Stephen Sizer as anti-replacement theology champion?

Calvin Smith on Stephen Sizer’s proposed paper:

Thus, given how, in our correspondence last year Stephen stated categorially the Jews are no longer God’s chosen people, I will be interested to see how exactly he intends to challenge replacement theology. At the very least his paper’s title is disingenuous, even misleading. It is certainly amusing. At the risk of sounding pejorative, it’s like the Pope presenting a paper challenging Catholicism, or Benny Hinn criticising the excesses of Charismaticism. Though no doubt it will be embraced with gusto at the conference, it just won’t wash across the wider theological world.

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12 Comments

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12 responses to “Stephen Sizer as anti-replacement theology champion?

  1. I don’t understand what the problem is, just read the Bible and it becomes obvious to anyone with half a brain that replacement ideology (couldn’t bring myself to call it ‘theology’) is an unbiblical, dangerous, ignorant load of bollox.

  2. Glasspole

    Hmmm, Dr Sizer is using the same kind of terminology as Dr Wright. They (along with the arch Israel-lover Colin Chapman) are keen on telling the world they don’t hold to “replacement / succession / supercession” positions, and then proceed to write about a position which is clearly a “replacement / succession / supercession” viewpoint. You know the kind of thing – “I don’t hold to that position; it’s a straw man set up by Zionists; the promises to the Jewish poeple now no longer stand in a literal sense; they have been spiritualised” (not a quote)
    It may seem a tad dishonest to some observers

  3. modernityblog

    “The title of Sizer’s paper is “Israel and the Church: Challenging Zionism, Anti-Semitism and Replacement Theology.”

    How exactly will Sizer be challenging antisemitism, when he seems to partly believe half of that nonsense?

    See http://stephensizer.blogspot.com/2009/11/exposing-israel-lobby-in-britain.html for the evidence

  4. I’m having a Stephen Sizer day, he is mentioned in this peice of crap that I just read:-

    http://www.middle-east-online.com/english/?id=35914

  5. zkharya

    “Christian Zionism’s particular reading of history and contemporary events … sets Israel and the Jewish people apart from other peoples in the Middle East… it justifies the endemic racism intrinsic to Zionism, exacerbates tensions between Jews and Palestinians and undermines attempts to find a peaceful resolution of the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, all because ‘the Bible tells them so.'”

    That is spectacular.

    The traditional Christianity, to which Sizer otherwise seems to subscribe, holds that Jews have indeed been “set apart”, by manifest dispossession of temple, Jerusalem and land, precisely because de-selected by g-d in favour of gentile, largely Greco-Roman Christians.

    By Sizer’s reading, traditional Christian anti-Zionism is also Zionist.

    What about the traditional middle eastern (never mind European) Christianity and Islam that also “set apart” Jews, and then worked to drive them from the Arab, Islamic (never mind European Christian) world altogether?

    I think Sizer is a mite confused. Hardly a systematic theologian. Or historian. No wonder he keeps his comments turned off.

  6. seismicshock

    Stuart – re. the author of the article, I wish I was a freelance writer living in Japan.

  7. For those interested, there is a review of Sizer’s book, Zion’s Christian Soldiers?: The Bible, Israel and the Church, in the Review of Biblical Literature. The reviewer rips Sizer’s arguments to shreds in a very satisfying way. Link is at: http://www.bookreviews.org/bookdetail.asp?TitleId=6781. A good excerpt from the review: “Sizer writes in the preface that the ‘fear of being labeled an anti-Semite is a powerful disincentive’ (8) to challenging
    Christian support for Israel. Rather than simple anti-Semitism, his work expresses
    something more complex, deeper, and ultimately more terrifying—a sincere, theological,
    Christian anti-Judaism.”

  8. zkharya

    Thanks for that link, Rebecca.

  9. CZ

    People who are strongly anti-Zionist like that have a HUGE chip on the shoulder about Jews having their own country to govern. It makes them incredibly insecure and jealous.
    Israel came into existence in 1948, a day after Britain pulled out of running the region. It has prospered ever since. It didn’t need patronising British imperialists to ensue its socio-economic and scientific success.
    This is bound to have made English public school types incredibly jealous.

    Israel’s entire population is actively involved in defending itself militarily, i.e. it’s got a civilian army. Britain, and most other western countries, have professional armies. What that really means is that most western countries apart from Israel no longer have the heartfelt desire to defend their populations from external threats, so they delegate the issue of defence to ‘professional soldiers’. The kind of sense of belonging engendered by Israel’s IDF is another thing that tends to evoke a vicious negative reaction in most westerners. Maybe we need to compare it with the rather dubious way in which a lot of westerners play along with Islamism. Western countries no longer have norms for masculinity, and this is linked to their disdain for the armed forces. The corollary is resentment of Israel and getting into bed with creepy rage-filled Islamist men, who look macho but who have absolutely nothing positive at all to offer the western countries where they have lived.

  10. CZ

    Oh goody. a reivew on the book reviews site of the Society for Biblical Literature, the world’s largest academic society for Biblical Studies, based in the US. That will soon cut Sizer’s work down to sizer (pardon the pun).

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