By Clarence H. Wagner, Jr.
Perhaps you have heard of the term Replacement
Theology. However, if you look it up in a dictionary of Church
history, you will not find it listed as a systematic study.
Rather, it is a doctrinal teaching that originated in the early
Church. It became the fertile soil from which Christian
anti-Semitism grew and has infected the Church for nearly 1,900
What Is Replacement Theology?
Replacement Theology was introduced to the Church
shortly after Gentile leadership took over from Jewish
leadership. What are its premises?
- Israel (the Jewish people and the land) has been replaced by
the Christian Church in the purposes of God, or, more precisely,
the Church is the historic continuation of Israel to the
exclusion of the former.
- The Jewish people are now no longer a "chosen people." In
fact, they are no different from any other group, such as the
English, Spanish, or Africans.
- Apart from repentance, the new birth, and incorporation into
the Church, the Jewish people have no future, no hope, and no
calling in the plan of God. The same is true for every other
nation and group.
- Since Pentecost of Acts 2, the term "Israel," as found in the
Bible, now refers to the Church.
- The promises, covenants and blessings ascribed to Israel in
the Bible have been taken away from the Jews and given to the
Church, which has superseded them. However, the Jews are subject
to the curses found in the Bible, as a result of their rejection
How Do Replacement Theologians Argue Their Case?
- To be a son of Abraham is to have faith in
Jesus Christ. For them, Galatians 3:29 shows that sonship to
Abraham is seen only in spiritual, not national terms: "And if
you be Christ's, then you are Abraham's seed, and heirs according
to the promise."
Rebuttal: While this is a wonderful inclusionary
promise for Gentiles, this verse does not exclude the Jewish
people from their original covenant, promise and blessing as the
natural seed of Abraham. This verse simply joins us Gentile
Christians to what God had already started with Israel.
The promise of the land of Canaan to Abraham
was only a "starter." The real Promised Land is the whole world.
They use Romans 4:13 to claim it will be the Church that inherits
the world, not Israel. "For the promise that he should be the
heir of the world was not to Abraham, or to his seed, through the
law, but through the righteousness of faith."
Rebuttal: Where does this verse exclude Abraham and
His natural progeny, the Jews? It simply says that through the
law, they would not inherit the world, but this would be acquired
through faith. This is also true of the Church.
The nation of Israel was only the seed of
the future Church, which would arise and incorporate people of
all nations (Mal. 1:11): "For from the rising of the sun, even
unto the going down of the same, My Name shall be great among the
nations, and in every place, incense shall be offered to My Name,
and a pure offering for My Name shall be great among the nations,
says the Lord of Hosts."
Rebuttal: This is great, and shows that the Jewish
people and Israel fulfilled one of their callings to be "a light
to the nations," so that God's Word has gone around the world. It
does not suggest God's dealing with Israel was negated because
His Name spread around the world.
Jesus taught that the Jews would lose their
spiritual privileges, and be replaced by another people (Matt.
21:43): "Therefore I am saying to you, 'The kingdom of God will
be taken from you, and given to a nation bringing forth the
fruits of it.'"
Rebuttal: In this passage, Jesus was talking about
the priests and Pharisees, who failed as leaders of the people.
This passage is not talking about the Jewish people or nation of
Israel. See Teaching Letter #770008, "Did God Break His Covenant
With the Jews?"
A true Jew is anyone born of the Spirit,
whether he is racially Gentile or Jewish (Rom. 2:28-29): "For he
is not a Jew who is one outwardly; neither is that circumcision
which is outward in the flesh; But he is a Jew who is one
inwardly; and circumcision is that of the heart, in the spirit
and not in the letter; whose praise is not of men, but of
Rebuttal: This argument does not support the notion
that the Church replaced Israel. Rather, it simply reinforces
what had been said throughout the Hebrew Scriptures [the Old
Testament], and it certainly qualifies the spiritual
qualifications for Jews or anyone who professes to be a follower
of the God of Israel.
Paul shows that the Church is really the
same "olive tree" as was Israel, and the Church is now the tree.
