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Topic: The Generation of Vipers

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The Generation of Vipers

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Y'shua and John Baptist both used this phrase but no one knows where it came from.  It does not come from the Essenes or Nazarines (let alone India as one retard says).



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That's because Y'shua was apprenticed out to his Uncle Joseph of Arimathea who was a Pharasee. The material presented below about the Sadducees and Essenes probably also applies to the Sect of the Nazarenes of the 1st Century.

The Pharisees, Hasidim and the Early Judahite Ecclesia

"Jesus was closer to the world of the Pharisees than to that of the Sadducees or Essenes. He certainly did not share beliefs, religious outlook or social views with the Sadducees, and he would have had little in common with the isolationist views of the Essenes and their overt hostility toward anyone who did not accept their stringent views on ritual purity. Jesus' education and understanding of Torah was in agreement with the Pharisees' norms, based on both the Written and Oral Torah (Lk. 2:41-47). He even taught his disciples and followers: 'The scribes and the Pharisees sit in the seat of Moses, so be careful to observe everything they tell you' (Matt.23:2-3). The expression 'seat of Moses' is also found in midrashic literature and such seats have actually been found in ancient synagogues. Jesus contributed the required annual half-shekel for the Temple, an innovation of the Pharisees or their predecessors. This innovation was accepted by neither Sadducees nor Essenes."

Furthermore, we know that Y'shua went into the synagogues frequently, to worship, "as his custom was" (Luke 4:16). It is not known whether the Sadducees took part in synagogue services, but considering their antipathy toward the Pharisees it is unlikely, since the synagogues were another innovation of the Pharisees and all known synagogues were Pharisaic in origin and practice.

Says Shmuel Safrai regarding Y'shua's custom in this respect, "Jesus, however, customarily went to the synagogue on the Sabbath, to read from the Torah and the Prophets and afterwards to teach from them. All of this is in keeping with halachah and the practice described in tannaic literature. Jesus' method of public instruction was also in keeping with Pharasaic practice. He employed educational techniques such as the parable that were common only in Pharisaic teaching, and some of the basic themes in his teaching such as 'kingdom of heaven' and 'repentance,' are found only in the teachings of the sages. The prayers of Jesus and the motifs they contain are likewise similar to those of the sages."

However, as Shmuel Safrai points out, the world of Pharisaism was not a monolithic world. It was not a huge united rock-like structure, but was rent by cracks and splits. "The many differences between the house of Hillel and the house of Shammai pertained not only to specific details in halachah, but also to the basic underlying principles of halachah and religious and social thought."

Also preaching and teaching during the time of the Messiah and also coming from the region of Galilee, were the religious pietists and worshipers known as the "Hasidim." In fact, says Shmuel Safrai, all the references to the Hasidim in the Second Temple Period relate to the Galilee. Although Jerusalem Pharisees tended to look down their long noses at Galileans and others away from Jerusalem, in the period before and immediately after the destruction of the Second Temple in 70 A.D., the Galilee was noted as a place where Torah was taught in public and in many respects the moral and religious behavior of the Galileans was on a higher level than that of the Judeans. Rabbinic literature refers to Galilean sages teaching in their academies and in the open air of the Galilee, much as Yeshua the Messiah did. Says Safrai, "Jesus, who was quite closer to the Hasidim and perhaps even involved with some of them, does not therefore reflect Galilean boorishness or ignorance, but rather the dynamism and ongoing creativity of Jewish life in Galilee."

Generally, it was the Hasidic element within the Pharisaical movement to which the people looked when they desired prayer for healing, or exorcism of evil spirits. They had more faith in the prayers of a Galilean Hasid, than in a Jerusalem priest.

The Hasidim, also like Yeshua, stressed the qualities and advantages spiritually of poverty. In Hasidic thought, poverty is the ideal state that leads to all other positive and praiseworthy qualities of character.

However, Yeshua also had much more in common with some of the Pharisees than with others. A careful investigation of the teachings of the schools of Shammai and Hillel shows that in many respects, the school of Hillel came closer to the teachings of the Messiah.


by Hope of Israel Ministries Staff

www.hope-of-israel.org/hasidim.htm

 

Hillel the Elder

The Gospels also refer to at least one Pharisee who supported and defended Jesus, while none of the Pharisees who persecuted him are named. Nicodemus is named as the Pharisee and Sanhedrin member who defended Jesus when the council considered arresting him. (John 7:50ff) Joseph of Arimathea, though not identified specifically as a Pharisee, is named as a Sanhedrin member (Mark 15:43) and a secret disciple (John 19:38) of Jesus. The Book of Acts portrays the grandson of Hillel, Gamaliel, as a Sanhedrin leader who saved the disciples from death. (Acts 5:34) The same Gamaliel is mentioned in Acts as the former teacher of the Apostle Paul (Acts 22:3).

https://www.newworldencyclopedia.org/entry/Hillel_the_Elder



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We are going to see that Yeshua’s statements against the Pharisees (primarily against Beit Shammai) were very common. He will use the same phrases that everyone else used when criticizing these Pharisees from Shammai. Calling them a “brood of vipers” and saying “Woe to you” was used long before and after Yeshua came along in other Jewish writings. In the book “Jesus the Pharisee” by Rabbi Harvey Falk, he makes this point. It is a great resource for material on what was going on in the First Century.

whitefeatherministries.com/torah-new-testament-foundations-sanhedrin-beit-hillel-beit-shammai-part-2/



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Was Matthew Anti-Semitic?

Dosa ben Harkinas, a famous sage of the period, once called his own brother a 'first -born of satan' because he sided with Bet Shammai in a decision. (see Yevamot 16a, Talmud) It was also said, (Berakhot 11a and Berakhot 1:4-- Yerushalmi) that 'he who observes the teachings of bet Shammai deserves death'. When Rabbi Tarfon acted in accord in Bet Shammai in one case, the Sages told him (Mishnah, Berakhot 10b) that he deserved to be killed.

Bet Shammai was involved in an incident, about 40-50 years before Jesus' time, in which many followers of Hillel were killed. These victims were called 'prophets', or worthy of the divine spirit resting upon them (see Sukkah 28a and Bava Batra 134a, Talmud). They are also implicated in the murder of a Zecharaiah ben Berechia in the temple (see Josephus, Wars, 4:335), as instigators of the zealots, who committed the murder.

Thus, the condemnation in Matt. 23 of these Pharisees (of Bet Shamma), for the murders which their fathers (literally) did, including the blood of Zechairah ben Berechia, all fits into place.

There are more examples, ie, of Bet Shammai grouping to confront Hillel (Betsah 20a) and his followers (Betsah 20b) in the temple, the way Jesus was later confronted. Falk notes that there is no record of Bet Hillel acting in such a manner.

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