The Feasts of God (6) 

Table of Contents

39. The Sheaf of Firstfruits: Culminating in Pentecost and Tabernacles

40. Pentecost: A New Feast

41. Pentecost: The Ekklesia

42. Pentecost: A Harvest Feast

43. Pentecost: Two Loaves

44. Pentecost: More Types and Shadows

45. Pentecost: The Type and Shadow of Sinai

46. Pentecost: The Earnest

47. Pentecost: Savage Wolves

48. Pentecost: The Real Feasts Replaced by Pagan Feasts

 

Chapter Thirty Nine

The Feasts of God

The Sheaf of Firstfruits

Culminating in Pentecost and Tabernacles

 

And when the day of Pentecost was fully come, they were all with one accord in one place.

Acts 2:1

 

The fulfillment of the Sheaf of Firstfruits is about the beginning of a great harvest and those that will pave the way for that harvest.  The initial bringing in of that harvest began on the Day of Pentecost but was short lived.  The ultimate bringing in of that harvest will culminate in this seventh day (millennium) since creation, which is the third day (millennium) of the Church.

 

The 120 believers that were baptized with the Spirit on the Day of Pentecost were the initial firstfruits company but today there is another firstfruits company that will usher in the completion of the Apostolic Church birthed on the Day of Pentecost, and the restitution of all things, as the Kingdom of God comes on Earth as in Heaven.

 

While the fulfillment of the Feasts of God is playing out on God’s historic timeline in chronological order, we must realize that the actual walking out of the fulfillment of the feasts often overlaps or appears to all be happening at once.  The more we walk in the Spirit, the more we walk in eternity.  In eternity there is no chronological order of time but rather an ever present now.  Someone has said that God created time to keep everything from happening at once.

 

While we do live in a time capsule where things happen in chronological order, more and more we of the Remnant Bride are experiencing eternity, where time has little or no relevance.  We are experiencing all the feasts at once as they all culminate in the Feast of Tabernacles.  However, on God’s historic/prophetic timeline we are just now entering the first part of the Feast of Tabernacles, which is the Feast of Trumpets.

 

We of the Remnant Bride, that firstfruits company, are a trumpet people.  We are literally the last trump Paul spoke of in 1 Corinthians 15:52 and 1 Thessalonians 4:16.  We are the announcers; a prophetic voice proclaiming the glorious future that lies just ahead on God’s timetable.

 

Like the prophets of old announced (proclaimed) Jesus’ coming until they literally spoke it into existence, and like the Jews kept saying, “Next year Jerusalem,” speaking of keeping the Feast of Passover in Jerusalem, which became possible when Israel captured the entire city of Jerusalem during the Six Day War of 1967; we, the Trumpet People must keep proclaiming the fulfillment of the Feast of Tabernacles and the coming Kingdom on Earth as in Heaven, until we speak it into existence.

 

That’s why I keep writing about it, saying the same thing from perhaps a little different angle each time.  My writing and teaching is not only to inform you, my readers and listeners but to prophetically proclaim the next thing(s) on God’s timetable until it comes to pass.

 

And come to pass it will.  Everything is playing out just as God planned from the foundation of the world and before, precisely according to His blueprint.  Nothing takes God by surprise.  Nothing catches Him off guard.  There is no Plan B.  God is sovereign and everything He has purposed will happen exactly as He desires.   

 

While all of the world and much of the Church drift through life clueless for the most part, I want to know the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth; being on the cutting edge of all God is doing in this new day (millennium) we have entered. 

 

Surely we were born for such a time as this!

 

Wisdom is the principal thing; therefore get wisdom: and with all thy getting get understanding.  Exalt her, and she shall promote thee: she shall bring thee to honour, when thou dost embrace her.  She shall give to thine head an ornament of grace: a crown of glory shall she deliver to thee.

Proverbs 4:7-9

 

Absolutely, we were born for such a time as this!!!

Chapter Forty

The Feasts of God

Pentecost

A New Feast

 

And when the day of Pentecost was fully come, they were all with one accord in one place.

Acts 2:1

 

The Feast of Passover is divided into three parts as we have studied: the Feast of Passover, the Unleavened Bread and the Sheaf of Firstfruits.  Likewise, the Feast of Tabernacles is a three part feast: Trumpets, Atonement and the Feast of Tabernacles.  Sandwiched in between these two yearly feasts is the Feast of Pentecost, also called the Feast of Harvest, of Firstfruits, or of Weeks and it stands alone as a single day feast.

 

Pentecost is the New Testament name for the feast.  Pentecost means fifty.  The Feast of Pentecost began on the fiftieth day after the Sheaf of Firstfruits was waved before the Lord on the morrow after the Sabbath following Passover (see Leviticus 23:11, 15).  The Day of Pentecost, when the Holy Spirit first descended on believers, anointing them with power, occurred fifty days after Jesus’ resurrection.  Once again we see how precise God is, leaving no doubt about His plan of redemption and restitution or about His existence and the infallibility of His written Word.

On the Day of Pentecost, Israel was to offer a new meat offering to the Lord (see Leviticus 23:16), signifying that the Feast of Pentecost was about a new beginning.  That new beginning was the birth of the Apostolic Church, which flourished with great power and success during the first century.  However, Pentecost is not only about power and success, it is also about government.

 

When Peter stood up and preached on the Day of Pentecost, as recorded in the second chapter of Acts, he started his discourse talking about power, anointing, gifts of the Spirit, wonders and signs.  He spoke of deliverance and salvation.  Then in verse twenty-five he mentions David, first recognizing him as a prophet in verse thirty and then pointing out that his descendant, Jesus, would sit on his (David’s) throne.  Thrones have to do with government. 

 

The fulfillment of the Feast of Pentecost has lasted from that first Pentecost after Jesus’ resurrection until the present time.  It is about the indwelling and anointing of the Holy Spirit, which equips believers with supernatural power and authority.  This aspect of Pentecost has for the most part been ignored by the Church for most of the last two thousand years.  Not until the mid-nineteenth and twentieth centuries have we seen great strides toward the restoration of the gifts of the Spirit in operation in the Church.

