Sleep Disorders Skyrocketing Among US Military

•April 14, 2021 • Leave a Comment

Sleep Disorders Are Skyrocketing Among US Military Personnel, Study Finds

Excerpts from Military.com

12 Apr 2021
Military.com | By Patricia Kime

A new study has found that serious sleep disorders are on the rise in the US military — conditions that can affect readiness and cause short- and long-term physical and mental health problems for troops and veterans.

Army Reserve wheeled vehicle mechanic sleeps

According to research from the University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio, insomnia diagnoses increased 45-fold, and obstructive sleep apnea rose 30-fold, among US service members from 2005 to 2019.

The increases should concern military leaders and doctors as well as the Department of Veterans Affairs, which provides medical treatment for veterans with service-related conditions, said retired Army Col. (Dr.) Vincent Mysliwiec, a sleep expert and one of the study’s authors.

“A large percentage of military veterans have insomnia and sleep apnea. We’re trying to develop a better understanding of the factors that go into sleep disturbances that can develop into sleep disorders in the military,” he said.

Rates for insomnia across the services rose consistently beginning in 2005 and peaking in 2015 before dropping slightly. Sleep apnea diagnoses peaked in 2016, but remained higher than they had been previously, according to the research.

The highest rates for both disorders were found in the Army, with more cases diagnosed than expected; the Air Force, Navy and Marine Corps had lower-than-expected rates. Yet all services saw increases.

Those most likely to be diagnosed with either disorder were married, male, White, age 40 or older, and higher-ranking enlisted soldiers.

“These findings are concerning because service members across the military branches are otherwise healthy and have similar physical requirements. Their sleep disorders developed and were diagnosed while they were in the military,” Mysliwiec said.

Mysliwiec said he’d like to see more focus on healthy sleep habits and scheduling to ensure that service members don’t suffer from disrupted sleep or run the risk of developing a sleep disorder.

“There’s this perception that military personnel, in some way, shape or form, cause their sleep disorders. That’s just wrong,” he said. “‘Oh, they drink lots of caffeine. That causes their sleep disorders.’ Well, they drink lots of caffeine because they have to work 12-, 14-, 16-hour days and need to stay awake. They have to have a coping mechanism.

“How do we prevent people from needing to get these drinks to stay awake and perform their military duties? And if we do make them work 36 hours, do we give them time to sleep and recover after?” he added.

The Lord shall smite thee with madness, and blindness, and astonishment of heart; and thou shalt grope at noonday, as the blind gropeth in darkness,”(Deuteronomy 28:28-29)

A ‘Catastrophic’ Conflict, Henry Kissinger Warns

•April 14, 2021 • Leave a Comment

Endless US-China Contest Risks ‘Catastrophic’ Conflict, Henry Kissinger Warns

Henry Kissinger warns of 'catastrophic' conflicts unless China and US  settle their differences | South China Morning Post

Excerpts from NEWSWEEK By David BRENNAN – 3/26/21

Few people are as well connected or have more diplomatic experience than Kissinger, particularly when it comes to America’s bilateral ties with China. Beijing is not “determined to achieve a world domination,” Kissinger said in a recent Chatham House webinar “they’re trying to develop the maximum capability of which their society is able.”

The 97-year-old Kissinger called on the US to create a balance with existing global forces, saying

“And if you imagine that the world commits itself to an endless competition based on the dominance of whoever is superior at the moment, then a breakdown of the order is inevitable. And the consequences of a breakdown would be catastrophic.”

The veteran diplomat warned the US of creating a pre-World War One situation:

“Is it possible for us to develop a foreign policy thinking together with allies and understood by other countries that looks for world order at the basis of that sort of analysis? And if we don’t get to an understanding with China on that point, then we will be in a pre-World War One-type situation in which there are perennial conflicts that get solved on an immediate basis but one of them gets out of control at some point.”

Speaking of Ephraim:

“In all your dwelling places the cities shall be laid waste, and the high places shall be desolate, that your altars may be laid waste and made desolate, and your idols may be broken and cease, and your images may be cut down, and your works may be abolished” Ezekiel 6:6.

A Critique of UCG’s Pentecost 

•April 13, 2021 • Leave a Comment

A Critique of UCG’s Pentecost 

President — Victor Kubik
Chairman — Len Martin

United Church of God
P.O. Box 541027
Cincinnati, OH 45254-1027

Pentecost and Its Observance — A Doctrinal Study Paper (20 pages)
Approved by the Council of Elders September 1997

How to Count Pentecost, Feast of Weeks (Exodus 34:22), Feast of Firstfruits (Numbers 28:26), Festival of Fifty Days, Feast of Heptads, Festival of Seven Heptads, Wave Sheaf, Omer, “the firstfruits of thy labors which thou hast sown in the field (Exodus 23:16).”

This is a Critique of UCG’s Pentecost, the Feast of Weeks, or the Feast of Firstfruits. The counting to Pentecost is an extremely interesting subject and we’ll follow it in every issue discussed. Besides the main issue of when to start counting towards Pentecost is the issue of what the firstfruits mean. What or who do they represent? Are they humans or is it Christ?

Quoted are UCG’s “Pentecost and Its Observance” doctrinal paper, a Study Paper,1997, posted on its website. They are indented, in PINK, and in block form so as to differentiate UCG’s from other narratives or my comments. The Scriptures, in RED, must be our primary focus and guide, and sometimes the Scriptures, which include the Septuagint and the Targum, say things very different from what we think! 

And so with that in mind, we’ll begin:

The expression refers to the fact that Pentecost was the fiftieth day in a specific counting commanded in the Old Testament. The festival is one of the seven annual Holy Days listed in Leviticus 23. 

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 (Leviticus 23:21).

This same Festival is referred to as “the Feast of Harvest, the firstfruits of your labor” (Exodus 23:16). (Pentecost and Its Observance pg 1)

Only one-tenth of an ephah “sheaf” finally accepted

That’s right! The “Feast of Harvest” is “the firstfruits of your labor” or the firstfruits of thy labors which thou hast sown in the field. Question. If this “firstfruits” represents Christ, what labor did we humans contribute to His ressurection? NOTHING!

In studying the observance of Pentecost, it is important to understand the historical context. It was in 1974 that the Worldwide Church of God began observing Pentecost on Sunday (the 50th day after the Sunday during the Days of Unleavened Bread). Mr. Armstrong’s position was that the issue should not be complicated with a number of technicalities. There was no attempt to ignore these technicalities and the subsequent study paper addressed most of them. To arrive at the correct biblical position in this matter, we need to study the relevant passages of scripture. After all, our position must rest on scripture and not necessarily on what has been practiced historically.

Leviticus 23

In dealing with Leviticus 23, we must address the term “Sabbath” and what it means in this context.  There are three references to the word Sabbath (or Sabbaths) in verses 15-16.

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.

The English word “Sabbath” or its plural “Sabbaths” is translated from the Hebrew shabbath or its plural form shabbathoth. Although there are some translations that use the word “weeks,” this is not the most common translation.  In fact, in the King James Version (KJV) the word shabbath (or its plural shabbathoth) is only translated Sabbath and is never translated weeks. There is another word in Hebrew which is translated weeks. This can be found in Deuteronomy 16:9  and also in Exodus 34:22. The word used in these verses for weeks is shabuoth. The singular form of this word is shabua. In the King James Version, and the New King James Version this Hebrew word is never translated as Sabbath. In twenty occurrences in the KJV, this word is translated as “week” (or weeks) nineteen times and on one occasion it is translated “seven.” The Englishman’s Hebrew-Chaldee Concordance of the Old Testament makes this point quite clearly. The word shabbath can be found 108 times and in every instance it is translated Sabbath or Sabbaths and never weeks. According to this same source, the Hebrew word shabuoth is never translated as Sabbath, but is in every instance but one translated as weeks. (Pentecost and Its Observance pg 8-9)

It is interesting to note that the writer intends to arrive at the correct biblical position in this matter by seeking the relevant Scriptures, but the evidence is that this stated intent is only lip service. After all, UCG position has always been centered on what had been practiced historically.

The King James Versions say:

Leviticus 23:15 “‘And ye shall count unto you from the morrow after the sabbath, H7676 from the day that ye brought the sheaf of the wave offering; seven sabbaths H7676 shall be complete:16 Even unto the morrow after the seventh sabbath H7676 shall ye number fifty days; and ye shall offer a new meat offering unto the LORD.

Leviticus 23:15-16 seven sabbaths [h7676 shabbat] according to Strong, this shabbat could be translated as:

(a) sabbath
(b) day of atonement
(c) sabbath year
(d) WEEK
(e) produce (in sabbath year)

According to Strong’s Concordance, this shabbat could be translated as a weekly sabbath or an annual sabbath like the Day of Atonement. It is also the same word for the seventh year where the land needs a rest. But the most important point in Strong’s Concordance is that it could also mean week, or a block of seven days. The JPS 1917 and the New JPS 1988 translate Leviticus 23:15-16 as follows:

Leviticus 23:15 And ye shall count unto you from the morrow after the day of rest (footnote: Sabbath), from the day that ye brought the sheaf of the waving; seven weeks shall there be complete; 16 even unto the morrow after the seventh week shall ye number fifty days; and ye shall present a new meal-offering unto the LORD. (JPS 1917)

Leviticus 23:15 And from the day on which you bring the sheaf of elevation offeringthe day after the sabbathyou shall count off seven weeks. They must be complete; 16 you must count until the day after the seventh weekfifty days; then you shall bring an offering of new grain to the LORD. (New JPS 1988)

Note: the word sabbath [h7676 shabbat] could be translated as week. To restrict the word to only the weekly sabbath is misguided. The above extracts is as if Moses had written the Original Scriptures in the English James King Version. The King James translation is generally good, but at times, could be ridiculous, as translated in Numbers 25:4 

KJV: And the Lord said unto Moses, Take all the heads of the people, and hang them up before the Lord against the sun, that the fierce anger of the Lord may be turned away from Israel. — this includes all men, women and children; all are to be hung! Genocide!

Compared to:

Amplified Bible: The Lord said to Moses, “Take all the leaders of the people [who have committed sin with the Moabites], and execute them in broad daylight before the Lord, so that the fierce anger of the Lord may turn away from Israel.”

Septuagint: And the Lord said to Moses, Take all the princes of the people, and make them examples of judgment for the Lord in the face of the sun, and the anger of the Lord shall be turned away from Israel.

Look at the official UCG logo and it tells a story. The church has the mistaken notion that the center of this Universe is the British Isles instead of Jerusalem, whereas God’s main interest is centered in Jerusalem. Here are the evidence:

II Kings 21:4 . . . the Lord said, “In Jerusalem will I put My name.”
II Kings 21:7 . . . the Lord said to David and to Solomon his son, “In this house and in
Jerusalem, which I have chosen out of all tribes of Israel, will I put My name for ever.
II Chronicles 6:6 . . . but I have chosen
Jerusalem, that My name might be there.
II Chronicles 33:4 . . . the Lord had said, “In
Jerusalem shall My name be for ever.”
Ezra 7:19 The vessels also that are given thee for the service of the house of thy God, those deliver thou before the God of
Jerusalem.
Ezra 8:30 So the priests and the Levites took the weight of the silver and the gold and the vessels, to bring them to
Jerusalem unto the house of our God.
Psalm 116:19 in the courts of the Lord’s house, in the midst of thee, O
Jerusalem. Praise ye the Lord!
Psalm 125:2 As the mountains are round about
Jerusalem, so the Lord is round about His people from henceforth, even for ever.
Psalm 135:21 Blessed be the Lord out of Zion, who dwelleth in
Jerusalem! Praise ye the Lord!
Psalm 147:12 Praise the Lord, O
Jerusalem! Praise thy God, O Zion!
Isaiah 2:3 And many people shall go and say, “Come ye, and let us go up to the mountain of the Lord, to the house of the God of Jacob; and He will teach us of His ways, and we will walk in His paths.” For out of Zion shall go forth the law, and the word of the Lord from
Jerusalem.
Isaiah 28:14 Therefore hear the word of the Lord, ye scornful men, that rule this people which is in
Jerusalem.
Jeremiah 3:17 At that time they shall call
Jerusalem the Throne of the Lord, and all the nations shall be gathered unto it, to the name of the Lord, to Jerusalem.
Ezekiel 5:5 “Thus saith the Lord God: This is
Jerusalem. I have set it in the midst of the nations and countries that are round about her.
Micah 4:2 And many nations shall come and say, “Come, and let us go up to the mountain of the Lord, and to the house of the God of Jacob. And He will teach us of His ways, and we will walk in His paths.” For the law shall go forth from Zion, and the word of the Lord from
Jerusalem.
Zechariah 8:3 “Thus saith the Lord: ‘I am returned unto Zion, and will dwell in the midst of
Jerusalem; and Jerusalem shall be called a city of truth, and the mountain of the Lord of hosts, the Holy Mountain.’
Zechariah 14:8 And it shall be in that day, that living waters shall go out from
Jerusalem, half of them toward the eastern sea and half of them toward the hinder sea; in summer and in winter shall it be.

The focus of UCG is not in Jerusalem, but on the British Isles. It may seem innocuous and insignificant, but God says He is a jealous God. Their focus are on themselves, their elitist Anglo-Saxonisn — an indication of where members of the Council of Elders came from — their minds unfocused on the themes of God, but all about their self-centered hubris. 

“History Doesn’t Repeat Itself, But It Rhymes.” 

“Ephraim compasseth me about lies, and the house of Israel with deceit” (Hosea 11:12).

The house of Judah operates with hypocrisy but the house of Ephraim operates with lies and deceits! 

And here  are some examples:

In an August 2002 speech that kicked off the Bush White House administration’s campaign for war against Iraq, Cheney asserted, “Simply stated, there’s no doubt that Saddam Hussein now has weapons of mass destruction. There is no doubt he is amassing them to use against our friends, against our allies, and against us.”

In October 2002, Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld claimed he had “bullet-proof” evidence that Saddam was tied to Osama bin Laden. And a National Intelligence Estimate said Iraq had “continued its weapons of mass destruction program.”

“However, there is no doubt at all that the development of weapons of mass destruction by Saddam Hussein poses a severe threat not just to the region, but to the wider world.” – Tony Blair, House of Commons, 10 April 2002.

Prime Minister Tony Blair defended himself in 2005: “I have never told a lie. No. I don’t intend to go telling lies to people. I did not lie over Iraq.”

But these are only following their first lie by King Jeroboam, an Ephraimite:

“It is too much for you to go up to Jerusalem,” says King Jeroboam. “Behold thy gods, O Israel, which brought thee up out of the land of Egypt!” (I King 12:28).

So he (King Jeroboam) offered upon the altar which he had made in Bethel the fifteenth day of the eighth month, even in the month which he had devised of his own heart, and ordained a feast unto the children of Israel; and he offered upon the altar and burned incense (I King 12:33).

Jeroboam was of the house of Ephraim; he was not supposed to offer sacrifices, which were reserved only for the Aaronic Priesthood of the house of Judah. Further let’s take a closer look into this prophecy regarding Manasseh rallying with Ephraim against Judah:

Manasseh, Ephraim; and Ephraim, Manasseh; and they together shall be against Judah. For all this His anger is not turned away, but His hand is stretched out still (Isaiah 9:21).

Manasseh and Ephraim are united against Judah; their quarrels, contentions, and wars among themselves, whereby they bit, devoured, and consumed each other, though they were brethren; which explains and confirms what is before said, of no man sparing his brother, and everyone eating the flesh of his own arm. 

Clifford's Tower, York, England - Travel Darkly
Massacre of Jews in Clifford’s Tower 1290

In 1290 THE MASSACRE OF THE JEWS at Clifford’s Tower the British expelled all Jews from his kingdom and only some four hundred years were they allowed to return in the 17th century.

The Targum bore testimony the words in Isaiah 9:21:

“they of the house of “Manasseh” with those of the house of “Ephraim”, and they of the house of “Ephraim”, with those of the house of “Manasseh”, shall be joined together as one, to come against them of the house of Judah.”

Rashi: “Manasseh” shall be joined with “Ephraim”, and “Ephraim” shall be joined with “Manasseh”, and they together shall be joined against Judah;’

Gill: for all this his anger is not turned away, but his hand [is] stretched out still;

that is, the anger of God, that was not turned away; he had not yet stirred up all his wrath, he had not done with them, he had still other judgments to bring upon them; and his hand continued to be stretched out to inflict them, seeing they were not brought to repentance by what was already done unto them; so the Targum,

“for all this they do not return from their sins, that he may turn away his anger from them, but still retain their sins; and yet his stroke will be to take vengeance on them.”

The anger of God will soon hit Ephraim and Manasseh. Blind and deceitful Guides! Ephraim compasseth the world with lies! Such parallels are astonishing! Why have they ignored the warning of the Prophets, Isaiah, Jeremiah, Ezekiel, and especially Ezra? Even other English versions have translated “seven weeks” correctly in Leviticus 23:15,16. Blind Guides! Why have UCG blushed off these other translations? These are:

The Companion Bible (Bullinger)
Common English Bible (CEB)
Complete Jewish Bible (CJB)
Contemporary English Version (CEV)
Christian Standard Bible (CSB)
Darby Translation (DARBY)
Easy-to-Read Version (ERV)
English Standard Version (ESV)
Expanded Bible (EXB)
GOD’S WORD Translation (GW)
Good News Translation (GNT)
Holman Christian Standard Bible (HCSB)
International Children’s Bible (ICB)
International Standard Version (ISV)
Lexham English Bible (LEB)
The Message (MSG)
Modern English Version (MEV)
Names of God Bible (NOG)
New American Bible (Revised Edition) (NABRE)
New Century Version (NCV)
New English Translation (NET Bible)
New International Version (NIV)
New Life Version (NLV)
New Living Translation (NLT)
Revised Standard Version (RSV)
The Voice (VOICE)
Wycliffe Bible (WYC)

Also, if Leviticus 23:11,15-16 are restricted to a weekly Sabbath, there is no proof as to which one, since there are over 50 weekly sabbaths during the year. Another problem arises when the fourteenth of Nisan falls on a weekly Sabbath. And so there are different interpretations among the different CoG Communities adding confusion to confusion. Why choose one instead of another especially where there is no solid evidence to be found?

Council of Elders
UCG’s Council of Elders – a display of an Anglo-Saxonisn elitist Church

Further in Deuteronomy 16:9 it says:

Deuteronomy 16:9 Seven weeks shalt thou number unto thee: begin to number the seven weeks from such time as thou beginnest to put the sickle to the corn.

Putting the Scriptures in Leviticus 23 and Deuteronomy 16 together, they may appear to say different things. Surely they don’t, but how do we reconcile them? 

First we must realize that the books of Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus and Numbers were mainly the words of God to His subjects — from Adam to Abraham, on to Moses — but in the book of Deuteronomy it was Moses speaking to the Israelites. Deuteronomy 1:1 says “These are the words which Moses spoke unto all Israel on this side of the Jordan . . . 3 And it came to pass in the fortieth year . . .  that Moses spoke unto the children of Israel according unto all that the Lord had given him.”

In a language meant to be more easily understood, Moses uses the word šāḇûa [h7620] in Deuteronomy:

Deuteronomy 16:9 Seven weeksH7620 shalt thou number unto thee: begin to number the seven weeksH7620 from such time as thou beginnest to put the sickle to the corn.

Deuteronomy 16:9 Seven weeks [h7620 shabua] Strong translates shabua as seven, period of seven (days or years), heptad, week

A. period of seven days, a week
Feast of Weeks
B. heptad, seven (of years)

UCG points out that shabua is never translated as a sabbath. That is true, but UCG fails to explain that shabua is generally described as a block of seven days, or heptad. So what is a block of sevens?  It is a group or series of seven — it could be days or years.

In all, the Bible has used “šāḇûa H7620twenty times. We should study each of them in detail. Here are all their uses, all 20 of them, in 17 verses:

Gen 29:27 Fulfil her week, H7620 and we will give thee this also for the service which thou shalt serve with me yet seven other years. — this is a block of seven years

Gen 29:28 And Jacob did so, and fulfilled her week: H7620 and he gave him Rachel his daughter to wife also. — again, this is a block of seven years

Exo 34:22 And thou shalt observe the feast of weeks, H7620 of the firstfruits of wheat harvest, and the feast of ingathering at the year’s end. — This is the Feast of Weeks, which could also be called the Feast of Firstfruits, the firstfruits of thy labors which thou hast sown in the field

Lev 12:5 But if she bear a maid child, then she shall be unclean for two weeks, H7620 as in her separation: and she shall continue in the blood of her purifying threescore and six days. — this is a block of two weeks

See the source image

Num 28:26 Also in the day of the firstfruits, when ye bring a new meat offering unto the LORD, after your weeks H7620 be out, ye shall have an holy convocation; ye shall do no servile work — this is the Feast of Firstfruits, which could also be called the Feast of Firstfruits, the firstfruits of thy labors which thou hast sown in the field

Deu 16:9 Seven weeks H7620 shalt thou number unto thee: begin to number the seven weeks H7620 from such time as thou beginnest to put the sickle to the corn. — this is the Feast of Weeks, and is NEVER called the Feast of Sabbaths. The difference is that the count starts immediately; no need to wait until the weekly Sabbath has arrived

Deu 16:10 And thou shalt keep the feast of weeks H7620 unto the LORD thy God with a tribute of a freewill offering of thine hand, which thou shalt give unto the LORD thy God, according as the LORD thy God hath blessed thee: — this is the Feast of Weeks, NEVER the Feast of Sabbaths

Deu 16:16 Three times a year shall all thy males appear before the LORD thy God in the place which he shall choose; in the feast of unleavened bread, and in the feast of weeks, H7620 and in the feast of tabernacles: and they shall not appear before the LORD empty: — again, this is the Feast of Weeks or the Feast of Firstfruits, the firstfruits of thy labors which thou hast sown in the field

II Ch 8:13 Even after a certain rate every day, offering according to the commandment of Moses, on the sabbaths, and on the new moons, and on the solemn feasts, three times in the year, even in the feast of unleavened bread, and in the feast of weeks, H7620 and in the feast of tabernacles. — this is the Feast of Weeks or the Feast of Heptads

Jer 5:24 Neither say they in their heart, Let us now fear the LORD our God, that giveth rain, both the former and the latter, in his season: he reserveth unto us the appointed weeks H7620 of the harvest. — this is a block of weeks

Eze 45:21 In the first month, in the fourteenth day of the month, ye shall have the passover, a feast of seven H7620 days; unleavened bread shall be eaten. — a block of seven days: this is the most obvious illustration that shabua is NOT connected to the weekly sabbath. It starts IMMEDIATELY after Passover! And NO NEED to wait until the weekly Sabbath to start! The blind couldn’t see this because they are blind

Dan 9:24 Seventy weeks H7620 are determined upon thy people and upon thy holy city, to finish the transgression, and to make an end of sins, and to make reconciliation for iniquity, and to bring in everlasting righteousness, and to seal up the vision and prophecy, and to anoint the most Holy. — a block of seventy weeks

Dan 9:25 Know therefore and understand, that from the going forth of the commandment to restore and to build Jerusalem unto the Messiah the Prince shall be seven weeks, H7620 and threescore and two weeks: H7620 the street shall be built again, and the wall, even in troublous times. — a block of sixty-nine weeks

Dan 9:26 And after threescore and two weeks H7620 shall Messiah be cut off, but not for himself: and the people of the prince that shall come shall destroy the city and the sanctuary; and the end thereof shall be with a flood, and unto the end of the war desolations are determined. — a one week block; the seventieth week

Dan 9:27 And he shall confirm the covenant with many for one week: H7620 and in the midst of the week H7620 he shall cause the sacrifice and the oblation to cease, and for the overspreading of abominations he shall make it desolate, even until the consummation, and that determined shall be poured upon the desolate. — a one week block; the seventieth week

Dan 10:2 In those days I Daniel was mourning three full weeks. H7620 — a block of three weeks

Dan 10:3 I ate no pleasant bread, neither came flesh nor wine in my mouth, neither did I anoint myself at all, till three whole weeks H7620 were fulfilled. — a block of three weeks

All their uses show heptad is a block of seven — days or years — but NEVER is it used as a weekly Sabbath, nor does it have to align with the weekly Sabbath. It is a BLOCK of seven, and it can start on any day. 

The term was first used when Jacob had to serve seven years marriage to Leah, and another seven to marry Rachael. The seven years period began immediately when Jacob and Laban concluded their agreement.

When Moses wrote or spoke in Deuteronomy 16, he uses this word shabua that was different from that expressed in Leviticus, to clarify that the start of the count to Pentecost need not start at the beginning of a week, but that it can start “on the morrow after the Sabbath,” and that Sabbath is an annual Sabbath, the First Day of Unleavened Bread, followed by seven blocks of days. 

As the wordings in Deuteronomy16 show, Moses would clarify seemingly unclear issues in Leviticus 23, or to elucidate complex subjects. And when Ezra returned from Exile, he, too, used expressions which appeared different from what God or Moses used. We can see those expressions in the Targum.

The Targum makes it extremely clear:

Leviticus 23:15 And number to you after the first feast day of Pascha, from the day when you brought the sheaf for the elevation, seven weeks; complete they shall be.

The reference is from the day “after the first feast day of Pascha.” Since Passover also means Unleavened Bread, this is the day after the first Day of Unleavened Bread. And this is confirmed in Septuagint 23:11 and he shall lift up the sheaf before the Lord, to be accepted for you. On the morrow of the first day the priest shall lift it up. “The first day,” of course, refers to the first Day of Unleavened Bread; and to the morrow after is the sixteenth of Nisan. 

The Targum is an important source of our Scriptures. Blind Guides! Why would we ignore such an important witness? Naked Preachers! 

Let’s go and check into what the Targum is and what it says:

The Targum known in Hebrew: תרגום, plural: the targumim play an important role in translating many of our modern editions. The range of its origin was from 530 BC to 500 AD. When the Israelites returned from their exile in Babylon in the 6th century BC, most of them could no longer speak Hebrew; they spoke Aramaic. Nevertheless, the Scriptures have always been read in Hebrew even if no one in the greater community could speak it.

Golds World of Judaica - Targum Onkelos
The Targum

Something had to be done so that the people would understand God and His Word. The sages, starting with Ezra, found an answer. After hearing a priest read a few verses of the Torah scroll in Hebrew, they then heard a translation in Aramaic called a Targum, which simply means translation. Hence the Targum is an Aramaic translation of the Hebrew Bible (Tanakh) that was written or compiled in Palestine or in Babylonia from the Second Temple period until the early Middle Ages (late first millennium). 

One might think that God would have given the Levites privileged land as their inheritance to match their privileged position, but God actually gave them no land inheritance at all. Instead, they received agricultural and monetary tithes from the people as their inheritance. In this capacity, the Levites and priests had the opportunity to minister to the people through the instruction of the Torah. 

Back in Jerusalem, for instance, after returning from Babylonian exile, Ezra, a Levite and high priest, read and translated the Torah in Hebrew into the common Aramaic language, and he, or other Levites, explained the Torah so the people could understand. 

“The Levites … instructed the people in the Law while the people were standing there. They read from the Book of the Law of God, making it clear and giving the meaning so that the people understood what was being read” (Nehemiah 8:7–8).

Another way of saying: The Law was read by Ezra, verse by verse, and each verse was followed by a recitation by the Levites of the Aramaic version. Hence, we have to assume that the action of Ezra narrated in Nehemiah 8:8 implied not only the reading of the Law, but also the interpretation of its language — its translation in fact from Hebrew to Aramaic, and that, further, this practice was long followed in all the synagogues among the returning Exiles in Judea.

The Targum is like a mirror: when placed against the end-time CoG Communities, it reflects their nakedness. And the Targum stated clearly that the counting is the morrow after the first festal day of Pascha. Leviticus 23:11-13 And he shall uplift the sheaf before the Lord to be accepted for you. AFTER THE FIRST FESTAL DAY OF PASCHA (OR, THE DAY AFTER THE FEAST‑DAY OF PASCHA) on the day on which you elevate the sheaf, you shall make the sacrifice of a lamb of the year, unblemished a burnt offering unto the Name of the Lord . . . 15 AND NUMBER TO YOU AFTER THE FIRST FEAST DAY OF PASCHA, from the day when you brought the sheaf for the elevation, seven weeks; complete they shall be.

A Partial Week?

Are the weeks (shabuoth) referenced in Deuteronomy 16 truly full weeks, each ending with a Sabbath?  Can there be partial weeks in this count?  A partial week will result when a day other than the first day of the week is used as day one.  If the count were intended to start on any other day of the week, say, a Wednesday, seven weekly cycles would be completed on a Tuesday. In this case we would have a partial week, Wednesday to Sabbath, six complete weeks from Sunday to Sabbath, and another partial week from Sunday to Tuesday.  Notice how this would look if you began your count on a Wednesday:

Wednesday to Sabbath = one partial week, 4 days 6 full weeks (Sunday to Sabbath) = 42 days Sunday to Tuesday = one partial week, 3 days Total of 49 days, followed by the 50th day on Wednesday (morrow after the 49th day)

We could also count seven Sabbaths, and not have 49 days. In the hypothetical example above we count the seven Sabbaths, and then we still have to count the remaining days of Sunday through Tuesday to complete the seven weekly cycles.  It should be noted here that the NRSV (New Revised Standard Version), Moffat, NIV, and the JPS (Jewish Publication Society) all translate Leviticus 23: 15 “seven Sabbaths shall be complete” as “seven weeks” or “seven full weeks.”  The King James Version and the New King James Version are both faithful to the original Hebrew text where the word shabbath is used.  If weeks were the intended meaning in these verses, then a different Hebrew word should have been used– shabuoth.

It is certainly true that seven full weeks could be satisfied by seven weekly cycles, independent of when the weekly cycle started.  Thus, it would be permissible to have two fragments of a week and six complete weeks (from the first day through the seventh day or Sabbath) according to this explanation.  But is this what is intended by the scriptures?

An argument could be made here that God starts the week on the first day and ends it on the seventh day, the creation week being an example (Genesis 1).  This argument, however is not necessary in the determination of how to count to the day of Pentecost.  It is to be noted here that Deuteronomy was written after Leviticus.  The instructions from Leviticus have to be taken into account, as Deuteronomy supplements Leviticus.  There is no contradiction between the two. (Pentecost pg 12-13)

This is correct, that the “seven full weeks could be satisfied by seven weekly cycles, independent of when the weekly cycle started.” Pentecost is NEVER called the Feast of Sabbaths, it’s the Feast of Weeks, or Feast of Heptads (blocks of sevens). The Feast of Weeks could start at any day of the week. The best illustration is Ezekiel 45:21 where it testifies the seven-day Feast of Unleavened Bread could start at any time of the week.

