A Christian Perspective
STANLEY M. HAUERWAS, SERIES COEDITOR
Until recently many Jews and most Christian theologians have accepted as a truism the claim that "Jews do not do theology." To make such a claim is but a way of saying that Jews do not think like Christians. Christians have thought that Jews thinking are rabbis arguing law. Jews have thought that Christians thinking are university theologians engaged in philosophical speculations about the existence of God. These characterizations have been a comforting deceit for Jews and Christians alike, because they have allowed us to "appreciate" one another without assuming that we have anything to do with or to learn from one another.
Yet no Christian can read David Weiss Halivni Revelation Restored without a shock of recognition. This is theology; Jews do theology. Not only is this book theology, but the issues with which Halivni is struggling are also issues that are at the heart of contemporary Christian theological concerns. Without warning, Jews are doing theology in a way that makes it impossible for Christians to ignore. 1 Such a development may make many Christians uncomfortable just to the extent that it now challenges the assumptions inherent in the claim "Jews do not do theology." What has happened that such a challenge, which in truth has always been "there," can now be recognized by Christians?
First, Christians have awakened to their responsibility to respond to the horrors of the Holocaust. Christians know somewhere in the story that makes them Christian that the Shoah that happened to the Jews also continues to have its consequences for Christians. There simply cannot be a truthful account of the convictions that make us Christians that does not make it necessary to tell what happened in that time called Holocaust as part of the Christian story. Christians have only begun to explore how such a telling should work, but we know that such exploration cannot be avoided. The tear the Holocaust made in Christian tradition is no doubt