My Jesus-Loving Brother
It has been almost a year before my last post, but I want to get back into blogging regularly here, so stay tuned.
My Messianic blogger brother, Judah Himango, whose blog site is called Kineti L'Tzion (if only!) recently blogged about "apostates", Messianics leaving Yeshu. I am glad to announce, former Messianic blogger Gene Shlomovitch has rejected the Christian messiah. This is especially good for me to hear, being that Gene is a Jew. I have been trying to find Gene's email address, but I haven't been successful. Gene, if you're reading this, contact me, I want to congratulate you.
What Went Right With Me
The blog also mentions me, and the descriptions of my exit out of that world are not accurate. Twisting the facts to present things well is okay for Messianics and Christians, I guess, since Paul said its okay. I will tell you all how it really happened:
It started by studying Judaism. Judah got that much right. When you study Torah and are really interested in it, it can have life changing effects. It can make an idolater into a worshiper of the One True God. After all, isn't the whole point of Torah serving HaShem and Him only? Shema`, anyone?
And as I began learning Torah, I began to realize how little Messianics know about it. How little I knew about it. Today, after studying for a couple years, clearly I do not know much. That is the scope of how huge Torah is. By it's nature, being divine, it is actually infinite. In the end, it just doesn't take long to figure out, Jesus and Torah don't go together; and that was ultimately the sole changing factor in my ascent from the pit.
There were other factors which helped, but were not the main cause. Such as Messianics are as fractured as a community as Protestants, in fact perhaps worse. Every person believes something different that puts them at odds, at conflict, and even sometimes considering others heretics. That's what I saw among the many Messianics I knew and knew of, all different kinds ranging from those who are almost just like regular Christians to those who lived as Orthodox Jews. And that lack of unity is what I am about to talk about...
No True Messianic Unity
While the lack of unity in the Messianic community may be a strong point of it's impending downfall, it is only an outside view of the deeper issue. The deeper issue is that either you will find it to be a nice little denomination of Christianity that makes you feel important and righteous for leaving certain elements of Christianity (that, by the way, which is not true for the J4J crowd who promote standard Christianity and disagree with most of who call themselves Messianic), or you do like I did and learn so much Torah that Jesus is just going to have to go for good. Because, once you learn so much about HaShem and His will, you cannot serve another.
As someone who had never been Messianic pointed out to me, it seemed to him that the whole Messianic thing is just a dying cause, because there is no stable framework to maintain it. Either people will just end up being Christian, or their own thing altogether, or they will end up in Judaism or being Bnei Noah.
You know what? That guy was right. And I think the second option, their own thing altogether is what the reality already is in the Messianic world. So many Messianics are fragmented into little groups or even individual people, that it is just like a fantasy club where people make up their own religion - and that brings me to my next point.
Feeling Like God?
For the majority of Messianics it is this: you get out of the Christian church. You realized Christmas isn't in the Bible. Easter isn't, either. Heck, neither is the Sunday sabbath. Oh, and eating pork is bad, the Bible says. Yeshu said he didn't come to abolish the Torah, so I must have to keep it now. Paul says we aren't saved by works, but we are under grace, but that works are still necessary for salvation - wait, doesn't that contradict?
So some reject Paul, but most don't. But they get to the Torah part, so what do they do? Learn Hebrew? Listen to the people who have been living it through thick and thin for the last couple thousand years? Usually not. Usually, they end up making their own brand of "observance" of Torah. They have no Oral Torah, they reject it, therefore the Written leaves them confused and incomplete, especially since they don't even understand Hebrew to really read it for themselves. And no Oral Torah means no Torah at all and no stability. Anyone who really knows Torah knows what I am talking about. Halakha is the how-to guide and yes, it is of divine origin. Moshe learned the background info for the mitzvot of Torah that we term "Oral Torah". Of course he knew the background information! Of course he knew how to answer someone about all the details, how-tos, all the intricate depth of the Torah! Of course that was passed on! Anyone with a clear head, not brainwashed to think otherwise, will say: yeah, you have to listen to the Jews and their ancient traditions to know about the written law given to them.
