For freedom, Messiah set us free—so stand firm, and do not be burdened by a yoke of slavery again. Galatians 5:1, TLV
False teaching is either so restrictive it’s like slavery, or so loose it is dangerous. Paul’s frustration with the Galatians was understandable. Why? Because, they were listening to a few Jewish emissaries who taught one could only believe in the Jewish Messiah if they were Jewish. So, better convert these Gentiles into Jews through circumcision. Yikes!
Yeshua’s atonement was meant for the world –Jewish and Gentile. Our Messiah did the work of salvation. Because if our salvation was dependent upon our works of righteousness (Titus 3:5), we would be in big trouble.
Trying to “convert” non-Jews into Jews was not what Yeshua’s work was about. His redemptive work was so that we could be redeemed children of His Heavenly Father.
For in Messiah Yeshua, neither circumcision nor uncircumcision has any meaning—but only trust and faithfulness expressing itself through love. (vs. 6, TLV)
And that’s the key. Our trust and faithfulness because of what Jesus did for us will naturally be expressed through love.
There’s a very thin line between exploring through love and gratitude what is important to our Father, and performing acts we believe will make God love us more. It always goes back to this:
“But this is the covenant I will make with the house of Israel after those days”
—it is a declaration of Adonai—
“I will put My Torah [Law] within them.
Yes, I will write it on their heart.
I will be their God
and they will be My people. (Jeremiah 31:32, TLV)
As a Gentile, I am grafted into the Jewish olive tree as a wild branch (Romans 11:16-24). I’m a wild, uncultured branch, yet, I bring something to the tree. But I’m not feeding the tree, the tree feeds me. I begin by exploring first the branches, then the trunk, and then down deep into the roots. With each step, I learn more. Not as a means of salvation, but as an act of a loving and obedient child.
Exploring the “Jewish roots of the Christian faith” is not entirely accurate. We’re exploring what always was and will always be. And little by little, through the Holy Spirit, we’re changed. The Torah will be put within our heart, not so that we’re “better saved,” that’s an affront to Jesus. It is about our trust and faithfulness, ever exploring what is important to our Father, out of love.
How does this work practically?
Explore the first 2/3rds of the book we call the Bible and learn it as well as the one third toward the end. It doesn’t happen overnight. It will take a lifetime. Sometimes it will be confusing and other times we’ll jump from our chairs with incredible revelation.
I hadn’t intended to go in this direction for this blog. And, I’m not entirely sure why the LORD led me in this way. All I know is I tried my best to explain just how much there is for us. A treasure chest filled with jewels and gold and silver. We just have to open it and explore.
For those of my Mishpocha who celebrate, l’shanah tovah!