And the Lord spake unto Moses, saying,
2 Speak unto the children of Israel, and say unto them, Concerning the feasts of the Lord, which ye shall proclaim to be holy convocations, even these are my feasts.
3 Six days shall work be done: but the seventh day is the sabbath of rest, an holy convocation; ye shall do no work therein: it is the sabbath of the Lord in all your dwellings.
4 These are the feasts of the Lord, even holy convocations, which ye shall proclaim in their seasons.
5 In the fourteenth day of the first month at even is the Lord‘s passover.
6 And on the fifteenth day of the same month is the feast of unleavened bread unto the Lord: seven days ye must eat unleavened bread.
7 In the first day ye shall have an holy convocation: ye shall do no servile work therein.
8 But ye shall offer an offering made by fire unto the Lord seven days: in the seventh day is an holy convocation: ye shall do no servile work therein.
9 And the Lord spake unto Moses, saying,
10 Speak unto the children of Israel, and say unto them, When ye be come into the land which I give unto you, and shall reap the harvest thereof, then ye shall bring a sheaf of the firstfruits of your harvest unto the priest:
11 And he shall wave the sheaf before the Lord, to be accepted for you: on the morrow after the sabbath the priest shall wave it.
12 And ye shall offer that day when ye wave the sheaf an he lamb without blemish of the first year for a burnt offering unto the Lord.
13 And the meat offering thereof shall be two tenth deals of fine flour mingled with oil, an offering made by fire unto the Lord for a sweet savour: and the drink offering thereof shall be of wine, the fourth part of an hin.
14 And ye shall eat neither bread, nor parched corn, nor green ears, until the selfsame day that ye have brought an offering unto your God: it shall be a statute for ever throughout your generations in all your dwellings.
15 And ye shall count unto you from the morrow after the sabbath, from the day that ye brought the sheaf of the wave offering; seven sabbaths shall be complete:
16 Even unto the morrow after the seventh sabbath shall ye number fifty days; and ye shall offer a new meat offering unto the Lord.
17 Ye shall bring out of your habitations two wave loaves of two tenth deals; they shall be of fine flour; they shall be baken with leaven; they are the firstfruits unto the Lord.
18 And ye shall offer with the bread seven lambs without blemish of the first year, and one young bullock, and two rams: they shall be for a burnt offering unto the Lord, with their meat offering, and their drink offerings, even an offering made by fire, of sweet savour unto the Lord.
19 Then ye shall sacrifice one kid of the goats for a sin offering, and two lambs of the first year for a sacrifice of peace offerings.
20 And the priest shall wave them with the bread of the firstfruits for a wave offering before the Lord, with the two lambs: they shall be holy to the Lord for the priest.
21 And ye shall proclaim on the selfsame day, that it may be an holy convocation unto you: ye shall do no servile work therein: it shall be a statute for ever in all your dwellings throughout your generations.
22 And when ye reap the harvest of your land, thou shalt not make clean riddance of the corners of thy field when thou reapest, neither shalt thou gather any gleaning of thy harvest: thou shalt leave them unto the poor, and to the stranger: I am the Lord your God.
23 And the Lord spake unto Moses, saying,
24 Speak unto the children of Israel, saying, In the seventh month, in the first day of the month, shall ye have a sabbath, a memorial of blowing of trumpets, an holy convocation.
25 Ye shall do no servile work therein: but ye shall offer an offering made by fire unto the Lord.
26 And the Lord spake unto Moses, saying,
27 Also on the tenth day of this seventh month there shall be a day of atonement: it shall be an holy convocation unto you; and ye shall afflict your souls, and offer an offering made by fire unto the Lord.
28 And ye shall do no work in that same day: for it is a day of atonement, to make an atonement for you before the Lord your God.
29 For whatsoever soul it be that shall not be afflicted in that same day, he shall be cut off from among his people.
30 And whatsoever soul it be that doeth any work in that same day, the same soul will I destroy from among his people.
31 Ye shall do no manner of work: it shall be a statute for ever throughout your generations in all your dwellings.
32 It shall be unto you a sabbath of rest, and ye shall afflict your souls: in the ninth day of the month at even, from even unto even, shall ye celebrate your sabbath.
33 And the Lord spake unto Moses, saying,
34 Speak unto the children of Israel, saying, The fifteenth day of this seventh month shall be the feast of tabernacles for seven days unto the Lord.
