God gave Jesus a mission, and for that mission, Jesus was anointed with the power to speak YHVH’s words with YHVH’s authority (Deuteronomy 18:18-19, Acts 3:22, 7:37, John 12:49, 14:10). The singular goal of Jesus’ mission was to redeem as many human as are willing, making them worshipers of YHVH and fit for the Kingdom of Heaven. Jesus does that by calling on them to submit to YHVH divine authority as their supreme authority. However, Jesus’ mission required a two pronged effort.
The first prong of Jesus’ effort was to fix what was broken with Judaism. Jesus said, “I was not sent except to the lost sheep of the house of Israel.” (Matthew 15:24). And when he sent out is disciple to preach and teach he commanded them, saying: “Do not go into the way of the Gentiles, and do not enter a city of the Samaritans. 6 But go rather to the lost sheep of the house of Israel.” (Matthew 10:6). So what was wrong with Judaism that had to be fixed, and why were the people of Israel like “lost sheep”? They were ‘lost sheep’ because they were without shepherds who cared for the flock. So, it was paramount the Jesus accomplish the first part of his mission, and fix Judaism, before any efforts were made on the second prong of the effort.
Jesus’ mission was critical because long before Jesus was even born, or begotten, the world had only one small group of people to whom YHVH had revealed Himself, and they were entrusted with the oracles of God, i.e., His eternal word – and that small group of people were supposed to be a light unto the nations, and then share YHVH’s eternal word with the other nations - that small group, of course, were the Jews. There was only one religion which was based on YHVH’s eternal word, (the law and the Prophets), and that religion was a Biblical form of Judaism. But, unfortunately, Judaism had become toxic over the centuries and failed to be a light to the nations, and neither was YHVH’s word shared with the other nations. In Matthew chapter 23 Jesus issued a number of woes against the religious leaders (that shepherds of God’s flock) because of their toxic behavior.
The small group of Jewish people lost focus on their mission, because their leaders became corrupt and they made their religion distasteful to the Jewish people and uninviting for the Gentiles. Matthew 23:23 pretty well sums up what the problem was, “But woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you shut up the kingdom of heaven against men; for you neither go in yourselves, nor do you allow those who are entering to go in”. The religion was so corrupted that even the religious leaders’ worship was in vain (Matthew 15:9, Mark 7:7-8) and that corrupted religious system offered little or no hope for the lost, the confused, the seekers, or the disenfranchised. And there was no outreach to the Gentiles, whom the religious leaders considered ‘unclean’ and unworthy of God’s love and mercy. That’s why Jesus had to fix Judaism first.
Jesus did fixed Judaism with his many teaching, preaching, parables, stories, commands, woes and rebukes which helped shape Judaism into what it is today. Jesus’ revelation of YHVH’s true character, His will, His mercy, His love and principals, were the needed corrections to the religious thinking and understanding, and those teachings made their way into Jewish teachings, practices and beliefs. Today, Judaism again aspires for personal humility and righteousness, and welcomes in repentant sinners and the converts, it has even called itself a religion based on love, so now they are inviting and inclusive in their worship of YHVH God. Today’s Judaism acknowledges that while obedience to YHVH is required, love is the foundation for that relationship, that is; the love for God and love for mankind, and the Jewish prayer book (siddur) speaks much about YHVH’s grace. I can’t imagine the ancient Scribes and Pharisees which we read about in the Gospels ever saying anything of that nature.
While today’s Jews may never admit, or understand that Jesus’ influence changed Judaism for the good. Today, according to what we read in the Scriptures, the Jews practice a religion that can lead them to salvation – that is, Judaism does all that Jesus says is necessary to inherit eternal life. They keep the ‘law and the Prophets’ which Jesus commanded, and they do worship YHVH alone as Jesus commanded, and yet, Christianity rejects both of those two commands.
Then the second prong of Jesus’ mission was to gather the Gentiles into that newly reformed Judaism. (“And other sheep I have which are not of this fold; them also I must bring, and they will hear my voice; and there will be one flock and one shepherd”). Romans 11:17-23 tells us that Gentiles who keep Jesus’ teachings are ‘grafted into Israel’ and Ephesians 2:11-13 tells us that believing Gentiles are now part of the “commonwealth of Israel”. The early Christians, before the corruption on the Christian Church, were one flock with the Jews and they worshiped together in the Jewish synagogues.
