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Calendar Confusion

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Calendar Confusion
Written by Todd D. Bennett
March 1, 2015 (Gregorian Date)


The Scriptures tell us that “in the beginning” Elohim created the heavens and the
earth. We then read about the creation of time known as a day, which then led to a seven
day period known as a week. Up to that point, both of these categories of time involve the
sun as the sole determining factor of their duration which, of course, was controlled by the
earth’s rotational speed. The setting and the rising of the sun marked the progression of the
day cycle, and the week was merely a counting of days. This is expressly provided in the
Scriptures.
Night and day were “stitched together” and unified into one (echad) day. So a day at
any given location on the planet is reckoned from sundown to sundown. This was
established at the beginning of time, although most of the world currently operates under a
solar calendar that reckons a day from midnight, which is the halfway point between
sunset and sunrise.
Regardless of this difference in the start point there is not much difference between
how most of the world determines a day. It is generally considered to be a 24 hour period
that includes both night and day. It is significant to mention that the Scriptures do not
provide smaller definitions of time such as the hour, the minute and the second. Most
understand an hour to consist of sixty minutes and the minute to consist of sixty seconds,
but in the Scriptures we are not provided with any of these smaller time distinctions.
The Hebrew word for “hour” in the Scriptures is “sha’ah” and it means “moment.” It
refers to a moment in time, not necessarily a period of sixty minutes.
“Hours did not have a fixed length until the Greeks decided they needed such a system for
theoretical calculations. Hipparchus proposed dividing the day equally into 24 hours, which
came to be known as equinoctial hours. They are based on 12 hours of daylight and 12
hours of darkness on the days of the Equinoxes.”1
The notion of making timepieces independent from the sun and the moon is now
taken for granted, but it was actually a revolutionary concept. The idea of measuring and
tracking time separate from the created timepieces established by the Creator ultimately
formed a disconnect between mankind and creation that exists to this day.
While the daylight could be seen and measured using the sun by means of a sundial,
that was obviously not possible at night. So man sought to find a way to also measure the
1 A Brief History of Time Measurement article written by Leo Rogers at nrich.maths.org
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passage of time in the dark. Clocks were establish to measure time as a simple
mathematical occurrence on a theoretical division of time measured by things such as the
passage of sand through an hourglass, the flow of water through a water clock, the burning
of a candle or even the movement of stars.
These mechanical time measuring devices later started to calculate time within the
framework of an equal 12 hour day and 12 hour night which obviously only happened two
times per year at the equinoxes.2 So the very framework within which man calculates time
is flawed on a daily basis and defies the physical observations of the timepiece established
by the Creator. Modern science has proceeded to develop “atomic clocks” that base their
measurements on the oscillations of the Cessium 133 atom.
There is nothing necessarily wrong with measuring time to it’s most miniscule
measurement, but in doing so we should not forget or discard those measurements
originally provided by the Creator. They are the measurements that He expects us to use
and, of course, they are the measurements that He uses. If we want to understand time and
the future, we need to synchronize ourselves with the Creator of time. If we want to be in
synch with the Creator we need to stop looking at the Cesium atom or Greek derived clocks
and return to the true Scriptural reckoning of time that is the subject of this discussion.
Recently, the idea has circulated around various groups that a day begins at sunrise
and ends the following sunrise or that a day only constitutes the light portion of a day. The
reality is that there was darkness before light was spoken into creation and the Scriptures
describe the first day as: “. . . so the evening and the morning . . .” Genesis 1:4. In the Hebrew
text the “first day” is “yom echad.” The Hebrew word “yom” means “day” and the Hebrew
word “echad” can mean “first” but it also means “one” as in “unified.” Therefore, the text
literally provides that: “there was evening and morning – day unified.” The Scriptures
continue to describe the progression of subsequent days in the same fashion.
The evening and the morning are both the points when light and dark transition.
They could be described as the “turns” in a day and to properly understand time it is
important that we think cyclical rather than linear.3 Therefore, the light and the dark, called
the day and the night, were unified into a day, which is a cycle that began with the evening
and proceeded through the night and through the following day until the following evening
when the next day began. If you think of the night and the day being stitched together at
each sunrise and sunset we begin to see the cycle of time that the Creator established. We
will also see this cycle established when we consider the year, which is also divided into
two circuits.4
2 The equinox is the time when the day and the night are equal. This event occurs two times each year – once
at the vernal or spring equinox. The other time is known as the fall or autumnal equinox. 3 This is a fundamental difference between eastern thought and western thought. Eastern thought views time
in a cyclical, repeating fashion, while western thought views time in a linear fashion, from one point in a line
to another.
4 While much of the world observes four seasons in a year, the Scriptures typically refer to only two seasons,
namely: summer and winter. These seasons involve cycles that begin and end at the “turn” of the year or the
“circuit”. This point in time is called a “tequfah” in Hebrew. As you approach a “turn” it is typically referred to
3
As if the matter could not be any clearer, the Scriptures later define the duration and
parameters of a Day when detailing the Day of Atonement. The Scriptures tell us that the
Day of Atonement (Yom Kippur) shall occur on the 10th Day of Month 7.5 We are to “afflict
our beings” for the entire Day of Atonement on Day 10 and so there is no confusion the
Commandment provides: “It shall be to you a sabbath of solemn rest, and you shall afflict
your souls; on the ninth day of the month at evening, from evening to evening, you shall
celebrate your sabbath.” Leviticus 23:32. In other words, the 10th day spanned from the
evening after the 9th Day to the following evening – evening to evening, exactly as was
provided for a day span in the beginning.
Beyond the day, things can become more confusing as false doctrines permeate the
believing community, causing division and strife. The Creator’s Calendar is under attack by
various factions promoting erroneous teachings that result in many completely
misunderstanding time.
6 Indeed, as we are approaching the end of the age, the enemy is
desperately attempting to promote confusion and chaos in and amongst the Bride of
Messiah. Those who follow Yahushua7 are exhorted to come out of her (Babylon) lest you
take part in her sins and share in her plagues. 8
Most of the world currently operates under the Gregorian Calendar established in

  1. It is named after the Roman Catholic Pope Gregory XIII who adopted and
    implemented the calendar reforms promoted by Jesuit Christopher Clavius.
    9 This calendar
    was an adjustment of the Julian Calendar deriving also from Rome and named after Julius
    Caesar. They are both solar calendars deriving from the Roman Empire, a definitively
    pagan culture. As a result, the days of the week and most of the months on those calendars
    are attributed to pagan deities.
    Despite that this is the calendar established by the Christian church, many
    Christians are recognizing that they have been born and raised in a pagan dominated
    culture that is rooted in Babylonian sun worship. Christianity has adopted numerous
    Babylonian traditions and operates under a pagan calendar.10 Those who hear the voice of
    the Great Shepherd are turning away from their pagan ways and returning to the ancient
    paths that they have strayed from. (Jeremiah 18:15). This is not always an easy process.

as the “end of days” or “the end of the year” (see Onkelos). The two main “turns” are the two equinoxes
although there are two others known as the solstices. The summer would begin around the vernal (spring)
equinox and end around the autumnal (fall) equinox. The winter would begin around the autumnal (fall)
equinox and end around the vernal (spring) equinox.
5 Leviticus 16:29
6 Of course this is the hallmark of the enemy of the Creator, “to change times and laws.” (see Daniel 7:25). 7 Yahushua is the proper transliteration for the Hebrew Name of the Messiah. It is the same Name as the
Scriptural patriarch often known as Joshua in English Bibles. The Hellenized English name Jesus is commonly
used to refer to the Messiah, but that was never His Name. The name Jesus did not exist in any language
spoken at the time of His first coming. For an in depth discussion of the Name of the Father and the Son see
the Walk in the Light series book entitled Names. 8 Revelation 18:4 9 The Julian and Gregorian Calendars article written by Peter Meyer, Hermetic Systems. 10 For a more detailed discussion of this subject see the Walk in the Light series book entitled Pagan Holidays.
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While the Bride is coming out of Babylon, in this vulnerable condition, she is being
inundated by “doctrines of demons.”
“Now the Spirit expressly says that in latter times some will depart from the faith, giving heed
to deceiving spirits and doctrines of demons.”
1 Timothy 4:1
Throughout history we have seen that the hallmark of pagan cultures was the
worship of false gods (the Nephilim and their offspring). In fact, much of the world
currently lives under a pagan solar calendar glorifying these renamed and recycled beings
that all derive from the pre-flood period when the Nephilim Empires covered the earth.
Part of coming out of Babylon involves recalibrating your life from the calculated pagan
solar calendar to the Creator’s Calendar described in the Scriptures.
Just as the first man, Adam, was taken from the “ground” (“adamah” in Hebrew) we
are all intimately connected to the planet and the cycles of time established by the Creator.
In fact, the primary purpose of keeping track of time is so that mankind can discern and
observe the Appointed Times, also known as the Moadim, that are commanded in the
Scriptures.11 The entire focus of this time keeping exercise is so that we can be in synch
with the Creator and operate in His Kingdom according to His timing. His Appointed Times
align the physical and spiritual realms in both space and time.
When you determine to leave Babylon and enter into Covenant with the Creator,
understanding His Calendar is an important part of walking in the Light of Truth. My
journey out of Babylon was intimately tied with the Appointed Times.12 As I began to
observe them at their proper time and at the proper location the blinders fell from my eyes.
I was then able to see truths that had been hidden from me for much of my life. As I met
with the Creator at His Appointed Times, the Walk in the Light series was birthed and
eventually completed.
For some it is easy to leave Babylon, but they do not know what Calendar to follow.
They are provided with some basic information in the Scriptures, but then are faced with a
lot of conflicting extra-Scriptural information that causes confusion. Sometimes ideas
simply appear from nowhere. The issue concerning the day span is a good example. It has
long been understood that a Scriptural day flows from evening to evening. This is a visible
observation that anyone can make and we can see this reckoning from the first week of
11 The Appointed Times are known as “moadim” in Hebrew and they are specific times fixed by the Creator.
They belong to Him and anyone in Covenant with Him is commanded to keep those times. They are found
throughout the Scriptures and are intimately focused and synchronized with the harvests of the Promised
Land. They connect man with the Land, just as Adam was intimately connected with the Garden in the
beginning. They begin with Passover and the Feast of Unleavened Bread and then proceed to Shavuot, Yom
Teruah, Yom Kippur, Succot and Shemini Atzeret. The Appointed Times are discussed in the Walk in the Light
series book entitled Appointed Times. 12 Sadly, many Christians utterly fail to recognize the significance of the Appointed Times because they are
often referred to as Jewish Holidays. This is simply untrue as in Leviticus 23:2 the Creator refers to them as
“My Appointed Times.” They belong to Him and anyone who desires to serve and obey the Creator should be
keeping His times.
