« Home | Jews, Christians, and Robert Jenson Part 1 » | No Posts till Friday » | Unity and Diversity: A Review » | Pentecostals, Ecology, and Resurrection » | New Things » | 1 Corinthians 13:1-3 in the NBV ( New Blogger's Ve... » | The Empty Tomb: Why Doesn't Paul Mention It? » | Pannenberg on the Delay of the Parousia » | A Marginal Jew » | Et Resurrexit: Excursus » 

Friday, May 12, 2006 

Jews, Christians, and Robert Jenson Part 2

I'm not sure that I am convinced by Jenson's modified two covenant solution, but I am in agreement with him in so far as there is a crucial need for believers to construct a Christian theology of Judaism. For all the trouble Paul has caused us with Rom. 9-11, he sought to do what Jenson and others are proposing, to develop a Christian theology of Judaism. If I can be honest about my feelings for a moment I am rather sick and tired of those believers who treat the subject of Jews and Judaism with an irrelevant and sometimes condescending attitude. The grief Paul was stricken with over his fellow Jews, should be our grief as well, especially in this post-Shoah time. The Jews are in fact our elder brothers and just as we would be concerned about the relationship with our own flesh and blood siblings, so then should the Christian community be concerned about its relationship to the Jewish people. This can be done only by properly working out a theology that is Christian and which concerns itself with the Jewish people.

Do we Christians, who are predominately Gentile, need to be reminded again that we were grafted into the olive tree and our supported by the root? Unfortunately we do need this reminder. The warning Paul issued remains true to this day and we need to heed that warning:

"do not boast over the branches. If you do boast, remember it is not you that support the root, but the root that supports you. You will say, 'Branches were broken off so that I might be grafted in.' That is true. They were broken off because of their unbelief, but you stand fast only through faith. So do not become proud, but stand in awe. For if God did not spare the natural branches neither will he spare you." (Rom.11:18-21)

Part of this "boasting" I would submit is the failure of many believers to enage in the task of formulating a Christian theology of Judaism. Jenson may be wrong in his proposal, but at least he is undertaking the crucial task to better understand, from a Christian theological standpoint, those to whom "belong the sonship, the glory, the covenants, the giving of the law, the worship, and the promises." Let us not fail to enage in this same task.

The grief Paul was stricken with over his fellow Jews, should be our grief as well, especially in this post-Shoah time.

Well said. I've read the previous post as well, and I'm mulling over the questions you raised there. I don't think there are any quick and easy answers, but you're right … we should work on developing a coherent Christian position.

One of the things I really appreciate about the blogosphere is the opportunity to read Jewish blogs. It's a very different mindset from Christianity, that's for sure!

Thanks for the comments, Q. I too do not think there are any quick and easy answers. But this still should not deter us from trying to answer those questions. For my own part I have not worked a coherent theology of Judaism yet. But this is a task I will work at, even if it is never completed.

Hi Chris-

Just wondering if you've developed any further thoughts on this book or the subject of Jews and Christians in general. I am sitting down with this book over the next week.

Interestingly, this book recently replaced a book as an extra-Biblical source in my "Disciple" class at church. I am hoping this one is better than the last - in which the Christian writer turned out to be looking for far more than, in your words, a Christian theology on Judaism. He turned out to be a religious relativist. I posted on it at the following links:


I'm praying for you (re: your last post - "Frustrations").

Thanks, Scott

Post a Comment
Hit Counter
Free Web Counter />