You might have heard of Joshua Aaron; he’s currently one of the world’s most popular Messianic musicians.
However, you might not know that Joshua is a club leader for Torah Club, First Fruits of Zion’s network of small-group Bible studies. We recently interviewed Joshua about his musical career, his personal faith, and how the current Torah Club study, Jesus, My Rabbi, has affected his spiritual life and that of his community in the Sea of Galilee region of Israel.
Joshua’s first album, Bo Yeshua, was released in 2009, but he credits as his launching pad his 2012 album You Are Holy, which featured a Hebrew version of Chris Tomlin’s “How Great Is Our God,” titled “Gadol L’elohai.” Since then, he has noticed “a great surge of people interested in the roots of their faith.” He describes First Fruits of Zion as an “amazing ministry … to lead them in the right path.”
Joshua’s music has been an entry point to the Messianic world for many believers in Yeshua who have sought a deeper understanding of the Jewish roots of their faith. “Everywhere I go,” he says, “people thank me for leading them to this movement. I’m like, ‘I didn’t tell you where to go. I’m just trying to lead you to Yeshua.’”
Nevertheless, he has seen the potential pitfalls of this journey: “There’s a lot of leaning toward exclusivity, like, ‘I’ve found it and you haven’t,’ forgetting the fact that you’ve been on this journey, too, and you’ve found this path—to just all of a sudden [think] you’ve arrived. Because we’ve never arrived … We’re all on the same journey.”
Asked why he chose Torah Club, Joshua had this to say: “I think this is the most comprehensive and best-laid-out teaching in the Messianic movement. The fact that it’s been around for decades. I kind of discovered what you had, and the more I started digging, the more I’m like, ‘Wow, this is powerful; this is grounded.’ As a person who was, as some would say, half Jewish—my mother is Jewish; my father was raised Catholic—I’ve always been on this journey to discover my identity as a Jewish person through my mother’s side, and I’ve always had a hard time finding a good, healthy balance. I feel like I’ve found it here at First Fruits, and honestly, our club is just eating it up.”
Joshua leads a group of young, active Messianic Jews who all live near the Sea of Galilee: “They’re doing stuff that is helping the nation of Israel in many ways. We’ve got one guy who started an organization that cleans up trash all over Israel … another one has an aliyah refuge center … one is a part of helping Holocaust survivors. We’re not just believers; we’re living in the land, doing, building the kingdom, and helping the nation of Israel; we all believe that the great rabbi is Yeshua, and … we’re lit, we’re all just lit.”
He describes his initial reticence to become a Torah Club Leader: “I was quite nervous when I first signed up. ‘What do I do? Please help me! What is everybody else doing?’” He found, however, that “it was quite easy because it’s laid out for you. I’m honestly not a student. I’m not a good teacher, [but Torah Club] helps walk you through it. Somebody leads it, but it’s an open discussion. Such amazing discussions we have together. It’s laid out so great; I look like I know what I’m doing.”
You can find Joshua Aaron at joshuaaaron.tv, iTunes, or YouTube. Joshua is hoping to release both a studio EP and a live album later this year.