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Monday, February 22, 2016

Talmud Defender Criticizes Hoffman

1. Talmud Defender Criticizes Hoffman 

2. Michael Hoffman’s Rejoinder

Background:  In a Feb. 19 e-mailed column we photographically reproduced the Babylonian Talmud’s declaration in Kiddushin 68B that the gentiles are donkeys. That column elicited the following response from the critic, which he e-mailed to 65 people:

1. Judaic Talmud Defender Criticizes Hoffman for "grossly misrepresenting the Talmud"

On Feb 21, 2016, at 12:35, Menachem Mevashir wrote:
Source of Talmudic Teaching on Gentiles as Donkeys
Despite Michael Hoffman's claims to the contrary, the actual source for this idea is from the Old Testament book of Ezekiel. 

The Talmud merely expounds on this concept:

The Adultery of Oholah and Aholibah
19"Yet she multiplied her harlotries, remembering the days of her youth, when she played the harlot in the land of Egypt. 20"She lusted after their paramours, whose flesh is like the flesh of donkeys and whose issue is like the issue of horses. 21"Thus you longed for the lewdness of your youth, when the Egyptians handled your bosom because of the breasts of your youth.

St Paul roundly condemns the sexually immoral and Jesus calls unbelievers dogs.

So this was a common Jewish attitude to unbelieving pagans.

It does not apply to Christians Moslems and others of sincere faith in the Creator God.

So i would say Michael Hoffman is grossly misrepresenting the Talmud and Judaism in general on this point.

Last I checked, the Book of Ezekiel is in the canon of Christian sacred Scripture.

Michael P. Korn

2. Hoffman’s Rejoinder 

Dear Mr. Korn

You are thoroughly confused. The Babylonian Talmud (“BT") at Kiddushin 68B where it terms Gentiles animals (donkeys) has no basis in the Bible, and you should not do as the neo-Nazis do and indict the Bible for the rabbinic racism of the Talmud Bavli.

It is in Berakoth 58a that the Babylonian Talmud uses Ezekiel 23:20 as supposed “proof" of the sub-human status of gentiles. The rabbis’ citation of the Bible quote from Ezekiel as a “proof-text” is specious, since the quote does not prove that gentiles are animals. The quote from Ezekiel only says that some Egyptians had large genital organs and copious emissions. This does not in any way prove or even connote that the Egyptians being referred to in the Bible were considered animals.  Once again, the Talmud has falsified the Bible by means of distorted interpretation. Other Talmud passages which expound on Ezekiel 23:20 in this racist fashion are: BT Arakin 19b, Berakoth 25b, Niddah 45a, Shabbath 150a, Yebamoth 98a. For further insight, see my book Judaism Discovered, pp. 471-473.

In BT Kiddushin 68B the proof text cited for the belief that non-Jewish nations are donkeys is Genesis 22:5 (not Ezekiel 23 as you allege). But this is a farce because in Genesis 22:5 we find no such thing — Abraham in this Scripture passage is going to sacrifice his son, Isaac. He tells his servants to watch over the donkey which Abraham was using as transportation. Can you believe it? This is the whole basis of the absurd “proof” the Talmud cites from the Bible for claiming gentiles are donkeys. This asinine “proof text" is a product of a frankly insane rabbinic exegetical method, Gezarah shava. It is a formal epistemological system of contrived fantasies employed by Chazal in the Talmud, which is explained and exposed in Judaism Discovered, pp. 169-172. 

The Puritan exegete John Owen (1616-1683), quotes the antiquarian and philologist John Selden’s (1584-1654) description of the Gezerah shava: “It is a most common thing among the Talmudists to seek for some support for their additional customs from some words of the Scriptures, and, as it were, to try to hedge them up behind some Biblical word, interpretation or analogy. Those even tolerably familiar with their works will know this well. So the original words are twisted and distorted with great boldness to give some seeming confirmation to their customs, far out of the sense of the original.” 

According to the rabbinic principle of Gezerah shava, the student of the Bible can only truly determine what the Bible is teaching through a process of drawing analogies between two disparate Scripture verses based on “verbal congruities” supposedly appearing in both of them. This is the sort of venerated lunacy which is at the core of the Talmudic system of Scriptural falsification and nullification.

Lastly, under the old censorship system whereby English translations of the Babylonian Talmud were heavily redacted and accompanied by disingenuous footnotes, all references to the goyim or the min in the Talmud were explained away as allusions to Cutheans or similar “unbelieving pagans.” It’s pathetic that you would stoop to this propaganda device in the face of the now readily available, uncensored English language Babylonian Talmud, in the pages of which we find numerous hateful references to Christians. But you have the chutzpah to claim that the Talmud respects “Christians…and others of sincere faith in the Creator God.” 

Really? Is that why the Talmud says that Jesus was an idolater who deserved to die (BT Sanhedrin 43A), and that the New Testament should be burned (Shabbat 116A)?  

If you want to play jokes on the ignorant you are free to do so. It might be a mistake to attempt to hoodwink this writer, however. 

Michael Hoffman


Menachem Mevashir said...

(This suspicion about your disqualification as a Talmudic "scholar" is buttressed by the fact that you misquote the source of the Talmudic passage itself as TB Kiddushin 68B when in fact it is found at the bottom of folio page 68A. You can verify this for yourself at this link: http://halakhah.com/pdf/nashim/Kiddushin.pdf)

Michael Hoffman said...