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creation. Then, seemingly out of nowhere, people came up with a new idea that tantalizes
some and leads them away from the truth. The whole point of the Creator’s calendar is so
that it can be observed.
This is where we start to see a distinction between calculated solar calendars and
the Creator’s Calendar. Those who prefer clocks and a calculated calendar over observation
use midnight as the turn of the day. Midnight cannot be determined by a visual observation.
Rather, it must be calculated and, as we shall see, the Creator provides visual markers so
that time can be observed. Therefore, whenever you see a calendar that requires a
measurement of calculation that cannot be directly confirmed through observation you
should be suspect because it deviates from the principles established at the beginning.
Now as we continue through the Creation description in Genesis we read on the
fourth day of Creation the mention of the lights in the heavens. This is very interesting
because the earth already existed on day one and there are some who believe that while
the creation of the heavens and the earth occurred “in the beginning” what we are reading
on day one is a renewal of creation that had experienced a former judgment – most likely a
flood. The reason for this understanding is because the earth is described as being
“formless and void” (tohu v’bohu) (Beresheet 1:2). We know from Isaiah 45:18 that the
Creator, Named hwhy13 did not create the earth “formless” (tohu). So it seems that the
earth somehow became “formless and void” (tohu v’bohu) because it was not originally
created in that state.
It would appear that we are reading about a renewal of creation in Genesis 1:2
rather than a brand new creation. There is no mention of the earth actually being created
on any specific day, and only on the fourth day do we read about the sun, designated as the
greater light and the moon designated as the lesser light. Here is a common English
translation of Creation Day 4.
“14 Then God said, ‘Let there be lights in the firmament of the heavens to divide the day from
the night; and let them be for signs and seasons, and for days and years; 15 and let them be for
lights in the firmament of the heavens to give light on the earth’; and it was so. 16 Then 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. 17 God set them in the firmament of the heavens to give light on the
earth, 18 and to rule over the day and over the night, and to divide the light from the darkness.
And God saw that it was good. 19 So the evening and the morning were the fourth day.”
Genesis 1:14-19
There are problems with this translation. First and foremost, the Creator is
described as Elohim in the Hebrew Scriptures, not God.14 There are also some words added
into the English translation that create some confusion. One in particular is the word
“seasons.” The reader might think that the lights were for winter, spring, summer and fall,
13 The Name of the Creator is spelled “yud” (y) “hey” (h) “vav” (w) “hey” (h) in Hebrew. Hebrew reads from
right to left so the Name of the Creator represented in the Ancient Hebrew Script appears as: hwhy. 14 This is an important distinction to make since the Creator of the Universe chose to describe Himself with
this significant Hebrew title.
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but that is not the case. In the Hebrew we read “moadim” (mydowm) which actually
means “Appointed Times.” So instead of a vague reference to seasons, the text is stating
that these lights are for precision time keeping concerning specific appointments.
15
There is also a “then” inserted at the beginning of verse 16 which makes it seem as
though Elohim created the sun and the moon after He set the lights in the firmament. When
we remove the “then”, which is not in the original Hebrew, it is clear that the sun and the
moon are the lights that divide the day from the night. The sun provides light to the earth
during the day and the moon provides light to the earth at night. They are both great lights
and notice that verse 16 reads that the lesser light (the moon) rules over the night and the
stars. In other words, it is the brightest luminary body of the night.
Here is a more accurate rendering of the primary portion of the text that we are
focusing on:
“14 Then Elohim said, ‘Let there be lights in the firmament of the heavens to divide the
day from the night; and let them be for signs and Appointed Times, and for days and years; 15
and let them be for lights in the firmament of the heavens to give light on the earth’; and it
was so. 16 Elohim made two great lights: the greater light to rule the day, and the lesser light
to rule the night and the stars.”
Genesis 1:14-16.
Elohim had already divided the light from the dark on Day 1. That light was
obviously not the light from the sun.16 Now He was providing “lights” to divide the day
from the night. Those “lights” were two bodies to rule over the day and the night and those
“lights” would be for signs and Appointed Times and for days and years. I am emphasizing
“lights” because the text could not be any clearer that there is more than one light involved
in keeping time.
Now some argue that neither the sun nor the moon are specifically mentioned in this
passage, but there really is no other way to interpret this passage. Both the sun and the
moon are referred to as great lights. The sun is the greater light and rules the day and the
moon rules the night. The sun is the greater light because it provides the light for the earth
as well as the light for the moon to reflect. The text is obviously referencing the sun for the
day and the moon for the night. Indeed this reference to lights is referenced in the Psalms
and the lights are named: “7 To Him who made great lights, for His mercy endures forever – 8
The sun to rule by day, for His mercy endures forever; 9 The moon and stars to rule by night,
for His mercy endures forever.” Psalm 136:7-9.17
15 The Appointed Times described in the Scriptures occur on specific days of specific months. So in order to
determine the Appointed Times we must be able to discern the beginning of the year and the beginning of
each month, the duration of each month and the number of the months until the beginning of the next year.
16 In the Hebrew we read that after speaking the light into existence Elohim saw “et-ha’owr” (rwah-ta).
The Aleph Taw (ta) has been associated with the Messiah and when it is seen attached to “the light”
(rwah) points to Messiah in Creation as the Light of the World from the beginning. 17 The Hebrew word for “sun” is “shemesh” (vmv) and the word for moon is “yerach” (jhy). Interestingly,
in this verse the sun is identified as “et-ha’shemesh” and the moon is identified as “et-ha’yerach.” Each of
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How interesting that even for the two divisions of day and night, the sun is the only
source of light. The moon does not emit any light. It only reflects the light of the sun and
those reflections provide a reference for the passage of days just as a sundial provides a
reference for the passage of a day. These created bodies, among other parts of creation, are
meant to praise Him and His Name. (see Psalm 148:3, 5).
Again, the text describes the purpose of the “lights” as follows: “and let them be for
signs and Appointed Times, and for days and years.” The passage specifically grouped these
lights together and it is fair to say that they are both for signs and Appointed Times and for
days and years. Otherwise the text could have easily distinguished between them. This is
important because there are some who try to promote a strictly lunar calendar, while
others promote a strictly solar calendar. Still others promote a calculated calendar, but this
text makes very clear that the sun and the moon keep track of time together. Like two
hands on a clock made by the Creator, not by man, these two celestial bodies keep track of
days, years and Appointed Times. They also act as signs.18
Now if the calendar was strictly a solar calendar then the Scriptures would have
stated that the great light was for days and years and Appointed Times. Instead it indicates
that both of the lights are for days and years and Appointed Times. Clearly, both lights are
involved in keeping time. The rising and setting of the sun keeps track of the passage of
days while the moon keeps count of those days through its cycle of phases. The moon then
determines the duration of the month through a complete cycle from first sliver to first
sliver. A year is determined by the passage of months until the cycle of the year is
completed. The cycle of the year is gauged by the “tequfahs” and the Appointed Times. Both
the sun and the moon are intimately involved with all of these observable occurrences.
The Appointed Times are detailed in various portions of the Torah and include: The
Sabbath, The Passover and Unleavened Bread, Shavuot, The Day of Trumpets, The Day of
Atonement, Succot and Shemini Atzeret. In order to properly observe these times it is
important to be able to determine the beginning of each year, the beginning of the months
and the beginning of days. Failure to do so will involve missing the appointments with the
Creator. This is a big deal.
Interestingly, one of the primary sections describing the Appointed Times in
Leviticus 23 provides a separation and a distinction between the weekly Sabbath and the
rest of the Appointed Times. That is because they are determined differently. This point is
evident when we look back at the description of the two great lights occurring in the midst
of the first week. Nowhere does the text attribute determining the week to the sun and the

these great lights is attached to the Aleph Taw (ta), so when the Psalm clearly identifies the two great lights
by name it also identifies them with the Messiah.
18 The word for “sign” in Hebrew is “owt” (twa). It means: “a sign, a signal, a beacon or evidence.” It is
something visible and clearly meant to be seen. Notice also the similarity of the “et” (ta) with the “owt”
(twa). The visible sign contains the “vav” (w), which symbolizes a peg or a nail. It connects things and has
the numeric value of 6, which is the number of man, who was created on the 6th day. The ultimate sign is the
sign of the Messiah Who came in the flesh as a man.
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moon together. That is because the moon has nothing to do with the week. The week is
strictly a seven day count.
As was at the beginning, the Sabbath is dependent only on the day count. It was not,
nor ever will be associated with the moon. The only involvement that the moon has with
the day is that it rules the night portion of a day. Further, its phases help keep track of the
progress of the day count through the monthly cycle, but it does not control the actual day
or week in any way. This is where those who subscribe to a lunar Sabbath go awry.19 They
are trying to synchronize the lunar cycle with the weekly Sabbath cycle, which is not
possible. It is very confusing because the lunar year of 12 months is 354 days long and the
solar year is 365.25 days. An average synodic lunar month is 29.53 days and you cannot
precisely fit 4 weeks into a lunar month. So the count of seven days has continued since
creation to this day, but it does not synch with the phases of the moon nor is their evidence
to suggest that it is supposed to.
The Appointed Times are designated by the Creator to fall on specific days of
specific months. The Appointed Times occur in various numbered months and those
months are determined by the cycles of the moon. That is where the moon plays a very
important part. It determines the beginning of months and as a result, it also determines
the beginning of the year. Obviously, the first day of the year will also coincide with the first
day of the first month. In each of these determinations the sun plays an equally important
role by providing the light of the visible marker revealed through the moon.
Remarkably absent in Genesis 1 is the reference to a specific number of days in a
year, the mention of a month or any indication of how many days are in a particular
month.20 We are only told that the two lights provide the gauge for time. This is important
because when we later read about competing calendars it is important to discern whether
they are “adding to the Torah” by adding information that is not provided in the Scriptures
and which may contradict the Scriptures.21
We are also not told when a year begins. So the first question is how do we start the
year and how do we end the year. If we are following a strictly solar calendar we would
simply start the count at day 1 of creation and continue counting until the earth completely
revolved around the sun at which point the count would be reset. There would be no need
for months if the Creator were operating on a strictly solar calendar. He could simply have
19 There are some who attempt to synchronize the month and the weeks together so that there are exactly 4
weeks and Sabbaths in every month or so that the Sabbath is somehow determined by the phases of the moon.