Look at Ezekiel 45:21 again:

In the first month, in the fourteenth day of the month, ye shall have the passover, a Feast of Haptads (a block of seven) H7620 days; unleavened bread shall be eaten.

Note carefully, the seven days Feast of Unleavened Bread starts IMMEDIATELY after Passover, so it could be a Monday, or any day after Passover, but the most important characteristic is that it starts IMMEDIATELY to begin the block of seven weeks! There is no waiting even for a single day. That’s why Pentecost is called the Feast of Weeks but never the Feast of Sabbaths.

The Pharisees and Sadducees were both sects of the Jews in the first century. The two groups had numerous differences, one of them being the method of counting Pentecost.  It is acknowledged that during the first century C.E. and up until the destruction of the Temple in 70 C.E., the Sadducees controlled worship at the temple. . . . 

It is only after the destruction of the Temple that the Pharisees gain control and the Sadducees, for the most part, disappear:

Except under Salome Alexandra the Pharisees have the role of a minority up to A.D. 70.  Their great period comes only with the fall of the hierocracy.  When the capture of Jerusalem shatters the Sadducean ideal, Pharisaism provides the direction needed for reconstruction. Politically independent, it nurtures community life in the synagogue.  The failure of the Zealots clears the way for more moderate leaders such as Jochanan ben Zakkai. Jabneh with its chakamim [sages], which plays no part in the revolt, forms a center for reorganization. (Pentecost pg 16)

On first appearance, the Sadducees seemed to have control over the worship at the temple, but it wasn’t the case. Josephus, an eye witness living during the first century, wrote in his Antiquities of the Jews, saying that the Pharisees were the dominant religious party during the time of Christ, and that they controlled the worship services. 

Now, for the Pharisees, they live meanly, and despise delicacies in diet; and they follow the conduct of reason; and what that prescribes to them as good for them they do; and they think they ought earnestly to strive to observe reason’s dictates for practice. They also pay a respect to such as are in years . . .  on account of which doctrines they are able greatly to persuade the body of the people; and whatsoever they do about Divine worship, prayers, and sacrifices, they perform them according to their direction (Antiquities 18.1.3).

The bulk of the common people followed the Pharisees. And although the Sadducees were occupying the upper stratum of the Jewish aristocracy, they were few in numbers, hence they were unable and unwilling to carry out their own beliefs in the Temple service, “because the multitude would not otherwise bear them” but to carry “the notions [directions] of the Pharisees”:

Image result for josephus pics

But the doctrine of the Sadducees is this: That souls die with the bodies; nor do they regard the observation of any thing besides what the law enjoins them; for they think it an instance of virtue to dispute with those teachers of philosophy whom they frequent: but this doctrine is received but by a few, yet by those still of the greatest dignity. But they are able to do almost nothing of themselves; for when they become magistrates, as they are unwillingly and by force sometimes obliged to be, they addict themselves to the notions of the Pharisees, because the multitude would not otherwise bear them. (Antiquities 18.1.4).

The Unger’s Bible Dictionary tells us further political-religious amalgamation called the Sadducees:

“Their political supremacy was, however, of no long duration. Greatly as the spiritual power of the Pharisees had increased, the Sadducean aristocracy was able to keep at the helm in politics. The price at which the Sadducees had to secure themselves power at this later period was indeed a high one, for they were IN THEIR OFFICIAL ACTIONS TO ACCOMMODATE THEMSELVES TO PHARISAIC VIEWS. With the fall of the Jewish state the Sadducees altogether disappear from history. (“Sadducees,” Pg 954).

The strength of the Sadducees was mainly in politics and living luxurious lives. “What servant would work all day without obtaining his due reward in the evening?” they asked themselves, and so they broke away from the Law and lived in great luxury, using silver and gold vessels at banquets; and they established schools which declared the enjoyment of this life to be the goal of man, at the same time pitying the Pharisees for their bitter privation in this world with no hope of another world to compensate them. These schools were called, after their founders, Sadducees after their apparent founder, Zadok; and Boethusians, after Boethus the high priest brought over by King Herod the Great from Alexandria.

In the book Faith in the Future, we find a chapter which discusses this subject in some detail.  The chapter is entitled “Shavuot/Pentecost, Israel’s Wedding” and the book was written by Jonathan Sacks, who is currently Chief Rabbi of the United Hebrew Congregations of the British Commonwealth:

In Judaism, mysteries have a habit of becoming controversies, none more so than in the case of Shavuot, otherwise known as Pentecost or the Feast of Weeks.  Shavuot generated one of the great arguments in Jewish history. . . The argument became acute in the days of the second Temple when Jews were divided into several groups, most notably the Sadducees and Pharisees.  We know all too little about this period, but we can say this.  Of the two groups, the Sadducees were the more affluent and influential.  They were closely connected to the Temple hierarchy and to the political elite.  They were as near as Jewry came to a governing class. . . The Torah had specified that the counting of seven weeks should begin on the “day after the Sabbath.”  The Sadducees took this literally.  The counting should begin on Sunday, so that Shavuot would always fall on Sunday seven weeks later.  The Pharisees invoked tradition and argued instead that in this case “sabbath” meant “festival,” specifically the first day of Pesach.” 

From the above quotes, it may be deduced that the Pharisees were unable to convince the Sadducees that the Feast of Weeks always falls on a fixed date of Sivan 6.  The two groups were clearly divided over this issue. (Pentecost pg 17)

There was a Talmudic report of a Sadducean high priest, R Abbahu, who suffered badly by following the Sadducaic interpretation. It was reported that coming out of the Holy of Holies on the Day of Atonement, he was hit from behind between his shoulders. He fell forward and hit the floor on his face. It was believed that an angel kicked him, a type of sound was even heard in the Temple courtyard, whose sole of a foot had the mark of a calf-hoof, (Ezekiel 1:7). 

A mark of a calf’s hoof appeared right at the center of Abbahu’s forehead and his nose started to discharge worms. And he died a terrible death a few days later. (Yoma 19b)

The significance of the destruction of the Temple in 70 AD should not be understated. It came forty years after John the Baptist had given a stern warning about another consuming fire recorded in Luke 3:16. The number 40 generally symbolizes a period of testing, trial or probation. During Moses’ life he lived forty years in Egypt and forty years in the desert before God selected him to lead his people out of slavery.

Because of their perversion, God destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah during Abraham’s time. The Blind have ignored John’s warning about another consuming fire recorded in Luke 3:16. John said unto them:

“I indeed baptize you with water; but One mightier than I cometh, the straps of whose shoes I am not worthy to unloose. He shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost and with FIRE. 17 His winnowing fan is in His hand, and He will thoroughly purge His floor and will gather the wheat into His garner; but the chaff He will burn with FIRE unquenchable.” (Luke 3:16)

The word “FIRE” is highlighted above, with a hope that the Blind could see finally. When we look back, one cannot avoid concluding that God had deemed that the Sadducees and the Boethusians were worthy of extinction during the 70 AD INFIRNO. Everything about the Sadducees and the Boethusians were destroyed — they “disappeared.” A large portion of the Shammai Pharisees also followed suit; only the Hillel branch of Pharisees limped off to Yavne and survived. 

Now, just as the victims of Sodom and Gomorrah have revived today, so were those of the Sadducees and Boethusians! They, too, have revived as a “Reform Movement.”

So says the United Hebrew Congregations on its website:

We are a Reform congregation with a traditional mind-set and a progressive heart. As a congregation affiliated with the Union for Reform Judaism, we strive to attain the high ideals of the movement. We make informed, meaningful choices from Jewish tradition to guide our observance, take an open-minded approach to Jewish religious belief and practice, and provide a home where members can cultivate, explore, and expand their spirituality.

The origins of Reform Judaism started in 19th-century Germany, where its early principles were formulated by Rabbi Abraham Geiger (1810-1874). Since the 1970s, the Movement adopted a policy of inclusiveness and acceptance, inviting as many as possible to partake in its communities, rather than “strict theoretical clarity,” and away from the “Bondage of Judaism.”

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Abraham Geiger (1810-1874)

Reform Judaism initially developed as lay Jews simply lost interest in the strict observances required of Orthodoxy, with many seeking shorter services, more frequent sermons, and organ music, modeled after Protestant churches. Thus Reform Judaism’s own mandate is “a process of constant evolution” and it “rejects any fixed, permanent set of beliefs, laws or practices.” In an attempt to alter the appearance and ritual of Judaism and to mimic German Protestantism, they stated that the old mechanisms of religious interpretation were obsolete and a new one had to be found. 

Hence Geiger sought a more coherent ideological framework to justify innovations in the liturgy and religious practice. Discrimination and persecution against Jews were rampant for the next hundred years in Germany. Works were hard to come by and such new interpretation made sense in a community struggling to survive. 

One characteristic of their progressive revelation was the institution of a “Second Sabbath” on Sunday, modeled on the Second Passover, as most people desecrated the day of rest. “If you cannot keep the Sabbath on its appointed time, you keep it on the next available day,” and so the Sabbath was shifted from Saturday to Sunday. “God would accept it,” they justify themselves and encourage each other.

America was opening up to immigrants and in a new Land of the Free, the five-day workweek soon made the Sunday Sabbath redundant. But nevertheless, the Movement had already had its momentum and today the Reform Movement’s largest center is in North America. 

Reform Judaism encourages adherents to seek their own means of engaging a new Judaism, enhancing “individualism.” Tolerance for LGBT and ordination of LGBT rabbis were also pioneered by the Movement. It started slowly then gathered speed. Intercourse between consenting adults was declared as legitimate by the Central Conference of American Rabbis in 1977, and openly gay clergy were admitted by the end of the 1980s. Same-sex marriage were sanctioned by the end of the following decade. In 2015 the Union for Reform Judaism (URJ) adopted a Resolution on the Rights of Transgender and Gender Non-Conforming People, urging clergy and synagogue attendants to actively promote tolerance and inclusion of such individuals.

If the 70 AD inferno was only a microcosm, a foretaste, how would the Reform Movement and its CoG Communities, who have similar deceptive beliefs as the original Sadducees and Boethusians, escape John’s warning during the Last Days? Isn’t this a return to the days of Sodom and Gomorrah? And also to share its fate? And why is it so coincidental that the end-time lackadaisical churches described as “wretched” and “blind” and “naked”? It’s an unpleasant descripture, but that’s what the Scriptures say.

How did the Sadducees just “disappeared” in 70 AD?

These Blind Guides may have grand aspirations but they are misguided! The Targum ireflects their nakedness. When placed against the end-time CoG Communities, it reflects their wretchedness. Woe unto the shepherds of Israel (the shepherds of the United States, Britain and related countries), says the Lord, for they feed themselves but not the sheep!

Although Ezekiel’s message was to both the “house of Israel” and the “house of Judah” its main message after chapter 24 was to the “house of Israel.” Captivities were the end results historically for both kingdoms, but today, the main focus in Ezekiel chapter 34 is on the Northern Kingdom with dire warning, especially its shepherds: 

Ezekiel 34:1 And the word of the Lord came unto me, saying,2 “Son of man, prophesy against the shepherds of Israel, prophesy and say unto them, ‘Thus saith the Lord God unto the shepherds: Woe to the shepherds of Israel that feed themselves! Should not the shepherds feed the flocks? 3 Ye eat the fat, and ye clothe yourselves with the wool, ye kill the ones that are fed; but ye feed not the flock. 4 The diseased have ye not strengthened, neither have ye healed that which was sick, neither have ye bound up that which was broken, neither have ye brought again that which was driven away, neither have ye sought that which was lost; but with force and with cruelty have ye ruled them. 5 And they were scattered because there is no shepherd, and they became meat to all the beasts of the field when they were scattered. 6 My sheep wandered through all the mountains and upon every high hill; yea, My flock was scattered upon all the face of the earth, and none did search or seek after them. — Adam Clarke: The prophet is commanded to declare the dreadful judgments of God against the covetous shepherds of Israel, who feed themselves, and not their flocks; . . . the using these tithes and offerings, not to enable them the better to fulfill the work of the ministry, but to pamper their own bodies, and support them in an idle voluptuous life . . . and maintain their own luxury and idolatrous prodigality . . . The fat sheep point out the rich to whom these pastors often disguised the truth, by a cruel condescension and complaisance . . . And the consequence was, grievous wolves, false and worldly interested teachers, seized on and made a prey of them.

~~~~~

FORT DETRICK – SOURCE of COVID-19?

•April 12, 2021 • Leave a Comment
This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is main-qimg-b2c88901d9e4c44d436d6ddf6e8f931b
FORT DETRICK, the nerve center of US biological weapons program, was “shut down” in July 2019 but resumed back on November 25, 2019. Is this FORT the Source of COVID-19?

Is FORT DETRICK the SOURCE of COVID-19?

In the months leading up to the Outbreak of COVID-19 in China, US media reported an outbreak of a fatal respiratory disease of unknown cause near Fort Detrick. What’s more, Fort Detrick was suddenly and mysteriously closed in July 2019, just before the onset of an unknown infectious disease a few months later, and the US government has so far been reluctant to explain why. Suspicions are growing and there are calls for an international investigation of the largest biological and chemical weapons site in the United States, but the the US Administration has repeatedly rejected such call.

Shiro Ishii
Shiro Ishii – Commander of Japan’s Unit 731

Unit 731, officially under the cover of and known as the “Epidemic Prevention and Water Purification Department of the Kwantung Army,” was a covert biological and chemical warfare unit that was solely dedicated to testing and researching various uses of lethal chemicals and organisms for the Imperial Army during World War II.

In August 1945, Japan surrendered to the Allies and Unit 731’s leader, General Shiro Ishii, ordered his more than 10,000 workers to bury the evidence by destroying the facilities, killing and burying the remaining prisoners, releasing all disease-infected animals, and taking their secrets to the grave.

The United States granted General Ishii and a number of other prominent Unit 731 workers immunity from war crime investigations in exchange for the medical research they accumulated from their experiments.

On 6 May 1947, Douglas MacArthur, as Supreme Commander of the Allied Forces, wrote to Washington that “additional data, possibly some statements from Ishii, can probably be obtained by informing Japanese involved that information will be retained in intelligence channels and will not be employed as ‘War Crimes’ evidence.”

The Soviet-US rivalry was soon to turn into the Cold War, and the US wanted to get ahead of the USSR in biological warfare research. The Americans did not want the publicity of an international war crime trial, which would leak any of the secret and valuable research to the Soviets that the Japanese had accumulated at the high cost of hundreds of thousands of human lives.

Unfortunately, this decision not only undermined the integrity of the Tokyo Tribunal, but also deprived the victims of Unit 731 of any kind of justice, and its effects are still in evidence more than 70 years later. Until recently, Japan denied the very existence of Unit 731 and the crimes it committed on primarily Chinese, but also Korean, Russian and Allied prisoners of war. This lack of accountability is evident in Japan’s revisionist history, and relations between China and Japan are strained, in part due to Japan’s refusal to acknowledge its wartime actions

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Only the least gruesome picture among the many

The US found the data “the fruit of 20 years’ laboratory tests and research” to be useful “obtainable nowhere else.” It was also useful to deny that data to the enemy Soviets who otherwise would snatch the Japanese war criminals for their own uses.

Thomas Powell Quora reported how consequently the US government gave immunity and took Unit 731 scientists home to America; how Fort Derrick was where many of the Japanese scientists (including Shiro Ishii “took his research data and begged for remission” for himself and his associates) ended up; and where the US’s bio-weapon program got started. Of particular interests to American bio-weapon scientists were data about “Caucasian and Asiatic prisoners with fatal pathogens to determine possible racial differences in natural immunity.”

Excerpts from Global Times, who asks for an explanation:

USAMRIID, (the US Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases at Fort Detrick, Maryland) the US largest research center for biochemical weapons, has long been enmeshed in scandal. 

The institute once had shady connections with Unit 731, a Japanese Imperial Army unit notorious for its atrocious and lethal chemical experimentation on Chinese and Russian people during World War II, said a Chinese biosecurity expert who spoke on anonymity.

The US had a backdoor deal with then detainees of Unit 731 after the war, granting immunity from prosecution to many of the unit’s members in exchange for its biological warfare and experiment data for USAMRIID, the expert told the Global Times.

CAMP DETRICK / UNIT 731 Transplant / USAMRIID / FORT DETRICK – Aerial view

What are Fort Detrick’s remaining secrets? Why did the closure of Fort Detrick coincide with the timeline of “vaping illness,” the pandemic flu and COVID-19, and why don’t US politicians, Democrates and Republications, ask the Fort to be opened for investigation and give Americans an explanation? The US has been preaching about transparency and being clean, so why not takes this opportunity to prove to the world that the United States is, indeed, transparent and clean? What an opportunity!

Ralph Baric in his lab
Professor Ralph S. Baric; from SHC014 with the help of a “naive Snow White” Shi Zhengli, is this virologists the Father of COVID-19?

Time reported high cancer rate, Agent Orange and anthrax, weaponized botulism and radioactive carbon here. John Hopkins Public Health news here. Baltimore Sun here.

For those living near Fort Detrick and are affected by sickness, diseases, cancer or any other illness, please check here.

Would a Chernobyl incident happen one day at Fort Detrick and the Supreme Court finally consent to opening up the secret Fort for an investigation?

And below is a testimony from an anonymous Samantha Hill, an ex-employee of the bio-weapon lab at Fort Detrick, who testified that Professor Ralph Baric is the creator of the COVID-19 virus and had now fled back to India when her continual presence there became dangerous:

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Research into deadly viruses and biological weapons at US army bio weapon lab shut down over fears these deadly viruses could have escaped. Perhaps one day when racial issues become so polarized, a new President, probably one of colored like a probable President Harris, President Haley (or even the International Criminal Court in The Hague, Netherlands) would be compelled to open the Fort for investigation. And if found guilty, this could be one possible way Ephraimites may be carried away screaming into captivity as prophesied.

More from The Independent Aug 6, 2019; New York Times Aug 5, 2019;

US Army Games Participants posturing in Wuhan – October 18–27, 2019.

More from Politico for a briefing by Stephen Kinzer’s new book Poisoner in Chief: Sidney Gottlieb and the CIA Search for Mind Control, September 15, 2019

In 1954, a prison doctor in Kentucky isolated seven black inmates and fed them “double, triple and quadruple” doses of LSD for 77 days straight. No one knows what became of the victims. They may have died without knowing they were part of the CIA’s highly secretive program to develop ways to control minds—a program based out of a little-known Army base with a dark past, Fort Detrick.

Suburban sprawl has engulfed Fort Detrick, an Army base 50 miles from Washington in the Maryland town of Frederick. Seventy-six years ago, however, when the Army selected Detrick as the place to develop its super-secret plans to wage germ warfare, the area around the base looked much different. In fact, it was chosen for its isolation. That’s because Detrick, still thriving today as the Army’s principal base for biological research and now encompassing nearly 600 buildings on 13,000 acres, was for years the nerve center of the CIA’s hidden chemical and mind control empire.

Detrick is today one of the world’s cutting-edge laboratories for research into toxins and antitoxins, the place where defenses are developed against every plague, from crop fungus to Ebola. Its leading role in the field is widely recognized. For decades, though, much of what went on at the base was a closely held secret. Directors of the CIA mind control program MK-ULTRA, which used Detrick as a key base, destroyed most of their records in 1973. Some of its secrets have been revealed in declassified documents, through interviews and as a result of congressional investigations. Together, those sources reveal Detrick’s central role in MK-ULTRA and in the manufacture of poisons intended to kill foreign leaders.

Excerpts from Samantha Hill’s testimony for further analysis below:

Why was China so naive and silly as to allow the Wuhan Institute of Virology to receive foreign funding ($3.7m) from the US’ NIH to “collect about 15,000 bat samples / to identify bat coronaviruses that were at high risk of jumping to humans”? More in Science Magazine
Unsupervised, a pretty “Snow White” Shi Zhengli was doing legwork for a Bar’barian
Has Professor Ralph Baric been developing this COVID-19 virus to produce an effect only on the non-white??

In innumerable times, President Trump, a Republican, said the virus will soon go away. For a record here, on March 25, 2020 BBC (and numerous media) reported Trump says: “We’re going to be opening relatively soon… I would love to have the country opened up and just raring to go by Easter.”

Had President Trump been misguidedly briefed on something from their research at Fort Detrick about the “China virus” that fellow Americans knew nothing about? As reported in POLITICO, here is what Nikki Harly said of Trump: “He was getting bad advice from bad people who were filling his head with self-destructive fantasies.”

Dark and glommy days lie ahead for the modern descendents of Ephraim; for the LORD looks down from HEAVEN and says:

“I have seen a horrible thing in the house of Israel; there is the whoredom of Ephraim, Israel is defiled” Hosea 6:10.

“Ephraim shall be desolate in the day of [My] rebuke” Hosea 5:9.

And His Judgement of removing EPHRAIM’s Mandate of Heaven is sure:

“The Lord shall cause thee to be smitten before thine enemies; thou shalt go out one way against them and flee seven ways before them, and shalt be removed into all the kingdoms of the earth.”

“And thy carcass shall be meat unto all fowls of the air and unto the beasts of the earth, and no man shall frighten them away. The Lord will smite thee with the boils of Egypt, and with the hemorrhoids, and with the scab, and with the itch, whereof thou canst not be healed,” (Deuternomy 28:25-27).

With few exceptions, most Mandates run around 200, 250 or 300 years. Another GREAT Change is about to take place!

A Critique of John Ritenbaugh’s Pentecost 

•April 10, 2021 • Leave a Comment

A Critique of John Ritenbaugh’s Pentecost 

Sermon: Pentecost, Consistency, and Honesty
The Basics of Counting to Pentecost
Given 26-Feb-05; Sermon #707; 77 minutes

John W. Ritenbaugh

Church of the Great God
PO Box 471846
Charlotte, NC 28247-1846

Feast of Harvest (Exodus 23:16), Feast of Weeks (Exodus 34:22), Feast of Firstfruits (Numbers 28:26), Festival of Fifty Days, Heptad, Feast of Heptads, Festival of Seven Heptads, Wave Sheaf, Omer, Shavuot, “the firstfruits of thy labors which thou hast sown in the field (Ex 23:16).”

See the source image
A Sheaf of Grains – is this the Omer offering?

This is a Critique of John Ritenbaugh’s Pentecost (the Feast of Weeks, or the Feast of Firstfruits). The Counting to Pentecost is an extremely important subject and we’ll follow it in every point discussed. Besides the main issue of when to start counting towards Pentecost is the issue of what the firstfruits meant. Does the sheaf represent humans or does it represent Christ?

Quoted are Ritenbaugh’s transcript “Pentecost, Consistency, and Honesty” posted on his website. They are indented, in PINK, and in block form so as to differentiate his from other comments. The Scriptures, in RED, must be our primary focus and guide, and sometimes the Scriptures, which include the Septuagint and the Targum and, often, say things very different from what we believe.

And so with that in mind, we’ll begin:

I am giving this message because there is much confusion within the Church of God regarding the subject of Pentecost. I do not know whether peoples’ salvation hangs in the balance because of disobedience, but at the same time I know that the subject is not unimportant.(The Basics of Counting to Pentecost)

This is very true, the subject is extremely important. In Acts 2, had the disciples waited for the wrong day in Jerusalem when the rushing mighty wind came they would have missed receiving the holy spirits. Today, many churches ignore such significance to their own detriments. So identifying the right day is extremely important.

The year 2005 is a year in which Passover falls on a weekly Sabbath, and this always creates disputing because the Church of God is not unified as to the proper counting method for locating Pentecost. The result of this disagreement is that various groups will observe Pentecost one week apart. (The Basics of Counting to Pentecost)

There is certainly unity in truth, but God’s enemies are usually scattered (Psalm 68:1 “let His enemies be scattered,” so this year 2021, some churches have Pentecost on May 16, others like CGG have it on May 23 despite supposingly all counting from the weekly sabbath) in different opinions.

The proper keeping of the Sabbath is a major sign giving direction. That is what a sign does. A sign gives direction by pointing to certain things. Most important in this case is that it points to the relationship between God and His people. In regard to Pentecost, the weekly Sabbath points to the proper day that the sheaf was to be waved, and thus to Pentecost—another Sabbath to be observed.

Leviticus 23:9-16 is the foundation of this particular doctrine.

Leviticus 23:9-11 And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying, Speak unto the children of Israel, and say unto them, When you be come into the land which I give unto you, and shall reap the harvest thereof, then you shall bring a sheaf of the firstfruits of your harvest unto the priest: And he shall wave the sheaf before the LORD to be accepted for you: on the day after the Sabbath the priest shall wave it. (The Basics of Counting to Pentecost)

The Septuagint, one that the NT writers most often used, translates “the day after the sabbath” as “on the morrow of the first day.” Obviously this “first day” is not the first day of the week, but the first Days of Unleavened Bread, which is the 15th. It is a high day, one of the annual Sabbaths. The day after the first Days of Unleavened Bread is obviously the 16th of Nisan. 

Exodus 31:13 “Speak thou also unto the children of Israel, saying, ‘Verily My Sabbaths ye shall keep; for it is a sign between Me and you throughout your generations, that ye may know that I am the Lord who doth sanctify you.

The Hebrew translators of the Septuagint living around 300 BC knew that the omer counting began after the first Day of Unleavened Bread on the 16th of Nisan. Most New Testament writers had relied heavily on the Septuagint when quoting the Old Testament, and is a great testimony to clarify “the morrow after the sabbath” to mean the first Days of Unleavened Bread. Hence the Sabbath referred to in Leviticus 23:11 is always the 16th of Nisan.

Leviticus 23:11 and he shall lift up the sheaf before the Lord, to be accepted for you. On the morrow of the first day the priest shall lift it up. (Septuagint, translated by Brenton)

The Septuagint is backed up by the Targum, whose existence was attributable to its founder, Ezra (480–440 BC), a high priest. Ezra led a large body of exiles back to Jerusalem, where he discovered that when he read the Torah in Hebrew, the exiles couldn’t understand him. The Targum was in oral form initially but later on it was written down in Aramaic. 

Ezra 7:10 For Ezra had prepared his heart to seek the law of the Lord and to do it, and to teach in Israel statutes and judgments.

In another way of saying: When the Exiles returned to Jerusalem, the Law was read by Ezra, verse by verse, and each verse was followed by a recitation by the Levites from the Hebrew to the Aramaic version. 

“The Levites … instructed the people in the Law while the people were standing there. They read from the Book of the Law of God, making it clear and giving the meaning so that the people understood what was being read.” (Nehemiah 8:7–8)

Nehemiah 8:7 NKJV and the Levites helped the people to understand the Law; and the people stood in their place. 8 So they read distinctly from the book, in the Law of God; and they gave the sense, and helped them to understand the reading.

John Gill comments on the above “they first read it in Hebrew, and then translated it into Chaldee, that the people might better understand it, being just come out of Babylon . . . not hereby how to read it, but chiefly to understand what was read, that they might clearly know their duty to God and men.” The action of Ezra narrated in Nehemiah 8:8 implied not only the reading of the Law, but also the interpretation of its language — its translation in fact from Hebrew to Aramaic, and that, further, this practice was long followed in all the synagogues among the returning Exiles in Judea. 

As a result, the Targum portion in Leviticus 23:9-16 is even clearer:

And the Lord spake with Mosheh, saying: 10 Speak with the sons of Israel, and say to them: When you have entered into the land which I give you, and you reap the harvest, you shall bring the sheaf of the first fruits of your harvest unto the priest; 11-13 And he shall uplift the sheaf before the Lord to be accepted for you. After the first festal day of Pascha (or, the day after the feast‑day of Pascha) on the day on which you elevate the sheaf, you shall make (the sacrifice of) a lamb of the year, unblemished a burnt offering unto the Name of the Lord . . . (The Targum, translated by J.W. Etheridge)

Ezra was a man of God, and “the good hand of God is upon him” (Ezra 7:9). For Ezra had prepared his heart to seek the law of the LORD, and to do it, and to teach in Israel statutes and judgments. Why would any modern mere man doubt him? It is rather contemptuous to do so!

37 Nehemiah ideas | nehemiah, bible, old testament

The Encyclopaedia Britannica says: 

The status and influence of the Targums became assured after the Second Temple was destroyed in AD 70, when synagogues replaced the Temple as houses of worship. For it was in the synagogue that the practice of reading from the Old Testament became widely observed, along with the custom of providing these readings with a translation into Aramaic. When Scripture was read aloud in the synagogue, it was translated aloud by a meturgeman, or professional interpreter (hence the name Targum), for the benefit of the congregation. The translator tried to reproduce the original text as closely as possible, but since his object was to give an intelligible rendering of the biblical text, the Targums eventually took on the character of paraphrase and commentary, leaving literal translation behind. To prevent misconceptions, a meturgeman expanded and explained what was obscure, adjusted the incidents of the past to the ideas of later times, emphasized the moral lessons to be learned from the biblical narratives, and adapted the rules and regulations of the Scriptures to the conditions and requirements of the current age. The method by which the text was thus utilized as a vehicle for conveying homiletic discourses, traditional sayings, legends, and allegories is abundantly illustrated by the later Targums, as opposed to the more literal translations of the earlier Targums.

After the Babylonian exile, most Jews spoke Aramaic as their first language, so translation became necessary to understand the Biblical readings. Many of the Targum contained interpretations or explanatory notes in addition to the literal translation. Though the written Targums gradually came into being, it was the living tradition of the Oral translation and exposition that were recognized as authoritative throughout the Second Temple period and the early centuries of the Christian Era.

This waving, according to historical records, could be either of an actual cutting of grain (the sheaf), or the grain could be cut, with all of the berries shaken off it, and then an omer (a couple of quarts) was put in a bottle, and it was raised before God. That is all that was done. It was lifted up there as if it were being raised up for Him to see. (The Basics of Counting to Pentecost)

THE OMER BARLEY OFFERING Leviticus... - The Temple Institute | Facebook
Only one-tenth has Oil and Frankincense added

The waving of the wave sheaf gives a false implication. It’s the omer that is waved. First, let’s understand the process from the wave sheaf to the omer, from the grains to a more finished product. 

First, let’s understand what the “wave sheaf” is. The wave sheaf as firstfruits must be reaped by three men, each with his own sickle and basket and each had his basket full. They then brought them to the courtyard of the Temple to be thrashed and parched (on a pan perforated with holes, so that each grain might be touched by the fire and exposed to the wind) and then to go through all thirteen sieves until they became clean, and only one tenth of the measure selected.

Oil and frankincense were added. Now known as the omer, it was offered early the next morning at about 9 AM, the time of the morning sacrifice in the Temple as a special offering waved before God.

The Wave Sheaf Offering, composed of MANY individual grains, representing the FIRSTFRUITS, but it’s only when only one-tenth taken, oil and frankincense added and processed into a final cake, is it the omer offering! But the “he lamb” in Leviticus 23:12, which the Blinds couldn’t see, representing Christ, wasn’t waved:

Leviticus 23:9 And the Lord spoke unto Moses, saying,

10 “Speak unto the children of Israel and say unto them: ‘When ye 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.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.

12 And ye shall offer that day when ye wave the sheaf a he lamb without blemish of the first year for a burnt offering unto the Lord.

This Lamb wasn’t waved! Weird! Why wasn’t this Lamb waved if it were to represent Christ? These end-time CoG Communities have produced many insightful interpretations of the Scriptures, but have also had its share of nonsensical interpretations which have caused great delusions. Most of these Blind Guides didn’t even notice the Lamb there! It is nice to believe that Christ was waved before the Throne of God, but where are the evidence? Not a single one is given. 

Those who count Pentecost (meaning the churches of God, the Jews, and any Protestant group that still observes Whitsunday) are in unanimous agreement that it is a Sabbath during the Days of Unleavened Bread. This therefore narrows the choices to no more than 3 (three) Sabbaths: the first day of Unleavened Bread on the 15th, the last day of Unleavened Bread on the 21st, and the weekly Sabbath that always falls between those two holy days.

Remember that the count to Pentecost always begins the day after the weekly Sabbath that falls within the days of Unleavened Bread. The day that follows the weekly Sabbath within the days of Unleavened Bread will always be Wavesheaf day—the day the sheaf was waved. That is the rule arrived at from the information contained within Leviticus 23, and especially verses 15 and 16. (The Basics of Counting to Pentecost)

Whitsunday, a pagan holiday that takes place 7 weeks after Easter Sunday, is a fallout from the Samaritans who were and are actually Sun-worshippers. Similarly, Sunday has been used as the focal point by the CoG Communities to determine when to start and when to end the count toward Pentecost.

Again, the above testimony runs contrary to the Targum in Leviticus 23:11-13 And he shall uplift the sheaf before the Lord to be accepted for you. AFTER THE FIRST FESTAL DAY OF PASCHA (OR, THE DAY AFTER THE FEAST‑DAY OF PASCHA) on the day on which you elevate the sheaf, you shall make (the sacrifice of a lamb of the year, unblemished a burnt offering unto the Name of the Lord . . . 15 and number to you AFTER THE FIRST FEAST DAY OF PASCHA . .  . (The Targum)

The word “Pentecost” does not appear in the Old Testament because it is a Greek word. Pentecost means “fiftieth”—the 50th day—the one on which the count ends. In the Old Testament it is called the Feast of Weeks, or the Feast of Firstfruits.

Here is another interesting fact that needs to be considered. This is part of the general understanding of this. If one begins counting after the first day of Unleavened Bread, which will always be the 15th, then you would begin counting with the 16th. You would have a Sabbath there, and the next day would be the 16th. But if you do that, then Pentecost will always end up on Sivan 6. Once you do that you have effectively removed the reason for counting, because, just like all the other holy days, it will be on a fixed date every year. This is the way that the Pharisees during Jesus’ day counted and the way that modern Jews count. But as I said, following that practice effectively eliminates God’s command that one count. (The Basics of Counting to Pentecost)

Why do we count? We learn several lessons by counting. The foremost is that the count demonstrates our thrill for the impending occasion of receiving our spiritual blessings, celebrated on Shavuot. When the Israelites were in Egypt some 3400 years ago, they had assimilated many of the pagan ways of the Egyptians. 

A countdown is when we all have obstacles removed between our uncleanliness and our spiritual goal. When the days pass, our spiritual goal is becoming more achievable. Every year we are not counting down the days that pass. Rather, we are counting toward the end, climbing one step higher in our spiritual growth each day.

There are other Jewish groups that do not count the way the Pharisees did. There were the Essenes, who no longer exist, but we know the way that they counted. There were the Falashas. I do not know whether any of them still exist. They were Ethiopian Jews. Then there were the Karaites, who were never really an organized group. They were more or less independent. Those three groups all counted using the last day of Unleavened Bread. But if one does that, you always end up on Sivan 12, and that too effectively removes the reason for counting. (The Basics of Counting to Pentecost)

False; this isn’t true. Very sloppy research everywhere! Nehemia Gordon is a prominent Karaite. He wrote that both the Essenes and Sadducees always begin their count “on the morrow of a weekly Sabbath.”

35 Nehemia Gordon & Keith Johnson videos:Collaborations on Jewish aspects  of the Bible | bible, scripture study, gordon
Nehemia Gordon, a prominent Karaite

Writes Nehemia Gordon on his “The Truth About Shavuot” website (May 22, 2020):

“The Sadducees and Essenes agreed that the 50-day count to Shavuot had to always begin on the morrow of a weekly Sabbath. They only differed as to whether this referred to the Sunday during the Feast of Unleavened Bread or the Sunday following the Feast of Unleavened Bread.”

The Essene/Qumran has their own 364 day solar calendar totally at odds with the calendrics of the Sanhedrin. Their sacred year always began on the vernal (spring) equinox and is, by definition, Wednesday (because God Created the “lights in the firmament” for “signs and seasons” on the 4th Day), 1st day of the 1st month (Nisan or Abib). 

Consequently, the Essene Passover will always begin at 6 PM Tuesday, 13 days later (Nisan 14). The key point being Essene Passover always began “Tuesday” evening, 13 days after the vernal equinox. To outsiders, the Essenes would appear to observe the vernal equinox and (regardless of whatever the previous day was) declare that day to be Wednesday 1 Nisan of their calendar. 

The Essene’s calendar had a year of 364 days. The first day of the first month always begins at sunset on Tuesday evening following the vernal equinox. Their counting — counted from the first Sunday after the Feast of Unleavened Bread — the offering of the wave sheaf (Leviticus 23:11) always fell on Sunday the 26th of their first month. Consequently after 50 days set the day of Pentecost on Sivan 15 of their calendar. Also Pentecost on the 15th, is always a Sunday in their third month on their calendar. 

Although the Karaites observe the new moon separately to establish their calendar in Jerusalem they were pretty united under Nehemia Gordon until he gave up in 2016. Other than establishing their calendar by observation, they start their count from the weekly Sabbath, like the Sadducees and Samaritans. Says Nehemia Gordon, “Karaite Jews have accepted the Sadducee reckoning as the only one to be consistent with the plain meaning of the biblical text.”

The day Passover falls on determines the date one must begin to count from. Therefore the count must begin on the day following the weekly Sabbath which, like Passover, is constantly changing. That is the day in which the sheaf is waved and the count begins. Since the weekly Sabbath always falls on a Saturday, the count to Pentecost always begins with a Sunday.

It may interest you to know that this is the way the Sadducees in Jesus’ day counted. In Jesus’ day the Sadducees still retained control of the Temple, and they determined when Pentecost was to be kept. That is one of the reasons why you will find no disagreement between Jesus and the Sadducees regarding the celebration of Pentecost. They were in agreement. (The Basics of Counting to Pentecost)

The above is again false — all lies and bulls, all pure Speculations and Magics. First, Josephus states that “whatever they [the Jewish people] do about divine worship, prayers, and sacrifices, they perform them according to their [the Pharisees’] direction. Insomuch, that the cities give great attestations to them, on account of their entire virtuous conduct, both in the actions of their lives, and their discourses also,” (Antiquities 18:1.15); and that the Sadducees “addict themselves to the notions of the Pharisees: because the multitude would not otherwise bear them.” (Antiquities 18:1.17; translated by W. Whiston).

And second, the Samaritans are SUN worshippers — they turn their faces toward Mount Gerizim whenever they pray, but during Passover on top of Mount Garizim, where at twilight, they turn West to pray at the setting down of the SUN. They infiltrated the Sadducees during the early era of the Second Temple period, and like the CoG Communities today, they would lie through their teeth that their beliefs don’t have anything to do with Samaritan SUN worship. 

See the source image
The Samaritans (and their various spinoffs) are SUN worshippers

The significance of the firestorm to Jerusalem 70 AD and should not be understated. Because of sin, the God of Heaven destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah during Abraham’s time. John the Baptist had given a stern warning about another consuming fire recorded in Luke 3:16-17 John said unto those who heard him:

“I indeed baptize you with water; but One mightier than I cometh, the straps of whose shoes I am not worthy to unloose. He shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost and with FIRE. 17 His winnowing fan is in His hand, and He will thoroughly purge His floor and will gather the wheat into His garner; but the chaff He will burn with FIRE unquenchable.” Luke 3:16-17

The Blind couldn’t see the FIRE part. When we look back, one cannot avoid concluding that God deemed that the Sadducees and the Essenes were worthy of extinction during the 70 AD inferno like Sodom and Gomorrah. Everything about the Sadducees and the Essenes were destroyed (except perhaps the scrappy Dead Seas Scrolls). A large portion of the Shammai Pharisees also followed suit in the conflagration, but the Hillel branch limped off to Yavne and survived. If the 70 AD inferno were only a microcosm, how would the CoG Communities, who have similar beliefs as the Sadducees, escape John’s warning during the Last Days? And why is it so coincidental that the end-time Laodicean church was described as “wretched” and “blind” and “naked”?

I said I was going to give you absolute proof that the sheaf is to be waved on the day after the weekly Sabbath that falls within the days of Unleavened Bread. Believe it or not, it is in the New Testament. Let us go to John 20. (The Basics of Counting to Pentecost)

Only one-tenth of an ephah finally accepted

Although the New Testament could add further meaning, the people during Old Testament times should be able to understand how to count during their days, rather than waiting one and a half thousand years later. During Ezra’s time, the returning Jewish Exiles understood this ambiguity when their Aramaic interpretation confirms the Septuagint translation “on the morrow of the first day,” as the day “after the first day of Pascha.” So is Ritenbaugh admitting he couldn’t prove it from the Old Testament?

In the New Testament

The New Testament is built on the foundation of the Old Testament, and not the other way round. Whenever the concept of firstfruits (G536 aparchē) is used in the New Testament context it could mean principally as (1 and 2) produce of the land and (3) firstborn, or person of superior excellence.

Should Moses have any question or doubt he had full access to God who sits between the Cherubim in the inner Sanctuary to make an inquiry. Also the High Priests, should they have any doubt, they could inquire from the Urim and Thummim (Exodus 28:30, Numbers 27:21) if they want to seek clarification of anything? 

In ancient Israel the Urim and Thummim were entrusted by the LORD, first to Moses and through him to the high priest as the representative of the LORD and as the mediator between God and the nation whose decisions, through the Urim and Thummim, even kings were expected to obey.

Josephus maintained that the Urim and Thummim continued to be used until the Maccabees, if not then, perhaps during Ezra’s time (Ezra 2:63, Nehemiah 7:65). All those decisions made knowledge gained would form the foundation and collection of what eventually emerged as the Oral Law.

So exactly seventy-two (72) hours after He was put into the grave, He rose from the dead and came out of the grave. Seventy-two hours from the time He was put into the tomb on Wednesday as the sun was setting, the sun was setting on the weekly Sabbath—Saturday—when He walked out of that tomb. This brings us to Matthew 20:1 in the time element. On Sunday morning, Mary Magdalene showed up at the tomb. She found it empty. Christ had already been resurrected, probably somewhere close to ten hours by that time. We will pick up the story in verse 11.

Matthew 20:11-17 But Mary stood without at the sepulchre weeping: and as she wept, she stooped down and looked into the sepulchre. And seeing two angels in white sitting, the one at the head, and the other at the feet where the body of Jesus had lain. And they said unto her, Woman, why weepest thou? She said unto them, Because they have taken away my LORD, and I know not where they have laid him. [She thought He was still dead.] And when she had thus said, she turned herself back and saw Jesus standing, and knew not that it was Jesus. Jesus said unto her, Woman, why weepest thou? Whom seekest thou? She, supposing him to be the gardener said unto him, Sir, if you have borne him hence, tell me where you have laid him, and I will take him away. Jesus said unto her, Mary. [And she melted, because she recognized the voice.] She turned herself, and said unto him, Rabboni; which is to say, Master. Jesus said unto her, Touch me not; [It actually says, “Do not cling to Me.” She had already grabbed Him.] for I am not yet ascended to my Father: but go to my brethren, and say unto them, I ascend unto my Father, and your Father; and to my God, and your God.

Remember, the sheaf was raised up before God. Jesus is the Firstfruit of God’s spiritual harvest. You can see this in I Corinthians 15:20 where Paul calls Him that.

I Corinthians 15:20 But now is Christ risen from the dead, and become the firstfruits of them that slept.

And so Jesus, as the first of the Firstfruits, was the reality of the Wavesheaf. Everything else was a type and a symbol. The reality had to ascend to the Father, and He did. He just ascended to the Father and was accepted on our behalf by the Father. When did this occur? The reality occurred on Sunday morning—the day after the weekly Sabbath. That nails it down. (The Basics of Counting to Pentecost)

In Leviticus 23:12: And if the he lamb represents Christ, which He is, then the sheaf of firstfruits couldn’t be Christ. Hence the logical conclusion drawn from the Old Testament is that the sheaf as firstfruits should represent human beings. And in parables, Christ was the husbandman, the sower, a landowner, the true vine, the good shepherd, etc, but never was He portrayed as a firstfruits in the sense of a produce of the land. It is a heresy to infer that Christ was part of a harvest.

The Omer Offering | Holy temple, Third temple, Priest
The Grains sifted through thirteen Sieves, and only one-tenth Accepted

We can conclude from these observations is that Christ after He had fulfilled being a sacrifice for us as the Lamb at Passover, presents Himself as the High Priest, interceding for His younger brothers to the Father. But He was never the sheaf of firstfruits in the OT context. He was the Lamb and the Lamb wasn’t waved, only the sheaf of many grains did, known as the omer, was waved.

Second, the “wave sheaf” is also a mistranslation. It is “omer” in Hebrew, a finished product, not some freshly cut grains from the field. 

And this is from the Jewish Encyclopedia:

Manner of Waving the Omer.

After the grain had been gathered it was brought to the courtyard of the Temple, where it was first thrashed and then parched (dried and roasted over a fire). The grain was ground into coarse meal and then sifted through thirteen sieves until it became very clean, after which the tenth part was taken, the measure of the ‘omer, and given to the priest. The priest proceeded with the ‘omer as with any other meal-offering: he poured oil and frankincense over the meal, “waved” it, and then burned a handful of it on the altar; the remainder was eaten by the priests (Men. vi. 4). The “waving” was done in the following way: The offering was placed on the extended hands of the priest, who moved them backward and forward and then upward and downward. As soon as the ‘omer ceremony was completed the people of Jerusalem were permitted to eat of the newly harvested grain; people of towns far from Jerusalem might not do so until after noon, when it was certain that the ceremony at Jerusalem had been gathered (Men. vi. 7).

The other nine-tenth rejected!

The omer is an end-product made from the sheaf, a bundle of grains, MANY STOCK OF GRAINS. The grains (or the stock of barley) are all the same, it would be derogatory to infer that Christ is on the same level as other humans. Christ was and is always referred to as the Lamb. Even before Christ was born, He was already the Son of God, divine (Psalm 2:7 I will declare the decree: the Lord (Father) hath said unto me, Thou art my Son; this day have I begotten thee). Before each one of us humans were born we were dust. It is a heresy to think we are of the same level of the Son of God. Christ was YHVH (Psalm 110:1,5) before He was born.

In a brief summary, from the Old Testament: (1) Christ isn’t the firstfruits of Leviticus 23:10, only humans are; (2) The Lamb symbolizes Christ but He wasn’t waved, only the firstfruits were waved.

In Hebrew, the wave sheaf is h6016 `omer (Leviticus 23:10); and firstfruits are h7225 re’shiyth (Leviticus 23:17,20).

Exodus 23:19 The first H7225 of the firstfruits H1061 of thy land thou shalt bring into the house of the LORD thy God. — the firstfruits from, perhaps, the Old Testament times (Leviticus 23:10) to New Testament times, at Pentecost (Leviticus 23:17, 20; Acts 2).  Note, both were produce of the land. But Christ was the Lamb.

The New Testament is built on the foundation of the Old Testament. Whenever the concept of firstfruits (G536 aparchē) is used 8 times in the New Testament context it could mean principally as Strong indicates:

(1) & (2) firstfruits as produce of the land Rom 8:23; Rom 11:16; Rom 16:5; 1Co 16:15; Jas 1:18; Rev 14:4.

(3) firstborn, or person of superior excellence.

1 Corinthians 15:20 But now Christ is risen from the dead, and become the firstfruits G536 of those who slept. — only category (3) applies above.

1 Corinthians 15:23 but every man in his own order: Christ the firstfruits G536; afterward those who are Christ’s at His coming. — again, only category (3) applies above.

As Christ is the firstborn as in Acts 26:23 “the first G4413 protos who should rise from the dead,” and a person of superior excellence, the King James version and many related translations as “firstfruits” above are misleading: 

However other translations listed below give a more accurate concept of Christ being the first person to rise from the dead or the firstborn, the first to be born from the womb. 

1 Corinthians 15:20 

But now Christ has come back from the dead. He is the very first person of those who have died to come back to life. GOD’S WORD Translation (GW)

But the glorious fact is that Christ did rise from the dead: he has become the very first to rise of all who sleep the sleep of death. PHILLIPS

But the fact is that Christ did actually rise from the dead and has become the first of millions who will come back to life again someday. Living Bible (TLB)

But now Christ has come back from the dead. He is the very first person of those who have died to come back to life. Names of God Bible (NOG) 

But Christ has truly been raised from the dead—the first one and proof that those who sleep in death will also be raised. New Century Version (NCV)

But Christ really has been raised from the dead. He is the first of all those who will rise from the dead. New International Reader’s Version (NIRV)

But it is true! Christ has been raised from the dead! He was the first One to be raised from the dead and all those who are in graves will follow. New Life Version (NLV) 

1 Corinthians 15:23 

This will happen to each person in his own turn. Christ is the first, then at his coming, those who belong to him will be made alive. GOD’S WORD Translation (GW)

But the glorious fact is that Christ did rise from the dead: he has become the very first to rise of all who sleep the sleep of death. PHILLIPS

Each, however, in his own turn: Christ rose first; then when Christ comes back, all his people will become alive again. Living Bible (TLB)

This will happen to each person in his own turn. Christ is the first, then at his coming, those who belong to him will be made alive. Names of God Bible (NOG) 

But everyone will be raised to life in the right order. Christ was first to be raised. When Christ comes again, those who belong to him will be raised to life. New Century Version (NCV)

But here is the order of events. Christ is the first of those who rise from the dead. When he comes back, those who belong to him will be raised. New International Reader’s Version (NIRV)

This is the way it is: Christ was raised from the dead first. Then all those who belong to Christ will be raised from the dead when He comes again. New Life Version (NLV) 

But each one has his turn. Christ rose first. Then those who belong to Christ will rise when he comes again. Worldwide English (WE)

But Christ really has been raised from death. He was the first one to rise of all who have died.  Worldwide English (WE)

The evidence from the above is clear. If not, the three main questions to ponder are: 

See the source image

(1) If the wave sheaf in Leviticus 23:11 represents Christ, then what did this “he lamb” without blemish of the first year in verse 12 represents?

(2) And if this he lamb in verse 12 represents Christ, then why this “he lamb” wasn’t waved?

. . . and (3) if waving means going up to heaven and back, then why the 3000 on Pentecost (Acts 2) didn’t similarly go up to heaven as they were also waved (Lev 23:20), each should be warning the others “don’t touch me” along the way up and back from heaven on that day of Pentecost, wouldn’t they?

There is a saying which goes, “one swallow doesn’t make a summer.”

