Monday, April 13, 2009

First Fruits

The Feast of First Fruits can be found in Leviticus 23:9-14.
vs.9--And the Lord spake unto Moses, saying,
vs.10--Speak unto the children of Israel, and say unto them, When ye be come into the land which I give unto you, and shall reap the harvest thereof, then ye shall bring a sheaf of the firstfruits of your harvest unto the priest:
vs.11--And he shall wave the sheaf before the Lord, to be accepted for you: on the morrow after the sabbath the priest shall wave it.
vs.12--And ye shall offer that day when ye wave the sheaf an he lamb without blemish of the first year for a burnt offering unto the Lord.
vs.13--And the meat offering thereof shall be two tenth deals of fine flour mingled with oil, and offering made by fire unto the Lord for a sweet savour: and the drink offering thereof shall be of wine, the fourth art of an hin.
vs.14--And ye shall eat neither bread, nor parched corn, nor green ears, until the selfsame day that ye have brought an offering unto your God: it shall be a statute for ever throughout your generations in all your dwellings.
One commentary explains it this way:
"The harvest represents all who would put their faith, trust, and confidence in the Messiah (Matthew 13:39). So, the sheaf is the first of the first fruits. Since a sheaf in the Bible is used to typify a person or persons (Genesis 37:5-11), a sheaf spiritually represents people who accept the Messiah into their hearts.
THE THEME OF THE FESTIVAL OF FIRST FRUITS IS RESURRECTION AND SALVATION
There are several important events tht happened on this day in the Bible.
1. Noah's ark rests on Mount Ararat (Genesis 8:4).
2. Israel crosses the Red Sea (Exodus chapter 14).
3. Israel eats the first fruits of the Promised Land (Joshua 5:10-12). The manna that God gave from Heaven during the days in the wilderness ceased the sixteenth day of Nisan after the people ate of the old corn of the land. The day following was the seventeenth of Nisan, the day when the children of Israel ate the first fruits of the Promised Land.
4. Haman is defeated (Esther 3:1-6). In the Book of Esther, Haman plotted to kill all the Jews in Persia and Media. Haman had ten sons. By this, we can see tht Haman is a tye of the false Messiah (antichrist). A decree was sent out on the thirteenth of Nisan that all the Jews would be killed. Upon hearing this news, Esther proclaims a three-day fast, which would be Nisan 14-16. On the sixteenth of Nisan, Esther risked her life when she came to King Ahasuerus. The king asked her, in effect, "Tell me, what do you want?" Esther replied, "If it seem good unto the king, let the king and Haman come this day unto the banquet tht I have prepared for him." This was the sixteenth day of Nisan. At the banquet, the king again asked Esther what she wanted, and she asked the king to come to another banquet to be held the next day, the seventeenth of Nisan. On this day, Haman (a type of the false Messiah or antichrist, as well as of satan) is hanged.
5. The resurrection of Jesus (John 12:24, 1 Corinthians 15:16-20). The Lord Jesus celebrated the Festival of First Fruits by offering Himself as the first fruits to all future generations (Matthew 27:52-53).
JESUS IS THE FIRST FRUITS OF THE BARLEY HARVEST
1. Jesus is the firstborn of Mary (Matthew 1:23-25)
2. Jesus is the first-begotten of God the Father (Hebrews 1:6)
3. Jesus is the firstborn of every creature (Colossians 1:15)
4. Jesus is the first-begotten from the dead (Revelation 1:5)
5. Jesus is the firstborn of many brethren (Romans 8:29)
6. Jesus is the first fruits of the resurrected ones (1 Corinthians 15:20,23)
7. Jesus is the beginning of the creation of God (Revelation 3:14)
8. Jesus is the preeminent One (Colossians 1:18)
Jesus is indeed the Most Holy One of God and is sanctified by the Father. Jesus is the first, the choicest, the preeminent One. He is both the firstborn of God and the first fruits unto God. Jesus is the sheaf of the first fruits.
Few people understand that God follows a systematic plan, symbolized by His Holy Days, to save all humanity by offering all people eternal life in His Kingdom."
I am rather sad indeed that the church has really let us down in the celebrating and teaching on these holy days- their significance to us as Christians. There is so much to learn and to understand!

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