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Month 11:29, Week 4:7 (Shibi'i/Sukkot), Year:Day 5939:324 AM
2Exodus 1/40, Messianic Countdown 72/60
Gregorian Calendar: Tuesday 17 February 2015
The Aviv 1 Quest
From Search to Discovery

    Continued from Part 1 (Aviv)
    Continued from Part 4 (Sunrise)
    Also see articles on Rosh Chodesh

    A. PREFACE

    Introduction

    Shabbat shalom kol beit Yisra'el and welcome to this final assembly of the 11th month. Uppermost on the minds of most members of late has been the desire to once and for all establish the biblical method for calculating the first day of the biblical month or Aviv 1 and the purpose of this gathering is to do that.

    An Answer by Process Revelation

    I am happy to announce that we do have the answer we have sought, it has not come by any spectacular vision or revelation, but by means of a gradual conviction as we have sifted through the scriptural and historical data. So you might call this one of those 'process revelations' that Yahweh gets us to engage in both for the reward of personal sanctification and conviction as we search important matters out and also - and I think this is critical - so that we can have a sound and thorough answer for those in the messianic community who remain divided over the issue. My goal today is to share with everyone what you have been sharing with me and with each other and to show how we arrived at the conclusions that we did.

    The 13th Leap-Year Month Issue

    This investigation was triggered by concerns some members had that our Dynamic Calendar was indicating a 13th month this year which meant that Aviv did not begin until April making all the divine moedim (appointments, festivals) unusually late. In addition to the urgent need to know when the Biblical New Year would begin this year, there was also unease as to how we set about determining when an extra 13th month should be added, and a request was made by Brother Gabriel Ljungstrand of the Sweden Mission for a clear scriptural exegesis on the matter.

    A Study Commissioned

    To cut a long story short, I asked our mathematician and calendar designer/programmer, Sister Deborah Peterson of the South Africa Mission, to take a close look at the Dynamic Calendar which had been in need of some urgent maintenance for some time, and as a result of this a number of important questions surfaced which needed urgent addressing especially following the revelation on the 15th day of the 11th month (3 February 2015) commanding us to assemble at Aviv 1 to rededicate the Temple of Messianic Israel to be followed, a week later, by instructions from Yahweh for a prophetic countdown, both of which required we absolutely know, without a shadow of a doubt, the correct new year's day. If you are not familiar with these two Rededication articles, you should read them first before proceeding.

    Agenda

    Accordingly, I asked Sister Deborah to prepare an article summarising the issues so that this could be shared with the membership to give them opportunity to study the matter out and so each could independently come to a witness. What follows now is her paper in its entirety with comments from members and committed investigators to this work, with a concluding Q&A section. I shall then proceed to analyse the data, make my own summary and share what Yahweh has laid on my heart as to whether Aviv 1 this year is in March or April.


    B. STUDY PAPER ON AVIV 1 AND THE CREATION CALENDAR
    by Deborah Peterson (South Africa Mission)

    Greeting

    Shalom and Blessing in Yahweh our Father and Yah'shua our Salvation!

    Introduction

    Recently, we were asked to re-examine the dynamic calendar's reckoning of Aviv - the first month of the Scriptural year and the month of Passover - and the other moedim dates . The correct reckoning of Aviv is especially important to us as a Body as it influences the reckoning of all the other moedim (festival) dates, so it's critical for us to get them right.

    Data and Prayerful Duiscussion

    Having reviewed both the testimony of Scripture and the evidence of historical sources, we have had a critical question surface as to when Aviv should be reckoned, giving us two possible scenarios. With this being such a critical issue (since it will affect the reckoning of all the other moedim dates), we want to share all the evidence with you, and ask that you would join us in prayerful discussion and in sincerely seeking Elohim to confirm the correct way to reckon Aviv.

    Yahweh's Three Signs or Beacons of Reckoning

    To begin with, we would like to start by retouching the important foundations we need to understand about Elohim's calendar and time keeping before we get deeper into the Aviv problem itself. The Testimony of Scripture is that Elohim appointed the Sun, Moon and Stars not only to give us light, but to be signs or beacons to us by which we would reckon the divine appointments (or Sacred Festivals) He has set for us:

      "And Elohim (God) said, 'Let there be lights in the expanse of the heavens to separate the day from the night. And let them be for otot (signs / beacons) and for moedim (seasons / appointed times), and for days and years, and let them be lights in the expanse of the heavens to give light upon the earth.' And it was so. And Elohim made (the Hebrew says 'appointed') the two great lights - the greater light (Sun) to rule the day and the lesser light (Moon) to rule the night - and the stars. And Elohim set them in the expanse of the heavens to give light on the earth, to rule over the day and over the night, and to separate the light from the darkness. And God saw that it was good." (Gen.1:14-18, ESV).

      "He made the moon to mark the moedim (seasons / appointed times); the sun knows its time for setting" (Psalm 104:19, ESV).

    Prophetic Markers

    Except for acting as beacons for time keeping and reckoning of moedim (sacred appointments with our Maker), Scripture also testifies that Elohim sometimes uses the Sun, Moon and stars as markers of prophetic significance:

      "Now after Yah'shua (Jesus) was born in Bethlehem of Judea in the days of Herod the king, behold, wise men from the east came to Jerusalem, saying, 'Where is he who has been born king of the Jews? For we saw his star when it rose [in the east] and have come to worship him.' … After listening to the king, they went on their way. And behold, the star that they had seen when it rose [in the east] went before them until it came to rest over the place where the child was. When they saw the star, they rejoiced exceedingly with great joy" (Matthew 2:1-2, 2:9-10 ESV).

      "[And leading up to Yah'shua's second coming] there will be signs in sun and moon and stars, and on the earth distress of nations in perplexity because of the roaring of the sea and the waves… " (Luke 21:25, ESV)

    Divine Time-Keeping for All

    The calendar Father Yah has marked for us in the expanse of the heavens is a great blessing, for He has granted us a heavenly timepiece that no man will be able to take or hide from us, and that will always be accurate, regardless of our position on earth; all we need to do is learn how to read it. He has taken out the 'middle man', so we do not need to be dependent on men or complicated (privileged) calculations that can only be done by a few, but has made it simple enough that we can teach a young child how to observe it. This will be especially important for us as the Bride when the time of Tribulation comes and we will be limited in the communication and computing we will be able to do. It will be a time we will need to know how to read the heavens ourselves in order to keep the divine appointments with our Maker.

    First Foundational Principle: Day-Start

    So what do we need to understand first in order be able correctly read the heavens before attempting to determine when the month of Aviv is?

    Sunrise to Sunrise Days

    The first foundational principle we need to understand is that a biblical day is from Sunrise to Sunrise, not from Sunset to sunset.

