SBMF SBMF - Southern Baptist Messianic Fellowship Matthew 4:19

Southern Baptist Messianic Fellowship

Articles - August 15, 2006

Shalom to all.   “The grace of the Adonai Yeshua HaMeshiach, and the love of Elohim, and the fellowship of the Ruach HaKodesh, be with you all.”


Good News:


Bless the L-rd your G-d forever and ever!  Blessed be Your glorious name, which is exalted above all blessing and praise!  You alone are the L-rd; You have made heaven, the heaven of heavens, with all their host, the earth and everything on it, the seas and all that is in them, and You preserve them all.  The host of heaven worships You.  [Nehemiah 9:5-6 NKJV]

Baruch HaBah B’Shem Adonai.  Blessed is He Who comes in the Name of the L-rd



SBMF Article: (By Rev John Denson)

What is Messianic Judaism?

Director of Shalom Ministry

Messianic Judaism is a movement comprised of Jewish people who believe that Yeshua (Jesus, in Hebrew) is the Messiah of Israel, the Savior of the world and the most Jewish of Jews. He was a descendant of both Abraham and King David, was reared in Jewish home and not only attended synagogue – but following His Bar Mitzvah, He also taught in the synagogue. Yeshua was born under the Law. (Galatians 4:4) He taught that He came to fulfill the Law, not to destroy it. (Matthew 5:17 – 19) He was a rabbi who performed unparalleled miracles, bringing great blessing to the nation of Israel. All of His early disciples also lived very Jewish lives. The Messianic movement was entirely Jewish at its inception, and continued to exist as an authentic Jewish movement for 700 years. Messianic Jewish believers have not stopped being Jewish. On the contrary, they remain strongly Jewish in both their identity and lifestyle!

The Tanakh (the Older Covenant) provides the foundation of the Jewish faith, and the New Covenant Scriptures (also of Jewish authorship inspired by the Holy Spirit) completes the Jewish faith. IN fact, the Hebrew Scriptures, themselves, affirm that they are not complete, and that God was going to make a new Covenant with the Jewish people. The book of Jeremiah contains this amazing prophecy of a New Covenant:

“Behold days are coming,” declares the Lord, “when I will make a New Covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah, not like the covenant which I made with their fathers in the day I took them by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt, My covenant which they broke, although I was a husband to them.” declares the Lord. “But this is the covenant which I will make with the house of Israel after those days,” declares the Lord. “I will put My teaching within them and on their hears I will write it; and I will be their God, and they shall be My people.” (Jeremiah 31:31-34)

Traditional Judaism is based on “the covenant which they broke,” and cannot save anyone. In contrast, the Messianic Jewish community believes that God has established this New Covenant through Yeshua’s death and resurrection – that He died and rose again on the third day, forgiving our sins so that we can enter, by faith, into this New Covenant relationship with God. They believe that Yeshua ascended to the right hand of God the Father, and is coming back to earth to reign from Jerusalem over Israel and all the nations of the world. At that time, the fullness of the New Covenant will be realized.

What is the difference between Messianic Judaism and Christianity?

Christianity is the faith in Yeshua as primarily expressed by His Gentile followers, and is made up of numerous denomination and various doctrines. People who identify themselves as Christians number over one billion in the world. For most of the First Century A.D., the faithful followers of Yeshua were predominantly Jewish. However, as more and more Gentiles came into the Messianic faith, some had little understanding or regard for its Jewish roots and God’s eternal covenant with Israel. A “de-Judaizing” process set in, that is, a separation from the Jewish roots of the faith and form the Jewish people. This separation eventually led to the formation of second branch of faith in Yeshua which is primarily composed of Gentile believers, and is known as “Christianity”. While there is only one faith, and we are definitely one in the Spirit with true Gentile Christians, Jewish believers have their own expressions of the faith. For some, believing in Yeshua could mean a return to the Jewish lifestyle, while at the same time maintaining that the only way to salvation and eternal life is by placing their faith in His saving grace. (Romans 11:24 – 25).

When did Messianic Judaism Begin?

Messianic Judaism is actually 2,000 years old, dating to the time of Yeshua Himself. Yeshua was Jewish. He was raised in a Jewish home and ministered to Jewish people in the Land of Israel. His disciples were Jewish, and the apostles were Jewish. The writers of the B’rit Chadashah (the New Covenant or New Testament) were Jewish (with the possible exception of Luke) and, for a time, the faith was strictly Jewish. By the middle of the First Century A.D., there were tens of thousands of Jewish people who believed that Yeshua was the Messiah (Acts 2:37 – 42, 4:4, 21:20).

Why do we use the name “Yeshua” more often than “Jesus”?

