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THE TALMUD.
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BY H. 0. OXONIENSIS: A TALMUDIST OF TALMUDISTS.

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INTRODUCTION. (Continued from page 555 of the Volume for 1873.) I said that Mr. Deutsch constantly respect of the lighter or more managecontradicted himself, and so he did; able works on Rabbinical laws. The but his admirers were so enraptured reviewer found Bruck, Buxtorf, Chi. by his superfine phrases and well arini, El Edzardo, Fürst, Grætz, Jost, rounded sentences that fluent hyper- Pinner, Wolfius, Zunz, more practi. bolical rhetoric took, in their minds, cable to his proficiency, and he drew the place of reason and sense. In- his materials from them, without stead of giving us the promised sum- however making the best use of them, mary of the laws of the Talmud- as the random rhapsodies about the which he might easily have done, if Mishnah and the GEMARA, the Halahe had been a proficient in Hebrew,

and the HAGaDAH—which by giving an epitome either of came upon Mr. Grove “as a revelaMaimonides' YAD HACHAZAKAH, or tion ”-and the Midrash abundantly Rabbi Joseph Karo's Arbaah Tooreem, prove. I do not intend to follow both works respectively consist of a him, at present, in his haphazard digest of the laws scattered over Tal- statements respecting those works; I mud--he introduced a factious, face- shall give the readers of the HEBREW tious, fictitious dissertation on the CHRISTIAN WITNESS AND PROPHETIC Talmud, based on the slenderest INVESTIGATOR, an opportunity of judg. matters of fact, in the following ing of Mr. Deutsch's proficiency in terms:

the subjects which he treats of, when “When we speak of the Talmud as a I come to deal with the Talmud from legal code, we trust we shall not be under. the Talmud. All I think necessary stood too literally. It resembles about as

at present, is to enter my solemn promuch what we generally understand by

test against his meddling with the that name as a primeval forest resembles a Dutch garden.

New Testament, and insinuating his “Nothing indeed can equal the state of strictures upon it; couched, moreutter amazement into which the modern over, in such terms, as if he had been investigator finds himself plunged at the a Christian.

For this purpose, I first sight of these luxurious talmudical

shall quote here the concluding rewildernesses. Schooled in the harmonis.

marks of his lucubrations on the ing, methodising systems of the Westsystems that condense, and arrange, and

Mishnah, and take the liberty to classify, and give everything its fitting make such strictures as, in my opiplace and its fitting position in that place nion, his observations call for. --he feels almost stupified here. The

Thus wrote Mr. Deutsch on pages language, the style, the method, the very sequence (a sequence that often appears as

437-8, of the Quarterly Review, No. logical as our dreams), the amazingly

246:varied nature of these things-everything seems tangled, confused, chaotic."

“Before leaving this period of Mish. Could the writer possibly have

nic development, we have yet to speak of one

or two things. This period known the works of Maimonides and

is the one in which Christianity arose ; Karo? If he did, why ignore them? and it may be as well to touch here upon Both those laborious and indefatiga

the relation between Christianity and the ble authors have harmonised, metho

Talmud-a subject much discussed of late.

Were not the whole of our general views dised, condensed, arranged, classified,

on the difference between Judaism and and given everything its fitting place

Christianity greatly confused, people would and its fitting position in that place.. certainly not be so very much surprised at The conviction forces itself upon me, the striking parallels of dogma and parable, that the essayist on the Talmud in

of allegory and proverb, exhibited by the the Quarterly was not only lamen

Gospel and the Talmudical writings. The

New Testament, written, as Lightfoot has tably superficial as regards the Babel

it, ' among Jews, by Jews, for Jews,' canand chaotic work itself, but, also in not but speak the language of the time