35 On the first day shall be an holy convocation: ye shall do no servile work therein.
36 Seven days ye shall offer an offering made by fire unto the Lord: on the eighth day shall be an holy convocation unto you; and ye shall offer an offering made by fire unto the Lord: it is a solemn assembly; and ye shall do no servile work therein.
37 These are the feasts of the Lord, which ye shall proclaim to be holy convocations, to offer an offering made by fire unto the Lord, a burnt offering, and a meat offering, a sacrifice, and drink offerings, every thing upon his day:
38 Beside the sabbaths of the Lord, and beside your gifts, and beside all your vows, and beside all your freewill offerings, which ye give unto the Lord.
39 Also in the fifteenth day of the seventh month, when ye have gathered in the fruit of the land, ye shall keep a feast unto the Lord seven days: on the first day shall be a sabbath, and on the eighth day shall be a sabbath.
40 And ye shall take you on the first day the boughs of goodly trees, branches of palm trees, and the boughs of thick trees, and willows of the brook; and ye shall rejoice before the Lord your God seven days.
41 And ye shall keep it a feast unto the Lord seven days in the year. It shall be a statute for ever in your generations: ye shall celebrate it in the seventh month.
42 Ye shall dwell in booths seven days; all that are Israelites born shall dwell in booths:
43 That your generations may know that I made the children of Israel to dwell in booths, when I brought them out of the land of Egypt: I am the Lord your God.
44 And Moses declared unto the children of Israel the feasts of the Lord.
(Leviticus 23:1-44) King James Version (KJV) Public Domain
Jesus came as one blood sacrifice, and the blood of this Lamb has power. Power to cleanse, power to heal, and millions upon millions around the world have experienced the glory and the power of this cleansing blood of Jesus Christ.
We serve the living Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world.
Ask the Holy Spirit to come and speak to your heart in that still, small voice. If you don’t know Christ, that’s what Easter is all about. I want you to take a step as the prodigal son did: he walked back to the father.
First of all, I want you to know that there’s no sin that anyone has ever committed that’s so horrible or so wicked that it can’t be forgiven. God doesn’t turn anybody down. Secondly, I ask you—once you’ve confessed your sins and believed in the cleansing power of Jesus Christ’s blood—don’t go back to them. Give them over, and don’t let the devil haunt you with them because those sins are under the blood of Christ.
Some of you live in condemnation. You live in fear. Believe that this lamb was slain for you, and your sin was laid on his shoulder. He carried your sin, and he paid the price for that, and there’s nothing you can do to work it through. So, right now, just lay it down. Then when these thoughts come back to hound you, say, “Jesus is my righteousness. Christ is my righteousness. Christ is my righteousness.”
When Satan comes and lies to you, when he tells you that you still have some devil in you or whatever he says. Right now, just say back: “Christ is my righteousness.”
Say it right now. “Christ is my righteousness.”
Glory be to God. He is our righteousness. We deserved hell, and he gave us heaven because we trust in him.
I want you to allow the Holy Spirit to speak to your heart if you’ve drifted from him and want to come back to his love and grace on this Easter. The Bible says believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and thou shall be saved. I believe that. I believe that with all my heart. (Click to Source)
This article is a followup to an article I wrote earlier this year and will probably be a bit disorganized and I apologize for that. We continue to uncover a lot of pieces to the prophetic puzzle and it looks like we may have little time left to share it. Normally I like to move slow on research and test it out thoroughly, but because of the lateness of the hour I want to share with you some of the highlights being discussed in our fellowship (credit to Adam, Barry, Brad, Daniel, Greg, Jeff, Jim, Paul, and Scottie for different bits of insight).
Above all, you must understand that in the last days scoffers will come, scoffing and following their own evil desires. They will say, “Where is this ‘coming’ he promised? Ever since our ancestors died, everything goes on as it has since the beginning of creation.” But they deliberately forget that long ago by God’s word the heavens came into being and the earth was formed out of water and by water. By these waters also the world of that time was deluged and destroyed. By the same word the present heavens and earth are reserved for fire, being kept for the day of judgment and destruction of the ungodly.
2. Unbelievers who claim to be part of the Church:
But suppose that servant is wicked and says to himself, “My master is staying away a long time,” and he then begins to beat his fellow servants and to eat and drink with drunkards. The master of that servant will come on a day when he does not expect him and at an hour he is not aware of. He will cut him to pieces and assign him a place with the hypocrites, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.
