Tentative agricultural dates for the Feasts

There are a lot of Messianics who use the traditional Jewish calendar, created in the 4th century AD.

There are also a select few of us who use a calendar based off the agricultural seasons in Israel, as described in the Torah.

I don’t condemn people for using the traditional Jewish rabbinical calendar; this post isn’t meant to start a flame war about trivial calendar issues.

Rather, I’ve had some Messianics and Christians approach me about the agricultural dates for 2009: when does the Biblical new year start? When is Passover? And so on. This post addresses these questions. Provided abib barley is found as expected before the next new moon, these are the dates for the Feasts of the Lord:


Western calendar date for 2009


Messianic fulfillment

Biblical New Year, 1st day of month of Abib Sundown March 27th    
Passover Twilight, April 10th   Messiah, the Lamb of God, was sacrificed.
Unleavened Bread Sundown April 10th through sundown April 17th God commanded rest on the first and last days of Unleavened Bread. Messiah was in the tomb during the week of this feast.
First Fruits Sundown April 11th   Messiah rises from the dead on this feast.

While Messiah rose on the first day of the week, many mistake this to be Sunday; because Hebrew days end at sundown, rather than midnight, the first day of the week begins Saturday at sundown, not Sunday morning.
Shavu’ot (Feast of Pentecost) Sundown May 30th God commanded rest on Shavu’ot. Messiah sent his spirit to the apostles on this feast. They began speaking in foreign languages and were filled with God’s spirit.
Yom Teruah (Feast of Trumpets) Sundown September 20th God commanded rest on Yom Teruah. Possible future Messianic fulfillment: the great shofar will sound, signaling the coming of the Messiah.
Yom Kippur (Day of Atonement). Sundown September 29th God commanded rest on Yom Kippur. Possible future Messianic fulfillment: Messiah will judge the world on this feast.
Sukkot (Feast of Tabernacles) Sundown October 4th through sundown October 12th. God commanded rest on the first and last days of this Sukkot. Possible future Messianic fulfillment: Messiah will dwell/tabernacle with us during this feast.

Most often, there’s a few days in between Passover and First Fruits. (Indeed, Messiah was in the tomb 3 days and 3 days nights before rising on First Fruits.) However, this year First Fruits falls the day after due to the commandment to celebrate it the “day after the Sabbath following Passover”. This happens to be only a day apart this year.

There you have it, fine blog readers. Shalom.


  1. I appreciate the tone with which you have approached what can be a rather divisive subject. I may be an advocate of the traditional Rabbinical calendar, including the Pharisaic reckoning for counting the omer, but unlike many of the non-traditionalists I believe that we can discuss our differences in a very constructive and useful way.

  2. Thanks, J.K.

    Yeah, the last thing I wanted was yet another divisive fight. The lack of comments here suggests I was successful in that regard. :-)

  3. People such as myself obviously do not follow the traditional calendar out of some kind of "blind" obedience to the Rabbis, but for some good reasons from the Scriptures regarding protocol, order, and unity. I would hope that in the future we can discuss those differences of opinion that we have in a fair-minded way, rather than the kind of rhetoric that we have been plagued by in recent days.

  4. Yeah, that would be good.

    Rumors circulate that the modern Orthodox Jewish Sanhedrin in Israel (whether it is legitimate or not is another question...) will appoint judges to determine the months and seasons as it was in Biblical times. If that happens, I wonder whether that will finally bring some unity on the calendar issues. Knowing how zealously argumentative some of us are, it will probably only create further division.

  5. A lot of these calendars--and hence my extreme skepticism to use anything but the traditional calendar along with the Synagogue--have been used to try to predict the Second Coming. Over the past 14 years I have seen recalcuations of recalcuations, and now more recalculations when dates come and go. You can't milk that goat forever...

  6. Are you comparing "you can't milk that goat forever" to "following the commands of the Torah"? The Torah is very specific as to how to calculate the months, and the traditional calendar is now off by 2 days. What happens if this year due to the drought the barely does not ripen, the traditional calendar will be off by a month!

  7. The 4 spring feasts, Christ fulfilled in his 1st Coming. The 3 Fall feasts Christ fulfilled in his 2nd Coming in AD70 with the judgment of physical Israel. Spiritual Israel survived the "days of vengeance."