~~~~~

A Critique of Frank Nelte’s Pentecost 

•April 7, 2021 • Leave a Comment

A Critique of Frank Nelte’s Pentecost 

Frank W. Nelte, Ex-WCG Minister

— attended the Bricket Wood campus of the memorable Ambassador College in the 1960s and upon graduation in 1971 was hired by the Worldwide Church of God to pastor several congregations in South Africa until early 1994 when he was sacked.

When Should We Keep Pentecost? — (January 1998)

How to Count Pentecost

Wave Sheaf, Wave Sheaf Offering, Pentecost, Feast of Weeks, Feast of Firstfruits, Heptad, Feast of Heptads, Wave Sheaf, Omer

This is a Critique of Frank Nelte’s Pentecost, the Feast of Weeks, or the Feast of Firstfruits. The Counting to Pentecost is an extremely important subject and we’ll follow it in every point discussed. Besides the main issue of when to start counting is how restrictive is the term “Sabbath.” Is it restricted only to a weekly Sabbath or was it meant to be an annual Sabbath, the first day of Unleavened Bread, the 16th of Nisan.

Quoted are Frank Nelte Bible Study article “When Should We Keep Pentecost?” posted on his website, dated January 1998. They are in pink, indented and in block form so as to differentiate his from other comments. The Scriptures, in red, must be our primary focus and guide, and sometimes the Scriptures, which include the Septuagint and the Targum, say things very different from what he assumes! 

And so with that in mind, we’ll begin:

We need to recognize that the Jews have developed MANY customs which have no biblical basis at all.

Most people do not understand that Hebrew as a spoken language had basically DIED OUT long before the year 1800 A.D.! Two thousand years ago the Jews had already abandoned speaking Hebrew in favour of speaking Aramaic. Even Jesus Christ conducted His whole ministry in the Aramaic language. Christ’s final words, as He was dying on the stake, were in Aramaic. They were “Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani” (Matthew 27:46), or as recorded by Mark “Eloi, Eloi, lama sabachthani” (Mark 15:34). (When Should We Keep Pentecost?)

Obviously the above are false on many fronts. The writer shows his hatred for the Jews more than a cool headed willingness to find the truth. The Hebrew Gospel of Matthew by George Howard testifies that the original was written in Hebrew.

Another book “Understanding the Difficult Words of Jesus” by David Bivin and Roy Blizzard, has been devoted to understanding the structure of poetry, and literal translations of Hebrew idioms which involve the case for claiming that Jesus spoke and taught in Hebrew instead of Greek or Aramaic and that the synoptic gospels (Matthew, Mark and Luke) were originally written in Hebrew, and when translated caused formidable problems for translators, resulting in the text that makes little sense to English (or even Greek) readers. 

Second, many of Christ’s sayings that have in the past been difficult to understand were presented and analyzed in the light of their Hebrew origins. The authors explain that lack of knowledge of Hebrew literary forms, especially the structure of poetry, and literal translations of Hebrew idioms caused formidable problems for translators, resulting in text that makes little sense to English (or even in Greek) readers. So, according to the authors, Hebrew, is the language that needs to be understood to correctly interpret the teachings of Christ in the synoptic gospels. This approach would yield a clearer understanding of the sayings of Christ that are puzzling or confusing, thus making the gospels much more readable. 

Third, had Hebrew been forgotten and DIED OUT two thousand years ago, how could the Aleppo Codex being developed, which were formulated around the ninth or tenth century? If they have forgotten how to read Hebrew, how could they remember suddenly to incorporate the vowels and turn it into the Masoretic Text? So much lying, deceits and bullshit! 

Now if we want to be clear about the meanings GOD attached to specific Hebrew words, then the best way to establish this is to look at ALL the places where God has inspired those specific words to be used. When any word is used a large number of times, then in most occurrences the intended meaning will be quite plain and easy to discern from the context.

When a Hebrew Dictionary CLAIMS that a certain word had a secondary meaning in biblical times, which meaning is NOT supported by actual usage ANYWHERE in the whole Old Testament, then this claim must be questioned. Is the claim perhaps based on a preconceived false interpretation of some biblical teaching? Is the claim perhaps made in order to support a non-biblical “tradition of the elders”? WHY is this claim made when there is no biblical usage anywhere in the entire Old Testament to support this claim?

THE HEBREW WORD “SHABUWA”:

Of the 20 times this word is used in the Old Testament, in the KJV it is 19 times translated as “week/s” and one time as “SEVEN”. That one place is Ezekiel 45:21.

In the first [month], in the fourteenth day of the month, ye shall have the passover, a feast of SEVEN DAYS; unleavened bread shall be eaten. (Ezekiel 45:21)

An examination of the 9 occurrences in the above-quoted 8 verses should make it quite clear that THIS is indeed the Hebrew word for “week” and “weeks”. This word really has no other meanings! It is NEVER used in any way to IMPLY any other meaning! Moses, who wrote the first five books of the Old Testament, was obviously familiar with this word. (When Should We Keep Pentecost?)

This is very true, and you don’t wait for a few days till the weekly Sabbath to start along with Shabuwa (H7620). The important point is that it starts IMMEDIATELY.

The critical verse is in Deuteronomy 16:9 “Seven weeks H7620 shalt thou number unto thee: begin to number the seven weeks H7620 from such time as thou beginnest to put the sickle to the corn. 

Deuteronomy 16:9 Seven weeks [H7620 shabua] — Strong translates shabua as seven, period of seven (days or years), heptad, week:

A. period of seven days, a week — Feast of Weeks or Heptads
B. heptad, seven (of years)

In the Scriptures there are a total of nine times (out of 20) where Shabua H7620 is used to designate Pentecost. Here they are:

(1) Exodus 34:22 And thou shalt observe the Feast of Weeks, H7620 of the firstfruits of wheat harvest, and the feast of ingathering at the year’s end. Feast of Weeks (each a block of seven)

(2) Numbers 28:26 “‘Also on the day of the firstfruits, when ye bring a new meat offering unto the Lord, after your weeks H7620 be out, ye shall have a holy convocation. Ye shall do no servile work. after seven blocks of sevens

(3,4,5) Deuteronomy 16:9-10 “Seven weeks H7620 shalt thou number unto thee: begin to number the seven weeks H7620 from such time as thou beginnest to put the sickle to the corn. 10 And thou shalt keep the Feast of Weeks H7620 unto the Lord thy God with a tribute of a freewill offering of thine hand, which thou shalt give unto the Lord thy God according as the Lord thy God hath blessed thee. seven blocks; Feast of Weeks (each a block of seven)

(6) Deuteronomy 16:16 Three times a year shall all thy males appear before the Lord thy God in the place which He shall choose: in the Feast of Unleavened Bread, and in the Feast of Weeks, H7620 and in the Feast of Tabernacles. And they shall not appear before the Lord empty.Feast of Weeks (each a block of seven) 

(7) II Chronicles 8:13 according to a certain rate every day, offering according to the commandment of Moses on the Sabbaths and on the new moons and on the solemn feasts, three times in the year: on the Feast of Unleavened Bread and on the Feast of Weeks H7620 and on the Feast of Tabernacles. Feast of Weeks (each a block of seven) 

(8) Jeremiah 5:24 Neither say they in their heart, Let us now fear the LORD our God, that giveth rain, both the former and the latter, in his season: he reserved unto us the appointed weeks H7620 of the harvest. Feast of Weeks (each a block of seven) 

(9) Ezekiel 45:21 In the first month, in the fourteenth day of the month, ye shall have the passover, a feast of seven H7620 days; unleavened bread shall be eaten. the days of unleavened bread didn’t wait until the following weekly sabbath to start counting the seven days

All the above show that the Feast of Weeks could also be called the Feast of Heptads. However, the important point is that it starts IMMEDIATELY, not waiting even a day. This is shown best below:

Ezekiel 45:21 In the first month, in the fourteenth day of the month, ye shall have the passover, a Feast (a block of seven) H7620 days; unleavened bread shall be eaten. — seven days, the most obvious example where it occurs IMMEDIATELY and is not connected to the weekly sabbath.

And here we have a non-Feast of Weeks example:

Leviticus 12:5 But if she bears a daughter, then she shall be unclean two weeks H7620  as in her separation: and she shall continue in the blood of her purifying threescore and six days. — two weeks, this occurs IMMEDIATELY after birth and not waiting until the weekly sabbath to start counting the two weeks of uncleanliness.

The Feast of Unleavened Bread follows Passover immediately without waiting for even a day. 

THE HEBREW WORD “SHABBATH”

This word “shabbath” is used 108 times in the Old Testament. It is thus quite common. Another word, which has been formed from this word “shabbath”, is the word “shabbathown”, which is used 11 times in 10 different verses, all 11 occurrences being in the books of Exodus and Leviticus. This word “shabbathown” is translated (in the KJV) 8 times as “REST” and 3 times as “SABBATH”. It is an intensive form of the word for “rest” and that is precisely what it means … EMPHATIC REST!

And ye shall count unto you from the morrow AFTER THE SABBATH, from the day that ye brought the sheaf of the wave offering; SEVEN SABBATHS shall be complete: (Leviticus 23:15)

Even unto the morrow AFTER THE SEVENTH SABBATH shall ye number fifty days; and ye shall offer a new meat offering unto the LORD. (Leviticus 23:16) (When Should We Keep Pentecost?)

Strong designates the 108 times using sabbath H7676 to include (a) sabbath, (b) day of atonement, (c) sabbath year, (d) week, (e) produce (in sabbath year). Note that the use of “week” is being included as one of Biblical usage.

The ambiguity of the phrase “from the morrow after the Sabbath” has offered much confusion over the millennium. Unfortunately, the Masoretic Text doesn’t provide an answer. But fortunately the Septuagint, one that the NT writers used most often, helps in presenting the truth. It translates “on the morrow after the Sabbath” as “on the morrow of the first day.” 

Leviticus 23:9 And the Lord spoke to Moses, saying, 10 Speak to the children of Israel, and thou shalt say to them, When ye shall enter into the land which I give you, and reap the harvest of it, then shall ye bring a sheaf, the first-fruits of your harvest, to the priest; 11 and he shall lift up the sheaf before the Lord, to be accepted for you. On the morrow of the first day the priest shall lift it up. (Septuagint)

The first day is, of course, the first day of the Days of Unleavened Bread. And the morrow after the fifteenth is, of course, the sixteenth! Thus count from the sixteenth!

And secondly, this is backed up by the Targum which states it even clearer. To ignore any of these Scriptures as testimonies to the truth is to ignore to our demise!

Leviticus 23:11-12 And he shall uplift the sheaf before the Lord to be accepted for you. After the first festal day of Pascha (or, the day after the feast‑day of Pascha) on the day on which you elevate the sheaf . . . 15 And number to you after the first feast day of Pascha, from the day when you brought the sheaf for the elevation, seven weeks; complete they shall be. (Targum, translated by J. W. Etheridge)

Same thing, the day “after the feast-day of Pascha” is, again, the sixteenth! The evidence from both the Septuagint and Targum are overwhelming. At times they are superior to the Masoretic Text. Here is an example:

How do you solve the problem of Genesis 15 where it says 400 years and in Exodus 12 says 430 years? Is there an error? Also, how does this tie into the age of Isaac when he was offered as the burnt offering? So where do we begin?

