Being three years into our walk as a Torah Observant believing family, you would think we would be able to dodge much of what is dished our way because of our beliefs. Many who have started on this journey before us warned of the speed bumps that would come… and they were right.
I have found that many people simply do not understand what it means to be Torah Observant, let alone, what Torah even means. On the contrary, there seems to be almost just as many who are familiar with it, but from an [unknowingly] anti-Semitic way.
The word Torah comes from the Hebrew word that means “instruction, teaching, or law” – law being the word that trips everyone up and has them running for the hills. However, with the proper contextual understanding, one can accept and implement Torah in their lives, and spiritual walk, today.
Without getting into the details of physical Israel versus spiritual Israel, it should be known and understood that once you are grafted in, you then adopt the ways and beliefs of the Creator who established what a child of His looks and acts like. This is where the instructions of the Torah come into play. On one hand, they were meant to show that the Israelites needed a Savior and an understanding of what their purpose in life was. On the other hand, Yahweh’s instructions were meant to bless, benefit, and guide the people (just like they do today).
So, what are 5 things Torah Observant believers wish others would stop saying to them?
1. You are putting yourself under the law!
This is most always the first thing said to a Torah Observant believer, and goes hand-in-hand with, “You’re working for your salvation!” And its understood why. When mainstream Christianity constantly and consistently preaches that “the law was done away with and nailed to the cross”, one begins to see anything contrary through that skewed lens. I was there, and would quote that in a heartbeat, not knowing what I was actually saying. For the Torah Observant believer, there is an awakening shared and Scriptural understanding unlocked about what the word law actually means. The instructions given in the Torah are clear cut with nothing hidden, and everything well-explained. For example, there are instructions specifically for men, others specifically for women… or if you are a farmer… and so on. All 613 commandments are not for every single person.
It is equivalent to today’s “law of the land”. If you do not own a business, then you are not “under the laws” that are required for business owners. If you do not drive, you are not “under the laws” mandated specifically for those who operate a motor vehicle. Needless to say, once there is an understanding of Yahweh’s laws, and how they apply to you, you genuinely see the blessings, benefits, and guidance of honoring them.
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2. Are you trying to be Jewish?
How often have you heard that one?! This is in running for first place as another thing most said to Torah Observant believers. And it again, it’s no wonder why! Be honest with yourself. How often have you heard a preacher or teacher refer to anything of the Old Testament as “stuff for the Jews”? Probably a lot. When people begin hearing about the practices and livelihood from those of the days of old, it is most always related to Jews.
Here’s the most important point left out – Jews are just a representation of one of the twelve tribes of Israel. Jews are from the tribe of Judah. Just like an American is from America, or a Chinese person is from China. Jews just so happened to be a collective tribe who still carries out the instructions of Torah. Yes, with many things added, but the additions added by the Rabbis, Talmud, etc. are not adopted by all who call themselves a Torah Observant believer.
3. You are creating division!
Not saying that every Torah Observant believer has a free pass, but others who haven’t come to the knowledge of Torah don’t quite understand the overwhelming emotions that come with the “awakening”, so to speak. We go through feelings of anger, confusion from lies taught, and aggressive passion of wanting to alert everyone we know. With that comes a flying sword of misunderstood words, and misplaced emotions.
Most Torah Observant believers go through a season of what appears to be “condemning” those who don’t get it, but in all actuality, that’s what we want… is for others to have the eyes to see and the ears to hear. Not division. Not harm. And definitely not a loss in witness!
4. You don’t have to do “all that”!
“All that” doesn’t make sense to the person who is not observing Torah. But for the Torah Observant believer, “all that” doesn’t really consist of all that much. The biggest differences between a Christian and a Torah Observant believer are:
- replacement of man-made, traditional holidays for Biblical feast days (Leviticus 23)
- replacement of an unhealthy diet for the Levitical (clean eating) diet (Leviticus 11)
- replacement of Sunday worship for Biblical seventh day Sabbath worship (4th Commandment)
- addition of wearing tzitzits (fringes added to four corners of clothing) as commanded in Number 15:38-40
Beyond these main differences are smaller ones that require understanding of what instructions apply to you and which do not. The instructions laid out for women, are for women. Those laid out for men, are for men. And so on. It’s not difficult, and definitely not burdensome!
5. You don’t have to use Hebraic names!
Again, for the Torah Observant believer, this is important… to the point where some will no longer use transliterated names (God, Jesus, Holy Spirit), terminology, and so on – and instead use Yahweh (YHWH), Yeshua, and Ruach HaKodesh. Even then, there are various ways of pronouncing and spelling those. However, some Torah Observant believers still continue to use the transliterated names of God, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. Either way, when it comes down to it, it’s the heart of the matter.
The argument most Torah Observant believers have with proper name usage comes from a place of respect for the Creator. For example, if you were given a certain name at birth, you would want to be called that name. Now some would beg to differ and say, “my name always gets messed up or mispronounced and I’m okay with that”. For others, that is not okay.
There is also the understanding that a transliteration doesn’t have to replace an original language. After researching, it didn’t take long to realize that there is no way possible that our Messiah’s name could have been anything close to Jesus. The Hebrew language doesn’t have a J. And when looking at the original Hebrew characters (without vowel points), you actually sound out something that is even a little different than Yeshua! Simply put, our Messiah was name ישוע (yod, sheen, vav/waw/, ayin).
So next time you approach a Torah Observant believer…
Try to extend grace, love, and understanding for where they are in their walk. We don’t have all the answers, and we haven’t “arrived” because of our belief that Torah still applies to our spiritual walks today… but best believe there is some hardcore passion driving us!
And if you come across one who is angry, explosive, and immature – perhaps you may want to steer clear of any “religious talk”. I do apologize on behalf of anyone you have encountered like that because, indeed, that is not the character of our Messiah. In the same breath, I pray for all Torah Observant believers to truly embrace humility, gentleness, and wisdom when given the opportunity to share the gospel of Torah being a full of blessings, benefits, and guidance from our loving Heavenly Father!
Chime in! If you are a Torah Observant believer, what are some things you wish others would stop saying to you? Leave your thoughts in the comments section below!
Until next time, blessings!
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