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Why Count the Omer? Part 2: Nine Days of Prayer

counting the omer 2In Leviticus 23:15 God instructs us to count the seven weeks (49 days) that occur before the Day of Pentecost (the 50th day) also called the Festival of Weeks and Shavuot in Hebrew.  But counting days with no explanation? Why would this be important to God and to us?

For the Israelites, it pertained mainly to their harvest cycle and offerings to be presented.  For us living after the time of Yeshua, and the giving of the Holy Spirit to the disciples, we can see the spiritual implications of this count.  We know that on the 50th day after Yeshua’s resurrection, something unimaginably wonderful happened:  The pouring out of the Holy Spirit not only on the disciples, but on all those who come to faith in Yeshua as the Messiah!  The implications of that day reverberate even stronger in these last of the last days.  The 50th day is one I want to be prepared for every year. Read the rest of this page »

Why Count the Omer? Part 3: God’s Spirit Poured Out

counting the omer 2This 3-part blog series focuses on the Lord’s instruction in Leviticus 23:15 to count the seven weeks (49 days) that occur before the Day of Pentecost (the 50th day) also called the Festival of Weeks and Shavuot in Hebrew.  For the Israelites, the count was about the harvest, thus the word “omer” which was a unit of measure used to count and track grain harvests.  Yeshua taught us the spiritual meaning of “harvest” as those ready to receive the good news of the Messiah (Matt 9:37).  That’s what the third phase of counting the omer is about.

In Parts 1 and 2, I laid out a three-phase structure for the 49-day count:

  1. The first 40 days
  2. Days 41-49
  3. The 50th day

The first two phases prepare us for what’s about to happen on the 50th day and beyond. Read the rest of this page »

Passover and Easter: What are You Celebrating?

spring-tree-cropPassover and Easter usually occur close together on the calendar, and presumably both commemorate the same event.  Are they the same or what’s the difference?  I assumed Passover was Jewish and Easter was Christian.  But what I found surprised me.  Read the rest of this page »

The Feasts of the Lord: Going Through the Motions

Spring FeastsPassover, Feast of Unleavened Bread, Feast of First Fruits, Pentecost, Feast of Trumpets, Day of Atonement, Feast of Tabernacles – lots of Feasts, each with different instructions for observing them. Sometimes when we’re just starting out observing the Feasts, or approach a new season of Feasts, we can easily think of all the instructions and do’s and don’ts, and forget the richness of each Feast.  It can feel – and in fact become – like we’re just going through the motions.

I can imagine that’s how the Hebrews must have felt when they heard the instructions for the first time as well.  Exodus 12 is 50 verses full of instructions for Passover and the Feast of Unleavened Bread.  And the instructions are not exactly intuitive or logical.  What were they to make of killing a lamb and smearing its blood on their door frames?  Had that ever saved them from death before?  Was this a common practice?  And what’s so bad about leavened bread?  What does that have to do with saving their firstborns? Read the rest of this page »

Purim – The Story of Mordecai

EstherEsther – Queen of Persia, intercessor for the Jews before the King, and the one for whom the book of Esther is written.  Understandably, as the heroine of the story, most discussions of the book are meant to inspire people to emulate her.  But how many people are going to get the chance to be a queen, or be in a position to intercede for their people in front of a king?  Re-reading the story this year, I realized Mordecai’s role in the whole affair is probably a more realistic picture of what people in any position could aspire to. Read the rest of this page »

God’s Blessing & Provision: All Who Call on the Name of the Lord Will be Saved

www.DanKarvasek.comIn the posts leading up to this, I discussed the balance between stewarding our resources for the difficult times ahead, while maintaining complete dependency on God’s provision during those times.  In Part 2, we looked at Joseph as a type of Messiah who foreshadows how God will provide for us during times of tribulation.  But all of this assumes one very important requirement on our part: Calling on the name of the Lord.

This is certainly not a new concept.  It might seem obvious to most.  But I hadn’t seen the full meaning of this principle until I put it into the perspective of tribulation.  What had been a wonderful spiritual understanding now took on literal significance. Read the rest of this page »

Hanukkah? Chanukah? And Why Does the Date Keep Changing?

Happy_Hanukkah3Hanukkah — or Chanukah as it’s sometimes spelled, typically falls sometime in December.  I had heard of it, but didn’t actually know what it celebrated.  So one day I decided to look into it.  If you’re at that point, I can save you some time.

It turns out, it’s really not the Jewish version of Christmas.  It’s not even the most important Jewish holiday.  It just happens to usually fall between America’s biggest holidays — Thanksgiving and Christmas — so we end up throwing it in with the majors.  Not to say that what’s celebrated is not a big deal.  Here’s what I found out… Read the rest of this page »

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