We who preach the gospel must not think of ourselves as public relations agents sent to establish good will between Christ and the world. We must not imagine ourselves commissioned to make Christ acceptable to big business, the press, the world of sports or modern education. We are not diplomats but prophets, and our message is not a compromise but an ultimatum. A.W. Tozer

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

It Happened Again!

Years ago, when I first started studying apologetics, it seemed as if information about various false teachings would come across my path a short time before I needed that knowledge.  After this happened so many times as to be seemingly against all odds to call it coincidence, I came to realize that perhaps the Lord was leading me to the apologetics ministry.  While it has been some time since the last incident, I never doubted that the idea of coincidence would not hold water and that it certainly had to be by the Lord’s design.
Well, it happened again!  
Over the past few years I have read some things about “Messianic Christianity,” including the book, “Messianic Judaism Is Not Christianity,” by Stan Telchin, and sold through Jews for Jesus.  But I didn’t realize this movement went beyond that - until last week.  Last week the new issue of Personal Freedom Outreach’s The Quarterly Journal arrived, and it has a front-page article on “The Hebrew Roots Movement.”  The article gives some basic divisions in this movement (I’m not going to explain them - I’ll let you buy the journal):
  1. The Messianic Movement. 
  2. Third Questers. 
  3. Dual Covenant Groups. 
  4. Noahides
  5. The Hebrew Roots Movement
  6. Autonomous Entities
  7. Eclectic System
The article was very interesting in that it demonstrates how far some will go to keep “Jewishness” in Christianity, to the point of often demanding legalistic adherence to the Mosaic Laws.  
Today I received a telephone call from a retired pastor friend who wanted to know what I could find out about Skip Moen, who is part of the Hebrew Roots Movement - what the movement teaches, etc.  (My friend, at almost 80 years, still does prison ministry, Bible studies, etc. - but he never had a computer).  A quick look on the Internet demonstrated that Skip is indeed part of this aberrational movement, and I already had information as to the teachings from this movement from that journal!  So it becomes just a matter of copying the article for my friend to study.

I’m not convinced this was just a coincidence!

14 comments:

Anonymous said...

The Bible has a lot to say about pride...maybe you should read it for what it is actually worth.

Glenn E. Chatfield said...

Anonymous,

Since when is reporting how the Lord worked in someone's life a matter of pride? I reported this as a praise to God and how He directs things to His glory.

Cristofer Urlaub said...

I agree. Anonymous, the Bible also makes it clear the it requires HUMILITY to recognize the hand of God in ones life.

Mr. Chatfield, I admire your ability to attribute these events to the Lord and not to yourself.

Jo said...

The Lord's Sovereign hand, so directing as in your testimony, is something to always get excited about, eh, Glenn?!! Rejoicing with you, that you could help this brother (80 yrs. old, Praise Him!!, wow, age hasn't cooled his heels in regard to wanting to know truth) in this particular matter of the Hebrew Roots Movement....by sovereign design. Glad to hear it.

Marie said...

Thanks for sharing this info. I have often thought the Christians who want to "act as Jewish as they possibly can" was a bit odd, (like, why? I don't get it), but I didn't realize there was anything wrong with the Messianic Jewish faith per se. I thought they were basically just Christians of the Jewish persuasion.

Now I'm confused. Is the PFO article online?

Glenn E. Chatfield said...

Marie,

None of the PFO Journals are on line. I think that is so they can sell the CD of all of them.

There are many facets of the Hebrew Roots Movement, and some aren't all that bad because they just examine where Christianity came from. Some, as Jews for Jesus, just demonstrate how one can be a Christian Jew. But other stuff gets really legalistic and bizarre.

Anonymous said...

Glenn, bear in mind that the "Hebrew roots movement" and "Messianic Judaism" are two completely different things.

Stan Telchin is a rather controversial character and several people found major issues in his book. Have a look at:

http://www.kesherjournal.com/Book-Reviews/Messianic-Judaism-Is-Not-Christianity-by-Stan-Telchin

http://www.atoxicfaith.com/christianweek.html

http://www.atoxicfaith.com/MessTimesNews.html

(This is not to defend any of the other people listed in your post - I don't know who they are).

Glenn E. Chatfield said...

Anonymous 6/23,
Actually, in the whole scheme of things, "Messianic Judaism" comes under the umbrella of the many things seeking to have Hebrew roots. But the Hebrew Roots movement, as you saw in the list, is a separate entity from that which is called "Messianic Judaism." I only mentioned Stan's book by way of explaining things I have learned, not as saying the two are the same.

Nevertheless, I have some great reservations about any movement seeking to attach O.T. laws, etc. to their theology.

Anonymous said...

...and here I thought it was all about spelling G-d with a hyphen!
Silly me! I guess then that we should spell m_n this way!
Signed -n-n-m--s

Glenn E. Chatfield said...

Anonymous 6/25,
Yes, there's a lot of that in it! :oD

Anonymous said...

Glenn, thanks for this article. I am always amazed at how you touch on things that I always wondered about. This is one of those things that Christians are afraid to say anything about...like wanting to accept others in the Lord and overlook differences, but then on another level being concerned about some of the differences. For a time I worked at a Christian bookstore that had a few regular customers who were Messianic Jews. Our store kept candles for them to use in their festivals and such. One day one of these folks came inthe store when I was the only one working. She got really angry with me because we were out of the right color candles. She yelled at me that the rabbi was coming and that she did not have her candles and what was she going to do? All I could think to say was, "What happened to grace?" At that she stormed out of the shop!

kim said...

You saying that information crosses your path a short time before you need it, resonates deeply with me. I too have experienced the same thing. It is a true enabling of a servant of God...an answer to prayer to fulfill the mission He has set forth for every believer. He alone equips us to serve Him through the Holy Spirit.

Blessings to you and your ministry.

Glenn E. Chatfield said...

Hi Kim,

Thank you and welcome to my blog. It is always amazing how the Lord works. Finding YOUR blog was something quite worthwhile - you have done some good research and have some great stuff. I will be following you now.

Anonymous said...

Hi Glenn, this is very timely that I came across this because the last year I've been attending a mostly wonderful baptist church and they recently started a preaching series on TULIP.

I felt that I was being called an Arminian in the sermon and I resented it because I do not follow Arminius and have never even read him. To lump me into that was something I resented. I don't even care that two men, Calvin and Arminius even argued.

Having never learned Calvinism and being raised Anabaptist and Mennonite, what I was learning was sort of new to me and actually sounded strange and twisted.

At this point in time I feel like what I was hearing from the pulpit was a bit different that what I have learned by simply reading the scripture. Having never read Calvin or Augustine, these points were foreign to me.

I want to simply be a Christian, and I resent being called Arminian, or whatever. I don't even like being called a Menno-nite.

Thank you for clarifying for me. I have an open mind and I do want to learn what the big stink is about to an extent, but I don't like the arrogance that I'm hearing in the Calvinist camp. Everyone who isn't a Calvinist is an Arminian to them? smh
~Labby