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An Appointment with God—Passover

This year (2021) Passover is March 28, but it starts at sundown on March 27 because the Hebrew or Biblical day runs from sundown to sundown. Passover is then followed by a 7-day feast called the Feast of Unleavened Bread. Over time, the two feasts have been grouped together and simply called Passover.

But, what is Passover, or Pesach (PAY-sach)? You may know it as something that the Jewish faith celebrates every year, but what and why are they celebrating?

Passover is one of the seven appointed times (meeting appointments with God) that He scheduled with the Israelites (Jewish people) in Lev. 23:1-2. Through each of these meetings, He reveals more of Himself and calls His followers into a deeper relationship with Him. All seven yearly Feasts or festivals commemorate His faithfulness and the many miracles of deliverance that He performed as He set Israel apart as His own special people. They serve to remind us of His holiness, our impurity, and that, despite the disparity between God and man, He wants us to be in fellowship with Him.

But, you ask, “I am a Gentile, why should I care, even if I follow Yeshua as my Savior?” Well, I’m a Gentile as well, so I’ll try to provide a brief answer to your question.

The fact that these festivals are part of the Old Testament, or better yet Bible Part 1, they are often considered as being irrelevant for New Testament, or Bible Part 2, believers.  However, they open up a complete understanding of the continuity of the Scriptures and just how central Yeshua is to all the festivals. And, Yeshua faithfully observed each of these seven festivals. If we are a follower or disciple of Yeshua shouldn’t we follow His example? After all, a disciple emulates his leader.

So, without digging deeper into that question (we’ll cover that in a future post), let’s move on to the subject of this article, the Feast of Passover. God introduced Passover and the Feast of Unleavened bread in Ex. 12:1-20 and Lev 23:5-8. As you probably recall from Sunday school, the first Passover occurred, on the night of the last plague when God was releasing the Israelites from Egyptian slavery. Now, He could have easily accomplished this very quickly without doing the “plague thing.” However, He wanted the Egyptians to know without a doubt that He was greater than every god they worshipped.  Each of the plagues was a direct assault on one of those gods. I encourage you to read the story of the plagues and the first Passover for yourself. It is found in Exodus 6:28-12:32.

The Passover was the defining moment in Jewish history. God called them out of slavery and delivered them from 400 years of bondage in Egypt to give them a land of their own and make them not only a people but a nation. Now, that is something to celebrate! It even surpasses our Fourth of July. 🙂

Even better, though, is that the Passover is prophetic of the coming of Yeshua. It presents a scene or a shadow of something yet to come. The Feast of Passover looks back to the liberation of Israel from the land of Egypt, and it looks forward to the saving work of the Messiah, Yeshua, our Passover Lamb. Because Yeshua came 2000 years ago, we, Jew and Gentile who follow Him, can celebrate Passover as a celebration of His death as our Passover Lamb and Resurrection as our Savior. There is nothing more worth celebrating than the sacrifice of Yeshua. It completed His purpose of proclaiming that the Kingdom of God is at hand and His call for all mankind to repent of our sins and turn to Him, our once-and-for-all sacrificial Lamb.

The celebration of Passover is centered around a meal. What’s a “feast” without food? The story of the first Passover is retold with various food items as symbols of the suffering and sacrifice associated with the first Passover. Leaven is not permitted at the Passover meal and during the following 7-day Feast of Unleavened bread. Leaven, or yeast, symbolizes impurity, sin.  The Passover feast includes a specific remembrance service called a Seder (SEY-der). The order of the service is outlined in a booklet called a Haggadah (HAH-gah-dah), which means “telling”. It guides the service and prayers using the symbolic food items while it explains the significance of the event. A full-blown Passover Seder can last for hours, though most are only an hour or two.

In future posts, I plan to cover the meaning of the symbolic items in a modern-day Seder, Yeshua’s last Seder before His crucifixion, and the Feast of Unleavened Bread.

