Monday, November 25, 2013

Christians: The Perfect Poison for Isolated Messianics

For the record, I never expected the Christian teacher with whom I've been conversing to read my arguments and immediately exclaim, "Wow!  I really am part of Israel through the blood of Yeshua!  And the Torah really is valid for non-Jewish Believers!"  It was probably an exercise in futility trying to convince him of the truth.  But I tried because A) I'd want someone to do the same for me and B) I can't help myself.  

So, without further ado, here's my final update on this apparently fruitless discussion. Here's his response:

Hello Peter.  I hope you had a blessed weekend.

I just want to make a couple of brief comments to your reply.

 Let me be clear; I never stated that the festivals were abolished.  What I said was that these were mandated by God to ISRAEL (Jews) as a way to remember the great and mighty acts of mercy and deliverance.  My point is that although they are permissible, they are not mandated for theGentile believers.   As for the ceremonial practices, I was thinking of the procedures of washing, cooking, dressing, etc. and things that pertain to the Leviticus order of worship related to the sacrifices.  The fact that Levites as a clan do not exist is evident that these things cannot be practiced.  As a matter of fact, no modern Jew can determine from which tribe they descend since the census records have long since been destroyed.

The key to understanding the issue of observance of Jewish Law is context.  When rightly applied, the rules of hermeneutics (context, rules of language, exegesis, etc.) makes this issue quite clear as was explained in Acts 15.  Nevertheless, there were those who insisted that Jewish converts adopt and maintain the same regulations as Jews.  This created much confusion for the Gentile believers in Antioch as well as the Galatians and Colossians.  This is also why Paul stressed the application of moral precepts and a life transformed by the "renewing of the mind (Ro 12:1-2).

The personal example that Paul cites in Philippians 3:17 when examined in context has nothing to do with following Jewish regulations, but rather a lifestyle of sacrifice and love.  All of the instructions provided in each of his letters pertain to a lifestyle that results from a transformation of the heart by a personal encounter with the living Savior and explicitly charges people to NOT become entangled in legalism as a means of righteousness.

I am not sure where you see a reference in 1 Cor. 5 pertaining to the Passover.  The entire chapter is dedicated as a rebuke to immorality (another emphasis on moral precepts).   In verse 7 there is a mention of Christ being our Passover as THE sacrifice.  This is in context of not allowing sin a foothold in our lives as a means of leaven.  As for the feast in verse 8; we always remember the Passover as it proceeds Easter; however, here he appears to be speaking figuratively regarding the attitudes of our heart regarding the Lord's Supper which we should be practicing each time we meet as they did at that time.   Again, the emphasis here is repentance "from morality and wickedness" to a heart of "sincerity and truth."

As for the prophesies of Zechariah: the 14th chapter appears to pertain to the millennial reign of Christ and those who rise up against Israel during the rule of the anti-Christ.  These will be those have "rejected the truth so as to be saved."  In other words, they are unbelievers; rejecter's of Divine Truth.  How the Lord chooses to deal with them at that time should not be construed as a patter for our lives now.

As for Isaiah 66:23; yes every knee will bow and every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord.  This is a certainty.

It appears that we are not going to find much common ground on this issue Peter.  Nevertheless, I look forward to having fellowship with you as we walk together.

Blessings to you Peter

CONCLUDING THOUGHTS

If you're a Messianic and your primary congregation is a Messianic congregation then visiting a church won't hurt you.  The Messianic sphere of influence will neutralize the poisonous teachings you hear at church and inoculate you to the subtle social rejection you'll receive from Christians (no matter what they say, they won't really accept someone that they think is a legalistic Pharisee).

But if you're Messianic and you only go to a church...be prepared for a slow, tortuous spiritual death.  One cannot live without true fellowship.  And a Messianic can't live without hearing the Teaching.










10 comments:

  1. His response is Dispensationalism 101... he is towing the party line of what he was taught in seminary and continues to teach... He is not going to change his views based on a few arguments, from that of centuries of Christian teaching. The best you can do, is simply to challenge some of the basic points he makes, and not expect him to change, simply challenge.

    I will offer a few points to what he said...

