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Thread: Was the antisemitism in the Book of John just an internecine squabble between Jews?

  1. Top | #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lion IRC View Post
    You Samaritans worship what you do not know; we worship what we do know,
    for salvation is from the Jews.
    John 4:22 (NIV)

    Yeah. Real anti-semitism right there.
    Even if this interpretation were correct (see Subymbolic's response), how does this negate the anti-Jewish messages of the other parts of the New Testament?

    The anti-Jewish elements of the story are far more prevalent/prominent than any imagined pro-Jewish messages, which is why for most of the past two thousand years, Christians have done horrific things to Jews. The Holocaust wasn't an aberration in the relation between Christians and Jews, but the cherry on top of a horrifying atrocity sundae.

    The history of Christianity makes clear that anti-Jewish sentiment is taught by the Bible.

  2. Top | #12
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    The Op is about the book of John.
    And Subsymbolic underscored that Samaritans claiming affinity to eternal Israel could hardly be cited as victims of anti-semitism from Jesus.
    Where we read the Gospel writers criticizing "the Jews" its a stretch to claim this was an ad hominem attack rather than an attack on the actions of a collective group (conveniently) referred to as the Jews. There was a plainly pragmatic need to disambiguate the establishment Jews from...you know ...those other people who were also Jews of a different sort.


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    Everything plus the kitchen sink slurs thrown at Jesus. You can't get Jesus this way ...then lets try anti-semitism.


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    Why don't you try thinking of 'Jews' as being those who were resident in Judea? That means everybody who lived and paid taxes in the geographic area known as Judea. If you were a devotee of YHWH, and gave credence to the Temple and its priesthood in Jerusalem, then you might be referred to as a 'Hebrew' or an 'Israelite'. But, in Jerusalem, there would have been an admixture of other peoples, both pagan and other Hebraic sectarians, including believers in the likes of the Great Angel, and the Enochians, as well as the neighboring Samaritans. And well all know about the various 'libraries' like those in Qumran, evidencing robust divergent religious traditions. Indeed, only a lifetime earlier, the Parthians had occupied Jerusalem, and lurked just beyond the frontier, so Zoroastrianism would probably have been present, as well. And, of course, after 135 CE, the new temple to Jupiter would rise on Mount Moriah, thanks to the exasperated Latins. What we call Judiasm was not some monolithic belief system....it had a central temple and an active priesthood that was widely resented by much of the local population, as it was a known puppet to the political powers of the day. Most of them would have spoken a Semitic language and acknowledged Semitic customs, even the likes of Herod, who was not a Jew.

    What we call 'antisemitism' is a resentment of the teachers of the scriptural interpretations of what became diaspora Judaism and claimed the scriptural underpinnings of the teachings of the Christian sectarians. The 'authorities' of the scriptures denied the Christian interpretation and explicitly excluded Christian teachings as heretical. The antisemitism is reactionary to their exclusion from the congregation.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Learner View Post
    Everything plus the kitchen sink slurs thrown at Jesus. You can't get Jesus this way ...then lets try anti-semitism.

    Well, it seems quite common that later interpreters give many of the documents as being 'anti-semitic' (basically, "against those who dismiss our interpretation, based on their interpretation of their scriptures, which we adopted and finally interpreted correctly"), and malevolent in nature . This is not new. It's been in the open for centuries, now.

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    "The Jews"?

    The Greek word for "Jew" and "Judean" was the same.

    Some references to "the Jews" probably meant "the Judeans" in contrast to Galileans and Samaritans. Almost certainly this has led to some confusion about "the Jews" in the NT. It's impossible to calculate how much. It's impossible to determine which meaning was intended in each case.

    Better not to put much reliance on "the Jews" passages.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ioudaios

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    Followers of Jesus were initially looked at as Jewish heretics. As time passed they developed a separate identity as Christians. They coopted the Torah as their own. Paul had dispensed with the Jewish requirements.

