Scholem (p.172), it was this parallel in Jewish golem and alchemy that finally led to Paracelsus' idea of the "homunculus." These wax or clay figures were employed in back magic to inflict injury on enemies.

Behind the preoccupation of modern science with cloning lies the Kabbalistic art of alchemy for eugenics purposes. Progress in this occult science is now being realised with the cloning of the first human embryo at the Rosslin Institute, which is near the site of the Rosslyn Chapel in Scotland, the holiest shrine of the Knights Templars.

According to the Toledot Yeshu and similar writings, the miracles of Christ are a reflection of His possession of this same "mastery" over the Name, no different than any other "adept."

Masters of the Name

Isaiah 47:10

"For thou hast trusted in thy wickedness: thou hast said, None seeth me. Thy wisdom and thy knowledge, it hath perverted thee; and thou hast said in thine heart, I am, and none else beside me."

Historical records reveal many Jewish adepts who made an impact on their peers by their magical abilities, although many orthodox Jews rejected their feats as charlatanism. However, their magical abilities were also the impetus for various movements which divided the Jews over whether the particular adept was indeed the long awaited Messiah.

These adepts were called Masters of the Name or Baal Shems. The term, "Baal Shem means that the person was regarded as expert in the 'practical kabbalah' or magic. 'Baal Shem means literally one who is master of the name of God, who knows how to employ it." 31.

Citing from "The Harmsworth Encyclopœdia" and the "Diary of Samuel Pepys", Webster recounts the origins of the term "Master of the Name".

"Since the sixteenth century the great mass of Jewry had settled in Poland, and a succession of miracle- workers known by the name of Zaddikim or Ba'al Shems had arisen. The latter word, which signifies " Master of the Name," originated with the German Polish Jews and was derived from the Cabalistic belief in the miraculous use of the sacred name of Jehovah, known as the Tetragrammaton."

"According to Cabalistic traditions, certain Jews of peculiar sanctity or knowledge were able with impunity to make use of the Divine Name. A Ba'al Shem was therefore one who had acquired this power and employed it in writing amulets, invoking spirits, and prescribing cures for various diseases. Poland and particularly Podolia---which had not yet been ceded to Russia---became thus a centre of Cabalism where a series of extraordinary movements of a mystical kind followed each other. In 1666, when the Messianic era was still believed to be approaching, the whole Jewish world was convulsed by the sudden appearance of Shabbethai Zebi, the son of a poulterer in Smyrna named Mordecai, who proclaimed himself the promised Messiah and rallied to his support a huge following not only amongst the Jews of Palestine, Egypt, and Eastern Europe, but even the hard-headed Jews of the Continental bourses. 1. Samuel Pepys in his Diary refers to the bets made amongst the Jews in London on the chances of " a certain person now in Smyrna, " being acclaimed King of the World and the true Messiah. 2 " 32.

Just as the Dalai Lama is said to exude an exquisite perfume or odor, so too are Baal Shems noted. Shabbethai dared to proclaim himself to be God. From the Jewish Encyclopœdia, article on Shabbethai Zebi, we learn of his fate.

"… Shabbethai, who was an expert Cabalist and had the temerity to utter the Ineffable Name Jehovah, was said to be possessed of marvelous powers, his skin exuded exquisite perfume, he indulged perpetually in sea-bathing and lived in a state of chronic ecstasy. The pretensions of Shabbethai, who took the title of " King of the Kings of the Earth," split Jewry in two; many Rabbi's launched imprecations against him and those who had believed in him were bitterly disillusioned when, challenged by the Sultan to prove his claim to be the Messiah by allowing poisoned arrows to be shot at him, he suddenly renounced the Jewish faith and proclaimed himself a Mohammedan. His conversion, however, appeared to be only partial, for "at times he would assume the role of the pious Mohammedan and revile Judaism; at others he would enter into relations with Jews as one of their own faith. "3 By this means the he retained the allegiance both of Moslems and of the Jews. But the Rabbis, alarmed for the cause of Judaism, succeeded in obtaining his incarceration by the Sultan in a castle near Belgrade, where he died of colic in 1676." 1." 33.