Now I know there are differing interpretive opinions about Matthew 24’s dispensational placement, but I find these four verses to be fascinating because of what we’re now witnessing. Isn’t it interesting that Christians who refuse to look for the coming of Christ and who join in with the scoffers to falsely accuse, beat, and malign those Believers who are hoping, watching, and longing for the LORD, are repeating “no one knows the day or hour” ad infinitum, not realizing that in that same passage it is the wicked servants who are caught unaware. It is the wicked who are in the dark and who know neither the day nor hour. This comports perfectly with 1 Thessalonians 5:3-4, Hebrews 10:25, and Revelation 3:3. Immediately following those four verses in Matthew 24 is The Parable of the Ten Virgins. We are saved through faith alone, but does the Christian who routinely mocks and beats his brother, who loves the world more than God, and who has little interest in being with the LORD actually have faith? Faith isn’t in the head, it’s in the heart.
Blessed is the man who walks not in the counsel of the wicked, nor stands in the way of sinners, nor sits in the seat of scoffers.
As we continue to study and pick up the pieces some information has recently come to light that may have dramatic implications. Before you absorb this you first need to clear your mind of assumptions. I think we’ve all been partially blinded by the traditions of men and outside commentaries when it comes to what are commonly called “The Feasts of the LORD”. Let’s just stick to the Bible to get a basic framework from relevant passages in Leviticus and Numbers. Leviticus 23 is the foundational passage as it lists all seven “feasts”.
1. These are moed, which means appointment or meeting. “Festival” and “feast” seem to be poor translations. To carry the correct meaning, we really need to call these “The Appointments of the LORD”, because for the most part they are anything but festivals and there is often no feasting. These are divine and prophetic meetings between God and man.
2. The other Hebrew word used to define these appointments is miqra, which means convocation or sacred assembly. However, don’t get moed and miqra confused – there are seven moedim, but not every moed is a miqra. Passover and First Fruits are not called miqra. There is no sacred assembly on those days. Five of the moedim have sacred assemblies (Unleavened Bread, Weeks, Trumpets, Atonement, and Tabernacles). Two of the moedim have two assemblies (Unleavened Bread and Tabernacles). Thus there are seven Divine Appointments:
Passover, Unleavened Bread, First Fruits, Weeks, Trumpets, Atonement, and Tabernacles
And there are seven Sacred Assemblies:
Unleavened Bread #1, Unleavened Bread #7, Weeks, Trumpets, Atonement, Tabernacles #1, and Tabernacles #8
3. There is no such thing as a “Feast of Trumpets” – unless you mean every moedim. This has been majorly overlooked and needs to be investigated further because it could have profound prophetic implications. 1 Corinthians 15:52 and 1 Thessalonians 4:16 associate the resurrection and rapture of Christ’s Church with a trumpet (the last trumpet and the trumpet of God, respectively), which has given Christians a natural desire to associate the timing of the rapture with the Feast of Trumpets.
The problem is that neither of the two passages that define this particular appointment explicitly involve trumpets (Lev. 23:23-24, Num. 29:1). The Hebrew word used is teruah, which means shout or alarm. Hebrew has more exact words for trumpets: shophar (ram’s horn) and chatsotsrah (metal or generic man-made trumpet). These words are both used in Leviticus and Numbers when a trumpet is explicitly mentioned, so let’s clear this up…
2 Chronicles 15:14 actually distinguishes between all three:
They swore an oath to the LORD with a loud voice and with shouting [teruah] and with trumpets [chatsotsrah] and with horns [shophar].
The so called “Feast of Trumpets” is actually called a “Memorial of Shouting” in Leviticus 23:24 and a “Day of Shouting” in Numbers 29:1. Yom Teruah. Therefore the seven moedim should actually be Passover, Unleavened Bread, First Fruits, Weeks, Shouting, Atonement, and Tabernacles. Rabbinical tradition has added confusion.
4. 1 Thessalonians 4:16 tells us that the trumpet which signals the rapture is the “trumpet of God”. How might we identify this? In New Testament Greek all trumpets are called salpigx. No distinguishment is made between the Hebrew chatsotsrah and shophar, so we have to go back to the Old Testament to figure this out and the answer is actually pretty obvious:
First, the chatsotsrah is a man-made musical instrument (Numbers 10:2), whereas the shophar is from an animal – it is made by God.
