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Does Orthodoxy "denigrate" Jews and Judaism for rejecting the gospel?

jews judaism antisemitism

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#1 H. Smith

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Posted 30 October 2014 - 04:32 PM

In 2009, leaders in the Holy Land's Christian community, including an Orthodox archbishop, made the "Kairos" Declaration about the Christian churches there. Then in 2012, an ecumenical group of American pastors replied by writing "Kairos USA". It agreed with the Orthodox theology, except that it added a section claiming:

[R]eplacement theology… claims that the Church has taken the place of Israel in God’s purposes, and that the Jews have been condemned to suffering as punishment for rejecting the Gospel. Replacement theology denigrates the Jewish people and Judaism itself... We repudiate the anti-Semitic legacy of the church’s past.




I am not so concerned with understanding the first part: our theology implies that the Church takes the place of Israel in the purpose of being a light to the gentiles (although the Church doesn't take its place in all purposes). My difficulty is with the underlined parts.


What would be an Orthodox answer to these questions?

1) Doesn't the New Testament say that those who reject it would have hardships for doing so?


2) Does that denigrate the Jewish nation or Judaism?


3) Does the church's past have anti-semitism?

Or were anti-semitic things in, say, medieval Russia, part of the governmental or cultural spheres instead of the church?





Edited by H. Smith, 30 October 2014 - 04:32 PM.

#2 Brian Patrick Mitchell

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Posted 10 November 2014 - 08:15 PM

Jews are a representative people whom God uses for several purposes, including to show that even when He showers people with favor they can't really understand Him or appreciate His goodness without the Incarnation.


That said, (1) anyone who rejects the Gospel will suffer for doing so, because the Gospel is the way of life; (2) as a representative people, Jews are denigrated no more than any other people and only as much as they resist the Gospel; and (3) the Church doesn't persecute people, although some Christians might, being still sinners and not yet perfected.


In XC,

Pdn Patrick

Edited by Brian Patrick Mitchell, 13 November 2014 - 04:11 PM.

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