Transformations of Jewish and Christian Identities in the Past and Present

The varied with-each-other and the (all too frequent) against-each-other of Judaism and Christianity has to be understood as a transformation process of “identity markers“ since religious identity is subject to a constant process of adaptation and progression. In a similar way, Christianity originated from a re-interpretation of (early) Jewish “identity markers“.

This transformation and re-interpretation has especially positioned Christianity against Judaism in a unilateral reframing of shared traditions already in antiquity and then in the later eras. Due to this constant anti-Jewish tradition in the history of Christianity, one can also understand modern anti-Judaism as a consequence of “historical amnesia“ and of a “deprivation of identity“ that can be fought with a critical reflection of transformation processes of Jewish-Christian identities in the past and in the present. In addition, in making the shared roots and “identity markers“ in the different readings in Judaism and Christianity present, new possibilities and chances of Jewish-Christian dialogue open up. Christian churches are also faced with the task of reviewing and reprocessing history in dialogue with contemporary Judaism and of then following up with theological and pastoral reforms.

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