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5-144000

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    B. Synopsis of the Weekly, Monthly & Annual Festivals

    A. Monthly Moed/Festival

    Holiday & Date Purpose Messianic Significance
    Rosh Chodesh

    New Moon

    -The first day of every month, the first being Aviv 1 or the spiritual New Year (N.B. Yom Teruah is the agricultural new year).

    -May be 12 or 13 Rosh Chodesh's each year depending on how many months there are

    -Twin silver trumpets blowing

    -Sets the times of all the other moedim or festivals

    Literally meaning 'Head of the Month', Rosh Chodesh was given by Yahweh as one of the luminaries 'for signs and for seasons' (Gen.1:14), the moon is be used to calculate the calendar, and the day of the monthly new moon set-apart for consulting the prophets and establishing Yahweh's will (2 Ki.4:23). It is not a Shabbat but is very similar to one, being a day to congregate for worship, and to cease commercial activity. All other kinds of work were permitted (like cooking), separating it from Shabbat. It was announced by the blowing of twin silver trumpets and animal sacrifices. The latter, like all animal sacrifices, have now ceased, being fulfilled by the sacrifice of Messiah. Rosh Chodesh commences at the New Moon when the moon is completely invisible. All the shabbats and festivals are set by it, making it Yahweh's main time-keeping piece. Like the Shabbat and annual festivals, Rosh Chodesh is a shadow or type of the Messiah. Paul warns that we are not saved by legalistically observing it or the other moedim (2 Col.2:16ff.). Like the sun, the moon is a symbol of permanence (Ps.72:5) and is used to mark the coming of the Messiah (Mk.13;24; Lk.21:25). In the New Covenant, because of the unfulfilled autumnal/fall festivals, it is still used to mark the second coming of Yah'shua. The New Moon is used to consult the prophets probably because in an invisible state it does not affect the mind or interfere with the revelatory process on a psychic level (Ps.121:6; cp. Mt.4:24; 17:15). The moon is also an outer symbol of Messiah, who reflected the Light and Glory of the Father Yahweh, speaking not His own words but only those of Yahweh, and doing nothing without His Father's permission. It also therefore symbolises the relationship between husband and wife and is celebrated by us as the Day of the Patriarchs too, a day on which to honour fathers and husbands.

    B. Weekly Moed/Festival

    Holiday & Date Purpose Messianic Significance
    Shabbat

    Sabbath

    -4 per month on the 8th, 15th, 22nd and 29th days of each biblical (not Roman) month (not regular consecutive Saturdays or Sundays)

    Yahweh blessed the seventh day and sanctified it (Gen.2:3). It is a celebration of His complete and perfect creation. It was set-apart by Him long before the Israelites came into existence and was re-affirmed by Moses in the Torah. Shabbat-keeping is enshrined in the Ten Commandments and has been given to man to rest from weekly work and the stress and pressure of making a living, and to remember the Creator. Keeping it honours Yahweh, maintains bodily health, unifies families and sets priorities for them. It refreshes the whole soul, physically and spiritually. The first Shabbat of each month is measured 7 days from Rosh Chodesh with three others following it at 7 day intervals. The 4th Shabbat of the month is followed by Rosh Chodesh or first by an extra 'preparatory day', depending on the lunar conjunction. The same tavnith or pattern is repeated the following month. Shabbat reminds us that Yahweh-Elohim created the world and delivered Israel from bondage, that Yah'shua delivered us from the penality of sin, that Yahweh will make us set-apart (holy) in the same way He madeShabbat holy, that Yahweh will finish His work in our lives just as He finished the work of Creation and Redemption, that Yahweh is our Master, and that in Yah'shua we have spiritual rest. By not working on the seventh day we are reminded that we cannot save ourselves and can rest in the finished work of the Messiah. Yah'shua defines Shabbat in Matthew 12:8. Indeed, everything about Shabbat teaches us something about the Messiah. It is to be used, after sunset, to partake of the Lord's Supper. Finally, the Sabbath is a shadow or mirror of the Millennial world to come. Also observed by us as a day to honour mothers and wives because of its association with Shegal haShabbat, the Sabbath Queen or 7th Ruach (Spirit).

