Brief Outline of How God's Feasts Teach the Plan of Salvation
by Tara Lang Chapman
Written June 2009, Roman Calendar
Uploaded to Website October 2010, Roman Calendar
The instructions for the feasts can be found in Leviticus chapter 23. We are to now keep the feasts in the new covenant way. Christ taught the new symbols for the Passover in the gospels, during the his last Passover with his disciples. The following is very brief, yet informative.
1. Passover--It's not a sabbath. Regular work may be done. It is the day Christ died for our sins and became our Passover lamb. The first step of salvation is the perfect sacrifice of Christ to cover over our past sins.
2. The Feast of Unleavened Bread. This immediately follows Passover. It lasts seven days, with the first day and the last day being holy days--sabbaths and holy convocations (gathering with brethren for worship), where the only work allowed is cooking. Leaven is to be removed from homes, and no leavened things may be eaten during this week. Leaven symbolically represents sin. Removing sin from our lives--REPENTANCE of breaking God's Law--is the second step of salvation.
3. Pentecost or Feast of Weeks. This is a sabbath and a day to feast, and only cooking may be done. It is also a holy convocation. This feast comes 50 days (7 weeks and a day) after the weekly sabbath that falls during the week of Passover. Pentecost is therefore always on a Sunday. The Holy Spirit was poured out upon the apostles on Pentecost, just weeks after Christ's resurrection and was then given to thousands afterward, after baptism. Baptism and the begettal with God's spirit (His spiritual sperm) makes one a begotten son of God who will be born at the resurrection (if he or she does not abort during the gestational period--the remainder of his or her life). The Spirit teaches the person and HELPS him or her keep God's Law. As the Passover sacrifice--the death of Christ--covered our sins before baptism, the resurrected LIVING Christ serves as our High Priest to intercede on our behalves for sins committed after baptism (which is not to say we deliberately sin). This is the third step of salvation.
SUMMER PERIOD, the time of the Church of God. The previous three feasts are spring feasts. The remaining ones are fall feasts.
4. Feast of Trumpets. This is a sabbath and a day to feast, and only cooking may be done. It is also a holy convocation. This feast foreshadows the 7 trumpet plagues that will take place during the Day (year) of God's wrath, and more specifically the 7th trumpet, at which time the dead in Christ and those still living who are begotten with God's Spirit will be resurrected and BORN as sons of God. We will be like Christ (I John 3:2). These are the FIRSTFRUITS. We will reign with Christ on the earth for 1,000 years. This is the fourth step of salvation for mankind.
5. Day of Atonement. This day is a sabbath where no work may be done and when a person fasts. My desktop dictionary defines atonement as "reparation for wrong or injury." This is the time when Satan and his fellows are locked away for 1,000 years. Their spiritual kingdom will not rule during this time. Rather, Christ and his fellows (the other sons of God, the resurrected Spirit saints) will rule during this time. While Satan encouraged people to do wrongly, the kings and priests of God will encourage people to do right. My favorite etymology dictionary says [i]atone[/i] literally means "at one." This will be a time where people will eventually be at one with God and live in harmony with all creation. This is the 5th step in the plan of salvation.
6. Feast of Tabernacles or Feast of Booths. This feast lasts seven days, the first and last of which are holy days--sabbaths and holy convocations. Israel had to dwell in booths (tents/temporary dwellings) when they were led out of Egyptian bondage. This foreshadows the time of the millennium (the 1,000 years of the Kingdom of God) when the sons of God live among mankind to teach them God's ways on this temporary physical dwelling place, in temporary earthly bodies. This is the sixth step in the plan of salvation.
7. The 8th Day. This immediately follows the Feast of Tabernacles and is the last feast. This is the time of eternity, just as the number eight symbolizes. First comes the "Great White Throne Judgment." This is when everyone who was never called to know the truth in their first lifetime will be resurrected and the books (the scriptures) will be opened to show them the right way to live. This will be their time of judgment. The book of life will then be opened, and everyone who did not choose God's way of life, whose names are not written in the book of life, will be thrown into the lake of fire, which will destroy both body AND spirit so that they will never live again. This is NOT a time of second chances. Those of us who came to the truth in THIS lifetime have our chance now. This is OUR time of judgment. The GW Throne Judgment period is only for those who did not have a fair chance during their first life, whether they died as babies or young children, whether they were reared up in a false religion, or whether they were mentally disabled--ALL those who were not CALLED by the Father in their first lives. (He calls only a relative few during this period to be firstfruits, and of those called [nominated], not many are chosen [elected] ("many are called, but few are chosen"), b/c they do not answer the calling. Of those who are chosen, some do not remain faithful and prematurely abort. We must be called, chosen, AND faithful to be of the firstfruits.) Then all the children of God will live on in ETERNITY, signified by the number eight.