Any descendant of Abraham. Originally they were called Hebrews.
Sometimes in the NT the Jews are termed “the circumcision”, distinguishing themselves by the physical act God instructed was to happen to Abraham and all his male descendants (Gen 17:10; Phil 3:3; Tit 1:10).
In the NT the word Jew is used as the opposite to Gentile, which encompassed all nationalities not of Jewish descent (Act 14:1,2,5; 1 Cor 1:23; Gal 2:14,15). The gospel was first presented to the Jews with many becoming Christians and forming the early church. Peter’s primary focus continued to be with them, however, as a nation they increasingly rejected the gospel and the Gentiles responded becoming the focus of Paul’s ministry (Act 17:4; Rom 1:16, 11:13,14; Gal 2:8). Strong ill-feeling (anti-Semitism) is sometimes directed at the Jews in general because of their involvement in demanding that Christ be crucified.
Thank God for the Jewish people and ask for His blessing on them
special in its own right; rather it was that God chose them to bring His purposes to pass, with all nations on earth being blessed. Salvation is ‘from the Jews’, because Jesus our Saviour was born of a Jewish woman (Gen 18:18; Jn 4:22).
Many Jews today hold to the OT belief system and are still looking for a Messiah, as they don’t acknowledge Jesus Christ. Replacement theology is a wrong belief that considers God has by-passed the Jews and they have no further involvement in God’s plan.
See also: anti-Semitism, circumcision, Gentiles, Hebrews, Judaism, nations, replacement theology, Talmud, Torah.