    Proof-Texts for Sunrise Day Start

    Though Brother Christopher Warren (Lev-Tsiyon) goes into more detail about the biblical evidence for Sunrise to Sunrise days at verses I found especially helped confirm this for me were Exodus 16:22-30, but especially verse 24, where Father Yah is in the process of especially teaching the Israelites how to keep Shabbat:

      "And so it was, on the sixth day, that they gathered twice as much bread, two omers for each one. And all the rulers of the congregation came and told Moses. Then he said to them, 'This is what Yahweh has said: 'Tomorrow is a Sabbath rest, a holy Sabbath to Yahweh. Bake what you will bake today, and boil what you will boil; and lay up for yourselves all that remains, to be kept until morning'.' So they laid it up till morning, as Moses commanded; and it did not stink, nor were there any worms in it. Then Moses said, 'Eat that today, for today is a Sabbath to Yahweh; today you will not find it in the field. Six days you shall gather it, but on the seventh day, the Sabbath, there will be none'"

      "Now it happened that some of the people went out on the seventh day to gather, but they found none. And Yahweh said to Moses, 'How long do you refuse to keep My mitzvot (commandments) and My laws? See! For Yahweh has given you the Sabbath; therefore He gives you on the sixth day bread for two days. Let every man remain in his place; let no man go out of his place on the seventh day.' So the people rested on the seventh day." (Exodus 16:22-30, ESV)

    Collecting Manna

    Verse 23 points out that they worked through the night until morning to lay up the manna "as Moses commanded" - namely, to prepare and lay it up on the 6th day before the Shabbat began - and then in verse 25 points out in the morning Moses said: "Eat that today, for today is a Shabbat to Yahweh; today you will not find it in the field."

    Contradictions in the Sunset Model

    These verses would not be possible if a day was always reckoned from sunset to sunset, because if it was, they would either have been breaking Shabbat by working through the night until morning (and with these verses, we can note that Elohim was angry at those who broke Shabbat by going out to look for manna when they were told there wouldn't be, but not those that had worked through the night ("as Moses commanded"), or otherwise (if we worked with the understanding of sunset to sunset and said they had worked through the night proceeding the 6th day), when the morning after the night they had worked came it wouldn't have been Sabbath and they still would have been able to collect manna... however, in these verses Moses especially said in the morning that it was the Shabbat, and there wouldn't be any new manna.

    Yom haKippurim is Different

    These verses couldn't be explained with the teaching of biblical days and Shabbats normally being from sunset to sunset, and that it could only make sense from sunrise to sunrise. That would also make sense why Elohim explained the way the Yom haKippurim Shabbat and fast was to be kept, since it would have been different from how Shabbat was normally reckoned from Sunrise to Sunrise.

    Second Foundation Principle: Conjunction vs. First Visible Crescent

    The second foundational principle we need to understand is that Rosh Chodesh or New Moon starts with the observation of the Conjunction Day (when the moon is invisible/dark), not with the first visible crescent.

    How Do You Observe an Invisible Moon?

    Some may ask how or if it's even possible to observe the moon when it's supposed to be invisible. To help understand this, it may be useful to look at some diagrams of what the moon looks like and how it moves as it progresses through its phases in a lunar month.

    The Sunset Model Illustrated

    Below in Figure 1 we see the change of the moon's phase and approximate position if we were watching the sky's dome nightly at sunset (viewing it from the Northern Hemisphere, facing South) for the first 15 days of the Lunar Month, known as the waxing (growing) moon. The dark (or new) moon would begin on the far right to the West, and night by night as the moon waxed to the full moon move towards the extreme left in the East. As the moon is waxing (growing), the moon will look slightly bigger every night.

    Notice that there are approximately 7 days from the day 1 (new moon) to the first quarter moon (day 8), the first Sabbath. And there are approximately seven days from the 8th to the 15th (full moon), the second Sabbath.

    The Sunrise Model Illustrated

    Figure 2 below shows the change of the moon's phase and approximate position if we were watching the sky's dome at sunrise (viewing it from the Northern Hemisphere, facing South still) for the last 15 days of the Lunar Month, known as the waning (growing) moon. The full moon (day 15) would begin to the west (far right) and gradually progress to the 'invisible moon' dark of the moon, moving towards the East (extreme left). During the waning moon, the moon is up during a portion of the day. This time the moon seems to gets a little smaller every day. Once again, we notice there are about seven days from the full moon to the 22nd (the third quarter moon), the 3rd Sabbath, and that seven days after that is the 29th (no moon) the last Sabbath of the month.

    So what significance does this have for us trying to observe the New Moon or Conjunction Day?

    The Significance of Conjunction and Why the Temple Faces East

    We note from Scripture that the temple was built so the entrance faced the East. Those entering the temple faced the West (as a prohibitive measure, so Israel would not worship the rising sun). The priests who were tasked with opening the doors on the moedim days (the Sabbaths, New Moons and Feasts), however, would face toward the East and the rising sun, and with good reason. As the moon grows old (wanes), every morning a smaller and smaller crescent is seen closer and closer to the eastern horizon where the sun will rise, the moonrise shortly before sunrise. Conjunction day is the day the sun rises without the moon being seen first.

    When the Moon is Invisible for Two Days

    There are some months where for two consecutive days the moon is not seen before the sunrise. In this case, the first day is the 30th and final day of the concluding month, and the second day is Rosh Chodesh and the first day of the new month.

    Differences in Calculated and Observable Conjunction Moments

    I would like to make a note here that the moon remains invisible to the naked eye for between 17-24 hours before and after the calculated 'moment of conjunction' provided by most calendars or calculators, depending on the time of year. This means it's possible for the calculated 'moment' of conjunction to happen late on a given afternoon, but only be observable at sunrise the next morning, making the Next day New Moon day. For further information and evidence of months starting with Conjunction, you can read more here.

    How Do We identify the First Month of the Year?

    Now that we understand when biblical days begin and how to observe and mark Rosh Chodesh (marking the first day of a new month), we can finally approach our big question - how do we know which lunar month is Aviv, the first month of a new Scriptural Year?

    Exodus Instructions

    In Exodus 12 as the people of Israel were awaiting deliverance, Yahweh instructed Moses:

      "This month [Aviv] shall be for you the beginning of months. It shall be the first month of the year for you…" (Exodus 12:2-20, ESV)

    Aviv and the Spring Festivals

    Yahweh then proceeded to give Moses the instructions for Passover (Exodus 12:3-11), explaining that He would pass through the land on the night of the 14th of that month and strike down the firstborn of the Egyptians and all who had not applied the lamb's blood to their door posts (Exodus 12:3-13), and telling the Israelites that this was to be a memorial day to be kept throughout generations, as a statute forever (Exodus 12:14), and that both the Feast of Passover and Unleavened Bread were to be kept as memorials that He brought them out of Egypt at that time. (Exodus 12:17).

