Postmissionary Messianic Judaism
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In recent years, a new form of Messianic Judaism has emerged that has the potential to serve as a bridge between Jews and Christians. Giving voice to this movement, Mark Kinzer makes a case for nonsupersessionist Christianity. He argues that the election of Israel is irrevocable, that Messianic Jews should honor the covenantal obligations of Israel, and that rabbinic Judaism should be viewed as a movement employed by God to preserve the distinctive calling of the Jewish people. Though this book will be of interest to Jewish readers, it is written primarily for Christians who recognize the need for a constructive relationship to the Jewish people that neither denies the role of Jesus the Messiah nor diminishes the importance of God's covenant with the Jews.
"This important book is a breakthrough study for all who care about Jewish-Christian relationships. Mark Kinzer makes a convincing case for seeing those relationships in a state of schism that desperately needs to be healed. He also offers refreshing clarity for those of us who have not been able to decide until now how to approach the supersessionist issue."--Richard J. Mouw, Fuller Theological Seminary"Mark Kinzer has written an important book. He is surely correct that God intends the church to be a church of Jews and Gentiles, that there are in fact many Jews who believe that Jesus is Messiah, and that within the predominantly Gentile church they are unlikely to continue as observant Jews. Congregations of 'Messianic' Jews would seem to be an obvious solution, and such synagogues are up, running, and connected. All of which poses an enormous ecumenical question: What form is communion between these congregations and those who now think of themselves as 'the churches' to take?"--Robert W. Jenson, Center of Theological Inquiry"Mark Kinzer's sophisticated discussion is engaging for a Jewish reader 'listening in on the conversation,' even if written first to challenge Christians to reconsider the foundational Jewishness of their own identity. I learned much about the movement's origins and the effort to reconceptualize its identity in Jewish ways. The exegetical discussions are well made, explaining the New Testament mandate to which Kinzer appeals. In the twenty-first century, can a movement born out of Christianity become a kind of Judaism? And I wonder, is what Kinzer endorses here really postmissionary? Mark Kinzer's bold rethinking of his particular Messianic Judaism's agenda certainly suggests the possibility, if not yet the reality."--Mark D. Nanos, author of The Mystery of Romans and The Irony of Galatians"Mark Kinzer gives us this powerful book in the fullness of time. It probably could not have been written before now, nor can we do without it any longer. The church needs this book to know how to be the church of the God of Israel. Messianic Judaism needs this book to know how to be a Judaism. And Christians and Jews can no longer 'dialogue' as if Messianic Judaism did not exist. In a brilliant, thorough, and compelling way Kinzer boldly interrupts the conversation of contemporary theology with the voice of Messianic Judaism. We are left with no option but to engage it. There is no turning back."--Douglas Harink, author of Paul among the Postliberals
Mark S. Kinzer (Ph.D., University of Michigan) is president of Messianic Jewish Theological Institute, the leadership-training center for the Union of Messianic Jewish Congregations, and chair of its theology department. He is also an ordained rabbi and an adjunct professor of Jewish studies at Fuller Theological Seminary.