About a month ago I spoke at a conference at Narkis Church in Jerusalem. I posted a link to my talk called Jesus’ Bold Messianic Claims on an earlier blog, but many of the talks there will be of interest to those who like to learn about Christianity in its historical, Judaic context. The entire […]
When I first read the Shema, the Jewish profession of faith, I assumed it was their Apostle’s Creed. I was shocked because I was looking for doctrines like the “communion of saints” and “forgiveness of sins,” not mundane realities like grass, fields and cows.
There’s no end, it seems, to how people can interpret the words of Jesus. It’s not hard to pluck out a line here and there and read it in some strange new way. How can we know how they actually sounded to his original audience? I’ve discovered that a great place to look for answers […]
How does the epic history of Abraham’s descendants relate to the overall story of salvation? Ancient ideas about family are key to the logic of both the Old and New Testaments.
The woman in this picture is explaining how she ended her newborn daughter’s life. Believe it or not, she’s actually done this to eight of her children, all girls. In her village in India, it is common practice. You can read more of her tragic story on this blog, “The Three Deadliest Words in the […]
Few issues stir up Christian passions more than Bible translation, but you never hear debates like this in Jewish circles. Issues over translation don’t come up, because everyone knows that God’s words were not revealed in English. The Jewish approach reveres the original Hebrew text, rather than any particular translation.
What does it mean that Jesus lived as a Jewish rabbi who called and trained disciples? And how does learning about his teachings in their original context enable us to better live out our calling? Jesus’ first followers responded to his words with actions that astound us. They left home, family, and comfort behind to […]
Please share your own reflections on how understanding Jesus’ setting has affected your faith.