Anti-Judaism in Early Christianity
Volume 2: Separation and Polemic
Publication Year: 1986
The second volume in this two-volume work studying the initial developments of anti-Judaism within the church examines the evolution of the Christian faith in its social context as revealed by evidence such as early patristic and rabbinic writings and archaeological findings.
Published by: Wilfrid Laurier University Press
Notes on Contributors
The essays in this volume represent the final two years of a five-year seminar held at the annual meeting of the Canadian Society of Biblical Studies (Halifax, Nova Scotia in 1981; Ottawa, Ontario in 1982). They extend into the late first and second centuries the work begun in earlier years of the seminar, a selection of which appears...
1. To the Hebrews or Against the Hebrews? Anti-Judaism and the Epistle to the Hebrews
The writing of the New Testament commonly known as the epistle to the Hebrews has engaged the attention of New Testament scholars to an inordinate degree. The long and detailed article by Erich Crasser, describing the research on Hebrews from 1938 to 1963 and running for almost 100 pages, demonstrates the breadth of interest this book...
2. Temple and Bet Ha-midrash in the Epistle of Barnabas
The anti-Judaic content of the epistle of Barnabas1 is not its most disturbing feature. As readers of the New Testament we are unfortunately familiar with-though often inured to-the anti-Judaic themes it rehearses. What disturbs the reader most is the virulence with which these themes are presented. The package is more offensive than the contents. In what follows we will attempt...
3. Judaism of the Uncircumcised in Ignatius and Related Writers
The anti-Judaism which begins in the New Testament becomes much nastier in the writings of the early fathers and in the legislation of the post-Constantinian emperors. At least some of this development, however, must be understood as a misunderstanding by later generations of the polemic of earlier generations...
4. Marcion and the Jews
About 150 C.E. Justin claimed that Marcion's teaching had spread throughout the whole human race (Apol. 20.5-6) and fifty years or so later Tertullian made much the same observation (Marc. 5.19). The number of tracts written to combat Marcionite influence...
5. Justin Martyr's Argument with Judaism
Both in his First Apology and his Dialogue with Trypho Justin Martyr argues with Jewish traditions. However, in the two Apologies he is also in conflict with contemporary paganism. That makes possible some comparisons between his argument with Judaism and against paganism and allows one to place the former...
6. Melito and Israel
"Marred by cavalier and superficial use of evidence, as well as by a deplorable harshness of tone...,"J said S.G. Hall of an article by E. Werner entitled "Melito of Sardis: The First Poet of Deicide."2 The "harshness of tone" presumably refers to passages where Werner, a Jew, castigates Melito in no uncertain terms...
7. Christian Anti-Judaism in its Judaic Mirror: The Judaic Context of Early Christianity Revised
It was originally intended that I should present a paper on the early rabbinic reaction to Christianity and to its anti-Judaism. After some reflection, I decided to tackle a somewhat different theme-the Judaic context of early Christianity and its anti-Judaism-out of a conviction that the tannaitic rabbis had little to say about...
8. Judaism, Christianity, and Gnosticism
The rabbinic references to heretics who believed in "two powers in heaven" present a promising start for uncovering the vexed relationship between Judaism, Christianity, and gnosticism because some kind of dualistic doctrine seems inherent in the designation1 and several scholars have seen a relationship between two powers...
It is fair to say that all who participated in the seminar on anti-Judaism in the Canadian Society of Biblical Studies were changed by the experience in some way. It thus seemed appropriate for one of the participants to reflect in retrospect on where we have been and what questions we wish we had asked along the way...