Many Believers in Yahushua Messiah [Jesus Christ] are hearing about the ‘Hebrew Roots’ of the Faith, and are frightened to see their fellow Believers becoming involved in this movement.
For those who have been frightened into thinking that Believers should avoid obeying God’s Law, there is one thing we would do well to consider.
According to the New Testament, our obedience to ‘the Law’ — the Torah [teachings and instructions given by Moses] — is not about achieving righteousness, or about salvation (Gal 3:11; Eph 2:8-9; Titus 3:5).
It is, however, about walking as Messiah walked (1John 2:6).
It is about loving Messiah, and about loving others, in the way Messiah has told us (John 14:15, 15:10; 1John 5:2-3).
And, it is about sanctification – walking in holiness (1Pet 1:14-16).
Many Believers today, having been Born-again, and saved by grace through faith, are sensing the inner promptings of the Holy Spirit to begin to obey Torah. Those who are learning to obey Torah agree fully with the apostle Paul’s declaration that “by the works of the law no human being will be justified in God’s sight!” (Rom 3:20). They fully believe that it is by God’s grace that we are saved through faith in Yahushua Messiah (Eph 2:8-9).
These ‘Torah keepers’ believe that God’s children are justified freely only by the redemption through the blood of Messiah Yahushua (Rom 3:22-26; Eph 1:7). These Believers who keep the Torah, agree with these Scriptures:
God, who hath saved us, and called us with an holy calling, not according to our works, but according to His own purpose and grace, which was given us in Christ Jesus before the world began, (2Timothy 1:9)
Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to His mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost (Titus 3:5).
As the above Scriptures reveal, our heavenly Father has saved us — not according to our own works of righteousness, not according to any of our attempts to please God. Father has saved us only according to His mercy, grace, and purposes which are in Messiah Yahushua.
So what can this Hebrew Roots movement be about? What are these Torah keepers trying to do? Why are they so excited about obeying ‘the Law’?
This movement of obeying Torah [also known as the Messianic Movement] is all about the Wise Virgins preparing themselves, and making themselves ready for the Bridegroom (Matt 25:10).
It is about returning to the Biblical definition of what it means to be holy.
It is all about holiness — about living a holy [set-apart] life before our Maker, Yahuwah Elohim.
Sin vs. Holiness
To live our life as Father directs His children, is to walk according to His ‘house-rules’ — the guidelines and instructions that Messiah [the WORD] gave from the beginning, through the hand of Moses (Num 4:45). Those who are learning to obey Torah desire to love and honour Yahuwah by living according to Father’s righteous standards. They desire to live the life that Father desires of His children — a life that is holy, a life that is set-apart unto God (1Pet 1:16).
For this reason, Torah keepers are learning the Bible’s defintion of what sin is. They are coming to understand the serious implications of what the apostle John meant when he said:
Whosoever commits sin transgresses also the law: for sin is the transgression of the law. (1John 3:4)
As the above Scripture teaches us, when we disobey Father’s house-rules, we commit sin — which is to transgress the Law [the Torah] (1John 3:4).
Messiah and His Disciples, and the Prophets of old, all urge us not to sin — not to transgress the Law (1Sam 15:23; Psa 4:4; Rom 6:12; 1Cor 15:34; Eph 4:26; 1John 2:1, 3:4).
We all fail, stumble, and commit sin at times. We also know however, that Yahuwah loves His children, and He wants us to get back up after we stumble and fail. Father wants us to confess [acknowledge] our sin to Him, in order to be cleansed by the blood of our Saviour (1John 1:8-9). He then expects us to return to obedience, return to keeping His righteous standards — return to walking, by His grace, in obedience to His standards, to the best of our ability.
So when Born-again Believers obey the Torah, they are not trying to achieve righteousness or salvation by their own fleshy attempts. Their goal is to demonstrate their love for Messiah, by keeping His commandments, including the commands and instructions that He [as the WORD of Yahuwah] gave to Moses (John 1:1, 14; John 14:15).
The WORD of Yahuwah who appeared to Moses, and to all the Prophets, and who gave the commandments to Moses, is the same WORD that was made flesh and dwelled among us! This WORD is none other than Yahushua Messiah!
Messiah, who is the WORD, gave us His commandments from ‘the beginning’ — [from the book of Genesis], all the way to Malachi — and John exhorts us as Believers, to walk according to His commandments (2John 1:6).
And this same WORD, who gave the commandments to Moses, also tells us today:
“If ye love me, keep MY commandments.” (John 14:15)
Many Believers today are choosing to love Messiah more fully. They have learned Messiah’s true identity as the WORD who gave the commandments to Moses. They have learned that obeying Torah brings them out of a foggy understanding of the New Testament, and brings them into a solid and joyful understanding of Yahuwah’s heart’s desire for His children! They have learned that the Sabbath instructions, the dietary laws, the Biblical feasts instructions, and many other guidelines in the Old Testament, apply to all of Yahuwah’s children, throughout all generations!
And, they have learned the important connection between obedience and holiness: that obedience is necessary for holiness, as the apostle Peter taught us:
As obedient children, do not be conformed to the passions of your former ignorance, but as He who called you is holy, you also be holy in all your conduct, since it is written, “You shall be holy, for I am holy.” (1Peter 1:14-16)
So there is no reason to be frightened by all this Torah keeping. The Hebrew Roots movement, as a whole, is good for the children of Yahuwah, despite its various problems and diverse levels of extremes. It is a sovereign moving of the Holy Spirit among Father’s children, to bring them into a closer, more holy, more perfect walk with Him — preparing them for the Bridegroom.
Those who are beginning to walk in Torah, are beginning to truly understand the great riches of what Yahushua meant when He said: “If ye continue in my WORD, then are ye my disciples indeed; And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.” (John 8:31-32)
Torah keepers understand that obeying Torah is not about Salvation!
Below are links to some excellent teachings for born-again Believers who want help in understanding the Hebrew Roots movement. Remember however, to prove all things with Scripture, and hold fast that which is good!
- 119 Ministries – great teaching videos; a Hebrew Roots resource
- EliYah.com – many excellent articles and teaching videos examining the Hebraic roots from a Biblical persepctive
- The Way Prepared – practical teachings for Believers, exhorting them to ‘choose wisely’ and prepare themselves for the Bridegroom’s soon return
- Seven Biblical Guidelines for Studying the Bible – excellent guidelines for learning how to study the Scriptures for ourselves
- What Is the Hebrew Roots? – 65 minute You Tube video
- The Word – or The Spirit
- That It May Be Well With You – Part Two
- What Is the Biblical Definition of Legalism?
- Coming Home to the Truth of Torah
- Eliyah: Making Ready A People Prepared For Messiah
- 4 Keys to Discerning the Guidance of the Holy Spirit