Thursday, October 24, 2013

Gene Shlomovich, UMJC-Trained, FFOZ-Collaborator, Turned APOSTATE

I started this blog for one reason:

Boaz Michael (of First Fruits of Zion) and Gene Shlomovich were conspiring to take down the One-Law movement.  Their plan:  get these One-Law Messianics alone in a room with Gene and Boaz and slowly brainwash them.

That made me mad.

I could see Satan working through these guys, see them trying to fight what the Spirit of G-d is doing around the world through the One-Law movement.

Now behold the REAL "fruit" of First "Fruits" of Zion!

Here's Gene Shlomovich's own words:

"I no longer believe that any of the Greek writings of the New Testament are an inspired "Word of G-d". No, I think these writings are a rebellion to the Word of G-d..." 
"As a Jew, I've never felt closer to HaShem than when Jesus the idol was no longer in-between me and my Maker."
Of course, Boaz Michael is not entirely to blame here.  The UMJC is the organization that trained Gene.  Gene even invited me to join him one time at a UMJC conference.  Glad I decided not to go!  Here's what the UMJC teaches:

(1) the Bible is not a supernatural book:   CLICK HERE FOR LINK

(2) you don't need Yeshua in order to be saved:  CLICK HERE FOR LINK

CONCLUSION

What do you have to say for yourself, Boaz Michael?

What do you have to say for yourself, Carl Kinbar and Mark Kinzer?


NOTE:  Gene, I decided to take this public after hearing what you did to Judah's brother.  I consider Judah to be family.  

35 comments:

  1. Gene's apostasy is sad, despite being a kind of vindication.

    For so long, we have been saying faithfully that God is doing a great work among the gentiles. He's opened eyes to the beauty of His Torah, shown the Israel-centric nature of our faith, and the Jewishness of Yeshua to the gentiles. It's positively marvelous what God has done among the nations, even in the last 50 years, and I believe it's building up to something greater.

    Gene's Bilateral Ecclesiology flew in the face of this work of God. He'd say the Torah is only required of Jews, asserting gentiles should stay in the Church (Tent of David), and that the Messianic movement is intended for Jews alone, rather than an enlarged commonwealth of Israel. The idea of Jews and gentiles as co-heirs in the assembly was put down in favor of clear distinctions between Jews and gentiles, creating an inequality in the body of Messiah that has contributed to apostasy.

    Gene always stumped for those things, even gaining a reputation as a haughty, browbeating debater. I remember one instance where even Leman had to step in, telling Gene he crossed a line in his harsh criticisms of One Law and Two House Messianics. I was talking to Gene today, and recalled my first interaction with him: I posted a picture of my wife and kids, and he commented on the picture to say I was a member of a cult. (I guess not much has changed!)

    Gene was so certain and confident he was right, and his arguments were often harsh rebukes. Now he recants all of those "certainties" and replaces them with his new certainty in apostasy. In a way, it's vindicating. Even so, it's overall saddening and discouraging to see apostasy, even from Gene.

    I'd like to propose some courses of action going forward.

    First, that we treat Gene kindly, despite how he has treated so many of us in the past. I believe Yeshua loves even the lost sheep. Let's keep this in mind going forward. Gene, since we know you're reading, I still love you as a brother, and if there is a way to prove that going forward, let me know.

    Second, I suggest this: chazak, chazak, v'nit chazek. Let's learn from this and be strengthened in the vindication that what Gene was speaking truly in opposition to God's work among the gentiles, and that the fruit Gene demonstrated was not the fruit of the Spirit.

    How do we learn from this? I believe there are some clear indicators of a path that leads to apostasy. In my 10 years of blogging, I've now see 4 Messianic bloggers abandon Yeshua faith for Judaism or atheism, and I see some common pitfalls that leads to unbelief. I'll elaborate in a future blog post.

    We should see red flags when we see questionable fruit from individuals. We are commanded to know men by their fruit. I should have been tipped off something was not right from my very first interaction, if not the years of ugly fights that followed, or the active confusion propogated by "converting" Messianics to bilateral ecclesiology. All this was bad fruit, we knew it, but didn't consider the existence a deeper problem within the individual.

