Today some people call their Bible study or fellowship, or congregation, a “Messianic congregation, when they hold services on Saturdays. It is strange to all those regular churchgoers who profess the same Messiah on Sunday. And it is so confusing to people who may think that Messianic Jewish and Messianic would be the same.
Something which already existed, or something different?
Understandably we hear from sincere Christians that they also acknowledge the Messiah. Moreover, Seventh Day Adventists and Seventh Day Baptists also have their services on Saturdays. “Messianic congregation”, it is a new and good sounding term. But a misleading term for something that already existed under a different name.
What then is a Jewish Messianic congregation?
This is the difference: a Jewish Messianic congregation consists of Jewish disciples of Yeshua. It is a place where Jews experience their spiritual home when they understand that Yeshua is the Jewish Messiah. A Jewish home which warmly opens its doors to non-Jews in order to join wholeheartedly. A Jewish congregation where grace and truth are the good old pillars of the faith, besides Torah and the Messiah. Jewish liturgical prayers in addition to singing and dancing, reading from the Hebrew prophets and from the New Testament. Rules in addition to respect for each person’s opinion, all that and more.
Why a Jewish Messianic congregation?
Since the exodus from Egypt, Jews together with non-Jews practiced their faith and shared their lives. A crowd of a variety of nations went along with Israel. Toward freedom. Isaiah 56 says that later the Temple will be a house of prayer for all nations in which Jews and non-Jews will celebrate the Sabbath and will bringing sacrifices. With a Jewish faith based content, in addition to a personal faith. The biblical model for a New Testament congregation: Jewish leadership with Jewish liturgy and open doors for non-Jewish soul mates (ger tosjav). Like Zechariah 8 showing the restoration and leadership of Israel (see also Romans 11).