March 9, 2011

'I didn't mean to sound anti-Jewish'

Amy-Jill Levine speaks on where Christian sermons go wrong

Jesus of Nazareth followed the Torah of Moses and found inspiration in the prophets of Israel. Yet often Jesus is seen as rejecting Judaism, and often his Judaism is seen as legalistic, misogynistic, vengeful, and xenophobic. As Christian churches observe Lent, scholar and author Amy-Jill Levine will lead a forum at Methodist Theological School in Ohio: "I Didn't Mean to Sound Anti-Jewish: Where Christian Sermons Go Wrong." Levine will speak from 12:45 to 1:45 p.m. March 16 in the Alford Centrum on the MTSO campus. There is no charge.

Levine asserts that understanding Jesus in his Jewish context both brings new meaning to his parables, his politics and his piety, and corrects anti-Jewish stereotypes. The result, she says, is good news for Jews and Christians alike.

A self-described "Yankee Jewish feminist who teaches in a predominantly Christian divinity school in the buckle of the Bible Belt," Levine is a professor at Vanderbilt University Divinity School. Her recent books include "The Misunderstood Jew: The Church and the Scandal of the Jewish Jesus."

Methodist Theological School in Ohio prepares transformational leaders of many religious denominations for service to the church and the world. MTSO offers master's degrees in divinity, counseling ministries, theological studies and practical theology, as well as a Doctor of Ministry degree. For more information, visit

Danny Russell, director of communications, 740-362-3322