Until next time…“May the LORD bless and protect you…May He give you Shalom.” (Numbers 6:24-26)

Bill

Scriptures related to Passover:

Exodus 12:1-20, 39; Leviticus 23:4-8; Deuteronomy 16:1-8; Luke 22:1, 7; Acts 20:6; 1 Cor 5:7-8; Hebrews 11:28

For further study:

Arlene Bridges Samuels, “Passover and Easter”, The Christian Broadcasting Network
Barney Kasdan, “God’s Appointed Times”, Lederer Books
Jewish Voice Ministries, International, “The Spring Feasts and Purim”, JVI Publications
Kevin Howard, Marin Rosenthal, “The Feasts of the Lord”, Thomas Nelson, Inc.

Can You Hear Me?

In the world in which we live, many voices are vying for our attention. There is the voice of our flesh, the voice of our enemy, the devil, and the voice of the media—many voices speaking seemingly at the same time. 

Amidst the clamor for our attention, are we missing the most important Voice of all-our Daddy God? I believe that sometimes He is so desperate for us to hear His Voice that He has to “yell” by bringing undesirable circumstances into our lives! I believe that this grieves His Heart. However, His love for us is so great that He wants to share the secrets of His Heart if we will only listen to His Voice! 

Have you ever just sat quietly with the Father and asked Him what He has to say to you? I believe His Word for today is “Be still and know that I AM God.”

Quiet all the other voices and let your Daddy share His Heart and secrets with you. Another benefit will be that His Presence will bring the fullness of His Joy to your heart!

This post was written by my wife, Sue.

Until next time…“May the LORD bless and protect you…May He give you Shalom.” (Numbers 6:24-26)

Bill

I Dare You…

In fact, I double-dare you…

If you think that the progressive agenda being promoted in the US is a good thing, I dare you to listen to the entire video below with an open mind. Heck, even if you think this agenda is not a good thing, but don’t really understand why not, then you will find it informative, as I did. BTW, “progressivism” is just another term for socialism.

The video is entitled The Resurgence of Socialism Today and is a talk given at Hillsdale College. (In other words, no conspiracy theories here.) You can read about Mrs. Strassel in the description accompanying the video.

Until next time…”May the LORD bless and protect you…May He give you Shalom.” (Numbers 6:24-26)
Bill

Who Are You Leaning On?

We all lean on something or someone. Leaning is all about trust. Who or what are you trusting? Today’s Lighthouse Network devotional addresses that very subject. I share it with permission.

Lean Away From Yourself … Then Lean On God

February 19, 2021

Transformational Thought

The Music Man is a famous Broadway musical from the ’50s which was made into a fun movie that is one of my all-time favorites. The setting is River City, Iowa, perfect small-town USA. Into that Garden of Eden rolls Harold Hill, an infamous flim-flam con-man who fabricates “Trouble with a capital T,” that is corrupting the youth and singing his famous song, “Ya Got Trouble.” Then he cons the residents into buying a pricey solution. It’s a great movie to watch with the kids, especially if you have one with a lisp as I did as a 5-year-old Ron Howard played the little boy with a lisp.

Listen up for today’s warning: trouble is all around us in today’s society as we’ve been reminded by the realities of Hurricane Sandy, the horrific Sandy Hook Elementary shooting, ISIS, terrible murders and abuses on a daily basis in our own states and the atrocities in every nightly news broadcast. [As well as the unBiblical actions of our government, antisemitism, racism, etc.] Trouble often doesn’t come from outside the home, but usually from our own heart and mind. 

Temptation is just around the corner and we are either running towards trouble or away from it. In which direction are you heading? Which way are you leaning? In today’s scripture, Solomon gives us two options regarding trust: God or our own understanding. God is calling us to lean away from the conventional wisdom of self-reliance to find happiness or pain relief. He wants us to lean on (or trust) His wisdom. God wants us to acknowledge His ultimate wisdom and trust Him in every area of our lives.

What should I do about this relationship? Which job should I seek? How will I make the mortgage payment this month? How can I help my daughter? Should I confront that problem or wait? What do I do about this decision? Do I look at that cleavage? Do I eat that extra _____? No matter what challenge or circumstance you are facing, God wants to help. But you have a choice to make. Are you going to lean on your own understanding … or are you going to trust God?