Genesis 15:12 And when the sun was going down, a deep sleep fell upon Abram; and, lo, an horror of great darkness fell upon him. 13 And he said unto Abram, Know of a surety that thy seed shall be a stranger in a land that is not theirs, and shall serve them; and they shall afflict them four hundred years (Masoretic KJV)

Exodus 12:40 Now the sojourning of the children of Israel, who dwelt in Egypt, was four hundred and thirty years.(Masoretic KJV)

The Masoretic Text above says “in Egypt” but the Septuagint read “Egypt and Chanaan.” Chanaan is Canaan

From the Septuagint:

Genesis 15:12 And about sunset a trance fell upon Abram, and lo! a great gloomy terror falls upon him. 13 And it was said to Abram, Thou shalt surely know that thy seed shall be a sojourner in a land not their own, and they shall enslave them, and afflict them, and humble them four hundred years. (Septuagint)

Exodus 12:40 And the sojourning of the children of Israel, while they sojourned in the land of Egypt and the land of Chanaan, [was] four hundred and thirty years. (Septuagint)

From the Targum:

Genesis 15:12-13 And when the sun was nearing to set, a deep sleep was thrown upon Abram: and, behold, four kingdoms arose to enslave his children: Terror, which is Bavel; Darkness, which is Madai; Greatness, which is Javan; Decline, which is Pheras, which is to fall, and to have no uplifting, and from whence it is to be that the children of Israel will come up. And he said to Abram, Knowing, thou must know, that thy sons shall dwell in a land not their own, because thou hast not believed, and they will subjugate and afflict them four hundred years; and also that the people whom they shall serve I will judge with two hundred and fifty plagues, and afterwards they shall go forth into liberty with great riches. (Targum)

Exodus 12:40 And the days of the dwelling of the sons of Israel in Mizraim were thirty weeks of years, (thirty times seven years,) which is the sum of two hundred and ten years. But the number of four hundred and thirty years (had passed away since) the Lord spake to Abraham, in the hour that He spake with him on the fifteenth of Nisan, between the divided parts, until the day that they went out of Mizraim. And it was at the end of thirty years from the making of this covenant, that Izhak was born; and thence until they went out of Mizraim four hundred (years), on the selfsame day it was that all the hosts of the Lord went forth made free from the land of Mizraim. (Targum)

Abraham (75 years old when he left Ur for Caanan: Gen 12:4; was 100 when Isaac was born: Gen 21:5) If the Covenant was made 30 years before Isaac was born, then Abraham would be 70 years old, i.e. when he was still in Ur?

Isaac (60 years old when he had Jacob: Gen 25:26)

See the source image

Jacob (130 years old when he entered Egypt: Gen 47:9. When Jacob descended to Egypt at the age of 130, 190 years of the 400 years had already passed, thus leaving 210 years. This is the number of years that the Israelites lived in Egypt.

Levi (137 years old: Ex 6:16)
Kehath (133 years old: Ex 6:18)
Amram(137 years old: Ex 6:20)
Moses (80 years old when God called him: Ex 7:7; a fourth generation: Gen 15:16)

To elaborate the problem with the Masoretic text, presuming that Kehath was even only one day old when entering Egypt, he is recorded as living 133 years (Ex. 6:18). Kehath’s son is Amram who lives 137 years (Ex. 6:20) of which some presumably overlap with those of his father Kehath. Amram’s son is Moses who is 80 when standing before Pharaoh (Ex. 7:7) – presumably some of those years overlap with his father Amram’s years. Even without the issue of overlapping years, the total maximum number of years would only be 133 + 137 + 80 = 350 years. This would mean that even if Kehath entered Egypt on the first day of his life, had Amram on the last day of his life, and who, in turn, had Moses on the last day of his life, the longest period of time that the nation could have been in Egypt is 350 years.

Genesis 15:13 And he (God) said unto Abram, Know of a surety that thy seed shall be a stranger in a land that is not theirs, and shall serve them; and they shall afflict them four hundred years;

The count of the 400 years as recorded in Genesis 15:13 should start with the birth of Isaac. Isaac was 60 years old when he had Jacob (Gen. 25:26) and Jacob was 130 when standing before Pharaoh (Gen. 47:9). Therefore, when Jacob descended to Egypt at the age of 130, 190 years of the 400 years had already passed, thus leaving 210 years. This is the number of years that the Israelites lived in Egypt.

Therefore the Masoretic KJV of 430 years of “dwelling in Egypt” is a BLATANT ERROR. The Septuagint and the Targum gives an accurate account, but the Targum translates and elucidates with great insights. 

The Targum is like a mirror. When placed against the end-time CoG Communities, it reflects their nakedness. When the Jews returned from their exile in Babylon in the 6th century BC, most of them couldn’t speak Hebrew; they spoke Aramaic, but they still retained the Torah, which were read to them in Hebrew. Something had to be done so that the people would understand God and His Word. 

Starting with Ezra, the new communities found an answer. After hearing Ezra read a few verses of the Torah scroll in Hebrew, either he or other Levites translated it to Aramaic, hence it set the stage for the Aramaic version of the Bible, called a Targum, which simply means translation. Hence the Targum is an entrenched translation of the Hebrew Bible that was written or compiled in Judea from the Second Temple period until the early Middle Ages (late first millennium).

“The Levites … instructed the people in the Law while the people were standing there. They read from the Book of the Law of God, making it clear and giving the meaning so that the people understood what was being read.” (Nehemiah 8:7–8)

Nehemiah 8:7 NKJV and the Levites helped the people to understand the Law; and the people stood in their place. 8 So they read distinctly from the book, in the Law of God; and they gave the sense, and helped them to understand the reading.

So they read in the book of the lawand gave the sense — i.e., they read and translated the meaning of the Hebrew words, and expounded them in the common language. And caused them to understand the reading — So they gave them both a translation of the Hebrew words, into the Chaldee or Syriac, and an exposition of the things contained in them, and of the duty incumbent upon the people by virtue thereof; to declare and teach these things were a great part of the duties of both priests and Levites.

Adam Clark comments on Nehemiah 8:8: I beg leave to make a few observations: – So they read in the book in the law of God distinctly, and gave the sense, and caused them to understand the reading . . . but it appears that they had in general lost the knowledge of the ancient Hebrew to such a degree, that when the book of the law was read, they did not understand it: but certain Levites stood by, and gave the sense, i. e., translated into the Chaldee dialect. This was not only the origin of the Chaldee Targums, or translation of the law and prophets into that tongue but was also, in all probability, the origin of preaching from a text; for it appears that the people were not only ignorant of their ancient language, but also of the rites and ceremonies of their religion, having been so long in Babylon, where they were not permitted to observe them. This being the case, not only the language must be interpreted, but the meaning of the rites and ceremonies must also be explained . . . 

John Gill comments on the above “they first read it in Hebrew, and . . . not hereby how to read it, but chiefly to understand what was read, that they might clearly know their duty to God and men.”

Ezra and those with him expounded obscurer passages, and in doing so naturally translated into the vernacular Aramaic dialect. This simply explains the former: they expounded as they read. They gave the meaning though the scriptures on how Ezra and those with him would understand the meaning from the Torah. 

THEREFORE IF GOD INTENDED FOR US TO “COUNT” FROM THE DAY AFTER THE FIRST DAY OF UNLEAVENED BREAD:
THEN SOMETIMES we would have to count “1 week” as being:

– from a Monday to the following Sunday; or
– from a Wednesday to the following Tuesday; or
– from a Friday to the following Thursday; or
– from a Sunday to the following Saturday. (When Should We Keep Pentecost?)

This is correct. Pentecost is never called the Feast of Sabbaths, it’s the Feast of Weeks, or Feast of Heptads (blocks of seven days). The Feast of Weeks could start at any day of the week. The best illustration is Ezekiel 45:21 where the seven-day Feast of Unleavened Bread could start at any time of the week — it DOESN’T HAVE TO WAIT UNTIL THE WEEKLY SABBATH TO START!. 

How could God possibly tell us: “counting FROM A WEDNESDAY TO THE FOLLOWING TUESDAY, COUNT SEVEN FULL WEEKS, COMING TO THE SEVENTH TUESDAY, AND THEN GO TO THE MORROW AFTER THAT TUESDAY TO ARRIVE AT A WEDNESDAY PENTECOST”?? How could God possibly refer to a period of time from a Wednesday to the following Tuesday as “A SHABBATH”?? (When Should We Keep Pentecost?)

Look at Ezekiel 45:21 again: In the first month, in the fourteenth day of the month, ye shall have the passover, a Feast of Weeks (Haptads) H7620 days; unleavened bread shall be eaten. — the seven days of UB starts any day IMMEDIATELY after Passover, so it could be a Monday, a Wednesday, a Friday or a Sunday. By your double question marks above, it demonstrated the opposite of what you intended, that the “Sabbath” could be translated as “weeks” as Strong shows below:

A. period of seven days, a week — Feast of Weeks or Heptads; B. heptad, seven (of years)

Leviticus 23:15-16 seven sabbaths [h7676 shabbat] according to Strong, this shabbat could be translated as:

(a) sabbath
(b) day of atonement
(c) sabbath year
(d) WEEK
(e) produce (in sabbath year)

James Strong (1822 – 1894)

According to Strong, both shabua (H7620) and sabbath (H7676) could be translated as weeks. Has Frank Nelte had a higher level of Hebrew degree at the angelic but uncredited Ambassador College than Strong’s? Who were his Hebrew lecturers at the now fallen Ambassador College can we ask him? James Strong was both acting President and Professor of Biblical Literature at Troy University; Professor of Exegetical Theology at Drew Theological Seminary, and was honored with a degree of Doctor of Laws (LL.D.) by Wesleyan University in 1881. 

And Strong’s definition allows the JPS 1917 and many other translators to transcribe the seven Sabbaths as seven WEEKS:

Leviticus 23:15 And ye shall count unto you from the morrow after the day of rest (footnote: Sabbath), from the day that ye brought the sheaf of the waving; seven weeks shall there be complete; 16 even unto the morrow after the seventh week shall ye number fifty days; and ye shall present a new meal-offering unto the LORD. (JPS 1917)

Other versions that translated “seven weeks” in Leviticus 23:15 are:

The Companion Bible (Bullinger)
Common English Bible (CEB)
Complete Jewish Bible (CJB)
Contemporary English Version (CEV)
Christian Standard Bible (CSB)
Darby Translation (DARBY)
Easy-to-Read Version (ERV)
English Standard Version (ESV)
Expanded Bible (EXB)
GOD’S WORD Translation (GW)
Good News Translation (GNT)
Holman Christian Standard Bible (HCSB)
International Children’s Bible (ICB)
International Standard Version (ISV)
Lexham English Bible (LEB)
The Message (MSG)
Modern English Version (MEV)
Names of God Bible (NOG)
New American Bible (Revised Edition) (NABRE)
New Century Version (NCV)
New English Translation (NET Bible)
New International Version (NIV)
New Life Version (NLV)
New Living Translation (NLT)
Revised Standard Version (RSV)
The Voice (VOICE)
Wycliffe Bible (WYC)
The Septuagint (LXX
The Targum

Adam Clarke comments on “Ye shall count unto you – seven Sabbaths” – “That is, from the sixteenth of the first month to the sixth of the third month. These seven weeks, called here Sabbaths, were to be complete, i. e., the forty-nine days must be finished, and the next day, the fiftieth, is what, from the Septuagint, we call pentecost.”

DO JEWISH CUSTOMS AND AUTHORITIES STICK TO THE BIBLE?

If you are on the lookout for it, it is quite easy to find evidence that the Jews actually do not stick to what is revealed in the Bible at all. It is fairly easy to discover that for the Jews TRADITION is of far higher importance than what God actually instructed in the Old Testament. (When Should We Keep Pentecost?)

Some of their traditions are bad, but some are great. Only the wise know how to separate the good from the bad. The stupid renders all traditions as bad. Here is what Paul says:

“I profited in the Jews’ religion beyond many of my equals in mine own nation, being more exceedingly zealous for the traditions of my fathers” Galatians 1:14.

“Therefore, brethren, stand fast and hold to the traditions which ye have been taught, whether by word or our epistle” II Thessalonians 2:15.

Paul being a Pharisee, and son of a Pharisee’ and in all thirteen epistles are littered with Pharisaic precepts. He grew up and was “zealous for the traditions of my fathers” – namely, those of the Pharisees, bred up at the feet of Gamaliel. “Tradition (paradosis) embraces everything which is handed down orally or in writing from generation to generation,” says the Schaff’s Commentary. The Whedon’s commentary on Zealous — “The inspiring motive; zeal for the ancestral traditions; not merely the sacred books, but hereditary customs and rabbinical maxims, as afterwards embodied in the Talmud.”

Second, if traditions are always untrustworthy, then the Masoretic vowel points should also be considered untrustworthy. They are based on traditions and should be rejected, because how to read any single Hebrew word comes from oral tradition. Plain and Simple!

In the March 1992 edition of “Prophecy Flash” Mr Dankenbring has an article entitled “A Letter to the Chief Rabbi, London – on Passover and Pentecost”, and another article entitled “Reply from the Office of the Chief Rabbi”. This second article is interesting in that it clearly reveals the Jewish thinking. The last two paragraphs of that article are most revealing.

Firstly, the “Chief Rabbi” points out that

“… according to the Sadducees, PENTECOST WOULD ALWAYS FALL ON A SUNDAY”. (my emphasis)

THIS IS A STAGGERING ADMISSION!

During the time of Jesus Christ the Pharisees controlled the local synagogues, but THE SADDUCEES CONTROLLED THE TEMPLE AND THE TEMPLE WORSHIP! The priests, with very few exceptions, were Sadducees!

Therefore during the time of Christ Pentecost at the Temple in Jerusalem was always observed on a Sunday … and this information is given to us by the “Chief Rabbi” (Christ said to call no man ‘Rabbi’!) of London, England. Thus, when Christ observed the Day of Pentecost and when the disciples observed it at the Temple in Acts chapter 2, IT WAS ON A SUNDAY!

Church of God Photo Library - Letter 'N'

But continue reading this “reply from the office of ‘the chief rabbi'”. Notice the last paragraph of that article – it’s only six-and-a-half lines long. How did the Pharisees try to argue with the Sadducees? Notice! [The parenthetical statements are my comments.]

“The Pharisees … tried to do this from text [i.e. they tried by using THE OLD TESTAMENT SCRIPTURES!] WITHOUT relying on the oral traditions, [what “oral traditions”? – the ones Christ addressed in Matt 15:1-3 and Mark 7:8-9?] since their adversaries were not ready to accept all of the oral tradition [i.e. the Sadducees said: unless it’s in the Bible, we don’t believe it].”

But now notice this candid admission concerning pharisaical teachings:

“But the real reason they [i.e. the Pharisees] insisted on this interpretation [Pentecost on the 6th of Sivan] is based on two factors …”

WHAT ARE THOSE TWO FACTORS THAT DETERMINE PHARISAICAL BELIEFS?? God’s Word? the Bible? NO!! Continue with the quote:

“…1) The oral tradition which [they falsely claimed!] had come down from Moses’ time which they maintained and passed on; 2) Logic which dictated that …” (When Should We Keep Pentecost?)

Who was that “Chief Rabbi” of London who wrote “… according to the Sadducees, PENTECOST WOULD ALWAYS FALL ON A SUNDAY”.  Actually there is nothing wrong with what he wrote. The truth is that no sensible Orthodox Rabbi is that stupid to say that such is the truth. Keep your head cool: he only wrote that “according to the Sadducees, Pentecost would always fall on a Sunday.” The Rabbi didn’t say that’s what he believes nor that that is the truth. If the “Chief Rabbi” believes such is the truth, the only possibilities are that he is either a rabbi from (a) a Karaite Organisation, or (b) a Reform Movement. 

Both the Karaites and Reform Jews have Sadducaic leaning. And they, of course, claim that during the first century, the Sadducees had control over the Temple functions. But Josephus, the first century Jewish historian, wrote in his Antiquities of the Jews, informing us that the Pharisees were the dominant religious party in Judaea during the time of Christ, and that they controlled the worship services:

The common people followed the Pharisees. And although the Sadducees were occupying the upper stratum of the Jewish aristocracy, they were few and unable and unwilling to carry out their own beliefs in the Temple service, but to carry “the notions of the Pharisees”:

But the doctrine of the Sadducees is this: That souls die with the bodies; nor do they regard the observation of any thing besides what the law enjoins them; for they think it an instance of virtue to dispute with those teachers of philosophy whom they frequent: but this doctrine is received but by a few, yet by those still of the greatest dignity. But they are able to do almost nothing of themselves; for when they become magistrates, as they are unwillingly and by force sometimes obliged to be, they addicted themselves to the notions of the Pharisees, because the multitude would not otherwise bear them. (Ant 18,4)

Sadducees | Life-Giving Water
Sadducees – “Disappeared” during the AD 70 Inferno!

Also, the Unger’s Bible Dictionary tells us further political-religious amalgamation called the Sadducees:

“Their political supremacy was, however, of no long duration. Greatly as the spiritual power of the Pharisees had increased, the Sadducean aristocracy was able to keep at the helm in politics. The price at which the Sadducees had to secure themselves power at this later period was indeed a high one, for they were IN THEIR OFFICIAL ACTIONS TO ACCOMMODATE THEMSELVES TO PHARISAIC VIEWS. With the fall of the Jewish state the Sadducees altogether disappear from history. Their strong point was politics. When deprived of this their last hour had struck. While the Pharisaic party only gained more strength, only obtained more absolute rule over the Jewish people in consequence of the collapse of political affairs, the very ground on which they stood was cut away from the Sadducees” (“Sadducees,” pg 954).

And keeping your head cool again, using Oral Traditions could be true and valid. The Talmud tells the story of a Gentile who went to Hillel the Elder and said to him, “I want to convert, but I want to accept only the Written Torah, and not the Oral Torah. I don’t wish to accept the words of the Rabbis. So teach me only the Written Torah.”

But Hillel knew that the man wanted to do the right thing, but he didn’t understand the purpose of the Oral Torah. So Hillel began to teach him the Aleph Bet (Hebrew alphabet). The first day, Hillel taught him the first two letters, aleph and bet.

The next day, Hillel taught him the same two letters in reverse. He showed him the letter aleph, but called it “bet.” 

The man objected, “but yesterday you taught it the other way!”

A Critique of Frank Nelte's Passover (I) | The mystery of life blog

“Well, then, you need me, a Rabbi, to teach you the Aleph Bet? So you have to trust my knowledge of the tradition of the letters. What I tell you is the Oral Tradition. You can’t read the alphabet if no one tells you how they are pronounced. And you think you don’t need the Rabbis’ knowledge of Jewish Tradition in order to understand the words of the Torah? Those are much more difficult! Without an Oral Tradition you will never be able to learn the Torah.”

So it is clear that an Oral Tradition is needed, and that one exists. If you don’t agree, try to define: (a) what circumcision is, and (b) when is Sabbath — from the Bible alone and without tradition! and (c) how do you pronounce the 22 Hebrew alphabets when you don’t have the Oral Traditions? And how to identify and pronounce each of the vowels with the 22 alphabets?

But did you notice one other point in this statement by the “Chief Rabbi”? When the Pharisees tried to argue with the Sadducees based purely on the written Word of God, they couldn’t succeed. Did you notice this? What does this tell you?

It tells you that about 2000 years ago already the Sadducees, the keepers of the Temple Scriptures, the ones who were of the priestly line and who were responsible for all of the Temple services, DID NOT ACCEPT THAT “SHABBATH” MEANS “WEEKS”! And those learned Sadducees knew more about the Hebrew language than all of the “noted Biblical scholars and Bible dictionaries” of today put together! It makes clear that the Pharisees tried to attach the meaning of “weeks” to the word “shabbath” and that the Sadducees did not accept this as valid. (When Should We Keep Pentecost?)

Yes, the above were very true, but not all, especially this line: “When the Pharisees tried to argue with the Sadducees based purely on the written Word of God, they couldn’t succeed.” On almost every issue they debated frequently. And it was left for Christ to judge. John the Baptist prophesied about judgement time and the Messiah:

Luke 3:16 John answered, saying unto them all, “I indeed baptize you with water; but One mightier than I cometh, the straps of whose shoes I am not worthy to unloose. He shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost and with FIRE. 17 His winnowing fan is in His hand, and He will thoroughly purge His floor and will gather the wheat into His garner; but the chaff He will burn with FIRE unquenchable.”

Let’s get back to a basic parable where the tares and wheat were growing together:

Matthew 13:1 The same day, Jesus went out of the house and sat by the seaside. 2 And great multitudes were gathered together unto Him, so that He went into a boat and sat, and the whole multitude stood on the shore . . .
24 Another parable put He forth before them, saying, “The Kingdom of Heaven is likened unto a man who sowed good seed in his field; 25 but while men slept, his enemy came and sowed tares among the wheat, and went his way. 26 But when the blades had sprung up and brought forth fruit, then appeared the tares also.
27 So the servants of the householder came and said unto him, ‘Sir, didst not thou sow good seed in thy field? From whence then hath come the tares?’ 28 He said unto them, ‘An enemy hath done this.’ The servants said unto him, ‘Wilt thou then have us go and gather them up?’
29 But he said, ‘Nay, lest while ye gather up the tares, ye root up also the wheat with them. 30 Let both grow together until the harvest, and in the time of harvest I will say to the reapers, “Gather ye together first the tares, and bind them in bundles to burn them, but gather the wheat into my barn.”’”

As the Pharisees and Sadducees thrived together for a designated time only, and forty years later, it was decision time, judgement time — to put the tares into the fire. And who were those that met their fate during the fire and brimstones of the 70 AD inferno? The Sadducees and their allies — the Herodians and Boethusians. The Essenes (who practiced an anti-Sanhedrin calendar), all ended in the inferno. Every Blind Guide ignores the significance of the destruction of Judea in the 70 AD conflagration BECAUSE THEY ARE BLIND!

How did the Sadducees and Essenes just “DISAPPEARED” from this 70 AD INFERNO?

