Messianic Apologetics

Addressing the Theological and Spiritual Issues of the Broad Messianic Movement

Navigating Messianic Pluralism – Part 2 – Messianic Insider

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As we prepare to discuss increasingly more complicated issues, Messianic Apologetics editor John McKee goes through the Outreach Israel Ministries / Messianic Apologetics Statement of Faith—in an effort for each of us to gauge issues where we agree, disagree, and need to recognize the various levels of theological plurality in our faith community.

As we prepare to discuss increasingly more complicated issues, Messianic Apologetics editor John McKee goes through the Outreach Israel Ministries / Messianic Apologetics Statement of Faith—in an effort for each of us to gauge issues where we agree, disagree, and need to recognize the various levels of theological plurality in our faith community.


FEATURED PUBLICATION

Messianic Beginnings: An Introductory Study

Messianic Beginnings: An Introductory Study has been written as a primer, following the journey of the Huey and McKee family, as evangelical Believers drawn into the Messianic movement in 1995, and learning what it meant to have a more comprehensive understanding of the ancient roots of our Biblical faith. This workbook has been mainly produced to help non-Jewish Believers have a good overview of what the Messianic movement is all about, based on our family’s experience. Since the turn of the Millennium, the Holy Spirit has prompted many more non-Jewish Believers to tangibly embrace their Hebraic Roots in the Tanach (Old Testament) Scriptures, and Jewish Roots in the faith practices of Yeshua the Messiah (Jesus Christ) and His Disciples, specially calling them into the Messianic movement. They have joined in both unity and common cause with their fellow Jewish Believers in Israel’s Messiah, as we all steadily approach Yeshua’s return!

Have you heard about the Messianic movement? Have you heard about the significance of the Torah for a Believer’s walk of faith? Do you know why you might be involved with these things? Do you need a foundational introduction to the Hebraic and Jewish Roots of our faith, and who Yeshua truly is in His Biblical and historical context? Do you want to know more about what God is doing in this hour? If you have ever asked any of these questions, then this workbook can help get you started.

This volume examines a number of areas for study and discussion, and will prompt questions for personal reflection or group exchanges in twelve easy lessons. Each chapter has study questions which will enable you to think and examine the Scriptures, and key issues as they involve components of the Messianic lifestyle and theology, often different from contemporary evangelical Protestantism. If you are unfamiliar with the Messianic movement, some of its basic beliefs and lifestyle practices, and the great potential it offers God’s people today—then Messianic Beginnings is the book for you! This is a resource that can definitely get many you started on a journey into the Messianic walk.

available in both paperback ($14.99) and eBook for Amazon Kindle ($9.99)


The Messianic Walk: The End-Time Move of God

AN EXCELLENT RESOURCE FOR YOUR CONGREGATION’S NEXT NEW FOUNDATIONS OR NEW MEMBERS CLASS!

Why are you a part of today’s Messianic movement? Since the reemergence of the Messianic Jewish movement in the late 1960s to the present, we have witnessed a generation of Jewish people come to faith in Israel’s Messiah, retaining their Jewish heritage. Since the mid-to-late 1990s to the present, we have also witnessed a great number of evangelical Protestant Believers be sovereignly called by God into the Messianic movement, to join in and participate with their fellow Jewish Believers in the restoration of Israel. Many are of the sincere conviction that the end-time prophecies involving a massive salvation of Jewish people (Romans chs. 9-11) and the nations coming to Zion to be instructed in God’s Torah (Micah 4:1-3; Isaiah 2:2-4), are simultaneously occurring in this hour.

Today’s Messianic congregations are often places where these two dynamics emerge, and people from diverse backgrounds fellowship with one another on a regular basis in a local assembly or fellowship of brothers and sisters. What are some of the things of what it means to be a Jewish Believer in Yeshua of Nazareth? What are some of the things of what it means to be a non-Jewish Believer in the Messianic movement? How do we pool the strengths and virtues of our Judeo-Protestant heritage, as we anticipate and work toward the salvation-historical trajectory of “all Israel will be saved” (Romans 11:26) and the return of Yeshua to Planet Earth?