Isaiah 47: 12-14

"Stand now with thine enchantments, and with the multitude of thy counsels. Let now the astrologers, the stargazers, the monthly prognosticators, stand up, and save thee from these things that shall come upon thee. Behold, they shall be as stubble; the fire shall burn them; they shall not deliver themselves from the power of the flame: there shall not be a coal to warm at, nor fire to sit before it."

Baal Shem Tov

It should be noted that historically, while there had been great dissension over the kabbalah, when the Spanish kabbalist, Nahmanides, proclaimed his support and taught it, most open protests eventually ceased. Nesta Webster recounts how Baal Shems continued to appear, one of the most notable being Baal Shem Tob:

"… This prosaic ending to the career of the Messiah [Shabbethai] did not, however, altogether extinguish the enthusiasm of his followers, and Shabbethan movement continued into the next century. In Poland Cabalism broke out with renewed energy; fresh Zaddikim and Ba'al Shems arose, the most noted of these men, Israel of Podolia, known as Ba'al Shem Tob, or by the initial letters of his name, Besht, who founded his sect of Hasidism in 1740.

Besht, whilst opposing bigoted Rabbinism and claiming the Zohar as his inspiration, did not, however, adhere strictly to the doctrine of the Cabala that the universe was an emanation of God, but evolved a form of Pantheism, declaring that the whole universe was God, that even evil exists in God since evil is not bad in itself but only in its relation to Man; sin therefore has no positive existence. 2. As a result the followers of Besht, calling themselves the " New Saints," and at his death numbering no less than 40,000, …3…" 34

We find Baal Shem Tov listed with Hillel, Shammai, Maimonides, Rashi and others who are considered the great sages or mystics of Judaism. Theirs is the ancient wisdom that encompasses the oral traditions, which many are turning to in the Hebrew Roots Movement.

Gershom Scholem also references Baal Shem Tov as the founder of the Polish Hasidic movement and relates that a "spirit guide" taught him:

"Israel Baal Shem, founder of the Hasidic movement in Poland and Russia." On another page, " Israel Ba'al Shem is the most celebrated of all the Jewish mystics of recent centuries"--the founder of Polish Hasidism." "...he had no teacher of flesh and blood to guide him on his way---the only spiritual guide he ever alluded to was the Prophet Ahijah of Shiloh, with whom he was in constant spiritual and visionary contact. In short he was a pure lay mystic..." 35.

Not only was Baal Shem Tov more than an adept peasant, but a scholar of the Talmud and Kabbalah. Tzvi Freeman relates the struggle for acceptance of kabbalah and how eventually adepts like Baal Shem Tov became famous today.

"There was a time when mysticism was considered irrational, bizarre, archaic and certainly not for the respectable, modern gentleman to be caught dead in. "Emancipated" and "Enlightened" Jews, therefore, denounced the Kaballa. They called the Zohar the "Book of Lies". They created a myth that the Kaballa was the creation of a lunatic fringe and was entirely grown from alien roots. They even went so far as to claim that Jews had never believed in Mystical union with the Ein Sof, reincarnation, life after death, meditation, etc., etc… The Baal Shem Tov and the chassidic movement was a big thorn in the side of these politically correct Jews. Too mystical. Too far off the edge. And much too popular…"

"At first they tried to deny the Baal Shem Tov had ever existed…" 36.

Freeman declares that kabbalah is central to Judaism thought and that for the past 600 years most rabbinic scholars have openly taught its doctrine. He states that the sages of the Talmud were indeed mystics of Kabbalist meaning, not merely scholars, as some would have us believe.