They begin the weekly count with the first day of the month, thus day 7, day 14, day 21 and day 28 would be
Sabbath, but then they need to reset that Sabbath count so there is not a continuous seven day Sabbath cycle,
but rather a disrupted cycle at the end and beginning of each month. This was never provided in the
Scriptures.
20 Months are clearly an important part of the Scriptural calendar and they are specifically referenced later in
the Scriptures. The month is alluded to here since one of the words for “month” in Hebrew is “yereach“ and it
specifically derives from the word for “moon” which is “yerach.”
21 An important principle in the Scriptures is not to add to the words or take away from the words. “You shall
not add to the word which I command you, nor take from it, that you may keep the commandments of hwhy
your Elohim which I command you.” Deuteronomy 4:2. See also Deuteronomy 12:32.
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stated that the Appointed Times occurred on specific numbered days throughout the year
without the need for a month reference, but since there are currently 365.25 days in a solar
year we cannot precisely begin and end a year of days based upon the sun. So it is not
possible to maintain a strictly solar calendar.
Using a strictly solar calendar, there is no provision for the existence or duration of
months, which are critical for observing the Appointed Times. For instance, in order to
enter into the Covenant journey patterned by the Appointed Times we must partake in the
Passover meal. The Scriptures provide a precise time for this meal: “On the fourteenth day
of the first month at twilight is hwhy’s Passover.” Leviticus 23:5.
A strict mechanical translation of this passage provides: “In first new moon, in
fourteen to new moon, between the evenings, Passover to hwhy.” Notice the precision of
this event. It is all about timing, and it is highly dependent upon the new moon.
The word in the Hebrew for “new moon” is “chodesh”. The word is used twice in this
passage and in the second mention of “chodesh” it is prefixed by a “lamed” (l) which
represents a shepherd’s staff and literally means: “learn.” Therefore, we are being
instructed to “learn chodesh.” The Hebrew word “chodesh” literally means: “renewal” so
we understand that the month begins at the “renewal.”
Passover occurs on the fourteenth of the first month. Therefore you must be able to
determine the beginning of the year and the beginning of the month in order to then count
fourteen days to celebrate the Passover. You also must be able to determine the beginning
of a day as the Scriptures state that Passover occurs at “twilight” which is literally “between
the evenings.”
Indeed, so there was no mistake concerning the count, the Creator confirmed the
first month with Moses and Aaron while they were in Egypt. “1 Now hwhy spoke to Moses
and Aaron in the land of Egypt, saying, 2 This month (chodesh) shall be your beginning of
months (chodeshim); it shall be the first month (chodesh) of the year to you. 3 Speak to all the
congregation of Israel, saying: On the tenth of this month (chodesh) every man shall take for
himself a lamb, according to the house of his father, a lamb for a household. 4 And if the
household is too small for the lamb, let him and his neighbor next to his house take it
according to the number of the persons; according to each man’s need you shall make your
count for the lamb. 5 Your lamb shall be without blemish, a male of the first year. You may
take it from the sheep or from the goats. 6 Now you shall keep it until the fourteenth day of
the same month (chodesh). Then the whole assembly of the congregation of Israel shall kill it
at twilight. 7 And they shall take some of the blood and put it on the two doorposts and on the
lintel of the houses where they eat it. 8 Then they shall eat the flesh on that night; roasted in
fire, with unleavened bread and with bitter herbs they shall eat it. 9 Do not eat it raw, nor
boiled at all with water, but roasted in fire – its head with its legs and its entrails. 10 You shall
let none of it remain until morning, and what remains of it until morning you shall burn with
fire.” Exodus 12:1-10
This verse tells a lot about time. First of all hwhy was specifically telling Moses
and Aaron to start the counting of the month at the “renewal” (chodesh). The month did not
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have a name, but we know that it occurred around the vernal equinox (spring). In fact, it is
later referred to as the month of “the aviv”. The Hebrew word “aviv” means: “green ears.” In
an agricultural society this time of the year would be determined by the equinox and we
shall later see how the first month of the year was determined.
So we know that the Passover occurs in the first month and on the fourteenth day at
twilight. Twilight is better described as “between the evenings.” This describes the time of
day between sunset and total darkness. That is confirmed by the fact that the meal is eaten
in the dark and none is kept until morning, when the sun rises. So this entire meal event
occurs in darkness. Just as a day begins in darkness, so does the Covenant journey
established through the Appointed Times.22
Now every reference to a month in this passage is “chodesh” in Hebrew. In Hebrew
there are often different words to describe the same idea. While the word for the planetary
body known as the moon is “yerach” the word for the renewal of the moon is “chodesh.” As
a result, “chodesh” is often used to refer to the measure of time known as a month, but
there is another word for month in Hebrew which is “yereach”. This clearly points to the
fact that the monthly cycle is determined by the moon as the word for month (yereach)
derives directly from the word for moon (yerach).
23
In fact, “chodesh” (renewal) and “yerah” (moon) are used interchangeably on many
occasions in the Scriptures when referring to the month. For instance, in 1 Kings 8:2 we
read: “Therefore all the men of Israel assembled with King Solomon at the feast in the month
(yerah) of Ethanim, which is the seventh month (hodesh).” The renewed moon is equated
with month. Again, this clearly reveals that the moon determines the month which proves
that the Creator’s calendar is not a solar calendar.
Of course this makes perfect sense since we already read that both the sun and the
moon determine time. Without the moon there would be no way to determine months but
for some arbitrary count. Some propose solar calendars with predetermined month counts
and additions of days at certain points but none of that is found in the Scriptures. That all
involves adding to the Torah. Instead, the Scriptures let the signs speak for themselves and
there is no need for man-made equations or traditions. The sun and the moon make the
determinations.
Now the first time that we read the word “month” in the Scriptures involves the life
of Noah and the flood. Here is the passage: “In the six hundredth year of Noah’s life, in the
second month (chodesh), the seventeenth day of the month (chodesh), on that day all the
fountains of the great deep were broken up, and the windows of heaven were opened.”
Genesis 7:11
22 The entire process of the Appointed Times demonstrates how the Creator leads us from death to life – from
darkness to light. It all points to a future resurrection.
23 Of course, this is the case in most languages. The word for moon is linked to the word for the month, just as
the English word “month” derives from the word “moon.”
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The word for year is “shanah” and it refers to a cycle. The Hebrew reckoning of time,
and even thought, deals with cycles. That is why the Creator provides heavenly bodies that
operate in cycles to gauge the cycles of time.
The flood began on Day 17 of Month 2. The text further provides that: “ . . . the
waters prevailed on the earth one hundred and fifty days.” Genesis 7:24. We finally read: “3
And the waters receded continually from the earth. At the end of the hundred and fifty days
the waters decreased. 4 Then the ark rested in the seventh month, the seventeenth day of the
month, on the mountains of Ararat.” Genesis 8:3-4.
Now the flood event occurred approximately 1656 years after creation. Interestingly,
the date that the ark rested is precisely provided in the text, as are the dates that the waters
receded from the earth and when the earth was dried. All of these dates are provided by
both month and day.
If we assume that the duration of 150 days constituted exactly 5 months then it
seems to indicate during that period of time all months were 30 days in duration. If that
were the case, it might support a calendar of 360 days each year, but only if the cycle of the
moon consisted of 12 months of exactly 30 days. That would provide a fixed calendar in
complete synchronicity with the sun and the moon. It would also mean that the earth and
the moon would have had different rotational speeds and/or distances than we observe
today.
So while there may have been a fixed calendar consistent with the sun and the moon
in the past, there can be no such fixed calendar now. It simply does not coincide with the
reality that we observe. A lunar month is a calculation concerning how long it takes the
moon to circle the earth. That time currently averages out to be 29.53 days but can span
from 29.18 to about 29.93 days. A solar year is approximately 365.25 days. Therefore, they
do not currently synchronize together to form a unified calendar.
All calendars require adjustment if they were to coincide with the harvest season,
which is the focus of the Appointed Times. And this is the crux of the entire calendar. The
Appointed Times, anchored by the Feasts,
24 are specifically tied to the harvests and the
harvests are intimately tied to the seasons. Therefore, it is not simply a matter of
mathematically counting days and years. The purpose is to pinpoint specific months and
days within the yearly harvest cycle. This is important because various firstfruit offerings
would be made during the Feasts so obviously the harvests and the Feasts needed to be in
synch.
So in the Scriptural calendar the sun and the moon work together. Some cultures
use strictly a solar year. Others use strictly a lunar year. The Creator’s Calendar uses a luni-
24 The Feasts, also known as “hags” are the three Appointed Times that require those in Covenant to travel to
the Tabernacle, later referred to as the Mishkan and then the Temple. The location changed throughout time
and ultimately it was located in Jerusalem. The three Feasts are 1) Unleavened Bread, 2) Shavuot and 3)
Succot.
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solar year.25 In other words, we gauge weeks by the passage of days determined by the sun
and we gauge months by the cycle of the moon. This joint cooperation in the keeping of
time culminates in the beginning of the year by determining that Passover always occurs
on or after the vernal equinox.26
These are all easy determinations that anyone could make without a watch or a
calculator. Of course, we take for granted telling time because of our modern technology
and communication, but in days gone by, people and communities might need to determine
time independently from one another and the luni-solar method was very easy because
people looked at the sun and the moon as hands on the clock. The Israelites thus followed a
luni-solar calendar.27
Archaeological evidence throughout the world shows architecture aligning with the
equinoxes and the solstices so that people could easily discern the “turns” in the year (ie.
the tequfahs). These were simply turns that existed when the days of the years were equal
(equinoxes) and when the day was longest (summer solstice) and when the day was
shortest (winter solstice). The Scriptural reckoning of time was more concerned with the
two equinoxes that would mark the beginning and end of days – summer and winter.
As already mentioned, the Appointed Times occur on specific days of specific
numbered months and those months are determined by the cycles of the moon. The moon
is therefore absolutely necessary for determining the Appointed Times. In fact, that is one
of its’ primary purposes. That is why the Scriptures specifically provide: “He appointed the
moon (yerach) for Appointed Times . . .” Psalm 104:19. This is crystal clear in the Scriptures.
The lesser light, known as the moon (yerach), was appointed for Appointed Times.
So we do not pre-calculate months based upon a solar year, rather we watch the
moon for the change in months and then we number the days of the months after each new
moon at the sighting of the first sliver. This is evident in the Scriptures by the use of the
term “chodesh” which refers to a renewal of the moon.
