Long Hair

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Some people object to Jesus being depicted in modern art work with long hair. The truth is that long hair amongst men was not common amongst the Jews. That does not mean that Jesus did not have long hair during the three years of his ministry before the Crucifixion.

The long hair complained about in the side panel of this artist's rendition is possibly explained in Numbers 6:5

"All the days of the vow of his separation there shall no razor come upon his head: until the days be fulfilled, in the which he separateth [himself] unto the LORD, he shall be holy, [and] shall let the locks of the hair of his head grow."

Nazarite is the word meaning "to dedicate, consecrate, separate" Paul even says in 2 Corinthians 6:17 "Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean [thing]; and I will receive you,"

Paul said this when he asked "what agreement" would we have with idols. Idols are the things that men create to represent things, institutions or ideas.

Paul goes on to say if we will do that, be separate.

Touch not and cleanse ourselves of "from all filthiness" that He "will be a Father unto you".

Of course this is a reference to what Jesus said about calling no man on earth father and applying to God the Father in your prayers rather than the fathers of the earth.

Matthew 23:9 And call no [man] your father upon the earth: for one is your Father, which is in heaven.

What was happening amongst the people was their system of Corban which they had signed up for was making the word of God to none effect.

Mark 7:13 "Making the word of God of none effect through your tradition, which ye have delivered: and many such like things do ye."

The word tradition here is also translated ordinance and is defined as "giving up, giving over" even "the surrender of cities". [1]

Herod had instituted a system of Corban that guaranteed social welfare through his government temples at Jerusalem and all over the Roman Empire. These temples were a source of benefaction to the people by funds collected from its civic members.

Besides sewers, aqueducts, and many other civic projects there was a welfare fund that took care of needy and aged members in time of want.

People had signed up for this with the ritual of Baptism and registration by the scribes. This membership entitled people to benefits but compelled offerings. The funds of Corban, which means sacrifice and is also translated treasury funded Herod's building projects.

King Herod built more Temples to Roma and Augustus and city of Caesarea on a tiny, nearly deserted preexisting Phoenician foundation called Strato's tower.

The temple at Jerusalem and its network of synagogues served a dual purpose. While the temple of Roma and Augustus were to house the Boule[2] of the gentiles living in Judea also housed the effigies of the emperor and the goddess Roma. No such images would be found in the temple of Jerusalem. They instead housed copies of the Torah which was read from through out the network of synagogues.

A bouleuterion was a building which housed the council of citizens (boule) in Ancient Greece. These temples were government buildings and managed social systems of welfare of the people. The manner in which these temples obtained and distributed the funds to operate divided them into two categories, those that compelled the offerings of the people according to the traditions or ordinances of their assemblies or rulers and those that were entirely dependent upon a network of free will offerings.

Rome and Judea had both at different times in their history. When the people are free the father of each house chooses to contribute to the social welfare of his neighbor through love of righteousness and chooses to give to a minister who does the best job. When a group or individual has the power to choose what will be given on behalf the fathers of every household that group or individual becomes the civil or Conscripted Fathers[3]

The Law of Patronus makes the state the Father of the people. The sons of Herod the Great also sought the favor of the Roman Emperors. Phillip's own building project Caesarea Phillipi was the Caesarea Maritima of a new age or new deal where the people were guaranteed benefits by benefactors who exercised authority one over the other.People forced the contributions of their neighbor through the agency of the governments they created for themselves.

Christians, followers of Christ, were not to touch these benefits that made the word of God to none effect but were to gather together in free congregations the supplied the same benefits through faith and hope by charity.

It is all pretty simple stuff once you know who the fathers of the earth were and are.[4] Of course you would need to want to know who they were and unfortunately that might tip over some of the eschatology idols that men have made for themselves.

So what does this have to do with Jesus' hair?

There were lots of people trying to maintain a system of social welfare based on charity. They had lots of different traditions in their societies and did not become members of the new social welfare systems set up by Herod's new deal Baptism.

5.23 min video about Baptism of Herod and John's politics.

These two forms of social welfare explain the reason for Christian distinction and persecution.

