Oct 17, 2017

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00012

Last Name
BEN MEIR
First Name
Moshe Yimanuel
Life Span
Publications
From Jerusalem to Jerusalem
Sources
Gershon Nerel’s article “A Messianic Jewish Church in Eretz Israel?” in Mishkhan, Issue No. 29, 1998, search here.
Details
Orthodox Israeli whose journey in faith to Yeshua at the beginning of the twentieth century is told in his autobiography From Jerusalem to Jerusalem. He is one of the pioneers of the Messianic Jewish movement in Israel. He established with Hyman Jacobs and Dr. Arne Jonsen, a Norwegian missionary, the first independent Messianic Jewish congregation in Jerusalem between 1925-1929 referring to the congregants in Hebrew as “Yehudim Meschichiim” or Messianic Jews. This term would not be the definition of choice for Jewish believers in Yeshua until 1975 in America, then was officially adopted in May 1997 at an international conference in Mexico. As they were accused of “Judaizing tendencies,” the first congregation only lasted 4 years. Then in cooperation with the International Hebrew Christian Alliance (IHCA) of London, they formed the Hebrew Christian Fellowship of Palestine, but still used the term “Messianic Jews” in Hebrew texts. Their professed aim was to achieve an interdenominational fellowship that would “unite the Messianic Jews in Palestine and Syria; establish and support urban branches; witness corporately to both synagogue and church concerning the fulfillment of Israel’s messianic hope in Jesus; to introduce Jewish thought to Gentile Christians and the Gospel to Jews; …” in 1933, the Fellowship changed its name to The Hebrew Christian Alliance of Palestine and the Near East. He also created a Messianic Sabbath liturgy and a Messianic Jewish Haggadah, combining Jewish tradition and biblical texts in order to find some common ground with normative Judaism. He is also the apologist for what is now called “the minimalist creed” of seven word length “I believe with a perfect faith in Yeshua the Messiah the Lord.” (Ani Ma’amin Be-emuna Shelema Be-Yeshua Hamashiach Haadon). He explains it thus, “If our seven-worded creed causes offense, misunderstanding, and suggests some doubts as to our orthodoxy or fundamentalism, it is not our fault. The fault lies at the door of the so-called ‘Church Fathers.’ The creed that we, Messianic Jews, repeat is the rock-bottom foundation of the Church of God. Formulated by St. Peter under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, it was ratified by our Lord Himself. Turn to Matt 16:15. The Hebrew concept expressed by the word HaMashiach is the seed-plot of all saving faith and saving truths. This word covers and includes every detail in the divine plan of Redemption, each and every fact and truth that should and must be believed with the heart in order to be saved.” This seems to contrast but not contradict Haimoff’s views on the subject which could be termed ‘maximalist’ (Ref. Haimoff). Ben-Meir also taught along with Kofsmann, Haimoff, Poljak and Ostrovsky that full Jewish hegemony in Jerusalem meant the end of the “Time of the Gentiles.” They raised the post-1948 Jewish remnant in Israel into developing a strong patriotic Zionism as part of their eschatological theology. They also stressed that Israeli believers should serve in the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) as loyal citizens of the State, and if competent, even as officers.

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