Monday, September 16, 2013

Seven Reasons Why a Christian would keep the Biblical Feasts

"Concerning the feasts of the LORD..." The word translated "feasts" is from the Hebrew word /moed/ which means "appointment, a fixed time or season; specifically a festival...".

These last few years we have been learning about the Feasts of the Lord, and keeping them the best we know how. Some of my friends have asked me about it, wondering why we would have any interest in keeping "Jewish feasts". I woke up this morning thinking on that question, and decided to write this post sharing with you seven good reasons to keep the biblical feasts.

1. They are the Feasts of our LORD.

Speak unto the children of Israel, and say unto them, Concerning the feasts of the LORD, which ye shall proclaim to be holy convocations, even these are my feasts. {Lev 23:2}
In the minds of most of us, they are Jewish. By the time of the New Testament they were sometimes referred to as feasts of the Jews. That is because throughout history, it is the Jews (even if just a remnant) who have faithfully kept them from year to year, though they may not have understood their full significance and fulfillment. But from the beginning, the feasts are appointments set by God, special times to meet with Him, from which He did not exclude "strangers" (Lev 19:34; Num 9:14). They are His appointed times, and we who are His may keep His feasts!

2. Creation itself was set up for them.
And God said, Let there be lights in the firmament of the heaven to divide the day from the night; and let them be for signs, and for seasons /moed-im/, and for days, and years: And let them be for lights in the firmament of the heaven to give light upon the earth: and it was so. {Gen 1:14-15}
The Appointed Times were not a new idea in the mind of God when Israel left Egypt and congregated in the wilderness. They were in His heart from the beginning, and were part of the purpose for creating the heavenly bodies. When we look up at the night sky and thank Him for creating these beautiful lesser lights to light the night, we are only acknowledging part of His purpose. They were also created to be for signs and for His seasons (moed-im, appointed times).

3. The Biblical Feasts are all pictures of Jesus Christ, our Messiah.
For had ye believed Moses, ye would have believed me {Jesus}: for he wrote of me. {John 5:46}
The more we study the Feasts, the clearer the beautiful picture of Christ comes into view. It reveals more of His heart and His character to us! They are all about HIM. Why wouldn't I keep them, then?

4.  The Biblical Feasts are not all "fulfilled" yet.

For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled. {Matt 5:18}
The Spring Feasts picture events that have been fulfilled with Messiah's first coming: Passover and Unleavened Bread (His death and burial), First Fruits (His resurrection; He is the First Fruits, and we will follow in the Resurrection), and Feast of Weeks/Pentecost (He sent the Holy Spirit). But the Fall Feasts have yet to be fulfilled: Feast of Trumpets (His second coming), Day of Atonement (That Great Day, final redemption), and Tabernacles (when He will dwell/tabernacle among us in the Kingdom). We are still looking forward to these prophesied events. The Biblical Feasts are still relevant at least until these events come to pass.

5. So that we won't be in the dark about Messiah's return.
Read this carefully:
1  But of the times and the seasons {Greek /kairos/: occasions, set times, akin to Hebrew /moed-im/}, brethren, ye have no need that I write unto you.
2  For yourselves know perfectly that the Day of the Lord so cometh as a thief in the night.
3  For when they shall say, Peace and safety; then sudden destruction cometh upon them, as travail upon a woman with child; and they shall not escape.
4  But ye, brethren, are not in darkness, that that day should overtake you as a thief.
5 Ye are all the children of light, and the children of the day: we are not of the night, nor of darkness.
6 Therefore let us not sleep, as do others; but let us watch and be sober. {1 Thes 5:1-6}
Why did Paul not have any need to write to them about the times and seasons? Because they already knew all about them, and were keeping them as Paul did. From this and other passages we see that Messiah will come as a thief in the night to those who are NOT watching, and who are NOT walking in the Light of God's Word, which reveals His times, seasons, appointments.

6. Keeping the Feasts of the LORD shows that we are a faithful Bride, prepared and waiting for our Bridegroom.
{Matt 25} Then shall the kingdom of heaven be likened unto ten virgins, which took their lamps, and went forth to meet the bridegroom. And five of them were wise, and five were foolish...
In this parable there are five wise virgins and five foolish ones, who went to meet the Bridegroom. The five foolish ones were not prepared for His coming, but the five wise ones were prepared with oil to spare. At the end of the parable we see this same admonition used later by Paul: WATCH.

7. The Feasts are remembrances of what He has done, and rehearsals for what is to come.

Looking back, we remember His death with Passover, His glorious resurrection with First Fruits. Looking forward, in the Millennial Reign of Christ the first event we see taking place is the Feast of Tabernacles, which is a picture of the great wedding feast of the Bridegroom and His Bride! It will take place every year for a thousand years as a commemoration, like a wedding anniversary.
And it shall come to pass, that every one that is left of all the nations which came against Jerusalem shall even go up from year to year to worship the King, the LORD of hosts, and to keep the feast of tabernacles. {Zec 14:16}
Most of us had a wedding rehearsal before our actual wedding date. Shall we rehearse the Greatest Wedding in the Universe?

I have found it a joy to do so!


Anonymous said...

I was wondering how do you keep the feasts? What do you do? Thanks!

Tammy Coates said...

Quick answer: I do what the Bible says, as far as I am able.

All of the Feasts and Sabbaths are laid out in Leviticus 23, so that's where I start. Most of them involve memorial sacrifices in the temple, which of course doesn't exist, so we obviously can't do those. But we can do a solemn Passover meal. We can do Unleavened Bread, getting all of the leaven out of our houses for a week. (Great for Spring Cleaning. ;o) We can observe First Fruits, rejoicing in the resurrection of our Savior Jesus Christ. We can count 50 days to Pentecost ("Feast of Weeks"), and blow trumpets on the Feast of Trumpets, looking forward to the Last Trump, when the Messiah will return for us! We repent on Yom Kippur, making things right with God and our fellow man, even fasting if we choose to. And we build a "sukkah" (a booth or temporary dwelling) and rejoice during Feast of Tabernacles, looking forward to the Marriage Supper of the Lamb, and the time when He will once again "tabernacle" among us in the Millennial Reign!

There are many Jewish traditions which have been added to the keeping of the Feasts. Some of them might be fun and even helpful to understanding the significance, but they aren't necessary. We pretty much stay away from those things.

Tammy Coates said...

By the way, while I do appreciate the comment/question, I also would appreciate it if you would identify yourself. Do I know you? "Anonymous" comments may or may not get published on my blog. :)

Thanks for reading.

Anonymous said...

Thanks Tammy for answering my question. Sorry for not signing my name. Blessings Lisa
PS I do not have any type of google account so I have to do anonymous on the chosen identity space.

Tammy Coates said...

No problem! I understand completely.

Blessings to you, Lisa!