Was God practicing legalism when He created His holy days (Lev. 23)? Was He being legalistic when He commanded them to be honored? Was His intent simply to create something “burdensome” and oppressive? Furthermore, are these feasts simply a collection of ancient traditions with no relevance today? Or, do they reveal something marvelous about the God of the Bible? We at Blow the Trumpet believe the latter. God’s holy days tell a remarkable story about a plan of salvation and how He is going to accomplish it. Consider that story:
The Passover pictures the death of Jesus Christ. This great sacrifice reconciles mankind back to the Father (Rom. 5:10) and makes possible man’s journey toward God’s eternal and incorruptible Kingdom. It is the first step in God’s plan of salvation. This day is mentioned prolifically in both the Old and New Testaments.
Days of Unleavened Bread
This seven-day feast pictures the acceptance of Jesus’ sacrifice as well as the rejection of sin. This act is called “REPENTANCE.” When one truly repents, he or she is acknowledging God as the unimpeachable Moral Authority of the universe, and is committing himself or herself to following God’s way. In the Bible leavening is a symbol of sin (I Cor. 5:6-8, Gal 5:9). When God’s people honor this time as He commands, they are reminded of their journey out of sin and toward a great destiny. It is interesting that when God gave the children of Israel his holy days, He called them “holy convocations” (Lev. 23:2). The Hebrew word for convocations in this verse is miqra. This word also means “a rehearsal.”
As a result of accepting the sacrifice of Jesus Christ and repenting of sin, man can take the next step. Pentecost pictures man receiving God’s holy spirit (Acts 2) as well as having His law written on their hearts (Jer. 31:31-33). This gift comes as a result of repentance and baptism. From this time on, the believer walks in a “newness of life.”
Feast of Trumpets
This day pictures the return of Jesus Christ and the resurrection of His Saints (I Cor. 15:50-55). At the moment of this resurrection, these children of God are born into His divine Family as literal sons and daughters (I Jn. 3:1-2). Those who experience this “birth” have, in this life, accepted the sacrifice of Jesus Christ and have come to acknowledge God as the True Moral Authority of the universe. As a result of this act, they have received the gift of God’s holy spirit. Guided by that spirit, they have set their will to honor their Creator and His great moral Law.
Day of Atonement
Once the Messiah returns to earth to subdue the nations, He will order the imprisonment of Satan the devil (Rev. 20:1-3). The Day of Atonement pictures that moment. Once Satan is bound, God’s Kingdom will be formally established on earth.
Feast of Tabernacles
This seven-day festival pictures God’s Millennial Kingdom. It is a Kingdom that all true believers today fervently pray for. When it comes, the earth will be filled with great peace (Isa. 2:4) and prosperity (Isa. 30: 23,33:15 and 35:1), and the knowledge of God will be everywhere (Isa. 11:9). The scriptures reveal that this Kingdom will last one thousand years. However, it will ultimately be transformed into one that will be everlasting (see: Rev. 21).
Last Great Day
The Last Great Day pictures a time when the billions of people who never knew the True God will be raised to life again (Rev. 20:4). At that time, they will be taught God’s truth and be given an opportunity to claim the sacrifice of the Savior of the World. This day also pictures God’s final judgment of man and the end of his mortal existence Rev. 20:11-15). Once this takes place, all those who have yielded themselves to the Great Moral Authority of the universe will enter into an incorruptible dimension called the New Heavens and the New Earth.
Each of God’s holy days are truly a great joy to His people and it is a profound honor to keep them as God commands. They are not burdensome! They are WONDERFUL!! In a very real sense they represent the architectural drawings to the destiny of the universe. With this in mind ask yourself the following question: WOULD MAN IN HIS WILDEST IMAGINATION EVER CREATE FEASTIVALS LIKE THOSE GOD ORDAINED SO VERY LONG AGO? The answer should be obvious. The Bible makes it abundantly clear that man should never be in the business of creating feasts to the Eternal. That has been tried many times before and only results in tragedy.
As a community that once kept man’s festivals, we at Blow the Trumpet can only tell you that there is no comparison between the two. God’s feasts are inspiring and filled with hope. Not one ounce of them comes for the pagan world. Each one reflects God’s perfect wisdom and can stand firm on His authority.
We could go on addressing what so many “believers” call “burdensome” and “legalistic.” For example: Was God being legalistic when He gave His laws regarding what food was appropriate to eat? Or, was God just being legalistic when He designed laws regarding tithing? Today it is easy to call such things legalistic and burdensome. However, we see them as evidence of a perfect mind at work. Every one of God’s moral pronouncements declare both His wisdom and His love. They challenge His people to have faith—to believe in Him. King David declared that God’s law made him wiser than the ancients. We at Blow the Trumpet affirm that belief. We do so in respect and in fear, but never in anger.
Blow the Trumpet
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