Hope you’ve had a shavua tov, fine blog readers. This week in the Messianic blogosphere feature a number of Yeshua-centered items from around the web, with items of particular interest from the new YeshuaInContext blog:
- Answering “Yeshua is just another religious figure” – Derek expounds why Yeshua is unique from among religious figures (Buddha, Krishna, Mohammed, etc.) and points to Yeshua’s observable impact on the world.
- Cataloging the New Testament’s Hebraisms: Part 4 – Looking at the Hebraism of parallelisms, that is, repeating the meaning of a statement in a reworded form for additional emphasis, David Bivin gives examples from the Tenakh and the New Testament, suggesting,
A prophet [in the Hebrew Bible] could scarcely open his or her mouth without parallelisms popping out. Likewise, parallelisms are everywhere in the synoptic Gospels, especially in the sayings of Jesus, an indication that the Greek of these Gospels is derived from a Greek source translated from Hebrew.
- FaceGod not Facebook – Boaz writes on the difficulty of studying in the modern world,
In the modern world, many of us live under the tyranny of too many activities, too many responsibilities, too many options, and not enough time. We run from stress to stress. Life was not always like this, nor is it supposed to be like this. The great rabbi Hillel once said, “Do not say that you will study Torah when you have more time; perhaps, you will never have more time."
- Muslim followers of Jesus? – The author recounts the story of his best friend from 1979 who, as a Jew, became a Messianic Jew, keeping Judaism’s practices while following Jesus as Messiah, as did many in the Jesus Movement of the 1970s. In the 1980s, the same thing happened to Muslims, with Muslims becoming followers of Jesus, but not considering themselves converts to Christianity, but rather, Jesus-following Muslims. Are “Messianic Muslims” a legitimate group to God?
- 100% Yisrael and 100% You – Ken Lane laments that so many of the folks he’s met on this Torah path are seemingly without personality. He writes,
Am I saying that Torah observance leads to a boring personality? Heaven forbid. But some of these individuals are under the false impression that with this extreme and radical teshuvah (repentance/change of lifestyle) they have subjected themselves to, they also needed to perform some kind of personality-lobotomy on themselves in order to become this more palatable individual to the rest of the observant community.
- Reasons For Faith In Yeshua – Suppose a person starts with the premise that the New Testament is not authoritative, what are reasons to believe it? Derek answers concisely.
- Essentials for discipleship – Looking at what Yeshua’s disciples had to change in order to become disciples, we can derive principles from those changes and apply them ourselves. The first 3 principles:
- Replacement at the level of ideas: truths to replace falsehood and subtle errors.
- Replacement at the level of desires: the proper desires which replace envy, lust, and pride.
- Replacing wicked and unhealthy habits with good ones.
- In The Margins – Being Messianic may mean forever having to explain faith, Silverman suggests “we are exactly in the right place. We should not be on the defensive or lamenting our position but rather rejoicing in the Lord! We have always been a nation of aliens and sojourners.”
- Mussar: Decisiveness – Going along with my post earlier this week about contributing to the kingdom instead of just talking about it, Rabbi Resnik writes,
The greatest impediment to ethical growth may not be ignorance, but immobility. We might have a sense of right, and a conviction about some excellent course of action, but fail to pursue it through indecisiveness, endlessly weighing the pros and cons, or the difficulties and complications and never getting around to doing the right thing. Modern life conspires against decisiveness. We are taught to avoid absolutes, to keep our options open, to be tolerant, inclusive, always a bit skeptical . . . and often immobilized.
- MJAA supplies furniture to Jewish orphanage – While on the topic of building the kingdom, the Messianic Jewish Alliance of America continues its humanitarian work in Israel.