In various ways the contemporary Messianic Jewish movement roots in Christianity and in Judaism. Its relation to both appears strained by the past. Its present can appear like a liminal state in the twilight zone, „between the suns”. Its future may depend on the credibility it will gain in the Jewish fold. Christianity wrestles with its Jewish, and Judaism with its Christian expressions.
The moment „between the suns” is the Hebrew term for twilight. It is the moment which the Hebrew poet and mystic associates with the mysteries of life and the deepest secrets of creation, „the tong that made the tongs.” Could it be that this moment of in-betweenness is so precious because it is so „fleeting”? (Weiner 1961: v)
In modern Israel a Christian cannot help but confront the physical features, the language, the landscape in which his faith was first clothed. The New Testament comes to life for him, just as the words of Isaiah or Joshua come to life for Ben Gurion. Something else comes to life for a Christian in Israel - the Jewish people - and this is a phenomenon which can have disturbing implications for some Christian doctrines (Weiner 1961: 114).
The Sabbath day ends, not at sundown when the sun sets, but at nightfall when the stars come out. Nightfall begins when at least three stars are visible in the heavens. Calculations have, however, long replaced the visual method of determining the onset of nightfall. The time between sundown (shkiat hakama) and nightfall (test hakokhavim) is traditionally neither day nor night. In Hebrew it is called „between the suns” (bayn hashmashot). Since its status is doubtful, it is automatically attached to the Sabbath, so that there shall be no question of Sabbath violation. The bayn hashmashot period of Friday evening is also attached to the Sabbath for the same reason (Donin 1972: 85).