This post is on a more personal note. One of the trials of being a leader in the Messianic Movement is the instability of many believers coming & going in the movement.
Messianic Congregations by definition seems to attract very diverse groups:
1. The curious visitor - come out of curiousity, attend 1-4 services, and never return. Generally attend regularly at a Sunday Church, want to see what the movement is about. Comment - This group is attempting to understand the "root of their faith", so whatever they learned will probably bear some fruit.
2. The wilting visitor - start attending, get rapidly "on fire", want to put the ministry on radio & TV, only to disappear after several weeks. I liken this group to the "seeds amongst rocky soil" in Yeshua's parable of the sower. Comment - this group seems to flit from new doctrine to new doctrine. They are the group of souls that Sha'ul refers to concerning "being tossed about by waves, to and fro". Generally, I have not seen any positive fruit from this group.
3. The "for a season" group - usually Believers who where Gentile, come for a season, learn, and then move on. Comments - generally stay for 6 months to a couple years, this group learns the root, and generally seems to apply it. They usually bring forth fruit.
4. The Adopt the lifestyle group - Believers who where Gentile, come, learn, and adopt the lifestyle. These former Gentiles (we refer to these as Messinaic Hebrews)become fully united to the Messianic Jew and become G-dfearers much as seen in the book of Acts. Comment - along with the Messianic Jews, are the backbone of the movement. They understand that they are there to serve and worship G-d, not only to be ministered too.
5. The Messianic Jew - Jewish Believers in Messiah who are strongly commited to the movement and seek to maintain the the beliefs and culture. Comment - along with the Messianic Hebrews, are the backbone of the movement. They understand that they are there to serve and worship G-d, not only to be ministered too.
6. The assimulating Jew - Jewish Believers in Messiah that seek a Messianic Congregation to reattach to their Jewishness, but later drift away, most often to return to a Sunday Church. Comment - often, but not always part of a interfaith marriage. This group often ceases being Jewish, and is fully assimulated into the gentile culture within 2 generations.
The two groups that create the most concern for me are the wilting visitor & the assimulating Jew:
1. The wilting visitor, because they are seeking emotional highs, not the living G-d. They have no root, often falling away or turning to cults.
2. The assimulating Jew because as they are assimulated, they are not fulfilling G-d's desire for His Chosen people. Over 60% of all Jewish Children are not being raised as Jew's. Do the math, in only 2-3 generations, assimulation will do what Hitler could not, rid the world of G-d's Chosen people.
We believe the Church has not replaced Israel as G-d's chosen. The Church has been grafted into Israel. If the Chosen people of G-d cease to exist, it will be the greatess loss since man fell into sin.
Blessings in Messiah