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Sabbath Years and Jubilees-Irrelevant?

For quite some time now, the serious student of Yahweh’s sacred calendar has recognized that there is a lack of knowledge and understanding regarding the scriptural concept of the Sabbath and Jubilee Years.

It seems that, for many, this subject is irrelevant for us today.

We at the Yahu Ranger Report would have to strongly disagree with those adhering to this “Irrelevant” attitude.

Therefore, to illustrate the importance of the Sabbath years and Jubilees as proclaimed in Scriptures and its relevance for us today, the following has been extracted from the publication by Qadesh La Yahweh Press titled “The Sabbath and Jubilee Cycle.”

Leviticus 25:1-13

1. And Yahweh spoke to Moses on Mount Sinai saying,
2. Speak to the sons of Israel and say to them, Without a doubt you shall come into the land which I am giving to you and the land shall have a sabbath, a sabbath for Yahweh.
3. Six years you shall sow your field and six years you shall prune your vineyard and shall gather the produce.
4. And in the seventh year a sabbath sabbathon shall be for the land, a sabbath for Yahweh. Your field you shall not sow and your vineyard you shall not prune.
5. That which grows of itself of your harvest you shall not harvest and the grapes of your unkept vine you shall not gather. A year of sabbathon it shall be for the land.
6. And the sabbath of the land shall be to you for food, to you and to your male servant and your female servant, and to your hired one and to your tenant, those living among you,
7. And to your cattle and to the beast which is on your land, shall all the produce of it be for food.
8. And you shall count seven sabbaths of years, seven years seven times, and shall be to you the days of the seven sabbaths of years, forty-nine years.
9. And you shall let sound a ram’s horn, a signal in the seventh moon, on the tenth of the moon. On the Day of Atonement the ram’s horn shall sound in all your land.
10. And you shall make sacred this year, the fiftieth year, and you shall proclaim liberty in the land to all its dwellers. A Jubilee it shall be for you. And you shall return a male to his possession; and each to his family you shall return him.
11. A Jubilee it is, the fiftieth year. A year it is for you, not shall you sow it and not shall you harvest that which grows of itself and not gather the unkept vine,
12. For a Jubilee it shall be. Sacred it shall be to you. Out of the field you shall eat its store in the year of this Jubilee.
13. You shall return each one to his possession.

This study presents the evidence from ancient biblical and secular sources for the dating of the Sabbath year and Jubilee cycle.

There has been a long standing debate over exactly which Sabbath and Jubilee cycle system represents the one actually practiced by the ancient Israelites. To the novice this dispute may at first glance seem trivial. Nevertheless, there are two reasons that its solution is extremely valuable.

First, this cycle is an essential tool for any reconstruction of the chronological framework of ancient Israelite history. The strong foundation it provides, in turn, acts as a guide for other contemporary dynasties and events.

Second, once the correct cycle is ascertained, it allows us to “clock in” and discover which years are presently Sabbaths and Jubilees. This possibility holds great significance for students of biblical eschatology.

The book of Hebrews, for example, notes that, “The Law,” of which the Sabbath and Jubilee years are a part, is “a shadow of the coming good things (Heb. 10:1).”

The Sabbath day, to demonstrate, was reckoned as a type of the great sabbatism and rest into which the people of Yahweh will one day enter (Heb. 3:7–4:13; especially verse 4:9).

Likewise, the prophetic character of the Jubilee year is strongly attested to. The ancient extra-biblical book of Jubilees, for instance, notes that the Sabbath and Jubilee cycle would continue “until the sanctuary of the sovereign (Yahweh) is creat­ed in Jerusalem upon Mount Zion (Jubilees 1:29).”

The text of 11Q Melchizedek, found in the caves at Qumran, explains the Jubilee statutes of Leviticus 25, by stating:

1. [saying to Zion] ‘your eloahim reigns.’ . . . [
2. [ ] . . . and where it says, ‘In [this] year of Jubilee you shall return, each man to his possession.’
3. [and where it says, ‘Let] every holder of a debt [let drop] what he loans [to his neighbor. Let him not exact payment from his neighbor nor from his brother, for there is proclaimed a] remission
4. [of el.’ Its interpretation concerns the e]nd of days as regards ‘those taken captive’ who [. . . etc.].

“Those taken captive” is a reference to the future captivity of the Israelites among the nations during the end of days.

The prophets foretold that out of this captivity a remnant of Israel and Judah would return to the Promised Land and eternally dwell with Yahweh. This return was symbolized by the Israelites regaining their liberty during the Jubilee year.

The coming of the messiah during the end of days, at which time he will save Israel and Judah from their captivity and return them to their homeland, was, by extension, understood as occurring in one of these future Jubilee years.

In either case, whether for an accurate Israelite chronology or for eschatological purposes, a precise knowledge of this ancient cycle is required.

Therefore, we must take the utmost care in uncovering the true and original Sabbath year and Jubilee cycle.

For the complete discussion regarding the information leading to the correct identification of the known Sabbath and Jubilees up to the present time, the Ranger suggests that you check it out here: The Sabbath and Jubilee Cycle.

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