    C1. Spring Annual Moedim/Festivals

    Holiday & Date Purpose Messianic Significance
    Pesach

    Passover

    -Aviv (Month 1) Day 14

    -Shofar blowing

    -May also be celebrated one month later (Month 2, Day 14), along with a 2nd Chag haMatzah and second Yom haBikkurim, by those who were unworthy to celebrate the main one (Num.9:6-13)

    -Full moon (2nd ¼)

    -Rishon (1st festival)

    Remembering the deliverance from Egyptian bondage. An unblemished firstborn male lamb was sacrificed and its blood poured on the altar. A lamb was selected for each family, and four days before the lamb was to be slain it was brought into the home for a four-day examination period. Those who were defiled or impure for the first Pesach were allowed to celebrate it a month later and are symbolically those of the second resurrection. Yah'shua is the sacrificial lamb who died for our sins. On Aviv 14 at the exact time the lamb was to be slain, Yah'shua was slain. Yah'shua also had a four-day examination period before the religious leaders and was found without blemish. Therefore we have 4 Days of Examination or Study before Pesach in which we contemplate Yahweh's and Yah'shua's perfection and purity, reminding ourselves that we are called to be without blemish too. Pesach represents spiritual conception in Messiah.
    Chag haMatzah

    Unleavened Bread

    -Aviv (Month 1) Days 15-21

    -1st Day of ChM is 2nd Shabbat of the 1st Month

    -7th Day of ChM is a Special High Shabbat (#1)

    -Shanee (2nd festival)

    -Shofar blowing

    Leaven symbolises sin. Unleavened Bread speaks of sanctification. Yahweh told the Israelites to cleanse all leaven from their homes and eat only unleavened bread, matzah, for seven days, symbolising a holy walk with Him. Yah'shua is the "Bread of Life" without sin. Born in Beit Lechem (Bethlehem), meaning 'house of bread' in Hebrew. Just as matzah is striped and pierced, so was the Messiah. This Feast falls on the day after Yah'shua was buried. Chag haMatzah represents the old (Adamic, carnal) nature being complete purged (sanctification) through repentance, forgiveness through the blood of Messiah, and subsequent yielding to Yahweh's tavnith (pattern) and lifestyle through obedience to the mitzvot (commandments).
    Yom haBikkurim

    Firstfruits

    -Aviv (Month 1) Day 16

    -Day after 1st day of ChM (not a Shabbat)

    -Shleshi (3rd festival)

    -Shofar blowing

    The first of the barley harvest was brought as an offering to the cohen (priest) in the Tabernacle/Temple. The cohen (priest) would present the first of the harvest to Yahweh by waving them back and forth. This reminded the Hebrews that Yahweh gave them the land, and the harvest belonged to Him. Represents spiritual rebirth (being born again) in Messiah as symbolised in baptism. Yah'shua is the Firstfruits (1 Cor. 15:20-23). Yah'shua's resurrection marked the beginning of the harvest of souls. John 12:23-24,32 shows Yah'shua was likened to a grain of wheat falling to the ground and dying to produce a great harvest. Yah'shua arose on Firstfruits.

    C2. Summer Annual Moed/Festival

    Holiday & Date Purpose Messianic Significance
    Shavu'ot

    Weeks/Pentecost

    -Month 4, Day 29

    -4th Shabbat of Month

    -50 days from the 1st day after the 7th Shabbat

    -Revee (4th festival)

    -Shofar blowing

    7 sabbaths and 50 days after the Feast of Firstfruits, two loaves of leavened wheat bread are presented to Yahweh. Also a reminder that the Israelites were slaves to Egypt (Dt.16:9-17). The giving of the Torah to Moses on Sinai took place at Shavu'ot. Three thousand were killed that day for rebellion. Represents communal or national covenants of betrothal to Messiah and Bar/Bat Mitzvah. Shavu'ot is the hinge between the spring and autumn/fall festivals 7 sabbaths and 50 days after Yah'shua arose, a group of Messianic Judahites received the Ruach haQodesh (Holy Spirit). Yah'shua said "Unless I go, the Ruach haQodesh will not come. But when I go (Firstfruits - His resurrection) I will send the Ruach haQodesh unto you." Yahweh began the process of writing the Law (Torah) on the hearts of the believers. Three thousand souls were saved. Represents the second resurrection.

    C3. Autumn/Fall Annual Moedim/Festivals

    Holiday & Date Purpose Messianic Significance
    Yom Teruah

    Trumpets/Shouting

    -Month 7, Day 1

    -Rosh Chodesh 7

    -Special High Shabbat (#2)

    -Chamashee (5th)

    -Twin silver trumpets blowing

    The Hebrew Agricultural New Year begins the high Holy Days in the seventh Hebrew month. A celebration of the spiritual birthday of the world or creation. Blowing of the twin silver trumpets (not ram's horns/shofars) and coronation of the Melech (King). Also known as Yom haZikkaron - the Day of Remembrance - a memorial (Lev.23:24) reminding us that Yahweh remembers us always and that we are under obligation to remember Him too. Depicts the post-tribulation regathering of believers at the sound of the trumpet (1 Thess. 4:16-18; Rev. 19) and is the day of the second coming. Yah'shua will be Melech (King) and rule over a Theocratic world government based in the New Jerusalem. It is preceeded by Chevlai shel Maschiah - the Birth Pangs of the Messiah, the seven year tribulation period.
    Yom Kippur