Most people do not know about the fact that Herod was baptizing people and registering them through the scribes with these temples. This new deal was changing society and many resisted.

They saw these ideas as a source of decay in society and knew that they were a snare for the people.[5]

They saw these system as covetous by nature while others excused them and signed up only to discover a loss of individual freedom through the fathers of these systems that promised security.[6]

Was Jesus a part of this movement away from compelled social welfare? Was He a part of a group that was doing something different?

Some people think "Jesus was not a Nazarite. Jesus drank wine and raised the dead and approached them."

They quote Matthew 2:23 "And he came and dwelt in a city called Nazareth: that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophets, He shall be called a Nazarene."

One of the problems with this is there is little to no evidence that Nazareth ever existed as a town at or before that time.

Is there evidence that Jesus lived in a town called Nazareth?

• Nazareth is not mentioned in the Old Testament.

• The Talmud names 63 Galilean towns but no Nazareth there nor in early rabbinic literature.

• St Paul mention Jesus 221 times but does not mention 'Nazareth'.

• There seems to be no ancient historian or geographer who mentions Nazareth.

• The 3rd century Church Father Origen lived at Caesarea some 30 miles from where Nazareth was supposed to be, knew the gospel but had no clear idea where Nazareth was.

Nazareth seems to be first noted at the beginning of the 4th century as a real place. (see also Vows#The_Nazarite_Vow)


So if there was no city of Nazareth then what did the original authors mean?

Yes we see Matthew saying Matthew 2:23 "And he came and dwelt in a city called Nazareth: that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophets, He shall be called a Nazarene."


Polis

"Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hid." Matthew 5:14

The word commonly translated city in the New Testament is the word Polis which may not mean a town or city as we think of the term today. It may mean a juridical community.

A "polis" (plural: poleis) was not always a place but could also be something that you were a part of like a community. "It can also mean citizenship and body of citizens."[7]

According to Dr. Gerard Casey Professor Emeritus of University College at Dublin a polis was neither a city nor a state but a sort of fellowship. In Aristotle's Politics, it is suggested that a polis is something more than a collection of individuals seeking safety in life and gain in the exercise of trade. It was “a union of families and villages in a perfect and self-sufficing life by which we mean happy and honourable life" [8] A polis might not have members as we think of citizens of a State but the individual was a member of a family which formed a community of aggregated families in the common pursuit of happiness.

In another Polis the people might give up some of their freedom and power of choice to the State in order to obtain protection or benefits. In such a polis the people would be persons who would be less and less free as more and more power of choice was vested in the State or Polis.

A "polis" was the social structure of a community in the ancient Greek world. Although poleis were each a unique cultural and political unit, a common feature included religious beliefs. Since Religion was the manner in which you conducted and provided welfare for a community the Corban of groups like the Essenes, Mandaeans or "Nazarene".

The Pharisees and Rome provided civil polis systems of welfare called Corban too but those types of welfare systems made the word of God to none effect.

Dr. Moshe Berent wrote:

“Though the notion of the free, or self-governed community, originated in ancient Greece, the Greek polis seems to pose a problem for the modern post-Hobbesian concept of sovereignty. For the latter presupposes that of the State, that is an agency which monopolizes the use of violence, as an instrument by which sovereignty is constituted. Yet, the polis was not a State but rather what the anthropologists call a stateless community. The latter is characterized by the absence of ‘government’, that is of an agency which has separated itself from the rest of social life and which monopolizes the use of violence. In stateless societies the ability to use force is more or less evenly distributed among armed or potentially armed members of the community. Being stateless, then, in what sense can we say that the polis was sovereign? On the practical level the Greek polis had a very limited ability to control and direct legislation. The decentralised nature of Greek society and the absence of coercive apparatuses meant that the laws had to be identical with the customs of the community or else that decisions had to be shared by a wide consensus, which imposed a severe limitation on the ability of the poleis to change their laws or initiate changes in the community.”[9]

This description of the ancient Polis government is where the leaders are only titular and not "lawmakers". It ascribes more to the Libera res Publica of ancient Rome before the rise of emperors and the virtual death of the Republic. If the leaders of society are only servants who cannot exercise authority one over the other the people remain free.