 

As already stated, the fulfillment of the Feast of Pentecost is also about government.  First of all, God established the government of the Apostolic Church, which functioned very well during the first century.  When the Roman Emperor Constantine married Church and state in the fourth century, committing an act of spiritual adultery, he also changed the government of the Church.  What had been a powerful, living organism in the first century, became a dead religious organization and the Dark Ages followed.  Today, as a result of the worldwide house church movement, the proper government of the Church is being restored and once again the Church is becoming a living organism, with Jesus as its Head instead of a man made organization.

 

But that is just one aspect of Pentecost being about government.  As the church once again begins to operate with the proper government, having great power and authority, the governments of the world are going to be affected.  This is already happening to some degree and in the time ahead I believe we will see the trend accelerate, until the kingdoms (nations) of this world become the kingdoms (Kingdom) of our Lord and his Christ (see Revelation 11:15), glory to God!

 

While that first Pentecost after Jesus’ resurrection was a new beginning with the establishment of the Apostolic Church, we are about to experience a second new beginning as the pattern, authority and power of the first century Church is restored during Tabernacles.  Passover and Pentecost are about to fully culminate in Tabernacles, as we come into the unity of the faith and a complete knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man measured by the stature of the fullness of Christ (see Ephesians 4:13).

 

Surely we were born for such a time as this.

Chapter Forty One

The Feasts of God

Pentecost

The Ekklesia

And I say unto thee, That thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.  And I will give unto thee the keys of the kingdom of heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt bind on earth shall be bound in heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.

Matthew 16:18-19

 

In our last teaching we looked at how the Day of Pentecost, when the Apostolic Church was birthed, is as much about government as it is about power and authority. 

 

Prior to the New Testament there was no church.  The closest thing to a church meeting under the Old Covenant (Testament) involved coming together in synagogues for study of the scripture and assembling together for the celebration of the Feasts of God, Passover, Pentecost and Tabernacles.

 

So when Jesus spoke of building His Church, He was speaking of something new, with functions beyond meeting for Bible study or to celebrate festivals (feasts).  He said the gates of hell (hades/sheol) would not prevail against it.  Gates are a defensive mechanism, so the indication was that the Church would invade the realm of death for the purpose of overcoming death.  He also said He would give the keys of the Kingdom of Heaven, with authority to bind and loose on Earth as in Heaven, an indication of a convergence of Heaven and Earth.

 

The word church in this passage is the Greek word ekklesia.  Interestingly, ekklesia is a governmental word.  Note that Jesus didn’t say, “I am going to build My temple or synagogue.”  He said ekklesia.  In the Roman Empire, the word ekklesia was used to define a ruling body like a parliament or congress.  So what Jesus literally said was, “I will build My government on Earth.”

 

Ekklesia is a governing body that establishes dominion to rule over a certain territory, establishing law and that which is socially acceptable.

 

Why do you suppose Jesus used a governmental word to describe something as spiritual as the Church?  Perhaps the answer can be found in a brief study of Jesus’ childhood.

 

Various historical accounts record that Jesus spent His teen years with His uncle, Joseph of Arimathea, whose tomb Jesus was buried in.  We don’t know why this is.  Perhaps His earthly father, Joseph (His mother’s husband), had died and Mary was unable to continue raising Him on her own.  Or maybe there was some other reason.

 

Joseph of Arimathea was a Jew, but involved in the Roman government.  The Greek word, ekklesia, was used to describe the Roman government. Rome sent out apostles from Rome to establish Roman society in the various regions that Rome conquered, with the intent to cause assimilation into the Roman way of thinking an functioning.  What we call the five-fold ministry was actually used by Rome in the establishment of the Roman Empire, in a natural sense.  Jesus learned all this while traveling with His uncle, and then applied the terminology to His Church (through the apostle Paul).  Interestingly, Jesus traveled with His uncle throughout the Roman Empire, going as far as England.

 

The lost and last chapter of the Book of Acts, which has recently resurfaced and is available, records that Paul also traveled to England, and found there a Jewish population, and history records that Joseph of Arimathea lived there.

 

This definition of ekklesia entails much more than believers assembling together for worship and ministry to one another.  It implies that we are to be reigning with Christ, governing regions and even nations.  What a clever trick of the devil to put this off somewhere in the future, convincing the ekklesia that we are to simply occupy until…  No, we are to be reigning right now!  We don’t have to wait until Jesus comes and sets this up.  He is setting it up right now. The government is and always has been upon His shoulder (see Isaiah 9:6-7).  The more He becomes fully formed in a people (see Galatians 4:19 AMP), which is the process of maturity or sanctification, the more we will take our rightful position as the ekklesia, reigning over the earth system until the nations of the world become the Kingdom of God, not just in individuals but politically (see Revelation 11:15).

 

Surely we were born for such a time as this!

Chapter Forty Two

he Feasts of God

Pentecost

A Harvest Feast

 

In that day will I raise up the tabernacle of David that is fallen, and close up the breaches thereof; and I will raise up his ruins, and I will build it as in the days of old.  Behold, the days come, saith the Lord, that the plowman shall overtake the reaper, and the treader of grapes him that soweth seed; and the mountains shall drop sweet wine, and all the hills shall melt.

Amos 9:11, 13

 

Come, and let us return unto the Lord: for he hath torn, and he will heal us; he hath smitten, and he will bind us up.  After two days will he revive us: in the third day he will raise us up, and we shall live in his sight.  Then shall we know, if we follow on to know the Lord: his going forth is prepared as the morning; and he shall come unto us as the rain, as the latter and former rain unto the earth.

Hosea 6:1-3

 

We have established that Pentecost is about power and government.  In that day in Amos 9:11, refers to the millennium we are now entering on God’s historic and prophetic timetable.  Raising up the tabernacle of David in this day is about the restoration of the Apostolic Church of the first century, which is necessary in order for the Kingdom of God to come on Earth as in Heaven.  This will be the result of a continual harvest (the plowman overtaking the reaper and the treader of grapes him that sows seed). 