Second, we have a clear rapture template in Exodus 19 complete with God descending, a cloud, a trumpet, and a righteous man ascending to meet Him halfway. It fits 1 Thessalonians 4:16-17 like a glove:
On the morning of the third day there was thunder and lightning, with a thick cloud over the mountain, and a very loud trumpet blast. Everyone in the camp trembled. Then Moses led the people out of the camp to meet with God, and they stood at the foot of the mountain. Mount Sinai was covered with smoke, because the Lord descended on it in fire. The smoke billowed up from it like smoke from a furnace, and the whole mountain trembled violently. As the sound of the trumpet grew louder and louder, Moses spoke and the voice of God answered him. The Lord descended to the top of Mount Sinai and called Moses to the top of the mountain. So Moses went up…
Compare this passage to 1 Thessalonians 4:
For the Lord himself will descend from heaven with a cry of command, with the voice of an archangel, and with the sound of the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first. Then we who are alive, who are left, will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air, and so we will always be with the Lord.
The trumpet sound that accompanied God’s descent, which is mentioned twice in Exodus 19, is none other than the shophar (commonly spelled shofar). Now here is the clincher for me: the term “trumpet of God” is only found in 1 Thessalonians 4:16, but there seems to be a clear reference to the trumpet that God Himself sounds in Zechariah 9:14 and the word used is shophar:
Then the LORD will appear over them, and his arrow will go forth like lightning; the Lord GOD will sound the trumpet [shophar] and will march forth in the whirlwinds of the south.
Psalm 47:5 appears to provide a double-witness that the shophar is the trumpet of God:
God has gone up with a shout, the Lord with the sound of a trumpet [shophar].
The evidence seems fairly conclusive to me that neither teruah nor chatsotsrah constitute God’s trumpet. The shophar is the trumpet of God.
Believers recognize that Christ will return for His Church at a precise time, perhaps even on a moed, but we may not know when exactly that will be. Jesus fulfilled Passover, Unleavened Bread, First Fruits, and Pentecost on the exact days. There is also growing consensus that He was born or conceived on Yom Teruah or Tabernacles. However, His ascension occurred outside of the moedim, so we should never put God in a box. But if we’re humble, prayerful, and watching, we should be aware of how close Christ’s arrival is. Matthew 24:48-51, 1 Thessalonians 5:3-4, Hebrews 10:25, and Revelation 3:3 seem to pretty clearly indicate that watchful Believers will be aware of the time, while unbelievers and perhaps even some Believers will be caught by surprise.
My honest opinion is that the doctrine of imminency is an attempt to put God in a box just as much as those who set exact dates. Both sides fail to accept the genuine tension that exists in the Scriptures on the subject. Everyone just wants to be right in their “camp”, but it usually comes at a cost – neglecting the Scriptures that the other side uses.
With that foundation laid, I want to offer a speculation that some of us are currently discussing: Atonement or Tabernacles may be better candidates for the rapture.
Numbers 10:10 describes how chatsotsrah (man-made trumpets) were blown over all of the offerings and sacrifices made on the moedim, thus in a certain sense every moed is a “Feast of Trumpets”. Since Tabernacles is the last appointment, you could make an argument that it is the time of the last trumpet. However, the chatsotsrah is not the trumpet of God and these trumpets are only blown over sacrifices and offerings – they are not a general call to the people.
Is the trumpet of God ever sounded on a moed? Yes, and in fact it’s the appointment that has been most overlooked as a template for the rapture: the Day of Atonement. According to Leviticus 25:9, the shophar is sounded “throughout all the land” on the Day of Atonement announcing the Year of Jubilee. In the Torah itself only one moed is explicitly identified with the trumpet and it’s Atonement – and only on the Year of Jubilee. Thus at the end of every Jubilee cycle the shophar is blown throughout all the land announcing the Jubilee year. This shophar signals:
Remember that according to Leviticus 23:27, the Day of Atonement is not only a moed, but also a miqra – a sacred assembly. God’s people are gathered together. And guess what else is significant about Atonement? It is the only day of the year when mankind has access to the Holy of Holies, which is why Yom Kippur is considered the holiest day in Judaism.
