Lately I’ve been intrigued as to the why, and or the appropriateness of, the increasing popularity of Christians celebrating Jewish high holy days, and why some seem to identify very strongly with Judaism. I’ve been researching how it seems Jewish people really feel about Christians (not good), the messianic synagogue “controversy” and various other aspects of this subject. Because you are a messianic Jew I would be very interested in what you think about this. If you have time I would value it greatly (and promise not to quote you without permission). I can only imagine what you’ve been through!
Thanks and blessings always to you my Brother In Christ!
I too am concerned about the legalistic theology of many Messianic believers (both Jewish and Gentiles) and their self-imposed isolation from the rest of Christianity. Recently I have decided to distance myself from this movement to avoid being associated with their errant beliefs. These days I prefer to call myself a “Judeo-Christian” rather than “Messianic”.
Although I still believe in learning all the good we possibly can about Christianity’s Jewish roots and keeping the original holy days of the Bible (including the original Saturday sabbath), I don’t believe we can “earn” our salvation by the keeping of the Old Testament Laws. Salvation is by grace through faith, not of works, lest anyone should boast (Eph. 2:8-9).
The Sabbath and OT Holy Days have to be re-interpreted in light of what Jesus did in the New Testament to fulfill them – such as Passover, Unleavened Bread, Pentecost (First Fruits), and the Day of Atonement. Other Holy Days such as the Feast of Trumpets and Tabernacles are yet to be fulfilled at the Rapture and Second Coming of Messiah.
A good book I have read, which you may want to read is, “Messianic Judaism Is Not Christianity” by Stan Telchin. Stan is a believing Jew who also came out of the Messianic Movement and wrote some good biblical insights on the subject. He has also distanced himself from Messianic churches. As a result, He has received a lot of criticism for doing so, but I believe he was led of the Holy Spirit.
You are free to reprint this message if you like. You can also read a short devotional I wrote on this subject by going to:
Blessings to you and your wife Donna!
Pastor Luis Yosefus
Real Jesus Ministries