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Monday, 11 January 2016

The First Principle

Seeing Judaism Anew: Christianity's Sacred Obligation,
Ed. Mary C. Boys, Rowman and Littlefield, 2002, page xiv-xvii

The first principle outlined in the introduction to this work is: G-d's covenant with the Jewish people endures forever.

For centuries Christians have claimed that their covenant with G-d replaced or superseded the Jewish covenant. We renounce this claim. We believe that G-d does not revoke divine promises. We affirm that G-d is in covenant with both Jews and Christians. Tragically, the entrenched theology of supersessionism continues to influence Christian faith, worship and practice, even though it has been repudiated by many Christian denominations and many Christians no longer accept it. Our recognition of the abiding validity of Judaism has implications for all aspects of Christian life.

Bold words, but very difficult to put into practice on the ground. Although it is true that a number of major church denominations have repudiated replacement theology, it is still very much alive and kicking in many others and those churches who are not formally affiliated to a denomination. Even in those churches where it has been formally rejected, replacement theology forms an unspoken bedrock in teaching, basic assumptions and liturgy - all churches have liturgy even if they don't call it that and would deny it. This subtle but pervasive underpinning takes a lot of work and prayer to reduce and eliminate. There is still a lot of work to be done.

Posted By Jonathan, 9:00am Comment Comments: 1

Monday, 11 January 2016
Comment -

There is much room for development on both sides. Judaism is in convulsions endeavouring to rediscover its identity and Messianic Jews are rightly bidding for a place in that brave new world. Christian convulsions continue with the supersessionist debate which we must bury once and for all but I suspect that the new partnership will only arise as the Messianic Jewish movement gains recognition.

Posted By Timothy Butlin 09:18am