Jesus: Christian, Jew or a Muslim?

By Richard Allen Greene, CNN

(CNN) – The relationship between Jews and Jesus has traditionally been a complicated one, to say the least.

As his followers’ message swept the ancient world, Jews who did not accept Jesus as the Messiah found themselves in the uncomfortable, and sometimes dangerous, position of being blamed for his death.

Mainstream Christian theology’s position held that Judaism had been supplanted, the Jewish covenant with the divine no longer valid, because of the incarnation of God as Jesus and his sacrifice on the cross.

Jews, for their part, tended largely to ignore Jesus.

That’s changing now.

In the past year, a spate of Jewish authors, from the popular to the rabbinic to the scholarly, have wrestled with what Jews should think about Jesus.

CNN’s Belief Blog: The faith angles behind the biggest stories

And overwhelmingly, they are coming up with positive answers, urging their fellow Jews to learn about Jesus, understand him and claim him as one of their own.

“Jesus is a Jew. He spent his life talking to other Jews,” said Amy-Jill Levine, co-editor of the recently released “Jewish Annotated New Testament.”

“In reading the New Testament, I am often inspired, I am intrigued. I actually find myself becoming a better Jew because I become better informed about my own history,” she said.

Rabbi Shmuley Boteach, a media personality who recently launched a bid for a U.S. House seat, argues in his own new book, “Kosher Jesus,” that “Jews have much to learn from Jesus – and from Christianity as a whole – without accepting Jesus’ divinity. There are many reasons for accepting Jesus as a man of great wisdom, beautiful ethical teachings, and profound Jewish patriotism.”

And Benyamin Cohen, an Orthodox Jew who spent a recent year going to church, admitted that he’s jealous that Christians have Jesus.

“He’s a tangible icon that everybody can latch on to. Judaism doesn’t have a superhero like that,” said Cohen, the author of the 2009 book “My Jesus Year.”

Read more.

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9 replies

  1. Jesus (PBUH) was born to a Jewish mother, the Christian faith started in his name and he was a Muslim by Quranic definition of a Muslim. (According to Quran anyone who believes in Allah as the Only One worthy of worship is a Muslim. So Abraham (PBUH) was a Muslim and so were all the prophets before Prophet Muhammad and their followers.)
    The line taken by the Rabbis is not new. A Jewish, Mathematician, friend of mine told me “Jesus was a teacher and Muhammad was a teacher”. I think it is a remarkably good and intelligent way of easing tensions without conceding much.

  2. The world history shows us that all the Prophets of God always were believer of one God.They spent all their lives to calling toward worship of one and only The Al-Mighty God.When ever peoples said yes to their calls the most of the world leaders or rulers of that time feel danger from the Prophets and tried to block their ways and think them as a challenge and show their power to crush the Prophets and their believers.Some in reaction told the peoples that they (Rulers) are actual Gods and not that ONE towards the Prophet calling.But History shows us that at the end Prophets of God Succeeded and Self made God defeated.
    But in most cases history also shows us a great Tragedy that The Prophets who spent all their life to calling toward ONE GOD are made GOD or like God and their worship started. Like Jesus Worshiped all his life THE ONE AND ONLY , ALL MIGHTY GOD and never says worship me but after his natural death He is being worshiped against his teachings.
    As We know according to saying of Muhammad( S. A),Hadees, WHO SAYS GOD IS ONE HE IS A MUSLIM ( Man Kala La-Ill-ah Ill-ah , Fa ho WA MUSLIM )
    So Jesus like all other Prophets was a believer of ONE GOD. SO HE was Muslim like all Prophets and like all believers of ONE GOD.

  3. According to the Christian gospel, Jesus said:
    I and the Father are one
    he who has seen me has seen the Father.
    Before Abraham was I am.
    Perhaps these words were added later, perhaps not –
    and Jesus spoke them.
    Doubtless these are points that people from all three religions – Christianity, Islam, & Judaism,
    as well as people from other religions – think about.

  4. I want to sincerely say that lack of access to original versions of the Gospel, indeed, the entire Bible, actually cause almost all the controversies on Jesus, alaehi Salaam. Translation without the original languages side by side has caused the problems. If we had had a text of Bible like the presentation of the Holy Qur’an, the issues would have been long resolved. Remember what an old Italian Phrase says: ‘Traduttore, traditore! (“translator, you’re a traitor!”). To my mind,Translators of the Bible into several languages, have not helped matter at all. Let the world have access to the original language(s)of the bible and the liberal translators should take it upon themselves to help out. The original sayings and status of Jesus would be revealed.

  5. Last night I had a dream and Jesus came to me and said he was a Jewish Muslim. I was very confused in the dream and never thought of Jesus as Muslim because I grew up Without religion, my family wanted my brother and I to find our own way, because my fathers side is jahovas witness and my moms side is Mormon.
    I asked him in the dream, so your saying being Muslim is the only true religion? He answered yes, and walked away. I’m still in shock because I know nothing of being Muslim at all. I have tried to study other religions to see if I felt a connection to them, but to be honest, because of all the terrible things said of muslims I was afraid to even look into it. But now I feel that it very important I learn about the Muslim religion.

    • Hi,
      Your dream fascinates me…
      if you want to email me and we can talk about it, it would be great 🙂
      I am also fascinated by this topic and would love to solve this riddle.
      I like your neutral ground you stand on, like me 🙂

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