 

While we saw a great harvest in the first century, the spiritual awakening that is about to take place as we enter this third day of the Church and seventh day of/since creation will cause the first century harvest to pale in comparison.

 

We are about to experience the former rain that caused the planted seeds to germinate and begin to grow and the latter rain that brought in the harvest, all at once.

 

The former rain and the latter rain is an analogy that has more than one application.  We can compare the former rain to the initial outpouring of the Holy Spirit on the Day of Pentecost as recorded in the second chapter of Acts, and the latter rain to the outpouring of the Holy Spirit in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries.  Or, we can compare the former rain to Pentecost and the latter rain to Tabernacles, although the actual former and latter rains in Israel do not coincide with these feasts on the calendar.

 

However the analogy is used, it is definitely about continual harvest.  With that in mind, I think the better application of the analogy has to do with Pentecost and Tabernacles.  As we enter this new day (millennium), Pentecost is culminating in Tabernacles.  As a result, we are going to experience the harvest of Pentecost as never before.

 

In Exodus 23:16, Pentecost is called the Feast of Harvest and Tabernacles the Feast of Ingathering.  I think these names for the two feasts support the analogy of the former and latter rain having to do with Pentecost and Tabernacles.

 

The awakening that is already taking place in much of the world is no less than continual harvest.  James Rutz, in his book “Megashift,” says this:

 

By tomorrow, there will be 175,000 more Christians than there are today.  That means, no matter how rotten a day you have today, no matter how many things go haywire, when the sun comes up tomorrow you will have 175,000 new brothers and sisters in Christ in 238 nations around the world (page 25)!

 

From 1970 to 2000, core apostolics doubled every nine years.  As national strongholds of sin are dismantled and pits of misery cleaned up, the true purpose of God for many nations will be revealed.  We are in the early stages of a total transformation of our planet (page 27).

 

Rutz credits these statistics and his predictions for the future to the world wide house church movement.  While it is just in the beginning stages in the Western World, at the present rate of growth in other countries, should that rate continue, the whole world will be Christian by 2032, according to Rutz (page 41).

 

This sounds like continual harvest to me, glory to God!

 

We are living in the most exciting time in all of history so far.  Surely we were born for such a time as this!

Chapter Forty Three

The Feasts of God

Pentecost

Two Loaves

 

Ye shall bring out of your habitations two wave loaves of two tenth deals: they shall be of fine flour; they shall be baken with leaven; they are the firstfruits unto the Lord.

Leviticus 23:17

 

For we being many are one bread, and one body: for we are all partakers of that one bread.

1 Corinthians 10:17

 

In the mathematics of the Bible, 1 + 1 doesn’t always equal 2.  When two walk in unity, 1 + 1 = 1.  In Genesis we see Adam and Eve; Eve being taken out of Adam creating two but Eve completing and complementing Adam, the two becoming one.

 

Genesis also speaks of the sun and the moon; the moon reflecting the glory of the sun having no light of its own; comparable to Adam and Eve/to the Lord and the Church.

 

There were two loaves of bread on the table in the Holy of Holies in the temple in Jerusalem.  There were two tablets of stone with the Ten Commandments written on them.  There were two trumpets that called the assembly together in ancient Israel when there were important announcements to be made.  There are two covenants: the Old Testament and the New Testament that are two but actually one and the same with Jesus being in and the subject of every book of the Bible.  Jesus came with the law written in His heart and mind and now the Body of Christ has that same law written in our hearts and minds; Jesus, the Head and His Body being one.

 

Not only are Jesus and His Body one, He has made provision for Israel and the Church to become one (see Ephesians 2:11-22).  In doing so, we must realize that the prophetic scriptures are not only for the nation of Israel but there is an application also for the Church; which includes Jews and Gentiles becoming one in Christ.

 

The two loaves were the product of the recent harvest and they were to be baked with leaven.  Leaven in Scripture is representative of a mixture; truth and lie/man-made tradition and God’s way of doing things/etc.

 

There are many examples of unity fulfilled in the New Testament Church; yet our two thousand year history is one of division and strife.  God, knowing the end from the beginning, knew this would be the case.  Again, how precise God is!  The Feast of Pentecost, unlike Passover, allowed leaven.

 

The Sheaf of Firstfruits was celebrated as a part of Passover, but in Pentecost we find the two loaves being made from the firstfruits of the actual harvest.  As great a harvest as Pentecost produced it was but the firstfruits of the harvest Tabernacles will produce and will pale in comparison.

 

The two loaves were to be made from fine flour.  Fine flour was made on the threshing floor, having been ground to dust; symbolic of how believers are ground to dust on the threshing floor of adversity, being reduced to nothing so the Lord can live in and through them, with great might and power.

 

This is witnessed in the first century Church and in the remnants down through the centuries of Church history.  Today the Remnant Bride of Christ has been ground to dust, preparing and positioning her to enter Tabernacles, when Pentecost will be experienced in fullness.

 

Surely we were born for such a time as this!

Chapter Forty Four

The Feasts of God

Pentecost

More Types and Shadows

 

And ye shall count unto you from the morrow after the sabbath, from the day that ye brought the sheaf of the wave offering; seven sabbaths shall be complete: even unto the morrow after the seventh sabbath shall ye number fifty days; and ye shall offer a new meat offering unto the Lord. 

 

Ye shall bring out of your habitations two wave loaves of two tenth deals: they shall be of fine flour; they shall be baken with leaven; they are the firstfruits unto the Lord.  And ye shall offer with the bread seven lambs without blemish of the first year, and one young bullock, and two rams: they shall be for a burnt offering unto the Lord, with their meat offering, and their drink offerings, even an offering made by fire, of sweet savour unto the Lord.  Then ye shall sacrifice one kid of the goats for a sin offering, and two lambs of the first year for a sacrifice of peace offerings. 

 

And the priest shall wave them with the bread of the firstfruits for a wave offering before the Lord, with the two lambs: they shall be holy to the Lord for the priest.  And ye shall proclaim on the selfsame day, that it may be an holy convocation unto you: ye shall do no servile work therein: it shall be a statute for ever in all your dwellings throughout your generations.

