What is Yeshua-Do?
The term Christian Martial Art can be for some confusing, both for religious and non-religious people. They might think “Bruce Lee” and “Billy Graham” and the two groups just hardly seem to blend together.
Without a doubt, Budo/Bu-jutsu (Martial Arts as a whole), are highly misunderstood in the West, and especially among the Christian communities. Because of Hollywood and Hong Kong movies it is often associated with violence, cruelty, warfare, and mysticism, as well as Eastern cultures, religions, and philosophies. It is true that Martial Arts were invented and developed mainly in the Far East. However, we can find a great example of warriorship in any culture, and particularly in ancient history of Israel. People like Abraham, Moses, Joshua, Gideon, Samson, David and his mighty men were great warriors; were also many other prophets and kings. The Books of Moses, Joshua, Judges, and 1&2 Samuel shows very clearly the foundational principles in warfare. A careful reading will also reveal rather unusual, very sophisticated concepts of strategy and divine (inspired by the Spirit) martial techniques. So, they knew very well how to use the Art of War and God’s supernatural power in a real combat. Even God the Father and Jesus Christ are beautifully portrayed as mighty warriors, especially in the Books of Psalm, Isaiah and Revelation. Yes, this frightening Warrior King, with His sword drawn, with a powerful shout for battle upon His lips against satanic forces, is the same blessed Savior who died on the cross for our sins.
We have to understand also that Martial Arts are not necessary cultural, religious, or philosophical in and of itself. Rather can reflect the values, beliefs and principles of its teachers, which can be Christian or any other religion. Today, there are two ways that Christians can justifiably be involved in the Martial Arts. As I believe, the first and most popular way is by removing religious ceremonialism of Buddhism, Taoism, Hinduism, Shintoism, Omoto-kyo, and etc. that may be attached to some systems or styles, and practicing only the physical techniques of self-defense as a form of exercise or sport. However, the Christian way of Martial Arts should be more challenging; it requires replacing traditional Eastern religious beliefs and concepts with Christian ones, thus, “baptizing” or “sanctifying” them (“Spolia Aegyptorum” - the term used by ancient Fathers of the Church) for the glory of God and benefit of His people. In this way, the Martial Arts becomes more than an exercise or sport, it becomes a tool for personal growth and the true Way of the Warrior for genuine spiritual development in a Christian life.
Throughout the centuries, God has been raising mighty men and women, people of valor and honor, who carried His banner of righteousness and brought peace to the nations and harmony to the earth. These warriors of the Spirit never gave up and pressed on through the darkness, carrying the torch of Truth, sacrificing their lives for the glory of the Kingdom. And if they could live today, they would never shrink back from this noble task. The message of the Kingdom and the unshakable love for the King brought to them the crown of glory and fame, even though they didn’t look for it in the first place.
All those warriors who went before us had one thing in common – they loved righteousness and hated wickedness (Hbr.1.9). In this way, they reflected the character of our LORD and Master, who came to the earth with one particular mission – to destroy he works of the Devil (1 John 3.8) and to release the power of freedom and peace to all men.
Nowadays some Christian denominations and churches perceived the Martial Arts as a unique and powerful tool for the effective counselling and spreading Christian teaching among the youth and adults. In fact, God is using already the Martial Arts in wide spread evangelical ministries both in North America and Europe to glorify Him and bring young people to know and love the Saviour.
In the last 10 years I sought to unite my Christian faith with a combination of martial arts skills, prowess, and ideas; and create many new ones. As a result of my search and spirituality I was led to the revelation that the heart of true warriorship is God’s care and love toward mankind and nature itself. Yes, it is the spirit of loving protection for all living beings. Thus, to me, the true Martial Art means more than just punching, kicking, and throwing the opponents. If we are true Christians, so, the Gospel must be seen and expressed in our entire attitude, just as talking, even walking and eating. The Christian Martial Art then is to accept all things in God by surrending to his will, and to keep the peace of the world by cultivating righteousness and harmony with all people and God’s creation in bonds of compassion and love.
Actually, a true struggle of man is not just a physical combat or competition, because today’s winner can be tomorrow’s looser. Rather, one’s internal confrontation is and must be with the ego, our old or carnal nature, and the dark forces (shadow warriors) that lead a person out of loving harmony with the Spirit of God, himself and others.
“YESHUA-DO” can be translated as:
“The Art of Peace”
“The Sacred Path of the Christian Warrior”
To name my Art – “Yeshua-Do” I have deliberately chosen the Holy Name of our LORD, which is the greatest Name given to all men by which we can be saved and united with God throughout eternity.
YESHUA – (JOSHUA, IESOUS or JESUS) – means “The Lord is Salvation” or “Yahweh Saves”. Signifies then; “Salvation”, “Victory”, “Healing” or“Deliverance” from distress, oppression, sin, curse, disease, guilt, shame, poverty, condemnation and punishment. The Holy Name also means – “Peace”given to true followers of Yeshua, Who is the Prince of Peace.
