D33A1F75 92DE 4DF6 BDEB 47908DB512DDBy Daniel Nessim. Reposted with kind permission.

When our Messiah and Lord, Yeshua, arose from the dead and His disciples began to spread the Good News (the word “Gospel” means “Good News”), they lived in a very diverse world. Their religious life and frame of reference was Biblical and part of the nascent Judaism of the day, and they never seem to have thought of themselves as other than people living a life of devotion to the Almighty. Now that they knew Yeshua’s true Identity, their devotion and service to the Father also meant devotion and service to His Son. 

Theirs was a world where they also interacted with Romans and Greek culture had had a deep influence for over two centuries. When they began to preach the Good News, they did so on the first Shavuot (1) to the crowds in Jerusalem, who were both Jews and Gentile proselytes (Acts 2:11) they did so to people from all over the world. When the Brit Hadasha, BH (2) was written they wrote according to their personalities, educations and backgrounds. This means we can understand the Scriptures so much better when we understand more about who the writers the Spirit inspired were, and the way they thought.

tommy fretwellThis is a two-part article by KEDS tutor Thomas Fretwell which is crossposted from Calvary Chapel in Hastings. 

“Who has heard such a thing? Who has seen such things? Can a land be born in one day? Can a nation be brought forth all at once? As soon as Zion travailed, she also brought forth her sons" (Isaiah 66:8).

On Friday May 14, 1948, the modern state of Israel was born. The new prime minister David Ben Gurion read the Declaration of Independence. The opening statement of this declaration is significant as it mentions both Jewish identity and Jewish attachment to the land:

“The land of Israel was the birthplace of the Jewish people. Here their spiritual, religious and national identity was formed. Here they achieved independence and created a culture of national and universal significance. Here they wrote and gave the Bible to the world.”1 

Now, 70 years later, it is an appropriate time for the church to look at what lessons can be learned from this momentous event. While theological discussion concerning the relationship between Israel and the church has existed for nearly 2,000 years, the establishment of the modern state has breathed new life and increased vigor into the discussion. Although the subject may be complex, the relationship of Israel to the church is still of significant interest to many Christians...

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This cross post is an opinion piece by Daniel Nessim.

D33A1F75 92DE 4DF6 BDEB 47908DB512DDMessianic Jews have a natural predisposition and tendency, as Jews who care about our people and our peculiar calling, to maintain the traditions and culture of our ancestors. This means that in our lives, traditions and prayers it is most natural and fitting for us to follow the ways of our people’s lifestyles, traditions and prayers which are founded in the complete Jewish Bible and secondarily in the sea of Jewish holy writings and literature that we have inherited.

It is therefore with great surprise that many Messianic Jews have considered the words of Yeshua which seem to prohibit calling anyone ‘rabbi’ (= ‘teacher’), ‘father’, or even ‘leader’. Does this mean that Messianic Jews may not ordain rabbis, or may not call their teachers by that title? Christians call their pastors ‘pastor’, or their teachers ‘teacher’, don’t they? Why are rabbis in particular singled out?

The immediate context is the first place one should look for an answer.