I was meditating upon Amos 8:5 this morning. Here we have people who are so anxious for the Father's set apart times to be over with so they can get back to cheating others by dishonest weights and measures. I sit here and ponder how that Yahweh gave me 6 days to labor and do all my work. He then requires me to set aside the 7th day for Him. I'm called to suspend my work, not have anyone work for me, not cook, not do my own things, but rest, worship, and seek Him for 24 hours. He asks for 1 day and gives us 6 days. Sure, this doesn't mean we forget Him for 6 days straight. We should always be seeking Him, but during the 6 working days we are allowed to go about our daily lives working, making a living, etc. He only requires 1/7th of our time when it comes to laying a day completely aside for Him, but even on this day people still worry about all the other things in their life. "When will the Sabbath be over with?" is our cry. Father... help us take notice of You. Help me live my life in view of eternity. Change my heart daily.
Ignorance is bliss. When a person first begins to learn about the Sabbaths, New Moons, and Feast Days of the Biblical calendar, they begin by thinking that this is the most wonderful discovery of all time! You know what, I believe it truly is a wonderful discovery. Discovering any of Yahweh's commandments to apply to your life is beautiful. After all, Yochanan (John) wrote in 1 Yochanan 5:3 - "This is the love of Yahweh, that we keep His commandments, and they are not a burden." If we are interested in loving our Creator, then we MUST be interested in loving all of His commandments. From the least to the greatest.
I'm writing this post because there are just SO many differences when it comes to calculating the calendar among brethren. I use the term brethren purposefully, because I want to be clear that I personally know men that disagree with me on let's say, the timing of the new moon, that are my spiritual brothers in Messiah. Our disagreement on the timing of the new moon doesn't mean we're not brothers, and it certainly doesn't mean we must dis-fellowship one another because of our differences. I have met some people in my life who will dis-fellowship you for every single, little thing and it always turns out that they are the only person in their fellowship. We need to realize that there are brothers and sisters out there who love Yahweh, but who come to different conclusions after studying. I believe we should still meet with one another, discuss our differences, and do our best to come to a unified understanding on such issues, but this all must be done in love rather than pride, strife, hatred, etc.
I do try to be as ecumenical as possible with people. That doesn't mean I am a man of compromise, but it does mean that I try to conform for the sake of unity on grey areas in Scripture that I honestly feel could go either way. At the same time, there are areas I've studied long and hard about concerning the calendar (the topic of this particular blog article), and I cannot in good conscience follow a pattern that I believe can be dis-proven by Scripture.
Take this issue of the new moon for example. You've got people who believe the new moon is determined by conjunction and others by the first visual crescent sighting of the moon (in the west). You've got others who try their best to link up the Sabbaths each moon with the major phases of the moon, even though this is an absolute impossibility to do across the scale because the moon does not phase in exact 7 day intervals. People who are bent on doing this have alternating new moon days whether they realize it or not. This is because in one month the quarter moon phase may align with conjunction. The next month the same phase may align with the first visible crescent method.
Take this coming up 9th new moon (Nov-Dec 2012). We see that by looking ahead the moon will be a have on Tuesday evening, November 20. However, the moon will not be full until Wednesday evening, November 28. http://www.moonconnection.com/moon_phases_calendar.phtml
I'm of the persuasion that the new moon is determined by the conjunction, and that after determining the new moon the Sabbaths of each moon/month are counted to in intervals of 7. This means that sometimes the Sabbaths will line up on the quarter phases and full phase of the moon, but it is not a necessity. This seems to me to be the most Scriptural way of doing things. The moon begins to rebuild after its conjunction with the sun. This means that the day after conjunction is the first full 24 hour day of the rebuilding moon. Everything is pulled from there each month.
My reasons are detailed here:
I'm open to correction, but sometimes it's difficult to have an honest, intelligent discussion with others about these matters. It would be nice if the men of Yahweh would take things more seriously and make the decision to fast, pray, and then come together in humility to discuss topics like this.
Shall a trumpet be blown in the city, and the people not be afraid? shall there be evil in a city, and Yahweh hath not done it? (Amos 3:6)
I woke up this morning to find my Twitter and Facebook feed filled with people who were very disappointed (to say the least) that Barack Obama won the election for the President of the United States. These people were instead pulling for Mitt Romney, the gentleman on the Republican ticket. Sure, I would have liked to see Barack Obama removed from the Presidency, but I am not surprised at all that he was re-elected.
