When rabbis are asked about Sayyidunā ‘Isā ‘alayhi as-salām, i.e., Jesus, they often refer to tractate Sotah 47 in the Jerusalem Talmud.
For those not familiar with the importance of the Talmud in Judaism:
[It] is the central text of Rabbinic Judaism and the primary source of Jewish religious law (halakha) and Jewish theology. Until the advent of modernity, in nearly all Jewish communities, the Talmud was the centerpiece of Jewish cultural life and was foundational to “all Jewish thought and aspirations”, serving also as “the guide for the daily life” of Jews.
The Talmud on Jesus
The English text below is from the William Davidson Talmud.
The Gemara returns to the incident in which Yehoshua ben Peraḥya turned away Jesus the Nazarene: What is this incident? When King Yannai was killing the Sages, Shimon ben Shataḥ was hidden by his sister, Yannai’s wife, while Rabbi Yehoshua ben Peraḥya went and fled to Alexandria of Egypt. When peace was made between Yannai and the Sages, Shimon ben Shataḥ sent him the following letter: From myself, Jerusalem the holy city, to you, Alexandria of Egypt. My sister, my husband dwells within you, and I am sitting desolate. Rabbi Yehoshua ben Peraḥya said: I can learn from it that there is peace, and I can return.
When he came back to Eretz Yisrael, Rabbi Yehoshua arrived at a certain inn. The innkeeper stood before him, honoring him considerably, and overall they accorded him great honor. Rabbi Yehoshua ben Peraḥya then sat and was praising them by saying: How beautiful is this inn. Jesus the Nazarene, one of his students, said to him: My teacher, but the eyes of the innkeeper’s wife are narrow [terutot]. Rabbi Yehoshua ben Peraḥya said to him: Wicked one, is this what you are engaged in, gazing at women? He brought out four hundred shofarot and excommunicated him. Every day Jesus would come before him, but he would not accept his wish to return.
One day, Rabbi Yehoshua ben Peraḥya was reciting Shema when Jesus came before him. He intended to accept him on this occasion, so he signaled to him with his hand to wait. Jesus thought he was rejecting him entirely. He therefore went and stood up a brick and worshipped it as an idol. Rabbi Yehoshua ben Peraḥya said to him: Return from your sins. Jesus said to him: This is the tradition that I received from you: Anyone who sins and causes the masses to sin is not given the opportunity to repent. The Gemara explains how he caused the masses to sin: For the Master said: Jesus the Nazarene performed sorcery, and he incited the masses, and subverted the masses, and caused the Jewish people to sin.
This text states that Sayyidunā ‘Īsā ‘alayhi as-salām was a disciple of Yehoshua ben Peraḥya. This is false.
It also contains an abundance of disrespect and insolence towards one of the great Messengers of Allāh. It accuses Sayyidunā ‘īsā ‘alayhi as-salām of abusing his gaze, it speaks about a great Messenger trying to seek forgiveness from a rabbi and causing people to turn to sin. It describes him as practicing sorcery and engaged in idol worship!
We seek the protection of Allāh Ta’ālā from such blasphemy.
The Talmud is the word of man and contains discrepancies. The rabbi in the incident quoted above was Yehoshua ben Peraḥya. He lived during the Zugot period, the time of the King, Alexander Yannai. This was about a century or two centuries before the birth of Sayyidunā ‘Īsā ‘alayhi as-salām, whereas Sayyidunā ‘Īsā ‘alayhi as-salām lived during the first century AD. The tractate Sotah was composed around the fifth century AD. This means it was done hundreds of years after the time of Sayyidunā ‘Īsā ‘alayhi as-salām. Whoever made up this story about Sayyidunā ‘Īsā’ ‘alayhi as-salām erred in the date and was not good at history?
How can a person seriously believe and accept the Talmud and its contradictions about Sayyidunā ‘Īsā ‘alayhi as-salām? Sayyidunā ‘Īsā ‘alayhi as-salām was not the student of any rabbi, nor did he engage in idolatry, sorcery and other filthy deeds.
Why do rabbis hide the New Testament and other realities from their own Jewish people? Why have the rabbis in Israel made sure that the New Testament is not sold in bookstores in Israel? Why do the Christians not study and analyze what the Jewish books contain, before accepting the trends of falsehood put into their hands by the Jews? Why do the Jews not seriously think about questioning the teachings being imparted by their rabbis and scholars, as they do not even meet the basic criteria of a history scholar?
So woe to those who write the “scripture” with their own hands, then say, “This is from Allah,” in order to exchange it for a small price. Woe to them for what their hands have written and woe to them for what they earn. [Sūrah Al-Baqarah: 79]
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