Talmidi Library

Articles on Talmidi Theology


Glossary & List Of Abbreviations Used on this Website

Word Definition
Aramaic a Semitic language, related to Hebrew and Arabic. Until the rise of Arabic in the 7th century CE, Aramaic was the international language of the Middle East, and there were many different varieties of it.
Baal the general title of respect for any Canaanite god; the word means ‘lord’.
BCE abbreviation: ‘Before the Common Era’, used with the western dating system. The academic equivalent of BC
Believers self-appellation of the first Gentile Christians, (Pisteuontes in Greek); the followers of Paul of Tarsus; the Jewish followers of Yeshua` did not use this term.

The Quran also refers to Muslims as ‘Believers’(mūminin in Arabic)

CE abbreviation: ‘Common Era’, used with the western dating system. The academic equivalent of AD
cf compare with; from Latin confero
Christianity the religious philosophy based on the belief system of Paul of Tarsus, and the ethical teachings of Jesus of Nazareth
Convention of Jerusalem, the known as ‘Council of Jerusalem’ in the Orthodox and Catholic churches. Took place in about the summer of 49 CE to discuss the status of Paul’s Gentile Believers, and their relationship with the community of Followers
Covenant, the the pact made between God and Israel: ‘If you will worship me alone, and follow only My laws and teachings, then I will give you the land of Canaan forever, and preserve you as a nation forever’. Everything else are terms and conditions.
Ebionite an ancient Talmidi sect. Even in the first 40 years after Jesus’s death, there were several sects. The only one whose name we still know are the Ebionites.
Essenes ancient Jewish sect. They were opposed to the priesthood in the Jerusalem Temple, whom they saw as corrupt, so they formed an isolated community in the Judean desert near the Dead Sea.
Followers of the Way self-appellation of the first Jewish followers of Jesus of Nazareth; see also: ‘Way, the’
free translation a translation that gives the sense of the original, and is not necessarily a literal, word for word translation. This also gives the nearest vernacular equivalent of otherwise misleading, idiomatic expressions.
Galilee, the region in the north of ancient Israel. Its population consisted mostly of farmers and fishermen. Its capital was Sepphoris
Gnosticism Belief system that holds that there is a good and an evil god; that this world is controlled by the evil god, and only spiritual things are good. Attainment to the spiritual realm is only possible through secret knowledge or gnosis.
Godfearer Non-Jew who follows the beliefs, principles and customs of the Israelite religion, without going through full conversion (in Hebrew: yireh elohim [for a woman, yirat elohim], ‘someone who reveres God in awe’). Can also be called a nilveh / nilvah (‘one who attaches themselves’ i.e. to Yahveh)
immersion the Jewish version of baptism. It is carried out, not only for conversion, but whenever one needs to be ritually prepared for attending Temple. It was therefore not a one-time-only ritual.
Jacob the Pious St. James the Just, author of the ‘Letter of James’ in the New Testament. He was the leader of the ancient Talmidi community after Jesus died. He led the community from c.30 to 62 CE, when he was executed by stoning at the orders of the High Priest.
Jerusalem Council, the the central ruling body of the ancient Talmidi community; not to be confused with what Catholics call ‘the Council of Jerusalem’, which was a great meeting (or Convention) convened specifically to decide the position of Paul’s followers in relation to the ancient Talmidi community.
Jewish Aramaic the dialect of Aramaic spoken by Jews – more accurately, Galilean Jewish Aramaic. It was heavily influenced by Hebrew
Josephus Jewish historian who lived shortly after Jesus. He was a Galilean who witnessed many of the events that led to the destruction of Jerusalem and the Temple.
Kabbalah a form of mysticism which is a mixture of pagan, Gnostic and Jewish thought. Not accepted in Talmidaism as being of pagan origin.
Karaism The religious philosophy of Karaite Jews. They do not accept the authority of the Oral law, and rely on the freedom to interpret Scripture according to one’s own learning and understanding.
Kavodh lit. ‘glory’; refers to the fire of the ‘Divine Radiance’ – the powerful and purifying aspect of God’s nature.
kheruvim (pronounced khair-oo-VEEM) a form of angel that, according to tradition, supports God’s throne. They have the back end of an ox, the front end of a lion, the wings of an eagle, and the torso and head of a man. The Christian version of these angels are cherubs; Israelite kheruvim look nothing like the baby-faced Christian cherubs.
Koine Greek the everyday form of Greek spoken by ordinary people (in contrast to classical or literary Greek). The gospels were probably written in this form of Greek to make them easy to read by ordinary people.
literal translation a translation that gives a word-for-word translation of the original language. Literal translations don’t give the real sense of idiomatic expressions, only the literal rendering of them.
Miqra, the the oldest word for the Hebrew Bible or ‘Old Testament’. Also called the Tanakh, after the rabbinic abbreviation for the 3 parts of the Miqra (T.N.K. – Torah, Nevi’im Ketuvim (Torah, Prophets & Writings).
miqveh ritual immersion pool
Mishkan Hebrew for the Tabernacle, the covered tent that was the central place of worship in the Sinai, and also in the Land of Israel until the Temple was built.