"…Kaballa is as central to Judaism as the sun is to the solar system, as a heart is to a body, as Human Liberty is to America…"

"The sages of the Talmud were mystics, as is clear from many of the tales told therein. Since the time of the Ramban (Nachmanides) almost every classic Jewish scholar has openly espoused the teachings of the Kaballa…."

"Every classic attempt to explain Judaism in depth has resorted to mystical terms. Every such attempt over the last 600 or so years has resorted to the language of Kaballa."

"The Baal Shem Tov was a student of the Kaballa of Rabbi Yitzchaak Luria, the "Arizal" -- as were so many of his contemporary scholars. It amazes me how so many authors could have imagined even for a moment that the teacher of so many great scholars -- such as Rabbis Yoseph Polnoye, Dov Ber of Mezritch, Levi Yitzchaak of Berdichev and others -- could have been any less a scholar himself." 37.

Freeman also affirms that there was a group of scholars of the Talmud and Kaballah, who hid their identities and their true purpose.

"He [Baal Shem Tov] was involved from his early youth with a society of "hidden tzaddikim" who were scholars of Talmud and Kaballa and travelled about incognito in an effort to resurrect the Jewish life of Eastern Europe that was still licking its wounds from the tragic pogroms of 1648-49…" 38.

The Jewish Encyclopœdia and many other sources, recount that there were many other Baal Shem's or Masters of the Name. Many had followers that used their magical abilities to advantage.

"Another Ba'al Shem of the same period was Heilprin, alias Joel Ben Uri of Satanov, who, like Israel of Podolia, professed to perform miracles by the use of the Divine Name and collected around him many pupils, who, on the death of their master, " formed a band of charlatans and shamelessly exploited the credulity of their contemporaries. "4 " 39.

Chief of all the Jews

One of the most famous and important to this discussion of Baal Shems, is one who resided in London. The famous "Ba'al Shem of London," was a Cabalist Jew named Hayyim Samuel Jacob Falk, also called Dr.Falk, Falc, de falk, or Falkon and who was born in 1708, probably in Podolia. Falk was known as " the Chief of all the Jews." His fellow Jews regarded him as an adherent of the "Messiah" Shabbethai Zebi. 40a.

The following is a summary of an account of the "Baal Shem of London" from the Jewish Encyclopœdia, as sited by Nesta Webster.

"…Falk claimed to possess thaumaturgic powers and to be able to discover hidden treasure, Archenholz (England und Italien I, 249) recounts certain marvels which he had seen performed by Falk in Brunswick and which he attributes to a special knowledge of chemistry. In Westphalia at one time Falk was sentenced to be burned as a sorcerer, but escaped to England. Here he was received with hospitality and rapidly gained fame as a Cabalist and worker of miracles…an incantation would fill his cellar with coal; plate left with pawnbroker would glide back into his house. When a fire threatened to destroy the Great Synagogue, he averted the disaster by writing four Hebrew letters on the pillars of the door…" [Obviously the Tetragrammaton]" 40b.

Falk died April 17, 1782 with the following epitaph on his grave, which:

"…bears witness to his excellence and orthodoxy": "Here is interred…the aged and honourable man, a great personage who came from the East, an accomplished Sage, an adept in Cabbalah…His name was known to the ends of the earth and distant isles,…" 41.

There is a portrait of Falk in the Jewish Encyclopœdia, of which Nesta Webster makes these observations of his use of the double triangle:

"…in the curious portrait of the great Ba'al Shem appended we see him holding in his hand the pair of compasses, and before him, on the table at which he is seated, the double triangle or Seal of Solomon known amongst the Jews as "the Shield of David", which forms an important emblem in masonry…" 42.

We know that the Shield of David is none other than the Hexagram, and have already established some of its use within Freemasonry above.

