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Jesus and Israel: One Covenant or Two? Paperback – January 6, 1995
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From the Back Cover
The author chose sufficient information to establish the theological contours of an answer to the question of Jesus and Israel. For full agreement on all points in dispute, we must await god's promised future. God has his way of surprising us all.
About the Author
David E. Holwerda is professor of New Testament studies at Calvin Theological Seminary, Grand Rapids, Michigan.
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Prof. David Holwerda has advanced an excellent defense of the traditional view (at least as its understood by many Calvinists). He shows that the Old Testament promises (such as the temple and the land) find their fulfillment in Jesus. Besides refuting Dispensationalism, it is a "positive" presentation of the supersessionist case. Because he sees only one covenant, there is much more emphasis on fullfilment instead of "replacement." As Holwerda says, under New Testament teaching the children of Abraham have inherited the world, so it's hard to assert that the New Testament is attempting to take something from the Jews. Nonetheless, his exegesis of one of the New Testament's more difficult portions, Romans 9-11, indicates that Paul sees a continuing role for the Jews. (This is contrary to some Calvinists who see Romans 9-11 as dealing with spiritual Israel.)
My only complaint about this book is that Prof. Holwerda's historical survey in chapter 1 deals mostly with current thinkers. There is some discussion of contemporary thinkers such as Pinchas Lapide, Karl and Marcus Barth, and Rosemary Ruether. I would be interested in Prof. Holwerda's opinion of how orthodox thinkers have evaluated the relationship between Israel and the church.
One reviewer was concerned that Holwerda represented a 2000 year old view of Israel. He is correct. If you are for theological innovation you should stick with dispensationalism which was created in 1830.
For accurate theological balance and history concerning crucial Jewish - Christian dialogue see books like: "The God Of Israel and Christian Theology" by Kendall Soulen, or "Has God Only One Blessing?" by Mary C. Boys, or "Our Father Abraham" by Marvin Wilson, or "Irrenconcilable Differences?" by both Christian and Jewish scholars, among many other sources of good, current information from respected Christian and Jewish theologians.