The Temple was a template of the heavenly realms and the Holy of Holies represented God’s throne in Heaven. A thick curtain separated the people from God and only on Yom Kippur could the high priest enter in to make an offering for the people (Lev. 16:2). Jesus is the head of the body, the Church, and according to the book of Hebrews He is our High Priest who entered the heavenly places, but His entrance into Heaven was not restricted to Yom Kippur because He is God Himself. Since we are a kingdom of priests (1 Pet. 2:9), yet not divine, perhaps Yom Kippur serves as the template for when we also will enter Heaven. It’s the only day Heaven is opened!
It has long been thought that Christ’s visible second coming would occur on the Day of Atonement, but based on this additional evidence, perhaps the rapture will occur on that day, as well. As the only day when Heaven is opened, it could be the day the Church enters Heaven and also the day Christ and the Church return fromHeaven. The Day of Atonement might then be a template and encapsulate the entire Tribulation period – the Day of the LORD. Here is a summary of points in favor of a rapture on a Yom Kippur that also coincides with the Jubilee:
1. It’s the only moed explicitly tied to the shophar and this shophar is heard “throughout all the land”. This might be the best candidate for the trumpet of God mentioned in 1 Thessalonians 4:16.
2. The trumpet announces liberty from bondage, rest from labor, and a return to land, property, and family – all images of what Believers inherit at the rapture.
3. It is the only day of the entire year when access was granted to the Holy of Holies, and perhaps then the only day of the year when Heaven is opened and the Church can enter in.
4. A Jubilee trumpet at the rapture would mark both the end of that particular Jubilee cycle and perhaps even the end of all Jubilee cycles. Thus, in at least two different ways it would be the “last trumpet”. Genesis 6:3says that mankind would persist for 120 years. This is generally thought to be a reference to the time remaining before Noah’s Flood, but it may also indicate the total number of Jubilee years from creation to the Millennial Kingdom – the length of mankind’s rebellion. 120 years x 50 years = 6,000 years, which just happens to be right about where we are in history.
The obvious question presents itself: does this weekend’s Yom Kippur also mark the Jubilee? There is some evidence it does:
1. Biblical years run from roughly April to April and that timeframe in 1917-1918 and 1967-1968 marked the Balfour Declaration and the conquest of Jerusalem, respectively. In the first instance the land of Israel was returned in a sense when the anti-Semitic Ottoman Empire was conquered by the British. The British government announced that the Holy Land would eventually return to the Jews and Jews were allowed to move more freely to their ancestral homeland. The very next year, in 1919, the Third Aliyah kicked off with tens of thousands of Jews returning.
In the second instance, Jerusalem was returned to its rightful owners when Israel conquered the city in addition to other portions of the Promised Land.
In 1867 the Jews were emancipated (released from bondage) in the Austro-Hungarian Empire – another event closely mirroring the biblical concept of Jubilee. Interestingly, the Austro-Hungarian Empire existed for exactly one Jubilee (1867-1868 to 1917-1918).
Furthermore, if you go back to the same April to April range in 1517-1518 you’ll see another Jubilee-type event: Christians were released from the spiritual bondage of the Roman Catholic Church. The Protestant Reformation began on October 31, 1517. The 500th anniversary of the Protestant Reformation occurs next month.
2. Israelis actually celebrated 2017 as the Jubilee back in May, which marked 50 years since the Six-Day War on the Jewish calendar and also 70 prophetic years since the rebirth of Israel. This was the first time Jews collectively celebrated the Jubilee since before Christ. That alone should get your attention. You can read more about this Jubilee celebration here. Israel seemed to have no qualms about what they were celebrating:
3. WatchForTheDay noticed that exactly 49 prophetic years transpired between the decree to restore and rebuild Jerusalem on April 1, 1969 to July 17, 2017, when the Jews temporarily recaptured the Temple Mount and resumed prayer. The same amount of time transpired between June 7, 1967, when Jerusalem was recaptured, to September 23, 2015 – the Day of Atonement. The incredible precision of these two separate counts provides at least supporting evidence that we are very close to the exact year of the Jubilee. The former count might even be a possible parallel fulfillment of the separate 7 weeks of years in Daniel 9:25.
