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The Judeo-Christian Worship Tradition

This entry is part 6 of 8 in the series

"Preserving the Truth in our Worship"

Read more posts by using the Table of Contents in the right sidebar.

I argued in the last essay that if we intend to preserve the truth handed down to us, we must never reject tradition outright. Instead, if we are intent upon preserving the truth handed down to us from Scripture, both its doctrinal content and the way the truth is imagined, we must continue to preserve and cultivate what we might call the Judeo-Christian tradition.1 We have at our fingertips a rich heritage of cultural forms that have grown within the biblical value systems of Judaism and the historic Christian Church—forms that were cultivated with the goal of expressing transcendent biblical values. This tradition perpetuated and cultivated worship forms of the same character as the biblical forms. The forms up until the early 19th century were text-driven, modest, and distinct from the pagan culture; those with Bible-informed imaginations nurtured them in order to communicate that imagination to others.

This cultivation of the Judeo-Christian worship tradition continued until Revivalists in the early 19th century rejected the tradition in favor of the novelty and “excitement” of pop culture. William McLoughlin observes that “Finney’s revivalism broke the dam maintained by ‘The Tradition of the Elders’ (the title of one of his most pungent sermons) and transformed ‘the new system’ from a minority to a majority religion.”2 From that point on, most of the evangelical/fundamentalist movement has failed to cultivate this tradition, but has instead favored more novel and “stimulating” cultural forms nurtured by secular culture. The Church is now ruled by what Loren Mead called the “Tyranny of the New”—a complete rejection of the Judeo-Christian tradition. Mead explains the problem with this rejection: “When the new way is considered the only way, there is no continuity, fads become the new Gospel and in Paul’s words, the church is ‘blown to and fro by every wind of doctrine.’”3 Quentin Faulkner devastatingly summarizes the effect of this rejection of tradition upon the worship of the Christian Church:

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Truth and Tradition

Music (for that matter, all the arts) had become a theological orphan. In fact, no important theological movement, either in the nineteenth or twentieth century, has concerned itself in any profound way with the significance of harmony, order, or beauty in Christian life or [worship].4

Tradition is neither infallible nor authoritative in itself; but I would strongly suggest that failure to preserve the truth, in both its doctrinal and aesthetic faithfulness to the revelation of God’s Word, is due in large part to a failure to preserve the Judeo-Christian worship tradition. In our desire to preserve the truth, we must realize that we cannot start out of nothing; since fully-orbed truth is preserved in large part through our worship forms, we must be committed to preserving those forms that have been cultivated within the Judeo-Christian tradition.

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Scott Aniol

About Scott Aniol

Scott Aniol is the founder and Executive Director of Religious Affections Ministries. He is Chair of the Worship Ministry Department at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, where he teaches courses in ministry, worship, hymnology, aesthetics, culture, and philosophy. He is the author of Worship in Song: A Biblical Approach to Music and Worship, Sound Worship: A Guide to Making Musical Choices in a Noisy World, and By the Waters of Babylon: Worship in a Post-Christian Culture, and speaks around the country in churches and conferences. He is an elder in his church in Fort Worth, TX where he resides with his wife and four children. Views posted here are his own and not necessarily those of his employer.



Endnotes:

  1. Space does not allow the full explanation of the development of the Judeo-Christian worship tradition. For a more thorough exploration, see my paper, “The Hymnody of the Christian Church: Two Roads Diverged.” []
  2. William G. McLoughlin, Modern Revivalism: Charles Grandison Finney to Billy Graham (New York: Ronald Press, 1958), 66. []
  3. Loren B. Mead, The Once and Future Church: Reinventing the Congregation for a New Mission Frontier (Washington, D.C.: Alban Institute, 1991), 11. []
  4. Quentin Faulkner, Wiser Than Despair: the Evolution of Ideas in the Relationship of Music and the Christian Church (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1996), 190. []

One Response to The Judeo-Christian Worship Tradition

  1. Shalom alechem dear Pastors, dear brothers and sisters, beloved brethren in the Lord, of The Religious Affections Ministry !

    May Peace, grace and blessings of YHWH the Most High be always with you, proclaiming the Revival of Repentance in the Name of Yahshua HaMashiach, Messiah of Yisra’El.

