Last year we enjoyed our first “Moshiach’s Seudah” which is basically a mini-seder that revolves around the telling of stories about Messiah. This is a fairly recent tradition, done mostly in chassidic circles. I don’t have time to post details, but we had a great time last year and are planning on it this year as well. We used both rabbinic lore and narratives from the Gospels. I loved it when my then 3-year-old’s eyes got as big as saucers as I dramatically told the story of Yeshua walking on the water to meet his talmidim. Here are a couple of resources:
We have a mid-week study by which we are going through Torah Club Volume 4 (available through FFOZ – it is a year-long study through the Gospels, plus Acts). This week’s study was on Acts 10-12. In it Peter has his encounter with Cornelius and his household. When Peter recounts his experience with Cornelius to the elders at Jerusalem, their response is recorded as follows:
“When they heard this, they had no further objections and praised God, saying, “So then, God has granted even the Gentiles repentance unto life.”
– Acts 11:18 –
Daniel Lancaster, in his commentary, makes note that this sounds as if it could be formulated into a beracha (blessing):
Blessed are You, Oh L-rd, our G-d, King of the Universe Who has granted even the Gentiles repentance unto life.
I propose that for non-Jewish, Messianic believers, we substitute this blessing in place of the second blessing of the 15 Blessings recited during Shacharit (based on Berachot 60b). We definitely cannot say the standard blessing, “Blessed are You, Adonai, our G-d, King of the universe, for not having made me a gentile.” We can, however, thank Hashem for who He has made us: Gentiles who have repented unto life. I propose our blessing be as follows:
Blessed are You, Adonai, our G-d, King of the Universe Who has granted even the Gentiles repentance unto life.
Daniel Lancaster & Toby Janicki have put forth an exciting proposal linking the fast of Tevet with the yarzheit (anniversary of a person’s death) of the Apostle Peter!
As a synopsis, throughout the centuries many observant Jews have not only fasted on the 10th of Tevet, but on the 9th as well, without a clue as to why. Daniel & Toby believe it is due to it being the yarzheit of Peter, which has been quietly observed for nearly 2000 years within the Jewish community. Take a listen for yourself at Daniel’s audio teaching and decide for yourself. By next year many of us may be observing Peter’s yarzheit as part of our minhag.