12/23/2008 ©Homer Kizer
The following is a section of a much larger work titled, A Manual of Procedures, a work that will shortly be available on-line. Because some of the information found in this section would, most likely, be overlooked in the larger work, this section is being offered not as a stand-alone work, but as an invitation to read the larger work when it is posted on-line.
The Wave Sheaf Offering
The foremost reason given by the visible Church for Sunday worship is that Christ rose from the dead on the first day of the week. What is missed is that this day was also the fourth day of Unleavened Bread: the man Jesus was crucified and died physically on the fourth day of the calendar week, Wednesday, the 14th of Abib, of the year 31 CE (the year starting with the first new moon after the equinox, not the first full moon). But Jesus was resurrected on the fourth day of Passover week.
The seven days of the Feast of Unleavened Bread and Sabbath observance under the Moab covenant are memorials to liberation from bondage (cf. Deut 16:1; 5:15), not the physical creation. Plus, the fourth high Sabbath of the seven annual high Sabbaths is the Feast of Trumpets, the first day of the seventh month, the high Sabbath that’s customarily taught as representing the coming of the Messiah in the physical application of the high Sabbaths. In addition, the fourth day of the spiritual week represented by the Genesis chapter one creation account [the so-called “P” account] features creation of the greater light to rule the day—this creation of the greater light is or represents the resurrection to glory of the saints, the firstfruits of God. So the spiritual significance of the mid-week day begins with liberation from bondage and moves to the coming of the Messiah and to the resurrection of the saints. But all of this is missed when the person does not realize that Jesus was resurrected as the Wave Sheaf Offering, the First of the firstfruits to be accepted by God.
In their physical representation, the high Sabbaths commemorate events separated by time, but the heavenly realm is timeless and the events themselves are stacked upon themselves. The reality of the Days of Unleavened Bread began on the day of the Wave Sheaf Offering, when, because of grace, disciples have no sin imputed to them under the terms of the Passover covenant and under the terms of Yom Kipporim, which has Jesus seated at the right hand of the Father to intercede for disciples. And it will be during these Days of Unleavened Bread when the reality of Pentecost occurs as well as the resurrection, the reality of the first high Sabbath of Sukkot. So those Sabbatarian disciples who do not keep the high Sabbaths err spiritually, and will pay for their error with their physical lives during the first 1260 days of the Tribulation.
About the day when Jesus was crucified, John wrote,
[literally] the therefore Jews, since preparation it was that may not remain upon the stake the bodies on the Sabbath, great the day of that the Sabbath … . (John 19:31)
Jesus was crucified on the Preparation Day (the 14th of Abib) for the great Sabbath day of the Sabbath, making all of Unleavened Bread “the Sabbath” referenced in the phrase, “ekeinou tou sabbatou.” Considering now that the two goats selected on the 10th day of the seventh month (Yom Kipporim) represent Israel’s sin offering, Jesus entering Jerusalem on the 10th day of the first month as the selected Passover Lamb of God represents both of these goats, with His death at Calvary representing the sacrifice of the first goat on the altar (its blood making atonement for the altar, the temple, and the people), and Jesus following His resurrection representing the Azazel goat, over which the sins of Israel have been read. As high priest, Jesus bears but does not pay the death penalty for the sins of Israel in the inter-dimensional heavenly realm as the reality of the Azazel goat, which in a far land bears but doesn’t pay the death penalty for Israel’s sins. And what’s seen is that the seventh month is the visible physical representation of the first month; hence, the civil year begins the 1st day of the seventh month whereas the sacred year begins the 1st day of the first month. The fall Feast season becomes the visible, physical representation of the spiritual harvest of firstfruits, with Christ Jesus being the First of the firstfruits. Thus, the “the Sabbath” referenced in the phrase, “ekeinou tou sabbatou,” actually backs up to the 1st day of the first month and represents the entirety of the period during which an Israelite would have journeyed to Jerusalem to keep the Passover, with this period representing half of the gospel of Matthew (chap 16 on), half of Luke’s gospel (chap 14 on), and half of John’s (chap 12 on).