    Atonement

    -Month 7, Days 9 sunset-10 sunset

    -Special HighShabbat (#3)

    -Sheshi (6th)

    -Shofar blowing

    -24 hour fast

    The holiest day in the annual biblical calendar is spent in fasting, prayer, and confession. This was one gracious day a year given by Yahweh during which the whole nation could receive collective forgiveness. Spans two calendar days but lasts only 24 hours from sunset to sunset. The Cohen Gadol (High Priest) entered the Holy of Holies to make atonement for the nation by sacrificing animals including two goats. Yah'shua our Messiah was displayed as our sacrifice. We use this as a time of self-searching, repentance, and recommitment to Yahweh. The goats represent Israelites and ingrafted Gentiles, respectively. Points to the day of the Messiah judging the world after His physically returning to earth to inaugurate the Millennium.
    Sukkot &
    Shemini Atseret

    Tabernacles/ Booths &
    The Last
    Great Day

    -Month 7, Days 15-22

    -1st day of Sukkot is the 2nd Shabbat of the 7th month

    -Shemini Atseret is the 3rd Shabbat of the 7th month

    -Shibi'i (7th)

    -Shofar blowing

    Yahweh told the Israelites they should live in booths for seven days so that the generations would know that His people lived in booths when He brought them out of Egypt. Each Sukkot, the Hebrews built and dwelt in booths or temporary dwellings for 7 days. A joyful celebration! Represents the full marriage or consummation of the Messianic Bride and Messianic Bridegroom. Shemini Atseret represents the first day of the Theocratic Millennium. Yah'shua is our tabernacle, dwelling place or covering (John 14:14). Represents the 1000-year reign or Millennium of the Messiah on earth. Many Messianics believe Yah'shua was born during this Feast because they believe He was born in the late autumn/fall in a "booth" (not a cave as Catholic tradition teaches). Others believe He was born in the Spring. Represents the first resurrection of the elect and 144,000 who live through the Millennium. Those of the second resurrection (Shavu'ot) are raised at the end of the Millennium.

    (C4. Judahite Annual Winter Observations)

    Holiday & Date Purpose Messianic Significance
    Hanukkah

    Lights/Dedication

    During Month 9 and/or 10, 8 days

    An eight day festival held by the Jews to commemorate the rededication of the Temple after its defilement by the Greek pagan antichrist Antiochus Epiphanes. When the Jews cleaned out the temple idols, legend has it they found only one small cruse of oil with only enough oil for one day to light their holy lamps. They decided to light the Menorah (the Temple candelabra) even with the small amount of oil. Allegedly, the Menorah miraculously burned for eight days until new oil was available. The historical evidence demonstrates that this miracle almost certainly did not happen and that it was invented by the Pharisees to bolster their power. It was originally a late Sukkot but evolved later into a man-made tradition. During Hanukkah Yah'shua spoke of His miracles (John 10:37-38). Yah'shua wanted the people of his day to see His miracles and believe in Him as a result. His miracles point to his divine and messianic identity. Yah'shua did not endorse the spirit of Hanukkah which commemorates the re-establishment of the Kingdom by violent means, contrary to the way of the Gospel. Hanukkah is also a reminder of the days of persecution and tribulation ahead when the Antichrist comes to power. It's celebration is not commanded by Yahweh anywhere in Scripture and therefore Hanukkah is not celebrated by us.
    Purim

    Festival of Lots

    During Month 12, 1-2 days

    A one day festival (Jews celebrate two) celebrating the deliverance of the Persian Judahites from one of the most dastardly plots in history to exterminate them. The Book of Esther in the Old Testament tells the story of how the beautiful Benjaminite Esther (Hadassah) and her counsin Mordecai thwart the evil Haman who plots to massacre the Judahites. The festival was instituted by Queen Esther but its observance is nowhere commanded anywhere by Yahweh in Scripture. Just as the Judahites were rescued, so believers are redeemed by our Righteous Messiah, Yah'shua. True and complete redemption lies in our hands as we must turn to Yahweh in complete repentance. The attempt to exterminate one of the Israelite tribes in Persia foreshadows the Great Tribulation in which the Antichrist will attempt to exterminate all true believers just prior to the return of Yah'shua. Though we teach the story of Purim as found in the Book of Esther, we do not hold any formal observance of the festival.

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    This page was created on 25 November 1999
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