These voluntary societies were supported by the generosity of the people rather than the force commonly used in modern governments today. The character of the society created by such a Republican form of government was not only different but often more common than the modern historian would lead us to believe.

Tacitus in his description of ancient Germania writes, “The communities are wont, of their own accord and man by man, to bestow upon their Princes a certain number of beasts, or a certain portion of grain; a contribution which passes indeed for a mark of reverence and honour, but serves also to supply their necessities.”[10]

The words 'of their own accord' is from the Latin 'ultro' meaning 'voluntarily'. “[O]ur modern reliance on government to make law and establish order is not the historical norm.”[11] See Orders

Jesus uses the same word polis in Matthew 5:14, "Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hid." He is instructing his apostles and followers to be that light and city as he continues in Matthew 5:16 "Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven."

The people of Israel were strangers and pilgrims but the Hebrews passage is talking about the city that actually is given to us, not as a location, but as something to be a part of since we are not to be "of the world".

The word politeia[12] from polites[13] which is from polis is translated freedom [14]and commonwealth[15].



Was Jesus a member of a group operating separate from the constitutional order or system of government set up by Herod through His welfare system? Jesus did say his kingdom was not a part of the world[16]of Pontius Pilate.


4:01 min video about one of several Greek words translated into the word "world".

Understanding what world Jesus is talking about tells us what we may be "in" but are not to be a part "of".

The expression 'Jesus of Nazareth' is a translation of the original Greek 'Jesous o Nazoraios' which is actually saying 'Jesus the Nazarene'.

Nazarene more likely comes from the Hebrew root of the name is NZR, nazir which is often translated NAZARITE meaning to dedicate, consecrate, separate.

There is lots of reasons to believe that Jesus separated himself and appeared to be associated with Nazarite Essene teachings.

Descriptions of groups with this title are given by the A fourth century church father known as Epiphanius (370 CE) speaks of Nazarite Essene.

The Encyclopaedia Britannica of 1911 stated definitely that the name Nazarenes specifically identified an obscure Jewish-Christian sect, existing at the time of Epiphanius.

"…The Nazarene sect was before Christ" (Epiphanius, Panarion 29)

"For this group did not name themselves after Christ or with Jesus’ own name, but “Nazarene.” All Christians were called Nazarene once, before the disciples began to be called “Christians” at Antioch… They were so-called followers of the apostles…they dedicate themselves to the law…However, everyone called the Christians Nazarenes as I said before." (Epiphanius, Panarion 29)

The Nazarenes did not eat meat but made exception at Passover and at other times. They were fond of taking a vow of the Nazarite which was for a period of time or permanently. Even Paul took the vow at times and would not cut his hair during that period nor drink wine.

The Nazarenes looked at the Bible and words differently and came to a different conclusion about much of that text. Today, modern Christians believe they have it all figured out. They want to deny that Christ was doing something very much different than what they do today at church.

A Nazarite was not to go near a body of a dead person. Some like to quote Matthew 9:24-25 "He said unto them, Give place: for the maid is not dead, but sleepeth. And they laughed him to scorn. But when the people were put forth, he went in, and TOOK HER BY THE HAND, and the maid arose."

And then note the verse Numbers 6:6 "All the days that he separateth himself unto the LORD he shall come at no dead body."

They completely miss Matthew 9:24 "He said unto them, Give place: for the maid is not dead, but sleepeth. And they laughed him to scorn."

She was dead but not dead in another sense. Entering the room where the dead body was which was a part of the vow of the Nazarite, the vow of separation/consecration,would seem to be a violation of the vow.

Jesus was making it clear to them that the death God is talking about is not the death of the flesh but of the Spirit. He spoke about this numerous times.[17]

The same is true of wine. It may mean something different in different places. There are more than one word in the testaments that is translated wine. Many of the things we see as rituals have meanings that references something else.

