A Response To “Christendom’s Jewish Problem”

As a Jewish Christian (and I say that I identify as such in my TOI bio), I resent the implications which David Turner makes (I grant that I read the article a little late. Nonetheless, I read it while I was checking to see if “‘or l’goyim” is a correct transliteration of “light of the nations”. When I see something interesting in Google search results, I may look at it.).

For example, David Turner states:

I understand your faith, its need, in Or l’goyim” as justification, our mission as Jews continuing to live in the Diaspora. I understand, but reject it as denial, as rationalization. With the destruction of Jerusalem and Jewish independence in the year 70 the rabbis had little choice but to offer solace to our survivors as “missionizing” to the nations, Or l’goyim.” But I cannot value such a consolation today with its clearly defined end-game script regarding our survival. And that, as the final solution to Christendom’s Jewish Problem expressed seventy years ago, is our very real fate.

For me, that could not be further from the truth. As a Jewish Christian, I find that whole passage insulting and revisionist. After all, many Jewish Christians who came before were directly affected by the Shoah—Eduardo Propper de Callejon, Edith Stein, Oswald Rufeisen, and Aaron “Jean-Marie” Lustiger among them.

Oswald Rufeisen, by the way, faced issues with making aliyah like we Jewish Christians of today face—his issues were more distressing, of course, given that he was a Holocaust survivor and a rescuer of fellow Jews. Even he, however, was recognized as a Jew. The case would not be so for Jewish Christians today, let alone those of us who are Patrilineally Jewish—and I myself won’t settle for being recognized as a gentile of Jewish descent (I’ll either make aliyah as the Jew that I am or I’ll have to die in the Diaspora, despite that I don’t want to violate Tanakh in regards to aliyah—though so be if I am among “all the residue that remain of this evil family, that remain in all the places whither…driven…”.)

Thus (and forgive my flippancy), David Turner has a history and theology problem if anyone has any problem in regards to Christendom’s supposed “Jewish problem”.

Meanwhile, another implication adds insult to the injurious implication that David Turner already made:

We can analyze the dynamic of Christian fear, insecurity and self hared, of jealousy: whatever from its inception two millennia ago has motivated Jew-hatred. Whatever pathology drives the West’s terminal end to its eternal search for a solution to its “problem” I see no justification in continuing to sacrifice ourselves on our “rabbinic mission” justifying our remaining victims in the Diaspora.

Christians (i.e., Messianics, Nazarenes) weren’t the ones who cut off Nazarene/Messianic Judaism from Judaism at large, let alone by holding a Council at Yavneh to do so. The Anti Semitism began only with those (usually gentiles, though some Jews) who (if they were really Christians at all) forgot an important admonition:

16 For if the firstfruit is holy, the lump is also holy; and if the root is holy, so are the branches. 17 And if some of the branches were broken off, and you, being a wild olive tree, were grafted in among them, and with them became a partaker of the root and fatness of the olive tree, 18 do not boast against the branches. But if you do boast,remember that you do not support the root, but the root supports you.

19 You will say then, “Branches were broken off that I might be grafted in.” 20 Well said.Because of unbelief they were broken off, and you stand by faith. Do not be haughty, but fear. 21 For if God did not spare the natural branches, He may not spare you either.

Underlying all of the implications—much less the two cited above—is more than just a history and theology problem that pertains to ancient and modern history and theology—there is also the same problem that pertain to post-modern history and theology. For instance, the following does not sound too foreign to certain theologies today:


11 Therefore, since all these things will be dissolved, what manner of persons ought you to be in holy conduct and godliness, 12 looking for and hastening the coming of the day of God, because of which the heavens will be dissolved, being on fire, and the elements will melt with fervent heat? 13 Nevertheless we, according to His promise, look for new heavens and a new earth in which righteousness dwells.

“[H]astening the coming of the day of God” sounds very much like the theology of hastening Moshiach and/or hastening the Messianic Agewhich is very much within Jewish parameters in general.

Nonetheless, David Turner somehow counts Nazarene/Messianic Judaism’s hastening of Moshiach and the Messianic Age as “Christendom’s yet unsolved Jewish Problem” (and I know exactly where he’s going with this, since he is essentially making the same claim that Andrew Brown made against George Bush; and groups like Yad L’Achim and Jewish Israel make against those of us who are, in their view, “destroy[ers of] the souls of Israel”) :

Post-Holocaust Zionism is reminder of these, our tragic “reward.” From one-tenth the population of the Roman Empire to a tiny fraction of one-percent of Western “civilization” today: a miniscule “surviving remnant.” Zionism properly understood is our reminder of that past, of the futility of Or l’goyim: Zionism’s mission post-Holocaust is to clearly dsecribe Or l’yisrael, the only path forward: our Jewish Solution to Christendom’s yet unsolved Jewish Problem.

About the Author
Born in the Diaspora in 1990, Nicole Czarnecki didn’t even know that she’s Jewish until about 2008. As a Jewish Christian and an aspiring olah with more of a history than she ever knew and hope for a future of which she can't even begin to dream, she aspires to help others learn from their histories and build hopeful futures for everyone whom aspires to pursue tzedek and tikkun ha’olam.