    The Commandment to Keep the Aviv Order

    After Father Yah kept His word on the night of the 14th day of that month, killing the firstborn of Egypt and bringing Israel out on the 15th Day, Scripture records Moses' words to the people:

      "Then Moses said to the people, 'Remember this day in which you came out from Egypt, out of the house of slavery, for by a strong hand Yahweh brought you out from this place. No leavened bread (matzah) shall be eaten. Today, in the month of Aviv, you are going out. And when Yahweh brings you into the land of the Canaanites, the Hittites, the Amorites, the Hivites, and the Jebusites, which He swore to your fathers to give you, a land flowing with milk and honey, you shall keep this service in this month. Seven days you shall eat unleavened bread, and on the seventh day there shall be a feast to Yahweh. Unleavened bread shall be eaten for seven days; no leavened bread shall be seen with you, and no leaven shall be seen with you in all your territory. You shall tell your son on that day, 'It is because of what Yahweh did for me when I came out of Egypt.' And it shall be to you as a sign on your hand and as a memorial between your eyes, that the law of Yahweh may be in your mouth. For with a strong hand Yahweh has brought you out of Egypt. You shall therefore keep this statute at its appointed time from year to year" (Exodus 13:3-10).

    The Assumptions the Bible Makes About Calendar Reckoning

    Except for being told that Aviv is the same lunar month as the month that Israel was brought out from Egypt, Scripture says no more about how to reckon Aviv, and we find ourselves faced with the challenge of how to determine when the deliverance of Exodus happened. We find that it was assumed that the people being spoken to would know how to recognise the same month year after year, without need for further instruction (much the same way old recipe books seem to leave gaping holes for modern cooks, as the writers took for granted that their readerships would understand how to execute certain procedures without further explanation).

    Barley for Yom haBikkurim, Not for Aviv 1

    So what more do we know about that month? In context, we know that this was in or near spring, and that the first ripe ears of barley were to be brought to Elohim as a firstfruit offering. For this reason, many members in the Messianic community believe that Aviv should be determined by when the first ripe ears of Barley are spotted in Israel. Though this reasoning can be understandable to a degree, we ultimately find the reasoning to be Scripturally flawed.

    Keeping the Moedim in the Barleyless Desert

    Scripture records that Israel kept both Passover and the moedim (divine appointments) with Yah during their 40 years of desert wandering, when they would have had no way of knowing or finding out what the state of ripeness of the barley would be in the Promised land.

    Heavenly Bodies, Not Barley for Seasonal Calculations

    Genesis 1:14 states in plain language that the heavenly bodies are to be for "signs and appointed times, and for days and years." There is no mention of vegetation in this passage, and nowhere in Scripture is it stated that the beginning of the year is to be determined by examining barley. To suggest that the New Year hinges on the ripeness of the barley, when Scripture clearly declares that the heavenly bodies are to determine years, is to add to Yahweh's Word.

      "You shall not add to the word that I command you, nor take from it, that you may keep the commandments of Yahweh your Elohim that I command you" (Deuteronomy 4:2, ESV).

      "Everything that I command you, you shall be careful to do. You shall not add to it or take from it" (Deuteronomy 12:32, ESV).

      "Every word of Elohim proves true; He is a shield to those who take refuge in him. Do not add to his words, lest he rebuke you and you be found a liar" (Proverbs 30:5-6, ESV).

    Marking the Festivals During Days of Tribulation

    In the light of Scripture, we understand that the way Israel (and we) are to determine the New Year and the month of Aviv must somehow be marked by the heavenly bodies - the sun, moon and stars. (Again, we should thank Yah for His wisdom for marking his calendar in the heavens, for when the Tribulation comes and communication will be made very difficult, it would be impossible for the Bride to find out the ripeness of Barley in Israel).

    Looking to Historical Sources

    Since Scripture tells us no more about how Israel recognised by the heavenly bodies which was the month of Aviv - the same lunar month as the month that they exited Egypt - we need to look at what other historical sources can tell us about how Israel reckoned the Aviv.

    Eusebius

    We will start by looking at a quote from Eusebius of Caesarea, bishop of Caesarea about 314 AD, a scholar of the Biblical canon and is regarded as an extremely well learned by Christians of his time:

      "Anatolius did not write very many works; but in such as have come down to us we can discern his eloquence and erudition. In these he states particularly his opinions on the Passover. It seems important to give here the following extracts from them.

      "From the Paschal Canons of Anatolius. There is then in the first year the new moon of the first month, which is the beginning of every cycle of nineteen years, on the twenty-sixth day of the Egyptian Phamenoth; but according to the months of the Macedonians, the twenty-second day of Dystrus, or, as the Romans would say, the eleventh before the Kalends of April.

      "On the said twenty-sixth of Phamenoth, the sun is found not only entered on the first [constellation] segment, but already passing through the fourth day in it. They are accustomed to call this segment the first dodecatomorion, and the equinox, and the beginning of months, and the head of the cycle, and the starting-point of the planetary circuit. But they call the one preceding this the last of months, and the twelfth segment, and the final dodecatomorion, and the end of the planetary circuit. Wherefore we maintain that those who place the first month in it, and determine by it the fourteenth of the Passover, commit no slight or common blunder.

      "And this is not an opinion of our own; but it was known to the Jews of old, even before Christ, and was carefully observed by them. This may be learned from what is said by Philo, Josephus, and Musæus; and not only by them, but also by those yet more ancient, the two Agathobuli, surnamed 'Masters,' and the famous Aristobulus, who was chosen among the seventy interpreters of the sacred and divine Hebrew Scriptures by Ptolemy Philadelphus and his father, and who also dedicated his exegetical books on the law of Moses to the same kings.

      "These writers, explaining questions in regard to the Exodus, say that all alike should sacrifice the Passover offerings after the vernal equinox, in the middle of the first [lunar] month. But this occurs while the sun is passing through the first [constellation] segment of the solar, or as some of them have styled it, the zodiacal circle. Aristobulus adds that it is necessary for the feast of the Passover, that not only the sun should pass through the equinoctial segment, but the moon also. For as there are two equinoctial segments, the vernal and the autumnal, directly opposite each other, and as the day of the Passover was appointed on the fourteenth of the month, beginning with the evening, the moon will hold a position diametrically opposite the sun, as may be seen in full moons; and the sun will be in the segment of the vernal equinox, and of necessity the moon in that of the autumnal [equinox]" (Eusebius, Ecclesiastical History, Book 7, Chapter 32, Section 13 - 18).

