The Messianic FAQ
  • F.A.Q: Christian Relations

    The relationship between traditional Christians and Messianic Jews.

    1. Messianics: Jews or Christians?
    2. Are Messianics Judaizers?
    3. Why do Messianic Jews worship as Jews and not Christians?
    4. Why don't all Jewish Christians worship as Messianic Jews?
    5. What of the Claim That Jews are Christ Killers?
    6. Should Gentile Christians Witness to Rabbinic Jews?
    7. Why do you Use Y'shua Instead of Jesus?

    1. Messianics: Jews or Christians? - Top

    Ask most Jews and they will tell you that Messianic Jews are not Jews but Christians. Christians on the other hand are divided amongst those who believe that Messianic Jews are Jews (and thus Judaisers) and those who believe they are Christians of Jewish descent.

    Many, but not all, Messianic Jews define themselves as both. For like Jesus, and those that followed him, they have never left their Jewish beliefs and practices, yet they embrace the basic tenets of the Christian faith. Paul called himself a Jew's Jew... it is obvious that even though his writings have defined much of Christianity, he never considered himself as divorced from his Jewish faith. Decency demands that Messianic Jews should define for
    themselves whether they are religiously Jew or Christian or both. - Updated: November 6, 2004

    2. Are Messianics Judaizers? - Top

    Paul repeatedly warned the Church that attempting to force Gentile believers to become Jews before they could become Christians was wrong. Peter's dream, which began the outreach into the Gentile community teaches us that as Christians all the unclean things have passed and become clean.

    While there is nothing wrong in Jews keeping a traditional form of Jewish worship in which they are comfortable, it is improper and unscriptural for Jewish Christians to teach that Gentiles must do likewise. There is, however, no wrong in teaching Gentiles the Jewish roots of their faith, and the remarkable shadows of the Biblical Christian faith preserved in the Old Covenant writings and traditions and feasts of the Jews.

    Gentile believers who are offended by a Jewish style of worship or the concept of Jews teaching Gentiles should remember that we are their brethren in the Lord and that they owe all but one book of the New Testament to Jewish Christians. If they are still offended then they should give that offense to the Lord and trust that at his return he will set all things right. - Updated: November 6, 2004

    3. Why do Messianic Jews worship as Jews and not Christians? - Top

    Two main reasons:

    a. It is more comfortable for Jews raised in a Jewish tradition (Orthodox, Reform, or Conservative) to worship in a Jewish form. There is ample evidence that the first century Jewish Christians never ceased to worship as Jews. In fact, the Book of Acts records that most of the Evangelistic efforts of these early Christians took place in Jewish Synagogues.

    b. The scriptures prophesy that in the Messianic kingdom to come, both Gentile and Jew will gather together in the Temple to keep the feasts of Israel. This requires that at Messiah's return, he will return the church to a traditional form of Jewish worship. - Updated: November 6, 2004

    4. Why don't all Jewish Christians worship as Messianic Jews? - Top

    Because all Christians are under grace, and free from the bondage of law. Messianic Jews are observant (hopefully) not because of the law, but because of their respect for the wisdom and commandments of G-d through his servant Moses, and their desire to be pleasing to G-d.

    As Christians, we should rejoice in the liberty of grace that allows us all to approach the throne of G-d not through the blood of sheep and goats, but through the blood of a more perfect sacrifice. - Updated: November 6, 2004

    5. What of the Claim That Jews are Christ Killers? - Top

    Though born in hate, this statement is basically true! (Please refrain your flames until you read this entire section) Everyone who sins is a killer of Jesus! Jew and Gentile alike... Yes, the Temple guard arrested Y'shua, the Sanhedrin tried him, Herod sent him back to Pilate, and the Roman's crucified him...yet this is not what killed him.

    The scriptures plainly tell, both in the Gospel's and in the Prophecies of David, how he was separated from his Father, G-d, and how the weight of all the sin of the world was placed on him, as the ultimate sin sacrifice. The medical evidence is indicative of a ruptured heart, filling the pericardium with a mixture of blood and water. Y'shua benYosef died of a broken heart brought on by the sins of us all. No one group or person is to blame, for all the sons of Adam have sinned and fallen short of the glory of G-d.

    The most common occurrence of the "Christ Killer" theme comes from those with an axe to burn... both anti-Semites such as the Nazi's who were the farthest thing from Christian imaginable and from Rabbinic Jews who seem to want an excuse to paint Christians, and Jewish Christians in particular, in as poor a light as possible. - Updated: November 6, 2004

    6. Should Gentile Christians Witness to Rabbinic Jews? - Top

    All Christians have been charged with the great commission, and the gospel is for the Jew first and then for the Greek (Gentile). But 2000 years of atrocities perpetrated by Gentiles in the name of Christ have allowed Satan to develop a hardness of heart in most Rabbinic Jews.

    The best witness that a Gentile Christian can give to a Rabbinic Jew is the love of friendship. Show them that you accept them as what they are. If you want to discuss religion, stick to topics like, "How great G-d's love is for the Jews, that He has preserved them through the ages" and "G-d's word commands all of us to pray for the peace of Jerusalem".

    Attempting to debate religion with an informed Jew without knowing their theology and practice will probably lose you a friend. Many Jews are conditioned to think that even talking about Jesus is anti-Semitic. - Updated: November 6, 2004

    7. Why do you Use Y'shua Instead of Jesus? - Top

    Jesus was a Jew... his name in Hebrew was Y'shua.... and we use that name out of respect for his Jewish roots. What name should you use? Because we are under grace, and few of us speak in Hebrew... Jesus is a perfectly acceptable English translation...

    It is believed by many that Y'shua spoke Koine Greek.... if so he was probably known as Issous. - Updated: November 6, 2004