Add to the above the realization that the Feast of Weeks represents that harvest of firstfruits that is also represented by the last high Sabbath of Unleavened Bread, with the counted seven weeks now representing the seven days of Unleavened Bread (the period when Israel lives without sin by either being under grace or empowered through being filled with the Holy Spirit), and represented by the first high Sabbath of Sukkot, and what’s seen is the four days between Yom Kipporim and Sukkot represents the entirety of the Church era when those Israelites who had journeyed to Jerusalem to keep Sukkot would have been gathering the boughs of goodly trees and preparing booths … the physical gathering of boughs is the visible shadow of disciples bringing forth the fruit of the spirit (Gal 5:22–23) as Jesus commanded the fig tree to produce fruit before it was the season for fruit. The temporary booths in which ancient Israelites dwelt during Sukkot represents the fleshly bodies of empowered Israel during Christ Jesus’ millennial reign as King of kings and Lord of lords; therefore, the fleshly tents or tabernacles in which sons of God, born of spirit, today dwell are as tree boughs not yet gathered and brought to Jerusalem.
Feast of Weeks is also Pentecost: the filling of the room with the sound of a mighty rushing wind [pneuma] on that day of Pentecost following Calvary was the audible (visible but not seen), physical shadow and type of the invisible spiritual baptism of the world into life by spirit (Joel 2:28) that will occur halfway through the seven endtime years of tribulation. The cloven tongues of fire that were manifested or seen around the head of each disciple (the first disciples were already born of spirit, but sin still dwelt in their fleshly bodies) was the shadow and type of the world being baptized by fire with the coming of the new heavens and new earth (Rev 21:1). John the Baptist promised that Jesus would baptize the world with spirit and fire. The shadow and type of these two baptisms occurred on Pentecost, thereby placing the reality of both of these baptisms inside the Feast of weeks, and by extension, inside the Feast of Unleavened Bread.
Therefore, when the Apostle John identifies the entirety of the spring holy day season as “Sabbath,” with the 15th of Abib as “the great Sabbath” of the Sabbath, what’s seen is the plan of God being represented by Unleavened Bread, with the harvest of firstfruits forming the mirror image shadow and copy of the harvest of God during the Millennium and in the great White Throne Judgment. Sukkot, now, represents Christ’s millennial reign, and the last Great Day of the Feast represents the great White Throne Judgment. The shadow and copy of the reality of Sukkot and the last Great Day is Passover and the Days of Unleavened Bread—so while Fall Feast serves as a physical shadow of the harvest of firstfruits (i.e., the Passover season), the harvest of firstfruits forms the shadow and copy of the Millennium and the great White Throne Judgment.
The annual Sabbaths of God are not separated events, but are interrelated in a play of shadows and shadowing that makes each essential to the unified whole: the plan of God is for the spiritual harvest of the earth which will have human beings represented by barley, wheat, or tares (false wheat). Those human beings who have been born of spirit in this so-called Church era, and those human beings who will be born of spirit when the Holy Spirit is poured out on all flesh halfway through the seven endtime years, and those ancient Israelites who received the promise of inheriting eternal life—all will be resurrected to glory or to condemnation when Christ Jesus returns as the long-awaited Messiah. All are firstfruits. So going into Jesus’ millennial reign, human beings will be very few indeed (Isa chap 24). Yet because the main crop wheat harvest has to ripen to maturity as a fig tree naturally puts on fruit when it is time for fruit, the scarcity of human beings will became a surplus of human beings during the Millennium, each with the mind of Christ. Over the course of the 1,000 years, with the fullness of the earth seen through observance of Sukkot, humankind will not die physically from internal causes; the great life-spans of the pre-Flood period will return. But Sukkot lacks a high Sabbath on its 7th day because of humankind’s rebellion against Christ that will occur when Satan is loosed from the bottomless pit for another three and a half years (Rev 20:7–10). The high Sabbaths reveal this rebellion, and even identifies why this rebellion occurs, but as the 1,000 years pass, Israel will cease thinking spiritually and begin to think physically, focusing upon goodly tree boughs, not on bearing spiritual fruit, the by-then mundane expectation for the nation.
Philadelphians can stand on this side of an abyss and caution those who, in the Millennium, have forgotten about how deceitful the Adversary is, but no warning will be heeded. As King Solomon would have refused to put away his many foreign wives, Israelites in the Millennium will not heed a warning from this side of the abyss: Philadelphians can warn about the failings of democracy, but the very people who hear these warnings will envy what could be accomplished by a few under Satan’s reign as prince of this world, and they will use the warnings as reasons for joining with the Adversary in rebellion against God, with their rebellion seeming no more like rebellion than did Israel’s rebellion in the days of Samuel. But let those who rebel stumble over the living stones that will then be part of New Jerusalem as the visible Christian Church today stumbles over the cornerstone of the temple. Thus, for those who know to use the term, this is a self-aware text.