    Shalom, and thanks in the name of YHSWH our Lord and Saviour, for considering this message, from so far YHWH's children living in a community of YHSWH believers, in this part of the world , in Cameroon, Africa.

    I am Rév. Johaness Dingome Biyick, a messianic Pastor, with a ministry in Cameroon,Africa.

    I am a born-again, fulfilled, Messianic Christian, who believes that the Messiah of Israel is Adonai Yeshua Hamashiakh and, naturally, I am very concerned about anything relating to Israel, judaism, judéo-christianism and messianism,and think also it should be good for all christians to think this way, to return to our hebraic roots, simply, to even better understand the message of the lord Yeshua,and how worshiping in truth and in Spirit, YHWH our God.

    Your adress has been given to me, by the dearest and most beloved, brethren of Heavenly Intimacy Ministries, who have vehemently asked me to write to you, about the following:

    – Partner with your ministry, to help us with teachings on true fellowship to YHWH and His son YHSWH, by respect to all the ordonnances, feasts and worship, as established in Israel and the Bible, and with no compromise.

    – To help us with practical teachings and tools on spiritual healing and deliverance.

    – To send us if possible copies in DVDs or vidéos in USB or strong discs of some hebrew, jewish messianic songs or preaches, live in public or private celebrations or public evangelisation campaigns, and eventually, some holocaust and documentaries about israel, the people, the history, the culture and the politics.

    – Some christian and mesianic DVDs and other books and documentations, on the study of the Torah, the Holy Bible and christianity in general.

    – Bibles in Hebrew/ English transliteration, please please please, to help us walk accordingly to YHWH's wish, according to YHWH's strict ordonnances and convenience, and with no compromise.

    – Some blue and black lines coloured prayer Shawls for me,my wife and my two children, because the one I had alone and which was serving for all of us, is so old,and getting in pieces.

    – some hand and front teffilins.

    – Some Israel and Jerusalem flags to put inside and outside the ministry and homes, with any other physical items and DVDs, concerning

    Israel, the land, the culture, and its peoples, with eventually some Tshirts and other banners, that you might have in your possibility and

    possession.

    – Used or new clean clothings, blankets, bedshits, plates, spoons,or any other daily needed item, in good or little bad concondition is always welcome,for our Charity Home and Anti abortion,Prostitution and Suicide Home for alls.

    – Personally, and if possible, please send me also a Laptop, with external strong disc possibility, and a Film Projector and screen, even an old or second hand ones, which can permit me to show the messianic preaches on DVDs in the villages, where there is no Internet,as in many country

    villages in in africa.

    This material is a luxury here again in Africa.

    Please dear brethren, don't get angry about my asking you of these items,they can't be available here in Africa,and I am quite poor to travel to israel actually,to get them, or make any command through internet.

    If you could do that for me and my ministry in the Lord YHSWH, I shall never ever forget you,nor ever forgetting giving you thanks,for you will never know the better you gonna do to me,by sending that to me, because I have a culture of oeucumenism and intefaith, and am letting it grow in my ministry.

    There is no particular obligation in getting all the items, the ones you should get for me and for us, will surely be a greatest gift.

    If there could be of any help you could be for us, with no obligation at all but goodwillingness only, we shall be very thankful for you, and thank the lord YHSWH, for have used you, to help ones of His poor peoples on this earth, under this sun which daily shines, for all of us,tough with different magnitude.

    Thanks in advance for all and please, unite your ministry into partnership in Christ, with our Messianic ministry and pray for our work to spread the YHWH truth in our Country, and the whole of our continent too,for we are all Torah observant, and encourage all to refer back, in our hebraic roots.

    Please do pray also for our services and our charity home of orphans.

    Here we'll be all fervently praying for you, your blessed family, your staff your elders and our YHVH group.

    We are prayerfully expecting your kind reply.

    May YHVH bless you all,

    May the light of YHWH our Lord and our God be always infront of your paths,with the love of Yeshua His Holy,and the blessings of the Ruach Hacodesh.

    בעזרת השם Be'ezrat Hashem.

    Yours and in His name,

    Pastor Johaness Dingome Biyick ben Israel

    The New jerusalem Ministry and Charity Home

    YHSWH Ha Mashiach Tabernacle

    BP 5000 Bonanjo

    Douala,

    Cameroon.