    Philo and Josephus

    Additionally, let us also look at quotes from two historians referenced by Eusebius, namely Philo and Josephus:

      "(Scripture) thinks it proper to reckon the cycle of months from the vernal equinox. Moreover, (this month) is said to be the 'first' and the 'beginning' by synonymy, since these (terms) are explained by each other, for it is said to be the first both in order and in power; similarly that time which proceeds from the vernal equinox also appears (as) the beginning both in order and in power, in the same way as the head (is the beginning) of a living creature. And thus those who are learned in astronomy have given this name to the before-mentioned time. For they call the Ram the head of the zodiac since in it the sun appears to produce the vernal equinox" (Philo, Questions and Answers on Exodus, Chapter 1, Section 1).

      "In the month of Xanthicus, [the first month of the Macedonian Luni-solar calendar in usethe time], which is by us called Nisan [or Aviv], and is the beginning of our year, on the fourteenth day of the lunar month, when the sun is in Aries, (for in this month it was that we were delivered from bondage under the Egyptians), the law ordained that we should every year slay that sacrifice which I before told you we slew when we came out of Egypt, and which was called the Passover; and so we do celebrate this Passover in companies, leaving nothing of what we sacrifice till the day following" (Josephus, Antiquities, Book 3, Chapter 10, Section 3).

    Passover After the Equinox, Sun in the Ram

    From these historical sources, we find two important facts - firstly, that Passover happened after the vernal (spring) equinox, and secondly, that the Sun was in the constellation called the Ram (or Aries, as it was called by the Greeks). Up until now, we've seen how Father Yah uses both the Sun and moon in marking times, but we have yet to see what rôle the stars, the final heavenly lights mentioned in Genesis, might play.

    Story of the Twelve Mazzarot

    Though there are different constellations that appear in different seasons in the year (some visible only for their short seasons and some visible throughout), the most significant are the 12 constellations that the Sun and Moon move through as they journey across the sky. These constellations (called the Mazzarot by the Hebrews and the Zodiac by the Greeks) precede in a fixed order, as acknowledged in Scripture:

      "Thus says Yahweh, who gives the sun for light by day and the fixed order of the moon and the stars for light by night, who stirs up the sea so that its waves roar - Yahweh of hosts is his name…" (Jeremiah 31:35, ESV)

      "Can you bring forth the constellations (mazzarot) in their seasons or lead out the Bear with its cubs?" (Job 38:32, NIV)

    Israel and the Heavenly Bodies

    It's interesting that Scripture (and some historians like Josephus and Philo), noted that there was a parallel between Elohim's creation of the Sun, moon and stars and the nation of Israel. An example of this in Scripture was Joseph's dream:

      "Then he [Joseph] dreamed another dream and told it to his brothers and said, 'Behold, I have dreamed another dream. Behold, the sun, the moon, and eleven stars [constellations] were bowing down to me.' But when he told it to his father and to his brothers, his father rebuked him and said to him, 'What is this dream that you have dreamed? Shall I and your mother and your brothers indeed come to bow ourselves to the ground before you?' And his brothers were jealous of him, but his father kept the saying in mind." (Gen 37:9-11, ESV)

    Symbolism of Joseph's Prophetic Dream

    In this, we see that Joseph's family understood that the dream represented them - the Sun represented Jacob, the moon represented Rebecca, and the 11 constellations represented his brothers, and by extension, he being the 12th constellation.

    The Twelve Constellations

    These 12 constellations in order are:

    • The Ram
    • The Bull
    • The Twins
    • The Crab
    • The Lion
    • The Virgin
    • The Scales
    • The Scorpion (also the Eagle)
    • The Archer
    • The Goat
    • The Cup- or Water-Bearer
    • The Fish

    Astrology and Star Worship Condemned

    At this point I want to pause and emphasize that we are NOT talking about or promoting Astrology which tries to predict the future based on which 'star sign' someone was supposed to be born in, nor worshipping the heavenly bodies, for Father Yah has clearly forbidden it:

      "And beware lest you raise your eyes to heaven, and when you see the sun and the moon and the stars, all the host of heaven, you be drawn away and bow down to them and serve them, things that Yahweh your God has allotted to all the peoples under the whole heaven" (Deuteronomy 4:19, ESV).

      "If there is found among you, within any of your towns that Yahweh your Elohim is giving you, a man or woman who does what is evil in the sight of Yahweh your Elohim, in transgressing his covenant, and has gone and served other gods and worshiped them, or the sun or the moon or any of the host of heaven (stars), which I have forbidden, and it is told you and you hear of it, then you shall inquire diligently, and if it is true and certain that such an abomination has been done in Israel, then you shall bring out to your gates that man or woman who has done this evil thing, and you shall stone that man or woman to death with stones" (Deuteronomy 17:2-5, ESV)

      "You shall not practice divination or soothsaying" (Leviticus 19:26, ESV).

      "When you enter the land that Yahweh your Elohim is giving you, you shall not learn to imitate the abhorrent practices of the nations. Let no one be found among you who...is an auger, a soothsayer, a diviner, a sorcerer, one casts spells.....For anyone who does these things is abhorrent to Yahweh..." (Deuteronomy 18:9-12, ESV).

    Testimony of the Heavenly Design

    What we are trying to do is see the creation rôle Father Yahweh appointed to these constellations in His heavenly design. What we want is the correct understanding of how they testify and point to Yahweh, while putting aside the corrupt and counterfeit understandings and interpretations that the Enemy has spewed into this world. For indeed, as the Scriptures testify:

      "The heavens declare the glory of Elohim;
      And the firmament shows His handiwork.
      Day unto day utters speech,
      And night unto night reveals knowledge.
      There is no speech nor language
      Where their voice is not heard.
      Their line [ , literally measuring line] has gone out through all the earth,
      And their words to the end of the world.

      "In them He has set a tabernacle for the sun,
      Which is like a bridegroom coming out of his chamber,
      And rejoices like a strong man to run its race.
      Its rising is from one end of heaven,
      And its circuit to the other end;
      And there is nothing hidden from its heat"
      (Psalm 19:1-6 NKJV).

    The Measuring Line

    If we were to compare the heavens to a watch, the sun and moon move like clock hands through these constellations which act as numbers on the heavenly 'clock face'. It takes the sun a year to complete its circuit through all 12 constellations in its path (spending about a month in each constellation), whereas it takes the moon just over 27 days to complete its circuit. Like David said in Psalm 19:4, the 12 Mazzarot constellations act as a measuring line of the year, that can be seen throughout all the earth.

    From One Constellation to the Next

    What significance does this have in the creation calendar? It means that every month, when the moon lines up with the sun to be marked as the New Moon (which marks Rosh Chodesh), that the sun and moon are found in the same constellation, progressing to a new constellation each lunar month. Each month finds itself marked by a unique constellation.