The Sabbatarian teacher who would hinder disciples from keeping the high Sabbaths of God is either an active minister of the Adversary (2 Cor 11:15), or teaches from ignorance. That “woman Jezebel, who calls herself a prophetess” (Rev 2:20) teaches endtime disciples to commit spiritual fornication through ignoring the high Sabbaths of God—and Sabbatarian disciples who commit adultery with her by worshiping her instead of the Father and the Son will suffer great tribulation. They will not suffer easy martyrdom, for they advertise their adultery around the world.
The Wave Sheaf Offering should properly be a fixed day of the week observance in this era: the Lord [YHWH] spoke to Moses, saying,
Speak to the people of Israel and say to them, “When you come into the land that I give you and reap its harvest, you shall bring the sheaf of the firstfruits of your harvest to the priest, and he shall wave the sheaf before the Lord, so that you may be accepted. On the day after the Sabbath the priest shall wave it. … And you shall eat neither bread nor grain parched or fresh until this same day, until you have brought the offering of your God: it is a statute forever throughout your generations in all your dwellings.” (Lev 23:9–11, 14)
If all of the spring holy day season is Sabbath, as the Apostle John wrote, some ambiguity exists about the phrase, On the day after the Sabbath — what Sabbath is being referenced?
In Scripture, two models exist, the first under Joshua when Israel physically entered in the Promised Land, with this land of Judea forming the shadow and type of Sabbath observance and entering into God’s rest (cf. Heb 3:16–4:11; Ps 95:10–11; Num chap 14). In this model, Israel crossed the Jordan on the 10th day of the first month (Josh 4:19), was circumcised after entering into God’s rest (Josh 5:2–7), then while still camped at Gilgal, the nation kept the Passover on the 14th day of the month in the evening (v. 10). On the day after the Passover, “on that very day” (v. 11), Israel ate the produce of the land … if the day after Israel ate the Passover, the first of the grain of Canaan was waved and the people ate of the produce later that day, then the Passover would have had to be a Sabbath.
The sect of the Pharisees and modern rabbinical Judaism believes the Sabbath referenced in Joshua 5:11 is the high Sabbath, the 15th of Abib, of Unleavened Bread, not a weekly Sabbath; thus, they offer the Wave Sheaf on the 16th of Abib, a fixed calendar date.
But a problem exists: Israel in Egypt ate the Passover sacrifice on the 14th day, not in the 15th day of Abib.
In Deuteronomy, Moses instructs Israel,
You may not offer the Passover sacrifice within any of your towns that the Lord your God is giving you, but at the place that the Lord your God will choose, to make his name dwell in it, there you shall offer the Passover sacrifice, in the evening at sunset, at the time you came out of Egypt. And you shall cook it and eat it at the place that the Lord your God will choose. And in the morning you shall turn and go to your tents. For six days you shall eat unleavened bread, and on the seventh day there shall be a solemn assembly to the Lord your God. (Deut 16:5–8 emphasis added)
Yet, in Egypt, Israel was instructed,
Then Moses called all the elders of Israel and said to them, “Go and select lambs for yourselves according to your clans, and kill the Passover lamb. Take a bunch of hyssop and dip it in the blood that is in the basin, and touch the lintel and the two doorposts with the blood that is in the basin. None of you shall go out of the door of his house until the morning. For the Lord will pass through to strike the Egyptians, and when he sees the blood on the lintel and on the two doorposts, the Lord will pass over the door and will not allow the destroyer to enter your houses to strike you. You shall observe this rite as a statute for you and for your sons forever. And when you come to the land that the Lord will give you, as he has promised, you shall keep this service. (Ex 12:21–25 emphasis added)
If Israel did not leave their houses in Egypt the night on which the nation ate the Passover sacrifice, then there is the same type of discrepancy between the Passover sacrifice as recorded in Exodus and the Passover sacrifice as recorded in Deuteronomy as there is a discrepancy in the reason for why the Sabbath was commanded to be kept in Exodus (20:11) and for why the Sabbath was to be kept in Deuteronomy (5:15) … in Egypt, Israel killed the Passover sacrifice at even going into the 14th day of the first month, and ate the Passover during the dark portion of the 14th day. Israel in Egypt, with the exception of Moses and Aaron, did not leave their houses until morning.