Messianic Apologetics editor J.K. McKee has developed the workbook The Messianic Walk to specifically aid in acclimating people to today’s Messianic movement. This resource is a primer, divided into six units, covering: (1) The Messianic Experience, (2) Shabbat, the Appointed Times, Jewish Holidays, (3) Kosher and Torah-Based “Means of Grace,” (4) The Contours of Jewish Evangelism, (5) Our Place in the Congregation, and (6) A Survey of Messianic Theology. The Messianic Walk has been written in an as user-friendly and easy-to-read style as possible, as it introduces students to the Messianic congregational experience as it has developed by the third decade of the Twenty-First Century. It is a resource intended to be used in the new members classes of today’s Messianic congregations, either on its own or in concert with other materials.

available in both paperback ($14.99) and eBook for Amazon Kindle ($9.99)


Introduction to Things Messianic

Are you new to the Messianic community? Do you have questions about what the Messianic movement, lifestyle, and theologies are all about? Do you need answers on a wide variety of issues with some detailed information? If these are the questions you have been asking, then Introduction to Things Messianic is a resource which will definitely benefit you.

Written to the new person investigating Messianic things, Introduction to Things Messianic is a compilation of articles which will inform the inquirer on a wide array of Messianic topics relevant to the current state and growth of our movement, including:

  • Is “the Church” truly a new group of elect?
  • Is the Torah or Law of Moses relevant for Believers today?
  • Who were the ancient Pharisees and what did they believe?
  • What are the ancient civilizations relevant to the Bible?
  • Am I required to keep the Sabbath?
  • What are the Biblical festivals?
  • Am I required to eat kosher?
  • Why do many Messianics use the proper name of God?
  • What do Messianics think about the end-times?
  • How do I properly grow in this new walk of faith?

These questions, and many more, are discussed and detailed in Introduction to Things Messianic. This book builds on the foundational material in Messianic Beginnings: An Introductory Study in a much more thorough way for those wanting an in-depth view of these basic issues. Introduction to Things Messianic can be used for a single person or a group Bible study, as study questions follow each chapter. This publication can also be used as an excellent primer to other publications available from Messianic Apologetics.

available in both paperback ($17.99) and eBook for Amazon Kindle ($9.99)


The New Testament Validates Torah

The New Testament Validates Torah is a study that all Messianic Believers need, especially in the current season of considerable growth and expansion in which our broad faith community finds itself. On the whole, today’s Messianic movement holds that the Torah or the Law of Moses remains valid instruction for God’s people, and that Yeshua the Messiah (Jesus Christ) did not come to abolish or do away with it (Matthew 5:17-19). Yet throughout much of Christian history, many theologians have argued that the Law has been rendered inoperative, and/or that it was only to be followed by those in the pre-resurrection era. Many Messianics are incapable of responding to the common arguments delivered by their Christian family members, friends, acquaintances, or even various pastors and teachers that they know, who quote verses to them from the Apostolic Scriptures (New Testament) which supposedly prove that the Law has been “done away.”

Has Moses’ Teaching been abolished? This publication is a lengthy study that analyzes and critically examines, in detail, a wide number of New Testament passages that are commonly offered as proof texts to claim that the Torah is not to be followed by those in the post-resurrection era. Statements such as not being “under the Law” (Romans 6:14-15), “Christ is the end of the Law” (Romans 10:4), “All things are lawful” (1 Corinthians 6:12), “abolishing…the Law of commandments contained in ordinances” (Ephesians 2:15), “having nailed it to the cross” (Colossians 2:14), and many more, are considered. Considerable attention is given to the Greek source text of the Apostolic Scriptures, and where translation errors into English appear to have been made by various modern versions. Cross-examination and discussion with a wide number of commentators have also been offered, as well as an exploration of important subjects present within today’s Biblical Studies.

