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June 7, 2011 / attilashrugs

Counting the Omer, From When, For Whom? (Edited)

In regard to the counting of Omer and the starting point for counting:

(Lev. 23:10 “Speak to the children of Israel, and say to them: ‘When you come into the land which I give to you, and reap its harvest, then you shall bring a sheaf of the firstfruits of your harvest to the priest. 11 He shall wave the sheaf before the Lord, to be accepted on your behalf; on the day after the Sabbath the priest shall wave it. 12 And you shall offer on that day, when you wave the sheaf, a male lamb of the first year, without blemish, as a burnt offering to the Lord.)

Two points have bothered me. Why would we need to count, if the calendar date remains the same? (Lev. 23: 15 ‘And you shall count for yourselves from the day after the Sabbath, from the day that you brought the sheaf of the wave offering: seven Sabbaths shall be completed. 16 Count fifty days to the day after the seventh Sabbath.)

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, and the next day is 16 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 (according to the mystics) another i.e. mystical reason.
Second point, In America a rapidly growing phenomenon of believers in Jesus are 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 re-ingrafted in the same Pauline metaphor!
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 the 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.
The Last Supper was the First Seder.  The Seder is eaten as the sun sets on the 14th, and as the 15th of Nissan begins.  His sacrifice IS that of the perfect yearling lamb! But, Hebraic Roots do not calculate it that way! Messianic Jews do. To me it is a perfect case of reciprocal blindness.

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