Interfaith event traces views of salvation
BY BILL SHERMAN World Religion Writer
Saturday, February 25, 2012
It isn’t every day that a prominent
evangelical pastor stands up in a
Tulsa Jewish synagogue and proclaims
that the historical Jesus was the
long-promised Jewish Messiah, the only
way to God.
But it happened Monday at an interfaith
women’s luncheon at Temple Israel.
The women’s fellowship at Temple Israel
invited women from Victory Christian
Center to the annual event, where
the spiritual leaders of both congregations
explained their faith tradition’s
view of salvation.
The Rev. Sharon Daugherty, pastor
of Victory Christian Center, and Rabbi
Charles Sherman of Temple Israel each
spoke for about 20 minutes and then answered
It was the first time a Victory pastor
has spoken at the interfaith luncheon.
Victory is a 17,000-member charismatic
church, one of Tulsa’s largest,
with a conservative evangelical viewpoint.
Temple Israel is a liberal Reform
Beginning with the creation account
in the Book of Genesis, Daugherty
traced the fall of mankind in the Garden
of Eden and the Old Testament prophecies
that she said foretold the virgin
birth of Jesus Christ and his death and
resurrection to save people from the
curse of the fall, sin and death.
Her voice broke, and she had to stop
and compose herself as she described
how the grace and mercy of God have
sustained her through every trial since
she accepted Christ as a teenager. Two
years ago, she lost her husband, the late
Victory pastor Billy Joe Daugherty, to
“We believe we’ve been called to be
a blessing to the nation of Israel and
to the Jewish community worldwide
and to support you and defend you,”
said Daugherty, who is state director of
Christians United for Israel.
“When some of you think about the
name Christian, different thoughts
come to your mind because things have
been done in the name of Christianity
that were bad and that were wrong and
cruel, that have caused great hurt and
devastation to the Jewish community,”
“But our desire is to change that view."
In answer to questions, she said she
did not believe in Darwinian evolution,
and she did believe that the Bible is the
word of God, written by men as the Holy
Rabbi Sherman said Judaism and
Christianity share remarkable similarities,
with differences that are primarily
a matter of emphasis.
Religious Jews are at least as concerned
about collective salvation, saving
society on Earth, as they are about saving
individual souls, he said.
“We use the word redemption much
more frequently than the word salvation."
He said redemption includes three elements:
national, the return of the Jewish
people to the land of Israel; universal,
an end of warfare, creation of a just,
compassionate society and recognition
of the one and only God; and individual,
the final judgment and afterlife, including
the immortality of the soul and resurrection
of the body, which Jews view
in a variety of ways.
He said Jews recognize God as creator,
giver of the Torah and redeemer,
three characteristics that are inexorably
He said Jews believe the monotheistic
faiths — Judaism, Christianity and Islam
— all worship the same God.
Christians tend to get their view of
Judaism from the Bible, he said, so they
miss the last 2,000 years of Jewish experience.
He said Judaism changed in the year
70 when Romans destroyed the Jewish
temple in Jerusalem, eliminating the
temple sacrifice and the need for priests.
“The heart fell out of the Jewish experience. … The diaspora began,” he said.
“Jews had to change, or die out. Our
change was to leave the sacrificial system
and turn to the sacrifice of the heart,
which is prayer."
Bill Sherman 918-581-8398
The Rev. Sharon Daugherty, pastor
of Victory Christian Center, preaches
recently at Victory Bible Institute.
MATT BARNARD/Tulsa World file
Rabbi Charles Sherman of Temple
Israel addresses his congregation.
MICHAEL WYKE/Tulsa World file