49 thoughts on “Torah

  1. Pingback: Are Messianic Jews Commanded To Keep Kosher? « The Rosh Pina Project

  2. Pingback: Israel Before The Torah « The Rosh Pina Project

  3. Dear brothers and sisters in our Lord Yeshua,

    I highly recommend the “Rosh Pina Project” for its ability to transcend the current prohibition within Messianic ranks to critically discuss the current falling-away from New Testament grace oriented teaching by overly stressing Torah observance.

    As the founder and director of “The Messianic Literary Corner” (www.messianic-literary.com) I took a doctrinal stand a decade ago stating:

    “New Testament teachings clearly show that Messianic believers are not under the injunction of Torah. Pauline doctrine stresses that all believers should maintain a knowledge of New Covenant freedoms. Many modern Messianic Jews are still struggling with the basic tenants of Pauline doctrine. Their unhistorical and undoctrinal interpretation of Paul and his teachings has led them to an antogonism with the Gospel professed in Protestant Christianity. Messianic Judaism should be permissive in it’s acceptance of Torah observance, but must never let believers feel obligated in their worship and daily practice.

    I believe there is a necessity for all Messianic doctrine to be thoroughly scrutinized by trusted teachers of New Covenant Doctrine, and a “Messianic Jewish Task Force” appointed for such oversight. Most Torah Observant Messianic teachers show very little regard for New Covenant Doctrine. Paul strictly warned his disciples to be on guard for heresy. It is with the hope of reinstilling within the Messianic Jewish community a zeal for the grace preached in the Gospel that I continue my efforts.”

    In Messiah Yeshua’s grace,

    Marshall Beeber
    Messianic Literary Corner

    http://www.messianic-literary.com

    • Thank you Marshall, your sentiments and very much appreciated, I think you hit the nail on the head where you say “unhistorical and undoctrinal interpretation of Paul and his teachings has led them to an antogonism with the Gospel professed in Protestant Christianity. Messianic Judaism should be permissive in it’s acceptance of Torah observance, but must never let believers feel obligated in their worship and daily practice.”

      Any compulsion to Torah-observance would strangulate the grace which we have as a free gift from Messiah. We have freedom now and we’re no longer in bondage. From your Grace Ministries links I came across this:

      http://www.messianicfreedom.org/

      I don’t know much about it but I very much look forward to reading more from this site.

  4. What happened Marshall, only got 2 hits on your website last week? Trying to fish alittle here? LOL!

    It is interesting that unscholarly people like you, when question of torah is brought to the table, those who maintain that it has no current relevance to the life of the believer inevitably go to Paul, not to Yeshua. some of you would openly admit that Paul was the first to stand against the torah, most simply presume that he only farther explained what Yeshua had taught.

    Could paul have consistently claimed the position as “the Apostle of Yeshua the Messiah” in the begining of most of his Epistles and taught contrary to his Master? Did not yeshua instruct His disciples to carry the message He had given them (Matt. 28:19-20)? Did not this message contained Matt. 5:17-20)?

    So, either Paul intended his message and teaching to be based firmly on the teachings of yeshua, meaning that what he had taught in no way contradict the words of his Master, or he fashioned his own theology in opposition to what Yeshua taught. If you opt for the latter, my friend Marshall, you should rip the Pauline epistles from your Bible–they are the words of a renegade.

    And please stop from using the uneducated term “Pauline doctrine,” there is no such thing. “Pauline doctrine” is Yeshua’s doctrine… No wonder you get no hits….

  5. “Many modern Messianic Jews are still struggling with the basic tenants of Pauline doctrine. ”

    Marshall, you’re not struggling – you just ate up antinomian and-Judaic interpretations of Paul’s words and feel full and proud of yourself, spewing hateful condemnations of faithful Messianic Jews. Do you not understand – Jews who follow Yeshua as their master don’t wish to become Protestant Christian Charismatic Dispensationalist Evangelicals as yourself? We love Torah and believe that ALL Jews MUST live their lives obedient to it and to the words of our Master who gave us the gift of this wonderful, sweet commandments in the first place on Mount Sinai. You’re still chasing after the wind with your empty broad-brush condemnations, but the Messianic Jewish world I know has long moved on…

    Besides all that, Marshall, shouldn’t you interpret Paul’s words through the lens of Yeshua’s own teaching, instead of the other way around? Don’t you see something terribly wrong with this picture when the very words of our Master take a back seat to your misinterpretations(!) of the writings one of his servants?

