Toledot Jeshu
"Book of the Life of Jesus"... "Genealogy of Jesus"

The Devastating Hebrew Book


    The Toledot Jeshu (Book of the Life of Jesus), is a devastating Hebrew book to belittle the person of Jesus by ascribing to Him illegitimate birth, magic, witchcraft, and a shameful death. The main point of the Toledot is that Jesus is a deceiver and a heretic who was crucified by the Jews and his disciples stole his body and deceived others by proclaiming his resurrection. All the Toledot Jeshu editions declared Jesus Christ to be a bastard.

    Virgin Mary is portrayed in the Toledot as a woman who conceived Jesus as a result of rape by a Roman soldier, Joseph Pandera.

    "Jeshu" means "may his name be blotted out!": Most Jewish sources avoid the Greek name "Jesus", meaning "savior", and in Hebrew abbreviate Jeschua to Jeshu: "Jeschua" means "Savior", "Jeshu" means "may his name be blotted out!"

    The Toledot is a pernicious book mainly for the Jewish people: Jewish mothers know the false fiction-story and pass it to their children via voice, by word, and those little children are programmed against Christianity since their very early childhood, creating in them all kind of poisonous resentment and prejudice against Christians... the Rabbis also pass the false story by word.

    The Toledot is a kind of farce, a mocking distortion of the gospel story, and goes back to the second and third centuries, extant in about a dozen different versions.   

    The most prominent edition was published by Johann C. Wagenseil in 1681, with the title Tela Ignea Satanae. Altdorf: Noricum, 1681.

    Other titles of the book are: Deeds of Jesus (Ma'ase Yeshu), Deeds of the One Who Was Hanged (Ma'ased Talui), Deeds of the One and His Son (Ma'asth do'otho v'eth b'no), Genealogy of Jesus... or Tolodoth Ieschu or Sepher Toldoth Jehoshua....

    However, you may not find anyone in your bookstore because when the Jewish teachings regarding Jesus Christ were discovered in the early 1600's, a cover-up ensued. In 1631, a Jewish synod in Poland ordered the offending passages to be expunged, and that these teaching were to be passed on orally to young Jews by Rabbis and parents. This is documented by P.L.B Drach:

    "Drach, op.cit. I.168, 169. The text of this encyclical is given in Hebrew and also in translation, thus: "This is why we enjoin you, under the pain of excommunication major, to print nothing in future editions, whether of Mischna or of the Gemara, which relates whether for good or evil to the acts of Jesus the Nazarene, and to substitute instead a circle like this O, which will warn the Rabbis and schoolmasters to teach the young these passages only viva voce. By means of this precaution the savants amongst the Nazarenes will have no further pretext to attack us on this subject." Cf, Abbe'Chiarini, Le Talmud de Babylone, p. 45 (1831)." 13.

The offending passages are said to have been reinserted since then, although such passages may not necessarily be in English translations or newer editions.  

    The book where I could find something instructive on the Toledot is Jesus Outside the New Testament (pages 122-134), by Robert E. Van Voorst, William B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, Grand Rapids, Michigan, USA / Cambridge, UK.

    The Talmud and Cabala teachings of the Toledot Yeshu are representative of teachings regarding Christ which may be shocking to Christians. A brief overview of these teachings cites the Talmud, which presents this falsified account of Jesus:

    "...the Toledot Yeshu relates with the most indecent details that Miriam, a hairdresser of Bethlehem,4. affianced to a young man named Jochanan, was seduced by a libertine, Joseph Panther or Pandira, and gave birth to a son whom she named Johosuah or Jeschu. According to the Talmudic authors of the Sota and the Sanhedrim, Jeschu was taken during his boyhood to Egypt, where he was initiated into the secrets doctrines of the priests, and on his return to Palestine gave himself up to the practice of magic. 5. The Toledot Yeshu, however, goes on to say that on reaching manhood, Jeschu learnt the secret of his illegitimacy, on account of which he was driven out of the Synagogue and took refuge for a time in Galilee." (treatise Sabbath, folio 104, treatise Sanhedrim, folio 107, and Sota, folio 47).


    All the Jews are well acquainted with anti-Semitism, and they better stop this kind of talk because it obviously backfires.

    Hebrew Roots proponents claim that these teachings are a thing of the past. However, a review of various Jewish sources in use today discloses identical the same or similar teachings.

    The above quotation is an example.

