1. Welcome to Religious Forums, a friendly forum to discuss all religions in a friendly surrounding.

    Your voice is missing! You will need to register to get access to the following site features:
    • Reply to discussions and create your own threads.
    • Our modern chat room. No add-ons or extensions required, just login and start chatting!
    • Access to private conversations with other members.

    We hope to see you as a part of our community soon!

Featured Dabru Emet: A Jewish Statement on Christians and Christianity

Discussion in 'Comparative Religion' started by IndigoChild5559, Dec 28, 2018.

  1. IndigoChild5559

    IndigoChild5559 Loving God and my neighbor as myself.

    Joined:
    Aug 7, 2018
    Messages:
    2,138
    Ratings:
    +750
    Religion:
    Judaism
    Dabru Emet - A Jewish Statement on Christians and Christianity

    Judaism and Christianity have had a long and tumultuous history, full of persecution and pogroms against Jews. However, since the holocaust, Christians have largely rethought the place of the Jewish people and have done an about face of their traditional anti-Semitism. This doesn't mean that anti-Semitism has disappeared, but one simply doesn't find a haven for it in the churches like it once was. Jews have taken notice. A scholarly group of Jews felt it was time for a thoughtful reply to these changes. The result is a document called Dabru Emet, which was published in major newspapers. Here are its main observations. You can click on the link and read the write up on each point:
    1. Jews and Christians worship the same God.
    2. Jews and Christians seek authority from the same book—the Bible—(what Jews call “Tanakh” and Christians call the “Old Testament”).
    3. Christians can respect the claim of the Jewish people upon the land of Israel.
    4. Jews and Christians accept the moral principles of Torah.
    5. Nazism was not a Christian phenomenon.
    6. The humanly irreconcilable difference between Jews and Christians will not be settled until God redeems the entire world as promised in Scripture.
    7. A new relationship between Jews and Christians will not weaken Jewish practice.
    8. Jews and Christians must work together for justice and peace.
     
    • Like Like x 2
    • Winner Winner x 2
  2. adrian009

    adrian009 Well-Known Member
    Staff Member Premium Member

    Joined:
    Aug 5, 2014
    Messages:
    7,562
    Ratings:
    +5,598
    Religion:
    Baha'i
    It sounds excellent. I wish other faith communities would write similar documents. I was quite impressed with this section:

    Nazism was not a Christian phenomenon. Without the long history of Christian anti-Judaism and Christian violence against Jews, Nazi ideology could not have taken hold nor could it have been carried out. Too many Christians participated in, or were sympathetic to, Nazi atrocities against Jews. Other Christians did not protest sufficiently against these atrocities. But Nazism itself was not an inevitable outcome of Christianity. If the Nazi extermination of the Jews had been fully successful, it would have turned its murderous rage more directly to Christians. We recognize with gratitude those Christians who risked or sacrificed their lives to save Jews during the Nazi regime. With that in mind, we encourage the continuation of recent efforts in Christian theology to repudiate unequivocally contempt of Judaism and the Jewish people. We applaud those Christians who reject this teaching of contempt, and we do not blame them for the sins committed by their ancestors.
     
  3. pcarl

    pcarl Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2005
    Messages:
    3,508
    Ratings:
    +1,419
    Religion:
    Catholic
    I remember when Dabru Emet was published, and the Catholic response.

    "For our part, as representative Catholic leaders involved in the dialogue, we wish to urge Catholics throughout the United States to read (Dabru Emet) with care and loving respect," said the letter of appreciation. "Through dialogue, we have come to understand something of the pain of centuries of Jewish suffering at the hands of Christians that lies just underneath the surface of this document and why, therefore, it is such a significant contribution to further progress in Jewish-Christian relations."

