19 November 2017

Jewry, and Eschatology

As Dom Gueranger explains, the instinct of the Latin Church, in these last glorious Sundays before Advent, was to think about the Salvation of the Jews in the End Time (vide Romans 11:25sqq.). He draws our attention to the Introit (from Jeremiah 29) which we keep repeating in November:
Thus saith the Lord: I think thoughts of peace and not of affliction; ye shall call upon me, and I will hearken unto you: and will bring again your captivity from all places. Psalmus 85 Lord, thou art become gracious unto thy land: thou hast turned away the captivity of Jacob.

And those of you with Anglican previous could blow the dust off your Prayer Books and read the passage from Jeremiah 28 which BCP provides for the 'Epistle' on Stir up Sunday. It is a passage which, in the Middle Ages, different parts of the Latin Church used on different Sundays, but always just before or just at the start of Advent.

And then  ... how are we to understand the majestic words in the Gospel which follows: Gather up the fragments that remain, that nothing be lost.

I gave you the exegesis of Abbot Rupert about this time last year. I'll reprint it this evening. And I will include the original thread to that blogpost, which included some exceedingly powerful points.

How on earth will the Incoming of Jewry, their eschatological acceptance by Faith of their Messiah and their Entry with him into his kingdom, take place? Will all Jews be saved? But S Paul has just talked about "the Fullness of the Gentiles". Are we to believe that all the Gentiles will be saved? I put these questions, not because I propose to offer answers, but because they will occur to intelligent readers. I am not going to offer answers because, throughout the Church's history, no good has ever come out of eschatological speculations. But good does come out of our humble acceptance of the Promises in Holy Scripture that the One who has promised is faithful to his Promises.

As we think about the Jews, there are two pernicious dead ends. One is to say that they do not need Christ and are best remaining in their own religion, so let's stop talking about their conversion. The other is to say that they killed the Messiah, and lie under an everlasting condemnation. Each of these is equally anti-semitic and contrary to the immemorial teaching of Scripture. And to the teaching of the Liturgy.

Lex orandi legem statuat credendi.


Sadie Vacantist said...

The Catholic Church hasn't just stopped its mission to convert the Jews but has stopped trying to convert anyone. I have a suspicion your own ordination was delayed because of your willingness to articulate or accommodate views (on this blog) which imply that.

Traddies and their conservative bedfellows sneakily (and sometimes lazily) blame the Council for the above development. In truth, the problem started during the war and the source of the problem was not German theological faculties.

Amateur Brain Surgeon said...

Dear Father. Kudos for your courage in leaving the safe rhetorical spaces and venturing out into the storms where even the fairest of claims about the Jews can call down wrath upon one.

What has always bothered ABS (well, a complete list would be too long) about the Jewish question is the tendency for we Christians to claim, Well, the Bible says there will be a mass conversion near the end of time and so they will be ok.

Yeah, maybe so and maybe not but in the mean time, twixt now and the Parousia, tens of millions of Jews will have been born and died while we have failed to preach Christ and conversion to them and we know that if the Messias-Deniers do not choose to accept Jesus Christ, they are choosing for themselves an eternity in Hell.

It is prolly safe to observe that were any Pope after Pius IX (He actively campaigned for their conversion) to preach the Gospels to the Jews that would be the end of the modern political arrangement/agreement we have made with them and, thus, all of the meetings and happy photos etc

Well, we Christian Catholics can do both - we can be friends with the Jews and we can try to convert them and if they reject us for preaching the Gospel (it is a mortal sin if we don't accord to the exegesis of Cornelius a Lapide) it will mean a rejection based on us fulfilling the Great Commission.

Are we to fear The Lord or man?

One is aware of the virtual minefield you are crossing. May you be a courageous example to all other clergy, good Father.

God Bless you.

Unknown said...

Without the need for taking care about dust... I gladly, always follow advice to read anything from the book of the great prophet Jeremiah. So this time again, at your advice father, I began to read chapter 28 and then 29... And again! How remarkable (for our times now) must be these words of our Lord:
"Haec enim dicit Dominus exercituum, Deus Israel: Non vos seducant prophetae vestri qui sunt in medio vestrum, et divini vestri, et ne attendatis ad somnia vestra quae vos somniatis, quia falso ipsi prophetant vobis in nomine meo : et non misi eos, dicit Dominus." (Jr 29,8-9)

"For thus saith the Lord of hosts the God of Israel: Let not your prophets that are in the midst of you, and your diviners deceive you: and give no heed to your dreams which you dream: For they prophesy falsely to you in my name: and I have not sent them, saith the Lord."

overcaffeinated said...

I think this is a completely sane and rational religious position. I also think it is naive to be overly concerned about antisemitism (something Jesus never thought to talk about) when that sentiment is only ruthlessly exploited and laughed at by semites, while never talking about racism against Europeans.

Here are two news stories from the past week -- draw your own conclusions.

"The Jewish community of Poland issued a statement saying its leader, Leszlaw Piszewski, and the country's chief rabbi, Michael Schudrich, had a 'frank and open conversation' of more than an hour with Kaczynski." - leading to the prosecution by the Polish government of people involved in a right-wing, anti-immigrant rally in Poland. Jews constitute less than 1% of the Polish population, but their leaders are given the honor of an hour of the head of the leading party's time, and their demands are acquiesced to. (http://abcnews.go.com/International/wireStory/polish-prosecutors-open-probe-tight-march-51278479)

Meanwhile, in Israel...
"It is time to increase the pace of deporting African migrants, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told the cabinet on Sunday." Refugees who attempt to enter Israel are kept in camps, then deported. (http://www.jpost.com/Israel-News/Politics-And-Diplomacy/Netanyahu-Time-to-increase-deportation-of-African-migrants-514604) One is inclined to wonder why Jews are so supportive of Europe accepting these people, but not Israel. One might reasonably conclude that anti-whiteism has more influence these days than anti-semitism.