    Let's learn from these things and be strengthened in our faithfulness to Messiah, even when close friends deny him.

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    1. Shalom Judah,

      I don't keep up with the latest MessyWorld battles, and for good reason (look at all the fun I am missing out on) so I don't know who Gene S. is. But it seems that darkness is attracted to darkness as a spiritual principle, and you can't logically or rationally argue someone into the light. If this guy has joined the anti-missionaries, because he is attracted to their hatred and pridefullness or because he is getting a paycheck, or both, I don't know.

      It appears, with UMJC, they are ruled by a man-pleasing spirit, which brings a snare. Leaven + time = leaven taking over. I was there back in the 70's and 80's, and even back then, there was an attitude of desiring to be accepted and approved of by the greater Jewish and rabbinic world. The only way that is going to happen is to deny Yeshua, and it seems that this is the direction in which things are going. Yeshua said that the Son of Man had no place to lay his head, and that is also our fate if we join ourselves to him. I know, we all want a place to lay our head on this side of eternity.

      Now, I have a different take on One Law, and this is, One Law is only for those who sojourn among us to cut our wood and draw our water; the one law is for the Eliezers, not the Hagars.

      One can "leave Babylon," and then create their own Babylon, and perhaps a worse one. We are also told that 10 men of the goyim will take hold of the the tzitzit of one Jew and say, "We will go with you for we know God is with you." Sadly, some are taking hold of the tzitzit of fake Jews, who have set themselves up as authorities directing said gentiles where to go, and even having the audacity to tell Jews what to do.

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  2. Judah:

    I might comment that fathful adherence to Judaism in our Hashivenu corner of the Messianic Jewish world has not been leading people away from Yeshua. In fact, I'd say the highest views of Yeshua's divinity and centrality come precisely from the Kinzer-Dauermann-Kinbar-Saal crowd, the scholars of Hashivenu.

    Gene was never really involved in our segment of Messianic Judaism. As for the UMJC (a broad network of congregations, mst of whom would not be Hashivenu-style), I think Gene attended once.

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    1. Now the denials come. Gene, who has precisely shared the Bilateral view, along with you, has now denied the Messiah, and you denounce him having any real relation to Messianic Judaism, or now a plural Messianic Judaism (your group) vs another Messianic Judaism... fancy.

      Gene followed Bilateral Ecclesiology to the "T", and its ultimate conclusion of elevating ethnic identity to a level of importance greater than that of the Messiah, which resulted, in denial.


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    2. Derek, I don't mean to say UMJC isn't from God, or that Hashivenu leads to apostasy. (Thank you, Lord, for the service of Dauermann, Kinbar, and others who have served you faithfully for decades. May God prosper the work they are doing!)

      Rather, I believe bilateral ecclesiology can contribute to apostasy by rebuilding a wall between Jews and gentiles, creating inequality, rather than mutual submission, in the body of Messiah. That we have 4 Messianic Judaism bloggers who have ended up in apostasy should be a signal that the fruit of such a belief is not of the Spirit.

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    3. I agree with Judah, I think that people who are Jewish and are reclaiming their trashed identity from Christianity, who take hold of the Bilateral theory, end up trading one extreme for the other...From Christianity, where their Jewish identity meant absolutely nothing, to Bilateral Ecclesiology, where their identity is in some ways, more important than their identity in the Messiah.

      But then comes the gentiles, who realize they really are not part of this ship, well they are, but they are in the background, so in order to really participate and be part of the family, they feel the need to convert, because Bilateral in itself, disconnects them from the group, well they are still part of the group, but they are a lesser part of the group in technical terms. Basically conversion to Judaism offers a gentile more or takes a gentile farther than Yeshua can, into covenant relationship with God, giving a gentile the privileges/benefits/blessings that otherwise, he/she would not have.

      In other words, from a BE perspective, gentiles-believers do not have the full covenant responsibilities/blessings as Jews, and thus in order to take hold of all that God has to offer, a gentile must progress past Yeshua, as He only gets you in the door, if you want the whole package, you need conversion (something better). Yeshua is pushed down, while Jewish Identity is elevated, to the highest calling.