Therefore, to distinguish between Israel and the Church is,
strictly speaking, false. Indeed, people of Jewish origin need to
be grafted back into the Church (Rom 11:17-23).
Rebuttal: This claim is the most outrageous because
this passage clearly shows that we Gentiles are the "wild olive
branches," who get our life from being grafted into the olive
tree. The tree represents the covenants, promises and hopes of
Israel (Eph. 2:12), rooted in the Messiah and fed by the sap,
which represents the Holy Spirit, giving life to the Jews (the
"natural branches") and Gentile alike. We Gentiles are told to
remember that the olive tree holds us up and NOT to be arrogant
or boast against the "natural branches" because they can be
grafted in again. The olive tree is NOT the Church. We are simply
grafted into God's plan that preceded us for over 2,000
All the promises made to Israel in the Old
Testament, unless they were historically fulfilled before the
coming of Jesus Christ, are now the property of the Christian
Church. These promises should not be interpreted literally or
carnally, but spiritually and symbolically, so that references to
Israel, Jerusalem, Zion and the Temple, when they are prophetic,
really refer to the Church (II Cor. 1:20). "For all the promises
of God in Him (Jesus) are Yea, and in Him, Amen, unto the glory
of God by us." Therefore, they teach that the New Testament needs
to be taught figuratively, not literally.
Rebuttal: Later, in this Teaching Letter, we will
look at the fact that the New Testament references to Israel
clearly pertain to Israel, not the Church. Therefore, no promise
to Israel and the Jewish people in the Bible is figurative, nor
can they be relegated to the Church alone. The promises and
covenants are literal, many of them are everlasting, and we
Christians can participate in them as part of our rebirth, not in
that we took them over to the exclusion of Israel. The New
Testament speaks of the Church's relationship to Israel and her
covenants as being "grafted in" (Rom. 11:17), "brought near"
(Eph. 2:13), "Abraham's offspring (by faith)" (Rom. 4:16), and
"partakers" (Rom. 15:27), NOT as usurpers of the covenant and a
replacer of physical Israel. We Gentile Christians joined into
what God had been doing in Israel, and God did not break His
covenant promises with Israel (Rom. 11:29).
How Did The Position Of The Early Church Fathers
Affect The Church?
Let us look at a brief history of the first four
centuries of Christianity, which established a "legacy of hatred"
towards the Jewish people, which was against the clear teaching
of the New Testament.
(For a complete history of Christian anti-Semitism,
send the equivalent of US $1 to your nearest BFP National Office
and ask for a copy of the Israel Teaching Letter (#779806),
"Where Was Love and Mercy," or download a copy from our Bridges
for Peace website, found under the Israel Teaching Letters button
at http://www.bridgesforpeace.com/. This teaching is also a chapter of my book, Lessons From the Land of the Bible with 13 other great teachings including "Lessons from the Olive Tree," which can be
ordered from your nearest BFP national office.)
In the first century AD, the church was
well-connected to its Jewish roots, and Jesus did not intend for
it to be any other way. After all, Jesus is Jewish and the basis
of His teaching is consistent with the Hebrew Scriptures. In
Matthew 5:17-18 He states: "Do not think that I have come to
abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them
but to fulfil them. I tell you the truth, until heaven and earth
disappear, not the smallest letter, not the least stroke of a
pen, will by any means disappear from the Law until everything is
accomplished." Before the First Jewish Revolt in AD 66,
Christianity was basically a sect of Judaism, as were the
Pharisees, Sadducees, and Essenes.
Separation between Judaism and Christianity began
as a result of religious and social differences. According to
David Rausch in his book, A Legacy of Hatred, there were several
contributing factors: 1) the Roman intrusion into Judea, and the
widespread acceptance of Christianity by the Gentiles,
complicated the history of Jewish Christianity; 2) the Roman wars
against the Jews not only destroyed the Temple and Jerusalem, but
also resulted in Jerusalem's relinquishing her position as a
center of Christian faith in the Roman world; and, 3) the rapid
acceptance of Christianity among the Gentiles led to an early
conflict between the Church and Synagogue. Paul's missionary
journeys brought the Christian faith to the Gentile world, and as
their numbers grew, so did their influence, which ultimately
disconnected Christianity from its Jewish roots.
