Pod Prep 9-2-16: Should Christian Observe God’s Annual Holidays Described in the Bible?
THEY ARE THE HOLY DAYS OF GOD NOT THE JEWS
These Hoy Days were given not to just Judah but to all of Israel. They are described in the Bible as “The Feasts of the LORD. God calls them His Feast Days. See Lev 23:1 and vs 3 -4 in which they are called His Sabbaths and Feasts. See also verses 37 and 41. They belong to God and not to any one of the twelve tribes. They do not stand or fall for certain periods of time, with the unfaithfulness of any of the tribes of Israel.
God said that His annual Holy Days and the Sabbath are an IDENTIFYING SIGN between Him and his people. See Exodus 31:13. These days link and identify us with the true God of the Bible.
THE HOLY DAYS DO NOT COME AND GO WITH THE SACRIFICIAL SYSTEM
These Holy Days were delivered to Israel before the sacrificial system was commanded. The Passover and Days of Unleavened bread were given in Exodus 12 and 13. They help us identify with God’s rescue of Israel from slavery in Egypt and our rescue from slavery to sin by Christ. See Heb. 8:7-8 and Jer. 7:21-23 as proof that the sacrificial system was added because of the weakness of the people not any weakness in God’s annual Sabbath laws. Further see also Psalms 40:6, 51:16. These annual days are part of the clear plan of salvation and we live it out each year as we keep God’s Holy Days not mans’ holidays. We remember the coming of the Holy Spirit and the birth of the New Testament Church as we keep Pentecost each summer.
JESUS AND THE NEW TESTAMENT CHURCH OBSERVED THE HOLY DAYS
Jesus observed the Passover Days of Unleavened Bread, the Feast of Tabernacles and the Last Great Day. He observed the Feast at the risk of his life. See John 7:1-2, 10, 37. He is looking forward to keeping the Passover again with his disciples when He returns. See Matt 26:17-18, 26-29.
The Church of God in the first century kept the Hoy Days and it is clear that they ALL knew the days were still holy. This includes Paul the Apostle to the gentiles. No discussion of whether to keep them is found, just a record of them being kept. See Acts 12:3-4, 20:6, 27:9, 18: 21 and I Cor. 5:6-8, 16:8.
THE HOLYDAYS ARE SHADOWS OF THINGS TO COME
Some will ask about Col 2:16-17. Are they only a shadow? First it says that the Hoy Days are a shadow of things to come. This is not a diminishing of the days but an elevating of them. In the Greek language the word mello, translated ‘to come’ explicitly points to events yet future. Paul is saying that the Sabbath and Holy Days are a guide. The grammar of Paul’s statement requires this meaning. Holy Days of God are a guide to God’s plan and a key to coming events. Celebrated by The Colossian church celebrated by feasting according to Biblical instructions which foreshadowed future events, things yet to come.
We believe a better translation than the KJ Col 2:16-17 would be to leave out the “is” which the King James translators added in 1611 it is not in the original Greek. . (That’s why “is” is in italics). Then it would read do not let any man, including your pagan neighbors, judge you regarding what you eat or the days you keep but the Church of God. See also Col 1:18.
Clearly the Passover was a foreshadowing of Jesus Christ Sacrifice for all mankind as the Lamb of God. See John 1:36. Pentecost foreshadowed the coming of Power for the early first harvest. Note the second chapter of Acts. The other Holy Days foreshadow events that are still in mankind’s future.
SOON THE HOLY DAYS ARE COMING TO THE ENTIRE PLANET
The Feast of Trumpets pictures the last trump of God and the return of the Messiah. See 1 Thess 4:13-17 and further note that in I Cor 15:52-54, Paul mentions the Trump of God prior to our being changed from mortal to immortal. We remember that day every year as we keep the Feast of Trumpets. Very soon, all nations will also keep the Feast Tabernacles in the millennium or, face the wrath of God. See Zach 14:16. Trumpets were in the Bible as an alarm of war like a siren. Christ will return to battle and crush the Beast and force all mankind to live righteously by His laws. Trumpets were blown to gather the people for important events. The last trump of Revelations and the second coming of Christ is the most important event coming in mankind’s future. The Church of God celebrates it each year as commanded by God.
PAUL TAUGHT THE GENTILES TO KEEP DAYS OF UNLEAVENED BREAD
The key scriptures that we use to prove that gentile Christians were really keeping the Feast of Unleavened Bread with unleavened bread are in 1 Corinthians 5:6-8. Verse 6, Your glorying is not good; know ye not that a little leaven leaveneth the whole lump? Verse 7 states, Purge out therefore the old leaven that ye may be a new lump, AS YOU ARE UNLEAVENED. For even Christ our Passover is sacrificed for us: verse 8, Therefore let us KEEP THE FEAST not with old leaven, neither with the leaven of malice and wickedness; but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth. Paul is saying to purge out (get rid of) the old leaven (sin), that ye may be a new (unleavened) lump (spiritually) as ye are (actually) unleavened. He wrote this to them during the Days of Unleavened Bread.
Those who don’t want to keep the Days of Unleavened Bread twist these scriptures and try to say that gentile Christians were not physically keeping the Days of Unleavened Bread. They say “as you are unleavened” does not mean what it says, but is a simile. A simile tries to make a point by comparing two things that are not alike, for instance, a man and a turtle. “He is as slow as a turtle is a simile. A simile uses “like or as” for this comparison. In our simile, he and turtle are not alike, but the turtle is used to point out that the man is slow physically. If ‘as ye are unleavened’ is only meant by Paul as a simile and not to mean that they were actually unleavened, then these scriptures would by saying be free from leaven (sin) metaphorically), as you are free from leaven (sin) again metaphorically.”
Similes are not constructed this way. It is illogical. Remember that a simile is a comparison between two things that are unlike. In the case of our scripture, the spiritual is being compared with the physical. Otherwise the simile makes no sense because it would not be comparing two things that are different. What Paul must be writing is “Be free from leaven” (sin) spiritually, as you are free from leaven literally. (Physically) It would be like saying be as fast as a turtle when a turtle is clearly not fast. Be unleavened spiritually as you are not unleavened physically makes no sense.
The Greek gentile Christians were literally unleavened years after Christ’s death, as Acts 20:6 and 12:3 plainly show. Paul tells these gentiles to keep the Feast. He is clearly speaking of the Feast of Unleavened Bread and the New Testament Passover or Lord’s Supper.
For timing issues look at the phrase I Cor11:23 ‘the same night in which he was betrayed’. It was on the fourteenth in which he was arrested by the mob so he could be sacrificed on the very day or moment of the sacrifice of the Passover Lamb by Israel was done at the Temple.