    Peter wrote of Paul writings in 2 Peter 3:16:

    “He [Paul] writes the same way in all his letters, speaking in them of these matters. His letters contain some things that are hard to understand, which ignorant and unstable people distort, as they do the other Scriptures, to their own destruction.”

    So, please stop distorting Paul writings to make him look like an opposer to Yeshua’s own clear teachings and use that to slander Messianic Jews!

    “Many modern Messianic Jews are still struggling with the basic tenants of Pauline doctrine. ”

    When and if you ever start doing so, you may develop respect for, as Dan put it, Yeshua’s doctrine, and perhaps, just may be, your slanderous attention-seeking decade-long war of words on Messianic Jews and Messianic Judaism will abate somewhat. One can only hope…

  6. Dear Gene & Dan,

    Many Torah observant Messianic believers are defensive towards those Messianic believers who teach a grace orientied gospel. Paul’s doctrine is permissive in its acceptance of Torah observance, but does not let the Law (Torah) have supremacy over New Covenant freedoms. From my experience, many Torah observant believers drive out grace oriented Messianic brethren from their ranks, rather than choosing to co-exist in tolerance and love.

    Over a decade ago I began to compile various grace orientied commentaries, with many references to respected Messianic Jewish teachers. An introductory statement from this study series (http://www.messianic-literary.com/teaching1.htm) states:

    “There is only one Gospel whose power and gracious freedom overcomes sin and death throughout the world. But if the Gospel’s freedom is suppressed for the sake of upholding the Law (Torah), then those that put Torah above the Gospel must abandon the contradictory elements of their theology and submit their Torah observance to New Covenant principles. This does not mandate the banning of Torah observance; however, it does restrict Torah observance to that of “non-obligatory” compliance in Messianic Jewish worship and daily practice.

    There are now several major theological trends that counter the truth of the gospel, that need to be recognized and opposed. The task of this study is one of taking a critical look at these newly accepted beliefs by comparing them to the apostles writings. Some Messianic Jewish theologians have faulted the apostle Paul for the “Pauline Gospels” claiming it to be anti-Semitic. Most anti-Pauline Messianic Jewish theologians have avoided taking an anti-Pauline stand and have re-invented Paul and his writings as that of the “Torah observant Rabbi Paul, all accepting of modern Messianic Jewish thought.” Such a re-invention is both doctrinally unsound and historically incorrect. We should question both seriously by first concentrating on the teachings in the epistles to the Hebrews, Romans and Galatians. Above all the other apostles, Paul was given the divine task of proclaiming the principles of the New Covenant to Jew and Gentile believer alike. Let us endeavor to take His new revelation to heart.”

    Respectfully yours,

    Marshall Beeber
    Messianic Literary Corner

    http://www.messianic-literary.com

  7. Well, Marshall, first you have to explain to us why are you pitting grace against the Torah, knowing full well that God gave us both?

    In light of only this fact, your preaching sounds hollow, don’t you think so?

    • Well, Marshall, first you have to explain to us why are you pitting grace against the Torah, knowing full well that God gave us both?

      In light of only this fact, your preaching sounds hollow, don’t you think so?

      Marshall is saying quite clearly:

      1. Torah-observance is fine for Messianic Jews
      2. Compulsory Torah-observance is an affront to grace for Messianic Jews
      3. This is the clear meaning of what Paul writes

  8. Hello,

    If you are believers, you should understand what “freedom in the Spirit” and “Grace” is. If you do not, maybe you were indoctrinated into false teachings.

    A few years ago I corresponeded with a Messianic leader who claimed that my teachings were anti-nomian (http://www.messianic-literary.com/anti-nomianism.htm). I replied to his statement below:

    “I believe that Torah has it’s place in Messianic Judaism, but the practice of Torah must not contradict the freedoms given in the New Covenant. You asked “why don’t you show me where the “Newer” Covenant says it’s not obligatory to keep Torah.” I am assuming you are requesting scripture evidencing that Torah should not be practiced in an obligatory fashion.

    My first reference is Colossians 2:16 “Therefore do not let anyone judge you by what you eat or drink, or with regard to a religious festival, a New Moon celebration or a Sabbath day.”

    My second reference is 1 Corinthians 10:23-27 “Everything is permissible”–but not everything is beneficial. Everything is permissible–but not everything is constructive. Nobody should seek his own good, but the good of others.