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both as to form and, broadly speaking, as • • Six hundred and thirteen injunctions,' to contents. There are many more vital says the Talmud, was Moses instructed points of contact between the New Testa- to give to the people. David reduced them ment and the Talmud than divines yet all to eleven, in the fifteenth Psalm: Lord, seem fully to realise ; for such terms as who shall abide in Thy tabernacle, who * Redemption,' Baptism,' • Grace,'' Faith,' shall dwell on Thy holy hill? He that Salvation,'• Regeneration,'. Son of Man,' walketh uprightly,' &c. . Son of God,'' Kingdom of Heaven,' were * The Prophet Isaiah reduced them to not, as we are apt to think, invented by six (xxxiii. 15):– He that walketh righChristianity, but were household words of teously,' &c. Talmudical Judaism, to which Christianity "The Prophet Micah reduced them to gave a higher and purer meaning. No three (vi. 8): · What doth the Lord reless loud and bitter in the Talmud are quire of thee but to do justly, and to love the protests against ' lip-serving,' against mercy, and to walk humbly with thy God?' *making the law a burden to the people,' " Isaiah once more reduced them to two against 'laws that hang on hairs,' against lvi. 1) :-Keep ye judgment and do justice.' • Priests and Pharisees. The fundamental Amos (v.4) reduced them all to one :mysteries of the new faith are matters Seek ye Me, and ye shall live.' totally apart; but the Ethics in both are, * • But lest it might be supposed from in their broad outlines, identical. That this that God could be found in the fulfil. grand dictum, 'Do unto others as thou ment of His whole law only, Habakkuk wouldest be done by,' against which Kant said (ii. 4) :The just shall live by his declared himself energetically from a philo- Faith." sophical point of view, is quoted by Hillel, the President, at whose death Jesus was

Any one who is conversant with ten years of age, not as anything new, but

the simple, sublime, coherent, terse as an old and well-known dictum that style of the New Testament, and comprised the whole Law.' The most bears in mind the Essayist's own demonstrous mistake has ever been our mixing up, in the first instance, single indi.

scription of the“ luxuriant talmudical

the viduals, or classes, with a whole people,

wilderness ”—“the language, and next, our confounding the Judaism of style, the method, the very sequence the time of Christ with that of the time of things (a sequence that often apof the Wilderness, of the Judges, or even pears as logical as our dreams), the of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. The Judaism of the time of Christ (to which that

amazingly, varied nature of these of our days, owing principally to the Tal.

things-everything seems tangled, mud, stands very near), and that of the

confused, chaotic" — would never Pentateuch, are as like each other as our think of comparing one with the England is like that of William Rufus, or the other, except for the purpose of pointGreece of Plato like that of the Argonauts. ing out, as I intend doing, in the It is the glory of Christianity to have carried those golden germs, hidden in the

course of my Essays, the use which schools and among the silent community'

some of the better sort of the Rabbis of the learned, into the market of Hu- have made of certain dicta in the manity. It has communicated that • King- Gospels, Epistles, and the Revelation, dom of Heaven,' of which the Talmud is

and the way which the “ baser sort full from the first page to the last, to the herd, even to the lepers. The fruits that

abused the same. Had Mr. Deutsch have sprung from this through the wide

made the original of the Old Testaworld we need not here consider. But the ment a subject of serious and solemn misconception, as if to a God of Vengeance study, he would have known that had suddenly succeeded a God of Love, such terms as 'Redemption,' Bapcannot be too often protested against.

Salvation,' Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself: tism,' 'Grace,' “Faith, is a precept of the Old Testament, as our

Son of Man,' Son of God,' 'kingSaviour Himself taught His disciples. dom of Heaven,'” were of frequent The Law,' as we have seen and shall fur- occurrence in the writings of Moses ther see, was developed to a marvellously

and the Prophets, which our Lord and, perhaps, oppressively minute pitch ; but only as a regulator of outward actions.

and His Apostles elucidated. A The faith of the heart'--the dogma pro

higher and a purer meaning they minently dwelt upon by Paul-was a thing could not give to those terms, except that stood much higher with the Pharisees it be to rescue them from the degrathan this outward law. It was a thing,

dation and profanation to which they said, not to be commanded by any ordinance ; yet was greater than all.

some of the false Jewish teachers and * Everything, is one of their adages, 'is pastors, even in the times of the in the hands of Heaven, save the fear of Prophets, have reduced those terms. Heaven.'

