Light and Dark – 1 Kings 8: 10 + 11

This verse would have been in the list of the FURTHER THOUGHT from Genesis 15.  The story is Solomon dedicating the Temple of God that his father David had wanted to build. Father God shows up in a cloud and envelops the Temple chasing the priest out.  In verse 12 Solomon states that “God would dwell in a dark cloud”.  Verse 10 is where the cloud (dark) filled the temple and verse 11 states the Glory (light) caused the priest to leave.

The Most Holy Place was always dark and the only light that penetrated the area was when the High Priest entered once a year to burn incense.  This is a connection to the Christmas story – Zechariah was doing this when he saw the angel Gabriel.

Three– The time stamp in verse 2 provided my “three”.  Okay, this may be a stretch but!  The feast in the seventh month (Leviticus 23: 23 – 44) was the third set of feasts that Israel was to observe – Passover, Unleavened Bread, and Firstfruits are the first set and Pentecost is the second. I would think this feast was the Day of Atonement.  It would be followed by Tabernacles, which is mentioned in verse 65.  Everyone had such a blessed time they lived in booths for seven more days.  These feast mirror events in Exodus that were to be remembered.

End and Start–This day marked the end of God “living in a tent” and now started the “grand house that was built” to replace a wandering Tabernacle.  (Writer’s Note – There is more in this end/start, I am just not getting it!) This resembles the change in the Exodus when the Ark/Tabernacle was built.  God was in the Pillar of cloud and fire and He allowed the Ark to be built.  Just like that shift, this also changes the focus of the people to a building instead of a tent.  So, did they get closer to God or to an object to represent Him?

FURTHER THOUGHT – Compare Solomon’s Temple (1 Kings to Jeremiah) to Ezra’s/Herod’s Temple – Ezra, Haggai, and Zechariah to when the Romans destroyed it. http://clipart.christiansunite.com/1547120461/Bible_Characters_Clipart/Solomon_Clipart/Solomon002.jpg

Passover to Pentecost – Passover

Passover to Pentecost – Passover        Week 1 Day 1

“Commemorate this day, the day you came out of Egypt, out of the land of slavery. Exodus 13:1 (NIV)

Passover is a foundational stone of the Jewish faith; for the Christian it is an historical event that shows Jesus and His redemptive work for our salvation.  The importance of this day is reflected in Exodus 12: 13 when God commanded, “This is a day you are to commemorate; for the generations to come” and Luke 22:15 when Jesus said, “I have eagerly desired to eat this Passover with you before I suffer.”   The initial story is found in Exodus 12.

Passover, for the Jew, represents physical redemption from bondage and the path to spiritual liberation when they given the Laws of God at Mount Sinai.  In that redemption several things that occurred:

  • All of the Egyptian gods were judged (12:12).
  • The final plague occurred
  • A mass movement of people started.
  • The Egyptian people gladly gave away their wealth and possessions to slaves.
  • God’s timing of events and love for Abraham’s descendants was made evident.
  • God established rules for participation in Passover.

Leviticus 23 is where the “appointed feast” is explained.  The Feasts of the Lord start with Passover and is then followed by the Feast of Unleavened Bread, Firstfruits, the Feast of Weeks or Pentecost.  Passover starts the Feast of Unleavened Bread and Fristfruits begins the Feast of Weeks which starts the day after Passover.  This is the time after Jesus’ resurrection to Pentecost, when the Holy Spirit came to the Church.

Over the next seven weeks we will look at references to this period of time in the Old and New Testament and the things that Jesus did before his Ascension, and we will explore more about the start of the Church in the Book of Acts.  Some of my references will be from Messianic websites as well Jewish websites.  If you look on the Jewish sites I am sure you will find things that are not pro-Christian.  Please do not be offended!  I wanted a Jewish prospective about the Feast and they provide an excellent resource.

So, “To look at things differently will improve your vision or make you shut your eyes.”

A Look at the Biblical Calendar

A Look at the Biblical Calendar

In Mark 14: 5 some disciples were complaining about Jesus being anointed with a “bottle” of pure nard.  The complaint was it could be sold for a year’s wage or three hundred denarii.  According to Matthew 20, a denarius was a day’s wage.  The year in the Bible was twelve months or lunar cycles (29 ½ days). (Some years had thirteen months to make up the eleven-day difference and that would keep the season in line with the calendar.)  So why only 300 denarii?

