As today's Messianic community strives to return to the First Century faith of the Disciples and Apostles, we will t just be facing common problems like adultery, idolatry, or even sins such as lying. We will also contend with some of the very specific religious problems that the First Century ekklesia faced. Very few when examining Scripture, unfortunately, consider it in its historical context. Many do t have an understanding of First Century Judaism, Greco-Roman religion, Second and Third Century Christianity, and the various mystery religions and cults that existed. Too many fail to consider the gross religious errors that were circulating throughout the First Century that affected the early Believers in Yeshua-and how some of these same errors are affecting Believers today. Have you encountered any current Messianic teachings that relate to Jewish mysticism, Kabbalah, numerology, Hebrew letter pictures, the Bible code, or the Gstic Scriptures? Do you ever question where these things actually originate and where they are seen in religious history? Are you wondering if these things have any Biblical basis and true spiritual value? Messianic Apologetics editor J.K. McKee directly addresses the problem of mysticism and Gsticism in the Messianic movement, and how we need to be aware that these things are being used by the enemy to draw many people away from the truth of the gospel and mission that God has for us beyond some of the extremes we often face.
J.K. McKee (B.A., University of Oklahoma; M.A., Asbury Theological Seminary) is the editor of Messianic Apologetics (www.messianicapologetics.net), a division of Outreach Israel Ministries (www.outreachisrael.net). He is a 2009 recipient of the Zondervan Biblical Languages Award for Greek. He is author of numerous books, dealing with a wide range of topics that are important for today's Messianic Believers. He has also written many articles on theological issues, and is presently focusing his attention on Messianic commentaries of various books of the Bible.