New Ratzinger article published…
Benedict XVI: No Mission to the Jews, just Dialogue
Instead of remaining silently retreated in his little safe house in Vatican City, “hidden from the world”, as he had initially promised, Fr. Joseph Ratzinger — a.k.a. “Pope Emeritus” Benedict XVI — has once again inserted himself into the world of theological discourse. Although he speaks with much greater finesse and academic credibility than his boorish successor, the blasphemies he utters differ at best in degree, not in kind.
The German theological journal Herder Korrespondenz just released its December 2018 edition. On the cover, pictured above, we see Benedict XVI next to the words Die Entgegnung — “The Rejoinder” — because in this issue the retired “Pope” responds to those who had blasted him for an essay published in the July/August 2018 issue of Communio, wherein Ratzinger had dared to assert that “[t]he [Novus Ordo] formula of the ‘never-revoked covenant’ [between God and the Jews] may have been helpful in a first stage of the new dialogue between Jews and Christians, but it is not adequate in the long run to express the magnitude of the reality in a way that is passably appropriate” (source; our translation).
This “bold” proposal caused a ruckus among Ratzinger’s more openly Modernist compatriots, who saw in it a first step to reneging on the de facto Novus Ordo dogma that the Talmudic Jews of our day are just fine where they are and salvation is all but assured them. The “Pope Emeritus” had suggested nothing of the kind, of course, and in fact his essay contained lots of erroneous, heretical, and even blasphemous material. We covered Benedict’s initial write-up, as well as its background and effects, in an extensive article back in September. It is worth reviewing to properly understand the context in which the current post is to be read:
Now the Antipope Emeritus returns to the scene with more blasphemy.
In a brief, four-column monograph entitled Nicht Mission, sondern Dialog (“Not Mission but Dialogue”), published in Herder Korrespondenz (issue 12/2018, pp. 13-14), he reaffirms one of the central claims in his original essay, namely, that the so-called “substitution theory” (a.k.a. “Supersessionism”) — according to which the Catholic Church has replaced the Jews as the Chosen People of the New Covenant — was never actually taught by the Church before Vatican II.
As we showed in our powerful critique published in September, this is a preposterous claim to make. Let’s review very briefly some concrete examples of where this was taught by the Church before the “New Springtime” of the Second Vatican Council was unleashed upon the world.
For example, we read in Fr. Joachim Salaverri’s work De Ecclesia Christi that “Christ not only preached a religious and universal Kingdom … but he also said that the religious economy of the O.T. [Old Testament] was going to be abrogated, and for it he substituted a new religious order” (Sacrae Theologiae Summa, vol. IB, n. 84; italics added).
Pope Pius XI expressed this Supersessionist doctrine in his beautiful Act of Consecration of the Human Race to the Sacred Heart of Jesus, which even Ratzinger himself acknowledged in his essay denying its validity: “Turn Thine eyes of mercy towards the children of the race, once Thy chosen people: of old they called down upon themselves the Blood of the Savior; may it now descend upon them a laver of redemption and of life” (source; underlining added). Under the same Pius XI, the Holy Office stated without equivocation that “the Jewish people … were the depository of the divine promises up until the arrival of Jesus Christ…” (Decree Cum Supremae; underlining added).
In the 19th century, Fr. Richard F. Clarke, S.J., wrote rather straightforwardly: “We ought to remember that Catholics are, far more than the Jews were, the chosen people of God…” (Clarke, “The Ministry of Jesus: Short Meditations on the Public Life of Our Lord”, in Beautiful Pearls of Catholic Truth [Cincinnati, OH: Henry Sphar & Co., 1897], p. 542).
In his encyclical letter on the Church, Pope Pius XII likewise enunciated the Supersessionist position:
And first of all, by the death of our Redeemer, the New Testament took the place of the Old Law which had been abolished; then the Law of Christ together with its mysteries, enactments, institutions, and sacred rites was ratified for the whole world in the blood of Jesus Christ. For, while our Divine Savior was preaching in a restricted area — He was not sent but to the sheep that were lost of the house of Israel — the Law and the Gospel were together in force; but on the gibbet of his death Jesus made void the Law with its decrees, fastened the handwriting of the Old Testament to the Cross, establishing the New Testament in His bloodshed for the whole human race. “To such an extent, then,” says St. Leo the Great, speaking of the Cross of our Lord, “was there effected a transfer from the Law to the Gospel, from the Synagogue to the Church, from many sacrifices to one Victim, that, as our Lord expired, that mystical veil which shut off the innermost part of the temple and its sacred secret was rent violently from top to bottom.”
