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The Differences Between Messianic Judaism and Christianity

In this foundational episode, Ezra and Carly discuss Messianic Judaism and Christianity and identify some of the key ways Messianic Judaism differs from Christianity and why. They unpack the topic that some listeners might be wondering about ­– “Why use different names? Aren’t we all Christians?” – to give a fuller understanding of what Messianic Judaism is and what it isn’t.

Using a question and answer format, Ezra and Carly ask each other questions coming from their own perspective and aimed at the other’s background and faith practices. Their discussion includes:

  • Carly defines Christianity
  • Ezra defines Messianic Judaism
  • Is Messianic Judaism for all people or only for Jews?
  • Similarities and the major differences in practices
  • Are Messianic Jews trying to convert Christians to become Jews?
  • Are Christians trying to convert Jews into Christians?
  • What about a Messianic Jewish worship service would be the strangest thing to me as a Christian? And vice versa?
  • Does Messianic Judaism do missions like the Church does? What does the outreach ministry of a Messianic Jewish congregation look like?
  • Are there denominations in Messianic Judaism like there are in the Christian Church?

Carly also asks Ezra how he defines himself when people ask him about his religion, which gets at the heart of why Messianic Jews don’t call themselves Christians. They also discuss how the “good news” is an Old Testament concept that appears in Scripture long before the New Testament. Ezra explains how Messianic Judaism typically presents the Gospel in a way that “fills in some blanks” of the way many Christians share it.   You’ll also learn Ezra’s enlightening take on when “Messianic Judaism” really started.

Ending on a light, fun note, Carly and Ezra ask each other what their favorite holiday is on the other’s religious calendar.

Words you might learn in this episode:

protoevangelion, seed, besora, evangelion, holy one, Mashiach, Shabbat, Shavuot, Rosh Hashanah, Yom Kippur, Sukkot, Shema, Judaizing, convert, missiology, Baruch haba b’shem Adonai, hosanna, hoshiana, hamantashen

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