My, Wasn’t David Baron Wrong!

I appreciate David Baron, the Hebrew Christian (1857-1926) who wrote some books that are still in print. Like Edersheim, I appreciate Baron, but sometimes have to wince at the anti-Judaism that was so inculcated by the Christian culture of that time. It was so intense that it led men like Baron and Edersheim to denounce traditional Judaism as a false religion. Consider these words opposing the very idea of a Messianic Jewish movement in 1911 (thanks to Jeff G. for passing on Baron’s book to me):

What these brethren preach and agitate for is, that it is incumbent on Hebrew Christians, in order to keep up their “national continuity,” not only to identify themselves with their unbelieving Jewish brethren, in their national aspirations—as expressed, for instance, in Zionism and other movements which aim at creating and fostering “the national idea” and regaining possession of Palestine—but to observe the “national” rites and customs of the Jews, such as the keeping of the Sabbath, circumcision, and other observances, some of which have not even their origin in the law of Moses, but are part of that unbearable yoke which was laid on the neck of our people by the Rabbis.


About Derek Leman

IT guy working in the associations industry. Formerly a congregational rabbi. Dad of 8. Nerd.
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8 Responses to My, Wasn’t David Baron Wrong!

  1. Beit Tefillah Chavurah says:

    Blessings Derek;

    Sadly, this spirit is still alive and well. He did some interesting work but certainly had his own share of issues.


  2. *sigh* I’ve never read Baron’s work, though I’ve seen much the same sort of thing in Edersheim, as you’ve noted. How worth it is it to wade through the sludge to find the nuggets?

  3. Lance Ponder says:

    As a mid-western white-bread frumpy gentile Christian I am mystified that any Christian would claim Judaism is a false religion. As near as I recall our Lord was a Jew – and he kept all of the very same law that the apostles allowed us gentiles to lay aside. Its a wonder most Christians don’t worship Paul instead of Jesus. Oh, wait, I think some do…

  4. bography says:

    Lance, if you mean that the religion based on the Tenach was a true religion, then of course it was true. But if you mean that the Judaism that developed after the rejection of Jesus/Yeshua the Messiah is a true religion, then THAT can’t be true, unless you do NOT believe that Jesus said “I am the way the truth and the life, no one comes to the Father but by me.” All religions that do not believe what Jesus said are, in Jesus’ book, false religions. How do you see it?

    • Lance Ponder says:

      Yes, in the most simple sense I do mean the former.

    • Bogarty,

      That’s kind of like saying, “If you mean that the religion based on the Bible, well of course that’s true. But if you mean the Christianity that developed after the rejection of the Torah is a true religion, then THAT can’t be true, unless you do NOT believe that Yeshua said, ‘Not one yod or one tittle will pass away from the Torah . . . and he who breaks the least of these commandments, and teaches others so, will be called least in the Kingdom of Heaven.’ All religions that do not believe what Yeshua said are, in Yeshua’s book, false religions.”

      So that means that Christianity as it has been taught for 1600-1800 years is a false religion, at least according to your view and if we are to be consistent. Which would mean that the Great Commission has failed, since billions worldwide have been initiated into a false religion.

      Personally, I think that would be a false conclusion. I would rather suggest that both branches of the Abrahamic faith, just like both kingdoms of Israel, went awry, and both need correction, but neither has ceased to be the people of God.


    • Enjoy this comment, bography, because it is your last here on Messianic Jewish Musings. Please take your “I-was-a-Jew-and-now-I-hate-Judaism” schtick somewhere else. I am now well aware of the games you play on others’ blogs. It is a shame that your substantial intelligence is wasted on mindless preaching of unfounded drivel and foundation-less declarations of, “You’re all wrong unless you bow down to the mere citation of a Bible verse which I authoritatively hold up before you.”


      Derek Leman

      • Thank you Benjamin and Derek! Very helpful replies! I wish there was more to this thread :/ I will say, I also enjoyed Edersheim. There’s always something precious to gain in fellowship with another lover of Yeshua. And though E. may have rejected Judaism, God still gave him much to share. Right now I’m reading both Heschel and Baron. Today, I read in his book on Zechariah that Baron claimed the Talmud was such a waste of energy. But I love Heschel! So i decided to search on the combination of their names. This thread is what came up :) I certainly have learned something today!

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