Shall a trumpet be blown in the city, and the people not be afraid? Shall there be evil in a city, and the LORD hath not done it?

~~~~~

A Critique of Wade Cox’s Wave Sheaf Offering

•April 5, 2021 • Leave a Comment

A Critique of Wade Cox’s Wave Sheaf Offering 

Christian Churches of God
PO Box 369,
Woden ACT 2606,
Australia

Wade Cox

The Wave Sheaf OfferingNo. 106b (2014-05-18; 2020-04-11)

How to Count Pentecost — Feast of Harvest (Exodus 23:16), Feast of Weeks (Exodus 34:22), Feast of Firstfruits (Numbers 28:26), Festival of Fifty Days, Heptad, Feast of Heptads, Festival of Seven Heptads, Wave Sheaf, Omer

Image result for Wave Sheaf
Wave sheaf – is this the Omer?

This is a Critique of Wade Cox’s  Wave Sheaf Offering, Pentecost, the Feast of Weeks, or the Feast of Firstfruits. The counting to Pentecost is an extremely important subject and we’ll follow it in every point discussed. Besides the main issue of how to count is what exactly is the Wave Sheaf Offering. Are they the firstfruits, and what do the firstfruits mean if they are. Are they humans or is it Christ?

Quoted are Wade Cox’s transcript “Wave Sheaf Offering” posted on his website. They are indented, in PINK, and in block form so as to differentiate his from other comments. The Scriptures, in RED, must be our primary focus and guide, and sometimes the Scriptures, which include the Septuagint and the Targum, say things very different from what we think!

And so with that in mind, we’ll begin:

The Wave-Sheaf Offering needs to be kept in order to understand the full implications of Christ’s sacrifice and the power that he was given in terms of his resurrection from the dead. The Wave-Sheaf Offering is an ancient requirement of Israel within the Torah. The ordinance is found in Leviticus 23:9-14, and also in Exodus 29:24-25 and other texts. It is poorly understood by scholars and ignored by many (e.g. it is absent as a category in Schürer’s index in The History of the Jewish People in the Age of Jesus Christ). It is often thought of as being “done away,” as a part of the sacrificial aspects of the law. So why is it to be kept now? It is a day that commences the count to Pentecost. Whilst we don’t physically wave the sheaf of grain, we celebrate the acceptance of Christ before the Throne of God. In the same way we no longer sacrifice the animals at the Temple but we celebrate the actual days on which they were made. The days themselves represent aspects of the Plan of God fulfilled in Christ and the elect. The Wave Sheaf in like manner represents part of the Plan and part of the Story. (The Wave Sheaf Offering No. 106b)

At least it is “poorly understood by scholars” rather than misunderstood by the CoG Communities. First, let’s understand what the “wave sheaf” is. The original word is omer which is rendered “wave sheaf” in English translations, which gives a wrong impression. The “wave sheaf” as firstfruits, must be reaped by three persons, each with his own sickle and basket, until each had his basket full. They then brought them to the courtyard of the Temple to be thrashed and parched and then to go through ALL of the thirteen sieves until it became very clean, and only one tenth the measure of the ‘omer’ were selected.

Second, the barley grain was cut by three people appointed by the Sanhedrin at the end of the “Sabbath.” The heads of the grain were then separated from the stalks and the removed grain was thrashed, parched with fire and ground into flour in the courtyard of the Temple that night. 

The resultant flour were then sieved through thirteenth sieves until it was pure and of very fine texture. Only ten percent of an ephah were chosen while the other ninety percent were rejected, From this, now known as the omer, oil and frankincense were added, which is a weight of about 1.6 kg (the same weight the children of Israel were allowed to collect for their morning manna Exodus 16:16), was taken and then offered the next morning at about 9 AM, the time of the morning sacrifice in the Temple as a special annual offering waved before God. 

The omer, composed originally of MANY individual grains, offered together, is the wave offering. If the omer represents Christ, why was it composed of many stalks of grains? It should be of one grain. Further if the omer represents Christ, why the “he lamb” in Leviticus 23:12, which definitely represents Christ, wasn’t waved:

Leviticus 23:9 And the Lord spoke unto Moses, saying,

10 “Speak unto the children of Israel and say unto them: ‘When ye 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.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.

12 And ye shall offer that day when ye wave the sheaf a he lamb without blemish of the first year for a burnt offering unto the Lord.

This Lamb wasn’t waved! If waving represents acceptance by God in heaven, why this Lamb wasn’t waved?

Leviticus 23:19 Then ye shall sacrifice one kid of the goats for a sin offering, and two lambs of the first year for a sacrifice of peace offerings. 20 And the priest shall wave them with the bread of the firstfruits for a wave offering before the Lord with the two lambs; they shall be holy to the Lord for the priest.

Weird! If on the day of Pentecost, waving represents acceptance by God in heaven, why weren’t the “one kid of the goats” “two lambs of the first year,” and these that wave “with the bread of firstfruits” gone into heaven and be similarly accepted by God in Heaven?:

These end-time CoG Communities have produced many insightful interpretations of the Scriptures, but they are Blind Guides! In the first instance, they didn’t even notice the Lamb there! It is nice to believe that Christ was waved before the Throne of God, but where are the evidence? Not a single one is given. 

It is a mandatory ordinance associated with the Feast of the Passover and controls both the timing of Pentecost and the consumption of the new harvests (Lev. 23:9-14). To put it in its modern perspective, we should look at the significance of the timing of Christ’s death.

The sign of Jonah had to be completed in all of its phases. The only sign that was given to Christ’s ministry was the sign of Jonah. Christ said that the function of three days and three nights in the belly of the whale or great fish of Jonah was the same as his ministry, and he would be three days and three nights in the belly of the Earth (as the great fish). The sign of Jonah is much more than three days and three nights in the belly of the fish. The sign of Jonah was related to the ministry to Nineveh, where there were three days consisting of one day’s journey into Nineveh  and two days preaching to Nineveh, and 40 days for repentance. Nineveh repented. Judah was given approximately three years under John the Baptist and the Messiah, and then 40 years to repent. Nineveh repented but Judah did not repent. (The Wave Sheaf Offering No. 106b)

What a great observation! Yes, many living in Jerusalem and surrounding areas were burnt off like Sodom and Gomorroh, others limped off but survived. Interesting. Who were those who escaped from the fire and brimstones of Sodom and Gomorroh? 

Let’s get back to a basic parable, a parable where the tares and wheat were growing together:

Matthew 13:24 Another parable put He (Jesus) forth before them, saying, “The Kingdom of Heaven is likened unto a man who sowed good seed in his field; 25 but while men slept, his enemy came and sowed tares among the wheat, and went his way. 26 But when the blades had sprung up and brought forth fruit, then appeared the tares also.

27 So the servants of the householder came and said unto him, ‘Sir, didst not thou sow good seed in thy field? From whence then hath come the tares?’ 28 He said unto them, ‘An enemy hath done this.’ The servants said unto him, ‘Wilt thou then have us go and gather them up?’

29 But he said, ‘Nay, lest while ye gather up the tares, ye root up also the wheat with them. 30 Let both grow together until the harvest, and in the time of harvest I will say to the reapers, “Gather ye together first the tares, and bind them in bundles to burn them, but gather the wheat into my barn.”’”

So as the wheat and tares grew together, the Pharisees and Sadducees thrived together. And forty years later, it was decision time — to put the tares into the fire. And who were those that met their fate during the fire and brimstones of the 70 AD inferno? Everyone seems to understate the significance of the destruction of Judea in 70 AD. Nobody equates it to sin as it was in Sodom and Gomorrah’s “a little taste of God’s judgment” in the words of Australian Israel Folau. John the Baptist had given a stern warning about another consuming fire recorded in Luke 3:16. John warns with a prophetic taint:

Image result for jerusalem on fire ad 70

“I indeed baptize you with water; but One mightier than I cometh, the straps of whose shoes I am not worthy to unloose. He shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost and with FIRE. 17 His winnowing fan is in His hand, and He will thoroughly purge His floor and will gather the wheat into His garner; but the chaff He will burn with FIRE unquenchable.” Luke 3:16

Who died in the AD 70 inferno some 40 years after these warnings were given? Those burnt into ashes like Sodom and Gomorroh were the Sadducees and their allies — the Herodians and Boethusians. The Essenes (who practiced an anti-Sanhedrin calendar), also ended in the inferno. The Blind put no significance to John’s warning because they are blind. And why is it so coincidental that the end-time Laodicean church has been described as “NAKED” “WRETCHED” and “BLIND”? If the AD 70 inferno were only a microcosm, how would the CoG Communities, who have similar misguided beliefs as the Sadducees and Boethusians, escape John’s warning during the Last Days?

The Wave-Sheaf Offering seems to have been waved at 9 a.m. on the Sunday morning within the Feast of the Passover. The general wave offering was brought by the worshipper and made in conjunction with the priest (Ex. 29:24-25). We know that the Samaritans and the Sadducees kept a Sunday Wave Sheaf and a Sunday Pentecost. That is an important factor in history. The Jews do not keep the Wave Sheaf because they keep a Sivan 6 Pentecost, which came from the traditions of the Pharisees in rabbinical Judaism after the Temple was destroyed. We know that the Samaritans keep the 14th and 15th and the concept of the Wave Sheaf, and count the Omer from Sunday within the Feast. So the Temple period structure and right throughout, including the Samaritans, always kept Pentecost on a Sunday. The early Church kept Pentecost on a Sunday. Only the Jews kept a Sivan 6, and only after the Temple was destroyed. (The Wave Sheaf Offering No. 106b)

See the source image

Reading the above, the smell of a rat is all over the place. In this paragraph alone, the word “Sunday” is mentioned six times. Today, it’s no coincidence as the CoG Communities cuddle with the Samaritan Sun-worship. When Daniel prayed his knee bent and he turned his face toward Jerusalem (Daniel 6:10). But for the Samaritans, they turn their faces toward Mount Garizim whenever they pray, except during Passover on top of Mount Garizim, where, exactly at sunset, they turn West to pray at the setting down of the sun. The Samaritans would deny they were sun worshippers, nor idol worshippers, but they are. Even while these people were pretending to worship the LORD, and made unto themselves from the lowest of them priests of the high places, they were in fact, serving their idols. TO THIS DAY (and even in 2021), their children and grandchildren continue to do as their fathers did (II Kings 17:29-41). 

“So these nations feared the Lord, and also served their graven images, both their children and their children’s children: as did their fathers, so do they unto this day,” (II Kings 17:41)

Hayyim Schauss points out that these Samaritans would go up to Mount Gerizim every year, and half an hour before sunset, as the 14th of Nisan draws to a close, their high priest leads the assembly in silent prayer:

Exactly at sunset the High Priest faces WESTWARD and reads that portion of the Pentateuch which orders the slaughtering of the Pesach sacrifice. About twelve or fourteen of the younger Samaritans busy themselves, meanwhile, with preparing the sacrificial animals. They form a circle about the pit of fire, holding the lambs between their legs, and as the High Priest utters the words, ‘And the whole assembly of the congregation of Israel shall kill it at dusk,’ they utter a benediction and throw the lambs, throats to the pit, where they are slaughtered by two ritual slaughterers. Six or seven sheep are slaughtered” (The Jewish Festivals, pg 63).

Their priest taught them a schismatic system to worship the Lord, the system imposed by King Jeroboam to wean his people away from the worship of the Jews and the Temple at Jerusalem.  “Nevertheless, each national group made its own gods in the several towns where they settled, and set them up in the shrines the people of Samaria had made at the high places. . . . They pretended to worship the Lord as they appointed all sorts of people to officiate as priests in the shrines at their high places. Indeed, they were actually serving their own gods in accordance with the customs of the nations from which they had been brought from. 

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Look at the photo above — the Samaritans are SUN worshippers. After sending the Northern Kingdom into exile in 721 BC, the king of the Assyrians brought the pagans from Babylon — Cuthah, Avah, Emath, and Sepharvaim — and placed them in Samaria. Today their modern followers would deny that they are SUN-worshipers and they would lie through their teeth that their beliefs are based in the Scriptures. So let’s continue with Wade Cox’s Samaritan version of his Wave Sheaf Offering:

Modern Judaism does not do this now. Pentecost was then counted from this day. This (the Sadduccean) position was held up until the destruction of the Temple in 70 CE (see F. F. Bruce, art. ‘Calendar’, The Illustrated Bible Dictionary, ed. by J. D. Douglas and N. Hillyer, IVP, 1980, Vol. 1, p. 225). After the dispersion, the Pharisaic position became the accepted practice, and the conflict is noted in the Mishnah (Hag. 2:4). After the dispersion, the Wave Sheaf was understood to be waved on the first Holy Day of Unleavened Bread, and Pentecost was then determined to fall on a fixed date, namely, Sivan 6. This practice was not followed during the days of the Temple priesthood and up until 70 CE and, hence, at the time of Christ. (The Wave Sheaf Offering No. 106b)

There are many problems with the above paragraph, but I’ll only mention the main ones. 

(a). The Targum could be traced all the way back much earlier than AD 70 to Ezra (480 BC – 440 BC). And the Targum states clearly that the counting is the morrow after the first festal day of Pascha:

And he shall uplift the sheaf before the Lord to be accepted for you. AFTER THE FIRST FESTAL DAY OF PASCHA (OR, THE DAY AFTER THE FEAST‑DAY OF PASCHA) on the day on which you elevate the sheaf, you shall make (the sacrifice of a lamb of the year, unblemished a burnt offering unto the Name of the Lord . . . 15 and number to you AFTER THE FIRST FEAST DAY OF PASCHA . .  .  (Leviticus 23:11-15, Targum)

(b) The Targum is like a mirror. When placed against the end-time CoG Communities, it reflects their nakedness. When the Jews returned from their exile in Babylon in the 6th century BC, most of them couldn’t speak Hebrew; they spoke Aramaic, but they still retained the Torah, which were read to them in Hebrew.

But the people couldn’t understand Hebrew. Something had to be done so that the people would understand God and His Word. The sages, starting with Ezra, found an answer. After hearing Ezra read a few verses of the Torah scroll in Hebrew, either he or other Levites translated it to Aramaic, hence it set the stage for the Aramaic version of the Bible, called a Targum, which simply means translation. Hence the Targum is an entrenched translation of the Hebrew Bible, first orally by Ezra for the returning Exiles in Judea, and was written or compiled from the Second Temple period until the later part of the first millennium.

“The Levites … instructed the people in the Law while the people were standing there.  They read from the Book of the Law of God, making it clear and giving the meaning so that the people understood what was being read.” (Nehemiah 8:7–8)

Nehemiah 8:7 NKJV says “and the Levites helped the people to understand the Law; and the people stood in their place. 8 So they read distinctly from the book, in the Law of God; and they gave the sense, and helped them to understand the reading.”

The Targum translates and explains the counting of the wave sheaf from the Hebrew in Leviticus 23 into the vernacular, in a very simple language, and in verse 15 only the blind couldn’t see: “And number to you after the first feast day of pascha from the day when you brought the sheaf for the elevation, seven weeks; complete they shall be. 16 Until the day after the seventh week you shall number fifty days, and shall offer a mincha of the new bread unto the Name of the Lord.”

This unique truth is captured by the GOD’S WORD Translation and the Wycliffe Bible (WYC)

Leviticus 23:15 “Count seven full weeks from the day after Passover (the day you bring the bundle of grain as an offering presented to the Lord) 16 until the day after the seventh week. This is a total of fifty days. Then bring a new grain offering to the Lord. GOD’S WORD Translation (GW) 

Leviticus 23:15 Therefore ye shall number from the tother day of the sabbath, in which ye offered handfuls of the first fruits, seven full weeks, (And so ye shall count seven full weeks from the day after the sabbath, that is, after the Passover, in which ye offered the sheaves as a special gift,) (Wycliffe Bible)

These “seven weeks” do not have the same connotation as “seven Sabbaths” but have the same meaning as the “seven weeks” of Deuteronomy 16:9. They are both seven blocks of seven days, or heptad. So what is a heptad?  A heptad is a BLOCK OF SEVEN — either days or weeks — and a heptad can start on any day of the year.

We will get the timing of the Wave-Sheaf Offering from Leviticus 23.

Leviticus 23:9-14   And the LORD said to Moses, 10 “Say to the people of Israel, When you come into the land which I give you and reap its harvest, you shall bring the sheaf of the first fruits of your harvest to the priest; 11 and he shall wave the sheaf before the LORD, that you may find acceptance; on the morrow after the sabbath the priest shall wave it. 12 And on the day when you wave the sheaf, you shall offer a male lamb a year old without blemish as a burnt offering to the LORD. 13 And the cereal offering with it shall be two tenths of an ephah of fine flour mixed with oil, to be offered by fire to the LORD, a pleasing odor; and the drink offering with it shall be of wine, a fourth of a hin. 14 And you shall eat neither bread nor grain parched or fresh until this same day, until you have brought the offering of your God: it is a statute for ever throughout your generations in all your dwellings. (RSV)

As we have established at the beginning, the expression “wave sheaf” is also a mistranslation. It is “omer” in Hebrew, a finished product, not some freshly cut grains from the field. Secondly, the “wave sheaf” is made of MANY grains from a BUNDLE of barley plants? Of the bundle of grains only about ten percent made it to the end. Old and frankincense were added. Now known as the omer, it represents human beings, that humans need to go through numerous trials and testings, to be acceptable before God. The priest represents Christ, who mediates before us. The omer as firstfruits have to go through ALL the thirteen sieves. Only humans were required to go through numerous trials and testings, many fell by the waysides. The role of the Messiah was on a much higher plane — He was the sacrifice, the Passover sacrifice.

Jesus told many parables, but not a single one indicates he was a product of the land, a firstfruits. He was always the Lamb, he was the “he Lamb” in Leviticus 23:12. And in parables, He was the husbandman, a landowner, the good shepherd, etc, but never was He portrayed as a firstfruits or produce of the land.

The offering of the he-lamb and the waving of the first-fruits symbolised Christ as a first-fruit ascending into Heaven to his Father. Compare the passage concerning Mary Magdalene. In John 20:1,14-18, we find that Christ had waited that night. He was resurrected and he was waiting to ascend to the Father, and that ascension took place on the Sunday morning. The resurrection did not take place on Sunday morning at all; it took place on the Saturday night, and Christ waited until Sunday morning in readiness to ascend into Heaven. (The Wave Sheaf Offering No. 106b)

Did Christ go up to heaven and saw the Father? When Moses went up to Mt Sinai to meet God, his face shone brightly when he returned, but why wasn’t Christ’s face shone after meeting His Father, neither his clothes glistened in white? Was His seeing God inferior to that of Moses? Weird! 

See the source image

But when Jesus met His Father in heaven nothing happened.
No earthquake, no lightning, nothing!
When He returned, His disciples should have fallen backward.
“What happened?”
Not only did His face shone, but His whole garment too.
“Why is your face blaring at us?”
“Help! I can’t see, I’m blind.”
“I just came back from seeing my Father face-to-face. Don’t be afraid.”
No, nothing happened like this as Moses experienced in Exodus 34.

Also when there is a prophecy fulfilled, there is normally something supernatural accompanying it — lightning, earthquakes, darkening of days, etc. But there was none! Nothing! Something is obviously wrong! What happened? Was Jesus’ acceptance postponed? Or not accepted? Or being delayed?

John 20:15-17 Jesus said to her, “Woman, why are you weeping? Whom do you seek?” Supposing him to be the gardener, she said to him, “Sir, if you have carried him away, tell me where you have laid him, and I will take him away.” 16 Jesus said to her, “Mary.” She turned and said to him in Hebrew, “Rab-bo’ni!” (which means Teacher). 17 Jesus said to her, “Do not hold me, for I have not yet ascended to the Father; but go to my brethren and say to them, I am ascending to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God.” (RSV)

What would happen if Magdalene had touched Him? Would He be defiled? But numerous other translations say she held Him. Yes, she held Him.

Adam Clarke adds:

“Verse 17:  Touch me not. . . . Cling not to me.  APROMAI  has this sense in Job 31:7, where the Septuagint uses it for the Hebrew dabak, which signifies to cleave, cling, stick, or be glued to. . . . our Lord seems to have spoken to her to this effect:  ‘Spend no longer time with me now: I am not going immediately to heaven — you will have several opportunities of seeing me again:  but go and tell my disciples, that I am, by and by, to ascend to my Father and God, who is your Father and God also.  Therefore, let them take courage.'”

Cambridge Greek writes:

17. μή μ. ἄπτου. This is a passage of well-known difficulty . . . the full meaning will therefore be, Do not continue holding Me, or simply, hold Me not. The old and often interrupted earthly intercourse is over; the new and continuous intercourse with the Ascended Lord has not yet begun: but that Presence will be granted soon, and there will be no need of straining eyes and clinging hands to realise it.

See the source image

Matthew 28:9 And as they (Mary Magdalene and other women) went to tell His disciples, behold, Jesus met them, saying, “All hail.” And they came, and held Him by the feet, and worshiped Him. — That means, they had all touched Him. But Jesus’ face didn’t shine like Moses! What happened? Moses needed a veil to cover his face when he returned to face his people (Exodus 34:35). 

And again, Jesus’ face didn’t radiate when two disciples met Him on the road:

Luke 24:13 And behold, two of them were going that same day to a village called Emmaus, which was from Jerusalem about seven miles. 14 And they talked together of all these things which had happened.
15 And it came to pass that while they communed and reasoned together, Jesus Himself drew near and went with them.
16 But their eyes were held, that they should not know Him.
17 And He said unto them, “What manner of communications are these that ye have one to another as ye walk and are sad?”
18 And one of them, whose name was Cleopas, answering said unto Him, “Art thou only a stranger in Jerusalem, and hast not known the things which have come to pass there these days?”
19 And He said unto them, “What things?” And they said unto Him, “Concerning Jesus of Nazareth, who was a prophet mighty in deed and word before God and all the people;
20 and how the chief priests and our rulers delivered Him to be condemned to death and have crucified Him.
21 But we trusted that it had been He who should have redeemed Israel. And besides all this, today is the third day since these things were done.
22 Yea, and certain women of our company, who were early at the sepulcher, made us astonished.
23 And when they found not His body, they came saying that they had also seen a vision of angels, who said that He was alive.
24 And certain of those who were with us went to the sepulcher and found it even so as the women had said, but Him they saw not.”
25 Then He said unto them, “O fools, and slow of heart to believe all that the prophets have spoken!
26 Ought not Christ to have suffered these things and to enter into His glory?”
27 And beginning with Moses and all the prophets, He expounded unto them in all the Scriptures the things concerning Himself.
28 And they drew nigh unto the village whither they were going, and He made as though He would have gone further.
29 But they constrained Him, saying, “Abide with us, for it is toward evening and the day is far spent.” And He went in to tarry with them.
30 And it came to pass, as He sat at meat with them, He took bread and blessed it, and broke and gave it to them.
31 And their eyes were opened and they knew Him. And He vanished out of their sight.
32 And they said to one another, “Did not our hearts burn within us while He talked with us on the way and while He opened to us the Scriptures?”
33 And they rose up that same hour and returned to Jerusalem, and found the eleven gathered together and those who were with them,
34 saying, “The Lord has risen indeed and hath appeared to Simon!”
35 And they told what things were done on the way, and how He was known to them in the breaking of bread.

It would be a great opportunity for a risen Christ to tell His disciples He had been accepted by the Father, but He didn’t! Maybe He forgot!

The Septuagint, one that the NT writers used most often, is also a great testimony to the truth. It translates “on the morrow after the Sabbath” in the KJV as “on the morrow of the first day.” The first day is, of course, the first day of the Days of Unleavened Bread. And the Targum states it even clearer. TO IGNORE ANY OF THESE SCRIPTURES AS TESTIMONIES TO THE TRUTH IS TO IGNORE TO OUR DOWNFALL!

~~~~~

A Critique of Fred Coulter’s Pentecost 

•April 2, 2021 • Leave a Comment

A Critique of Fred Coulter’s Pentecost 

Count to  Pentecost — From the Morrow After Which Sabbath by Fred R. Coulter, 2014 (36 pages).

Fred Coulter — How to count Pentecost

Pentecost, Feast of Weeks, Feast of Firstfruits, Wave Sheaf, Omer

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Wave sheaf – is this the Omer?

This is a Critique of Fred Coulter’s Pentecost, the Feast of Weeks, or the Feast of Firstfruits. The Counting to Pentecost is an extremely interesting subject and we’ll follow it in every issue discussed. Besides the main issue of how to count is when to start counting towards Pentecost. Included are some issues on the Passover, which are also critiqued, but for the most part, it has been critiqued earlier on Fred Coulter’s Passover series (see A Study Index of Fred Coulter’s Passover).

Quoted are Fred’s work from a PDF version from his website. They are indented, in PINK, and in block form so as to differentiate his from other comments. The Scriptures, in RED, must be our primary focus and guide, and sometimes the Scriptures, which include the Septuagint and the Targum, say things very different from what we think! 

And so with that in mind, we’ll begin:

Chapter One

In The Holy Bible In Its Original Order, these verses have been properly translated so that it is clear and the wave sheaf offering day itself was, in fact, the 1st day of the 50-day count to Pentecost. It reads: “Speak to the children of Israel and say to them, ‘When you have come into the land which I give to you, and shall reap the harvest of it, then you shall bring the premier sheaf of the firstfruits of your harvest to the priest. And he shall wave the sheaf before the LORD to be accepted for you. On the next day after the Sabbath the priest shall wave it…. And you shall count to you beginning with the next day after the Sabbath, beginning with the day that you brought the sheaf of the wave offering; seven Sabbaths shall be complete; even unto the day after the seventh Sabbath you shall number fifty days. And you shall proclaim on the same day that it may be a holy convocation’ ” (Lev. 23:10-11, 15-16). (Count To Pentecost From the Morrow After Which Sabbath by Fred R. Coulter, pg 1)

Fred Coulter would be using his translation, The Holy Bible In Its Original Order, or the “Faithful” Version, but unsure of his Hebrew proficiency I’ll compare his translation with KJV, KJ21, the Masoretic version, the Septuagint, or the Targum.

The Pharisaic Method of Counting to Pentecost

When the Pharisaic Jews reinterpreted God’s commands for the wave sheaf offering, they began the count to Pentecost from the day after the annual Sabbath of Nisan 15, which may fall on any day of the week, instead of counting from the first day of the week—the day after the weekly Sabbath—during the Feast of Unleavened Bread. This change was apparently made to solve the problem caused by the elimination of Nisan 14 as the Passover day. Since the Pharisaic Jews had ceased to observe Nisan 14 as part of the spring festival season, they could not use that day in determining the correct day for the wave sheaf offering. Thus, when Nisan 14 fell on a weekly Sabbath, the only weekly Sabbath they could use [to count] was the following weekly Sabbath which fell on Nisan 21, the annual holy day which ends the Feast of Unleavened Bread. But if the wave sheaf were offered “on the day after” the last day of the Feast of Unleavened Bread, the Wave Sheaf Day would fall on the first day of the week outside the Feast of Unleavened Bread. The Wave Sheaf Day must always fall within the seven days of the Feast of Unleavened Bread. It is contrary to Scripture to place the Wave Sheaf Day outside of the Feast of Unleavened Bread. (Pg 4)

Fred Coulter’s use of the word “reinterpreted” is not just being misguided for himself but misleading to those who follow him. He has already made his conclusion before he has even started. What really happened is that where the Scriptures in the Torah appear contrary, they need to be read and interpreted taking all related Scriptures as a whole. The existence of an oral law was deduced from the character of the written law as well as of the other books of the Torah and the Prophets.

Many of the Mosaic laws are worded very briefly, and some are almost unintelligible without certain presuppositions which were assumed to be generally held, like circumcision (where to cut); and a few other examples that seem to contradict one another, for example, on the Sabbath day “let no man go out of his place” Exodus 16:29 and Leviticus 23:3, where ye are to have “an holy convocation.” If the written Torah is regarded as a complete code, it must be assumed that on certain points some of the laws supplement the others, so that the written law might be interpreted in a way that makes sense as a whole. It makes no sense to attend Sabbath and yet not allowed to leave ones home. So a Sabbath boundary was established and defined roughly as a distance of about 2000 cubits (about 1km) as measured from the edge of a settlement to all directions as one could venture out of his/her home, known as a Biblical mile.

Second, the Pharisaic Jews had never ceased to observe Nisan 14 as part of the spring festival season. This is a blatant lie. In fact the Pharisees used the spring festival, the “morrow after the sabbath” which is the wave sheaf to count toward the Feast of Weeks. That is, all the annual feast days are related. The weekly Sabbath runs on its own and has no relation to the annual Holy Days, but the Sadducees had made them seem so.

Third, Fred Coulter has got confused with his own writings. The second half of the above quote (starting with “Thus” to the end) is a problem about counting toward Pentecost “when Nisan 14” fell the weekly Sabbath. When the high day falls on the weekly Sabbath it becomes a problem, because then which weekly Sabbath is to start the count, since there are two weekly Sabbaths that qualify. The problem is that different CoGs have different interpretations. This problem is only confined within those who use the Sadducaic interpretation. But for the Pharisees and Rabbinics, when the weekly Sabbath fell during the Jewish calendar has no bearing in determining which day to start counting Pentecost.

To solve this problem, the Pharisaic Jews decided to reinterpret the meaning of “the morrow after the [weekly 7th day] Sabbath.” They transferred the meaning of the word ha shabbat—“the Sabbath” in Leviticus 23:11—from the weekly Sabbath to the first holy day of the Feast of Unleavened Bread, Nisan 15. It is true that Nisan 15 is an annual Sabbath, shabbat, but ha shabbat which always refers to the weekly Sabbath. According to this Jewish reinterpretation, the day after Nisan 15 is Nisan 16, which to them became “the morrow after the Sabbath.” As a result, the Pharisaic Jews always begin their count to Pentecost with Nisan 16—regardless of the day of the week on which it falls. (Pg 4-5)

Abraham Geiger - New World Encyclopedia
 Abraham Geiger (1810 – 1874)

Again, the Pharisees didn’t “reinterpreted” God’s commands for the wave sheaf offering in any of their writings as Fred Coulter alleges. The Samaritans were the ones to reinterpret the Scriptures, though it was first started by King Jeroboam of the Northern Kingdom, spearheaded by those with the Birthrights — Ephraim and Manasseh. The Rabbinics have their Scepter, their Oral Law which were written in the Talmud.

Fred’s assertions are gathered mostly from the Jewish Reform Movement writers who were keened to avoid the “bondage of Judaism.” Started by Abraham Geiger (1810 – 1874) in Germany, they succumb to the Samaritan narratives in how the Torah should be interpreted. These Reformers believe in “a process of constant evolution” and “rejects any fixed, permanent set of beliefs, laws or practices.” They stated that the old mechanisms of religious interpretation were obsolete and sought a more coherent ideological framework to justify innovations in the liturgy and religious practice.

The Septuagint, one that the NT writers most often used, translates “the day after the sabbath” as “on the morrow of the first day.” Is this “first day” the weekly sabbath? Obviously not. It is the first day of the Days of Unleavened Bread. If we follow the Saddusaic reasoning, then the counting of the omer would begin on Monday, the day after “the first day” i.e. Sunday. 

The Hebrew translators of the Septuagint knew that the omer counting began after the first Day of Unleavened Bread on the 16th of Nisan. Most New Testament writers had relied much on the Septuagint when quoting the Old Testament, and is a great testimony to clarify “the morrow after the sabbath” to mean the first Days of Unleavened Bread. Hence the count is always on the 16th of Nisan.

Besides the Masoretic Text and the Septuagint, another source of our Scriptures is the Targum. And note the Targum portion in Leviticus 23:9-16 is even more clear:

And the Lord spake with Mosheh, saying: 10 Speak with the sons of Israel, and say to them: When you have entered into the land which I give you, and you reap the harvest, you shall bring the sheaf of the first fruits of your harvest unto the priest; 11-13 And he shall uplift the sheaf before the Lord to be accepted for you. AFTER THE FIRST FESTAL DAY OF PASCHA (OR, THE DAY AFTER THE FEAST‑DAY OF PASCHA) on the day on which you elevate the sheaf, you shall make (the sacrifice of a lamb of the year, unblemished a burnt offering unto the Name of the Lord . . . 

15 AND NUMBER TO YOU AFTER THE FIRST FEAST DAY OF PASCHA, from the day when you brought the sheaf for the elevation, seven weeks; complete they shall be.16 Until the day after the seventh week you shall number fifty days, and shall offer a mincha of the new bread unto the Name of the Lord. (Leviticus 23:10-16, Targum)

The Targum, a translation and interpretation started by Ezra for the returning Jewish exiles, makes it absolutely explicit. The Aramaic interpretation confirms the Septuagint translation “on the morrow of the first day” as “on the morrow after the first day,” which is the sixteenth. Have anyone wonder why the end-time church is described as “wretched” and “blind” and “naked”? 

In ancient times, not all Jews followed the Pharisaical method of counting to Pentecost. The Jewish sects known as the Essenes and the Sadducees used different methods. The Essenes were an ascetic sect that combined Judaism with pagan sun worship and lived in monastic religious communities. Because of this strange mixture of sun worship and Torah law, they always counted Pentecost improperly. They reckoned the last holy day of the Feast of Unleavened Bread, Nisan 21, as the Sabbath for beginning the count. As a result, the first day of their count was always Nisan 22—the day after the last day of the Feast of Unleavened Bread. Because they began their count on Nisan 22, their Pentecost always fell on the fixed date of Sivan 13. (Pg 5-6)

Who Were the Essenes? - Biblical Archaeology Society

The Essenes were indeed sun-worshippers. This Qumran community has their own 364 day solar (and no regards to the moon) calendar which were totally at odds with the calendrics of the Sanhedrin. Their sacred year always began on the vernal (spring) equinox and is, by definition, Wednesday (because God Created the “lights in the firmament” for “signs and seasons” on the 4th Day), 1st day of the 1st month (Nisan or Abib). Consequently, the Essene Passover will always begin at 6 PM Tuesday, 13 days later (Nisan 14). The key point being Essene Passover always began “Tuesday” evening, 13 days after the vernal equinox. To outsiders, the Essenes would appear to observe the vernal equinox and (regardless of whatever the previous day was) declare that day to be Wednesday 1 Nisan, their New Year.

Interpreting their calendar from the Book of Jubilees 6:1-38, their 12 months were either 30 (for 8 months) or 31 days (for 4 months). Meaning, they didn’t follow the phases of the moon. Essenes also celebrated each Equinox and Solstice on the first day of those months (the 1st, 4th, 7th and 10th months).

The Essenes calendar had a year of 364 days. The first day of the first month always begins at sunset on Tuesday evening following the vernal equinox. Their counting — counted from the first Sunday after the Feast of Unleavened Bread — the offering of the wave sheaf (Leviticus 23:11) always fell on Sunday the 26th of their first month. Consequently after 50 days the day of Pentecost is set on Sivan 15 (not 13th as Fred quoted above, a show of his shabby research), and is always on a Sunday in their third month. 

While the Pharisees and the Essenes based their counts on the holy days, which were annual Sabbaths, the Sadducees followed the biblical injunction to begin to count to Pentecost “beginning with the next day after the weekly Sabbath. The priests and the high priests who were in charge of the temple during Jesus’ physical life were Sadducees. They did not set a fixed date for Pentecost because they based their count on the weekly cycle, as God had commanded. When a weekly Sabbath fell on any of the first six days of Unleavened Bread, they began counting to Pentecost from the day after that weekly Sabbath—the first day of the week. But a problem arose in years when the weekly Sabbath fell on the last day of Unleavened Bread. In the following chapter, we will examine this problem and learn why “the day after the Sabbath” is always the first day of the week during the Feast of Unleavened Bread. (Pg 6)

Josephus, the first century Jewish historian, was himself a priest and a Pharisee. In his Antiquities of the Jews, he informs us that the Pharisees were the dominant religious party in Judaea during the time of Christ, and that they controlled the worship services. 

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Now, for the Pharisees, they live meanly, and despise delicacies in diet; and they follow the conduct of reason; and what that prescribes to them as good for them they do; and they think they ought earnestly to strive to observe reason’s dictates for practice. They also pay a respect to such as are in years . . .  on account of which doctrines they are able greatly to persuade the body of the people; and whatsoever they do about Divine worship, prayers, and sacrifices, they perform them according to their direction (Ant 18,3).

The common people followed the Pharisees. And although the Sadducees were occupying the upper stratum of the Jewish aristocracy, they were few and unable and unwilling to carry out their own beliefs in the Temple service, but to carry out “the notions of the Pharisees”:

But the doctrine of the Sadducees is this: That souls die with the bodies; nor do they regard the observation of any thing besides what the law enjoins them; for they think it an instance of virtue to dispute with those teachers of philosophy whom they frequent: but this doctrine is received but by a few, yet by those still of the greatest dignity. But they are able to do almost nothing of themselves; for when they become magistrates, as they are unwillingly and by force sometimes obliged to be, they addicted themselves to the notions of the Pharisees, because the multitude would not otherwise bear them. (Ant 18,4)

The Unger’s Bible Dictionary tells us further political-religious amalgamation called the Sadducees:

“Their political supremacy was, however, of no long duration. Greatly as the spiritual power of the Pharisees had increased, the Sadducean aristocracy was able to keep at the helm in politics. The price at which the Sadducees had to secure themselves power at this later period was indeed a high one, for they were IN THEIR OFFICIAL ACTIONS TO ACCOMMODATE THEMSELVES TO PHARISAIC VIEWS. With the fall of the Jewish state the Sadducees altogether disappear from history. Their strong point was politics. When deprived of this their last hour had struck. While the Pharisaic party only gained more strength, only obtained more absolute rule over the Jewish people in consequence of the collapse of political affairs, the very ground on which they stood was cut away from the Sadducees” (“Sadducees,” pg 954).

The Talmud records such an instance, when a Sadducee attempted to circumvent a procedural ruling of the Pharisees concerning the high priest entering the Holy of Holies and offering incense. The Talmud shows that the Pharisees came to require that a sitting high priest who was a Sadducee give an OATH that he would perform the ceremony according to Pharisaical teaching. 

         Says the Talmud:

“And why do they require an oath of him?  Because of the Boethusians [a family from Alexandra installed by King Herod as high priest, subsequently becoming a close ally to the Herodians and the elitist Sadducees], who said: let him cense from outside and let him enter from inside. We are told of one who did so, and when he came out, someone said to his father: ‘Though ye have taught this all your lives, ye have never done so until this man came and did it.’ The other replied: ‘Though we have taught so all our lives, we have done as the hakhamim [Pharisees] willed and I wonder if this man will live long.’ It is said that there were no easy days until he died; and some said that worms came out of  his nose” (Jerusalem Talmud, Yoma I,39a).

High priests, showing the ephod and linen robes - Stock Image - C042/7458 -  Science Photo Library

Although the High Priests were often from the Sadducees, they were under the authority and supervision of the Pharisees and were rigorously taught and trained and required to perform every act of worship according to the dictates of the Pharisees. The people feared that if the High Priest offended the Most High in any way, while in the Holy of Holies, he might never come out alive again. Therefore a rope was tied to his ankle, so that just in case something went wrong, and he stayed in the Holy of Holies much too long, they could pull him out with the rope! 

