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Showing posts from November, 2019

That Jewish Christmas?

This is part of a series of essays I wrote in 2018 to explain the Biblical Appointed Times (mo'adim) to my family members. If you'd like to read the other papers in this series, you can find them linked here:

Happy New Year! (four months early)Shabbat shalom!Passover & Unleavened BreadPentecostThe Day of Loud NoiseThe Day of AtonementThe Grand FinaleThat Jewish Christmas?

This time of year, it's become common to hear the greeting, “Happy holidays.” Christians tend to be put off by this, since it seems like a not-so-covert attempt to stamp out the celebration of the birth of Jesus from this time of year. I know many Christians are aware that Jesus wasn't born at Christmas, but that isn't the point. It is dearly-loved in family traditions and as a celebration to honor the birth of our Savior. The secularization of “the holidays” is seen as an attack on the foundation of our faith.

It may seem from my earlier letters that I am doing something of the same thing. Ove…

The Grand Finale

This is part of a series of essays I wrote in 2018 to explain the Biblical Appointed Times (mo'adim) to my family members. If you'd like to read the other papers in this series, you can find them linked here:

Happy New Year! (four months early)Shabbat shalom!Passover & Unleavened BreadPentecostThe Day of Loud NoiseThe Day of AtonementThe Grand FinaleThat Jewish Christmas?

Merry Christmas!

“In September?” you ask. Yes, in September. Some of you may remember that back in college, I merged the nativity accounts in Matthew and Luke to produce a chronological account of Jesus' birth. During that research, I came across an article presenting the idea that Jesus was born on the first day of the Feast of Tabernacles (Tishrei 15).1 And that just so happens to be the next feast on our list of mo'adim. Actually, this paper will cover both the Feast of Tabernacles (called Sukkot in Hebrew) and the Last Great Day. They blend together the same way that Passover, the Feast of Unle…

The Day of Atonement

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This is part of a series of essays I wrote in 2018 to explain the Biblical Appointed Times (mo'adim) to my family members. If you'd like to read the other papers in this series, you can find them linked here:

Happy New Year! (four months early)Shabbat shalom!Passover & Unleavened BreadPentecostThe Day of Loud NoiseThe Day of AtonementThe Grand FinaleThat Jewish Christmas?

May you be sealed in the Book of Life!

We are about to enter the holiest, most solemn day of the year. Yom Kippur falls on the tenth day of the month of Tishrei (the seventh month). On this day, the high priest would enter the Holy of Holies, the innermost sanctum of the temple in Zion. The temple represented Eden, the garden of God, where heaven met earth, and the Holy of Holies was the place where the presence of God dwelt among men.

The only object in the 15′ × 15′ × 15′ room was the ark of the covenant—the throne of God.1 The ark of the covenant is the most sacred object on earth. It contained the two s…

The Day of Loud Noise

This is part of a series of essays I wrote in 2018 to explain the Biblical Appointed Times (mo'adim) to my family members. If you'd like to read the other papers in this series, you can find them linked here:

Happy New Year! (four months early)Shabbat shalom!Passover & Unleavened BreadPentecostThe Day of Loud NoiseThe Day of AtonementThe Grand FinaleThat Jewish Christmas?

Blow a trumpet in Zion; sound an alarm on my holy mountain! Let all the inhabitants of the land tremble, for the day of Yehovah is coming; it is near.
—Joel 2:1
It's been three months since I sent you the last essay on the feast days of Scripture. Spring and summer are behind us, and we are entering the season of the fall appointed times (mo'adim). Before we dive in, let's recap what we covered before.

The biblical calendar begins with a month called Aviv. It kicks off with the sighting of the fresh sliver of the new moon when the barley crop is nearly ready to harvest. The spring feasts celebra…

Pentecost

This is part of a series of essays I wrote in 2018 to explain the Biblical Appointed Times (mo'adim) to my family members. If you'd like to read the other papers in this series, you can find them linked here:

Happy New Year! (four months early)Shabbat shalom!Passover & Unleavened BreadPentecostThe Day of Loud NoiseThe Day of AtonementThe Grand FinaleThat Jewish Christmas?

Chag Shavuot sameach!

It's been seven weeks (give or take) since my last message. Now is the time for our next mo'ed (do you remember what that means?). Shavuot is a tiny feast, lasting only one day long, but it packs a wallop. If you remember from my last letter, I briefly covered the timeline of Israel's exodus from Egypt. They painted their doorways in blood the night of the Passover. The next day, they were told to leave. They fled for a week until they reached the Red Sea, which God parted so they could escape Pharaoh forever. To commemorate those events, the first and seventh days of the F…

Passover & Unleavened Bread

This is part of a series of essays I wrote in 2018 to explain the Biblical Appointed Times (mo'adim) to my family members. If you'd like to read the other papers in this series, you can find them linked here:

Happy New Year! (four months early)Shabbat shalom!Passover & Unleavened BreadPentecostThe Day of Loud NoiseThe Day of AtonementThe Grand FinaleThat Jewish Christmas?

Chag haMatzot sameach!

If I have kept up with these as I planned, then you should be getting this on Aviv 13—that is, thirteen days after the biblical New Year's Day. That is actually the day before Passover (Pesach); I will explain why I’m a day early soon. We have a lot to cover in this section, so I will do my best to keep it within four pages.

As you all have grown up in church, my hope is that you already know the story of the Exodus. For brevity, I won't recap that story, except for the parts directly related to the Passover.

The people of Israel were slaves in Egypt for 215 years.1 God used M…