Friday, January 6, 2012

Hebrew Roots Movement Split into Two Sects?

Courtesy of

The Hebrew Roots movement is popular enough to already have split into two main sects: 1) Christian Hebrew Roots; and, 2) Hebrew Roots. -From Wikipedia

Hebrew Roots is a contemporary global spiritual movement to return to the true faith revealed during the personal earthly ministry of Jesus of Nazareth.
Hebrew Roots Movement

The Hebrew Roots movement is popular enough to already have split into two main sects: 1) Christian Hebrew Roots; and, 2) Hebrew Roots.

Christian Hebrew Roots Movement
The Christian Hebrew Roots movement follows the Ten Commandments (Ex 20:3-17) and the feasts of the Lord (Lev 23:1-44).
The importance of both divisions of the Hebrew Roots movement is best illustrated by contrasting it with the practices of the Roman Catholic Church whose core doctrines have been adopted by most Protestant Christian churches.
The Roman Catholic papacy thought to change the seventh-day Sabbath to the first-day Sunday; and, invented the feasts of the Cult of Saints to quote "replace the feasts of the Lord."
Mainstream Protestant Christianity, beginning with Martin Luther (an ex Roman Catholic priest), also observes the papal catechisms that teach a change to Sunday as the day of rest instead of the seventh-day Sabbath.
The Roman Catholic feasts of the Cult of Saints include: Christmas - St. Nicholas' feast; Easter instead of Passover; Halloween as the eve of All Saints Day; feast days for hundreds of "saints;" and, Mary's Octave on New Year's Day) and seven other feasts.
Note: Luther's main objection to the Roman Catholic institution was the "transubstantiation" doctrine of the Catholic Mass which held that priests literally change the communion wafer into the body (flesh) of Jesus during the MYSTERY part of the Mass when the priest turns his back on the congregation.
The Christian Hebrew Roots movement instead follows the biblical teachings set forth in the New Testament regarding the nature of Communion as asymbol of Christ's body instead of the literal body and flesh of Jesus. This, they deduce from the words Jesus spoke to describe the amendment to the Passover service being symbolic and not literal (in accordance with definitions of the Greek words in the New Testament).
The Christian sect of the Hebrew Roots movement does not teach a return to the law as dispensed by the scribes who Jesus rebuked as hypocrites. Instead, this sect of the movement follows a claimed worship pattern of Jesus whom they claim freed mankind from the yoke of the letter of the law; and, in fulfilling the law, taught Christians to practice the Ten Commandments and feasts of the Lord which make up "the acceptable year of the Lord"  in Jesus' speech inaugurating his personal earthly ministry.

Some followers of the Hebrew Roots movement choose not to even use the English translations of common Hebrew and Greek terms, preferring instead to pronounce the anglicized versions of certain Hebrew words, notably, the names of God and Jesus (Yahweh and Yeshua).[6]  Those who go beyond this in returning to ones Hebrew roots are discussed in the section below called "Hebrew Roots." Both movements include adherents who are of Jewish heritage as well as Gentile heritage. The Christian Hebrew Roots movement is completely nondenominational, consisting of persons from many different religious backgrounds[7]  and teaches adherence to the health laws of the Torah but not the portions of the Torah abandoned by Jesus.

Hebrew Roots Movement
The primary thing that Hebrew Roots movement advocates is a return to Torah observance . Some Hebrew Roots congregations encourage the use of Hebrew-based forms of the sacred names but this is generally a minor emphasis. Also included is a greater understanding of the tribes of Israel.Herbert Armstrong  felt that understanding about the tribes would help in understanding prophecy but his main focus was for Christians to observe the Torah, just like the apostles did. In addition, he taught, like Paul, that God's people should choose not to engage in "pagan" practices.

Some would state that this awakening is a sovereign act of Yahweh  through His Spirit. Some would state that God is restoring His followers to the true path or ancient paths and that people are independently catching the inspiration to return to forgotten truths by various means.

The Hebrew Roots movement has accelerated in the last few years, mainly because of a turn within the Messianic Judaism  community. The groups diverge on the issue of One Law theology which Hebrew Roots subscribes to but which Messianic Judaism denies. One Hebrew Roots teacher, Tim Hegg, responded to this issue by defending what he believes to be the biblical teaching of "One Law" theology and its implications concerning the obligations of Torah obedience for new Messianic believers from the nations.

