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Questions:
If you believe that Yeshua is the Messiah, are you still Jewish?
Do you have to be Jewish to attend?
Do you have to believe in Yeshua to come or can I just come and check it out?
What are your services like?
Where do you meet? What time are services?
Do you keep the Biblical festivals?
Is there a dress code? Do men have to wear a yarmukle?
Why don't you pronounce the name YHVH in the Bible or in services?
Did the Jewish people ever bow down to and serve images?
Do you study the New Testament?
Did the Jewish people ever accept the Apochryphal Books as canonical?

Answers:

If you believe that Yeshua is the Messiah, are you still Jewish?
Certainly. If you are born a Jew, you will always be a Jew. For example, former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright discovered late in life that she was born Jewish. Even though she had been raised a practicing Catholic, Jewish halakhah (law) still regards her (and any of her children) as Jewish. Actually, believing in Yeshua is very Jewish, because "Messiah" (Moshiach) is a Jewish idea! Yeshua himself was a Jew (since his mother Miriam was a Jew), he lived as a Jew, and he said that "Salvation is of the Jews" (John 4:22). A Messianic Jew lives out his calling, from birth, to follow Yeshua as a Jew.
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Do you have to be Jewish to attend?
Not at all. Our vision statement is "We are a community welcoming Jews and Gentiles, rejoicing, worshipping the God of Israel, learning, and loving one another." All are welcome!
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Do you have to believe in Yeshua to come or can I just come and check it out?
We encourage all who are interested to visit, join in as you are led, stay for oneg (our lunch and fellowship after services) and ask questions about what we do. Our services are lively and most people find them to be quite interesting.
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What are your services like?
Our services combine traditional Jewish liturgy with Spirit-filled praise and worship. The Rabbi opens the service by praying that we might all come into His presence as he puts on a tallit or prayer shawl. Our Chazzan (cantor) leads us with prayers from a siddur (prayer book) such as the V'Shamroo, Amidah, Kaddish, etc. Following the example of David (see for examples Psalms 149 and 150), we praise Hashem (the Lord) with singing, clapping, dancing, standing, davening (bowing), and praying silently. Inspired by the Ruach Elohim (Spirit of God), people may spontaneously read Scripture or give prophetic utterances to encourage the congregation. We bless our children under a large tallit (prayer shawl). People read from the Torah scroll and give short drashes (interpretations) or a Rabbi or guest speakers gives a longer teaching. Never a dull moment!
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Where do you meet? What time are services?
Our services are at Wellspring Community Church, west of Allentown. Click
here to see a map and directions. Our Shabbat services start at 10AM. We also have services for other festivals and musical coffeehouses at other times--see our special events on our home page. And we have havurah (friendship) groups and bible studies that meet in homes in Allentown, Bethlehem, Hamburg and the Poconos at other times.  Call 610-289-2011 for more information.  Please join us! Back to Top

Do you keep the Biblical festivals?
Yes, we observe the festivals ordained forever in Leviticus 23, including Shabbat (Sabbath), Pesach (Passover), Chag HaMatzot (Feast of Unleavened Bread), Shavuot (Weeks), Yom Teruah (Day of Blowing Shofars commonly known as Rosh Hashana), Yom Kippur (Day of Atonement) and Sukkot (Tabernacles or Booths). We also celebrate Purim (as ordained in Esther) and Chanukah (Re-Dedication of the Temple). Yeshua also celebrated these festivals and each of them is associated with a major event in Messiah's plan to redeem humanity. Check out web site periodically to find out when we will be celebrating upcoming festivals and plan to join us!
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Is there a dress code? Do men have to wear a yarmukle?
Dress in a manner that shows respect for G-d and will not distract your neighbors. The yarmukle (kippa or head covering) is a traditional way to show respect for Hashem--we recommend but do not require wearing one.
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Why don't you pronounce the name YHVH in the Bible or in services?
My own belief is that Yeshua is the visible image of the living G-d and that every knee will bow and every tongue confess His name, Yeshua. What name could be higher than the name of the one we are commanded to worship? The phrase paraphrases one in Tanakh (Isaiah I believe) which refers to the Tetragrammaton. I believe the latter was given until Yeshua was revealed. We cannot be sure how YHVH is pronounced (there are various theories), and I believe that is how it is His providence, because He has given us the name Yeshua. To be sure, there are many names describing His nature, i.e., Immanuel, Yeshophat, El Shaddai, etc. All these names refer to the One G-d, for as Yeshua said, "I and the Father are one."
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Did the Jewish people ever bow down to and serve images?
In ancient Israel, Jews definitely worshiped idols. Moses and the pre-exilic prophets castigated them often about it, starting with the golden calf incident. It seems to have been much less of a problem after the exile, since the post-exilic prophets don't mention it much if at all, shifting to other issues such as poor priorities (building their own houses instead of the Temple). Worshiping images is taboo among Jews after that.
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Do you study the New Testament?
We study both the Tanakh or Hebrew Scriptures and the New Covenant or Brit Chadashah. During our services we always read verses from the New Covenant declaring the character and teachings of Messiah Yeshua. Our Rabbis teach from both the Tanakh (Hebrew Scriptures) and Brit Chadashah. In our men's and women's bible studies, we have been studying the book of Luke, which we consider a very Jewish book, describing how Yeshua had a brit milah (circumcision), studied with the sages in the Temple, declared that the greatest commandment is the V'ahavta ("You shall love the L-RD your G-d" from Deuteronomy 6:5), etc.
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Did the Jewish people ever accept the Apochryphal Books as canonical?
Nope, they were never regarded as canonical among the Jews. Talmud and the New Testament do allude to them, however (see Jude 1:14). Indeed, if these books hadn't been preserved., Jews might not know much about the Maccabbees, who have become heros in the 20th century after they were somewhat disreputable in earlier times. The apocryphal books from what I've read (I don't read them much) strike me as good literature, some very good story-telling (such as Judith) and wisdom imitating Ecclesiastes. I wouldn't derive doctrine from them, but I would recommend looking at them.
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