    Paul had conflict with the Jerusalem Jewish power elite, and acceding to the NT at one point he was on the run from Jews taking refuge behind his Roman citizenship.

    The enmity between Jews and Christians goes back to the beginning.

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    Quote Originally Posted by whollygoats View Post
    Why don't you try thinking of 'Jews' as being those who were resident in Judea? That means everybody who lived and paid taxes in the geographic area known as Judea. If you were a devotee of YHWH, and gave credence to the Temple and its priesthood in Jerusalem, then you might be referred to as a 'Hebrew' or an 'Israelite'. But, in Jerusalem, there would have been an admixture of other peoples, both pagan and other Hebraic sectarians, including believers in the likes of the Great Angel, and the Enochians, as well as the neighboring Samaritans. And well all know about the various 'libraries' like those in Qumran, evidencing robust divergent religious traditions. Indeed, only a lifetime earlier, the Parthians had occupied Jerusalem, and lurked just beyond the frontier, so Zoroastrianism would probably have been present, as well. And, of course, after 135 CE, the new temple to Jupiter would rise on Mount Moriah, thanks to the exasperated Latins. What we call Judiasm was not some monolithic belief system....it had a central temple and an active priesthood that was widely resented by much of the local population, as it was a known puppet to the political powers of the day. Most of them would have spoken a Semitic language and acknowledged Semitic customs, even the likes of Herod, who was not a Jew.

    What we call 'antisemitism' is a resentment of the teachers of the scriptural interpretations of what became diaspora Judaism and claimed the scriptural underpinnings of the teachings of the Christian sectarians. The 'authorities' of the scriptures denied the Christian interpretation and explicitly excluded Christian teachings as heretical. The antisemitism is reactionary to their exclusion from the congregation.
    There were the Jerusalem, Syrian, Rome, and Greek Jews. I read there was a dispute between Jerusalem and Syrian Jews as to who was the true line going back to Moses and Abraham. Similar to the Muslim Sunni Shiite split. I read that for a time the Roman Jews were respected for business skills and a strong patriarchal family. It became a Roman fad religion for a while.

    In the time of the gospels there was no monolithic Jewish culture.

  9. Top | #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lion IRC View Post
    You Samaritans worship what you do not know; we worship what we do know,
    for salvation is from the Jews.
    John 4:22 (NIV)

    Yeah. Real anti-semitism right there.
    The old testament Jews were an intolerant people, the chosen people of a god. A god who aided in defeating enemies/ They were minor players in the region when Israel was a power who waged war. Everybody pretty much hated everybody else's culture. Egyptians-Assyrians. In those times anti Semitism did not really apply.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Lion IRC View Post
    The Op is about the book of John.
    And Subsymbolic underscored that Samaritans claiming affinity to eternal Israel could hardly be cited as victims of anti-semitism from Jesus.
    Where we read the Gospel writers criticizing "the Jews" its a stretch to claim this was an ad hominem attack rather than an attack on the actions of a collective group (conveniently) referred to as the Jews. There was a plainly pragmatic need to disambiguate the establishment Jews from...you know ...those other people who were also Jews of a different sort.

    Again, for thousands of years, Christians read the same Bible you're reading, and they interpreted it as justifying really awful mistreatment of the Jews.

    Much of the Nazi's policies regarding Jews came straight from the father of Protestantism, specifically a book titled "On the Jews and Their Lies."

    Catholics are far from off the hook. They did plenty of awful things to Jews, including kidnapping Jewish babies so that they could be raised by Christian parents.

    For thousands of years Christians read the same book you are reading, and came to the conclusion that mistreating and even killing Jews was justified. It is only after the Holocaust that Christians suddenly started to get the exact opposite message from reading the Bible.

    If God wrote the Bible and intended it to communicate His intent, and it took Christians 1945 years of getting it exactly wrong before they could understand the "real intent" of God, what does that say about the author of the Bible and the intent of the Bible?

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