Stories of Jesus’ passion and death lie at the core of Christian identity. They offer an encounter with his experience of the human condition: betrayals by those closest to him, his own fear of death, uncertainty about God’s will, and the endurance of terrible suffering and an ignominious death. From generation to generation, these stories have functioned in sacred and saving ways for Christians. Yet, misinterpretations of the passion narratives have rationalized hostility to and violence against Jews as «Christ killers.» This sacrilegious telling cries out for redemption. Redeeming Christianity’s sacred story involves three facets. It requires respect, even awe, for its power. It demands rigorous examination of the history between Jews and Christians, and the ethical obligation to be altered by this history. It entails pursuing solid biblical scholarship, principles for reinterpreting troubling texts, and incorporation into Christian spirituality. Redeeming Our Sacred Story will contribute to more just relations between Jews and Christians, and witness to the world that reconciliation is possible.
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