We Jews and Jesus: Exploring Theological Differences for Mutual Understanding

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9781594732089: We Jews and Jesus: Exploring Theological Differences for Mutual Understanding

An important contribution to the welcome growth of
religious understanding and cooperation between Jews and Christians.

Filled with warm sympathy for Christianity but also with sturdy intellectual honesty and loyalty to Judaism, this classic work continues to clearly and forcefully guide both Christians and Jews in timely, relevant discussion of the relationships between their faiths. Examining the Jewish views on Jesus throughout history and today, Rabbi Samuel Sandmel introduces the perspective of a rabbi of the liberal wing of Judaism, and presents the scholarship of the last century and a half as pursued by both Christians and Jews.

Without prejudice but admittedly partisan, this book explains why Jesus is of cultural and historical interest to Jews, though not of direct religious interest. It drives home one of the most important lessons of our time―that Christians and Jews can be worlds apart theologically, but also very close in mutual understanding and in cooperation toward desirable human goals.

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From the Inside Flap:

Significant portions of the world's Jews have lived, or are living, as minorities in predominantly Christian societies. They have, therefore, always been affected by the figure of Jesus. For much of Jewish history this has meant finding ways to respond to Christians who wondered why Jews did not accept Jesus the Jew as the Messiah prophesied about in the Scriptures. The nature of the responses Jews have given to this question varies greatly and has been influenced by both the intellectual climate of their time and the position of Jews within the larger society.

This classic reprint explores what Jews have thought and written about Jesus throughout history and how contemporary Jews, informed by modern critical scriptural scholarship, might think of Jesus today. Written in a non-technical way for the layperson, Rabbi Sandmel examines how Jewish views of Jesus provide valuable perspectives on how Jews have thought about themselves, their religion and their relationship with the broader world. He traces the history of how Jews have described Jesus, highlights what can be learned from modern scholarship and suggests how Jews might view Christianity in light of what has been learned over the centuries.

About the Author:

Rabbi Samuel Sandmel was professor of Bible and Hellenistic literature at Hebrew Union College–Jewish Institute of Religion, and was author of many highly regarded books in the field of Jewish and Bible studies.



Rabbi David Sandmel is the son of Samuel Sandmel and professor of Jewish studies at Catholic Theological Union in Chicago. He is also the rabbi of KAM Isaiah Israel Congregation.

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