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The New Moon Cycle

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          God established the different seasons and feasts for Israel. In Leviticus 23 it tells of these different seasons. In the spring, on the first month, which is Nisan and the 14th day is the feast of Passover followed immediately by the Feast of Unleavened Bread which lasts for 7 days and then the Feast of First Fruits. Today in Israel they do not name and celebrate all these feasts by have an eight day celebration which is all called the Feast of Passover, during which time they eat no unleavened bread. In 2004 the spring feasts began April 6th on our calendar. Then 50 days from Unleavened Bread you come to Pentecost.

Finally, on the Seventh month, Tishri, and first day is the Jewish New Year which is celebrated for 2 days and also the beginning of Rosh Hashanah, the Feast of Trumpets which is ten days of Penitence and climaxes on Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement which is the 10th day of the month, which in 2004 was September 25th. Then you count five days and come to Sukkot, the Feast of Tabernacles or Feast of Booths. Most know of these feasts but there are some additional appointed days for Israel.

          First is that of the New Moon known as Rosh Hodesh. Psalms 81:3Blow up the trumpet in the new moon, in the time appointed, on our solemn feast day.” Psalms 89:37It shall be established for ever as the moon, and as a faithful witness in heaven.” Psalms 104:19He appointed the moon for seasons: the sun knoweth his going down.”

It is interesting to note that most of the world goes on a solar calendar of 365.25 days per year. However, if you go back to 7th century B.C. and before that, all calendars were only 360 day years comprised of 12 months of exactly 30 days. If you go to Revelation 11:3, 12:6 you see that same calendar of 360 day years is being used for the time known as Great Tribulation. God will then operate on that same calendar which is the way time was from creation until after the flood.

          In ancient Israel, they were on a lunar calendar controlled by the moon cycles. It was probably the fact that most of the nations around Israel worshipped the sun, moon and stars but the sun god was one of their big gods. It could have been that God put the Israelites on a lunar calendar for the reason that they would not be tempted to get involved with worshipping the sun as the nations around them. Genesis 1:16And God made two great lights; the greater light to rule the day, and the lesser light to rule the night: he made the stars also.” The moon is a reflection of the sun and is lesser light. Within scriptures the sun and moon are used as symbolism. Jesus is called the ‘light of the world’ in John 8:12, and the ‘bright and morning star’ in Revelation 22:16.

We are a reflection of Him and His light. The moon was the lesser light, but it shined in the dark by the light of the sun. God could have been saying to Israel, you will be little and insignificant among the nations, which He did because of their sin. Deuteronomy 4:27And the LORD shall scatter you among the nations, and ye shall be left few in number among the heathen.” But also note what God said in Deuteronomy 7:7The LORD did not set his love upon you, nor choose you, because ye were more in number than any people; for ye were the fewest of all people.” But God said He would make them great. In the midst of the darkness of the world, God gave the light of His revelation and knowledge of Him to this little nation. The moon is the lesser light compared to that of the sun, but it was necessary in the darkness to walk in that day when the didn’t have electricity and modern lighting.

There are four cycles or stages of the moon. The new moon was between the first and 7th days of the month then, but not today because the months don’t follow the moon. Then the month was determined by the positioning of the moon. That is how they determined the stage of the moon. It was the New Moon from the 1st to 7th day, the Waxing Moon from the 8th to the 14th day, the Full moon was the 15th to the 22nd day and the Waning Moon was form the 23rd day to the 30th day of the month.

You have total darkness, then the crescent moon, then a half moon then full moon, then half moon again and then back to darkness. Back in the ancient times they called it the moon being born again because it came out of darkness into light. That is similar to a believer coming to Christ and being born-again according to John 3:3-7.

When a baby is born it is a three fold process, called descent, rotation and crowning that is in all medical books. When you are born again, first there is descent where you humble yourself before God. Then there is rotation when you turn from your sin unto God. That is followed by the crowning when the baby’s head comes forth. When you come forth a brand new person after repentance, you are born again, which is your crowning, when you become a child of God.

Rabbit trail: God created all things so that there was a natural and spiritual with the natural things reflecting and showing that which is in the spiritual realm. Everything in the natural creation is that way and made to show something that is spiritual and to reflect as a testimony to the one who created all things. That is why all of creation is a trinity. Time is a trinity. Matter is a trinity. Space is a trinity. Why? Because God is a triune God and His creation is a reflection of the creator as a painting is a reflection that tells you something about the painter.

So there is a phrase of the New Testament about being born again and this phrase connected to the moon and ancient Israel.

