What do you mean "Hebraic" fellowship?
Without trying to put anyone in a box, most people who believe that Jesus is the promised Messiah fall into one of two
categories - either they are "Christians" or they are "Messianics".
Both terms have their shortcomings. Most Christians believe that Jesus
came to change all or part of God's law. Messianics, while holding on
to certain aspects of God's law, tend to incorporate customs that give them
a "Jewish" identity. In addition, Messianic Judaism supports somewhat
of a wall between those with Jewish and those with non-Jewish heritage.
Hebraic, on the other hand, implies a return to the time when ancient Israel
(including all Israelites, both Jewish and non-Jewish) under Joshua's
leadership, crossed over the Jordan and began to implement God's way as a way of life.
Most people in the Hebraic "awakening" believe that God does not change, and
thus God's way does not change. Therefore, the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus brought forgiveness of sin, but did not
change any of His Father's laws.
Are you Jewish?
Probably not. But most people (including the Jewish people) don't really understand the term
"Jew". The Jews do not represent all Israel, for they are simply a subset of Israel.
Jacob (whose name was changed to "Israel") had 12 sons, the fourth being
Judah, the father of the Jewish people. The other sons were
Israelites, but not Jews. Contrary to what many believe, Abraham was not a Jew; he was a 'Hebrew'. The same holds true for many of the patriarchs of the Bible including Isaac, Jacob, Joseph, Moses, Joshua, and Samuel - all of whom descended from Jacob, but not through Jacob's son Judah. We believe we are probably physical
descendents of Jacob and thus descendants of Abraham, but even if not, Paul explains that if we
are Christ's, then we are Abraham's seed, and heirs according to the
promise (Gal. 3:29).
Do you believe in Jesus?
Absolutely! There is only one way to salvation and that is through Jesus the Messiah. But unfortunately, "Jesus"
has been mischaracterized down through the centuries as a man who came to
abolish His Father's instructions. We therefore choose to call Him by
his Hebrew name - "Yeshua" which means "salvation". Yeshua shows
throughout the gospels that He did not come to destroy the law (Torah), but
to restore it to it's proper position as a guide to the people of God.
Why do you call Jesus "Yeshua"?
When the angel told Joseph to name the baby in Mary's womb "Jesus" (Matt. 1:21), he said to do so because the baby would eventually "save His people from their sins". In other words, He was to become a "saviour" and His name was to reflect His purpose. But "Jesus" does not mean "save", because like many English names - it is just a name. Being that "Jesus" was a Hebrew child, He would have been given a Hebrew name, and the way to say "save" in Hebrew is with the word "yesha" (Strong's 3467). "Yeshua" is its Aramaic derivitive. See our article - "Yeshua to Jesus".
What is the "Torah"?
The first five books of the Jewish and Christian Bibles in commonly referred to as the Torah. They
are the foundational teachings of the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob and
thus serve as the words of life for the people of God. They are often
referred to as "the Law", but the Hebrew word 'torah' actually means "direction" and "instruction" and comes from a root word that means "to hit the mark". Yeshua (Jesus) often refers to the Torah as
part of the text that teaches about Himself (Luke 24:44). Some
believers consider the entire Old Testament to be Torah, and many in the
Jewish community erroneously include all or part of their "Oral Law" as Torah.
What is a "Torah Study"?
Sometime before the birth of Yeshua, the Jewish sages divided the Torah (five books of Moses) into
portions that would be read every Sabbath, with the intent that the entire
Torah would be read in the congregation once every year. The purpose
was to keep the instructions of God in front of the people all the times.
After the Babylonian exile, certain portions of the Prophets was added to
the weekly readings. Yeshua appears to have participated in the weekly
Torah readings (Luke 4:17).
Why do you meet on Saturday instead of Sunday?
From the creation, God established the seventh day as His 'set apart' day. He alone made it 'Holy', and only He can change it. But God said that the never changes (Malachi 3:6), so the seventh day Sabbath remains. Throughout the
Bible we see that the people of God observed the seventh day Sabbath for it is a sign God's people (Exodus 31:13). It was the
custom of Yeshua and it continued to be the custom of the apostles after His death and resurrection. (Luke 4:16, Acts 17:2). If you claim to be a follower of Yeshua (Jesus), you should do as He did and 'keep the Sabbath'!