The New Testament Validates Torah is an important apologetic study that will benefit Messianic Believers and evangelical Christians alike. There is literally nothing in today’s Messianic movement that has compiled as much information on Torah relevance for God’s people into a single book. Also, unlike some other publications issued on the message of Torah relevance, The New Testament Validates Torah is highly respectful to Christian voices over the centuries who have valued what they have considered to be the “moral law” of the Old Testament, and seeks to honor those who have preceded us in the faith.

available in both paperback ($25.99) and eBook for Amazon Kindle ($9.99)


The New Testament Validates Torah MAXIMUM EDITION

Today’s broad Messianic movement is of the conviction that the Torah or Law of Moses is relevant instruction for God’s people in the post-resurrection era. This is a conviction firmly rooted within the teaching of Yeshua the Messiah, who explicitly said that He did not come to abolish or eliminate the Torah (Matthew 5:17-19). Yet throughout much of Christian history, and even more so today, many theologians and examiners have argued that Moses’ Teaching has been rendered inoperative, and/or that it was only to be followed by those in the pre-resurrection era. Many of today’s Messianic people, while having a witness of the Spirit that God’s commandments are to be written on their hearts and minds via the New Covenant (Jeremiah 31:31-34; Ezekiel 36:25-27), are not equipped well enough to answer common arguments delivered by evangelical Protestant family members, friends, acquaintances, or even various pastors or teachers that they know—when they quote verses to them from the Apostolic Scriptures (New Testament), in support of the premise that the Torah of Moses has been abolished.

The New Testament Validates Torah is a massive resource that all of today’s Messianic Believers need, especially in the current season of growth, development, and expansion in which our faith community finds itself. This publication is an extensive compilation of data across the wide range of books and commentaries available from Messianic Apologetics. The core of this resource is an examination of fifty passages, which are commonly used as proof texts to claim that the Torah is not to be followed by God’s people today. Statements such as not being “under the Law” (Romans 6:14-15), “Christ is the end of the Law” (Romans 10:4), “All things are lawful” (1 Corinthians 6:12), ‘how is it that you turn back again to the weak and worthless elemental things” (Galatians 4:9), “abolishing…the Law of commandments contained in ordinances” (Ephesians 2:15), “having nailed it to the cross” (Colossians 2:14), and even “Thus He declared all foods clean” (Mark 7:19)—among many—are thoroughly addressed. Considerable attention is given to various Hebrew and Greek issues, potential translation differences, and differences of perspective. Cross-examination and discussion with a wide number of commentators have also been offered, as well as an exploration of important subjects present within today’s Biblical Studies.

The New Testament Validates Torah is an important apologetic study that will benefit Messianic Believers and evangelical Christians alike. There is literally nothing in today’s Messianic movement that has compiled and packed as much information on Torah relevance for God’s people into a single book. Also, unlike some other publications issued on the message of Torah relevance, The New Testament Validates Torah is highly respectful to Protestant voices over the centuries who have valued what they have considered to be the “moral law” of the Old Testament, and seeks to fairly honor those who have preceded us in the faith, establishing common ground where possible.

available in both paperback ($49.99) and eBook for Amazon Kindle ($19.99)


Torah In the Balance, Volume I: The Validity of the Torah and Its Practical Life Applications

The Messianic movement largely advocates that the Torah or Pentateuch is relevant instruction for Believers today, and that modern Christianity has too often ignored God’s revelation in the Tanach or Old Testament—not benefiting from this dismissal. Yet the subject of “Torah observance” can often be a point of contention, not only between the Messianic and Christian communities, but even internally among Messianics. Why is this the case? Do we have to be negative about this? Is it possible that people claiming to be Torah observant do not often know why the Law of Moses is to instruct and teach today’s Believers? Have some Messianics simply lacked an appropriate perspective on how the work of the Holy Spirit is to guide God’s people into greater holiness and maturity, given the promises of the New Covenant (Jeremiah 31:31-34; Ezekiel 36:26-27)? How are we to balance how following the Torah includes outward practices, but also includes a greater manifestation of God’s love and goodness to all we encounter?

