I never touched a sprig of broccoli until I was about 30 years old.
I did not like the vegetable. Why? It is green, and it is a vegetable. Like grass. If it was green, I did not like it. The fact that I had not actually tasted it was not relevant. I do currently enjoy “the Brock.” But all other greens are merely tolerated.
My criteria for judging the green tree of tinyness was that it resembled others in color only. Yes, I had a color-blind palate. Why do we enjoy pointing the finger at something wrong? Many times, it makes us feel more “right.” Maturity happens when we enjoy being right more than feeling right.
Let me step back to look at the idea of Messianic believers in Jesus/Yeshua. There can be a lot said about the concept, but for sake of this article, I define them as “people who worship and live out a Hebraic expression of the faith.
There are many misunderstandings, but right now, I must mention a biggie that is misunderstood “bigly.” (Sorry, I have been waiting for another opportunity to use/force this new word. That will probably do it for me for a while.) But before I walk through this, let me ask you what you think about Jews. What do you even think of the word “Jew?”
Pick any people group that you simply would not see yourself relating to: Black? White? Mexican? Eskimo? Polish? Jew? Pick one.
Now say these words out loud, “I am a ______.” Hear your own voice and ask yourself how that felt. Did you immediately start listing inner reasons why you are “surely not that?” Did you feel a twinge of distaste?
We often speak of other people groups with, at least, a tad bit of disdain. Many times while we are claiming loudly that we are not racist. We often look upon the customs and norms of them as backward or silly.
That’s how many Christians have been conditioned to feel about Messianics – distaste. Perhaps even disdain.
I recently met a pastor who seemed a bit confused about the fellowship that I keep. Most Christians I have talked to believe that Messianics adhere to a doctrine of works for Salvation, where a man is not saved by grace through faith in Jesus.
I personally have never met a Messianic who believes that theology.
Disclaimer: I am beyond even trying to convince another of my doctrine. Who needs that kind of heavy weight? I’m not that good at persuasion.
Perhaps Messianics are your broccoli. I didn’t like broccoli because it was green. What I saw was greenishness.
Many Christians don’t like Messianics because they see “Jewishness.” Was green a good reason for me to not like Broccoli? No, but it was for me. Is Jewish a good reason for many Christians to not like Messianics? No, but it’s reason enough for some.
Don’t believe me? Look at the history of what the church has done to the Jew. For a good (really good) reference, read Constantine’s Sword By James Carroll.
Would it shock you that all the apostles of Jesus the Messiah (plus Apostle Paul and Mother Mary) were Messianic Jews? They believed in salvation by grace through faith in Jesus.
Would it shock you that not all people who claim to be called Christians do not believe a gospel of grace through faith?
Would it shock you that people like Moses, Joshua, David, and Sampson were saved by grace? Did any of them keep the instructions, the law perfectly?
I hope this helps, at least a little, to take away that notion that Messianics are putting their faith in their own works for Salvation (English word for Yeshua).
Maybe, one day, we will all like broccoli. And we will all understand the importance of Messianics at the table.
Below is a slide show which supports this article. If you think this can help unify the Body of Messiah, please share this article. The video version of this teaching will be found on Youtube on the “Basically The Deal” channel.
I Corinthians 12:12-13 – For just as the body is one and has many members, but all the members of the body, although they are many, are one body, thus also Christ. For by one Spirit we were all baptized into one body, whether Jews or Greeks, whether slaves or free persons, and all were made to drink one Spirit.
Here is the video version for sharing. The recording had some skips in it. Hope the message made it through.