Recently, I performed a wedding in Wisconsin for my step-son and his new bride. Most (the overwhelming majority) of the folks there were not believers. For the first time in their lives they saw a wedding performed under a chuppah (which my dear wife, JoAnne, made). They witnessed a "typical" Hebrew (Nazarene Israelite style) wedding ceremony and afterwards, we received many positive comments.
As expected, some classified us as a mainstream Jews, and others as "Messianic Jews." I tried to explain that we are not not so called "mainstream" Jews because we believe in and accept Yahshua as our Messiah and His shed blood as the atonement for our sins, and that we believe in the Bible from Genesis to Revelation and keep the Torah as they lifestyle of the redeemed.. I attempted to further explain that we are not "Messianic Jews." But attempting to explain anything beyond that either went over their heads or fell on deaf ears. (Oh, how I disdain that term 'Messianic Jews').
A few months ago, Dr. Trimm brought forth what he called (rightly so) the United Israel concept. (See group on Nazarene Space).
I won't delve into this so-caleld "Messianic Jewish," idea because I'm sure that most of us here understand that "Messianics' are really "Messy-Antics" who like to, at best, play Jew for a Day. Enough said for that.
But the question remains, just who are we, what are we, and where are we at today?
No doubt who we are has already been answered by the United Israel group. What are we is a slightly different question. By "What are we" I mean what are we as individuals. it is indeed "tov meod" (very good) and necessary to study all the concepts and resource materials that are offered here on Nazarene Space. This resource helps us grow spiritually and serves to ground us more solidly in our faith.
But what about heartfelt prayer. What about private, personal meditation on Yahweh's Torah? Are these two vital ingredients being ignored or glossed over by some of us? I really don't know and I'm certainly not judging anyone or making accusations. (Yahweh knows, I have enough sins on my own plate).
Where are we? Where will we be in a few weeks from now when we begin to celebrate one of the most important Feasts on Yahweh's calendar - Sukkot.
You know, I really have to give some of those old "Sacred Name" people credit. Despite their "stubborness" on some issues, they "stubbornly" refuse to neglect keeping Sukkot - the Feast of Tabernacles. During our association with a Sacred Name group we thought nothing of driving hundreds of miles every fall, and spening a full eight days to worship Yahweh at Sukkot.
But is seems to me that our blessed and beloved "Nazarene Israelite" or "Nazarene Judiasm" brothers and sisters have for the most part, taken Sukkot lightly, keeping only the first and last High Days, or isolating themselves and keeping the Feast at "home."
ZecharYah 14:16 - 21 tells us tthat if we do not present ourselves to Almighty Yahweh at Sukkot, we will not be blessed with "rain." Deuteronomy 32:2 tells us that "rain" is a metaphone for Yahweh's instruction. If we are not properly instructed how can we expect to instruct others? If we do not put ourselves in teh froefront by practicing and keeping Yahweh's Moedim, then we cannot expect people to recognize us for waht we are, or at least, for what we should be.
Brothers and sisters, time is quite short, but if any have not made plans to keep Sukkot with others this years there is still time to get in "under the wire." If you drive past our place this October (Tishri or Ethanim) you will see a Sukkah Booth prominently displayed in our front yard. And yes, you will even see us waving the lulav and etrog in full site of any passers by. If you're in the western Pennsylvania are, join us. May Almighty Abba Yahweh bless us all, through Messiah Yahshua, as we seek to serve Him. and learn and keep His ways. Thank you Abba Yahweh. .