Let me just quote a couple of pas

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sages from the Old Testament, in il. lustration of my meaning:-“For the Lord hath poured out upon you the spirit of deep sleep, and hath closed your eyes: the prophets and your rulers, the seers hath He covered. And the vision of all is become unto you as the words of a book that is sealed, which men deliver to one that is learned, saying, Read this, I pray thee: and he saith, I cannot; for it is sealed: and the book is delivered to him that is not learned, saying, Read this, I pray thee: and he saith, I am not learned. Wherefore the Lord said, Forasmuch as this people draw near me with their mouth, and with their lips do honour me, but have removed their heart far from me, and their fear toward me is taught by the precept of men: therefore, behold, I will proceed to do a marvellous work among this people, even a marvellous work and a wonder: for the wisdom of their wise men shall perish, and the understanding of their prudent men shall be hid." “ Then came certain of the elders of Israel unto me, and sat before me.. And the word of the Lord came unto me, saying, Son of man, these men have set up their idols in their heart, and put the stumblingblock of their iniquity before their face: should I be inquired of at all by them ? Therefore speak unto them, and say unto them, Thus saith the Lord God; Every man of the house of Israel that setteth up his idols in his heart, and putteth the stumblingblock of his iniquity before his face, and cometh to the prophet, I the Lord will answer him that cometh according to the multitude of his idols."| I might multiply passages to the same effect. The above, however, will suffice to show how early some of our false teachers, elders, and pastors, have made the word of God, -which teems with promises and offers of “Redemption," “Grace," "Faith,"

• ," “ Salvation," "Regeneration,”-of none effect.

When the reviewer wrote the words “the fundamental mysteries of the new faith,” he adopted the slip-slop phraseology of the unthinking and il-informed. The eleventh chapter

Isa. xxix. 10-14. + Ezek. xiv. 1-4.

of the Epistle to the Hebrews demonstrates that THE FAITH which Jesus and His Apostles preached was that of Abel, Enoch, Noah, Abraham, Joseph, and all the saints of the Old Testament, as well as of those of the New. When he asserted “that the Ethics in both [in the New Testament and in the Talmud) are, in their broad outlines, identical," he wrote at ran. dom. The panegyric, "It is the glory of Christianity to have carried those golden germs hidden in the schools and among the silent community' of the learned, into the market of humanity," was a sinister compli. ment, inasmuch as it implied that Christianity was indebted to the Tal. mud for its Ethics. The statement that “It (Christianity) has communicated that 'kingdom of heaven,' of which the Talmud is full from the first page to the last," is as absurd as it is untrue. But what can one expect from an unbelieving Jew, who, for the sake of beguiling silly professing Christians, identifies himself, for the nonce, with them, and wrote of the Redeemer of the world, as “our Saviour?” The quotation about the gradual reduction of the “six hundred and thirteen injunctions which the reviewer gave-as he had done with his “ weird story”-garbled and minus reference to vol., fol., and col., is not the unanimous teaching of the Rabbis, but the discourse of an individual Rabbi-most probably a Christian. Moses MargoLIOUTH, when an undergraduate at Trinity College, Dublin, had occasion to publish a brochure, entitled “IsRAEL'S ORDINANCES EXAMINED;" he gave the quotation more accurately, for he could read the original, by the token that he told his readers where the passage was to be found, even Talmud, vol. Maccoth, fol. 24, col. 1. It begins thus :

“Rabbi Simlai expounded that six hun. dred and thirteen precepts were communi. cated unto Moses; three hundred and sixtyfive negative, according to the number of the days of the sun; and two hundred and fortyeight affirmative, to accord with the members of a man. David came and reduced them to eleven: for it is written,

+ See “The Fundamental Principles of Modern Judaism Investigated," by the same author, p. 116.

