Sunday, November 04, 2007
Wellhausen on Jesus as a Jew
J. Wellhausen's dictum is well-known: ‘Jesus was not a Christian, but a Jew’. What is a little less known is that he also said a few paragraphs later: ‘one may be justified in maintaining that what is un-Jewish in him, what is human, is more characteristic than what is Jewish’.
J. Wellhausen, Einleitung in die drei ersten Evangelien (1911), pp. 102-3.
This calls to my mind something that Ernst Käsemann said in a radio broadcast where he said about human beings that "each man has become his own Jew". Yet ironically, being a Jew inwardly is regarded as being a good thing by Paul in Rom. 2.25-29.