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The Sacrifice Of Isaac And Jewish Polemic Against Christianity

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Chapter Summary

Students of the bible will be familiar with rabbinic Judaism's interpretation of Isaac's sacrifice by his father Abraham which is known as the Aqedah, or Binding, of Isaac. In this interpretation, the famous biblical story of Genesis 22 is considerably elaborated, so that Isaac appears as a mature man, fully informed by his father that he is to be sacred victim, who willingly accepts his fate and joyfully succumbs to sacrificial knife. This chapter shows that the Jewish response to Christian atonement, if indeed such a response was involved in the Aqedah, was conducted in rather more subtle ways than by means of filching the opposition's terminology. And one would expect nothing less of the rabbis, whose use and understanding of Scripture and tradition could be relied upon to defend Judaism in its own terms.

Keywords: Abraham; Aqedah; Christianity; Genesis; Isaac's sacrifice; Jewish polemic

10.1163/ej.9789004179561.i-432.30
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