Thursday, August 14, 2014
For All Peoples
Even though Jesus says that he was "sent only to the lost sheep of the house of Israel (Mt.15:24)" he makes an exception and heals the daughter of a non-Jewish woman. Jesus is a Jew and understands that his mission is to his fellow Jews, God's Chosen People. In this passage Matthew shows that the God of Israel is approached by non-Jews through Jesus the Jew.
Commenting on this passage, Daniel J. Harrington, S.J., says, "If one wishes to be true to the biblical witness, it is necessary to present clearly what the Scriptures say about the chosenness of Israel and how Christians share in it through Jesus. The God of Jesus is the God of Israel. Gentiles call upon and experience this God through Jesus as representative of the Jewish people. The roots of Christianity are Jewish. Gentile Christians have been grafted onto the olive tree (see Romans 11:17, 24)."
If we could understand and accept what Harrington is saying, it would go a long way in improving our relationship with our Jewish brothers and sisters.