Torah In the Balance, Volume I is a well needed resource for our time, as it addresses the main aspects of how to follow God’s Torah. Subjects addressed include: why Believers need the Torah, the Acts 15 Jerusalem Council, the foundational importance of the Ten Commandments, the role of the appointed times, and the dietary laws. While Messianic positions on these aspects of faith can often clash with those of our Christian brothers and sisters, they are considered in a fair and reasonable way that encourages positive solutions between all people who have called out to Yeshua the Messiah (Jesus Christ) for salvation. A large amount of scholastic engagement and support is offered for the validity of these aspects of faith on the part of today’s Believers.

This book is an important addition to any Messianic library, and should be read by those desiring not only a comprehensive understanding regarding what the Lord has started in this hour—but the great responsibility we have been endowed by Him. With everything we have been called to do, the transforming power of God’s love is emphasized above all! This resource encourages growth and maturity on the part of all of His people.

available in both paperback ($21.99) and eBook for Amazon Kindle ($9.99)


Torah In the Balance, Volume II: The Set-Apart Life in Action–The Outward Expressions of Faith

The views expressed and practices witnessed, regarding the place of God’s Torah in the life of contemporary Messianic Believers, are more likely to cause tension for far too many people—than facilitate any sense of spiritual fulfillment, much less relief. There is little doubting the fact that as a widely mixed group of people, from both Jewish and Christian backgrounds, that each man and woman within the Messianic community brings both positive and negative things into the assembly. When it comes to the issue of Torah observance, the spectrum of views and practices has been too often polarized between an Orthodox Jewish, hyper-traditional style—and some anti-traditional, quasi-Karaite style. Much of this has come about because there is an entire array of issues, which need some preliminary handling, and which has yet to receive it.

Torah In the Balance, Volume II is a book which recognizes that the Torah does regulate many physical actions to be performed by God’s people. Faith in the Lord is hardly just a series of abstract mental beliefs or doctrines; it is also something which is to be demonstrated in concrete works. But when we consider the importance of external works as a manifestation of our trust in Yeshua the Messiah (Jesus Christ), what is some of the variance seen in on-the-ground Messianic settings? How do people keep the seventh-day Sabbath/Shabbat, eat kosher, or sanctify the appointed times? What about our physical dress and appearance? What about issues like circumcision or water immersion (baptism)? What about various religious symbols like the cross or Star of David? Even when Messianic people have been theologically convinced that Moses’ Teaching remains valid instruction for God’s people today, there is going to be variance, and even internal disagreement, about how it is to be implemented for those living in the Twenty-First Century.

This publication has been long anticipated in addressing some of the finer-issues of Torah observance witnessed within the Messianic movement. It takes into consideration the theological and spiritual developments of the 2000s-2010s to be sure, but more importantly tries to present the necessary third way which must emerge for our Torah observance. This is crucial, as we steadily develop into a force of holiness and righteousness in the world, and strive to commit ourselves to further obedience.

available in both paperback ($21.99) and eBook for Amazon Kindle ($9.99)


Messianic Torah Helper

There are many aspects regarding the subject matter of “the Torah” for today’s broad Messianic movement to consider. These range from: the validity of the Torah or Law of Moses, the historicity and reliability of the Torah, the degree of applicability of the Torah to Jewish and non-Jewish people, the role of tradition in following the Torah, and changes affected to the role of the Torah in the post-resurrection era via the sacrifice of Yeshua (Jesus). Some of these aspects surrounding Messianics’ study and appreciation of the Torah are handled quite well by the current generation, and some of them are frequently avoided or handled rather poorly.

The Messianic Torah Helper is a valuable compilation of articles and analyses designed to assist you, your family, and your friends in approaching those important areas of the Torah which need to be considered. How have Jews and Christians approached the Law of Moses in their theology? What are some of the controversies surrounding the Pentateuch? Has the Law been abolished? Are Jewish and non-Jewish Believers in Israel’s Messiah both supposed to keep the same basic Law? Does Jewish tradition play any kind of role in following Moses’ Teaching? Are non-Jews who keep the Torah trying to replace the Jewish people? These questions, and many more, are some of those considered in the Messianic Torah Helper.

