Yahshua the Messiah came at Bethlehem when the Jews again were back in their land. The Temple was standing and the Levitical priests played their part in worship of Yahweh. Although the Romans governed the land of Palestine, the Jews were allowed to worship in either the Temple or synagogue with comparative freedom. Naruto Dad
The people of Judah were given sufficient time to get re-established in their homeland since their return under Ezra and Nehemiah. The Torah was read and expounded each Sabbath, and worship of Yahweh was again in vogue.
A Special Time and Place
The opportunity for salvation has always been “to the Jew first.” The Jew was allowed to become the root or source of the truth by having the evangel first revealed to him. If he refused to believe or spurned the offer, the Greek or Gentile was called. This is the gist of Paul’s message to the Romans: “For I am not ashamed of the evangel of Messiah: for it is the power of Yahweh unto salvation to every one that believes; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek” (Rom. 1:16).
Now under the Roman government relative peace and calm allowed the Jews to worship Yahweh as He had commanded. The message of the birth of the Messiah was given first to the Jewish shepherds.
The Savior was born at Bethlehem (“house of bread”), into a Jewish family, into a community that spoke Hebrew, the language of the Bible. The people were quite familiar with prophecies of a coming Redeemer and an air of expectancy was everywhere.
But They Rejected Him
The only place on earth where an entire class of people would comprehend the prophecies of the coming Redeemer was the Holy Land. The Torah was taught and studied. The Jews would have firsthand knowledge of Bible prophecies dealing with the coming Messiah. They would be the first to perceive that He was the exact fulfillment of these prophecies.
John reveals, “He came unto His own, and His own received Him not” (John 1: 11). The Jews who should have acknowledged that Yahshua had fulfilled these prophecies, rejected Him as the Redeemer of Israel.
They were looking for a Savior who would free them from the iron hand of Rome. They expected Him to come on a white horse with pomp and power and drive the Romans out of the Promised Land.
They were not conditioned to accept a babe in a manger, a meek and mild Teacher of righteousness. His rejection of their traditions and hypocritical customs angered the scribes and Pharisees.
Instead of freeing them from the hated Roman government, He spent His time showing their perversion of the Torah through their own pet doctrines. “Howbeit in vain do they worship me, teaching [for] doctrines the commandments of men” (Mark 7:7). The very people He came to save became His worst enemies.
The twelve disciples called out of Judaism were chosen to proclaim the truth Yahshua brought to earth. The writers of the New Testament were given the commission to proclaim His message to a lost and dying world.
Tearing Out the Roots
The first generation of leaders of the various congregations in the Middle East were Jews, and became known to the world as “Jewish Christians.” Eventually the Jews died off and were replaced by converts from paganism, known as “Gentile Christians,” who brought with them their heathen customs and ways of worship.