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A Psalm of David :' 'Lord, who shall which the reviewer constantly exabide in Thy tabernacle? Who shall dwell hibited must have had a deluding in Thy holy hill? (1.) He that walketh

effect upon his confiding admirers, uprightly, (2.) and worketh righteousness,

who looked upon him as an oracle, (3.) and speaketh the truth in his heart. (4.) He that backbiteth not with his tongue, or a revealer of secrets, to which they (5.) nor doeth evil to his neighbour, (6.) had no access; but upon those who nor taketh up a reproach against his knew the man and his real attainneighbour. (7.) In whose eyes & vile per

ments in Oriental lore, the effrontery son is contemned ; (8.) but he honoureth them that fear the Lord. (9.) He that

produced a different effect, that of sweareth to his own hurt and changeth

utter amazement at the writer's Dot. (10.) He that putteth not out his audacity. For instance, what can money to usury, (11.) nor taketh reward

be more daring and flippant than against the innocent. He that doeth those

his assertions respecting the “ Phathings shall never be moved.' (Psa. xv.)

risees.” The following are his lucuThen came Isaiah and reduced them to six; for it is written, (1.) 'He that walk

brations about them :eth righteously, (2.) and speaketh up

“Regarding these ‘Pharisees' or 'Separightly; (3.) he that despiseth the gain of

ratists' themselves, no greater or more oppressions, (4.) that shaketh his hands

antiquated mistake exists than that of from holding of bribes, (5.) that stoppeth

their being a mere 'sect' hated by Christ his ears from hearing of blood, (6.) and

and the Apostles. They were not a sect,shotteth his eyes from seeing evil.' (Isa. xxxii. 15.). Micah came and reduced

any more than Roman Catholics form a

'sect ' in Rome, or Protestants a 'sect'in them to three ; for it is written, 'He hath showed thee, O man, what is good ; and

England, -and they were not hated so inwhat doth the Lord require of thee, (1.)

discriminately by Christ and the Apostles

as would at first sight appear from some but to do justly, (2.) and to love mercy,

sweeping passages in the New Testament. (3.) and to walk humbly with thy God ?"

For the Pharisees,' as such, were at that (Bicah vi. 8.)... Then Isaiah again re

time-Josephus notwithstanding-simply duced them to two; for it is written, . Thus

the people, in contradistinction to the saith the Lord, (1) Keep ye judgment, (2)

leaven of Herod.' Those upper classes' and do justice.' (Isa. lvi. 1.) ... Then

of freethinking Sadducees who, in oppocame Amos and reduced them to one ; for

sition to the Pharisees, insisted on the it is written, . Thus saith the Lord unto the house of Israel, Seek ye me, and ye shall

paramount importance of sacrifices and

tithes of which they were the receivers, live.' (Amos v. 4.) . . . Likewise did Ha

but denied the Immortality of the Soul, bakkuk come and reduce them to one ; for

are barely mentioned in the New Testait is written, But the just shall live by

ment. The wholesale denunciations of his faith.' (Hab. ii. 4.)"

• Scribes and Pharisees' have been greatly The portions which Margoliouth

misunderstood.” omitted consist of unmeaning inter- Here the writer not only sets at polations by a baser sort of Rabbis defiance the Apostles and their conthan Simläi, which render the dis

temporary, Josephus, but also our course of the latter “tangled, con- blessed Lord Himself, whom he condefused, chaotic.” Here then is another scended in the previous page to aposproof of Mr. Deutsch's superficiality, trophise as “our Saviour." Those deand that the essayist of the Quarterly, clarations in the New Testament "reon the Talmud, was the last man garding these Pharisees" which do from whom such wonders about the not commend themselves to him, as Talmud was to be expected, as Mr. favourable to his clients, he describes Grove anticipated. I afford that as sweeping passages. I dare say the gentleman, as well as every one of eight woes denounced by the most your readers, facilities for testing the merciful One against “these Phariquestion at issue between himself, sees" must have swept like a hurriand the writer in the Edinburgh cane of wrath over the cowed spirits Review. The references which I of those craven and coward murderfurnish, enable every one, not ac- ers, whose hearts were set upon the quainted with Rabbinical lore, to ap- destruction of the Holy and Just ply to one of the chief Rabbis in this One, in His defenceless state. Let me country, for translations of the quota- just give the connecting link between tions in question.