Do you know how many times I have been left with no response by Messianics about what happened to the Mosaic Court of Devarim (Deuteronomy) 17? Or how they carry out that clear command from HaShem given in the verses of that chapter? Regardless that it is a rhetorical question, the answer is that no Messianic has ever told me how they carry out the command to not veer to the right or left of what the Hakhamim of Israel say. Not even one.
The point of these last three paragraphs is that they make themselves their own halakhic authorities (yet, halakha is a bad word by them). And how do they claim to have that authority? By the authority of Yeshu, who told Peter he now had the ability to "bind and loose", terms of halakhic significance. And that this power is accompanied by their "holy spirit". Yeah... riiiight...
And now we have come to the next point - keep following, I can't imagine any other anti-missionary has gone this deep!!!
Judah also mentions in my blog that one thing I had been "into" in my Messianic days was personal spiritual revelation. Yes, that's right. And so is he still into, along with my parents and all of my siblings. Is it reliable? No. How do I know? Because I have witnessed literally hundreds and hundreds of "words of the Lord", "words of knowledge" and "prophetic words" come out to either never happen, being false completely, or having some truth mixed with error, or rarely actually coming true.
Their is some reliable knowledge, and some things are not prophecies but rather they are information. This comes from the fact that you can definitely gain knowledge from the other side. You can even gain extra-sensory information from having no spiritual contact, merely being in touch with your soul which sees lots of things all the time.
That isn't the point. The point is, it does not have the reliability to give any psychic a career - much less determining Torah law! Guessing can be more accurate than these "words" people get. Nonetheless, people claim that they have the spiritual knowledge to know if they are sinning or not.
Clearly, with the wide ranging variety of Messianic ideas about the laws of Torah that exist, this claim couldn't possibly be true. Everyone ends up believing they are the ones who have it. Like my parents said in response to me asking them how they believe they can drive on Shabbat, igniting the engine, without transgressing "do not light a fire". I also asked that if they take the written command so literally, how do they even leave their house on Shabbat, since the Torah says no one can leave their place on Shabbat. To these questions, they replied "we feel that the need for fellowship overrules these things". Who actually buys that answer?
What if Mr. McMessianic number two or three thinks he can't drive, on the contrary? And he is spiritual too, listening to the same spirits you do - what then? They don't even think about these things.
It is a whole big disaster (especially since most of them shouldn't be attempting to keep Shabbat, unless they're actually Jewish), and it all comes back to everyone deciding for himself what the right way is. That means no unity, no adhesiveness, no future for any Messianic community which will continually split up into offshoot after offshoot after offshoot...
So, Uh... Messianic Numbers Dwindling?
I don't know statistics, and I don't care. Even if Messianic numbers happen to be on the rise, it doesn't take away from anything I said because it means that the whole Messianic "movement" is just a waypoint. There may be big influxes of former standard-Christians, but in the end, they will either end up leaving or becoming their own Messianic sect, like everyone else. And if they end up going the second route, they may be called Messianic and even meet and "fellowship" (I always loved that goofy term) with other Messianics, but they will ultimately be doing their own thing if they never eventually leave.
Judah said in his blog that Judaism is not the problem for people turning from Yeshu, but as we will see, his Messianic religion was perhaps not made for any other purpose than to introduce some aspects of Judaism to goyim.
So, based on this idea, perhaps the Messianic "movement" is a movement in the right direction for some people, in that some definitely choose unadulterated Torah over the joke that exists in Messianism and their dead messiah who didn't do diddly-squat to bring in no exiles, to build no temple, nuthin'. It could be that this is why people usually eventually leave the Messianic world one way or the other.
Maybe Messianism is a gateway drug for some Christians to get them eventually hooked on the real stuff that gets you the highest. I would like to believe that, and I see that it happens like this sometimes. A large part of the Assyrian-exiled "northern tribes" never returned but were absorbed into various nations. Some of them have come back, like the Bnei Menashe of India for example. For those of you who say "I'm Ephraim", the answer is clear: Torah is the only way. Real Torah, conversion to Judaism by a beit din of kosher Jews. That is how it works, that is what HaShem says in Torah, and that is the only way you'll be an Israelite. Yeshu doesn't have any magical miracle cure for your gentile-ness. Nor do you need a cure for that - you can have a place in the next world without being Jewish! The Master of all the worlds laid out His standard of righteousness for Jews and non-Jews in His Torah.