On the Cross then the Old Law died, soon to be buried and to be a bearer of death, in order to give way to the New Testament of which Christ had chosen the Apostles as qualified ministers….
But if our Savior, by His death, became, in the full and complete sense of the word, the Head of the Church, it was likewise through His blood that the Church was enriched with the fullest communication of the Holy Spirit, through which, from the time when the Son of man was lifted up and glorified on the Cross by His sufferings, she is divinely illumined. For then, as Augustine notes, with the rending of the veil of the temple it happened that the dew of the Paraclete’s gifts, which heretofore had descended only on the fleece, that is on the people of Israel, fell copiously and abundantly (while the fleece remained dry and deserted) on the whole earth, that is on the Catholic Church, which is confined by no boundaries of race or territory.
(Pope Pius XII, Encyclical Mystici Corporis, nn. 29-31; underlining added.)
We also see the replacement of the people of the Old Covenant by that of the New foreshadowed in the Old Testament itself; for example, in the supplanting of the elder brother, Esau, by his younger brother, Jacob. Having realized that his brother Jacob had received his father Isaac’s unique blessing in his stead, Esau cried out, but to no avail:
Esau having heard his father’s words, roared out with a great cry: and being in a great consternation, said: Bless me also, my father. And he said: Thy brother came deceitfully and got thy blessing. But he said again: Rightly is his name called Jacob; for he hath supplanted me lo this second time: my first birthright he took away before, and now this second time he hath stolen away my blessing. And again he said to his father: Hast thou not reserved me also a blessing? Isaac answered: I have appointed him thy lord, and have made all his brethren his servants: I have established him with corn and wine, and after this, what shall I do more for thee, my son?
And, of course, we find very clear expressions of the substitution doctrine in the New Testament itself. Many of those scriptural passages and other Catholic proofs of Supersessionism can be found in the following post from 2013:
There is simply no excuse for this. Just as the New Covenant has replaced the Old, so the people who belong to the New Covenant have replaced the people who belong to the Old. It is a necessary corollary. What’s beautiful about this is that in the people of the New Covenant, there is “neither Jew nor Greek”, i.e. neither Jew nor Gentile, “[f]or you are all one in Christ Jesus” (Gal 3:28). The New Covenant is no longer founded on a fleshly link but on a spiritual link, through Faith — and even this much was foreshadowed in the Old Testament, as St. Paul explains in Gal 4:22-31. But this spiritual link through Faith is indeed required and not optional; that is, people must believe in the Messiah in order to be a part of this New Chosen People.
In his new monograph published in Herder Korrespondenz (p. 14), Ratzinger makes it seem as though the New Testament were merely one possible interpretation and application of the Old Testament, one that Christians have decided to embrace but the (apostate) Jews have not. He outrageously insinuates that either view is equally valid — and this is by no means the first time he has put this forward:
It is of course possible to read the Old Testament so that it is not directed toward Christ; it does not point quite unequivocally to Christ. And if Jews cannot see the promises as being fulfilled in him, this is not just ill will on their part, but genuinely because of the obscurity of the texts and the tension in the relationship between these texts and the figure of Jesus. Jesus brings a new meaning to these texts — yet it is he who first gives them their proper coherence and relevance and significance.
There are perfectly good reasons, then, for denying that the Old Testament refers to Christ and for saying, No, that is not what he said. And there are also good reasons for referring it to him — that is what the dispute between Jews and Christians is about….
(Joseph Ratzinger, God and the World: A Conversation with Peter Seewald, trans. by Henry Taylor [San Francisco, CA: Ignatius Press, 2002], p. 209)
This is Joseph Ratzinger, ladies and gentlemen! This is “Pope Benedict XVI”, so beloved by all those too disgusted with Francis to be able to see the apostasy this man too has been promoting for all these years! Remember that Christ Himself scolded the Pharisees for their stubborn unbelief, for their refusal to accept the clear scriptural testimony concerning Him: “And you have not his word abiding in you: for whom he hath sent, him you believe not. Search the scriptures, for you think in them to have life everlasting; and the same are they that give testimony of me. And you will not come to me that you may have life” (Jn 5:38-40).
