Days Set For National Public Worship And Sacrifice

A man visited the Fiji islands. He was skeptical of missionaries and told the chief that nobody believed what the Bible had to say nowadays. He concluded his remarks by saying “I am sorry for you that you have been so foolish”. The Fijian chief shocked this visitor when … More


In this chapter the Lord instructed His people to reserve certain dates on their calendar for national public worship and sacrifice. Calendars are a normal part of our modern busy world, but they weren’t that important to the people of Israel in Moses day. The Jews worked from sunrise to sunset and they counted the months by the different phases of the moon as they watched the seasons come and go. God had promised a seed time and a harvest, cold and heat, summer and winter, and day and night (Gen. 8:22). Now He is talking to them about special days called “feasts“ for them to celebrate. “Feasts“ did not mean eating but appointed times.

The first of these days was the weekly Sabbath (vv. 1-3). It was not one of the annual “feast“ days but was a very important day and the Jewish people were expected to honor it. To dishonor it meant death (Num. 15:32-36).  The first “feast“ was the Passover (vv. 4-5) which marked Israel’s deliverance from Egypt and a celebration that the lamb was slain and the blood sprinkled on the door posts of each Israelite home.

The second “feast“ day was that of Unleavened Bread(vv. 6-8), which began the day after the Passover and continued for a week. It was a time when the Jews ate only unleavened bread with their meals and when they cleansed all the yeast from their homes. During this time a “sheaf of first fruits” of barley was offered (vv. 9-14) as a wave offering before the Lord God and it symbolized the fact that it all came from Him.


As a believer I am not commanded to keep any of these days today. However, each day is a sacred gift from God and I need to live it fully for Him.

Leviticus 23:1-14 (English Standard Version)

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