The Feasts of Jehovah
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The Passover Service

The Passover Service introduces us to the first of the annual memorials in the sacred calendar. It was first kept in ancient Egypt when after four hundred years of slavery the Almighty rescued His people Israel from the hand of Pharaoh. In that well known episode Yahweh "passed over" the houses of the believers who had obeyed His command to apply the blood of a literal lamb to the lintel and doorposts of their houses. The Almighty spared the lives of Israel's eldest sons, but authorised the Destroyer to kill all the firstborn of the Egyptians who had refused to obey.
Exodus 12:29 "And it came to pass, that at midnight the Lord smote all the firstborn in the land of Egypt, from the firstborn of the Pharaoh that sat on his throne unto the firstborn of the captive that was in the dungeon, and all the firstborn of the cattle.
30 And Pharaoh rose up in the night, he, and all his servants, and all the Egyptians; and there was a great cry in Egypt; for there was not a house where there was not one dead."

Surprising as it may sound, that awesome experience in ancient Egypt on the night of the 14th Abib (the first month in the sacred calendar) was merely a "scaled-down preview", a "miniature object lesson", a "dramatised prophecy," a "spiritual blueprint" of a far greater deliverance of Jehovah's people scheduled to occur at the midnight of this age. For the real meaning of the Passover is this:

"And how," you may well ask, "is the blood of the real Passover Lamb, the Son of the Almighty God, applied to a believer in this electronic age?" The answer is: By taking part in a special memorial service called the Passover Service on the evening of the 14th Abib each year, which is the divinely appointed time. The Passover Service is a memorial of the Saviour's death on Calvary and every believer in the Messiah is commanded to keep it. "this do in remembrance of me" said the Messiah, the Lamb of God. Memorial services, incidentally are not observed several times a year; neither should they be observed at any time people fancy. The time to observe the Passovere Service has been divinely appointed; and that time is the evening of the 14th day of the month of Abib. Let all who read, pause and take note.

The new covenant emblems of the Saviour's body and blood are "unleavened bread and wine." (Luke 22:14-20, 1 Corinthians 11:23-26) These emblems have replaced the need to slay a literal lamb each year, for the Messiah, the real Passover Lamb, has already been slain. But the TIME set apart for this memorial service remains the same. It is the evening of the 14th day of the first month (Abib) in the sacred calendar (Exodus 13:5-11). The date is important and can never be altered, because it is the memorial date of our Saviour's death, when he paid with His life to rescue mankind from extinction at the hands of the Destroyer. When a believer takes part in this service he/she is, figuratively speaking, applying the blood of the Messiah to his/her mind, which is the lintel of the soul. This act of faith is a clear sign to the Almighty that that soul seeks pardon, protection and salvation. That is how the Passover Lamb's blood is applied to the lintel of a believer's mind in this century.

Incredible as it may seem, the fulfilment of the Passover (the day itself , not the Lamb) is still future. According to Scripture that day will be fulfilled in the Kingdom of Heaven. Even the Saviour is awaiting the approaching midnight of this age when the Destroyer will be compelled to spare or passover all those who are displaying the sign of the Lamb's blood.
Luke 22: 15: And he said unto them, With desire I have desired to eat this passover with you before I suffer:
16: For I say unto you, I will not any more eat thereof, until it be fulfilled in the kingdom of God.

Note those words, "until it is fulfilled in the Kingdom of God." This points to a still future fulfilment of the Passover, an event which will take place just prior to our entry into the Kingdom of Heaven. I repeat, the Passover Lamb (Yeshua the Messiah) has been slain; it now remains for believers to symbollically apply his blood to their hearts and minds before the midnight of this age when the Destroyer will once again circle the earth on his mission of death!

Believers in the Almighty who, therefore, celebrate the Passover Service on the appointed evening each year will be greatly blessed; for as they eat the unleavened bread and drink the wine (the new covenant emblems of the Saviour's body and blood) they are, in truth, applying the Saviour's life-giving blood to the lintels of their souls..

Put differently, we may say that Yahweh's main purpose in staging such a breathtaking Passover display in ancient Egypt was His way of giving the entire universe a 'prophetic preview' of His earth- encompassing plan to 'pass over' and deliver His people in the closing days of this age. Yes, the LORD God of Israel is in the near future going to personally visit all the nations of the world, and as before, 'pass-over' (pity, spare and deliver) all those who faithfully display the Sign of His Son's blood on the lintels of their minds and the door post of their supporting actions. Thus we can see that ancient Israel's exodus from Egypt was a "prophetic drama," a "living blueprint," a "meaningful model" of a far greater deliverance of Yahweh's people which is scheduled to take place on a world scale in our day. In view of this, believers in the Messiah should beware of failing to keep this memorial service at its appointed time. (See How to hold the Passover in your own home.)