Just as I mentioned that the in the natural realm there is a shadow of the spiritual, the spiritual cycles of Israel are linked to the moon. From the first of the month as it is coming into the half moon, from the 1st to the 15th of the month the light is growing until it is full at the full moon. There are 15 days and 15 generations from Abraham when God cut the covenant with him to King Solomon when he built the Solomon’s Temple. So Israel came from nothing, from Abraham coming from the land of Ur to a nation, to the Temple to the shekinah glory of God in 15 generations, parallel to the 15 days of the moon.

Then you go from King Solomon to King Zedekiah, the king when the Babylonians came in and destroyed the Holy Temple and the glory of God left the temple and went to the Mount of Olives and departed according to Jewish teaching. As it is 15 days from the full moon to darkness, it was 15 generations from King Solomon to King Zedekiah.

It started from darkness, went to light and returned to darkness. For the moon in a 30 day cycle made up of the increasing moon for 15 days and the decreasing moon for 15 days and Israel began with Abraham, from darkness, coming out of his father’s house who was an idolater, to the light and glory of the Temple and God’s presence 15 generations later in Solomon’s day and then back to darkness and God’s judgment 15 generations later. Israel’s history of how they followed the Lord and fell into sin and went into captivity is patterned after the cycles of the moon.

Another interesting fact. The moon grew full as the nation of Israel went down to Egypt. They go from Abraham, Isaac and Jacob to become a nation, then they went down into Egypt in darkness for 400 years, then they returned to the land. Solomon built the temple of Solomon and 400 years later the Babylonians came and destroyed it. So here is a 400 year cycle which reoccurs again in Israel’s history, going from light and illumination back to darkness. What is the space between Malachi and John the Baptist? 400 years. Malachi was the last true prophet until the revelation of John the Baptist. These 400 years is again comparable to how the light of the moon shines and gives radiance and light and then suddenly goes back into darkness and then is renewed again.

What we believe prophetically, is that the nation of Israel is being renewed according to Psalms 89:37. “It shall be established for ever as the moon, and as a faithful witness in heaven.” He appointed the moon for seasons. We take it for granted as it goes through its cycles, but it was appointed as a calendar for Israel and then God uses it as a picture to say, don’t worry about when you are in darkness. If you will turn back to me I will again bring you out of the darkness into light. Israel is now back from the new moon which is darkness being renewed to the full moon which will be the return of Christ.

There are cycles that are important. The 1st day of the month, then the 14th-15th, the middle of the month. Remember they had no physical calendar, they looked up and saw the darkness and when the saw the first sliver of a moon they said, this is the new moon. So the first day was important, the 14th and 15th days were important and the 21st day was important. In our bible the first day is mentioned 80 times. “On the first day” normally alluding to the new moon. The 14th day is mentioned 19 times in the Bible, the 15th day is mentioned 13 times in the Bible and the 21st day called the great day.

Many times, like the prophet Ezekiel and others tell us that on the first day of a particular month, God visited them. Or it happened on the 14 and 15th day of the month. So it is interesting to think about how God put Israel on the lunar calendar. The moon becomes a faithful witness to the seasons. Then what is so interesting is that as they were looking to the moon to determine the fullness or darkness, God is visiting the prophets.

Day one was important because there was a new moon sacrifice. So, when they were doing the sacrifice there was a time of searching and prayer and God would visit the prophets with a vision or revelation all around the cycles of the moon. Why did God ask them to make an offering for every new moon? When there is a full moon they could see someone and tell who they were from a short distance. When it was the new moon and total darkness you couldn’t see and tell who someone was and that is when the enemies of Israel would attempt to attack them. As long as there was a full moon, you might be able to identify who was there because of the light of the moon. But if it is totally dark, even from close by you couldn’t tell who someone was. God knew the enemies of Israel would try to take advantage of the darkness, so He told Israel to offer a sacrifice of blood on my altar during the new moon. And God supernaturally protected His people because of that blood offering. So when the Bible talks about seasons it is important. Psalms 104:19He appointed the moon for seasons:”

Here is something that most people are not aware of. They are not aware that according to the scripture the millennial reign of Christ, which is mentioned 6 times in Revelation chapter 20, is a 1000 year period that is called by some “The Day of the Lord.” Revelation 20:2-7

