Amir’s commentary on Pentecost as Jews worldwide observe Shavuot (The Feast of Weeks) beginning Tuesday evening.

Jews worldwide will begin observing the Feast of Weeks (Shavuot) on Tuesday evening, also known as Pentecost, meaning “fifty”, as it is exactly fifty days after the Feast of Firstfruits. Common forms of celebration include musical events and activities as a family. Additionally, markets and bakeries will typically overflow with produce as a sign of the celebration of the harvest of the land.

The holiday is a celebration of the end of the biblical seven-week wheat harvest in the Land of Israel, and it commemorates God’s gift of the Torah and His oath to the Jewish people at Mount Sinai.

Furthermore, on the day of Pentecost nearly 2,000 years ago, the Holy Spirit (the promise of the Father) descended and marked the birth of the church (Εκκλησία).

Acts 2:1-4
When the Day of Pentecost had fully come, they were all with one accord in one place. And suddenly there came a sound from heaven, as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled the whole house where they were sitting. Then there appeared to them divided tongues, as of fire, and one sat upon each of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.

You may be wondering, “Why is this being celebrated in the middle of the week when we know that the events in the book of Acts took place on a Sunday?” This is because the Jewish holidays are observed in accordance with the lunar calendar (360 days) rather than the Gregorian calendar (365) days. Therefore, the dates shift on the Gregorian calendar each year, while they remain the same on the Hebrew (lunar) calendar.

Regardless, let us not forget that these festivals are all just the shadow of things to come. The substance is Jesus Christ!

Colossians 2:16-17
So let no one judge you in food or in drink, or regarding a festival or a new moon or sabbaths, which are a shadow of things to come, but the substance is of Christ.

May our eyes and heart remember to learn from the shadow, but focus on the substance. In Christ, we are now ALL priests! Jews and Gentiles alike. In Him, we are ONE!

1 Peter 2:9-10
But you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, His own special people, that you may proclaim the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light; who once were not a people but are now the people of God, who had not obtained mercy but now have obtained mercy.

Please take time today to ponder both the shadow and the substance as they appear in the word of God:

Leviticus 23:15-22
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. Count fifty days to the day after the seventh Sabbath; then you shall offer a new grain offering to the Lord. You shall bring from your dwellings two wave loaves of two-tenths of an ephah. They shall be of fine flour; they shall be baked with leaven. They are the firstfruits to the Lord. And you shall offer with the bread seven lambs of the first year, without blemish, one young bull, and two rams. They shall be as a burnt offering to the Lord, with their grain offering and their drink offerings, an offering made by fire for a sweet aroma to the Lord. Then you shall sacrifice one kid of the goats as a sin offering, and two male lambs of the first year as a sacrifice of a peace offering. The priest shall wave them with the bread of the firstfruits as a wave offering before the Lord, with the two lambs. They shall be holy to the Lord for the priest. And you shall proclaim on the same day that it is a holy convocation to you. You shall do no customary work on it. It shall be a statute forever in all your dwellings throughout your generations. ‘When you reap the harvest of your land, you shall not wholly reap the corners of your field when you reap, nor shall you gather any gleaning from your harvest. You shall leave them for the poor and for the stranger: I am the Lord your God.’ ”