Satan is always playing with our heads, wanting us to build our houses on his sandy foundation. We also wrestle with our own massive inventory of hurts, letdowns, and frustrations. We have unhealed wounds leftover from times when we did trust others only to be let down. All that scar tissue from the past interferes with our willingness to trust and be vulnerable again with others. The message society tries to drive home is, “You can only rely on and trust yourself.”

Leaning is all about trust. When you lean against a wall, you trust that the wall won’t collapse … that it will support your weight. If you are going to lean on God, you need to be ready to trust Him fully. So interview Him. Is He wise enough to help you? Is He interested in helping you? Does He understand your situation? Does He know what is really best for you and for everyone involved? Is His timing fast enough for your agenda? Does He love you? Is He willing to sacrifice for your growth?

If you are willing to study the Scriptures with an open heart and mind, you will soon discover that the answer to all these questions is a resounding and powerful “YES.” God loves you with a love so great that you can’t begin to fathom it. His wisdom knows no bounds. Lean away from self-reliance and stop trying to do it all yourself. Begin leaning on God today. If not God, then who is worthy and able to sustain you during the storms of your life? Certainly not you!

Today, compare your track record to God’s. No contest. Then, look at an area in which you struggle. Write down how you are leaning on your own understanding. Then write down God’s instruction for that issue. Make an effort today to trust and follow God’s instruction and direction and put aside your own. Whether you lean on God and stay standing upright or you lean on yourself and this world and fall on your face is your decision, so choose well.

Prayer

O Almighty God, I do want to trust You so that I can truly lean on You. Help me to spend time with the Scriptures and teach me to learn how they apply to me. Help me understand how the scars from my past still interfere with my willingness to be fully vulnerable to You and Your purpose, direction, and plan for my life. I ask for the courage to live with the uncertainty and concern that I feel when I am not in control. Am I ever really in control of my life anyway? Help me to trust You and lean on Your wisdom. I pray in the name of the One I lean toward, Jesus Christ; and all God’s children say – AMEN!

The Truth

Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight. Proverbs 3:5-6

The post Lean Away From Yourself … Then Lean On God appeared first on Lighthouse Network.

Until next time…”May the LORD bless and protect you…May He give you Shalom.” (Numbers 6:24-26)
Bill

Super Bowling?

Are You “Super Bowling” Everyday Life?

Feb 5, 2021 Stepping Stones devotion from Lighthouse Network.org. Shared with permission.

Transformational Thought

Super Bowl Sunday has basically become a national holiday. With 120+ million viewers, it’s the most-watched TV show, charging $5 million for a 30-second commercial. It is second to Thanksgiving as the day the most food is eaten. On this day record numbers of employees “call-out-sick.” One billion wings are eaten, the most pizzas are ordered and guacamole is eaten, and it’s one of the heaviest beer, soda, and chip consumption days. Tragically, Super Bowl Sunday is also the worst day of the year for gambling, domestic violence, and sex trafficking. 

The Super Bowl itself is an unbelievable event … so much emotion, buildup, and expectations. The winner is remembered and worshipped forever, and the loser is branded a choker … forever, unless they get back to the Super Bowl again and win. The commercials, halftime mega-shows, plays, players, and personalities are seared in our minds or become societal icons.

One Super Bowl a year is enough, just ask my wife. Can you imagine if we had 4 a year, one per month, or heaven forbid, weekly Super Bowls? We would be overwhelmed, on edge, emotionally spent, fed up, bankrupt, hung-over, and paralyzed on a regular basis.

But you see, life can be viewed the same way. We have “Super Bowl” events … meeting God, getting married, birth of a child, losing a close loved one, starting day 1 on our dream job, taking grand vacations, starting school, helping a child leave for college, learning a child has a disability, having an affair, experiencing divorce, getting fired, coping with a natural disaster, 9/11. You get the idea … they don’t happen every week (for anybody). Then we have some “playoff game” events whose immediate and long-term impact are important but smaller than the Super Bowl events. Some other life events rank on the very-important-regular-season-game level. And most other events have the importance and impact of a preseason game

Brace yourself for a reality check, 98% of your day, your life, is either a regular season game or even a preseason game in level of importance and impact. The problem: we react to many of our daily events as if they had the importance and impact of a Super Bowl or playoff game. Need some proof? Just look at how intense your reactions are to small things in your day that you won’t even remember a couple days later. They aren’t that important? Unlike Super Bowl big plays, we forget most issues in our life within 1-15 days. 

