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Midrash Tanchuma Bereshis 11.

Discussion in 'General Religious Debates' started by John D. Brey, Sep 24, 2021.

  1. John D. Brey

    John D. Brey Well-Known Member

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    The thread, What Did Jesus Look Like Naked, began with a quotation from Midrash Tanchuma 11:

    They were taught that when the Holy One, Blessed Is He, said to Adam, "Accursed is the ground because of you; through suffering will you eat from it all the days of your life." Then Adam said, "Master of the World! Until when?" He said to him, "Until a man will be born circumcised."

    Midrash Tanchuma, Bereshis 11.​

    The thread noted above insinuated that the quotation from Midrash Tanchuma was speaking of Jesus of Nazareth as the one born circumcised. In that thread, circumcision is said to be something like neutering, or ritual emasculation, forcing the bride, if she's to conceive a child at all, to do so as a virgin, since the groom is neutered, or emasculated, and thus can't add anything to the pregnancy. Ironically Jewish law claims the father is inconsequential to the Jewish-ness of the child. If the mother is Jewish and the father Gentile, the child is still Jewish. But if the father is Jewish and the mother Gentile, the child is not Jewish. The father has no role in the Jewish-ness of the child.

    Jesus' alleged virgin birth would make him the sole Jewish firstborn literally born of a circumspect, in this case circumcised, i.e., emasculated, neutered, pregnancy.

    As fate would have it, and as has happened too many times to count, an interlocutor noted that the passage quoted above was "cherry picked" in order to make it seem like it could be applicable to Jesus, when in fact the context of the text implied ----directly ----- that the text was speaking of Noah, and not Jesus. All one has to do is read further in the text quoted above (Midrash Tanchuma 11) to see that it appears, by expanding the context of the original quotation, that the quotation is speaking of Noah.

    Unfortunately, the interlocutor who pointed out that by expanding the context even a little bit it becomes clear that the new context makes the text speak of Noah specifically, and thus not Jesus or Messiah, might not care enough about the nature of exegesis and sound interpretation to realize that we can expand the text even further, and then again further, literally until we're speaking of the entire Tanakh as the feedback mechanism for interpreting the short quotation in the original thread. If, and when, we do that, we can, potentially, show that even though expanding the context to that part of Midrash Tanchuma 11 that makes it pretty clear that the text seems to be speaking of Noah, nevertheless, an expanded exegesis and interpretation, taking in a much broader context, can, legitimately show that in fact the text is not really speaking of Noah after all.

    Showing that this is true is admittedly a tall order. But it can be done.



    John
     
    #1 John D. Brey, Sep 24, 2021
    Last edited: Sep 24, 2021
  2. idea

    idea Well-Known Member

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    Noah or Jesus - the ground is no longer cursed?
     
  3. John D. Brey

    John D. Brey Well-Known Member

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    Death is part and parcel of the curse. Jewish scripture teaches that Messiah, and Messiah alone, will be the harbinger and bringer of the end of that curse. The curse is still in effect so long as death is part and parcel of, a natural part of, the processes of life.


    John
     
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  4. dybmh

    dybmh Terminal Optimist
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    No. My objection is that you did not include the very next sentence in the Midrash which does not imply Noah, it explcitly names Noah.

    https://www.sefaria.org/Midrash_Tanchuma,_Bere****.11.5?lang=bi

    Screenshot_20210924_204848.jpg

    You continue to quote the first part underlined in blue; and you continue to omit the very next sentence.

    Omitting this repeatedly after it has been shown to you is dishonest. I consider it trolling for someone to continually misrepresent Judaism in this manner.

    Please stop.
     
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  5. dybmh

    dybmh Terminal Optimist
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    This is false: It is contradicted by Genesis 8:21. The curse as lifted long before Jesus was born.

    Genesis 8:21 When the LORD smelled the pleasing aroma, He said in His heart, "Never again will I curse the ground because of man, even though every inclination of his heart is evil from his youth. And never again will I destroy all living creatures as I have done.
     
