Who is a Jew?

We continue, from part 1, part 2, part 3, part 4, part 5, considering pop-research on the issue of

We continue, from part 1, part 2, part 3, part 4, part 5, considering pop-research on the issue of the historical Jesus and Jesus mythicism with regards to some Atheists who have taken to the utterly radical view that Jesus never even existed.
I have been considering Michael Paulkovich and Raphael Lataster and, in this case, I got into a comment section discussion within an article written by YouTube celebrity Atheist AaronRa that was simply titled “Jesus never existed” November 3, 2015 AD.
See my article Historical Jesus – two centuries worth of citations wherein I chronicled 205 texts that reference Jesus dating from pre 70 AD to 200-250 AD

The Jewish person lorasinger had decided to bypass inconvenient truths and took ad hominem aim at me by stating that I am “a Christian apologist with a heritage in Judaism which you gave up to become a pagan. Thus, I replied with a critique and also seeking to see if they could back up their claims:

I’m a Jew, I was born and Jew and I’ll die a Jew.

Friend, you are clearly tapped out which is why you are now turning to emotive taunting. You are ignoring those texts of the Tanakh which you find inconvenient. Thus, you are choosing Rabbinic Judaism rather than the Tanakh’s Judaism and no amount of putting me down on a personal level will change that.

If I may ask, how would you answer the question, “Who is a Jew?”

This seems a simple enough question but alas, it eventually lead to lorasinger not replying to me any longer. Here is how the back and forth on this specific issue went with lorasinger replying with:

You are a Christian of Jewish origin. You are either a Christian or a Jew. You cannot be both.

This is actually a very, very popular talking point which actually violates the Tanakh, the Halakah, the Talmud, various Jewish scholarly sources such as encyclopedias, etc. (as we shall see below). Well, this seemed to be going nowhere but I decided to keep at it:

I’m a Jew, I was born and Jew and I’ll die a Jew.
If I may ask, how would you answer the question, “Who is a Jew?”

Here is the reply:

If you’ve converted to Christianity, you are a Christian, no matter what you were born.

Here we go again as I replied with:

I’m a Jew, I was born and Jew and I’ll die a Jew.
I am afraid that you are reading much too much into this. I am actually asking a general and generic question. How would you answer the question, “Who is a Jew?”

Well, unwilling or unable to answer, lorasinger goes back to their tactic of copying and pasting airs of authority:

If you don’t know then obviously you need to hear it from an expert. Suggest: Twenty-Six Reasons Why Jews Don’t Believe In Jesus by Asher Norman who is an attorney, an Orthodox Jew, and a recognized expert in Jewish-Christian polemics. He has lectured nationally on this subject for several years. His book is the result of thousands of hours of meticulous research. He utilized his legal training to put faith claims about Jesus “on trial.”

One review reads: “Here is a book that is absolutely required reading by all Jews, and also by all Christians. Before any Jew even considers discussing religion with a Christian, he is strongly advised to read this book first. It is clear, easy to read, and devastating in its implications. If all Jews read this book, the entire “Jews for Jesus” movement would disappear overnight. And if all Christians read this book, one wouldn’t be surprised if many would reconsider their own religious beliefs. I did.

Next, I sought to get them focused again by pointing out the specificity of my question:

You seem to misunderstand my question. I am NOT asking you “Who is a Jew?” I am asking you “How would YOU answer the question, ‘Who is a Jew?’” That is Judaism 101.

Also, I have read plenty of why Jews don’t believe in Jesus style text, such as Rabbi Aryeh Kaplan’s anti-missionary book, and they are certainly convincing if, and only if, you are not aware of the rich history of the diversity of Jewish opinions down through the millennia.

FYI: see my article Rabbi Aryeh Kaplan’s Anti-Missionary Assertions.

Well, I did not hear back from lorasinger so after about two weeks I posted the following:

I must admit to be quite saddened and disappointed by the way this left off. It seems to me that your views are based on Rabbinic Judaism’s polemics and not on the Tanakh. This led you to make generic and inaccurate statement which do not consider the rich and complex history of Jewish thought. When I reply with quotations and citation from the JPS Tanakh you simply ignored them. You copy and paste from polemicists and finally when I ask a very, very basic question “How would YOU answer the question, ‘Who is a Jew?’” you reply with even more inaccurate assertions and refuse to answer (or, are simply unable to answer). Well, I pray the best for you and will leave you with this are a resource that I am sure we can agree is authoritative.

The Encyclopedia Judaica 3:211 states, “In Jewish religious law, it is technically impossible for a Jew (born to a Jewish mother or properly converted to Judaism) to change his religion. Even though a Jew undergoes the rites of admission to another religious faith and formally renounces the Jewish religion he remains-as far as the Halakah is concerned-a Jew, albeit a sinner (Sanh. 44a)…For the born Jew, Judaism is not a matter of choice…in the technical halakhic sense, apostasy is impossible.”

Just in case you are interested in more info on this issue: Jewish and Christian? Is Messianic Judaism Possible?.

By the way, another statement that lorasinger made along the way was to tell me about myself…for some odd reason as they wrote:

True Free Thinker is a Christian apologetic website run by Ken Ammi that has a strong emphasis on the refutation of various forms of atheism. In addition, Ammi wrote Creation Ministries International’s main article rebutting atheism. A fundamentalist Christian convert of Jewish origin in Canada – How’s that working out for you?

Well, it is working out just fine and thank you for asking? Now, it is true that I wrote Creation Ministries International’s main article rebutting atheism which you can find here but I was not aware that I am in Canada—not that there’s anything wrong with it ;o)
I either have to consult a map or lorasinger will have to consult actual fact…on many, many issues.