The Jews were targets of hatred but Christians took it to an altogether different level. And there was me thinking that Christians were supposed to be loving.<quoted text>
Insanity? I give you atheists credit for one thing. You're experts at picking and choosing. The Jews were targets of hatred and murder long before Christianity.
But that doesn't fit the atheist narrative... Does it?
The NT refers to Jews as dogs, snakes and a vipers brood who cannot escape being condemned to Hell. They're the people on whom God brought a "numbness of spirit" and gave them "blind eyes and deaf ears"
The NT tells us that they're hypocrites and deaf to the truth. No less a person than Jesus told Jews who rejected him that their father was the devil and they chose to carry out their father's desires. Look yourself, there are other passages of anti-semitic text in the NT.
The Gospels contain scriptures that malign the Jews and disseminate hatred towards them. It seems to me that it suited the early Christians to blame the Jews to avoid upsetting the Romans. It would make it much easier to continue practicing this new religion if they kept Rome sweet.
Then came the early church fathers:
Tertullian told us that Israel is never clean - its hands foerever stained with blood
Origen stated that the blood of the Jews falls not just on the Jews of that time but of all Jews up to the end of the world.
Saint Ephraeum Syrus called the Jews "circumcised dogs"
Saint Gregory of Nyssa said the Jews were slayers of the Lord, murderers of prophets, enemies and haters of God.
John Chrysostom wrote "Eight Homilies Against the Jews" which tell us about the despicable nature of Judaism and of the Jewish people who were driven to the ultimate evil. Christians are warned not to come into contact with Jews, a people who within them, demons dwell and their mothers ate their own babies. Chrysostom tells us that the Jews cause is lost and they can expect no atonement.
I'm hardly scratching the surface here and much more anti-Jewish invective existed. With such writings and sermons, it's little wonder that a hatred of Jews became indelibly stamped on the mindset of Christianity.
Fuelled by the anti-Semitism of their leaders, Christians attacked and destroyed synagogues. The earliest recorded Christian pogrom of the Jews was in 414 CE in Alexandria where the Jewish community was pretty much eradicated.
With such a strong anti-Jewish mindset it wasn't long before repressive laws were created.
The Synod of Elvira forbade Jewish men from having sex with Christian women. It didn't ban Christian men from having sex with Jewish women. Jews couldn't marry Christians or even share a meal with them.
A few years later at the Council of Nicea, Christian clergy were forbidden to hold conversations with Jews.
Then along came the Codex Theodosianus which laid down a slew of anti-Jewish laws. These pretty much turned the Jews' status into that of an underclass and they were banned from the administrative, military and legal professions.
Further laws followed and the religious hatred of Christians toward Jews became state laws.
Hatred of the Jews was pretty trendy in the middle ages. Pope Innocent III used his influence by putting pressure on Christian rulers of other nations to remove Jews from public office.
Innocent added a preambles of his own to the papal manuscript "Sicut Judeis" in which he says that the Jews are not to be wiped out completely. In other words it's OK to partially wipe them out. Right.
On an on went the attacks on Jewishness. Further laws were passed and ghettos were set up for the Jews to live in. Life as a Jew in Christendom was truly hellish.