    My third reference in the area of food is: Romans 14:14 “As one who is in the Lord Jesus, I am fully convinced that no food is unclean in itself. But if anyone regards something as unclean, then for him it is unclean”

    The scriptures above indicate that Messianic believers are not under the injunction of Torah. Pauline doctrine stresses that all believers should maintain a knowledge of New Covenant freedoms. Many modern Messianic Jews are still struggling with the basic tenants of Pauline doctrine. Their unhistorical and undoctrinal interpretation of Paul and his teachings has led them to an antogonism with the Gospel professed in Protestant Christianity. I therefore submit to you that the Grace that I profess is not heresy but rather correct doctrine. If my teachings were anti-nomian, I would not consider the inclusion of Torah observance in the daily life of Messianic believers acceptable. Messianic Judaism should be permissive in it’s acceptance of Torah observance, but must never let believers feel obligated in their worship and daily practice.

    It could be that the intollerance inherant in Torah observance is the real enemy of the Gospel. God forbid that you be free! If you have the time to read some satiric poetry, you may want to check out “The Apostle Paul’s Phylacteries” at http://www.messianic-literary.com/beeber-p4.htm#e4

    Shalom,

    Marshall

    • I bet you have a statue of Paul on your desk, and you are praying to him 3 times a day, but you also portraying him as holding Yeshua to be a lier….. How sad……

      • I bet you have a statue of Paul on your desk, and you are praying to him 3 times a day, but you also portraying him as holding Yeshua to be a lier….. How sad……

        What’s the basis of this bet?

  9. Marshall,

    I bet your back yard is full of slogans, but here we discuss theology. do you understand what theology means?

  10. Dear Dan,

    I have been a Messianic Jew since 1973. I have met those who were filled with the Spirit and those who were filled with themselves. I have discussed doctrine with many honorable Messianic and Christian leaders and have gained much, but also have had fruitless conversations with contentious believers who only want to score points for their theological camp. I really don’t care to discuss theology with you. What does it gain either of us to contend with one another in anger. Feel free to check out my web site at http://www.messianic-literary.com. I will do the same for you if you have a website.

    I will leave you with one of my favorite Messianic poems below:

    One New Man
    Oct. 28, 97

    Rabbi Paul expounded to all,

    of the union of souls in Messiah. *

    The Gentile and Jew that once struggled as two,

    will now dwell as but “one” reconciled.

    But how can this be when we readily see,

    that an enmity lingers before us.

    Of law and of grace we debate and retrace,

    but agreement it seems is abhorrent.

    So what must be done,

    is petition the Son,

    together in prayer very fervent.

    “Please show us your way,

    to discover this day,

    to unite as but one as your servants.”

    To this point I believe,

    I have come to receive,

    the wisdom required this moment.

    Our union as “one” is already won,

    on the cross by His bloody atonement!

    There is no dispute.

    All debate is now mute.

    Our equality certain before us.

    So let us proclaim we are “one” in His name,

    with forbearance towards all sung in chorus.

    *(reference: Ephesians 2:14-16)

    In Messiah’s grace,

    Marshall Beeber
    Messianic Literary Corner

    http://www.messianic-literary.com

    • “I have been a Messianic Jew since 1973. ”

      Marshall, if you were indeed born into a Jewish family, going by your doctrines and how you live and worship and your opposition to Messianic Judaism, you are a Christian of Jewish descent (or Hebrew Christian, if your prefer).

      Also, thank you for being so “permissive” to covenant faithful Jews regarding Torah – however, we didn’t ask nor will we ever ask for anyone’s PERMISSION to consider Torah as obligatory for all Jews.

      Also, I am surprised that Joseph didn’t call you out regarding your proposed so-called “Messianic Jewish Task Force” that is to oversee, according to your theology, an enforcement of correct (read, ACCORDING TO YOU) “all Messianic doctrine”. To that I say: no thanks. If we are going to establish any beit dins, it will certainly not be anti-Torah anti-Judaic Protestant inquisitional courts that you’d create.

      • Also, I am surprised that Joseph didn’t call you out regarding your proposed so-called “Messianic Jewish Task Force” that is to oversee, according to your theology, an enforcement of correct (read, ACCORDING TO YOU) “all Messianic doctrine”

        I think it’s a good idea for everyone to criticise doctrine – I probably wouldn’t call it a task force, you’re right, but we should weigh up every false doctrine, yes – especially those restricting grace for Messianic Jews.

        If we are going to establish any beit dins, it will certainly not be anti-Torah anti-Judaic Protestant inquisitional courts that you’d create.