The Week of Unleavened Bread

The week of unleavened bread is often referred to as the Passover Week. The first and last days of this week (15th and 21st Abib) are Sabbath days, on which all believers are commanded to rest from their labours and to assemble to worship the Almighty. (Leviticus 23:5-8)

Leaven (yeast) is a symbol of sin, hypocrisy and false doctrine, a week represents eternity and a house represents the church of God. Thus the week of unleavened bread (when every trace of leaven is cleared from the houses of believers) symbolises the church which is to be purged by God:   of sin, hypocrisy and false doctrine - for all time. Only when that work has been done will the church be a fit "Temple of God," a spiritual home the Almighty will inhabit for all eternity. Yes, before Yahweh's Holy Spirit takes up permanent residence in 'His house' (the church) He has scheduled Himself to purge His people of every trace of (leaven) sin. (Matt. 16:6-12, 1 Cor. 5:6-8, Luke 12:1).

I repeat, there is coming a time when the Almighty will purge hypocrisy, false doctrine & sin (leaven) from the minds of His people; and only when that time arrives will the Week of Unleavened Bread have found its fulfilment, not before.

Scripture tells us that this Feast of Unleavened Bread is a Sacred Sign on the believer's hand and mind that the Almighty's law is inscribed therein. This Feast is, in fact, the appointed sign of faithful obedience, as opposed to the Mark of the Antichrist, which is the brand mark of disobedience.
Exodus 13:6: Seven days thou shalt eat unleavened bread, and in the seventh day shall be a feast to the LORD.
7: Unleavened bread shall be eaten seven days; and there shall no leavened bread be seen with thee, neither shall there be leaven seen with thee in all thy quarters.
8: And thou shalt shew thy son in that day, saying, This is done because of that which the LORD did unto me when I came forth out of Egypt.
9: And IT
(this particular Feast) shall be for a sign unto thee upon thine hand, and for a memorial between thine eyes, that the LORD's law may be in thy mouth: for with a strong hand hath the LORD brought thee out of Egypt.
10: Thou shalt therefore keep this ordinance in his season from year to year.
Note: that specific reference to this Feast being a sign on the hand and a memorial between the eyes (the mind).

The Feast of Pentecost

The Feast of Pentecost, also called the Feast of First Fruits, falls on the 50th day after the Passover Sabbath. This feast is a reminder, a guarantee of Yahweh's power to produce spiritual fruit in the field of human salvation. The literal first fruits of the soil are merely the physical types or expressions of the real first fruits of the Holy Spirit.

The first fruits of the Holy Spirit are the true believers won to God by His Son the firstborn. (1 Cor. 15:20&23, James 1:18, Rev. 14:4)

The ancient ceremony of presenting the Almighty with the firstfruits of the earth (Deut. 26:1-11) with two oven-baked loaves, in which the leaven had been de-activated (Lev. 23:15-17), was a figure, a type, a shadow of the spiritual harvest of human souls in whom the yeast of sin will one day cease to exist. There is coming a day when the power of sin will be de-activated in us believers just as the power of leaven is neutralised in an oven baked loaf.

The breathtaking experience recorded in Acts 2 was but the early harvest, a kind of "firstfruits" of an even greater out-pouring of divine power scheduled to fall upon the church in the near future when the main harvest of human beings will be gathered in.

The Feast of Pentecost, in short, prefigures, guarantees and commemorates the early harvest, the first fruits of human souls: and those who celebrate it declare their willingness to be part of that spiritual multitude which will one day be gathered in and presented to the Almighty by His Son - the Firstborn!

The Feast of Trumpets

The Feast of Trumpets is celebrated on the first day of Ethanim (Tishri) the seventh month in the sacred calendar. (Lev. 23:24)

Trumpets were used by Yahweh's command in ancient Israel:

The Feast of Trumpets is a memorial Sabbath, a day of special significance, designed to bring the faithful into remembrance before the Almighty. The two silver trumpets mentioned in Numbers 10 were types of the great originals in the heavens - the Trumpets of Yahweh & His Son. Those divine originals are mentioned several times in the Scriptures and at their sounding events of awesome importance have and still will take place. We read about the trumpets past and future used in: A study of the texts listed above will show how Yahweh Himself has planned to use His heavenly trumpets again. He and His Son will blow them to gather His people as in days gone by; gather them for the climatic events scheduled to take place at the Messiah's return. Did he not say:
Isaiah 18:3 "All ye inhabitants of the world, and dwellers on the earth, see ye, when He lifteth up an ensign on the mountains; and when He bloweth a trumpet, HEAR YE."
Zechariah 9:14 "And the LORD shall be seen over them, and His arrow shall go forth as the lightning: and the Lord God shall blow the trumpet, and shall go with the whirlwinds of the south."