“When a symbol unmoors itself from what it symbolizes, it loses meaning. It becomes ineffective” Albert Einstein

Modern religionists who try to privately interpret the Bible fall back on the letter to give them faith which is a form of idolatry but they often do not even know the meaning of religion as James used it. They worship the words rather than the spirit of the truth.

When Luke 9:60 says "Jesus said unto him, Let the dead bury their dead: but go thou and preach the kingdom of God." Was Jesus talking about zombies actually burying the dead?

The literalistic read of the Bible in the spirit may easily fool people because the letter killeth...

So why was Jesus called the Nazarene?

The 2nd century gnostic Gospel of Philip [47] mentions:" The apostles that came before us called him Jesus Nazarene the Christ ...'Nazara' is the 'Truth'. Therefore 'Nazarene' is 'The One of the Truth' ..."

The Nazarene (or Nazorean) was the name of an early Jewish sect of the Essenes that some historians associate with early Christians. The root of their name may have been the Hebrew noun 'netser' (netzor), meaning 'branch' which could in turn refer to the claim that Jesus was a "descendant of David." The plural of 'Netzor' becomes 'Netzoreem.'

Paul from Tarsus does not mention Nazareth nor Nazarenes but is accused of being a Nazorean in Acts 24:5 "For we have found this man [a] pestilent [fellow], and a mover of sedition among all the Jews throughout the world, and a ringleader of the sect of the Nazarenes: Who also hath gone about to profane the temple: whom we took, and would have judged according to our law."

They say Jesus was not a Nazarite because "Jesus drank wine" and Numbers 6:3 says "He shall separate himself from wine and strong drink, and shall drink no vinegar of wine, or vinegar of strong drink, neither shall he drink any liquor of grapes, nor eat moist grapes, or dried."

Since the vow was often temporary he could have drank wine for some times and not for others. We do see him saying that he would not drink for a period of time.

Matthew 26:29 "But I say unto you, I will not drink henceforth of this fruit of the vine, until that day when I drink it new with you in my Father's kingdom."

These same people miss entirely that Jesus does drink with them later so the kingdom was there and they were in it. Jesus said he would take the kingdom from the Pharisees and He took it from them because they misunderstood the Old Testament. They were not bearing fruit with their forced sacrifice so he took it from them and gave it to the apostles, appointing them that kingdom. But forbade them from exercising authority one over the other.[18]

Just as Jesus touched the dead who were not dead but asleep could Jesus have drank wine but did not drink "wine" in the sense that the original author meant?

There are more than one word in the Hebrew text translated into wine and if you do not know the difference and the purpose of the ritual descriptions then you may easily miss the true meaning of the ritual as you depend on your private interpretation.

There is a great deal of confusion and misinterpretation of what Jesus was doing and saying.

That is understandable since most of the modern christian coreligionists have asked the Pharisees to tell them what the Old Testament meant.

Flesh and blood study [19]does not reveal the truth of the scripture which is why there are so many different interpretations and denominations.

As long as people continue to worship their personal ideas about the Bible, their modern religionist ideas and private interpretations they will remain under a strong delusion about the real meaning of the Gospel of the kingdom.

That is why they seem to have more in common with the Pharisees and probably would not recognize Christ with short hair or long since most of them do the direct opposite of what Christ actually said.

It really is irrelevant if Jesus had long hair or not. It is a distraction to argue the point when there is so much that people have already missed that is fundamental to living by faith.

People still pray/apply to men who call themselves benefactors but exercise authority one over the other in-spite of the fact that Jesus saying you are not to be that way.

With such covetousness they curse their children to bondage as Peter warned. With every benefit they take they plunge their children further into debt.

2 Peter 2:14 "Having eyes full of adultery, and that cannot cease from sin; beguiling unstable souls: an heart they have exercised with covetous practices; cursed children:"

People have become merchandise, human resources as Peter also warned us:

2 Peter 2:3 "And through covetousness shall they with feigned words make merchandise of you: whose judgment now of a long time lingereth not, and their damnation slumbereth not."

People strain at gnats and swallow a camel. They fail to tend to the weightier matters which Christ said we should have done.

