I received the comment below, but due to the length of the reply, I thought it would be best to answer via a post. I pray you don’t mind!
“I am curious about your family’s decision to celebrate the feasts according to the Gregorian calendar. The feasts are based on an agricultural, lunar calendar. Wouldn’t using the Gregorian calendar put the feasts in the wrong seasons?”
Thank you so much for your comment! I would love to answer why we came to this conclusion…but I’m going to warn you, this may be a long reply!
My father has always instilled in us children that the Word of Yahweh held the answers to our questions and has always encouraged us to study it for the answers, instead of going to another source to see what others thought. We are all humans and therefore, out of 100 opinions, only 1 is correct…and that’s not very good odds! Yet, when we search the Word and have Yahweh teach us, we can be assured His ways are perfect!
The first thing that we can see is that Yahweh teaches us that “All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness:”2Tim 3:16
Which told our family that even the smaller things in scripture provides useful information to be used to figure out what was right and what was wrong…in other words, to train us in righteousness/doctrine.
The other thing that we realized (and this was a really hard one for me personally to accept) was that all people, even the Jews (Yahweh’s chosen people) fail. None of us are perfect. So following the Jews wasn’t the right thing, necessarily. We needed to follow the Word of Yahweh and what it taught, and no matter what another taught, we needed to be like the Berean’s and search out the scriptures to see if what was being taught, was correct, biblically.
With the calendars, people tell me constantly that the Jews wouldn’t be keeping it on the wrong days, as it’s been past down from generation to generation. But they forget what the scripture teaches.
We can see how in the past, the Jews were deceived (led astray) about when to keep the feasts…
1 Kings 12:32-33 “And Jeroboam ordained a feast in the eighth month, on the fifteenth day of the month, like unto the feast that is in Judah, and he offered upon the altar. So did he in Bethel, sacrificing unto the calves that he had made: and he placed in Bethel the priests of the high places which he had made. So he offered upon the altar which he had made in Bethel the fifteenth day of the eighth month, even in the month which he had devised of his own heart; and ordained a feast unto the children of Israel: and he offered upon the altar, and burnt incense.”
And we see in verse 27 that the reason that he changed the time that the feasts were celebrated was specifically to cause them to stop following Yahweh. 1 Kings 12:27 If this people go up to do sacrifice in the house of the LORD at Jerusalem, then shall the heart of this people turn again unto their lord, even unto Rehoboam king of Judah, and they shall kill me, and go again to Rehoboam king of Judah.
1 Kings 14:16 And he shall give Israel up because of the sins of Jeroboam, who did sin, and who made Israel to sin.
If we read the story, the way in which Jeroboam made the children of Israel sin, is he changed when the feast was supposed to be kept.
So this should make all of us stop short of thinking that the Jews have kept the feasts perfectly all these years. Yahweh condemned them for following Jeroboam and said that Jeroboam made Israel sin because they followed him in this. If they kept the feast at the wrong time before (and remember that Yahweh condemned the kings after Jeroboam for following in the sins of Jeroboam), we have to acknowledge that it is quite possible that they are now. We can’t simply rely on man’s wisdom. I say this simply to explain that we must go back to see what the Word says.
If so much of what Yahweh does and will do and wants us doing, revolves around the calendar, our family knew He wouldn’t leave us in the dark concerning it. We also realized that Yahweh says in Daniel 7:25 that, “…he shall speak great words against the most High,…and think to change times and laws:…” This made us be even more cautious about just accepting what was being taught by everyone, knowing that Yahweh warned us that there would be a time when the laws and times would be changed. Have they already been? It’s a thought that our family had to seriously consider and find out.
This brought our family on a journey of studying the Word and laying aside everything else that people have said. We wanted to know what Yahweh said, as really, He’s the only one that matters (or atleast should matter).
Someone once asked my father (back when we did a partial lunar calendar) if he had ever looked up the words for moon and month in scripture. Little did he know, that would be one of the first gold mines in helping us find the answers we needed!
Many people have said that they are interchangeable. I would encourage you to seriously look up each and every passage in scripture and see which word was used! It was such an eye opener for me! I did an entire study on the solar system…sun, moon, stars, planet, etc…and WOW! It was incredible! But I looked up each and every word in the Hebrew and wrote which one was used for each verse. That way I could see in which context each was used and it was consistent in each verse.
The Hebrew word for Moon is Yareach and is Strong’s #3394 and means…moon! Imagine that!
I’m going to give you a couple of verses to help show you the context that each word is used. Below are some of the verses that yereach is used.
Gen 37:9 And he dreamed yet another dream, and told it his brethren, and said, Behold, I have dreamed a dream more; and, behold, the sun and the moon and the eleven stars made obeisance to me.
Deu 17:3 And hath gone and served other gods, and worshipped them, either the sun, or moon, or any of the host of heaven, which I have not commanded;
There are MANY other passages, but yereach in these verses are obviously speaking about the literal moon.
