To this day, when the rabbis are asked about Jesus, they always refer to a story tractate Sota 47 in the Jerusalem Talmud, where it is says that Jesus was a disciple of the President of the Sanhedrin, Joshua ben Perahiah. The story is about how Jesus was a bad, lustful, unkind yeshiva student who fell into idol worship and led others astray. But there are a number of reasons why we can be certain that this story has been fabricated – including an embarrassing oxymoron. The Talmud really shot itself in the foot when trying to put the dirt on Jesus.
Here are the words of Rabbi Pinhas Badush quoting the story:
“Jesus was a disciple of Rabbi Joshua ben Perahiah… At the beginning of his way, he was an academy student. One day, the rabbi and his disciples stayed in a certain Inn and the rabbi praised and said: ‘How beautiful is this hostel’. Jesus, with his improper thoughts, thought that the rabbi meant the lady Innkeeper is beautiful, and said to his rabbi: ‘The woman is not beautiful, she has crossed eyes.’ When the rabbi heard this, he was very angry, he said to Jesus: ‘’Wretch, for it is said in the Law ‘not to follow after your own heart and your own eyes’, he banished him and removed him from the academy. But Jesus came before him many times and asked forgiveness. But the rabbi would not forgive him, until one day, he decided in his heart that ‘if he (Jesus) will come today, I will forgive him.’ Jesus said to himself: ‘If the rabbi wouldn’t forgive me today, I will go and worship idols.’ When he came to ask forgiveness, the rabbi was in the middle of reciting the Shema prayer, so he signaled Jesus with his hand to wait, but Jesus thought that the rabbi told him to go away, so he went, and what was done was done.”
Another example are the words of Rabbi Benjamin Shmuel:
“We’re talking about Jesus, the disciple of Rabbi Joshua ben Perahiah… His story begins according the Talmud in that he had his eyes on immodest things, and from there fell into idolatry, did sorcery, enticed and caused the people of Israel to sin.”
Where is the problem, you wonder? As we know, the life and ministry of Jesus occurred during the first century AD, and any historian will agree on this. On the other hand, according to the Talmud’s story, his rabbi was Joshua ben Perahiah, who lived during the Zugot (“pairs”) period, the time of the King Alexander Yannai… which was about 100-200 years before Jesus’ birth. Do you see the contradiction in the Talmud?
In addition, tractate Sota was composed around the fifth century AD, hundreds of years after Jesus’ time. Whoever composed tractate Sota and made up this story about Jesus was clearly not very good at history and confused the dates. Would you be willing to seriously consider a book that claimed that Baruch Spinoza groomed and taught Rabbi Ovadiah Yosef while he wrote the book “Ethica”? With the same seriousness you should also address the Talmud’s claims about Jesus, who, by the way, was never an academy student and never had a rabbi.
To conclude, we see more evidence that the Talmud contradicts itself, that the stories in the Talmud about Jesus are false and were meant to incite hatred against him. In contrast to what the rabbis teach, the Talmud is not the Word of God, since God would not allow this kind of drastic contradiction.
If you really want to know the truth about Jesus, you have to go straight to the original source and not to things that were written about him hundreds of years later. For example, if we want to learn about the life of King David, we would go to the Old Testament. In the same way, whoever wants to learn about Jesus should read the New Testament. Don’t be afraid to read the New Testament, don’t let your rabbi think for you and hide the truth from you. Don’t let prejudice prevent you from getting to know the Jewish Messiah, Jesus. The rabbis might have made sure that you will not be able to purchase the New Testament in Israel’s bookstores but we will be glad to send you a copy or you can read it online at our New Testament website.
Eitan's professional background is in "Multimedia Design and Visual Communications" working for various secular advertising agencies in Tel-Aviv.
Eitan is the producer of:
1) I MET MESSIAH (Jewish testimonials).
2) Answering Rabbinic Objections to Jesus.
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