One Million Arrows Christian Parenting Blog

Posted in: Parenting

DEC
23
No Problem Keeping Jesus in Hanukkah!
By Julie Ferwerda
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holy daysThis past week I read something like, "Let's not forget to keep Christmas about Jesus." This struck me as funny because I realized that a person would never have to say that about God-ordained holy days. No one could confuse the fact that Hanukkah or Passover or Tabernacles is all about Jesus. It would be like saying, "Don't forget that your toe is attached to your foot."

The truth is, whether your family celebrates Christmas or not, it is a man-made holiday. God has His own calendar, and on it are seven major holy days He established called "Feasts," and no one has ever gotten them confused with any other human celebration.

For instance, we have recently explored the "Feasts" at a very surface level. They were at least partly about taking out time to fast from the world and feast on God. They hinged on personal cleansing, intimate worship, and extreme celebration of God's greatness. They also foretold about future events-some fulfilled already, some not yet-events that would shape the course of His-story. In fact, the word "Feast" in Hebrew means, "dress rehearsal" or "divine appointment." In a nutshell, these events were completely and totally about acknowledging, honoring, and gaining understanding about our Amazing Creator.

There are many additional good reasons for observing the Biblical Holy Days. For one, they get our eyes off ourselves and onto God. Many of the current holidays we observe are presented to be and even seem like they are about celebrating God, but really at the core, they are not. If they were really solely about God, they would not be disappointing in the least. These man-made holidays focus on people and things-get-togethers, gift exchanging, decorations, greeting cards, romance-and that is why they have the capacity to leave us wanting, empty, disappointed, and lonely. They are designed to be about us-our parties, our traditions, our families, our memories, even our own ideas about worship. But our best efforts at trying to successfully remake holy days into holidays have fallen short. 

The greatest reason for learning about and observing Biblical holy days, particularly the Feasts, is that they have very important messages to teach us about God's plan for humanity. These plans have been all but forgotten as we've taken our eyes off God's calendar, and put them on a man-made calendar and events. Some of these plans has been fulfilled, much of them haven't. But until we return to learning about the intent behind them, we will be in the dark about God's intentions and exciting plans in the coming ages (see chart for a glimpse).

holy days chart

I'm not saying for a moment that it is wrong to embrace traditions, or to gather as families, or to celebrate life and loved ones. But if we truly want to find fulfillment, celebration, joy, peace, and amazing future purpose, we must return throughout the year to God's way of making the holy days about Him, and not about us. When we get our eyes off the flesh, and focus upon the Holy, there becomes no room for emptiness, loneliness, disappointment, or despair. On the contrary, those days become a Feast for the heart and soul!

In our times, God does not want us to observe His Feast days as just another religious ritual. In the quietness of our hearts, or perhaps behind closed doors either alone or with our families, we can once again learn about the true prophetic meanings and then observe His holy days, keeping our celebration purely and simply about Him. It is one great way to begin healing a lonely heart for every day of the year.

holy days or holidaysHoly Days 2009-2010

  • December 12-19, 2009: Hanukkah or Festival of Lights
  • March 30-April 6: Passover/ Feast of Unleavened Bread
  • May 19-20 (sunset to sunset): Feast of Weeks or Pentecost
  • September 9-10 (sunset to sunset): Feast of Trumpets or Rosh Hashanah
  • September 18: Day of Atonement
  • September 23-30: Feast of Tabernacles or Ingathering
  • Every Friday sundown to Saturday sundown: Sabbath rest and celebration of our Father

For more information on God-established Holy Days, visit BiblicalHolyDays.com. Be sure to check out the sections that reveal the Messiah in each Holy Day description.

About The Author

Julie Ferwerda with orphanJulie is recognized for making the Bible exciting and relevant to everyday life through her writing and speaking. Her articles are featured in many Christian magazines and websites for both adults and teens, and she frequently volunteers her time and talents to international orphan ministry. When not doing all these things, she lives by her mantra: Life is short, nap hard. Learn more at: JulieFerwerda.com »

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