Christian magazine under fire for saying Jesus was Asian

Christian magazine under fire for saying Jesus was Asian

On Christmas Eve, social media users were agitated by a contentious article in a Christian magazine that clarified the ethnicity of Jesus Christ.

In an article titled "How Asian Artists Picture Jesus' Birth From 1240 to Today" that appeared in Christianity Today, author Victoria Emily Jones made the case that Jesus was born in Asia. He was Asian.

Nine Asian artworks that depicted the Nativity were included in the photo essay. According to Jones, Christian artists could depict a more profound "theological meaning" of "the universality of Christ's birth" by portraying Jesus as Asian.

"Some people argue that portraying Jesus as anything other than a brown man born into a Jewish household in first-century Judea's Bethlehem compromises his historicity. However, Jones noted that Christian artists who work on the theme of the Incarnation frequently strive for theological significance rather than historical authenticity.

"By representing Jesus as Japanese, Indonesian, or Indian, they convey a sense of God’s immanence, his ‘with-us–ness,’ for their own communities—and for everyone else, the universality of Christ’s birth," she said.

The piece was released on December 18, but it didn't become widely known until December 24 when the outlet shared it on the social media site X.

"Jesus originated in Asia. His ethnicity was Asian. He is returned to Asia by the photographers in this photo essay, not ancient Israel. The publication stated that these nine pieces of art "proclaim the expansiveness of Christ's kingdom."

On the other hand, X commenters disapproved of the article's concept and made fun of the evangelical publication for running it.

Joel Berry, a manager at the Christian satirical news website The Babylon Bee, made a joke, saying, "Next, could you please do an article with a bunch of AI images of Jesus if He were Rosa Parks?"

"Did you guys read the Bible?" Author and columnist Buzz Patterson of RedState responded to the post.

Samuel Sey, a Christian blogger, retorted, "Blasphemy. Jesus belongs to the Jewish people."

"That Christ be a son of David, of the tribe of Judah, and born in Bethlehem is essential to our salvation. Put an end to this foolishness. He is not black, European, Asian, or Palestinian. "He's a Jew—the world's savior because he's the king of the Jews," he said.

Ekkie Tepsupornchai, senior pastor of Western Ave Baptist Church, similarly reacted to the article by stating, "I am Asian. Jesus wasn't. But Jesus is my Lord even still. And I now have the right to become a child of God because of His sacrifice. To me, that is all that matters."

Not just Christianity Today faced criticism for its interpretation of Jesus on this holiday.

"A Palestinian Jew born into a time when his country was occupied," was how Father Edward Beck described Jesus on CNN Christmas morning.

On social media, the CNN guest was widely criticized for providing a "incorrect" historical account of Jesus Christ.

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