Catholic Q&A

Jews are often hated. Is it because they put Christ to death? Can we allow the Jews to occupy Palestine and oppress its inhabitants just because the land was promised to them in the Bible?

The Jewish people have been greatly hounded in the past, and their conditions have been very tragic. Nevertheless however, they are people who have been chosen by God, and who have made a covenant with him. Due to their having rejected the call of God that was conveyed by Jesus, the community of the people of God through faith (the Church of Christ) was born. This however does not mean that the promises once made by God to Israel have been annulled. As Paul argues in the letter to the Romans, chapter 9 and following, Israel continues to have a special place in God’s eternal plan. God will definitely guide Israel and have it restored as his own.

Hence the Jews are people who are particularly close to Christianity, and who deserve special respect. To justify hatred and prejudice against Jews by affirming that they are people who crucified Christ, or that the words of the Bible, “His blood be upon us and on our children,” (Matthew 27.25), are being fulfilled, is a dangerous ideology that stems from ignorance of the Bible.

On the other hand though, for Jews to use the Bible to invade Palestinian land on the grounds that God has guaranteed them the promised Land, and to use the Bible to justify their war against the Arab nations, is also a dangerous ideology. The words of the Bible need to be construed within the context of those times, and they cannot be applied literally to today’s situation. Speaking from the standpoint of the Gospel spirit of love, we cannot endorse the aggression of modern-day Israel.

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