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The premise of the Hebrew Roots movement is the belief that the Church has veered far from the true teachings and Hebrew concepts of the Bible. The movement maintains that Christianity has been ind...
Whilst I can agree with this in part, we must also remember that the early Apostles/Disciples were Torah observant Jewish believers. Remember, outside of their faith in the risen Yeshua they didn't have the New Testament writings to base their faith on. They only had the Old Testament Tanach/Torah. Even Yeshua, on the Sabbath went into the Synagogue to teach, and to worship. He also celebrated Passover as was the custom. Luke 4:16 (ASV) 16 And he came to Nazareth, where he had been brought up: and he entered, as his custom was, into the synagogue on the sabbath day, and stood up to read. And Apostle Paul also, Acts 17:1-2 (ASV) 1 Now when they had passed through Amphipolis and Apollonia, they came to Thessalonica, where was a synagogue of the Jews: 2 and Paul, as his custom was, went in unto them, and for three sabbath days reasoned with them from the Scriptures. In all of this we do have to be cautious that we don't put ourselves under the 'LAW' of 'MAN, but to walk under the 'GRACE' of 'FAITH'. The final thing that we 'MUST' remember is that the Old Testament was written by Jews, in Hebrew, mostly, or Aramaic, for Jews, and now for all peoples. In observing the feasts of our Lord doesn't make one any different, or better than one who doesn't, but what it does/can do is enhance one's faith, and give a deeper understanding of our faith in Yeshua. As for the wearing of Tallit, especially when praying, is in obedience to the command of Yeshua when he says, when you pray go into your prayer closet. What he is saying here is to cover/wrap yourself in the Tallit. The wearing of the Yarmulke is a cover between the person and the glory of Hashem which abides over us. In modern times it has mostly become a symbolic gesture by Jews as a means of identity, but mostly worn in the synagogue. In the times of Yeshua they didn't have tallit's or yarmulke's. The outer garment of the day was an all encompassing robe with an in built hood, and Zitzit's on the fringes of the bottom of the robe. Again, in obedience to the command of the Lord. To go into their prayer closet, was to raise the hood over their head and thereby covering themsevles in. The Zitzit's on the fringes were to remind them of the commands of the Lord. In Luke 8:43-46 (ASV) 43 And a woman having an issue of blood twelve years, who had spent all her living upon physicians, and could not be healed of any, 44 came behind him, and touched the border of his garment: and immediately the issue of her blood stanched. 45 And Jesus said, Who is it that touched me? And when all denied, Peter said, and they that were with him, Master, the multitudes press thee and crush thee. 46 But Jesus said, Some one did touch me; for I perceived that power had gone forth from me. What the women touched was the zitzit's on the fringe of his robe.
*Because this is a discussion about the Hebrew Roots Movement, I will use quite a lot of Hebrew terms, but I will try to define each and every one of them. I would like to add my “two shekels” to this question and discussion… (a shekel is an Israeli denomination) The definition and background to the Hebrew Roots Movement was already covered in a previous answer, so I will not repeat it here. Like the Messianic Jewish Movement, a central aim of the HRM is to promote Torah for Jews and Gentiles from a Messianic (Christ-centric) perspective and to reach lost Jews for Yeshua (Jesus) the true Messiah of Isra'el. As Jews we are proud of our heritage, and yet we are equally as proud to call Gentiles in Messiah our true brothers and sisters. I don't personally claim to be a member of the HRM, preferring instead the label “Messianic Jew” or simply “member of the Torah Community.” I also call myself a Christian and am proud to do so. As a Messianic Jew and adjunct Torah Teacher with my home Messianic congregation, I am embarrassed to hear of the many failings of the HRM as described by some in mainline Christianity. The HRM is as much in need of grace as those in mainstream Christianity. After all, no one is perfect. We are all a work in progress. So, while not perfect, everyone must admit that the HRM nonetheless shares much in common with the religious culture of the 1st century Jewish sect called The Way since that is an intentional and primary thrust of their foundational core beliefs. As such, modern Christianity which doesn't seek to purposely imitate the Jewish culture of the sect called The Way, would nevertheless do well to learn what they could from any group that seeks to mimic and recover the original grassroots movement started by Yeshua and his faithful few. After all, logic suggests that if Yeshua and his disciples “did it,” then it cannot be wrong if, in a spirit of grace and forgiveness, and without pride, arrogance, and judgmental attitudes, “we do it also.” What should be so simple has, unfortunately become quite complex and confusing, thus the many marked differences between standard Christianity and the HRM. Reducing what I believe to a bare-bones minimum for this question, I will say that I try to keep my theology to these simple points: I hold strong convictions that man is a sinner and only Yeshua can save him (Jn. 14:6). That there exists One God, One Messiah, One Spirit (essentially Eph. 4:4-6 theology), One Body of believers called the Remnant of Isra'el, a.k.a., the Church (Rom. 11:17-24), and One Law (from Genesis to Revelation) for both Jews and Gentiles in Messiah to follow (Ex. 12:49; Jer. 31:33; Matt. 5:17-20; Rom. 3:27-31; 1 Cor. 7:19). Without sounding like I am dismissing all of the other points that necessarily fall in between these pillars of Truth, for me, any theology that diverges from the foundational theology of these simple points starts to become questionable.
Christianity is simply an extension of Biblical Judaism. It is indeed important for gentile Christians to understand their Jewish roots to fully understand the need for His substitutionary sacrifice, not by conversion to Judaism, because we are to come as we are called. Paul made this abundantly clear in the 2nd and 3rd chapters oh Ephesians. Ep. 2:8,9 makes the clearest statement about faith alone being sufficient, in the entire Bible [my opinion].This is for both Jews and saved Gentiles! I am a messianic Jew who is equally comfortable using the term Christian. What I am not comfortable with is being told that I must be Torah observant, as in the case with many "Messianic" congregations. Legalism has no place in ANY believer's life. Yeshua, Jesus, came to fulfill the law, in that He is the only one who can keep All of the Law's righteous commandments, and this is the righteousness that is credited to our account--by faith alone.
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