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Jews for Jesus:
Targeting Jews for Conversion with Subterfuge and Deception
RULE Christian Response to Jews for Jesus

About Jews for Jesus

Activities and Tactics
Christian Response

Legal Cases

Not surprisingly, many Jews find the tactics and beliefs of Jews for Jesus offensive, and numerous Jewish leaders have condemned the group. Christians of many denominations have also voiced their disapproval of the group’s theology and tactics.

Questioning the group’s tactics

The Interfaith Conference of Metropolitan Washington, an umbrella organization that includes Roman Catholic, Methodist, Baptist, Lutheran and Presbyterian church groups, has condemned Jews for Jesus as promoting activities “harmful to the spirit of interreligious respect and tolerance.” The conference also denounces the group’s “deceptive proselytizing efforts,” adding that when they are practiced on “vulnerable populations” such as the young or the elderly, these efforts are “tantamount to coerced conversions.”

The Board of Governors of The Long Island Council of Churches voiced similar sentiments in a statement about three groups, including Jews for Jesus, that “noted with alarm” the “subterfuge and dishonesty” inherent in the “mixing [of] religious symbols in ways which distort their essential meaning.”

Accepting the Jewish faith

More broadly, many Christian denominations have explicitly rejected the assumption that undergirds Jews for Jesus’ entire theology: that the “Old Covenant” between God and the Jewish people has been revoked and that Jews need Jesus for their salvation.

And while Jews for Jesus would convert all Jews to Christianity, the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops has stated that since the Second Vatican Council of the 1960s, the Christian evangelizing mission “no longer includes the wish to absorb the Jewish faith into Christianity and so end the distinctive witness of Jews to God in human history.”

Many Protestant denominations have put forth similar doctrines. The United Church of Christ, a union of American Protestant churches, stated in 1987 that “God's covenant with the Jewish people has not been abrogated,” and that “God has not rejected the Jewish people.” A 2002 statement from The Christian Scholars Group on Christian-Jewish Relations, which includes Lutherans, Methodists and Episcopalians, stated that “In view of our conviction that Jews are in an eternal covenant with God, we renounce missionary efforts directed at converting Jews.”

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