Sunday, April 19, 2015

The Jewishness of the New Testament

As he read the New Testament, he was struck by how Jewish it was; it didn’t fit the mold he’d always heard. There were many references to the Tanakh which he cross referenced and documented. As he began studying these Messianic and prophetic texts, a picture began forming in his mind and he struggled to reconcile what he was learning with what he was taught. He felt that the Church had missed the point almost as much as the Jewish side had; they both started at a common foundation and both went their own ways into error. The corruption of the Jewish officials led them into another way for justification and the Gentiles made up their own version of the faith minus any Jewish interpretation. Both excluded each other and both became poorer for it. 

It took me longer to come around. I loved and respected my father. One day, when I was 16, he took me for a walk to the Grand Square and found a quiet spot. I can still see him sitting there with the basilica in the background as he took a deep breath and said, ‘Rebekah, I want to tell you something that I haven’t told anyone. I struggled with whether I should tell you, but it’s hard to keep anything from you! I’ve been studying the New Testament and I’m starting to believe that Yeshua was and is the Mashiach (Messiah). I know it sounds crazy and I know it’s dangerous, but that’s where I am.’ I was dumbfounded and scared because I knew this was considered heresy. I tried to think what this could mean if it were ever discovered. He must have sensed my concern as he said,’I can’t get into it right now but I could explain more about this and let you see for yourself.’

I began reading the New Testament and talked about it with my father. We both discovered that Yeshua, which is how we referred to Him, is not an enemy of the Torah, in fact it’s just the opposite. I will admit that we didn’t fully understand why the Messiah came to die and why He left. Everyone was waiting for the Messiah to come and conquer. I know He still plans to do that but here we are in this interval where confusion reigns. It’s hard to understand; but it still makes more sense than the alternative.” 

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