        Inquisiton was Catholic, nevermind..

      • Mr. Shlomovich,

        The Torah says “G-d is not a man…nor the son of man” (Num. 23:19), “have no other gods before Me” (Ex. 20:3), “besides Him there is no other” (Deut. 4:35). You worship a deceased man, whom you imagine to be one of three persons that together reign as a godhood.

        G-d told Israel in Is. 44:24: “Thus saith the L-ord, thy Redeemer, and He that formed thee from the womb, I am the L-ord that maketh all things; that stretcheth forth the heavens alone; that spreadeth abroad the earth by Myself”.

        Christian trinitarianism is inherently inconsistent with, and indeed precludes, Torah observance..

  11. Marshall,

    You first deception is calling yourself a Messianic Jew, because theologically you are not, you are just a plain Hebrew Christian, I wish you guys will master the guts one day to call yourself as such….

    BTW, you should retitle the poem :my way or the highway……LOL!

    • Dan, how would you feel if someone said:

      “You are a Gnostic Hebrew Christian trying to argue that Paul’s words about Torah mystically mean something different, I wish you’d stop deceiving us true Messianic Jews with your anachronistic imitation of the Biblical Messianic faith. :lol:”

      I doubt you would like to be spoken to like that.

    • It’s just your interpretation of Paul seems to be a post-modern form of Gnostic Christianity rather than authentically Messianic Jewish. Marshall’s understanding of grace is in line with the early Christian church leaders such as Paul and Peter, who were Messianic Jews.

      • I don’t think Paul could be any more clear than he was in Galatians 5:1-6:

        It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery. Mark my words! I, Paul, tell you that if you let yourselves be circumcised, Christ will be of no value to you at all. Again I declare to every man who lets himself be circumcised that he is obligated to obey the whole law. You who are trying to be justified by law have been alienated from Christ; you have fallen away from grace. But by faith we eagerly await through the Spirit the righteousness for which we hope. For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision has any value. The only thing that counts is faith expressing itself through love.

  12. We are all called to honor the Lord in our behavior towards one another. Remember that your rhetoric only shows those reading this blog your true character. If you cannot moderate your attitudes, the moderator should.

    I am a Jew. My father was an orthodox Jew from Poland. My mother was from an Romanian Jewish family. You are all behaving like a pack of wolves. Fairly disgusting for believers to show such a witness. Maybe you are not believers at all, but actually are anti-messianics infiltrating this website. If so, Joseph should kick you out.

    In Yeshua’s grace,

    Marshall Beeber
    Messianic Literary Corner
    http;//www.messianic-literary.com

  13. Marshall,

    If you cannot stand the heat, then get out of the kitchen. Joseph understands that there is no animosity here. Only people with no answers are trying to kill the messengers……

  14. I’d like to allow everyone to comment and say what they like.

    Here is our comments policy:

    http://roshpinaproject.wordpress.com/comments/

    I don’t want to start moderating comments as we are all adults and we should be able to discuss these things maturely. That said, I agree with Marshall that as believers we should be as gracious as possible in our conversations. It is a hard balancing line between assertiveness and politeness. None of us are perfect in this. We should all let our speech be “seasoned with salt”. This is easier said than done.

    I do not think there’s any reason to suspect Marshall of deceptiveness – he is a Jew, his teachings are authentically Messianic, he is not pretending to be a rabbi or making out his website to be a Judaism, or fraudulently claiming to be Torah-observant whilst ignoring the penalties of Torah-disobedience (e.g. death by stoning).

    Marshall is a Messianic Jew rightly concerned about the unwelcome presence of legalism in the Messianic movement, and I think he has some excellent points.

  15. That said, Paul was quite assertive:

    Brothers, if I am still preaching circumcision, why am I still being persecuted? In that case the offense of the cross has been abolished. As for those agitators, I wish they would go the whole way and emasculate themselves!

  16. Yes, Joseph, Paul was very clear. He told the Gentiles that if they were to yield by agreeing that only proselytes had a firm standing in the covenant, they would, at the same time br undermining or even dismissing the crucial place of messiah in terms of covenant membership.

    Yah, i say, he was very clear…..

    • I don’t understand what you’re trying to say, sorry. It might be me. What do you mean by ‘firm standing in the covenant’ and ‘covenant membership’?