The prophecy of the Revelation tells of the sounding of heavenly trumpets - possibly starting at a Feast of Trumpets - which will probably coincide with the gathering of Yahweh's people in the last days and the final war in heaven between the forces of good and evil. (Rev 12) See Understand the Revelation, in which the Seven Trumpets are explained.

No one will doubt but that the Feast to Trumpets has still to find even partial fulfilment; and it is because of this fact and the many texts which tell of the use of the Trumpets of God in the future that believers should beware of ignoring this important feast day.

On some future Feast of Trumpets the mighty Trumpet of the LORD will sound. It will be heard throughout the world!   and will reverberate with tones as awesome as the rushing sound which filled Jerusalem on the Day of Pentecost some 2000 years ago (Acts 2:2). All of mankind will hear the Trumpet, for the Bible says:
Zechariah 9:14 "And the LORD shall be seen over them, and his arrow shall go forth as the lightning: and the Lord God shall blow the trumpet, and shall go with the whirlwinds of the south."
Isaiah 18:3 "All ye inhabitants of the world, and dwellers on the earth, see ye, when he lifteth up an ensign on the mountains; and when he bloweth a trumpet, hear ye."

Only when that event happens can we justifiably say that the Feast of Trumpets has found fulfilment. For further information see the Shofar;   herald of the coming kingdom.

The Day of Atonement

The Day of Atonement is observed on the 10th day of the seventh month of Ethanim (tishri) by abstinence from daily labour, by a holy convocation and by fasting. It is the only commanded fast in the year and is, doubtless, the most solemn day in the sacred calendar. (Lev. 16 also Lev. 23:27-32). On this day the high priest laid aside his official ornaments and dressed in a white linen garment entered the Most Holy place to make atonement for himself, the priesthood and the congregation of Israel. The Epistle to the Hebrews (chapter 9) explains that this annual entry by the High Priest in the Holy of Holies foreshadowed the entrance of the Messiah the High Priest of the Melchizedek Order (Heb. 7:15-17) into Yahweh's presence to secure salvation for His people.

Our salvation, in other words, will only by complete when we are actually brought into the very presence of the Almighty.

The word "atonement" means to make amends for, to reconcile, to restore, to repair, to make at-one again. And that is exactly what the Day of Atonement prefigures. It points to a specific time in the future when the great High Priest of the Melchizedek Order (Yeshua the Messiah) will literally bring the redeemed host of mankind right into the very presence of His Father, in order that we may be AT-ONE with YAHWEH.

That indeed will by a reconciliation beyond compare, when the Almighty's estranged human family - alienated from Him by sin - will actually be brought into His presence to be AT ONE with Him. Can you now begin to see the plan of salvation prefigured in the feasts?

Yahweh's family of true believers:

Oh what a glorious day of reconciliation that will be! Catch a glimpse of it in these words from that famous parable of the Prodigal Son.
Luke 15:11-32 "Quick, bring the best robe and put it on him. Give him a ring for his hand and sandals for his feet. Bring the fatted calf, kill it and let us eat and be merry. For my son here was dead and he has come to life. He was lost and he is found."

The Feast of Tabernacles

The Feast of Tabernacles (Booths or Shelters) is celebrated on the 15th day of Ethanim (Tishri) the seventh month in the sacred calendar.

This feast begins a week during which all 'Israelites born' are required to live in temporary dwellings or shelters. (Lev. 23:39-43). It is, at its basic level, a memorial of the time when Yahweh made His people live in tents and temporary shelters in the wilderness when He brought them out of the land of Egypt.

At a higher level it is also a reminder or memorial of the fact that the Almighty came down from heaven to live in a Tabernacle (a tent) amidst His people Israel. (Exodus 33:7-11 & chapters 35 to 40)

The Westminster Dictionary of the Bible has this to say about the Tabernacle in the wilderness. "The movable sanctuary in the form of a tent which God directed Moses at Sinai to make, that God might dwell as king among His people." (Exodus 25:8-9) Hence it was called:

From these and other passages we can see that the literal Tabernacle which Moses built according to the Almighty's design was merely a type, a shadow, a physical expression of:

These three functions of the physical Tabernacle find fulfilment in Yeshua the Messiah the only begotten Son of the Most High, who is, in reality, the true Tabernacle of God.

Consequently, we may say that the Feast of Tabernacles is also a memorial of the Almighty's astonishing condescension to come down to earth to tabernacle or pitch His tent with humanity in the person of His Son. For Jesus Christ is Immanuel, GOD WITH US, God incarnate; that is the LORD God of Abraham, Isaac and Israel taking up his abode in the tabernacle of a human body, in order to redeem and enable mankind to obey His eternal law.
Romans 8:3 "For what the law could not do, in that it was weak through the flesh, God sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh:
4. That the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit."

