5.1 A Continuing Saga
“But when they had commanded them to go aside out of the council,
they conferred among themselves, Saying What shall we do to these men?
For that indeed a notable miracle hath been done by them
is manifest to all them that dwell in Jerusalem:
AND WE CANNOT DENY IT.
But that it spread no further among the people, [censorship in action]
let us straitly threaten them,
that they speak henceforth to no man IN THIS NAME.” Acts 4:15
5.2 DID JOSEPHUS REPORT YAHSHUA’S HISTORY?
Why didn’t Josephus mention the Messiah in his writings? Even though some think Josephus mentioned the Messiah, it is agreed by nearly all, including theologians, that “his” comment is a later addition by some other person.
The above question is important. The answer is because of the censorship by the Sanhedrin at work when Josephus wrote. Just as the command above was given to the disciples, it applied to all in Israel, including Josephus. Even more important, if you realize who and what Josephus was, you can understand why he could not, on penalty of death himself, write about this man.
Josephus, by his own admission, was a priest of Israel. As such, it was his sworn duty to uphold the decisions of the priesthood, especially the Sanhedrin. Once you understand how powerful the High Priest’s declaration was, it becomes easy to understand the utter silence about the Messiah in Jewish writings of the time and later.
In fact, many problems of research clear up when we understand the depth of this fantastic edict. For that reason, this chapter is going to delve into this subject more deeply. In a future chapter, we will begin our discussion of the deception that began in 350 B.C.E.
We have already mentioned a couple of the scriptures about the practice of blotting out the name of those who had offended Israel. Here is another one that is also a precedent.
This scripture shows to what extent Israel went NOT to have a name wiped or blotted out. To have one’s name totally erased from Israel was a horrendous thing in the sight of the people.
“The first son she bears shall carry on the name of the dead brother so that his name WILL NOT BE BLOTTED OUT from Israel.” Deuteronomy 25:6
If you read the book of Ruth with this in mind, you will see how important it was to have one’s name preserved.
With all this in mind, let’s pursue some more information about what the Jews did.
5.3 THE APOSTLE PAUL?
Have you ever wondered why the Apostle Paul so bitterly persecuted the Messiah’s followers? Paul, you will recall, said he was exceedingly zealous for the traditions of the fathers. Galatians 1:14, “… so extremely enthusiastic and zealous I was for the traditions of my ancestors.” (Amplified)
Again, the answer is similar to why Josephus did what he did. Paul was strictly obeying the edict of the High Priest. The people who kept speaking in the NAME of this disgraced, censored individual, deserved the death penalty according to tradition. And Paul was going to make sure the Bible command was carried out against the disciples.
It is surprising to me that this has not been understood before this time. It is so simple and easily proven.
5.4 THE HEBREW CURSE ON YAHSHUA
Though we are not able with this particular printing to show you the actual Hebrew letters used, this quote should help clarify our discussion.
For those of you who do not understand what an acrostic is, let me explain it right here.
“1. A poem or series of lines in which certain letters, usually the first in each line, form a name or message.” The American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language. November 1981
Now, for the first time I want you to see the curse in transliterated form. Here it is quoted from the book Jesus Christ in the Talmud, Midrash, Zohar, & the Liturgy of the Synagogue.
“The three consonants j, s (shin), v [today’s grammar would show them as y, shin, w] with which the name Jeshu was written, are explained as being the first letters of the three words J(y)immach sh’mo w’zikhro (May his name and his memory be blotted out!) It is not certain when the Jews began to explain “yshw” (in Hebrew there are no vowels. The reader has to supply them. Thus, we would do this to read “yshw”: “yAshUw.) by “yimmach sh’mo w’zikhro. The first witness is the mediaeval Tol’doth Jeshu.” p. 7.
5.5 WHAT HAPPENED TO “JEWISH” MEMBERS?
Anyone reading the New Testament for the first time will notice this strange phenomenon. The story of the Messiah begins with 100% participation of the “Jewish” race. This reaches a peak at the day of Pentecost mentioned in Acts 2. However, from that time on, there was a constant decline until the assembly is 90% gentile. Finally, it appears to be 100% gentile in nature.
Isn’t this strange, since the Messiah was a Jew, not a Greek? The answer is really quite simple. Let’s review something very important.
