In an age of competing voices and growing awareness of the Hebraic roots it is now necessary to be absolutely clear what we stand for. We have one abiding ministry aim and that is to glorify God by introducing the wider Church to the Hebraic roots that has been lost to it for centuries and to address the reasons for this historical neglect.
To do this we must be relevant and uncompromising in order to communicate effectively to an audience that is, by default, suspicious of our motives. This suspicion has two elements. The first is the historical situation best illustrated by the following sentiment – what gives us the authority to query the teachings and attitudes of our leaders and theologians, particularly those who came before us in the past? The second is a fear, sadly fed by some existing Hebrew Roots teaching, that embracing one’s Hebrew Roots is somehow locking us into a legalistic system, perhaps even sucking us into a form of Judaism.
The truth is that the Church has historically had an awful record of antagonism towards the Jews, resulting in a rejection of anything deemed Jewish and swapping the mindset of Jesus with a pagan one fed from Greek philosophy. Also, many Hebrew Roots teachers have failed to pick up on the liberating truths of the restoration of this mindset and, instead, have dwelt on externalities of traditions and rituals. This has given a false picture of what God has really intended for His Church, with respect to the One New Man of Ephesians 2.
We at Saltshakers are attempting to create a balance that we call Hebraic Church. It is a reclamation of the true Hebrew roots of the faith, as driven by the mindset of Jesus and the early believers. But, also, it doesn’t reject Gentile elements for the purposes of instructing the Church without antagonising it, illustrating restored truths without dwelling on wrong teachings and attitudes. It’s about presenting a fresh slate, quarried from a deep pool, but also trimming away some grime that has been picked up on the way.
For instance we have no problems with the name of Jesus, though we would probably prefer the more authentic name, Yeshua. Also, we are aware of the pagan derivations of Easter and Christmas but would not condemn those who partake in these festivals with a pure heart. The purpose of marketing our booklets with the name of “The Christmas Telling” and “The Easter Telling” is simply one of communication to our target audience. It is no different to Peter’s different approach to the way he presented his message to the Jews (Acts 2:14-36) and the Gentiles (Acts 10:34-43). It’s about connecting with your audience without diluting the truth.
It is all about communication. If it is our mandate to instruct the Church to embrace its Hebraic roots then our attitude and use of terminology is important, particularly in our current age of information overload, where misunderstandings abound. We need to embrace our Christian brothers and sisters in love and help them to move beyond the mistakes of the past and the confusions of the present and walk in the real blessings and liberating truth that come from the Hebraic foundations of their faith.
The Saltshakers team