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RE: The Essene Name

---------------Original Message---------------
Another of the corpus' self-designations would be 'ebionim' [the poor]
which occurs frequently in several documents.  Whether or not the
'ebionim' referred to throughout the scrolls would be the one and the
same as the 'Ebionites' described [interchangeably with Nazarenes] by 
Eusibius in _Ecclesiastical History_ some three hundred years later is 
highly subject to speculation, however there do seem to be references 
to the early Jerusalem church in the NT as 'the poor' [ptochos] as well.  
Where would one find the earliest references to the [for lack of a 
better word] 'sect' of Ebionites??

Vernon Chadwick
Charlotte, NC
----------End of Original Message----------

Shalom Vernon,

Though I'm still trying to obtain a copy, from tantalizing citation I have 
seen, I understand that references can be found in Pseudo-Clementine and 
Panarion.  I believe I saw the discussion of that in Crosstalk.  Dr. Tabor, 
there, probably can also help.

While Eusebius confuses Ebionites with at least two different types of 
"Nazarene," he was apparently ill-equiped to distinguish among Jewish sects. 
While he confused the two, we should try not to.  What can be discerned 
relative to 1st-century Judaism from 4Q MMT suggests that, the 1st-
century N'zarim (Nazarene Jews) recognized the full authority of halakhah 
(by whatever term, including miyshpat, ma'aseh, or Book of Decrees) whereas 
_at least_ one of Eusebius' "Nazarenes" and, certainly I think from Pseudo- 
Clementine and probably the Didache, the Ebionites advocated partial 
adherance to halakhah and Torah.

Full versus partial adherance to halakhic Torah- observance seems, to me, to 
be a better distinction between them than any other criteria I've run 
across, particularly when Eusebius, et al., seem unable to distinguish 
between them with any reliability.  Especially subsequent to 135 CE, 
"Nazarene" seems to be assigned to sects that advocate partial adherance to 
halakhic Torah- observance and would, therefore, have been regarded by the 
1st-century N'tzarim and the rest of 1st- century Judaism (e.g., the Beyt 
Diyn Ha-Gadol, see discussions in Crosstalk archives), as apostate and 
outside of legitimate Judaism.

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Yirmiyahu Ben-David, Pakiyd 16; Ra'anana, Israel
Q'hiylat Ha-N'tzarim
(Global Congregation of Nazarene Jews)

N'tzarim Virtual Community Center:

N'tzarim... Authentic
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