Nazirite a man or woman who has taken a particular vow not to consume anything derived from grapes, and to avoid contact with the dead. During the time of their vow, they had to live a life of piety, in accordance with the laws and principles of the Israelite religion.
Oral Law a corpus of books that contain the debates and decisions of the ancient rabbis. It has greater authority in modern Rabbinic Judaism than the Hebrew Bible.
Outer Darkness in Massorite Talmidi theology, a term used by Yeshua` to describe a place after death where the soul goes to dwell apart from God (also known as Sheol and Azza Zel). Here one has to work through one’s sins by reliving what one has done to others as if they were happening to oneself. Once one has experienced and repented of all the sins one did not repent of in life, one then goes on to heaven.
Paul of Tarsus St Paul. His teachings and beliefs form the basis of modern Christianity (the atoning death of Jesus on the cross, original sin etc). He was not accepted by the ancient Jewish followers of Yeshua`
Paullist adjective, describing a particular theology and outlook that originates from the teaching of Paul of Tarsus (or ‘St Paul’), and not Jesus.
Pharisees ancient Jewish sect from which the majority of modern Jewish sects (i.e. Rabbinic Judaism) are descended. They held the Oral Law in greater esteem than the Hebrew Bible
Q-Gospel, the (or simply, Q) earliest hypothetical gospel, containing only the sayings of Jesus; it would have predated the Gospels of Matthew and Luke, and possibly even Mark.
Sabbatical Year every 7th year was a Sabbatical year. The land was not to be tilled or harvested, and all debts were to be forgiven.
Sadducees ancient Jewish sect consisting mostly of aristocratic priests. They only accepted the first 5 books of the Hebrew Bible, and did not believe in life after death.
Samaritans Israelite sect descended from the northern tribes of Israel. In Jesus’s day, Jews and Samaritans hated each other, and there were regular intercommunal clashes.
scribe generally a professional who is paid to write or copy anything. In Yeshua`’s time, they were also trained, learned interpreters of Torah.
Second Temple period Jewish historical period from 530 BCE to 70 CE. The period in which Jesus lived is referred to as the Late Second Temple period, or the Herodian period (after King Herod the Great, and the dynasty he founded).
seraphim (pronounced sair-raff-FEEM); fiery, winged, serpent-like angels who are traditionally thought to exist in the immediate presence of God. In Jewish tradition they are gigantic, flying serpents, the colour of copper or bronze. They have three sets of wings, one with which they fly, another with which they cover their faces, and the third with which they cover their middle.
She’ol the underworld, place of the dead. Before the Israelites believed in heaven, they used to believe that the dead went to a dark, unknowing underworld called She’ol. This later evolved into belief in a place Yeshua` called ‘the Outer Darkness’.
Tabernacle the covered tent that was the central place of worship in the Sinai, and also in the Land of Israel until the Temple was built.
Talmidaism modern term for ‘Jewish-Christianity’ (pronounced taal-mee-DAY-izzm, from the Aramaic talmīdā, ‘follower’, ‘disciple’), and is synonymous with ‘the Way’. It is an umbrella term for any Jewish sect that follows Jesus of Nazareth as a fully human prophet.
Talmidi modern term for ‘Jewish-Christian’, (pronounced taal-MEE-dee; plural: Talmidis), and is synonymous with ‘Follower of the Way’. This term refers to those Jewish followers of Jesus of Nazareth who believe he was a fully human prophet. Although the word was only coined in 1996, the term is used retrospectively by modern ‘Jewish Christians’ to refer to ancient Jewish Christians too.
Talmud the Oral Law. This is the collected debates and decisions of the ancient rabbis, and contains material which is often contradictory to books of the Hebrew Bible, and even with itself. For modern rabbinic Judaism, it has greater authority than the Hebrew Bible.
tithe ten per cent of one’s income before tax. This was given to pay the clergy, the upkeep of the Temple, and to help the poor.
Way, the short for ‘the Way of Yahveh’. It was the original name of the Israelite religion, but came to be associated with the faith of the first Jewish followers of Jesus of Nazareth.
Yahwism the pure form of Israelite theology, before it was affected by the beliefs of other religions. Yahveh is held supreme, without equal. Yahveh alone is Saviour (i.e. not a messiah), and has no equal (so Satan is not the ‘ruler of evil’).
Yahwist someone who adheres to the purest form of Israelite theology; also adj., to describe the purest form of Israelite theology
Yeshua` Jesus of Nazareth. This was his original Aramaic name (from Hebrew Yehoshua`, which means ‘Yahveh saves’). Talmidis use it to emphasise the difference between the Christian ‘Jesus’ and the Jewish ‘Yeshua`’, and to point out that they are two distinct entities.
Yochanan the Immerser John the Baptist. He actually led his own sect, the Nazorayyans. The Mandeans of Iraq claim descent from these Nazorayyans.
Zoroastrianism The old religion of Persia (now Iran). It was founded by a man called Zoroaster (Zardusht). It believed in a good god (Ahura Mazda) and an evil god (Ahriman), and that a saviour from the world of light would come to save humanity. This religion influenced Judaism after the Babylonian Exile in the 6th century BCE, and introduced new beliefs such as a king-saviour, Satan, fallen angels and battles in heaven.