Wednesday, 2 March 2016
Seeing Judaism Anew: Christianity's Sacred Obligation,
Ed. Mary C. Boys, Rowman and Littlefield, 2002
Chapter 13, "Covenant and Conversion" (pp. 151-162), page 161
Let's allow Philip Cunningham to present his concluding paragraph in full.
Our covenanting with Christ requires, if we are truly to priase and thank G-d for the unmerited graces we continue to receive, that we convert our own hearts. We now better appreciate that we Christians are not the only people covenanting with G-d. Therefore, we should honour G-d's wishes and foster aming the Christian people attitudes of religious respect especially for the covenanting faithh community of the Jewish people. Such respect must include preserving their distinctive relationship with G-d in the world, intended by the Holy One to endure until the end of days.
The biggest move that the church could make in this direction is while continuing to allow Jewish people to share the good news with other Jews, to stop assimilating them to the church and making them Christians. That way the witness of the Jewish people remains intact and is amplified and enhanced by the Jewish wtness to Yeshua and the miracle of the One New Man - the two made one - is visible for all to see. Jews should not be paganised - or of you prefer a gentler word - Gentilised - by the church and torn away from their traditions by the church; instead those Jewish people who find faith in Messiah should be encouraged to maintain their Jewish identity and work to share the gospel in a culturally relevant way with their own people as the Spirit directs. The Bible relates G-d's own position on the matter:
The Lord is not slow to fulfill His promise as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance. (2 Peter 3:9)
Note that doesn't say that all should be baptised, or that all should become Christians, but that all should reach repentance. May G-d have mercy!