We must ask the question as to how a Cabalist adept, a Master of the Name or Baal Shem, is also known as a Freemason, with known connections to the Illuminati. We must ask, Is there solid historical evidence that unites not only the Kabbala and Freemasonry, but also the Illuminati? Do the mystery religions of the East play the uniting role? Through this, will we discover why the teachings or wisdom of the ancients, which clearly comes from documented Kabbalist and occult sources, is being promoted by Hebrew Roots and associated groups, unknowingly or otherwise?

Secret Meanings

Isaiah 45:19

"I have not spoken in secret, in a dark place of the earth: I said not unto the seed of Jacob, Seek ye me in vain: I the Lord speak righteousness, I declare things that are right."

Throughout this series, there have been many quotes from Kabalistic sources which state that the term Qabbalah, kabbalah, cabala or its many variations means, "to receive." The suggested Hebrew term used is QBLH, which is said to refer to the custom of handing down the esoteric tradition by oral transmission and is nearly allied to "tradition". We know that kabbalah is about a secret doctrine restricted to adepts and their initiates, which is passed down through the ages. Certain information is being publicly disseminated--but much remains hidden.

Strong's Concordance reveals that the term 'qabal' does mean, "to receive" among other things. It is a Chaldean word and it is noteworthy that the Jewish Encyclopœdia article on Cabala associates the term with miracle working cults:

"… All these ideas derived from very ancient cults; even the act of working miracles by the use of the Divine Name, which after the appropriation of the Cabala by the Jews became the particular practice of Jewish miracle workers, appears to have originated in Chaldea. " 43

Babylon and Chaldea were both judged by God for their corruption and paganism. Of further note, is the fact that the term "Cabal" has been assimilated into the English language. A dictionary definition states:

Cabal (ke bal).n. v. -balled,-bal-ling---n. a small group of people working or plotting in secret. 2. A secret scheme of such a group; plot. v. form such a group; conspire; [ Med.L. cabbala See:CABALA ] ---Syn.n. 1. Faction, junto, conspiracy. (junto means-a political faction; a group of plotters…") 44

Cabala… n. a secret religious philosophy of the Jewish rabbis, based on a mystical interpretation of Scriptures…

If we turn to Strong's Concordance and look at the Chaldean spelling of "cabal", with a "c" rather than qabal, we see an interesting correlation to the first dictionary definition.

2254 - Chabal---khaw-bal; a prim. root; to wind tightly (as a rope) i.e. to bind; spec. by a pledge; fig. to pervert, destroy; als. to writhe in pain (espec. of parturition)…bring forth (deal) corrupt, destroy, offend, lay to (take a) pledge, spoil, travail, x very, withhold.

2255 --chabal (Chald) khab-al; corresp to 2254; to ruin--destroy, hurt.

2256 chebel , kheh-bel; or;

chebel (khay-bel) from 2254--a rope (as twisted) espec., a measuring line; by impl. a district or inheritance (as measured) or a noose (as of chords) fig. a company (as if tied together) also a throe (espec. of parturition) also ruin…

2257 chabal (Chald), khab-al; from 2255; harm (personal or pecuniary):-damage.

Kabbalah, Freemasonry and the Illuminati are built on secret and layered meanings, symbolism, initiation and other occult teachings. Is it possible that the various definitions could be applied to each? As we look to history the secret societies of adepts, which have brought many into bondage through initiation into theosophy, must be considered. Sadly, even with the evidence already presented in these articles, many will reject any notion that these connections relate to their various groups. For the sake of the others who will be instructed, the following sections will examine the further connections and roots of the Hebrew Roots movement.

Psalm 119:1-2

"Blessed are the undefiled in the way, who walk in the law of the Lord. Blessed are they that keep his testimonies, and that seek him with the whole heart."