    How Do You Observe the Sun and Moon in a Constellation?

    But how would someone observe this? And how would they know which constellation the sun and moon were in on Rosh Chodesh (especially when the moon is supposed to be invisible)?

    Between the Constellations

    The stars, like the sun, rise and set on the horizon. We can determine which constellation the sun is in (as ancient astronomers did) by noting which is the last constellation of the Mazzarot to rise ahead of the Sun, or the first to set after it. The Sun is in the constellation 'in between' these two constellations.

    The View from the Temple Doors

    This means that as the priests would look out from the temple doors to observe Rosh Chodesh, they would not only see that it was conjunction day by seeing the sun rising without seeing the moon first, but they would also know which month it was by noting which constellation the sun rose in on that Rosh Chodesh Day. If the last constellation they could observe before the sun rose was The Fish, then they would know that the sun was rising in The Ram.

    The Star of Bethlehem

    When I shared this revelation with a loved one, they asked me if there was any kind of Scriptural evidence for noting the stars at sunrise, and at the time of their asking, didn't have an answer for them. While preparing these notes to share with you for consideration, Yahweh did, however, have an answer:

      "Now after Yah'shua (Jesus) was born in Bethlehem of Judea in the days of Herod the king, behold, wise men from the East came to Jerusalem,saying, 'Where is He who has been born King of the Jews? For we have seen His star in the East [Strongs 395] and have come to worship Him.' … When they heard the king, they departed; and behold, the star which they had seen in the East [Strongs 395] went before them, till it came and stood over where the young Child was. When they saw the star, they rejoiced with exceedingly great joy" (Matthew 2:1-2; 2:9-10 NKJV).

    East is Sunrise

    The word translated in these verses as 'East' is also the word translated as sunrise. (http://biblehub.com/greek/395.htm). The wise men were telling the king that they had seen this unique star rise with the Sun in the East, and that the understood it to be marking a significant time or event, namely the birth of Israel's King. We notice that King Herod didn't question or argue the validity of taking note of a star rising in the East with the sun - rather, his reaction was to try to find out where the child was so he could kill him.

    Pesach in the Ram, Yom haKippurim in the Scales

    It's interesting to notice the prophetic significance that Elohim would not only allow Pesach (Passover) to be in the month marked by the constellation of The Ram, but that Yah'shua's crucifixion - the sacrifice of the Lamb of Elohim - happened in the month marked by the Ram (1 April, 33 AD). Also, if the first month was marked by The Ram, we notice the 7th month - the month of Yom haKippurim, the time for atonements and weighing of the nation of Israel - is marked by the constellation of The Scales.

    The Thirteenth Month and the Snake Restrainer

    Some may ask what would happen in a year where there is a 13th lunar month? There is a 13th constellation that crosses the path of the Sun and Moons, namely the Snake Restrainer (which goes by the Greek name Ophiuchus), which lies between the Scorpion and The Archer. Traditionally, the Snake Restrainer was considered to be trampling The Scorpion, as mentioned by Eudoxus of Cnidus. At present, our understanding is that a New Moon will only appear in the Snake Restrainer's feet on a year that requires a 13th month.

    The Ram Aftert the Ancient Spring Equinox

    As Philo and Jospehus both note, during their time The Ram was always the first constellation to happen directly after the vernal (spring) equinox and lead in the other 12 months.

    The problem with Precession of the Equinoxes

    Today, however, this no longer remains true. Because of an astronomical phenomenon called precession, every 2,000 years or so the last constellation moves to become first constellation at the vernal equinox. This means there was a period a few thousand years ago when the Vernal Equinox started with The Bull rather than the Ram. This explains ancient calendars found at Qumran that start with the Bull rather than the Ram, as well as one of Egypt's ancient idols, Apis (which was the model for Israel's golden calf), modelled as a bull with the sun between its horns - a reflection of a time when the vernal equinox began in The Bull.

    Today the Fish is the Marker After the Equinox

    Though the Ram was the first constellation to mark the Lunar Month directly after the equinox at the Exodus and crucifixion, today The Fish marks the first month at or immediately after the vernal equinox, followed the next month by The Ram.

    The Dilemma to be Resolved

    In the light of this, we are faced with an important question - what is the correct way of reckoning Aviv now that the Ram is no longer the first Constellation seen immediately after the equinox? Is it Father Yah's will for us to continue observing the Lunar Month marked by The Ram as Aviv (as this was the sign that marked the month Israel exited Egypt), or is it His will for us to always mark the first lunar month after the vernal equinox, which is now The Fish, as Aviv instead?

    The Task of NCAY

    This is a big question for us as a community, both because it will determine whether Aviv will be starting this Year (2015) with the March or April New Moon, and because it will affect our calendar reckoning going forward. Once we have surety from Elohim as to the correct timing, I will also update the code of the online calendar, which we provide to assist people in being able to plan ahead. Thus we ask that you would give this deep consideration and prayer with us, that Yah would lead us clearly in His will.

    Blessings in Yah'shua!


    COMMENTARIES BY NCAY MEMBERS & INVESTIGATORS

  • 1. FRANÇOIS VAN STADEN (South Africa Mission)

    Shalom Pastor Chris,

    The Countdown Reveals Rosh Chodesh II

    Don't we already have the answer? I'm thinking of the vision you had about 72 counting down. Did Abba Yah not reveal to us when Rosh Chodesh will be on the second month? Can we then not calculate from there backwards to get to 1 Aviv?

  • 2. SARAH POMEROY (UK-Eire Mission)

    Dear Christopher,

    I've spent the better part of the day digging into the calendar trying to find any historical evidence I can to help solve the problem.

    Firstly, reading Deborah's letter, it very much resonated within me and left me with the thought "There is something in this!"

    Over the years I've read various pieces, and had various dreams about the significance of the stars. Coincidentally, last night before we opened this email this morning, my husband and I had a discussion about how we need to study stars for navigation purposes...on the basis that if we lose GPS or what-not, we need to know where we are going.

    Testimony of the Ancient Britons

    Okay, what I have found today in regards to Aviv. The Celtic church, though abandoning the biblical Pesach, observed Paschal from the 14th-21st days following the new moon in the new year (Lev.23), and determined their new year by observing the vernal equinox. According to historical documents, the Celts/Britons/Scots all kept to this method of observing the beginning of the year, much to the consternation of Augustus and the RCC (Roman Catholic Church). Here is an interesting quote:

      "Now the Britons did not keep Easter at the correct time, but between the fourteenth and twentieth days of the moon -- a calculation depending on a cycle of eighty-four years. Furthermore, certain other of their customs were at variance with the universal practice of the Church. But despite protracted discussions, neither the prayers, advice, nor censures of Augustine and his companions could obtain the compliance of the Britons, who stubbornly preferred their own customs to those in universal use among Christian Churches.... The Britons admitted that his teaching was true and right, but said again that they could not abandon their ancient customs without the consent and approval of their own people..." (Reference)

    This wouldnt be of much consequence except when couple with the knowledge of the Celtic and Scot peoples' origins, the tribes of Dan and Judah. Their observance of 'paschal' stemmed from ancient tradition, so ingrained that they were willing to face persecution over it.

