Let us recall that an association under the name "Friends of Israel", to which even cardinals and bishops belonged, was dissolved by his Holiness Pope Pius XI, by means of the Sacred Congregation of the Holy Office, in the year 1928; and that among the assertions condemned, assertions which the said association spread, was that the Jewish people were not the murderers of God, which contradicts what the Church has maintained for nearly twenty centuries. Condemned by the Church, this association was dissolved through the Edict mentioned. No one imagined that its adventures would be re-enlivened, until it was established to great astonishment that, after more than thirty years, the Jews had founded the same association again and it was supported by a numerous group of clergy, who nevertheless defiantly contradict the condemnation expressed by the Holy Office and assert that it is completely false that our Lord Jesus Christ was killed by the Jews and that those really responsible for the murder were the Romans; consequently it is unjustifiable to describe the Jewish people as murderers of God. The audacity of the new Friends of Israel verges on the limits of the incomprehensible; for they not only dare to contradict the Apostles of the Lord, but Christ Himself, as will be proved in what follows by means of texts
from the New Testament, which reveal:
- That Christ accused the Jews and not the Romans of wishing to kill him.
- That the Jews and not the Romans were those who had the intention of killing Jesus, and who upon different occasions attempted to destroy him before his Passion and Death.
- That the Jews and not the Romans were the instigators and truly responsible for the crime.
- That the Apostles accused the Jews and not the Romans of the death of Jesus.
First Thesis: Christ accused the Jews and not the Romans of wishing to kill him.
In the Gospel of John, Chapter VIII, the Apostle relates that Jesus, in a verbal dispute with some Jews, said to them (Verse 37):
I know that ye are Abraham's seed; but ye seek to kill Me, because My word hath no place in you. - John 8:37
And afterwards, as the Apostle alludes in verse 40 of the same chapter, Jesus Christ, our Lord, says anew to the Jews:
But now ye seek to kill Me, a man that hath told you the truth, which I have heard of God; this did not Abraham. - John 8:40
And in another chapter of the said Holy Gospel (in the Vllth), the favourite disciple points out that Jesus, having gone on a certain day to the temple in order to preach, said to the Jews:
Did not Moses give you the law, and yet none of you keepeth the law? Why go ye about to kill Me? - John 7:19-20
In no passage of the Holy Apostles does it appear that Christ, our Lord, said that the Romans wished to kill him, but on the contrary he accused the Jews of wanting to do it. Do then the clergy who represent this new kind of (Jew-friendly) thesis believe that Christ, our Lord, was wrong and that now, in this century, they have just discovered that our Lord Jesus Christ could not foresee that it was the Romans and not the Jews who wished to kill Him?
Second Thesis: It was the Jews and not the Romans who repeatedly planned and attempted to kill Jesus, even before His Passion and Death.
Proofs: The Gospel according to Matthew, Chapter XXI, relates to us that Christ our Lord,
When He had come into the temple, the chief priests and the elders of the people came unto Him as he was teaching and said, 'By what authority doest thou these things? And who gave thee this authority?' - Matthew 21:23
The Apostle then tells further of the discussion which Jesus conducted with such high leaders of the Jewish people, to close the passage with these two verses:
And when the chief priests and Pharisees had heard His parables, they perceived that He spake of them. But when they sought to lay hands on Him, they feared the multitudes because they took Him for a prophet. - Matthew 21:45-46
This passage shows that the intentions of attack did not emanate from irresponsible Jews, but from the respected leaders of the Jewish people, who were then the chief priest as well as the Pharisees, who had a decisive influence in the government of that nation.
In the Gospel according to Mark, Chapter III, one reads the following:
And He entered again into the synagogue; and there was a man there which had a withered hand. And they watched Him, whether He would heal him on the Sabbath day, that they might accuse Him. .. And when He had looked around about on them with anger, being grieved for the hardness of their hearts, He saith unto the man, 'Stretch forth thine hand.' And he stretched it out, and his hand was restored whole as the other. And the Pharisees went forth, and straight away took counsel with the Herodians against Him, how they might destroy Him. - Mark 3:1-2, 5-6
One thus sees that the leading strata of the Jewish people plotted against Jesus to cause His death, and in fact long before He was led before Pilate, without there being in the Gospels one passage which alludes to an intention or a plan of the Romans to do this.
