Originally Posted by ~~Mama2B~~
What are you talking about? The primary factors defining the rift between mainstream Judaism and the Jewish sect who claimed Yeshua as messiah were not centered around exclusivism. The gentiles became more numerous in the sect and brought with them their pagan beliefs and practices. Due to these influences, many Jews rightfully seperated themselves from early-Christianity. However, there were still plenty of Jews who continued on in Judaism yet believed Yeshua was the messiah.
I don't think I agree with this as historical analysis. It ignores the very existence of Rabbinic Judaism and other post-Temple sects. All Jews did not join the early Christians.
I don't think you can accurately say that Jews "continued on in Judaism" if there were part of early Christianity, since Christianity did separate itself into another religion AND, since Rabbinic Judaism did become the dominant, canonical Judaism.
i know, it's kind of reading backwards, isn't it? In the immediate post-Temple period, no one knew which Judaism was going to be officially Jewish and which Christianity was going to be the religion we know today. So it seems weird to talk about the early Jews in Christianity as either Jews or Christians, but we have to take the current canonical religions into account. (Especially on this board, in a dialogue between present-day Jews and Christians.)
When I taught students about this period at the state university (and it's like six years ago now! whoa!) i developed a way of thinking about the competition between early X-tianity and Rabbinic Judaism. Rabbinic Jews and Christians were two parties who were competing both to define post-Temple Judaism, and to gain converts from outside of Judaism. Rabbinic Judaism won the right to define Judaism, and Christianity got the Roman Empire and the universalist drive for non-Jewish converts.
The way your narrative has it is kind of like the question that my students sometimes asked "Well why don't Jews believe in Jesus?" Which is kind of a silly question, because belief in Jesus (as messiah, or divine, or what have you) is what defines Christianity, now. The split between the two groups was a two-way split, but it's still a split.
it puts Jewish converts to Christianity, or Jews who practice any sort of syncretistic Jewish-Christianity, in an uncomfortable position.