Why is it called the Day of the Lord. It is when the battle of Armageddon takes place, the Lord comes back to stop that war and to judge the nations and remove the antichrist, beast and false prophet from the earth in a day. That day is called ‘The Day of the Lord.’ It is the peak of the day of the Lord to some who say that it is the beginning of the 1000 years using 2 Peter 3:8 to verify their stand. “But, beloved, be not ignorant of this one thing, that one day is with the Lord as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day.” So, they say the day and the 1000 years are all the same and both are a day before the Lord. The prophets speak of a terrible day of the Lord and then there is Isaiah 11:6. “The wolf also shall dwell with the lamb, and the leopard shall lie down with the kid; and the calf and the young lion and the fatling together; and a little child shall lead them.” So there is the bad and the good all associated with the day of the Lord and so it is believed by many to refer to both a single day and also a 1000 year period, rather than the time after the re-creation and the new heavens and new earth. 2 Peter 3:13 Nevertheless we, according to his promise, look for new heavens and a new earth, wherein dwelleth righteousness.” Revelation 21:1-5a And I saw a new heaven and a new earth: for the first heaven and the first earth were passed away; and there was no more sea. And I John saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. And I heard a great voice out of heaven saying, Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and he will dwell with them, and they shall be his people, and God himself shall be with them, and be their God. And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away. And he that sat upon the throne said, Behold, I make all things new …”

According to Ezekiel chapters 40-46 there is a temple that will be rebuilt when the Messiah returns. The East Gate will be open during the New Moon (Ezekiel 46:1). “Thus saith the Lord GOD; The gate of the inner court that looketh toward the east shall be shut the six working days; but on the sabbath it shall be opened, and in the day of the new moon it shall be opened.” The nations will worship during the new moon (Isaiah 66:23). “And it shall come to pass, that from one new moon to another, and from one sabbath to another, shall all flesh come to worship before me, saith the LORD.” Sacrifices will be offered upon altars (Ezekiel 46:6) during the new moon. “And in the day of the new moon it shall be a young bullock without blemish, and six lambs, and a ram: they shall be without blemish.” So the point is that when God establishes a feast, something of this nature in the Word, it is important to understand that he continues it. He may stop it by fulfilling it, as he did the Feast of Passover. Much will happen in the future regarding the antichrist, the tribulation and the coming of Christ will have to do with the fall feasts of Israel which have yet to be fulfilled by Christ as He did the spring feasts. So He doesn’t destroy that, He simply adds to it and gives a picture of what is to come.

Acts 2:20The sun shall be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood, before that great and notable day of the Lord come:” quoting Joel 2:31. When men landed on the moon there were many that said it didn’t happen, it was all a hoax. A preacher would back then preach about the moon turning into blood and someone would say, how can that happen? The answer would be something like, oh, the Russians and Americans would start a war on the moon and their blood would cause the moon to turn blood red. That would take an awful lot of bodies.

But when you go back and study the Hebraic history and writings you find out that the moon turning into blood alludes to a lunar eclipse. When you read Jewish rabbi’s they talk about the sun is always a bad sign for idolaters, the heathen, if the sun is in a solar eclipse. The moon is always a bad sign for Israel if it’s a lunar eclipse. If you see a lunar eclipse in which it looks orange or bloody. If it’s in the East, it’s a bad sign for the East, if it’s in the West; it’s a bad sign for the West. If its face is totally bloody it is an indication that war is coming.

Then the interesting part. During the 3000th anniversary of King David taking the city of Jerusalem, on April 3, 1996, there was a complete lunar eclipse over Jerusalem at Passover. Then on the eve of the Feast of Tabernacles the same year, September 27th 1996 there was a lunar eclipse again as on the eve of Passover. Purim, March 23rd 1997 a 90% lunar eclipse, in the middle of the days of repentance, September 16th, 1997 another lunar eclipse. That is unheard of. The rabbi’s saw it and they called it the bloody moon. The moon turning into blood before the day of the Lord was a sign; an ancient indicating sign of lunar eclipses falling on feast days would be a sign. Think about what has happened since 1996 and 1997. It began with the terrorism in Israel with the current Palestinian uprising and giving away of land in hopes of peace, then terrorism against America and the war in Afghanistan and Iraq. All these things have happened since that time, like a spirit of war has been on the earth. Actually, it has been as the Muslims have said, it is a jihad against Israel and America because we support Israel. But also they have said it is against the people of the book, being both Jews and Christians which they call the 3rd Great Jihad.

You might say, “well what does those eclipses of the moon over Israel in 1996-1997 have to do the America and the war we are in that really began with the attack on Sept.11, 2001”? If you go back to 2001, from America, we had lunar eclipses on January 9th, 2001, December 30th, 2001, May 26th, 2002, November 20th, 2002, May 16, 2003, November 9th, 2003, then this one on October 27th, 2004.

Anyway, this should help us to understand the times and the season in which we are living. It is not insignificant to America that we just had a full eclipse of the Moon on October 27th, 2004. The next one is due March 3rd 2007, then another August 28th 2007, then again February 21st 2008. That is also significant because 2007-2008 ends a 400 year cycle for America (1607-2007) as well as a 40 year cycle for Israel (1967-2007 from Jerusalem being reunited). Undoubtedly this will an important period of time for the fulfillment of prophecy.

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