And finally, the Sadducees were all dead from the AD 70 inferno: John the Baptist warned in Matthew 3:11 “I indeed baptize you with water unto repentance, but He that cometh after me is mightier than I, whose shoes I am not worthy to bear. He shall baptize you with the Holy Spirit and with FIRE.” 

If the AD 70 inferno is a microcosm for the CoG Communities of the Great Tribulation to come, what would stop these resurfaced “Sadducees” from disappearing into another end-time inferno?

Shall a trumpet be blown in the city, and the people not be afraid? Shall there be evil in a city, and the LORD hath not done it? Amos 3:6

Chapter Two

Like the Jewish sects of old, Christians today, hold differing interpretations of God’s instructions for counting to Pentecost. While most follow the scriptural injunction to count beginning the next day after the weekly Sabbath, sometimes there is disagreement as to WHICH weekly Sabbath is the correct Sabbath. (From the Morrow After Which Sabbath by Fred R. Coulter, pg 7)

This is very true, which weekly Sabbath, one is as good as the other. In singling out one, we read all the human reasoning above, but there is not a single scripture to back up any statement. This is only a doctrine of man. The real problem is that there are over 50 weekly sabbaths during the year, why choose one instead of another? 

This conflict of opinion is greatest in years when the Passover day—Nisan 14—falls on the weekly Sabbath. When this occurs, the first holy day of the Feast of Unleavened Bread— Nisan 15—falls on Sunday, the first day of the week. When the first day of the Feast of Unleavened Bread falls on Sunday, the seventh day of the feast falls on the next weekly Sabbath. In this sequence of days, the only weekly Sabbath during the Feast of Unleavened Bread is the last day of the feast—which would cause “the day after the Sabbath” to fall outside the feast. Therefore, the critical connection that God established between the Wave Sheaf Day and the Feast of Unleavened Bread is severed. Yet some Christians follow this practice because they believe that the Wave Sheaf Day must always follow the weekly Sabbath that falls during the 7 day Feast of Unleavened Bread. (Pg 7)

Again, this is a typical doctrine of man, and what they do year after year becomes a tradition, not a single Scripture is quoted to back up any statement. Outside of the written word of God, men wonder with all sorts of new ideas. Beginning with Jeroboam, they started with changing the feast days, with two different places of worship, but proclaimed the same old maxim: “Behold, these are your gods, O Israel, who brought you up out of the land of Egypt.”

When we understand the full meaning of the wave sheaf offering, all confusion concerning the determination of the Wave Sheaf Day is eliminated. The offering of the wave sheaf in Old Testament times on the first day of the week during the Feast of Unleavened Bread foreshadowed the acceptance of Jesus Christ by God the Father as the First of the firstfruits after His resurrection from the dead. Thus, in order to understand the ultimate fulfillment of the wave sheaf offering, we must go to the New Testament. (Pg 7)

Although the New Testament could add further meaning, the people during Old Testament times should be able to understand how to count during their days, rather than waiting one and a half thousand years later. During Ezra’s time, the returning Jewish exiles understood this ambiguity when their Aramaic interpretation confirms the Septuagint translation “on the morrow of the first day,” as the day “after the first day of Pascha.” Why are the end-time churches so cocky to think they are so much better than Ezra when these end-timers are described as “wretched” “blind” and “naked”?

When we accept this biblical truth, we are acknowledging the true Wave Sheaf, Jesus Christ, Who ascended to God the Father and was accepted on that day. No other day can commemorate His fulfillment of the offering of the wave sheaf. Some Christians have not understood this truth because they were taught that the Wave Sheaf Day must follow the weekly Sabbath which falls during the Feast of Unleavened Bread. (Pg 9)

Most in the CoG Communities believe that the wave sheaf represents Christ. But this is too simplistic on several fronts. First Christ is always represented by the Lamb. In the most critical Scripture, the lamb is mentioned in Leviticus 23 but most have chosen to ignore its presence:

Leviticus 23:11 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. 12 And ye shall offer that day when ye wave the sheaf A HE LAMB without blemish of the first year for a burnt offering unto the Lord.

Second, there are numerous problems to identify Christ as the “wave sheaf” above. If the wave sheaf represents Christ, then what did the “he lamb” represent in Leviticus 23:12?

And if this he lamb represents Christ, then why was this he lamb wasn’t waved?

. . . and if waving means going up to heaven and back, then why the 3000 on Pentecost (Acts 2) didn’t similarly go up to heaven as they were also waved (Leviticus 23:20), each should be warning the others “don’t touch me” along the way up and back from heaven on that day of Pentecost, wouldn’t they?

William Tyndale Valued The Bible—Excerpt | JW.ORG Videos
William Tyndale (1494 – 1536)

Lastly if that he-Lamb were to represent Christ, which it is, then the wave sheaf must be representing something else, the human saints. The “wave sheaf” is made of MANY grains from a BUNDLE of barley grains. This could only represent human beings, rather than Christ, and that humans need to go through numerous trials and testings, to be acceptable before God. The high priest represents Christ, who does the wavings and mediates for us.

Before we start, as good an intention William Tyndale may have, “wave sheaf” is also a mistranslation, so is “firstfruits” plural. It is “omer” in Hebrew, a finished product (grains that had been thrashed, dried and roasted, and only a tenth part taken), now a tenth of this is called the omer and given the the priest, who laced it with oil and frankincense before waving it before the altar, not some freshly cut grains from the field, which is misleading. A leading figure in the Protestant Reformation, Tyndale had his translations heavily influenced by the works of Erasmus of Rotterdam and Martin Luther i.e. anti-Jewish and biased toward Catholic and Protestant dogma. His work was later plagiarised for subsequent English translations, including the Great Bible, the Bishops’ Bible and in 1611, by the 47 scholars who produced the King James Bible.

This is from the Jewish Encyclopedia

Manner of Waving the Omer.

After the grain had been gathered it was brought to the courtyard of the Temple, where, it was first thrashed and then parched (dried and roasted over a fire). The grain was ground into coarse meal and then sifted through thirteen sieves until it became very clean, after which the tenth part was taken, the measure of the ‘omer, and given to the priest. The priest proceeded with the ‘omer as with any other meal-offering: he poured oil and frankincense over the meal, “waved” it, and then burned a handful of it on the altar; the remainder was eaten by the priests (Men. vi. 4). The “waving” was done in the following way: The offering was placed on the extended hands of the priest, who moved them backward and forward and then upward and downward. As soon as the ‘omer ceremony was completed the people of Jerusalem were permitted to eat of the newly harvested grain; people of towns far from Jerusalem might not do so until after noon, when it was certain that the ceremony at Jerusalem had been gathered (Men. vi. 7).

The “wave sheaf” as firstfruits, must be reaped by three persons, each with his own sickle and basket, until each had his basket full. They then brought them to the courtyard of the Temple to be thrashed and parched and then to go through ALL of the thirteen sieves until it became very clean, and only one tenth the measure of the ‘omer’ were selected. 

Only humans were required to go through numerous trials and testings. Only ten percent of an ephah (about 40 litres or 9 gallons) or about 1.5 to 1.8 kilo in weight, were chosen while the other ninety percent were rejected, but could be redeemed and eaten even by laymen; these ninety percent, so to speak, fell by the wayside. 

Thus the “wave sheaf” analogy doesn’t fit the role of the Messiah where ninety percent were rejected. Leviticus 27:32: “a tenth shall be holy unto the Lord.” Our messiah has a far higher role; He was the sacrificial lamb, unblemished. His death at 3PM at Calgary was accepted immediately when thunder and earthquake displayed God’s eminence, and this lamb wasn’t waved.

The New Testament reveals the fulfillment of the things pertaining to Jesus Christ which were prophesied in the Old Testament. When we understand the New Testament fulfillment of the wave sheaf offering by Jesus Christ, we can understand why God commanded that the first of the firstfruits, the premier sheaf, must be waved and accepted during the Feast of Unleavened Bread. (Pg 8) 

The firstfruits are better explained in Revelation 14:1 And I looked, and, lo, a Lamb stood on the mount Sion, and with him hundred forty and four thousand, having his Father’s name written in their foreheads. . . 4 These are they which were not defiled with women; for they are virgins. These are they which follow the Lamb whithersoever he goeth. These were redeemed from among men, being the firstfruits (G536 aparchē) unto God and to the Lamb.

Here, as in Leviticus 23:11-12, the “firstfruits” or “wave sheaf” (omer) and the Lamb are shown to be TWO DIFFERENT entities.

Chapter Three

The account of the original Passover in the book of Exodus makes it clear that the Passover was both killed and eaten on the 14th day of the month. . . The lambs were roasted and eaten that same night, and any remains were burned before the morning of the 14th day. (From the Morrow After Which Sabbath, pg 11)

Passover is a sacrifice, an event, not a day. The Scriptures references of Passover as the sacrificial lamb are being made as follows:

(a) ”to kill the Passover” — Exodus 12:21, II Chronicles 35:6;
(b) “to sacrifice the Passover” — Deuteronomy 16:2;
(c) “to roast the Passover” — II Chronicles 35:13.
(d) “to eat the Passover”— Exodus 12:43;

Passover isn’t a day; it’s a sacrifice. You couldn’t kill a day, you couldn’t sacrifice a day; neither could you roast nor eat a day! Coulter’s quote above is contrary to what the Targum says, which translates and explains the ordinances of the Passover from the Hebrew in Exodus 12:8 into the vernacular, in a very simple language that the people could understand: “And you shall eat the flesh on that night, the fifteenth of Nisan . . .

In another way of saying: When the Exiles returned to Jerusalem, the Law was read by Ezra, verse by verse, and each verse was followed by a recitation by the Levites in the Aramaic language. 

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Ezra with the Exiles

Nehemiah 8:8 So they read in the book, in the law of God, distinctly, and gave the sense and caused them to understand the reading. (Targum)

John Gill comments on the above “they first read it in Hebrew, and then translated it into Chaldee, that the people might better understand it, being just come out of Babylon . . . not hereby how to read it, but chiefly to understand what was read, that they might clearly know their duty to God and men.” The action of Ezra narrated in Nehemiah 8:8 implied not only the reading of the Law, but also the interpretation of its language — its translation in fact from Hebrew to Aramaic, and that, further, this practice was long followed in all the synagogues among the returning Exiles in Judea. And they understand that the flesh eaten on that Passover night, was the fifteenth of Nisan.

The account of the original Passover in the book of Exodus makes it clear that the Passover was both killed and eaten on the 14th day of the month. God commanded the children of Israel to kill the Passover lambs on the 14th at ben ha arbayim, or “between the two evenings” (Ex. 12:6). Other passages make it absolutely clear that this Hebrew term refers to the beginning of the 14th—after ba erev, or the sunset of the 13th. (Pg 11)

MAGIC! According to Fred Coulter, ben ha arbayim comes AFTER ba erev. If his junky theory is correct, then two lambs would be needed to be killed for the Passover, one for ben ha arbayim (Exodus 12:6) and the other to satisfy ba erev (Deuteronomy 16:6). One lamb definitely couldn’t fulfil two sacrifices. Fred Coulter’s analysis can only add confusion to more confusion. His definitions for ba·erev and ben ha arbayim are both sleights of hand! Suddenly from nowhere, you see two pigeons, out of the hands of Simon Magus. His non-thinking faithfuls would always admire his skills with veneration and mesmerization!

For the rest of chapter 3 (pages 11-17; and again from chapter 4, pages 18-20), Fred went on to explain Matthew 26:17; Mark 14:12; Luke 22:17.

Matthew 26:17 Now the first day (G4413 protos) of the Feast of Unleavened Bread the disciples came to Jesus, saying unto him, Where wilt thou that we prepare for thee to eat the Passover?

The natural reading of this verse seems to suggest the disciples asked Jesus where to keep the Passover when Passover was already over. But G4413 protos could be translated as ‘a time before’ as in John 1:15 John bare witness of him, and cried, saying, This was he of whom I spake, He that cometh after me is preferred before me: for he was before G4413 me.

Thus Matthew 26:17 could be translated as: “Now before the Days of Unleavened Bread have arrived, the disciples came to Jesus, asking, Where shall we prepare for thee to eat the Passover?”  — the intention to eat the Passover was there, but the actual eating was yet to happen.   

Mark 14:12 And the first (G4413 protos) day (G2250 hemera) of Unleavened Bread, when they killed the Passover, his disciples said unto him, Where wilt thou that we go and prepare that thou mayest eat the Passover?

Same translation problem here. G2250 hemera could be translated as ‘a period of time or days’ as in Matthew 2:1 Now when Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judaea in the days G2250 of Herod the king, behold, there came wise men from the east to Jerusalem.

So Mark 14:12 could well be translated “Now before the Days of Unleavened Bread, when they killed the Passover, his disciples said unto him, Where wilt thou that we go and prepare that thou mayest eat the Passover?” — the unleavened bread period was the time they killed the lamb. Yes the context of this question indicates that the time asked could be a couple of days before the fourteenth when they killed the lamb. And yes, the Passover was a composite festival in the NT (as well as the Old), also called Days of Unleavened Bread when the lamb was to be killed.

Same thing with Luke 22:7 Then came (G2064 erchomai) the day (G2250 hemera) of Unleavened Bread when the Passover lambs had to be sacrificed. 8 Jesus said to Peter and John, “Go and prepare the Passover meal for us to eat.”

G2064 erchomai could be translated “to come” or “to go” as in Matthew 2:2, 8. In Matthew 14:29 And he said, Come. G2064 And when Peter was come down out of the ship, he walked on the water, to go G2064 to Jesus.

Thus Luke 22:7 could be translated as “As the Days of Unleavened Bread were approaching when the Passover lambs had to be sacrificed, 8 Jesus said to Peter and John, “Go and prepare the Passover meal for us to eat.”” — again, the intention to eat the Passover was there, but the actual eating had yet to happen.  

Chapter Four

When we examine all three Gospel records of Jesus’ instructions to His disciples, it is obvious that Jesus kept the domestic Passover on the 14th—“the first day of the unleaveneds.” (Count To Pentecost From the Morrow After Which Sabbath pg 19)

If Jesus and His disciples had kept a “domestic Passover” they would have stayed back in Galilee, in their own homes as in the original Exodus. A “domestic Passover” would have to be kept in their houses “as commanded by God in Exodus 12.” 

See the source image
Foot washing

Notice what Fred Coulter had written in chapter 6 of his book, The Christian Passover:

If the children of Israel had gathered at one place before the Passover, as Josephus pictures, they would not have been in their houses but would have been camping in tents. And if they were in tents, how could they purify their houses with the blood of the lambs? Did they run back to their houses with bowls of blood and sprinkle the blood on the two side posts and lintel, and then frantically return to their tents in Rameses? This ridiculous scenario shows the gross internal contradiction in Josephus’ account. (The Christian Passover Pg 61)

Fred Coulter makes a scene that if the Israelites have to keep the Passover in their houses, they would have to run back from Rameses to Goshen to keep their Passover in their houses. Fast forward to Jesus and His disciples, they would also need to run back from Jerusalem to their houses in Galilee with bowls of blood and sprinkle the blood on the two side posts and lintel to keep it in their Galilean houses. Did they? Is this not ridiculous? Just substitute “Josephus” to “Fred Coulter” above. Blind Guides and WHAT FOLLY, that’s how he concludes about himself:

WHAT FOLLY! What foolishness to accept a traditional belief that directly conflicts with the truth of God’s Word, and to use interpretations of Scripture that promote the false ideas of men! No wonder God says that He entraps the intelligent in the foolishness of their own human wisdom. (ibid pg 61)

Moreover, in Deuteronomy 16:16 it commands “three times in a year shall all thy males appear before the LORD thy God in the place which he shall choose; in the feast of unleavened bread, and in the feast of weeks, and in the feast of tabernacles.” And God had chosen Jerusalem, a Temple-centered place where He had chosen to place His name there.

Again in Chapter 6 of his book, The Christian Passover:

The children of Israel kept the Passover in their houses, just as the Bible records for us. The inspired record in Exodus 12 makes it clear that the children of Israel were not dwelling in tents at Rameses when they kept the Passover. The Hebrew word bayith, which is translated “house” or “houses” in Exodus 12, does not refer to a tent or a temporary dwelling. (ibid pg 62)

There is no question that the children of Israel were in their houses “bayith” when they observed the original Passover in Rameses, but in the New Testament, Jesus and His disciples didn’t keep any Passover back in Galilee. Fred Coulter may have good intentions but he has foolishly made his savor a sinless life unattainable! And if they have to keep it in Jerusalem in houses, tents, or inns it would be a fake domestic Passover. Because Jesus and His disciples lived in Galilee in their houses – “bayith.”

The Gospel accounts do not specify whether the disciples’ preparations included the killing of the Passover lamb. However, since everything was “furnished and ready,” there can be little doubt that the master of the house had already killed the lamb and it was already being roasted by the time Peter and John arrived. In that case, they would have begun setting out the other foods for the meal, making sure that the unleavened bread and wine were ready. They completed whatever was necessary to prepare the Passover meal. Luke records, “Then they went and found everything exactly as He had said to them; and they prepared the Passover” (Luke 22:13). (Count To Pentecost From the Morrow After Which Sabbath pg 20)

The above are all pure speculation. Magic. The master of the house must have killed the lamb early, before the fourteenth, and to sin on behalf of Jesus and His disciples. Ridiculous Bulls!

One of the requirements of partaking Passover is for members of a group of about ten to kill as well as roast the lamb to be eaten. Why would the master of the house roast and had the lamb ready for Jesus and His disciples? He and his family don’t have to kill his lamb for his family? 

But Fred Coulter had unknowingly given warning to himself:

The apostle Peter warned the believers to be on guard against false teachers: “As he has also in all his [Paul’s] epistles, speaking in them concerning these things; in which are some things that are difficult to understand, which the ignorant and unstable are twisting and distorting, as they also twist and distort the rest of the Scriptures, to their own destruction. (The Christian Passover pg 13)

How true it is, that Fred Coulter could be seeing his own destruction, like the AD 70 inferno!

Sound doctrine should be firmly based on Scriptures. Here he is basing his doctrines on pure speculation —  everything is done so that Fred Coulter could deceive his dumb sheep?

Until the destruction of the temple in 70 AD the domestic 14th Passover was apparently the predominant practice. However, after the destruction of the Temple, the Jews observed only a 15th Passover; and thus, only viewed the 14th of Nisan as a preparation day for their traditional Seder meal on the 15th—the first day of the Feast of Unleavened Bread. By replacing the 14th Passover with a traditional Seder meal at the beginning of the 15th, the Jews have changed the original eight-day festival to their own eight day observance ending on the 22nd day of the 1st month. These eight days of are now known to Jews as “the Passover,” rather than as the Feast of Unleavened Bread. (Pg 20-21)

The significance of the destruction of the Temple in 70 AD should not be understated. Because of sin, the Heavenly Overseer of this Universe had destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah during Abraham’s time. The God of this Universe had also destroyed Solomon’s Temple in 587 BC. John the Baptist had given a stern warning about another consuming fire recorded in Luke 3:16 John said unto them:

The Fall of Jerusalem in 70 CE: A Story of Roman Revenge

“I indeed baptize you with water; but One mightier than I cometh, the straps of whose shoes I am not worthy to unloose. He shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost and with FIRE (pyr g4442). 17 His winnowing fan is in His hand, and He will thoroughly purge His floor and will gather the wheat into His garner; but the chaff He will burn with FIRE (pyr g4442) unquenchable.”

When we look back, one cannot avoid concluding that God had given judgement that the Sadducees and the Boethusians were deemed worthy of extinction during the AD 70 inferno like Sodom and Gomorrah. Everything about the Sadducees and the Boethusians were destroyed. A large portion of the Shammai Pharisees also followed suit, only the Hillel branch survived. If the AD 70 inferno were only a microcosm, a foretaste, how would the CoG Communities, who have similar deceptive beliefs as the Sadducees and Boethusians, escape John’s warning during the Last Days? And why is it so coincidental that the end-time Laodicean church was described as “wretched” and “blind” and “naked”? How could these “virgins” escape a coming FIRE?