We can’t handle the emotional rollercoaster of 6 Super Bowls a year, let alone 3 Super Bowls a day. But for many, the emotional reaction to several events in a day is fairly extreme. We tend to elevate that event to major impact level when it really isn’t, especially when we don’t get our way or our planned agenda isn’t happening. While few people are “drama queens,” most people fall into the Super Bowl mentality trap. We erroneously feel many things in life are all-important and react to them as life-changing, when they actually aren’t.

Patients, both male and female, tell me they’ve been impacted by one question I’ve asked, namely, “Does that event really rate the ‘Super Bowl’ level of importance you are giving it?” That question really helps people gain a more eternal, realistic, and Godly perspective about everyday events.

Today, remember that Super Bowl-magnitude events usually occur once, twice, or maybe three times a year. So look at how you react to minor daily disruptions and ask yourself, “Is this situation really a Super Bowl event in magnitude and long term impact, or am I having an exaggerated response?” If you are inappropriately “Super Bowling” it, ask yourself “Why?” and “How often do I do this?” and “Am I becoming dependent on something that, when taken away, seems like a Super Bowl level loss to me?” Parents, you’ll probably be amazed as you contemplate your reactions to your kid’s behavior. Whether you see each day’s events from a Godly, realistic perspective or you over-react and Super Bowl the minor events of your day is your decision, so choose well.

Prayer

Dear Father God, thanks for being sovereign over all things. This truth, and my faith in Your sovereignty gives me such peace in most situations. I confess though, that sometimes I over-react to the spiritual warfare and minutiae of the day and give them a Super Bowl level of importance. Give me discernment and the Mind of Christ to realize what really is important and what isn’t. I pray this in the name of the greatest “Super Bowl” event of all time, Jesus Christ’s death and resurrection; And all God’s children say – AMEN!

The Truth

And which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his span of life? If then you are not able to do as small a thing as that, why are you anxious about the rest? Luke 12:25,26

And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body. And be thankful. Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God. And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him. Colossians 3:15-17

The post Are You “Super Bowling” Everyday Life? appeared first on Lighthouse Network.

Until next time…”May the LORD bless and protect you…May He give you Shalom.” (Numbers 6:24-26)

Bill

How to Cause Change

Want to change what us going on around you? First look at yourself and the strength and intimacy of your relationship with Yeshua. You must change, actually permit the Holy Spirit of God to change, what is going on within you before you can change what is going on around you. This principle applies whether you want to change things in your personal life, work life, or in society.

Until next time…”May the LORD bless and protect you…May He give you Shalom.” (Numbers 6:24-26)


Bill

Anger of Man

The wrath of man will not accomplish the purposes of God! (James 1:20)

Diagnosis: Dehydration; Cure: Living Water

January 12, 2021

Diagnosis: Dehydration; Cure: Living Water is from today’s Stepping Stones daily devotional)

Transformational Thought

When I was a kid, people weren’t obsessed about health. Fitness clubs didn’t exist, nobody ran unless they had to, grease and butter were an actual food group, fast food was the new Utopia, and cigarettes were just a smelly habit. Now my wife says my Fruit Loops aren’t healthy. She keeps putting vegetables on my plate even though the only vegetable I like is french fries. Our generation must be the last of the ‘meat and potatoes’ species as we seem headed for extinction.

It gets even worse. Everywhere I go nowadays, I see water bottles. I still have a hard time paying for water, but it seems like we have bottles of it all over the house. Martine and my girls tell me water is healthy for me. I only get a drink at meals, and sometimes skip lunch. So they get on my case because I don’t drink enough. Well, the experts seem to agree with them. They say that if you feel thirsty, you are most likely already dehydrated. A recent report title said it all: “You are not sick … you are just thirsty.” All the medical experts agree that we need to drink water continually through our day. So it seems like we are all dehydrated.