Now lets look up the word for month and see what it is. And realize I am randomly choosing verses. There is no rhyme or reason to them, I’m just trying to help you to know what we did and what I did to help me understand what the word was saying. We wanted to let the context speak for itself. If the words were interchangeable, then we would see that by both words being used in contexts that clearly showed both meanings. And if they meant two totally different things, we would see that too, by whenever the context clearly meant one or the other, only a single word would be used for each meaning.
The Hebrew word for month is Kodesh and is Strong’s #2320 and it means…month. Let’s read the context that word was used in.
Gen 7:11 In the six hundredth year of Noah’s life, in the second month, the seventeenth day of the month, the same day were all the fountains of the great deep broken up, and the windows of heaven were opened.
Exo 12:3 Speak ye unto all the congregation of Israel, saying, In the tenth day of this month they shall take to them every man a lamb, according to the house of their fathers, a lamb for an house:
So we can see here that this word was obviously speaking about a date, a time, a month as we know it. And each of the verses, the context is always the same. The word for moon was never used. KJV translated verses to “new moon”, but I’d like you to look up those verses too. That Hebrew word is not Yereach. It is Kodesh. Never do you see Kodesh as being used to refer to the moon. And when it is speaking about the actual moon, each and every time, the Hebrew word is Yereach.
That makes one think…why did the translators, translate it the way they did? They obviously had an agenda. But was it right? Or was Yahweh trying to tell us something totally different?
Also, if the words could be used interchangeably, why are they never used interchangeably in the Hebrew? And if we took out the phraseology of “new moon”, and using “moon” to mean “the beginning of a month”…but brought the words back to their original form, what would we see? We would see Yahweh saying “new month”. Never would the moon be even mentioned in reference to time, as in the calendar sense of time. It would be used as part of the host of heaven…like stars and the sun are.
In my own study, this brought me to the next word in my study, the sun. Yahweh uses the sun all the time in scripture, to tell us when a day would end and when it would start, how a week is structured, etc. So if he used it for telling time throughout his word, he used it for telling us when a day would be and how long a day would be, and that there are “seven” of those days in a week (thus we get our week), why wouldn’t he also use that to tell us how long a month should be? Why would we all of a sudden change to using the moon? It made no sense to me. It puzzled me. But when I looked at the context that the Hebrew words were used in, it began to make sense…sense that someone changed the meaning of the words on purpose to confuse the reader.
But Yahweh said that we needed 2-3 witnesses. There had to be more in his word explaining his calendar. Don’t you agree?
Then we saw some dates and times (days between specific dates). Yahweh never writes anything in His word, for naught. Yes, we’re going to now read about the flood and then we get to do some math!
Gen 7:11-12 “…in the second month, the seventeenth day of the month…and the rain was upon the earth forty days and forty nights…”
Gen 7:24 “And the waters prevailed upon the earth an hundred and fifty days”.
Gen 8:3-4 “…after the end of the hundred and fifty days the waters were abated…the ark rested in the seventh month, on the seventeenth day of the month.”
So we now have some times. Let’s look at how many days are between the second month, seventeenth day of the month and the seventh month, seventeenth day of the month.
First we will look at the Lunar calendar. A Lunar calendar is made up of months of 29.54 days. In 5 months time, we would have 147.65 days (29.54days x 5 months=147.7 days). Problem is, that’s not how many days Yahweh said would be within a 5 month period of time. So we have a slight problem. It’s not adding up. We are 3 days short! That is almost 10% of the lunar cycle.
Now let’s calculate a solar calendar and see what it comes up with. The second month is February, and the seventh month is July. If we count the number of days from February 17th through July 17th, we have exactly 150 days. Furthermore, we also tried assuming that perhaps the second month wasn’t supposed to be February, and so we tried each of the 12 months being the start of the year to see if perhaps the year shifted, and the only 5 months that total 150 days were the two months that Yahweh stated, February to July.
But again, this was only two witnesses. Could there be more to lead us with what calendar Yahweh wanted us using for his appointed times (feasts)?
In a Lunar year, you will have what they call a “leap month” about every three years. If this was the calendar Yahweh intended for us to use, and it happened this often, His word should definitely have something to say about it, right? Only problem, it doesn’t. But, it does have something important to tell us…the calendar does have 12 months in it.
1Ki 4:7 And Solomon had twelve officers over all Israel, which provided victuals for the king and his household: each man his month in a year made provision.
Rev 22:2 In the midst of the street of it, and on either side of the river, was there the tree of life, which bare twelve manner of fruits, and yielded her fruit every month: and the leaves of the tree were for the healing of the nations.
