Christianity is practiced by over 2.18 billion in the world. It was started by an itinerate Jewish teacher called Yeshua from Galilee in Roman occupied Palestine. He was born around 4 BC and died in Jerusalem in 30 AD. The first 100 years of Christianity was dominated by the 12 Jewish (Apostles) followers of Jesus, who based their teachings on the Hebrew Scriptures called the Tanakh.
The Roman Empire tolerated and made exceptions for the Monotheistic faith of Judaism, and Julius Caesar and Augustus granted the Jews religious privileges not granted other conquered nations. The new beliefs of these 12 Galilean (Apostles) followers of Jesus spread after His death. They still met and worshipped in the Jewish Synagogues as a sect of Judaism just like other Jews. The customs of these early followers of Jesus included Saturday worship in the Synagogue and an annual Passover service and most of the customs of the Jews.
In AD 66 the Jewish revolt against Rome led to the Jewish Temple being destroyed in AD 70. Judaism was no longer a specially protected religion. All the Jews were deported to other nations and sold as slaves by Rome, and Jerusalem was burnt to the ground. Meanwhile, the Jewish sect called Christianity had spread all over Asia Minor, Greece and Rome and the early writings of the 12 apostles were now Greek documents. These early writings become the New Testament and were combined with Hebrew writings called the Old Testament into what we now call the Christian bible.
So how did a faith that started in the Jewish synagogues of Palestine led by 12 Jewish followers of Yeshua according to the Hebrew Tanakh later end up being Anti-Semitic and lead to the burning and killing Jews in the crusades. How could Martin Luther write a book called the “Jews and their Lies” in 1543 and Adolph Hitler later use those same religious books to justify the Holocaust?
That story is a long sad story of the separation and of how Christianity lost her way and forgot her Hebrew Roots. The good news is that all of that is changing. There is now an openness to reexamine our relationship with the Jews and our traditional understanding of the Jewish scriptures. We call this the Hebrew Roots movement.
Some key changes are:
Many scholars realize that it was prophesied in the ancient Hebrew Scriptures that Israel would be re-established as a nation in Palestine.
All this happened on May 15th 1948 when a Jewish Prime minister David Ben-Gurion read these same scriptures and proclaimed the State of Israel. This caused many Christians to examine the Hebrew Scriptures again.
• Amos is a book written about 750BC and says: Amos 9 v 14 I will bring back my exiled people Israel; they will rebuild the ruined cities and live in them.
• Isaiah was written about 680BC and says: Isaiah 66 v 7-8 Who has ever heard of such a thing? Who has ever seen such things? Can a country be born in a day or a nation be created in a moment?
• Ezekiel was written about 571BC and says Ezekiel 34:13 I will bring them out from the nations and I will gather them from the countries, and I will bring them into their own land.
The Catholic Church has changed its attitude towards the Jews. The Second Vatican Council, commonly known as Vatican II, was an ecumenical council of the Catholic church under Pope John XXIII in 1962 and Pope Paul VI in 1965. This council’s understanding of “Nostra Aetate” changed the long held position of the Catholic Church and no longer blamed the Jews for killing Jesus. In 1971 the Catholic Church established an internal International Catholic-Jewish Liaison Committee for Interreligious Consultations.
Important Christian scholars are now examining the newly discovered Dead Sea Scrolls and are challenging Christianity’s long held assumptions of what Paul and the 12 followers of Jesus taught. E.P. Sanders with his book, “Paul and Palestinian Judaism” and Anglican Bishop of Durham in the Church of England N.T. Wrights book called “What St Paul Really Said” are challenging the old Christian ideas. They teach that Paul and the 12 followers of Jesus did not abandon their Jewish roots. These ideas are now being debated in Christian Seminaries around the world. NT Wrights understanding of Second Temple Judaism is transforming our understanding of first Century Christianity.
We at Servant of Messiah Ministries welcome these changes and want to be a part of this change and new understanding in Christianity. We do not hear the gospel of the kingdom of God as taught in the First Century in most churches today. We want the original teachings shared. Please share our humble attempt to restore the Hebrew Gospel to Gods people.