Jesus' appearances to Peter and James

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Re: Jesus' appearances to Peter and James

Post by rakovsky » Mon Jan 11, 2016 12:26 pm

John2 wrote:But this is how the NT presents things, that the Pharisees wanted to kill Jesus and colluded with and used their influence over the ruling authorities (a power that they wielded since the time of the Maccabees) and used his breaking of the Oral law only as an excuse:
Why did the pharisees want to kill Jesus? The NT presents it that Jesus announced he was a divine miracle working Messianic "Son of God" who spoke against the oral law, and the establishment considered it a heresy. He told the Sanhedrin "I am and you will see the son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven".
I am extremely skeptical that the Sadducee-run Sanedrin's objection to Jesus was that he was not keeping the oral law and that this is the reason why the Sanhedrin had him killed.

Since the Sadducees rejected the oral Torah, it is irrational to propose to that this was the Sadduccees' main charge against Jesus.

Some proposals are just so irrational that they are basically impossible. Sadducees would not have a motive for killing Jesus in his rejection of the oral torah. Nor could the Sadducees in practice organize themselves to kill him for that. They could not formally announce to themselves as a group that they were killing Jesus for teaching against the oral torah as they simultaneously announced that the oral Torah should not be followed. They couldn't teach against the oral law anymore if they did so.

Let's say that the police and government in a town formally, publicly and constantly announce that jaywalking is wrong, believe it themselves, and there is a policy to that effect. But people in the town jaywalk so much the police have to tolerate it. The police and town government will not agree among themselves to arrest someone on the charge of teaching against jaywalking, nor will they announce that as their reason for doing so.

It is practically impossible for the Sadducees' Sanhedrin to agree among themselves to make preaching against the oral law the formal, official reason for killing someone.

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Re: Jesus' appearances to Peter and James

Post by rakovsky » Mon Jan 11, 2016 12:32 pm

This is so simple.

The Sadduccees' court is not going to kill someone for rejecting the oral law because the Sadducees reject the oral law and because preaching against the oral law is legal.

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Re: Jesus' appearances to Peter and James

Post by John2 » Tue Jan 12, 2016 10:21 am

I'm not saying that the Sadducees wanted to kill Jesus for breaking the Oral Law (nor the Pharisees for that matter; for them it was an excuse). I'm only pointing out what Josephus says, that even though Sadducaic judges did not believe in the Oral Law "they are able to do almost nothing of themselves; for when they become magistrates, as they are unwillingly and by force sometimes obliged to be, they addict themselves to the notions of the Pharisees, because the multitude would not otherwise bear them."

So the question is not, would Sadducaic judges execute someone for breaking the Oral Law, though I think they would because Josephus says that the Oral Law was in essence the law of the land since Maccabee times and that, even though Sadducaic judges they did not believe in the Oral Law, they consequently could "do almost nothing of themselves ... because the multitude would not otherwise bear them," and because breaking the Oral Law was used as an excuse to arrest and bring Jesus before the Sanhedrin and thus played a part in the process that ultimately resulted in Jesus being killed like the Pharisees and Herodians wanted.

No, the question is, what Pharisaic "notions" did Sadducaic judges, despite their religious beliefs, nevertheless "addict themselves to"? I figure these had to be either political, religious or a mixture of the two, and in Jesus' case it appears to be a mixture of the two.
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Re: Jesus' appearances to Peter and James

Post by perseusomega9 » Tue Jan 12, 2016 10:31 am

rakovsky wrote: He told the Sanhedrin "I am and you will see the son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven".
I am extremely skeptical that the Sadducee-run Sanedrin's objection to Jesus was that he was not keeping the oral law and that this is the reason why the Sanhedrin had him killed.




The high priest said to him, “I charge you under oath by the living God: Tell us if you are the Messiah, the Son of God.”

64 “You have said so,” Jesus replied. “But I say to all of you: From now on you will see the Son of Man sitting at the right hand of the Mighty One and coming on the clouds of heaven.”[a]

65 Then the high priest tore his clothes and said, “He has spoken blasphemy! Why do we need any more witnesses? Look, now you have heard the blasphemy. 66 What do you think?”

“He is worthy of death,” they answered.
54 When the council members heard Stephen’s speech, they were angry and furious. 55 But Stephen was filled with the Holy Spirit. He looked toward heaven, where he saw our glorious God and Jesus standing at his right side.[a] 56 Then Stephen said, “I see heaven open and the Son of Man standing at the right side of God!”

57 The council members shouted and covered their ears. At once they all attacked Stephen 58 and dragged him out of the city. Then they started throwing stones at him. The men who had brought charges against him put their coats at the feet of a young man named Saul.