    http://www.usccb.org/news/2000/00-265.cfm



    Did Christians give every possible assistance to those being persecuted, and in particular to the persecuted Jews?"85 There is no doubt that there were many Christians who risked their lives to save and to help their Jewish neighbors. It seems, however, also true that "alongside such courageous men and women, the spiritual resistance and concrete action of other Christians was not that which might have been expected from Christ's followers."86 This fact constitutes a call to the consciences of all Christians today, so as to require "an act of repentance (teshuva),"87 and to be a stimulus to increase efforts to be "transformed by renewal of your mind"

    Memory and Reconciliation: The Church and the Faults of the Past
     
    • Like Like x 1
    • Winner Winner x 1
  4. whirlingmerc

    whirlingmerc Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 12, 2016
    Messages:
    3,746
    Ratings:
    +671
    Religion:
    Christian
    I agree with all those points

    The Super Epic Psalms book 1- what the longer Psalm point to
     
  5. IndigoChild5559

    IndigoChild5559 Loving God and my neighbor as myself.

    Joined:
    Aug 7, 2018
    Messages:
    2,138
    Ratings:
    +750
    Religion:
    Judaism
    In my own opinion, the most controversial of their observations is this one:

    Jews and Christians worship the same God. Before the rise of Christianity, Jews were the only worshipers of the God of Israel. But Christians also worship the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob; creator of heaven and earth. While Christian worship is not a viable religious choice for Jews, as Jewish theologians we rejoice that, through Christianity, hundreds of millions of people have entered into relationship with the God of Israel.

    Jews disagree as to whether Christians worship the same God, because Christians worship Jesus and Jews do not. The argument goes like this: God cannot be a man. Therefore any worship of a man is avodah zarah (idolatry) for anyone, Jew or Gentile. If the worship of Jesus is idolatry, then how can they be worshiping the same God?

    However, not all Jews agree with this line of reasoning, going back to medieval times. Trinitarianism was said by some to be sort of muddied waters, not pure monotheism, but not polytheism either. This is called sh*tuf, or "association." For example, Jews could accept an oath sworn to God by a Christian.
    Today, it is permitted [to form a partnership with Christians], because when they swear on their holy scriptures called the Evangelion, they do not hold it to be divine. Even though when they mention God they mean Jesus, they do not mention idolatry since they really mean the Creator of heaven and earth. Even though they mention jointly (****uf) God's name and another name, there is no prohibition to cause someone to jointly mention [or associate] (****uf) God with another... since this association is not forbidden to gentiles.
    Moses Isserles Darkhei Moshe OH 156

    While sh*tuf is not acceptable for Jews, it is acceptable for Gentiles. This is because Jews are supposed to be a priestly people. Priests have special responsibilities that non-priests do not have, so it follows that a priestly people will have responsibilities that non priestly peoples do not have. This is why, for example, that Jews may not eat pork but it is perfectly okay for a German or Australian to do so.

    Thus, according to this line of reasoning, it is permissible for Gentiles to have a symbol for God, a kind of lens through which they see God. So while it is not permissible for Jews to worship one God if it is a sun God, is was perfectly acceptable for Egyptians to worship Aten, because it was monotheistic. In the same way, while it is not permissible for Jews to worship the trinity, it is permissible for Gentiles to do so.

    Halakhah, or Jewish Law, is divided, supporting both the avodah zarah and sh*tuf views.
     
    #5 IndigoChild5559, Dec 29, 2018
    Last edited: Dec 29, 2018
  6. pcarl

    pcarl Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2005
    Messages:
    3,508
    Ratings:
    +1,419
    Religion:
    Catholic
    It is more accurate that Christians worship the God of Israel in the name of Jesus.
     
  7. IndigoChild5559

    IndigoChild5559 Loving God and my neighbor as myself.

    Joined:
    Aug 7, 2018
    Messages:
    2,138
    Ratings:
    +750
    Religion:
    Judaism
    I just uploaded post five, fully examining point #1. I'd be interested in your comments.
     
