When I used to hear Christian speakers glibly toss out statements like, “The Church has replaced Israel” as if they were chucking an empty fast food bag into the trash, I would inwardly cringe, but didn’t always have the opportunity to challenge the speaker. The last time I checked, leaping onto a chair in the middle of a church service, calling a foul and diving into a theological debate was not socially acceptable. I’m glad to know that Jesus himself challenged a bad idea or two during his ministry, sans the dramatic leap up onto a chair.
This “replacement” language, and the elaborate theological structures that are constructed on top of it, are rarely a blessing to Jewish people, who inevitably come out on the short end of this particular stick. [Read more]