  6. John D. Brey

    John D. Brey Well-Known Member

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    What I tried to get across in the thread-seeder is the fact that each time we expand the context, the interpretation can change. For instance, if I leave out the text that says the one being born circumcised is Noah, the shorter quote can be used to imply it's speaking of Jesus. But if we expand the context to where it says it's speaking of Noah, it now appears that applying it to Jesus is wrong-headed or "cherry picking" as you pointed out.

    And yet if we expand the context even wider, take an even broader view, we can see that in fact it's not speaking of Noah but only stating that Lamech is under the misimpression that it refers to Noah. It's Lamech who thinks Noah is the one born circumcised. The scripture is recording Lamech's misunderstanding and not stating his misunderstanding as a fact.

    Nowhere in the scripture does it say Noah was born circumcised. And though Midrash Tanchuma claims seven men are born circumcised, there's not one single person in the Tanakh that the Tanakh says was born circumcised. That distinction awaits the Gospels that tell us Jesus was born of a virgin: his father was ritually neutered at eight days old, and then cut out of the conception of his firstborn son, whom, for that reason, is the only Jewish firstborn ever truly born circumcised.

    In Genesis 4:1 Eve implies that Cain is born of the Lord. Her and Adam are under the impression that Cain is the messianic firstborn who will save them from their sins. The text records their erroneous misunderstanding concerning Cain, even as it records Lamech being under the same misunderstanding that Noah is the messianic comforter who will save the world.

    Neither Cain, nor Noah, saved the world from the curse of Adam and Eve since that salvation awaits Messiah who will remove death itself along with all the other elements of the curse. The world remains cursed to this day. We still die. And we still must work by the sweat of our brow to earn our daily bread.



    John
     
  7. dybmh

    dybmh Terminal Optimist
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    No John, it's dishonest to omit the sentence that says "Noah was born circumcised". When discussing Midrash Tanchuma 11. Omitting this sentence, omits the author's intention.

    It is further dishonest to claim the curse is still in effect, when the text clearly says the curse ended.

    You are not interpretting, you are omitting and re-writing the text. If this continues, I will simply report you for breaking the forum rules against trolling.

    This has happened repeatedly in your posts. You cherry pick a quote from a Jewish source; neglect to provide a link to the source; on further inspection the quote in context 100% contradicts your conclusions.

    The same thing happened in your thread about the bronze serpent staff in the book of Numbers. There you cherry picked a quote the Talmud; but omitted the parts which render your thesis impotent. It's unethical. Lacks integrity. Shameful.
     
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  8. John D. Brey

    John D. Brey Well-Known Member

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    If we expand the context even further we read about Lamech's wives refusing to sleep with Lamech because he killed Cain. They go to Adam, and when Adam tells them to sleep with Lamech, they point out that after the ******* Cain was born of Adam and Eve's original sin in the garden (uncircumcised sex, phallic-sex) Adam was so distraught he didn't have sex again for one hundred and thirty years.

    The text of Midrash Tanchuma then records that after one hundred and thirty years, Adam conceives his first son conceived in his own likeness and image. Seth is a harbinger of the messianic redemption since he represents Adam's true firstborn while Cain represents a ******* usurper.

    This is the context for Lamech believing Noah, like Seth, will be the firstborn savior of the world. But neither Cain, Seth, nor Noah, are the savior of the world even though each of them were fitting precursors, or harbingers, of the still future salvation of the world.

    While it's true that the text tells us that Lamech states that Noah will end the curse of Adam's sin, and Lamech no doubt believes it at the time, it is not the case that Noah is messiah, or the one who will rescind the curse of Adam. It is sound, foundational, Jewish and Christian theology that Messiah, and Messiah alone, will rescind the curse of Adam's sin.

    Men like Noah, Abraham, Moses, David, and such, are types and precursors of Messiah, and while it's true each of these men are part and parcel of the world redeeming work of Messiah, it's a truth come from the holy spirit that none of the named persons were truly born circumcised. Jesus of Nazareth is the only person born of a neutered, emasculated, pregnancy, and even he hasn't been revealed to the world yet. Even he hasn't rescinded the curse of Adam yet.


