Today’s Readings are Leviticus 22-23

Click here to read today’s passages on BibleGateway.

Rabbit Trails 

Let’s dive in!

In Leviticus 21:24 While this was part of yesterday’s reading, it is also part of the introduction to today’s reading. A great thing to do in order to orient yourself with any passage in the Bible is to read the first few verses both before and after it for better context.

This verse actually tells us that what we are about to read was spoken to Aaron and his sons AND all the people of Israel. However, these commandments we are going to read about directly following apply only to the Levitical priesthood, so why speak it to all of Israel? Israel shares responsibility for holding the priests accountable. This knowledge also indicts the Israelites when we see them creating their own priesthoods later on in the books of Kings and Chronicles. Ignorance is not an excuse but it is better than having clear knowledge and disobeying anyway, which they will do. I can’t stand in judgement of them as I’ve done the same.

Leviticus 22 continues to define who is to be considered part of the priests household, thereby able to partake of the food offerings deemed edible by the priests.

BONUS: How many times Does YHWH say “I AM YHWH” in Chapter 22? Most of your Bibles will say “I am the LORD”. Why does He keep saying this? He is reminding us of His authority and position in our lives. He is God, we are not. Recall as a child, questioning your parents and at some point they likely said “Because I said so.” That should have been enough but for many of us, it wasn’t. We still argued, we still tried to find a way out. The same principle applies to the Father but even more so because when we question His wisdom, His instruction, we are actually questioning the source of Wisdom itself. This is why He admonishes us to lean not unto our own understanding and yet, we run right back to it the first chance we get.

In all your ways knowledge Him and He will make your paths straight. Proverbs 3:6

Who is He? He is YHWH. He is in charge, we are not.

If the road we’re on starts to feel a bit crooked, twisted, or wobbedly, this is a wake up call of whose wisdom we are leaning on. Insider’s note: We are all prone to do this.

31 “So you shall keep my commandments and do them: I am the Lord. 32 And you shall not profane my holy name, that I may be sanctified among the people of Israel. I am the Lord who sanctifies you, 33 who brought you out of the land of Egypt to be your God: I am the Lord.” Leviticus 22:31-33

But YHWH is speaking this to Israel, so does it apply to us? The ten commandants were spoken to Israel as well. Also, Messiah said He came only for the lost sheep of the house of Israel (Matthew 15:24). Man, I sure do want to be part of Israel! I’ve mentioned this before but we will talk about it more as the readings unfold. Do a careful reading of Isaiah 56 and Romans 11 if you haven’t already, to see how we are part of the chosen people. And no, we don’t have to become Jewish and no, our Jewish brethren don’t have to stop being Jewish. Messiah is the way for all of us.

While we’re at it, you know what else was spoken only to Israel?

11 For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Jeremiah 29:11

We all want the promises given exclusively to Israel. We all want to take these verses and apply them to our lives. If we want to be counted among the chosen people we have to be accountable as chosen people. It’s really simple. The Father told us that it is not too hard for us (Deuteronomy 30:11). It starts with the “big ten”. 

And now we move on to the Moedim or Appointed times in Leviticus 23!

If y’all are going to start out reading these, make sure you read to the end, please. Trust me ❤️

Today we will read YHWH’s word (actually HIM speaking, y’all!) as He talks about the Biblical feasts. In the old days, some churches celebrated them and slowly but surely some are coming back to them today. Many of y’all may recall a church meeting outside in a tent for a week for the Feast of Tabernacles (also known as Sukkot).

But in our day and age most people think of these as Jewish feasts because that is what we have been told and we have believed the people who told us. I’m not here to argue, and I’m not saying this is a salvation issue, but in our readings today we see what YHWH says about this.

Lev 23:2 “Speak to the people of Israel and say to them, these are the appointed feasts of the Lord (YHWH) that you shall proclaim as holy convocations; they are my appointed feasts.”

  • Appointed feasts of who? The Lord (YHWH)
  • They are ____ appointed feasts. (My)

Okay that doesn’t say they are Jewish. Let’s keep reading though.

Lev 23:3 “It is a Sabbath to the Lord (YHWH) in all your dwelling places. “

  • Sabbath to who? The Lord (YHWH). 

Let’s keep reading though. 

(Note: We are not going to debate Sabbath.)

Lev 23:4 “These are the appointed feasts of the Lord (YHWH)…” (This is God speaking here)

  • Whose feasts?  YHWH’s feasts. Got it.

Lev 23:5 “In the first month, on the fourteenth day of the month at twilight, is the Lord’s (YHWH’s) passover.” 

  • Whose passover is it? His. Got it. This is getting easier, right? 

Let’s keep reading.

Lev 23:6 “And on the fifteenth day of the same month is the feast of unleavened bread to the Lord (YHWH).” 

  • Who is this feast to?  YHWH. I’m sensing a pattern here…

This chapter goes on and on with much of the same and I’m sure you felt I was being repetitive but keep in mind,
that is just the first six verses and it wasn’t me repeating myself, it was the Father.

When does a parent repeat themselves?  When something is important to remember.

When does a parent take care to remind us to remember?  When they know we are prone to forgetting.

YHWH says that these appointed feasts are His, He has declared them and they are for Him. They are important to Him. 
If it is important enough For YHWH to host an event, I want to be there.