    AFRICA

    Praise YHWH, we give thanks to Him for the gift of salvation He gave us through His Son, Messiah Y’shua.

    THE NEW JERUSALEM MINISTRY DECLARATION OF FAITH

    ____________________________________________________

    You are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hidden. Nor do they light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a lamp stand, and it gives light to all in the house. Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven. Matthew 5:14-16

    We, as founding members of "The New Jerusalem Ministry",are an african evangelising mission for a call to all christians in Africa and the world, to unite for a full support,prayers and intercessions for the world in general,and in particular for Israel and its people,according to the Holy Bible and our Lord Yeshua Ha Messiah's prescriptions.

    We, as founding members of "The New Jerusalem Ministry",are an african evangelising mission for a call of all christians in Africa and the world to unite for a full support,prayers and intercessions for love,unity and peace between all the peoples on earth for peace and love,according to the Holy Bible and our Lord Yeshua Ha Messiah's prescriptions on love unlimited.

    We, as founding members of "The New Jerusalem Ministry",are an african evangelising mission for a call of all christians in Africa and the world to,to do all this,on a full spirit of love,practical and not spoken word love to one another,between us and the poorest of us,in our midst, here,and the others in the rest of the world,also.

    Just as the Lord YHSWH did.

    All our members agree with these facts,and so should all our fellow brothers and sisters in christ and believers in Africa in particular,and the whole world in general,do.

    " The New Jerusalem Ministry " believes Yeshua Ha’Natsree (Jesus of Nazareth) was and is the true Messiah, the lion of Judah, the Branch Who will fully reunite all Israel; that he died and rose from the dead and lives at right hand of the Almighty, and according to the ancient Holy Scriptures, Genesis to Revelation, Yeshua is YHVH Elohim appearing in the flesh, as Yeshua demonstrated in Himself

    (Deu 18:18-19; john 8:58; 10:33; Mat 12:6-8; 9:35; 15:31; Isa 11; 53; Micah 5:2-4; Luke 24:46; Isa8:14; John 2:22; Acts 3:15-17; Heb 13:20; 1John 4:2; 2John 1:7; Rev 5:5; John 1:1).

    " The New Jerusalem Ministry " believes we are made righteous in Messiah Yeshua (he is the heart of Abraham’s unconditional covenant). The sign of the new covenant is circumcision of the heart, which leads to confession, salvation, faith, grace, and to good works in Messiah. The conditional Mosaic covenant presents the eternal truths of Torah (God’s teaching and instructions) his people, the hearing of which brings about blessing or curses (responds and be blessed, disobey and lack).

    In the new covenant, Yeshua’s Law is to be written on our hearts by the spirit

    (Rom 4:13-16; 10:10; 1 Pet 1:19; 2 Cor 5:21; Gal 3:16, 29; Titus 3:5; Heb 10:38; 1 John 1:9; Eph 2:8; James 2:14; Deu 28; Ezek 36:26; Jer 31:31-33; Heb 10:16; Gal 2:16; John 5:46; 10:30; 14:2; 15:10).

    " The New Jerusalem Ministry " is a people whose heart’s desire is to fully reunite the olive tree of Israel both branches Ephraim(which of course includes African christians also) and Judah,into one, redeemed, nation of Israel through Messiah Yeshua.

    The seek to arouse Ephraim from obscurity, and by example, to awaken Judah to the Messiah-and thus to hasten both Yeshua return to Earth and the restoration of the Kingdom to Israel

    (Mat 6:10; 12:25; 21:43; 24:43; Luke 22:29-30; Mark 13:34; Luke 22:29-30; 2 Chr 11:4; Eze 37:15-28; Jer 11:10, 16; 2:18, 21; Rom 11:17,24; Eph 2:11-22; Acts 1:6).

    " The New Jerusalem Ministry " deems the Jewish people to the identifiable representatives and offspring of Judah, plus “the children of Israel, his companions,” and that non-Jewish followers of the Messiah from all nations(which of course includes African christians also) have been, up to now, the unidentifiable representatives and offspring of Ephraim, plus” all the house of Israel, his companions”

    (Gen 48:19; Hosea 1-2; 5:3; Eze 37:16; Jer 31:6-9; Gen 15:2-5; 26:3; 28:4; Heb 11:9; Isa 56:3, 6-8; Eph 2:11-22).