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    1. Reviewing your last response, he never replied to many of the points you made, ignoring the future prophetic implications of a restored Levitical Priesthood with sacrifices, he also ignored your point about Matthew 5, he ignored or at least skirted around the issue of the absolute One World government of God's Kingdom on this earth, resulting in how the nations will be required to keep the Feast, (ie Sukkot, Shabbat), as well as, the Torah going to the nations.

      To me, he does not seem interested in actually breaking down the debates you raised, he simply read off a card of dispensationalism to you and said were done... So if this is a class room, you can always raise points if you feel lead to do so, and challenge the status quo, which ultimately may not be for the teacher, but for others to question and search themselves. You may also end up being removed or kick out, but as long as you are kicked out, while always having had a good and respectful attitude, people will be left considering what you said.

      As to your last conclusion, we can't change anyone, only God can open our eyes. Trying to change someone will always end in the result of disappointment. Just look for doors of opportunity and give your opinion and leave it at that.

      I remember when I attended a Christian camp as a counselor one summer, and I along with the other counselors had many scriptural debates, our main leader did not agree with much of what I taught (as expected...), but a few of the counselors had their interest perked, and they started to search it out for themselves, one who was very angry with what I was teaching, ended up being the first to see it, turns out he was a Christian Jew, funny, and the others while not angry with me, did their research as well, they eventually came around, while the leader never did, but it was ultimately not for him, but for the others. You never know who you might be reaching...

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    2. You make a great point about "Christian Jews". That's one of the reasons why we should be sharing this with Christians at the risk of becoming social pariahs. There's probably one Jew in church for every two hundred non-Jews. This Christian teacher is Jewish. Another wonderful lady there is Jewish.

      And the odd thing is that some of these Christian Jews have tried the local UMJC synagogue. But they get such a bad vibe from that place that they come back to church. I hope our movement will eventually create places for these "Christian Jews" to come back to Torah. I hope that with all my heart.

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    3. And the odd thing is that some of these Christian Jews have tried the local UMJC synagogue. But they get such a bad vibe from that place that they come back to church. I hope our movement will eventually create places for these "Christian Jews" to come back to Torah. I hope that with all my heart.

      Can you blame him... I don't want anything to do with the UMJC either, but I think at the forefront for many of these people are doctrinal issues.

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  2. I don't think you can win an argument, but perhaps if he saw torah living as beautiful and meaningful, it would counter some of the idea that it is legalism and bondage.

    There were a number of inaccurate statements, especially about the Levites. Yes, the records were destroyed, but descendents of the Levites and Kohan know who they are, and this can also be verified via DNA testing. The Levites still exist, even if the temple no longer does. The Levites were not only to present korban, but to teach the people and discern between clean and unclean. There would be no point in keeping the moed if one saw no meaning in them.

    You can't broad brush either churches or messianic congregations, as they are all different. In these perilous times we live in, there are few in the likeness of Nathaniel.

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  3. I have experienced this too. Messianics have no place in the church. It is a different spiritual paradigm. Torah is not of this world and if you keep it as HaShem says, then you are a citizen.

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  4. Thank you for commenting. May I ask where you attend?

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  5. I am currently am looking for a new congregation. The previous one I went to likes to charge people for an oneg. I found a synagouge hear in south Florida that seems to be balanced. I remember coming across your blog before when you put Derek Leman on blast. That sparked my interest. He is like a lot of other Jews that are discriminatory against converts. And, how do you know that he is a Goy? Anyways, thanks for the response. It was much needed.

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  6. I am currently am looking for a new congregation. The previous one I went to likes to charge people for an oneg. I found a synagouge hear in south Florida that seems to be balanced. I remember coming across your blog before when you put Derek Leman on blast. That sparked my interest. He is like a lot of other Jews that are discriminatory against converts. And, how do you know that he is a Goy? Anyways, thanks for the response. It was much needed.

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  7. Yeshayahu,


    I'll pray that you find something. And always feel free to message me (see tab above) if you would like a particular topic to be discussed.


    Derek Leman, by the way, he's very open about his "conversion." He'll blog about it every now and then.

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