Jesus, in His final Passover, ate the sacrifice on the dark portion of the 14th day; He was then betrayed and taken during the dark portion of the 14th day, then crucified during the light portion of the 14th day. He died about 3:00 pm in the afternoon, when Pharisees were then killing Israel’s Passover lamb … Jesus ate the Passover after the pattern established by the first Passover covenant made in Egypt, but He was offered up as the Passover Lamb of God according to the Moab Passover instructions, or Moab Passover covenant.
· In Egypt, Israel killed the Passover lamb going into the 14th day of the first month, ate the lamb during the dark portion of the 14th, then looted the Egyptians during the light portion of the 14th before leaving Egypt at the end of the 14th, as the 15th began.
· The killing of the Passover sacrifice going into the 14th is the model that established the Passover covenant which remains in effect to this day; hence, disciples are to eat the Passover sacraments on the night that Jesus was betrayed, the dark portion of the 14th (1 Cor 11:23–26)
· Under the Moab covenant, however, the Passover will be killed at the end of the 14th, going into the 15th. The observance of the Passover under the Moab covenant in this so-called Church era is not to eat the sacraments again, but to celebrate the night when Israel came out from Egypt; i.e., from sin.
· The Passover should be observed on two nights, with radically different observances on these two nights, for Jesus was not crucified twice.
1. Christians are to take the sacraments of bread and wine on the dark portion of the 14th as a memorial of Israel’s physical liberation; this is a somber occasion.
2. Christians are to feast on the dark portion of the 15th as a memorial to Israel’s spiritual liberation; this is a joyous occasion.
3. The first celebration of Passover is the mirror, or chiral image of the second celebration.
· Judaism recognizes that the Passover is to be celebrated on two nights, but Judaism celebrates a day late and for the wrong reasons; therefore, Judaism’s celebrations have no standing in Philadelphia.
The discrepancy between when the Passover sacrifice was killed and eaten in Egypt, and when Pharisees were killing and eating the Passover sacrifice in the 1st-Century (with the Pharisee’s 1st-Century practice based on what was recorded in Deuteronomy) enabled Jesus to both eat the Passover and to be the Passover Lamb of God, sacrificed under the Moab covenant. Therefore, Jesus’ sacrifice did not end the Passover covenant made on the day when God took the fathers of Judah and Israel “by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt” (Heb 8:9).
· The sacraments of bread and wine represent the body and blood of Jesus on only one day of the year, the dark portion of the 14th of Abib. On every other day of the year, they are an offering of the ground, Cain’s offering.
· The Moab covenant is a spiritual or eternal covenant that did not begin on the plains of Moab, but at Calvary, when Jesus came from a far land to love God, to obey His voice, and to keep all that is written in the Book of Deuteronomy. (Deut chap 30)
· The spiritual night that began at Calvary has not yet arrived at its midnight hour, the hour when death angels shall again pass throughout the land to slay firstborns not covered by the blood of the Passover Lamb of God.
· So the model for how Israel under Joshua kept the Passover in Canaan is the model for how Israel under Jesus will keep the Passover in the Millennium.
· The model for how the Church is to keep the Passover is the model for how Israel kept the Passover in Egypt. The Lamb of God (the sacraments of bread and wine) are to be eaten on the dark portion of the 14th of Abib.
All of the above pertains to when the Wave Sheaf Offering is to be observed; in using the Moab model as the controlling passages pertaining to killing and eating the Passover sacrifice, Pharisees and rabbinical Judaism observed the Wave Sheaf on the 16th of Abib whereas the Sadducees and the Churches of God contend that the referenced Sabbath is the weekly Sabbath occurring within the Feast of Unleavened Bread; thus they celebrate the Wave Sheaf Offering on a fixed day of the week, the first day. And with the Wave Sheaf being a shadow of Christ, the substance of the feasts, new moons, and Sabbaths (Col 2:16–17), the testimony of Jesus is that referenced Sabbath is the weekly Sabbath at least until the New Covenant replaces the old Passover covenant made on the day when God took the fathers of Israel by the hand to lead the nation out of Egypt.
Scripture is silent about what day of the week Joshua lead Israel into Canaan. What is known is that Israel under Joshua kept the Passover, with Israel eating the Passover on a Sabbath day. If Israel would have eaten this Passover on dark portion of the 14th, then the following day (the 15th) would have been the great Sabbath day of the Sabbath and would not have been a day on which grain would have been waved if the Wave Sheaf Offering is to occur on the morrow after the Sabbath. Therefore, by necessity, Israel under Joshua ate the Passover on the dark portion of the 15th day of Abib, which could well have also been the weekly Sabbath. If the high Sabbath were also the weekly Sabbath, then the morrow after the Sabbath would have been on a Sunday that was also the 16th of Abib.
