June 1, 2009

In answer to your question...


I have been asked many times about my faith. It is not what you might call 'mainstream', but it is not new. I will attempt to put it in writing here, however, I am positive that others have done a much better job than I will. I firmly believe that everyone should be able to provide an answer for the hope that lives within them, regardless of what that hope may be.

Disclaimer: I do not intend to offend or proselytize anyone. I fully realize by writing this that I may be leaving myself open to criticism, persecution or ridicule. Regardless, this is simply my faith, of which I am not ashamed.

I worship the G-d of Israel, King of the Universe, who created the heavens and the earth. He is revealed in the Holy Bible, most notably the Torah, or Pentateuch, which was given to the people of Israel at Sinai.

I am observant of the commands given in the Torah, and diligently attempt to follow them to the best of my ability. I believe that the Torah was given to tell believers how to live righteously, and that this can be best accomplished by being a part of a Torah-observant congregation.

I believe the prophets of the Tanakh (Old Testament) spoke of the coming Messiah and that He did indeed come in the form of Yeshua of Nazareth. I do believe that He was a teacher, leader and had many followers, was executed for His teachings and was resurrected to forever make intercession for the people of the Most High, those who fear His Name. Because of His execution, He has made it possible for His people to be sanctified and their sin atoned for; as the consequence of sin is separation from G-d, Yeshua's death and resurrection has therefore ensured life forever with G-d. I believe that He currently sits at the right hand of the Almighty.

I humbly bow before the King of the Universe and believe that His Ruach Hakodesh, Holy Spirit, dwells within every believer enabling them to live a righteous life and to love and help others.

I live a Jewish lifestyle, therefore keep the Sabbath on Saturday, honor the commandments, celebrate the feasts and festivals as laid out in Scripture, eat kosher, believe in wearing tzitzit (fringes), pray the ancient prayers and liturgy, love the Land of Israel, and study Hebrew and Scripture under a Torah scholar. I am raising my children to do the same.

I hope this answers the question, and I welcome further discussion and comments.

Further information can be found at Torah Resource.

Shalom!

11 comments:

Ari C'rona said...

Well stated, my friend! :o)

Mama Cache said...

When you provide a pane through which others can see "inside Hendel D'bu," you leave little to obscure the view. Well done.

GreyCrazy said...

Wow. Thank you for the sharing the light of our soul, so clear and golden.

Anonymous said...

Hi, I just stumbled on your site. A friend of mine practices Christianity in a similar way -- keeping Torah. I thought you expressed your beliefs in this post very well. I'd like to ask you, though, who or what you consider to be your religious authority in interpreting the meaning of the New Testament Scriptures.

2000 years of Christianity... 30,000 different denominations and all claim to have the Truth.

Anyway, if you're up to it, I love discussing theology as well.

Peace in Christ,
Tozt

Hendel D'bu said...

Glad you found me, Tozt...and now you have me thinkin'. Interesting, it is, your statement of 2,000 years of Christianity and with so many denominations - how does one decide which has Truth?

I know my ultimate authority rests in the Master, who dwells within me (Ruach HaKodesh), as is the case in all true believers (the remnant). But, it is also true that we all are influenced by men...and which do we allow to influence our belief? Moses, of course, and the prophets for the Tanach, that one is easy. But the Gospels? Yeah, I take the Gospels as Scripture, most certainly the words of Yeshua...

I'm still pondering this one today - what are your thoughts? I'd love to ponder those, as well.

Anonymous said...

Hi Hendel,

Thanks for the response. Yes, I agree, as Christians in 2010, we can’t helped but be influenced by men, as men were God’s chosen tools in handing down these Traditions (which reveal His Truth) from one to another. The Scripture is the product of tradition as well.

For example, how do we really know that Peter wrote the book of Peter? We don’t. We weren’t there, right? But we trust the Tradition that was given to us by mere men. (Guided by God, of course.)

Here’s my big question:

About the books of the New Testament… why do you accept this part of Tradition, (that they are inspired, infallible, that there isn’t any book that doesn’t belong and that there aren’t books rejected that should be in it, and so on) but seemingly reject 2000+ years of oral tradition which interpret the *meaning* of New Testament Scriptures from the same sources that compiled the New Testament and then handed it down to you?

Of course I might be making an assumption here that you accept all the books of the New Testament. Do you?

Thank you for explaining this to me… I find your beliefs very interesting and your obvious love of God inspiring. 

-Tozt

Hendel D'bu said...

I have to be honest, Tozt, I definitely do not accept the changing of the Sabbath to Sunday, Communion (in place of Passover) and the celebration of Christmas and Easter as traditions that I can embrace. The church fathers made these changes, and you are correct, they also dictated the canon. I struggle with the epistles at times, wondering why they are there, and not, say, the Wisdom of Solomon. But then, why is Esther in the Tanach? I scratch my head at the books that were included and those that weren't...sounds rather political to me.

I suppose my bottom line, if you are truly interested in how and why I believe, is rooted in my faith. I don't believe in the Master of All because of what I read in the Bible, I believe because I feel He has chosen me, even from a small child - before I could even read. He speaks to me, guides me and proves Himself to me with His provision every day. I can't explain it, but I know it's true. Even before the Bible was written, there were those that believed, those whose heart were set to worship Him.

As far as traditions, well, I guess we will all know what was necessary and what was not when we meet Him face to face, won't we? I do hope that I have done my best to please Him by loving and serving others, but really all that matters is my faith in Him and His Messiah (Yeshua) and what He did.

All my deeds are filthy rags, after all. :-)

Anonymous said...

One questions pops out from your response:

How do you claim to know *anything* about Jesus being the Messiah and His nature, teachings, the church, etc. if you also claim that the very Scriptures which reveal Him to you may not be trustworthy and may be corrupted by political motivations?

Is there another source that you go to for learning about Jesus' ministry that I'm not aware of?

Thank you for sharing.

-Tozt

Hendel D'bu said...

The Tanach teaches about the Messiah, first of all. Secondly, I did not say that the canon was corrupted, I suggested that the process of canonization sounded suspiciously political, which is just my opinion. There is no way to prove that it was or was not.

As far as another source of information about Yeshua, I am not aware of one...sorry.

Thanks for the interchange. :-)

Anonymous said...

This answers a lot of questions. I wondered how your church viewed the New Testament... it seems to not be an issue to you. That is unfortunate.

As far as learning about Jesus' ministry from the Tanach, that is a perplexing statement.

Thanks for sharing.

-Tozt

Hendel D'bu said...

It seems as though I somehow didn't answer the question you were asking. I am just a lay-person, not a pastor or rabbi. However, if you are interested in a more scholarly answer, might I suggest you investigate the writings of my mentor?

http://torahresource.com/

I hope you find what you are seeking, my friend.

~hendel