Of course, the moon is renewed when it comes out of darkness and is seen after
being in darkness for days. This is confirmed by the fact that the Septuagint28 translates
“hodesh” into Greek as “neomenia” (νεομηνία), which specifically means: “new moon”. (see
also Colossians 2:16). The Greek word for “month” is “minas” (μηνας) so again, we are
referring to the moon as the determining factor of the month, not a calculation.
25 Could it be that He foresaw the inevitable judgments that would be rendered upon the earth and therefore
built a system that was durable enough to withstand those judgments?
26 Anatolius ap. Eusebius, Ecclesiastical History, 7.32 from Anatolius’ Canons on the Passover. Anatolius also
provides support for the Rule of the Equinox by referencing Aristobulus, Philo, Josephus, Musaeus and the
Agathobuli, known as “the Teachers.”
27 Mahler, Handbuch, 173 and Bickerman, Chronology of the Ancient World at 24 which states: “The preBabylonian time reckoning of the Hebrews is virtually unknown. It is certain that the calendar was lunisolar.”
Quoted in Handbook of Biblical Chronology, Jack Finegan, Hendrickson Publishers, Inc, 1998. 28 The word “septuagint” derives from the Latin word “septuaginta” which means “seventy.” It is used to
describe a translation of the Hebrew Scriptures into Koine Greek. The reason it is linked with the number
seventy is due to the tradition that seventy Scholars worked on the translation.
13
There are some who are trying to make the moon out to be bad, as if using the moon
for its intended purpose involves moon worship. This is sheer nonsense. All of the ancient
cultures understood the significance of the sun and the moon, and as a result, most of the
pagan cultures incorporated them into their worship. We know better and do not follow in
that error, but what the pagans do in no way diminishes the created purpose of the sun and
the moon to mark time. Indeed, it was because of their significant roles in time that they
were esteemed by the pagans.
Looking to the sun and the moon to gauge time does not involve the worship of
these heavenly bodies. It simply amounts to looking at the clock set in the heavens by the
Creator. Clearly various pagan cultures worshipped these bodies, that is why Sun Day is the
first day of the week and Moon Day is the second day of the week on our current pagan
derived Gregorian calendar. Does this mean that we should not use the sun to gauge a day?
How silly. Those who attempt to disparage the moon to justify a strictly solar calendar are
following warped logic as they are doing the same as many pagan sun worshipping cultures
by placing exclusive attention to the sun, contrary to the Scriptures.
I recently read an article essentially attacking the moon as a timepiece for creation.
The author used Isaiah 24:23 to propose that those who use the moon to reckon months
and Appointed Times will be ashamed and punished in the end. Talk about twisting the
Scriptures to fit an agenda. Here is what the text says in a popular English translation:
“Then the moon will be disgraced and the sun ashamed.” Isaiah 24:23. From this text some
who advocate against hwhy’s use of the moon declare that the moon will somehow
become “a pit of shame.”
First of all, it is important to note that the text does not actually describe “the moon,”
but uses the word “lebonah” which means: “whiteness.” The word in Isaiah 24:23
translated as “disgraced” is “chefer” which can mean: “to be ashamed, to blush.” It can also
mean: “to dig, to search out.” This text is describing that the whiteness of the moon will be
hidden or diminished so that it will have to be sought out. It could also mean that the full
moon will blush. When a person blushes they turn red. So it is describing a time when the
moon will function in its Scriptural role as a sign, like a “blood moon”.
In this passage Isaiah is either referring to a past astronomical event or to future
events associated with the Day of hwhy when “the windows on high are open” and “the
earth is shaken exceedingly” and “shall reel to and fro like a drunkard, and shall totter like a
hut.” (see Isaiah 24:18-22). These are climactic events that may have happened in the past
as we will soon discuss. They also mirror the future climactic events described in the Book
of Revelation when judgment is rendered upon creation. What the text is actually
describing, in part, is an astronomical event when the earth is likely influenced by an
asteroid or another planet that also effects the sun and the moon.
This fits well with the account in Revelation 6:12 describing the events surrounding
the sixth seal: “and behold, there was a great earthquake; and the sun became black as
sackcloth of hair, and the moon became like blood.” The sun will be “ashamed” by not
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shining upon us and the moon will “blush” as it turns red like blood. Its’ whiteness will be
replaced by redness as it blushes.
hwhy is not mad at the sun and the moon, they have been doing what they are
supposed to be doing, marking time and acting as signs, until the great Day of hwhy. No
doubt their courses have been altered through the catastrophes of the ages caused by the
sin that abounds upon the planet and the resulting judgment. In the end, hwhy provides
for a reset when He ultimately renews them as later provided by Isaiah. “And it shall come
to pass that from one New Moon to another, and from one Sabbath to another, all flesh shall
come to worship before Me, says hwhy.” Isaiah 66:23. Notice the two distinct time
references mentioned here. Just as we currently gauge time by weeks, from Sabbath to
Sabbath, we will be doing the same in the renewed Creation. Also, as we gauge months
from one new moon to another, we will be doing the same in the future.
So the moon is very important although there will come a time when it will lose its
prominence. After the Day of hwhy and the climactic events associated with that time
hwhy of Hosts will reign on Mount Zion and as we read in the Book of Revelation: “The
city had no need of the sun or of the moon to shine in it, for the glory of Elohim illuminated it.
The Lamb is its light.” Revelation 21:23. We also read: “There shall be no night there: They
need no lamp nor light of the sun, for the Master Elohim gives them light. And they shall reign
forever and ever.” Revelation 22:5. So the sun and the moon that ruled the day and the night
will be diminished in their stature and importance by “the Sun of righteousness.” (Malachi
4:2).
All one needs to do is look at the crater filled landscape of the moon through a
telescope and consider that it has been pummeled by all sorts of extraterrestrial objects. It
has not been an easy go of it for the moon, yet the moon has partnered with the earth since
the first week of creation and has remained a faithful witness through it all, providing a
reckoning of months for the observance of the Appointed Times. This does not necessarily
mean that it has had the exact same orbit or duration, but through it all, it continues to
regularly mark time.
In the renewed creation described by Isaiah people will be telling time by 7 day
weeks ending with the Sabbath and months gauged by the moon – exactly as was
established at the beginning. Regardless of the current state of things and the need for a
renewal of all of creation, the moon has been a faithful witness for the months and the
Appointed Times. This is clearly provided in the Scriptures which state: “It shall be
established forever like the moon (yerach), even like the faithful witness in the sky.” Psalm
89:37.
That is a powerful passage because the Hebrew word for “faithful” is “aman”
(nma) and it refers to something that can be trusted to be true. It also refers to the
Hebrew idea of turning to the right, which infers the righteous path. The Hebrew word for
“witness” is “ad” (do) and it can also mean “testimony.” It is the same word often used
when referring to the Ark of the Covenant. It literally means: “see the door” and it is at the
15
heart of the word “moadim” (mydowm) which we first saw in Genesis 1:14 that means:
“Appointed Times”.
This is why in Psalm 81:3 we are instructed to sound the shofar at the New Moon.
Psalm 81:3 also provides another interesting clue as to how the moon gauges the
Appointed Times. Here is the text: “Blow the New Moon shofar, in the full moon, on the Feast
Day.” As was mentioned previously, there are three Appointed Times that are called Feasts,
namely: The Feast of Unleavened Bread, Shavuot and Succot. They are called Feasts
because they are times when the people would travel and converge upon the House of
hwhy. Two of those Feasts occur at the full moon, in the middle of the month – The Feast
of Unleavened Bread and the Feast of Succot. These Feasts parallel one another around the
two equinoxes and will always occur around the full moon because they begin in the
middle of the month. This affirms that Scriptural months are reckoned by the moon. If the
calendar were strictly solar, these days would not be dependent on the moon and would
not necessarily occur at the full moon.
The Psalm goes on to say: “4 For this is a statute for Israel, a law of the Elohim of Jacob.
5 This He established in Joseph as a testimony, when He went throughout the land of Egypt,
where I heard a language I did not understand.” Psalm 81:4-5. Therefore, the shofar would
be sounded at the new moon29 and it would also be sounded at the full moon during the
Feasts of Unleavened Bread and Succot30 revealing exactly as was provided in Genesis
1:14-16, that it would be for the Appointed Times. This is an established law of Elohim and
a statute for those in Covenant to follow. The calendar that you follow identifies the Elohim
that you serve. That is why it is intimately connected with the Appointed Times that tell us
when to meet the Master at His House.
The Appointed Times were focused on the House of hwhy, known as the Temple.
That is where the people were to meet three times a year, and we can see the significance
of the moon in the Temple. Interestingly, there were 24 Priestly Divisions presumably
established by King David. (1 Chronicles 24). Each course lasted one week and ended on
the Sabbath. Depending on their division, priests went to the Temple for 2 weeks or
courses per year as well as for each pilgrimage Feast.
Therefore the yearly Temple Service, which was the focal point for time and the
Appointed Times, involved 48 priestly weekly services. This points to the significance of
the lunar cycle, as it hints of a year consisting of 12 months with 4 weeks that would
approximate 48 months. A strictly solar year consists of 52 weeks so if Israel were
following a solar calendar in the past they could have easily established 26 courses
resulting in a 52 week yearly cycle. Instead, the 48 weeks were better suited for a luni-solar
calendar.
29 There is one Appointed Time that occurs on the new moon of month 7, known as the Yom Teruah or rather
the Day of Blasting. On this special day the shofars and trumpets are sounded at the sighting of the first sliver
of the new moon.
30 Both the Feast of Unleavened Bread and Succot occur in the middle of the month insuring that they will be
celebrated at the time of the full moon.
16
As mentioned, the moon was an integral part of the Temple Service. That is why
people would participate in New Moon celebrations (1 Samuel 20:18, 24). It would mark
the beginning of the month. There is even a grain offering prescribed for the New Moon.
(Numbers 29:6). In the future Temple there will be a special sacrifice for the New Moon.
(see Ezekiel 46:6-8). In that Temple service the New Moon is actually categorized on the
level with the weekly Sabbath.
“Thus says Adonai hwhy: ‘The gateway of the inner court that faces toward the east shall
be shut the six working days; but on the Sabbath it shall be opened, and on the day of the New
Moon it shall be opened.”