    Destruction of the Golden Calf

    Okay, so how does this fit in with the stars? Well, here are some other interesting things I found out. As Deborah pointed out in her letter, precession changes the first constellation after the equinox every 2,000 years. The constellation setting the order during the time of Egypt was the bull/cow. The Hebrews built this cow at the foot of mount Sinai with the sun inbetween its horns, and then Moses destroys it...all at the same time the Ram constellation takes over. Then 2000 years later we have the fulfillment of the Ram with the death, burial and resurrection of the Passover Lamb, Yah'shua...and around the same time, the fish constellation takes over from the ram. Interestingly, this is spoken of in scripture:

      "But He answered and said to them, 'An evil and adulterous generation seeks after a sign, and no sign will be given to it except the sign of the prophet Jonah. For as Jonah was three days and three nights in the belly of the great fish, so will the Son of Man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth. The men of Nineveh will rise up in the judgment with this generation and condemn it, because they repented at the preaching of Jonah; and indeed a greater than Jonah is here. The queen of the South will rise up in the judgment with this generation and condemn it, for she came from the ends of the earth to hear the wisdom of Solomon; and indeed a greater than Solomon is here" (Matthew 12:39-42)

    What if we are to use the sun, the moon AND the stars as our markers not just for where we are in the year, but for where we are in the ages?

    If what I have read is right and the beginning of the year was marked by the vernal equinox and the new moon, we have this scenario:

    • Vernal equinox date: March 20th
    • March New Moon (first sighting): March 20th
    • Actual New Moon ("invisible"): March 19th

    By these dates, March wouldn't work, the new moon in March is before the vernal equinox. we would have to wait for the new moon in April. This would then have Aviv falling on a the 'Fish' constellation...which seems to be fitting for the messianic age...maybe this is also where the Christian fish symbol also arises from, bar the various pagan associations....but that is what the enemy does isnt it, takes truth, and corrupts it?

    Queen of the South?

    Further to the Jonah prophecy, the Queen of the south is also a constellation... food for thought I hope!

    Comment from Deborah Peterson:

    This year, the March New Moon is happening on the same day as the calculated equinox (the moment when the sun's path passes the equator). In the past, we were unsure how to reckon this and if this was indeed Aviv. This year however after much prayer we have received assurance that it is the beginning of Aviv, and that though the calculated moments may be slightly different, that by observation the March New Moon will show itself to be the one closest to (this year coinciding) with the equinox.

  • 3. GABRIEL LJUNGSTRAND (Swedish Mission & MLT)

    The Primacy of the Two Great Lights

    I also believe the countdown is to Rosh Chodesh II. I believe the most important is scripture, not historic documents, Jewish or Christian. In Genesis 1:14-16 Elohim MADE (not created) TWO GREAT LIGHTS, the GREATER AND THE LESSER, also the stars for SIGNS (OTH) and SEASONS (MOEDIM) and for days and years!

    An Important Divine Pattern

    I see a pattern (tavnith) that the SUN is most important, then the moon and only at place 3 the stars (including MAZZAROT) For new year that is in spring (aviv) the vernal equinox is the most important point in time and all civilisations knew that at the time of exodus. After that comes Rosh Chodesh as close as possible.

    2015 An Exceptional Year

    THIS EXCEPTIONAL YEAR ROSH CHODESH IS EXACTLY ON THE EQUINOX AND THEREFORE THE TRUE ROSH HASHANA!!!

    Satan's Corruption of the Mazzarot

    About the mazzarot Satan could not create astrology, just currupt Yahweh's prophetic speech in the zodiac. See Psalm 19 and App 12 of Companion Bible! Aries, the ram, speaks about the sacrifice of Yah'shua as our Pesach; Pisces, the fishes, speak of disciples being fishers of men with Shavu'ot anointing and Aquarius, the waterbearer speaks of the coming Sukkot anointing, the total outpouring of the Ruach over all flesh. MY UNDERSTANDING IS THAT 20 March, both spring equinox and Rosh Chodesh is ROSH HASHANA THIS UNIQUE YEAR!!!

    See Bullinger's Compantion Bible under 'Stars' about the Creator's message in the stars!!!

  • 4. DEBORAH PETERSON (South Africa Mission)

    After much prayer and consideration, I feel more assured myself that Aviv is the first New Moon after the observed vernal equinox (which happens 3-4 days before the calculated equinox). As Brother Gabriel pointed out, Father Yah gave the Sun and Moon as the greater heavenly lights, and that years would be calculated based on them before the stars. I do see that there was a prophetic picture at the time of the Exodus and the crucifixion (in that Passover then fell in the month marked by the Ram and Yom haKippurim in the month of the Scales), and wonder what the prophetic significance is now that Aviv is marked by the Fish instead. I think we have much yet to learn about how the heavens declare Father Yah's glory and work!

    The New Moon and Solar Eclipse

    While I was still unsure which New Moon this year would be Aviv (the one in March or April), someone pointed out to me that the New Moon in March would be accompanied by an eclipse, and expressed their belief that it was confirmation of it being the Aviv New Moon. At the time, though I could see the eclipse being significant in some way, I did not see it as conclusive evidence of the March New Moon being the beginning of Aviv.

    Closest New Moon to the Vernal Equinox

    After much prayer and discussion with other believers, I came to a point where I do believe that Aviv is the first / closest New Moon to the vernal equinox and that this year the March New Moon is the beginning of Aviv. This morning while reading through some astronomy notes, I came across something that seemed to confirm to me that that the solar eclipse that is occurring with the March New Moon in some ways do confirm that it is Aviv.

    The path of the moon is slightly offset from the path of the sun, but it crosses the sun's path at two points, traditionally called nodes. If a Full Moon occurs while the moon is passing through a node (the place where the moon's path crosses the sun's path), a Lunar Eclipse occurs as the earth shadow falls on the moon. If a New Moon occurs when the moon is passing through a node, a solar eclipse happens as the moon lines up directly in front of the sun.

    Perfect Synchronisation of Solar and Lunar in 2015

    That means this year, the March New Moon will not only start in sync with the start of the 'solar new year' marked by the equinox, but also that the sun, moon and earth will be perfectly 'aligned' in their starting positions as the eclipse occurs - Sun at the point of observed equinox and Moon in its New Moon phase, their paths crossing to perfectly 'line up' the sun, moon and earth.

