The Voice of the Lord


The person who is righteous will attain life by trusting and being faithful (Galatians 3:11; see also Habakkuk 2:4).

During the last few centuries, some Jewish scholars have described Christianity as a religion based on faith, while Judaism is based on action. Perhaps a Church history of "faith without works" is to blame for this conclusion. However, during the first century Messianic Jewish revival, faith's place was acknowledged.

Talmudists living soon after the destruction of the Temple had much to say about faith toward God. Quite possibly they were influenced by New Covenant teaching on the subject. For example, in Makkot 24a, the rabbis taught that all the commandments are reduced to one, "The righteous shall live by his faith" (see Romans 1:17). Rabbi Eliezer said (Sotah 48b), "Whoever has a piece of bread in his basket and says, 'What shall I eat tomorrow?' belongs only to them of little faith" (see Matthew 6:25-34). Were the rabbis quoting Yeshua and his disciples? In addition, Genesis 15:6—where Abraham believed God and was counted righteous—and Numbers 21—about healing through observing the serpent—are used by the rabbis as faith examples (see John 3:14-15)!

When Yeshua is asked how one might do God's works, he answers, "Here is what the work of God is: to trust in the one he sent!" (John 6:29) His message that faith and action are inextricably tied could not have been more Jewish! the most Jewish thing in the world. I will live by faith and action.


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The Voice of the Lord, Copyright 1998 by the Lewis and Harriet Lederer Foundation, Inc. Published by Messianic Jewish Publishers, Distributed by Messianic Jewish Resources, All rights reserved. Used by permission. No part of this article may be reproduced in print or on the web, or transmitted in any form, without the written permission of the publisher.