Ezekiel 46:1
Imagine that, the gates are only opened on the Sabbaths and the New Moons – the
two main indicators of time. Of course, we know that the New Moon day was traditionally
treated similar to the Sabbath as a day of no work. (see Amos 8:5). The Appointed Times
are divided into 2 distinct categories, the weekly Sabbaths and the Appointed Times
determined by the months.31
That is why Psalm 81:3 instructs us to blow the shofar on the New Moon and the full
moon at the Feasts. The shofar would be sounded when the sign of the New Moon would
appear in the sky – as a sliver of light resurrected from the darkness. It was a symbol of
rebirth – resurrection. It was critical to the understanding of the “renewal” of the Covenant
that is rehearsed throughout each year as we participate in the Appointed Times. The
concept of birthing was obviously intentionally and directly connected with the moon by
hwhy as it has been shown that the most fertile reproductive cycle in women has the
same length as the lunar cycle.32
This is critical to understand and reveals the important connection between the
Plan of hwhy and the Appointed Times, which are determined and confirmed by the
visible phases of the moon. This leads us to another false teaching concerning the
determination of the beginning of the month. It is well established that the ancients always
reckoned the beginning of the month by the first sliver of the moon. The evidence is
overwhelming.33
Strangely there are a number of people advancing the notion that the month begins
at the astronomical conjunction. The conjunction is more of a mathematical and
astronomical calculation than it is a visible “sign” or “marker” for gauging time. In fact, it is
something that cannot be seen and can only be calculated because it occurs while the moon
is in darkness.
31 A close reading of Leviticus 23:1-4 reveals resumptive repetition of the same verse in 23:2 and 23:4 which
essentially brackets and separates the text of 23:3 describing the weekly Sabbath and separating it from the
other Appointed Times.
32 Lunar Influences on the Reproductive Cycle of Women, Winnifred B. Cutler, Wolfgang M. Schleidt, Erika
Friedman, George Preit and Robert Stine, Human Biology, December 1987, Volume 59, Number 6.
33 For a brief article that lists a number of the historical references concerning the use of the first sliver in
ancient Israel see The Biblical Calendar – New Moon: Visible or Conjunction? By Ya’acov Natan Lawrence at
http://www.hoshanarabbah.org
17
The astronomical conjunction is a moment in time, not a day. It occurs as the moon
passes between the sun and the earth so that the moon is obscured by the sun and most of
it’s light is reflected toward the sun with darkness facing the earth. It could happen at
anytime, day or night on earth, and the actual mathematical conjunction only lasts briefly
within a period of up to 3.5 days of darkness. So the astronomical conjunction does not
serve as a marker for the beginning of a day or a month, nor is it a visible sign. All we see
here on earth is darkness.
The ability to calculate the conjunction is a relatively newer skill, astronomically
speaking. It is much more difficult than determining the equinoxes and solstices and was
not a talent acquired by many of the oldest civilizations, maybe because it was not needed
since they used the first sliver sighting as the sign of the new moon. Again, the problem
with the conjunction error is that the moon is in darkness anywhere between 1.5 days and
3.5 days and the actual conjunction is just a moment in the midst of that dark phase when
the sun, the earth and the moon are precisely aligned. There was no good way for the
ancients to use this dark period to determine the start of the month. In fact, ancient
cultures referred to this period as the old moon and waited for the new moon when the
first sliver was visible. Only recently, with the advancement of precision instrumentation
and space exploration has the usage of the moment of conjunction been classified as the
new moon in astronomy.
There is nothing clear cut or visible for the observer here on earth regarding the
conjunction. It is lost in darkness in the midst of a variable period of dark days. Thus the
conjunction provides no “sign”. While it might be a nice scientific reference point decided
by mathematics, it completely ignores the concept that the moon was intimately connected
with the earth to be a sign for those on earth through the reflected light of the sun, acting as
the “lesser light”. The function of the moon is to act as the “lesser light” and through that
“light” it marks time, not through darkness. Again, this is supposed to be easy for all to see,
like hands on a clock.
Those who are advocating the conjunction method are literally in darkness. They
are following a sign of darkness instead of light. Remember that a sign (owt) was
something that can be visibly seen. You cannot see the conjunction as the sign of a day
beginning. This is precisely why a day begins in the evening, so the first sliver can be
seen and the new month can be determined at the beginning of Day 1 of a month.
While anyone can sight the first sliver and know that the month began, very few
would know when the conjunction occurred, because it would require an advanced
knowledge of the lunar cycle and mathematics. There is no evidence that the conjunction
was ever used to determine the beginning of the month by Israelites, although there is
ample evidence that the first sliver was used.
Those who promote the conjunction usually support their position through a
mistranslation of 1 Samuel 20. They propose that the events described in that passage
when David was absent from the New Moon Banquet hosted by King Saul prove a
conjunction reckoning of the new moon. A response to this notion is a teaching in and of
18
itself, suffice it to say that the passage proves nothing of the sort. In reality, the passage
describes David and Jonathan referring to the fact that the next day was the New Moon.
They knew this, not because it was a conjunction, but rather because it was Day 30 of
Month 6 and the next day had to be the New Moon because there cannot be 31 days in a
lunar month. Indeed, the next day was Day 1 of Month 7 of 1003 BCE, which fell on the
third day of the week. David was absent on that day as well as the following day, which was
Day 2 of Month 7.34
Now the conjunctionist movement may be, in part, a backlash to the Karaite
tradition being advocated regarding the determination of the new year by inspecting barley
crops throughout the land of Israel. While the Karaites correctly follow the first sliver as
the method of determining the beginning of the month, some from that sect follow a
tradition concerning the determination of the year by inspecting the condition of the barley
prior to the end of Month 12. This practice is an acknowledgement that the yearly crop
cycle must synchronize with the Appointed Times, but it has created a man-made tradition
to determine the turn of the year.
Instead of using the sun and the moon, certain Karaites perform an inspection of the
barley crops throughout Israel and then make a subjective decision concerning the
condition of the barley and the beginning of the year. Remember that hwhy revealed to
Moses and Aaron that the month they went out of Egypt would be the first month of the
year for them. “This month (chodesh) shall be your beginning of months (chodeshim); it shall
be the first month (chodesh) of the year to you.” Exodus 12:2.
There is later a reference that the month they went out was “the month of the aviv.”
(Exodus 13:4, 23:15, 34:18; Deuteronomy 16:1). Many incorrectly name the first month
“Abib,” but that is not what the Scriptures are saying. The Scriptures refer to the first
month as “the month of the aviv”. It is not named the month of aviv. Aviv means: “fresh or
young ears of barley” and it is merely referencing the first month as the month when the
ear forms and grows green.
As a result, the Karaite tradition determines that the barley must be “aviv” before
the first crescent is sighted in order to declare month 1 of a new year. If they do not find
sufficient amounts of barley in the state of “aviv” prior to the sighting of the New Moon
then they intercalate, which means they add a 13th month to the calendar. So you have men
making subjective determinations and declarations separate and apart from the sun and
the moon, and they are using criteria not provided for in the Scriptures. By doing so they
are adding to the Torah.
The barley does not need to be aviv before the first month, only during the first
month. So you might find the adherents to this tradition adding a month to the calendar
and foregoing the new year because they do not believe there is “sufficient” barley when, in
fact, there ends up being plenty of aviv barley. It is a very dangerous thing to add to and
take away from the Commandments, and there may come a day when precise observance
of the calendar could mean life or death. Imagine if the Israelites in Egypt had decided to
34 Eliyahu David ben Yissachar, Jerusalem, Israel (www.torahcalendar.com)
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push off the first month. They would not have been covered by the blood of the lamb at
Passover which would have meant the death of their firstborn, as well as the Egyptian
firstborn. It is actually quite profound that the entrance-way to the Appointed Times, the
Passover meal, involves a life or death decision based upon meticulous and specific timing.
While the Karaite tradition correctly acknowledges the importance of synchronizing
the Appointed Times with the harvests, it has added to the Torah and taken away from the
Torah. It has added a subjective determination based upon crops and taken away the
importance of the great lights provided in the Torah. It is a clear error as the crops of the
Land never controlled the calendar. In fact, it is precisely the reverse. The calendar that
correctly utilizes the sun and the moon uses the very aspects of creation that control the
crops. Let’s face it, time does not cease to exist or progress if for some reason there was no
barley crop in Israel to observe.
35
As people have recognized the error of the Karaite tradition of determining the new
year, they often reject all of their calendar reckoning, including the first sliver, which is
actually correct. So how do we determine the beginning of the year using the sun and the
moon? The answer is quite simple and we have already mentioned it. The equinox was the
method of determining the beginning of the year because that is, after all, the definition of
the “tequfah.” The two equinoxes are when the year turns. The spring equinox was called
the beginning and the fall equinox was called the end of days, or end of the cycle.
36 It is no
coincidence that the Appointed Times begin in month 1 “in the beginning” around the
spring equinox and end in month 7 at “the end of days” around the fall equinox. It is an
expansion of the pattern of sevens established during the first week of creation, and a
framework for time itself.
History reveals how many ancient Israelites would use the sun and the moon to
determine the beginning of the year through what was called the Rule of the Equinox.37
Essentially, toward the end of Month 12 they would determine the date of the approaching
equinox and then look to insure that the first day of Passover occurs on or after the vernal
(spring) equinox. It is then essentially a matter of determining the New Moon closest to the
equinox and counting days from the beginning of Day 1 of Month 1. The new moon closest
to the equinox would be the first month of the new year. So at the subsequent first sliver
sighting they would either proceed to Month 1 of a new year or add another month to the
current year, which is known as intercalation.
Remember that the equinox is the day when both day and night are equal and the
sun determines the equinox. The sun and the moon determine the first sliver of the first
35 This is what the text in Jeremiah 33:25 was referring to when hwhy spoke of the everlasting promises of
the Covenant. “Thus says hwhy: If My Covenant is not with day and night, and if I have not appointed the
ordinances of heaven and earth.” The ordinances of the heaven and the earth are the revolutions and orbits of
the heavenly bodies that determine time.
36 This time was described in Genesis 4:3. The end of days is the end of the harvest in the fall when we appear
before the Creator. See also Exodus 23:16 and Deuteronomy 11:12. The Appointed Times encapsulate the
pattern for time within the first 7 months of the year during the summer, which is the primary harvest season.
37 Calendar and Community, A History of the Jewish Calendar 2nd Century BCE – 10th Century CE, Sacha Stern,
Oxford University Press 2001.
20
month. Working together the two great lights would determine the year, exactly as was
stated in the beginning. This Rule of the Equinox was also the way to keep the calendar in
synch with the harvests.
We know from the Scriptures that there was not always a unanimous consensus on
calendar issues. After the death of King Solomon, the Kingdom of Israel was divided into
two kingdoms, or two houses, if you will. Jeroboam became king of the Northern Tribes,
known as the House of Israel. He proceeded to change the location and the times for
worship, although he did not necessarily change the form of reckoning the calendar and
determining the new year.