      Of course many try to put their spin on this and deny this, but as you stated, we are seeing the fruits of this very dilemma, but it is not hard to see, if one is willing to do the math.

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    4. That's a pretty good summary Zion, thanks and Shabbat Shalom

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    5. Yes, that is a good summary.

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  3. Zion:

    My comments were in no way intended to denounce Gene. I love and understand Gene's choice. My comment was to say that you guys perceived Gene as being highly related to our circle of MJ and it simply isn't true. He agreed with us about bilateral ecclesiology and about the authority of Jewish tradition for Jews, and to you that means he was closely within our circle.

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    1. I love and understand Gene's choice.

      Wait a second, you love that Gene has decided to deny the Messiah and you understand this?

      Peter, if you ever create a "Wall of Weird", if you can do me a favor, make sure Derek is the first.

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    2. Did he just say "I love and understand Gene's choice"???

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    3. I noticed that when another Messianic Judaism-leaning blogger, Christian4Moses, lost faith in Yeshua and converted to Judaism, James Pyles commended it, saying,

      "I’m very glad that you have found your path. May you continually walk in His Presence."

      I do not think the disciples of Yeshua should be commending apostasy.

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    4. For those who don't know, James Pyles, in addition to encouraging people to follow "the path" of heresy, writes for FFOZ's "Messiah Journal".

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    5. This comment has been removed by the author.

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    6. p.s. I would guess Derek did not intend to say what he said. He probably meant to say, "I love Gene and understand his Gene's choice." I will give him the benefit of the doubt.

      [deleted above comment because of typo]

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  4. JewishPrincess:

    I love your quick judgment based on zero evidence: "It appears, with UMJC, they are ruled by a man-pleasing spirit, which brings a snare."

    Any sage advice you would offer to the UMJC from your high position of being a Jewish princess?

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  5. I do not understand how anyone in his right mind can say that he loves and understands an act of formal apostasy. A person who apostates is in high risk of committing a sin which the Apostle John calls sin unto death (I Jn. 5:16).

    It is possible, however, that a person denies Messiah while being in the state of a confused mind, in a crisis of faith, for instance if he is overwhelmed or torn apart by difficulties in the interpretation of the NT or puzzled by questions on how the NT exactly is in harmony with the Torah. Such a person will in the end not be stubborn enough to complete an orthodox conversion but will be attentive to the clear evidence of Yeshua's resurrection.

    Because of this possibility of a temporal confusion of mind, let us pray for Gene's return and not throw stones at him. We all have the treasure of our faith in earthen vessels.

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    1. Re: "I do not understand how anyone in his right mind can say that he loves and understands an act of formal apostasy."

      Hear, hear!

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  6. This is sad indeed n scary because my jewish friend here in oz and close friendr is/was very close to gene...and many times told me to stay away from you, peter. I could see gene had bad fruit by his manner of speech etc etc. The same jewish brother whom I occasionally attend his studies is very hung up on this 2 law thing. Ive decided to still attend his teachings in the hope the holy spirit will open his eyes it no longer aggravates me the way 2law speak as though gentile low in G-ds estimation but this is a sign of whats to come when pride comes as the bible states. The Holy Spirit finally showed me hes taking care of those who speak falsely may we never forget this specially those responsible for the sheep. My jewish friend blames the gentile for genes act n it surprised me very much as genes leaving shows where his foundations lay. My prayer is that my jewish brother will wake up soon from this terrible deception may those who have eyes n ears to hear stand strong n those who dont G-d have mercy on them! I am a widow with 5 children n no community this can be very discouraging. May I request prayer to sell my property so I can be closer to a like minded family 6hrs from me. Happy to have found this site n the leading of the Holy Spirit. Im angry at the likes of leman n ffoz I have no right but im angry they are blind to the damage they cause ive bn a victim of it G-d has used to for good. It took my husbands faith too he thought we found something good but the likes of gene etc turned him, my husband was a little weaker in his faith. He no longer has to be here to witness the agenda of men. Ok thanks for letting me rant I cud go on :) now im gonna go n ask the L-rd to cleanse me my heart feels rather contaminated....

