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The Bottom Line
Quote:aspiring2slavery wrote:
I have now read/listened to 12 of the earliest extra-biblical writings, and I am blown away at how much they exhort the believers to obey God's Law.

When I started my journey into the historical writings, I started in the "Early Church Fathers", because obviously I was interested in the EARLY CHURCH, but the Devil as crafty as he is, saw to it that those writings that taught obedience to God's Law were not under that label, but rather called the "Apostolic Fathers". No doubt, by the time most people get through the "Early Church" writings of what is primarily 3rd century texts, they are thoroughly convinced that the early church did not keep God's Law (and ofcourse they turn a blind eye to the many heresies contained in those writings in order to justify their lawlessness).

These are the texts I have gone through so far:

1st Clement
2nd Clement
Shepherd of Hermas
Polycarp to the Philippians
And the 7 letters of Ignatius

So far the only 2nd century writer I've found that teaches against the Torah, is Justin Martyr, but even then he admits in his writings that though he may belong to a Lawless Sect, there remains true Christians that indeed keep the Torah.

It is so interesting to me, as the preaching of Lawlessness increases in the writings, how more and more heresies are introduced to the Church such as Idolatry, praying to Angels, and ofcourse, the Pope :/


Shlama SS2:
Understand that the New Testament was written exclusively by Jews. All Jewish believers were zealous for Torah, as the Apostle Paul has said in the Book of Acts. Never will you find any of the Apostles encouraging Gentiles to keep more than a rudimentary representation of the Torah. Why is this? It is because Gentiles were never raised under the LAW/Torah, nor did they grow up to really understand its nuances from birth. It is only through salvation of our LORD Jesus Christ that they understand that the Torah makes us formally aware of our sin in its entirety and the devastation that it has wrought. Only converts who were taught the Torah and converted before receiving Christ as Saviour kept the LAW like Jews, for under Jewish Law, they were circumcised as Jews under the LAW of Moses. In reading Acts 15 in its entirety we can see the rudimentary LAWS of Torah, "do not commit idolatry, do not drink blood , do not partake of animals that have been strangled (pour out the blood at the altar of Alaha, for the life/soul of the flesh is in the blood) and do not commit adultery". The one and only purpose of these stipulations for the Gentiles directly from the LAW was to prepare them for fellowship with their Jewish brethren. There may have been more reasons given but they are not recorded in Acts 15 to my knowledge.
The uniformity was minimal for Gentiles so that the Body of Christ might be One Body consisting of both Jews and Gentiles, without faction, factions and sects and denominations are overwhelmingly prevalent in the Christian Church in this day and age. The fact that the LAW is the written definition of what sin in the flesh stands for, to both Jew and non-Jew. Just as the Gentiles had benign traditions so also the Jews had benign traditions as well that were embellishments, finding these "hiddur mitzvah" based upon the keeping of the LAW, since Moses divinely delivered the LAW to the nation of Israel when they were led by Moses from Egypt, beginning with the festival of Pesakh and the command to fulfill Shabbat. Over a period of 40 years these Laws were embellished, and defined as the customs and traditions of the nation of Israel, indeed they were the very lifestyle of the Jews. Since the main purpose of the Torah to all nations including both Jews and Gentiles is to define sin and iniquity it can be found that all humanity lies in sin, both Jews and Gentiles. The Spirit of Alaha bears witness to this and He bore witness to this at the Jerusalem Council. The Law, having never been the custom and tradition of the Gentiles was not needed except rudimentarily. The Holy Spirit would make the sinner aware. Hence it is written, '"those who have no law use their conscience, not the written code. Jews have the written code and because it defines their culture and tradition as well as their sin they are required to keep it.
Now, I will take liberty here and say that any one born a Jew and not knowing his race, either by adoption or total neglect of the parents and is not raised knowing the LAW of Moses is the same as a Gentile and not subject to the Keeping of the Law, including ritual circumcision, as a Jew who was raised under the Law, from birth and has partaken of the Culture and Tradition.
Moreover, The Torah is a burden to the Gentile. Why? Simply because he has not partaken of both the festivals and the Culture and stumbles at them. They are not his natural heritage. A crude parallel, if I may be allowed is transgender, A boy who has not been raised as a boy from birth has no natural recall of his childhood as a girl. This individual, truly and individually loved by Alaha because he/she is part to His creation will never truly find his/her natural identity. He may live, act and dress like a girl but he still has no childhood memories as a girl. At best he has a confused gender orientation. After hormone treatment and councelling he may develop breasts and the soft curves of a woman's body but He is sterile and will undoubtedly have psychological stresses all through adulthood. So it is for the Gentile who tries to keep Torah. To the Jew, Torah Customs and Traditions cannot be seen as burdens or some foreign thing when they are family participations. These events leave lasting memories in the mind of the Jew that will last his/her whole life and mature as they are practiced. The Jew is reminded that he is a Jew and it is his beloved heritage. The Gentile in Christ rejoices in his salvation by adoption just as the natural olive branch does, his inclusion in the family of Meshikha and the company of loving, supportive believers. He shares eternal life in Meshikha as does the Jewish believer, without being perceived as a second class citizen. He is a fully priveledged son of Alaha in Christ Jesus. His joy is complete in his salvation and in his fellowship with both Jews and Gentiles in one humungous Body of Meshikha. I welcome all scriptural responses.

