The Calendar Court
The Hillelic system for determining the New Moon Day and how to intercalate the year operated through a court panel of three judges.25 In the time of the Temple, these judges represented the Court of Elders and, after the Temple’s destruction in 70 C.E., the Great Sanhedrin of Pharisees.
The Mishnah reports:
The intercalating of the month and the intercalating of the year (are decided upon) by three (judges). So (says) Rabbi Meir. But Rabban Simeon ben Gamaliel says: The matter is begun by three, discussed by five, and decided upon by seven; but if it is decided upon by three the intercalation is valid.26
Later, the number of the assembly of participating members was changed to 10 judges.27 The leading judge was the Nasi. New Moon Days were sanctified by at least two of the three members of the court.28 Continue reading “The Pharisaic Calendar and Court – Pt. 2”
In 41 C.E., the Aristocratic system of determining new moons and the intercalation of a year, previously calculated only by the priests who were the descendants of Aaron, the high priest, was officially usurped by the Nasi (head of the Sanhedrin) of the Hillelic Pharisees.
Thus began a process wherein the Hillelic party, starting with Gamaliel I, using the “traditions of their fathers” and heavily influenced by Babylonian customs, instituted a series of modifications that forever changed the requirements for determining the beginning of a month and a year in what became known as Orthodox Judaism.
These new calendar regulations were created for two reasons: Continue reading “The Pharisaic Calendar and Court – Pt. 1”
For many, it seems that the most confusing of all the sacred days of Yahweh is the Festival of Passover and Unleavened Bread.
The question that arises is, Why so much confusion?
In order to address and eliminate this confusion, it would seem reasonable to acknowledge that the expectation of keeping Yahweh’s sacred days existed from the time of Adam and Eve.
Let us cite a few relevant passages from Scriptures.
And eloahim said, Let there be luminaries in the open expanse of the heaven to divide between the daytime and the night and let them be for signs and for מועדים (moadim; APPOINTED TIMES) and for days and years; and let them be for illuminations in the open expanse of the heaven to give light on the land; and it was so. And eloahim made the two great luminaries: the great luminary for ruling the day and the smaller luminary for ruling the night, and the stars. And eloahim set them in the open expanse of the heaven to give light upon the land and to rule over the daytime and over the night, and to separate between the light and the darkness. (Gen. 1:14-18)
He (Yahweh) made the moon for the מועדים (moadim; appointed times), the sun knows where he enters in. (Psalm 104:19)
It is evident that Yahweh’s Festival Days fall into the category of the moadim or appointed times, thereby confirming that the Festival Days were observed from the beginning in the Garden of Eden.
Abraham Kept the Festival Days
At a minimum, Scriptures indicate that Abraham, who lived well before the Torah of Moses, kept Yahweh’s Festival Days. Scriptures inform us:
Continue reading “Passover – The 7-Day Festival”
Some time ago, a popular Sacred Name group published a list titled “10 Key Passover Facts,” found in their Jan-Feb 2018 magazine.
We will address Fact #5, which reads:
While leavening is not prohibited on Passover day, Abib 14, it is disallowed with the Passover memorial, Exodus 12:8. The Passover is a time of removing leavening in preparation for the Feast of Unleavened Bread that follows.
For many, this would seem to be a reasonable statement because this reflects the present-day acceptance, by most, of a modified version of the Hasidic/Pharisaic practice of Passover and Unleavened Bread which encompasses the dates of Abib 14-21 with the result of an observance consisting of 8 days. Continue reading “The Math of Passover & Unleavened Bread”
In our previous discussion, Beginning the New Year – Pt. 1, we addressed the issue of the Hebrew terms תקופה (tequphah) and תקופת (tequphath).
We learned that a tequphah is a solar event and is a point in time that could be an equinox or a solstice.
It was also recognized that a tequphath represents a season of the solar year. The two seasons for calculating Festival Days being spring-summer and autumn-winter.
With this in mind we will continue in Part 2 with an examination of the Festival of Tabernacles and the Festival of Ingathering. What we will discover is how they both relate to the determination of the scriptural New Year.
