THE MEASURING ROD OF THE END TIMES
When I was a child a preacher said that we have the counts of days in the bible, but we don't know when they begin and end, therefore we can do nothing with it. He also said that when the Antichrist signs the peace pact with Israel, we will know that Armageddon is seven years away; and then all the other counts will fit into position and we will have every event of the 70th week. Did God leave us a clue as to how these pieces fit together? The seven Feasts of Israel, with dates determined by the 19-year lunar cycle, provide a way to put together the complete sequence of prophetic events.
The first Feast is set out in Lev. 23:5. Passover begins at sunset on the thirteenth day of the first Jewish month, Nisan. 3 Lev. 23:6-8 details the second Feast, Unleavened Bread, the seven days following Passover. The third Feast, First Fruits, is described in Lev. 23:9-11. It is to be held after the only Sabbath during the Feast of Unleavened Bread.
The fourth Feast, Weeks, is described beginning in Lev. 23:15. This Feast is called Shavuot by the Jews and Pentecost by Gentiles. These first four Feasts are all celebrated in the first half of the Jewish sacred year, which goes from 1 Nisan to 1 Nisan. In this way a Jewish year may be said to go from Passover to Passover.
The fifth Feast is Rosh-Hashana, the Feast of Trumpets. It is given in Lev. 23:24. Lev. 23:26-32 describes the sixth Feast, the Day of Atonement. The seventh Feast, Tabernacles, is given in Lev. 23:33-36.
The Feasts of Israel were established by God through Moses. They are marked by the rise of the new moon which establishes the exact time of the events forever. After the death of Jesus they were rearranged by the Sanhedrin so that the Feast of First Fruits and the Feast of Pentecost, or Shavuot, would no longer occur on a Sunday and point to Jesus as the Messiah. 4 The Rabbis hid this because they thought the acceptance of Jesus as Messiah would tear Israel apart as a nation.
God gave Israel 40 years of testing and grace from 30 to 70 A.D. When Israel had not turned back to God they were destroyed as a nation for 1878 years. When Israel became a nation in 1948 the time clock began running on the final 40 years of testing and grace for Gentile Israel, the United States.
The seven Feasts of Israel are used in four ways to demonstrate God-given truths: by the Jew in actual performance of the Feasts; by the church, in symbolic form, to tie together the 69th and 70th weeks of Daniel, and by God in recognition of his loved ones.
The Jew actually performed the seven Feasts of Israel. On Passover he ate the Passover lamb in the evening. On Unleavened Bread he cast all leaven out of his house. On First Fruits he waved the sheaf of the first fruits before the Lord in the temple. On Pentecost, or Shavuot, he celebrated the first harvest, called the Feast of Weeks. On Trumpets he celebrated the fall harvest. On Atonement he celebrated the only fast given by God. At this time the high priest entered the Holy of Holies to make atonement for the sins of Israel for the year. On Tabernacles the Jews lived in tents for eight days to celebrate a feast of God's glory.
The seven Feasts of Israel are also applied to the church in spiritual form. For Passover, the Christian accepts the blood of Jesus on the cross as the Passover Lamb. For Unleavened Bread the Christian puts all sin out of his life. For First Fruits he is baptized and arises to new life. For Pentecost he receives the baptism of the Holy Spirit. For Trumpets he will be raptured into Heaven. For Atonement he will celebrate the end of the ceremony at the judgment seat of Christ. For Tabernacles the faithful church will celebrate this feast of God's glory with a festival of ingathering of the body of Jesus to the throne room of God.
The Seven Feasts are also used to tie together the 69th and 70th weeks of Daniel. The first four Feasts signify Jesus' death, burial, resurrection and the establishment of the Church; the last three the Rapture, signing of the peace pact by Antichrist and the arrival of the two witnesses and World War III.
In recognition of his loved ones, God gave the first three Feasts to Jesus to commemorate his death, burial and resurrection. The next two feasts were given to the Church to signify its birth and rapture.
The last two Feasts were given by God to Israel. On the Day of Atonement Antichrist will sign the Peace Pact with Israel to start the 70th Week of Daniel, called the seven-year tribulation. On the seventh Feast, Tabernacles, the Jew will recognize Jesus as the Messiah.
3 If an event is Jewish, one counts the day as a Jew: that is, with the first day being called day one and starting at sunset the previous evening. A Gentile event is counted with day one beginning the next day.
4 The modern Jew uses the new moon to set the day for Rosh-Hashana and backs up 163 days to call 15 Nisan Passover. But the Jew before the time of Jesus had taken Passover, 14 Nisan, and made it a preparation day for 15 Nisan. To be correct, the Jew should back up 164 days from first Tishri to 14 Nisan to get Moses' Passover. (Lev. 23:5).
The modern Jew calls 16 Nisan Omer to replace the Feast of First Fruits. He then goes forward 50 days to get Shavuot. These changes throw off the calculation for First Fruits and thereby keep Shavuot from always falling on the day after the Jewish Sabbath. This has kept the Jew from seeing that these feasts point to Jesus.