 

And when ye reap the harvest of your land, thou shalt not make clean riddance of the corners of thy field when thou reapest, neither shalt thou gather any gleaning of thy harvest: thou shalt leave them unto the poor, and to the stranger: I am the Lord your God.

Leviticus 23:15-22

 

Let’s break this scripture down verse by verse and look at the symbolism, which is a picture of the fulfillment of Pentecost and a foreshadowing of Tabernacles.

 

And ye shall count unto you from the morrow after the sabbath, from the day that ye brought the sheaf of the wave offering; seven sabbaths shall be complete: even unto the morrow after the seventh sabbath shall ye number fifty days;

 

From the waving of the Sheaf of Firstfruits until Pentecost was fifty days, a type and shadow of the year of Jubilee that took place in Israel every fifty years (see Leviticus 25:8-14).  Every seventh year was a Sabbath in Israel (see Leviticus 25:3-4).  Seven Sabbath years plus the six years that preceded each Sabbath year equaled forty-nine years.  Then the fiftieth year would also be a special Sabbath; the year of Jubilee.

 

This is what Jesus was referring to in Luke 4:19 when he read from Isaiah.  The acceptable year of the Lord (KJV) refers to the year of Jubilee.  Jesus is our Jubilee, so Pentecost was about continual Jubilee, which will find its complete fulfillment in Tabernacles.

 

 … and ye shall offer a new meat offering unto the Lord.

 

On the Day of Pentecost, Israel was to offer a new meat offering to the Lord (see Leviticus 23:16), signifying that the Feast of Pentecost was about a new beginning.  That new beginning was the birth of the Apostolic Church, which flourished with great power and success during the first century. 

 

Ye shall bring out of your habitations two wave loaves of two tenth deals: they shall be of fine flour; they shall be baken with leaven; they are the firstfruits unto the Lord.

 

In the mathematics of the Bible, 1 + 1 doesn’t always equal 2.  When two walk in unity, 1 + 1 = 1.  In Genesis we see Adam and Eve; Eve being taken out of Adam creating two, but Eve completing and complementing Adam, the two becoming one.

 

Genesis also speaks of the sun and the moon; the moon reflecting the glory of the sun having no light of its own; comparable to Adam and Eve/to the Lord and the Church.

 

There were two loaves of bread on the table in the Holy of Holies in the temple in Jerusalem.  There were two tablets of stone with the Ten Commandments written on them.  There were two trumpets that called the assembly together in ancient Israel when there were important announcements to be made.  There are two covenants: the Old Testament and the New Testament that are two but actually one and the same with Jesus being in and the subject of every book of the Bible.  Jesus came with the law written in His heart and mind and now the Body of Christ has that same law written in our hearts and minds; Jesus, the Head and His Body being one.

 

Not only are Jesus and His Body one, He has made provision for Israel and the Church to become one (see Ephesians 2:11-22).  In doing so, we must realize that the prophetic scriptures are not only for the nation of Israel but there is an application also for the Church; which includes Jews and Gentiles becoming one in Christ.

 

The two loaves were the product of the recent harvest and they were to be baked with leaven.  Leaven in Scripture is representative of a mixture; Truth and lie/man-made tradition and God’s way of doing things/etc.

 

There are many examples of unity fulfilled in the New Testament Church; yet our two thousand year history is one of division and strife.  God, knowing the end from the beginning, knew this would be the case.  Again, how precise God is!  The Feast of Pentecost, unlike Passover, allowed leaven.

 

The Sheaf of Firstfruits was celebrated as a part of Passover, but in Pentecost we find the two loaves being made from the firstfruits of the actual harvest.  As great a harvest as Pentecost produced, it was but the firstfruits of the harvest Tabernacles will produce and will pale in comparison.

 

The two loaves were to be made from fine flour.  Fine flour was made on the threshing floor, having been ground to dust; symbolic of how believers are ground to dust on the threshing floor of adversity, being reduced to nothing so the Lord can live in and through them with great might and power.

 

This is witnessed in the first century Church and in the remnants down through the centuries of Church history.  Today the Remnant Bride of Christ has been ground to dust, preparing and positioning her to enter Tabernacles, when Pentecost will be experienced in fullness.

 

And ye shall offer with the bread seven lambs without blemish of the first year,

 

Seven is the Biblical number for completion/perfection.  We have been through six millennia (days) since creation and are now entering the seventh millennium (day).  Jesus, the Lamb that was slain from the foundation of the world (see Revelation 13:8), has been present in all six millennia since creation even though He wasn’t born into the world as a man until the fifth millennium.  John emphasizes this truth in the first chapter of his account of the Gospel.  Jesus is coming in fullness in a people (see Galatians 4:19 AMP) during this seventh millennium (day), which we are now entering.  He was present in the first year/day/millennium and continues to be present throughout history and on into the future.

 

In the apostle Paul’s second letter to Timothy, he speaks of those that love the Lord’s appearing (see 2 Timothy 4:8).  I submit to you that His appearing is a continual event throughout history.

 

… and one young bullock,

 

A young bull can inseminate many cows producing offspring.  This is symbolic of Jesus, the firstfruit of many more to come, which has been fulfilled in Pentecost and will find an even greater fulfillment in Tabernacles.

 

… and two rams: they shall be for a burnt offering unto the Lord, with their meat offering, and their drink offerings, even an offering made by fire, of sweet savour unto the Lord.

 

Again we find the number two, but this time it is two rams instead of two loaves.  Rams were male sheep, perhaps symbolic of Jesus, the Head and the Body (the Head of the Body of Christ, the true Church).  They were to be a burnt offering made by fire (the refining fire that Jesus experienced in the wilderness and every believer must experience in the adversity of tests and trials), which is a sweet savor to God (see Psalm 116:15). 

 

The drink offerings were symbolic of the cup of the New Covenant that Jesus shared with his disciples at that last Passover meal before the crucifixion (see Luke 22:20), which He commanded them and us to do in remembrance of Him (see 1 Corinthians 11:24); a ceremony of remembrance carried on down through the last two thousand years of Pentecost that will continue to be carried on from the present and on into Tabernacles.

