- Pathfinder

Reply To: In the first lecture, Dr. McDermott teaches that the Bible is one story, and that God upholds his covenant with the Jewish people to this very day. Was this what you were taught growing up? If not, how will this insight change the way you read the bible going forward?

Kari McDowell

Actually, yes. I grew up in a dispensationalist church, so I was raised to understand God’s continuing covenant with the Jewish people. People were pretty positive towards the State of Israel and more “philosemitic” than anything else. God’s enduring covenant with the Jewish people was upheld and sometimes used as an example of His faithfulness and patience towards all believers. As an adult, I got a Bible degree and have thought things through for myself and visited Israel three times (twice with Passages), and I am actually still a dispensationalist. I also changed denominations but to another dispensationalist one. So, most of the ideas in this course were not new to me; what makes me really sad is that there are so many Christians who have been taught a supercessionist view. The one new thing that will affect how I read the Bible is looking for the everlasting covenant with the Jews in the New Testament or Christian Scriptures; I did not realize how prominent of a theme that is, particularly the land aspect in the New Testament.

As a side note, one book which I really liked on the topic of Jewish-Christian relations was A Match Made in Heaven by Ze’ev Chafets. It talks about how the American evangelical-Jewish relationship has been awkward at times but how American evangelical dispensationalists have tried to support Israel.