As a result of his great sins and the sins of his successors, the House of Israel was
conquered and exiled by the Assyrians. They completely lost their identity and connection
to hwhy as prophesied by Hosea and they still have not been reconciled to hwhy and
restored to the Covenant.38 This will be the culmination of many end time events. The
southern tribes, collectively known as the House of Judah, also sinned. They were
conquered and exiled by Babylon for a period of only 70 years.
This stint in Babylon likely resulted in the House of Judah learning the ways of
Babylon and possibly conforming to Babylonian customs. In fact, when the 70 year exile
was completed, many of the displaced captives chose to remain in Babylon. It was after the
return from Babylon that we read about Babylonian names ascribed to the numbered
months. As a result, some believe that this return also involved a complete calendar change
and that those in the reconstructed Temple in Jerusalem were following a false system.
There is no historical proof for that assumption. It is all speculation and conjecture.
In fact, the Books of Ezra and Nehemiah provide accounts of the people returning,
restoring and rebuilding. Part of the process involved observing the Appointed Times. They
clearly knew what time it was and they obeyed at the proper time when they read the
commandments concerning the Appointed Times.39
It should be understood that the Scriptures were written by those who understood
the calendar and were reckoning time correctly. There are many references to months,
days and years. Very interestingly none ever provide a year date from Creation. The years
are typically keyed to the reign of a certain king or sovereign. If we had those year dates
from Genesis 1:3 it would be relatively easy to reconstruct time and determine how time
was reckoned. Without an anchor point, these Scriptural dates are essentially floating in
the past, relatively lost, or at least disconnected from our present time.
38 Through the life of Hosea hwhy vividly portrayed how the deterioration of His relationship with the
House of Yisrael would progress until it was completely severed. (See Hosea 1). Jeremiah described it as a
divorce. (See Jeremiah 3:8). The prophets also provided hope that hwhy would someday restore the House
of Yisrael to the Covenant, reunited the tribes and restore the divided Kingdom under the Messiah. This is the
hope and longing that we all anticipate in the end.
39 See Ezra and Nehemiah, specifically Nehemiah chapter 8. These texts describe the return and restoration of
the House of Judah. The House was still in exile as prophesied through Ezekiel at chapter 4. The texts provide
both Babylonian named months as well as numbered months.
21
What needs to be done is to somehow connect the present with the past so that time
can be reconstructed. If we can do that, we can then look back at some of the most recent
dates provided and attempt to determine the method of reckoning used. For instance, if we
look at the chronological order of the Bible, the most recent writing would have occurred
after the return of the House of Judah from their 70 year exile in Babylon. We know that the
Books of Ezra and Nehemiah describe the return. Ezra provided year references according
to the reigns of the Media-Persian Sovereigns.
The Book of Nehemiah begins with a cryptic reference as follows: “It came to pass in
the month of Chislev, in the twentieth year, as I was in Shushan the citadel.” Nehemiah 1:1.
This begs the question, what is the month of Chislev and the twentieth year of what?
It is important to understand that the Hebrew months are numbers, but at some
point during the Babylonian exile, they were give names. Chislev refers to Month 9. The
twentieth year, as we later find out was the twentieth year of the King Artaxerxes.
We know this because a subsequent statement that provides: “And it came to pass in
the month Nisan, in the twentieth year of Artaxerxes the king, that wine was before him: and I
took up the wine, and gave it unto the king. Now I had not been beforetime sad in his
presence.” Nehemiah 2:1
Now we happen to have the Elephantine Papyri that provide us with an anchor
point because they are double dated (ie. they have a Hebrew date along with the
corresponding Egyptian date). As a result, it has been determined with a great degree of
certainty that King Artaxerxes’ 20th year began on September 18, 446 BC and ended on
September 5, 445 BC.
While Nehemiah was referring to the same regnal year of Artaxerxes, he
acknowledged a change in the Hebrew Year, as he first referenced month 9 on the Hebrew
calendar and later referenced month 1 on the Hebrew calendar in a subsequent year. So it
is apparent that the Hebrew’s were reckoning the calendar accurately. They knew what
time it was. That is why Daniel was specifically praying about an end to the 70 year exile
when He was given the vision of the 70 weeks. He was keeping track of time and counting
the years. (see Daniel 9:1-2). Gabriel appeared right on schedule and gave him a timeline.
He did not give Daniel a new lesson on the calendar. Daniel obviously knew the calendar
while he was in Babylon. The Prophets during the return from exile also cited dates, so the
calendar was not in issue. In fact, we know that after the return from Babylon they
continued to offer “. . . the regular burnt offering, and those for the New Moons and for all the
Appointed Times . . .” Ezra 3:5.
There is no evidence of a different calendar being used although I have read various
theories asserting such a premise. Primarily they point to Antiochus IV Epiphanes, the
Seleucid Ruler who attacked the Torah and the Yisraelites in Judea during his reign
between 175 BCE and 164 BCE. He imposed pagan practices and banned the Torah. He
went so far as to set up an Image of Zeus in the Temple of hwhy and slaughter a pig on the
Altar. This is what prompted the Maccabean rebellion that resulted in the retaking and the
cleansing of the Temple.
22
Things were restored and that is the basis for the celebration of Hannukah – the
cleansing and rededication of the Temple. Of course, the Temple would have operated on
the Scriptural Calendar and the notion that they rededicated the Temple but converted to
the calendar of Antiochus is unfounded and actually ridiculous.
While there is evidence from the Maccabean writings as well as Josephus that
Macedonian Calendar dates were used, that does not mean that a false calendar was
adopted in the Temple.40 In fact, it is no different than me dating this article using a
Gregorian date. While I acknowledge the Creator’s Calendar as all controlling, since I am in
this pagan culture I use the Gregorian dates as a common frame of reference. It does not
mean that I follow that calendar.
I find the point of most of the attacks on the calendar is to discredit the Scriptural
luni-solar calendar and promote a different calendar, usually one of the diverse solar
calendars found amongst the Dead Sea Scrolls. Some of the adherents to these calendars
promote the notion that there was a monastic group of Zadokite priests at Qumran who
rebelled against the Temple System in Jerusalem. The theory surmises that the Qumran
community was the headquarters of the Essene sect and that all Essenes followed the
Qumran calendar. Through these multiple layers of speculation, the advocates then
promote one of the solar calendars found in the Dead Sea Scrolls as the true priestly
calendar that used to be followed by Yisrael.
Of course, this flawed thinking is premised upon the belief that the Temple system
was so corrupted that they were operating on the wrong calendar. This is simply not the
case. While some of the communities associated with the Dead Sea Scrolls separated from
the Temple system and promoted a solar calendar the surest confirmation that we have of
the calendar is the Messiah Himself.
According to the New Testament texts, Yahushua the Messiah was in perfect
synchronicity with the Temple and the Calendar. Instead of rejecting the Temple and
refraining from going there, He was always there at the Feasts. This stands in direct
opposition to those communities represented in the Dead Sea Scrolls who promoted
alternative solar calendars.
While hwhy chose Jerusalem for His House, various Dead Sea Scroll communities
rejected the Temple in Jerusalem. While hwhy established His calendar based upon the
sun and the moon, they chose a different calendar to complete their separation. Those
minority sects represented in the Dead Sea Scrolls followed the same path as Jeroboam and
committed the same sin which was the basis for the exile of the House of Yisrael – they
changed the location of their worship and the calendar for their worship of Elohim.41
40 Handbook of Biblical Chronology, Jack Finegan, Hendrickson Publishers, Inc, 1998 page 51, 8. The
Macedonian Calendar.
41 See 1 Kings 12:32-33: “32 Jeroboam ordained a feast on the fifteenth day of the eighth month, like the feast
that was in Judah, and offered sacrifices on the altar. So he did at Bethel, sacrificing to the calves that he had
made. And at Bethel he installed the priests of the high places which he had made. 33 So he made offerings on
the altar which he had made at Bethel on the fifteenth day of the eighth month, in the month which he had
23
At the time of Yahushua, the Temple was functioning on the same priestly courses
that had been established during the time of King David. We know this because the Book of
Luke brings us forward hundreds of years from the time of Antiochus IV and tells about the
parents of John the Baptist. Both Zacharias and his wife were descendants of Aaron – the
first High Priest from the Levitic tribe. Zacharias, the father of John the Baptist, was a priest
who belonged to the division of Abiyah. Abiyah means: “Yah is my Father” and it
immediately precedes the Course of Yahushua. (1 Chronicles 24:10-11). Of course
Yahushua is the Name of the Son of Elohim and Messiah. There is clearly prophetic
significance surrounding the sacerdotal courses.
As a cohen, an essential part of Zacharias’ duties involved going to Jerusalem and
serving in the Temple during his appointed course, as well as during the Feasts. Obviously,
it was imperative that he serve at the right time so he had to be on the right calendar. If he
were on the wrong calendar then his service would have been in violation of the Torah.
Instead the Scriptures describe him and his wife as: “ . . . both righteous before Elohim,
walking in all the commandments and ordinances of hwhy blameless.” Luke 1:6.
Celebrating the Appointed Times at the proper time is imperative in order for a
priest to be called “righteous” and described as: “walking in all the Commandments and
ordinances of hwhy blameless.” The fact that he was a priest connects him with the
Temple and reveals that the Calendar being used at the time of Zacharias was correct.
In fact, it was while he was performing the priestly duty of offering the incense in
the Temple in Jerusalem that the Messenger Gabriel appeared and told him of his son. The
fact that the message was provided at this special time and place affirms his service.
That alone should be sufficient for anyone wondering what calendar was in use at
that time. Certainly this is not an endorsement of everyone that was serving or everything
that was going on in the Temple, but the Messiah needed to fulfill the patterns presented
through the Torah, the Prophets and the writings. In order to do this He needed to fulfill
those items at the Appointed Times. As it stands, He was born, renewed the Covenant, died,
was resurrected and sent the Spirit all on Appointed Times precisely when the Yisraelites
were celebrating and rehearsing these times.42 We know from historical records that the
calendar in use at that time was luni-solar based upon the first sliver new moon.
There are numerous sources that attest to the luni-solar calendar in effect at that
time. Philo, a contemporary of Yahushua, specifically provided an account concerning the
first sliver method as the start of the month.
“XXVI. (140) Following the order which we have adopted, we proceed to speak of the
third festival, that of the new moon. First of all, because it is the beginning of the month, and
the beginning, whether of number or of time, is honorable. Secondly, because at this time

devised in his own heart. And he ordained a feast for the children of Israel, and offered sacrifices on the altar
and burned incense.”
42 For a more detailed description of the patterns fulfilled by the Messiah see the Walk in the Light series book
entitled The Messiah.
