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Israel In The Church And The Church In Israel: The Formation Of Jewish Christian Communities As A Proselytising Strategy Within And Outside The German Pietist Mission To The Jews Of The Eighteenth Century

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Chapter Summary

It is a common assumption that Christian Jewish missionary endeavours are generally aimed at integrating converts as virtually isolated individuals into the Christian churches, thereby eliminating their Jewish identity. Thus, the eighteenth-century Pietist mission to the Jews, if the relevant works actually pay any attention to it, is referred to as yet another chapter in the history of anti-Semitism. A comprehensive account of the history, self-conception and customs of the "Church of Jesus Christ in Israel," as the sect used to call itself, is found in a lengthy letter from the spring of 1773. The two sacraments were implemented in the "Church in Israel" at that point as well and continue to be administered to this day, according to the letter. The letter's reference to the famous Jonathan Eibeschütz who became chief Rabbi of the "Three Communities" of Altona, Hamburg, and Wandsbek in 1750 is most noteworthy.

Keywords: Church; Israel; Jewish missionary endeavours; Pietist mission



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