Author Archives: Marc H. Ellis

About Marc H. Ellis

Marc H. Ellis is retired Director and Professor of Jewish Studies at Baylor University and author of Future of the Prophetic: Israel's Ancient Wisdom Re-Presented.

John Kerry and the Pope set to face off with Jewish Knight Templars on the Temple Mount

This is the week that supposedly spells the end of the peace process or its end. Marc Ellis’s money is on a continuation that has no real substance or direction. What’s the alternative?

Posted in Israel/Palestine | 8 Comments

Passover Auto-Pilot

Some Jews I’ve known mock the Easter-driven “He is Risen” church billboards which, surprisingly, aren’t much different from the Facebook postings by our more enlightened Christian comrades in arms. Our thoughts: Christians can’t help themselves. They’re on self-congratulatory auto-pilot. But then, how do our Passover liberation greetings sound to those outside the Jewish community?

Posted in Israel/Palestine | 29 Comments

Max Blumenthal’s guilt by association – with Jewish ethics

At tonight’s Seder read the Passover story. But before the Seder dip into Goliath. You can start at the end with the Exodus party. Then see what you think of Israel’s ancient leave-taking and the one taking place today. It makes for an interesting contrast. Is today’s leave-taking a logical unfolding of a Zionist dream turned into a nightmare?

Posted in Israel/Palestine, US Politics | 16 Comments

No rescue!

Whatever your faith community or theological persuasion, on Easter Sunday let’s be clear: The world is unredeemed. No amount of “redeemed and not yet” theological hocus pocus will do. Even doing Seder’s and Easter the “right way” isn’t going to help us

Posted in Israel/Palestine | 25 Comments

On Easter, costly Jews – and costly Palestinians

Christians atone for the teaching that Jews crucified Jesus, from the Gospel of John. But Jews must atone for the treatment of Palestinians, which Christians have allowed them to get away with, says Marc Ellis at

Posted in Israel/Palestine | 27 Comments

The Book of Exodus and the Book of Palestine

Scriptures should evolve to include what is done in God’s name after the forming of faith communities. Expand the Passover story to include the modern state of Israel. Shall we call it the Book of Palestine? Or we could recite both histories together – the Book of Exodus and the Book of Palestine.

Posted in Israel/Palestine | 13 Comments

Resurrecting Passover?

Jews need Passover today like Christians need salvation – to be diverted from the injustice we are enabling. Has Passover become a faux prophetic trope to banish the unstable Jewish prophetic?

Posted in American Jewish Community, Israel/Palestine | 35 Comments

Let God’s people go — and return, too

The Exodus story isn’t for the faint of heart – unless you’re play acting, which most Jewish observance of Passover amounts to, if we’re honest. Marc Ellis on reinterpreting the Passover Seder.

Posted in Israel/Palestine | 2 Comments

Handling holy hypocrisy at holiday season

If Passover cannot really be celebrated without Palestinians being free – and since Palestinian freedom isn’t on the immediate or even long-range horizon and ironically Passover has become a time for punishing Palestinians for asserting their right to be free – should we suspend our celebration of Passover?

Posted in American Jewish Community, Israel/Palestine | 13 Comments

Passover for Palestine

The Passover experience for Jews has been distorted beyond recognition. While the New York Times debates whether mobile phones should be used to enhance the Passover experience, it ignores the obvious question: How can Jews celebrate Passover when we are oppressing another people? The plaintive cry – “Next year in Jerusalem” – has already occurred. The results are devastating for Palestinians. In the long run, are they less disastrous for Jews?

Posted in American Jewish Community, Israel/Palestine | 17 Comments

The Two-State SodaStream Solution

Why doesn’t Netanyahu doesn’t break from his right wing pack and accept Mahmoud Abbas’s offer for an American-led NATO occupation of Palestine? He would take almost all of Palestine while leaving a cheap and subservient labor pool of millions of Palestinians for Israeli and Palestinian kingpins. Call it the SodaStream solution.

