Counting the Omer, From When, For Whom?
In regard to the counting of Omer and the starting point for counting:
Two points have bothered me. Why would we need to count, if the calendar date remains the same? The key issue here is the sense of WHICH Sabbath is meant when we are told to bring the first fruits of the harvest and a yearling lamb on Sabbath following the first fruits arrival. It is from that as we know that we count 7 weeks. Jewish custom has settled on “that Sabbath” being the first day of Pesah. But as above since that is always Nisan 15, the date of Shavuot remains fixed and not necessary to count. It seems that the mystical study of the 7 X 7 of the seven Sefirot in all combinations is a retrospective reason to count. Since we are told to count and there is no reason to if Shavuot falls on the same day every year, there must be another i.e. mystical reason.
Second point, There is in America a rapidly growing phenomenon of believers in Jesus leaving their Christian Churches and coming to recognize the Jewish Yeshua. These folks with names such as Hebraic Roots, are reinterpreting their very identity. From Paul’s theology of Jesus allowing gentiles to become engrafted into Israel, they are now seeing themselves as the lost branches in the same Pauline metaphor!
Judaism has been the victim of Replacement Theology. “The Church” claimed for itself the title “spiritual Israel” and read “Jerusalem” in prophecy to refer to “Heaven. Thus flesh and blood Israel gave the lie to their theology. Two millennia of anti-Jewish violence in Christendom, resulted. But The Jewish People have also engaged in a different replacement theology! The Tanaachs’ commentaries have spoken of “two Jewish Kingdoms” in the wake of the revolt of Jeroboam. This is just foolishness. The concept of Judaism emerged in Babylonian captivity, two centuries after the Northern Kingdom, called variously “Israel, Ephraim, (see Ezekiel), Joseph, Samaria” had been sent into exile by the Assyrians. Because of YVHK’s love for David, he allowed Rehoboam to keep “two” tribes. In actuality, since Jerusalem was kept by the Davidic dynasty, many Levites were amongst them. As explicitly stated Benjamin whose territory partially contained Jerusalem remained. (This allowed for the southern kingdom to be a microcosm of Leah and Rachel.) And Simeon also had been scattered within Judah’s territory as punishment for his violence against the Sechemites. These tribal groups went down into Babylon and emerged as The Jewish People. In Babylon, with no Temple, the parallel proto-Rabbinic model can be found. But the Jewish People have appropriated the name “Israel”! It is as if the entire population of western USA was conquered by Mexico and exiled. And if two hundred years later New England was conquered by Britain, but then were allowed to return. They may be called The Yankee People at that time. But imagine the ridiculous statements that would result from substituting and interchanging America and Yankee People. The great David Crockett, a Yankee, stood at the Alamo as did the Jews at Masada! The Yankee, Robert E. Lee was a young warrior in the Yankee attack on Mexico. Several of his fellow Yanks faced each other in the bloody Civil War pitting the two Yankee nations against one another. Ridiculous!
If Ezekiel 37 is not dismissed as babble, there MUST be a people in the world who unbeknownst even to themselves are Ephraim and his associated tribes! The Hebraic Yeshua believers are having their blindness lifted. They have recognized that Sunday worship and the Pagan Holidays with their Churchy trimming are not, NOT to be observed. They are becoming Torah Observant. This will be the biggest and most important religious revival in the English Speaking World. Who are like Ephraim and Manasseh in world history? Two brother peoples that have gored the nations to the ends of the earth? They are Great Britain and the Dominions and The United States of America (Artzot ha B’rit)!
To return to Shavuot, the Hebraic Roots Believers have been counting Shavuot from the first Saturday after the first day of Passover. Some are counting from the first maturing of the earliest grain crop. Yet, ironically The Jewish Method of counting would make Yeshua who was crucified on the day after the first Seder, Nisan 15, as being equivalent to the First Fruit! Jewish custom has unknowingly recognized the day of the Crucifixion of Yeshua as the same day as the holding up of the first fruit. His sacrifice IS that of the perfect yearling lamb! But, Hebraic Messianic Israelites do not calculate it that way! Messianic Jews do. To me it is a perfect case of reciprocal blindness. The Jewish People were not meant to recognize Yeshua. He is quoted innumerable times that He came for the Lost Sheep of Israel. And only for them! I have heard lame explanations that the Lost Tribes are not lost but have mingled in to become the Samaritan People. Yeshua a para-Pharisee at least, did NOT recognize them to be so, and neither did the Jewish People at that time and place.
The New Testament was propagated through the world and history by Pagan worshippers of Jeezus Christ. And dare I say that much of Jewish tradition has been carried to maintain the separateness and cohesiveness of the Jewish People. BUT, now in these days the Jewish People no longer need the external traditions that had aided their survival until this day. We are back, in our Land! We ought to be tearing off the hot black woolen garments of Eastern Europe! And, with The Jewish People home, the Bible no longer needs to be protected by the worldly powerful Church, and can now be rid of the paganism that cloaked it until this day! The Lost Sheep are having the scales fall from their eyes. Many ex-Sunday Christians are identifying themselves as no-longer-lost Israelites, but Torah Observant Shabbot-keeping Israelites. The two sticks of Ezekiel are about to connect and the world will be stunned!
Please, do not be frightened of this movement. It is not out to replace the Jewish People. It is to reunite with the Jewish People and restore all of Israel. Many of these new believers are from the Western States. Many are fond of the Second Amendment. Many would love to settle in Samaria, our home. This was the special allotment given Joseph. Imagine just imagine new muscular Israelites, non-Jewish, but equally Israeli, acquiring Land in Shomron. Who would you be safer with up there in the hills? Torah Observant Yeshua Believing Israelites, or Palestinians? These people are the great great-grandsons of those who fulfilled America’s Manifest Destiny. In retrospect, that destiny was Zionism writ large. (The Pilgrims commonly studied Hebrew, and considered themselves to be busy creating a New Israel. Other than in the State of Israel, where will you find towns and cities called Bethlehem, Salem, Bethpage, Canaan, Goshen, Mt. Carmel, Hebron, Bethel, Sharon, Zoar, Rehoboth, Jericho and more? Nowhere else will you find one such named place but here in America. Am, a People, Erica, ? slow or late to understand?