Many Gentile Christians interpreted the destruction
of the Temple and Jerusalem as a sign that God had abandoned
Judaism, and that He had provided the Gentiles freedom to develop
their own Christian theology in a setting free from Jerusalem's
influence. Could it be He was showing us that Temple worship was
no longer necessary as His Holy Spirit now resides in us (I Cor.
6:19), not in the Holy of Holies? After the Second Jewish Revolt
(AD 133-135) put down by the Roman Emperor Hadrian, theological
and political power moved from Jewish Christian leaders to
centers of Gentile Christian leadership such as Alexandria, Rome,
and Antioch. It is important to understand this change, because
it influenced the early Church Fathers to make anti-Jewish
statements as Christianity began to disconnect itself from its
As the Church spread far and wide within the Roman
Empire, and its membership grew increasingly non-Jewish, Greek
and Roman thought began to creep in and completely change the
orientation of Biblical interpretation through a Greek mindset,
rather than a Jewish or Hebraic mindset. This would later result
in many heresies, some of which the Church is still practicing
Once Christianity and Judaism began to take
separate paths, the chasm became wider and wider. Judaism was
considered a legal religion under Roman law, while Christianity,
a new religion, was illegal. As Christianity grew, the Romans
tried to suppress it. In an attempt to alleviate this
persecution, Christian apologists tried in vain to convince Rome
that Christianity was an extension of Judaism. However, Rome was
not convinced. The resulting persecutions and frustration of the
Christians bred an animosity towards the Jewish community, which
was free to worship without persecution. Later, when the Church
became the religion of the state, it would pass laws against the
Jews in retribution.
The antagonism of the early Christians towards the
Jews was reflected in the writings of the early Church Fathers.
For example, Justin Martyr (c. AD 160) in speaking to a Jew said:
"The Scriptures are not yours, but ours." Irenaeus, Bishop of
Lyon (c. AD 177) declared: "Jews are disinherited from the grace
of God." Tertullian (AD 160-230), in his treatise, "Against the
Jews," announced that God had rejected the Jews in favor of the
In the early 4th century, Eusebius wrote that the
promises of the Hebrew Scriptures were for Christians and not the
Jews, and the curses were for the Jews. He argued that the Church
was the continuation of the Old Testament and thus superseded
Judaism. The young Church declared itself to be the true Israel,
or "Israel according to the Spirit," heir to the divine promises.
They found it essential to discredit the "Israel according to the
flesh" to prove that God had cast away His people and transferred
His love to the Christians.
At the beginning of the 4th century, a monumental
event occurred for the Church, which placed "the Church
Triumphant" over "Vanquished Israel." In AD 306, Constantine
became the first Christian Roman Emperor. At first, he had a
rather pluralistic view and accorded Jews the same religious
rights as Christians. However, in AD 321, he made Christianity
the official religion of the Empire to the exclusion of all other
religions. This signaled the end of the persecution of
Christians, but the beginning of discrimination and persecution
of the Jewish people.
Already at the Church Council in Elvira (Spain) in
AD 305, declarations were made to keep Jews and Christians apart,
including ordering Christians not to share meals with Jews, not
to marry Jews, not to use Jews to bless their fields, and not to
observe the Jewish Sabbath.
