Every time I hear about an act of anti-semitism, I can't help feeling a conflict of loyalties. Do I mourn as a Christian, or as a Jew? Can I grieve as both? Is that possible? In college, some well-intentioned friends quoted Galatians 3:28 to me when I expressed uncertainty about where I belonged: "There is… Continue reading I am both/and
The day of Easter is the culmination of the story of God's plan for salvation -- a reminder that death does not have the last word. But before Easter, a happy day is festivity, comes Good Friday: a day of darkness when Jesus was crucified, and the Jews were blamed for it. Good Friday is… Continue reading The trouble with Good Friday
Some Christians complain about having to experience any discomfort at all. Others seem unable to get enough of it – or they’ve experienced so little genuine suffering that they have to create it. I can’t help but think of Kim Davis: the county clerk from Rowan County, Kentucky, who in 2015 refused to issue marriage… Continue reading American Christians and “Persecution Envy”
When my brother mentioned casually at the dinner table that he was interested in Buddhism, neither of my parents thought it was strange. In fact, in recent years there has been an increase of interest in Eastern religions among the Jewish community, and there's nothing shocking or heretical about it (unless maybe you're Orthodox). My… Continue reading Choosing a religion that persecutes you
My first book, Confessions of a Prodigal Daughter, describes much of my frustration with feeling like a "bad" Jew because I didn't keep kosher, or the Sabbath, or fast on Yom Kippur, the Jewish day of atonement. It wasn't just that I tried to do those things, and failed -- I didn't really want to.… Continue reading There can be freedom in following “the law”
I read with interest a Washington Post article about a white teenager who wore a traditional Chinese dress to her prom: Like many other teenagers preparing for prom, Utah senior Keziah Daum wanted to find a dress that would stand out, “something that would be more unique and bold and had some sort of meaning to it,”… Continue reading On cultural appropriation: how much do intentions matter?
As I’ve weaved in and out of church groups over the years, sharing my story with the people I met there, someone with an interest in apologetics always wants to know: when was the moment you read the Bible and realized that the Old Testament points to Jesus? There was no such moment like that… Continue reading Reconciling my faith with anti-semitic Easter vibes
As a Jew who converted to Christianity, I learned to appreciate Christmas. Easter, on the other hand, has always been difficult. There is no other day of the year when one-foot-in-both-worlds syndrome hits me harder, but I’ve never been able to articulate why. Thankfully, there’s Amy-Jill Levine, who wrote an enlightened piece for Religion and… Continue reading Thoughts and responses to Amy-Jill Levine’s “Holy Week and the Hatred of Jews”