John remarks that, because Jesus had healed the lame man on the Sabbath, the Jews persecuted Him. In Chapter V, he says:
Therefore the Jews sought the more to kill Him, because He not only had broken the Sabbath, but said also that God was His Father, making Himself equal with God. - John 5:18
In the Gospel according to Luke, the disciple tells us how Christ was in Nazareth and went on the Sabbath into the synagogue, began to preach and aroused opposition in many of those present with his preaching. In verses 28 and 29 of the fourth chapter the evangelist says:
And all they in the synagogue when they heard these things, were filled with wrath. And they rose up, and thrust Him out of the city, and led Him unto the brow of the hill whereon their city was built, that they might cast Him down headlong. - Luke 4:28-29
If they attempted to kill Him in His own city, this means that the intention of murdering Him was universal and not only restricted to the Jewish leaders of Jerusalem.
Saint John further reveals in Chapter VII, Verse I:
After these things Jesus walked in Galilee, for he would not walk in Judaea because the Jews sought to kill Him. - John 7:1
This passage cannot be clearer. Throughout the whole of Judaea the Jews sought Jesus in order to kill Him; but since His hour had not yet come, He preferred not to go into this region.
If there were various preceding intentions and conspiracies to kill Jesus, then it was also the Jews and not the Romans who hatched the final conspiracy that was to result in His death.
Third Thesis: The Jews and not the Romans were the instigators and those really responsible for the crime.
In the Gospel according to Saint Luke, Chapter XXII, the disciple says:
Now the feast of unleavened bread drew nigh, which is called the Passover. And the chief priests and scribes sought how they might kill Him. - Luke 22:1-2
In Chapter XI of the Gospel according to Saint John, for its part, is found the following passages:
Then gathered the chief priests and the Pharisees a council, and said, 'What do we? for this man doeth many miracles?' ... And one of them, named Caiaphas, being the high priest that same year, said unto them, Ye know nothing at all. Nor consider that it is expedient for us that one man should die for the people, and that the whole nation perish not.' ... Then, from that day forth, they took counsel together for to put Him to death. Jesus therefore walked no more openly among the Jews. - John 11:47, 49-50, 53-54
Saint Luke says that it was the Jews and not the Romans who bribed Judas to hand Christ over to them (Chapter XXII):
Then entered Satan into Judas surnamed Iscariot, being of the number of the Twelve. And he went his way, and communed with the chief priests and captains, how he might betray Him unto them. And they were glad, and covenanted to give him money. And he promised, and sought opportunity to betray Him unto them in the absence of the multitude. - Luke 22:3-6
When Jesus had spoken these words, He went forth with His disciples over the brook Cedron, where was a garden, into the which He entered, and His disciples. And Judas also, which betrayed Him, knew the place, for Jesus oft-times resorted thither with His disciples. ... Then the band and the captain and officers of the Jews took Jesus, and bound Him. And led Him away to Annas first; for he was father-in-law to Caiaphas, which was the high priest that same year. Now Caiaphas was he which gave counsel to the Jews that it was expedient that one man should die for the people. ... Now Annas had sent Him bound unto Caiaphas the high priest. ... Then led they Jesus from Caiaphas unto the hall of judgment; and it was early; and they themselves went not into the judgment hall, lest they should be defiled; but that they might eat the Passover. ... 'Ye have a custom that I should release unto you one at the Passover. Will ye therefore that I release unto you the King of the Jews?' Then cried they all again, saying, 'Not this man, but Barabbas.' Now Barabbas was a robber. - John 18:1-2, 12-14, 24, 28, 39-40
In Chapter Nineteen, he relates further that, after Pilate had had Jesus scourged (as the Bible annotation of Scio Vol. V, page 255 explains) and Jesus was seen in a condition which would have moved to pity even the wild beasts and softened their hearts:
