Shavuot or Pentecost: Not Jewish
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Another Appointed Time is upon us—a time to rejoice and celebrate! Yet, as more and more begin to honor the commanded Mo'edim, even more end up confused thinking the world is becoming more Jewish. This is very understandable and we should lovingly handle these misconceptions accordingly. Remember, most of us came into the truth as atheists, agnostics, Christians, Jews, etc., with all our presuppositions, misunderstandings and baggage. Therefore, it should be no shock when someone inaccurately assumes that because you're celebrating the Appointed Times given by God, that you're trying to be Jewish. As followers of Messiah, we are called to be understanding, patient, and loving as we strive to correct these types of misunderstandings. After all, most Americans and others around the world have been taught for decades, even centuries, that the Appointed Times of the Bible are Jewish. On top of that, the way many of us choose to celebrate these Holy Times look very Jewish. This makes total sense for those of us who realize we were grafted-into the already planted and sprouted Olive Tree that represents Yah's children. Even so, since its inception, Shavuot has never been solely Jewish.
We are called to remember that Shavuot was established by our Creator for all Twelve Tribes of Israel to honor and keep. Those we call Jewish—which refers to descendants of the House of Judah (the Tribes of Judah, Benjamin, and Levi)—are only a small fraction of Israel. Knowing this, one can only conclude that Shavuot is and always will be an Appointed Time for all of Israel—including those grafted-in by the grace (that is favor) of our loving Creator. Those who call Messiah Yeshua their Lord, Savior, and Master, must realize that they are striving to be called an Israelite—a child of the Most High. Therefore, the influx of those who are striving to keep all the Biblical Feasts and Appointed Times must be understood as a move of Elohim to fulfill His promise to Abraham:
In your seed all the nations of the earth shall be blessed, because you have obeyed My voice.
Genesis 22:18 NASB
Seed, as Apostle Paul recognizes, was given in the singular form. This was a promise given to Abraham of our Messiah! All nations would be blessed by the seed (singular) of Abraham! Yeshua is the seed!
Now the promises were spoken to Abraham and to his seed. He does not say, "And to seeds," as referring to many, but rather to one, "And to your seed," that is, Messiah.
Therefore, may it also be no shock or surprise that many who have fully submitted to Messiah Yeshua as their Lord and Savior, have adopted the Appointed Times that he himself kept and guarded. Furthermore, as we witness those who are striving to honor the Appointed Times as detailed in Holy Scripture, may it be recognized not only as beautiful fruit of our Creator's promises, but of the love and obedience of those who proclaim Yeshua as their Messiah! Those who have adopted the Torah of Elohim—the instructions of YHVH—are simply striving to walk in their Master Yeshua's footsteps and be obedient children of whom their heavenly Father has named: Israel.
Shavuot does not belong to Judaism, but instead to the Creator of all things who commanded His Children to honor and keep it forever. It belongs to Israel.
Yet, we must give due love and respect to our Jewish brothers and sisters who have been set-apart by our Father and guided to play a key role in helping to preserve the Holy Scriptures, Yah's Calendar, and His Appointed Times. All details considered, Shavuot still belongs to all of Israel. Every Israelite, whether a direct descendant of one of the Twelve Tribes or grafted-in, are all called to honor, keep, and guard each Appointed Time. The children of Elohim—those that are truly and spiritually Israel—will bear the fruit of obedient children. We will know who the children of YHVH are by their fruit. One does not keep the Torah or guard the Appointed Times in order to be saved, but as fruit of such favor (grace) and salvation. It is through our Messiah Yeshua that an ethnic or grafted-in Israelite has the peace of their salvation and pleasure to bear the fruit of obedience.
Shavuot is an excellent time to give praise to YHVH for his unmerited grace and our salvation through Yeshua! It is also a time to give Him praise and thanks that not only do we receive salvation through our Messiah, but that we have a perfect example of how we can walk as YHVH's obedient children. Yeshua showed us how to be a perfect Israelite! And when we walk as he walked, we can rest assured that we are Yeshua's brother or sister! When we walk as Messiah walked, we give our Father glory as we reflect His perfect Son.
Walking as Yeshua walked—keeping the perfect Torah (Law of Elohim)—we stir those around us to ask: Are you Jewish? To where we can excitedly reply, no, but my Messiah is! And many Jews are my brothers and sisters! (Which is obviously just the beginning of a fruitful conversation for those who are truly interested in what Holy Scripture has to say).
Sure, many will dismiss you as a "wanna-be-Jew." But those who truly love you, and are sincerely interested in what our Creator has said through His perfect Word, will want to learn more from you as to why you're living the way you do. Until then, always be understanding, patient, kind, and loving, earnestly praying that the Father will give more eyes to see and ears to hear! Remember, those who are peacekeepers are the ones who are blessed!
Be patient, as our heavenly Father was patient with you. Shalom!
For those interested in walking as Yeshua our Messiah walked, clinging to the perfect instructions (Torah) given by the Most High, we highly encourage you to keep the Appointed Time of Shavuot. Start by reading Leviticus 23:15-21.
Sean is a former Atheist who was finally awoken to the reality of our Creator—which lead him to the one place he thought he would never step foot: “Bible College.” During his studies, our Heavenly Father flipped his Christian worldview upside down in order to reveal the Whole truth of His perfect Word. As a follower of Messiah Yeshua (Christ Jesus), Sean encourages believers to deepen their faith, seek the truth, test everything, and be willing to walk in the true image they were created: the image of the Most High and His flawless Son.