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Jewish FeastsDid you know that Jesus fulfilled to the exact hour in His first coming the biblical feasts of Passover, Unleavened Bread, First Fruits and Pentecost?  What do the Feast of Trumpets, Atonement and Tabernacles foreshadow?

And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying,

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]

Feasts of the LORD
Introduction 101
מועד Moedim

By Keith McKenzie

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. These [are] the feasts of the LORD, [even] holy convocations, which ye shall proclaim in their seasons.  Leviticus 23

מועד Mow’ed  Strong’s H4150

1) appointed place, appointed time, meeting

a) appointed time

2) sacred season, set feast, appointed season

b) appointed meeting

c) appointed place

d) appointed sign or signal

e) tent of meeting

The very first mention of the use of the Hebrew word Mow’ed is in Genesis 1:14 on day 4 of Creation.  Here in verse 14 Mow’ed is translated seasons (highlighted yellow)

And God said, Let there be lights in the firmament of the heaven to divide the day from the night; and let them be for signs, and for seasons (Moed), and for days, and years:  Genesis 1:14

Now this study has been so fruitful for me.  I began to hear about these feast and never really connected the overall importance in God’s future prophetic program.  I have gleaned much from many ministries with Hebrew roots.  Some are very good and some have fully returned to a works based religion.  Be cautious when surfing the subject.

First note that these are God’s appointments.  [Concerning] the feasts of the LORD, which ye shall proclaim [to be] holy convocations, [even] these [are] my feasts. That is “My feasts” says the LORD.

The other key word here that bears looking at is convocations (miqra) Strongs 4744 a convocation, convoking, reading

Word origin from qara

assembly, calling, convocation, reading

From qara’ ; something called out, i.e. A public meeting (the act, the persons, or the place); also a rehearsal — assembly, calling, convocation, reading.

Note:  The idea of rehearsal I think is the best understanding for us today.  The ancients where rehearsing God’s Feasts as rehearsal for the ultimate fulfillment of Messiah in these Appointments.  I will add here for anyone who may not know that the Lord Jesus Christ fulfilled the first four (spring feasts) to the very day and hour that the rehearsals where actually going on at the temple,at His first coming.  The final three (fall feasts) will get this all likewise be fulfilled on all the very day of the fall feasts.  We will look at these separately in articles to come.

Some maybe saying I never saw that. (join the club)  Here is the problem that we suffer from.  It is our calendar.  We use a Gregorian calendar and it is November 4, 2009 as of this writing.  God’s calendar that He is using for His appointments (feasts) is the Hebrew calendar and today is 17th of Cheshvan, year 5770.  What, you maybe thinking.  Yeah, big difference.  Here is a link to a calendar converter Hebrew Date Converter – 17th of Cheshvan, 5770   and a Jewish calendar below.

Source: Judaism 101: Current Calendar

Months of the Jewish Year

The “first month” of the Jewish calendar is the month of Nissan, in the spring, when Passover occurs. However, the Jewish New Year is in Tishri, the seventh month, and that is when the year number is increased. This concept of different starting points for a year is not as strange as it might seem at first glance. The American “new year” starts in January, but the new “school year” starts in September, and many businesses have “fiscal years” that start at various times of the year. Similarly, the Jewish calendar has different starting points for different purposes.

The names of the months of the Jewish calendar were adopted during the time of Ezra, after the return from the Babylonian exile. The names are actually Babylonian month names, brought back to Israel by the returning exiles. Note that most of the Bible refers to months by number, not by name.

The Jewish calendar has the following months:

Hebrew

English

Number

Length

Civil Equivalent


Nissan

1

30 days

March-April


Iyar

2

29 days

April-May


Sivan

3

30 days

May-June


Tammuz

4

29 days

June-July


Av

5

30 days

July-August


Elul

6

29 days

August-September


Tishri

7

30 days

September-October


Cheshvan

8

29 or 30 days

October-November


Kislev

9

30 or 29 days

November-December


Tevet

10

29 days

December-January


Shevat

11

30 days

January-February

 

Adar I (leap years only)

12

30 days

February-March

 

Adar

(called Adar Beit in leap years)

12

(13 in leap years)

29 days

February-March

Judaism 101: The Jewish Calendar: A Closer Look 

Now look at this passages in Isaiah in the section of the trial of the false gods.  I love this portion of scripture.  In Isaiah chapters 40-49, the LORD God puts all on notice that He alone has the ability to tell us what is coming.  We call it prophecy.  Much of it has already been fulfilled, but much has not.  Look at a sampling of the prophet Isaiah.

