The Feasts of the Lord:


One of God's Seven Annual Holy Days

The Feasts of the Lord

     Lev 23:1-2 (NKJV) says: "And the LORD spoke to Moses, saying, {2} "Speak to the children of Israel, and say to them: 'The feasts of the LORD, which you shall proclaim to be holy convocations, these are My feasts."
     Notice that God calls these feasts His Feasts. Also notice that these feasts are holy convocations. These feasts are God's Holy Days. In Lev. 23 all 7 of God's Holy Days are listed in the order that they occur each year.


     In this article we want to focus in on the Feast of Pentecost.
The word "Pentecost is a Greek word, used in the New Testament, but not in the Old Testament. It signifies "fifty." In the Old Testament this feast is called "Feast of Firstfruits," and the "Feast of Weeks."

Feast of Firstfruits

     In Lev. 23:9-14 it says: "And the LORD spoke to Moses, saying, {10} "Speak to the children of Israel, and say to them: 'When you come into the land which I give to you, and reap its harvest, then you shall bring a sheaf of the firstfruits of your harvest to the priest. {11} 'He shall wave the sheaf before the LORD, to be accepted on your behalf; on the day after the Sabbath the priest shall wave it. {13} Its grain offering shall be two-tenths of an ephah of fine flour mixed with oil, an offering made by fire to the LORD, for a sweet aroma; and its drink offering shall be of wine, one-fourth of a hin. {14} 'You shall eat neither bread nor parched grain nor fresh grain until the same day that you have brought an offering to your God; it shall be a statute forever throughout your generations in all your dwellings."

The Wave Sheaf Offering

     These festivals were all arranged around the harvest seasons, and it was at Passover time that the first barley became ripe. Notice in verse 14 that they were not permitted to eat any of this early harvest before the wave sheaf was offered. The wave sheaf offering is mentioned in verses 10 and 11 and let's notice what it portrays: 1 Cor 15:20-23 says: "But now Christ is risen from the dead, and has become the firstfruits of those who have fallen asleep. {21} For since by man came death, by Man also came the resurrection of the dead. {22} For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ all shall be made alive. {23} But each one in his own order: Christ the firstfruits, afterward those who are Christ's at His coming." This verse is saying that Jesus was the first to be "harvested" from the dead.
     Let's notice what happened after Jesus was resurrected. Mary Magdalene had come to the tomb early, while it was yet dark, and saw that the stone had been taken away from the tomb. John 20:14-17 says: "she turned around and saw Jesus standing there, and did not know that it was Jesus. {15} Jesus said to her, "Woman, why are you weeping? Whom are you seeking?" She, supposing Him to be the gardener, said to Him, "Sir, if You have carried Him away, tell me where You have laid Him, and I will take Him away." {16} Jesus said to her, "Mary!" She turned and said to Him, "Rabboni!" (which is to say, Teacher). Jesus said to her, "Do not cling to Me, for I have not yet ascended to My Father; but go to My brethren and say to them, 'I am ascending to My Father and your Father, and to My God and your God."
     Verse 17 in the KJV says: "Jesus saith unto her, Touch me not; for I am not yet ascended to my Father."
     Later the same day there is evidence that He had been to the Father and had returned. Mat 28:9 "And as they went to tell His disciples, behold, Jesus met them, saying, "Rejoice!" So they came and held Him by the feet and worshiped Him."
     Jesus did not want Mary to touch Him because He had not yet ascended to God the Father. Later the same day they were allowed to touch Him making it plain that He had presented Himself to the Father within that time period. After Jesus was resurrected, why did He wait to a specific time of the day before ascending to God the Father? (Reread Lev. 23:10-11).
     Why? Because Jesus was the wave sheaf offering. It is a simple conclusion to see that the sheaf of firstfruits offered here foreshadowed the presenting of the risen Christ as the firstfruits of God's harvest of men.
     Christians are also seen as a sort of firstfruits. (James 1:18, Rev. 14:4.)

Count Fifty Days

     Let's continue in verses: 15-16 "And you shall count for yourselves from the day after the Sabbath, from the day that you brought the sheaf of the wave offering: seven Sabbaths shall be completed. {16} 'Count fifty days to the day after the seventh Sabbath; then you shall offer a new grain offering to the LORD." Verse 21: "And you shall proclaim on the same day that it is a holy convocation to you. You shall do no customary work on it. It shall be a statute forever in all your dwellings throughout your generations."
     This festival is not to fall on a calendar date, but on a day of the week - "the morrow after the seventh Sabbath" from the wave sheaf offering.

The Feast of Weeks

     In the Old Testament the "Feast of Firstfruits," is also called the "Feast of Weeks." Deut 16:9-10 "You shall count seven weeks for yourself; begin to count the seven weeks from the time you begin to put the sickle to the grain. {10} "Then you shall keep the Feast of Weeks to the LORD your God with the tribute of a freewill offering from your hand, which you shall give as the LORD your God blesses you." {16} "Three times a year all your males shall appear before the LORD your God in the place which He chooses: at the Feast of Unleavened Bread, at the Feast of Weeks, and at the Feast of Tabernacles; and they shall not appear before the LORD empty-handed."


     "Pentecost" comes from the Greek and means "fiftieth," a reference to the feast falling on the 50th day after the wave sheaf offering. The festival is referred to variously as Pentecost, the Feast of Weeks or the Feast of Firstfruits. The seven intervening weeks are the weeks of grain harvest in Palestine, beginning with the first ripe barley during the Days of Unleavened Bread and finishing with the wheat harvest before Pentecost. Pentecost, then, is a harvest festival.
     In Palestine there are two annual harvests. First produced by the early rain, is the spring grain harvest, second, produced by the "latter rain," comes the main harvest ... the much greater fall harvest. God intended His Holy Days to picture to His Church repeatedly year by year the fact that only those He himself calls during this age can become His begotten children now. We are merely the firstfruits of the great spiritual harvest. As Passover symbolized Christ's sacrifice for the remission of our sins and the days of unleavened bread, the putting away of sin. Pentecost pictures the first part of the spiritual harvest-the calling out of the Church-the called-out ones which, for the New Testament dispensation, began in 31 A.D.-On the day the Holy Spirit first came to dwell within flesh, as prophesied in Joel 2:28: "And it shall come to pass afterward That I will pour out My Spirit on all flesh; Your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, Your old men shall dream dreams, Your young men shall see visions."
     Pentecost looks forward to the return of Christ and a massive pouring out of God's Spirit. The seven weeks of harvest thus would portray the harvest of saints taking place in our age between Christ's departure and His return to this earth.
     Pentecost is the very feast that Jesus' disciples were observing as recorded in Acts 2:1 "When the Day of Pentecost had fully come, they were all with one accord in one place."

For more information, Pick the following links:

God's Holy Days

Christian Holidays - "On Line" Bible Correspondence Course - Lesson #10


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