The Rabbi as a Surrogate Priest
"There are many aspects to this task of rabbinic training, but four closely related questions rise to the surface as requiring primary attention. The first is a question of description: What ought to be the functions performed by a messianic...
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"There are many aspects to this task of rabbinic training, but four closely related questions rise to the surface as requiring primary attention. The first is a question of description: What ought to be the functions performed by a messianic Jewish rabbi? The second is a question of legitimacy: What similarities exist between the functions performed by messianic Jewish rabbis and rabbis in the wider Jewish context such that the rabbinate in both contexts may legitimately be seen to be variations on the same theme, and the messianic Jewish rabbinate therefore legitimately a rabbinate? The third is a question of differentiation: How and why are the functions performed by a messianic Jewish rabbi contextually particularistic and therefore different from those performed byChristian clergy? In other words, how is a messianic rabbi more than just a Protestant Pastor with switched labels? The fourth is a question of biblicity: Is there biblical justification or precedent for the proposed paradigm of the rabbi as a surrogate priest? Each of these questions emerges from messianic Judaism's interaction with different but overlapping audiences. The question of description is addressed primarily to the messianic Jewish context. The question of legitimacy is addressed primarily to the wider Jewish world. The question of differentiation is addressed primarily to the church world. The question of biblicity is addressed both to the messianic Jewish context and the church world. And in all cases, looking over our shoulder is the general public." --from the Prologue
Stuart Dauermann (PhD, Fuller Seminary School of Intercultural Studies) is senior scholar with Messianic Jewish Theological Institute and rabbi of Ahavat Zion Messianic Synagogue in Beverly Hills, California. Since the 1960's, he has kept himself busy helping Jews and Christians better understand one another and Yeshua (Jesus)Êthe Messiah.Ê