 

Then ye shall sacrifice one kid of the goats for a sin offering, and two lambs of the first year for a sacrifice of peace offerings.  And the priest shall wave them with the bread of the firstfruits for a wave offering before the Lord, with the two lambs: they shall be holy to the Lord for the priest.

 

More types and shadows of Jesus fulfilled in all three of the yearly feasts: one kid for sins and two lambs for peace.  Jesus is the Lamb (kid) slain for the sins of mankind.  However, it will take not only the sacrifice of Jesus but also the sacrifice of the Body of Christ, sharing in His suffering and death, to bring lasting peace to Earth.  The priest was to wave them and they were holy to the Lord for the priest; we are all priests unto our God (see Revelation 1:6).

 

And ye shall proclaim on the selfsame day, that it may be an holy convocation unto you: ye shall do no servile work therein: it shall be a statute for ever in all your dwellings throughout your generations.

Israel was to do no work on this day.  It was to be a day of rest; a rehearsal (convocation) of a day when the people of God would enter into His ultimate rest.

 

There remaineth therefore a rest to the people of God.

Hebrews 4:9

 

We have discovered that rest to a degree during Pentecost but will realize it completely in Tabernacles, during this seventh day (millennium), which is the ultimate Sabbath.

 

And when ye reap the harvest of your land, thou shalt not make clean riddance of the corners of thy field when thou reapest, neither shalt thou gather any gleaning of thy harvest: thou shalt leave them unto the poor, and to the stranger:

 

The continual harvest of Pentecost, which will find greater fulfillment in Tabernacles, provides abundance for the poor and the stranger.  Because of the New Covenant we lack nothing and can give to all as we desire and are led of the Spirit to do so.

 

I am the Lord your God.

 

This statement qualifies all the above.  Amen (so let it be).

Chapter Forty Five

The Feasts of God

Pentecost

The Type and Shadow of Sinai

 

And ye shall count unto you from the morrow after the sabbath, from the day that ye brought the sheaf of the wave offering; seven sabbaths shall be complete: even unto the morrow after the seventh sabbath shall ye number fifty days.

Leviticus 23:15-16

 

The days and weeks from Passover to Pentecost were to coincide with Israel’s journey in the wilderness, after their departure from Egypt.  They had left Egypt on Friday, the fifteenth of the month Aviv and crossed through the Red Sea on Sunday, the seventeenth.  The Passover lamb was slain at 3:00pm of the fourteenth and they ate the Passover meal ready to leave Egypt that night, the fifteenth (days were counted from sundown to sundown, approximately 6:00pm until 6:00pm the following day).  The observance of the Feast of Passover was not only a remembrance of the Exodus; it was a foreshadowing of the crucifixion of Jesus, the real Passover Lamb, which took place not only on the same day of the year as the Exodus, but on the same day of the week and at the same hour of that day!   

 

The misconception that Jesus was crucified on Friday stems from John 19:31, but Jewish history records that Jesus was crucified on Thursday about 3:00pm, which coincides with the Passover celebration and the Exodus.

 

The resurrection of Jesus coincides with the crossing of the Red Sea three days after the Passover lamb was slain.  Again and again, there can be no doubt as to the infallibility of scripture, the existence of Almighty God and His awesome plan for mankind and planet Earth!

 

After the Israelites passed through the Red Sea they traveled forty-seven days to Mount Sinai.  When they arrived at Mount Sinai they were to then purify themselves for three days.  47 + 3 = 50.  Pentecost means fifty.  Pentecost is the New Testament name for the second main festival Israel celebrated each year (it was actually the fourth festival total).  In the Old Testament it was called the Feast of Weeks or Shavuot.

 

This coincides with the coming of the Holy Spirit to baptize believers on the Day of Pentecost as recorded in the second chapter of Acts, which occurred fifty days after Jesus resurrection.   Israel’s passing through the Red Sea was a type and shadow of His resurrection.  But there is much more to this story than the coinciding dates, days and hours.

 

And when the day of Pentecost was fully come, they were all with one accord in one place.  And suddenly there came a sound from heaven as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting. And there appeared unto them cloven tongues like as of fire, and it sat upon each of them.  And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance. 

 

And there were dwelling at Jerusalem Jews, devout men, out of every nation under heaven.  Now when this was noised abroad, the multitude came together, and were confounded, because that every man heard them speak in his own language.  And they were all amazed and marvelled, saying one to another, Behold, are not all these which speak Galileans?  And how hear we every man in our own tongue, wherein we were born?

Acts 2:1-8

 

According to the book of Exodus and Jewish tradition, fifty days after Israel passed through the Red Sea and had purified themselves at Mount Sinai, God descended on the mountain.  That day is known in Jewish history as The Revelation of God at Mount Sinai.  As fire appeared on the mountain, the wind blew and the earth quaked.  As God spoke the commandments audibly, not only was His voice heard in Hebrew but in the seventy languages known at that time.  This took place in the wilderness, an area not claimed by any one nation.  Long before the Messianic Jews of the first century realized the Gospel was for all nations and not just for the Jews, God was reaching out to all mankind with His redemptive message of hope and salvation.

 

It isn’t hard to see how God’s appearance to Israel on Mount Sinai compared with the appearance of the Holy Spirit on the Day of Pentecost.

 

According to Jewish tradition, Israel not only heard God’s audible voice that day at Sinai, but saw the sound waves as they proceeded from His mouth, which appeared as tongues of fire.  It was these tongues of fire that actually engraved the Ten Commandments on the two stone tablets.

 

Learning of the feasts and their coinciding events leaves me almost speechless and in awe of our amazing God and His incredible plan.  The understanding of this knowledge has greatly increased the intimate relationship I have with Him; opening the door to revelation that is clear and precise, washing away all religious traditions that are void of truth, or at best partially true.

