Den israelske avisa The Jerusalem Post har i dag ein kronikk om Jesus! Det dreier seg om skribenten Shmuley Boteach som skriv om Jesu forhold til den romerske okkupasjonsmakta, inspirert av den britisk-jødiske forskaren Hyam Maccoby. Eg kjenner verken Boteach eller Maccoby frå før. Det er tydeleg at skribenten meiner han har grunnlag for ei fullstendig omskriving av den Jesushistoria som me kjenner frå NT. Han meiner det må vera heilt feil at Jesus ikkje var meir kritisk til romarane enn det NT gir inntrykk av.
The Jerusalem Post fortel av Boteach arbeider med ei bok om den jødiske Jesus. Prosjektet med å forstå Jesus med utgangspunkt i det jødiske har eg stor sans for, og det er slett ikkje unikt for Boteach. Eg tenkjer at Jesu forhold til romarane er ein studie verdt, men eg er likevel noko usikker på dette skriveprosjektet. Det verkar som Boteach meiner Paulus er den store, stygge ulven som har fjerna Jesus frå sin jødiske kontekst. Dette er etter mitt skjøn ei grov forenkling og heller ikkje nokon revolusjonerande eller ny ide. Sjølv om Paulus blir kalla heidningane sin apostel, skal me ikkje gløyma at også han var jøde og at han alltid forkynte Jesus som Messias (med utgangspunkt i GT) i synagogen før han utvida perspektivet til det ikkje-jødiske samfunnet.
Either the night before Passover, or the Seder night itself, is the time Christians believe to have been Jesus’ Last Supper. So, as I sat on Pessah rereading the New Testament in preparation for an upcoming debate in the UK on whether belief in Jesus is compatible with Judaism, I was struck by a powerful insight made by the brilliant British-Jewish scholar Hyam Maccoby.
I shall sum it up, as he does, in a single word: Romans. How could it be that Jesus, the man who defended the innocent and condemned the wicked, the man who drove the moneychangers out of the Temple with a whip, the man who declared it his objective to be the light of the world, never opened his mouth against the Romans? Here was Jesus, a man impassioned in his commitment to justice, a man of extreme sensitivity to the sufferings of others, condemning the Jews, but never the Romans.
IT IS for this reason that we have to rethink Jesus’ mission and what he was trying to accomplish. I have written many articles arguing that it is time for the world Jewish community to reclaim the Jewish Jesus by understanding his original mission and his great love for his people before his story was later edited by Pauline writers and before he was made into an enemy of the Jews and a friend of the Romans.
In my next column on this subject I intend to summarize Maccoby’s conclusions that will, based on the sources, make the real Jesus known not as an enemy of Judaism but as a Jewish patriot who sought to win Jewish independence from Rome, and who was thus cut off mercilessly by Pontius Pilate for his act of rebellion. (les meir)
PaleoJudaica kommenterer artikkelen i Jerusalem Post slik:
Shmuley Boteach presents a revisionist reading of Jesus in the Jerusalem Post.
It’s an interesting idea and I look forward to reading the next column or columns. (I haven’t read any of the articles he mentions.) But the implied moral equivalence between the Nazis and the ancient Romans is very overdone. The Romans ran an empire in a brutally efficient way, but they didn’t engage in systematic genocide for genocide’s sake. And whether death by crucifixion was worse than many of the deaths people died in the Nazi death camps is at the very least open to debate.
That said, it’s entirely possible that Jesus had criticisms of the Romans that were censored by his earliest followers for the sake of their own safety. But I’d like to see some positive evidence.