©6 June 2014 Revive Israel Ministries
Dealing with Disagreement
By Asher Intrater
Whenever we discuss moral or spiritual values, we must be careful not to despise the person who disagrees with us. We should hate all evil activity (Proverbs 8:13), yet love the people involved (John 3:16). No one rebuked sin more than Yeshua; yet no one befriended sinners more than He (Luke 7:34).
We love Arab people, yet we disagree with those who have been influenced by Islamic Jihad to hate, kill, and terrorize.
We love people involved in homosexuality, but we oppose their activities, just as we oppose adultery or prostitution. All types of sexual sin destroy healthy relationships between men and women.
Should anyone raise an objection to homosexuality today in Western society, he is immediately denounced as a bigot. However, as it has been said, "This is about biology, not bigotry." We do not despise anyone, but we do want to discuss the moral and social issues involved.
We as Messianic Jews often have to deal with theological disagreements in both traditional Christianity and Judaism. With ultra-Orthodox Jews (Haredim), in addition to the clash over our faith in Yeshua (Jesus), there are several other areas of objective disagreement:
- Oral Law – A tenet of ultra-Orthodoxy is that the oral law was given directly from God at Sinai. This error is somewhat parallel to the belief in the authority of church traditions over Biblical truth in some Christian denominations.
- Attitude toward Gentiles – There is a fundamental rejection of non-Jews in much of ultra-Orthodox Judaism, which borders on plain racism. We take issue with this, just as we challenge anti-Semitism in many parts of European Christianity.
- Religious Monopoly – In Israel, religious institutions are controlled by the Orthodox, including marriage and conversion. Even conservative rabbis have no real authority.
- Anti-Zionism – Much of the Haredi world opposes the legitimacy of Israel as a secular state. (Ironically, this is somewhat similar to radical Muslims who only recognize a state with Sharia law.) Many reject court authority and oppose military service.
- Tax corruption – While demanding large government grants in the budget, they remove people from the work force, thus not contributing to the tax and economic base.
Let us remember to love and respect those with whom we have disagreements; yet constantly seek the right to discuss issues on an objective basis.
Brown on CNN about Homosexuality
Don't miss this short clip with our dear friend Dr. Michael Brown appearing on CNN discussing homosexuality. He refutes the claim that Yeshua did not denounce homosexuality by citing 3 passages:
- The laws of the Torah are not done away with (Matthew 5:17)
- Marriage is between a man and a woman (Matthew 19:5)
- Fornication (porneo), including homosexuality, is equated to adultery (Matthew 19:9)
Dr. Brown also acutely points out the brazen biological contradiction of homosexuality by stating, "The rectum is for disposal not reproduction." To view, click HERE.
By Mati Shoshani
Being a follower of Yeshua requires communicating our personal version of the message of salvation. In addition, our calling, both personally and collectively, is also to be a moral compass to society, by voicing our values, standards, and understanding of "right and wrong."
Isaiah chapter 40 speaks of a need to prepare the way of the Lord, of changing the terrain to allow for his coming. The passage is quoted in Mark chapter 1 - as John the Baptist's call for a moral revolution becomes the precursor to the appearance of Yeshua.
Yeshua himself was a man calling for a moral revolution. He often criticized the legalistic discussion of ritual commandments, yet emphasized the values and morals behind the words of the Torah. An example of this is found in Mark 10 where Yeshua sets a higher standard of morality as it relates to the covenant of marriage.
As an Israeli Messianic Jew, I ask: who’s deciding on our society’s morality and ethics? Is it us, the followers of Yeshua, or others? If we look at some of the most important questions to our society – godliness, financial integrity, ownership of the land, marital standards - it’s clear that we are not those setting the tone on these topics.
We are required to tell people what we believe, when an issue involving moral values comes across our path. This does not always require sharing the gospel, although it might in certain cases. It means that we clearly state that we believe that something is wrong, or right. It is as simple, and hard, as that.
The people of Israel are hungry for moral content, for a clear image and vision of the goals we need to aspire to as a society. We have that content, through the Bible, Yeshua, and the Holy Spirit, and I believe it’s time we penetrate society with our message.
Meyers on "Wall or Fence?"
Don't miss this short video with our dear friend Calev Meyers discussing the issue of the so-called "Wall of Separation" between Israelis and the Palestinians. On the issue of whether it is a wall or a fence, Calev cites statistics that 97% percent of the barrier is a light chain link fence and not a thick cement wall.
On whether it is for ethnic separation or security protection, Calev cites another statistic that since the barrier was built, the number of Jews murdered by terrorists crossing into the area has decreased 98%, and that in areas where there has not been terrorist activity, there is no barrier at all. To view, click HERE.
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