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Publisher's Summary

Dr. David Neiman's lecture series, The Church and The Jews traces the intimate and troubled relationship between the Christian Church and the Jewish people. The series starts with the Council of Nicea in 325 A.D. when the Catholic Church was founded and takes us through the Crusades, the Disputations of the 13th century, the Spanish Inquisition, and the Reformation.

©2000 Rebecca N. Neiman (P)2013 Midnight Shadow Productions

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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Illuminating, insightful and stimulating

Would you listen to The Church and the Jews again? Why?

Yes, it is full of interesting information and insights.

What about David Neiman’s performance did you like?

Dr.Neiman breathes life into everything he mentions.

Any additional comments?

Dr.Neiman was one of those scholars of the old school who make me regret not having the qualities necessary to become one. Such scholars command a vast store of knowledge that enables them to draw together divers elements into a web of understanding; to partake of this is both enlightening and exhilarating. I am truly grateful that Dr.Neiman's lectures are available now as audiobooks; they are among those things that make me happy to be alive today.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Every Christian should hear Dr Neiman

Dr Neiman's lecture series is simply outstanding. Whether you are a Christian or a Jew, you will enjoy him tremendously because he is an absolutely unparalleled teacher.

But if you are a Christian, you may need to listen to this information because it covers history that is almost entirely neglected in a so-called Christian education and upbringing. In my experience, this entire history is ignored, if not exactly intentionally neglected, in the Christians I have known. It is appalling to find so few have any historical knowledge of the religion out of which their own emerged. But this need not be so.

Coming from a family background of mixed Christian and Jewish heritage, and having married a man who is of the same, we've often talked about how we've felt as if we didn't quite belong in either group. In this series, I found greater, older echoes of this sense of ambiguity.

The Church has never quite known what to do with the conflict between their new religion which was built upon Judaism and their belief that the Jews had rejected Christ and were therefore damned. This is the conundrum (for the Church) with which the series opens.

The discussion of the Diaspora and the Sephardi and Ashkenazi contributions to European culture is thoroughly enjoyable and enlightening throughout. Persecutions, forced and/or nearly inevitable conversions based on the need to survive and preserve one's family, and ghetto segregations are also a shameful, but inseparable part of their story. Obviously, modern persecutions did not simply arise out of thin air, and this, too, is an especially neglected area of history for those Christians who seem to think Hitler just came up with some bad ideas and have no idea how far all of this reaches back in history.

Neiman handles it all with equanimity, bringing in his immense erudition and knowledge of multiple languages to enliven his presentation. I could listen to him for years.

I've found all of Dr. Neiman's work to be edifying, thought provoking, and meaningful. Please listen to him and share this title with others. I promise you it will be time well spent!

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Ben Stein
  • New York, New York United States
  • 10-07-17

Brilliant

Professor Neiman has an enormous story telling gift with minute personal knowledge of history and politics. He provides a comprehensive review of the relationship between the Church and the Jews. The material is clear and memorable. Excellent job!

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Fascinating journey through time.

The lectures were presented in chronological order which made this an enjoyable experience. The presentations contained both breadth and depth in their handling of the topic which should appeal to those with a serious interest.

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  • Philo
  • San Diego, CA, United States
  • 04-04-15

A terrific display of the power of lecture

The story here spans the arrival of Christianity as an official religion of Rome in the 300s, through Martin Luther's times. As my scholarship into these times in Muslim, Jewish and Christian spheres deepens, it is refreshing to have good lectures between heavier forays. These are not as ponderous as deeply scholarly books, and yet deep enough to give me a strong start into the subjects. As such they empower and accelerate my learning, with the light touch that lecture provides. There is much on European political history and particularly the Catholic church and its greatest thinkers in these times, alongside the Jewish thinkers and leaders. This work effortlessly, gracefully spans politics, philosophy, law, and theology, showing sensible links between them, as a great professor can do. The Jewish migrations and various related actions of Jews and Christians alike suddenly make a lot more sense to me, showing that Professor Neiman was a deeply thoughtful scholar of all sides of these matters. Time and again we receive fine insights into the actors in their times, finding themselves facing real-world problems unfolding in real time, to solve (often imperfectly, sometimes disastrously) with doctrines and the tools at hand.
He seems unfailingly charitable to the Jews' plights and perspectives, as I suppose I could expect, and I'm not scholar enough to completely critique this. Nevertheless, I never feel I am being shown one-dimensional Christians. Everyone is credibly an actual person in a world of fast-emerging, tough issues. My knowledge has gained immensely.
I would contrast the next work of his I am hearing, "The Jews in History." The style and approach are somewhat different. In "The Church and the Jews," some basic history knowledge and curiosity is all that is needed, and many characters, institutions, doctrines, terms, and concepts are lucidly and patiently explained. "The Jews in History" would seem to require a bit more pre-existing background in the listener, in the basic stories of the Torah, for example. E.g., we are expected to know some detail of the stories of Joseph and Moses, to make sense of the comments. It has a more familiar tone, and has less patient, smoothly accessible structure and continuity as is found in "The Church and the Jews." Yet, it has a quality and depth all its own.

2 of 4 people found this review helpful

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  • Eyal
  • Van Nuys, CA, USA
  • 06-21-13

He is brilliant and makes history accessible

What did you love best about The Church and the Jews?

He is brilliant and makes history accessible

What did you like best about this story?

He is brilliant and makes history accessible

Which character – as performed by David Neiman – was your favorite?

He is brilliant and makes history accessible

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

He is brilliant and makes history accessible

Any additional comments?

He is brilliant and makes history accessible

1 of 2 people found this review helpful