Of course, if one can legitimately read the Old Testament as not pointing to Jesus of Nazareth as the Messias, then there is no obligation to convert to Catholicism, which then becomes nothing more than an opinion — and all that remains for Catholics and Jews to do, at best, is to “dialogue” about their differences. Which is exactly what Ratzinger suggests:
The Gospel of St. Matthew ends with the commission given to the disciples to go forth into all the world and make all nations into disciples of Jesus (Mt 28:19). Missionary activity among all peoples and cultures, [that] is the assignment Christ has left to His followers. The point is to acquaint people with the “unknown God” (Acts 17:23). Man has a right to get to know God because only he who knows God can properly live his humanity. That’s why the missionary mandate is universal — with one exception: A mission to the Jews was not intended and not needed for the simple reason that they alone among all peoples [already] knew the “unknown God.” With regard to Israel, therefore, there is no mission but [only] dialogue about whether Jesus of Nazareth is “the Son of God, the Logos” whom Israel and, without knowing it, [all of] humanity has been awaiting in accordance with the promises made to His People. To take up this dialogue once more is the task this hour puts before us.
(Joseph Ratzinger – Benedict XVI, “Nicht Mission, sondern Dialog”, Herder Korrespondenz, vol. 72 [Dec. 2018], p. 14; our translation.)
That such rubbish is considered top-notch Catholic theology in our day is a sad testimony to how far the Novus Ordo apostasy has advanced!
A simple look at the actual text of the Great Commission shows what utter poppycock this German Modernist has put on paper behind the closed doors of Mater Ecclesiae monastery in Vatican City:
And Jesus coming, spoke to them, saying: All power is given to me in heaven and in earth. Going therefore, teach ye all nations; baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost. Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and behold I am with you all days, even to the consummation of the world.
Notice that Christ did not say, “Going therefore, acquaint all people with the true God, except for the Israelites, since they already know Him.” No, He said to teach all nations His doctrine — including that of the Most Holy Trinity — and to baptize them, thus making them His true disciples. If the command to “teach … all nations” were excepting the Jews, then so would the command to baptize them likewise except the Jews, for the verbs teach and baptize are given in the same command and in the same grammatical sense.
But no, there is no exception for the Jews, of course. Ratzinger made it up. Fr. George Leo Haydock, in his popular Scripture commentary, for example, notes regarding this passage: “Teach all nations. In St. Mark we read, going into the whole world, preach to every creature, that is capable of it; not only to the Jews, but to all nations throughout the whole world, baptizing them, &c” (Haydock Bible, note on Mt 28:19; italics given; underlining added).
Another commentator on Sacred Scripture writes: “…the old restriction of apostolic preaching, [Mt] 10:5f., is abrogated. Enrolment of disciples …, baptism, religious and moral instruction are for Gentiles also” (Dom Bernard Orchard et al., A Catholic Commentary on Holy Scripture [London: Thomas Nelson & Sons, 1953], n. 723f, p. 904; underlining added). The word “also” means “in addition to”, “as well”, and not “only”. As if intending to refute Ratzinger directly, the same Bible commentary notes on the parallel passage, Mark 16:15: “The Gospel and the salvation which it brings are for all without exception” (n. 743e, p. 933; underlining added). “Without exception” means no exception for the Jews, either!
Recall also that when Christ was being repeatedly petitioned by a Gentile woman, He told her: “I was not sent but to the sheep that are lost of the house of Israel” (Mt 15:24). Christ’s own mission on earth was not to the Gentiles but to the Jews — and it was a genuine mission, not a “dialogue”! Of course Christ redeemed all, Gentiles as much as Jews, but His own missionary activity was to the Jews specifically, whereas the mission to the Gentiles He left for the Apostles.