those denunciations, and some of the It is true that the bold effrontery previous events.

(To be continued.)

66

Notes.

MISSIONARY WORK AMONGST THE baneful effects upon both. To this JEWS IN THE PROVINCES.

cause must be attributed, in the first

instance, the rejection of the Gospel One of the ablest of the missionaries

by the Jews, and their denial that of the “London Society for Pro- Christianity is the necessary sequel moting Christianity Amongst the to the Mosaic economy, and the Jews,” the Rev. M. Wolkenberg has further development of the Divine been engaged, in the course of the counsels for the salvation of manlast two months of the past year, in kind. Ths consequences of this reendeavouring to stir up an interest

pudiation of every connection bein the souls of Jews and Gentiles in tweeu the law and the Gospel are, the great truths of the Gospel of the to the reflecting Israelite, who still grace of God. He was privileged to clings to the faith of his forefathers, preach to crowded congregations, simply appalling. To him everyconsisting of believers, professors, thing in the Old Testament is inand unbelievers, at Portsea, Exeter, volved in impenetrable mystery. He Plymouth, Swansea, Cardiff, and

cannot give himself a satisfactory Bristol. In each place the interest reason why God, who is not a rewhich was excited was of a vital

specter of persons, should have character, and the seed thus sown heaped innumerable benefits upon will no doubt, in God's own good

his people, and have consigned all time, bring forth fruit to the praise other nations to moral darkness who and glory of the Redeemer's most

are equally the work of His hands, holy name. In our last issue we

and, therefore, ought to be no less gave a bird's eye view of our brother's

objects of His compassion. His persermon at St. John's Church, Port

plexity increases when he reflects, sea, as it was reported in the Ports

that in spite of the divine preference mouth Times of November 19. We

of this people, they are. and always now give the epitomes of his dis

have been, in everything which concourses which he delivered at Cardiff

stitutes the happiness of a nation, far and Bristol, as furnished in the pro- inferior to the Gentiles who received vincial local papers. The following no such favours. He has no Scripis from the South Wales Daily News tural ways of access to his God, for of the 9th ult.:-

the Temple services are no more, and sacrificial atonements are impracticable. Last, but not least, if

religion is to be of any practical use, “ SERMON TO JEWS AND GENTILES.- it should open a clear prospect beOn Sunday evening last a sermon yond the grave, and deprive death was preached by the Rev. M. Wol- of its terrors. And yet, apart from kenberg to Jews and Gentiles, at St. the Gospel, there is no direct and John's Church, Cardiff. The atten- explicit reference in Moses and the dance was very large, and a consi- Prophets to a future state of existderable number of Israelites were ence, and the few passages that present. The subject was 'The treat of it are so obscure and ambiLight of Israel reflected upon the guous that their meaning has been Gentiles. Taking his text from disputed and explained away by JewIsaiah lx. 2-3, the rev. gentleman ish Commentators themselves. On said : The close and intimate rela- the other hand, from the Jewish tions subsisting between the Jewish natural rejection of Jesus, Christians people and the Christian Church have declared the hasty and erroneous have been either ignored or misun- inference that the Gentile Church derstood in all ages; and this misap- has taken altogether the place of prehension has proved a fruitful Israel. They plainly overlook the source of evil, and produced the most Apostle's assertion, that the Gentiles

THE LIGHT OF ISRAEL REFLECTED ON

THE GENTILES.

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