When we hear Jesus’ voice and keep his teachings, which commands us to keep YHVH’s ‘law and the Prophets’ (Matthew 5:17-20) and worship YHVH alone (Matthew 4:10), we become a part of Israel. and by submitting to YHVH’s divine authority, as our supreme authority, we will be shaped into the type of characters that YHVH is searching for in order to populate His future eternal Kingdom – the Father (YHVH God) seeks true worshipers (John 4:23).
When Jesus said ‘salvation is of the Jews’, (John 4:22) he didn’t mean that all Jews are saved, nor did he mean that we can be saved just by being a Jew, but rather only Judaism practices what Jesus said it takes for us to be saved. We can only be saved when we submit to YHVH’s and Jesus’ authority, and they both told us to keep the ‘law and the Prophets’ (Matthew 5:17-19) as the Jews do, and to worship YHVH alone (Matthew 4:10) as the Jews do. – That’s why ‘salvation is of the Jews’. Revelation 14:12, “Here is the patience of the saints; here are those who keep the commandments of YHVH and the faith of Jesus.” The saints of God (His holy ones) are those who keep His commandments of God (Submit to His authority) and practice the faith of Jesus, Biblical Judaism.
Jesus was not a Christian, Jesus was a Jew, and he practiced Biblical Judaism in a Jewish synagogue (Matthew 4:23), he kept all of YHVH’s commandments (John 15:10), including the YHVH’s holy feast days (Matthew 26:17). Jesus instructed us on how to be one of the redeemed; we are to ‘follow the Lamb wherever he goes’ (Revelation 14:4), that is we are to hear Jesus’ voice and follow him (John 8:51, 10:27-28, Acts 3:23), we are to keep the Jewish faith of Jesus (Revelation 14:12), we are to walk as he walked (1John 2:6), and Jesus said we are to keep YHVH Old Testament ‘law and the Prophets’ – for “salvation is of the Jews” (John 4:22).
Jesus preached against Jewish religious traditions when they were used to negate YHVH’s word. Religious traditions are not necessarily bad; we read in the Gospels that Jesus himself kept some of the Jewish traditions himself. We know that Jesus celebrated Chanukah (John 10:22-23) according to Jewish traditions and observed Passover Seder meals (Luke 2:41, Matthew 26:17-30) according to Jewish traditions. But, Jesus warned us not to forsake any of YHVH’s Torah laws in order to keep the manmade traditions (Luke 5:33-39), that will cause our worship to be in vain (Matthew 15:9, Mark 7:7).
Jesus never instructed anyone to start ‘Christian Churches’, Jesus was born a Jew who was faithful to Judaism and died a Jew still faithful to Judaism. Jesus didn’t have a problem with Judaism, he embraced it and practiced it, but he did have a problem with the religious leaders who were perverting it.
Before Jesus died he told his disciples how to conduct their religious activities after he was gone. In Matthew 23:1-6 he told them to attend the Jewish synagogue and adhere to all the words of Moses, but he warned them not to do as the religious leaders, the Pharisees do. Jesus said they were ‘hypocrites and lawless’ (Matthew 23:23, 28). Jesus commanded us to practice Biblical based Judaism, by keeping YHVH’s ‘Law and the Prophets’, and the words of Moses.
The early Christian community worshipped in Jewish synagogues, and that worked well as long as the ‘Christians’ kept Jesus’ words. But when they adopted the Trinity, and Paul’s lawless theology, there were disputes with the faithful Jews, and finally the lawless ‘Christians’ broke off into Churches, where they continued to degrade over the centuries with the adoption of more, and more manmade laws, ruled, creed, bull, writings and doctrines. The Christian Church turned out to be a big theological disaster, one which would cause Jesus to weep.
However the Christian Church’s lawless doctrines suited people who are seeking an easy route to heaven and pleasing religion with lawless doctrines, and that helped the Church grow to a billion people. We read in the Scriptures and people tend to look for preachers to say what their itching ears want to hear. 2Timothy 4:3, “For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine, but according to their own desires, because they have itching ears, they will heap up for themselves teachers”. So they are happy with the lawless message. Jeremiah 5:31a, “The prophets prophesy falsely, And the priests rule by their own power; And My people love to have it so.”
The Christian Church has many, many good people in it, who are eager to worship and serve God, but they are deceived. They are deceived in such as way that they practice lawlessness and thus dishonor the God, and Jesus, both whom they aim to serve.