 

The definition in Hebrew of festival or feast is a set time or an appointed time.  The Greek word for a set time or an appointed time is kiros.  The feasts or festivals were kiros moments that took place at specific times during the calendar year, which is chronological time; the Greek word there being chronos.   While the prophetic applications of the feasts are also kiros moments, they play out on a timeline that is chronological.  Thus, we have experienced Passover and Pentecost in the last two thousand years and are now beginning to experience Tabernacles in this third millennium of the Church, and seventh millennium since creation.

 

There is another Hebrew word that is associated with the feasts or festivals.  That word is mikrah and is translated in most English Bibles as convocation, which means rehearsal or recital.

 

The three main feasts or seven total feasts, initiated in the Old Testament, are rehearsals for the events that brought about the birth and will bring about the completion of the New Testament Church (that completion being when the Church is fully mature having been perfected).  That is the Church Jesus will present to Himself without spot, wrinkle or any such thing, holy and without blemish (see Ephesians 5:27).  The end result of this perfecting of the Church will be the restitution of all things (see Acts 3:21).

 

Surely God’s plan is perfect and will continue to play out exactly as and when He has purposed and…

 

Surely we were born for such a time as this!  Bless his name forever!

Chapter Forty Six

The Feasts of God

Pentecost

The Earnest

 

Now he which stablisheth us with you in Christ, and hath anointed us, is God; who hath also sealed us, and given the earnest of the Spirit in our hearts.

2 Corinthians 1:21-22 (emphasis added)

 

For we that are in this tabernacle do groan, being burdened: not for that we would be unclothed, but clothed upon, that mortality might be swallowed up of life.  Now he that hath wrought us for the selfsame thing is God, who also hath given unto us the earnest of the Spirit.

2 Corinthians 5:4-5 (emphasis added)

 

We were sealed with that holy Spirit of promise, which is the earnest of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession, unto the praise of his glory.

Ephesians 1:13-14 (emphasis added)

 

The word earnest can have several meanings, but according to Vine’s Expository Dictionary of Old & New Testament Words, the Greek in the above scripture references is the noun arrabon.  Originally, it meant earnest-money deposited by the purchaser and forfeited if the purchase was not completed.  It is thought it was a Phoenician word introduced into Greece.  In Modern Greek arrabona is an engagement ring.

 

In general use it came to denote a pledge or earnest of any sort, and in the New Testament it is used only of that which is assured by God to believers.  In the above scripture references, earnest is a synonym for the Holy Spirit. 

 

Hence, the Holy Spirit is the earnest of our inheritance, which entails all the promises of God now and future, including eternal life, not only in the spiritual and soul realm, but in the physical realm as well.  When Jesus walked out of the tomb with a physical body that would never die again, He became the firstborn from the dead of many more to come (see Romans 8:29).

 

2 Corinthians 5:4-5 insures us that our mortality will at some point be swallowed up of life and become immortal.  While the multitudes that exit the earth through physical death will have to be resurrected in order for that to happen, I believe there is a generation of believers that will not have to experience physical death.  Like Enoch (see Genesis 5:23-24), they will walk closer and closer to God until one day they will completely step over from time into eternity; the mortality of their physical bodies simply being swallowed up by life, putting on immortality like a person puts on a garment.  That is the ultimate hope of glory that Christ (the Holy Spirit) in us is the earnest of (see Colossians 1:27).

 

If you want to buy a car or a house, the down payment (earnest) might be a reasonably small percentage of the total cost.  The earnest of the Holy Spirit, which is Christ in us, the hope of glory, is no small down payment.  However, when considered in light of Ephesians 3:20 and compared to the glory that lies ahead in the ages to come, perhaps it is a small percentage.

 

Now unto him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us, unto him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus throughout all ages, world without end.  Amen.

Ephesians 3:20-21

 

To say that the Holy Spirit or Christ in us is a small percentage of that to come is in no way intended to diminish His presence and power in us.  Actually, that presence and power is limitless.  The only thing that can in any way limit it is the reality that we live in physical bodies in a time capsule.  Still, the closer we walk with God and in the Spirit the more we step over from those physical and time limitations into eternity.

 

The more we die to self and live in abandonment to God’s plans and purposes, the more we will experience the fruit of an intimate relationship with God.  His presence and power dwelling in us is no less than Christ living his life in and through us (see Galatians 2:20).

 

I often hear believers say they would like to see more signs, wonders and miracles.  Perhaps this is the primary key to the fulfillment of that desire: to die continually and completely to self and live in total abandonment to God with no agenda of our own and not a care in the world, trusting Him completely and walking in obedience to the leading of the Holy Spirit, and the laws He has

written on our hearts and in our minds.

 

I dare say this is not possible by simply choosing to do so.  While we can make that choice, it seems to take intense and sometimes severe tests and trials to bring us to the place of total surrender and dependence on God.  To say or think otherwise is to ignore much of the teaching in the New Testament.  However, I can assure you from personal experience, the results far outweigh any cost.  Actually, when the results are compared to the cost, there really isn’t any cost to us personally.  You see, Jesus already paid that cost.

 

For us, the price we pay as we share in His suffering and death (see Philippians 3:10) is but opportunity to prove the glory that is in us, enabling us to be victorious overcomers.  And that glory is no less than the earnest of the Spirit, a down payment toward more than we can ask or think, glory to God!

Chapter Forty Seven

The Feasts of God

Pentecost

Savage Wolves

For I know this, that after my departing shall grievous [savage] wolves enter in among you, not sparing the flock.  Also of your own selves shall men arise, speaking perverse things, to draw away disciples after them.  Therefore watch, and remember, that by the space of three years I ceased not to warn every one night and day with tears.  And now, brethren, I commend you to God, and to the word of his grace, which is able to build you up, and to give you an inheritance among all them which are sanctified.

Acts 20:29-32

It sounds like Paul foresaw what John wrote to seven Asian churches, which Jesus gave to him in the Book of Revelation.  The one thing Jesus said he hated in those letters was the practice of the Nicolaitans, which most likely referred to the clergy/laity system that was already in existence by the end of the first century and became the foundation of the Roman Catholic Church.  That same system was carried over into Protestant churches and is prevalent in so called charismatic, evangelical and independent churches today.

