How Christians Think About Jews at Easter
There is a very strange understory associated with this video. Jay Michaelson at the Forward sees the video as a crude effort to desecrate the memory of Auschwitz and use the camps as a lever to convince Jews that Christianity is our salvation rather than our curse. The creators of the video are part of the Jews for Jesus organization and their message, as Jay Michaelson says, is not to Christians but to Jews: “The Holocaust, perhaps more than any other event or topic, has kept Jewish people from being open to considering Jesus as the Jewish messiah. If only we didn’t blame Christians for the genocide of our people, the reasoning goes, we’d be more open to converting to Christianity.” .
I see the video in in the very different light. Lost in the story of the resurrection, is a story of an insurrection. Crucifixion was never a punishment for petty crimes. The Romans used crucifixion to suppress efforts by conquered people to seek freedom. Jesus’ story, if not transformed by Paul’s vision, would be the same as the story we now read of Tibetans resisting Chinese occupation. Like the Tibetans,the Jews of occupied Israel were torn between the overwhelming might of the occupying forces and their beliefs in their religion and culture. Like the Chinese in Tibet, the Romans in Israel punished sedition mercilessly.
There is another, quite amazing parallel between the story of Tibet and the story of Israel. Around the time of Jesus, the great majority of Jews were opposed to violent resistance to the Roman forces. Militants willing to take up the sword would be in a minority until 40 years later when the disastrous Jewish Wars would lead to the destruction of Jerusalem itself. The Pharisees, so excoriated by the Christian Bible, were led by the great Rabbi Hillel. Like a Tibetan monk or like Martin Luther King, Hillel taught his people to be true to their beliefs while practicing passive resistance to the Romans. Most historians today describe Jesus as a follower of this nonviolent doctrine.
Anti-Semitism, whatever its other roots, was fed by the need of the Roman Christians to suppress memories of this nonviolent resistance. An image like the one in this video of Jesus as a Jew submitting to Roman authority would certainly not have served the purposes of the Roman Empire.
Read more: http://blogs.forward.com/forward-thinking/196708/when-jesus-died-at-auschwitz/#ixzz2zLhaToe0
READMORE about my fight to get my father’s heritage from Buchenwald released so the public can read on one Jew’s words about what he saw when he entered the camps to give medical care to the Nazi victims.