Thursday, November 18, 2010

The Talmud and 'a certain Galilean'


The Talmudic Mystery concerning 'a certain Galilean'

QUESTION: Who is 'a certain Galilean'?

“The Judaeans … were exact in their language … but the Galileans … were not exact in their language … A certain Galilean once went about enquiring, ‘Who has amar?’ ‘Foolish Galilean’, they said to him, ‘do you mean an ‘ass’ for riding (hamar), ‘wine’ to drink (hamar), ‘wool’ for clothing (amar), or a ‘lamb’ for killing (amar)?’”

- Erubin 53a - 53b

Alternatively, what is andifa? The lock on the forehead. Even as a certain Galilean chanced to visit Babylon and was requested to lecture on the chariot passage. He said to them, 'I will lecture to you as R. Nehemiah lectured to his companions.' Thereupon a wasp came out of the wall and stung him on the andifa (forehead) and he died. Said they. 'This befell him through his own fault.'

- Shabbath 80b

What is mashkokith? - Here they explained it: 'The bell'. R. Jacob, however, said: 'The goat that leads the herd.' So too a certain Galilean in one of his discourses before R. Hisda [said] that when the shepherd becomes angry with his flock he appoints for a leader one which is blind.

- Baba Kamma 52a

A certain Galilean lectured before R. Hisda: 'Blessed be the Merciful One who gave a three-fold Torah to a three-fold people through a third-born on the third day in the third month.' With whom does this agree? With the Rabbis.

- Shabbath 88a

As a certain Galilean lectured before R. Hisda: 'The Holy One, blessed be He, said: I put a rebi'ith of blood in you; therefore I commanded you concerning blood.'

- Shabbath 31b

A certain Galilean expounded before R. Hisda: 'If one should make an analogy in respect of Elijah, what does this matter resemble? A man who locked his gate and lost the key.' R. Jose taught in Sepphoris: Father Elijah.

- Sanhedrin 113a

ANSWER: Rabbi Joshua ben Joseph of Nazareth, the Messiah (Jesus Christ)

May the LORD God bless you in the name of St. Judas Maccabaeus.


1 comment:

  1. A major problem with this conclusion is that Rav Hisda lived 278 - 320 CE. It is more likely that this "certain Galilean" was an early Christian follower who still studied the Jewish sacred texts.