by Dr. Mika Ahuvia
Everyone remakes the apostle Paul in their own image and I, as a scholar of classical Judaism, am no different. Paul describes himself as a “Hebrew of Hebrews; as to the Law, a Pharisee; as to zeal, a persecutor of the church; as to the righteousness which is in the Law, found blameless” (Philippians 3:5-6). By his own account, Paul was devoted to the life of the Torah, with the interpretation of his forefathers, the Pharisees, making sense of biblical complexities.
by Elle Dowd
Note: This post was updated to correct the link to the Jeremy Bearimy video. Our apologies for that mistake.
Christ the King Sunday, sometimes known as Reign of Christ Sunday, is a relatively recent holy day in the church calendar, established by Pope Pius XI in 1925 in response to the increasing threat of the rise of fascism. Authoritarian leaders of fascist regimes were being lifted up as all powerful demigods, and the Roman Catholic Church created this holy day in an attempt to reclaim power for the church as opposed to the secular nation-state. Unfortunately, a Christian message of anti-fascism and anti-nationalism continues to be more and more relevant as fascist leaders gain power in many countries around the world. There are government officials within our own country with documented ties to White Nationalist Groups, the number of anti-Semitic hate crimes continue to rise, and President Trump proudly says, “I am a nationalist.”
by Pr. Elizabeth Rawlings
Ruth and Boaz:
A few years ago, I had a student ask me about the story of Ruth and Boaz relating to the story of Cinderella. Was this the perfect match, they asked? Is this how we should do it?
I was taken aback. It had been a while since I had read Ruth and I wasn’t sure if I was remembering incorrectly. After re-reading Ruth, I asked her where that question came from. It turns out that in more evangelical circles, Ruth and Boaz are frequently lifted up as the ultimate relationship. Women are instructed to wait for their Boaz as Ruth did. This is supposed to imply both that women should wait patiently for a suitor and that they should find a man who will protect them and treat them well. Which, well, is not how I read Ruth at all.