Thursday, January 22, 2015

Mapping the Messianic Minefield

Ah, the path of the Messianic can be a treacherous one.  Kind of like navigating a minefield.  Over the years, I've tripped a lot of mines.  So in this post I'll share a map of sorts that shows the major concentrations of mines--the danger zones.  And if you have any thoughts about how the map can be improved or how to actually defuse these mines, by all means share your wisdom in the comments section.

Danger Zone 1:

Want to get along well with Christians?  Be aware of the danger zone of discussions about the merits of One Law, Torah, or Jewish Tradition.  Defusing methods:  Shabbat dinners, Pro-Israel events.

Danger Zone 2:

Want to get along well with One Law Messianics?  Be aware that many come from Christian backgrounds and still haven't shed their anti-rabbinic bias.  Talking about the merits of Rabbinic Judaism is therefore a danger zone.  Defusing methods:  letting change happen organically, promoting facts not conclusions.  My pitfall is probably sharing my conclusions.  It's probably more effective to present facts and let people make their own conclusions.  Easier said than done (especially when you are very opinionated).

Danger Zone 3:

Want to get along well with Bilateralists? (i.e. those who reject One Law by saying that Gentiles are excluded from Israel and excluded from the Torah)  The danger zone here is defending One Law or directly attacking a Bilateralist organization or teacher.  Defusing methods:  ???  There may not even be a way to avoid tripping these mines--not if you feel called to attend a congregation that is heavily influenced by this type of teaching.

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