What people do not understand is that Yahweh punishes nations, cities, families, and individuals when they refuse to turn from their wickedness and turn to Him. It sounds like a cliche when quoted, but 2 Chronicles 7:14 is so very true. If the people of Yahweh, who are called by His name, will humble themselves and pray and seek His face, and TURN FROM THEIR WICKED WAYS, then He will hear from heaven, forgive their sin, and heal their land. The reason the nation of American, or any other nation for that matter, gets leaders like Barack Obama or Mitt Romney ruling over them is because they refuse to turn from their wickedness. Wickedness is only defined by Yahweh's standards, thus wickedness is the violation of the law of Yahweh. Blatant breaking of Yahweh's law is not only found in the secular world, but it runs strong in many professing Christian churches in this nation. People sit in their pews under preachers who are guilty of breaking and teaching others that it's okay to break the least to sometimes the greatest of the commandments. They turn their ears from hearing the law (Proverbs 28:9) and then they pray, asking Yahweh to heal the nation. The problem is that Yahweh sees their prayer as an abomination before Him. You can't just quote 2 Chronicles 7:14 and think prayer is the answer.Prayer is PART of the answer, but prayer only works if you are humble, seeking His face, and turn from your violation of His holy law.
When a nation refuses to follow the laws of Yahweh, Yahweh begins to wreak havoc on that nation. Look at the verse from Amos at the top of this post again. There are two rhetorical questions in the verse, both answers should be obvious. When a trumpet is blown in a city, people become afraid because they know they are hearing an alarm. Likewise, when evil exists in a city it is because Yahweh hath done it. Like it or not, that is what the inspired prophet Amos wrote. Yahweh is wreaking havoc upon America. America is severely under the judgment of the Almighty. The nation is corrupt as a whole, and Christians were blind to think that even a fellow like Mitt Romney could turn this nation around in the sight of Yahweh.
See, asking me if I would vote for Barack Obama or Mitt Romney is like asking me if I would prefer a pork sandwich or shrimp scampi? It's like asking me would I rather steal from my father or my mother? It's like asking me would I rather you shoot me with a 50 caliber or a 22 rifle? These questions are botched to begin with. Both men, Barack Obama and Mitt Romney, are wicked men. I know this because the standard I'm judging them by is the law of Yahweh. Neither man is interested in upholding Yahweh's commandments, statutes, and judgments.
Read the last portion of Deuteronomy 17 about selecting a king. There are criteria that the king must meet in order for him to be selected to rule. People say, "Well, nobody is perfect" but the fact remains that according to the Scriptures, men (and they must be men) must meet certain qualifications in order for them to be appointed (not voted) into a leadership office. One key criteria for a king is that he write himself out a copy of the law of Yahweh, read in it every day, judge and govern by it, and not turn aside from it to the right or left. If you put your stamp of approval upon a man that for leadership that is not the least bit interested in doing this, you are violating a major area of Yahweh's law. You are actually rejecting Yahweh in doing so.
The odd thing is that professing Christians realized this when it came to Barack Obama. They would say things like "He's for abortion and homosexuality!" However, when it came to Mitt Romney they would not judge Him by Yahweh's law. I'm certain myself that Mitt Romney is not anti-abortion in the way Yahweh demands we should be, and do you really believe that Mitt Romney is anti-homosexuality in accordance with the law of Yahweh? Is Mitt Romney willing to hand out the death penalty to baby murderers and practicing, unrepentant homosexuals? This is what Yahweh demands, and if a king is not willing to meet Yahweh's standards on these laws then they are not "eye-to-eye" with Yahweh. Many professing Christians rightly recognize that by voting for Barack Obama you are partaking in his evil deeds. They fail to recognize that the exact same holds true by voting for Mitt Romney.
On top of this we have an entire host of other laws of Yahweh that neither Barack Obama or Mitt Romney are concerned about, and we think that by voting one of these men into office that it is going to turn America around? I'm baffled, but then again, I'm really not. People are wicked and incapable of knowing the truth apart from the miraculous work of Yahweh upon their heart and mind turning them into a new creature.
Right now, this nation is getting what it deserves. Wickedness is on the rise in America and Yahweh will punish this nation more and more severely until we actually begin to acknowledge that His ways are the only ways, and then begin to put His ways into practice.
What can we do? It's simple, but few people are willing to do something simple that in the natural doesn't seem like it's going to make any headway. Yahweh always confounds the "wisdom of this world" with His ways of simplicity. Remember when he told the Israelites to march around the walls of Jericho? What kind of plan was that? It was Yahweh's plan, and you only get the righteous results of Yahweh by obeying His plan. What you need to do as an individual or as a family is seriously involve yourself in obeying 2 Chronicles 7:14. You must believe in and uphold His name, Yahweh, you must humble yourself, pray, and repent of violating His law - every portion of it. This means that you must be about studying Yahweh's law every day and applying to your life a little at a time. I guarantee you that if our nation did this as a whole, Yahweh would heal it, and I guarantee you that if you truly practice 2 Chronicles 7:14 in your own life and in the life of your family, Yahweh will protect you.
Blog by Matthew Janzen. Lover of Yahweh, Yeshua, my wife and 5 children. All else is commentary.