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    1. Sister,

      I think the anger you feel is like the anger Yeshua felt when He saw wicked men infiltrating His Father's House.

      Anger is good if it leads a man (or woman) to protect his family.

      In fact, if there is a man or woman out there who doesn't, from time to time, experience these types of feelings then I would be concerned for them.

      Re: "May I request prayer to sell my property so I can be closer to a like minded family 6hrs from me."

      I'll pray for you now (and I'll ask anyone reading this to also join with me in prayer).

      Also, as I'm sure you know, remember that you, as a Messianic, have not only Messianics as your spiritual family but all Believers--including Christians. The assembly of Believers in your local area (no matter their denomination) have a responsibility to assist you as a widow if you're unable to receive help from more immediate family.

      Shalom and blessings in the L-rd Yeshua,

      Peter

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  7. Wow. Gene, why?

    As for the association to the UMJC or FFoZ, while Gene had some things in common with them, I understood his position regarding some theological issues was there before and not because of them. He also had friends in the MJAA, so why was he not so influenced by them? And I don't see how such commonalities that we may not share would lead to this apostasy.

    Meanwhile, I was convinced of Gene's solidarity of knowing that Yeshua is the Messiah and maintaining his Jewishness. That while he participated in an orthodox shul (in Florida?), and the men there knew of his acceptance of Yeshua, he and they were comfortable with it. I even recall one of his comments on a Rosh Pina Project in response to another Jewish individual that Christianity is a false religion: "I represent Judaism that recognizes Yeshua as the only true Messiah that our people ever had or ever will have. Judaism and faith in Messiah do not cancel each other out, regardless of the present, but temporary blindness and obstinateness of majority of Israel toward Yeshua as being the one."

    I had noticed that he dropped from blogging and commenting for a while and that his site, that I had enjoyed visiting, was made private. So, I had no idea of this progression.

    In short, I wouldn't blame the UMJC or FFoZ (but what to I know).

    Why, Gene? What has shaken your foundation? What has seduced you from the One who once loved? (2 Corinthians 11:3)

    On a different note, and not related, has anyone heard from Luke Romer (KOEOY blogger) lately?

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    1. Shalom, Marko. I'm here; teary-eyed and shaking my head with the rest of you - truly saddened by what I'm seeing. I've had a few, strange tangles with Gene over the years, so some of this makes sense. I think Judah probably saw it all coming miles away too. But yeah, it's terrible (and shouldn't surprise us, knowing the issues some of our brothers grapple with). But you needn't worry for me, my friend. B"H!

      I stepped away from blogging for a bit (partly from a James 3:1 standpoint), but often feel compelled to pick it back up. Maybe once I wrap up a large project I've been working on this year, I'll return to the internet to pretend I know stuff. Thanks for asking, Marko.

      Love and pray for one another. Shalom to you all. ~ Luke

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  8. A Messianic — Jewish or non-Jewish — shouln't participate in an orthodox synagogue on a regular basis. This is wrong because there is no possibility of expressing one's messianic faith in the context of orthodox liturgy and ritual. Nobody should underestimate the effect this has on a person's mind. It works as a conditioner to the effect that messianic faith is to remain somehow hidden. Subconciously, this has effects on a person's self-perception and it doesn instill the misleading impression that faith Yeshua is somehow irrelevant for one's observance.

    I would add to this that in messianic circles the liturgy and all that''s belong to it is often treated with a level of ignorance which is astonishing as it is irresponsible. 'Worship Teams', 'Messianic Dance' and stuff like that, which serious people, especially orthodox Jews, find distasteful. They are thus only stiffened in their verdict that the messianic movement is simply a erratic and dilettantish phenomenon.

    Messianic community life and liturgy should be clearly and unambiguously concentrated on Messiah, but this should be done not through of all kinds of sponteneous expression, but in a regular manner, treating liturgy and ritual as serious matters. Only in this way a messianic shul will present a serious alternative to an orthodox one.