Yeshua never heard the name “Jesus” in his lifetime! Yeshua is his given Hebrew name! It means “salvation” or “the Lord is Salvation” (Matthew 1:21). He was always called “Yeshua,” a common Hebrew name at that time. When Latin speaking missionaries, who called the Messiah “Yesu”, brought the Good News to the British people, “Yesu” became “Jesus” in English.

What does “Christ” mean?

Some people mistakenly believe that “Christ” is Yeshua’s last name. Rather, “Christ” is His title in much the same way as we might refer to a “President” or “King”. This title is taken form the Hebrew word “Mashiach” or “Anointed One”, which was translated “Christos” in Greek and later anglicized to “Christ”. The actual English translation of Mashiach is “Messiah” and means an anointed, God-appointed leader. Examples of this title in the Tanakh are found in Daniel 9:25 and Psalms 2:2. In the New Covenant, Yeshua claimed the tile of Messiah (Mark 14:61 – 62 and John 4:25 – 26).

I encourage you to support the Messianic Jewish movement and, more importantly, learn how to share your faith with your Jewish friends. For everyone, the only way to the Father is through the Son.

This is the first in a series of articles on the Messianic Jewish movement and why we should be sharing the good News with the Jewish people. Upcoming articles will be as follows: “The Jewish Roots of Christianity”, “The Debt We Gentiles Owe”, “Jesus as Messiah of Israel and Savior of the World” and finally, “Messianic Bible Studies”.

John Denson is currently Director of Shalom Ministry and can be reached at:

P.O. Box 19695  Detroit, MI 48219


[248 545 8800]


SBMF NEWS FROM RUSSIA:  (From a SBMF Minister in Russia)




It was only in the late 18th century when Jews were permitted to live temporarily in Moscow.  Before that time handfuls of Jews lived in Moscow. The majority of Russian Jews lived in the Pale of Settlement in Ukraine and Belarus.  Through the partitions of Poland in the 1700’s many more Jews were incorporated into the Russian empire. The Jews who settled in Moscow were primarily from the shtetls (small villages) of the Pale.  Czar Alexander II allowed temporary Jewish settlement in Moscow in 1885.  However from 1891-1905 the Jewish community were expelled from the city. 

The Jewish population of Moscow really blossomed after 1917, when under Communism, they were free to live there.  Jewish schools, newspapers and cultural centers flourished during that time.  Under Stalin the Jews lost many of their rights to express themselves culturally.  State sponsored anti-Semitism was a noted feature of Stalin’s regime.  

During World War II Jews in other parts of the USSR fled to Moscow for safety.  It eventually became the city with the largest Jewish population in the USSR and became the center of Jewish culture and political activism.

In 1967 Israel defeated her Arab neighbors in the 6 Day War and regained Jerusalem as her capital.  This event caused a great stirring of Zionism among Soviet Jews.  It also led to stringent government measures to suppress Jewish culture.  Many Jewish activists lobbied for an open policy of immigration to Israel.  This struggle continued until the fall of Communist.  Several thousands of Jews were able to immigrate to Israel during that time. 


It would seem that there are Jews in every economic class in Russia today.  Many elderly Jews, some of whom are Holocaust survivors, are economically depressed.  As is the case with the Russian population in general, many Russian Jews live below the poverty line.  At the other end of the spectrum are some very wealthy Jews.  Many of them fall into the category of ‘New Rich’ which refers to people who have made their fortunes after the fall of Communism.  Many of  them are businessmen and entrepreneurs.  The majority of the Jews of Russia would fall into the Middle class: including Jews in professions such as medicine, law and education.


Estimating the Jewish population of Moscow is no easy task.  The estimates for 2006 range from 200,000-500,000.  There are a number of reasons for this great divergence of opinion.  One factor is the determination of who is a Jew.  Intermarriage between Jews and non-Jews is estimated to be between 50-70%.  The children resulting from those unions are half Jews, thus counted as Jews by some groups but not by others.  Under Communism, Jewish identity was listed on one’s internal passport.  This is no longer required so some Jews are choosing not to identify themselves as such.  On the other hand, with the significant decrease in state-sponsored anti-Semitism some Jews who previously hid their identity are now openly identifying themselves as Jews.

What can we say with some certainty about the Jewish population of Moscow?  After the fall of Communism many Jews all over the fSU chose to immigrate to Israel or other Western countries.  It is estimated that over 1 million Jews have left fSU in the past decade.  Over the past 2 years or so the number of Jews choosing to immigrate has dropped significantly and it appears that the Jewish population of Moscow is relatively stable at this time.  Although larger numbers of Jews tended to immigrate from smaller cities and towns, we can be certain that Moscow has also seen a substantial decrease in their Jewish population over the past 10 years.  On the other hand many Jews from other parts of fSU are immigrating to Moscow.


The Jews of Moscow tend to be dispersed in various neighborhoods throughout the city.  Two exceptions are Malkhovk and Saltuykovka suburbs which have had a large Jewish presence for a long time and which each have a synagogue and a cemetery. 


