It has been over 2,000 years since the death and resurrection of Jesus. Since that time Christianity has grown and changed to reflect different eras, cultures, and different beliefs. The expression of our faith has taken on various forms and faces. It is ever growing and transforming—sometimes with choices that are for the better and some for the worse.
Since the 1970s more and more Christians are finding themselves returning to the Jewish roots of their faith. And with this outpouring has come many questions regarding the importance of our roots and in what form they should and can be expressed. In other words, "how deep do I really want to go?"
Should I celebrate the Feasts of the Lord?" Believer's everywhere are asking this question in particular.
The road of returning to the Hebrew roots of our faith is becoming increasingly well traveled with each passing year, and yet it has dangerous pit falls on either side. One side is the snare of legalism and on the other the lure of lawlessness. Perhaps, it could be said, "...narrow is the way, pressured is the gate, and few that find it."
Personally, as a pastor with a flock, I have witnessed the transforming power of the revelation of the Father's love that is revealed as we honor and celebrate the feasts and the miraculous fulfillment of Jesus in them.
We have taken these times to celebrate and honor God for His faithfulness to His Word; this celebration and honor, not legalistic observance, has created an added dimension to the depth of teaching within the church. Simple observance and understanding of the appointed times of the Lord removes fear and misconceptions while bridging the gap between Jews and Gentiles. It is human nature to fear what you do not know.
I believe the seriousness of this message, and the life changing power of walking in deeper revelation of our Father's covenant with us, causes this subject to come under pressure from the enemy. The enemy is consistently attempting to separate us from our Father and His love for us; as Believers begin to discover the truth in the roots of their faith, they not only find out who they are and where they came from, but also who their Father is.
This is something that as an adopted child I can relate to. When I first met my biological father I realized, for the first time in my life, that so many things that make me who I am are things that were passed down to me from my father. I walk like him, I have his sense of humor, and we even have similar interests and gifting. As a child I did not grow up in his household, where I might have picked up these things by osmosis; but rather strengths and weaknesses alike were passed down from him to me through the laws of nature.
In the same way we receive spiritual and natural gifts from our earthly father, we also receive gifts from our heavenly Father. In understanding these gifts, and the deep history behind them, we are empowered to use them.
Many times the body of Christ has so identified with the Son of God that we have lost sight of the Father, our Father. Jesus did not come to erase the past or bring confusion. He did not come to negate all of the traditions and customs His Father used to speak to His people. He was not a replacement; He was a bridge to connect us, even more so, to our Father.
Customs and traditions become negative things if they simply become empty acts carried out step by step. However, when our traditions, such as the feasts, point us to our Father, and we see Him expressing Himself to us, our traditions become what He intended them to be, a bridge from His heart to ours.
There is increasing revelation in the body of Christ that the feasts are everlasting ordinances between God and His people; they were given to Israel but they are available to whoever calls on the name of the Lord. Together, as a whole, they are mentioned over 100 times in scripture with more than 25 of the references being in the New Testament. The blessings that are tied with these special times are life changing-there is revelation, sanctification, provision, forgiveness, fresh starts, and impartation.
Many ministries use drama and illustrated messages to convey something significant. In a similar way, the feasts of the Lord act as illustrated sermons directly from God's heart to ours. They are prophetic, as some of the things demonstrated in and through them have been fulfilled and some things have yet to occur. While the spring feasts are done in remembrance, the fall feasts are a dress rehearsal of what is to come and of Jesus' second coming. They illustrate God's nature, God's timing, and they point us to Messiah.
I believe many things would be different if the body of Christ honored the Lord's feasts. I believe that the blessings associated with the feasts and are promised in the Word would truly be ours, as a body, on a grand scale. I would also be so bold as to say that I believe that history would be different if we as the Christian church had a better understanding of the Hebrew roots of our faith and our role with the nation of Israel. Regardless, we cannot change the past but we can impact the future; this brings me great hope as Christian hearts around the world are beginning to grow curious and sensitive to the history of our faith.
Many in the body of Christ are also coming into the revelation of the unique blessings of bringing offerings to the Lord during feast times. As a farmer would tell you, a yield of a harvest is directly linked to the timing of the planting. As it is in the natural realm, so it is also in the spirit. The Lord reveals specific times to plant seed in order to receive the highest yield. I believe that God has provided specific times of planting in order to produce a supernatural yield.
In Hebrews 11 it was said of Moses that it was accredited to him as faith that he kept the Passover. In Psalm 23:5 the scripture says, "You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies. You anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows." The feasts are when the Lord invites us to His table and where we find deliverance from our enemies. They are a time of outpouring where our cup truly overflows and where we are anointed and promoted.
In the world, we may receive a reward at the White House or another prestigious location, but as Believers, our Father invites us to His table. After we have walked through the valley of the shadow of death our reward and our anointing is at our Father's table. The Lord Himself has prepared a table before us and invited us to truly "do this in remembrance" as well as "do this" in great anticipation of what is to come!
Curt Landry is CEO of House of David Ministries. For more information about his organization, go to www.houseofdavid.us.