Imperial Rome, in AD 313, issued the Edict of
Milan, which granted favor to Christianity, while outlawing
synagogues. Then, in AD 315, another edict allowed the burning of
Jews if they were convicted of breaking the laws. As Christianity
was becoming the religion of the state, further laws were passed
against the Jews:
- The ancient privileges granted to the Jews were
- Rabbinical jurisdiction was abolished or severely
- Proselytism to Judaism was prohibited and made punishable by
- Jews were excluded from holding high office or a military
These and other restrictions were confirmed over
and over again by various Church Councils for the next 1,000
In AD 321, Constantine decreed all business should
cease on "the honored day of the sun." By substituting Sunday for
Saturday as the day for Christian worship/rest, he further advanced
the split. This Jewish Shabbat/Christian Sunday controversy also
came up at the first real ecumenical Council of Nicea (AD 325),
which concluded Sunday to be the Christian day of rest, although
it was debated for long after that. Overnight, Christianity was
given the power of the Imperial State, and the emperors began to
translate the concepts and claims of the Christian theologians
against the Jews and Judaism into practice. Instead of the Church
taking this opportunity to spread its Gospel message in love, it
truly became the Church Triumphant, ready to vanquish its
After 321, the writings of the Church Fathers
changed in character. No longer was it on the defensive and
apologetic, but aggressive, directing its venom at everyone
"outside of the flock," in particular the Jewish people who could
be found in almost every community and nation. During this
period, we find more examples of anti-Jewish bias in Church
literature written by church leaders:
- Hilary of Poitiers (AD 291-371) wrote: "Jews are a perverse
people accursed by God forever."
- Gregory of Nyssa (died AD 394), Bishop of Cappadocia: "the
Jews are a brood of vipers, haters of goodness..."
- St. Jerome (AD 347-407) describes the Jews as "... serpents,
wearing the image of Judas, their psalms and prayers are the
braying of donkeys."
At the end of the 4th century, the Bishop of
Antioch, John Chrysostom (Golden Tongued), the great orator,
wrote a series of eight sermons against the Jews. He had seen
Christians talking with Jewish people, taking oaths in front of
the Ark, and some were keeping the Jewish feasts. He wanted this
to stop. In an effort to bring his people back to what he called,
"the true faith," the Jews became the whipping boy for his sermon
series. To quote him, "the synagogue is not only a brothel and a
theater; it is also a den of robbers and a lodging for wild
beasts. No Jew adores God... Jews are inveterate murderers,
possessed by the devil, their debauchery and drunkenness gives
them the manners of the pig. They kill and maim one another..."
One can easily see that a Judeo-Christian who wanted to hold on
to his heritage, or a Gentile Christian who wanted to learn more
about the parent faith of Christianity, would have found it
extremely difficult under this pressure. Chrysostom further
sought to separate Christianity totally from Judaism. He wrote in
his 4th Discourse, "I have said enough against those who say they
are on our side, but are eager to follow the Jewish rites... it
is against the Jews that I wish to draw up my battle... Jews are
abandoned by God and for the crime of deicide, there is no
Chrysostom was known for his fiery preaching
against what he saw as threats to his flock, including wealth,
entertainment, privilege and outward adornment. However, his
preaching against the Jewish community, which he believed had a
negative influence on Christians, is inexcusable and blatantly
anti-Semitic in its content. Another unfortunate contribution
Chrysostom made to Christian anti-Semitism was to hold the whole
Jewish people culpable for the killing of Christ.
In the fifth century, the burning question was: If
the Jews and Judaism were cursed by God, then how can you explain
Augustine tackled this issue in his "Sermon Against
the Jews." He asserted that even though the Jews deserved the
most severe punishment for having put Jesus to death, they have
been kept alive by Divine Providence to serve, together with
their Scriptures, as witnesses to the truth of Christianity.
Their existence was further justified by the service they
rendered to the Christian truth, in attesting through their
humiliation, the triumph of the Church over the Synagogue. They
were to be a "Witness people" - slaves and servants who should be
The monarchs of the Holy Roman Empire thus regarded
the Jews as serfs of the chamber (servi camerae), and utilized
them as slave librarians to maintain Hebrew writings. They also
utilized the services of Jews in another enterprise - usury, or
money-lending. The loaning of money was necessary to a growing
economy. However, usury was considered to endanger the eternal
salvation of the Christian, and was thus forbidden. So, the
church endorsed the practice of lending by Jews, for according to
their reasoning, their Jewish souls were lost in any case. Much
later, the Jewish people were utilized by the Western countries
as trade agents in commerce, and thus we see how the Jewish
people found their way into the fields of banking and
So, by the Middle Ages, the ideological arsenal of
Christian anti-Semitism was completely established. This was
further manifested in a variety of precedent-setting events
within the Church, such as Patriarch Cyril, Bishop of Alexandria,
expelling the Jews and giving their property to a Christian mob.