Under the democratic Russian state Jews are guaranteed the same rights as all other Russian citizens.  They are free to practice their religion and to immigrate to other countries.  There does not appear to be much state-sponsored anti-Semitism but there is a lot of privately initiated anti-Semitism that has not been dealt with in a serious and severe manner.


The majority of Jews in Moscow would not identify themselves as religious.  Orthodox Jewish groups from the U.S. and Israel have worked very hard over the past decade to make the Jews of Russia religiously observant.  For the most part they have been unsuccessful.  There are 5 synagogues in Moscow but attendance on the Sabbath and Jewish holidays remains low.  The great majority of Moscow Jews do not observe the Sabbath of keep kosher laws.  Up to 70% of them intermarry with non-Jews.  For the majority of the Jewish community being Jewish is a racial or cultural identity rather than a religious one.

Looking at things from a different perspective there are a number of Jews who are open to the Gospel and an estimated 10% who have come to faith in Jesus as their Messiah. Many of them have been assimilated into Christian churches while a small percentage are involved in Messianic congregations.


Since the fall of Communism Jewish culture in Russia has been revived.  Aside from the 5 synagogues, mentioned above, there are Jewish schools, seminaries, cultural organizations, historical societies, community centers and Zionist groups.  All total there are 150 Moscow based Jewish organizations.  Many of these organizations have been formed by Western or Israeli groups.  I did not find any information as to how many Jews participate in these various cultural opportunities.  One thing is clear.  If a Jew in Moscow wants to learn more about his Jewish culture, history or religious practices he has plenty of places to go.


1.      From any number of reports, it would seem that God is drawing many Jews throughout Moscow to Himself.  Please pray that those that God has called to minister to this community will be sensitive to what God is doing and will work together with Him to reach the Jews of Moscow with the Gospel.

2.      At this time there are only 5 small Messianic congregations in Moscow.  Pray that God would give each of them a burning desire to reach out to their Jewish brothers and sisters.

3.      As new work is beginning in the Jewish community of Moscow ask the Father to show us how we can work together with existing ministries.

4.      Ask the Lord of the Harvest to send out more laborers to work among the harvest of Jews in the city of Moscow and beyond.


1.      Jewish Life after the USSR  Editor: Zvi Gitelman

2.      The Jews of Moscow, Kiev and Minsk  Robert Brym

3.      The Jewish Traveler

4.      A Travel Guide to Jewish Russia and Ukraine  Ben Frank

Prayer Request:  Please pray for Jay Fielding and Beth Chaim Messianic Congregation in Marietta, GA .   They need your prayers and support in this new work for the Kingdom Growth.



Baruch Ha’ba B’Shem Adonai

Blessed is he who comes in the name of the L-rd!  [Ps 118:26 NKJV]  


But be sure of this, that if the head of the house had known at what time of the night the thief was coming, he would have been on the alert and would not have allowed his house to be broken into.  For this reason you also must be ready; for the Son of Man is coming at an hour when you do not think He will. [Matthew 24:43-44 NASU]


Check out the below SBMF ministries for details of their Services.

SBMF Members Ministries, Congregations and Worship Service Information 


Congregation Adat Shalom

Dallas, TX.

Congregation Beth HaShem

Deer Park, TX

B'rit Avraham Messianic Congregation

Christian - Jewish Unity Congregation

Riverside County area of Southern California

Congregation Beth Chaim

Eternal Life Style Ministries

Marietta, GA

Beth El Shaddai

Bessemer, AL.

B'nai Avraham Messianic Fellowship

Hampton, Virginia

Congregation Kol Dodi

West Side of Central Nashville, TN.

Israel's Fullness

Princeton, WV

Shalom Ministries

Detroit, MI.

Valley Of Blessing

Greensboro, NC

Police Shomreem Ministries

Lindenhurst, IL.

Pasche Institute Of Jewish Studies

A Ministry Of Criswell College

Dallas, TX.


Not all of our affiliated congregations have web sites.  Some of of our members have not yet requested us to post links to their web sites.  If you are a member of the SBMF and would like a link to your web site posted and linked, please contact us at the SBMF.


If you need to know more please contact us.  If you are seeking the Face of   G-d and looking for His Mashiach to come, please contact us.  If you don't know who Yeshua is and who He can be in your life, please contact us.  

If you are thinking of attending our annual meetings, please contact us.  We would love to see you.

For Questions:   Please click the link to SBMF Membership link in the SBMF Links section at the top right of this page.  Please fill in the questions or give us your name and email address.  In the space marked Current Church or Congregation type the words:  "I have a question".   We will get back to you soon.


The L-RD bless you, and watch over you; The L-RD make His face shine on you, And be gracious to you;  The L-RD lift up His countenance on you, And give you peace.   [NASU  Numbers 6:24-26]




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