But many of the modern worshipers of religious beliefs will cling to their misinterpretation of Paul which Peter also warned about.


2 Peter 3:15 "And account [that] the longsuffering of our Lord [is] salvation; even as our beloved brother Paul also according to the wisdom given unto him hath written unto you; As also in all his epistles, speaking in them of these things; in which are some things hard to be understood, which they that are unlearned and unstable wrest, as they do also the other scriptures, unto their own destruction."

We cover all this on our website and will be a good topic of one of our broadcasts.


The text of Numbers 6 of the KJV

Numbers 6: 1 And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying,

2 Speak unto the children of Israel, and say unto them, When either man or woman shall separate themselves to vow a vow of a Nazarite, to separate themselves unto the LORD:

3 He shall separate himself from wine and strong drink, and shall drink no vinegar of wine, or vinegar of strong drink, neither shall he drink any liquor of grapes, nor eat moist grapes, or dried.

4 All the days of his separation shall he eat nothing that is made of the vine tree, from the kernels even to the husk.

5 All the days of the vow of his separation there shall no razor come upon his head: until the days be fulfilled, in the which he separateth himself unto the LORD, he shall be holy, and shall let the locks of the hair of his head grow.

6 All the days that he separateth himself unto the LORD he shall come at no dead body.

7 He shall not make himself unclean for his father, or for his mother, for his brother, or for his sister, when they die: because the consecration of his God is upon his head.

8 All the days of his separation he is holy unto the LORD.

9 And if any man die very suddenly by him, and he hath defiled the head of his consecration; then he shall shave his head in the day of his cleansing, on the seventh day shall he shave it.

10 And on the eighth day he shall bring two turtles, or two young pigeons, to the priest, to the door of the tabernacle of the congregation:

11 And the priest shall offer the one for a sin offering, and the other for a burnt offering, and make an atonement for him, for that he sinned by the dead, and shall hallow his head that same day.

12 And he shall consecrate unto the LORD the days of his separation, and shall bring a lamb of the first year for a trespass offering: but the days that were before shall be lost, because his separation was defiled.

13 And this is the law of the Nazarite, when the days of his separation are fulfilled: he shall be brought unto the door of the tabernacle of the congregation:

14 And he shall offer his offering unto the LORD, one he lamb of the first year without blemish for a burnt offering, and one ewe lamb of the first year without blemish for a sin offering, and one ram without blemish for peace offerings,

15 And a basket of unleavened bread, cakes of fine flour mingled with oil, and wafers of unleavened bread anointed with oil, and their meat offering, and their drink offerings.

16 And the priest shall bring them before the LORD, and shall offer his sin offering, and his burnt offering:

17 And he shall offer the ram for a sacrifice of peace offerings unto the LORD, with the basket of unleavened bread: the priest shall offer also his meat offering, and his drink offering.

18 And the Nazarite shall shave the head of his separation at the door of the tabernacle of the congregation, and shall take the hair of the head of his separation, and put it in the fire which is under the sacrifice of the peace offerings.

19 And the priest shall take the sodden shoulder of the ram, and one unleavened cake out of the basket, and one unleavened wafer, and shall put them upon the hands of the Nazarite, after the hair of his separation is shaven:

20 And the priest shall wave them for a wave offering before the LORD: this is holy for the priest, with the wave breast and heave shoulder: and after that the Nazarite may drink wine.

21 This is the law of the Nazarite who hath vowed, and of his offering unto the LORD for his separation, beside that that his hand shall get: according to the vow which he vowed, so he must do after the law of his separation.