Might the rapture happen this weekend? I don’t know for sure, but we should be awake and watchful. Yom Teruah ran from September 21st to 22nd (Tishrei 1). The Great Sign of Revelation 12 occurred on September 23rd to 24th (Tishrei 3). Yom Kippur is 10 days after Yom Teruah and 7 days after the Great Sign. Consider the timing in light of the following verses: Gen. 7:4, 10, 8:10, Ex. 22:30, Ex. 24:16, Rev. 2:10. Leviticus 12:1-5has also been on our minds:
The Lord spoke to Moses, saying, “Speak to the people of Israel, saying, If a woman conceives and bears a male child, then she shall be unclean seven days. As at the time of her menstruation, she shall be unclean. And on the eighth day the flesh of his foreskin shall be circumcised. Then she shall continue for thirty-three days in the blood of her purifying. She shall not touch anything holy, nor come into the sanctuary, until the days of her purifying are completed.”
This passage is interesting for a number of reasons. For starters, we see the image of a woman in labor just as we do in Isaiah 26:17-19, 66:7-9, Micah 5:3, and Revelation 12:1-2. It’s even a male child that she delivers. Just as she remains unclean for 7 days after giving birth to the male child, so Israel remains unclean for 7 years after giving birth to the Church.
But there’s more. The Great Sign of a woman in labor occurred on Tishrei 3, 7 days before Yom Kippur. The child is still in the flesh for 7 days before his circumcision. Might circumcision be a symbol of the rapture when our fleshly nature is removed (1 Cor. 15:50-55; see also Jn. 3:3-7)? Perhaps Yom Teruah marked the invisible reality that Christ’s Church has finally finished its growth and gestation and the corporate baby was born, yet the corporate male child is still in its flesh for 7 days. Additionally, 33 days after Yom Kippur is the 100th anniversary of the Balfour Declaration, just as 33 days after the Great American Eclipse was the Great Sign!
Yom Kippur also happens to be 40 days from the Great American Eclipse. Were 40 days given to the world to repent just as in the days of Jonah? Just thoughts and speculation.
There is an important Scripture that we need to address. This one simple verse holds immense importance and has caused a lot of confusion. It’s Psalm 81:3:
Blow the trumpet at the new moon, at the full moon, on our feast day.
Rabbinical and Karaite Jews are divided over this verse. The word here for “full moon” might mean “concealed moon”. Jewish tradition favors “concealed moon”, but most biblical commentaries and the Karaite Jews favor “full moon”. I won’t get into that. What is most important to this topic is the fact that the trumpet mentioned here is shophar and this is not Yom Kippur. The question is what moed does the last phrase “on our feast day” point to? Commentaries are divided between Passover and Tabernacles, but the Tabernacles view is slightly more popular.
This verse is not in the Torah, but it is in Scripture, so we have to treat it as such. If the moed referenced here is Passover, then in regards to the moedim Passover is the first trumpet and the Yom Kippur Jubilee is the last trumpet. If instead this verse speaks about Tabernacles, then you might be able to argue that Tabernacles is actually the last trumpet.
Tabernacles has always been one of the “big three” moed to watch in regards to the rapture, along with Yom Teruah and Pentecost. Here is further study on why Tabernacles might fit.
Friends, we’re getting closer than we could have possibly imagined. Keep looking up and maranatha! (Click to Site)
VaVera (He Appeared)
Time for Review
Anyone who has read the Torah knows that many commandments and instructions are repeated many times. The simple reason is that our Creator knows us very well. He understands the way we think and the way we tend to forget, unless things are repeated and maybe even then.
In Leviticus 23 we see a review of the Feasts. Let’s look at each one briefly as a review.
Shabbat – Because of His work in our lives we should enjoy rest, both spiritual and physical. We are to cease from endless striving for our redemption. Yeshua has accomplished this for us and we rest in Him. We are also to give our bodies physical rest on the Shabbat.
Passover – We remember the slavery we were once living and celebrate our being set free to live a new life.
First Fruits – As Yeshua was the first to be raised from the dead, we will also be raised from this life and enter into His likeness.
Unleavened Bread – Leaven is a type of sin. We are to be conformed into His sinless image through obedience to His word.
Pentecost – We celebrate the instructions He has given to us and the Spirit He has placed in us to enable us to walk in those instructions. The work of Passover in not truly complete until we have been given a new way of life in Torah.
Feast of Trumpets – Life is a wonderful gift, but we look for a day of complete restoration. One day the shofar will sound, His family will be gathered into His presence and we will forever be with Him.
Day of Atonement – While in this life we should “work out our own salvation with fear and trembling.” We are to live our lives unto Him, knowing that one day we will all give an account for the way we lived. On that day we will stand alone, not with friends and family. On that day it will not matter what anyone else thinks, it will only matter what He knows.
