Why the Vatican Is Wrong About Evangelizing Jews

Bernard N. Howard | February 23, 2016


Late last year the Vatican released a document declaring that the Roman Catholic Church would no longer engage in organized mission to Jews. Titled “The Gifts and the Calling of God Are Irrevocable,” the document states: “In concrete terms this means that the Catholic Church neither conducts nor supports any specific institutional mission work directed towards Jews.”

As a Jewish believer in Jesus, I was horrified when I first heard about this rejection of mission to my people. But the Bible commands us, “Be quick to listen, slow to speak” (James 1:19). Reading the whole 10,000-word document doesn’t diminish the shock of the Roman Catholic Church’s announcement. But it does reveal the thinking that led to the final conclusion, just as a student’s work in a math problem explains the mistaken answer at the end.

Glimpses of Truth

The Vatican’s document isn’t wrong all the way through. Instead, it’s a strange patchwork of truth and error. For example, consider the following perfectly expressed statement:

The new covenant for Christians is therefore neither the annulment nor the replacement, but the fulfilment of the promises of the old covenant.

Or consider this helpful reflection on salvation history, which could have been penned…


To read the rest of this article, visit http://www.thegospelcoalition.org/article/why-the-vatican-is-wrong-about-evangelizing-jews.