Isaiah 40:21

Have you not known? Have you not heard? Has it not been told you from the beginning? Have you not understood from the foundations of the earth?   Who has performed and done [it], Calling the generations from the beginning? ‘I, the LORD, am the first; And with the last I [am] He.’ ” 

Isaiah 41:4

“Remember this, and show yourselves men; Recall to mind, O you transgressors.  Remember the former things of old, For I [am] God, and [there is] no other; [I am] God, and [there is] none like Me, Declaring the end from the beginning, And from ancient times [things] that are not [yet] done, Saying, ‘My counsel shall stand, And I will do all My pleasure,’

Isaiah 46:8-10

“I have declared the former things from the beginning; They went forth from My mouth, and I caused them to hear it. Suddenly I did [them], and they came to pass.  Because I knew that you [were] obstinate, And your neck [was] an iron sinew, And your brow bronze, Even from the beginning I have declared [it] to you; Before it came to pass I proclaimed [it] to you, Lest you should say, ‘My idol has done them, And my carved image and my molded image Have commanded them.’

Isaiah 48:3-5

Recall that God in Creation set his appointment calendar by His created heavens and earth Genesis 1:14 as signs (Mow’ed)… I love that the LORD says, “Even from the beginning I have declared [it] to you; Before it came to pass I proclaimed [it] to you”

Okay what are the Feasts (God’s appointed times)  There are seven that was given to Moses in Leviticus 23.  Also we should note that God’s day begins with evening (6pm) unlike ours which is Midnight.  In creation God said, it was evening and morning… We say morning and evening.  Isn’t that just like man to get it wrong.  Now special days for us have special meaning.  Thanksgiving, Memorial day & the Fourth of July all represent something to us and we rehearse it in our years.  Let’s look at God’s days which He says are the Seven most important dates in world history.

Feast overview

Spring Feasts

1.  Passover (Pesach)

Leviticus 23:4-5  Shadows and fulfillment Exodus 12 rehearsal begins.  Fulfilled at the Cross as our Passover lamb 14th day of Nisan.  1 Corinthians 5:7, John 1:29.  Personal application of the blood of the Lamb to the heart’s door by faith.  Romans 3:25, Acts 16:31.

2.  Unleavened Bread

Leviticus 23:6-8  Sunset began the 15th day of Nisan. Jesus was buried, just in time for the Feast of Unleavened Bread. But in the grave His body did not decay or see corruption. That Passover the sinless unleavened ‘Bread of Heaven’ was revealed as that long awaited perfect sacrifice for sin. Thus He fulfilled the Feast of Unleavened Bread.  Personal application is that leaven is a metaphor for sin.  Jesus purged the leaven six days before Passover. John 12:1-2 see also 1 Peter 2:5, 1 Corinthians 3:16-17 & 5:7-8.  Of note is that God’s work of creation was six days and ended His work (Salvation) on the seventh day.  Isn’t this awesome!

3.  First Fruits (Easter)

Leviticus 23:9-14  Jesus at His Resurrection on Nisan 17.  In the case of the Feast of Firstfruits on the morrow after the sabbath of Passover something wonderful and unexpected happened. Our Saviour once again fulfilled the feast. He rose from the dead on the first day of the week. This was on the morrow after the sabbath following Passover. Thus in His resurrection from the dead He fulfilled the Feast of Firstfruits. Resurrection Sunday came on the very day in which the Feast of Firstfruits had been celebrated.  See also Numbers 33:3-4 and personal application is the promise that “now Christ is risen from the dead, and has become the first fruits of those who have fallen asleep.  1 Corinthians 15:20.  See Acts 26:23, Deuteronomy 26:23, Revelation 1:5, and Romans 8:29.

4.  Feast of Weeks (Pentecost)  Shavuot

Leviticus 23:15-22  50 days from the day the firstfruits of the barley harvest was waved before the Lord, (50 days from the morrow after the sabbath after Passover), is Shavuot or the Day of Pentecost.  Because of sin 3,000 die under the Law that day.  Exodus 32:28, and conversely under grace 3,000 souls where added to the Church on Pentecost.  Acts 2:41.  Of note it is a remembrance of the Israel journey from Egypt to Sinai with the giving of the Torah.  God is a God of incredible precision with His foreshadowing His prophetic timeline.  Personal application is a time of spiritual inventory.

