Over the last thirty or more years, a movement has influenced the Church among many of its members.
Many have found meaning in celebrating the feasts of Israel along with an adherence to the customary laws surrounding the Jewish faith.
Much of this has been done in tandem with the new birth that we experience in Christ, and yet it is an on-going coupling of the two doctrines, but oftentimes is adhered to as something superlative instead.
Please note that my intentions here are not to downgrade these things, but merely to draw reference to what our utmost following after should be.
Most are quite familiar with the Bible’s context and yet some venture into giving adherence to the Talmud.
Most keep the Shabbat, eat kosher, and keep the faith. All ascribe to the Hebrew names of God and emphatically use the names of YHWH (י ה ו ה), Yah, Elohim, and yet these names are transformed into the English consonants of Yahweh or Jehovah.
However, I find that many almost strictly forbid the use of using the name God or even Jesus, because it isn’t stated in the original form.
However, during the new birth, as we have left the former spiritual state of sin and have come to the Lord Jesus in faith, we have entered into a new union of the Spirit.
Our former lives are dead in Him. We are now a new creation set apart unto Him for good works.
We no longer have to follow the rituals of a Jewish faith that ascribes certain rules and regulations regarding a following after certain celebrations and customs.
Certainly there is a beauty to found in following after and perhaps keeping some of these things, but we are not bound by them.
But we are now born anew to a new covenant. This covenant celebrates our new life in Jesus.
Colossians 2:16 and 17:
“Therefore do not let anyone judge you by what you eat or drink, or with regard to a religious festival, a New Moon celebration or a Sabbath day. These are a shadow of the things that were to come; the reality, however, is found in Christ.”
And yet to those who would follow after the law it is written:
“For I testify again to every man that is circumcised, that he is a debtor to do the whole law,” Galatians 5:3.
There is nothing in the law that could ever make a man perfect.
One cannot follow everything that is written and expect to become acceptable in the sight of God. It is an impossible thing to do.
That is why now Christ has come to make us acceptable to the Father.
“For the law made nothing perfect, but the bringing in of a better hope did; by the which we draw nigh unto God.
And inasmuch as not without an oath he was made priest,” Hebrews 7:19-20.
For you see, all of those things written down as beautiful and meaningful as they were to the Jews, are but a shadow of what was to come.
For what was to come in the form of a man who gave His life for us and died that we might have new life in Him, was to free us from the stern taskmaster of the law.
Certainly there is a deep beauty in following the feasts that are outlined in the Old Testament, and a beauty in many of the other customs, but again, we are now freed from them.
Yes, we can welcome those who do follow these things and accept those who don’t, but we are not in any way expected to follow them.
“But now hath he obtained a more excellent ministry, by how much also he is the mediator of a better covenant, which was established upon better promises.
For if that first covenant had been faultless, then should no place have been sought for the second.
For finding fault with them, he saith, Behold, the days come, saith the Lord, when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah: not according to the covenant that I made with their fathers in the day when I took them by the hand to lead them out of the land of Egypt; because they continued not in my covenant, and I regarded them not, saith the Lord.
For this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, saith the Lord; I will put my laws into their mind, and write them in their hearts: and I will be to them a God, and they shall be to me a people: and they shall not teach every man his neighbour, and every man his brother, saying, Know the Lord: for all shall know me, from the least to the greatest.
For I will be merciful to their unrighteousness, and their sins and their iniquities will I remember no more.
In that he saith, A new covenant, he hath made the first old. Now that which decayeth and waxeth old is ready to vanish away,” Hebrews 8:6-13.
~ Stephen Hanson
Stephen Hanson of In His Truth Ministries came to the LORD is a special way in 1975 and has prophesied regularly since. In these end-time birthing pangs we are reminded that judgment must first begin with the household of God. Will we be prepared and ready?