In Jewish history class in my Orthodox high school, we learned that Reform Judaism came about to keep Jews in the fold by convincing them to not convert to Christianity.
Reform synagogues were playing organs during the services. Or my dad’s childhood story about how awkward he felt when, at his cousin’s bar-mitzvah, the rabbi came out playing guitar.
I used to think Reform Judaism mirrored Christianity.
Well, I was wrong, partially at least.
I mean, it did base itself off of Christianity. But Christianity came form Judaism. So, per transitive property, Reform Judaism came from Judaism.
And in it’s playing music on Shabbat, Reform mirrors pre-exile, which—and may it come soon in our time—will be what post-exile Judaism looks like.
But Christianity was formed as a response to the Jews being in exile.
It’s got the songs from the Temple, it’s got the life, the music, the movement, the soul. Damn does it have the soul.
That’s why I was attracted to visiting church services on Sundays when I was single in my twenties. I needed non-judgmental soulful bliss to wash over me.
Sorry Judaism, you judgmental.
Many believe that the Old Testament is in the past and the New Testament is the present and future.
I, and many others, hold the belief that there will be a post-exile Judaism, that is distinctly Jewish.
But I hold Christian practices dear to my heart. You my cousins’s y’all.