Passover to Pentecost – Seven Week 1 Day 3
Count off seven full weeks. Exodus 23: 15b (NIV)
Genesis 2: 2-3 is the foundation for the use of seven when it comes to Sabbaths and special holy days as they are stated in Leviticus 23 and 25. In Genesis God ceased working, rested, and blessed the seventh day because He had finished creating. Leviticus should clear up any doubt that God is serious about us resting.
The Feast of Unleavened Bread, Weeks, Trumpets, Day of Atonement, and the Feast of Tabernacles are special holidays and all of them have a “do no work” or “no regular work” component in them. We will look at this on day six.
The patterns of seven days or years then adding a day or year is seen in the Feast of Weeks/Pentecost, the Sabbath Year, and the Year of Jubilee. The extra day/year was to give an extended rest to the people and the land. Remember, part of the reason for the exile of Judah/Israel was to give the land its Sabbath rest.
I once heard someone preach about Matthew 18: 21 and Luke 17: 4 where the disciples were willing to forgive seven times; the person assumed they picked seven because they were being generous. Now I might wonder if it may not be connected with putting the matter to “rest.”
It is interesting that in Exodus 16 (part of the first fifty days) where it seems that the people ran out of Egyptian food, and would now have to start “working” again for their food that God reminded them of the Sabbath. He reinstated the Sabbath before they got to Sinai and the Law. I imagine that the Egyptians did not give them a day off because their God had demanded it. God also gave them a special miracle for forty years with the manna on the sixth and seventh days of the week; so they had no excuse not to rest (it did not go bad over night as it did on the other days).
Hezekiah was a king who tried to follow God and was given several special signs for the things he did. One thing he did was celebrate Passover (2 Chronicles 30) and one special sign he received sounds a lot like Jubilee when it came to planting and reaping (2 Kings19: 29).