When did the High Priest finally put his foot down and declare that no longer was this Name to be used?
The high priest enforced this edict AFTER the day of Pentecost. This is important because you see an immediate decline in new “Jewish” converts. Notice the sequence of events.
Acts 2 — Day of Pentecost and the outpouring of the Father’s Spirit. Thousands were converted.
Acts 3 — Peter heals a man in the temple using the Name of Yahshua. People gathered and Peter and John preached to them. (There was a wholesale departure, it seemed to the priests, from following their teachings to those of Yahshua.)
Acts 4 — The High Priest is forced to act. The use of the Name is forbidden. You should understand that this command extended to ALL the people, not just the followers of the Messiah.
The implications of this command are quite far-reaching. First, anyone now professing this Name was considered by the Sanhedrin to be worshipping foreign “gods.” Such a thing was tantamount to being cast out of Israel, if not stoned. Any rights, legally, as a citizen of Israel, were given up by one continuing to profess this Name. All such people were now guilty of the death penalty. Thus, Paul and others began to search out the followers and kill them. They had the legal right to do so, whether we agree or not.
As the original believers died, quit or left, fewer and fewer “Jews” were willing to give up their birthright. Remember, from the above scripture how important it was to have one’s name carried on in Israel. To have it wiped out was tantamount to giving up one’s national citizenship! Later, after conversion, Paul realized that his citizenship was in heaven, and that of the disciples, no longer in Israel.
In the eyes of the rulers of Israel, the followers of the Messiah were worshipping a false mighty one. That is a false “God” according to present usage of the word Elohim. Therefore, they were guilty of breaking the first and second commandments. “You shall have no other mighty ones before Me, OR besides Me. You shall not make for yourself [to worship] a graven image, or any likeness of ANYTHING that is in the heavens above, or THAT IS IN THE EARTH BENEATH… You shall not bow down yourself to them or serve them… “ Deuteronomy 5:7-11
According to James, even to break one commandment was to break them all. Thus, in the eyes of the rulers of Israel, the “Christians” as the world called them (which is the wrong appellation) were deserving of death. They weren’t actually “Christians”, they were “followers of the Way.” The “Way” being the Messiah.
Here is how severe YHWH was about worshiping other mighty ones. Remember the rulers had to obey these commands, since in their minds, Yahshua and His followers were worshipping other than the true Mighty One of Israel.
“It is not with you only that I make this sworn covenant, But with FUTURE Israelites who do not stand here with us today before YHWH our Elohim, as well as with those who are here with us this day… Beware lest there should be among you a man or woman or family or tribe [here is precedent for killing whole families, even a whole tribe of Israel if need be, who went after other mighty ones.] whose [mind and] heart turns away this day from YHWH our Elohim to go and serve other mighty ones of the nations; LEST THERE SHOULD BE AMONG YOU A [POISONOUS] ROOT THAT BEARS GALL AND WORMWOOD; [One rotten apple in the barrel can ruin them all.]
“And lest, when he hears the words of this curse and oath, he flatter and congratulate himself in his [mind and] heart, saying, I shall have peace and safety, though I walk in the stubbornness of my [mind and] heart bringing down a hurricane of destruction and sweep away the watered land with the dry.
“YHWH WILL NOT pardon him, but then the anger of YHWH and His jealousy will smoke against that man, and ALL THE CURSE that is written in this book shall settle on him; YHWH WILL BLOT OUT HIS VERY NAME FROM UNDER THE HEAVENS;
“And YHWH will single him out for RUIN AND DESTRUCTION from all the tribes of Israel, according to all the curses of the covenant that are written in this book of the law…” Deuteronomy 29
This chapter explains many things about the history of the Jews before, during and after the destruction of the Temple in 69-70 C.E. But, that is another subject.
Friends, you who read this now know why, what and how the Name of the TRUE MESSIAH was changed; you now know why the Jewish converts disappeared; you know why the history of Israel changed from that point on; you know why there are no bona fide historical records about the TRUE MESSIAH, including that of Josephus; you know why Paul persecuted the early assembly. If you will meditate and think, you now have the “secret” to many dilemmas of New Testament history. I dare say, most scholars do not understand this simple truth. You Do — what will you do with it?