S. L. McGregor Mathers, Introduction to the Kabbalah Unveiled;
A.E. Waite, The Real History of the Rosicrucians, p. 293. As cited in Nesta Webster, op.cit. p. 84.
David Conway, Ritual Magic;
Nesta H. Webster, op.cit., p. 8
Books on Qabalah;
Gershom Scholem, "On The Kabbalah And Its Symbolism," p.130 , Schocken Books, 1965/1996
Ibid. p. 130, 131, p. 132
Promise Keepers News October 1997 Article:"Stand in the Gap: What Can I Expect?"
'The Shofar' by Rav Shlomo Aviner Ateret Cohanim; The Jerusalem Reclamation Project; Translated from 'Tal Chermon' by Bracha Slae.;;
Webster, op. cit., p. 13
J.Davila; Ancient Magic, Part III, Jewish Magic;]
The Senior Dictionary; W.J.Gage Limited, Toronto
Colin Low; Kabbalah Faq; February 1996;
Dr. Cathy Burns, Masonic and Occult Symbols Illustrated; p. 31-41; Sharing; 1998,
Private Email--used with permission by the correspondent. Wed. February 24/99
Dr. C. Burns, p. 39; Masonic and Occult Symbols
Mystic Masonry, 1913, p. 244-45; As cited Burns, op.cit., p. 215;
Burns, op.cit., p. 293-310; p.349,350, 351, p.312
Burns, op. cit, p.349
"THE SOURCE FOR EVERYTHING JEWISH catalogue (Early Spring 1999) Herschel I. Strauss President, Hamakor Judaica, Inc., also:
Private Review of DAY OF PLEASURE: STORIES OF A BOY GROWING UP IN WARSAW; Isaac Bashevis Singer. Published by Farrar, Straus and Giroux of New York 1969
(2) Mackey, Lexicon of Freemasonry, p. 156; as Cited in Webster op.cit., p.167
Cathy Burns' HIDDEN SECRETS OF FREEMASONRY, p. 309, quoting Albert Mackey's SYMBOLS OF FREEMASONRY, p. 188:
Ibid. Cathy Burns, p. 309; Mackey, p. 339:
Kabbalah and Jewish Mysticism;>
Gershom Scholem, "On The Kabbalah And Its Symbolism," p.200, Schocken Books, 1965/1996
(1)Harmsworth Encyclopaedia, article on Jews. (2) Diary of Samuel Pepys, date of February 19, 1666.; As Cited Webster op.cit., p. 181 (3) Jewish Encyclopaedia, article on Shabbethai Zebi B. Mordecai.
(3)Jewish Encyclopaedia, article on Shabbethai Zebi B. Mordecai.; (1) Henry Hart Milman, History of the Jews (Everyman's Library), Vol.II, p. 445; As cited, Webster, op.cit., p. 181-182
(2)Jewish Encyclopoedia, article on Ba'al Shem Tob (3) Milman, op.cit.,II. 446; As Cited Webster, op.cit. p.182.
Scholem, op.cit., p.26
Tzvi Freeman, Article:Baal Shem Tov; 1991; Chabad Lubavitch in Cyberspace;
(4)Jewish Encyclopœdia, article on Heilprin, Joel Ben Uri; as Cited in Webster, op.oct, p.182.
(40a & 40b) Cited in Webster, op.cit, p.185; (1) Jewish Encyclopœdia, article on Falk, of whom a good portrait by Copley is given. On Falk se also Ars Quatuor Coronatorum, Vol. XXVI. Part I.,pp 98-105, and Vol. XXX. Part II; Transactions of the Jewish Historical Society, Vol. V.p. 148. Article on "The Ba'al Shem of London," by the Rev. Dr. H. Adler, Chief Rabbi, and Vol. VIII, "Notes on some Contemporary References to Dr. Falk, the Ba'al Shem of London," in the Rainsford MSS. At the British Museum," by Gordon P. G. Hills. The following pages are taken entirely from these sources."
Webster, op. cit., p.188
Ibid., p. 189
Jewish Encyclopœdia article on Cabala; as Cited Webster, op. cit. p. 13
The Senior Dictionary; W.J.Gage Limited, Toronto


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