The aforesaid scribes and Pharisees accordingly set James on the summit of the temple, and cried aloud to him, and said: "O just one, whom we are all bound to obey, forasmuch as the people is in error, and follows Jesus the crucified, do thou tell us what is the door of Jesus, the crucified." And he answered with a loud voice: "Why ask ye me concerning Jesus the Son of man? He Himself sitteth in heaven, at the right hand of the Great Power, and shall come on the clouds of heaven."

And, when many were fully convinced by these words, and offered praise for the testimony of James, and said, "Hosanna to the son of David," then again the said Pharisees and scribes said to one another, "We have not done well in procuring this testimony to Jesus. But let us go up and throw him down, that they may be afraid, and not believe him." And they cried aloud, and said: "Oh! oh! the just man himself is in error." Thus they fulfilled the Scripture written in Isaiah: "Let us away with the just man, because he is troublesome to us: therefore shall they eat the fruit of their doings." So they went up and threw down the just man, and said to one another: "Let us stone James the Just." And they began to stone him: for he was not killed by the fall; but he turned, and kneeled down, and said: "I beseech Thee, Lord God our Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do."




Wiki - The Talmud relates that Elisha ben Abuyah (a rabbi and Jewish religious authority born in Jerusalem sometime before 70 CE), also called Acher (אחר, "other", as he became an apostate), entered Paradise and saw Metatron sitting down (an action that is not done in The Presence of God). Elishah ben Abuyah therefore looked to Metatron as a deity and said heretically: "There are indeed two powers in Heaven!"[15]



Are these hints that Jews killed followers of the Two Powers in Heaven?

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Re: Jesus' appearances to Peter and James

Post by rakovsky » Tue Jan 12, 2016 1:11 pm

John2 wrote:I'm not saying that the Sadducees wanted to kill Jesus for breaking the Oral Law (nor the Pharisees for that matter; for them it was an excuse). I'm only pointing out what Josephus says, that even though Sadducaic judges did not believe in the Oral Law "they are able to do almost nothing of themselves; for when they become magistrates, as they are unwillingly and by force sometimes obliged to be, they addict themselves to the notions of the Pharisees, because the multitude would not otherwise bear them."

So the question is not, would Sadducaic judges execute someone for breaking the Oral Law, though I think they would because Josephus says that the Oral Law was in essence the law of the land since Maccabee times and that, even though Sadducaic judges they did not believe in the Oral Law, they consequently could "do almost nothing of themselves ... because the multitude would not otherwise bear them," and because breaking the Oral Law was used as an excuse to arrest and bring Jesus before the Sanhedrin and thus played a part in the process that ultimately resulted in Jesus being killed like the Pharisees and Herodians wanted.

No, the question is, what Pharisaic "notions" did Sadducaic judges, despite their religious beliefs, nevertheless "addict themselves to"? I figure these had to be either political, religious or a mixture of the two, and in Jesus' case it appears to be a mixture of the two.
Josephus said that Sadducees could "do almost nothing of themselves", which means the pharisees had a veto power over them. The pharisees could stop or veto the saducees if, say, the Saducees wanted to ban one of the oral laws. But a veto or stopping power does not mean that the pharisees could force the saducees to act or penalize someone. The pharisees could not force the Sadduccees to kill someone for teaching Sadduceeism.

Next, you say as per Josephus: "they addict themselves to the notions of the Pharisees". I am unaware of the Sadducees becoming so sympathetic to the Pharisees that they generally adopted their general views. Perhaps Josephus meant that only some sadducees accepted only some ideas of the Pharisees. As I understand it, the Saduccees as a whole did have different beliefs than pharisees, especially in rejecting the oral law and books after Moses. In the gospels Jesus debates the Saducees over the resurrection, which the Saducees rejected. It says that the Saducees and pharisees then began a debate, with the pharisees supporting Jesus' position. This debate would not have happened if as a general rule the saducees accepted the pharisees' oral law.

I simply find it extremely difficult to believe that the formal charge that the Saducees and the Saducees' Sanhedrin killed Jesus for was that of rejecting the oral law, which the Saducees formally rejected. That interpretation does not make sense. The pharisees used it as an accusation, but the gospels don't say that at his trial the chief priests used this as an accusation. The Bible says that the accusation against Jesus at his trial was claiming to be divine.

I don't know how to say it better. Some interpretations do not make sense. It does not make sense to say that the Nazis accused the Soviet Union of being pro-German, it does not make sense to claim that Alfred Dreyfuss was convicted of being pro-French, it does not make sense to say that the US fought in Vietnam because Ho Chi Minh wanted to impose capitalism. Some theories do not make sense. Saying that the Saducees' own main formal charge against Jesus and that the motive for why the Saducees wanted to kill Jesus was because Jesus rejected the oral Torah, which the Sadducees at least formally rejected, is one of those things that does not make sense.

And since this discussion has reached Godwin's Law of Nazi analogies, I think it's over for all useful purposes.

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Re: Jesus' appearances to Peter and James

Post by rakovsky » Tue Jan 12, 2016 1:20 pm

Shimon ben Shetach successfully completed the expulsion of the Sadducees (a sect which denied the Oral Torah and the authority of the Sages) who had dominated the Sanhedrin (Supreme Court), replacing them with his Torah-loyal Pharisaic disciples, on the 28th of Tevet of the year 3680 from creation (81 BCE).
http://www.chabad.org/calendar/view/day ... istory.htm
The Sadducees rejected the idea of the Oral Law and insisted on a literal interpretation of the Written Law; consequently, they did not believe in an after life, since it is not mentioned in the Torah. T
http://www.jewishvirtuallibrary.org/jso ... senes.html

According to Josephus, Antiquities XIII. x. 6, "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 for that reason it is that the Sadducees reject them, and say that we are to esteem those observances to be obligatory which are in the Written Word, but are not to observe what are derived from the tradition of our forefathers."

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Re: Jesus' appearances to Peter and James

Post by John2 » Wed Jan 13, 2016 12:02 pm

I understand that the Sadducees denied the Oral Torah, but to me Josephus is saying that this had little impact on their judicial rulings. In other words, they tended to do the bidding of the Pharisees.

I'm not saying that the Sadducees in the Sanhedrin were asked to kill Jesus for breaking the Oral Law. I'm saying that the accusation of breaking the Oral Law was one of the reasons that the Pharisees used to get him arrested and brought to trial and ultimately killed. So even in the NT, Sadducaic judges, though perhaps not without a little muscle flexing on their part, nevertheless played a part in the process that led to Jesus being killed like the Pharisees wanted. I think this is a perfect illustration of what Josephus is saying.

And not everyone in the Sanhedrin was a Sadducee (e.g., Gamaliel the Pharisee in Acts 5:34):

"The two leading Torah personalities at the end of the Second Temple period were Rabban Yochanan ben Zakkai, dean of the Sanhedrin, and Rabban Shimon ben Gamliel, of the family of Hillel, the Nasi. Of the two, the undisputed leader was Rabban Yochanan ben Zakkai. He counteracted every attempt of the Sadducees to tamper with the Halachah. The importance of his success in this defense of the Torah is highlighted by the fact that the Sages proclaimed as minor holidays the occasions when Rabban Yochanan defeated his Sadducean opponents. In his capacity as president or Nasi of the Sanhedrin, he participated in the central government, and led the political opposition to the treacherous conduct of Josephus in the Galilee. The Sages, led by Rabban Yochanan and Rabban Shimon generally supported the political line of the more moderate Zealots in their reisistance to Rome. However, when they realized that because of the internal conflicts and wars there was no chance of withstanding the Romans, they chose to take the initiative in a daring action to save Jerusalem and the Holy Temple from total destruction. Rabban Yochanan pledged non-involvement in the revolt to Vespasian in return for three things: "give me Yavneh and its sages [to reconstitute the Sanhedrin]", the family of [Hillel] Rabban Shimon ben Galiel should not come to harm, Vespasian should provide a physician for the R'Tzadok, the tzaddik of the generation who had been fasting and praying that Jerusalem and the Temple should be spared from destruction. [HOJP I, p183-184]"

http://www.thesanhedrin.org/en/index.ph ... Roman_rule

The Oral Law was essentially the law of the land and the Sadducees could only persuade the rich:

"And concerning these things [the Oral law] it is that great disputes and differences have arisen among them, while the Sadducees are able to persuade none but the rich, and have not the populace obsequious to them, but the Pharisees have the multitude on their side" (Ant. 13.10.6).

"... they [the Pharisees] are able greatly to persuade the body of the people; and whatsoever they do about Divine worship, prayers, and sacrifices, they perform them according to their direction; insomuch that the cities give great attestations to them on account of their entire virtuous conduct, both in the actions of their lives and their discourses also" (Ant. 18.1.3).

So how did this state of affairs affect the rituals of Sadducaic priests? I suppose they either had to be willing to die for their beliefs (as some were, according to Josephus), be flexible, or run off to the desert like the Dead Sea Scrolls sect. But those who were willing to be flexible were "able to do almost nothing of themselves," and "when they become magistrates ... they addict themselves to the notions of the Pharisees, because the multitude would not otherwise bear them" (Ant. 18.1.4).

