Articles by Boaz Michael
Boaz Michael is the Founder and Director of First Fruits of Zion. He resides in Jerusalem, Israel. From there he directs First Fruits of Zion’s international efforts and is active in establishing a Messianic Jewish learning center in Jerusalem.
A Passover Seder is a uniquely eye-opening event. We developed The Master’s Table: A Passover Encounter for Christians to reach out to as many people as possible with the beauty and truth of God’s appointed times, his commitment to Israel, and the true Jewish identity of Yeshua the Messiah. Now we need your help.
It has been said that the wise man is he who knows his limitations. The way of Christianity for the past two thousand years has seemed right to Christians, but not to those who look at it as hypocritical in its failure to act out its fundamental teachings while such an enormous catastrophe occurred in its midst.
We can, through learning, directly express our admiration for God; we can, through learning, directly receive revelation. Whether it is undertaken individually or corporately, learning itself is a spiritual act, an act of worship. True spiritual learning is an incredibly meaningful experience. It draws one close to God in openness and praise.
To make the celebration of Hanukkah special, in our experience, it is essential to separate these nights from our normal routines. With this in mind, we have structured a guide to provide solid discussions of a spiritual nature that you can share around the family hanukkiah.
While it is important to remain holy and refrain from desecrating God’s name by imitating the worship of false gods, it is also important to maintain a healthy and positive relationship with one’s family. Certainly it is disheartening to one’s parents when one abstains from important family gatherings.
I have traveled all over the U.S. and throughout the world visiting Messianic congregations. I am sad to say that it is rare to find one that is actively seeking to reach lost people—those who have no connection with Yeshua—and to bring them to a place of faith, a place of connection with God through the Messiah.
Pauline Rose (1898-1973) was called the “Lady of Mount Zion.” She could also be considered the first lady of twentieth-century Messianic Judaism. She was a pioneer of the Messianic Jewish movement in Israel and abroad, starting the first Messianic Jewish congregation in Jerusalem in the modern era.
Living in Jerusalem as a disciple of Yeshua and a practicing Jew, I constantly feel the tension between the Messianic and Orthodox Jewish worlds. Yet that tension was exceptionally sharp as I had to defend my Jewish practice to a fellow believer in Yeshua.
This is true in a psychological sense and even truer in a spiritual sense. As believers, we often suffer from false identities. The reality God has created in us is different from our perception of it. We have new identities in the Messiah, but we often fail to see ourselves rightly.
Our culture has created a world without absolutes or definitions. Thus, if we want to raise children with a sense of absolutes and definitions, we will meet resistance from the majority of culture that we are part of. It is going to be increasingly difficult.
For most of us, participation in a Passover Seder begins with readying our homes and congregational buildings, preparation for what we’ll be wearing and/or whether or not we’ve purchased our dinner tickets prior to the event, then ends with the seder. What more is there that requires devotional preparation?
Yesterday, I heard a short comment from Dennis Prager, a prominent US talk show host. He speaks on topics that range from ethics, politics, marriage, and everything in between. He was expressing his concerns about several of the current GOP presidential candidates, about the baseless hatred that is now taking place in the political arena.
A gift lovingly given, a young man on a tour of Israel, and a terrorist attack all converged together to blend tragedy with hope and provision. This is the story of how God in his infinite wisdom can use seemingly random people across the globe to intersect into one moment in time.
A place to rediscover Yeshua, to find resources and assistance, to provide a theological and communal backbone for Messianic Judaism in Israel: this is the vision of the Bram Center that, with God’s help, my friends and family and I are building here.
Messianic Jews in the land of Israel should be exemplary advocates for Torah. Yet to date, due to a multitude of social, religious, and cultural pressures, Israeli disciples of Yeshua have drawn back from exploring the beauty of the Torah and the life it describes.
When the Israeli web portal Walla! recently featured testimonies of Jewish Yeshua-followers produced by Eitan Bar and Israel College of the Bible, it was hailed as a win for Jewish evangelism. It would be even better if a few of the testimonies pointed Jewish believers to Torah.
David provided a spark that lit a still-growing fire in today’s Christian and Messianic Jewish world. However, he has taught us all perhaps a more important lesson through the example of his steadfastness and consistency, through showing us what it looks like to have a dream and to work toward it.
Christians in China count the cost of discipleship before making a decision to follow Yeshua because the cost is so much higher than it is in the west. First Fruits of Zion teachers Boaz Michael and Daniel Lancaster bring the message of the Jewish gospel to young Chinese believers and plant the seeds of the gospel message of the kingdom into good soil.
In the latest update from First Fruits of Zion's outreach in China, Boaz Michael teaches against replacement theology in a Hong Kong area church while addressing the Paris attacks and the kingdom of heaven’s vision of peace.
When American Starbucks Coffee shops began to remove Christmas branding from their products, they incited an online outcry from conservative Christians, but Starbucks in Hong Kong still has the Christmas spirit: commercialism unhampered by political correctness.
Here in Israel, we have some confusion between congregation and community because we use the same Hebrew word (kehila) for both. The word kehila is also used to describe the "body", the general Messianic community throughout Israel. This seems to imply that congregations are the community and the community is the congregation.
To cope with the recent attacks Israelis are taking self-defense classes and buying personal weapons such as pepper spray. Most of us have had to change something about our daily routines. I’ve had to change my running route to run at a later hour when I’m not so vulnerable by being alone.
The Messianic community in Israel has a disproportionate amount of ministry personnel over the marketplace, which creates tension over wages, workload, and religious leadership. Israel is a hotspot for international ministries and the locals find it hard to refuse employment opportunities. Ministry should not be taken lightly, it is not an opportunity for easy work.
Messianic communities in Israel preach about the next generation and talk about younger leadership. However, leadership is not always delegated in actuality. The Master showed us how to train disciples and step back. This is the biblical model for leadership and ministry. Leadership is a serious discipline that requires professional training.
Messianic Jews in Israel are too few to create their own subculture in society. As such, they will necessarily study and work with others, adopting a large degree of existing identity markers. Unfortunately, secular society tends to be the only option. Where do we fit into the big scheme of it all?
Given that Hanukkah is a historically Jewish festival and that its celebration is not a mitzvah (commandment) of the Torah, why would Gentile believers in Yeshua celebrate it? Obviously Jewish believers have a cultural affinity for the festival, but is there any real biblical significance to it? Is there any reason Christians might want to incorporate the celebration of Hanukkah into their homes?
Every year in Israel ceremonies are held throughout the country to commence Yom HaShoah, a day of remembrance for those who perished in the Holocaust. This day should also be remembered by Christians throughout the world. It was the Christian silence that also contributed to the tragic loss of so many lives.
Today my pastor asked the congregation, “Can you just sit in the pew and be a disciple?” He is in the middle of a series on discipleship and the true call and meaning of the Gospel. He is challenging our church body with their understanding and expectations of the Gospel.