If you read the description of this blog, you saw that I described myself as a Messianic Jew. Whenever I tell someone this, in my mind I see quizzical facial expressions, or a large question mark blinking on and off on the forehead of the befuddled person. Ninety percent of the time, that’s what happens.
To elucidate, a Messianic Jew is a Jew who follows a Messiah who has already come. You could
say that all Jews that believe in the Messiah (whether he has come or not) are Messianic Jews, but most Jews do not identify themselves in this way because there is a spectrum of beliefs as to: 1) Is there a Messiah? 2) Is the Messiah a physical person? 3) Is it a Messianic era that we are waiting for rather than a man? Messianic Jews today believe that Yeshua (aka Jesus) is the Messiah as prophesied in the Hebrew scriptures.
In my opinion, Messianic Judaism is like the Rodney Dangerfield of all religions….We don’t get no respect! Because we do not exclusively call ourselves Jews nor Christians creates an unsettling effect on those two groups and many others. People like to put labels on you so they know what pigeonhole to put you in. It makes them feel safe and comfortable. To proclaim yourself as a Messianic Jew is akin to trying to put a square peg in a round hole.
We’ve heard all the usual arguments…..”If you believe in Jesus, then aren’t you a Christian?” We reply, “No, because we identify with the very first believers who were Jews”. We observe the biblical Sabbath and the moedim (appointed times, feasts)…..Christians do not. We take our cues from the Jewish believers of 2000 years ago who remained true to their Jewish roots and also accepted Yeshua as the promised Messiah. We are not deterred from this faith position by the opinions and lack of acceptance of others. Therefore, we say to our detractors “Get Over It – We’re Here to Stay”.
I have a dream………..I dream of a future day when the mistrust and negative feelings towards us will be relegated to a museum exhibit. I can see it all now…..within the diorama will stand figures of Messianic Jews, huddled together in the center holding their Bibles over their heads to form a collective shield. A group of Jews at one far side and Christians on the other are frowning at them and throwing an array of objects on/towards them. Those looking at the exhibit will say…..remember when it used to be like that for the Messianic Jews….thank G-d it’s no longer that way.
May that day come soon…………..Amen
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