Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Replacement Theology

Replacement Theology - an excerpt from a Christianity Today article titled Interview with a Pharisee-and a Christian How two believers of two faiths talk to one another with conviction and civility.

Rabbi Gavri'el

Christianity Today held an interview with Pastor R. T. Kendall and Rabbi David Rosen about their book - The Christian and the Pharisee (Warner Faith).

For 25 years, Pastor R. T. Kendall was minister of Westminster Chapel in London. He is a unique blend of the Reformed and charismatic streams of evangelicalism.

Rabbi Rosen is the former chief rabbi of Ireland and has lived in Jerusalem for the past 22 years. He represents the American Jewish Committee internationally in the area of inter-religious affairs.

This discussion shows the widely divergent views on Replacement Theology, and the damage it has done to our Traditional Jewish brothers and sisters.

Jews have traditionally been insulted by "replacement theology"-the idea that the body of Christian believers has taken the place of the Jewish people in God's covenant.

Pastor Kendall: Romans says all Israel will be saved. The olive tree in Romans 11 means you, a natural Jew. But I reject replacement theology.

Rabbi Rosen: So you're saying, that I, as a Jew, have an eternal destiny; I just at some stage have to open my eyes and be delivered from this blindness.

Pastor Kendall: I don't say that you can do it without the help of the Holy Spirit. But I hold that this blindness that is on Israel will be lifted prior to the Second Coming. Like a stack of dominoes falling all over the world, in New York and Miami Beach as in Tel Aviv and Jerusalem, there will be a large-scale lifting of the blindness of Jews. It will be a sovereign work of the Holy Spirit.

Rabbi Rosen: Replacement theology is a form of anti-Judaism. It says you just basically have no place-other than perhaps with Augustine's clever argument that the only reason you survive is that your humiliation and homelessness are a testimony to the truth of Christianity.

That attitude, which leads to the teaching of contempt toward the Jews and Judaism, is a direct product of replacement theology. For those that have that theological outlook, R. T.'s avenue is critically important, because it's a way to redeem themselves from the sin of anti-Judaism.

I would like Christians to [have] an attitude that is reflected more within mainline Protestantism and within the Catholic church, which is to say that there are at least two ways of articulating the covenant-and that these two are complementary. Christianity is part of God's destiny for humanity, but Jews do not have to relinquish their own particular Jewish worldview in order to be able to be part of God's design.

What is our position at CBHM?

We as Messianic Jews categorically deny Replacement Theology, considering it unscriptural and bordering on heresy!

The question of Dual or Multiple Covenant is more complex. We at CBHM do not believe there are 2 ways to G-d. Yeshua is the Way, the Truth, and the Life. However, for our traditional Jewish brothers and sisters who are counting on G-d for salvation (which is what believers count on also); we believe G-d retains His covenant with the children of Israel.

Sha'ul (Paul) himself, by the power of the Ruach HaKodesh, says "All Israel will be saved"! How this exactly will work, no one really knows, though there are many opinions. For now, hopefully it is enough to rest on G-d's promise that our people will be delivered.

Blessings - Rabbi Gavri'el

To read the entire article from Christianity today

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