Shall a trumpet be blown in the city, and the people not be afraid? Shall there be evil in a city, and the LORD hath not done it? Amos 3:6

~~~ CRITIQUE OF FRED COULTER PENTECOST ~~~

THAT NIGHT COULDN’T BE THE FOURTEENTH!

•March 30, 2021 • 1 Comment

THAT NIGHT WHEN CHRIST ATE HIS LAST SUPPER WAS ON THE THIRTEENTH!

THE MISSING HOURS OF CHRIST

This presentation, in detail with all the events leading up to Jesus’ Crucifixion, is to prove that that night Jesus took the Last Supper with His disciples, was the night on the thirteenth of Nisan. 

It is IMPOSSIBLE to be on the fourteenth as the High Priests (Annas and Caiapas), chief priests and other Sadducees were also awaiting to partake their passover, which would be on the night of the Fourteenth. Even these Sadducees refused to enter the Preatorium lest they be defiled and couldn’t take their passover.

There are other reasons for this IMPOSSIBILITY but they are presented along with the events, with timing — hour and day — conveyed in this presentation.

Second, that night when Jesus and His disciple sat down and ate, the Scriptures say it was a supper. Yes, just a supper!

Finally, if that night had been the Passover night, Jesus would have infringed one of the ordinances — that the bones should be burned in the morning (boqer), Exodus 12:10, 22; Numbers 9:12.

“They shall leave none of it [food remains] unto the morning (boqer), nor break any bone of it. According to all the ordinances of the Passover they shall keep it.” Numbers 9:12.

Beside, there were the missing 18 hours that most students of the Gospels missed.

Below are the comprehensive evidence, right from the Scriptures:

Jesus’ Last Hours 

(The Hours Usage are Jewish Reckoning; Usages in Roman Reckoning are AM (Ante Meridiem “before noon”) and PM (Post Meridiem “after noon”). 

Prelude to the Passover

Matthew 26:1 (KJ21) And it came to pass, when Jesus had finished all these sayings, He said unto His disciples,

2 “Ye know that after two days is the Feast of the Passover, and the Son of Man is betrayed to be crucified.”

3 Then the chief priests and the scribes and the elders of the people assembled together unto the palace of the high priest, who was called Caiaphas,

4 and consulted that they might take Jesus by stealth and kill Him.

5 But they said, “Not on the feast day, lest there be an uproar among the people.”

Jesus anointed in Bethany

Matthew 26:6 Now when Jesus was in Bethany in the house of Simon the leper,

7 there came unto Him a woman having an alabaster box of very precious ointment, and poured it on His head as He sat at meat.

8 But when His disciples saw it, they were indignant, saying, “To what purpose is this waste?

9 For this ointment might have been sold for much and given to the poor.”

10 When Jesus perceived this, He said unto them, “Why trouble ye the woman? For she hath wrought a good work upon Me.

11 For ye have the poor always with you, but Me ye have not always.

12 For in that she hath poured this ointment on My body, she did it for My burial.

13 Verily I say unto you, wheresoever this Gospel shall be preached in the whole world, there shall also this, which this woman hath done, be told as a memorial of her.”

Judas promised 30 pieces of silver

Matthew 26:14 Then one of the twelve, called Judas Iscariot, went unto the chief priests

15 and said unto them, “What will ye give me if I will deliver Him unto you?” And they covenanted with him for thirty pieces of silver.

16 And from that time he sought opportunity to betray Him.

Disciples prepared for Passover

Matthew 26:17 Now on the first day (G4413 protos) of the Feast of Unleavened Bread, the disciples came to Jesus, saying unto Him, “Where wilt Thou that we prepare for Thee to eat the Passover?”

— The natural reading of this verse seems to suggest the disciples asked Jesus where to keep the Passover when Passover was already over. But G4413 protos could be translated as ‘a time before’ as in John 1:15 John bare witness of him, and cried, saying, This was he of whom I spake, He that cometh after me is preferred before me: for he was before G4413 me.

Thus Matthew 26:17 could be translated as: “Now before the Days of Unleavened Bread have arrived, the disciples came to Jesus, asking, Where shall we prepare for thee to eat the Passover?” 

 — the intention to eat the Passover was there, but the actual eating was yet to happen.  

18 And He said, “Go into the city to a certain man and say unto him, ‘The Master saith, “My time is at hand; I will keep the Passover at thy house with My disciples.”’”

19 And the disciples did as Jesus had appointed them, and they made ready the Passover.

The Last Supper — 13th Nisan, Monday, Even (6:00 PM)

Luke 22:14 And when the hour had come, He sat down and the twelve apostles with Him.

15 And He said unto them, “With desire I have desired to eat this Passover with you before I suffer” 

If that night was the Passover night, Jesus would had broken one of the ordinances according to Numbers 9:12: “They shall leave none of it [food remains] unto the morning (boqer), nor break any bone of it. According to all the ordinances of the Passover they shall keep it.”

They left early and if Jesus had broken any of the ordinances, the destiny of all humanity would have been flushed down the toilet.

Second, if they had killed the lamb at sunset at 6 PM as the CoG Communities believe, it would be a miracle if they could have the lamb roasted and meal ready before 10 PM, but for this exercise, let’s start at 6 PM when supper was served, because that night could only be the thirteenth.

Taking into consideration a very unusual word for “desire” is epithumia in the Greek, which is something forbidden, perhaps this verse should be translated as: “With fervent desire I have desired to eat this Passover with you before I suffer; but I’m saying to you now, I am forbidden and denied this privilege, and I will no longer eat with you until we’re all in the kingdom of God.” — for a detailed exegesis see endnote.

16 for I say unto you, I will not anymore eat thereof until it be fulfilled in the Kingdom of God.” John 13:1 Now before the Feast of the Passover, when Jesus knew that His hour had come that He should depart out of this world unto the Father, having loved His own who were in the world, He loved them unto the end.

John 13:2 And supper (G1173) being ended, and the devil having now put into the heart of Judas Iscariot, Simon’s son, to betray Him other translations say “during supper.” It was just as a supper as in John 12:2 where Martha and Mary made Him a supper (G1173) in Bethany after raising Lazarus. If that night was a passover why didn’t the Gospel writers say so to differentiate it from other ordinary supper?

3 Jesus, knowing that the Father had given all things into His hands and that He had come from God and was going to God,

Foot washing (only recorded by John) — 13th Nisan, Monday Night (7:30 PM)

John 13:4 rose from supper (G1173) and laid aside His garments, and took a towel and girded Himself.

5 After that He poured water into a basin, and began to wash the disciples’ feet and to wipe them with the towel wherewith He was girded.

Among Eastern people it was customary, before eating, to wash the feet; and to do this, or to bring water for it, was one of the rites of hospitality. See Genesis 18:4; Judges 19:21. The reasons for this were, that they wore “sandals,” which covered only the bottom of the feet, and that when they ate they reclined on couches or sofas. It became therefore necessary that the feet should be washed before food. But here, none of His disciples was willing to play host and doing the act of hospitality, hence Jesus volunteered after supper.

6 Then came He to Simon Peter, and Peter said unto Him, “Lord, dost Thou wash my feet?”

7 Jesus answered and said unto him, “What I do thou knowest not now, but thou shalt know hereafter.”

8 Peter said unto Him, “Thou shalt never wash my feet.” Jesus answered him, “If I wash thee not, thou hast no part with Me.”

9 Simon Peter said unto Him, “Lord, not my feet only, but also my hands and my head.”

See the source image

10 Jesus said to him, “He that is washed needeth not but to wash his feet, but is clean every whit. And ye are clean, but not all.”

11 (For He knew who would betray Him; therefore He said, “Ye are not all clean.”)

12 So after He had washed their feet and had taken His garments and had sat down again, He said unto them, “Know ye what I have done to you?

13 Ye call Me Master and Lord; and ye say well, for so I am.

14 If I then, your Lord and Master, have washed your feet, ye also ought to wash one another’s feet.

15 For I have given you an example, that ye should do as I have done to you.

16 Verily, verily I say unto you, the servant is not greater than his lord, neither he that is sent greater than he that sent him.

17 If ye know these things, happy are ye if ye do them.

Judas left to betray Jesus — 13th Nisan, Monday Night (8:00 PM)

John 13:18 “I speak not of you all. I know whom I have chosen; but that the Scripture may be fulfilled, ‘He that eateth bread with Me hath lifted up his heel against Me.’

19 Now I tell you before it comes that, when it is come to pass, ye may believe that I am He.

20 Verily, verily I say unto you, he that receiveth whomsoever I send, receiveth Me; and he that receiveth Me, receiveth Him that sent Me.”

21 When Jesus had thus said, He was troubled in spirit, and testified and said, “Verily, verily I say unto you that one of you shall betray Me.”

22 Then the disciples looked at one another, not knowing of whom He spoke.

23 Now there was leaning on Jesus’ bosom, one of His disciples, whom Jesus loved.

24 Simon Peter therefore beckoned to him, that he should ask who it should be of whom He spoke.

25 He then, leaning on Jesus’ breast, said unto Him, “Lord, who is it?”

26 Jesus answered, “He it is to whom I shall give a sop when I have dipped it.” And when He had dipped the sop, He gave it to Judas Iscariot, the son of Simon.

27 And after the sop, Satan entered into him. Then Jesus said unto him, “What thou doest, do quickly.”

28 Now no man at the table knew with what intent He spoke this unto him.

29 For some of them thought, because Judas had the money bag, that Jesus had said unto him, “Buy those things that we have need of for the feast,” or that he should give something to the poor. — some of the other disciples thought Judas was taking the money to buy for the feast. This indicates that buying and selling were still going on, which demonstrates that Passover hadn’t arrived yet otherwise everyone would be keeping Passover at home and none would be engaging in commercial activities. Second, if that night were the Passover, the other disciples would be wondering why Judas didn’t wait until morning (boqer) before venturing out of the house (Ex 12:22; Num 9:12); but none did.

30 Judas then, having received the sop, went immediately out. And it was night.

31 Therefore when he had gone out, Jesus said, “Now is the Son of Man glorified, and God is glorified in Him.

32 If God be glorified in Him, God shall also glorify Him in Himself, and shall straightway glorify Him.

Wine and unleavened bread — 13th Nisan, Monday Night (8:00 PM)

Luke 22:17 And He took the cup, and gave thanks and said, “Take this, and divide it among yourselves;

18 for I say unto you, I will not drink of the fruit of the vine until the Kingdom of God shall come.”

19 And He took bread, and gave thanks and broke it and gave it unto them, saying, “This is My body which is given for you. This do in remembrance of Me.”

20 Likewise also He took the cup after supper, saying, “This cup is the new testament in My blood, which is shed for you.

21 But behold, the hand of him that betrayeth Me is with Me on the table.

22 And truly the Son of Man goeth as it was determined; but woe unto that man by whom He is betrayed!”

23 And they began to inquire among themselves which of them it was that should do this thing.

24 And there was also a contention among them, which of them should be accounted the greatest.

25 And He said unto them, “The kings of the Gentiles exercise lordship over them, and they that exercise authority over them are called ‘benefactors.’

26 But ye shall not be so; but he that is greatest among you, let him be as the younger, and he that is chief, as he that doth serve.

27 For who is greater, he that sitteth at meat or he that serveth? Is it not he that sitteth at meat? But I am among you as He that serveth.

28 “Ye are they that have continued with Me in My temptations.

29 And I appoint unto you a Kingdom, as My Father hath appointed unto Me,

30 that ye may eat and drink at My table in My Kingdom, and sit on thrones judging the twelve tribes of Israel.”

A new commandment  13th Nisan, Monday Night (9:00 PM)

John 13:33 Little children, yet a little while I am with you. Ye shall seek Me; and as I said unto the Jews, ‘Whither I go ye cannot come,’ so now say I to you.

34 A new commandment I give unto you: that ye love one another, as I have loved you, that ye also love one another.

35 By this shall all men know that ye are My disciples: if ye have love one for another.”

Prophecy about Peter denying Christ 

Luke 22:31 And the Lord said, “Simon, Simon! Behold, Satan hath desired to have you, that he may sift you as wheat.

32 But I have prayed for thee, that thy faith fail not; and when thou art converted, strengthen thy brethren.”

33 And Peter said unto Him, “Lord, I am ready to go with Thee, both into prison and to death.”

34 And He said, “I tell thee, Peter, the cock shall not crow this day before thou shalt thrice deny that thou knowest Me.”

Christ’s instruction to the disciples  13th Nisan, Monday Night (9:00 PM)

Luke 22:35 And He said unto them, “When I sent you without purse and pack and shoes, lacked ye anything?” And they said, “Nothing.”

36 Then said He unto them, “But now, he that hath a purse, let him take it and likewise his pack; and he that hath no sword, let him sell his garment and buy one.

37 For I say unto you that this that is written must yet be accomplished in Me: ‘And He was reckoned among the transgressors.’ For the things concerning Me have an end.”

38 And they said, “Lord, behold, here are two swords.” And He said unto them, “It is enough.” 

Thomas Coke Commentary on Luke 22:38. Lord, behold, here are two swords.— Our Lord’s disciples, mistaking his meaning about the swords, replied, they had two: the reason why they had any at all, probably, was, that they might defend themselves against robbers in their journey from Galilee and Perea, and from the beasts of prey which in those parts were very frequent and dangerous in the night time: it afterwards appears, that one of these swords was Peter’s. See John 18:10. Our Lord replies to the disciples, “It is enough for weapons of this sort; my chief intent is, to direct you to another kind of defence; even that which arises from piety and faith.” This is strongly intimated by our Lord’s saying that two swords were sufficient; which, it is evident, they could not have been for so many men, had our Lord meant what he said in a literal sense.

They sang a hymn and left 13th Nisan, Monday Night (9:30 PM)

Matthew 26:30 And when they had sung a hymn, they went out unto the Mount of Olives.

One of the Passover ordinances would be broken if that night was a Passover:

“And ye shall let nothing of it remain until the morning (boqer), and that which remaineth of it [food remains] until the morning ye shall burn with fire.” Exodus 12:10

“They shall leave none of it [food remains] unto the morning (boqer), nor break any bone of it. According to all the ordinances of the Passover they shall keep it” Numbers 9:12.

Jesus and His disciples left for the Garden of Gethsemane and according to most timeline it was around 9:00 PM. Further, they left without burning any food remains or the bones, infringing one of the Passover ordinances according to Exodus 12:10, 22; Numbers 9:12. If that night was a Passover night, all our hopes and dreams about eternal life would be flushed down the toilet. OBVIOUSLY IT WASN’T A PASSOVER NIGHT. THANK GOD!

More discourse 13th Nisan, Monday Night (9:30 PM)

John 14:1 “Let not your heart be troubled. Ye believe in God; believe also in Me.

2 In My Father’s house are many mansions; if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you.

3 And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you unto Myself, that where I am, there ye may be also.

4 And whither I go ye know, and the way ye know.”

5 Thomas said unto Him, “Lord, we know not whither Thou goest; and how can we know the way?”

6 Jesus said unto him, “I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life; no man cometh unto the Father, but by Me.

7 If ye had known Me, ye should have known My Father also; and from henceforth ye know Him, and have seen Him.”

8 Philip said unto Him, “Lord, show us the Father, and it sufficeth us.”

9 Jesus said unto him, “Have I been so long a time with you, and yet hast thou not known Me, Philip? He that hath seen Me hath seen the Father; and how sayest thou then, ‘Show us the Father’?

10 Believest thou not that I am in the Father, and the Father in Me? The words that I speak unto you I speak not of Myself; but the Father that dwelleth in Me, He doeth the works.

11 Believe Me that I am in the Father, and the Father in Me; or else believe Me for the very works’ sake.

12 Verily, verily I say unto you, he that believeth in Me, the works that I do he shall do also; and greater works than these shall he do, because I go unto My Father.

13 And whatsoever ye shall ask in My name, that will I do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son.

14 If ye shall ask anything in My name, I will do it.

15 “If ye love Me, keep My commandments.

16 And I will pray the Father, and He shall give you another Comforter, that He may abide with you forever”

17 even the Spirit of Truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth Him not, neither knoweth Him. But ye know Him, for He dwelleth with you, and shall be in you.

18 “I will not leave you comfortless; I will come to you.

19 Yet a little while and the world seeth Me no more, but ye see Me. Because I live, ye shall live also.

20 At that day ye shall know that I am in My Father, and you in Me, and I in you.

21 He that hath My commandments and keepeth them, he it is that loveth Me; and he that loveth Me shall be loved by My Father, and I will love him and will manifest Myself to him.”

22 Judas (not Iscariot) said unto Him, “Lord, how is it that Thou wilt manifest Thyself unto us, and not unto the world?”

23 Jesus answered and said unto him, “If a man love Me, he will keep My words; and My Father will love him, and We will come unto him and make Our abode with him.

24 He that loveth Me not, keepeth not My sayings. And the Word which you hear is not Mine, but the Father’s who sent Me.

25 “These things have I spoken unto you, being yet present with you.

26 But the Comforter, who is the Holy Ghost whom the Father will send in My name, He shall teach you all things and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you.

27 “Peace I leave with you; My peace I give unto you, not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.

28 Ye have heard how I said unto you, ‘I go away and come again unto you.’ If ye loved Me, ye would rejoice because I said, ‘I go unto the Father,’ for My Father is greater than I.

29 And now I have told you before it comes to pass, that when it is come to pass, ye might believe.

30 “Hereafter I will not talk much with you, for the prince of this world cometh, and hath nothing in Me.

31 But that the world may know that I love the Father, as the Father gave Me commandment, even so I do. Arise, let us go hence.

More discourse — 13th Nisan, Monday Night (9:30 PM)

John 15:1 “I am the true vine, and My Father is the husbandman.

2 Every branch in Me that beareth not fruit He taketh away; and every branch that beareth fruit, He purgeth it, that it may bring forth more fruit.

3 Now ye are clean through the Word which I have spoken unto you.

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is pictures-of-jesus-gethsemane-958589-wallpaper.jpg

4 “Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, unless it abide in the vine, no more can ye, unless ye abide in Me.

5 “I am the vine, ye are the branches. He that abideth in Me and I in Him, the same bringeth forth much fruit, for without Me ye can do nothing.

6 If a man abides not in Me, he is cast forth as a branch and is withered; and men gather them and cast them into the fire, and they are burned.

7 If ye abide in Me, and My words abide in you, ye shall ask what ye will, and it shall be done unto you.

8 Herein is My Father glorified, that ye bear much fruit; so shall ye be My disciples.

9 “As the Father hath loved Me, so have I loved you. Continue ye in My love.

10 If ye keep My commandments, ye shall abide in My love, even as I have kept My Father’s commandments, and abide in His love.

11 These things have I spoken unto you, that My joy might remain in you, and that your joy might be full.

12 “This is My commandment: that ye love one another, as I have loved you.

13 Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.

14 Ye are My friends if ye do whatsoever I command you.

15 Henceforth I call you not servants, for the servant knoweth not what his lord doeth; but I have called you friends, for all things that I have heard of My Father, I have made known unto you.

16 Ye have not chosen Me, but I have chosen you and ordained you, that ye should go and bring forth fruit and that your fruit should remain, that whatsoever ye shall ask of the Father in My name, He may give it to you.

17 These things I command you, that ye love one another.

18 “If the world hates you, ye know that it hated Me before it hated you.

19 If ye were of the world, the world would love his own; but because ye are not of the world, but I have chosen you out of the world, therefore the world hateth you.

20 Remember the word that I said unto you: ‘The servant is not greater than his lord.’ If they have persecuted Me, they will also persecute you; if they have kept My saying, they will keep yours also.

21 But all these things will they do unto you for My name’s sake, because they know not Him that sent Me.

22 If I had not come and spoken unto them, they would not have sin, but now they have no cloak for their sin.

23 He that hateth Me hateth My Father also.

24 If I had not done among them the works which no other man did, they would not have had sin; but now they have both seen and hated both Me and My Father.

25 But this cometh to pass, that the word might be fulfilled that is written in their law: ‘They hated Me without a cause.’

26 “But when the Comforter is come, whom I will send unto you from the Father, even the Spirit of Truth who proceedeth from the Father, He shall testify of Me.

27 And ye also shall bear witness, because ye have been with Me from the beginning.

More discourse — 13th Nisan, Monday Night (9:30 PM)

John 16:1 “These things have I spoken unto you, that ye should not lose faith.

2 They shall put you out of the synagogues; yea, the time cometh that whosoever killeth you will think that he doeth God service.

3 And these things will they do unto you, because they have not known the Father, nor Me.

4 But these things have I told you, that when the time shall come, ye may remember that I told you of them. “And these things I said not unto you at the beginning, because I was with you.

5 But now I go My way to Him that sent Me, and none of you asketh Me, ‘Whither goest Thou?’

6 But because I have said these things unto you, sorrow hath filled your heart.

7 Nevertheless I tell you the truth. It is expedient for you that I go away, for if I go not away, the Comforter will not come unto you; but if I depart, I will send Him unto you.

8 And when He is come, He will reprove the world concerning sin, and concerning righteousness, and concerning judgment:

9 concerning sin, because they believe not in Me;

10 concerning righteousness, because I go to My Father and ye see Me no more;

11 concerning judgment, because the prince of this world is judged.

12 “I have yet many things to say unto you, but ye cannot bear them now.

13 However when He, the Spirit of Truth, is come, He will guide you into all truth; for He shall not speak from Himself, but whatsoever He shall hear, that shall He speak; and He will show you things to come.

14 He shall glorify Me, for He shall receive of Mine, and shall show it unto you.

15 All things that the Father hath are Mine; therefore I said that He shall take of Mine, and shall show it unto you.

16 A little while, and ye shall not see Me; and again a little while, and ye shall see Me, because I go to the Father.”

17 Then said some of His disciples among themselves, “What is this that He saith unto us, ‘A little while, and ye shall not see Me; and again a little while, and ye shall see Me,’ and, ‘because I go to the Father’?”

18 They said therefore, “What is this that He saith, ‘A little while’? We cannot tell what He saith.”

19 Now Jesus knew that they were desirous of asking Him, and said unto them, “Do ye inquire among yourselves of what I said, ‘A little while, and ye shall not see Me; and again a little while, and ye shall see Me’?

20 Verily, verily I say unto you that ye shall weep and lament, but the world shall rejoice; and ye shall be sorrowful, but your sorrow shall be turned into joy.

21 A woman when she is in travail hath sorrow, because her hour is come; but as soon as she is delivered of the child, she remembereth no more the anguish, for the joy that a man is born into the world. 

22 And ye now therefore have sorrow; but I will see you again, and your heart shall rejoice, and your joy no man taketh from you.

23 And in that day ye shall ask Me nothing. Verily, verily I say unto you, whatsoever ye shall ask the Father in My name, He will give it to you.

24 Hitherto have ye asked nothing in My name. Ask and ye shall receive, that your joy may be full.

25 “These things have I spoken unto you in proverbs; but the time cometh when I shall no more speak unto you in proverbs, but I shall show you plainly of the Father.

26 In that day ye shall ask in My name, and I say not unto you that I will pray the Father for you;

27 for the Father Himself loveth you, because ye have loved Me and have believed that I came out from God.

28 I came forth from the Father, and am come into the world. Again, I leave the world and go to the Father.”

29 His disciples said unto Him, “Lo, now speakest Thou plainly and speakest no proverb.

30 Now are we sure that Thou knowest all things and needest not that any man should ask Thee. By this we believe that Thou camest forth from God.”

31 Jesus answered them, “Do ye now believe?

32 Behold, the hour cometh, yea, is now come, that ye shall be scattered, every man to his own, and shall leave Me alone. And yet I am not alone, because the Father is with Me.

33 These things I have spoken unto you, that in Me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation, but be of good cheer: I have overcome the world.”

In Gethsemene to pray — 13th Nisan, Monday Night (10:00 PM)

Luke 22:39 And He came out and went, as He was wont, to the Mount of Olives; and His disciples also followed Him.

Jesus’ ‘inner circle’

Mark 14:33 And He took with Him Peter and James and John, and began to be sore amazed and very heavy of heart. — These three disciples were there during Christ’s time of prayers and distress. They were Christ’s inner circle.

34 And He said unto them, “My soul is exceeding sorrowful unto death; tarry ye here, and watch.”

Jesus prayed for 3 hours — 13th Nisan, Monday Night (10:00 PM)

Matthew 26:39 And He went a little farther, and fell on His face and prayed, saying, “O My Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from Me; nevertheless, not as I will, but as Thou wilt.”

40 And He came unto the disciples and found them asleep, and said unto Peter, “What, could ye not watch with Me one hour?

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41 Watch and pray, that ye enter not into temptation. The spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.”

42 He went away again the second time and prayed, saying, “O My Father, if this cup may not pass away from Me, unless I drink it, Thy will be done.”

43 And He came and found them asleep again, for their eyes were heavy.

44 And He left them and went away again, and prayed a third time, saying the same words.

Up to this point, Jesus still hoped and prayed that this cup could be taken away from Him, so He could take the Passover with His disciples. But it wasn’t granted.

Second, He sweated profusely, His blood falling to the ground, not so much as death awaited Him, but the process of tortues under the Roman soldiers that most people would fear of. Surely He knew this in advance.  

And being in agony, He prayed more earnestly, and His sweat was, as it were, great drops of blood falling down to the ground (Luke 22:44).

Then He said unto them, “My soul is exceeding sorrowful, even unto death; tarry ye here and watch with Me.” And He went a little farther, and fell on His face and prayed, saying, “O My Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from Me; nevertheless, not as I will, but as Thou wilt” (Matthew 26:38-39). Christ wanted two things that night; (a) to partake the upcoming Passover; (b) avoiding this cup of suffering. Here, for three hours, He was still pleading, but both requests were denied.

The Lord’s prayer — 13th Nisan, Tuesday Early Morning (1:00 AM)

John 17:1 These words spoke Jesus and lifted up His eyes to Heaven and said, “Father, the hour is come. Glorify Thy Son, that Thy Son also may glorify Thee,

2 as Thou hast given Him power over all flesh, that He should give eternal life to as many as Thou hast given Him.

3 And this is life eternal: that they might know Thee, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom Thou hast sent.

4 I have glorified Thee on the earth; I have finished the work which Thou gavest Me to do.

5 And now, O Father, glorify Thou Me with Thine own Self with the glory which I had with Thee before the world was.

6 “I have manifested Thy name unto the men whom Thou gavest Me out of the world. Thine they were, and Thou gavest them to Me, and they have kept Thy Word.

7 Now they have known that all things whatsoever Thou hast given Me are of Thee.

8 For I have given unto them the Words which Thou gavest Me; and they have received them and have known surely that I came out from Thee, and they have believed that Thou didst send Me.

9 I pray for them; I pray not for the world, but for them whom Thou hast given Me, for they are Thine.

10 And all Mine are Thine, and Thine are Mine, and I am glorified in them.

11 And now I am no more in the world, but these are in the world, and I come to Thee. Holy Father, keep through Thine own name those whom Thou hast given Me, that they may be one, as We are.

12 While I was with them in the world, I kept them in Thy name. Those that Thou gavest Me I have kept, and none of them is lost, but the son of perdition, that the Scripture might be fulfilled.

13 “And now come I to Thee, and these things I speak in the world, that they might have My joy fulfilled in themselves.

14 I have given them Thy Word, and the world hath hated them, because they are not of the world, even as I am not of the world.

15 I pray not that Thou shouldest take them out of the world, but that Thou shouldest keep them from the evil.

16 They are not of the world, even as I am not of the world.

17 Sanctify them through Thy truth: Thy Word is truth.

18 As Thou hast sent Me into the world, even so have I also sent them into the world.

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19 And for their sakes I sanctify Myself, that they also might be sanctified through the truth.

20 “Neither pray I for these alone, but for them also who shall believe in Me through their word,

21 that they all may be one, as Thou, Father, art in Me and I in Thee, that they also may be one in Us, that the world may believe that Thou hast sent Me.

22 And the glory which Thou gavest Me I have given them, that they may be one, even as We are one:

23 I in them and Thou in Me, that they may be made perfect in one, and that the world may know that Thou hast sent Me and hast loved them, as Thou hast loved Me.

24 “Father, I will that they also, whom Thou hast given Me, be with Me where I am, that they may behold My glory which Thou hast given Me; for Thou loved Me before the foundation of the world.

25 “O righteous Father, the world hath not known Thee, but I have known Thee, and these have known that Thou hast sent Me.

26 And I have declared unto them Thy name, and will declare it, that the love wherewith Thou hast loved Me may be in them, and I in them.”

Judas’s betrayal — 13th Nisan, Tuesday Early Morning (1:30 AM)

John 18:1 When Jesus had spoken these words, He went forth with His disciples over the Brook Kidron, where was a garden into which He entered with His disciples.

2 And Judas also, who betrayed Him, knew the place, for Jesus often resorted thither with His disciples.

3 Judas then, having received a band of men and officers from the chief priests and Pharisees, came thither with lanterns and torches and weapons.

The high priests, Annas and Caiaphas, were known to be Sadducees and according to their beliefs they would be having their passover that night, if that night was on the fourteenth. They would be roasting their lambs for 4 to 5 hours and eating them and it would be extremely unlikely they had planned anything else on such a revered night.

Later these same high priests were said to refuse entering the praetorium, lest they be defiled to partake their passover, signifying that night could only be the thirteenth!

4 Jesus therefore, knowing all things that should come upon Him, went forth and said unto them, “Whom seek ye?”

5 They answered Him, “Jesus of Nazareth.” Jesus said unto them, “I am He.” And Judas also, who betrayed Him, stood with them.

6 As soon then as He had said unto them, “I am He,” they went backward and fell to the ground.

7 Then He asked them again, “Whom seek ye?” And they said, “Jesus of Nazareth.”

8 Jesus answered, “I have told you that I am He. If therefore ye seek Me, let these go their way,”

9 that the saying might be fulfilled which He spoke, “Of those that Thou gavest Me, have I lost none.”

Healing of High Priest servant’s ear — 13th Nisan, Tuesday Early Morning (2:00 AM)

John 18:10 Then Simon Peter, having a sword, drew it and smote the high priest’s servant and cut off his right ear. The servant’s name was Malchus.

11 Then said Jesus unto Peter, “Put up thy sword into the sheath. The cup which My Father hath given Me, shall I not drink it?” — Peter was there during Christ’s time of distress

12 Then the band and the captain and officers of the Jews took Jesus and bound Him,

Disciples deserted Him — 13th Nisan, Tuesday Early Morning (2:00 AM)

Mark 14:50 And they all forsook Him and fled.

51 And there followed Him a certain young man, having a linen cloth cast about his naked body; and the young men laid hold on him. — this disciple during Christ’s trial was probably James. 

Acts 12:2 He (Governor Herod) killed James the brother of John with the sword,

52 And he left the linen cloth and fled from them naked.

They led Him to Annas — 13th Nisan, Tuesday Early Morning (2.30 AM)

John 18:13 and led Him away to Annas first, for he was the father-in-law of Caiaphas, who was the high priest that same year.

14 Now it was Caiaphas who gave counsel to the Jews that it was expedient that one man should die for the people.

Peter followed near a fire — 13th Nisan, Tuesday Morning (3:00 AM)

John 18:15 And Simon Peter followed Jesus, and so did another disciple. That disciple was known unto the high priest, and went in with Jesus into the palace of the high priest. — John, shy to identify himself, was another disciple during Christ’s time of distress. 

16 But Peter stood at the door outside. Then the other disciple, who was known unto the high priest, went out and spoke unto her who kept the door, and brought in Peter.

17 Then the damsel who kept the door said unto Peter, “Art not thou also one of this man’s disciples?” He said, “I am not.”

18 And the servants and officers stood there, who had made a fire of coals, for it was cold and they warmed themselves. And Peter stood with them, and warmed himself.

Before Annas and Caiaphas — 13th Nisan, Tuesday Morning (4:00 AM)

John 18:19 The high priest (identified as Annas) then asked Jesus about His disciples and about His doctrine. — Annas was trying to fish out something so as to accuse Jesus of treason and to put Him to death.

20 Jesus answered him, “I spoke openly to the world; I ever taught in the synagogue and in the temple whither the Jews always resort, and in secret have I said nothing.

21 Why askest thou Me? Ask them that heard Me what I have said unto them. Behold, they know what I said.”

22 And when He had thus spoken, one of the officers who stood by struck Jesus with the palm of his hand, saying, “Answerest thou the high priest so?”

23 Jesus answered him, “If I have spoken evil, bear witness of the evil; but if well, why smitest thou Me?”

24 Now Annas had sent Him bound unto Caiaphas, the high priest.

Caiaphas was the son-in-law of Annas by marriage to his daughter. Annas and Caiaphas were Sadducees or their close allies, the Boethusiasns. And if that night was on the fourteenth, they would be having their Sadducaic passover. Their minds would be on killing, cleaning and roasting the lamb after sunset, and it would be close to insanity to think that they had planned to be troubled on something else on such an auspicious night.

Second, after Jesus’ miracle of raising Lazarus from the grave, the chief priests (John 12:10) who would certainly include Caiaphas and other Sadducees advocated putting Jesus to death. This act of raising Lazarus from death is anathema to Sadducaic teaching, because Sadducees don’t believe in any resurrection (Acts 4:1-6; 23:8).

The Sanhedrin — 13th Nisan, Tuesday Morning (5:00 AM)

Matthew 26:59 Now the chief priests and elders and all the council sought false witness against Jesus to put Him to death,

Mark 14:55 And the chief priests and all of the council (i.e. the entire Sanhedrin members alone would be 70 or 72, not including elders and false witnesses) sought for witnesses against Jesus to put Him to death, and found none. — It would probably take one or two hours to assemble them together, even if they all live nearby. Those days they didn’t have telephones, only runners.

Second, if that night were the fourteenth, it would be a passover night for the Sadducees, who made up a large portion of the Sanhedrin at that time. It would be inconceivable to believe that many runners could be found during the early morning hours and dared to trouble all the Sadducaic members of the Sanhedrin in their sleep. This together with the comment above on Annas and Caiaphas are strong evidence to believe that that night wasn’t possible to be on the fourteenth.

60 but found none. Yea, though many false witnesses came, yet found none. At the last came two false witnesses,

61 and said, “This fellow said, ‘I am able to destroy the temple of God and to build it in three days.’”

62 And the high priest (Caiaphas, Matt 28:57)  arose and said unto Him, “Answerest thou nothing? What is it which these witnesses say against thee?”

Earlier a Saddusaic high priest Caiaphas already wanted Jesus dead for raising Lazarus (for Sadducees didn’t believe in any resurrection Acts 23:8):
John 11:49 And one of them named Caiaphas, being the high priest that same year, said unto them, “Ye know nothing at all,
50 nor consider that it is expedient for us that one man should die for the people, and that the whole nation perish not.”
51 And he spoke this not of himself, but, being high priest that year, he prophesied that Jesus should die for that nation;
52 and not for that nation only, but that also He should gather together in one the children of God who were scattered abroad.
53 So from that day forth, they took counsel together to put Him to death.

63 But Jesus held His peace. And the high priest answered and said unto Him, “I adjure thee by the living God that thou tell us whether thou be the Christ, the Son of God.”

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Jesus before Caiaphas, chief priests, elders and the full Sandhedrin

64 Jesus said unto him, “Thou hast said; nevertheless I say unto you, hereafter shall ye see the Son of Man sitting at the right hand of Power, and coming in the clouds of heaven.”

65 Then the high priest rented his clothes, saying, “He hath spoken blasphemy! What further need have we of witnesses? Behold, now ye have heard his blasphemy!

66 What do you think?” They answered and said, “He is deserving of death!”

67 Then they spit in His face and buffeted Him, and others smote Him with the palms of their hands,

68 saying, “Prophesy unto us, thou Christ! Who is he that smote thee?”

Peter denied Jesus three times — 13th Nisan, Tuesday Morning (5:00 AM)

Matthew 26:69 Now Peter sat outside in the palace, and a damsel came unto him, saying, “Thou also wast with Jesus of Galilee.”

70 But he denied it before them all, saying, “I know not what thou sayest.”

71 And when he had gone out onto the porch, another maid saw him and said unto those who were there, “This fellow was also with Jesus of Nazareth.”

72 And again he denied with an oath, “I do not know the man!”

73 And after a while came unto him those who stood by, and said to Peter, “Surely thou also art one of them, for thy speech betrayeth thee.”

74 Then he began to curse and to swear, saying, “I know not the man!” And immediately the cock crowed.

75 And Peter remembered the word of Jesus, when He said unto him, “Before the cock crow, thou shalt deny Me thrice.”

The best scientific evidence says that normally endogenous cycles stimulate a cock to crow in response to incremental changes in light intensity. The best bet seems to be from around 5 AM to 6 AM.

Luke 22:62 And Peter went out and wept bitterly.

63 And the men who held Jesus mocked Him and smote Him.

64 And when they had blindfolded Him, they struck Him on the face and asked Him, saying, “Prophesy! Who is it that smote thee?”

65 And many other things they spoke blasphemously against Him.

Sanhedrin condemned Him — 13th Nisan, Tuesday, Dawn (6:00 AM)

Luke 22:66 And as soon as it was day, the elders of the people and the chief priests and the scribes came together, and led Him into their council, saying, it was day — “it was daybreak The Scripture here is screaming! “John 19:14 couldn’t be the same time as in Luke 22:66!” THIS IS DAYBREAK! 6AM! DAWN! THE SIXTH HOUR IN JOHN 19:14 COULDN’T BE ROMAN TIME! “Jesus couldn’t be with the Sanhedrin here and inside the praetorium at the same time!THIS IS DAYBREAK! THIS IS ALREADY 6AM!

The Lord shall smite thee with madness, and blindness, and astonishment of heart; and thou shalt grope at noonday, as the blind gropeth in darkness. That was written for the children of Israel in Deuteronomy 28:28-29 that they should gropeth in the dark. But in the last days, all ten virgins of the endtime Laodicean church blind, wretched and naked are ALL groping in the light!

67 “Art thou the Christ? Tell us.” And He said unto them, “If I tell you, ye will not believe.

68 And if I also ask you, ye will not answer Me nor let Me go.

69 Hereafter shall the Son of Man sit on the right hand of the power of God.”

70 Then said they all, “Art thou then the Son of God?” And He said unto them, “Ye say that I am.”

71 And they said, “What need of any further witness? For we ourselves have heard it from his own mouth.”

The Sanhedrin sent Him to Pilate — 13th Nisan, Tuesday Morning (7:00-8:00 AM)

Luke 23:1 And the whole multitude of them arose and led Him unto Pilate.

Judas hung himself — 13th Nisan, Tuesday Morning (7:00-8:00 AM)

Matthew 27:3 Then Judas, who had betrayed Him, when he saw that He was condemned, repented and brought back the thirty pieces of silver to the chief priests and elders,

4 saying, “I have sinned in that I have betrayed the innocent blood.” And they said, “What is that to us? See thou to that!”

5 And he cast down the pieces of silver in the temple and departed, and went and hanged himself.

6 And the chief priests took the silver pieces and said, “It is not lawful to put them into the treasury, because it is the price of blood.”

7 And they took counsel and bought with them the potter’s field, to bury strangers in.

8 Therefore that field was called the Field of Blood unto this day.

9 Then was fulfilled that which was spoken by Jeremiah the prophet, saying, “And they took the thirty pieces of silver, the price of Him that was valued, whom they the children of Israel did value,

10 and gave them for the potter’s field, as the Lord appointed me.”

Before Pilate — 13th Nisan, Tuesday Morning (9:00 AM) — 3rd hour

John 18:28 Then they led Jesus from the house of Caiaphas to the praetorium (AMP, RSV, YLT, WEB). It was early. They themselves did not enter the praetorium, so that they might not be defiled, but might eat the passover. — the phases “they” from the “house of Caiaphas” would comprise the chief priests (Caiaphas and Annas), the captains of the temple (Lk 22:52) and their servants. Most in the CoG Communities identify these accusers as solely the Pharisees but evidence here shows this is erroneous.

The chief priests, the captains of the temple and their servants are all known to be Sadducees. This is another proof that the Sadducaic passover haven’t arrived, and they, too, didn’t want to defile themselves by entering a Gentile residence just before their passover where they would have kept it on night of the fourteenth!

This is a solid proof that that night could only be on THE THIRTEENTH!

29 So Pilate went out to them and said, “What accusation do you bring against this man?” 30 They answered him, “If this man were not an evildoer, we would not have handed him over.” — Pilate would have to come out of the praetorium to speak to the multitude and he did “So Pilate went out [of the praetorium] and said” to the crowd!

31 Pilate said to them, “Take him yourselves and judge him by your own law.” The Jews said to him, “It is not lawful for us to put any man to death.” 32 This was to fulfil the word which Jesus had spoken to show by what death he was to die.

33 Pilate entered the praetorium again and called Jesus, and said to him, “Are you the King of the Jews?” 34 Jesus answered, “Do you ask this of your own accord, or did others ask it to you about me?” — See, Pilate went back to the praetorium to speak to Jesus.

35 Pilate answered, “Am I a Jew? Your own nation and the chief priests have handed you over to me; what have you done?” 36 Jesus answered, “My kingship is not of this world; if my kingship were of this world, my servants would fight, that I might not be handed over to the Jews; but my kingship is not from the world.” — the chief priests were standing outside the praetorium. “They themselves did not enter the praetorium, so that they might not be defiled, but might eat the passover” (John 18:28). So the Sadducees haven’t had their passover yet!

37 Pilate said to him, “So you are a king?” Jesus answered, “You say that I am a king. For this I was born, and for this I have come into the world, to bear witness to the truth. Everyone who is of the truth hears my voice.” 

Praetorium - YouTube
Only Jesus was in the Praetorium, the Sadducaic Chief Priests stayed out!

38 Pilate said unto Him, “What is truth?” And when he said this, he went out [the praetorium] again unto the Jews, and said unto them, “I find in him no fault at all. 39 But ye have a custom that I should release unto you one at the Passover. Will ye therefore that I release unto you the King of the Jews?”

Most like to place the timing of this encounter with Pilate and Herod and then back to Pilate again early morning, around 5.30 to 8.30 AM. But this timing just couldn’t be so.

“How Dare You Trouble Me?” It would be inconceivable or even fanciful to think that Pilate as king of Judea could be troubled in the early morning by someone subordinate to him as traditional protocol demands. Pilate was known as a tyrant and would kill anybody at will those who displeased him. It would be far more reasonable to assume that he attended court at a reasonable hour starting at 9 AM the earliest.

Luke 23:2 And they began to accuse Him, saying, “We found this fellow perverting the nation and forbidding to give tribute to Caesar, saying that he himself is Christ, a king.”

Jesus before Pilate

3 And Pilate asked Him, saying, “Art thou the king of the Jews?” And He answered him and said, “Thou sayest it.”

4 Then said Pilate to the chief priests and the people, “I find no fault in this man.”

5 And they became the more fierce, saying, “He stirreth up the people, teaching throughout all Judea, beginning from Galilee to this place.” – this stirring includes raising Lazarus from the dead, infuriating the Sadducees more than the Pharisees.

The chief priests could include Annas’ five sons (1 Eleazar ben Ananus 16-17; 2 Jonathan 37; 3 Theophilus 37-41; 4 Matthias 43; 5 Ananus ben Ananus 63-66), who at later times, also held the high priest office. Annas’ son-in-law Caiaphas 18-36-37

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(3) Theophilus ben Ananus 37-41: “A growing belief points to Theophilus ben Ananus, High Priest of the Temple in Jerusalem from 37 to 41. In this tradition Theophilus would have been both a kohen and a Sadducee,” (Theophilus (biblical), Wikipedia).

(5) Ananus ben Ananus 63-66: Josephus’s account says “Ananus, who, as we have told you already, took the high priesthood, was a bold man in his temper, and very insolent; he was also of the sect of the Sadducees,” (Anti 20.9.1). Wikipedia says he was the Sadducaic high priest who ordered the execution by stoning of James the brother of Jesus. Ananus was deposed as the high priest in 66 and became one of the main leaders of the Great Revolt of Judea. But in 68, he was killed during the inter-rebel civil war in Jerusalem, (Ananus ben Ananus, Wikipedia).

Josephus provides us with more details of the death of the high priesthood toward the AD 66-70 inferno: “But the rage of the Idumeans was not satiated by these slaughters; but they now betook themselves to the city, and plundered every house, and slew every one they met; and for the other multitude, they esteemed it needless to go on with killing them, but they sought for the high priests, and the generality went with the greatest zeal against them; and as soon as they caught them they slew them, and then standing upon their dead bodies, in way of jest, upbraided Ananus with his kindness to the people, and Jesus with his speech made to them from the wall. Nay, they proceeded to that degree of impiety, as to cast away their dead bodies without burial, although the Jews used to take so much care of the burial of men, that they took down those that were condemned and crucified, and buried them before the going down of the sun. I should not mistake if I said that the death of Ananus was the beginning of the destruction of the city, and that from this very day may be dated the overthrow of her wall, and the ruin of her affairs, whereon they saw their high priest, and the procurer of their preservation, slain in the midst of their city,” (Wars. Book 4, Chapter 5).

Luke 23:6 When Pilate heard of Galilee, he asked whether the Man were a Galilean.

7 And as soon as he learned that He belonged unto Herod’s jurisdiction, he sent Him to Herod, who himself also was at Jerusalem at that time.

Before Herod — 13th Nisan, Tuesday Morning (10:00 AM) — 4th hour

8 And when Herod saw Jesus he was exceedingly glad, for he had been desirous to see Him for a long time, because he had heard many things about Him, and he hoped to see some miracle done by Him. — remember, in those days they only have runners in sending and receiving messages. And protocol required letters were properly written, signed and sealed before they were despatched. 

9 Then he questioned Him with many words, but He answered him nothing.

10 And the chief priests and scribes stood and vehemently accused Him.

11 And Herod, with his men of war, treated Him with contempt and mocked Him, and arrayed Him in a gorgeous robe and sent Him again to Pilate.

12 And on the same day, Pilate and Herod were made friends together, for before that there was enmity between them.

13 And Pilate, when he had called together the chief priests and the rulers and the people,

My Favourite Painting: Jeffrey Archer - Country Life
“I find no fault in this man,” said Pilate

14 said unto them, “Ye have brought this man unto me as one who perverteth the people. And behold, I, having examined him before you, have found no fault in this man concerning those things whereof ye accuse him.

15 No, nor yet Herod; for I sent you to him, and lo, nothing worthy of death is done unto him.

16 I will therefore chastise him and release him.” Only Pilate was to scourge Jesus (consistent with John 19:1; Matt 27:26; Mark 15:15)

17 (For of necessity he must release one unto them at the Feast.)

18 And they all cried out at once, saying, “Away with this man, and release unto us Barabbas”

19 (who had been cast into prison for a certain sedition made in the city, and for murder).

20 Pilate therefore, desiring to release Jesus, spoke again to them.

21 But they cried, saying, “Crucify him, crucify him!”

22 And he said unto them the third time, “Why? What evil hath he done? I have found no cause for death in him. I will therefore chastise him and let him go.” Only Pilate was to scourge Jesus (John 19:1; Matt 27:26; Mark 15:15). The Roman soldiers remained restraint.

23 But they were instant with loud voices, requiring that He might be crucified. And the voices of them and of the chief priests prevailed.

Pilate: Barabbas or Jesus — 13th Nisan, Tuesday Morning (11:00 AM) — 5th hour

Matthew 27:15 Now at that feast, the governor was wont to release unto the people a prisoner, whom they would.

John 18:39 But ye have a custom that I should release unto you one at the Passover. — Not a law, neither of God nor man’s, but a custom, so commentators have swam in an ocean on this point, but nothing to such custom or reason is known.

Pilgrims normally took their trips to Jerusalem early before the actual Passover took place, to secure an accommodation, to buy a lamb and also to purify themselves. The whole period is a Passover season. “And the Jews’ Passover was nigh at hand, and many went out of the country up to Jerusalem before the Passover to purify themselves.” John 11:55 

16 And they had then a notable prisoner called Barabbas.

17 Therefore when they were gathered together, Pilate said unto them, “Whom will ye that I release unto you: Barabbas, or Jesus who is called Christ?”

18 For he knew that for envy they had delivered Him.

19 When he had sat down on the judgment seat [inside the praetorium again], his wife sent unto him, saying, “Have thou nothing to do with that just man; for I have suffered many things this day in a dream because of him.”

20 But the chief priests and elders persuaded the multitude that they should ask for Barabbas and destroy Jesus. the chief priests were always deeply involved throughout, but stayed outside the praetorium with the multitude.

21 The governor answered and said unto them, “Which of the two will ye that I release unto you?” They said, “Barabbas!”

22 Pilate said unto them, “What shall I do then with Jesus, who is called Christ?” They all said unto him, “Let him be crucified!”

23 And the governor said, “Why, what evil hath he done?” But they cried out the more, saying, “Let him be crucified!”

24 When Pilate saw that he could not prevail, but rather that a tumult (disorderly agitation) was beginning, he took water and washed his hands before the multitude, saying, “I am innocent of the blood of this just person. See ye to it.”

25 Then answered all the people and said, “His blood be on us, and on our children!”

26 Then released he Barabbas unto them

“Crucify him! Crucify him!” — 13th Nisan, Tuesday (12 NOON) — 6th hour

John 19:1 Then Pilate therefore took Jesus and scourged Him [inside the praetorium].

Only Pilate scourged Jesus here (consistent with Matt 27:26; Mark 15:15); no mentioning of the soldiers doing the scourging before John 19:16.

2 And the soldiers plaited a crown of thorns and put it on His head, and they put on Him a purple robe

Crown Of Thorns Stock Footage ~ Royalty Free Stock Videos | Pond5

3 and said, “Hail, King of the Jews!” And they smote Him with their hands.

4 Pilate therefore went forth again and said unto them [to those outside the praetorium], “Behold, I bring him forth to you, that ye may know that I find no fault in him.”5 Then came Jesus [from inside the praetorium] forth, wearing the crown of thorns and the purple robe. And Pilate said unto them, “Behold the man!”

6 When therefore the chief priests and the officers saw Him, they cried out, saying, “Crucify him! Crucify him!” Pilate said unto them, “Ye take him and crucify him, for I find no fault in him.”

7 The Jews answered him, “We have a law, and by our law he ought to die, because he made himself the Son of God.”

8 When Pilate therefore heard that saying, he was the more afraid.

9 And he went again into the praetorium and said [in private] unto Jesus, “From whence art thou?” But Jesus gave him no answer.

10 Then said Pilate unto Him, “Speakest thou not unto me? Knowest thou not that I have power to crucify thee, and have power to release thee?”

11 Jesus answered, “Thou couldest have no power at all against Me, unless it were given thee from above. Therefore he (the chief priests) that delivered Me unto thee hath the greater sin.” — having the greater sin, the Sadducees (some Pharisees included) were wiped out in the AD 70 inferno! Also a result of “His blood be on us, and on our children!”

12 And from thenceforth Pilate sought to release Him, but the Jews cried out, saying, “If thou let this man go, thou art not Caesar’s friend. Whosoever maketh himself a king speaketh against Caesar.”

13 When Pilate therefore heard that saying, he brought Jesus forth and sat down in the judgment seat (in the praetorium) in a place that is called the Pavement, but in Hebrew, Gabbath – (an extended elevated pavement by itself in front of the praetorium. This must be the place where a final verdict was made).

14 And it was the Preparation of the Passover and about the sixth hour, and Pilate said unto the Jews, “Behold your king!” (NOON 13th Nisan)

This sixth hour would be the same sixth hour where Jesus talked with the Samaritan woman at the well, established to be at NOON, when Jesus was wearied and needed a drink (John 4:6). To think that John suddenly popped up Roman time to suit a belief is just trying to be fanciful. Like a virgin who suddenly upskirts herself at an intersection, such distraction would surely result in many fatalities among the CoG Communities.

Second, Roman times uses AM (ante meridiem, meaning before midday) and PM (post meridiem, meaning past midday) to denote time. So if John was using Roman time in John 19:14 why didn he use AM and PM? The Hours Usage in John 19:14 is definitly Jewish Reckoning. 

Thirdly, Luke 22:66 says “it was day” — Jesus was at the Sanhedrin at daybreak! He couldn’t be with the Sanhedrin here and inside the praetorium at the same time! “Ephraim compasseth me about with lies, and the house of Israel with deceit” (Hosea 11:12). And most CoG Communities are prone to lying!

John 19:15 But they cried out, “Away with him, away with him! Crucify him!” Pilate said unto them, “Shall I crucify your king?” The chief priests answered, “We have no king but Caesar!”

16 Then he delivered Him therefore unto them to be crucified. And they (the soldiers, a small number 50-60 say) took Jesus and led Him away.

Matt 27:27 Then the soldiers of the governor [personal soldiers] took Jesus into the praetorium, and gathered unto Him the whole detachment of soldiers. i.e. this small number of the governor’s soldiers led Jesus to the entire contingent of soldiers!

Gill: consisting of five hundred, and some say more: these their fellow soldiers, to whom Jesus was committed, got together “against him” as the Syriac and Persic versions render it.

The TPT version says “nearly six hundred soldiers.” Matthew Henry: (at least five hundred, some think twelve or thirteen hundred)

The soldiers, numbering 500-600, led Him away to be crucified, but first to be flogged, this time by the Roman soldiers, including more scourging and mocking — the missing hours, back at the praetorium (about 18 hours where there is no record of Him; from about NOON on the thirteenth to daybreak on the fourteenth of Nisan). And it is thus obvious that that evening, the evening where Jesus and His disciples were taking supper, were indeed a supper. There is no evidence of a Passover — no lamb, no bitter herbs — not even a Samaritan or a Sadducaic passover, where it would be on an early fourteenth of Nisan. Even the high priests (Annas and Caiapas), chief priests and other Sadducees stayed outside the praetorium lest they be defiled and wouldn’t be able to partake in their passover!

Image result for roman whip

The night before, while He prayed, His blood fell to the ground. He knew He would be flogged nearly to the point of death before they pounded the metal spikes into His flesh. He knew the prophetic words of Isaiah spoken seven centuries earlier that He would be beaten so badly that He would be “disfigured beyond that of any man” and “beyond human likeness” (Isaiah 52:14). 

Forerunner Commentary of the King James Version Isaiah 52:14:

Jesus had to die a death that was excruciatingly painful. Why? To depict the horrible pain that sin causes. It would not have served God’s purpose if He had died a painless death. The picture would have been incomplete.

Any criminal of that time would have despaired to learn he was to be crucified. Crucifixion was not only an execution, but also a method of torture. The Romans usually gave the victim an excruciating scourging first. Jesus was no exception. Before He ever touched His cross, He was scourged, beaten, and insulted.

Image result for roman whipping
Before 500-600 soldiers!

Over the years we have heard quite a bit about the Roman lictor (Roman officer), the soldier charged with dispensing this dreaded punishment. He used a whip, often with imbedded pieces of metal, bone, or other sharp objects. Romans did not limit their lictors to the Israelite practice of “forty stripes save one,” nor to striking just the victim’s back. He would let the whip strike and wrap around every inch of the person’s body until he was within an inch of death.

The prophet Isaiah prophesies how Jesus appeared after the scourging: “Just as many were astonished at you, so His visage [appearance] was marred more than any man, and His form more than the sons of men” (Isaiah 52:14). He goes on to say that He was “wounded [pierced] for our transgressions, He was bruised [crushed] for our iniquities” (Isaiah 53:5).

Just as there were many who were appalled at him — his appearance was so disfigured beyond that of any human being and his form marred beyond human likeness — Isaiah 52:14.

Many people were shocked when they saw him. He was so scarred that he no longer looked like a person. His body was so twisted that he did not look like a human being anymore (Isaiah 52:14).

The Jews were prophesied they would mourn One whom they had rejected: “And they shall look to Me whom they have pierced; then they shall mourn for him, as one mourns for an only son” (Zechariah 12:10). But the Christians have nothing to mourn? Currently these endtime virgins are described as lukewarm and in need of nothing, but would they not mourn when they realise that they had been blind, wretched and naked, seeing finally that Christ had suffered far more through His torn flesh and shed blood than they had ever realised? No? Regardless, these are they being described in Revelation 3:17. “As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten: or else I will spew thee out of My mouth (v16,19).”

The Lord shall smite thee with madness, and blindness, and astonishment of heart; and thou shalt grope at noonday, as the blind gropeth in darkness. That was written by Moses for the children of Israel in Deuteronomy 28. But at the endtime, all ten virgins of the Laodicean church — blind, wretched and naked — ALL THESE TEN VIRGINS ARE GROPIING IN THE LIGHT!

The next morning — 14th Nisan, Wednesday, Dawn (6:00 AM)

Luke 23:26 And as they led Him away, they laid hold upon one Simon, a Cyrenian, coming out of the country, and on him they laid the cross, that he might bear it after Jesus.

27 And there followed Him a great company of people, and of women who also bewailed and lamented Him.

28 But Jesus, turning unto them, said, “Daughters of Jerusalem, weep not for Me, but weep for yourselves and for your children.

29 For behold, the days are coming in which they shall say, ‘Blessed are the barren, and the wombs that never bore and the breasts which never gave suck.’

30 Then shall they begin to say to the mountains, ‘Fall on us!’ and to the hills, ‘Cover us!’

31 For if they do these things in a green tree, what shall be done in the dry?”

They led Him to be crucified — 14th Nisan, Wednesday (7:00 AM)  

John 19:16 Then he delivered Him therefore unto them to be crucified. And they took Jesus and led Him away.

17 And He, bearing His cross, went forth into a place called the Place of a Skull (which is called in the Hebrew, Golgotha)

The Third hour — 14th Nisan, Wednesday (9:00 AM) — 3rd hour

John 19:18 where they crucified Him and two others with Him, one on either side and Jesus in the midst. — here, Jesus was nailed to the cross, with two others besides Him

19 And Pilate wrote a title and put it on the cross. And the writing was: Jesus Of Nazareth The King Of The Jews.

20 Then many of the Jews read this title, for the place where Jesus was crucified was nigh to the city, and it was written in Hebrew and Greek and Latin.

21 Then said the chief priests of the Jews to Pilate, “Write not ‘The King of the Jews,’ but, ‘He said, I am King of the Jews.’”

22 Pilate answered, “What I have written, I have written.”

23 Then the soldiers, when they had crucified Jesus, took His garments and made four parts, to every soldier a part, and also His coat. Now the coat was without seam, woven from the top throughout.

24 They said therefore among themselves, “Let us not rend it, but cast lots for it, whose it shall be,” that the Scripture might be fulfilled which saith, “They parted My raiment among them, and for My vesture did they cast lots.” These things therefore the soldiers did.

Mark 15:25 And it was the third hour (9 AM) when they crucified Him.

29 And those who passed by railed at Him, wagging their heads and saying, “Ah, thou that destroyest the temple and buildest it in three days,

30 save thyself and come down from the cross!”

31 Likewise also the chief priests, mocking, said among themselves with the scribes, “He saved others; himself he cannot save!

32 Let Christ, the King of Israel, descend now from the cross, that we may see and believe.” And those who were crucified with Him reviled Him.

25 Now there stood by the cross of Jesus His mother and His mother’s sister, Mary the wife of Clopas, and Mary Magdalene.

26 When Jesus therefore saw His mother and the disciple standing by whom He loved, He said unto His mother, “Woman, behold thy son!”

27 Then said He to the disciple, “Behold thy mother!” And from that hour, that disciple took her unto his own home.

Mark 15:33 And when the sixth hour (12 NOON) had come, there was darkness over the whole land until the ninth hour (3 PM).

Luke 23:44 And it was about the sixth hour (12 NOON), and there was a darkness over all the earth until the ninth hour (3 PM). 45 And the sun was darkened, and the veil of the temple was rent in the midst.

See the source image

28 After this Jesus, knowing that all things were now accomplished, that the Scripture might be fulfilled, said, “I thirst.”

29 Now there was set there a vessel full of vinegar; and they filled a sponge with vinegar and put it upon a hyssop, and put it to His mouth.

Mark 15:34 And at the ninth hour (3 PM) Jesus cried out with a loud voice, saying, “Eloi, Eloi, lama sabachthani?” which is, being interpreted, “My God, My God, why hast Thou forsaken Me?”

35 And some of those who stood by, when they heard it, said, “Behold, he calleth Elijah.”

36 And one ran and filled a sponge full of vinegar, and put it on a reed and gave it to Him to drink, saying, “Let him alone. Let us see whether Elijah will come to take him down.”

37 And Jesus cried out with a loud voice, and gave up the ghost.

30 When Jesus therefore had received the vinegar, He said, “It is finished.” And He bowed His head and gave up the ghost.

Earthquakes and graves opened — 14th Nisan, Wednesday (3.00 PM) — 9th hour

Matthew 27:51 And behold, the veil of the temple was rent in two from the top to the bottom, and the earth quaked and the rocks rent.

52 And the graves were opened; and many bodies of the saints who slept arose,

53 and came out of the graves after His resurrection, and went into the Holy City and appeared unto many.

54 Now when the centurion, and those who were with him watching Jesus, saw the earthquake and those things that were done, they feared greatly, saying, “Truly, this was the Son of God!”

Preparation for the Passover — 14th Nisan, Wednesday (4:00 PM) — 10th hour

John 19:31 The Jews therefore, because it was the Preparation, and so that the bodies should not remain upon the cross on the Sabbath day (for that Sabbath day was a high day), besought Pilate that their legs might be broken and that they might be taken away.

32 Then came the soldiers and broke the legs of the first and of the other who was crucified with Him.

33 But when they came to Jesus and saw that He was dead already, they broke not His legs,

34 but one of the soldiers with a spear pierced His side, and forthwith there came out blood and water.

35 And he that saw it bore record, and his record is true, and he knoweth that he saith truly, that ye might believe.

36 For these things were done, that the Scripture should be fulfilled: “A bone of Him shall not be broken.”

37 And again another Scripture saith, “They shall look on Him whom they pierced.”

The women watched — 14th Nisan, Wednesday (4:30 PM)

Mark 15:40 There were also women looking on afar off, among whom were Mary Magdalene, and Mary the mother of James the Less and of Joses, and Salome

41 (who also, when He was in Galilee, had followed Him and ministered unto Him), and many other women who came up with Him unto Jerusalem.

Joseph of Arimathea — 14th Nisan, Wednesday (5:00 PM) — 11th hour

Mark 15:42 And now when the evening had come, because it was the Preparation (that is, the day before the Sabbath), — that Sabbath was a High Day, the beginning of the Feast of Unleavened Bread.

43 Joseph of Arimathea, an honorable council member who also was waiting for the Kingdom of God, came and went in boldly unto Pilate and asked for the body of Jesus.

44 And Pilate wondered if He were already dead; and calling unto him the centurion, he asked him whether He had been any while dead.

45 And when he learned it from the centurion, he gave the body to Joseph.

46 And Joseph bought fine linen, and took Him down and wrapped Him in the linen. And he laid Him in a sepulcher which was hewn out of a rock, and rolled a stone unto the door of the sepulcher.

47 And Mary Magdalene and Mary the mother of Joses beheld where He was laid.

