Liturgy, Hebrew

25 November, 2016 J.K. McKee 0

UPDATED 22 OCTOBER, 2008 What do you think about the use of Hebrew liturgy in Messianic congregations? There are generally two extremes that one encounters among Messianic congregations as it relates to Hebrew liturgy: (1) those who rely on liturgy exclusively, and (2) those who see no value in liturgy at all. Those who rely on liturgy exclusively for prayers and worship are those that often embrace a strictly Orthodox Jewish style of halachah, whereas those who often see no value in liturgy are largely influenced by charismatic and/or Pentecostal Christianity. Any cursory examination of Second Temple Judaism will reveal […]


Leavening Agents

25 November, 2016 J.K. McKee 0

POSTED 14 APRIL, 2006 How can I determine what is, and what is not, kosher for the Passover season? One of the major Biblical injunctions concerning Passover is to eat unleavened bread for seven days, remembering the bread of haste that the Ancient Israelites had to eat as they left Egypt (Deuteronomy 16:3). By extension, not only does the command pertain to eating unleavened bread, but it is a week-long prohibition against eating anything with leavening agents. This has been interpreted and applied in different ways, with some divergent halachah, in the Jewish community over the centuries. The Talmud, for […]


Leaven of the Pharisees and Sadducees

25 November, 2016 J.K. McKee 0

POSTED 30 JUNE, 2014 What is “the leaven of the Pharisees and Sadducees” that Yeshua warns about? Are the numbers twelve supposed to relate to the Twelve Tribes of Israel, and seven to relate to the seven laws of Noah? How am I supposed to approach this? Certainly when encountering Yeshua’s word to His Disciples about “the leaven of the Pharisees and Sadducees” (Matthew 16:5), and various associated numbers, it can be very tempting for contemporary Messianic Bible teachers, or various people in the Hebrew/Hebraic Roots movement, to attach some sort of significance or symbolism to them representing something. Yet, […]


Torah, division of commandments

24 November, 2016 J.K. McKee 0

POSTED 17 SEPTEMBER, 2008 How am I to appropriately understand the division of the Torah’s commandments? Yeshua the Messiah did teach us that there were “weightier provisions of the law,” such as “justice and mercy and faithfulness” (Matthew 23:23). He affirms that the greatest of the Torah’s commandments are the admonitions to love the Lord God and to love one’s neighbor (Matthew 22:36-40; Mark 12:28-34; Luke 10:25-28; cf. Deuteronomy 6:5; Leviticus 19:18). It is a fact that there is a prioritization among the Torah’s commandments between those that carry more weight and those that may be considered “least” (Matthew 5:19), […]


Karaites, Karaite Judaism

24 November, 2016 J.K. McKee 0

UPDATED 05 SEPTEMBER, 2011 What is your opinion of Karaite Judaism? The Jewish Study Bible states the following concerning who the Karaites are: “[T]he theological movement in Judaism dating from Babylonia in the 8th century C.E. Karaites claimed to be restoring an original form of Judaism from the Second Temple period, and were opposed by the rabbis of their time…Karaite calendars, festivals, dietary restrictions, and other practices differed in various ways from rabbinic norms. The movement reached its height around the 11th century though a small Karaite community is still in existence today.”[1] There is a noticeable trend in the […]



9 November, 2016 J.K. McKee 0

POSTED 05 NOVEMBER, 2012 I am a non-Jewish Believer, and I have encountered some Messianic Jews who consider me as some sort of “God-fearer” in their midst. What is this supposed to mean? Even with our natural differences and distinctions, I thought we were supposed to emphasize one another as fellow brothers and sisters. Unfortunately, for far too many people who make up today’s broad Messianic movement, the distinctions which exist among God’s people, are more important to be emphasized than the common traits and faith in Yeshua the Messiah, which is to bind them together, and how we can […]

Appointed Times

Sadducees, Pharisees, and the Controversy of Counting the Omer

27 October, 2016 J.K. McKee 0

originally posted 01 June, 2008 reproduced from Counting the Omer The season between Passover and Unleavened Bread, and the Feast of Weeks or Shavuot, can be one of the most difficult times for various persons and assemblies within the Messianic community. While this is supposed to be a very special and sacred time, a great number of debates certainly rage over Passover. Some of the most obvious debates among Messianics occur over the differences between Ashkenazic and Sephardic Jewish halachah. Do we eat lamb or chicken during the seder meal? What grains are “kosher for Passover”? Can egg matzos be […]

Biblical Practices & Torah Observance

Matthew 23:2-3: Who Sits in the Seat of Moses?

24 October, 2016 J.K. McKee 0

originally posted 18 July, 2013 reproduced from the Messianic Torah Helper There is no doubting, that when one surveys much of the broad Messianic movement, that there are some significant issues which not only divide us, but which spur on some strong emotions. One passage in the Gospel of Matthew frequently stirs vehement emotions, from all sides of the theological and ideological spectrum: Matthew 23:2-3. These verses appear within a much larger section of Matthew’s Gospel, Matthew 23:1-36, which is hardly an easy passage for Bible readers to encounter and evaluate. For much of Christian history, even extending into the […]

Hebrew Roots

Hebrew Roots Vs. Jewish Roots?

