Are There Antisemitic Roots in Christianity?

Therefore, what is the advantage of the Jew, or what is the use of circumcision? Much in every way. For first, that they were entrusted with the oracles of God.

Romans 3:1–2 (LEB)

Erasing history is not a new phenomenon, and there is a considerable amount of history erasing happening in real time today. Our building architecture is full of people’s names and statutes of supposedly good people who influenced our present time. All of a sudden, moderns realized that these people were living the same as everyone else around them, and even though they did some great things, their monuments must be torn down and names erased from history.

John 8:3–7 (LEB)

Now the scribes and the Pharisees brought to him a woman caught in adultery. And standing her in their midst, they said to him, testing him, “Teacher, this woman was caught in the very act of committing adultery! Now in the law, Moses commanded us to stone such women. So what do you say?” (Now they were saying this to test him, so that they would have an occasion to bring charges against him.) But Jesus, bending down, began to write with his finger on the ground, taking no notice. And when they persisted in asking him, straightening up he said to them, “The one of you without sin, let him throw the first stone at her!”

I am certainly not trying to cast stones here, but it is important to understand history, especially when it comes to our theology. My blog posts are centered around abandoning the traditions of men and returning to the things of God. Unfortunately, Christianity views the things of God as the things of the “Jews” because God used the Jews to deliver salvation to the world through Jesus Christ. We must remember that Jesus was a Jew, from the tribe of Judah, with the name Yeshua H’mashiach. Christ is simply a transliteration of a Greek word that means Messiah, or anointed one. If one hates the Jews and their ways, they hate the Messiah. Jesus did not come to Earth to create a new religion called Christianity. Yet we see early on that this was the mentality of early church fathers.

For if we are still practicing Judaism, we admit that we have not received God’s favor…it is wrong to talk about Jesus Christ and live like Jews. For Christianity did not believe in Judaism, but Judaism in Christianity.” Ignatius Bishop of Antioch (98-117A.D.) Epistle to the Magnesians

Once the gentile believers took over the church, the wall that was torn down by Messiah slowly built back up. The reason Christianity does not observe the Creator’s feast days, Sabbaths and even commandments, has nothing to do with religion and everything to do with antisemitism. Justin Martyr is a second century “church father”, and this is what he records in his Dialogue with Trypho:

We too, would observe your circumcision of the flesh, your Sabbath days, and in a word, all you festivals, if we were not aware of the reason why they were imposed upon you, namely, because of your sins and the hardness of heart.

 The custom of circumcising the flesh, handed down from Abraham, was given to you as a distinguishing mark, to set you off from other nations and from us Christians. The purpose of this was that you and only you might suffer the afflictions that are now justly yours; that only your land be desolated, and you cities ruined by fire, that the fruits of your land be eaten by strangers before your very eyes; that not one of you be permitted to enter your city of Jerusalem. Your circumcision of the flesh is the only mark by which you can certainly be distinguished from other men…as I stated before it was by reason of your sins and the sins of your fathers that, among other precepts, God imposed upon you the observance of the sabbath as a mark.” Justin Martyr, Dialogue with Trypho (Between 138A.D. and 161 A.D.)

These words should make any Christian concerned. I have quoted Justin Martyr to make points in the past myself, but in light of these remarks, I would be hesitant to do so in the future. I read Dialogue with Trypho a number of years ago and glossed right over these statements. It is offensive to me now to think this man was using the Sabbath in such a derogatory manner. The Sabbath is not a mark of just Jews, but all the tribes and those grafted in through the Messiah. The Sabbath predated Israel and is ordained by God.

Origen was another church father responsible for much of the doctrine in Christianity today. This is what he has to say regarding the Jewish people:

We may thus assert in utter confidence that the Jews will not return to their earlier situation, for they have committed the most abominable of crimes, in forming this conspiracy against the Savior of the human race…hence the city where Jesus suffered was necessarily destroyed, the Jewish nation was driven from its country, and another people was called by God to the blessed election.” Origen of Alexandria (185-254 A.D.)

This statement by Origen is pure replacement theology, and makes the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob a liar. A more modern version of replacement theology is dispensational theology. This is the system used by Baptists, Pentecostals and other evangelical denominations where Israel still gets some of its promises here on Earth, but the church gets all the “spiritual” blessings with Jesus in heaven. This is what God actually told us in scripture:

Hebrews 8:8–12 (LEB)

For in finding fault with them he says, “Behold, days are coming, says the Lord, when I will complete a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah, not like the covenant which I made with their fathers on the day I took hold of them by my hand to lead them out of the land of Egypt, because they did not continue in my covenant and I disregarded them, says the Lord. 10 For this is the covenant that I will decree with the house of Israel after those days, says the Lord: I am putting my laws in their minds and I will write them on their hearts, and I will be their God and they will be my people. 11 And they will not teach each one his fellow citizen and each one his brother, saying, ‘Know the Lord,’ because they will all know me, from the least of them to the greatest. 12 For I will be merciful toward their wrongdoings, and I will not remember their sins any longer.”