Pilate therefore went forth again, and saith unto them, 'Behold, I bring Him forth to you, that ye may know that I find no fault in Him. Then came Jesus forth, wearing the crown of thorns, and the purple robe. And Pilate saith unto them, 'Behold the man!' When the chief priests therefore and officers saw Him, they cried out, saying, 'Crucify him, crucify him.' Pilate saith unto them, 'Take ye him, and crucify him: for I find no fault in him.' The Jews answered him, 'We have a law, and by our law he ought to die, because he made himself the Son of God!' ... But they cried out, Away with him, away with him, crucify him.' Pilate saith unto them, 'Shall I crucify your King?' The chief priests answered, 'We have no king but Caesar.' Then delivered he Him therefore unto them to be crucified. And they took Jesus, and led Him away. And He bearing His cross went forth into a place called the place of a skull, which is called in the Hebrew, Golgotha: Where they crucified Him, and two others with Him, on either side one, and Jesus in the midst. - John 19:4-7, 15-18
Pilate, like others also who did not belong to the "generation of vipers", to use the actual words of Christ, could not imagine to what degree the cruelty of the Jews would reach, for it is something extraordinary in the history of mankind. By their denying their God and Lord, they fell into the deepest abyss. If they did even with Jesus what they have done, then we can no longer be surprised at the terrible ritual crimes that the Jews practised for several centuries, concerning whose monstrous occurrences indisputable evidence is at hand, even from the saints of the Catholic Church. These ritual crimes consisted, as is known, in capturing an innocent Christian child and, on Good Friday subjecting it to all tortures of the Passion, and causing it to suffer the same cruel death that they had prepared for Christ our Lord. In the unfortunate child they cold-bloodedly repeated the Passion and Death of Jesus. The veneration that is shown in Italy to the child Blessed Simon of Trent and the child Blessed Lorenzino de Marostica has in fact its origin in that both were martyred by the Jews.
All this would seem incredible to us, if irrefutable proof of their actual execution were not available, not only during the Middle Ages, but also in recent times.
Only a "generation of vipers", as the Son of God called them, a cold-blooded and merciless race, the murderers of Jesus Christ, could arrive at such uttermost limits of insanity, which today we still experience in the Communist lands, where they tortured and killed millions of Christians and Gentiles with all application of cruelty. As long as the beast, according to the expression used in the Apocalypse of Saint John, lay in chains for a thousand years, i.e. from the fifth to the fifteenth century, it limited itself to crucifying defenceless children, to polluting crucifixes and images of the Holy Virgin Mary, to degrading sacred objects, to dirtying the holy memory of Jesus and Mary with blasphemies and terrible slanders. But when the beast made itself free at the beginning of the 16th century, it finally rolled over the whole world in the 19th and 20th century.
Then it no longer restricted itself to only spitting upon and shamefully polluting the crucifixes or the images of the Holy Virgin Mary, or in slandering in horrible manner the memory of the latter. It was no longer necessary, due to a lack of other objects, to concentrate their entire hatred and their entire cruelty upon innocent children; the horrible monster, freed of its chains and free of ecclesiastical and civil laws, which had kept the Jews locked in the ghettos and separated from the Christians, free of the ban of occupying leading posts in Christian society, stormed loose in order to now bring everything into its possession, in order to destroy one after another of the Christian institutions and to unleash their diabolic hatred against the whole of Christianity, which is being systematically destroyed in the Communist lands.
The Jewish writer Salvatore Jona confirms the foregoing, when he says:
Once the Hebrews were out of the Ghetto, they flung themselves upon the conquest of all those material and spiritual positions which had been forbidden to them in the past centuries.1
Only the hand that martyred Jesus Christ could be capable of organising Chekas and secret police, in order to commit horrible crimes in frightful number, which have not their like in history.
Saint Mark reports to us in Chapter 14 of his Gospel:
After two days was the feast of the Passover, and of unleavened bread: and the chief priests and the scribes sought how they might take Him by craft, and put Him to death. ... And Judas Iscariot, one of the twelve, went unto the chief priests, to betray Him unto them. And when they heard it, they were glad, and promised to give him money. And he sought how he might conveniently betray Him. - Mark 14:1, 10-11
It is necessary to establish that Judas did not attempt to betray Him to the Romans, but to the Jews, because they and not the Romans were interested in killing Christ.