    John
     
  9. John D. Brey

    John D. Brey Well-Known Member

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    I could equally say that it's dishonest to omit the fact that anyone who reads an even more expanded section of Midrash Tanchuma 11 will see that the text is clearly saying not that Noah is the one who will be born circumcised, but that Lamech believes it's Noah who will be born circumcised.

    The text even asks how Lamech could make such a statement unless he is a prophet and he's not? The answer is that they were already taught that when a person is born of circumcision (or circumcised) that person will be the one who will end the curse.

    The text of Midrash Tanchuma places quotations around Lamech's statement about Noah being the savior from the curse. It is stating that Lamech believed Noah was that savior, not that he in fact was the savior.

    Read carefully, everything is dependent on Noah allegedly being born of circumcision, or circumcised, and there's not a verse in the entire bible that says Noah was born circumcised. There's not a word in the bible that says anyone was circumcised until a man was born of a circumspect pregnancy in the Gospels: he was born while his mother's veil of virginity remained intact.


    John
     
  10. John D. Brey

    John D. Brey Well-Known Member

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    While you're at it you might see to it that it's clarified in the rules of the Forum that Martin Luther is not to be quoted in the Forum since he was a rewriter of texts, a mere troller, and since he's the foundation for some of the ideas spouted by fools like me:

    28. And Lamech lived a hundred and eighty-two years, and he begot a son. 29. and called his name Noah, saying: He will comfort us from the works and toils of our hands on the earth which the Lord has cursed.

    Moses merely touches on this account concerning the name of Noah. Nevertheless, the story deserves our rather careful examination. Lamech was living when Enoch was carried away out of this life to the other, deathless life. And so, after God had bestowed such great honor and had performed so outstanding a miracle in transporting Enoch, a human being like ourselves, from this lowly kind of life to eternal life----for he was a husband and the head of a household who had sons, daughters, servants, fields, and cattle---then the holy fathers, quickened and incited by their joy, came to believe that now that happy day of the fulfillment of the promise was near at hand. For it was a unique manifestation of divine mercy that Enoch was taken away to the Lord alive.

    Therefore just as Adam and Eve, after the promise had been given to them, had come to hope ----because of their excessive joy over seeing a human being like themselves---that Cain was that Seed, so, in my opinion, Lamech---because of a pious mistake---gave this name to Noah at birth and said: "He will bring us comfort and will deliver us from the hardships of this life. Now original sin and the punishment of original sin will come to an end. We shall be restored to the state of perfection; the curse which the earth has borne on Adam's account will come to an end."

    Thus after Lamech has seen that his grandfather has been taken away to Paradise without pain, sickness, and death, he assumes that Paradise with all its glory will follow at once. It is his opinion that Noah is the promised Seed and that he will bring about the restoration of the world. For he plainly insists that the curse must be removed. Yet the curse, or the punishment for sin, cannot be removed unless original sin itself is first removed.

    Martin Luther, on Genesis 5:28-29.​



    John
     
  11. John D. Brey

    John D. Brey Well-Known Member

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    A very fine woman once chided me for allegedly quoting statements out of context. I responded to her as I would to you, i.e., that that's kinda what a quotation is, i.e., what's required to give a quotation: you must determine what part of a giant context you want to quote.

    A quotation is always "cherry picking" since you're looking for the ripest, shiniest, cherry on the tree. In this case, where we're looking for the true context for Lamech mistakenly believing Noah is the messianic comforter, it' the entire bible, the Talmud, and every commentary ever written, that is the expanded context for the shiny cherry we picked to quote. For an instance concerning the expanded context, I've included part of Martin Luther's commentary on Lamech's mistake in this very thread.


    John
     
  12. dybmh

    dybmh Terminal Optimist
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    Omitting sentences is not expanding the context. It's deceit.
    Strawman! I never expanded anything, no one has expanded the section in Midrash Tanchuma.

