The Refiner's Fire was originally created in 2001 to reveal the beauty of Torah to Christians and introduce Jews to the Jewish Messiah, Yeshua. As the years passed, and as challenges flowed in from around the word, our site began to turn into a full-fledged Messianic Apologetics website, defending the Netzari/Messianic faith. While no one can honestly say they have cornered the market on Truth, The Refiner's Fire website presents what we call "Biblical Truth" from a "Hebrew", rather than a "Greek" mindset and attempts to show, through scripture-only teachings, the errors of man's flawed "religiosity".

What makes our ministry different? First of all, there are no donate buttons because we don't want anyone's money! Secondly, unlike most other Messianic or Hebrew Roots ministries, we don't teach "feel-good theology" peppered with opinions. We present solid, no-nonsense Biblical teachings from the Hebraic viewpoint, that steadily concentrate on the Truth of YHWH/Yeshua/Torah!

The Refiner's Fire (in partnership with the Messianic Jewish Rabbinate) does not have a "staff" - it is basically a "Maw and Paw" operation run by a husband and wife team - Bill and Carmen Welker - who simply love God and the Bible and wish to share their knowledge with the world. There are no"donate" buttons, because the goal is not to make it "about us" nor is it to profit from YHWH's Word; rather, it is to present scriptural evidence that there is more to God and the Bible than we have been taught in our churches and synagogues. The goal is to get people to think for themselves using what Scripture actually says, instead of mindlessly following the doctrine or dogma of man-made "religion"....

What are our qualifications? Simply a love for YHWH and His Divine Messiah, interspersed with plenty of knowledge and common sense. The teachers at The Refiner's Fire are highly educated and and have actual teaching experience in various fields. Details below:

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Messianic Rabbi Carmen Welker is creator and webmaster of The Refiner's Fire. She is an Associate Professor of Messianic Apologetics at the Messianic Jewish Rabbinate, where she received her smicha lerabbanut (rabbinical ordination). She is a former U.S. Army Sergeant Major who served 22 years as a journalist and newspaper editor, administrator and German language translator. Originally from Germany, she came to the United States in 1960 when her mother married an American soldier.

Carmen has a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of the State of New York and is a graduate of Mid-America Business College (Springfield, Missouri); the Defense Information School (journalism) at Fort Benjamin Harrison, Indiana; and the prestigious United States Army Sergeants Major Academy in El Paso, Texas, where she also worked as a lesson developer and instructor.

A former Bible study teacher and leader in the prison ministry "Friends in Transition," she is now a Hebraic Faith/Netzari teacher and author who had the distinct privilege of being the editor/proofreader of the 1st edition of the Aramaic English New Testament. She has also authored several books designed to lead the world to YHWH/Yeshua/Torah. Carmen's testimony can be found here.

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Bill Welker's list of accomplishments spans decades. A life-long love of astronomy, the sciences, and computers gave him the perfect background to be co-founder and co-host of The Refiner's Fire. Bill is a retired Air Force Lieutenant Colonel with a Master's Degree in Engineering Physics. During his Air Force service, he worked on space-based lasers and commanded two Air Force detachments operating sensors on satellites.

He also had the privilege of being selected as an alternate for the Department of Defense (DoD) Group 2, Astronaut (Manned Spaceflight Engineer (MSE) program) in the Eighties. After retirement from the Air Force he served the the DoD as a Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP). Currently he has been volunteering his expertise on astronomy - both to The Refiner's Fire and to other researchers.

Today, Bill spends much of his time researching the methods the ancients would have used to determine the Biblical calendar and answering questions sent to the The Refiner's Fire on how the sun, moon, and stars work together to announce the true calendar.

The Refiner's Fire is in partnership with Professor Rabbi Brian Tice's Messianic Jewish Rabbinate (MJR). Rabbi Tice is Professor of Bible & Languages and Acting President of MJR. He obtained his B.Sci. in Bible, Youth Ministry, and Ancient Languages from Cornerstone University and his M.Sci. in Higher Education with an emphasis on Classical Hebrew Andragogy from Kaplan University. He also studied Music and Modern Languages at Kalamazoo Valley Community College, Pastoral Studies at Grand Rapids Theological Seminary, and Middle Eastern History at Tel Aviv University.

Professor Tice has taught Hebrew, Hermeneutics, Tanakh Exegesis, and Apologetics for Cornerstone University (as a Graduate Assistant) and Take Hold Ministry School. He also developed a number of courses for International Messianic Torah Institute and Messianic Jewish Rabbinate as well as teaching homeschool music and cantillation courses in the Grand Rapids area (Michigan). Rabbi Tice's latest book, Reflecting on the Rabbis: Sage Insight into First-Century Jewish Thought, is now available at Amazon. (Click here for more about Rabbi Tice, and be sure to check out the informative articles on his website, Emunah biY'shua/Faith in Y'shua.)