1 Chronicles 27:1, 15 Now the children of Israel after their number, to wit, the chief fathers and captains of thousands and hundreds, and their officers that served the king in any matter of the courses, which came in and went out month by month throughout all the monthsof the year, of every course were twenty and four thousand. The twelfth captain for the twelfth month…”
So again, there was never a 13th month mentioned…and there were only 12 cycles of priests for the 12 months and notice that it says that was for all the months of the year. Why would such an important aspect be left out of consideration? Since Yahweh’s ways are perfect, and we serve an orderly God, don’t you think He would have made provision for the 13th month that happened just about every 3 years? But he doesn’t have a fruit for that month, and he doesn’t have a set of priests! Why? Do you think it could be that there wasn’t a 13th month? It made us seriously think about it, especially since once again, 1 Chro 27 specifically mentions that the 12 months were all the months of the year. There was no room given for a 13th, month, and notice if there was one, then Yahweh’s word is not true when it says that there were only 12 months.
But again, it didn’t stop there. Yahweh doesn’t leave his people hanging. His word truly does hold all the answers to our problems; we just need to search it out.
Jos 3:15 says “And as they that bare the ark were come unto Jordan, and the feet of the priests that bare the ark were dipped in the brim of the water, (for Jordan overfloweth all his banks all the time of harvest,)”
Israel is a dry climate and because of what they now do, the Jordan doesn’t overflow its banks anymore. But we can tell when this would happen from the rain fall. Also, remember, they now cultivate and arrogate their fields, so they can now grow things for much longer periods than they once could. So we can’t use their harvests now, as they are different. So when does Israel get its rain?
We see here that the average rain fall in Tel Aviv in mm is 165mm in Jan, 64mm in Feb, 58mm in March, 13mm in April, 3mm in May, nothing in June, nothing in July, nothing in Aug, the 1mm in Sept, 14 in Oct, 85mm in Nov, and 144mm in Dec.
If the Jordan overflowed its banks all the time of harvest, and the wheat harvest isn’t until firstfruits, how could the first month be March/April and the firstfruits be April/May? The first month is supposed to get a lot of rain…but April doesn’t hardly even make enough to talk about (when I was there, we got a light shower which everyone was talking about as being unusual!) and May doesn’t even get rain!
Deu 11:14 “That I will give you the rain of your land in his due season, the first rain and the latter rain, that thou mayest gather in thy corn, and thy wine, and thine oil.”
The latter rain and the early rain…which we know would have to be around the first month…and look when the rain fall happens…Dec/Jan are the heaviest rainfalls in Israel! Thus it would make sense that the Jordan would overflow then, too.
Now we know that Exo 9:31-32 “And the flax and the barley was smitten: for the barley was in the ear, and the flax was bolled. But the wheat and the rye were not smitten: for they were not grown up.” and this was during the plagues. Remember, the barley was smitten. It was already grown up and this was the first month.
Exo 34:22 “And thou shalt observe the feast of weeks, of the firstfruits of wheat harvest…”
Again, this showed that first fruits was a wheat harvest, not a barley harvest.
The Quram Jews (who have preserved our Bible, kept a Gregorian calendar…?http://www.jstandard.com/index.php/content/item/14393
As far back as the Second Temple the calendar has been a divisive matter between the different sects of Jews…http://uscj.org/scripts/wa.exe?A3=ind0701&L=MISHNAHYOMIT&E=quoted-printable&P=43865&B=——%3D_NextPart_000_0011_01C72FE3.5A71D640&T=text%2Fhtml;%20charset=iso-8859-1
There is evidence as far back as the flood of the Jews keeping a Gregorian calendar…http://inventors.about.com/library/weekly/aa070701a.htm
We can see how over 4000 years ago, the Jews were indeed keeping a Gregorian calendar…it isn’t something that we simply “came up with”. Some of the sects of Jews, namely those who Yahweh had preserve His word, have always kept the Gregorian calendar.
Yahweh’s word says in Deut 19:15 “One witness shall not rise up against a man for any iniquity, or for any sin, in any sin that he sinneth: at the mouth of two witnesses, or at the mouth of three witnesses, shall the matter be established.” This meant for our family to settle the matter, we needed to have atleast 2-3 witnesses proving what we were doing, was wrong and that something else, was right.
So let’s recount some of our witnesses and see if it passes as being enough witnesses to establish the matter.
- We have the words month and moon not being interchangeable in scripture and how it was new month, not moon.
- We also see that Yahweh has always used the sun in reference to time and days.
- We have the specific number of days mentioned in Genesis only being fulfilled with the Gregorian calendar
- We have the Jordan overflowing its banks when Yahweh said it would…only within the context of the Gregorian calendar.
- We have Yahweh telling us that all the months of the year were only 12 months, not 13.
- Furthermore, we also see that He only gave us 12 sets of priests (one set for each of the 12 months).
- We only have 12 fruits, once again, a fruit for each of the 12 months.
- But we also see that we have historical proof of Jews keeping a Gregorian calendar as far back as Noah’s time.
This told our family that we had more than enough evidence that we needed to change where we stood on calendars…thus why we now believe in using the Gregorian calendar for Yahweh’s calendar as well. Thank you again for your comment!
1Th 5:21 “Prove all things; hold fast that which is good.”