1

I saw relatively less participation here from Jewish members then the Christian members of this site , crowdsourcing Q\A from two highly incompatible religions would sound heretical to both. The only connection Christians have with Jews is the OT. The OT itself is mostly of sacramental value to the Christians because the NT is supersedes the OT.Jews consider NT to be heretical Hence it would be a herculean task to achieve this feat unless any one side(probably Christians ) becomes exclusive contributors, which seems the case here. Even when I stumbled on this site I got a "Christian" feeling of the site equally surprised by the few (or just one ) highly humble Jew(s) who contributed to this site.

Hence, A general concern would be that the Jews risk their teachings to be shown in the light of NT to anyone who stumbles on this site, even if the other meta questions do say that this is not a "Christian" site , but ostensibly it clearly manifests itself as one.

The other question that arises from this is that the name "Biblical Hermeneutics" is misleading to the users who would stumble on this site via search engines, Ideally for the site to continue it should be renamed as either "Christian text Hermenuetics" or "Jewish text hermenuetics" ?

6
  • 1
    This question comes from my reading of the Misneh Torah and Talmud which prohibits a "Jew" to teach the scriptures to the Gentile(Christians). As well as the Jews consider the Christian pauline doctrine to be Avodah Zarah(Idolatry) which makes me wonder how this Q/A site could be compatible – bib Jul 1 '13 at 18:33
  • 1
    "The OT itself is mostly of sacramental value to the Christians because the NT is supersedes the OT" That is not true – Jack Douglas Jul 2 '13 at 8:39
  • It is true thanks to the pauline teachings, do you observe Kosher meat? The pauline wing does not even adhere to the 7 bni Noah laws far from the Torah laws – bib Jul 2 '13 at 8:40
  • 2
    @Ali It is not true. The OT is not superseded in Christianity and it's value is not diminished to "sacramental" (whatever that is). And we've already established that you haven't (at least as of a couple weeks ago) actually read Paul's teachings. I've asked you before to stop using that line until you actually do. – Caleb Jul 2 '13 at 8:53
  • 1
    @Caleb I also established that I did start to read the Pauline addendum to the bible but felt a total disconnect with what was mentioned in the gospel and OT. So if the OT is not of sacramental value do you observe Kosher meat? The pauline wing violates even the 7 bni Noah laws. Since you are a Mod you should not start offtopic argumets. – bib Jul 3 '13 at 2:33
6

This is a very interesting and important question, which I've worried over since the site began. My vision for the site is that it would be a place where everyone who cares about the Bible has a voice. One of my first meta-questions concerned a question of mine that excluded (at least in theory) any Jewish answers. I issued a challenge to ask more Tanakh questions. If we have one tag to talk about the Hebrew scripture, I would prefer it be called and not . I'd like to see our name change to Biblical Studies which explicitly includes scholars from all traditions. These proposals have received wide support from our current set of users.

You express concern with whether Jews should participate on a site like ours. I am also concerned. In fact, I put considerable thought into exactly that question on Mi Yodeya. As far as I can tell, there is no religious reason for Jews to not participate here. Further discussion of that point should be taken up on the site about Jewish teachings.

What I can speak to with authority is the position of the Hebrew scripture in Christianity. It is the promise that we believe is fulfilled in the person of Jesus. I know a lot of people (including Christians!) ignorantly assert that the Old Testament has been replaced by the New. But that's like saying a building replaced its foundation! We no longer have a Temple in which to offer sacrifice, but sacrifice was never an end in itself:

For I desire goodness, not sacrifice;
Obedience to God, rather than burnt offerings.
—Hosea 6:6 (NPJS)

Or to put it another way "sacrifices shmacrifices"!

The fact is, we respect each other's beliefs because they aren't that different than out own. Sure, Christians believe that Jews haven't finished reading the story and Jews believe that Christians jumped the gun on declaring the arrival of the hope of Israel. But when we get together to talk about the Bible, we have a lot to say before we start having serious disagreements.

As for the perception that our site is "Christian", I'm afraid that's a function of demographics. It turns out that new people who find our site are overwhelmingly Christian because the number of Christians is much higher than the number of Jews at the moment. Other people groups would be even better represented if they commonly searched for answers about the Bible on the internet. We are also beginning to address the imbalance.

In the meantime, I'm excited that you, as a Muslim, have decided to participate in our academic quest to understand the foundational documents of Western Civilization. Please recall that our primary goal is to learn from each other. We will not tolerate any attempt to drive a wedge between religious (or irreligious) traditions.

8
  • 1
    @Ali: Monotheism is neither here nor there on this site. The Trinity is neither here nor there either. What matters on this site is the text. If you'd like to ask a question about the text or answer one of our existing questions, please feel free. If you want to talk about Jewish or Christian doctrine, I recommend you consult those Stack Exchanges. – Jon Ericson Mod Jul 3 '13 at 3:16
  • asking question about text without meaning? are we doing a shallow linguistic analysis here ? From all the answers and questions here it seems a clear NO, there are many instances where a doctrine and dogma is also presented here with upvotes. – bib Jul 3 '13 at 3:22
  • 4
    @Ali: Please don't insult my intelligence or yours. You are, of course, free to do any analysis you please. However, you may not link to entire books trying to discredit Paul (or any other author) when the question was very focused on a single textual issue. I would also suggest you stop pretending to have knowledge that you clearly do not possess. (The later is not site policy, but just a bit of friendly advice.) – Jon Ericson Mod Jul 3 '13 at 3:39
  • 2
    @Ali: We tend to have a more lax environment on meta than we do on the main site. But that does not excuse you for being rude to people of different faiths. I have received an anonymous flag on a previous comment that tried to tell people of a different religion other than your own how to behave. I have removed the insensitive comment and I ask you to show better wisdom in the future. Thank you in advance for your cooperation. – Jon Ericson Mod Jul 3 '13 at 16:13
  • But why my first comment was deleted?' – bib Jul 3 '13 at 16:16
  • @Ali: Please see my previous comment. – Jon Ericson Mod Jul 3 '13 at 16:19
  • was that the first comment about violation of Monothiesm deleted? – bib Jul 3 '13 at 16:24
  • @Ali That is the comment that got deleted. There is only ONE deleted comment here (so far) and that was the one in which you were busy explaining why somebody of a different faith was living out their faith wrong. – Caleb Jul 3 '13 at 20:16

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .