Dushaw, Amos I., spent the greater part of his youth in Jerusalem, Palestine [sic!], where he attended the school of the London Jews’ Society. Here the seeds of Christian truth were sown in his young  heart. He afterwards came to London, where he was brought into close connexion with the members of the above-mentioned society, and the germs of truth gradually grew, budded, and blossomed into faith in our Lord as his Messiah. [Bernstein]
Dushaw went to America in 1895. The following year he was baptized, upon confession of his faith in Christ, in the Fourth Congregational Church, at Hartford, Conn.
He followed Horace Greeley’s advice, “Young man, go West.” He was determined to obtain a classical education. After a hard struggle, that perseverance and determination to conquer all obstacles always a component of the Jewish character, enabled him, in 1901, to graduate from Redfield College, South Dakota. He afterwards returned to New York, and entered the Union Theological Seminary, from which he graduated in 1904. June 12, 1905, he received a preacher’s license from the New York Presbytery.
While pursuing his regular academic course he made a specialty of sociology, literature and history. Especially was he interested in Hebrew history and the present social, religious and political status of Israel. He supplemented this study by personal observation as a worker on the East Side of NY. This training enabled him to write for “The People, The Land and the Book”, some very choice articles. Several secular papers quoted from one of his articles, “Moses and Jesus”.
The production of this article was due to the following incident. Dushaw called upon one of the leading reformed rabbis to discuss the condition of the Jews in the Ghetto. This rabbi was so much impressed with his insight into the situation, and also with his information on many facts pertaining to Israel’s development, that he advised him to return to the Hebrew ranks. Israel, he said, would appreciate his ability, whereas the Church would simply cast him out, because he was a member of Israel. He thought Dushaw was foolish to waste his time in the Church. On separating, the rabbi gave him a lecture, “Moses and Jesus”, delivered in his temple. Dushaw then decided to write one on the same subject, from his own point of view.
Prayer: Thank you, Lord, for this gifted and reflective Jewish believer in Yeshua, who whose novels and other writings express the problematic issues of identity, theology and narrative that challenge Messianic Jews throughout history. Thank you for his honesty, contribution to scholarship, and faith in you. Help us to similarly articulate the issues on which Church and Synagogue have been divided for thousands of years, but which, in your purposes, will one day be resolved. In Yeshua’s name we pray. Amen.
Lower East Side writer Amos Dushaw began a series of non-fiction and fictional books to respond to Cahan’s stereotyping of Jewish Christians. After studying at Union Theological Seminar he published The People, the Land and the Book as a Jewish Chrstian counterpart to Abraham Cahan’s The Rise of David Levinsky.
Dushaw published his novel Proselytes of the Ghetto as a direct response to Cahan. The title may be an allusion to Israel Zangwill’s Children of the Ghetto. Zangwill gave currency to the phrase “the melting pot,” which he said was God’s way of remaking what it means to be Jewish.
Felix, the narrator of the story, recounts that the “Russian Jews” who read the New Testament discover that “God’s love is wider than petty creeds have represented, and that the life and teachings of the Nazarene have been caricatured by many of his followers. Here he discovers that the New Testament is not anti-Semitic and that Jesus was a loyal son of Israel, who came to break down the barriers which separated man from man.”
Dushaw combined Zionism and Messianism. “Zionism will do it, from a political point of view, and the gospel from a spiritual point of view; and the intelligent Jews are turning to Zionism for political freedom, and to the gospel for spiritual freedom.”
He published the novel The Rivals: A Tragedy of the New York Ghetto. The story line is that Jewish journalist Daniel Mendes meets Debora Herz, and problems ensue over his evident belief in Jesus.
1920 Dushaw was appointed by the Hebrew Christian Alliance as its representative in Palestine.
1932 Dushaw published When Mr. Thompson Got to Heaven.
The book is sprinkled with some surprising gems. For instance, there is the account of Amos Dushaw, a Jewish Christian novelist “who gave voice in his novels to the struggles and dilemmas of converted Jews” (p. 51). Comparing his writings to those of the famous Yiddish novelist Abraham Cahan, Ariel notes that Dushaw was somewhat unconventional but that nevertheless, he served as the Hebrew Christian Alliance’s representative to Palestine beginning in 1920.
“The Russian Jew who reads the New Testament for the first time, is like a man who, on climbing a mountain, finds himself enshrouded in a thick cloud, and as he rises higher, he at length reaches the summit of the mountain where he sees the sun shining in all its splendor and beauty. Below him are the thick clouds, corresponding to human creeds which lead to unkind thoughts, petty jealousies, cruel and ignorant prejudices,
and non-chivalrous deeds. Here, far away from human inventions he finds himself in a limitless sphere of love and sympathy where creeds vanish before the Giver of light and life. The thought instantly comes to him, “Is this what I beheld below?” but his soul resents even the very suggestion of a possible resemblance between the atmosphere of the mountain top and that of the valley. What sights he now beholds! The light has revealed to him a larger horizon than he ever beheld before. Here he discovers that God’s love is wider than petty creeds have represented, and that the life and teachings of the Nazarene have been caricatured by many of his followers. Here he discovers that the New Testament is not anti-Semitic and that Jesus was a loyal son of Israel, who came to break down the barriers which separated man from man.”
The Grumbler, South St. Paul, MN, 1912
The Rivals: A Tragedy of the New York Ghetto, Arthur H. Stockwell, London, 1910
When Jews and Christians Meet: an Interpretaion and a Message for the Department of Jewish Evangelisation by the Presbyterian Board of Publication and Sabbath School work, 1923
The Man Called Jesus, Fleming H. Revell Company, New York, 1939
Anti-Semitism – The Voice of Folly and Fanaticism, Tolerance Press, Brooklyn, 1943
When Mr. Thompson Got to Heaven, Tolerance Press, Brooklyn, 1932, 1954
No Room for Him, Tolerance Press, Brooklyn, 1950
Proselytes of the Ghetto: Time: the Present: Place: New York 1909 J. Heidinsfeld, 1909
Moses and Jesus, Calvary Baptist, 1924
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