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Ten ‘Jewish Facts’ You Need to Know About the New Testament

Updated: Jan 10, 2022

As a new believer in Yeshua (Jesus), I assumed I was no longer Jewish—that believing in this Jewish man had nothing in common with Jewishness. However, after reading the New Testament, I was shocked to find out that it was a Jewish book, telling a Jewish story in Israel about Jewish people.

Check out these 10 facts:

1. Jesus’ actual name is Yeshua.

Yeshua comes from the Hebrew noun Yeshu-á, which means salvation. When Joseph was visited by the Angel, he was told that he must give the child the name Yeshua, because He would be Yeshu-á for His people! (Matt. 1:21) You miss this powerful prophetic wordplay in Greek and English.

2. His mother’s name was not Mary or even Maria.

She was not Catholic! Miriam is the same name as the sister of Moses. It is a Jewish name, and that was her name. She was an Israelite who lived long before the Vatican even existed.

3. John was not a Baptist.

No disrespect to my Baptist friends, but John was the last and greatest of the Hebrew prophets like Jeremiah, Isaiah, and Ezekiel. He prophesied the coming of the Jewish Messiah. He too was an Israelite calling the Jewish people to get ready for the appearance of the Lamb of God.

4. Baptism is not unique to the New Testament.

Jews, believe it or not, used water immersion for centuries before John began to baptize his Jewish followers. One of the reasons they did not resist was because it was familiar to their culture. Next to the Temple, archaeologists have discovered more than 50 immersion tanks (Mikvot) that were for those coming to be ritually cleansed before making their sacrifice at the Temple.

5. Peter was not the first Pope!

Peter, a Jew, was only the leader of the first Jewish believers for a few years. He turned over the reigns to Jacob (we will talk about him in a minute) the brother of Yeshua and began to travel, sharing the message of Salvation through Yeshua.

There is zero evidence that Peter was the Bishop of Rome or that he passed down such a mantle to anyone else.  He was a Jewish fisherman who became one of the greatest communicators of Yeshua’s message of Salvation. He never stopped living as a Jew, and certainly never referred to himself as Catholic.

Oh, and the Bible states very clearly that Peter had a mother-in-law, which would lead me to believe he had a wife, and for some strange reason, Catholic priests (including the Pope) are forbidden to wed.

6. James is not the name of the fellow who wrote the Book of James or who led the first Jewish believers in Acts 15.

James would be a great name for a butler or chauffeur, or even a king…but not a Jew in the first century. His name was Jacob! The Latin for James and Jacob are very close and because of linguistic confusion, James became the English for Ya’akov (Jacob) in the New Covenant.

7. Yeshua died on Passover, rose from the dead on the Jewish Feast of Firstfruits, and the Holy Spirit was poured out on Jerusalem on the Feast of Weeks (Shavuot).

These are three of the most significant days in history, and God caused each one of them to happen on the three most significant days to Jews during the spring of 30CE. It is as if God was saying, “Hey, don’t forget that this started with the Jews in Jerusalem!” And still, the Church sadly forgot.

8. Paul never changed his name.

The Bible merely mentions the fact that Saul was also called Paul. (Acts 13:9) Like most Jews, he had a name that was common to the people where he lived (Roman Empire) and a Hebrew name. The idea that he got rid of his Jewish name is unbiblical and frankly ignorant. I too was given an English name when I was born, Ron, and a Hebrew one, Chaim.

9. The entire New Testament was written by Jews.

There is some controversy about whether or not Luke was Jewish (I have heard strong arguments for both views), but every other writer was Jewish.

10. Communion was instituted at a Passover Seder.

Yeshua picked up the Afikomen, a special piece of matzah (unleavened bread) used during the Passover Seder and he lifted the third cup of four that are blessed during the Passover meal, the Cup of Redemption, and asked that his Jewish disciples continue this Jewish tradition.

BONUS: All of the original followers of Yeshua were Jewish. And once Gentiles began to believe in Him, there were many that felt that in order for non-Jews to believe in the Jewish Messiah, they had to convert to Judaism first. In the end (Acts 15), it was decided that they didn’t need to. But never did it enter the mind of the Jewish followers of Yeshua that they were no longer Jewish!

Yeshua died on Passover, rose from the dead on first fruits and poured out his Spirit on Jerusalem on Shavuot (Pentecost) — the three most significant days of the spring for Jews. Clearly this is a Jewish story. The big revelation in the New Testament is that Jesus is not only for Jews, he is for everyone!

Hey, if you enjoy this article then you'll love my book Identity Theft. We are getting ready to celebrate it's 10 year anniversary. We have updated it and will be releasing the new version very shortly. Stay tuned!

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30 commentaires

Father God is no respecter of persons. He loves us all ✝️❤️🙏embrace it. accept it and be blessed for ever and always 🌅🐶😇🇨🇦😢🇺🇸


Raphael Levy
Raphael Levy
15 févr. 2022

It is 2021 years that christians betray their Jesus : they don't live and practice the judaism Jesus used to practice.


you said., Jesus picked up the third cup. What are these cups and how does it work ✝️😇

Pat Griffin Sheek
Pat Griffin Sheek
09 mars 2022
En réponse à

There are a total of 4 cups of wine drank during the Passover Seder, each symbolizing different things: Sanctification, Plagues (Deliverance), Redemption and Praise. Try to find a Passover Seder that you can attend. You will never be the same.


Thank you... we are all still learning. I don’t think there is a physical drop of Jewish blood in me, but spiritually I am your sister. l Looking forward to meeting you in heaven, Shalom

28 janv. 2022
En réponse à

Interesting thought.... God told Abraham that his descendants would be "as the sands of the sea" and of the "stars of the sky"..... I believe if you've turned your eyes upon Jesus/Yeshua you could very well be one of the family. Interesting also that there were/are 12 tribes of the descendants and when heaven is to be brought down to earth - there will be 12 entrances, each with the name of a tribe over it. ...welcome aboard friend in Christ.


19 janv. 2022

Some very good points but may I add something? John (the immerser) was one of 3 men in the bible who had a goal planned before their birth. the other 2 were Yeshua and Jeremiah. Jeremiah's story and plan is so wonderfully fascinating and complete but never understood by most people.....having to do with the "daughters of the last king" Zedekiah and their journey to Egypt, the scarlet thread put upon the first born twin sons of Judah at the time of Jacob. And the fact that the 10 tribes of Israel moved to the "Isles of the North and West".... where Jeremiah later died in Ireland.

The story is so Amazing. And BTW..... at the time of Yeshua's life…

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Shalom from Israel! I am Ron Cantor and this is my blog. I serve as the President of Shelanu TV.

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