The new covenant is with the House of Israel and the House of Judah. There is nothing about the church there, and it is not because the church got raptured before these verses apply. That is simply a trick of the devil on people who refuse to read for themselves, truly seek God, or unknowingly rely on these men who hated Jews so much that they created a different religion and made a “Jesus” their God.

John Chrysostom (344-407 A.D.), one of the of church fathers, known as “The Golden Mouthed”, a missionary preacher famous for his sermons and homilies, has this to say about the Jews:

The synagogue is worse than a brothel…it is the den of scoundrels and the repair of wild beasts…the temple of demons devoted to idolatrous cults…the refuge of brigands and dabauchees, and the cavern of devils. It is a criminal assembly of Jews…a place of meeting for the assassins of Christ… a house worse than a drinking shop…a den of thieves, a house of ill fame, a dwelling of iniquity, the refuge of devils, a gulf and a abyss of perdition.”…”I would say the same things about their souls… As for me, I hate the synagogue…I hate the Jews for the same reason.The Roots of Christian Anti-Semitism by Malcolm Hay

St. Augustine (c. 354-430 A.D.), responsible for much of the church doctrine, is someone whose material I have studied quite a bit. Even at that time I noticed his writing would often burst out with obvious hatred for the Jewish people. This example is from his book called Confessions, 12.14:

How hateful to me are the enemies of your Scripture! How I wish that you would slay them (the Jews) with your two-edged sword, so that there should be none to oppose your word! Gladly would I have them die to themselves and live to you!

There are many more examples of the hatred of the Jews among early church leaders and so-called fathers. I am highlighting this to show how Christianity moved away from the teachings of Yeshua, a Jewish Rabbi, and his Apostles and could never go back. This is why someone like me is given the silent treatment when trying to tell my Christian friends and family to examine their belief system and compare it to what the Bible says. It is easier to ignore and silence a person then it is to defend things about the faith that really are not defensible. The adversary, which is called “satan” in the Hebrew language, has deluded people into thinking the things of God are “Jewish” and not to be even considered by a Christian.

Martin Luther played a large role in the protestant reformation. This is where many of the splinters of denominations come from today. It was simply people arguing about doctrine and creating their own “way”. One thing they can all agree on is not to have anything to do with the way of “those detestable Jews”.

Martin Luther (1543); On The Jews and Their Lies:

What then shall we Christians do with this damned, rejected race of Jews? Since they live among us and we know about their lying and blasphemy and cursing, we can not tolerate them if we do not wish to share in their lies, curses, and blasphemy. In this way we cannot quench the inextinguishable fire of divine rage nor convert the Jews. We must prayerfully and reverentially practice a merciful severity. Perhaps we may save a few from the fire and flames [of hell]. We must not seek vengeance. They are surely being punished a thousand times more than we might wish them. Let me give you my honest advice.

First, their synagogues should be set on fire, and whatever does not burn up should be covered or spread over with dirt so that no one may ever be able to see a cinder or stone of it. And this ought to be done for the honor of God and of Christianity in order that God may see that we are Christians, and that we have not wittingly tolerated or approved of such public lying, cursing, and blaspheming of His Son and His Christians.

Secondly, their homes should likewise be broken down and destroyed. For they perpetrate the same things there that they do in their synagogues. For this reason they ought to be put under one roof or in a stable, like gypsies, in order that they may realize that they are not masters in our land, as they boast, but miserable captives, as they complain of incessantly before God with bitter wailing.

Thirdly, they should be deprived of their prayer-books and Talmuds in which such idolatry, lies, cursing, and blasphemy are taught.

Fourthly, their rabbis must be forbidden under threat of death to teach any more…

Fifthly, passport and traveling privileges should be absolutely forbidden to the Jews. For they have no business in the rural districts since they are not nobles, nor officials, nor merchants, nor the like. Let them stay at home…If you princes and nobles do not close the road legally to such exploiters, then some troop ought to ride against them, for they will learn from this pamphlet what the Jews are and how to handle them and that they ought not to be protected. You ought not, you cannot protect them, unless in the eyes of God you want to share all their abomination…

To sum up, dear princes and nobles who have Jews in your domains, if this advice of mine does not suit you, then find a better one so that you and we may all be free of this insufferable devilish burden – the Jews…

Let the government deal with them in this respect, as I have suggested. But whether the government acts or not, let everyone at least be guided by his own conscience and form for himself a definition or image of a Jew. When you lay eyes on or think of a Jew you must say to yourself: Alas, that mouth which I there behold has cursed and execrated and maligned every Saturday my dear Lord Jesus Christ, who has redeemed me with his precious blood; in addition, it prayed and pleaded before God that I, my wife and children, and all Christians might be stabbed to death and perish miserably. And he himself would gladly do this if he were able, in order to appropriate our goods…

Such a desperate, thoroughly evil, poisonous, and devilish lot are these Jews, who for these fourteen hundred years have been and still are our plague, our pestilence, and our misfortune.

