By Nabion, www.nabion.org
Supersessionism is the general Christian Mishnaic doctrine, if you will, that implies or outright states that Christianity has superseded Judaism. The dangers of supersessionism is that it adulates Christianity as it is proffered at any given time, rather than actual Biblical Christianity, which was itself no different than Biblical Judaism. Not all hold the view of supersessionism, of course, but it is a common belief amongst Catholicism and the many denominations that stem from the Reformation.
The difference between the two is that Catholicism carried forward some of the early period’s (second century AD) anti-Jewishness whereas Protestantism, estranging itself from anything Catholic, took up a Pharisaical study of the Bible and New Testament. The post-Reformation period, especially amongst the Calvinists (Reformed and Presbyterian denominations), saw several Pauline statements in Romans as implying that Christians are the true Jews and the true Israel, and therefore the old are the false Jews. … Nothing could have been further from Paul’s mind.
This “gentilizing” of the New Testament and allegorizing of the “Old” is one of the chief components that maintains supersessionism, largely because Christian talmudism allows the Pauline comments to be used to establish doctrines, a talmudism now robbed of the original Jewish meaning. A self-serving cultural interpretation, now robbed of the original meaning, is given the equal status as the word of God. …
The early Christians, or the sect of Nazarenes as the Jewish element was called, believed correctly that Christianity was the fulfillment of all that was foretold by Moses and all the prophets. Thus it was a fulfillment of their own religion’s expectations and not its destroyer. Once again, ever since the words of Moses there was the prediction that “that prophet” would come, and that the people were to hearken unto him or vengeance would be taken. …
But no where did it say this Messiah would destroy Judaism. Matthew 5;17 “Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfill. For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled.”
Thus thousands upon thousands of Jews believed that he came when they saw the ministry of Jesus or when they heard the preaching of the Apostles. All were dumbfounded (including the apostles) when they heard that the Gentiles were also believing and even actively seeking the message of Jesus the Christ. …
Nothing was being superseded; the great expectation had come: the Messiah. This is verified by the book Acts of the Apostles, which clearly shows the teachings of the Apostles. This was written by Luke the physician, the frequent companion of Paul, and most of it details what he personally witnessed. This book shows that none had any perception that Judaism was done away with. On the contrary, the believers were zealous of the laws and the customs, as Acts 21 (19-25) confirms: “And when he had saluted them, he declared particularly what things God had wrought among the Gentiles by his ministry. And when they heard it, they glorified the Lord, and said unto him, Thou seest, brother, how many thousands of Jews there are which believe; and they are all zealous of the Torah: And they are informed of thee, that thou teachest all the Jews which are among the Gentiles to forsake Moses, saying that they ought not to circumcise their children, neither to walk after the customs. What is it therefore? the multitude must needs come together: for they will hear that thou art come. Do therefore this that we say to thee: We have four men which have a vow on them; Them take, and purify thyself with them, and be at charges with them, that they may shave their heads: and all may know that those things, whereof they were informed concerning thee, are nothing; but that thou thyself also walkest orderly, and keepest the Torah. As touching the Gentiles which believe, we have written and concluded that they observe no such thing, save only that they keep themselves from things offered to idols, and from blood, and from strangled, and from fornication.”
We know from history and from the NT that Christians, even the Gentiles, worshipped in the synagogues and listened to the laws, as James advised in Acts 15:21 concerning the instructions to the Gentiles mentioned above: “Moses of old time hath in every city them that preach him, being read in the synagogues every Sabbath day.” James’ advice was good. In order to follow the laws, any Gentile could go and learn at the synagogue. It was neither practical nor affordable for the apostles to pay for transcriptions of the Scriptures and send them out in order for the Gentiles to learn the ways of the law. The nations followed the advice, and went to the local synagogue.
So where has supersessionism come from? Certainly not from the Lord himself, else the apostles would have known. … The Scriptures and the New Testament’s earliest books show no supersession. They speak of fulfillment. No supersessionism comes from Christ, the apostles and from the study of the scripture. …
The fetters of Gnosticism clutched Christian minds only when they started to walk away from the root out of which they were grafted. This led to supersessionism, justifying the road they now walked on, and this led many a Christian down a path of unusual doctrines and into a multiplicity of denominations and cults. In the end now, all do what is right or convenient in their own minds. They approach the scripture to justify their new mindset or old tradition while at the same time overlooking the plain and clear commands of God contained therein. And this kind of attitude comes only before the end . . .or a tremendous reformation.
What happened to nabion.org. is there a replacement site? so miss that very informative website. please advise. thanks. dawn
Same question — where is that amazing Nabion website?