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  9. The culprit of Gene's apostasy is Orthodox Judaism, not BE or UMJC. For years he attended a shul in Florida and these are the results.

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    1. While that is true probably in Gene's case, it does not explain the Apostates who were part of the UMJC and FFOZ who left for Judaism, all together.

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    2. Zion,

      Could it not be that the non-engagement of the UMJC on Torah observance is another cause of apostasy? What I have read about it at least evokes the impression that the UMJC doesn't consider Torah observance obligatory for anyone, not even for Jews, and that the ritual mitzvot only are considered as cultural markers which can be observed for that reason and to keep the Jews distinct from the Gentiles. So their position concerning the obligatory character of the Torah is almost the same as the position of the Church, that the Torah ceased to be binding after the coming of Yeshua.

      Such a position can only be very unsatisfactory from a religious viewpoint. For any person interested in Torah — Jew or Gentile — it must look like a mockery. Naturally, then, the really serious become attracted to what seems to be the only real alternative, Orthodox Judaism.

      One can object to this that these persons would also have the possibility to join a One Law community. That's true. But as far as I know there are very few "One Law" communities which are stable and well-established and which succeed in maintaining a certain level of uniformity in their communal halachah and customs. It is very tiresome to join a One Law congregation and to discover soon afterwards that everyone does what seems good in his own eyes.

      To give an example: There are some who insist on Glatt kosher, while for others normal kosher is kosher enough. Then there are those who dispute the requirement of Shechitah. Then there are still others who don't follow the halachah of the separation of meat and milk. As a consequence, people begin to question other halachic principles, for instance that eggs and milk from non-kosher animals may not be consumed. "Where is that in Scripture?" they keep asking, and see nothing problematic in eating ostrich eggs or drinking camel's milk. Everyone develops his own kashrut laws and local congregation members cannot even eat together.

      One of the effects of this Protestant sickness of each one following his own interpretation has the effect that after a while people get so disgusted of the whole thing that they either return to their churches, or become radicals and opt for conversion to Orthodox Judaism.

      The root cause seems to be the same in all these cases: the erratic and dilettantish state of current Messianic Judaism.

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    3. Could it not be that the non-engagement of the UMJC on Torah observance is another cause of apostasy? What I have read about it at least evokes the impression that the UMJC doesn't consider Torah observance obligatory for anyone, not even for Jews, and that the ritual mitzvot only are considered as cultural markers which can be observed for that reason and to keep the Jews distinct from the Gentiles. So their position concerning the obligatory character of the Torah is almost the same as the position of the Church, that the Torah ceased to be binding after the coming of Yeshua.

      I don't necessarily get that impression from the UMJC, I see an umbrella organization, with competing ideas of how the Torah should be observed, all working together. If the UMJC takes a stance on Torah, according to what denomination will it mimick? The Ultra Orthodox, Orthodox, Conservative, Reform, etc. If they end up choosing one, they will eliminated everyone who does not hold to lets say an Orthodox view point.

      Such a position can only be very unsatisfactory from a religious viewpoint. For any person interested in Torah — Jew or Gentile — it must look like a mockery. Naturally, then, the really serious become attracted to what seems to be the only real alternative, Orthodox Judaism.

      This is going to be different for Jew and Gentile, because in a UMJC atmosphere, a gentile is a tag along and not a member of the community. Many will deny this, but this is the outcome of their teachings, gentiles 'come alongside', they do not 'come in'. So for a gentile, the reason to leave, would be to finally feel welcome within the community, thus conversion is what they think is the answer. Instead the answer is found in Yeshua, not in Jewish identity, but the UMJC plays this drum, they do not allow gentiles into the fold, or least they keep a wall dividing those who are gentiles and Jews in their theology. This is of course what they believe will uphold Jewish identity, effectively creating a lesser class, one that does not have the privileges in Messiah, and only has the privileges in Jewish identity, making Jewish identity, the ultimate goal, at least the ultimate goal for covenant community, thus diminishing the Messiah's work and gentiles.