Is it any wonder that the profound reality of this fact (that God is going to tabernacle with mankind for eternity) drew from the lips of an angel these amazing words:
Revelation 21:3 "Behold, the Tabernacle of God is with men and He will dwell with them and they shall be his people and God himself shall be with them and be their God."

I repeat, Yeshua the Messiah is the Tabernacle of God!; and on the earth made new he will again dwell in the midst of His people just as surely as He occupied the tabernacle built by Moses in the days of old. That is what the Feast of Tabernacles is a reminder and foretaste of.

The Last Great Day

The feast, known as the Last Great Day, occurs just after the week of Tabernacles. It is celebrated on the 22nd Ethanim. (Lev. 23:36)

The Last Great Day prefigures the endless cycles of eternity when the life-giving power of the Almighty God will flow to and through His people on the earth made new. At the moment (1999) the reality of the Great Day of the Feast is an event to look forward to; but in the hereafter, when the saints occupy the new universe, the breathtaking bliss of the Great Day will begin to be appreciated as each anniversary - through the endless ages of eternity - brings unspeakable joy to the ransomed host. The Great Day will have begun - never to end!

A special invitation to this great spiritual banquet of an endless life of bliss is given to you by the Master Himself in John 7:37-39.
John 7:37 "In the last day, the Great Day of the Feast, Jesus stood and cried, saying, If any man thirst, let him come unto me, and drink.
38. He that believeth on me, as the scripture hath said, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water.
39. (But this spake he of the Spirit, which they that believe on him should receive: for the Holy Ghost was not yet given; because that Jesus was not yet glorified.)"

Here is an invitation that tells of how the true believer will not only live with the Almighty for all time, but will go on with the Creator to become the channel and co-producer of life everlasting to others, just as a young wife is the potential mother of many generations to come. Oh! the astonishing wonder of that declaration in John 7:37-39. Can you afford to ignore it?

These, then, are the appointed, memorial feasts in the Almighty's Programme of Salvation. As you can see each and every one of them commemorates in a special way a unique accomplishment of the Holy One of Israel.

This is the message of the Bible concerning the Feast Days of Yahweh the Holy One of Israel. And it is concerning these sacred feasts that He says:
Leviticus 23:2 "Speak unto the children of Israel, and say unto them, Concerning the feasts of the LORD, which ye shall proclaim to be holy convocations, even these are MY FEASTS...
4. These are the FEASTS OF THE LORD, even holy convocations, which ye shall proclaim in their seasons.

Who are the Children of Israel?
The true children of Israel, astonishing as this may sound, are those who have put their faith in the LORD God of Israel and His only begotten Son Jesus Christ.
Galatians 3:29 "And if ye be Christ's, then are ye Abraham's seed, and heirs according to the promise."

Romans 2:28 "For he is not a Jew, which is one outwardly; neither is that circumcision, which is outward in the flesh:
29 But he is a Jew, which is one inwardly: and circumcision is that of the heart, in the spirit, and not in the letter; whose praise is not of men, but of God."

Gentiles who believe in the Messiah of Israel are, according to the Holy Scriptures, grafted into the Olive of Israel. They become part of the commonwealth of spiritual Israel and thereafter share all the blessings of the chosen race. Paul's letter to the Romans (chapter 11) makes this fact abundantly clear.
Romans 11:17 "And if some of the branches be broken off, and thou being a wild olive tree, wert grafted in among them, and with them partakest of the root and fatness of the olive tree...
22 Behold therefore the goodness and severity of God: on them which fell, severity; but toward thee, goodness, if thou continue in his goodness; otherwise thou also shall be cut off.
23 And they also, if they abide not in unbelief, shall be grafted in; for God is able to graft them in again...

25 For I would not, brethren, that ye should be ignorant of this mystery, lest ye should be wise in your own conceits; that blindness in part is happened to Israel, until the fulness of the Gentiles be come in.
26. And so all Israel shall be saved: as it is written, there shall come out of Sion the Deliverer, and shall turn away ungodliness from Jacob.
27. For this is my covenant unto them, when I shall take away their sins. "

What do these facts mean? They mean exactly what they say: that all true believers in the LORD God of Israel and His Son Yeshua are Israelites and are included in this gracious invitation to become part of the Olive of Israel. As Israelites we rejoice greatly and gladly observe the Feasts of the LORD; the eternal memorials of our salvation!
Leviticus 23:2 " Speak unto the children of Israel, and say unto them. Concerning the feasts of the LORD, which ye shall proclaim to be holy convocations, even these are my Feasts!

If you are a believer in the Son of the Most High, then the invitation to keep His appointed feasts is extended to you. Accept it without delay.

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Elder: David B Loughran
Stewarton Bible School, Stewarton, Scotland
First published 1978, Updated May 1999