Saint Mark continues with a passage which proves that it was the spiritual and civil leaders of the Jewish peoples, and not the Romans, who had Jesus taken prisoner:
And immediately, while He yet spake, cometh Judas, one of the twelve, and with him a great multitude with swords and staves, from the chief priests and the scribes and elders. And he that betrayed Him had given them a token, saying, 'Whomsoever I shall kiss, that same is he: take him, and lead him away safely.' ... And they laid hands on Him, and took Him. ... And they led Jesus away to the high priest: and with him were assembled all the chief priests and the elders and the scribes (i.e. the leaders of the Jewish people; the most far-reaching representatives of Israel). ... And the chief priests and all the council sought for witness against Jesus to put Him to death; and found none. For many bare witness against Him, but their witness agreed not together. ... But neither so did their witness agree together. And the high priest stood up in the midst, and asked Jesus, saying, 'Answerest thou nothing? What is it which these witness against thee?' But He held his peace, and answered nothing. Again the high priest asked Him, and said unto Him, 'Art thou the Christ, the Son of the Blessed?' And Jesus said, 'I am, and ye shall see the Son of man sitting on the right hand of power, and coming in the clouds of heaven.' Then the high priest rent his clothes, and saith, 'What need we any further witnesses? Ye have heard the blasphemy; what think ye?' And they all condemned Him to be guilty of death. And some began to spit on Him, and to cover His face, and to buffet Him, and to say unto Him, 'Prophesy'; and the servants did strike Him with the palms of their hands. - Mark 14:1, 10-11, 43-44, 53, 55-56, 59-65
For two thousand years long the whole world has been filled with horror at the cruelty and hardness that has been displayed by the Jews in the torturing of their own God; this cruelty and this sadism has later always revealed itself, where they have intervened, especially in those lands where they were successful in introducing their totalitarian dictatorship, i.e. in the so-called Socialist or Communist states.
The Holy Gospels show us clearly three of the weapons that have been the favourites of Jewry in its struggle against Christianity and still are: deception, slander and crime; these three were even used mercilessly against our God and Lord. Later they used the same against the whole of mankind, so that it has brought them the name which they bear so rightly as "fathers of deceit and calumny."
With these despicable weapons they easily discourage even the most resolute defenders of our belief, who are subjected without remedy to the treacherous attacks of the agents of Jewry smuggled into the Church.
The supreme ruler and leader of Israel, the high priest Caiaphas, the chief priests, the elders, the judges, scribes, Herodians and even the influential Pharisees were responsible for the murder of God; for at first the popular mass followed Christ, and those who planned His death, feared the people. However, gradually the priests and leaders poisoned the climate and led the people against Jesus, until finally they were successful in bringing the masses into opposition with their Messiah, as the following passage of the Gospel according to Saint Matthew proves:
When the morning was come, all the chief priests and elders of the people took counsel against Jesus to put Him to death. And when they had bound Him, they led Him away, and delivered Him to Pontius Pilate the governor. ... Now at that feast, the governor was wont to release unto the people a prisoner, whom they would. And they had then a notable prisoner, called Barabbas. Therefore, when they were gathered together, Pilate said unto them, 'Whom will ye that I release unto you? Barabbas, or Jesus which is called Christ?' ... But the chief priests and elders persuaded the multitude that they should ask for Barabbas and destroy Jesus. The governor answered and said unto them, 'Whether of the twain will ye that I release unto you?' They said, 'Barabbas.' Pilate saith unto them, 'What shall I do then with Jesus which is called Christ?' They all say unto him, 'Let him be crucified.' And the governor said, 'Why, what evil hath he done?' But they cried out the more, saying, 'Let him be crucified.' When Pilate saw that he could prevail nothing, but that rather a tumult was made, he took water, and washed his hands before the multitude, saying, 'I am innocent of the blood of this just person: see ye to it.' Then answered all the people, and said, 'His blood be on us, and on our children.' Then released he Barabbas unto them; and when he had scourged Jesus, he delivered Him to be crucified. - Matthew 27:1, 2, 15-17, 20-26
This passage alone already represents a proof of the complete guilt of the Jews for the murder of Jesus Christ, Our Lord. It also proves the responsibility that the Jewish people had for this crime; for even if its religious and civil leaders and its legal representatives had previously conceived, prepared and completed it, then nevertheless the mass of the people could have prevented it at the last hour, asking for Jesus instead of Barabbas; instead of that it demanded the freeing of the latter and the crucifying of Jesus, even though as a result the blood of the Son of God would descend upon them and their descendants.
- 1. Salvatore Jona, Gli Ebrei in Italia durante il Facismo. Milan, 1962, page 7.