From a social standpoint, the deterioration of the Jewish
position in society was only beginning its decline. During this
early period, the virulent judeo- phobia was primarily limited to
the clergy who were always trying to keep their flocks away from
the Jews. However, later, the rank and file, growing middle class
would be the main source of anti-Semitic activity.
The result of these anti-Jewish teachings continued
onwards throughout Church history, manifesting itself in such
events and actions as the Crusades, the accusation of communion
host desecration and blood libel by the Jews, the forced wearing
of distinguishing marks to ostracize them, the Inquisition, the
displacement of whole Jewish communities by exile or separate
ghettoes, the destruction of synagogues and Jewish books,
physical persecution and execution, the Pogroms. Ultimately, the
seeds of destruction grew to epic proportions, culminating in the
Holocaust, which occurred in "Christian" Europe.
Had the Church understood the clear message of
being grafted into the Olive Tree from the beginning, then the
sad legacy of anti-Semitic hatred from the Church may have been
avoided. The error of Replacement Theology is like a cancer in
the Church that has not only caused it to violate God's Word
concerning the Jewish people and Israel, but it made us into
instruments of hate, not love in God's Name.
Is the New Testament anti-Semitic? Was it Intended
That the Church Treat the Jewish People with Contempt?
While the New Testament has been used by Gentile
anti-Semites, even within the Church, the writers of the New
Testament were Jewish, and therefore their arguments, even
critical ones, were from the vantage point of being an
intra-communal debate, not inter-communal accusation. Even where
the criticism is harsh, it is directed towards a particular group
or sect of Jews because of their practices, which needed
correcting. For example, even though Yeshua spoke harshly to the
Pharisees, He nevertheless said of them, "The teachers of the law
and the Pharisees sit in Moses' seat. So you must obey them and
do everything they tell you. But do not do what they do, for they
do not practice what they preach" (Matt: 23:2-3). He was
distressed that they were "missing the mark" in their
self-righteousness, which is something all of us need to be
careful of doing.
The clear teaching of the New Testament is that the
Church was and is to love and honour the Jewish people. In
Ephesians 2:11-18, we are told that "by the blood of Messiah," we
Gentiles are "made near" to the commonwealth of Israel, the
covenants, promises and hopes given to Israel. In Romans
11:11-12, 25, we are told that "blindness in part" has come to
the Jews so that the message would be forced out into the
nations. Nevertheless, we are told that a time would come when
"all Israel would be saved" (v. 26), because the gifts and
callings of God towards Israel and the Jewish people were given
without repentance (v. 29). God's relationship with Israel and
the Jewish people is everlasting.
We Gentile Christians are told that the Jews are
"beloved for the sake of the Patriarchs" (Rom. 11:28). They are a
chosen people who fulfilled their calling and brought the Gospel
to the world. They were chosen to:
- Be obedient to God's Word and demonstrate to the world as "a
light to the nations."
- Hear God's Word and record it - the Bible.
- Be the human channel for the Messiah.
The Jewish people have fulfilled their role. The
promise to the world through Abraham was that, "in you will all
the nations on the earth be blessed" (Gen. 12:3). They were to be
a light unto the nations and, while they made mistakes as we all
do, they did demonstrate the power of God on earth, they did hear
God's Word and record it so that we have the Bible, and they were
the human channel for the Messiah, who was born, ministered,
died, rose from the dead, ascended to heaven and will return to
Jerusalem, Israel, in a day yet to come.
