About Congregation Shaarei Hashamayim
Origins of Messianic Judaism
Messianic Judaism began 2,000 years ago, dating to the time of Yeshua, Himself - who was, and is, Jewish. Yeshua was raised in a Jewish home, ministered to Jewish people in the land of Israel, and had Jewish disciples and apostles. With the possible exception of Luke (though a good case can be made that he, too, was Jewish), all the writers of the B’rit Chadashah (New Covenant or Testament) were Jewish. For a time, the faith was strictly Jewish; by the middle of the First Century AD, tens of thousands of Jewish people believed that Yeshua was the Messiah (see Acts 2:37-42, 4:4, 21:20).
What does it mean to be a Messianic Jew?
As Messianic Jews, we express our faith in the G-d of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob in a way that is consistent with the life example and teachings of Yeshua (Jesus), who is the Messiah mentioned in the Torah, Prophets and Writings (T’nakh). Our congregational worship is based upon the same worship that was commonly practiced 2,000 years ago by Jewish followers of Yeshua.
Our liturgy reflects a blending of patterns from traditional Judaism and New Covenant teachings, that are, essentially, bound together according to the purposes of the Lord. Messianic Judaism embraces the standard Jewish observance of Holy Days and traditions that Yeshua, Himself, observed in the Second Temple Era. Since that Temple was destroyed, we must now ask ourselves how these observances should look for followers of Yeshua.
Way of Life
As Messianic Jews, we must interact with Rabbinic traditions and Jewish life and practice in its diverse forms of expression within the greater community. We share the joy of the establishment of the Jewish State in the re-birth of the nation of Israel, and understand what it means to be Jewish in the 21st century! Our Jewish identity exists, however, within the context of our core belief that the New Covenant scriptures advance the agenda of G-d - in particular, the outworking of His purposes for Israel and the Jewish people in the Diaspora.
Our congregation stands upon the historic traditions of the First Century Messianic fellowships, traditions which date back to the time of Moshe Rebeynu, and even unto Noah and Adam. Most importantly, our congregation is grounded in the tradition of the "First Mishpocha" -- Yeshua HaMoshiach! We rejoice in the glorious Presence of the Lord as individuals and as a corporate body, and find great joy in both our worship of the Lord and our close, loving fellowship as mishpocha.
Our Messianic Jewish congregation prays for the peace of Jerusalem. We hope that Yeshua, the Prince of Peace, will soon return and usher in His Kingdom!