  8. Saint Frankenstein

    Saint Frankenstein ᛘᛁᛏᚾᛁᚴᚼᛏ᛫ᛋᚢᚾ
    Premium Member

    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2012
    Messages:
    27,721
    Ratings:
    +13,304
    Religion:
    Germanic Folk Revival
    I thought this was interesting:
    "There are various objections to Dabru Emet from within the Jewish community. Some hold that it understates the significant theological differences between the two religions. Thus, most Conservative and Reform rabbis have not signed it, although many do agree with most of the document. Very few Orthodox rabbis have signed it; The Institute for Public Affairs, of the Union of Orthodox Jewish Congregations (commonly known as the Orthodox Union) issued this response:[1]
    This is in many ways an admirable statement composed by people for whom I have high regard. I agree with much of it, including the controversial but carefully balanced passage denying that Nazism was a Christian phenomenon. However, I did not agree to sign it for several reasons. First, for all its exquisitely skillful formulation, it implies that Jews should reassess their view of Christianity in light of Christian reassessments of Judaism. This inclination toward theological reciprocity is fraught with danger. Second, although it is proper to emphasize that Christians "worship the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, creator of heaven and earth," it is essential to add that worship of Jesus of Nazareth as a manifestation or component of that God constitutes what Jewish law and theology call avodah zarah, or foreign worship (idolatry)—at least if done by a Jew. Many Jews died to underscore this point, and the bland assertion that "Christian worship is not a viable choice for Jews" is thoroughly inadequate. Finally, the statement discourages either community from "insisting that it has interpreted Scripture more accurately than the other." While intended for the laudable purpose of discouraging missionizing, this assertion conveys an uncomfortably relativistic message.​
    Dabru Emet - Wikipedia
     
  9. pcarl

    pcarl Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2005
    Messages:
    3,508
    Ratings:
    +1,419
    Religion:
    Catholic
    On entering the People of God through faith and Baptism, one receives a share in this people's unique, priestly vocation: "Christ the Lord, high priest taken from among men, has made this new people 'a kingdom of priests to God, his Father.' The baptized, by regeneration and the anointing of the Holy Spirit, are consecrated to be a spiritual house and a holy priesthood. (CCC)


    We must add a parenthetical paragraph here to note that in all of pagan literature there is a single instance in which the writer apparently confesses and praises a single God of the universe. It is in the Hymn to the Aten, written in the 14th century B.C. by the Egyptian Pharaoh Akhenaten. He was somewhat of a religious revolutionary. By some stroke of grace or genius, he broke away from the polytheism of his fathers and insisted on the existence of a single deity. In the Hymn to the Aten, he describes the Aten as "lord of heaven and lord of earth," and the one "who gives breath to sustain all that he has made." The whole tone of the work is praise to a single god who created all that exists and rules over it with power and care. As a piece of religious writing, it is remarkable in its originality; the closest the ancient heathen world ever came to an understanding of the one God. It has even been compared to Psalm 104.

    https://suscopts.org/resources/literature/218/paganism-and-christianity/

    Because the Trinity does not contradict 'God is one'. It is the God of Israel that Christians worship through, with, and in Christ.

    If reference is made to God, it is always God the Father, never the Son.
     
  10. IndigoChild5559

    IndigoChild5559 Loving God and my neighbor as myself.

    Joined:
    Aug 7, 2018
    Messages:
    2,138
    Ratings:
    +750
    Religion:
    Judaism
    I think we would agree that the Catholic church, a la Nostra Aetate, does not consider God's covenant with the Jews null and void, nor does the Catholic Church consider itself as taking over the unique responsibilities of Jews, i.e. Catholics are not bound to abstain from pork or not kindle a flame on the Shabbat. As a Jew, I appreciate how far the Catholic church has come in its appreciation for the uniqueness of the Children of Israel, via the dialogue between Catholics and Jews. May our talks continue to be fruitful, and may we find common ground in repairing the world.

    As the document states, there will always be those doctrinal differences between us, and we must respect those differences and not try to force them on each other.

    Shalom to you
     
  11. IndigoChild5559

    IndigoChild5559 Loving God and my neighbor as myself.