Translated by Martin H. Bertram, “On The Jews and Their Lies, Luther’s Works, Volume 47”; Philadelphia: Fortress Press, 1971.

Martin Luther 1543; Of The Unknowable Name and The Generations of Christ

But your [God’s] judgment is right, justus es Dominie. Yes, so shall Jews, but no one else be punished, who held your word and miracles in contempt and ridiculed, insulted and damned it for such a long time without interruption, so that they will not fall, like other humans, heathens and all the others, into sin and death, not up in Hell, nor in the middle of Hell but in the pit of Hell, as one cannot fall deeper…

Even if they were punished in the most gruesome manner that the streets ran with their blood, that their dead would be counted, not in the hundred thousands, but in the millions, as happened under Vespasian in Jerusalem and for evil under Hadrian, still they must insist on being right even if after these 1,500 years they were in misery another 1,500 years, still God must be a liar and they must be correct. In sum, they are the devil’s children, damned to Hell…

The Jews too got what they deserved. They had been called and elected to be God’s mouth as Jeremiah says…Open your mouth wide and I will fill it; they however, kept tightly closed their muzzles, eyes, ears, nose, whole heart and all senses, so he polluted and squirted them so full that it oozes from them in all places and devil’s filth comes from them.

Yes, that tastes good to them, into their hearts, they smack their lips like swine. That is how they want it. Call more: ‘Crucify him, crucify him.’ Scream more: ‘His blood come upon us and our children.’ (Matthew 27:25) I mean it came and found you…

Perhaps, one of the merciful Saints among us Christians may think I am behaving too crude and disdainfully against the poor, miserable Jews in that I deal with them so sarcastically and insulting. But, good God, I am much too mild in insulting such devils…

Finally, the father of Calvinism, John Calvin. I never spent much time studying the doctrine of election that he puts forth, so I really cannot comment much on it. Here is John Calvin’s opinion of the Jews:

Their [the Jews] rotten and unbending stiffneckedness deserves that they be oppressed unendingly and without measure or end and that they die in their misery without the pity of anyone.

Excerpt from “Ad Quaelstiones et Objecta Juaei Cuiusdam Responsio,” by John Calvin; The Jew in Christian Theology, Gerhard Falk, McFarland and Company, Inc., Jefferson, NC and London, 1931.

History does not happen by accident. We see the ingrained hatred of Jews in Christianity. One has to wonder if this new religion has anything to do with the religion of the Jewish Messiah Yeshua and the Apostle Sha’ul, also called Pa’al, or Paul today. Paul was a Pharisaic Jew responsible for writing much of the New Testament, and this is what he had to say in defense of himself:

Acts 24:14–16 (LEB)

14 But I do confess this to you, that according to the Way (which they call a sect), so I worship the God of our fathers, believing all things that are in accordance with the law and that are written in the prophets, 15 having a hope in God which these men also themselves await: that there is going to be a resurrection of both the righteous and the unrighteous. 16 For this reason also I myself always do my best to have a clear conscience toward God and people.

Paul also taught us where believers in Yeshua from the nations (non-Jews), fit in. It is only by the grace of God that we can be grafted into the natural olive tree of Israel.

Romans 11:13–21 (LEB)

13 Now I am speaking to you Gentiles. Therefore, inasmuch as I am apostle to the Gentiles, I promote my ministry, 14 if somehow I may provoke my people to jealousy and save some of them. 15 For if their rejection means the reconciliation of the world, what will their acceptance mean except life from the dead? 16 Now if the first fruits are holy, so also is the whole batch of dough, and if the root is holy, so also are the branches.

17 Now if some of the branches were broken off, and you, although you were a wild olive tree, were grafted in among them and became a sharer of the root of the olive tree’s richness, 18 do not boast against the branches. But if you boast against them, you do not support the root, but the root supports you. 19 Then you will say, “Branches were broken off in order that I could be grafted in.” 20 Well said! They were broken off because of unbelief, but you stand firm because of faith. Do not think arrogant thoughts, but be afraid. 21 For if God did not spare the natural branches, neither will he spare you.

It is clear that modern Christianity has antisemitism built within its framework, and likely the reason Christians will get so angry if dietary instructions, Sabbaths or feast days are brought up. No, those are not simply things of the “detestable Jews”, they are the instructions of God. Examine yourselves, as I will examine myself continually. Repent and believe the gospel!

Featured photo by Wim van ‘t Einde on Unsplash.

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