The name of the Ebionites means to be poor. The Christians believed that was poor of understanding because the Ebionites did not understand the divinity of Christ. The Ebionites likely believed that it meant poor of spirit, like Christ wanted them to be. They did not believe that Christ was divine, but rather “adopted” by God because he had lived a perfect life. Because of this logic, they were able to maintain their Jewish monotheist beliefs and many Hebrew practices, but also integrate the Christian beliefs. The Letter of Barnabas argues against the Jewish Christian beliefs, saying that most of the beliefs (such as food laws) should be metaphorically exercised not literally.