Import jQuery

Weekly Bracha 30

Welcome to the weekly Messianic link round-up, partner. Bonus related items from the Jewish and Christian worlds – yeehaww!

  • Forks in the Dusty Road – Perhaps the most earnest, frank discussion to date on the Messianic movement, Messianic Judaism, One Law and Bilateral Ecclesiology.
  • Faith & Reason – Derek Leman argues that “we don’t actually believe because of some fictitious, neutral, objective investigation of the revelatory documents.” Instead, he suggests faith has reasons reason knows not of.
  • Redneck Protester – Amusing anti-Israel protestor near Birmingham, Alabama Ramallah.


  • In the Name of Yeshua – I know I’ve been harping this lately, but it’s important: the Yeshua Film documentary needs some donations, and soon. Please help. David writes,

    In my discussions with Messianics of all stripes, I have noticed one dire need that has never been addressed in any significant way. That is the need for objective documentation that will preserve the history of, not just a single person, family, congregation or organization, but the entire breadth of all things Messianic. The Yeshua Film project is the first real attempt at meeting that need.

    Without wishing anyone ill, I remind us that in another decade or two, we will, with appalling frequency, begin hearing about the deaths of all our present congregational founders and leaders. Soon, there will be no one left who can accurately document what was really thought, said, and done throughout the late 20th and early 21st centuries.

    Help keep that memory alive by contributing to the Yeshua Film project.

  • Young Earth Creationism and the Evangelical Elite – Houston, we have a problem, argues the author, and the problem is that instead of discussing the issue, conservative Christians battle those who hold to old earth creationism or theistic evolution.
  • The “Hypocrisy” of the Pharisees - Without reading the Scriptures carefully, and without a familiarity with Second Temple-period extra-biblical sources, a simple reader of the New Testament might assume that a majority of the Pharisees were hypocrites and that the Pharisees as a movement were indeed a “brood of vipers.” Hat tip: Aaron Eby
  • The Road To Antioch – New Testament scholar Michael Bird makes a suggestion that implies Jews and gentiles ought to operate apart from each other, i.e. the controversial bilateral ecclesiology popular in Messianic Jewish circles. Hat tip: Yahnatan Lasko. Bird writes,

    The Jerusalem council [of Acts 15] permitted the existence of two parallel theologies: one theology where the Gentiles were uncircumcised equals in a renewed Israel with holiness constituted by the Spirit and another theology where uncircumcised Gentiles were guests in an Israelite remnant that still defined holiness through Torah observance. The Jerusalem council’s decisions seem optimized in a setting where Jewish Christians and Gentile Christians remain in parallel rather than integrated.

  • Methodist Clerics Try To Justify Israel Boycott – Messianic Joseph Weismann gets an article on the popular Harry’s Place blog, and uses the opportunity to call out the Methodist Church for their anti-Israel, anti-Jewish stance, calling it a mockery of the Christian faith.
  • Blogetiquette – New Testament scholar Larry Hurtado has started a blog. He writes about his hesitancy to enter the blog world:

    One of the factors that has made me hesitate to get much involved in blog-sites of others, much less open one myself, is the behavior of some people who participate. Sites that are supposed to be all about serious academic issues concerning the New Testament and early Christianity, for example, attract comments that are rude, ill-informed, and downright pig-headed

  • Disciples Among the Nations – If discipleship means imitating Yeshua, what does that mean for gentile followers of Messiah?
  • Barack Obama Interview With Israeli Television – The US President visits Israel. Interview and transcript here. 
  • Yeshua’s voice of sarcasm – First Fruits of Zion is building a Hebrew/English translation of the gospels. In it, they note how they have tried to preserve nuances from the Hebrew, including sarcastic comments by Yeshua. For example, Yeshua rebukes certain religious leaders sarcastically in Mark 7:

    "How nice that you have nullified the mitzvah of God in order to observe your tradition."

    -Mark 7:9 Delitzsch Hebrew

  • Who Really Killed Jesus? – Blogger Gev, a follower of Jesus, suggests it was not the Jews who killed Jesus. In the 104 comments to the post, Jewish anti-Christians suggest it was Jews who killed Jesus. Amusing that a few hundred years ago or less and the tables would have been turned around.
  • Why the Church and the Jewish People Should Get Along – Dr. Schiffman discusses Genesis 12, the distinct calling of Israel, and how the nations are blessed through her.
  • Derek Leman receives an unexpected endorsement - ;-)

J-BOM (Jewish Book of the Month Club)


  • Pastoral Epistles Study: 1 Timothy 4:6-16 – John McKee continues his pastoral study, finishing up 1 Timothy 4, in which he discusses Paul’s encouragement of Timothy, which was one of “don’t dwell on the false teachings – but instead to devote himself to God. McKee quotes New Testament scholar Ben Whitherington,

    The best way to refute the opponents is not to dwell on their teachings, seeking to rebut them one-by-one, but rather to focus on what a positive presentation of the gospel from Timothy … should look like.

Enjoy the tasty bracha jerky bits! :-)


  1. Can anyone enlighten me as to who Dr. Schiffman is? He seems to write from the perspective of a traditional Christian, but a quick scan of his blog says he writes about Jewish topics. Confused.

  2. He's Messianic, and I believe he's Jewish.

    He runs an humanitarian organization, Chevra, that gives aid to Holocaust survivors through soup kitchens, food, medicine. I was first introduced to him through FFOZ's Holocaust seminar this past spring.

    His wife Michelle runs a blog as well.

    I don't see eye-to-eye, theologically, with him, but I usually enjoy his frank posts.

  3. Made a donation to the film site. Agree this history must be preserved.


  4. Todd,

    Thank you so much.


    I figured you'd like that one! :-)

  5. Just read Aaron's article and agree, it's a very fine piece and needs to be read by the larger Christian church. Also, not to put too fine a point on my current "issue", but it's teachings like this that I won't get a lot of access to if I retreat into the world of the traditional church, as suggested by MJ/BE proponents.

    Guess I'll have to blog about this again.

  6. Two Thumbs up to the Aaron Eby article, I like the weekly bracha's for this reason!


Appending "You might like" to each post.