 

Isn’t it amazing that sincere and serious believers see nothing wrong with this practice?  How can that be?  I just don’t understand.  The Truth seems so clear to me.

 

We are to be a Church of ministers, ministering to one another as the Spirit leads.  Paul made this clear in 1 Corinthians 14:26: 

 

How is it then, brethren?  When ye come together, every one of you hath a psalm, hath a doctrine, hath a tongue, hath a revelation, hath an interpretation.  Let all things be done unto edifying.

The apostle John said we are all priests (see Revelation 1:6), and the term for believers throughout the Bible is saints.  To designate certain men a priests and to grant a title of saint to a few individuals (mostly dead) is a gross misrepresentation and misinterpretation of Scripture.

The clergy/laity system in the Church, which is part of that leavened bread of Pentecost, has perhaps done more damage to the Church than anything else.  It has stunted the growth of believers, keeping them for the most part silent in the pews and making workers out of them instead of ministers.

 

Not only has it promoted immaturity among believers, it has greatly hindered evangelism.  Saints of God, this should not be!  We have got to divorce ourselves from this system that Jesus hates and build in the first century pattern that Paul so boldly defended.

 

The worldwide house church movement is proving there is a better way and while it is just in the beginning stages in the Western World, it is an idea whose time has come.

 

In the time just ahead, as we move into this third day (millennium) of the Church and enter into the second prophetic fulfillment of the Feast of Tabernacles, progressing from Pentecost, these savage wolves as Paul referred to them, will lose their influence as more and more believers come to a more complete understanding of truth, and of God’s eternal plan(s) and purpose(s).

Perhaps savage wolves is harsh terminology.  I realize many well-meaning pastors just don’t see their error.  We shouldn’t come against them but we should pray for their enlightenment and look for opportunities to share the truth with them in love.  And we should be ready to minister to them should they be dealt with harshly by the Lord.

 

Some think God doesn’t deal harshly with believers but my Bible says otherwise, and my experience is otherwise.  I thank Him that he has dealt harshly with me.  A modern psychological term for that is tough love.  Had He not dealt harshly with me I would not be where I am today and seeing what I am seeing of the Kingdom.

 

Manifested Sons are Chastened Sons

 

My son, despise not thou the chastening of the Lord, nor faint when thou art rebuked of him: for whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom he receiveth.  If ye endure chastening, God dealeth with you as with sons; for what son is he whom the father chasteneth not?  But if ye be without chastisement, whereof all are partakers, then are ye bastards, and not sons. 

Hebrews 12:5-8

 

For the earnest expectation of the creature [creation] waiteth for the manifestation [revealing] of the sons of God.

Romans 8:19

 

I want to be a son.  In the Hebrew culture of the Bible a son was a mature child, ready to receive his Father’s inheritance and use all the authority of his Father’s name, which was also his own name by birth.

 

We have been born into the Kingdom of God by being born from above (born again) (see John 3:3).  Our new birth enables us to see the Kingdom, but seeing it clearly is a process that takes time and chastening, as we renew our minds to the Word of God (see Romans 12:2) and seek the Kingdom (Matthew 6:33).  The process of chastening, which is a process of dying to self, usually if not always entails many tests and trials.

Around the end of 2001, the Lord began to put me through an intense process of dying to self.  At first I was clueless as to what was happening.  I thought I had died to self.  I thought I was being attacked by the devil.  I did everything I knew to do to overcome the attacks with no results.  Finally, after many months of suffering, I began to see what was happening.

 

I didn’t choose to die to self because I didn’t know I needed to die to self.  God literally killed me.  He forced the process on me without my even knowing what was happening.  He drove me into the wilderness just as the Spirit drove Jesus into the wilderness to be tempted (tested) of the devil (see Mark 1:12).

 

Unlike Jesus, in the beginning stages of my wilderness experience, I failed the test.  It took me a while to realize what was happening and then to cooperate with the chastening of the Lord.  Today I seek and welcome His correction.  Correction is better than chastening but if it takes chastening to bring needed change in my life, I welcome that too. 

 

As we enter this new day on God’s timetable, many in positions of ministry are going to be chastised by the Lord.  I suspect most of them, like me, have not walked in error willingly but just out of a lack of understanding of God’s ways, having accepted traditions of men as truth.  Those of us who have been put through an intense wilderness experience, emerging as overcomers, and are being taken out of the Body of Christ like Eve was taken out of Adam, becoming a remnant of the Body of Christ, must realize our unique position and be there for those that are in the jaws of chastisement.

 

Pentecost allowed leaven and God has overlooked a lot of error and partial truth as He has been in the process of restoring the Apostolic Church of the first century.  But this is not Pentecost.  This is the beginning of Tabernacles.  We are transitioning from the Church Age into the Kingdom Age, and much that God has overlooked in the past will not be allowed in the future.

 

During this time of transition we must realize that all are not seeing what a few of us are seeing.  Until the Spirit reveals truth to an individual, that individual cannot walk in the truth.  While there is a separation taking place, we must be peace makers and realize that eventually we will all come into the unity of the faith.

 

Eve was taken out of Adam in order to complete Adam.  We of the Remnant Bride of Christ are being taken out of the Body of Christ in order to complete the Body of Christ.  While we are more enlightened than the masses, we are in no way better than the masses.  We are simply trailblazers paving the way for many more to come.  We didn’t choose this walk we are walking.  We were chosen for a specific purpose like Israel of old was chosen to pave the way for all mankind to be saved.

 

Surely we were born for such a time as this.

Chapter Forty Eight

The Feasts of God

Pentecost

The Real Feasts Replaced by Pagan Feasts

 

This people honoureth me with their lips, but their heart is far from me.  Howbeit in vain do they worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men.  Making the word of God of none effect through your tradition, which ye have delivered: and many such like things do ye.

Mark 7:6-7, 13 (see also Matthew 15:6-9)

 

Before Jesus was crucified, He prophesied the destruction of Jerusalem and the temple, when the Jews would be dispersed throughout the Roman Empire.  By the time this happened, Gentiles were already becoming believers.  In the early days of the Church, most Gentile believers as well as Messianic Jews kept the festivals.  The Feasts of God were not Jewish festivals.  They were for all people with eyes to see and ears to hear the truth.  The early Church realized the importance of the festivals (feasts), as they related to the coming of Jesus and future events.