    " The New Jerusalem Ministry "affirms that the Jewish people have been kept identifiable as seed of the patriarch of Judah, YHVH’s covenant people, to preserve his holy Torah (Law), Feasts, and seventh day Shabbat (Sabbath); that the salvation of the Jewish people through their acceptance of Messiah Yeshua, will be the crowning act of mankind’s redemption, and is necessary for the restoration of the kingdom to Israel. Further, the father plans that Ephraim (that non-Jewish followers of the Messiah from all nations which of course includes African christians also), they being the “wild olive branch,” stimulate Judah to want what they have; they are called to walk in a way that will make Judah jealous of their relationship with the God of Israel

    Gen 48:19; Isa 11:13; 37:31, 32; Zec 2:12; Ezek 37:15-28; Hosea 1:7; Rom 10:19; 11:11, 14; Mat 23:39).

    " The New Jerusalem Ministry " believes the non-Jewish followers of Jeshua are primarily returning Ephraim, those who were once among the Gentiles as “loAmmi/Not a people,” but have been restored to the commonwealth of Israel through their covenant with Israel Messiah, and are no more “Gentiles, “but fulfil the promised restoration of uprooted Ephraim, and Jacob’s prophecy that Ephraim would become “melo hagoyim/fullness of the Gentiles. “As Ephraim, they have been kept in mystery until recently and have been used to preserve the testimony of Yeshua, the Messiah of all Israel .

    Their awakening, recognition, and performance as Ephraim(that non-Jewish followers of the Messiah from all nations which of course includes African christians also), and reunion with Judah, is part of the Divine plan for Israel’s restoration to her Messiah and to the kingdom of YHVH

    Gen 48:19; Hosea 1:9-10; 5:3; 8:8; Amos 9:9; Jer 31:18-19; Zec 10:7; Rom 9:24-26, 11:25-26; Eph 2:11-22).

    " The New Jerusalem Ministry " declares that Believes in Yeshua were not meant to replace Judah as Israel, but as “Ephraim ,” the are part of the called out ones (ekklesia), and in these latter-days, the Father is leading them to, whenever Scripturally possible, join with Judah; that Judah (faithful Jewish ones who will receive Messiah) and Ephraim (All faithful non-Jewish Messiah followers) ultimately will fulfil the destiny of the two houses of Israel: that together they might fulfil the prophesies about the one, unified, victorious people of Israel

    (Jer 31:9; Rom 8:29; Col 1:15, 18; 2:12; Heb 12:22-24; Lev 23:2-36; Exo 19:5; 1 Pet 1:1; 2:9; Jer 3:18; 23:6; Zec 8:13; 12:1-5; Mat 25:31-46; Exo 12:48-49; Num 15:15-16; Isa 56:3,6-8)

    " The New Jerusalem Ministry " maintains that up to this general time “blindness in part” has happened to all (both houses) of Israel, and as the blinders are lifted, non-Jewish followers in Yeshua will gain insight into their role as Ephraim, they will become defenders of Scriptural Torah and Judah, and due to this character change, many Jewish people will accept Yeshua as Messiah.

    This process has already begun as indicated through the Messianic Jewish movement (Judah), the Christian Zionism movement (Ephraim), and the Messianic Israel movement (union of Judah and Ephraim)

    (Isa 8:14; 11:13; Rom 11:25-26; Jer 33:14-16; 31:18-19; Ezek 37:15-28).

    And it's by this declaration and justification that we are members of the Christian Friends For Israel Ministry in Jerusalem..

    These views are based on the fields of our messianic christian background,and we do not by this,reject the true fact that christianism is part of the Divine elaborated plan,which is composed of many prophecies like the rainbow,(a factor,a sign of union with God),that is many colours from the same one God,but in different expression of Him alone,in unity,peace and love,for in different and many ranks,we are all looking for Him,going to Him,with our many religions,traditions and beliefs.

    The reunion and full restoration of the two houses: this is the hope that the hearts of those of " The New Jerusalem Ministry " here in Africa too,and,added to that,concrete acts of love and altruism in the real resemblance and imitation of Jesus-Christ our Lord,by concrete social,humanitarian and love unlimited acts towards one another,in the full acceptance and actions for that.