God made an everlasting covenant between the land
of Israel and the Jewish people that must be fulfilled and
completed or His Word, the Bible, will be proven a lie, which it
is not. God will never forget or annul His ancient people. If God
will not fulfil His promises to Israel, what guarantee do we have
that He will fulfil His promises to the Church? (See Jeremiah
Are Jews, Jews, and is Israel, Israel in the New
Testament? Do They Still Have a Covenant with God?
ABSOLUTELY. THE BIBLE IS CLEAR ON THIS.
- The Jews are Israelites, not Gentiles (Rom. 9:4).
- To Israel still belong the sonship, the glory, the
covenants, the giving of the law, the worship and the promises
- The gifts and calling of God for Israel are irrevocable
- There are 77 references to Israel in the NT and none of them
refer to the Church. Try replacing the words, "the Church," where
Israel is mentioned and the passage is rendered unreadable and
silly, e.g., Rom. 10:1, "Brethren, my heart's desire and prayer
to God for Israel is, that they might be saved." If you put "the
Church" where Israel is mentioned, then it is redundant. The
Church is the body of saved believers, so how could Paul's prayer
be for the Church to be saved?
- Psalm 105 has a seven-fold affirmation of God's promises of
Canaan to Abraham. This is an everlasting promise, as was Genesis
- Jeremiah 31:35-37 speaks of the everlasting nature of God's
promises to and for Israel, the Jewish people, which is as sure
as the sun that shines by day and the moon and stars that glow in
- The end-time prophecies, which speak of the return of the
House of Jacob to their land (Israel) and its restoration, have
overwhelmingly been fulfilled in Israel and the Jewish people in
the past 120 years. (See, Isa. 11:11-12; Eze. 37:1-14; Eze. 36;
Eze. 35:1, Isa. 43:5,6; Jer. 16:14-16; Isa. 60:9-11; Isa.
- The Gospel and Yeshua came "to the Jews first, then the
Greek" (Rom. 2:9,10; Matt:10:5-7;15:24). There is a distinction
in roles between the two. Galatians 3:28 says: "There is neither
Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither
male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus." This is
speaking of everyone's standing before God as equals, because we
are all sinners saved by God's grace and the atoning work on the
Cross. Nevertheless, our roles here on earth are definitely
distinct; e.g., men and women, mothers and fathers, husbands and
wives, etc. all have distinct roles to play. Likewise, Jews and
Gentiles have distinct roles to play.
What is the Role of the Church?
- "On this rock I will build My Church, and the gates of Hell
will not overcome it" (Matt. 16:18). The Church is built on the
testimony and understanding of Peter, who is Jewish. Ephesians
2:11-14 indicates that Israel and the Jews (we) were chosen, but
Gentiles (you) were also included.
- The Church is related to Israel and partakers of the
covenants, promises, and hopes, but we have not been called to
usurp them. Our relationship is as "grafted in" (Rom. 11:17);
"brought near" (Eph 2:13); "Abraham's offspring" (by faith) (Rom.
4:16); "heirs" to Abraham's promise as adopted sons (Gal. 3:29)
and "partakers" (Rom 15:27).
- To the world, the Church is called to preach the Gospel to
all nations and make disciples (Matt. 28:19-20); to love the Lord
our God with all our heart, soul, mind and strength; and to love
our neighbour as ourselves (Mk. 12:30-31).
- To the Jewish people, we are called to show God's love "for
the sake of the Patriarchs" (Rom. 11:28), for without them we
would not have had God's Word or our Saviour who was a Jew from
Israel. We are to show God's mercy (Rom. 11:31). We are to give
our material gifts to help them (Rom. 15:27). We are to pray for
them and for Israel (Ps. 122:6). We are to be watchman on the
walls to protect them (Isa. 62:6,7). We are to help with the
aliyah (immigration) to Israel and the building up of Zion (Isa.
60:9-11; Jer. 16:14-16; Isa. 49:22-23).
- According to Romans 11, we are two distinct groups, both
grafted into the same tree, which are the covenants and promises
given to Israel; grounded in the same root, the Messiah; drinking
of the same sap, God's Holy Spirit. We do not hold up the tree,
but the tree us, and we are forbidden from boasting against or
being arrogant to God's covenant people the Jews (Rom.
