Jesus-Oriented Visions of Judaism in Antiquity

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


This article argues that the Pseudo-Clementine Recognitions 1.27–72, the Pseudo-Clementine Homilies, and the Didascalia Apostolorum – third and fourth century-texts, which combine adherence to Jesus with Jewish law observance – would have made sense to Jews in antiquity as Jewish, although non-rabbinic visions of the history and calling of the people of Israel, and that they ought to be considered as part of the history of Judaism. Recent years have witnessed an emerging trend to reread texts previously regarded as ‘Jewish-Christian’ or ‘heretical Christian’ as Jewish texts, and as evidence of diversity within Judaism in the post-70 period. This understanding emerges from the related insights that rabbinic Judaism was not the only, or even the dominant form of Judaism during the early centuries ce, that there was no definitive early split between a well defined Christianity and an equally well defined Judaism, and that Jewish self-identity in antiquity seems to have allowed for adherence to Jesus as an option within Judaism. Abandoning the practice of using rabbinic Judaism as the sole criterion for defining Jewishness in this time period allows us to see the theologies developed by such Jesus-oriented groups with a Jewish self-identity as profoundly Jewish, although non-rabbinic, visions of the history and calling of biblical Israel.


Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • History of Religions


  • Judaism, Pseudo-Clementine Writings, Didascalia Apostolorum, Jesus-oriented Judaism
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)37–60
JournalScripta Instituti Donneriani Aboensis
Publication statusPublished - 2016
Publication categoryResearch