Rabbi Riskin: Jesus and Messianism

Hello, fine Kineti readers. Hope you all had a great holiday, and also that you’re ready to enter a new (western, Gregorian) decade in a few days! Time flies.

As I got back on the computer after a few days of technical hiatus, I stumbled on a post detailing a video that is “causing alarm on Orthodox Jewish web sites”.

The video’s of the chief rabbi of the Israeli city of Efrat, an Orthodox Jew, speaking about Jesus and the hope in Messiah shared by both Jews and Jesus’ followers:



Here’s a snippet:

I was truly fascinated by the personality of Jesus, whom I refer to as rabbi Jesus, because I think he is, indeed, a model rabbi in many counts.

He lived the life of a Jewish rabbi, in Israel, at a very critical time in our history. And I've constantly come back to a study of his personality, and his teachings, which are very strongly rooted in Talmudic teachings, and I've come to the very obvious conclusion that Christians and Jews are the root and the branch.

Jesus emerged out of Jewish teachings and Jewish society. Jesus went on to present much of the fundament truths of the bible to the entire world.

He then goes on to describe messianism, the shared hope that “there will be an end game, in which there will be peace, redemption, good will, for all humanity” (his words).

The rabbi’s respectful words are a welcome change. I hope the 2010s will be marked by this kind of honorable dialog.

Hat tip to Aaron Eby.


  1. I heard about this from someone I follow on twitter. The guy is Jewish and living in Israel and his comment about "Rabbi Jesus" was more or less, "You've got to be kidding". Rabbi Riskin's perspective has yet to become universal.

  2. Certainly it's a minority opinion. And even his opinion would by no means concede Yeshua as divine Messiah.

    But it is a welcome change from the various anti-missionary shamers of Judaism that spew foul rhetoric and carry out ugly persecution of Messiah's followers.

  3. From Shiloh Musings:

    Rabbi Riskin's continued pursuit of theological endeavors with evangelicals is especially problematic, because even though he is on record for opposing dialogue with Jews for Jesus or any messianic entities, messianic sites use his material and credit Rabbi Riskin for strengthening the messianic community in Israel:

    (Excerpt from a popular messianic site):
    “Riskin says that he was ‘truly fascinated’ by Jesus, and considers him a ‘model rabbi’, who lived the life of a Jewish rabbi in Israel. Riskin’s language is honest and refreshing, and his words strengthen the Messianic Jews in Israel…”

  4. For the sake of intellectual honesty, Rabbi Riskin has posted a follow-up statement and video that clarifies his stance, which states Jews cannot be Jews if they believe in Jesus, and that he shouldn't have used the title "rabbi Jesus".

  5. What an excellent question, "Is this the first time you are coming, or the second?". This question really puts it in perspective, however it is flawed, respectfully, in my opinion. I believe that the spirit is the source and before the physical. I also believe that the Lord is growing us (mankind). So, I believe Yeshua to be the Messiah, just as he claimed. But I believe he is shepherding us into a spiritual existence to live and die for/in love and peace for one another, rather than forcing it on us. This is the development of mankind. There will come a day in our development where we shall press forward in this spirit of love for one another in a peaceful world, or kill one another consumed in fear, pride, power, and greed.

    However, I do not follow Satan's 1700 year old deceptive doctrine called the "Trinity" that teaches people that God is a man :( and prepares the Christians to worship a man on Earth as God.

    Zeus, Aten, Helios.....When studying Messianism, never forget the wild card; Satan