Posted in Israel/Palestine, Israeli Government, Occupation, US Policy in the Middle East, US Politics | Tagged , | 2 Comments

Will there be an empowered Palestinian collective?

John Kerry seems to be talking about an “internationally funded ghettoized entity” for Palestine, says Marc Ellis

Posted in Israel/Palestine | 7 Comments

The demand for a demilitarized state is telling Palestinians to give away the right to be free

Progressive Jews have been arguing for a demilitarized Palestinian state for decades. It’s a staple of progressive Jewish discourse. I, for one, am not climbing on the demilitarized state bandwagon. It is a disingenuous act. It means you are giving away the right of Palestinians to be free.

Posted in Israel/Palestine, US Policy in the Middle East, US Politics | 16 Comments

Celebrity justice

Before she quit Oxfam, I’m sure Johansson thought about the issue deeply – with her publicist. No doubt Oxfam did as well – with its publicists. –Marc Ellis is cynical about the relationship between the celebrity and her (former) cause.

Posted in Israel/Palestine | 11 Comments

(Their) State of the Union

Not a word on tyranny in Egypt, and barely a line about Syria’s descent into extremism, as Obama champions the U.S. role in the world.

Posted in Israel/Palestine | 4 Comments

The US charade in Egypt, Syria and Palestine

The charade is empowering – for the powerful. The charade is a disaster – for the suffering.

Posted in Egypt, Israel/Palestine, syria, US Policy in the Middle East, US Politics | 2 Comments

Are we all Egyptians?

Democracy wears military fatigue, not just in Egypt, but in the US and Israel. Can’t Jews understand that they were wrong about the “liberation” of 1948?

Posted in Israel/Palestine | 19 Comments

Kerry’s Syrian illusion

Is Kerry pursuing regime change in Syria or is he posturing for the world community? Kerry should get off his anti-Iran soapbox and get on with helping to end the suffering of the Syrian people.

Posted in Israel/Palestine | 7 Comments

Kerry’s Saudi recipe for Palestinian homelessness

News reports say that John Kerry has the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia signed up to provide housing for Palestinian refugees in foreign countries

Posted in Israel/Palestine | 7 Comments

Israel’s castle

The New York Times promotes Israel’s “bad neighborhood” reason for never making peace with Palestinians. But the castle and the ghetto have always failed Jews

Posted in Israel/Palestine | 17 Comments

The (Jewish) N-Word

Trivializing Nazi and the Holocaust. Ethnically cleansing a people to create a state, placing permanent settlements to expand the state and then building a wall around the remaining occupied population – that’s the ultimate trivialization of Jewish suffering.

Posted in Israel/Palestine, Israeli Government, Occupation | 27 Comments

After Sharon

Call and response from the altar: a litany of Israel’s human rights violations. Never again, we say. Yet there is no ending, even after Sharon

Posted in Israel/Palestine | 4 Comments


Ariel Sharon’s Lebanon adventure in 1982 precipitated the isolation of Israel in the international community, as well as a civil war within the Jewish community over Israel that continues to divide Jews today. That war was an instigator for the new Israeli historians and their subversive narrative of Israel’s origins which is now accepted around the world. In the long run, Sharon diminished support for a Jewish state even among mainstream Jews. That support will never be recovered.

Posted in Israel/Palestine | 13 Comments

Sharon’s debris

At Sharon’s funeral today, not a word was heard about how progressive Jews loathed Sharon, and how he did not belong in “our” dream of a Jewish state. Israel has conquered Palestine– that is what Sharon left behind. And he left Jews the debris of a religion and a culture that once wrestled with the ethical.

Posted in Israel/Palestine | 27 Comments


Miko Peled on Sharon: He possessed an insatiable appetite for power, glory and fortune. His tendencies as a cold-blooded, merciless killer were evident from early on in his career. Says Marc Ellis: Simply put, Sharon was a thug.

Posted in Israel/Palestine | 84 Comments