This post has been copied from the Nazarene/Messianic Judaism forum.
I believe all those who are non-racial Israelites, but who truly trust Messiah Y'shua to save them, who have been born of God's Spirit and made One Spirit with Messiah, being part of His Body, are the TRUE ISRAEL of GOD, being grafted into the cultivated Olive Tree from a wild olive tree.

The same goes for all those who are racial Israelites who truly trust Messiah Y'shua to save them, who have been born of God's Spirit and made One Spirit with Messiah, being part of His Holy Body, they also are the True Israel of GOD, being of the cultivated Olive Tree.

God makes NO DISTINCTION of all those who are such members of Messiah's Body.

Those who try to make a distinction, based on what laws this group may keep or not keep, are not walking in The Spirit of Messiah, but in a self-righteous spirit. They themselves do not even keep all the laws of God, and need God's forgiveness every day for breaking those they can't or fail to keep as all do.

This issue was settled by The Apostles at the Council of Jerusalem...and those who teach against its decision are working against God and His Son. Not a good idea...ask Apostle Paul if you see him.


Thirdwoe Wrote:God makes NO DISTINCTION of all those who are such members of Messiah's Body.

Those who try to make a distinction, based on what laws this group may keep or not keep, are not walking in The Spirit of Messiah, but in a self-righteous spirit. They themselves do not even keep all the laws of God, and need God's forgiveness every day for breaking those they can't or fail to keep as all do.
I definitely agree!

But, it's no secret from my posts in the other thread that I am pro-Torah. So to clarify, the way I see it is that the more of applicable Torah we embrace and observe (however foreign it may be to our culture) the more we can ultimately learn and embrace from our God. It's not that we must keep it in order to be justified which I believe has never been the case. But it's more so to help us walk in a manner pleasing to God so we can be a light to the nations as we bear good fruit. Culturally abnormal things for Gentiles such as tzitzit, mezuza, kosher, Feast Days, etc. I believe can be important tools to help us stay on that narrow path that Meshikha mentions. I keep these aspects of Torah because they constantly remind me of the one whom I serve and that I should stay grounded in Him. During difficult, trying times in my life, having these things integrated into my way of living has made it very difficult to backslide. Therefore I see Torah as the means to help turn towards God and then to not turn away again from Him.

In other words, it is helpful. But is it essential? Essential for what I ask? For justifying ourselves before God? Heaven forbid, lest I speak against the very life giving words of the blessed Apostles. But the principles are certainly essential for all followers of Meshikha who wish to walk in His ways and His truth (and the Holy Spirit convicts us ALL of that); the extra "culturally different" aspects are just a bonus if we have the chance to bring them into a foreign community. A bonus because they were the very things that God commanded His people to do in order for them to learn about Him and His ways, and so they would be of a benefit to others too, so long as it was not imposed as essential. Having that said though, I believe that if Judaism as a whole had accepted Meshikha, then we would have all over time been integrated into that culture, just as many of the early Believers were keeping aspects of Torah no longer observed by the Christian majority (food laws, 7th day Sabbath, Festivals, etc.) But, that's not how history went, so I can only speculate.

But as Acts 15 ruled, I think it's important to be sensitive to any community we enter into to fellowship with. We are not to be as individuals but united in purpose and doctrine so that we can carry out the will of our God instead of arguing amongst ourselves (as has too often happened).

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