Tabernacles – The day of final and complete redemption! The day when all the work of this life will be over. Sin will have been dealt with for all eternity. We will be His people and He will be our Elohim! He will “Tabernacle” in the midst of His people and of His Kingdom there shall be no end.
You may have noticed the Feasts tend to switch back and forth from the here and now to the hereafter. I believe there is good reason for this. The Feasts are another reminder to be like Abraham. Although he was in this world he was never attached to this world. He was always looking for a city whose builder and maker was Elohim. The Feasts should cause us to live this life in fear and reverence of a Holy Creator and to always keep an eye toward the Eastern Sky and eternity.
With the world situation the way it is today, I am reminded of the Jewish people who lived through the Warsaw ghettos. When asked if they had kept Shabbat in the ghetto they said, “It is not that we kept Shabbat, but Shabbat kept us.” I wonder if one day we will be overheard saying that during the tribulation it was not that we kept the Feasts, but the Feasts kept us?
Exodus 33:12 – 34:26
Ezekiel 36:37 – 37:14
The night had been filled with emotion as the Hebrews ate of their Passover meal in haste. On the one hand was a sense of excitement about what the coming days would bring as they prepared to make their journey out of Egypt. On the other hand was a sense of despair as the sun rose the next day and they looked toward a country they had once called home, a prosperous land that was now in ruins. The wails of mothers who had lost their firstborn during the night could still be heard as far away as Goshen. The panic of the people of Egypt could be felt in the air. This morning they were being told to turn their backs on the land they had once called home and to pack their new possessions, and do it quickly. The prophesied time of return to their true home was at hand. They were the generation chosen to see the events unfold.
It was all happening too fast though. Many of the people felt that life was out of their control. They wondered if the timing was truly real or if this man Moses was really sent by Elohim. Who did he really think he was anyway? Why him? This is not the way they had all imagined the end of their life in Egypt would be. What about my job? Don’t I need to give a two-week notice or something? How about a forwarding address? These were all questions that went through the minds of the Hebrews as they prepared in haste to leave the place they had once called home. Yes, the sun was rising from a quite sleepless night. But although the sun was especially bright that day there was a darkness of confusion that filled the hearts of many Hebrews. What would this day bring? They were afraid to ask!
Centuries later. Many years had passed since that celebrated day in Egypt. History recorded the events with great detail. The promised redemption had come just like He had said it would. But this morning was different. The confusion of three million Hebrews so long ago could not compare to the confusion of this day. The lives of a handful of men and women He had referred to as His family had taken a turn they had not seen coming. Life seemed to be not only on hold, but had stopped altogether. Confusion, anger, despair and fear were only a few of the emotions that gripped them. Night had come hours early the day before. The sun was now rising over the Mount of Olives, but no outward light could help the darkness they felt on this morning.
The events of Egypt had brought the faithful together so many years earlier. They had provision and they had a leader. But for the disciples, the One whom they had looked to for everything was now gone. He was dead and from their distance and vantage point they stared at a stone, rolled in front of the entrance to a tomb. They stared in wonder. How could they have been so wrong? Why had they not listened to their family members who had told them this new life would never work out? Why had they strayed from the ways of the religious leaders of the day? Why had they not just followed the traditions they had been taught as children? Confusion and despair gripped them all and would only grow worse in the coming days.
But there were words He had spoken to them in the final days rolling around in the back of their minds, just barely out of their grasp. What good would those words do them now though? He is dead. The life, the redemption from the Romans, that seemed so sure just hours before, was now impossible. He is dead! But what are those words they kept trying to bring to the front of their minds?
We usually read the Scripture far too fast, do we not? We forget that verses that are read in moments may have taken days, weeks or even years to live out in reality. The tragedy of missing this concept is that we miss one of the great points of scripture, which is to learn from the example of those who walked before us. With that said, what are we to learn here? Many things of course, but very high on the list is to remember that His plans normally do not come to pass the way that we thought they would. Another one would be that in the end His plan was always better and accomplished a far greater work for our lives than the plan we had dreamed up.
Let us all take some time in this Shabbat, the days between Passover and the end of Unleavened Bread to consider the lives of the people who were leaving Egypt as well as those who lived the long days just after the death of Yeshua. The days prior to His resurrection. Maybe as we consider their uncertainty of the future and the emotions they must have dealt with, it will help us to prepare our own lives for another fulfillment of prophecy, the one that is happening right before our eyes.