Angus and Batya Wootten continue to reassert themselves as heads of the Messianic Israel Alliance in the wake of the departure of the majority of its teachers.
Scott Diffenderfer and several other MIA teachers, some of whom also were members of its leadership council, left the MIA at the beginning of the year to form the Messianic Covenant Community. There apparently were differences over the organization’s leadership structure as well as its emphasis.
That left the Woottens with the need to re-establish themselves as the MIA’s founders. It also looks like they’re trying to reassert their own emphases in theology and to clarify what they feel may be inaccurate or misrepresentative views of the MIA and its teachings.
Two recently released documents, “We Declare These Truths” and “The Messianic Israel Alliance is NOT a Two-House Organization,” seem aimed to clarify what the MIA and the Woottens stand for.
“We Declare These Truths,” with its allusion to the Declaration of Independence’s phrase “We hold these truths to be self-evident,” could almost stand as the MIA’s own declaration of independence, or re-declaration of such. It confirms essential doctrinal truths such as belief in the deity of Yeshua and the need for sinful man’s regeneration through His shed blood, but it continues on to restate the MIA’s distinctives. The “foundational” teachings that “Ephraim” and “Judah” are being brought back together and all of the ramifications of that constitutes the majority of the statement.
Some interesting aspects:
- Most of the statement is given over to explaining their Israel/Ephraim/Judah beliefs and then dealing with the complications that arise out of those beliefs.
- The Woottens’ concern for those who leave faith in Messiah and convert to nonmessianic Judaism. The Woottens lay this development in part to “a false claim that ‘non-Jewish Believers were not part of Israel.’”
- The claim that “The above-described points of faith are not our focus, but part of our foundational understanding.” Yet, visit their “Our Hope” page, and you see a condensed form of most of the points in the document, so that’s kind of a confusing claim.
- While they say that those points “are not our focus,” they don’t really say in the statement what their focus is.
I’ll talk about the “Two-House” statement in a later post.