Messianic Planters Attend “Boot Camp”

“Grab your Bibles and turn to…”

When potential Messianic congregation planters ask, “Where do I begin before I begin?” Sam Nadler is delighted and ready to show them. Although the textbook “Developing Healthy Messianic Congregations” was used during the September 2022 “Messianic Planters Boot Camp,” the Bible was the primary text for this course. Sam Nadler emphasized that his—and the participants’—source and authority is the Word of God. “Grab your Bibles and turn to…” was his constant refrain throughout the weekend seminar.

As he kicked off his ten teaching sessions, Sam explained why having Messianic congregations is imperative to maintain a “to the Jew first” (see Romans 1:16) mindset. The first stage of congregational development is “the Gathering Stage.” One might think this springboard event would be all about where to find potential members for a new assembly. Not so!

The Gathering Stage

Before “gathering” people to join a new Messianic congregation, these planters learned that a LOT needs to happen. The primary and preliminary step is to BECOME the servant leader that God can use. (This is akin to the advice we give to those looking to get married. “Focus on BECOMING Mr. or Mrs. Right, yourself rather than looking for that other person.”) Sam spelled out the character qualities and vision a planter (and his core group) must possess.

Conference Takeaways

As they reflected on the content they learned over the weekend, participants shared their main “takeaways.” One man from Texas thanked Sam for spelling out “how much is involved in the Gathering Stage.” It is the foundation that undergirds the building. Sam responded, “It IS the hardest stage and the longest. It’s what takes most of the time when beginning a congregation.” Our Texan friend also said, “What stood out to me was REDEEMING. Redeeming the time. (Sam, you called us out on that one!) Redeeming finances. Using the time, I have to take care of all of my responsibilities. I must have a plan to take care of all of my household duties, schooling, everything.”

Also covered in the first session is what Sam calls “Debunking Messianic Myths.” The first of these is, “I am a congregation if I say so.” What’s wrong with that? There is a difference between meeting as a Bible study group and establishing a congregation. Another participant from South Carolina discovered that the group he’s been meeting with actually embraces five of these seven myths. Sam would love to help this man plant and develop a healthy Messianic congregation in his area!

Each one can Reach one

A couple in Virginia were impressed by the value of discipleship. Being disciples. Making disciples. They grasped that discipleship starts in the home. So, they plan to get Sam’s “Messianic Discipleship” books for their children both in and out of their nest. As they study the basics of their faith, they will grow in their own understanding. Then “each one can reach one” as they, in turn, disciple others. This was the biblical pattern, and it’s still our method of growing today.

Another couple, who have been sitting under Sam’s teaching for several years, is planning to return to their native country of Colombia, South America. Even while here in the Carolinas, they have overseen a ministry focusing on children in their homeland. They provide soccer instruction along with Bible teaching for children living in poverty. They want to bring parents into the fold—but how? Please pray for this couple who wants to plant a Messianic congregation in Colombia! Sam is already planning to meet with them via Zoom to continue mentoring them.

Written Resources

The Texan’s wife grasped the mission of Word of Messiah. “There are a lot of resources on church planting. But thank you, Sam, for putting something together specifically for planting Messianic congregations. You don’t find that elsewhere. Thanks, too, for listening to what your wife asked you to do years ago—to write this stuff down!” Indeed, having the written resources provides these dedicated servants, and all of us, timeless resource materials which help us understand and apply the Bible in practical ways. Training like this from a Messianic perspective isn’t available elsewhere.

In addition to Developing Healthy Messianic Congregations, Sam also highlighted the training/teaching value of other books he has written in his quest for mentoring and equipping Messianic leaders: Messianic Foundations, Messianic Discipleship, Messianic Wisdom, Messianic Eldership, The Messianic Answer Book, and Messianic Marriage Matters: Restored to Our Original Design. (All of these are available in the Word of Messiah bookstore individually and in bundles:

Two Upcoming Conferences!

We are praying that we’ll see these planters, and others in their sphere of influence, at our MESSIANIC MARRIAGE MATTERS conference on October 22-23. Having “Couple Power” as they forge ahead into this adventure of serving God will make them twice as strong!

Please also pray for our LEADERSHIP DEVELOPMENT conference on November 5-6. It also uses the “Developing Healthy Messianic Congregations” book, but this course focuses more on applying biblical principles to existing congregations. (More information and registration can be found at

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