Well, not only are we physically thirsty, but we are born spiritually thirsty as well … empty … dry. All of our “sickness” is actually due to our spiritual dehydration. You see, we constantly thirst for God … His love, acceptance, and security. Only He can fill these essential needs. Only through Him do we find purpose, fulfillment, contentment, connection, engagement, passion, competence, peace, joy … and especially, pure and true love. 

But we are constantly using “spoiled,” even poisoned, water to substitute for the true living water that only God, through Jesus, truly is. But Satan is sharp. He doesn’t put the poisoned water in a bottle with a big ‘X’ on it. He doesn’t place a “Poison Warning” or skull and crossbones on the label. No! He packages this poison in an attractive, fancy bottle, with an enticing ad and alluring promises on the label. Drinking this contaminated water leads to depression, anxiety, addictions, hopelessness, anger, brokenness, stress, agitation, loneliness, and frustration. Still we drink it, thinking it actually cures these problems.

It sounds as though it would be easy to avoid. Why do we still drink that poisoned water? One reason is that we don’t drink regularly from the streams of living water provided by our Father. Then once we become dehydrated, out of desperation and discomfort we grab any bottle to sooth ourselves, thinking something is better than nothing. That is like drinking salt water when you are thirsty. Instead of making the situation better, it actually becomes dangerous.

Today, commit to taking sips, or short prayers, of living water. Confess a sin immediately. Stop to thank God for a blessing you take for granted. Ask His advice on an issue. Tell someone why God makes a difference in your life. Take sips throughout the day from the river of living waters offered by Your Lord and God. Whether you take in His living water regularly, or you wait until you’re dehydrated is your decision, so choose well.

Prayer

Dear Father God, I am so thirsty, Lord, and I know this means I am spiritually dehydrated. Daily, my tank is low and I thirst for more. Please give me wisdom to avoid contaminated water. Help me, Father, to drink and eat only what is good for me so that my soul may delight itself in Your abundance. Help me not to be complacent, but instead, to talk to You and recognize You more often in my day. I pray in the name of the One who died so I might drink from the living waters, Jesus Christ; and all God’s children say – AMEN!

The Truth
On the last day, that great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried out, saying, “If anyone thirsts, let him come to Me and drink. He who believes in Me, as the Scripture has said, out of his heart will flow rivers of living water.” John 7:37-38

Everyone who thirsts, Come to the waters; and you who have no money, Come, buy and eat. Yes, come; buy wine and milk without money and without price. Why do you spend money for what is not bread, and your wages for what does not satisfy? Listen carefully to Me, and eat what is good, and let your soul delight itself in abundanceIsaiah 55:1-2

Jesus answered her, “If you knew the gift of God, and who it is that is saying to you, ‘Give me a drink,’ you would have asked him, and he would have given you living water.” The woman said to him, “Sir, you have nothing to draw water with, and the well is deep. Where do you get that living water?” Jesus said to her, “Everyone who drinks of this water will be thirsty again, but whoever drinks of the water that I will give him will never be thirsty again. The water that I will give him will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life” The woman said to him, “Sir, give me this water so that I will not be thirsty or have to come here to draw water.” John 4:10, 11,13-15

The post Diagnosis: Dehydration; Cure: Living Water appeared first on Lighthouse Network.

Until next time…”May the LORD bless and protect you…May He give you Shalom.” (Numbers 6:24-26)

Bill

An Appointment with God—Rosh HaShanah

For an overview of God’s Appointed Times, see An Appointment with God—God’s Appointed Times. This post will introduce you to Yom Teruah/Rosh HaShanah.

Yom Teruah/Rosh HaShanah

Yom Teruah/Rosh HaShanah is the first of the fall appointments. This year, it was celebrated starting at sundown on Fri, Sept. 18, 2020, through sundown Sept 19, which corresponds to the first day of the Hebrew month of Tishri as designated in Lev. 23:24 and Num. 29:1-2. (The Biblical day runs from sundown to sundown, not midnight to midnight.)

