‘salvation is from the Jews’

Massada... the site of a massacre

Masada ... where Roman forces brutally extinguished certain Jewish hopes for salvation (photo courtesy of jungle mama, on Flickr)

Further to the questions I’ve been posing about the significance of Israel in God’s redemptive purposes, let me share with you the moment that got this little obsession of mine started. Unsurprisingly perhaps, it’s from Barth’s Church Dogmatics IV/1 (Section 59):

The Word did not simply become any “flesh,” any man humbled and suffering. It became Jewish flesh. The Church’s whole doctrine of the incarnation and the atonement becomes abstract and valueless and meaningless to the extent that this comes to be regarded as something accidental and incidental. The New Testament witness to Jesus Christ, the Son of God, stands on the soil of the Old Testament and cannot be separated from it.

Just an overreaction to the anti-Semitism with which he was painfully well acquainted? I doubt it.

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