    FALSE! Again, read the text you are quoting.

    Screenshot_20210925_093443.jpg
    Lamech understood immediately that Noah was the the one...

    Again, the text refutes your conclusion. The curse that is listed in the Midrash is the אֲרוּרָה הָאֲדָמָה "curse of the earth". This includeds the curse of eating thistles, thorns as food.

    Genesis 3:18 Both thorns and thistles it will yield for you, and you will eat the plants of the field
     
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  13. dybmh

    dybmh Terminal Optimist
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    I honestly don't care about what Martin Luther said. Just know that if you intentionally misrepresent Jewish sources I will report you.
     
  14. John D. Brey

    John D. Brey Well-Known Member

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    "He Said to himself." Literally, he "said in his heart." But it is the wicked who speak "in" their hearts, as we see (e.g.) with Esau (27:41) and Haman (Esther 6:6); the righteous speak "on" or "to" their hearts, as did Daniel (Daniel 1:8) and David (1 Sam. 27:1). The text is hinting to us that Abraham doubted what God had said (Hizkuni).

    Ibn Ezra.​

    If Ibn Ezra can be trusted, and for me he can, then the text of Genesis 8:21, like many other texts in the Tanakh, might be hinting to us that we may have to doubt that everything proclaimed in the Name of God comes to us directly from our beloved God.



    John
     
  15. dybmh

    dybmh Terminal Optimist
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    No. Cherry picking is omitting sections of a text which contradict the thesis. It is most obvious when a person takes one sentence and ignores the sentences immediately surrounding it. (That's what you're doing )

    This isn't taking out of context; it's much worse than that.
     
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  16. dybmh

    dybmh Terminal Optimist
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    Terrible example! It means nothing.
     
  17. dybmh

    dybmh Terminal Optimist
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    @John D. Brey ,

    You have proven again that reading your posts have 0 value. I'm done replying. Please try not to misprepresent other people's religious texts.

    Done.
     
  18. John D. Brey

    John D. Brey Well-Known Member

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    Then every quotation ever given is deceitful? Since that's kinda what's required to give a quotation. You must choose words and cut them out of a broader context.

    I quoted a section that didn't include that Lamech erroneously thought it was Noah who would cure the curse. You expanded the number of words I chose to include, so that you included the words that pointed out that Lamech thought the prophesy of the one born of circumcision was Noah. In that sense you expanded the part of the text I chose to use as my quotation.

    Yes. Lamech understood that. But there's legitimate reason to believe his understanding was, is, mistaken. The Bible quotes hundreds or thousands of mistaken beliefs without implying that since they're written in the bible they are correct.

    Lamech believed Noah was the promised Seed. That is true. But Noah wasn't. That' is equally true. The Bible is patently clear on both counts.

    This is a quotation concerning part of the curse. The most egregious part of the curse, and it is part and parcel of the curse, is that "dying you shall die." Adam and Eve, and all their offspring, will senescence and die because of the curse.

    Jewish and Christian theology is unanimous in believing that Messiah will come prior to the rescinding of the death sentence (the sentence that reveals that particular element of the curse) hanging over all mankind.

    Noah did not rescind death. We are not yet immortal. Messiah has not been revealed to the world. The world is still under the curse.



    John
     
  19. John D. Brey

    John D. Brey Well-Known Member

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    And I stated that in your lack of care concerning Martin Luther, you're unaware that what you consider my misrepresentation of Jewish interpretation is founded in Christian orthodoxy (Martin Luther) such that while I care a great deal for Jewish thought, your lack of concern for Christian thought has you thinking genuine Christian thought (you know not of, nor care to know, i.e., Luther's thought) should be banned from the Forum.

    It wouldn't surprise me in the least if the Forum agreed with you. We live in treacherous times. But keep your head up. Messiah's conductor on a slow train coming round the bend. We, you and me, will converse on better terms and in a better world very soon. . . Thank you for the opportunity and motivation to research Midrash Tanchuma 11 in more depth.



    John
     
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