This commission to include the Gentiles from the time of the Ascension on (in addition to the Jews) stands in contrast to the previous command given to the Twelve in Mt 10:5-6: “These twelve Jesus sent: commanding them, saying: Go ye not into the way of the Gentiles, and into the city of the Samaritans enter ye not. But go ye rather to the lost sheep of the house of Israel.” The Great Commission given just before His Ascension simply extends the original mission to the Jews, now to include also the Gentiles. It does not replace the mission to the Jews, neither is there any distinction made between preaching/converting and dialoguing.
Benedict XVI’s brazen idea that the Jews of our day need not be evangelized because they already know the true God is also quite mistaken, to put it nicely. The Jews, we recall, reject the idea that God is a Trinity. Thus they reject the true God as He revealed Himself in His essence, and hence it is true that they too do not know the true God, as Christ Himself said of them: “They said therefore to him: Where is thy Father? Jesus answered: Neither me do you know, nor my Father: if you did know me, perhaps you would know my Father also” (Jn 8:19).
The apostate Jews do not worship the God of the Old Testament because the God of the Old Testament is the Most Holy Trinity. The fact that the Trinity was not clearly revealed — although it is hinted at in the Old Testament — until the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ is irrelevant to the fact that the God “with whom there is no change, nor shadow of alteration” (Jas 1:17) has been a Trinity from all eternity. And thus the Jews too must come to know the true God, for “neither doth any one know the Father, but the Son, and he to whom it shall please the Son to reveal him” (Mt 11:27).
This is serious business and cannot be pushed aside or relativized by appealing to any political or religious persecution of the Jews in history. St. John the Evangelist was quite explicit in his warning that “[w]hosoever denieth the Son, the same hath not the Father. He that confesseth the Son, hath the Father also” (1 Jn 2:23); and again: “Whosoever revolteth, and continueth not in the doctrine of Christ, hath not God. He that continueth in the doctrine, the same hath both the Father and the Son” (2 Jn 9).
So Ratzinger wants to dialogue with the Jews instead of evangelizing them? Then one must ask why the Vatican does not extend its interreligious dialogue campaigns to the Jews. On the web site of the so-called Pontifical Council for Inter-Religious Dialogue (PCID) we read: “It should be noted that the PCID does not have responsability [sic] for Christian-Jewish relations. These are the competence of the Commission for religious Relations with Jews, which comes under the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity” (source). It is a scandal in its own right that the Modernists in Rome habitually refer to Protestants and other heretics as Christians (for, properly speaking, they are not such, even if they mean to be), but to include Christ-denying Jews under that umbrella really takes the cake!
But then again, why should the Vatican Modernists include the Jews in their never-ending, irrelevant, and utterly vacuous “interreligious dialogue” anyway? It’s not like that dialogue has anything meaningful as its goal. In 2009, when as “Pope” Benedict XVI the same Fr. Ratzinger wrote a letter to all the Novus Ordo bishops in the world, he defined interreligious dialogue as “the need for all those who believe in God to join in seeking peace, to attempt to draw closer to one another, and to journey together, even with their differing images of God, towards the source of Light” (source). Precisely what that looks like can be seen on numerous occasions every year, for example, when the Vatican releases its greetings to Hindus and Buddhists on their respective feasts. Have a look here and here for a small sample. “Bp.” John Wester’s video-taped dialogue with former Methodist-turned-Buddhist Christopher Clowery is always a hoot to review as well.
Let’s be serious: We all know that Benedict XVI simply does not care if any Jews become Catholics — whether that should happen by means of dialogue, evangelization, missionary activity, private revelation, or any other way. He does not believe in Catholicism to begin with, which is why he can simply make up “exceptions” to the divine missionary mandate and can blasphemously declare that the Old Testament does not unequivocally point to Jesus of Nazareth as the Christ. To make an exception for the Jews is not to show them any charity. Indeed, it is to except them from the only way of salvation (see Jn 14:6; Acts 4:12).
Do not allow yourself to be fooled: Ratzinger is a Modernist through and through, no less than Jorge Bergoglio; he is just more polished and cultured than his successor. Unless they repent sincerely before the end of their lives, Benedict XVI and Francis will go to the same hell to which all unbelievers go who have been led there by their apostate theology.
Image sources: herder-korrespondenz.de
Licenses: Fair use