They were to rest on the Sabbath, so there are forty-eight days (four weeks times 12 months).  For the missing days, we need to look to the feast days, I will use Leviticus 23.  These had a “no work” or “no regular work” day associated with them, which means they would not be paid on these days.

  • Unleavened Bread – one at the beginning and the end
  • Pentecost – one day
  • Feast of Trumpets – one day
  • Day of Atonement – one day
  • Feast of Tabernacles – one at the beginning and the end
  • This is seven no work days.

That totals to 299 days – I guess we can round off one day or it is more than a year’s worth of wages.

The Number Fifteen in the Bible – Cleaning Up to Celebrate

The number Fifteen -15 in the Bible.

FYI – Depending on the translation and the concordance you use some of these numbers may appear different.  For this study, I just wanted the number fifteen (15).  The NIV and KJV handle numbers differently.  The KJV will spell them out like eight hundred and fifteen while the NIV will write 815 (Genesis 5:10).  Also, the NIV translates some numbers in standard units (what Americans will understand) like 15 feet while the KJV would say 10 cubits (Zechariah 5:2).

  • The first number fifteen (cubits – this is twenty feet) is in Genesis 7:20 and is the depth of water covering the mountains with the Flood.
  • The second usage is with the walls of the courtyard of the Tabernacle.  There were two fifteen cubit walls forming the east side leaving a twenty cubit gap that had an offset hanging acting as the gate (Exodus 27:14).
  • The third usage is in Exodus 16:1 (see 10 Test and Timeline).  This marked the second month of the Israelites marching out of slavery.
  • The most references are with Feasts (Leviticus 23).

As I thought about the fifteen cubits in Genesis I realized it was not the depth of water but the fifteen.  God used the water to “clean” the earth of corrupt humanity.  Several source listed below will tell you that if you added the letter yod (10) and the letter hey (5) you would get 15 which happens to spell out a name of God.  In Hebrew, however, it is written with the 9th (teth) letter and the 6th (waw) letter out of respect for God. (Sorry, Hebrew letters are also used as numbers.)

The total width of the courtyard for the Tabernacle was 50 cubits, that was the west and east side (the one that faces the sun).  So as you entered on the east side to worship there was a 15 cubit wall on your left and your right. (See Camp and Marching Order) The bases holding up the curtains/walls also had a fifteen associated with them. (Think about that for a minute!)

The most references with fifteen belong to 15th of the month because several Feasts (celebrations) start on that day – Unleavened Bread, Booths/Tabernacles, Purim, and several you may not find in a Christian Bible.  Passover is on the 14th of the first month and the 15th is the start of Feast of Unleavened Bread, which is also when Pharaoh let Israel go because the firstborn all died (another cleaning/judgment).  The Feast of Tabernacles celebrates the exodus when Israel lived in booths waiting for everyone over twenty to die.  A “silent/hidden” fifteen is associated with the Feast of Pentecost (Leviticus 23: 17 – 21) it is the number of offerings:

Why the fifteenth of the month?  If you do not know it the Hebrew calendar is set on a 30-day month (lunar cycle) with the month being the actual unit of time.  The first day is the new moon so the fifteenth day would be the full moon of each month.  Here are some thoughts about this: the Feast was a reminder of the “best” of Egypt dying and them leaving; full moon is a reflection of sunlight at its best; it still could add up to be a name of God. (Something to think about.)  To be fair to one source I read which said 15 represented “rest.”  The Feast do start (and end) with a day of rest but the first one, the day after the first Passover, was them leaving in a hurry. These Feasts (Day of Atonement/Yom Kippur and Feast of Tabernacle) were so important that Jeroboam set up a false holiday on the 15th of the 8th month to act as a distractor for the Ten Tribes (1 Kings 12:33).  In Ezekiel 31:17 it is talking about Egypt, the time frame the 15th day of the first month (Passover/ Unleavened Bread).  Purim is the holiday from the Book of Esther and is still celebrated today (enemies got cleaned out).