    Joined:
    Aug 7, 2018
    Messages:
    2,138
    Ratings:
    +750
    Religion:
    Judaism
    @pcarl
    I forgot to ask:
    Do you deny that you as a Catholic worship Jesus, whom you claim is God the Son?
     
  12. Saint Frankenstein

    Saint Frankenstein ᛘᛁᛏᚾᛁᚴᚼᛏ᛫ᛋᚢᚾ
    Premium Member

    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2012
    Messages:
    27,721
    Ratings:
    +13,304
    Religion:
    Germanic Folk Revival
    Actually, dual covenant theology would be considered a heresy and so would the notion that Jews don't need Jesus to be saved. The Catholic Church has muddied the waters with its ecumenical statements regarding Jews, but it hasn't gone as far as proclaim as dogma that Jews have their own unique covenant apart from the rest of humanity.
     
  13. IndigoChild5559

    IndigoChild5559 Loving God and my neighbor as myself.

    Joined:
    Aug 7, 2018
    Messages:
    2,138
    Ratings:
    +750
    Religion:
    Judaism
    This is an area I've paid special attention to, as the Catholic Jewish dialogues are especially important to me. Dual covenant theology states that the Mosaic covenant brings the sort of salvation that Christians talk about. That's NOT what I mean when I say that Catholics accept the legitimacy of the original covenant. What I mean is that they accept the promises that are ACTUALLY spelled out in the Tanakh.

    Some of it remains controversial -- there are Catholics who do not accept Nostra Aetate. They do not accept that the land of Israel is given by God to the Jews. There are also many Catholics who accept Nostra Aetate but do not yet carry it to its logical conclusions. However, time has passed since the writing of the document and the dialogue between us, and the understanding of the giving of the promised land is just beginning to take hold, and have become Catholic Zionists. Professor D'Costa is a Vatican Advisor who is advocating a sort of minimal Catholic Zionism. This is the sort of thing which I am referring to when I say that they accept that the Mosaic covenant is still binding, or as Nostra Aetate says: "The gifts and callings of God are irrevocable."
     
  14. Saint Frankenstein

    Saint Frankenstein ᛘᛁᛏᚾᛁᚴᚼᛏ᛫ᛋᚢᚾ
    Premium Member

    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2012
    Messages:
    27,721
    Ratings:
    +13,304
    Religion:
    Germanic Folk Revival
    I get what you're saying, but Catholic Zionism doesn't make sense to me, at least in terms of supporting modern political Zionism. It would be God's duty to bring the Jews back to Israel, not humans doing it of their own volition, at least that's how I understand it how it viewed spiritually.

    I'm just not finding much grounding for this in Christian theology or tradition. The Jews who rejected Jesus are not depicted in positive terms in the Gospels, of course. Paul taught that the Jews have spiritual blinders on and are not able to see the truth until God removes those blinders, apparently at the Second Coming. There's the symbolism of the Temple veil being torn in two at Christ's death, signifying the completion of the Old Covenant. Then the Temple was destroyed in 70 CE and Jews were later kicked out of Judea. In Christian thought, that was viewed as deserved for the Jews' rejecting Jesus. For centuries, it was believed that attempts to build a third Temple would be heralding the Antichrist. The Church was viewed as inherenting the promises of Israel, and so was called the Spiritual Israel. That was mainstream orthodox Christian understanding for centuries until recently.

    I understand that, after the Holocaust, the West has deemed anti-Semitism to be extremely taboo (we just shifted our hatred to Muslims in recent times) and Christians felt the need to do a PR overhaul. I get that. But the truth is that Christianity does not teach nice things about the non-believing Jews, either by scripture or tradition. Christians teaching a Jew-friendly version of it are basically whitewashing and downplaying their own scripture and making up modern theologies. Personally, I just prefer that people be honest about what their religions teach instead of trying so hard to be nice to everyone when there isn't a foundation for that in their religion. That doesn't mean that Christians should hate Jews, as even Paul warns against that. It's just that the NT clearly views Pharisaic Judaism, which Rabbinic Judaism grew out of, as a false religion. That puts it in the same boat as every other religion outside Christianity.

