11 December 2010

Build bridge, then cross it

Step one: Develop Design
Step two: Gather materials
Step three: Gather helpers
Step four: Build bridge

For many folks, that's enough. They have noted a great gulf and they want to repair the separation. The chasm is a hindrance to relationships and they want that hindrance removed. I say, good for them!

Those who know about my life or things about which I write will know that bridge building in religious terms is often related to people on apparently opposite sides of a particular issue. In my world of Jews for Jesus, it's usually related to those who are labelled Jewish and those who are labelled Christian. Of course, I never know on which side of the proverbial fence people would want me to reside. But that's for another blog.

The Great Divide of Jewish and Christian dialogue is a function of ruined relationships over nearly two millenia of religious conflict and warring. The bloodshed throughout history of one religious mob taking on the religion and the leadership of another is enough to fill Lake Victoria. Religion is often the cause of wars, but again that's not the topic of my blog today.

Today I'm writing about the 'dialogue' movement within Christendom which seeks to (re)build relationships with Jewish people and to build bridges of peace between peoples of good will on 'both sides.'

I'm all in favor of people making amends. I'm keen for those who damage others to make restitution. I'm happy for a handshake from people rather than a sword or a knife, a grin rather than a gun. Who wouldn't?

Those people who work for reconciliation and peace, who spend energy to work in committee of Christians and Jews, who want people of good will to extend that to one another, certainly have my attention and respect. After all, there is much we can learn from each other. And who is to say that 'our version' of the conversation or history is necessarily accurate anyway?

That said, I know some who are more content to build a bridge than to cross it. I guess what bothers me at times is finding believers in Y'shua, real believers, who really believe in the real Messiah, who are reluctant or reticent or resistant to sharing that faith with Jewish people, because... well for many reasons, like 1) all the Jews have suffered, 2) I have not earned that right or 3) I may not be right in the end. Everyone has a bit of truth.


Brothers and sisters, let's work to be at peace with all people. Let's build bridges of peace. And then go ahead, have some chutzpah and cross that bridge... share the faith, explain what you believe about your own sinfulness, your own redemption that Y'shua bought for you on the cross. How He rose from the dead and is returning soon to gather all His to Himself. Go on, cross that bridge, ok?

1 comment:

Roger said...

I was talking to my Messianic faithful Rabbi recently and asking him what he was taught at school about the reformation. He couldn't think of much. Whereas I am a christian goy and was brought up in the Anglican church and went to a bourgeoise school with a British Empire history. As an Anglican I read the prayer book from cover to cover and of course the 39 articles contain anti-semiticism. While I was at an anglican theological college I was given the Protocals to read. It was when I was reading those that I realised that antisemiticism like fear of communism and now Islam is all fueled by the grand conspirator, Satan. We fight not against flesh and blood but against demonic thoughts that need to be brought into submission to Y'shua through being taught by Ruach Hachodesh that the same love of Abba Elohim may permeate our being so that we are perfect as He is perfect and love all alike even as He loves all alike, the same.