Jesus Christ, Racialist

by The Shadow

24 December 2004

Can you imagine a day when Herman Heinz rings up his parish house and wails into the phone, "Pastor Staller, son of Luther, have mercy on me. Come and pray over my daughter." Well, if you can imagine such a day, it probably wouldn't be Mr. Heinz's pastor who would show up at his front door. More likely it would be the paramedics, accompanied by Officer O'Callaghan: "Mr. Heinz, would you mind telling me what day of the week this is?"

But wasn't Jesus Christ sometimes addressed as son of David? In fact, the very first Gospel reads: "The book of the origin of Jesus Christ, the son of David, the son of Abraham." [The gospel writer then goes on to name Christ's entire lineage.]

Was son of David any different for Jews than son of Luther would be for Lutherans? I think not. Both names suggest a lineage, which is to say, a racial connection between generations.

Do the other biblical students among us recall what Christ said as he sent his disciples out on their first mission? He told them not to go to the Samaritans or to the Gentiles but to the Jews. Can you imagine a pope today telling his missionaries not to go to the Africans or to the Asiatics but to the White man? Would such a pope not be a racialist?

Christ did not rule out healing Gentiles, though. When the Roman centurion came to him to plead for a cure for his servant, not only did Jesus cure the man, but he also said of the centurion, "I have not found such great faith in Israel."

Then there was the time that the Canaanite woman begged a similar flavor. Jesus responded by asking her if the dogs at the table (Gentiles) should be fed before the children (of Abraham). When she gave him a witty but respectful reply, he granted her wish and cured her daughter.

But Christ remained a person who prioritized. It will be recalled that at one point, he said: "No greater love hath any man than that he lay down his life for his friend." Christ did not suggest laying down your life for some savage in Brazil. It should be for your friend!

But someone might reply, didn't Jesus, when asked who our neighbor is, tell the parable of the Good Samaritan (Samaritans not being Jews)? And hadn't Jesus, just prior to telling this parable, said that we should love our neighbors as ourselves?

Right in both instances. However, Samaritans, like Jews, were descendants of Abraham and therefore not Gentiles. (The parable was of the Good Samaritan, not of the Good Canaanite, it might be kept in mind.) Also, Jesus was in Samaria when he spoke this parable, on his way to Jerusalem. So again, one can make a strong case for racial survival in the mission of Jesus Christ.

In any event, there is nothing anti-Christian about putting your own race ahead of other races. Rather, it is arguably anti-Christian to do otherwise. For to do otherwise is not to follow the example of Jesus Christ, son of David as well as Son of God.

* * *

When Christ was born, and even well before the Romans had taken control of Canaan (Palestine), that country was divided into North and South. The North was home to 10 of the 12 tribes of Israel that came out of Egypt and was known as Israel. The South was home to the remaining two tribes, Benjamin and Judah.

Judah, which the Romans called Judea, was much, much larger than Benjamin (which had been absorbed into Judah by the time of Christ) and was home to the Jews. Judah contained Jerusalem, which was situated at its northern border, that is, close to Israel.

Christ was born in Judah (in Bethlehem) but raised in Israel (in Nazareth). Because of his birthplace and the fact that Joseph had come from Bethlehem originally, Jesus has always been considered a Jew.

But Jesus actually spent most of his ministry in the North, which is to say, in Israel, rather than in Judea. When he did come down to Judea, it usually was to Jerusalem. Otherwise, he was mainly in Galilee, which is in northern Israel, near the Lebanon border. In fact, the Gospels use the word Galilee when speaking of Israel, and Pontius Pilate considered Jesus a Galilean.

The Gospels tell us that Christ saw his mission as bringing the tribe of Judah, i.e., the Jews, back to the religion of Abraham and Moses, which the Israelites in the North presumably never lost. This is why he tells his disciples in Matthew 10: 5-6: "Do not go in the direction of the Gentiles, nor enter into the town of Samaritans; but go rather to the lost sheep of the house of Israel."

Samaria was located in the North, that is, in Israel -- directly north of Jerusalem, in fact. So, Jesus was telling his missionaries not to stay in Israel but rather go to Judea, where the Jews lived.

Later on in Matthew (15:24), we find that Jesus confirms his mission to the Jews when he says: "I was not sent except to the lost sheep of the house of Israel," again referring to the Jews in Judea.

What we see here is that Christ himself saw his mission as racial and, in a sense, no different from our own. He wanted to bring the tribe of Judah back where they belonged -- spiritually, while you and I are going to bring them back physically.

History tells us that Christ failed in this mission. Rather than bringing the Jews back to God, the Jews nailed him to a cross.

The Gospels tell us that Jesus had a backup mission, though. "Upon this rock I will build my church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it." Just to cement the deal, Christ's apostles weren't Jews. (Supplies! Supplies!) They were Israelites/Galileans. You'll recall that he recruited mainly fishermen from around the Sea of Galilee in the north of Israel, far from Judea.

Christ, in fact, foretold his failed mission to the Jews and his eventual success with Gentiles. In Matthew 8: 11-12, we read, "And I tell you that many will come from the East and from the West, and will feast with Abraham and Isaac and Jacob in the kingdom of heaven. But the children of the kingdom will be put forth into the darkness outside." In speaking these words, he confirms Christian tradition that the Jews remain away from God and lost any chance for salvation when they murdered their savior.

Since the Second Vatican Council, the Catholic Church has attempted to alter this truth. Specifically, during the Consecration of the Mass, the word 'many' has been changed to 'all.' In Matthew 26:28, we read, "This is my blood of the new convenant which is being shed for many." And Mark 14: 24 reads exactly the same. Christ's blood, we see, was not being shed for all, and certainly not for the Jews. [He forgave the Roman soldiers at his execution, not the Jews.]

The last two Gospels are even less inclusive than Matthew and Mark. In Luke 22: 20, we read, "This cup is the new covenant in my blood, which shall be shed for you." And John 17: 9 reads, "I pray for them; not for the world do I pray, but for those whom thou has given me, because they are thine."

It is not surprising then, that during the most recent convocation of Catholic bishops in the United States, a majority -- but thankfully not all of them -- voted against urging Catholics to become more familiar with the Bible.


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