      From a Jewish point, I think the reason there would be a strong draw to a Orthodox level of practice, would be to connect with what is felt by some, to be the highest form of keeping the Torah, however this is just an opinion, and many Jews would not be interested in an Orthodox lifestyle. The other point, would be from Jews who found their identity to be both worthless and degraded inside of Christianity, to going from one extreme to another, and that would be to where their identity means everything and more.

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    4. One can object to this that these persons would also have the possibility to join a One Law community. That's true. But as far as I know there are very few "One Law" communities which are stable and well-established and which succeed in maintaining a certain level of uniformity in their communal halachah and customs. It is very tiresome to join a One Law congregation and to discover soon afterwards that everyone does what seems good in his own eyes.

      I do understand this and yes I have witnessed this myself. A community setting forward rules to what they are going to 'do'/'not do', will for the most solve this, but the draw back is going to cut some out of the community and they will go and form a different.

      One of the effects of this Protestant sickness of each one following his own interpretation has the effect that after a while people get so disgusted of the whole thing that they either return to their churches, or become radicals and opt for conversion to Orthodox Judaism.

      The problem here, is that Protestants have survived despite a lack of liturgical practices, they survived and grew because they did hold to a maintained set of beliefs, any time someone joins a church (community), and this goes for both Protestant and Catholic, they have to go through classes, and agree to the regulations and beliefs of the community to join. I see benefits in both camps, but I do not strictly adhere to either, these are simply opinions that people are not going to fully agree upon. Even if, lets say, your idea was implemented, all communities accepted the Orthodox practice and lifestyle of Torah, it would still have to be changed or manipulated to fit the Apostolic Writings and Yeshua, which then is no longer Orthodox and is then a mixture, which then Halacha is challenged and changed.

      In my opinion, these two extremes for example, Protestants and Catholics or Orthodox and Conservative-Reform, must come to some form of a balance. Just picking one or the other, is nothing new and will not go away probably any time soon.

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  10. The culprit of Gene's apostasy is Orthodox Judaism, not BE or UMJC. For years he attended a shul in Florida and these are the results.

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  11. That makes the most sense.

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  12. Another culprit is a lack of Yeshua's words. "My words are spirit and they are life".

    Yet, these words are not focused on in many Messianic forums.

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  13. Absolutely tragic. Where did Gene say this Peter?

    All those hours I spent discussing and debating Gene's views on bilateral ecclesiology..... this is a good lesson (to me at least) on not getting bogged down in 1 on 1 debates.

    Probably better to focus our energies on sticking to the issues (writing articles, books, giving talks, etc.) -- not just on BE or One Torah, but also Jewish Apologetics -- i.e. answering Jewish objections to Yeshua (Dr. Michael Brown's 5 volume series being just one example). I don't think that's been a major focus for Messianic bloggers/authors in the past, but something that is sorely needed as the Orthodox community is actively seeking to fill its ranks with Messianics.

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    1. Rob,

      Your comment is from the L-rd. Here's why: All this morning I've been reading Michael Brown's books! I got online just now to create a post based on the section in Vol. 2 of Answering Jewish Objections that deals with atonement!

      That just confirms to me that your comment was directed by the L-rd! Praise G-d!

      Re: "Where did Gene say this Peter?"

      In an email conversation.

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  14. Guest comment: So much confusion and assumption. Why deviate from teshuvah. The Kingdom of Heaven is at hand. Yes, if we were there 2000 yrs ago and who appeared but Mashiach ben Yoseph, coming for the House of Israel, the lost sheep... We read into the past with our present perspective so easily. Even though so many through their comments made here on this blog and similar ones would deny this to be true. Strip away the cover and see the path with eyes of a babe and piece the puzzle together. Has "trusting faithfulness" been forgotten as the way to walking with the Elohim of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. Simple, yes, but it requires all of our "heart" and our will. So much "frosting" being discussed from the protesting past of the catholic 'kirche'; and we are afraid to let go. Let us eagerly await Machiach ben David and all Israel returning soon to the Land, speedily in our day.

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  15. Just wandered back to this blog. Thanks for stopping by and commenting. Glad you are well. Shalom u'vracha.

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