Painting the Jewish Jesus

‘Chagall: Love, War, And Exile’

Jesus is Jewish. Is there a more basic fact about him than that? Nothing has altered our understanding of Jesus more than our relatively recent attention to his Jewishness.

Yet the actual image of a Jewish Jesus hanging on a Cross still gives pause to both Jews and Christians. Marc Chagall, the Russian-born son of a Hasidic family, painted many such images—many more than most have ever seen. More than twenty-five of them have been collected in...

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About the Author

Margaret O'Brien Steinfels, a former editor of Commonweal, writes frequently in these pages and blogs at dotCommonweal.