    I wonder what the Orthodox think about this, since they concede much less to modern sensibilities than Catholicism does. I think I'll look that up.
     
    #14 Saint Frankenstein, Dec 30, 2018
    Last edited: Dec 30, 2018
  15. IndigoChild5559

    IndigoChild5559 Loving God and my neighbor as myself.

    Joined:
    Aug 7, 2018
    Messages:
    2,138
    Ratings:
    +750
    Religion:
    Judaism
    That's only one way to see it. For example, there is a minority of Jews who see it that way, but Jewish religious Zionists see it that we participate in the creation of the Jewish state and they are a far greater group.

    I will be the first to say that the Christians Scriptures are not kind to us Jews and that 2000 years of persecution were based on these scriptures. However, I'm not going to knock the current trend by the churches to soften these scriptures any more than I would not the Oral Torah softening the Torah.

    In my not so humble opinion, EO is still in the grip of anti-Semitism.
     
  16. Saint Frankenstein

    Saint Frankenstein ᛘᛁᛏᚾᛁᚴᚼᛏ᛫ᛋᚢᚾ
    Premium Member

    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2012
    Messages:
    27,721
    Ratings:
    +13,304
    Religion:
    Germanic Folk Revival
    I'm guessing you don't really care how it impacts Christianity as long as it benefits the Jewish people and Zionism? Just wondering.
     
  17. IndigoChild5559

    IndigoChild5559 Loving God and my neighbor as myself.

    Joined:
    Aug 7, 2018
    Messages:
    2,138
    Ratings:
    +750
    Religion:
    Judaism
    Well, I'm interested in the truth of the matter. There are two types of arguments for Zionism:
    Religious:
    The arguments that the land of Canaan belongs to the People of Israel as an everlasting covenant are in the Christian Bible as well. The Christian texts contradict themselves, so it largely depends on which verses they pick and choose.

    Moral:
    The argument that the Land is the historical homeland of the Jewish People, and that no other nation state has ever existed there (that it has only been an occupied territory) is undisputed. Furthermore, the necessity of restoring the Jews to our homeland is obvious, i.e. assimilation has failed to eliminate anti-Semitism, and we aren't just talking about the Holocaust.

    Note:
    Being a Zionist is NOT the same as condoning the mistreatment of the few ethnic Palestinians, or of those many immigrant families that moved into the occupied territories from Egypt and Jordan who now identify as Palestinian.
     
  18. pcarl

    pcarl Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2005
    Messages:
    3,508
    Ratings:
    +1,419
    Religion:
    Catholic
    This respect is a must in successful dialogue, and also to be clear on another's doctrine.

    In order for this to become a reality beyond the scholars and theologians it must be presented in a 'popular' medium where we common folk live.

    And to you also
     
  19. pcarl

    pcarl Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2005
    Messages:
    3,508
    Ratings:
    +1,419
    Religion:
    Catholic
    For Catholics the Eucharist is the 'source and summit' of Christian life.
    The Eucharistic Prayers make clear that these prayers are offered, not to Christ, but to the Father. It is worship offered to the Father by Christ as it was at the moment of his passion, death and resurrection, but now it is offered through the priest acting in the person of Christ, and it is offered as well by all of the baptized, who are part of Christ's Body, the Church. This is the action of Christ's Body, the Church at Mass.
    The thanksgiving (expressed especially in the Preface), in which the Priest, in the name of the whole of the holy people, glorifies God the Father and gives thanks to him for the whole work of salvation.

    The concluding doxology, by which the glorification of God is expressed and which is affirmed and concluded by the people's acclamation "Amen." '

    'to the Father, through the Son, in the Holy Spirit'
     
  20. pcarl

    pcarl Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2005
    Messages:
    3,508
    Ratings:
    +1,419
    Religion:
    Catholic
    It is my understanding that it is the Abrahamitic covenant that is absolute, unconditional and eternal.
     
Loading...