Re: [asa] promise trumps biology

From: Merv <>
Date: Mon Dec 08 2008 - 18:58:10 EST

Murray Hogg wrote:
> Hi Merv,
> I think you mean "lineages...were reckoned by paternity" rather than
> "reckoned 'fraternally'"?
Ooops! Thanks for that correction!

And I had never known (or forgotten) that "Jewishness" is reckoned that
way. That is interesting!
> What's interesting is that lineage might be reckoned according to
> paternity, but "Jewishness" is reckoned maternally!
> The logic, I believe, is that one always knows who the mother is -
> although the fact that appeal is made here to Ezra 10:3 (one of those
> "put away foreign wives" passages) suggests that (contrary to my
> immediately preceding post) there may be a naive assumption that one's
> religion is pretty much a racial (rather than social!) matter.
> Anyway, if there is an idea that there is some kind of "spiritual DNA"
> it would seem that it is the mother rather than the father who is
> considered the provider thereof.
> It's probably only worth adding that whilst there's no debate in
> Judaism that the child of a Jewish mother may be reckoned a Jew, this
> doesn't exclude the claim that a child of a Jewish father may likewise
> be reckoned Jewish. It's just that there is considerably less
> agreement that paternity can determine Jewishness. Doubtless from the
> perspective of Jewish theology, the matter is hardly simple.
> Blessings,
> Murray
Hardly simple, indeed! Thanks.
One passage in my regular Bible reading piqued my interest in Jeremiah
49, judgments were pronounced against many peoples, both Jewish and
non-Jewish (unless all Adamites are considered "Jewish" in some way
--(Dick's view?)). Both the Ammonites (descendents of Lot by his own
daughters) and the Elamites get devastating judgments, but then at the
end they get the curious phrase: "But afterward I will restore the
fortunes of the sons of Ammon" / (later Elam). Other tribes, don't get
this glimmer of hope after their gloom & doom, however. Even among the
major prophets, I guess this was no simple matter.


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Received on Mon Dec 8 18:53:46 2008

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