    It makes me wonder the significance is of this coming year (and this particular Aviv) that Father Yah would choose to mark its start in this way - not only that the year starts at the equinox, but that on the Aviv New Moon both the moon and the sun will be dark at some point. May Father Yah grant us revelation and insight!


    C. QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS (Q&A) SECTION

  • 5. SILVAN WOLF (German Mission)

    Q. With this passage I have some problem of understanding:

      "There are some months where for two consecutive days the moon is not seen before the sunrise. In this case, the first day is the 30th and final day of the concluding month, and the second day is Rosh Chodesh and the first day of the new month."

    I always understood that when I see no moon nefore sunrise I will definitely celebrate THAT day R[osh] C[hodesh]. How should I anyhow know a day before that I will again NOT see the moon a second day?

    Response from Deborah Peterson:

    A. When observing for New Moon, when starting it is helpful to observe both at sunrise and at sunset. On dark days, the moon will not only be invisible just before sunrise, but it won't be seen at or just after sunset. On the 2nd day of the month, the first visible crescent will be visible at or just after sunset.

    Since it is possible for the moon to be invisible to the naked eye two consecutive days, how would we know if today would be the only dark day (and the first day of the new month) or the first of two dark days (and only the 30th day of the old month, with tomorrow being the 1st day of the new month)?

    Taking note of the number of days from the previous New Moon, namely what day it is in the current biblical month, can help. We know that all biblical months are either 29 or 30 days long. If the moon is invisible before sunrise on the 29th day of the current lunar month, we know that day must be the last day of the current month (a 29 day month) and that the following day will also be dark and Rosh Chodesh (the first day of the new month). Otherwise, if the moon can still be seen just before sunrise on the 29th day of the current lunar month, we know that month will be a 30 day month.

    Scripture indicates that both dark days were be treated as moedim days (as sacred time set apart), though only the second dark day would be considered the first day of the New Month. We find this illustrated in the Hebrew of 1 Samuel 20, when David speaks to Jonathon about hiding from Saul, for fear of his life. David says that the next day would be Rosh Chodesh and that he would be expected at Saul's banquet (1 Samuel 20:5). David was not always required to eat with Saul, but at certain moedim like Rosh Chodesh, Saul would throw banquets which he would require certain people to attend.

    David and Jonathan agree that he should hide for 3 days, and that Jonathon would observe how his father Saul would react to David's absence from the banquet, and that after the 3 days Jonathan would give David a sign if it was safe to return or if he should flee. Scripture tells us that though Saul did not react towards David's absence the next day (the day David pointed out would be Rosh Chodesh), Saul did react violently the day after that when David was still absent. Why? Because this was the second day of the special banquet he held during the Rosh Chodesh which David was required to attend, yet remained absent from, and he was angry at Jonathan for taking David's side. The underlying Hebrew in 1 Samuel 20:27,34 literally means the 2nd day of the new moon (celebration) not the 2nd day of the month as translated in most English translations.

    From this, we can deduce that the day David and Jonathan first spoke must have been the 29th day of the old month. The moon must have just barely been visible before sunrise, so that David knew not only that it would be a 30 day month, but that it would be dark the next day. The next day (the 30th day of the month), would be the first day of the Rosh Chodesh celebration and banquet Saul would give. He agrees with Jonathan to hide 3 days (the 29th, the 30th and the 1st) and to wait for Jonathan's sign on the day following (the 2nd). Saul doesn't react when David isn't at the banquet on the first day of the Rosh Chodesh celebration (30th day), but he does react when David remains absent from the banquet the next day, on the second day of the Rosh Chodesh celebration (1st Day). Jonathan, shocked at his father's violent reaction, warns David the next day (2nd) to flee.


    D. CONCLUSIONS

    Acknowledgements

    I am sure everyone here will join with me in expressing our grattitude to all our contributors to this discussion, some of whom I spoke with by phone, face-to-face or by IM, so there is no record of those conversations I can easily include here. Those who have not appeared here were undecided or unsure and had no particular position. Thanks are especially due to Sister Deborah for all her hard work in preparing the original paper for study and its follow-ups, to Brother François for reminding us of the Countdown, to Brother Gabriel for reminding us of the utmost importance of sticking to Scripture and the primacy of the sun and moon, and to Sister Sarah for her contribution on early British history and the transit between constellations in Sinai. For as you know, the Besorah (Gospel) was already established in my homeland long before the Catholics brought over their corruptions.

    The Question of the Constellations

    My task in concluding this very worthwhile dynamic and cooperative exercise is to clearly establish the will of Yahweh so that there is no error as to establishing a biblically reliable method for determining the New Year and to especially make sure we keep our appointments with Him because this coming year which is extremely important. Inevitably, a number of questions have surfaced in direct connection with this study so perhaps we ought to deal with these first of all. I am speaking now of the importance of the mazzarot or constellations.

    Science in a Useful Supporting Rôle

    The first point that must be made is that there are no instructions in scripture telling us to use the mazzarot to determine the New Year. That a tool may have been discovered by ancient astronomers that uses the stars to confirm already-made calculations is by no means denied and may be a legitimate supporting device in the secondary sense. Scripture is never hostile to accurate observational science, true science being a legitimate domain of enquiry in support of the tools Yahweh has given us for knowing the qodesh (holy, set-apart) times and seasons.

    A Two-Thirds Completed Revelation on the Mazzarot

    I have, over the years, purposefully steered away from using stellar astronomy in resolving theological issues even though we have a two-thirds completed revelation on the stars which has never been published and probably won't be until the remaining third has been received. My great fear has been to potentially create an unhealthy, distracting interest in an area of celestial science that has regrettably often been the stepping stone into that branch of the occult known as astrology by those weak or not otherwise properly grounded in the emunah (faith) who are easily seduced by gnosis as a means to spirituality.

    A Brief History of Ancient Astrology and Its Biblical Impact

    I think it would be useful, therefore, since this subject has been broached, to say a few words on it before we get to the main business of establishing Aviv. What we call 'astrology' today properly belongs to the pagan ancient Greek tradition. Unlike the Greeks, the Babylonians viewed the stars as mere indicators of the will of the gods and not in themselves the causation of events [1]. This Babylonian tradition, from about the second millennium BC onwards, that also influenced the Egyptians, Middle East and India, is called celestial omina or omens and strictly speaking isn't 'astrology' at all. This was the kind of 'astrology' that the ancient Israelites came into contact with for the most part. However, the two occult forms did come to overlap and partially integrate. 'Proper' astrology is genethialogical (horoscopes at birth), catarchic (using the stars to determine the priopriety of a course of action), interrogatory (casting a horoscope in response to a question) and general (the alleged affect of the stars on groups of people, the nations and the world as a whole). Not until the inter-testamental period, when Hellenism was at its height, did this kind of astrology have any impact on the Judahite people. It's impact in Tanakh (Old Testament) times was minimal.

