chapter  4
Preaching about an Absent Minority
Medieval Danish Sermons and Jews
ByJonathan Adams
Pages 25

The Jews of the New Testament were as much of interest for Christians in Denmark as they were for those in Germany or Italy is not particularly surprising. But the continued existence of the Jews and the problem this posed for the self-identification and self-definition of the Church as the New Israel are not really dealt with in extant Old Danish texts, despite its being a universal, rather than just a local, concern for the Church. This chapter explains these sermons: Christiern Pedersen's Book of Miracle Sermons from 1515; Copenhagen, The Royal Library; and Uppsala. The most noteworthy aspect of preaching about Jews in medieval Denmark is surely the fact that there were no Jews in Denmark, or indeed in the rest of Scandinavia, at the time. The Jews in these sermons offered the Christians an opportunity to reflect upon their lives and to prove their steadfastness to their own faith.