Another notable story that has fifteen wrapped in it is the healing of Hezekiah where God added fifteen years to his life (2 Kings 20:6, Isaiah 38:5).  One resource concluded that fifteen must deal with “addition” because fifteen years were added to his life.  His reign was twenty-nine years long so this extra fifteen years started in the fifteenth year of his reign.

Some other non-holiday references with fifteen being a part of the story are (You will find these scriptures in a King James Version.):

  • Hosea 3:2 where the prophet bought his wife back for fifteen pieces of money (a picture of Jesus redeeming His Bride)
  • Solomon had columns in rows of fifteen holding his house up (1 Kings 7)
  • Ziba in 2 Samuel 9 had fifteen sons
  • 2 Kings Amaziah king of Judah lived 15 years then he was killed (cleaned out)
  • Asa king of Judah threw a party in the 15 years of his reign to renew the seeking of God – 2 Chronicles 15:10
  • Bethany was fifteen furlongs from Jerusalem
  • Paul spent fifteen days with Peter (Galatians 1:18)
  • Acts 27:28 finds Paul in a boat over fifteen fathoms of water.  Chronologically this would be the last listing of fifteen in the Bible.  The first reference (Genesis 7:20) had fifteen units of water and a boat also. (Just saying.)
  • Luke 3:1 is where John the Baptist starts to preach and that was the 15th year of Tiberius.  (Another party was starting.)

God “cleaning things” and “parties starting” seem to happen, a lot when the number fifteen is involved.  The feast were times to enjoy God and His goodness by drawing close to Him so they are cathartic in themselves.

Screen Shot 2014-05-17 at 8.07.29 PMThe fifteenth letter in the Hebrew alphabet is Samech.  I will list some things associated with it but follow the links to the various sources for a better study (Please note that some are Messianic Jew/Christian and others are strictly Jewish).

  • Numerically it represents the number sixty.
  • The priestly blessing has fifteen words and sixty letters.
  • It means “to support” or “to protect.”  This is all forms of support: spiritual, financial, physical, moral, etc.
  • Samech (15) and Mem (13) surround/support Nun (14).  Samech and Mem are the only fully enclosed Hebrew letters. (See studies on Thirteen and Fourteen).  Nun may represent someone who is “bent down.”
  • Because it is circular it represents the wedding ring.

There are still other references with the number fifteen (15) in the Bible but I hope you will continue to study as this number/letter has a lot associated with it.

References/Resources

Reflections On The Resurrection #1

The Resurrection, Easter Sunday, the day that Jesus came out of the tomb but is that The_Resurrection015really what the Resurrection was to the early church?  C.S. Lewis in the sixteenth chapter of his book Miracles makes the point that the modern church may have that wrong.  Instead of five minutes or an hour or even until sundown the Resurrection is the forty-day period of time up to the Ascension.  Lewis says,  “It is not the action of raising from the dead but the state of having risen.”  This period of time is only lightly covered in the Gospels but has its foretelling in the Feast found in Leviticus 23 and Exodus 23.

Many people witnessed the Resurrection and their testimony on the topic was The_Resurrection014important in the Church.  It started with the women on the morning of the Lord’s Feast of Unleavened Bread and that of “Firstfruits.”  This was also the beginning of the Feast of Weeks, which ends in what we call Pentecost.  So following Paul’s list in 1 Corinthians 15: 5 – 8 and adding in the ones from the Gospels the appearances of Jesus during the Resurrection were:

  • The women (Mary Magdalene)
  • Peter
  • The disciples on the road to Emmaus
  • The Twelve (twice)
  • The five hundred
  • James
  • The other apostles
  • Paul

After the meetings with the Twelve they went to Galilee like Jesus had instructed them and they saw Him there on the mountain.  The story of Peter and the “great catch of the fish” (John 21) took place in Galilee but the Ascension happened near Bethany.  So it seems that the Disciples did a lot of traveling during this forty-day period.

I found that the two appearances to the Twelve in John 20 were based on the Feast of Unleavened Bread.  The first one would have been the start of the Feast and the second visit was the end of the Feast (Leviticus 23: 4 – 8).  The Disciples were observing the Feast and honoring their Jewish beliefs.

Pics from: http://clipart.christiansunite.com/Easter_Clipart/The_Resurrection_Clipart/index3.shtml