Last updated on September 17, 2023
“…looking for the blessed hope and glorious appearing of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ.”
Do you know that the return of Yeshua (Jesus) most likely will occur in autumn at God’s appointed time? In Genesis through Leviticus, God lays out His timetable in minute detail. Unfortunately, after centuries of pagan influence, some liberal Bible translations, and a lack of knowledge, most Christians are unaware of God’s appointed times and their significance. God said in Hosea 4:6, “My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge.”
In Genesis 1:14, “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 for seasons, and for days and years…” In this passage, “seasons” refers to “appointed times or festivals,” not the more familiar meaning of spring, summer, fall, and winter.
The Jews celebrate seven festivals or appointed times—but they are not Jewish appointed times; they are God’s appointed times. Unfortunately, when Constantine changed the official calendar from a lunar calendar to a solar calendar, our “Christian” holidays merged with pagan holidays. In the process, Christianity absorbed many pagan traditions.
For example, Christians celebrate the resurrection of Yeshua at Easter. Historically, this day coincides with a pagan holiday following the flood and the Tower of Babel. Easter, because it is set according to the spring equinox, is often days apart from Passover and the crucifixion of Yeshua.
Christmas is another Christian celebration mired in pagan practices. It originated in Egypt long after Yeshua’s birth and resurrection. The first recorded date of Christians celebrating Christmas did not occur until 336 A.D. A few years later, Pope Julius I made December 25 the birthdate of Yeshua. Now, a second date on the Christian calendar was associated with a pagan holiday. Yeshua said in Matthew 15:9, “And in vain do they worship Me, teaching as doctrines the commandments of men.”
Only recently did I learn about God’s appointed times. In fact, through God’s appointed times, we see hints of when Yeshua will return. As Yeshua fulfilled the first four festivals at the time of His first coming, so will He fulfill the remaining three feasts at His second coming.
In Leviticus 23:4, God said, “These are the feasts of the LORD, holy convocations which you shall proclaim at their appointed times.”
While we are not obligated to keep the festivals in the church age, knowing what they mean has enriched my Christian walk. The sound of the shofar blowing reminds me of God’s set times. All around the world, in recent years, people have heard mysterious trumpet-like noises coming from the heavens. You can listen to these sounds on YouTube.
Could these sounds be announcing the Lord’s imminent return? Knowing that three of the seven festivals remain unfulfilled gives me heightened awareness that God could return at any moment. If you long for Yeshua’s return as I do, thinking about these things brings a quickening of the spirit. As saints have cried through the centuries, “How much longer, oh, Lord, until your return?”
I have listed below the seven Levitical Feasts and their meaning in reference to the Messiah. Remember, feasts (moadim) in Hebrew mean “appointed times.”
- Feast of Passover – Fulfilled at Yeshua’s first coming. Yeshua is the Passover lamb. His sacrifice occurred at the very hour the high priest slaughtered the lambs within the Temple.
- Feast of Unleavened Bread – Leaven is a picture of sin in the Bible. Yeshua was in the grave three days and three nights following His crucifixion as God’s unleavened, spotless Son. He was the perfect sacrifice for our sins.
- Feast of First Fruits – Yeshua was the first to be resurrected. In I Corinthians 15:20, Paul refers to Yeshua as the “first fruits of those who have fallen asleep.”
- Feast of Weeks (Pentecost) – Occurred fifty days after Passover. On Pentecost, Peter preached from Jerusalem, and 3,000 people responded to the outpouring of God’s Holy Spirit, sparking the beginning of the Church Age in which we live.
- Feast of Trumpets – While the first four feasts were fulfilled at Yeshua’s first coming, most Bible scholars believe the last three will be fulfilled at His second coming. The Feast of Trumpets is the first of the fall feasts. Many believe this is the feast when Yeshua will rapture the church from the earth.
In I Thessalonians 4:16, Paul wrote, “For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of an archangel, and with the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first. Then we who are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And thus we shall always be with the Lord.”
The first day of the Jewish New Year is the Feast of Trumpets. Remember that the Jewish New Year, also known as Rosh Hashanah, falls on the calendar dates of 1 and 2 Tishrei. In 2023, that starts on September 15 at sundown and concludes at nightfall on September 17. In 2024, the dates for Rosh Hashanah are sundown on October 2 to nightfall on October 4.
While we do not know the exact date of Yeshua’s return, that day is fixed as an appointed time. If you look at the signs Yeshua gave in the Olivet Discourse in Matthew 24, He tells us what signs to look for that would mark His return. He wanted us to prepare for His coming. In Matthew 25:1-13, in the Parable of the Ten Virgins, He warns us what would happen if we didn’t.
- Day of Atonement (Yom Kippur) – Many associate this day with Yeshua’s physical return to earth following the Great Tribulation. On the Jewish calendar, Yom Kippur occurs on 10 Tishrei. In 2023, that begins at sunset on September 24 and ends at nightfall on September 25.
In 2024, Yom Kippur falls on the Gregorian calendar on October 11, beginning at sundown and ending at nightfall on October 12.
Zechariah 12:10 says: “…then they [the Jews] will look on Me whom they pierced. Yes, they will mourn for Him as one mourns for his only son, and grieve for Him as one grieves for a firstborn.”
- Feast of Tabernacles or Booths – Looks ahead to when Yeshua will reign from Jerusalem over all the earth for one thousand years. (Micah 4:1-7).
As the return of Yeshua draws near, I find comfort in knowing that the Feast of Trumpets on September 15-16, 2023, might be God’s “appointed time” for the rapture. Knowledge of God’s fixed days assures us that even though Gentiles have altered the calendar, forgotten God’s appointed times, and imbued the Christian faith with pagan practices not found in the Bible, God never changes. His return is set—if not this year, maybe next year—in 2024, 2025, 2026 or beyond. Regardless of the year, when autumn draws near, I remember—and hope, this is the “appointed time.”
PRAYER: Dear Jesus, help me to keep looking up and not lose heart as the world devolves into chaos. I know You will return at the appointed time, and I wait expectantly for the Blessed Hope.