I decided not to put off telling my husband. There was no point. It was done. I was done. My religion was dead. I saw too many out of context verses and too many contradictions to play even one round of this game. I remember my first few sentences to him.
“You know how I’ve been seeing contradictions between the Old and New Testament?” I had previously informed him that the Jews were going to be saved according to the prophets.
“Well, I’m not a Christian anymore.”
“What?” he paused, “What are you?”
I cried loudly, “A Jeeeeewwwwww.”
Obviously I had not converted to Judaism. But I identified as a Jew. I guess I was more of a Returning Ten Triber. That’s really what I thought I was. A long lost descendant of the Northern Kingdom of Israel who was seeing her people being brought out of exile. It made perfect sense. God divorced us for idolatry and we were still in it. Only instead of worshiping Baal, Molech, or any other Canaanite deity, we were worshiping the Roman god, Jesus. I really thought I was one of the first ones being awakened from the Valley of Dry Bones (Ezekiel 37:1-14).
The rest of our conversation was a blur. I do remember him accusing me of thinking of him as simple-minded.
The next day, I gave my him a copy of the Bible verses, similar to my previous blog post. Sometime after that, he had a talk with our pastor, sharing with him my denial of Jesus, providing him a copy of my work, and resigning his deacon position. One of the qualifications of being a Southern Baptist Deacon is being able to keep your wife and children in order; and clearly, his wife was not in order.
A week or so later, my husband forwarded an email from our pastor that was from another pastor. I saw the entire thread. It went something like this:
Hey [fellow pastor],
I have a young lady in my congregation who is being drawn towards Judaism. We are very upset and need to help her. Please help.
I found it odd that he had to consult with another pastor on the matter. But anyway…
The pastor responded with an explanation regarding Daniel 9. Daniel 9:24-27 reads:
Seventy weeks have been decreed for your people and your holy city, to finish the transgression, to make an end of sin, to make atonement for iniquity, to bring in everlasting righteousness, to seal up vision and prophecy and to anoint the most holy place. So you are to know and discern that from the issuing of a decree to restore and rebuild Jerusalem until Messiah the Prince there will be seven weeks and sixty-two weeks; it will be built again, with plaza and moat, even in times of distress. Then after the sixty-two weeks the Messiah will be cut off and have nothing, and the people of the prince who is to come will destroy the city and the sanctuary. And its end will come with a flood; even to the end there will be war; desolations are determined. And he will make a firm covenant with the many for one week, but in the middle of the week he will put a stop to sacrifice and grain offering; and on the wing of abominations will come one who makes desolate, even until a complete destruction, one that is decreed, is poured out on the one who makes desolate.
His explanation was that if Jesus isn’t the Messiah then “there could never be one.”
There are a good number of problems with this passage, depending on which translation you are reading. The translation above is from the New American Standard. The first problem is with the translation of the Hebrew word, “moshiach,” which simply means, “anointed.” It doesn’t mean “savior,” and it doesn’t mean “messiah.” It means “anointed” or “to smear,” as in “smearing with oil.” This word is used countless times in the Hebrew Scriptures/Old Testament and only here is it translated as “messiah.”
And only here is it capitalized with a definite article preceding it. In other words, what we read as “The Messiah the Prince” in English, is actually, “an anointed governor.” This passage is not speaking of a particular Savior-god. This passage is speaking of a human ruler.
So Fellow Pastor was right. There can never be a Messiah. Not one single time in the Hebrew text is there any mention of a certain, definite messiah that is to be the savior of the world and worthy of worship. Not one – single – time.