Rabbi Shmuley Boteach will take part in a debate with Messianic Jew Dr. Michael Brown on the subject of whether or not the New Testament is antisemitic.
The debate will take place on August 8 in New York City, two days before the Jewish fast day of Tisha Be'Av, when both Jewish temples were destroyed, among other disasters in Jewish history. The debate will be broadcast live on YouTube.
Boteach will be debating from the side which claims that the New Testament contains "blatant antisemitic statements," according to the event's web page. Brown will debate for the side which claims that this is not the case.
Debates and disputations between Jews and Christians have occurred throughout the past two thousand years, often resulting in great danger to Jews and their religious books during the Middle Ages, according to The Jewish Encyclopedia. Often, these disputations were instigated by the church to prove Christian beliefs as correct, with heavy threats on the Jewish debaters should they provide a convincing argument.Boteach is one of the world’s leading relationship and spirituality experts. He served as Rabbi at Oxford University in England for 11 years. His books have been translated into 17 languages and he lectures and makes TV and radio appearances worldwide.
Brown is "widely considered to be one of the world’s foremost Messianic Jewish apologist," according to the event's web page. He holds a PhD in Near Eastern Languages and Literature from New York University and has served as a visiting or adjunct professor at multiple seminaries.
The debate is sponsored by Chosen People Ministries, which aims to "pray for, evangelize, disciple, and serve Jewish people everywhere and to help fellow believers do the same," according to their mission statement. The mission was founded in New York in 1894 by Rabbi Leopold Cohn. They now have a presence in eighteen countries around the world.
"It is always a privilege to debate my good friend Dr. Brown," said Boteach, according to The Jewish Press. "Although we disagree, we bring well-informed arguments on both sides," he said. "I know that I can look forward to an exciting dialogue that will allow me to enhance my perspective and to provide provoking food for thought to listeners."
"The question of whether or not the New Testament contains antisemitic sentiments has been a raging issue since my boyhood years growing up as a Jewish New Yorker," said the president of Chosen People Ministries, Dr. Mitch Glaser. "I anticipate the debate will inform members of both the Jewish and Christian communities in the greater New York area as we have two of our country’s leading experts speaking on this important topic."