Passover, Unleavened Bread and First Fruits 2020 begins in the evening of Wednesday, April 8 and ends in the evening of Thursday, April 16
One of the most important annual events on the Hebrew Calendar is the Passover meal and the seven-day Feast of Unleavened Bread. This powerful biblical holiday commemorates the deliverance of Israel from their slavery in ancient Egypt. God called Moses to go to Pharaoh and order him to let the Israelite’s go free. Pharaoh refused, so God sent plagues upon the land of Egypt. Despite each of these plagues, Pharaoh still refused, so God sent the tenth and final plague—the death of every firstborn in Egypt. During this plague, God provided the Passover lamb as a means of safety for His people. God passed over the homes of those who had the blood of the lamb on their doorposts (Exodus 12:13). For followers of Messiah Yeshua (Jesus), Passover commemorates not only the miraculous events described in the book of Exodus, but also our spiritual deliverance from the slavery of sin. The shed blood of the lamb represents the blood of the Messiah. Those who have His blood on the doorposts of their hearts are spared from the second death. Shortly after giving the Ten Commandments, God gave Israel another command: “Three times you shall keep a feast to Me in the year: You shall keep the Feast of Unleavened Bread … and the Feast of Harvest, the first-fruits of your labors which you have sown in the field; and the Feast of In-gathering at the end of the year …” (Exodus 23:14-16). At this Feast of Harvest, also called the Feast of First-fruits or Weeks, the Israelite’s were to offer the first-fruits of the late spring wheat harvest in the Holy Land (Numbers 28:26; Exodus 34:22). Months later they celebrated another festival, called the Feast of In-gathering or the Feast of Tabernacles. This came at “the end of the year”—the end of the agricultural cycle of the year at summer’s end in the Holy Land—when the people gathered in all the harvest. These festivals were commanded. And because of what God intends for us to learn from His festivals, they are still to be celebrated by God’s people today. We should also understand that when a person observes the festivals of God today, he is not just commemorating God’s blessings in the agricultural harvests of the Holy Land. He is celebrating and learning about something far more important—God’s very purpose and plan for the salvation of mankind!
Shavuot 2020 begins in the evening of Thursday, May 28 and ends in the evening of Saturday, May 30
The feast of Shavuot—or better known by its popular Greek name, Pentecost—is by far one of the most spiritual and prophetic days on the Hebrew calendar. Shavuot marks the end of the spring feasts. In biblical times, Shavuot also marked the beginning of the new agricultural season. It was called Chag HaKatzir, which means “The Harvest Holiday.” It is also known by the name, “The Feast of Weeks.” According to Jewish tradition, it was during Shavuot when the God of Israel betrothed His people at Mount Sinai. Marriage vows were given when the people spoke as one, saying, “All the Lord has spoken, we will do” (Exodus 19:8). And the marriage contract, or ketubah, was written down in the form of the Torah. In the New Testament, the outpouring of the Holy Spirit upon Yeshua’s disciples also occurred on Shavuot (Acts 2). This festival therefore celebrates true, biblical worship. Indeed, God gave both the Truth of His Word (Torah) and His Spirit on Shavuot, thus enabling His people to worship in Spirit and Truth: “God is spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in Spirit and Truth” (John 4:24).
Rosh Hashanah 2020 will begin in the evening of Friday September 18, and ends in the evening of Sunday September 20
Yom Teruah—also known as the Feast of Trumpets or Rosh HaShanah—is an incredible celebration during which believers come together to worship the God of Israel with shouts of joy and the blast of the shofar. In addition, this day beautifully symbolizes the second coming of our Messiah, Yeshua (Jesus). Yom Teruah marks the beginning of the fall feasts. The name Yom Teruah literally means, “Day of Shouting/raising a noise.” This day has later become known as Rosh HaShanah, which means “head of the year.” It is the beginning of the civil year on the Jewish calendar. According to Jewish tradition, Rosh HaShanah is like an anniversary commemorating the creation of Adam and Chavah (Eve). It is a day to reflect on our special relationship with the God of the universe and recommit to walking in our created purpose—sanctifying the name of God in this world and bringing Him glory.
Yom Kippur 2020 will begin the evening of Sunday, September 27 and end the evening of Monday, September 28
The name Yom Kippur means “Day of Atonement.” This is the day when the High Priest went into the holy of hollies and offered a sacrifice to atone for the nation of Israel (Leviticus 16). Yom Kippur is truly a day to reflect on the Gospel. Indeed, God gave His only Son to become a sacrifice that would atone for our sins. And Yeshua is our High Priest who makes intercession for us. According to Jewish tradition, Yom Kippur recalls the day when the people of Israel sinned against God by making the Golden Calf. God forgave the people of their sin after Moses made intercession on their behalf (Exodus 32-33). This same pattern is outlined in Torah—the High Priest intercedes for Israel every year on Yom Kippur and asks for God’s forgiveness. We also see this exact pattern again with our heavenly High Priest, Yeshua (Jesus), who is “able to save completely those who come to God through Him, because He always lives to intercede for them” (Hebrews 7:25).
Sukkot 2020 will begin the evening of Friday, October 2, and end the evening of Friday, October 9
The feast of Sukkot, also known as the feast of Tabernacles, is considered to be the most joyous celebration on the Hebrew calendar. Sukkot marks the end of the fall feasts. The name means “booths,” and it comes from the mitzvah to dwell in booths (sukkot) during the festival (Leviticus 23:42). This mitzvah recalls the forty years during which the Israelite’s dwelled in booths as they wandered the desert after their deliverance from Egypt.
Join us as we celebrate this amazing Biblical festival! You will be amazed at the depth of God’s Word as you learn how every detail of this ancient Festival points us to our Messiah.