Wednesday, August 01, 2018

Rashi - apologist or polemicist?

DR. YEDIDA EISENSTAT: Does Rashi’s Torah Commentary Respond to Christianity? (
Moses promises that if Israel forsakes the covenant, God will destroy them permanently (Deut 4:25-26). Drawing on a midrash, Rashi explains that God exiled Israel early to avoid having to wipe them out; thus, God never actualized this threat. Considering Rashi’s responses to Christian ideas in other biblical texts, Rashi’s comment on Deut 4:25 may well be an apologetic effort to prove that God’s covenant with the Jews remains intact.
The essay also involves Talmudic exegesis of this passage, with gematria, alongside Daniel 9.

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