Please upgrade to a newer browser.

The Lehrhaus website works best in modern browsers like Internet Explorer 8, Firefox 4, Google Chrome 10, Safari 3 and newer. If you are not using one of these, you may encounter visual glitches or other problems.

Traditions of Continuity and Diversity: The Rise of Rabbinic Judaism and Classical Christianity

This course was offered in Winter/Spring, 2018.

Jews and Christians claim that they share a common historical lineage, although this is often felt to be an uncomfortable fact. It has been said that there has never been a “real” Jewish-Christian dialogue because of the millennia-old struggle between them.

Until our recent era, there has rarely been a comprehensive and sympathetic portrayal of the rise of these two classical religious traditions from their common core and heritage—one that could claim any sense of being “unbiased.” How can we understand the history and context of the development of these two intertwined religious traditions from 586 BCE to 325 CE?

While no one can claim total objectivity, this course will attempt to provide just such an overview of the growth of the Rabbinic tradition and of classical Christianity within the context of the Greco-Roman world. These four sessions will attempt to provide crucial insights into that history with all its threads of continuity, divergence, and conflict.

Our goal is to provide a firm historical basis to begin anew a more fruitful discussion and true dialogue based on mutual respect and appreciation.

This course will presume no previous historical knowledge of this era and will use audio-visual, textual, and lecture and discussion formats to carry us through the material. Jews, Christians, and anyone else interested in the topic are encouraged to attend.

This course will be available to registered students via Adobe Connect distance learning software at no extra charge. Students may attend live in the classroom, live online, or anytime via video recording.


# Sessions
Date & time

Tuesdays, February 20 - March 13
7:00 - 8:30 pm

$60 for the public
$45 for members
Session Time Days Location Instructors
Feb 20 7:00 PM–8:30 PM Tue Lehrhaus Bruce Bramlett
Feb 27 7:00 PM–8:30 PM Tue Lehrhaus Bruce Bramlett
Mar 06 7:00 PM–8:30 PM Tue Lehrhaus Bruce Bramlett
Mar 13 7:00 PM–8:30 PM Tue Lehrhaus Bruce Bramlett


Lehrhaus Judaica

2736 Bancroft Way

Berkeley, CA 94704



Bruce Bramlett

Bruce BramlettThe Rev. Bruce R. Bramlett is an Episcopal priest and theological scholar. He has spent his academic career exploring and understanding the long, complex , and often tragic history of the Jewish-Christian encounter throughout the west, exploring specifically its affects on the Holocaust and working for reconciliation and renewal between these two traditions in the Post-Shoah era. He has done interdisciplinary graduate work in Historical and Theological studies at the Graduate Theological Union in Berkeley. While primarily a parish priest, he has continued to teach at a number of regional universities and colleges including St. Mary’s College, University of San Francisco, Dominican University, and San Jose State/Sonoma State Universities. He has also done adult education for numerous churches and synagogues and worked as an instructor for many years at Lehrhaus Judaica. He has also been a Holocaust educator in schools and colleges throughout the Bay area. He has studied the Holocaust at Yad Vashem and advanced Judaica at the Sholom Hartman Institute in Jerusalem.