The Feast of First Fruits begins in the first month; soon after the seven days of the feast of Unleavened Bread/Passover. Numbers 28:16 “And in the fourteenth day of the first month is the passover of the LORD.” Verse 26: “Also in the day of the firstfruits, when ye bring a new meat offering unto the LORD, ….”
In this feast we presented before the Lord the blessings he gave us from the land. Proverbs 3:9 “Honour the LORD with thy substance, and with the firstfruits of all thine increase:” Verse 10: “So shall thy barns be filled with plenty, and thy presses shall burst out with new wine.” By honoring the most High with our substance, he enriched us for keeping his commandment. Apocrypha Ecclesiasticus 35:8 “Give the Lord his honour with a good eye, and diminish not the firstfruits of thine hands.” Verse 9: “In all thy gifts shew a cheerful countenance, and dedicate thy tithes with gladness.” Verse 10: “Give unto the most High according as he hath enriched thee; and as thou hast gotten, give with a cheerful eye.” Verse 11: “For the Lord recompenseth [repays], and will give thee seven times as much.”
The reason that God recompenseth with great blessings the person that gives, is due to the support they provide to his ministry. The children of Israel presented these gifts of the Lord unto the priest. Leviticus 23:10 “Speak unto the children of Israel, and say unto them, When ye be come into the land which I give unto you, and shall reap the harvest thereof, then ye shall bring a sheaf of the firstfruits of your harvest unto the priest:” If the first fruits were to diminish, the priests would not be able to serve the Heavenly Father daily in his sanctuary.
Apocrypha Ecclesiasticus 7:29 “Fear the Lord with all thy soul, and reverence his priests.” Verse 30: “Love him that made thee with all thy strength, and forsake not his ministers.” When studying the laws of God we could immediately see why the priests (Levites) depended on the offerings of Israel. The amount of work that was required of them or their service was a full time job. Also they didn’t receive inheritance as the rest of the tribes for they were chosen to minister (serve) the most High. Therefore the Levites were scattered among all the tribes, laboring not only in the sanctuary but also among the people by teaching them. Please read, Deuteronomy 18:1-8.
To desert his ministers would mean to remove the stability of the land, in matters of counsel and judgment. Likewise in their ability to help the poor, the widow, and the fatherless. Apocrypha Ecclesiasticus 7:31 “Fear the Lord, and honor the priest; and give him his portion, as it is commanded thee; the firstfruits, and the trespass offering, and the gift of the shoulders, and the sacrifice of sanctification, and the firstfruits of the holy things.” Verse 32: “And stretch thine hand unto the poor, that thy blessing may be perfected.”
As a result this feast forces us to acknowledge pertinent historical information, beginning with the inheritance of the promise land. Exodus 3:8 “And I am come down to deliver them out of the hand of the Egyptians, and to bring them up out of that land unto a good land and a large, unto a land flowing with milk and honey; unto the place of the Canaanites, and the Hittites, and the Amorites, and the Perizzites, and the Hivites, and the Jebusites.” Our fathers that were enslaved in Egypt, heard the promise that was first spoken to our father Abraham. Please read, Genesis 12:6-7, 13:14-15, and 15:7-18. While wandering in the wilderness they learned of this feast when it was said to them, “When ye be come into the land which I give unto you”. This ancient prophecy was fulfilled, and they were given the best land that flowed with milk and honey. See, Ezekiel 20:6.
Today our land is no longer in our possession, it has been divided among the gentiles (nations), until second coming of Christ. Please read, Joel 3:1-2 and Luke 21:24. As our forefathers were given a promise of entering the holy land, our generation awaits the fulfillment of identical prophecies. Jeremiah 29:14 “And I will be found of you, saith the LORD: and I will turn away your captivity, and I will gather you from all the nations, and from all the places whither I have driven you, saith the LORD; and I will bring you again into the place whence I caused you to be carried away captive.”
Obviously before they entered the land they were taught laws, statutes, commandments, and judgments. This included to whom the priesthood was given; the tribe of Levi was chosen out of all the twelve tribes of Israel to be the ministers of God. Deuteronomy 10:8 “At that time the LORD separated the tribe of Levi, to bear the ark of the covenant of the LORD, to stand before the LORD to minister unto him, and to bless in his name, unto this day.” Even before this took place the most High chose Moses a man from the tribe of Levi, and his brother Aaron. Apocrypha Ecclesiasticus 45:6 “He exalted Aaron, an holy man like unto him, even his brother, of the tribe of Levi.” Verse 7: “An everlasting covenant he made with him and gave him the priesthood among the people; ….”
