May I ask you a rudimentary question?

Discussion about the New Testament, apocrypha, gnostics, church fathers, Christian origins, historical Jesus or otherwise, etc.
issemm
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May I ask you a rudimentary question?

Post by issemm » Sun Sep 06, 2020 12:05 am

In Galatians Paul said to Geba: 

"If thou, being a Jew, livest after the manner of Gentiles, and not as do the Jews, why compellest thou the Gentiles to live as do the Jews?"

How should I interpret this passage? 

A. In fact, Geba forced Gentiles to become Jews.

B. Being Jewish and not living like a Jew is like forcing a Gentiles to be a Jew.

What's the answer?

issemm
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Re: May I ask you a rudimentary question?

Post by issemm » Sun Sep 06, 2020 9:02 pm

Respectful teachers, please answer me

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Joseph D. L.
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Re: May I ask you a rudimentary question?

Post by Joseph D. L. » Sun Sep 06, 2020 9:33 pm

Paul is speaking to Cephas, not "Geba", and he's dressing him down for his hypocrisy.

But when Cephas came to Antioch, I resisted him to the face, because he stood condemned. For before that certain came from James, he ate with the Gentiles; but when they came, he drew back and separated himself, fearing them that were of the circumcision. And the rest of the Jews dissembled likewise with him; insomuch that even Barnabas was carried away with their dissimulation. But when I saw that they walked not uprightly according to the truth of the gospel, I said unto Cephas before them all, If thou, being a Jew, livest as do the Gentiles, and not as do the Jews, how compellest thou the Gentiles to live as do the Jews?

Hope that makes it clearer.
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Joseph D. L.
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Re: May I ask you a rudimentary question?

Post by Joseph D. L. » Sun Sep 06, 2020 9:39 pm

Basically, Paul catches Cephas eating unkosher meals with the gentiles, but when James, a Jew, comes around he sits and eats with them, all the while teaching gentiles to be more like the Jews. Paul sees this as a betrayal to both parties and accosts Cephas for this.
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davidmartin
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Re: May I ask you a rudimentary question?

Post by davidmartin » Mon Sep 07, 2020 12:55 am

So Peter is out evangelising in Syria to the gentiles
His problem is strictly speaking he shouldn't be eating with them until they convert
But he bends the rules and eats with the proselytes to help with his preaching efforts
Then James and his buddies show up and he switches to eating only with them, his friends
This kind of accommodation of the gentile world arouses Paul's interest and finds in it a way to attack their whole ideology, since his own gospel is geared around accommodating gentiles
But it's possible to see Peter's side of this as i try to above

Secondly it's interesting that Peter and James are both of the 'circumcision' party (Sounds like a fun party) i doubt there was a cigarette paper between their beliefs. The Clementine writings that champion Peter and James make a big deal of only eating with converts in a proper manner and are anti-Paul

Thirdly there's no guarantee whether it's Peter/James or Paul were closer to the original beliefs of the Jesus movement. Both options are possible
After all the entire concept is Jesus knew his gospel was intended for the whole world so you'd think he'd have addressed this himself and made it clear from the beginning, not only for this reason but that he himself had gentiles interested in him and encountered plenty on non-jews in the cosmopolitan Galilee area, Decapolis and among Samaritans.

issemm
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Re: May I ask you a rudimentary question?

Post by issemm » Mon Sep 07, 2020 1:02 am

Joseph D. L. wrote:
Sun Sep 06, 2020 9:39 pm
Basically, Paul catches Cephas eating unkosher meals with the gentiles, but when James, a Jew, comes around he sits and eats with them, all the while teaching gentiles to be more like the Jews. Paul sees this as a betrayal to both parties and accosts Cephas for this.
Thank you. I am not good at English, so it is hard to understand. 

Does that mean A is close to the answer?

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Joseph D. L.
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Re: May I ask you a rudimentary question?

Post by Joseph D. L. » Mon Sep 07, 2020 4:09 pm

issemm wrote:
Mon Sep 07, 2020 1:02 am
Does that mean A is close to the answer?
Your two points seem more like tautologies than an either/or proposition. One can easily follow the other and both seem to sum up the passage.
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issemm
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Re: May I ask you a rudimentary question?

Post by issemm » Mon Sep 07, 2020 8:01 pm

Joseph D. L. wrote:
Mon Sep 07, 2020 4:09 pm
issemm wrote:
Mon Sep 07, 2020 1:02 am
Does that mean A is close to the answer?
Your two points seem more like tautologies than an either/or proposition. One can easily follow the other and both seem to sum up the passage.

Thank you for your answer. Then I would like to ask you more clearly. 

So Has Cephas ever forced Gentiles to become Jews? I am asking this because Christians around me insist that they have never done so.

issemm
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Re: May I ask you a rudimentary question?

Post by issemm » Mon Sep 07, 2020 8:06 pm

Joseph D. L. wrote:
Mon Sep 07, 2020 4:09 pm
issemm wrote:
Mon Sep 07, 2020 1:02 am
Does that mean A is close to the answer?
Your two points seem more like tautologies than an either/or proposition. One can easily follow the other and both seem to sum up the passage.

I know I'm stupidly repeating the same question. I'm sorry. Please think it cute. I need to know the obvious facts

davidmartin
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Re: May I ask you a rudimentary question?

Post by davidmartin » Tue Sep 08, 2020 1:08 am

i think 'forced gentiles to become Jews' is too simple
maybe 'forced gentiles who wanted to be Christians to observe the Torah' would be better
Yes i think that is what Cephas was saying clearly from what Paul says in the whole of Galatians
But a couple of things to think about

Is Cephas actually Simon the apostle of Jesus or just a leader with a similar name?
There is no guarantee whether Cephas or Paul was closer to what Jesus had in mind. I take Paul's side on this question

If you accept the Clementine writings as revealing anything useful about this 'Cephas' branch of Christianity then you find they had a 'funky' concept of following the Torah and certainly were not normal Jews but were themselves a minority sect within Judaism apparently

So i think you're basically right but best to avoid that over simplification of saying Cephas wanted to force gentiles to become Jews
I don't think he did, he wanted gentiles to follow his own understanding of what it meant to be a Christian and so to join his grouping within early Christianity.

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