Khag of Tabernacles
We must next be cognizant of the difference between the use of the labels “the Khag (Festival) of Ingathering” and “the Khag of Tabernacles,” the latter forming only a part of the former. The instructions from Deuteronomy and Leviticus for the seven-day Khag of Tabernacles state:
Continue reading “Beginning the New Year – Part 2”
Prior to the observance of Passover during our present time, there frequently emerges a serious quest by some newer followers of Yahweh to experience a proper and valid water baptism.
The reason being that the majority of Sacred Name groups of today assert that in order for a person to partake of the Passover meal or emblems they must have undergone a mandatory water baptism in the proper name of the messiah.
It is also maintained by most of these groups that before the death of Yahushua the messiah, in order to partake of the Passover meal, all men had to be fleshly circumcised.
Different Passover Systems
We must first admit to a basic difference in the opinion about Passover. To begin with, many are often unaware that there were several different Passover systems practiced by the ancient Jews.
Continue reading “Passover & Water Baptism – Pt. 1”
There is a belief among some proclaimed followers of Yahweh that in order for men to partake of the Passover, they must first be circumcised of the flesh.
Fleshy circumcision is also held by some as a proof that Passover is not an actual Festival or Feast Day for the reason that the lack of circumcision would prevent individuals from participating in a required sacred day of Yahweh.
What do Scriptures actually say concerning this issue?
If you are interested in finding out the truth of the matter then it would be advantageous for you to continue with our investigation.
Before we can directly address the issue of circumcision as it relates to Passover we must first determine if Scriptures demand fleshy circumcision in order for men to be saved.
Usually two reasons are given by the advocates of circumcision:
• Abraham was circumcised and he was commanded to circumcise all the males of his household.
• Fleshly circumcision is required in the written Torah of Moses (Old Covenant).
Continue reading “Circumcision & Passover – Pt 1”
What does the book of Exodus really say regarding the observance of the Festival of Passover? Also, what about the Festival of Unleavened Bread?
There are two main popular understandings:
• According to the Hasidic Jewish view (System B) the Passover lamb was killed during the afternoon of Abib 14 and the Passover supper took place after sundown on Abib 15.
Abib 14 is a preparation day and not a High Sabbath. Abib 15-21 is the 7-day Festival of Unleavened Bread. Abib 15 and 21 are High Sabbath days. There are 8 days of eating unleavened bread.
• Among the Sacred Name groups of today, most hold to the Modern Hybrid view (System G) whereby, at the Exodus, the Passover lamb was killed at the start of Abib 14 after sundown and the Passover supper eaten that night.
Like the Hasidic Jews holding to System B, they consider Abib 14 to be a preparation day and not a High Sabbath. Abib 15-21 is the 7-day Festival of Unleavened Bread. Abib 15 and 21 are High Sabbath days. There are 8 days of eating unleavened bread.
For the seeker of truth, we are only left with the following possibilities.
1. One system is right.
2. Both systems are wrong.
If you have a strange suspicion that the second answer is more correct, then it is suggested that you read on.
Continue reading “Passover – Exodus Interrogated I”
There are those who would point to Leviticus 23:6 and insist that Abib 15 is the first day of the Festival of Unleavened Bread which continues through Abib 21.
And on the fifteenth day of the same month is a festival of unleavened bread unto Yahweh: seven days you must eat unleavened bread. (Leviticus 23:6)
An additional reference is also given from Numbers:
And on the fifteenth day of this month is a festival; seven days shall unleavened bread be eaten. (Numbers 28:17)
For those who observe a form of the Pharisaic/Hasidic practice for the Festival of Unleavened Bread (System B and System G), these passages from Leviticus and Numbers are held as proof that the first day of the 7-day Festival of Unleavened Bread is Abib 15.
It is evident that when these two passages are closely examined in context, the results reveal the opposite and actually support Passover Day, Abib 14, as being the first day of the Festival of Unleavened Bread (System A).