Verse 22 stands as a stark reminder of what we must be mindful of here: 

“And when you reap the harvest of your land, you shall not reap your field right up to its edge, nor shall you gather the gleanings after your harvest. You shall leave them for the poor and for the sojourner: I am the Lord your God.”

Did you see that? At the end, what He added. A reminder of His place of authority in our lives. 

“I am YHWH, your God.” That is the Biblical equivalent of “Because I said so.” And it is enough.

You know, these are things I glanced over for most of my life because I was told this part of the book wasn’t important. Once I began reading it for myself I came to see that the Father feels differently about it.

I think we need t shirts made that say “I’m with God”. 

YHWH’s been having these parties all this time, we were invited, and we never even knew it! 

They are easy to keep, especially in a time in which we aren’t required to make sacrifices. As I write this, the next one is in April and that is the Passover meal and the Feast of Unleavened Bread. Unleavened Bread is a really fun week with all sorts of crazy/fun recipes at my house and lots and lots of various kinds of grape juice because the Jordans know how to party. We make this crazy grilled cheese sandwich out of matzo that has been soaked in red grape juice and is stuffed to the brim with cheese. It sounds weird but it is so good your eyes will roll back in your head when you taste it. Following that, we have Shavuot which you may know by another name, Pentecost. We will learn more of these and the significant events that took place on them as we move forward.

As I said when I started this, I don’t personally consider these moedim (the Hebrew word for the feasts that literally translates to “appointed times”) to be a salvation issue. But honestly, what I consider to be or not to be a salvation issue should be of absolutely no importance to anyone. Salvation is not mine to give or take away, that privilege belongs solely to the Father. 

I have discovered that I missed out on a great deal by not keeping them and I’ve learned so much more about and grown far more closer to the Father by keeping them. Folks who keep them quickly learn they aren’t drudgery or something that feels like a chore. Rather, it is something to look forward to that holds untold blessings. After all, who could possibly throw a better party than the creator of the universe? 

YHWH set them up as teaching tools to remind us of all He has done in our lives, to show us His character, and to prepare us for what is to come. This is a wonderfully enriching rabbit trail that is really exciting if y’all wanted to hop down that road. You can click here to read my article on the Biblical Feasts . I also love this book as the introduction alone really changed the course of my faith walk by causing me to read the Bible without my predetermined perception of it.

So that is all I wanted to point out today, just to make sure we don’t read over some important points. But honestly, if YHWH said it, it is important. Period. 
I love the stuffing out of y’all and you bless my socks off!

Addendum 2022: Aaron Baker, a member of our admin team, left this comment in the discussion today and I thought it might be encouraging:

I wanted to take a minute to provide a testimony of what these feasts have meant to me over the past I-don’t-know-how-many years. It’s tempting to read through Lev 23 and just view them as things the Jews do, or maybe just as some stuff that was done before Jesus. I’ve even once heard someone say that they were so thankful for Jesus so they didn’t have to be a part of the feasts anymore. For what it’s worth, that’s the only time I’ve ever heard an American say they were thankful they didn’t have to be a part of a feast.
I think the thing that first made me want to take part in the feasts of the LORD was seeing Jesus all through them. First of all, when you read the NT it’s easy to see that Jesus cared deeply for these feasts and that He always made sure that He was able to participate in them. That alone should give you a little bit of a yearning to at least learn about them.
Even more substantial to me, though, was seeing how each one of the feasts aligned with a part of the life (or death, burial and resurrection) of Jesus. He was inspected by the Sanhedrin and became the Passover lamb. Three days later He rose as a Firstfruits offering, acceptable to the Father. Then, 50 days later, on another festival, the Holy Spirit was given to the church on the same day that Moses went up on Mount Sinai to receive the Torah. Jeremiah 31 tells us that the law is to be written on our hearts, and it is the Holy Spirit which enables us to walk in a way which is pleasing to the Father. All those years before Jesus, the people of Israel were performing dress rehearsals for these events. Why wouldn’t I want to participate in holidays which pay homage, and whole-heartedly celebrate, the great King Jesus?
One last reason I was drawn to celebrating these feasts of the LORD is that we know that Jesus is coming back. There are two sets of feasts, the spring and the fall, and so far it’s the spring feasts which have found their meaning in the life of my King. The fall feasts (the Day of Trumpets, the Day of Atonement, and the Feast of Tabernacles) are still waiting for Yeshua’s life to give them their ultimate meaning. When we study what the Bible says, and the traditions that have built up around them, we can glean every greater meaning pertaining to their prophetic fulfillment. But, more importantly, we get to know King Jesus better by understanding what He is intending to do and when He is intending to do it.
For those who are still on the fence over whether to participate in the feasts this year, I offer you this: Try it, but keep your eyes on Jesus the whole time. Don’t think of it as some stuff from the OT. Think of them as a way to get to know Jesus better. Try it out this year, eyes on the King, and see if you feel any closer to Jesus. If the Father doesn’t meet you in a special way, you haven’t lost anything. All I can say is, my faith is stronger because I have been faithful to this call.
If it helps, the food’s usually pretty good, too… ?

Test everything, hold tight to what is good.~ 1 Thess 5:21

We are saved by Grace alone: Obedience is not the root of our salvation, it is the fruit!

May YHWH bless you and keep you.

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Christy Jordan
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