A person is either Jewish or Christian. I’m Jewish

A person is either Jewish or Christian. I’m Jewish

You’re mixing apples with oranges. People are born Jewish or Gentile, but in order to become a Christian (or “Mes-sianic”) you must be born anew. This new birth comes through putting your faith in Jesus the Messiah. Your sins are forgiven, you receive a new heart, and you become a follower of the Messiah. That’s what it means to be Christian, or Messianic. But no one is born Christian.

That’s where the misconception lies. Nor is Christianity (or Messianic Judaism) merely another religion. Rather, it speaks of a living relationship between God and his people—both Jews and Gentiles—through the Messiah. Through physical birth you are either Jew or Gentile; through spiritual birth you become a follower of Jesus the Messiah.

It might help you to remember that the word Christian comes from the word Christ, which is derived from the word christos, the Greek equivalent of the Hebrew word mashiach (Messiah). Interestingly, it was a good number of years before the first followers of Jesus were called Christians (or Messianics), a term apparently coined by outsiders and critics (Acts 11:26; see also 1 Peter 4:16).

No one is born a Christian, although children can obviously be born into Christian homes. As one preacher said: Just because the kitten was born in the cookie jar doesn’t make it a cookie! So also, just because someone was born in a Christian home that doesn’t make him a Christian. It is only when someone completely identifies himself with the Messiah Jesus that he becomes Messianic, or Christian.

In a similar way, someone may be born Jewish, but that does not make that person a practicing or religious Jew. A person becomes practicing or religious by choosing to live a certain lifestyle. That’s how it is—although in a more profound way—with following Jesus the Messiah (i.e., Christ) and becoming Messianic (i.e., Christian). Whether you’re Jewish or Gentile, you must be born anew through faith in him. The ultimate question, therefore, is not whether you’re Jewish or Gentile but whether you are of the Messiah or not.

Brown, M. L. (2000). Answering Jewish objections to Jesus, Volume 1: General and historical objections. (6). Grand Rapids, Mich.: Baker Books.

A person is either Jewish or Christian. I’m Jewish

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