What is Supersessionism?

Dr. Ray Gannon explains Supersessionism, or Replacement Theology, in this YouTube video. In a nutshell, this philosophy that is rampant in some Christian circles believes that God’s promises are no longer for the Jewish People, but rather have been made exclusive to the Gentiles. This false teaching has caused havoc in the Jewish community and has damaged the cause of Yeshua (Jesus).

I am in Jewish ministry because of the powerful theological nemesis that was entirely fabricated by Christian leaders to satisfy their own humanly motivated agendas quite apart from the interests and revelation of God in Scripture. This nemesis to the Kingdom of God is called supersessionism. It is commonly termed Replacement Theology.

Ostensibly a Christian doctrine designed to alleviate second-century legal, social, political, and missiological difficulties, it created a theological monster that alleghorically sought to override God’s eternal commitment to the Jewish People, all Israel, and suggested His affections, His promises, an dHis commitments center entirely now around the Gentile Believers to the exclusion of Israel. God, according to this Christian theology, had wholly abandoned His aspirations for Israel and transferred all His hopes for all mankind into the Church universal.

This has not only been the essential Christian conviction for nearly all of the past 19 centuries, but it characterizes Christian thinking the world over today in almost every place and almost every religious circle. It has only been in the Anglo-evangelical world in the past two centuries that supersessionism has been challenged at all. Replacement Theology is making an overwhelming return to evangelical Christianity in the United States of America and Britain today in almost all Christian camps, including Pentecostal and Charismatic camps.

I’m in Jewish ministry because I recognize supersessionism to be diabolical. It’s not just a badly crafted form of theology; it is diabolical. It is a Satanic attempt to fully de-legitimize the eternal commitment of God to the Jewish People and disrupt God’s own plans to redeem a backslidden Israel, reconcile the Jewish People as a whole to God through Yeshua, and see the biblical, promised destiny of Israel come to fruition in today’s world.

Supersessionism, or Replacement Theology, is a doctrine without biblical support. There is no new Israel. There is no true Israel in the whole of Scripture—Hebrew Bible or Greek New Testament—to support a theology calling for the effective demise of the Jewish People.

Christian thinkers wanting to heighten the religious status of the Christian faith felt the need to denigrate Israel and the Jewish People. But the commonly accepted Christian disposition of Replacement Theology was and is an open assault upon the survival of the Jewish People. It is not the biblical teaching of Messiah, nor any apostolic teachings in the New Testament that threaten or undermine the legitimate existence of Israel. The apostles clearly understand Israel’s ongoing role in the Kingdom of God and devoted their apostolic careers to bringing Israel into a place of submission to God and in submission to His Anointed One so that Israel’s mandated destiny could be divinely accomplished.

But the Christian theological siege upon the very legitimacy of the Jewish community and aspirations for Israel’s Messianic future sent the message to all Israel that Christians wish for the total disappearance of Israel, as this would be a convenient step in demonstrating God’s full transference of divine faithfulness from Israel to the Gentile church. If we could just get rid of the Jews, the theological argument is over. There is a great comeback of this spirit of theology today. This theological posture generated complete distaste for Christian teaching among the Jewish world. Why would Jewish People be interested in a gospel that called for the national and cultural suicide of Israel?

Of course, Replacement Theology is not the biblical or apostolic position. I’m in Jewish ministry to offer the essential Gospel to Jewish People free of such Christian heresy, which to this day militates against the expansion of the Kingdom of God in the Jewish world, and therefore militates against the ultimate program of God and the reconciliation of all nations and peoples to Himself.

Supersessionism had another catastrophic result. Whereas the rabbis simply laughed at Replacement Theology—I mean, it struck them as quite funny—oh, now you are the Jews and we’re the Goyim (“non-Jews”). This was quite laughable in the second and third centuries. But when Christianity became the official religion of the Roman Empire in the fourth century, Replacement Theology was now a mortal threat to the Jewish world. It was no longer just a theological fantasy that curiously offered Christian one-upmanship over the Jews. Now this theology would be given political teeth that could well harm the Jewish world, as, indeed, it clearly came to do.

But for every action, as you know, there is a reaction. The adoption of a supersessionist Christianity as the Roman state religion led to a Jewish fabrication of their own. From the fourth century onward, we find the rabbis offering an entirely fanciful myth that the oral law, the rabbinically coded interpretation and applications of Torah, had been issued simultaneously with the written Torah to Moses at Sinai. Now, this teaching legitimated the oral tradition and put it on the same trust level in the Jewish world as the Bible itself. The oral law, we should understand, was crafted against the backdrop of widespread Christian supersessionism, and was in large part designed to counter the social effects of such unbiblical teaching with its socially catastrophic results to the Jewish People.

Most unfortunately, the rabbis only compounded the theological problems by fabricating yet another religious myth that took Israel even further away  from God’s revelation in Yeshua. I’m in Jewish ministry because I believe in the redemption of Israel. But for Israel to become all that God wants Israel to be, supersessionism needs to be exposed as anti-thetical to the divine agenda.

At the same time, the oral law needs to be appreciated as a code of religious conduct followed by many sincere people but stripped of its hitherto divine authority. The oral law cannot pretend to be equal to biblical authority without fully undermining God’s revelation in Yeshua.

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Jewish Voice Ministries International

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1 Comment

  1. Susan

     /  August 6, 2013

    I am a Gentile believer in the Jewish Messiah and just want you to know that I have always believed that I was grafted into the natural olive tree by the love and grace and the blood of Yeshua/Jesus. We the gentiles owe an incredible debt of love to the Jewish People who are and always will be the ones to whom God gave the covenants and In His love and through Jeshua the chief cornerstone, the apostles and propets by the Holy Spirit, God included the whole world in His offer of salvation. Yeshua/Jesus is Jewish and He is still the Hope of Israel and the whole world. I just want to say, that I have felt moved by the Holy Spirit to pray more for Israel and God is opening my eyes more and more that Jewish believers in Messiah are being raised up to lead the Christian church back to its Jewish roots and I say Amen! Hallelujah. This will be like a resurrection and I believe will bless the whole earth. I love Israel and I love the God of Israel. Anyone who reads the Bible has to know just what a debt of love and gratitude we owe to Israel. Replacement Theology is filling the void where the Light of the Golden Candlestick has been extinguished caused by the turning away from the truth.

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