19 October, 2016 J.K. McKee 0

Michael Rood’s Shabbat Night Live broadcast recently hosted a Q&A session called “Hebrew Roots Vs. Jewish Roots?“ While it can be appreciable that the faith heritage of today’s Believers is being stressed to primarily originate from the Tanach or Hebrew Bible–is it at all true that today’s Believers in Israel’s Messiah really have no Jewish Roots? While all of God’s people surely do have a spiritual heritage and Hebrew Roots in Israel’s Scriptures–is there no such thing as “Jewish Roots”? Was not Yeshua the Messiah a First Century Jew? Are there are not significant things for God’s people today to […]

Biblical Studies & Scriptural Reliability

You Want to Be a Pharisee

7 October, 2016 J.K. McKee 0

originally posted 22 March, 2005 reproduced from the Messianic Torah Helper How many of you, in your quest to become Torah observant, have been accused by Christian friends or family of being a “Pharisee”?[1] How many of you have been told that you are being a hypocrite and should not only not be concerning yourself with God’s Torah, but you are falling into the same mistakes that others in the First Century Body of Messiah fell into, that the Apostle Paul countered in his epistles? Having the accusation of being a “Pharisee” is one that is not only commonly used […]


The Effect of Mysticism and Gnosticism on the Messianic Movement

5 October, 2016 messianicapologetics 0

As today’s Messianic community strives to return to the First Century faith of the Disciples and Apostles, we will not just be facing “common problems” like adultery, idolatry, or even sins such as lying. We will also contend with some of the very specific religious problems that the First Century ekklēsia faced. Very few when examining Scripture, unfortunately, consider it in its historical context. Many do not have an understanding of First Century Judaism, Greco-Roman religion, Second and Third Century Christianity, and the various mystery religions and cults that existed. Too many fail to consider the gross religious errors that […]

Biblical Studies & Scriptural Reliability

The Impact of the Maccabees on First Century Judaism

2 September, 2016 J.K. McKee 0

originally posted 02 December, 2009 reproduced from the Messianic Winter Holiday Helper For most Messianics I know who celebrate Chanukah, they hear a great deal about the military exploits of the Maccabees and the rededication of the Temple. Many of them honestly take the time to flip through the Books of 1&2 Maccabees in the Apocrypha, the principal historical record that influences our understanding of the wars fought by the Maccabees. When Jerusalem was recaptured and the Temple was rededicated, much more really did take place. This goes beyond the lives of Judah Maccabee and his brothers. Sadly, too many […]


Anti-Semitism in the Two-House Movement

1 September, 2016 J.K. McKee 0

posted 17 May, 2015 reproduced from Israel in Future Prophecy Anti-Semitism or anti-Judaism is a significant crime, with devastating prejudices and a poisonous ideology, which has been present in our world since long before the time of Yeshua the Messiah. While manifested in many forms throughout the ages, anti-Semitism undeniably reached its lowest point in the 1930s and 1940s with Hitler’s Holocaust and the attempted annihilation of the Jewish people by Nazi Germany. While it can be said that out of the Holocaust and World War II, the State of Israel was birthed and Jewish-Christian relations have improved—making sure that non-Jewish […]

Appointed Times

Sayings of the Fathers

23 August, 2016 messianicapologetics 0

The Mishnah tractate Pirkei Avot or Sayings of the Fathers is a compilation of wise sayings, proverbs, and anecdotes dating from the Third Century B.C.E.-Third Century C.E., forming much of the basis of ancient Jewish ethics. Many important parallels can be seen between remarks made in the Pirkei Avot and the wisdom sayings or teachings of Yeshua the Messiah, James the Just, and the Apostles Peter and Paul. In the Jewish community today, the Pirkei Avot are traditionally read and considered during the seven weeks between the festivals of Passover and Shavuot. Sayings of the Fathers: A Messianic Perspective on Pirkei […]


Biblical Calendar

18 August, 2016 J.K. McKee 0

UPDATED 20 JULY, 2011 What is your opinion with the various calendar issues that seem to be dividing the Messianic community? The new month, as originally specified by the Torah, was to be determined by the changing of the moon or chodesh. Genesis 1:14 states how God originally made the lights of the sky, as the means by which His people were to keep time: “Let there be lights in the expanse of the heavens to separate the day from the night, and let them be for signs and for seasons and for days and years.” Numbers 29:6[1] records how […]


Biblical Faith, a Judaism

18 August, 2016 J.K. McKee 0

POSTED 25 OCTOBER, 2011 I am a non-Jewish person involved in the Messianic movement. I get a little nervous when I see some Messianic Jews talk about how Biblical faith is Judaism. Do you think that Biblical faith is Judaism? From a strict textual perspective examining the Holy Scriptures, the concept of faith (Heb. emunah; Grk. pistis) has no real label—be that label Judaism, Christianity, Orthodox, Conservative, Reform, Catholic, Protestant, evangelical, charismatic, etc. At best, any labels that people have associated with their belief in God, the Holy Scriptures, and certain values and traditions they hold dear, are so that […]

Appointed Times

Haggadah for Messianic Believers — Leader’s Guide

12 August, 2016 messianicapologetics 0

A Passover haggadah for Messianic Believers, specifically intended for home Passover commemorations lasting between 3-4 hours. This edition is intended to be used by the host of the Passover Seder.   Haggadah for Messianic Believers is available via in both paperback and eBook for Amazon Kindle

Appointed Times

Haggadah for Messianic Believers

11 August, 2016 messianicapologetics 0

A Passover haggadah for Messianic Believers, specifically intended for home Passover commemorations lasting between 3-4 hours   Haggadah for Messianic Believers is available via in both paperback and eBook for Amazon Kindle

Appointed Times

Messianic Winter Holiday Helper

9 August, 2016 messianicapologetics 0

The Winter holiday season is frequently a conflicted time of year for many people in today’s Messianic movement. On the one hand, most Messianic Believers do not celebrate the holiday of Christmas on December 25, due to some of its pre-Christian origins and questionable traditions. On the other hand, the birth of Yeshua the Messiah (Jesus Christ) is a Biblical event which we all must acknowledge in some way. Furthermore, during this same Winter season, the Jewish community commemorates the Festival of Dedication or Chanukah. What is a Messianic Believer to do? The Messianic Winter Holiday Helper is a valuable […]

1 2 3