Although the roots of Christianity run deep into Hebrew soil, many Christians remain regrettably uninformed about the rich Jewish heritage of the church. Our Father Abraham delineates the vital link between Judaism and Christianity, exemplified by the common ancestry of the two faiths traceable back to Abraham. Marvin Wilson calls Christians to reexamine their Semitic heritage to regain a more authentically biblical understanding of what they believe and practice.
Wilson, a trusted voice among both Jews and Christians, speaks to both past and present, first developing a historical perspective on the Jewish origins of the church and then discussing how the church can become more attuned to the Hebraic mindset of Scripture. Drawing from his own extensive experience, he also offers valuable practical guidance for salutary interaction between Christians and Jews. Discussion questions at the end of each chapter make this book especially suitable for use in groups—Christian, Jewish, or interfaith—as readers strive to make sense of their own faith in connection with the other.
The second edition of Our Father Abraham features a new preface, an expanded bibliography of recent relevant works, and two new chapters: one that discusses Jewish-Christian relations after the Holocaust and another that reflects on Wilson’s own fifty-plus-year career as an evangelical Christian deeply committed to interfaith dialogue. As Christians and Jews feel a growing need for mutual support in an increasingly secular Western world, Wilson’s widely acclaimed book will offer encouragement and wise guidance toward this worthy end.
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“In Paul’s view any church which exists independently of Israel ceases therein to be the church as a part of God’s salvation plan and becomes simply another religious society.” (Page 15)
“Paul states, ‘If you belong to Christ, then you are Abraham’s seed’ (Gal. 3:29)” (Page 4)
“The Hebrews were located geographically in the ancient Middle East, and during most of their long history were under the sovereignty of powers greater than themselves. Yet, remarkably, they were the only one of those peoples to succeed in maintaining themselves through the centuries as a culture. It was primarily their unique religion which sustained them, making them capable of withstanding those forces of absorption and disintegration which would have removed them as a people from the stage of history.” (Pages 11–12)
“There Paul emphatically says that God has not rejected his people (v. 1). And though ‘some’ (not all) of the branches of the olive tree have been broken off through unbelief (v. 17), ‘God is able to graft them in again’ (v. 23). Israel, however, remains a ‘holy’ people, for ‘the root is holy’ (v. 16). Israel is yet ‘loved on account of the patriarchs’ (v. 28), ‘for God’s gifts and his call are irrevocable’ (v. 29).” (Page 30)
“Succinctly stated, ‘The Old Testament is the foundation for the New. The message of the New Testament is in the Hebrew tradition as against the Greek tradition. Our tutors to Christ are Moses and the Prophets, and not Plato and the Academies.’” (Pages 8–9)
Our Father Abraham is a stunning achievement! Marvin Wilson has written a magnificent book that breaks new ground in furthering positive Christian-Jewish relations. His superb scholarship is combined with many concrete suggestions for building a new relationship between the church and the synagogue, between Christians and Jews.
—Rabbi A. James Rudin, The American Jewish Committee
An ambitious book, sweeping in scope. Wilson has thrown down a theological gaunt¬let, challenging Christians of all kinds to reform a two-thousand-year-old history of misunderstanding Jews and misinterpreting our own sources. Our Father Abraham does not pretend to be the last word in the dialogue, but it is a powerful first salvo!
—Carl E. Armerding, Regent College
It is undoubtedly Wilson’s intention that all of us come to see our differences as more concerned with means than ends, and to a great degree he succeeds. I recommend this book to anyone with a well-thumbed Bible, but especially to church and synagogue groups (together, whenever possible) who are interested in finding out where the other half lives.
—Journal of Ecumenical Studies
In the Logos Reader Edition, this volume is enhanced to best fit the content. Scripture references are hand-tagged to integrate with powerful functionality in Logos Bible Software. Page milestones and internal citation tagging provide accurate points of reference. Search important words across resources to find exactly what you’re looking for. Take the discussion with you using tablet and mobile apps. With Logos Bible Software, the most efficient and comprehensive tools for reading digital content are in one place, so you get the most out of your study.