Continue reading “40. Passover – C. O. Dodd’s Failing”
It is abundantly clear that an overwhelming amount of evidence supports the 7-day observance of Passover and Unleavened Bread being Abib 14-20. Also, it can be demonstrated that this was the practice of Yahushua the messiah, and the early assemblies who later were referred to as Quartodecimans. (System A)
Nevertheless, many would stubbornly disagree with this conclusion in the face of the facts and continue with a modified form of the Pharisaic/Hasidic practice (System B). This newer modified form would have an 8-day observance of eating unleavened bread from Abib 14-21 (System G).
Continue reading “39. Passover-Abib 14 is a Festival Day!”
When it comes to the issue of determining New Moons by visibility or calculation, there are a number of questions one should consider when trying to ascertain Yahweh’s truth of the matter.
It seems that various religious leaders have convinced many people that not only must one actually see the visible crescent of the new moon but must also determine the greenness of the barley crop for the New Year.
These religious leaders purport to know and understand the true criteria for the determination of Yahweh’s calendar. They also claim their knowledge and understanding comes directly from Scriptures.
In addition, these religious leaders claim that their formula for determining New Moons emanates from Scriptures and is very simple. So simple that Yahweh has provided the means for virtually anyone to determine the beginning of months and years regardless of circumstance.
Well, almost anyone. You might not be so fortunate if you don’t have 20-20 vision or are not a farmer.
Continue reading “New Moons – Visibility or Calculation?”
Unknown to most followers of Yahweh, there is a remarkable witness that provides evidence for the practice of the 7-day Festival of Passover and Unleavened Bread occurring on Abib 14-20.
This witness comes from an extra-biblical work, the Book of Yashar, also known as Sefer Ha-Yashar.
The present copy of the Book of Yashar is by no means to be assigned the authority of Scriptures. However, what the text says regarding the Passover of the Exodus nevertheless proves quite informative and interesting.
Book of Yashar
81:5 And the children of Israel TRAVELED FROM EGYPT AND FROM GOSHEN AND FROM RAMESES, AND ENCAMPED IN SUCCOTH ON THE FIFTEENTH DAY of the first month.
Continue reading “38. Passover – Egyptian Confirmation”
Many promote a form of the Hasidic/Pharisaic 8-day practice of Passover and Unleavened Bread, observing it on Abib 14-21.
Two scriptural passages that are misinterpreted and then used as proof against the 7-day Festival of Passover and Unleavened Bread practice of Abib 14-20 are Deuteronomy 16:8 and Ezekiel 45:21.
Before addressing these two passages, we will quickly recap the two positions.
• Abib 14, Passover day, is a Festival Day and High Sabbath. It is the first day of Passover week and the 7-day Festival of Unleavened Bread. One commences eating unleavened bread just after sunset at the beginning of Abib 14.
Continue reading “37. Passover – Deuteronomy and Ezekiel”
This question is one of the most profound statements found in Scriptures and uttered by the most unlikely of persons.
The New Testament names him Pontios Pilatos, or as many would recognize him, Pontius Pilate. He was the Roman prefect (governor) of Judaea under the emperor Tiberius, from 26-36 C.E.
The circumstances occurred when Yahushua the messiah was brought before Pontius Pilate by the Jewish religious leaders to exact an execution to be legally carried out by the Roman state.
The historical evidence dates this event to Abib 14, Passover day, of 30 C.E., corresponding to Thursday, April 6.
Was it possible that Pilate was capable of grasping some sense of truth from Yahushua?
Continue reading “What Is Truth?”
Although all of the evidence from Scriptures unequivocally makes “between/among the arabim (evenings)” begin at sunset and end at dark, there is one challenge made by the advocates of
System B (the Hasidic position) which must be addressed: their interpretation of Leviticus 23:26-32.
This single passage is the mainstay defense used by all of those claiming that at least one arab (evening) represents the last few hours of a day (System B and System D).
Day of Atonement (Yom Kippur)
Though the section begins by stating that “on the tenth day of this seventh month is a Day of Atonement,” a sacred convocation, and a day of humbling, i.e., fasting,1 it later gives a statement which is popularly translated to mean: Continue reading “36. Passover – Atonement on the 9th?”