Why do you use Jewish words and terms?
Though we are blessed to have wonderful translations of the Bible, a lot is lost in translation.
For instance, the Hebrew word "torah" essentially means "to hit the mark", but unfortunately, the translators use the word "law" which implies a list of "does and don't" instead of its intended meaning which is "the instructions to help you reach the goal".
Such holds true for many Hebrew words. Unlike English, Hebrew names
carry with them an intended meaning, such as "Levi" which means "to join"
and "Yehoshua" (Joshua) which means "Yah is Salvation". We believe a
person develops a closer understanding of the text by using as much Hebrew
Why do you follow the Jewish calendar?
There are a number of beliefs about how a person should determine the New Moon and the beginning
of the Biblical months. We choose to use the traditional Jewish calender because it has proven effective
in keeping the Jewish people together for nearly 2000 years. Since the Bible is relatively void of instruction concerning
the determnation of the new month, most New Moon determinations are based, at least in part, on tradition. If we're
going to follow tradition, why not follow a proven and effective tradition?
Do children attend your fellowship?
Yes. Children are included in practically every aspect of our Sabbath fellowship meetings. The are encouraged to take their turn reading the Torah Portion, commenting during the interactive session, and in offering up prayer. They participate in the worship dance, and often give special dance presentations. In past years the fellowship has had separate children's classes, but now believes it's better to keep the children with their parents throughout the entire service.
What do you do in your services?
Our weekly fellowship begins with a 90 minute sit
down reading and discussion of certain portions of the Torah (five books of
Moses, the prophets, and the Apostolic Scriptures ... the 'New Testament').
This is followed by a 30 minute break, then a "traditional" service which
includes song and dance, prayers and blessings, a recap of the day's Torah
reading, and a short teaching. We do not have any type of altar call
nor do we collect offerings. Dress is nice-casual.
Why do you dance?
Rejoicing through dance as an expression of praise to God was quite prevalent in the
Bible; Miriam danced after God defeated the Egyptians at the
Red Sea (Exodus 15:20), David danced when bringing the Ark of the Covenant to
Jerusalem (2 Samuel 6:14), and in the Millennial Kingdom of God, young men and old will
dance (Jeremiah 31:13). A study of the Hebrew word for festival
(chagag) in Leviticus 23, would reveal that one of the ways God expects his people to rejoice during the festivals
is through dance. The fall festival of Sukkot (the Feast of Tabernacles)
is one of the major festivals (Heb. - chag) in the Bible, picturing the 1000 year
millennial kingdom. It is pictured by the weekly Sabbath, thus it would seem
appropriate to dance in praise to God on Shabbat. The Bible is silent in
opposition to appropriate dance . . . thus we choose to dance. For
more information, go to http://season-of-our-joy.com/Dance.html
You may also want to read an extensive article on this subject by
Do you have an "oneg"?
Oneg Shabbat, or simply "oneg" is a time of fellowship that takes place on the weekly Sabbath. In
Messianic circles it usually refers to a meal that's eaten together as a
group. The Hebrew word 'oneg' actually means 'delight' as in "If you turn away your foot from the Sabbath, From doing your pleasure on My holy day, And call the Sabbath a delight (an oneg)". On most weeks, our fellowship has a somewhat shortened "oneg" (only 30 minutes long, and the food is limited to finger foods and snacks), but on the 1st Sabbath of each month, we have a full meal.
What is the meaning behind your logo?
When Abraham came to the land of Canaan, he dwelt in tents. So did his son Isaac as well as Isaac's son Jacob. In fact, the early Hebrews all lived in tents until they arrived in Egypt and eventually moved into houses. But that was not God's plan. It was His intent to for them to remember they were sojourners - living in a land that was not their own until they would eventually 'cross over' and take possesion of the Promised Land. Our logo symbolizes a bedoin's tent, possibly like that of Abraham. It reminds us that even though we live in America - a land of milk and honey - we are still exiles living in a land that is not our own. We long for the time when we too can 'cross over' into the Promised Land - the Kingdom of God on Earth.