24
there is nothing in the whole of heaven destitute of light. (141) Thirdly, because at that period
the more powerful and important body gives a portion of necessary assistance to the less
important and weaker body; for, at the time of the new moon, the sun begins to
illuminate the moon with a light which is visible to the outward senses, and then she
displays her own beauty to the beholders.”43
The Messiah was even born on an Appointed Time and the sun, the moon and the
stars were all involved in the sign of His birth. Here is the sign described in the Book of
Revelation: “Now a great sign appeared in heaven: a woman clothed with the sun, with the
moon under her feet, and on her head a garland of twelve stars.” Revelation 12:1.44
The two great lights were both included in this “great sign” and this may have been
the great culmination of their selected function as a sign. Indeed, when the moon was used
in this sign it was a first sliver moon marking the first day of Month 7 – the Day of
Trumpets.
It is likely that both of the great lights will also signal the sign of His return. “Then
the sign of the Son of Man will appear in heaven, and then all the tribes of the earth will
mourn, and they will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great
glory.” Matthew 24:30.
No doubt His second coming will be focused on the Calendar as was His first coming.
His arrival landed precisely within the Appointed Times on the Calendar that was being
followed at the time, and there was never any mention in the Scriptures that the calendar
was wrong.
In fact, the Messiah’s silence on this issue is deafening. If there were a problem on
such an important issue I cannot imagine Him not saying something. Indeed, it does not
appear that Yahushua even acknowledged the fringe groups following the solar calendars
found in the Dead Sea Scrolls. Instead, He spent time in the Galilee and Jerusalem. While He
had disputes with the religious leaders it was typically not with their outward observance
of the Torah, but rather their hearts.
He indicated that on several occasions. “Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees,
hypocrites! For you are like whitewashed tombs which indeed appear beautiful outwardly, but
inside are full of dead men’s bones and all uncleanness.” Matthew 23:27. Again we read,
“Even so you also outwardly appear righteous to men, but inside you are full of hypocrisy and
lawlessness.” Matthew 23:28.
So while their actions appeared to be righteous, according to the Torah, their
problem was on the inside. If they appeared righteous on the outside that would infer that
they were keeping the right calendar. If not, such a glaring mistake would have warranted
43 Yonge, C. D. with Philo of Alexandria. (1995). The works of Philo: complete and unabridged (p. 581).
Peabody, MA: Hendrickson.
44 With the advancement of modern technologies we can observe that this event occurred over Jerusalem
after sunset on September 11, 3 BCE.
25
correction by the Messiah. Instead, He affirmed that their actions had the appearance of
righteousness.
Again, He was always in Jerusalem during the Feasts and the Feasts were actually
the backbone of His ministry – they were the common thread of the Gospels. There are
many confirmations in the Scriptures, but people who want to follow a different calendar
are undaunted and very creative in their quest to show the Messiah acting contrary to the
Calendar. It was only after the destruction of the Temple in 70 CE that the religion of
Rabbinic Judaism was formalized and the Jewish calculated calendar, attributed to Hillel II,
was developed.45
I was recently presented with an interesting hypothesis regarding the final Passover
that Yahushua attended. Most will recall that when considering making preparations for
the Passover He sent His disciples to follow a man carrying an earthen pitcher of water.46
This account is provided at Mark 14 and Luke 22. The hypothesis goes that this man
carrying the pitcher must have been an Essene since women typically carried water and
only in the Essene Community did men carry water. The hypothesis continues by asserting
that this man was later described as a “goodman”47 which was therefore an affirmation of
the Essene calendar.
First, there is no proof that the man carrying the pitcher was an Essene and he was
probably a servant, not the owner of the house. The disciples were to follow him and see
what house he entered. They then were to talk to “the Master of the house”, not necessarily
a “goodman”, who was not the same man that they followed. While there was an Essene
Quarter in Jerusalem it is a stretch to link the Messiah with the Essenes or the Qumran
calendar(s) simply because of this event.
48 The problem with this theory is that it assumes
that the Dead Sea Scroll calendars are all attributable to the Essenes.
45 It is important to understand that the religion of Judaism was not the faith taught and walked by the
Messiah. Rabbinic Judaism is a religion established by the Rabbis after the destruction on the Temple. It was
presumably formed at the Council of Jamnia in Yavneh. This body consisted primarily of the Pharisaic sect
and this is where we see the oral law coming into dominance and the power of the Rabbis established.
Rabbinic Judaism is responsible for developing a calculated calendar that ignores the sun and the moon. This,
of course, is a violation of the Torah.
46 The hypothesis also attempt to link the small pitcher of water with the large stone vessels at Cana which
contained 20 to 30 gallons of water and were specifically used for waters of purification. This is not accurate
as the pitcher carried by the man was described as a small earthen vessel while the vessels at Cana were very
large and made of stone. The earthen vessel was likely for drinking water.
47 The Greek word used to describe the man carrying the pitcher is “anthropos” in Mark 14:13 and Luke 22:10.
The word “anthropos” simply means: “man”. Later, both texts describe that they are to speak to the
“oikodespotes” of the house that he enters. The Greek word “oikodespotes” refers to the head of the family or
the master of the house. In other words, the person in charge of the affairs of the house. This is obviously not
the same person as the man carrying the water pitcher and the use of the word “oikodespotes” has nothing to
do with him being good, moral or doctrinally correct. It has to do with him being in a position of authority
over the household.
48 Interestingly, the Passover occurred on a Tuesday night before the crucifixion of Yahushua so even if the
man with the water was leading the Disciples to an Essene guesthouse as Bargil Pixner surmises, it in no way
could be construed as an endorsement of the Essene calendar because the calendars coincided that year. For
26
To the contrary, archaeology has demonstrated that the Dead Sea Scrolls differ in
doctrine and calendars and therefore are likely attributable to three or four divergent
groups, namely: 1) the Yahad, 2) the Temple Scroll group, 3) the 4QMMT group, and 4) the
Enoch/Enastr group.49 Of course this makes sense since the scrolls were found in many
different caves throughout the Dead Sea region. The initial desire to connect all the Scrolls
to a monastic group at Qumran has fallen by the wayside. Indeed, the desire to link the
Essene Sect to Qumran is flawed since it is well established that the Essenes were a vibrant
group of Yisraelites interspersed throughout the communities of Judea.
Along with the varied doctrines found within the numerous Dead Sea Scrolls, there
are also different calendars. One of the calendars found in the Dead Sea Scrolls is known as
the Enoch Calendar. This is a solar calendar found within the writings collectively known as
I Enoch. It is important to understand that the Book of Enoch, also described as 1 Enoch, is
actually five separate books believed to have been written by different authors at different
times, namely: The Book of the Watchers (1 Enoch 1–36); The Book of Parables of Enoch (1
Enoch 37–71) also called the Similitudes of Enoch; The Astronomical Book (1 Enoch 72–
82), also called the Book of the Heavenly Luminaries or Book of Luminaries; The Book of
Dream Visions (1 Enoch 83–90) also called the Book of Dreams; and The Epistle of Enoch
(1 Enoch 91–108).
While these writings are attributed to Enoch, the seventh generation from Adam, the
texts are actually dated from the First or Second century BCE to the First Century CE. The
text of 1 Enoch has recently become very popular as many are particularly intrigued by the
backstory concerning the Nephilim mentioned in Genesis 6:4. Despite that information
contained in the Book of the Watchers, it does not mean that all of the texts in 1 Enoch are
accurate.
There is no historical evidence that the calendar provided in 1 Enoch was ever
followed by Israel. Here is a description of that calendar: “The year was composed from
364 days, divided in four equal seasons of ninety-one days each. Each season was
composed of three equal months of thirty days, plus an extra day at the end of the third
month. The whole year was thus composed of exactly fifty-two weeks, and every calendar
day occurred always on the same day of the week. Each year and each season started
always on Wednesday, which was the fourth day of the creation narrated in Genesis, the
day when the lights in the sky, the seasons, the days and the years were created.”50
There would have been a drift in this calendar as it was shorter than an actual
tropical year of 365.25 days. It is unknown how or if the calendar was adjusted to account
for the seasons and the Appointed Times.

a detailed discussion of the Passover and crucifixion of Yahushua see the Walk in the Light series book
entitled The Messiah. 49 A Reassessment of Qumran’s Calendars, Stephen Pfann, University of the Holy Land, Enoch and Jubilees:
Short Papers from the Fourth Enoch Seminar at Camaldoli, July 2007, editors Pierpaolo Bertalotto and Todd
Hanneken.
50 Wikipedia quoting Roger T. Beckwith (1996). Calendar and chronology, Jewish and Christian. Leiden: Brill.
ISBN 90-04-10586-7.
27
Another calendar found in the Dead Sea Scroll texts is found in the Book of Jubilees.
It has been dated from 160 to 150 BCE.51 That calendar also promotes a 364 day solar
calendar but uses a pattern of seven days and seven weeks. It divides the year into 7
different divisions of 49 days. It also inserts three 7 day periods at various intervals that
totaled 364 days.
It specifically contradicts the Torah (Genesis 1:14-16) by providing: “God appointed
the sun to be a great sign upon the earth for days and for sabbaths, and for feasts and for
years and for jubilees and for all seasons of the years.”52 The text specifically omits the
moon as provided in the Torah. It also contradicts the Torah by counting the Jubilee year as
the 49th year. The Torah specifically provides that the Jubilee is the 50th year.53
So while there may be some interesting and truthful oral traditions contained in the
Book of Jubilees, the calendar portions do not synchronize with the Creator’s reckoning
provided in the Torah.
There is a Qumran Calendar gleaned from the Temple Scroll that is also a solar
calendar with various errors. While there was clearly an emphasis on solar calendars found
amongst the Dead Sea Scrolls, these calendars were different in their mechanism and
structure. They each have extra-Scriptural traditions and difficulties synchronizing with the
actual movements of the heavenly bodies. They are not exclusively attributed to the
Essenes and belonged to various fringe sects in Israel.
They were far different from the calendar in Jerusalem. While there is an attraction
to seek out these ancient texts, just because they were old does not mean they were correct.
There are variations on these calendars and there is certainly no consistent calendar
deriving from the Dead Sea Scrolls, only diversity and confusion. They all require
adjustment and intercalation.
The point of all this is to simply show that solar calendars found amongst the Dead
Sea Scrolls are fixed calendars that have no reliance upon the moon to determine the
months. When you follow a fixed solar calendar you do not have any concern with the
phase of the moon. Now this obviously flies in the face of the clearly demonstrated purpose
of the moon from the very beginning.