  17. How does one get to be a covenant member? I’ll spear you the answer, by faith of course. the biggest problem that Paul had with the foolish Galatians was that they thought that in order to be covenant members they had to become Jews first and go through the required ritual of a proselyte at the time, which included circumcision. Paul mentioned Or alluded to this about 40 times in his epistles. He told the Gentiles not to get circumcised for this reason, he explained that circumcision is not the means to GET INTO the covenant, only faith in Messiah is.

  18. Hello Dan,

    I have been involved in many internet groups over the years. When I mentioned the term “wolf pack”, it actually is a term used for internet tactics to drive unwanted individuals off an unmoderated message board. In this case, Joseph is moderating, so hopefully this will not happen.

    I have experienced theogical debates on similar websites and they usually end up as “spats”. The term was coined by a Messianic Jewish leader from the UK who refused to join similar discussions. I disagreed with him until I experienced the frustration of facing hateful opponents on a regular basis. We are admonished not to throw our pearls to swine. Not saying I consider my opponents are swine, but rather that important spirtual concepts often do not commmunicate well in a debate and should not be offered without a request.

    I am not saying that internet debate is useless, but it certainly has its limitations and is often charged with emotions and incriminations.

    On the positive light, Joseph seems to be a fair moderator and hopefully those who he advises will heed his advice.

    I will be joining the Rosh Pina Project debates from time to time. I wish you all the Lord’s blessing. May we all be wiser and stronger in Spirit from our correspondence.

    • You will always be very welcome here Marshall, I know I have lots to learn from your ministry and am very honoured you have commented here. Shalom.

  19. Dan,

    It believe it is Joseph who determines what is considered hijacing and not you. Without civility on the website, it will degenerate into a “wolf pack” run by those who can bite the hardest. So my talk about the “rules of debating” are necessary. This website has rules, just like boxing; no cheap shots and no hitting below the belt.

    Regards,

    Marshall

  20. Marshall, I love you… The truth, that is all we proclaim here. It seems to bother you, Joseph, and some others, I wonder why?

  21. Marshal, I would concur with Dan here – our confronting your mischaracterization of Messianic Judaism’s view of Torah or the slams of the Messianic Jewish leadership does not mean that we don’t consider you a brother (especially with you being a Jew) or that we wish you anything but G-d’s best.

    • Mustn’t criticise the leadership! They’re a bunch of ex-missionaries-to-the-Jews rebelling against Protestant fundamentalism whilst being guided by an ecumenical – they sure are the authentic Jews, not us at all!

  22. Pingback: Are Messianic Jews Commanded To Keep Shabbat? « The Rosh Pina Project

  23. Hi Joseph,
    Excellent website. Its on my top 10. Its probably outside the domain of your blog, but it would be nice if you could cover more about the connections that Messianic Jews have with their past and how it affects the future. For example, the Hebrew writings of Messianic Jewish sages from 19th century. Hardly no one talks about this because of the disconnect created by Shoah between two generations of Messianic Jews in Europe. But, nonetheless this is an area that is waiting to be exploited. Most modern Messianic Jews don’t they have their own history and bible commentators in Hebrew just like rabbinic Judaism has its own. For example: Jechiel Zebi Lichtenstein, Biesenthal (do a search on archive.org), Levertoff, etc.

  24. Pingback: Submitting Torah Observance To New Covenant Principles - Page 24 - Christian Forums

  25. Pingback: [Open] tags-a read and respond thread for all - Page 14 - Christian Forums

  26. Thanks for your balanced & very sane posts. Refreshing! I am just learning about churches, plus learning Hebrew, so as they say from Ariel Ministries, I bid you Shaking.

  27. If you love Yahshua, you should keep His Torah and It is not burdensome. The ReNewed Covenant is the Torah written in and on our heart. YHVH/Yahshua, the same yesterday, today and forever ;He changes not. The age of Grace was in the beginning. We can see this throughout the Scriptures!! The only Scriptures around the time of Yahshua and the Apostles to teach were the Torah, the Prophets and the Writings. I LOVE His Torah ; Yahshua is the Written Torah that became flesh, the Living Torah!! This is very simple and easy to understand and the freedom is found in keeping His Word. If one follows the torah of the country they live in, they are free from the penalties given to those who transgress the torah of the country they live in. This was settled a long time ago ;yet, many Believers are still trying to find loopholes by twisting the words of Rav Should, a Torah Observant Jew from the tribe of Benjamin. Peter warned us about those that are ignorant of the Torah, the Prophets and the Writings, would do just that to their own destruction. I hope that the Torah will be taught in Spirit and Truth, just as Yahshua and the Apostles taught!! AMEIN! AMEIN!

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