What Happens When the Church Replaces
- The Church becomes arrogant and self-centred.
- It boasts against the Jews and Israel.
- It devalues the role of Israel or has no role for Israel at
- These attitudes result in anti-Semitism in word and
- Without a place for Israel and the Jewish people today, you
cannot explain the Bible prophecies, especially the very specific
ones being fulfilled in Israel today.
- Many New Testament passages do not make sense when the
Jewish people are replaced by the Church.
- You can lose the significance of the Hebrew Scriptures, the
Old Testament, for today. Many Christians boast of being a New
Testament (NT) Christian or a NT Church as in the Book of Acts.
However, the Bible of the early Church was not the New Testament,
which did not get codified until the 4th century, but rather the
- You can lose the Hebraic/Judaic contextualization of the New
Testament, which teaches us more about Yeshua and how to become
- The Church loses out on the opportunity to participate in
God's plan and prophecy for the Church, Israel and the world
What Happens When the Church Relates to Israel?
- The Church takes its proper role in God's redemptive plan
for the world, appreciating God's ongoing covenant relationship
and love for Israel and the Jewish people.
- We can see the consistency of God's redemptive plan from
Genesis to Revelation as an ongoing complementary process, not as
- We show love and honour for God's covenant people, not
- We value the Old and New Testaments as equally inspired and
significant for the Church today.
- Bible prophecy makes sense for today and offers
opportunities for involvement in God's plan for Israel.
- We become better disciples of Yeshua as we are able to
appreciate the Hebraic/Judaic roots that fill in the definitions,
concepts, words and events in the New Testament that are
otherwise obscured. Why? Many were not explained by the Jewish
writers of the New Testament, because they did not feel the need
to fill in all the details that were already explained in the Old
Had the Church understood this very clear message
from the beginning, then the sad legacy of anti-Semitic hatred
from the Church may have been avoided. The error of Replacement
Theology is like a cancer in the Church that has not only caused
it to violate God's Word concerning the Jewish people and Israel,
but it made us into instruments of hate, not love in God's Name.
Yet, it is not too late to change our ways and rightly relate to
the Jewish people and Israel today. Through Bridges for Peace you
can read, study and learn more, and also give to demonstrate
God's exhortation to us to bless His Covenant People, whom He
still loves. Not only do we need to learn and do for ourselves,
but we need to teach others so as to counteract the historical
error that has been fostered in the Church for nearly 2,000
Thank God, He is a God of mercy, redemption and
(The above was borrowed from "Bridges for Peace", May
9, 2002 edition.)
1) Gerhard Falk, The Jew in Christian Theology,
(MacFarland: Jefferson, NC, 1992).
2) Leopold Lucas, The Conflict Between Christianity and Judaism,
(Aris & Phillips, Warminster, UK: 1993).
3) The New International Study Bible, (The Zondervan Corporation:
Grand Rapids, MI, 1985).
4) The New Scofield Reference Bible, Authorized King James
Version, (Oxford University Press: New York, NY, 1967).
5) Keith Parker, Is the Church the "New Israel?", (Prayer for
Israel: Golant, UK).
6) James Parkes, The Conflict of the Church and the Synagogue,
(Atheneum, New York, 1974).
7) David Rausch, The Legacy of Hatred, (Moody Press: Chicago, IL,
8) Marcel Simon, Verus Israel, (Oxford University Press: New
York, NY, 1986).
9) Clarence H. Wagner, Jr., Lessons from the Land of the Bible,
(Bridges for Peace: Jerusalem, Israel, 1998).
10) Eds. C. Roth and G. Wigoder, Encyclopedia Judaica, (Keter
Publishing House, Ltd.: Jerusalem, Israel, 1972).
11) A. Lukyn Williams, Adversus Judaeos, (Cambridge University
Press: Cambridge, 1935).
12) Robert Louis Wilken, John Chrysostom and the Jews,
(University of California Press: Berkeley, 1983).