Wednesday, March 9, 2011

A Return to Jewish Customs (Num. 28-30)

SEAN - Our Holidays (even the Christian holidays) have turned into the worship of wealth and capitalism. The Jewish holidays point the way to something deeper. This is a chapter-by-chapter run through of the major Old Testament holidays/rites and what they mean. By the way, the picture at the top is a modern Samaritan Passover sacrifice. I think that's a lamb on the fire.

Based on's Chronological Bible In a Year schedule. If anyone would like to join in, this blog's comments sections would be a good forum in which to share insights from the text.

28: Day, Week, and Month
The Priests were told to offer sacrifices to Yahweh every day, week, and month. The Daily Offering was one lamb in the morning and one at night, showing that we are to offer prayers and thanks to God at least every morning and every night. The Weekly (Sabbath) Offering had double the amount of lambs and shows us that we should make an even more demanding effort once a week to pray to God and thank Him. The Monthly Offering was a grand spectacle with sacrifices of bulls, lambs, one ram, and a goat - showing that every month we should make a still more strenuous effort in our prayers and thanks to God. (For those of you who are engaged, by the way, all of the marriage books that I'm reading say we should check in with our spouses every day [regular], week [bigger deal], and month [very big deal]... I guess our prayer life goes the same way, as the Jewish sacrifices suggest.)

Numbers 29: Israeli Holidays and Festivals
The Jewish holidays have some special significance: The Passover is about God 'passing over' Israel's firstborn sons during the killing of the firstborn in Egypt; for Christians, Jesus is our Passover Lamb and God 'passes over' our sins because of His sacrifice. Pentecost was a day to thank God for providing that year; for Christians, it is the day when God provided the gifts of the Holy Spirit to His Church. Trumpet Day was the beginning of 10 days of repentance before The Day of Atonement when the High Priest would enter the Most Holy Place of the Temple to make a sacrifice for Israel's collective sins. The Feast of Tents was about remembering how God made Israel stay in tents during 40 years in the desert - also a good reminder that we are wanderers on the earth, and a good chance to remember that for 30+ years Jesus wandered the earth right along side us.

Numbers 30: When Women Make Vows
Men have to keep their rash oaths, but women get to have a way out - their father (for a minor) or husband (for a mature woman) could overrule their oaths. Widows, with no strong male figure in their lives, did not have that kind of protection. This points to God's relationship with us in the same sense that marriage and parenting always points to our relationship with God.

Other comments and observations can be found in the comments section! Join in!

No comments:

Post a Comment

Start or join a conversation! Please do not use the 'Anonymous'; option; use the Name/URL form and leave a first and last name (or last initial). Thank you.