I am not the Pope.
Unless something has gone very haywire with my reality simulation.
Be certain that if definitive proof were put forward that I am the Pope I would be as surprised and eager to review such incredible evidence as any of you would be.
But, so far as my own synaptic algorithms can calculate within my precocious simulation, the Pope is not this Jew.
I have also never wondered whether I am the Pope.
But the Pope has often wondered if he is a Jew. Or, specifically, what is the relationship of his branch of New Judaism to Old Judaism.
It is because Catholics insist on making the Jews their business that this Jew offers this helpful speculation into Catholic business.
To me a deep relationship is obvious and robust.
The founder of Christianity is a Jew descended from King David. Jesus’ mom is a Jew as is dad, all of the apostles, and so on and so forth.
Yet there has been a centuries long hesitancy within Catholicism to link the Church to Judaism.
The name for the ancient doctrinal debate about where Jews stand in Catholicism is Supersessionism. Its topic is to what degree Christianity has divinely superseded Judaism since Jesus to become a “New Israel” with all of the blessings given to the Jews beginning with the Abrahamic Covenant and after.
Supersession is a topic in all Christian denominations. But it has been most thoroughly analyzed by the Catholic Church. It is because Catholicism has the oldest theological doctrines of any denomination that my own analysis centers on the Catholic viewpoint.
Supersession comes in numerous guises. Some claim Christians completely replace/supercede Jews as God’s chosen people. Less extreme versions claim parts of the Biblical law still favor Jews, although only Christians enjoy God’s most complete religious favor.
The Catholic Church has never declared an official dogmatic position on supersession despite the antiquity of this debate stretching back to the apostles themselves.
Judging the Catholic Church by its own internal logic, I propose that it’s doctrine should officially become –
- The eternal and unconditional Abrahamic Covenant still applies completely to Jews as much as Catholics while God’s other favors remain only with devotees of Catholicism.
I view this compromise as fair to both parties.
My justification for amending the Catholic Church’s Constitution is that the restoration of the state of Israel itself proves, under Catholic doctrine, that Jews still enjoy all of the benefits of the Abrahamic Covenant.
The Covenant itself was an eternal and unconditional promise made by God to reward Abraham with the land of Israel, bless his descendants as God’s chosen people and bless their allies and curse their enemies, and make Abraham father of many nations.
If Jews had been completely superseded in the eyes of God by Catholicism, then the Holy Land should have fallen under the permanent control of Christians who have become the “New Israelites” with title to the land of Israel. Since the Abrahamic Covenant is eternal, the land of Israel must be controlled either by Jews or Catholics.
That Israel was restored not simply by Jews who did not accept Jesus as Messiah, but by secular Jewish founders who would be considered religious apostates and heretics to Judaism by just about every rabbinical authority prior to the 19th century is a clear demonstration – on grounds of Catholicism’s own doctrine – that the Abrahamic Covenant still fully applies to modern Jewry.
In the past, when Jews had not yet returned to govern Israel, elements in the Church could argue for purer forms of supersession that limited or excluded the application of even the Abrahamic Covenant to Jews.
After the establishment of Israel it becomes much harder, probably impossible, for a Catholic theologian to argue the Covenant does not fully apply to Jews.
For decades Evangelicals have interpreted the return of Israel to the Jews in this way and it is this which explains the Evangelical embrace of Zionism.
The Church, being a centralized hierarchy slow to change, has not updated its doctrine as swiftly as Evangelicals have.
But the Catholic Church would do well to update its dogma as proposed here.
What practical, political, form should this new doctrine take?
I say nothing extravagant is needed. Simply maintaining decent relations with Israel and Jews generally would be sufficient.
Specifically the Church could drop its diplomatic support for a Palestinian state. Theologically speaking, a Palestinian state would contravene the promise made to Abraham by dividing the Holy Land with Muslims who are sworn enemies of both Catholics and Jews.
In more practical terms it would somewhat help if their diplomatic position were altered since a Palestinian state will bring nothing to the world except another failed Islamic nation with terrorist organizations running rampant.
Having the IDF perpetually repress the Palestinians would then count as yet another gift for the Vatican from the children of Abraham.