Feasts of Israel (Part 4)

FEASTS OF ISRAEL (PART 4: PENTECOST)
(PASTOR LEE JACKSON – FFWC)

I) INTRODUCTION – TODAY WE HAVE OUR 4TH INSTALLMENT ON THE FEASTS OF ISRAEL AND HOW THEY POINTED TO AND WERE FULFILLED BY JESUS CHRIST. THE FEAST OF PASSOVER, INCLUDING THE FEASTS OF UNLEAVENED BEAD AND THE FEAST OF FIRST FRUITS AS FULFILLED IN JESUS CHRIST ILLUSTRATE HOW WE CAN HAVE PEACE WITH GOD. PASSOVER IS FULFILLED FOR US WHEN AS JESUS CHRIST IS APPROPRIATED AS OUR PASSOVER LAMB. THE FEAST OF UNLEAVENED BREAD IS FULFILLED AS THE INDWELLING SPIRIT OF CHRIST BEGINS TO WORK IN US TO SEPARATE US FROM OUR LIFE OF SIN AND SINFUL HABITS. THE FEAST OF FIRST FRUITS IS CELEBRATED AND FULFILLED IN OUR CONSECRATION TO GOD’S PURPOSES. THE SAME POWER THAT RESURRECTED JESUS FROM THE DEAD IS WORKING IN US. OUR BODIES BECOME A LIVING SACRIFICE ACCEPTABLE TO GOD. JESUS WAS THE FIRST FRUITS OF THE HARVEST, BUT WHEN HE RETURNS WE WILL GO WITH HIM FULFILLING WHAT JESUS SPOKE OF WHEN HE SAID, (JOHN 12:24) “VERILY, VERILY, I SAY UNTO YOU, EXCEPT A CORN OF WHEAT FALL INTO THE GROUND AND DIE, IT ABIDETH ALONE: BUT IF IT DIE, IT BRINGETH FORTH MUCH FRUIT.” TODAY WE WILL STUDY THE FEAST OF PENTECOST, THE SECOND MAJOR FEAST OF ISRAEL IN WHICH GOD COMMANDED THAT THEY WERE TO COME TO THE TEMPLE IN JERUSALEM TO CELEBRATE. THE FEAST OF PENTECOST REPRESENTS THE SECOND MAJOR ENCOUNTER A CHRISTIAN CAN HAVE WITH GOD TO RECEIVE GOD’S POWER TO BE HIS WITNESSES. IN THE CELEBRATION OF THE PASSOVER GOD CHANGES OUR POSITION, IN THE CELEBRATION OF UNLEAVENED BREAD AND FIRST FRUITS GOD CHANGES OUR CONDITION. IN THE CELEBRATION OF PENTECOST GOD GIVES US POWER TO LIVE FOR HIM AND TO DO HIS WORK.