Footnotes

  1. 3862 paradosis 1) giving up, giving over 1a) the act of giving up1b) the surrender of cities
  2. Boule (ancient Greece), plural boulai, an assembly forming part of city governments in Ancient Greece
  3. Conscripti Patri
  4. The Latin and Greek term for Father used as a title of respect for senators of Rome because they held the position of parens patriae, fathers of the country. [Latin, Parent of the country.] A doctrine that grants the inherent power and authority of the state to protect persons who are legally unable to act on their own behalf. The parens patriae doctrine has its roots in English Common Law. In feudal times various obligations and powers, collectively referred to as the "royal prerogative," were reserved to the king. The king exercised these functions in his role of father of the country. In the United States, the parens patriae doctrine has had its greatest application in the treatment of children, mentally ill persons, and other individuals who are legally incompetent to manage their affairs. The state is the supreme guardian of all children within its jurisdiction, and state courts have the inherent power to intervene to protect the best interests of children whose welfare is jeopardized by controversies between parents. This inherent power is generally supplemented by legislative acts that define the scope of child protection in a state. The state, acting as parens patriae, can make decisions regarding mental health treatment on behalf of one who is mentally incompetent to make the decision on his or her own behalf, but the extent of the state's intrusion is limited to reasonable and necessary treatment. The doctrine of parens patriae has been expanded in the United States to permit the attorney general of a state to commence litigation for the benefit of state residents for federal antitrust violations (15 U.S.C.A. § 15c). This authority is intended to further the public trust, safeguard the general and economic welfare of a state's residents, protect residents from illegal practices, and assure that the benefits of federal law are not denied to the general population. States may also invoke parens patriae to protect interests such as the health, comfort, and welfare of the people, interstate Water Rights, and the general economy of the state. For a state to have standing to sue under the doctrine, it must be more than a nominal party without a real interest of its own and must articulate an interest apart from the interests of particular private parties.
  5. Psalms 69:22 Let their table become a snare before them: and that which should have been for their welfare, let it become a trap.
    Romans 11:9 And David saith, Let their table be made a snare, and a trap, and a stumblingblock, and a recompence unto them:
  6. 2 Peter 2:3 "And through covetousness shall they with feigned words make merchandise of you: whose judgment now of a long time lingereth not, and their damnation slumbereth not."
    Luke 12:15 And he said unto them, Take heed, and beware of covetousness: for a man’s life consisteth not in the abundance of the things which he possesseth.
  7. "Polis (/ˈpɒlᵻs/; Greek: πόλις [pólis]), plural poleis (/ˈpɒleɪz/, πόλεις [póleːs]) literally means city in Greek. It can also mean citizenship and body of citizens."
  8. Aristotle 35 also translated "a community of families and aggregations of families in well-being, for the sake of a perfect and self-sufficing life. ... The end of the state [polis] is the good life. . . .”
  9. Polis: The Journal of the Society for Greek Political Thought, Volume 17, Numbers 1-2, 2000, pp. 2-34(33) Berent M. Sovereignty: ancient and modern.
  10. Tacitus says of the ancient Germans, in Germania 15,
  11. The Enterprise of Law: Justice without the State. Bruce L. Benson Publisher: Pacific Research Institute for Public Policy (San Francisco), 1991 ’
  12. 4174 1) the administration of civil affairs 2) a state or commonwealth 3) citizenship, the rights of a citizen
  13. 4177 a citizen
  14. Acts 22:28 And the chief captain answered, With a great sum obtained I this freedom. And Paul said, But I was [free] born.
  15. Ephesians 2:12 That at that time ye were without Christ, being aliens from the commonwealth of Israel, and strangers from the covenants of promise, having no hope, and without God in the world:
  16. The word that often appears as world in the Bible 2889 kosmos "an apt and harmonious arrangement or constitution, order, government"
  17. Matthew 10:28 And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.
    Luke 12:4 And I say unto you my friends, Be not afraid of them that kill the body, and after that have no more that they can do.
  18. Luke 22:25 "And he said unto them, The kings of the Gentiles exercise lordship over them; and they that exercise authority upon them are called benefactors. But it shall not be so among you: " Matthew 20:25 Mark 10:42
  19. Matthew 16:17 "And Jesus answered and said unto him, Blessed art thou, Simon Barjona: for flesh and blood hath not revealed [it] unto thee, but my Father which is in heaven." it is that revelation that is the rock that he builds on.
    1 Corinthians 15:50 "Now this I say, brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God; neither doth corruption inherit incorruption."