Hebrew Roots also clearly differentiates itself from Protestant Christianity by examining the arguments against Torah observance and using the work of recent Protestant Christian scholars and early historical church records to establish alternate interpretations. A good representative of this can be found at House of David Fellowship , a Hebrew Roots based religious educational fellowship with headquarters in Richmond Virginia. Here, one can find 12 distinct differences between Protestant Christianity and Hebrew Roots concerning Torah observance in their "Hebrew Roots of Christianity" section.

While both British Israelism as advocated by Herbert W. Armstrong  and the Sacred Name Movement proposed by Clarence Orvil Dodd  originated in the 1930s, the "Hebrew Roots" movement is more recent, emerging as a distinct phenomenon around 1997. In that year, Dean Cozzens of Open Church Ministries , Colorado Springs  published a prophecy  titled "The Hebrew Movement", which revealed that God had foreordained four major moves for the 20th century, viz. 1. Pentecostalism , 2. Faith-healing , 3. the Charismatic Movement , and finally 4. The "Hebrew Roots Movement". In this prophecy, the Hebrew Roots Movement is the "final stage of empowerment" before Christ returns. (?)
** Notable advocates include...
Eddie Chumney, of Hebraic Heritage Ministries International, is devoted to restoring the Hebraic Roots/Jewishness of Christianity.
Bill Cloud, of Shoreshim Ministries, who teaches on "lost" Hebraic heritage.
Rico Cortes, of Wisdom in Torah Ministries, whose mission is to bring people back to the Torah of Yahweh.

Sheila Crawford, Emphasizes the study of God's Word and understanding the Lost Hebraic Roots of Christianity. Founded "Shofar Ministries" around 1995 with a web presence and archived newsletters dating back to 1998.
William F. Dankenbring, former member of the Worldwide Church of God, founded Triumph Prophetic Ministries in 1987 and produces a newsletter called Prophecy Flash.
Tim Hegg, of Torah Resource, who provides resources that are Biblical based, honoring Yeshua, and upholding the Torah.
Tim Kelley, of Ami Yisrael Hebraic Fellowship, who teaches that it is difficult to understand the Bible, especially the Apostolic scriptures, without a good understanding of the Torah as well as the culture of the first century Jewish people.
Lee Miller, congregational leader of the House of David Fellowship in Richmond Virginia, who teaches the Hebraic perspective of The Holy Scriptures and works to clearly define the line of demarcation between Protestant Christianity and Hebrew Roots.
Tony Robinson, of Restoration of Torah, who uses thematic analysis to develop his teachings on Torah.
Sid Roth , Messianic Jewish host of Messianic Vision, a nationally syndicated radio, TV and publishing ministry, advocates "Hebrew Roots" topics to non-Jewish Christians.
Brad Scott, of Wildbranch Ministries, whose focus is to restore the ways of our Creator to His people by teaching the Old and New Testaments from the language and culture of the people who penned them.
Season of our Joy, a Feast of Tabernacles site located at the Lake of the Ozarks in central Missouri, features over 2 dozen teachers teaching topics on Hebrew Roots and the role of the festivals in our Christian walk.
Jim Staley, director of Passion for Truth Ministries, Pastor/Teacher of Passion for Truth Fellowship in St. Charles, Missouri, as well as the director for 'The Final Return Conference' that travels nationally to different cities throughout the country each year.
Dean & Susan Wheelock, who have the website, which is a teaching ministry dedicated to exploring the Hebraic roots of the Christian Faith.
The movement emphasizes the completion of the unified "House of Israel" in Jesus , made up of both Jews and non-Jews alike. Followers believe that they have become a co-heir and equal member of the chosen people  of the God of Israel  through the Blood of Jesus  and that returning to the mindset of the 1st-century church will provide deeper and more authentic insights into Hebrew idioms[clarification needed   and 1st-century cultural understandings presented in Scripture.
Hebrew Roots teachers emphasize the adoption of all believers of Jesus into the faith of Abraham,  often called in the Bible the "Unified House of Israel;" (Leviticus 10:6 ), (Jeremiah 37:11 ), (Ezekiel 39:25 ), (Romans 11:13-26 ), (Ephesians 2:10-14 ), made up of Jews and Non-Jews who maintain faith in Jesus while maintaining a Spirit-led adherence to the Torah, God's Teaching and Instruction, as a lifestyle of faith and love. Hebrew Roots followers believe that Christians have the testimony of Jesus, but are often found innocently to be living lawlessly (1John 1:9 ) according to the idea that Jesus died to do away with the Torah by abolishing it.
Rev. Sheila Crawford of Shofar Ministries States, "Hebraic Roots for the non-Jewish believer is this: "We seek to inspire believers in Yeshua (Jesus) to study the Word of God, the Holy Scriptures, and thus make God number one in their lives and to be fully equipped with the whole armor of God, to increase in the knowledge of God through an understanding of our previously lost, Hebraic Roots." So that Hebraic Roots is not a movement, but a move of God on the hearts of believers, drawing them deeper into an understanding of the culture and times the scriptures were written, in order that we may know HIM more by understanding His Word more clearly. source:

What The Messiah Must Accomplish

Has He Come Yet?
By Shlomo Phillips © 

As Jews we pray for the coming of HaMoshiach, the Messiah, daily. We will know him when he comes because the prophets give us the requirements he must fulfill. Over the past thousands of years many have arisen claiming to be our Messiah. To date NONE of them have meet the requirements. This is why knowledgeable religious Jews and Noahidim do not accept any of these men. Let's look at the essential Messianic requirements:

Mishna Torah, Laws of Kings and their Wars
Maimonides (Rambam), Chapter 11, Law #4:
If a king will arise from the House of David who delves deeply into the study of the Torah and, like David his ancestor, observes its mitzvos as prescribed by the Written Law and the Oral Law; if he will compel all of Israel to walk in [the way of the Torah] and repair the breaches [in its observance]; and if he will fight the wars of G-d; - we may, with assurance, consider him Moshiach.

If he succeeds in the above, builds the Beit HaMikdash on its site [i.e. the Third Jerusalem Temple on the Holy Mount], and gathers in the dispersed remnant of Israel, he is definitely the Moshiach.

He will then perfect the entire world, [motivating all the nations] to serve G-d together, as it is written [Zephaniah, 3:9], "I will make the peoples pure of speech so that they will all call upon the Name of G-d and serve Him with one purpose."
Who has met these requirements?
No one.

Here's a list of biblical requirements he must meet:
    Isaiah 2, 11, 42; 59:20
    Jeremiah 23, 30, 33; 48:47; 49:39
    Ezekiel 38:16
    Hosea 3:4-3:5
    Micah 4
    Zephaniah 3:9
    Zechariah 14:9
    Daniel 10:14
From the above sources we learn that HaMoshiach must meet the following essential criteria to be accepted (in no particular order):
  1. He must be a fully human Jewish male who reigns as King of Israel. (i.e. not an "incarnation of God," a "space brother" etc).
  2. He must be able to trace his lineage back to the House of David.
  3. He must be an accomplished Torah Scholar
  4. He must be a fully Torah observant Jew.
  5. He must lead the Jewish people in teshuvah (repentance) and obedience to HaShem and His Torah
  6. He must unite the Jewish people and do away with the movements and other distractions.
  7. He must cause all the Jews of the Diaspora (i.e. those scattered among the Gentile nations) to return Home to Israel .
  8. He must fight the necessary wars of God and establish Israeli supremacy throughout all the Lands granted us by HaShem in Torah.
  9. He must cause the Beit HaMikdash ("House of the Holy") to be rebuilt on the Temple Mount at the Sacred Rock.
Who has met these requirements?

No one.

When someone comes and accomplishes all of the above conditions we can know that HaMoshiach has come. So whether we are speaking of Jesus of Nazareth, Rebbe Akiva, the Ba'al Shem Tov, the Lubavitcher Rebbe, Rebbe Nachman of Breslov, Rabbi Yisroel Dov Ber Odesser or any one else, remember these requirements. Until they are met THE Messiah has not yet arrived.

Many anointed servants of HaShem have arisen and the tzadik of the age (whoever that is) is a "messiah" (i.e. an anointed righteous person) however HaMoshiach as of this point in history has not revealed himself. Will Jesus or the Lubavitcher Rebbe or Rebbe Nachman et al return and take up the mantle of HaMoshiach? Who can say? There are many people, both Jews and others, who are convinced that one of these men will do just that. Time will tell. What we can say for certain is that thus far no one has met the requirements. Therefore we continue to wait.

May he come soon and lead us all to freedom!

Be the Blessing you were created to be

'Don't let the perfect defeat the good.

Source ©
This content is used with permission of Shlomo Phillips

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