    Another example of the Talmud:

"Now, there was in the Temple a stone on which was engraved the Tetragrammaton [YHWH] or Schem Hamphorasch, that is to say, the Ineffable Name of God; this stone had been found by King David when the foundations of the Temple were being prepared and was deposited by him in the Holy of Holies. Jeschu, knowing this, came from Galilee and, penetrating into the Holy of Holies, read the Ineffable name, which he transcribed on to a piece of whom parchment and concealed in an incision under his skin. By this means he was able to work miracles and to persuade the people that he was the son of God foretold by Isaiah. With the aid of Judas, the Sages of the Synagogue, succeeding in capturing Jeschu, who was then lead before the Great and Little Sanhedrim, by whom he was condemned to be stoned to death and finally hanged." Such is the story of Christ according to the Jewish Kabbalists ..." (treatise Sabbath, folio 104, treatise Sanhedrim, folio 107, and Sota, folio 47).

    This false witness to the person of Jesus in the Talmud is also confirmed by Rev. I. B. Pranaitis in his online report, The Talmud Unmasked: The Secret Rabbinical Teachings Concerning Christians, and other sources" (Rev. I. B. Pranaitis; op.cit. Part One, Ch. 1, Jesus Christ in the Talmud).


    Virgin Mary, as the predominant tradition in the Talmud, is treated even worse than in the Toledot: Virgin Mary was immoral and conceived Jesus after willing premarital or extramarital sexual intercourse.

    In his volume, The Talmud, Joseph Barclay confirms that the writings of Drach, a Talmudist turned Catholic whose writings were never refuted by Jews:

" … Abominable calumnies on Christ and Christianity occur not only in the Cabala but in the earlier editions of the Talmud. In these, says Barclay - 'Our Lord and savior is 'that one', 'such an one', 'a fool', 'the leper', 'the deceiver of Israel', etc. Efforts are made to prove that He is the son of Joseph Pandira before His marriage with Mary. His miracles are attributed to sorcery the secret of which He brought in a slit in His flesh out of Egypt. He is said had been first stoned and then hanged on the eve of the Passover. His disciples are called heretics and opprobious names. They are accused of immoral practices, and the New Testament is called a sinful book. The references to these subjects manifest the most bitter aversion and hatred." 15.  

    Considering the diversity of thought inside Judaism as found in four different groupings - Orthodoxy, Conservative, Reform, and Reconstructionist Judaism - we cannot claim that the respective ideas of each group agree on all points. However, there are some underlying beliefs that appear to remain constant and accepted by most Jews regarding Jesus  Christ, the Messiah.


    The "Jews for Judaism" web site describes Jesus as a false prophet predicted in the Old Testament.

"…Jesus the Nazarene, who imagined that he would be messiah and was killed, is alluded to in the book of Daniel, as it is said, `And the sons of the transgressors among thy people will rise, in order to establish a vision, and will stumble' (Dan. 11:14). Can there be a greater stumbling then this? All the prophets said that messiah will be a redeemer and a savior to the Israelites, will bring together their outcasts, and will strengthen their obedience to the Divine precepts, but he (Jesus) caused destruction by the sword to Israel, the dispersion of those left, and their humiliation. He changed the law, and misled many people to worship a being beside G-D…." 17.

     A particularly egregious example would be the "Toledot Jeshu."  It purports to be the story of the life of Jesus. Although scholars admit there is no historical worth to the narrative, it provided many generations of Jews with their dominant impressions of Christianity, and reflects nothing but cruel disdain.  It circulated along with formal letters from the Sanhedrin at Jabne to the Diaspora concerning the attitude to be adopted <vis a vis> Christianity.  Three of the Fathers, St. Justin, Eusebius, and St. Jerome,  indicate the content of the letters:  Jesus, a charlatan, was killed by the Jews.  His disciples stole the body. Jews should have absolutely no dealings with His followers.  The decisions at Jabne, promulgated by these letters, clearly constituted a formal and definitive excommunication of Christians from the Synagogue (Edward Flannery, <The Anguish of the Jews> (New York: The Macmillan Co., 1965), pp. 29 and 34).

    It has been established that the original manuscripts for the New Testament were composed in Greek. The Toledot Yeshu is a Hebrew version of the life of Jesus Christ for Jews who rejected him as God come in the flesh. It is also purveyed in Jewish sources that Jesus was not viewed as divine by his disciples.