Statement of Faith

Updated: Dec 29, 2021

By Mark S Railey
October 9, 2021

Because we live in a day of massive deception (Matt. 24:24; 1 Tim. 4:1; 2 Tim. 4:3-4; 2 Thess. 2:3), we reject experiences and traditions as the foundation of our faith. Instead, we choose to study the Bible in light of the Torah and to reason together. If experiences and/or traditions support our studies or conclusions, we rejoice. If not, we should wonder why. This means we need to thoroughly understand both the experiences and the traditions - thus, we need to study materials outside of the Bible including the great thoughts of the Sages, Rabbis, Early Church Fathers, philosophers, scholars, etc. We must do this so as to make informed decisions. Nevertheless, the Bible remains our highest authority.

From the basis of faith, we can propose definitions, theological implications, sets of doctrines, perhaps even a systematic theology ... all should be rooted in the Torah, in the manifestation/revelation of the Torah (Yeshua/Jesus), the Ruach Hakodesh/Holy Spirit, Faith, and Reason, so that discerning the difference between good and evil, we may retain the good and choose righteousness over wickedness. The purpose of our studies is to grow in righteousness and to suppress wickedness within our own hearts, our families, and our communities.

• The Torah is the foundation for life (Ps. 119). The rest of the Bible, including the Brit Chadasha/New Testament, amplifies the Torah. Thus all conclusions should not contradict the Torah. • Yeshua/Jesus is the manifestation/messenger (or “Angel”) of the Torah and carrier of the Name of Hashem (Ex. 23:21; Isa.63:9; John 1:14). He is declared "the Son of God" (Dan. 3:23; Matt. 3:17; Rev. 2:18), “My L-rd and my G-d!” (John 20:28), and the Messiah (Matt. 1:16) who is a Hebrew man (Isa. 9:6) born in Bethlehem (Mic. 5:2) of a virgin (Isa. 7:14), a prophet akin to Moses (Deut. 18:18), a priest in the order of Melchizedek (Psa. 110:4), a king (Isa. 11:1-4), and the Son of David (Matt. 22:42) who suffered before entering His glory (Isa. 53). • The Ruach Hakodesh/Holy Spirit is the manifestation of the presence of Hashem and the seal of the righteous. He indwells individuals and communities (Exo. 31:3; Num. 11:17, 25; 1 Sam. 10:6; Neh. 9:20; Isa. 63:11; Rom. 8:16). • Without faith it is impossible to please G-d, for whoever would draw near to G-d must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who seek him (Heb. 11:6). • Righteousness is by faith in G-d’s ways. Abraham is the spiritual father of those who have faith, both the circumcised and the uncircumcised. This is because Abraham had faith before he was circumcised (Gen. 15:6; Heb. 4:11). The righteous say, “It is good for me to draw near to G-d: I have put my trust in the L-rd G-D, that I may declare all Your works” (Ps. 73:28). • Wickedness is rejecting the ways of G-d. The wicked say to G-d, “Depart from us. For we have no desire to know your ways” (Job 21:14). The wicked are condemned for their disbelief (Mark 16:16). • We are commanded to reason together with G-d (Isa. 1:18). G-d delights in giving discernment between good and evil (1 Kings 3:9-11). Thus we are to test everything and retain what is good (I Thess. 5:21).

For future work: All statements, derived through our studies, should contain truths rooted in the Torah as amplified in the rest of the Bible. The interpretations of these statements should remain the purview of the student. We choose to promote love for Hashem and for our neighbors. Therefore, each of our statements/studies should be interpreted with mercy and grace. No legalism is permitted. In other words, our conclusions may shape a community but must not condemn a community. Each conclusion/study should yield a faith-work/mitzvah for “faith without works is dead” (James 2:17).

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