3.Major differences with the “Teacher of Righteousness”
Our third critique opposes the minority opinion that Jesus was the Essenes’ “Teacher of Righteousness.” Although very few hold this view, we will still list several problems noted by scholars.^35
(1) The Essenes’ Teacher was a priest, as opposed to Jesus’ plural office. (2) The Teacher considered himself a sinner in need of purification, while Jesus was sinless. (3) The Teacher perceived that he was separated by an infinite gulf from God, while Christians hold that Jesus is the very Son of God. (4) There is no evidence of any atoning value being placed on the Teacher’s death, while such is the special significance of Jesus’ shed blood and death. (5) There is no claim or evidence that the Teacher was raised from the dead, while this is the central event for Christianity. (6) Jesus is worshiped by Christians as God, while such was not the practice of the Essenes and even opposed their belief. (7) Additionally, the Essenes’ Teacher lived long before Jesus did.