Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Pyles Makes a Good Point

Here's something from James Pyles blog (link).  He takes me to task for something I said about rescuing Christians from anti-Judaic doctrines.  And he actually makes a good point.  Here's the relevant portion from his blog:

"I see church as a less than ideal environment for anyone who wishes to follow Torah…I see the need for rescue missions but for everyone in churches…I think they all need to be rescued — rescued from anti-Judaic doctrines…I see those anti-Judaic Christian doctrines as negatively affecting both Jews and gentiles. There is only one faith and it’s a Jewish faith — it’s the Judaism proposed by Yeshua and the authors of the New Testament.

-a comment from Peter
on Gene Shlomovich’s blog post
One Law Gentile Has a Change of Heart

Peter suggests that Christians need to be rescued out of the church and returned to…what?

Well, let’s go back a step. Rescued from what?
rescued from anti-Judaic doctrines…

So you get a small army together, raid a local church during Sunday services, scoop everyone up in a big net, and fly them via helicopter to…where? A late Second Temple era “ekklesia?”

But they don’t exist and frankly, we don’t know how to replicate one. Even if we did, is that our goal? To transport all 21st century Christians back in time twenty centuries to the first “churches” established by Paul in the diaspora? To what end?"

The idea of a rescue mission is to send in a team to evacuate or protect people and transport them back to a safe, home base.  Pyles is saying that the One Law movement either does not constitute such a "home base" or that it is futile to try to recreate the congregations that Paul planted in the first-century because our information about them is limited.  

So do you think Pyles has a point?  

Or how about a situation where there's a town that has no One Law congregations.  Why bother sending out search and rescue missions to the churches if it's not possible to transport the people to a One Law congregation?  


  1. James is wrong, both historically and his opinion. We know what it was like, Acts, describes Synagogues who came to accept the message of Messiah, both Jews and Gentiles, thus Judaism was maintained, the Synagogue continued, I won't say we know all the clear details, but we do know they did not form something outside of Judaism, ie Christianity for Gentiles. What he is doing, is taking the few scenarios where both Jews and Gentiles were kicked out and had to form their own congregation, then ignoring that Jews were also part of these new congregations, and claiming they were only gentile. Now I don't doubt, that there was possibly some congregations that were majority Gentile, especially over time, but we see it orchestrated after that of the Synagogue. Many stayed in the Synagogue, and those who were not safe in a Synagogue formed their own groups, but remember we are talking Jews and Gentiles, not just gentiles, thus his argument concerning gentiles is moot, because the same would have to apply to the believing Jews who came out with them due to persecution.

    In other words, Bilateral Ecclisiology does not exist in the scriptures, that does not mean it does not exist in some peoples imaginations. :D

  2. Pyles uses hyperbolic rhetoric to mock a real problem: the Church has anti-Judaic doctrines. He would not use that same language when speaking of Jews in the Church, revealing his real bias: the belief that Jews shouldn't be in the Church, but gentiles should. Bilateral Ecclesiology, all the way.

    But let's address the problem, and not the ideologues:

    Given the Church has anti-Judaic and anti-Torah doctrines, what do we do?

    Leave the church and gather with people who do not hold such doctrines.


    Stay in the church and try to reform it.

    The folks who do either are bold and standing for their, and Scripture's, principles. I suggest we maintain a good relationship with the Church while we congregate together with like minded believers. Staying in a Church leads to assimilation, Jew or gentile.

    1. Judah,

      I agree. I think that means that visiting a Church should be a temporary solution. Yikes! I might need a little rescuing myself if I don't hurry up and find a OL home base.

    2. I agree. I think that means that visiting a Church should be a temporary solution. Yikes! I might need a little rescuing myself if I don't hurry up and find a OL home base.

      Go also to synagogue, that way, you can get the best and worst of both worlds. :D

    3. Zion,

      You're right. I'll try to go to a synagogue this Shabbat. In fact, I'll do some research now to see which one is nearby.