The Fourth of July is always a great time to meet crowds of people with tracts about real freedom and dependence on God. It can also be a time to ponder issues like ‘rebellion versus revolution’ and to consider such things as conflict for Christ’s sake. The following “musings” are excerpts from some of Moishe’s leadership lessons.

Rebellion

The rebellious person’s heart becomes set against those to whom he is submitted and he begins to act accordingly. Is rebellion justified? When it is, we call it a revolution. A revolution is sometimes justified. But remember that a revolution always destroys the structure. Before a person revolts, he or she must ask, “Am I sure that what I can bring into existence is better than what I am tearing down?” The interesting thing about rebellion is, those who succeed at it see themselves as revolutionaries simply because they were able to destroy the structure. But more often than not, it is not a revolution in the positive sense of building something better; rebellion is more often the destruction of a relationship and the destruction of trust.

When you break rules that were established to uphold you, you destroy your own support. You cannot be upheld by a structure that you didn’t help support.

Controversy and Conflict

We are reflecting the image of Christ. The problem with many evangelical Christians and Messianic Jews is a mistaken idea of who Yeshua is. We’ve heard so many hymns of the “child meek and mild” that we forget the Person who stands up to the Pharisees and calls them whited sepulchers. We forget the superbly skilled debater. We forget the Person who knows how to use a person’s rules against him: “You pay tithe of mint and anise and cumin, and have neglected the weightier matters of the law.” Spiritually speaking, we have to see Yeshua for who He is, embroiled in controversy and conflict.

The natural man wants to avoid controversy and conflict. The spiritual person knows that it’s inevitable, even though she or he never enjoys it. We don’t like to cause pain, and perhaps the impact of the gospel causes pain. That pain is momentary, but there’s an even worse, eternal pain. We should not mute our proclamation in order to avoid impact. But we should sharpen it and focus it so it can cause impact at the right time, at the right place, in the right way.