There are scriptural reasons for the high Sabbath to also be the weekly Sabbath when Israel under Joshua ate that first Passover in Canaan: in Greek, both the name Joshua and the name Jesus are written, Iesous, the only name by which men can be saved (Acts 4:10–12). This only name is not a Hebrew utterance or a Greek utterance, but the name of the one who leads Israel into God’s rest, a name that no person today knows (Rev 19:12) so that no one can go ahead on his or her own but all must follow the lead of the Lamb of God. Joshua/Jesus/Iesous will lead Israel into God’s rest, a euphemistic expression for God’s presence, when He returns on the 10th day of the first month.
· The above is an important concept to remember: Christ Jesus returns on the 10th day of the first month, not in the fall of the year.
· It is the Antichrist who comes claiming to be the Messiah in the fall of the year, 42 months or 1260 days before Christ Jesus returns.
· Christ Jesus returns 2520 days after the second Passover liberation of Israel from indwelling sin and death, with day 1260 being a doubled day patterned after Joshua’s doubled day.
· Jesus will, according to the Moab covenant, eat the Passover with new wine in His Father’s kingdom (Matt 26:29), the reason for the Moab Passover to now be celebrated as the Day to be Much Observed.
· The Day to be Much Observed is always celebrated on the dark portion of the 15th of Abib, and celebrated with feasting, not with bitter herbs or with the sacraments of blood and wine.
Because disciples will eat the Moab Passover in the Father’s kingdom when Jesus next drinks of the fruit of the vine, and because the present Passover covenant will end when the lives of firstborns are again given as the ransom for Israel (Isa 43:4), the Moab Passover timeline should not today be used for determining when the Wave Sheaf Offering is to be celebrated … the Wave Sheaf Offering should always be celebrated on Sunday, the day after the weekly Sabbath during Unleavened Bread. As the Passover sacraments of bread and wine should be taken on the night that Jesus was betrayed (1 Cor 11:23–26) and on no other night [again, on every other night bread and wine are Cain’s offering, not righteous Abel’s], the Wave Sheaf Offering should be made on the Sunday following the weekly Sabbath within the seven days of Unleavened Bread, even if that weekly Sabbath is the last high Sabbath of Unleavened Bread. It is not a requirement that the Wave Sheaf Offering be made within the seven days of Unleavened Bread, but that it is made on the morrow after the Sabbath. And it is made about 9:00 am Sunday.
If keeping the Wave Sheaf Offering throughout Israel’s generations is a statute forever, then celebrating Jesus’ resurrection on the day following the weekly Sabbath during the seven days of Unleavened Bread is a commanded celebration—and “Resurrection Sunday” is a poor cousin to the offering of the Wave Sheaf; for Resurrection Sunday misses the significance of Israel’s liberation from bondage to sin (as represented by the second Passover) and to death (as represented by the resurrection). It barely addresses that Jesus will return as the Messiah.
· The seven day calendar week and Sabbath observance under the Sinai covenant pointed to the physical creation (Ex 20:11).
· The seven day calendar week and Sabbath observance under the Moab covenant points to Israel’s liberation from sin and death, the reality foreshadowed by Israel’s liberation from Pharaoh (Deut 5:15).
· Likewise, the Passover covenant made in Egypt extends from when blood was shed in Egypt at a first Passover to when blood will be shed worldwide at a second Passover, for the copy of a heavenly covenant is purified with blood (Heb 9:22–23).
· The Moab Passover covenant, however, is not copy of a heavenly thing but is the heavenly reality, and as such, it is ratified by a better sacrifice as the covenant made with Noah about never again bringing a flood of water over the face of the earth is ratified by the bow set in the sky.
1. The Moab covenant is ratified by a better sacrifice, the second song of Moses (Deut chap 32).
2. The Moab Passover covenant is ratified by feasting in celebration of anticipated or achieved liberation from sin and death.
The Pharisees were without spiritual understanding as rabbinical Judaism is today without spiritual understanding. Their lack of understanding, though, was necessary for the completion of the plan of God. Likewise, the lack of spiritual understanding among Sabbatarian disciples is necessary for completion of the plan of God … the livestock do not need to know what the Shepherd does. However, those whom the Shepherd counts as friends know what is occurring, and by faith, keep the high Sabbaths of God with understanding.
"Scripture quotations are from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version, copyright ©2001 by Crossway Bibles, a division of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved."