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Have You Robbed God of Holy Time?
Several years ago when I began to study the "Hebrew Calendar," one of the first persons I questioned about it whipped out the verse, "the Sabbath was made for man, not man for the Sabbath" (Mark 2: 27) and fired it at me. Somehow, in that man's thinking, that verse gave validity to the notion that it is permissible to change the Sabbaths for man when there is a need. The next verse, "Therefore the Son of Man is Lord also of the Sabbath" he reasoned, makes it possible to adjust the holy days so that they will not be a burden to man. In his thinking, it was not only permissible to postpone the counting of the days of the month (i.e. the first day of the seventh month), but is preferable when not doing so would cause Atonement to come next to, either immediately preceeding or following, a weekly Sabbath. To him, and to many others, that verse means that we should not have back-to-back (or tandem) Sabbaths when the day of Atonement is involved, because that would be a hardship. Such, also, was this thinking expressed to me by a high-ranking minister in a respected "Church of God," not long ago.
The rather complicated rules of postponements were devised for the purpose of postponing God's Holy time. Another suggested reason proposed, is that the Jews were dispersed and they needed a calculated or "fixed calendar" so that Jews in all countries around the world would be unified in the keeping of the holy days. Two problems with that: 1) they still observe different days (see the 1995 Information Please Almanac, Article " Calendar"). 2) They were dispersed at the destruction of Rome (70 A.D.) but the "Hebrew Calendar" of Hillel wasn't revealed until about 359 A.D. about 300 years later.
None of these suggested reasons for delaying the "sacred year" have come from the sacred book, the Bible.
It can easily be established in the Bible that "new month" and "new moon" (Chodesh, new beginnings) are interchangeable because they mean the same thing. The proponents of the postponements admit that "the new moon (molad) is a celestial event" and cannot be changed by man, but man can delay the counting of the days, which is what the Hebrew calendar does. On the forty percent of the time, when the postponements are not used, the Hebrew calendar counts from the astronomical conjunction, and not from the crescent moon. The new moon, or conjunction is when the earth, moon and sun are positioned so that the sun's rays in striking the moon reflect away from the earth. They are not visible anywhere on the earth at that period of time. Again, this event is not subject to man's interpretation. God set it in motion at creation (see Gen. 1: 14,15).
It is left up to us to determine whether we will keep that day or select one day from the days of the crescent moon, like some do for the first day of the new month. The day that the astronomical new moon occurs is the beginning of God's month. For some people this poses a problem. You see, when the new moon falls on a Thursday (after sunset), like it did last year (September 12, 1996), the new day began at sunset, so Friday, September 13 was the first day of the seventh month according to God's way of reckoning, hence the feast of Trumpets.
So, last year the first day of the seventh month (Tishri, Babylonian name) was on Friday, the 13th of September. Since the first day of the seventh month is also the feast of Trumpets and Saturday was a regular Sabbath, non- postponement churches had tandem (back-to-back) Sabbaths. Those who employed the rules of postponement delayed, or postponed (hence the name) the feast of Trumpets to Saturday, September 14. That was the day observed by most of the "Churches of God" last year (1996).
We are told in Leviticus 23 that ten days later we are to keep the day of Atonement. Counting from September 13, we arrive at Sunday, September 22, another tandem Sabbath. By the rules of postponement such a thing must NEVER happen. After all, the rules were devised to prevent just such a terrible hardship. So, by counting the 14th day of September as the first day of the Hebrew calendar and the first day of Tishri, tandem Sabbaths can be avoided not only on the feast of Trumpets, but also on the dreaded day of affliction, Atonement. So, Atonement had been moved from Sunday (following a weekly Sabbath) to Monday. That gave everybody a chance to "prepare" for it.
The first day of the feast of Tabernacles was two weeks after Trumpets, the 15th day of the seventh month. Guess what! If you kept Trumpets on Friday, the feast of Tabernacles also began on Friday, but if you postponed Trumpets until Saturday, the feast of Tabernacles was also postponed until Saturday. Ditto, for the Last Great Day. It also fell on Friday, now postponed until Saturday.
Reviewing what has happened in the fall holy days (1996), the postponement rules have managed to prevent many people from having to keep 3 sets of tandem Sabbaths. In other words, many have been able to use days that would have been holy days for their own use. How convenient! THREE OF GOD'S HOLY DAYS BECAME WORK DAYS. GOD WAS ROBBED OF THREE OF HIS HOLY DAYS!!! SEVENTY TWO HOURS OF HOLY TIME, TRAMPLED UNDER FOOT! What's wrong with this picture?
Isaiah 58:13-14 says: "If you turn away your foot from the Sabbath, from doing your pleasure on My holy day, and call the Sabbath a delight, the holy day of the LORD honorable, and shall honor Him, not doing your own ways, nor finding your own pleasure nor speaking your own words, then you shall delight yourself in the LORD and I will cause you to ride on the high hills of the earth, and feed you with the heritage of Jacob your father. The mouth of the LORD has spoken" (NKJ).
Last year, 1996, what were you doing on those three, of God's Holy Days? Were you doing your own things, or were you keeping them as God's days, set apart and holy to Him? How was it in your life?
DID YOU ROB GOD OF THREE OF HIS HOLY DAYS IN 1996?
What about 1997?
Did You Know ...? If You Follow The Hebrew Calendar.....
You Did Not Keep Any Of GOD's Annual Holy Time In 1997.
Why? ...... Because
Every Holy Day Was One Month Late, In 1997!
© Church of God, In Truth