If you would consult the Koren Talmud Bavli: The Noe Edition (Koren Publishers: Jerusalem, 2015) volume 22, p. 378, you will see that the passage in question about gentiles as donkeys is numbered Kiddushin 68B, exactly as I have indicated.

Dakota said...

What a well-informed response to Menachem's assertion that Ezekiel 23:20 supports the Talmudic notion that non-Judaics are animals. It is this type of racist ideology that contributes to the denigration of ethnic groups and ultimately to genocide that is evident throughout history. That Talmudists would be so brazen to color those with opposing views of the "Holocaust" or critics of Talmudism with the brush of "racism" when they cling to their own racist worldview is unfathomable to me.

Further, Menachem's "proof" that you disqualify yourself from being a Talmudist scholar simply because, according to him, you have quoted the "wrong" page is ludicrous! This kind of pedantic argument has to be a logical fallacy surely?!

Truly, the Talmudists "proofs" for their anti-nomianistic, anti-Biblical and anti-Christian beliefs and practices reminds me of the saying, "A text without context is a pre-text for a proof text," which sums up their "religion" to a tee.

jgalindes said...

Dear Michael,
Mr.Michael Philip Korn background is as follows:

"I was born in America, moved to Israel after graduating from Harvard, enlisted in the Ba’al Teshuva movement, and joined a Messianic Chassidic cult (Breslov) from 1990-1999. Through the help of South African missionaries, I came to see that Jesus is the Jewish Messiah and Saviour of the World. I was baptized in a natural spring in the Israeli Galilee outside of the famous mystical city of Safed on 20 June 2000, and now I seek to introduce Jewish people to Jesus Christ, their Messiah whom they don’t yet know."

Bobby English said...


Foreword -- Daat Emet

For a long time we have been considering the necessity of informing our readers about Halacha's real attitude towards non-Jews. Many untrue things are publicized on this issue and the facts should be made clear. But recently, we were presented with a diligently written article on the subject, authored by a scholar from the Merkaz HaRav yeshiva -- so our job was done by others (though we have already discussed some aspects of this issue in the weekly portions of Balak and Matot). Since there is almost no disagreement between us and the author of the article on this issue, we have chosen to bring the article "Jews Are Called 'Men'" by R' David Bar-Chayim (in Hebrew) so that the reader will be able to study and understand the attitude of the Halacha towards non-Jews.

In this article R' Bar-Chayim discusses the attitude towards "Gentiles" in the Torah and in the Halacha and comes to an unambiguous conclusion:

"The Torah of Israel makes a clear distinction between a Jew, who is defined as 'man,' and a Gentile."

That is to say, any notion of equality between human beings is irrelevant to the Halacha. R' Bar-Chayim's work is comprehensive, written with intellectual honesty, and deals with almost all the aspects of Halachic treatment of non-Jews. It also refutes the statements of those rabbis who speak out of wishful thinking and, influenced by concepts of modern society, claim that Judaism does not discriminate against people on religious grounds. R' Bar-Chayim shows that all these people base their constructs NOT on the Torah but solely on the inclinations of their own hearts. He also shows that there are even rabbis who intentionally distort the Halachic attitude to Gentiles, misleading both themselves and the general public.

For the English readers' convenience we will briefly mention the topics dealt with in R' Bar-Chayim's article:

Laws in regard to murder, which clearly state that there is Halachic difference between murder of a Jew and of a Gentile (the latter is considered a far less severe crime).

A ban on desecrating the Sabbath to save the life of a Gentile.

A Jew's exemption from liability if his property (e. g. ox) causes damage to a Gentile's property. But if a Gentile's property causes damage to a Jew's property, the Gentile is liable.

The question of whether robbery of a Gentile is forbidden by the Torah's law or only by a Rabbinic decree.

A ban on returning a lost item to a Gentile if the reason for returning it is one's sympathy towards the Gentile and compassion for him.

The sum which a Gentile overpays in a business transaction due to his own error is forfeit; whether a Jew is permitted to intentionally deceive a Gentile is also discussed.

One who kidnaps a Jew is liable to death, but one who kidnaps a Gentile is exempt.

A Jew who hurts or injures a Gentile is not liable for compensation of damage, but a Gentile who hurts a Jew is liable to death.

One who overcharges a Gentile ought not return him the sum that the Gentile overpaid.

A Gentile -- or even a convert to Judaism -- may not be appointed king or public official of any sort (e. g. a cabinet minister).

One who defames a female proselyte (claiming that she was not virgin at the time of her marriage) is liable to neither lashes nor fine.

The prohibition to hate applies only to Jews; one may hate a Gentile.

One may take revenge against or bear a grudge towards Gentiles; likewise, the commandment "love your neighbour" applies only to Jews, not to Gentiles.

One who sees Gentile graveyards should curse: "Your mother shall be greatly ashamed..."

Gentiles are likened to animals.

Jim Yost said...

These fanatical Talmudic 'Jews' shoot themselves in the foot with all their vilifying of the gentiles seeing as how they aren't really Jews but are actually gentiles (descended from Ashkenaz who was a gentile).