II) HISTORICAL SETTING OF THE FEAST OF PENTECOST: LEVITICUS 23:15-21
A) THE FEAST OF PASSOVER MARKED THE BEGINNING OF THE BARLEY HARVEST WHILE THE FEAST OF PENTECOST MARKED THE COMPLETION OF THE WHEAT HARVEST. THE FEAST OF PENTECOST CAME ON THE SIXTH DAY OF THE MONTH OF SIVAN, WHICH CORRESPONDS TO OUR MONTHS OF MAY AND JUNE. IT LASTED ONE DAY.
B) THE WORD PENTECOST MEANS FIFTY, IT GETS ITS NAME FROM THE FIFTY DAY INTERVAL BETWEEN THE FEAST OF FIRST FRUITS AND THE FEAST OF PENTECOST. (EXO. 23:16; 34:22; NUM 28:26)
C) THE MAIN ACTIVITY AT THE FEAST OF PENTECOST WAS THE PRESENTATION OF A WAVE OFFERING TO THE LORD, TWO LOAVES OF BREAD BAKED WITH LEAVEN.
D) THE BREAD HAD BEEN BAKED WITH FINE FLOUR THAT HAD BEEN CAREFULLY SIFTED TO SEPARATE THE COARSE MATTER FROM THE FINE WHEAT.
E) THE WAVE OFFERING EXPRESSED ISRAEL’S DEPENDENCE UPON GOD FOR THE HARVEST AND THEIR DAILY BREAD.
F) LATER WHEN THE JEWS WERE DISPERSED AMONG THE NATIONS, THE FEAST OF PENTECOST LOST ITS PRIMARY SIGNIFICANCE AS A HARVEST FESTIVAL AND WAS CELEBRATED AS A MEMORIAL TO THE TIME THAT GOD GAVE THEM THE LAW AT MOUNT SINAI.
G) BY CAREFUL CALCULATION, THE JEWS BELIEVED THAT GOD GAVE MOSES THE LAW ON THE DAY OF PENTECOST. WE LEARN FROM EXODUS 19 THAT THE JEWS ARRIVED AT SINAI IN THE THIRD MONTH OF THE HEBREW CALENDAR. SIVAN IS THE 3RD MONTH ON THE JEWISH CALENDAR. THREE DAYS LATER, ON THE SIXTH OF SIVAN, GOD CAME DOWN UPON MOUNT SINAI AND GAVE THEM THE LAW. (EXODUS 19:11)
III)
HOW JESUS FULFILLED THE FEAST OF PENTECOST.
A) THERE WAS NO COARSE MATTER (SIN) IN HIM. YET, AS THE WHEAT WAS CRUSHED, SIFTED AND BAKED, JESUS WAS CRUSHED, SIFTED AND BAKED IN LOWER PARTS OF THE EARTH FOR OUR SINS. DEATH AND HELL COULD NOT HOLD HIM BECAUSE HE HAD NEVER SINNED. (REV. 1:18)
B) JESUS FULFILLED THE FEAST OF PENTECOST WHEN HE WAS EXALTED AND GLORIFIED TO THE THRONE OF GOD, HE SENT THE HOLY SPIRIT TO HIS DISCIPLES WHO WERE GATHERED IN THE UPPER ROOM TO FULFILL HIS COMMAND.
C) IT WAS EXACTLY 50 DAYS FROM JESUS CHRIST’S RESURRECTION TO THE DAY WHEN HE SENT THE HOLY SPIRIT TO FILL THOSE GATHERED IN THE UPPER ROOM IN JERUSALEM.
D) JESUS SPENT 40 DAYS AFTER HIS RESURRECTION EXPLAINING HOW ALL THE OLD TESTAMENT SCRIPTUES WERE FULFILLED IN HIM. LUK 24:44 – 53 AND HE SAID UNTO THEM, THESE ARE THE WORDS WHICH I SPAKE UNTO YOU, WHILE I WAS YET WITH YOU, THAT ALL THINGS MUST BE FULFILLED, WHICH WERE WRITTEN IN THE LAW OF MOSES, AND IN THE PROPHETS, AND IN THE PSALMS, CONCERNING ME. 45 THEN OPENED HE THEIR UNDERSTANDING, THAT THEY MIGHT UNDERSTAND THE SCRIPTURES, 46 AND SAID UNTO THEM, THUS IT IS WRITTEN, AND THUS IT BEHOOVED CHRIST TO SUFFER, AND TO RISE FROM THE DEAD THE THIRD DAY: 47 AND THAT REPENTANCE AND REMISSION OF SINS SHOULD BE PREACHED IN HIS NAME AMONG ALL NATIONS, BEGINNING AT JERUSALEM. 48 AND YE ARE WITNESSES OF THESE THINGS. 49 AND, BEHOLD, I SEND THE PROMISE OF MY FATHER UPON YOU: BUT TARRY YE IN THE CITY OF JERUSALEM, UNTIL YE BE ENDUED WITH POWER FROM ON HIGH. THEN HE LED THEM OUT AS FAR AS BETHANY AND LIFTED UP HIS HANDS AND WAS CARRIED UP INTO HEAVEN.
E) JESUS COMMANDED NOT TO DEPART FROM JERUSALEM BUT TO WAIT FOR THE THE PROMISE OF THE FATHER: ACT 1:1 – 5 THE FORMER TREATISE HAVE I MADE, O THEOPHILUS, OF ALL THAT JESUS BEGAN BOTH TO DO AND TEACH, 2 UNTIL THE DAY IN WHICH HE WAS TAKEN UP, AFTER THAT HE THROUGH THE HOLY GHOST HAD GIVEN COMMANDMENTS UNTO THE APOSTLES WHOM HE HAD CHOSEN: 3 TO WHOM ALSO HE SHOWED HIMSELF ALIVE AFTER HIS PASSION BY MANY INFALLIBLE PROOFS, BEING SEEN OF THEM FORTY DAYS, AND SPEAKING OF THE THINGS PERTAINING TO THE KINGDOM OF GOD: 4 AND, BEING ASSEMBLED TOGETHER WITH THEM, COMMANDED THEM THAT THEY SHOULD NOT DEPART FROM JERUSALEM, BUT WAIT FOR THE PROMISE OF THE FATHER, WHICH, SAITH HE, YE HAVE HEARD OF ME. 5 FOR JOHN TRULY BAPTIZED WITH WATER; BUT YE SHALL BE BAPTIZED WITH THE HOLY GHOST NOT MANY DAYS HENCE.
F) TEN DAYS AFTER HIS ASCENSION THIS PROPHECY WAS FULFILLED IN ACTS 2:1 – 4 AND WHEN THE DAY OF PENTECOST WAS FULLY COME, THEY WERE ALL WITH ONE ACCORD IN ONE PLACE. 2 AND SUDDENLY THERE CAME A SOUND FROM HEAVEN AS OF A RUSHING MIGHTY WIND, AND IT FILLED THE ENTIRE HOUSE WHERE THEY WERE SITTING. 3 AND THERE APPEARED UNTO THEM CLOVEN TONGUES LIKE AS OF FIRE, AND IT SAT UPON EACH OF THEM. 4 AND THEY WERE ALL FILLED WITH THE HOLY GHOST, AND BEGAN TO SPEAK WITH OTHER TONGUES, AS THE SPIRIT GAVE THEM UTTERANCE.
G) THOUSANDS OF JEWS WERE IN JERUSALEM TO CELEBRATE THE FEAST OF PENTECOST. MANY WITNESSED THE RESULTS OF THE OUTPOURING OF THE HOLY SPIRIT AS THE DISCIPLES THAT HAD RECEIVED THE HOLY SPIRIT BEGAN TO LOUDLY AND PUBLICLY WORSHIP AND PRAISE GOD IN LANGUAGES THAT THEY HAD NOT LEARNED.
H) THIS OUTPOURING TOOK PLACE ON THE VERY DAY THAT THE JEWS OFFERING TWO WAVE LOAVES TO GOD RECOGNIZING THEIR DEPENDENCE UPON HIM.
I) I BELIEVE THAT THE ONE LOAF REPRESENTED THE JEWS AND THE OTHER THE GENTILES THAT WOULD RECEIVE CHRIST. THE LOAVES WERE LEAVENED REPRESENTING THE SIN THAT WAS STILL IN US THAT WAS BAKED WITH THE FINE FLOUR REPRESENTING THE RIGHTEOUSNESS OF CHRIST.