If you have ever inquired about a wide range of Torah-related issues, then the Messianic Torah Helper is definitely something for you. This book is an excellent follow up to the extensive study The New Testament Validates Torah by J.K. McKee.

available in both paperback ($29.99) and eBook for Amazon Kindle ($9.99)


Are Non-Jewish Believers Really a Part of Israel?

The composition of the people of God, as broad and deep as this sector of theology is, is a definite place where some important, imperative, and critical thinking and reflection are surely needed by today’s Messianic Believers. Ecclesiology is not an area of theology that enough Messiah followers adequately understand or appreciate the importance of. To far too many, it is just a big word without a great deal of significance. Yet, given what many of today’s Messianic Believers, Jewish and non-Jewish, are convicted of, have read in Scripture, and have had the witness of the Holy Spirit regarding the likely future of the still-emerging and still-developing Messianic movement, ecclesiology is something very important.

Ecclesiology widely affects a person’s eschatology, or approach to end-time events that are supposed to occur prior to and subsequent to the Messiah’s return. For today’s Messianic movement, ecclesiology affects how Jewish and non-Jewish Believers read the Bible, and the instructions that God wants us to follow. Ecclesiology undeniably affects the unity of Jewish Believers and Believers from the nations as one in the Body of Messiah.

What does this mean in terms of the ekklēsia? Is the ekklēsia an actual separate entity known as “the Church”? Or, is ekklēsia no different than the assembly of Israel itself—which takes Bible readers back to the mixed multitude of physical descendants of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, and the welcomed persons from the nations, who received His Ten Words and Instruction at the base of Mount Sinai (cf. Exodus 12:38)? Did Yeshua the Messiah come to found a separate group of elect called “the Church,” or did He come to rebuild and restore His Father’s assembly of righteous ones (cf. Matthew 16:18; Jeremiah 33:7, LXX), restoring the Kingdom to Israel (cf. Acts 1:6)?

Regardless of where you stand on Jewish and non-Jewish Believers in the Kingdom of God, a wide range of changes are approaching our Messianic faith community—which are going to leave a demonstrable impact on all of us, as we approach the final stages of time before the Messiah’s return. The basic choices of ecclesiology we have are stark: either God (1) has two groups of elect, or sub-peoples: Israel and “the Church”; or God (2) recognizes us all as a part of an enlarged Kingdom realm of Israel. How are we to approach non-Jewish Believers in the Messianic movement, and things like the Commonwealth of Israel (Ephesians 2:11-13), the Israel of God (Galatians 6:16), or being grafted-in (Romans 11:16-18)? Will the Messianic movement emerge into something that tends to be exclusive or inclusive? There is much that we need to be considering from the text of Scripture, and what many have said and are likely to say, as we evaluate what our future beholds.

available in both paperback ($12.99) and eBook for Amazon Kindle ($9.99)


When Will the Messiah Return?

For almost two millennia, multiplied millions of Believers in Yeshua the Messiah (Jesus Christ) have eagerly anticipated His return. Many theories, doctrines, and creeds have been produced concerning the Second Coming, as well as an entire score of books. In today’s world, many Christians think that the Messiah can return at any moment in an event called the “pre-tribulation rapture.” Even among those who do not believe in this imminent rapture, are those who still think that the final days of humanity are upon us. Are they? Is absolutely everything in place for the Messiah to return quite soon? Or, are there some things that might be overlooked, regarding the Messiah’s return?

Before Yeshua was taken up into Heaven, the Apostles asked Him, “Lord, is it at this time You are restoring the Kingdom to Israel?” (Acts 1:6). The Apostles were eagerly awaiting the Messiah to restore Israel, but much work still had to be accomplished, as Yeshua commissioned them to go out into the greater world, and make disciples among all nations. In our era, much more has notably happened, most especially with the salvation of many Jewish people coming to Yeshua, but also with many non-Jewish Believers entering into the Messianic movement, embracing God’s Torah and their Hebraic Roots in a very tangible way. Something unique has undeniably started.