 

The Jews revolted against the Roman Empire in AD 66, the same year the apostle Paul was beheaded in Rome, according to history.  Four years later Roman armies surrounded Jerusalem at the time of the Feast of Passover, when many Jews were in the city to celebrate the feast.  The city and temple were for the most part destroyed, and the remaining Jews were then scattered throughout the Roman Empire.

 

Following this time, anything considered to be Jewish was seen as being in opposition to Rome.  Rome required assimilation into the Roman way of thinking and acting.  Antisemitism became popular throughout the Roman Empire, even among Gentile believers. 

 

About this same time, Messianic Jews were banned from Jewish synagogues.  So Jewish believers were attacked on three fronts: by pagans that hated anything Jewish, by non-believing Jews and by Gentile believers that were becoming more and more anti-Semitic.

 

In AD 116, Jews in Egypt revolted against Rome and were almost completely annihilated.  Then in AD 135 there was another revolt by Jews still living in their homeland.  Both non-believing Jews and Messianic Jews joined in the rebellion until a prominent Rabbi, Akiva, declared the leader of the Jewish forces to be the Messiah.  The Messianic Jews, knowing there was only one Messiah and unwilling to appear to be serving two Messiahs, deserted and were labeled as traitors by the non-believing Jews.  The non-believing Jews continued fighting and the Roman army destroyed them, which was a final blow to their nation and antisemitism became a way of life throughout the Roman Empire, causing Christian congregations to shun anything Jewish.

 

Just prior to the fourth century, Constantine became the Roman Emperor (Caesar).  He appeared to become a Christian and in AD 325 called the Council of Nicea, gathering Christian leaders from all over the Roman Empire.  However, purposely, there were no Jewish believers present at that meeting.  Laws were passed forbidding Jews to circumcise their sons or teach their children Jewish customs and laws.  The Feasts of God (considered to be Jewish) were banned and replaced by pagan holidays, which was the beginning of the modern Christian traditions: Lent, Easter and Christmas.

 

Lent may have begun in the church before the fourth century and while today it is observed a little differently by various denominations and not at all by some, its purpose is to commemorate Jesus’ time in the wilderness, when He was tempted of the devil, and to prepare Christians for Easter by practicing fasting, abstinence of various kinds, self-denial and prayer.  While none of these things are in and of themselves wrong, nowhere in scripture are we commanded to observe them as part of a ritual or ceremony.  To do so is an attempt to accomplish something in the flesh that is spiritual in nature.  The observance of Lent is a practice right out of pagan religions.

 

While there are various opinions as to the origin of the word Easter, the most prevalent is that it was derived from one of the names of a fertility goddess worshipped by numerous pagan religions and celebrated at the time of the spring equinox.  Hence, the use of rabbits, colored eggs and even sunrise services.  Perhaps it was incorporated into the celebration of Jesus’ crucifixion and resurrection to make the observance more acceptable to pagans.  Whatever its origins, it was substituted for and replaced the Feast of Passover.  It is estimated that more people attend traditional church services on Easter Sunday than any other time throughout the year.  Perhaps this is a testimony to the carnality of the observance of Easter.

 

Christmas had its beginnings with the Roman Catholic Church, probably in the fourth century and was later instituted as a civil holiday by the Roman Empire.  Originally it was a Catholic mass to celebrate the birth of Jesus (Christ-mass), which is a man-made tradition and totally unscriptural.   Eventually numerous pagan practices and influences became a part of the Christmas celebration.

 

Today Christians and non-believers alike have unreal expectations about Christmas.  They see it as a miraculous time of the year, when differences are forgotten and family and friends come together in peace and harmony.  The problem is it rarely turns out that way.  I have witnessed, as you probably have, more family fights resulting in relatives not speaking to each other at Christmas than at any other time of the year. 

 

The high expectations people have about Christmas, which is supported by many made for TV Christmas movies in the Western World, often causes disappointment and even depression.  Christmas also becomes a time when the loss or absence of loved ones is amplified.

 

It is a time when many people spend money they don’t have on presents no one really wants, all because they feel obligated to.  I am a giver and I love to give, but I would rather do it randomly throughout the year than at Christmas because I feel obligated to.

 

Jesus said that traditions of men make the Word of God have no effect (see Mark: 7:6-7, 13 and Matthew 15:6-9).  I have watched Christians and entire churches get caught up in Christmas and in essence shut out the Holy Spirit during the Christmas season.  It is as if the Holy Spirit takes a vacation sometime around Thanksgiving (a US holiday) and shows up again after the first of the year.

 

I have continued to be a part of Christmas mostly to keep peace in the family.  I’m not sure if that is a good idea or not, especially since at times I’ve witnessed it produce anything but peace.  However, Jesus did say, “Blessed are the peacemakers (Matthew 5:9),” so maybe it’s okay (I emphasize maybe). 

 

But I do know this: while we have two accounts of Jesus birth (Matthew and Luke), the celebration of Jesus’ birth is unscriptural.  And even if we should celebrate it, He was not born on December 25th.  His birth took place at the time of the Feast of Tabernacles.

 

Christians often get concerned about the so called secularization of Christmas.  Hence, the slogan: Put Christ back in Christmas.  The problem is, He was never there in the first place.

 

You may think celebrating these modern day rituals is of no consequence, but I think you should reconsider.  Ask any Christian about the true feasts or festivals that are scriptural and I suspect most won’t even know the names of them, much less their significance and their importance to the Church.

 

Whether or not you choose to be a part of Lent, Easter or Christmas, at the very least you should have a working knowledge of the three main and seven total feasts that were instituted by God thousands of years ago, which are still playing out on God’s historic and prophetic timetable.

 

That is why the Holy Spirit has instructed me to write these teachings.  It is my prayer they will become revelation to you and spark in you even more revelation.  We need to know the truth, because it is the knowledge of the truth that makes us free (see John 8:32).

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