IV) PERSONAL APPLICATION OF THE FEAST OF PENTECOST.
A) JOHN THE BAPTIST INTRODUCED JESUS AS THE LAMB OF GOD WHO TAKES AWAY THE SINS OF THE WORLD AND AS THE ONE WHO BAPTIZES WITH THE HOLY SPIRIT.
B) PASSOVER REPRESENTS THE FIRST MAJOR ENCOUNTER WITH GOD BY HIS COVENANT PEOPLE. PENTECOST REPRESENTS THE SECOND MAJOR ENCOUNTER WITH GOD BY HIS COVENANT PEOPLE.
C) GOD WANTS US TO KNOW HIS SON NOT ONLY AS THE PASSOVER LAMB WHO WAS SACRIFICED FOR OUR SINS, BUT ALSO AS THE ONE WHO BAPTIZES US WITH HIS HOLY SPIRIT AND POWER.
D) THE PURPOSE OF THE BAPTISM OF THE HOLY SPIRIT IS TO GIVE US POWER TO BE HIS WITNESSES. IT WAS THIS SECOND ENCOUNTER, NOT THE RESURRECTION THAT TRANSFORMED PETER FROM A COWARD HIDING BEHIND CLOSED DOORS TO A MAN WHO STOOD IN JERUSALEM BEFORE THE SAME CROWD WHO HAD CRUCIFIED JESUS, BOLDLY PROCLAIMING THE GOSPEL.
E) EVEN JESUS WAS FILLED WITH THE HOLY SPIRIT AS RECORDED IN MATT 3:16 – 17, BEFORE HE WAS TEMPTED IN THE WILDERNESS. HE WAS READY TO BEGIN HIS MINISTRY.
F) AFTER A BRIEF AND VICTORIOUS ENCOUNTER WITH SATAN IN THE WILDERNESS THE BIBLE SAYS “HE WENT IN THE POWER OF THE SPIRIT.” (LUKE 4:14)

V) CONCLUSION: THE BOOK OF ACTS REVEALS THAT THE CHURCH BEGAN IN A BLASÉ OF GLORY. GOD WORKED THROUGH EARLY CHRISTIANS IN POWERFUL WAYS. GOD STILL WANTS TO USE ORDINARY MEN AND WOMEN TO TURN THE WORLD UPSIDE DOWN AS THEY MINISTER IN THE POWER OF HIS SPIRIT. WE TOO NEED THE POWER OF THE HOLY SPIRIT IN ORDER TO BE HIS WITNESSES. JOH 14:12 VERILY, VERILY, I SAY UNTO YOU, HE THAT BELIEVETH ON ME, THE WORKS THAT I DO SHALL HE DO ALSO; AND GREATER WORKS THAN THESE SHALL HE DO; BECAUSE I GO UNTO MY FATHER.

 

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