A major challenge is that far too many non-Jewish Believers in Yeshua do not understand who the Lord is actually returning for. They will often consider themselves part of a separate “Church,” with really no connection to Israel. Because of this, it is concluded that the Messiah can imminently come for “the Church,” to leave Israel behind to face the Tribulation period and the antichrist. Is this a valid teaching? Are Israel and “the Church” separate entities? If they are not, how would this change our perception of various aspects of the end-times?

When Will the Messiah Return? is a unique book addressing the end-times from a Messianic perspective. The Messiah stated plainly that He would gather the saints “immediately after the tribulation of those days” (Matthew 24:29). Discussed are common false understandings as they relate to “the Church” being taken to Heaven for the duration of the Tribulation period, and instead how all Believers in Messiah Yeshua get to participate in restoration of Israel’s Kingdom via His return. Some overlooked elements regarding what has been prophesied in Scripture, may hold some of the insight for today’s Believers evaluating why the Messiah has yet to return to Planet Earth.

available in both paperback ($17.99) and eBook for Amazon Kindle ($9.99)


The Dangers of Pre-Tribulationism

The pre-tribulation rapture is an extremely popular doctrine, which advocates that Yeshua the Messiah (Jesus Christ) can unexpectedly come at any moment for the saints, gathering them into Heaven before the Tribulation period or Seventieth Week of Israel. Pre-tribulationism has sold many books, spawned numerous fiction series and movies, and has created a large financial market for prophecy materials. But in spite of its popularity in much of today’s evangelical Christianity, few question it. When presented with alternative points of view such as post-tribulationism, adherents of the popular pre-tribulational position can sometimes take strong offense, and they can be found to outright ignore Biblical passages that appear to contradict their position.

This report is an expanded edition of one of our most controversial articles. It answers the top reasons why people believe in the pre-tribulation rapture from a Messianic post-tribulational perspective. It considers whether or not various pre-tribulationists have employed tactics of fear and faithlessness, and whether or not their ideology of escapism can be supported by a fair reading of the Holy Scriptures. Are God’s people able to be protected by Him–or not–during the end-times? Specifically considered and responded to are fifty reasons given in support of the pre-tribulation rapture by former Dallas Theological Seminary chancellor John F. Walvoord. Above all, a fairness that is not always given to post-tribulationists is demonstrated to pre-tribulationists.

available in both paperback ($12.99) and eBook for Amazon Kindle ($7.99)


Confronting Critical Issues: An Analysis of Subjects that Affects the Growth and Stability of the Emerging Messianic Movement

Today’s Messianic movement has arrived at a very important theological and spiritual crossroads. Much of our long term viability and effectiveness as a faith community will be determined by what takes place in the 2010s, and by our approach to a series of important issues surrounding the nature of the Messiah, the reliability of Holy Scripture, our communication style, and whether we want to see all people included and welcome within our assemblies or not.

Confronting Critical Issues is an important compilation book of some of Messianic Apologetics’ key Confronting Issues booklets, as well as some major articles of substance. These are bound to answer some significant questions and controversies that all of today’s Messianic Believers have encountered within their fellowships, congregations, and personal Bible studies. This publication is also bound to stir some of its own controversy, as it inquires how we can be a mature, growing Messianic movement which is able to accomplish all that our Heavenly Father wants us to achieve—or whether those among us are going to disregard our spiritual potential to make a difference.

Some of the subjects addressed in Confronting Critical Issues include:

  • urban legends present in the Messianic movement
  • the Divinity and Messiahship of Yeshua
  • the Shema and the plurality of God
  • potential paganism witnessed in the stories of Holy Scripture, and how we are to avoid liberal theology
  • the origin of the Apostolic Scriptures
  • the negative influence of Jewish mysticism on the Messianic movement
  • the Divine Name of God (YHWH/YHVH)
  • a proper, edifying communication style for today’s Messianic Believers
  • the equality for Jewish and non-Jewish Believers, and both men and women in the Messianic community

This massive powerhouse of material is a must for every Messianic Believer’s library!

available in both paperback ($25.99) and eBook for Amazon Kindle ($9.99)


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