DO (TAO) – means the Way of the Warrior, his/her devotion to disciplined life or martial training, which is expressed by abundance of life’s energy,courage, compassion, love, harmony, and peace. It is also the Path of the Universe, not just a set of ethics for the artist or spiritual person to live by. Therefore, this Path points not only to some martial strategy, philosophy or religious doctrines, but directly to divine footprints of God, Jesus Christ, Who is The Way (John 14.6), the only Divine Master and example to follow. The “Way” is also synonymous with the “Logos” (Eternal Word/Wisdom) and means to be one with God and embody His character and glory, thus perfection. The expression - Tao/Logos, which is found in the Christian Martial Art, means also – The Eternal Christ, the One who existed in eternity before everything was created, and the One who created all things.
Yeshua-Do, then, is a result of my discovery in the fields of both Martial Arts and Christianity. It is a highly sophisticated, holistic and uniquely non-competitive Christian Martial Art based on biblical values, chivalry, principles of compassion and non-violence.
Yeshua-Do concept of warriorship is definitely different than in some traditional Martial Arts.
First of all, offers a new way to the arts of warriorship by living naturally and unselfishly in our complicated world. Most Martial Arts are studied because of competitive orientation and need for practical self-defense, but do not penetrate deeply into the human soul and spirit. Herein lies the core of our hidden fears and worries, anger and aggression, revenge and unforgiveness, rejection and feelings of inferiority, pride and sin; so, very often, the life of the individual does not change.
In our world of machines and modern technology, of constant tensions, wars, and disintegrating values, the realization of humanity and Christ-like nature in us is the only way toward attainment of righteousness, harmony and world peace. We have to realize, that the greatest enemies we face daily are: fear, cowardice, unchastity, adultery, anger, pride, rudeness, aggressiveness, doubt, hesitation, passivity, vanity, idolatry, and etc. these enemies are the first we have to overcome by uprooting them from our hearts, then developing in us a great stability of the mind, then love, compassion, faith, nobility, and bravery. All the aspects of training in Yeshua-Do help us to be filled with the necessity of victory over ourselves and thankfulness to God. It is through the repetition of daily practice that we can overcome tiredness, weariness, disappointments and even sickness, and develop a good taste for effort, the importance of self-discipline and perseverance, in one world, the confidence and joy in overcoming difficulties.
In this regard, I should say, Yeshua-Do is the Way towards freedom, which leads through purification from ego where the root of our selfish, prideful, and cowardly mind lies. Actually, a Yeshua-warrior (that’s how I call the student of the Way) cannot rest in any sense of self-complacency at his achievements, until he will see the “old nature” of his cocoon annihilated. So, he presses on toward egolesness (Agape/Love) where he can find his “Original Face” or true image in God his Creator. And in fact, there lies the fullness of his true accomplishment in the true Art of warriorship.
In community, a Yeshua-warrior is a protector, who stands between, shields, defends, guards, and heals. He expresses a deep ecological, peaceful, harmonious attitude towards mankind and all creation. Therefore, we seek to defend ourselves or others without using force or resistance, and avoid serious injury to the attackers. Such a warrior must possess then, a high moral standards and virtues: wisdom, honor, courage, compassion, love, discipline, self-control and politeness, and holds these as high principles. He or she is willing to live by them, stand for them, and if necessary, die for them. Warriorship in this context is the tradition of everything what is truly human, godly and spiritual.
It must be stated that Yeshua-Do offers the new way into existing Martial Arts by following the concept towards transformation of the inner man, being unselfish and fearless by living Christ’s example in His Spirit. All the martial aspects of the Art and Christian mystical spirituality are meant to bring us into the image or fullness of Christ (ph.1.17; 4.13-15). Nothing today is more needed, not even worship in the church nor spiritual combat, neither devoted work of service is truly attainable, if we miss the singular object of our faith - love and Christ-like nature.
Also in fairness should be noted, Yeshua-Do is not another Christian denomination, a sect, or a cult. Rather it is an inter-denominational Christian Martial Art seeking to promote fellowship and friendship among brethren and all people through the training of Martial Arts.
I credit God for giving me the vision and power to conceive Yeshua-Do, as I believe, something new in the field of Martial Arts. Even though, I do not presume that I am the only one to whom the LORD has spoken about these things, because we can find the echoes of spiritual warriorship and holy knighthood in the past. My heart wish is that all to whom the LORD has spoken about the Christian-warriorship would gather together in unity and manifest His eternal plan for spiritual-warriors of the last days in the power and wisdom of God’s Spirit.
I would like also to considerate people to listen to the voice of the Holy Spirit. First of all, it is not for correcting others, it is for correcting ourselves. Understanding martial ways as the way of service, care and charity was and still must be the main priority of true warrior. It’s purpose to perform the work of God, the work which will be remembered through all generations.
Yeshua-Do knows no boundaries, national, racial and religious. It is open to the world and welcomes everybody. During practice in the “Dojo” (training hall) the atmosphere is relaxed, non-rigorous and friendly, more so than in any known martial arts schools. It is also emphasized that compassion, peace, harmony, acceptance and friendship, centrality and perfect timing must reign.
As we see, Yeshua-Do is the Way of the spiritual-warrior, the Path of learning deeply from the Source of Truth (inspired Word of God), the Art of knowing the only one and true Master (Yeshua), and oneself (your weaknesses and strength). The whole idea of Christian Martial Art altogether is, that by facing all our enemies fearlessly with intelligence and in the Spirit of God, we finally can develop ourselves and thereby attain abundance, freedom, and peace in this very life.