    We act about love and concern,not only with simple words about love and concern as the world does,but according to what the Lord YHSWH left us as best recommandation.

    Our ministry consisting of Torah obedient believers in Messiah Y’shua , that is teaching believers about Elohim’s (God’s) truth found in His Son Messiah Y’shua and in His Torah, and are walking it out in their lives daily to the best of their ability.

    We have in-depth Torah studies on Shabbat following the Torah service and fellowship meal where we dig into the weekly portions to find His will for our lives as we strive to live Torah obedient lifestyles. This is also a time where we can ask questions about the Messiah Y’shua, the Torah, the Torah obedient lifestyle, or other issues facing us as believers and together find the answers from His Word.

    We believe that the Scriptures were written to help us live better lives that please our Father. The Torah is our instruction manual that shows us how to live righteous lives for Elohim. So Ro’eh Mordechai ben Yisrael (Ro’eh simply means shepherd or pastor and is preferred over the title rabbi) takes the Scriptures and tries to communicate it in a way that is relevant to our daily lives.

    In our services, what is worn should be respectful to HaShem and in keeping with what you would deem appropriate if you were to going to meet an important dignitary, because we are coming into the presence of our Creator and the King of kings. You will see some people wearing traditional tunics and caftans, some dress up, and some dress slightly more casual.

    We keep the Laws of Niddah (Laws of Family Purity) as found in Elohim’s Torah. For a clearer understanding on this subject and for some basic guidelines, please click here to read our position on this issue.

    We believe Torah teaches that men and boys over age 13 should wear a kippah or some other type of covering (hat, beret, etc), and married women should wear headcoverings (scarves, snoods, hats, or other types of headcoverings) to show that both the men and women are under proper authority. (Single women, girls, and boys under 13 need not cover their heads unless they desire). Because of the Torah instructions of YHWH (Adonai, The Lord), we ask that all men and women wear headcovering when attending our services and events. We have headcoverings available for you to use if you do not have one, or forgot yours. (We have kippot for men and scarves for the women). If you forget to wear a headcovering, someone will discreetly remind you so you can comply with Elohim’s instructions.

    We meet on the Sabbath Day (Saturday) .

    We have a time of food and fellowship between our Torah Service and our Scripture studies to refresh ourselves, and get to know one another better. Feel free to bring something with you to eat and share. We try to eat Scripturally kosher foods, and ask that all foods are prepared ahead of time before Shabbat so no one is cooking on the Shabbat.

    We want people to feel comfortable coming to learn about YHWH (Adonai, The Lord) and their Hebraic roots and to experience His love and shalom (peace).

    We also want to teach people about proper Torah obedience and the proper respect for YHWH, Messiah, and His Torah.

    And God knows,we are right,and really faithfull to this: teaching the knowledge of YHWH God and His only begotten Son YHSWH Ha Mashiach our Lord and Saviour,and giving food,medecines and cloths to those who have not.

    So YHWH our Father and our God, bless us!

    Igziabeher.

    On behalf of the College of Elders of The New jerusalem Ministry,and the Women of Vertue Group of Prayers,and courtesy of The New jerusalem Ministry SCA.

    "Freely ye have received, freely give," Matthew 10:8.

    Thanks for all the time taken to read about this ministry, hoping that YHWH our God has inspired you of any assistance that you gonna bring to us here, and wish you in advance, all the best in blessings.

    Tombs of Absalom, Zechariah, and the Sons of Hezir

    Yours faithfully,

    Pastor Johaness Dingome-BIYICK ben Israel

    The New jerusalem Ministry

    You can also visit my Facebook Page, by simply searching for : Johaness Joszeph

    Pictures are of me, my ministry, my Pilgrimage in Israel, my visit to a sister New jerusalem Ministry and Orphanhood for War Childres in Sierra Leone, East Africa, and some children of my charity home.

    Our Lord, Our Teacher and Our Rabbi King Messiah Jesus Christ Lives and rules for and from Ever and Ever, in Jerusalem

    and in Heavens, and soon will be back on earth !

    "But this I confess to you, that according to the Way which they call a sect, so I worship the God of my fathers, believing all things which are written in the Law and in the Prophets. I have hope in God!" — Acts 24:14

    "Pray for the peace of Jerusalem" Psalm 122:6

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