Q: Shalom Kevin. I have been raised as a Gentile Christian my whole life, but within the last year or so, I have been experiencing an ever-increasing draw towards the Messianic Jewish community. The Gentile Churches make me want to vomit and mourn; as they are straying farther and farther from Yeshua. My whole family is beginning to look at me strangely as my heart wants to forsake this thing called “Christianity,” and I long to embrace and understand the culture and ways of God from the Hebrew- and Jewish-Roots. I am very attracted to the Messianic Community, though I have not yet visited a congregation. I am a Christian who is crying out for help, and I want to disconnect from my paganistic Christian upbringing and come until full maturity in Moshiac by embracing our Jewish roots. Any guidance, info, or words of wisdom would be appreciated.
A: Thank you for your heart-felt letter. This is a huge question, and you are not alone in asking it.
The one thing I feel compelled to urge you is to not hope to find closeness to Yeshua simply by virtue of attending a Messianic congregation—do not be enticed by Jewish things (or allegedly Hebraic thinking) believing that simply because they appear Jewish they are therefore a reflection of authentic, Scriptural Yeshua-faith. Unfortunately, Messianic congregations have the potential to be just as steeped in religiosity as the Christian church. So, if you look to Messianic congregations intent on finding that elusive “true faith,” you may attend services for a while and become enraptured by the novelty of expression, but if you don’t eventually find yourself “wanting to vomit and mourn,” you may simply be taking on one form of religion in place of another.
My caution is that you do not start down the path of so many who have reviled the pagan roots of Christianity, and (as a reaction) sought out Christianity’s “Jewish roots,” only to end up creating a new religion of their own. It sounds to me like you want Messiah more than you want religion… so don’t go the way of the “religion-swap” in pursuit of your destiny with Yeshua!
What do you think? Weigh in with your comments below.
This “Gentile Chronicles” article was originally published in Messianic Jewish Issues. The Gentile Chronicles is a recurring feature in Messianic Jewish Issues, and is part of Perfect Word’s developing “Gentile Initiative” designed to explicitly build up Gentile believers in Yeshua.