    Astrology's Influence on the Inter-Testamental Writings

    This kind of thinking and divination did, however, negatively impact the many pseudepigraphical and apocryphal works which were written during this later inter-testamental period. Even Qumran (the Dead Sea Scrolls community) was influenced by it which is one reason why we must treat their non-Scriptural works with great caution. Talmudic tradition was certainly positive towards astrology and the influence of the stars was debated (b. SabbS. 156a-b) which is why many early Christian writings went out of their way to decry the Greco-Roman tradition of the interpretation of omens and astrology (e.g. Didache 3:4). Paul's condemnation of the tendency of Galatian converts to be attracted to "observing special days and months and seasons and years" (Gal.4:10, NIV) was not an attack on Yahweh's moedim like the sabbaths, new moons and festivals as antinomians claim but an attack on the tendency of former pagans to be attracted, and revert, back to their former heathen traditions which also did these things, a tendency that resulted historically in syncretism and the rise of neo-pagan Catholicism. These problems likely existed throughout the gentile congregations and there can be little doubt that the Colossians had a particular weakness for astrological reasoning (Col.2:8-23). The widespread belief in astral powers is picked up by Jude too (Jude 8). And though astral and astrological imagery pervade the Book of Revelation no astral influence or power is ever recognised, or so much as even hinted at (Rev.11:12-13; 12:1).

    The Pseudo-Clementine Recognitions and Astrology

    I should perhaps mention in passing, because it is germaine to a serious apostacy taking place in one section of the messianic movement that denies the apostleship of Paul, that their star text (no pun intended), the Pseudo-Clementine Recognitions (1:27-71), written in the third century AD but claimed to be a much earlier work by its adherents, praises astrology and glorfies Abraham as the pre-eminent Astrologer. Some superstitious Christians back then (3rd century) believed that the stars influence non-believers but not believers (Pseudo-Clementine Recognitions 9.31.1), reminding me of one modern Gnostic cult that it was my unpleasant duty to expose many years ago, that believed in the reality of reincarnation but that by being in Christ the cycle of rebirths could be broken. Therefore we absolutely MUST stick to Scripture when dealing with the heavenly bodies and to pure science.

    The Legitimate Use of Astronomy

    Astronomy, by contrast, is kosher, which is why we may safely study and employ it. Indeed, without a basic knowledge of astronomy it is not possible to have calendars at all. The Egyptians, Babylonians, Mayans and others were adept astronomers and whilst their religion was perverse we cannot fault them for their good observational science. The problem is the Babylonians blended their astronomy with their polytheism which resulted in astrology. That our forefathers dealt in astronomy is confirmed by Isaiah 13:10 and Amos 5:8 to cite but two references, which I select because they describe mazzarot or constellations. Job, one of early patriarchs, was certainly familiar with astronomy. But nowhere are we told that these mazzarot were used for determining Aviv, any more than searching for early barley was.

    Bullinger, Warner and Roth

    There is a lot of work to be done on the mazzarot and a few believers have attempted to find some kind of prophetic meaning in them. One of the most credible, in my view, and mentioned by Brother Gabriel, is Ethelbert Bullinger's study, The Stars Also, in Appendix 12 (pp.15-18) of his seminal and very important work, The Companion Bible, prepared over half a century ago and much used by serious scriptorians in this ministry. In many ways it is the defining work on the subject. More modern works (like Tim Warner's, Mystery of the Mazzarot: Prophecy in the Consellations), rely more on historical material than on Scriptural and clearly are lacking in Torah knowledge. It is easy to get preoccupied with speculations and to substitute eisegesis (personal belief) for exegesis (a critical explanation or interpretation of a biblical text) and go off on time-wasting tangents instead of focussing on sound exegesis and the evangel. Even scholarly Torah-based studies can wander seriously off the mark [2] and treat with scorn and disdain the luni-solar creation calendar. Bullinger's short appendix is more than enough grist for the mill, in my opinion, at least for now.

    Conclusion

    It was my belief from the beginning of this study that 20 March 2015 was the correct marker for the New Year and the first Rosh Chodesh of the biblical year. This conviction steadily grew the more we dug into the material surrounding this subject. As I mentioned at the beginning, I had no vision or verbal revelation, just the witness of the Ruach (Spirit) and especially when Brothers François and Gabriel wrote in with their conclusions, and then later, Sister Deborah (who had previously been disposed to an April Aviv) with hers. There are just too many signs that have been given which strongly indicate that Aviv 1 has to be 20 March, so much so that my original leaning has now become a firm conviction. And though I have to confess there is (and of necessity must be) a faith element in all of this, and though I am willing to consider any more information that others may find, I have to say that we shall be sticking with the original revision from April to March and shall be adjusting the Dynamic Calendar accordingly. So this is not a leap year, there is no extra 13th month. We shall calculate Aviv 1, which remarkably this year is actually on the spring equinox (which is why we shall be witnessing a total eclipse of the sun on 20 March), by selecting, in future, that Rosh Chodesh new moon which is closest to the Vernal Equinox. The matter of determining the 13th month, which was one of the questions raised by Brother Gabriel, we shall deal with in greater depth another time as this is involved. One thing we can be sure of is that the current year only has 12 months and we shall be assembling at Aviv 1 for the dedication on 20 March. May Yah bless us for what is going to be a momentous new year!

    Endnotes

    [1] F.Stanley Jones, Astrology in David Noel Freeedman (ed.), Eerdmans Dictionary of the Bible (William B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, Grand Rapids, Michigan: 2000), p.123
    [2] For example, Andrew Gabriel Roth, Wheel of the Stars: The Ancient Biblical Calendar of the Future (Netzari Press LLC: 2010) and author of the useful Aramaic English New Testament

    Acknowledgements

    We would like to take a moment to thank Troy Miller of www.creationcalendar.com. Much truth and useful information was gained from his site which played a big rôle in the creation of the Study that was sent to members by Sister Deborah Peterson for debate and consideration. We encourage him to continue in the good work for the Master.

    Comments from Readers

    [1] "What an incredible article, thank you for including the information I found and I'm glad a conclusion has been found...particularly as I am in NO way a mathematician!" (SP, Ireland, 17 February 2015)
    [2] "I believe this is great research work and I also believe this exercise was VERY necessary to go through. Thank you very much. Shalom!" (FVS, South Africa, 18 February 2015)
    [3] "I love the sermon on the Aviv confusion. It is now very clear to me with the calculations of the brethren" (DA, Kenya, 18 February 2015)

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