"...the Pharisees have delivered to the people a great many observances by succession from their fathers, which are not written in the laws of Moses" (Ant. 13.10.6).

"These [Pharisees] have so great a power over the multitude, that when they say any thing against the king, or against the high priest, they are presently believed" (Ant. 13.10.5).

And the Pharisees used this power with the Herodians, the chief priests and the Sanhedrin to kill Jesus, and their influence with the people persuaded them to choose Barabbas instead of Jesus (all from Mark):

"Then the Pharisees went out and began to plot with the Herodians how they might kill Jesus."

"Then the chief priests, the teachers of the law and the elders looked for a way to arrest him because they knew he had spoken the parable against them. But they were afraid of the crowd; so they left him and went away. Later they sent some of the Pharisees and Herodians to Jesus to catch him in his words."

"Very early in the morning, the chief priests, with the elders, the teachers of the law and the whole Sanhedrin, made their plans. So they bound Jesus, led him away and handed him over to Pilate."

"The chief priests accused him of many things."

"But the chief priests stirred up the crowd to have Pilate release Barabbas instead."

The Pharisees had their hands on all these levers of power (like Josephus says they did) and they used them to kill Jesus.

And Pilate is presented as understanding the real situation:

"Pilate, knowing it was out of self-interest that the chief priests had handed Jesus over to him."

But even he is presented as being powerless to stop it:

"Wanting to satisfy the crowd, Pilate released Barabbas to them. He had Jesus flogged, and handed him over to be crucified."

This all seems more powerful than having only veto power.
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Re: Jesus' appearances to Peter and James

Post by John2 » Wed Jan 13, 2016 6:10 pm

The Jewish Encyclopedia mentions the prominence of the Pharisees in the Sanhedrin:

"The Pharisees, however, held at various times more or less prominent positions in this body, according as they were the victors or the vanquished in their conflict with the Sadducees. When John Hyrcanus toward the end of his reign turned from the Pharisees ("Ant." xvi. 11, § 1), he seems to have effected their dismissal from the Sanhedrin or bet din and to have formed a Sadducean bet din (Sanh. 52b), or a Sadducean Sanhedrin, as it is called in another passage (Meg. Ta'an. l.c. p. 17). Under Alexander Jannæus, Simeon b. Sheṭaḥ succeeded in ousting the Sadducean members from the bet din and in reorganizing it so that it was composed only of Pharisees. But the latter lost their prestige in the subsequent quarrel with Alexander, gaining the upper hand again only under his successor, Salome Alexandra, from which time the Great Bet Din was composed exclusively of Pharisees."

http://www.jewishencyclopedia.com/artic ... in#anchor8
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Re: Jesus' appearances to Peter and James

Post by John2 » Wed Jan 13, 2016 6:17 pm

I asked:

"So how did this state of affairs affect the rituals of Sadducaic priests?"

I stumbled upon this interesting factoid about Rabbi Yochanan ben Zakkai:

" He prevented a Sadducean high priest from following the Sadducean regulations at the burning of the red heifer (Tosef., Parah, iii. 8; comp. Parah iii. 7, 8)."

http://www.jewishencyclopedia.com/artic ... n-b-zakkai
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Re: Jesus' appearances to Peter and James

Post by Diogenes the Cynic » Wed Jan 13, 2016 10:29 pm

John2 wrote:I'm not saying that the Sadducees wanted to kill Jesus for breaking the Oral Law (nor the Pharisees for that matter; for them it was an excuse). I'm only pointing out what Josephus says, that even though Sadducaic judges did not believe in the Oral Law "they are able to do almost nothing of themselves; for when they become magistrates, as they are unwillingly and by force sometimes obliged to be, they addict themselves to the notions of the Pharisees, because the multitude would not otherwise bear them."

So the question is not, would Sadducaic judges execute someone for breaking the Oral Law, though I think they would because Josephus says that the Oral Law was in essence the law of the land since Maccabee times and that, even though Sadducaic judges they did not believe in the Oral Law, they consequently could "do almost nothing of themselves ... because the multitude would not otherwise bear them," and because breaking the Oral Law was used as an excuse to arrest and bring Jesus before the Sanhedrin and thus played a part in the process that ultimately resulted in Jesus being killed like the Pharisees and Herodians wanted.

No, the question is, what Pharisaic "notions" did Sadducaic judges, despite their religious beliefs, nevertheless "addict themselves to"? I figure these had to be either political, religious or a mixture of the two, and in Jesus' case it appears to be a mixture of the two.
Jesus was not brought before the Sanhedrin, That is a completely fictional trial with no historicity.

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