None of these calendars are supported by our current measurements of the sun and
the moon, although it is possible that at some point in time the earth exhibited a 360 day
51 “Jubilees, Book of” in L. H. Schiffman and J. C. VanderKam (eds.), Encyclopedia of the Dead Sea Scrolls, Oxford
University Press (2000), Vol. I, p. 435.
52 The Book of Jubilees ii. 9
53 “10 And you shall consecrate the fiftieth year, and proclaim liberty throughout all the land to all its inhabitants.
It shall be a Jubilee for you; and each of you shall return to his possession, and each of you shall return to his
family. 11 That fiftieth year shall be a Jubilee to you; in it you shall neither sow nor reap what grows of its own
accord, nor gather the grapes of your untended vine.” Leviticus 25:10-11
28
year. The landmark work of Immanual Velikovsky details that the histories of most all
major ancient civilizations attest to this fact.54
Velikovsky writes: “The reason for the universal identity of time reckoning between
the fifteenth and the eighth centuries [BCE] lay in the actual movement of the earth on its
axis and along its orbit, and in the revolution of the moon, during that historical period. The
length of a lunar revolution must have been almost exactly 30 days, and the length of the
year, apparently did not vary from 360 days by more than a few hours. Then a series of
catastrophes occurred that changed the axis and the orbit of the earth and the orbit of the
moon, and the ancient year, after going through a period marked by disarranged seasons,
settled into a ‘slow-moving year’ of 365 days, 5 hours, 48 minutes, 46 seconds, a lunar
month being equal to 29 days, 12 hours, 44 minutes, 2.7 seconds, mean synodical period.”55
While Velikovsky attributes the change to repeated perturbations, other works have
confirmed the shift from 360 days to 365 ¼ days, but explain that it resulted from a Mars
flyby in March 701 BCE that was described by Isaiah and coincided with slaughter of the
camp of the Assyrians described in Isaiah 37:36.56
Really, this should be no surprise to the student of the Scriptures, a compilation of
texts that describe incredible astronomical aberrations and even past and future extinction
level events. Catastrophism is a rising field that is rattling uniformism because the evidence
is simply overwhelming.
In fact, there is no doubt that various catastrophes through the ages have affected
time. A very recent event known as the Fukishima earthquake on March 11, 2011 actually
shortened the length of the 24-hour day by 1.8 microseconds according to geophysicist
Richard Gross at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California. It also moved
Japan’s main island about 8 feet, according to Kenneth Hudnut of the U.S. Geological Survey.
The earthquake also shifted Earth’s figure axis by about 6 1/2 inches (17 centimeters).
Obviously the time change and axis shift from this one event is miniscule, but
imagine the compounding effect of similar incidents over thousands of years intermixed
with the many even greater catastrophic events cataloged throughout history and you are
bound to see some changes throughout time. For instance, the impacts that caused the 190
mile wide Vredefort Crater in South Africa, the Sudbury Basin in Ontario, Canada or the 100
mile wide Chicxulub Crater in the Yucatan Peninsula must have had incredible effects on
the planet. There are literally hundreds of such impact craters currently known to exist on
planet earth today and probably many others that have yet to be discovered.
In the Scriptures, events such as Joshua’s long day actually describe both the sun
and the moon stopping. “So the sun stood still, and the moon stopped, till the people had
54 Worlds in Collision, Immanuel Velikovsky, Paradigma Ltd 1950. See Chapter 8, The Year of 360 days.
55 Velikovsky ibid at p 337 (quoting Seneca).
56 Catastrophism and the Old Testament, The Mars-Earth Conflicts, Donald Wesley Patten, Pacific Meridian
Publishing Company, 1988. See Chapter VII The Long Night of Sennacherib.
29
revenge upon their enemies. Is this not written in the Book of Jasher? So the sun stood still in
the midst of heaven, and did not hasten to go down for about a whole day.” Joshua 10:13.
The Book of Yasher also records this event: “63 And when they were smiting, the day
was declining toward evening, and Joshua said in the sight of all the people, Sun, stand thou
still upon Gibeon, and thou moon in the valley of Ajalon, until the nation shall have revenged
itself upon its enemies. 64 And hwhy hearkened to the voice of Joshua, and the sun stood still
in the midst of the heavens, and it stood still six and thirty moments, and the moon also stood
still and hastened not to go down a whole day.” Yasher 88:63-64. The miracle was that
hwhy listened to the voice of a man and actually suspended the movements of the two
great lights that marked time.
During that battle the sun and the moon stopped, and there was a rain of large
hailstones. “And it happened, as they fled before Israel and were on the descent of Beth Horon,
that hwhy cast down large hailstones from heaven on them as far as Azekah, and they died.
There were more who died from the hailstones than the children of Israel killed with the
sword.” Joshua 10:11.
With the sun and the moon stopping, combined with the subsequent rain of what
some believe to be 100 pound “hailstones” or meteors, we are likely reading about the
earth and the moon being effected by the gravitational forces of an extraterrestrial object
and possibly passing through the debris trail of that object. Of course, such an event could
also account for some of the numerous craters that we observe on the moon. Some also
attribute this event to another Mars flyby or Nibiru event.
We also read in Isaiah 38:8 how the sundial of Ahaz moved back ten degrees. We are
not given any information on how this occurred, but it was a sign and not some optical
illusion or parlor trick, so we must assume that there was something happening with the
earth or the sun or both.
Therefore, there is abundant evidence that things have happened that have affected
the earth, the sun and the moon which takes us back to the notion of the 360 day year.
Clearly the five 30 day months in a row that were recorded during the flood event seem to
support that fact, although it is also possible, albeit rare, that there could have actually been
5 consecutive 30 day months using the present orbits of the sun and the moon.57
It is important to note that no matter what happened in the past, it does not change
the Scriptural criteria for reckoning time. While there is a certain beauty and perfection
associated with a 12 month year including all 30 day months, we know that situation does
not presently exist. It is clear that we cannot reckon either a solar or a lunar calendar in
such a fashion today. It is possible that after a past change certain people attempted to
recreate that perfection through later fixed calendars. That could explain the variety of
calendars that exist today.
57 Eliyahu David ben Yissachar, Jerusalem, Israel (www.torahcalendar.com)
30
While there may be a desire to revert to an ancient calendar, a “prophetic calendar”
or “priestly calendar” those supposed calendars defy reality as well as the criteria
established by Genesis 1:14. Further, the simple fact is that none of them will work without
some adjustment, and then you start entering into the realm of calculated calendars rather
than strict observation of the lights provided by the Creator. Again, while one or more of
the calculated calendars may have worked in the past, they do not work now.
All of the lights mentioned at the beginning are important and they all center around
the Covenant people – Israel. We are reminded of this in Jeremiah. “35 Thus says hwhy,
Who gives the sun for a light by day, the ordinances of the moon and the stars for a light by
night, Who disturbs the sea, and its waves roar (hwhy of hosts is His Name): 36 If those
ordinances depart from before Me, says hwhy, Then the seed of Israel shall also cease from
being a nation before Me forever.” Jeremiah 31:35-36
The word “ordinances” means something prescribed or enacted. This implies
purpose behind both of the lights in the sky. Note the close proximity of the moon to the
waves. Of course we all know that the moon is intimately connected to the tidal patterns
here on earth. The moon is also a visible sign that reveals the Appointed Times. Again, it is
important to understand that the whole purpose of the calendar involved the Appointed
Times. The Appointed Times needed to be in sync with the harvest season. A completely
lunar calendar could not accomplish that task because it would be shorter than the solar
year. Thus you would have drift that is plainly evident with the Islamic lunar calendar. In
contrast, a completely solar calendar disregards the moon and will not provide for the
exact months and days that the Scriptures command the Appointed Times to occur on. So
we need both the sun and the moon for this task and those who follow a purely calculated
calendar are disobeying the Torah by not utilizing the lights provided by hwhy.
There are some people who are currently attacking the first sliver luni-solar
calendar and attempting to diminish the significance of the moon. They are linking the
moon with Babylon while the sun is the heavenly body that has truly been hijacked by
Babylonian sun worship. Those who follow a strictly solar calendar are violating the Torah.
They are adding to the Torah by giving the sun more significance than it is supposed to
have, which is what sun worshippers tend to do. They are also taking away from the Torah
by not affording the moon its proper function in determining time.
Both the sun and the moon were created by hwhy and they both operate as
“hands on the clock” that help us gauge time on this planet. In order to properly tell time so
that you can correctly observe the Appointed Times, you must have a calendar that meets
the requirements set forth in the Scriptures. With all of these differing opinions it makes a
person dizzy trying to figure out truth, but the simple fact is that the sun and the moon are
made for “signs and Appointed Times and for days and years.”
Now again, it is possible that the flood or some other past cataclysmic event altered
the earth when there was formerly 360 days a year with 12 months consisting of 30 days,
but that is not presently the case. If that were the case then the sun and the moon would
have accounted for that fact through their orbits. The Scriptures are replete with various
31
astronomical events specifically ordained by Elohim that could have caused the cycles of
the heavenly bodies to change. In that event, they would still witness to time. Nothing
would change that fact.
As a result, you cannot force one of these ancient calendars into the present creation.
The moon remains as a faithful witness for the months and we can examine how ancient
Israel intercalated a 13th month. We can actually discern from history and a thorough
investigation that they followed the Rule of the Equinox when determining the beginning of
the year.
58 This method is completely consistent with Genesis 1:14 by allowing the sun and
the moon to determine the Appointed Times, the days and the years.
This is sound doctrine, and you will not go wrong by following the Scriptures and
traditions that were endorsed by Mosheh, the Messiah and the followers of Yahushua.
59
Strangely, there are many who either completely ignore the significance of the Calendar or
reject sound doctrine and instead chase after false doctrines leading down a variety of
rabbit trails that end in destruction. Those doctrines and teachings are causing confusion,
strife and division. This is an incredible distraction and, as a result, many are missing the
big picture of the Covenant and the Kingdom
Paul warned of such a time when people would stray from sound doctrine:
“3 For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine, but according to their
own desires, because they have itching ears, they will heap up for themselves teachers; 4 and
they will turn their ears away from the truth, and be turned aside to fables.”
2 Timothy 4:3
58 This is the focus of the Calendar Restoration project provided through http://www.torahcalendar.com.
59 Clearly the followers of Yahushua continued to observe the Creator’s Calendar. Paul is regularly recorded as
travelling to Jerusalem for the Feasts. He even made reference to these times, including the New Moon
celebrations in his letters. (see Colossians 2:16-17 and 1 Thessalonians 5:1).