In the gospels, Jesus is endlessly shown as being less legalistic, more welcoming, more forgiving and more compassionate than the Jews in general and the Jewish hierarchy in particular.  This is passive-aggressive abuse of the people and their cherished leaders.  Oddly enough Jesus does let it slip at times that their leaders were religiously dependable for going to for wisdom and spiritual help.  In Matthew 23 he says as much and then launches off into a tirade.  Each story about Jesus is about showing what the Jews were doing wrong and he was doing right.  There is hidden anti-Semitism which is probably worse than the more blatant.  The ex-priest scholar, James Carroll (read his book Christ Actually: The Son of God for the Secular Age) accepts this tone is there and says many historians and theologians say it is there too.

Jesus Christ though a circumcised Jew sowed the seeds of anti-Semitism in the gospels.  His appointed followers the apostles were no better.  The rift with Judaism got so bad that the followers of Jesus were barred from synagogues and the Temple and it became bitter and ingrained.  The Jews wrote very little bad stuff about this Jesus or his followers.  The Christians issued library after library of slander and hate for the Jews.

Luke 13:6-7 Jesus tells the parable of the fig tree.  The tree will experience violence for bearing no fruit.  In the context of the times that is definitely commanding the death penalty.  It makes sense for a man who was supposed to be Messiah or Christ a warrior king to do that.  Bible prophecy and even the last book of the Bible boast of a violent Messiah.

The fig tree refers to the Jewish Religion. 

That was not enough so he rubbed it in.  Jesus cursed a fig tree to make it wither away for it had no fruit even though it was not the season for fruit.  This action is held to express his view of Judaism as exemplified by a fig tree.  The notion that Jesus would blame a tree for not having fruit out of season pictures how he thinks that nobody has an excuse for saying saintly holiness is beyond them.  Christianity teaches that God's grace transforms and if your good fruits are not good enough it is because you did not accept God's help.  The use of the tree as a picture of Israel or Judaism comes from Hosea 9:10.  Note that Jesus washes his hands of Israel telling it will never bear fruit again.  That is very severe and so the children of Israel will be denied any help or grace from God to help them bear good loving fruits.  It is anti-Semitism at its worst.  Jesus provided the rationale for anti-Semitism.

Jesus had no problem with Judaism's teachings - it is just that it was full of fakes or so he said.  No fake is a complete fake but Jesus was clear that all the scribes and Pharisees did was for show - he said they did ALL their works and prayers to be seen by others.  He didn't soften things by saying they did this too much.  He said they did it all the time.  The amount of space they got for criticism in the Sermon on the Mount shows that off all the hypocrites that were in Palestine they were the ones that he wanted to point the finger at!

Anti-Semitism is the best example of the harm a religion can do purely on theological grounds. And Jesus himself virtually says that.


It is reasonable to suppose that the miracles of Jesus were invented or exaggerated in the gospels as a tactic against the Jews.  The New Testament aims to make the Jews look bad and mad for not believing in such an obvious Son of God and saviour as Jesus.  One is unwittingly hurting the Jews and their innocent ancestors if the miracles are really just manipulative propaganda against them.  Jesus in John 5:46 accused the Jews of not believing in Moses.  He claimed that Moses wrote about him.  So he reasoned that that if the Jews really trusted Moses they would believe in him.  This attacks any Jew who hears about Jesus and does not believe.  The Jews here do not mean only the Jewish leaders.  Remember no leader is a leader unless he has allies who are as bad or as good as him.  And when you turn to what Moses wrote all he said was that a prophet like him would come.  It is as vague as anything.

We will leave aside the fact that Moses did not write the unclear text, the text that does not mention Jesus anyway.  John is putting propaganda in Jesus' mouth and that alone is an anti-Jew red flag.

The miracles of Jesus look like an attempt to make the Jewish leadership and their people blameworthy for the brutal murder of Jesus and as having no excuse for doing this and not believing in him. If you are a downright unbeliever or a doubting sceptic who believes that writings after any miraculous event can’t count as suitable evidence then you simply have to regard the miracle tales as anti-semitist weapons. The believer may think they are evidence but is not sure and to avoid being anti-semitic has to confess that they are potentially anti-semitic.

It is telling that in telling the parable of the Good Samaritan Jesus says nothing to hint that the beaten and half dead man who is helped by the Samaritan is a Jew ... that the priests went on by and were Jews indicates that he was not.  Jesus could not resist making insinuations against the clergy.

The miracles could be real and still be anti-semitist weapons ...


If the doctrine that Jesus somehow perhaps supernaturally directed the composition of the gospels is true then Jesus is to blame for the terrible scourge of anti-semitism. Without the Jews being blamed for killing Jesus and without the New Testament there would have been no persecution of the Jews.  People tend to be populist - that is they can have it it for a group over very little so even if the New Testament did not teach anti-semitism it is a bit complicated to show that and that is no good to the people.  There is also the terrible subject of how the Jews were oppressed, colonised and murdered in scores of crucifixions and Jesus said nothing.  The Romans were antisemitic and Jesus just picked on the Jews.  Talk about kicking those who are down.  His own tirades against the Jews, especially when he repeatedly calls them murderers in the John Gospel and in Matthew 23 fueled the fire.

One last point: Gospels written for Gentiles, who were anti-Jewish both on religious/cultural and racial grounds anyway, that relay terrible unfounded accusations against a beleagured people are trying to sow the seeds of hate.

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