The Hebrew Bible explains the meaning of the personal and tribal name Judahfrom which the term Jews derivesin terms of praising or thanking (*ydy/ydh). In other words, the Jews are those who are to be praised out of a feeling of gratitude. This has important implications for the Lords words to Nephi regarding Gentile ingratitude and antisemitism: And what thank they the Jews for the Bible which they receive from them? (2 Nephi 29:4). Gentile Christian antisemitism, like the concomitant doctrine of supersessionism, can be traced (in part) to widespread misunderstanding and misapplication of Pauls words regarding Jews and praise (Romans 2:28-29). Moreover, the strongest scriptural warnings against antisemitism are to be found in the Book of Mormon, which also offers the reassurance that the Jews are still mine ancient covenant people (2 Nephi 29:4-5) and testifies of the Lords love and special concern for them.
About the Author
Matthew L. Bowen was raised in Orem, Utah and graduated from Brigham Young University. He holds a PhD in Biblical Studies from the Catholic University of America in Washington, DC and is currently an Assistant Professor in Religious Education at Brigham Young University-Hawaii.