In writing on this subject, I do not wish to be seen as pandering to the sensitivities of the Jews. It is not that I am hostile to the Jews. They are neither greater nor lesser in the Kingdom of God in Christ (Col 3:11, Gal 3:28, Eph 2:11–22), nor are they intrinsically more virtuous nor more villainous among the nations of men. If on balance, they appear superior in virtue and accomplishments, it must be remembered that in the judicial economy of God, “everyone to whom much was given, of him much will be required, and from him to whom they entrusted much, they will demand the more” (Luke 12:48).
The rationale, in seeking to appear neutral as to their state and status, is so that any assertions and arguments made are seen as an outworking of an impartial and unprejudiced mind. I know that this will not be seen as the case. One is likely to be shot from both sides on contentious issues like these. However, I profess to the ever pursuit of intellectual integrity come what may.
“His blood be upon us and on our children.” (Matt 27:25)
This verse has become the lightning rod for Christian anti-Semitism, as reflected by Origen. In declaring “His blood be upon us, and on our children” . . . “the blood of Jesus came not only upon those who existed at that time but also upon all generations of Jews who would follow afterwards until the endtime.” Therefore, until now, their abandoned houses are in ruins.
Although various churchmen held and expressed a somewhat more scripturally faithful and nuanced perspective, Jews as “Christ killers,” from mostly less sophisticated commoners, has been the frequent clamor throughout the history of Christendom, and with ensuing travesty and atrocity. The Jews have contrariwise sought to diminish the extent of their culpability for the rejection and/or death of Jesus of Nazareth to that of a negligibility or naught at all.
This whole paradigm, beyond being tedious, is quite alien to the scriptural/historical framework by which I conceive the Jewish element in the crucifixion of Christ or thereafter. However, there are few observations of this verse and response that warrant comment. Continue reading “Blood Libel”