Yom Teruah (pronounced yohm te-ROO-ah) means “the day of sounding” as it is designated in Leviticus or “Festival of Trumpets.” Rosh HaShanah (pronounced rohsh hash-shah-NAH) means “head of the year.” Huh, head of the year should be in the 1st month, not the 7th, shouldn’t it? That would be logical. However, the rabbis of old gave such significance to this special Shabbat (Sabbath – all God’s appointed times are Shabbats) that they eventually considered it the start of the spiritual new year. In fact, the Hebrew calendar year number changes on Rosh Hashanah, not on the 1st day of the 1st month, Nissan, which occurs in the spring. In addition, Yom Teruah occurs at the end of the harvest period that ends in the fall, which the Torah calls tzeit ha’shanah, or the “end of the year” (Ex 23:16). This suggests the start of a coming new year. So, that is how it came to be called Rosh Hashanah.

Purpose

The purpose of Yom Teruah is summed up in the words “regathering and repentance.” It is a day to take stock of our spiritual condition and make any necessary changes to ensure that our lives will be pleasing to God in the coming year. It is considered so important that the 40 days starting with the first of the previous month (Elul) through Yom Kippur on the 10th of Tishri is considered a time of spiritual preparation. This is based on a belief by the Rabbis that on the first of Elul, Moses ascended Mount Sinai to receive the second set of the Tablets of the Law and that he descended on Yom Kippur.

In Jewish tradition, the Shofar (ram’s horn) is blown calling all to return to the Lord in repentance. The ten days between Yom Teruah and Yom Kippur are called the Ten Days of Awe or Ten Days of Repentance. This is a period of intense prayer, self-examination, and repentance, which culminates on the fast day of Yom Kippur. Of course, as followers of Yeshua, we know that we do not, in fact cannot, earn God’s forgiveness. He freely provides salvation and forgiveness if we repent (Eph. 2:8-9). But, as we’ll see when we discuss Yom Kippur, our sins always require payment, but Yeshua paid the debt for us. However, Yom Teruah should still remind us of the need to repent of our sins—though we have been forgiven, we are still to be aware of the sins we commit and repent of them.  Of course, we don’t need to wait until Yom Teruah to do so. We should repent of sin as soon as we become aware of it. But, Yom Teruah is a good time for believers to take an accounting of their lives and, if needed, renew their relationship with their Lord and Savior, the Jewish Messiah, Yeshua.

The blowing of the shofar reminds us of an incident in Gen 22. At God’s instruction, Abraham took his grown son to be sacrificed. God provided a ram caught in a thicket by its horns (shofars, as it were) as a substitution—an indication of the future substitution of Yeshua, the Lamb of God (John 1:29, 36).

Customs

Yom Teruah is a time of celebration. The special customs observed on Rosh HaShanah include: the sounding of the shofar (the blowing of the ram’s horn is prophetic of the return of Yeshua), using round challah (symbolizes the completeness of the year), eating apples and honey and other sweet foods to initiate the start of a sweet new year, and observing the service of Tashlich.

Tashlich is a relatively recent addition to Jewish practice. While there is evidence of similar practices as early as the 1st century CE, the form we see today probably started around the 16th century. The word derives from Micah 7:18-20 and means to “cast away” or “cast off.” It involves symbolically casting off the sins of the previous year by tossing pieces of bread or other food into a body of flowing water. Just as the water carries away the bits of bread, so too, our sins are symbolically carried away. For believers, the living water represents Yeshua who has already cast our sins away. However, it is an opportunity for believers to acknowledge that He has done so in a symbolic manner. I have performed this “exercise” and found it to be very spiritually meaningful as a visible demonstration of Yeshua carrying my sins away.

