religious differences

Some days I’m amazed at how much Christians and Jews differ in their approach to theology. Some Christians, anyway.

I am not even talking about Indiana’s recent “religious freedom law” now (I’m embarrassed to see in the Indy Star that people present at the private signing of that bill include Orthodox Jews as well as Catholic monks and nuns, conservative lobbyists, and so on.)

Yesterday, I received a postcard from a local church advertising their Easter service, talking about how they offer a “fresh message”. That’s the part I don’t get. First of all, if you’re going to be a Christian at all, how could any new message be more powerful than the age-old “He is Risen?” Second, isn’t some of the power of that precisely because it isn’t fresh at all but because people have been celebrating that same message for the last two thousand years? This confuses me, but maybe that’s because the whole point of Passover is to repeat the same story we’ve been telling for a few thousand years.

(Said church also mentioned their “authentic worship”. I take that to mean “we really mean the words we’re saying – we’re not just repeating set prayers”. This is also different from Jewish tradition where it’s important to say the words in community, even if they get mumbled more as a mantra than a literal prayer, but that discussion probably needs a better theologian than me.)

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