Rabbi’s Reflections – Tuesday, October 1, 2019 

L’Shanah Tovah Tikatevu *|FNAME|*,

I don’t know if you saw this important announcement from Asher Intrater concerning the moving parts of Tikkun Global.  Shomair Yisrael is part of the Tikkun America network of congregations that is part of Tikkun Global.

I’m writing this on the first day of Rosh Hashanah, but it’s for the second day of RH.  We (at Shomair) only celebrate one day of the Feast of Trumpets.  In this we are in agreement with Reform Judaism which also celebrates only one day.

Rabbi Trail:  There is no “ed” on the end of Reform Judaism; it’s not “Reformed Judaism.”  The first permanent Reform Temple was formed in Hamburg, Germany in 1818.  Before that, there was no such thing, only orthodox Judaism.  They named their places of worship Temples to distinguish them from the more traditional synagogues and to signify that they no longer desired to see the Holy Temple in Jerusalem rebuilt.  

If you’re wondering why there is no mention of Conservative Judaism, it came along even more recently.  It was only after some of those who began practicing Reform Judaism decided they missed some of the traditions and Hebrew liturgy, so they came “half back” to orthodox Judaism.  End RT.

Even in Israel, Rosh Hashanah is celebrated for two days.  This is different from every other holiday.  Where other holidays are celebrated in the diaspora (Jews in exile outside of Israel) for two days, they are only celebrated for one day in the land of Israel.  Not so with Rosh Hashanah.  

The whole “2 days v one day” phenomenon is because in ancient times they were never sure of the exact day to celebrate any holiday, so they celebrated two days to be sure at least one of them was the correct day.  God commanded one day, that’s what we do at Shomair.

The first day of Rosh Hashanah is the first day of the spiritual year and the first day of the “Yomim Nora’im” (days of awe).  According to Jewish tradition (it’s not biblical) the book of life is opened on the first day of the new year and stays open until the 10th day, Yom Kippur.  So (according to Jewish tradition) this is a good time to be on your good behavior.

Of course, God is not mocked.  He knows who you are.  He knows the intent of your heart.  He knows how your mind works.  He knows there is none righteous, no, not one.  You can’t “trick God” into believing you deserve to be written in the book of life for another year.  All we can do is what God said to do.  

John 6:29 Yeshua answered them, “This is the work of God, to trust in the One He sent.”

John 6:47 “Amen, amen I tell you, he who believes has eternal life.

What?  You don’t believe John?  Would you believe Psalm 2 then?  After all, it is a Psalm that is written for Rosh Hashanah.

Psalm 2:12 Kiss the Son, lest He become angry, and you perish along your way— since His wrath may flare up suddenly. Happy is everyone taking refuge in Him!

Psalm 2 has a prominent place in High Holiday liturgy.  My recommendation to Jewish people everywhere is right there… “Kiss the Son.”  Then wait for Him to love you back.

Week 40
Memory Verse: Acts 17:24 The God who made the world and all things in it, since He is Lord of heaven and earth, does not live in temples made by hands. 25 Nor is He served by human hands, as if He needed anything, since He Himself gives to everyone life and breath and all things.

196   9/30  Monday:         Acts 15-16

197   10/1  Tuesday:        Galatians 1-3

198   10/2  Wednesday:   Galatians 4-6

199   10/3  Thursday:       Acts 17-18:17

200   10/4  Friday:           1 Thessalonians 1-2

Question of the day:  The question of the day comes from the middle of Galatians 2:17.  “Is Messiah then an agent of sin?”

Answer:  What kind of question is that?  Apparently a very good one.  Paul has been building the case for this question for the first two chapters of Galatians.  Answering this question is also the basis of the rest of the book. 

You should know that Galatians is frequently used to prove Messianic Jews are Judaizers.  However; Judaizers teach salvation comes through obedience.  We do not believe that.  We do, however; believe that it is not against God to obey God.

Furthermore; we believe Jewish people should walk with God in a way that is recognizably Jewish.  That is exactly the subject when Paul asks the question of the day.

After all… WWYD (What Would Yeshua Do?).  He would do God’s commands because He alone, above all others, is without sin.  And sin is transgression of the law.  If we really have His mind (1 Corinthians 2:16b) then we should make the same decisions He made.  And all His decisions were in obedience to His Father’s commandments.

So let’s be clear, crystal clear… Messiah is NOT the agent of sin.