Cover image for Messianic Judaism : a rabbi's journey through religious change in America
Messianic Judaism : a rabbi's journey through religious change in America
Harris-Shapiro, Carol.
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
Boston : Beacon Press, [1999]

Physical Description:
218 pages ; 24 cm
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
BR158 .H37 1999 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks

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A rabbi traces the history of Messianic movement within the Jewish community and explores the lives and struggles of those who believe the Messiah has already come.

Reviews 2

Booklist Review

The belief that Jesus is the Messiah is anathema to most Jews. For some, however, Jesus does represent the culmination of Old Testament prophecies. Harris-Shapiro, a Reconstructionist rabbi, looks inside the messianic Jewish community, describing its history, tenets, and organization, but more importantly, analyzing what factors lead some Jews to adopt the messianic point of view, thus crossing an ideological barrier that often leaves them isolated from family and friends. There is also discussion of the gentile members of the Jewish messianic community, an ironic kind of minority who are sometimes treated as second-class citizens. Harris-Shapiro uses an effective blend of scholarship, interviews, and personal insights to explain a concept that is often at odds with traditional Judaism and occasionally with Evangelical Christianity, with which it shares both ideology and resources. This compelling and evenhanded volume should attract readers from both Jewish and Christian communities. --Ilene Cooper

Library Journal Review

In this ethnography, Harris-Shapiro (Temple Univ.) describes her research into Messianic JudaismÄsomething she shows that both Protestantism and Judaism view as taboo. Messianic Judaism wants Jews to complete their faith by accepting Yeshua (Jesus) and for Christianity to return to its Jewish roots. The movement works for people who want to practice both Judaism and ChristianityÄsay, intermarried couplesÄbut leaves little room for Gentiles. Though the responses to Harris-Shapiro's questions sometimes lack substance, her cogent and lucid writing allows her to present an unbiased academic study of a community's theology. The main value of this book, though, is its explanation of why and how both Christianity and Judaism reject Messianic Judaism. Recommended for academic and larger public libraries where collections support programs in religion, Judaica, or Christian traditions.ÄNaomi Hafter, Broward Cty. Lib., Fort Lauderdale, FL (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.