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MORE SICKENING MISSIONARY LIES: Did the Chief Rabbi of Bulgaria become a Xtian?

835891071My 20+ years of countering false missionary claims about Judaism has shown that most Christians who convert to Judaism or leave Christianity to become Noahides are sincerely seeking G-d.   It was actually their initial faith in Jesus which caused them to search for the truth, and the truth led them away from Christianity.

The Jews who have done the reverse, left Judaism for Christianity, appear to be uneducated in Judaism.   Most were not raised in religious Jewish homes, and those who were may have gone through the motions without understanding the T’nach and halacha (Jewish law).  Missionaries often try to refute my observations by throwing out name after name of a supposedly high ranking rabbi who converted to Chirsitianity.  I have discussed two of these examples in the last two posts:  Leopold Cohn (who claimed to have been a rabbi, but many who knew him disputed this claim), and Simcha Pearlmutter (also claimed to be a rabbi, but there was no proof that he was one).Yesterday someone sent me a list of 22 supposed rabbis who converted to Christianity.  One of those names will be discussed in this post:  Daniel Tsion (Zion).   Again we will see that the missionary claims are not supported by the evidence.    So on to Daniel Tsion. . .

Michael Brown (a Christian missionary) wrote of Daniel Tsion / Zion (in his first “Answering Jewish Objections to Jesus” book)   “Have you ever heard of Daniel Zion, the chief rabbi of Bulgaria during the Holocaust?. . . his name is unfamiliar to almost all Jews today.  Why?  Simple.  He was a believer in (Jesus).   He was so highly respected by the Orthodox leaders in Israel that in 1954 the newly appointed chief rabbi, Samuel Toledano, offered him the position of judge in Jerusalem’s Rabbinic Court.”

Brown’s claims are found in other missionary sources to (regarding Tsion / Zion).  Let’s just revisit one sentence from Brown, when he says that Tsion / Zion was so “highly respected by Orthodox leaders” that in 1954 he was appointed as a judge in Jerusalem’s rabbinic court.

This claim seems ludicrous in light of the historical fact that in June 1950 a panel of Israeli rabbis ruled that Zion was “mentally ill” and removed Zion from the position of rabbi.  Tsion / Zion was not even allowed to enter any Synagogues in the city of Jaffa!

Four years before Brown claims he was “highly respected by Orthodox leaders” and appointed as a judge in Jerusalem he was basically stripped of his title and position.    This 1954 date is found on missionary site after missionary site. . .

This claim is even more bizarre when one continues reading from the missionaries who go on to claim “When the rumors circulated that Zion believed in (Jesus), R’ Toledano invited Zion to his office and asked him personally about these rumors.  Zion explained to Toledano his position. He explained that he accepts (Jesus) as the Messiah and he does not accept Christianity.”   Rumors, what rumors?  In 1950 an Israeli rabbinical court had ruled Tsion / Zion mentally defective (mentally ill)!

On September 14, 1952 during an interview on Israel Radio Zion said he believed in Jesus and by this time he was preaching about Jesus publically.

So why would Brown and the other missionaries claim that in 1954 this man was offered an important rabbinical position when by 1950 a rabbinical court had basically ruled him insane and unfit for rabbinical duties?   Why would they claim that in 1954 he was offered a rabbinical position on a court in Jerusalem when in 1952 he had gone on a Christian radio program in Israel preaching about Jesus?

Why do these missionaries not fact check their claims?

The story about R’ Shmuel Toledano (there are a number of people by that name, but this appears to be the Kabbalistic rabbi) appointing Zion to a rabbinic court in Jerusalem in 1954  makes even less sense if one realize that R’ Samuel Toledano  did not move to Israel until 1958.  Link.    Remember, Brown wrote in 1954 the newly appointed chief rabbi, Samuel Toledano, offered him the position of judge in Jerusalem’s Rabbinic Court,”  yet Toledano was never the Chief Rabbi of Israel either.    Wikipedia lists all the Chief Rabbis of Israel (predating the country itself).  The man is nowhere listed. . .  link.

The claim that R’ Toledano was the chief rabbi (of what BTW?) and made this offer to Tsion / Zion  is not found in any of the Hebrew stories I can find about Tsion / Zion.  The tale is only told by Brown in his book and missionaries on various websites. . . with no supporting documentation.  There was a Rabbi Ya’akov Moshe Toledano who was the Chief Rabbi of Tel Aviv (Israel) from 1942-1958, but given that Zion / Tsion was already banned by a Tel Aviv court in 1950 it seems highly unlikely that this could be the source of the missionary claim.

Brown’s glowing information about Tsion / Zion is wrong in more than just getting his dates wrong (1954!).  More than once Brown refers to Zion as an “Orthodox Rabbi” as do most of the missionary websites.  Even Wikipedia refers to him as an “Orthodox Rabbi.”

Do an internet search on the name “Daniel Zion” you will turn up missionary site after missionary site claiming that Zion (or Tsion or Tziyon) was the “chief rabbi” of Bulgaria and later of Jaffa, Israel who became a Christian.

Was he an “Orthodox Rabbi”?

Was he the “Chief Rabbi of Bulgaria”?

First, let’s put a few things into perspective.    Just how “Orthodox” was Bulgaria itself before and during World War II?    The answer is “not very.”   Bulgarian Jewish society might explain (a little bit) who Daniel Zion (Tsion) was – it definitely is not the high level learned Jews that missionaries would like to purport him to be.


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