I enjoyed the article immensely. I have learned a few things differently, but the gist of the article is sound. In addition, the chief evangelist of the first century was a self proclamed Pharisee (Hebrews 3:5) and zealous for the Law.
As to the quote above, I have always believed it was because the Pharisees had such a high calling and had still failed. They were supposed to bring G-d near and had lead the people away from Him (Matthew 23:15). Jesus was much like the Pharisees of His day, and many modern Jewish scholars look at Jesus of the Gospels as a prime example of first century Pharisaic life. But He had given much to the Pharisees and had demanded much in return. They did not deliver.
Still, His desire was to save them, not to condemn them. His harsh words were to bring them to the light, not drive them into outer darkness. Witness His relationship with the Pharisee in John 3.
Perhaps because they KNEW their scriptures regarding the archtypes of enemies of God?
They must have recalled what was said in Jeremiah 22:24
"As I live, saith the LORD, though Coniah the son of Jehoiakim king of Judah were the signet upon my right hand, yet would I pluck thee thence; And I will give thee into the hand of them that seek thy life, and into the hand of them whose face thou fearest, even into the hand of Nebuchadrezzar king of Babylon, and into the hand of the Chaldeans. And I will cast thee out, and thy mother that bare thee, into another country, where ye were not born; and there shall ye die. But to the land whereunto they desire to return, thither shall they not return. Is this man Coniah a despised broken idol? is he a vessel wherein is no pleasure? wherefore are they cast out, he and his seed, and are cast into a land which they know not? O earth, earth, earth, hear the word of the LORD. Thus saith the LORD, Write ye this man childless, a man that shall not prosper in his days: for no man of his seed shall prosper, sitting upon the throne of David, and ruling any more in Judah.
I'm not sure Jesus should have declared himself God. See, from the above verse no man of his seed shall sit upon the throne of David, or rule in Judah. It just happens that Matthew lists Jesus' lineage through the cursed branch of kings. Matthew either intentionally or unintentionally omits king Jehoiakim in the list, which may confuse some people. But Jehoiakim (not Jeconiah) is undeniably the son of Josiah, and Jeconiah is the son of Jehoiakim.
Matthew 1:10-12 "And Ezekias begat Manasses; and Manasses begat Amon; and Amon begat Josias; And Josias begat Jechonias and his brethren, about the time they were carried away to Babylon: And after they were brought to Babylon, Jechonias begat Salathiel; and Salathiel begat Zorobabel;
1 Chronicles 3:15-17 "And the sons of Josiah were, the firstborn Johanan, the second Jehoiakim, the third Zedekiah, the fourth Shallum. And the sons of Jehoiakim: Jeconiah his son, Zedekiah his son. And the sons of Jeconiah; Assir, Salathiel his son,"
Isaiah speaks of the cursed branch too.
Isaiah 14:18-19 "All the kings of the nations, even all of them, lie in glory, every one in his own house. But thou art cast out of thy grave like an abominable branch, and as the raiment of those that are slain, thrust through with a sword, that go down to the stones of the pit; as a carcase trodden under feet."
Jesus wound up missing from his grave... he had been pierced with a sword....
Isaiah 14:12 "How you have fallen from heaven, O morning star, son of the dawn! You have been cast down to the earth, you who once laid low the nations!" Revelation 22:16 "I Jesus have sent mine angel to testify unto you these things in the churches. I am the root and the offspring of David, and the bright and morning star."
Why do most Bibles translate heylel as "Morning Star", while others translate it as "Shining", and still a few translate it as "Lucifer"?
In the Isaiah verse the king of Babylon is made to seem like a fallen celestial being and Christian doctrine speaks of Satan as a fallen angel. So, why does Jesus use morning star??
Isaiah 14:12-16 How you have fallen from heaven, O morning star, son of the dawn! You have been cast down to the earth, you who once laid low the nations! You said in your heart, "I will ascend to heaven; I will raise my throne above the stars of God; I will sit enthroned on the mount of assembly, on the utmost heights of the sacred mountain. I will ascend above the tops of the clouds; I will make myself like the Most High." But you are brought down to the grave, to the depths of the pit. Those who see you stare at you, they ponder your fate: "Is this the man who shook the earth and made kingdoms tremble,"
Matthew 26:64 "Jesus saith unto him, Thou hast said: nevertheless I say unto you, Hereafter shall ye see the Son of man sitting on the right hand of power, and coming in the clouds of heaven."
Matthew 27:50-51 "Jesus, when he had cried again with a loud voice, yielded up the ghost. And, behold, the veil of the temple was rent in twain from the top to the bottom; and the earth did quake, and the rocks rent;"
John 19:37 "And again another scripture saith, They shall look on him whom they pierced."
Too bad John didn't tell them the rest of THAT scripture!!
How about some Ezekiel speaking of Tyre?, (another 'enemy')
Ezekiel 32:7-8 "And when I shall put thee out, I will cover the heaven, and make the stars thereof dark; I will cover the sun with a cloud, and the moon shall not give her light. All the bright lights of heaven will I make dark over thee, and set darkness upon thy land, saith the Lord GOD."
Luke 23:44-45 "And it was about the sixth hour, and there was a darkness over all the earth until the ninth hour. And the sun was darkened, and the veil of the temple was rent in the midst."
Ezekiel 28:9-10 "Wilt thou yet say before him that slayeth thee, I am God? but thou shalt be a man, and no God, in the hand of him that slayeth thee. Thou shalt die the deaths of the uncircumcised by the hand of strangers: for I have spoken it, saith the Lord GOD."
The word "uncircumcised" refers to Gentiles -- which the Romans were. The crucifiction punishment that followed Jesus's claim to GOD-hood was indeed the "death of the uncircumcised" (the Roman execution method), a punishment issued by Romans and typically reserved only for enemies of their state.
Why are there so many parallels with Babylon, Pharoah, Tyre, even Satan and Jesus???
At the time of Jesus, the only 'scripture' in existance was the Old Testament (Tanakh). Since there are quite a few verses from the OT that speak of God's enemies, and these same verses matched up with Jesus, is this why so many Jews were opposed to Jesus as the messiah? Because he fit so many of the verses speaking of God's enemies?
It's because back then as it is today religious leaders prefer to build and rule over their kingdoms than to bring people to the love of God.