Message From The Rabbi
Who We Are Message From the Rabbi Shabbat Shalom. Welcome to El Ahava. We are glad you decided to visit and worship with us. El Ahava is Hebrew for G-d’s Love. We are a Messianic Jewish Synagogue, which means we are Jews and Gentiles that celebrate together, believing that Yeshua (Jesus) is the Jewish Messiah who has come once and will return again. We follow Leviticus 23 by celebrating the 7th day of the week as the Sabbath or Shabbat. Because many of us are Jewish, our Shabbat service is a Synagogue setting with a Torah Service, so what you see here may be new to you. Our services are much like the Torah Services (although much shortened) that Yeshua and his followers would have attended. What you experience has strong similarities to what He would have experienced. You may think that our services are too long, but if scripture tells us that Shabbat is a day is to be spent resting from your daily routine and we choose to worship G-d as well, can resting all day and worshipping G-d for 3 or 4 hours be too long? So please relax and join in where you can. You will soon see that we love G-d with all our hearts and want to spend time with Him, so I encourage you to do the same. Many questions have been asked why G-d chose us to establish a Messianic congregation in Fort Myers. The following are responses to a few of the frequently asked questions: El Ahava was called into existence for both Jew and Gentile to come to know Yeshua the Messiah as their Redeemer. El Ahava endeavors to encourage those who have not yet asked for the redemption spoken of in the Tanach and Siddur to do so. El Ahava is a family of people, a community, who desire to enter into a new richness of walking closer to G-d in a fully Jewish lifestyle and have a desire to pass that lifestyle on from generation to generation. El Ahava is a place of learning and development for those who are called to be Messianic. There is much to learn and unlearn, so be prepared to lovingly have your branches pruned so that you can grow into the fullness of the scriptures of the L-rd. El Ahava is a refuge for those who are hurting. Often peoples’ spirits are injured and the individual senses something is wrong, but they don’t recognize what could be troubling them. El Ahava understands this and is called to employ scriptural prayer and ministering to bring healing to the inner person. We work with those who request help, find the root causes of the hurt; then, we ask the Ruach HaKodesh (Holy Spirit) to heal the root and bring the individual to complete health. El Ahava was established to help the Church body begin to understand their Hebraic/Jewish roots through teaching and outreaches to the Christian community. El Ahava was established to teach people who are called to sojourn with the Jewish people, the scriptures from a Hebraic perspective. We do this through Jewish style worship and lifestyle. El Ahava believes that the Gifts of the Spirit are just as rich today as they were in Yeshua’s time and we allow them to be practiced in an orderly fashion. We recognize through the Brit HaChadeshah (New Testament) that the true New Testament churches were not churches at all. They were Messianic Synagogues (Acts 15:21) We are very adamant that Messianic Judaism is not to be viewed as an entertaining event to be thrilled by. Our walks with G-d are not a playthings to play with. Messianic Judaism is a calling of G-d for people who are willing to learn Torah based thinking and a whole new lifestyle. If you are called into a Messianic lifestyle by G-d, we welcome you to stay and learn the richness of what G-d has in store for you. Thank you for visiting. We’re glad you decided to fellowship with us today. If you have questions, please feel free to ask someone sitting near you or talk to me after the service. Rabbi Charles Edwards
Statement Of Faith
Statement of Faith El Ahava, meaning G-d’s Love in Hebrew, is a Torah sensitive Messianic Synagogue where Jew and Gentile come together to celebrate our Messiah, Yeshua. We are a congregation who has accepted G-d’s love through Yeshua (Jesus), believing that Yeshua has come as a suffering servant and will soon return as The Conquering King, for all who accept Him as their Messiah. We are a congregation that shares the love of Yeshua with others, seeking to reflect the light of the Messiah to all. We joyfully worship on Shabbat (the seventh day of the week) and on G-d’s chosen feast days as recorded in Leviticus 23. We celebrate in traditional Jewish form recognizing that the Messiah is the center of our Jewish faith. We welcome with open arms anyone who chooses to fellowship with us, Jew or Gentile, mixed marriages, blended families, Sephardim and Ashkenazim. We believe that Yeshua was the visible manifestation of our invisible G-d, spoken of by Rav Sha’ul (Paul) and recorded in the Brit HaChadashah (New Testament) in (Colossians 1:15). We believe that the Torah, the Prophets and the Writings all declare the prophetic coming of the Messiah Yeshua as the Salvation of the L-rd. Our faith lies in the Holy One of Israel and His Maker (Isaiah 45:11). We believe that the G-d of Avraham, Yitzack and Yaakov (Abraham, Isaac and Jacob) gave His Torah to the Jewish people at Mt. Sinai, to follow and to share with the nations. Rav Shaul wrote to the Romans and explained in Romans 3:20 that through the law (Torah) we understand what G-d considers sin. Therefore, we study and follow both the Torah and the New Testament. We believe Yeshua’s words recorded in Matthew 5:17-19 that nothing that is written in the Torah will disappear until everything is fulfilled. We understand Yeshua to be identified as G-d’s salvation and the right hand of G-d, in the Scriptures, the Siddur and all the Jewish writings. We believe that the Brit HaChadeshah is a continuation, not a replacement of the Tanach (Torah, Writings and Prophets The Old Testament). We as Messianic Jews acknowledge Yeshua as the Messiah and accept Him as G-d’s provision for our atonement, which explains why the Temple sacrificial system was allowed to be destroyed. We believe that through Yeshua, we as individuals now have the ability to approach G-d the way Adam and Eve did, before the first sin, and that we may freely converse with Adonai and that we can and should expect to hear His voice (Psalm 95:7-8). We believe in the full expression of the Gifts of the Ruach HaKodesh (Spirit) in accordance with 1 Corinthians 12:8-11 & 28. We believe that the Messianic lifestyle is a calling, not a choice.
Our Vision The Vision of El Ahava Messianic Synagogue is to see salvations of lost souls, both Jews and Gentiles by way of building a congregation that is a light house of the good news of the L-rd Yeshua HaMashiach. The method of administering this vision is to complement G-d’s love with a genuine desire to love people and touch their lives by planting seeds of salvation (Redemption) in their spirits. We desire to help congregants develop an ability to minister in the gifts of the Ruach HaKodesh as spoken of in 1 Corinthians 12 and to be able to reach all people in proclaiming Yeshua as the Messiah. We desire to teach the fullness of the word of G-d in a Jewish context by illuminating the Jewishness of the scriptures and intertwining the scriptures with the writings of the sages as we uncover their understanding of G-d’s Messiah and other truths of scripture. We are a congregation of Jewish and non-Jewish people who worship Messiah Yeshua and are called to discipleship and outreach, all within a Jewish context and expression. Messianic Judaism is a calling by G-d, not a happening that people discover. As a congregation, we are encouraged to move and minister in the gifts of the spirit in an orderly fashion. We are a congregation that is a refuge for people who have been hurt spiritually. Our goal is to develop qualified people willing to be trained in spiritual healing so that hurting people can find spiritual rejuvenation. Judaism is the root faith that the Christian church has grown from. Our desire is to share with those who desire to learn, the richness of their roots, by teaching them the fullness of the Jewishness of the scriptures. Our desire is to provide outreach opportunities for believers and nonbelievers to enjoy, and to present ministry in ways that can be received without being offensive. This can be done through music programs, guest performers, haverah groups etc.