Chanukah

The Importance of Chanukah

9 December, 2016 J.K. McKee 0

reproduced from the Messianic Winter Holiday Helper The subject of what Messianic Believers are to be doing for the Winter holiday season can be very controversial. On the one hand, Messianics should not really be celebrating Christmas, because it is non-Biblical and was created to be one replacement for observing the appointed times of Leviticus 23. On the other hand, should all Messianic Believers celebrate Chanukah, or the Feast of Dedication? Primarily the debate surrounds the fact that often the celebration of Chanukah can become a replacement for Christmas, and that Chanukah is not a Biblically-mandated holiday, as it is […]

Jewish Tradition

Being Realistic About Kosher

8 December, 2016 J.K. McKee 0

POSTED 08 DECEMBER, 2016 reproduced from the Messianic Kosher Helper The subject matter of the kosher dietary laws is one which, I have to admit, tends to bring about a wide degree of personal consternation within me when I see it discussed. I do not think that when the issue kashrut being valid for God’s people in the post-resurrection era is brought up by contemporary Messianics, it tends to be addressed that well. There are many passages of the Apostolic Scriptures or New Testament which remain quantitatively ignored by those of the pro-kosher side, or are at least addressed in […]

FAQ

Tradition, Role that it plays

27 November, 2016 J.K. McKee 0

POSTED 26 DECEMBER, 2005 What role, if any, do you believe tradition should play in our examination and application of Scripture, particularly the Torah? There is a wide variance of opinion in the emerging Messianic movement relating to what role, if any, tradition should play as we study and apply the Bible in our daily lives. This is particularly true regarding our individual pursuits of a Torah obedient lifestyle. How we follow the commandments of the Torah is a huge issue, and often the Torah itself gives us no explanation(s) of how various commandments are to be kept. The two […]

FAQ

Talmud

27 November, 2016 J.K. McKee 0

UPDATED 21 AUGUST, 2006 What is your position concerning the Talmud? The two Talmuds, the Babylonian Talmud and the smaller Jerusalem Talmud, both compose several centuries of Rabbinic gemara or commentary on the Mishnah. The Mishnah was composed by approximately 200 C.E. and makes up what is considered to be the Oral Torah. According to Jewish tradition, two Torahs were given to Moses on Mount Sinai: the Written Torah (the Pentateuch or Chumash), as well as the Oral Torah or explanations on how to perform the Written Torah’s commandments. In Orthodox Judaism today, both the Written Torah and Oral Torah […]

FAQ

Sabbath, Jewish tradition

27 November, 2016 J.K. McKee 0

POSTED 16 FEBRUARY, 2006 To what extent, if any, do you believe that we should follow Jewish tradition in our Sabbath observance? Biblically, we are told that the Sabbath day is to be a time of rest for our bodies, and that we are to make it holy (Exodus 20:11; Deuteronomy 5:12). The Scriptures tell us that Shabbat is to be “a holy convocation” (Leviticus 23:3). How we “fill in the details” of doing this requires us to examine instances in the Scriptures where the Sabbath is being kept and determine with accuracy the halachah that was practiced in the […]

Appointed Times

Rosh HaShanah

27 November, 2016 J.K. McKee 0

POSTED 22 SEPTEMBER, 2008 Why does the Jewish community call Yom Teruah “Rosh HaShanah”? I thought the Biblical New Year began in the Spring. For many people in the independent Messianic movement, Exodus 12:2 settles the matter: “This month shall be the beginning of months for you; it is to be the first month of the year to you,” speaking of the month of Aviv (Exodus 13:4). Thus it is said that the worldwide Jewish Synagogue has been in error for millennia about designating the festival commanded in Leviticus 23:23-25 and Numbers 29:1-6 as “Rosh HaShanah,” and remembering the first […]

FAQ

PaRDeS

27 November, 2016 J.K. McKee 0

UPDATED 09 AUGUST, 2011 Can you explain to me the four levels of Hebraic Scripture interpretation? While it is quite commonplace in many sectors of the broad Messianic community, to hear about PaRDeS—also referred to as something like the “four levels of Hebraic Scripture interpretation”—few Messianic people are likely to know what the origins of the PaRDeS hermeneutic actually are. The term pardes itself is a loan word from Persian, meaning “enclosure, park, pleasure garden” (Jastrow).[1] When one encounters the term PaRDeS used as a method for interpreting the Tanach Scriptures, it represents an acronym for: p’shat, drash, remez, and […]

FAQ

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 […]

FAQ

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 […]

FAQ

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, […]

FAQ

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), […]

FAQ

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 […]

FAQ

God-Fearers

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 […]

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

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

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 […]

FAQ

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

1 2 3