I am a reader of your site for some months now.
I also read Brit-Am and the Sighted Moon sites and newsletters.
I am a t a point of great interest in that I have been in contact with people from a group of Nazarenes (I have tried to spell this correctly but given the biblical reference to Natzirenes etc, various spellings,).
The point is that the distinction is made in that the disciples of Yeshuah (the Apostles including Paul) were reporting themselves as being distinct from Christians during their lifetimes.
Reference was made to when Paul was undergoing trial in one specific instance and this had me wondering.
Is not a Christian really a follower of Yeshua, who is supposed to accept the TRUTH that his suffering pays for the price of our sins and thereby by God given Grace we are saved from destruction i.e. “grace through faith” ?
The fact that most so called white-sepulchre Christian Churces do not preach the TRUE word of Yahweh should in no way detract from TRUE Christians who do in fact take all the Word of God as it is with both hands and try to follow his commandments, statutes etc !!??
If one does not call one-self Christian but Nazarene, is this in some way separating one-self from the true line or not ?
I hope you can see the point that I am making. I have always considered followers of Yahweh and Yeshua to be Christian, but the Nazarene idea seems to separate from the Christian statement in some way.
I would appreciate your serious statement regarding these points and reasonings. I respect your opinion and would be much obliged for advice on the subject.
It could be a most important fact to be considered by all.
I agree that the calendar of feasts, land-rest, Sabatical Calendar and Jubilees seem to be primordial in the statutes of Yahweh and to be obeyed by all.
These are new concepts to myself and your advice would be, aforementioned, appreciated.
If you do have anyone in the Brisbane, Australia area who could be of help again I would be most appreciative of any assistance.
I remain yours in Yeshuah,
Thanks for contacting me, and greetings to you “down under” where you live.
While believers often care a great deal about what religious label they hang on themselves (Christian, Catholic, Protestant, Evangelical, Nazarene, Netzarim, etc.), or base fellowship on “laundry lists” of doctrinal agreements, it is my opinion that the Creator cares a lot less than we do about such things. He “looks at the heart” (I Samuel 16:7). John 13:35 adds that the real evidence of being the disciple of Yeshua (i.e. Jesus) is whether we “have love one for another.” Notice John did not say that the key “acid test” re: whether the Ruach (the Holy Spirit) dwells in us is (A) the religious label that we pin on ourselves or (B) the Name by which we address the Creator and his Son, etc. The key test is whether the Divine love of the Creator dwells in us toward others. If this is not in us, it matters not what knowledge or understandings we have (I Corinthians 13:1-3)!
You are correct that we are “saved by grace through faith” in Yeshua’s (i.e. Jesus’) sacrifice for us. Our works, deeds and religious affiliations do not save us. I also see no evidence in the New Testament that Yahweh’s (i.e. God’s) 7th-Day Sabbath, calendar feasts or meat laws were “done away” for our current age. It is prophesied that the 7th Day Sabbath will be mandatory in the Messianic Age/Millennium (Isaiah 66:22-23), and the calendar feasts (the “Holy Days” listed in Leviticus 23) will be mandatory as well (Zechariah 14:16-19). The Savior himself said he would keep the Passover again with his disciples after his return (Luke 21:15-16). Since Yeshua (Jesus) is “the same yesterday, today and forever” (Hebrews 13:8), I believe these laws of Yahweh (God) are still the Creator’s will for us today.
However, I do not believe in imposing my doctrinal views on other believers and similar doctrine-keeping is not a condition of fellowship for me. I know that there are many Christian believers who, while they may not observe the same doctrines as I do; nonetheless, have hearts that fully love the Lord and follow his ways according to their understand of his will. I have an “inclusive” attitude toward fellowship with other believers. So does our Savior. He tells us in Matthew 25:40 that he will exclude from his coming Kingdom the “exclusivists” who refuse to assist, accept or serve those who they regard to be the “least” of the Lord’s brethren. Those who reject believers who are in other denominations or doctrinal understandings risk running afoul of Matthew 25:40. We are all the “servants” of our Lord, and we are warned not to judge our fellow servants but realize that our Savior will judge us all (Romans 14:1-4). And, as I noted above, he looks “at our heart” in evaluating us, and whether we have love in our hearts toward others. Love is far more important than religious knowledge or our level of doctrinal understandings (I Corinthians 13:1-3).
I hope I answered your question! For those readers not used to the Hebrew Names for the Creator/Godhead, I’ve put the English equivalents in parenthesis in my reply).