Shadows of things to come

The Fall Feasts

So let no one judge you in food or in drink, or regarding a festival or a new moon or sabbaths, which are a shadow of things to come, but the substance is of Christ.  Colossians 2:16-17

We will look at each one of these in some detail and the various prophetic idioms that are associated with each of these fall feasts.  Note that each of the spring feasts where ALL fulfilled on the day and hour that they where to be celebrated (rehearsed).  The same is to be expected for the remaining fall feasts.  That is why you need to use God’s calendar.  On our Gregorian calendar these days can very wildly unlike the fourth of July.  It is worth watching.  We are commanded to watch!  🙂

5.  Feast of Trumpets (Rosh Hashanah)

Leviticus 23:23-25  Next on the prophetic calendar of our Creator.  Here are some idioms we will look at in a separate article.  All have future fulfillment and unfold in the book of Revelation.

The Time of Jacob’s Trouble.  (Tribulation)  Jeremiah 30:6-7, Daniel 12:1 & Isaiah 13:6-8.

The Day of the Awakening blast.  (Resurrection)  Daniel 12:2, Isaiah 26:19 & 1 Thessalonians 4:16-17.

Day of Judgement.  Revelation 14:18, 1 Corinthians 3:13-15 & 2 Corinthians 5:10.

Opening of the Books & Gates.  Daniel 7:10-11, Revelation 5:11-13, 4:1-2, and 20:11-12.

The Hidden Day.  (Rapture)  Revelation 3:1-3, 16:15, and 1 Thessalonians 5:1-5.

Wedding of the Messiah (to the Church)  Joel 2:15-16, Isaiah 62:5-7 & Matthew 25:6-7.

Coronation of the King Messiah (Casting Crowns)  Psalm 98:6-9, Genesis 49:10 & Revelation 4:1-4, 9-11.

6.  Day of Atonement (Yom Kippur)

Leviticus 23:26-32  This is the most solemn day of the year.  “Ye shall afflict your souls: in the ninth day of the month at even, from even unto even…”  This will have it’s ultimate fulfillment when all of Israel will be saved as a Nation during the Great Tribulation.  Isaiah 53:4, Leviticus 25:9-10 , Revelation 11:15-19, Ezekiel 20:33-35, , Zechariah 12:10 and Romans 11:25-29.  This will be when Israel repents as a nation read Hosea  Hosea 5:15-6:3.  For the church our goal is to pray for the peace and reconciliation of Israel.  Recall that when Jesus left the temple before the Crucifixion was, “See! Your house is left to you desolate; and assuredly, I say to you, you shall not see Me until [the time] comes when you say, ‘Blessed is He who comes in the name of the LORD!’ ” Luke 13:35″  They will in as the prophet Hosea says, “I will return again to My place Till they acknowledge their offense. Then they will seek My face; In their affliction they will earnestly seek Me.”

7.  Feast of Tabernacles (Sukkot)

Leviticus 23:33-44  This is a great celebration.  This is a reminder that we are in just traveling through this world.  Tabernacles where tents that where portable.  This is what Jesus and Peter referred to their bodies as.  The Tabernacle in the wilderness was a picture of both Christ’s body and ministry.  It is temporary.  We are headed for an upgrade in our glorified body.  These are just few pictures of the feast of Tabernacles is going to be celebrated starting a great season of joy with the advent of the Millennium.

“And it shall come to pass, that every one that is left of all the nations which came against Jerusalem shall even go up from year to year to worship the King, the LORD of hosts, and to keep the feast of tabernacles. And it shall be, that whoso will not come up of all the families of the earth unto Jerusalem to worship the King, the LORD of hosts, even upon them shall be no rain” (Zech. 14:16-17).

During the Millennium Kingdom when Christ will rule for a thousand years from His throne in Jerusalem all the nations of the earth will be commanded to come and celebrate the Feast of Tabernacles. If they refuse to come, which means that they are not trusting in the Lord for their substance and living. Therefore the Lord will withhold rain from their nation as punishment and the natural result of refusing God’s provision. Further it also pictures that God will not pour out the Holy Spirit on those who refuse His offer of salvation, who are invited to come and receive freely His mercy and grace.

The Millennium will be at time when Satan is bound for a thousand years (Revelation 20:2-7)  In short without getting into to here.  It will be a time of perfect government, rule, peace, but man will still have sinful flesh for those who are born and repopulate the earth during this 1,000 year rule of Christ.  See we struggle now with the flesh, the world, and the devil.  During the 1,000 years of Messiah’s rule both the world and the devil are gone.  People will need to look at the feasts looking backward to what God has done in memorial.  But the flesh is enough to get us to sin against God all by itself.

These people will not have glorified bodies like the Saints that come with Him that is the Church.  This will be a great time of knowledge of the LORD and everyone will still need to choose Christ.  More on this in another article.

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