Newsflash, people, Jesus was a Jew, The Guardian’s Howard Jacobson informs us. His real message seems to explain why Jews still fear Christians (and I might add, ignore all the evidence to the contrary and vote for people who actually aren’t pro-Israel and pro-Jew). He says:
It is a question of the deepest interest, how Christians have been able to maintain two parallel but entirely contradictory attitudes to Jews. The one, as described above, the effect of which has been to remove Jews from the sphere of the human altogether. The other, full of piety and respect, expressed in reverence for the Jewish Bible, in tender pilgrimages to the Jewish places of Jesus’s birth and upbringing, and even, in some quarters, in the fond adoption of Old Testament names for their offspring. The mind is a wonderful thing, capable (when it chooses) of entertaining apparently irreconcilable emotions. In this case, it is as though Christians simultaneously know and don’t know that Jesus was Jewish, but in order for the not knowing to win supremacy over the knowing they have had to do mental violence to themselves, of which the collateral victims have been the Jews. [Emphasis added.]
How else does one account for a calumny as grotesque and misapplied as the blood libel – a belief common throughout England and Europe in the Middle Ages and not entirely expunged in some parts of the world today, that Jews kill gentile children for their blood, which they drink or cook with in the course of whatever diabolic things Jews do when worshipping their God. If that is not an unconscious parody of the eucharist, a transference of shame felt towards something cannibalistic at the heart of Christian ritual, blame for which is then laid at the door of the older, crueller, fathering religion, I don’t know what it is.
Explain it how you will, Judaism is Christianity’s guilty secret, and God help whoever happens to be the occasion of a people’s guilt. “When will Jews be forgiven the Holocaust?” asks that dark philosopher John Gray. There is a prior question. When will Jews ever be forgiven giving Christianity its religion?
There is so much wrong with Jacobson’s take, but at essence, he writes like a European Jew stuck in history and explaining why Jews are right to be wary of Christians. Or rather, excusing Jewish bias towards Christians.
There is no question that historical Christian leaders had deep antipathy for their Jewish brethren. One could argue that changing the Sabbath to Sunday was a very real attempt, by Christians, to differentiate from Jews because back in the day, they were persecuted together because they were mostly Jews by birth who became Christ followers. The Gentiles came in later.
Mr. Jacobson clearly, though, does not understand or in some cases, distorts Christian dogma. And even that is difficult because everything from the nature of God to Armageddon is debated by Christian theologians. In essence, he’s debating a caricature of Christianity.
But this is all a diversion. Mr. Jacobson seems to be straining to find a reason why Christians can’t be trusted. It’s their own mental gymnastics that make them Christians to begin with–to believe that Jesus is God’s son. And it’s their own twisted morality that would have blamed Jews for Christ’s death. Therefore, Christians who do support Israel and Jews generally, are just delusional.
And that’s the real issue. In order to justify voting Democrat in the United States, and whomever the secular humanist, politically correct moral equivalence candidate is over in the UK, a Jew has to make Christians into conflicted, unpredictable, Illogical, immoral cartoons. Jews have to make Christians scary in order to turn a blind eye to the true threat before them: leaders who see no good and evil. Well, there’s an evil and the evil is the minority scape goat who makes life difficult because the more violent majority hates them.
I wouldn’t want to be a Jew in the UK or Europe today. Certainly, I wouldn’t want to be a Jew in Paris or Denmark right now. But the threat isn’t coming from the Christians. The threat is coming from the P.C. crowd who won’t condemn violent followers of an unreformed religion: Islam. Please read that sentence again. The threat isn’t even the violent Muslims. Not yet. They still need more numbers. And, as Mark Steyn says, time is on the Muslim’s side. The threat to Jews are those Machiavellian secularists who refuse to name evil when they see it.
The threat is the papers who sanitize phrases and refuse to note that the “youths” are Arab or Muslim. The threat is the schools who refuse to stand up to violent children and parents and protect Jewish children. The threat is the different newspapers too afraid to offend Muslims that they won’t put cartoons in the paper. The threat is the corrupt leaders appeasing terrorists and condemning Israel.
The threat to Jews has not been Christians, certainly not American Christians, for a very long time. And while I think it’s imperative for Christians to know about the Jewishness of Christ, I believe Mr. Jacobson’s angst is misplaced. Right now, the Jews staunchest allies and friends are Christians. It is difficult for some Jews to understand, but it’s actually quite simple. Christians acknowledge that the Jews were God’s people and still are. God loves them and blesses those who bless them and curses those who curse them. Christians who love God, will love the Jews.
Mr. Jacobson operates from an old reality. His suspicion is self-destructive. Many Jews seem to have a certain mind-blindness to the true existential threats before them. It’s time to see the world as it really is. Christians, Mr. Jacobson, are your best friends. It’s time you let go of your prejudice.
I would recommend reading two books that relate to this issue:
David Brog explains why many Christians ardently support Israel and Jews specifically.
Mark Steyn illuminates the actual existential threat. Hint: It ain’t Christians.
Also read Jonah Goldberg’s recent Op-Ed Who Are the Real Nazis? Here’s a snippet:
Perhaps one reason Israel fails at genocide is that it isn’t interested in genocide? That would explain why Israel warned thousands of Gazans by cell phone to leave homes near Hamas rocket stockpiles. It would clarify why, even amid all-out war, it offers aid to enemy civilians.
Meanwhile, calls for the complete extermination of Israel are routine. The Hamas charter, invoking the fraudulent “Protocols of the Elders of Zion” as justification, demands the destruction of Israel. Hamas exists solely because it is dedicated to the complete obliteration of the “Zionist entity.” Remove that “principle” and Hamas is meaningless.
A sick mixture of Holocaust envy and Holocaust denial is the defining spirit of Hamas. Indeed, Holocaust denial passes for a scholarly pursuit not just in Gaza but throughout much of the Arab and Muslim world.
Why the obsession with casting the Israelis as the new Hitlerites? One answer is surely that critics know such charges are painful to a country largely born of the Holocaust and marked by its scars. It also grabs attention, galvanizes radicals, vents legitimate frustrations and anger, and helps demonize the enemy and, hence, justify the murder of “Zionists everywhere,” as Hamas often declares in its communiques.
But I think the desire to cast the Israelis as Nazis is fueled, deep down, by the haters’ need to see their own hatreds and ambitions mirrored in their enemy’s actions. Hamas has an avowedly Hitlerite agenda. The only way to make such an agenda defensible is to convince yourself and others that the Israelis deserve it. Hence, Hamas and its allies insist that when they aim rockets at grade schools and playgrounds, they are resisting the “new Nazis.”
Also, for the genesis of liberal thought, read Jonah’s book. It should be required reading:
See also: Infidels Are Cool–great blog detailing the threat. He’s up for a BlogAward!