~~~

End note: Luke 22:15-6. Here Jesus said to the disciples: 

 “With fervent desire I have desired to eat this Passover with you before I suffer; for I say to you, I will no longer eat of it until it is fulfilled in the kingdom of God.” 

What did He mean by saying “THIS Passover”? 

There are only two possibilities: 

1) He meant the upcoming Passover that very year, which had not yet arrived, as this statement was made “before the feast of the Passover” (John 13:1).

2) He meant that very meal that evening which they were partaking of – even though it was served with regular “bread,” makes no mention of lamb, or bitter herbs, which were required for a Passover meal. Second, if that meal was the Passover, Jesus and His disciples would have broken one of the Passover ordinances specified in Numbers 9:12 moving the bones out of the house and burned them in the morning.

Fred Coulter, whose book The Christian Passover is his church’s flagship and endorsed by most of the CoG Communities, specifies it this way:

 God’s commands to Moses in Exodus 12 show us the step-by-step procedures required for keeping the Old Testament Passover.  It is clear that the act of slaying the lambs was only one part of keeping the Passover.  The nine steps for keeping the Old Testament Passover were as follows: 

1) Select an unblemished male lamb less than one year old on the 10th day of the first month (Ex 12:3).
2) Kill the lamb on the 14th day of the first month at dusk [Hebrew ben ha arbayim, “between the two evenings”]. Share the lamb with a neighbor if one’s own family was too small to eat it. Do not break a bone of the lamb (Ex 12:4, 6, 46).

3) Strike the side posts and lintel of the door of the house with some of the blood (Ex 12:7).
4) Roast the whole lamb — head and legs and edible entrails — with fire (Ex 12:9).
5) Do not boil the meat in water or eat it raw (Ex 12:9).
6) Eat the flesh in that night with bitter herbs and unleavened bread (Ex 12:8).
7) Allow no alien to eat it unless circumcised (Ex 12:43-44).
8) Eat it in the same house where it was slain. Do not carry any of it out of the house (Ex 12:46).
9)
Burn any remains, such as the bones and fat, the skin and guts, with fire by morning (Ex 12:10). (The Christian Passover, pg 19)

These were the commands of God for Israel’s first Passover.  If the children of Israel had not observed all nine steps for the Passover exactly as God commanded, the Passover would not have been fully “kept,” and the Lord would not have spared the firstborn of Israel.

At their next Passover, the first one in the wilderness after the tabernacle was set up and dedicated, the nine rules for “keeping” the Passover are called statutes and ordinances: “Let the children of Israel also keep the Passover at its appointed time.  In the fourteenth day of this month, between the two evenings, you shall keep it in its appointed time. You shall keep it according to ALL ITS STATUTES, and according to ALL THE ORDINANCES of it” (Num. 9:2-3). 

This Scripture shows that the nine rules for the Passover, here called statutes and ordinances, were to be observed in all the years that followed.  All nine ordinances were to be observed on the 14th day of the month!  It is quite clear in Numbers 9 that all the statutes and all the ordinances that were established at the first Passover were to be observed by the children of Israel.  We find no later instructions given in Scripture that in any way alter or modify the manner in which the Passover was originally commanded to be observed. (The Christian Passover, pg 19-20)

And Fred’s statements are reemphasised further: 

“And none of you shall go out of the door of his house until morning [sunrise]” (Ex 12:21-22),” (pg 58).

And none of you shall go out of the door of his house until sunrise [Hebrew boqer]’ ” (Ex 12:21-22). (Pg 71)

“…And none of you shall go out of the door of his house UNTIL SUNRISE….And the children of Israel went away and did as the LORD had commanded Moses and Aaron, SO THEY DID” (Ex 12:22, 28).

“If any of the children of Israel had left their houses before morning, it would be recorded in the Scriptures that some of the people had disobeyed the command of God and had left their houses too soon, and therefore they had died in the plague of the firstborn.” (Pg 72)

The Blind couldn’t see, of course! If that night had been the Passover, that would make Jesus and His disciples break a Passover ordinance since they were only allowed to burn the bones and left their house in the morning, BUT THEY DIDN’T! 

What, then, did Jesus mean when He said, “With fervent desire I have desired to eat this Passover with you before I suffer”? The word for “desire” in this verse is an unusual word, epithumia in the Greek, and means “a longing, especially for that which is forbidden” (see Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance, #1939). 

The word for “desire” in this verse is very important to understanding the context of Jesus’ words. Says Thayer’s Greek-English Lexicon, “desire, craving, longing,” “specifically for what is forbidden.” This is the “strongest expression of intense desire,” whether good or bad, says the Jamieson, Fausset, Brown Critical-Experimental Commentary. 

In other words, Jesus here was saying He desired to eat the traditional Passover with His disciples that year, but He knew that such a thing will be impossible that it was forbidden that for Him to fulfill God’s PLAN He must be dead and in the grave the evening the Passover would be eaten, and therefore it was forbidden and impossible for Him to eat that Passover with them!

Second, Christ also wanted to avoid this “cup” of suffering that He knew He had to endure. He pleaded for three hours, but both requests were denied, forbidden.

Perhaps Luke 22:15-6 should be translated as:

“With fervent desire I have desired to eat this Passover with you before I suffer; but I’m saying to you now, I am forbidden and denied this privilege, and I will no longer eat with you until we’re all in the kingdom of God.” 

Conclusion: despite all the huffings and puffings arguing otherwise by the various CoG Communities, that night when Jesus and His disciples had their last supper, the same night He was betrayed, it wasn’t the Passover; it wasn’t on the Fourteenth night.  IT COULDN’T BE! — IT’S IMPOSSIBLE! It was just a supper as the Scriptures say, and to believe that that night was the Fourteenth is only a sweet FANCIFUL DREAM!

~~~~~

China’s Rising Soft Power!

•March 24, 2021 • Leave a Comment
Zhang Jing at the Alaska summit

Woman Power! The Rising of China’s Flower Power!

China has been accused of not having soft power, but it’s about to change. Chinese female translator Zhang Jing at US-China talks showing her power applauded not just by Chinese netizens but the world audience. The highlight of Zhang’s interpretation came when she smoothly translated several speeches by the Chinese delegation that were more than 15 minutes long fluently and accurately into English, which earned her applause and respect from netizens, including many majoring in interpretation. 

China’s new weaponless Mulan

A native of Hangzhou and described as “China’s most beautiful interpreter,” Zhang, who graduated from China Foreign Affairs University, has been praised on Chinese social media for “fully showing the elegant demeanor of China’s diplomats in the new era.” 

According to a media interview with Zhang’s high school teacher, Zhang had academic credentials to enter top Chinese universities like Peking University and Tsinghua University, but she, with an IQ score of 161, chose to go to China Foreign Affairs University to serve her country at the ministry of foreign affairs.

No longer in the era of Maoism, wearing Mao jackets, a photo with the hashtag “she is the on-site translator at high-level US-China talks” has gone viral on China’s Twitter-like Sina Weibo with views surpassing 400 million.

Bad Omen or just Bad Luck?

“Zhang Jing helped convey China’s voice to the world through her specialty; and compared to the US translator, she performed far better. She also showed ‘her power’ of Chinese women,” one netizen commented on Sina Weibo.

Another Weibo user wrote: “I think women who have appeared in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in recent years are wonderful. They present China’s image on the international diplomatic stage and increase China’s reputation with their talents.” 

This new diplomacy, coupled with the slogan of China’s soft power rise, Zhang Jing dazzled the world with her calm and accurate translation of China’s State Councillor Yang Jiechi’s 15-minute remarks at the US-China Alaska summit. Her high school English teacher said: “Zhang has always been a persistent, focused person who knew at a very young age what she wanted for her career.”

With an IQ Score of 161

In a blunt opening statement before the talks with TV reporters keeping their cameras rolling in live broadcast for their President and audience back home, big mouth Secretary of State Antony Blinken fired the first shot by claiming that the US would “discuss our deep concerns with actions by China, including in Xinjiang, Hong Kong, Taiwan, cyber attacks on the United States, economic coercion of our allies.”

“Chinese people won’t be pushed around,” Zhang bombarded back at the hypocritical American-wiping-out-Native-Americans delegates in the only language they could understand. “The US is not qualified to speak to China from a position of strength!”

Her words meant, of course, that America, like Biden, has passed her best days, and now, a fallen power; but the Secretary of State seems not getting it — “their bows shall be broken” and “their sword shall enter into their own heart!” Whatever he (or any of the Five Eyes) alleges of world issues, his words will be of no effect but will come back to haunt him.

“The wicked plotteth against the just, and gnasheth upon him with his teeth. The LORD shall laugh at him: for he seeth that his day is coming. The wicked have drawn out the sword, and have bent their bow, to cast down the poor and needy, and to slay such as be of upright conversation. Their sword shall enter into their own heart, and their bows shall be broken.” Psalms 37:12-15.

But the worst lies ahead, the Five Eyes are destined to go into captivity!