Prophetic Fulfillment

Finally, all of the biblical Holy Days have prophetic fulfillment. While the historical emphasis of Yom Teruah is repentance, the prophetic looks to the future day when the Messiah will gather His flock into the Messianic Kingdom. Rosh Hashanah is a perfect picture of the regathering of believers and the Jewish believing remnant by Yeshua at His second coming. (Refer to Isa. 27:12-13; Matt. 24:31; Eph. 5:14; 1 Thes. 4:16-18; Titus 2:13)

Stay tuned for the next post in this series, An Appointment with God—Yom Kippur. May I suggest subscribing to these posts or following my WordPress page to insure that you do not miss it and other posts? To either follow the page or subscribe to receive an email when they are posted, go to www.WJBsTurn.WordPress.com. Thank you, and…

Until the next time…“May the LORD bless and protect you…May He give you Shalom.” (Numbers 6:24-26)
Bill

——————————————-
Sources:
  • Barney Kasdan, “Rosh HaShanah” God’s Appointed Times, Lederer Books, 1993
  • The Chosen People Ministries, “Appointed Times of the Lord” The Chosen People Vol XXVI, Issue 8, September 2020
  • Shani Sorko-Ram Ferguson, “The Fun Commandments,” Moaz Israel Report, September 2020
  • Tashlich: jewishhomela.com/2014/09/19/the-origins-of-tashlich

An Appointment with God

This post begins a series of posts on the God’s Appointed Times.

God’s Appointed Times

God’s Appointed Times are special annual appointments that He established with His people. These appointed times are also called Feasts of the Lord. Notice that I have not called them “the Jewish Feasts”. They are God’s feasts, though He instructed the Jewish people to observe them because the Jewish people were and are today His chosen people. God established these feasts/holidays in Lev. 23.

These biblical Holy Days teach us about the nature of God and His plan for mankind. God established them for the Jewish people (Israel) and “grafted-in” believers (Rom 11:17, 19, 23). They teach, in a practical way, more about Himself and His road to redemption. Each one points to a critical element of His plan of redemption. They are also annual reminders of God’s faithfulness, a reminder that, as the great hymn says, “He is marching on”. Most of God’s appointed times are times of celebration with plenty of food. The main storyline is “They tried to kill us. We won. Let’s eat!”

So, if you are a Gentile follower of Yeshua, you may be asking “Can or should believers join in these Biblical Anniversaries?” Is the entire Bible God’s Word? Yes. Does the Bible contain instructions that apply to Jews only? Yes. Does the Bible contain instructions for followers of Yeshua? Yes. Does the Bible contain instructions that apply to all mankind? Yes. But the key answer to your question goes back to what the early Jewish believers decided in the book of Acts regarding Gentile believers (Acts 15:20-31). The answer: yes, you absolutely can; no, you are not required to. This author’s opinion is that we should because they are full of spiritual depth that applies to all followers of Yeshua as well as the Jewish People.

The main appointed times are split into two sets. One set occurs in the spring and one in the fall.

The Fall Appointed Times

The fall appointed times or Holy Days occur in the 7th month on the Hebrew calendar, the month of Tishri, which falls in Sept/Oct on the Gregorian calendar. There are three fall appointed times: Yom Teruah/Rosh HaShanah (Feast of Trumpets/New Year), Yom Kippur (Day of Atonement), and Sukkot (Feast of Tabernacles).

The prophetic meanings of the fall Holy Days are yet to be fulfilled.

The Spring Appointed Times

The spring appointed times are: Passover and the Feast of Unleavened Bread, Festival of Weeks, Counting the Omer, and Shavuot (First Fruits/Pentecost). They occur over 50 days starting on the 5th of Nissan, month number one of the Hebrew calendar, through the 6th of Sivan (March to June).

The prophetic meanings of the spring Holy Days have been fulfilled according to God’s calendar of events.

An additional Appointed Time that is specified in Lev 23 is Shabbat (Sabbath).

Stay tuned for the next post in this series, An Appointment with God—Rosh Hashanah. May I suggest subscribing to these posts or following my WordPress page to insure that you do not miss it and other posts? To either follow the page or subscribe to receive an email when they are posted, go to www.WJBsTurn.WordPress.com. Thank you, and…

Until the next time…“May the LORD bless and protect you…May He give you Shalom.” (Numbers 6:24-26)
Bill

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