These two great men helped to liberate the nation of Israel from slavery, through miracles and great signs of God. Yet in their time men contested their priesthood. To end the murmurings of Israel, by a miracle the most High confirmed the priesthood that was given to Aaron. Please read, Numbers chapter 17. The astonishing act of the people at that time is baffling, while today no one questions those that claim to be priests! Numbers 3:10 “And thou shalt appoint Aaron and his sons, and they shall wait on their priest's office: and the stranger that cometh nigh shall be put to death.” It is a great offense for any to usurp the office of priests therefore as this feast teaches us, we must NOT submit to those that are illegitimate.
This is one of the reasons why we are no longer in the land. 1st Kings 12:31 “And he made an house of high places [a temple to false gods], and made priests of the lowest of the people, which were not of the sons of Levi.” To avoid keeping the feasts of the most High, a wicked king of Israel by the name of Jeroboam built temples to false gods. In order to accomplish this, he appointed any to the priest’s office. Presently the same things are done by our people in their ignorance, this is why they are taught not to keep the feasts. Not realizing that these idolatrous priests of religions are leading them to all evil. 1st Kings 13:33 “After this thing Jeroboam returned not from his evil way, but made again of the lowest of the people priests of the high places: whosoever would, he consecrated him, and he became one of the priests of the high places.”
Our people are led by those that are covetous and greedy, that misuse the word of God. Jeremiah 6:13 “For from the least of them even unto the greatest of them every one is given to covetousness; and from the prophet even unto the priest every one dealeth falsely.” The priests of Churchianity violate the laws of God and teach their followers that it is abolished. Yet in regards to giving them tithes or other offerings they compel the people through the law! Thus they are motivated by greed and covetousness which is not the purpose of the feast. The prophet Jeremiah exposed in ancient times these type of priests saying, Baruch 6:28 “As for the things that are sacrificed unto them, their priests sell and abuse; in like manner their wives lay up part thereof in salt; but unto the poor and impotent they give nothing of it.” Moreover tithes and first fruits offerings are not monetary donations!
Leviticus 23:10 “Speak unto the children of Israel, and say unto them, When ye be come into the land which I give unto you, ….” Now we should be aware that this feast has prophetic meaning to us as it did to our forefathers. Leviticus 23:10 “…. and shall reap the harvest thereof, then ye shall bring a sheaf of the firstfruits of your harvest unto the priest:” The sheaf was a bundle of wheat presented to the priest, which would become a wave offering. Leviticus 23:11 “And he shall wave the sheaf before the LORD, to be accepted for you: on the morrow after the sabbath the priest shall wave it.” When the feast of unleavened bread had ended, the people prepared themselves to honor the most High with their crops after the Sabbath.
Leviticus 23:12 “And ye shall offer that day when ye wave the sheaf an he lamb without blemish of the first year for a burnt offering unto the LORD.” On the day the bundle of wheat was brought to wave before the most High, the Levitical priesthood sacrificed on the altar “an he lamb without blemish”. This offering was symbolic of Christ the lamb of God. John 1:29 “The next day John seeth Jesus coming unto him, and saith, Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world.”
Besides the lamb, the priest offered unleavened bread and wine. Leviticus 23:13 “And the meat offering thereof shall be two tenth deals of fine flour mingled with oil, an offering made by fire unto the LORD for a sweet savour: and the drink offering thereof shall be of wine, the fourth part of an hin.” This also represents Christ, the bread is his body and the wine is his blood. 1st Corinthians 11:23 “For I have received of the Lord that which also I delivered unto you, That the Lord Jesus the same night in which he was betrayed took bread:” Verse 24: “And when he had given thanks, he brake it, and said, Take, eat: this is my body, which is broken for you: this do in remembrance of me.” Verse 25: “After the same manner also he took the cup, when he had supped, saying, This cup is the new testament in my blood: this do ye, as oft as ye drink it, in remembrance of me.” Verse 26: “For as often as ye eat this bread, and drink this cup, ye do shew the Lord's death till he come.”
Ultimately we learn that the greatest sacrifice to God for a sweet savour, was the body of Christ. See, Ephesians 5:2. A great majority of people do not believe that we must keep these feasts, also at times they misconstrue scriptures in the so called “New Testament” to justify this view. Often those scriptures explain the change that took place to the Levitical Priesthood. Hebrews 7:12 “For the priesthood being changed, ….” Although the Levites were given a perpetual priesthood to serve God before his altar, Christ has become the High Priest as expected in prophecies. Hebrews 3:1 “Wherefore, holy brethren, partakers of the heavenly calling, consider the Apostle and High Priest of our profession, Christ Jesus;”
We are never to think that the most High abolished his feasts or the laws. Leviticus 23:14 “And ye shall eat neither bread, nor parched corn, nor green ears, until the selfsame day that ye have brought an offering unto your God: it shall be a statute for ever throughout your generations in all your dwellings.” As we could clearly see the Heavenly Father expects us to keep his feast for ever, in every generation, regardless of where we dwell. This removes many of the excuses that some try to use, such as we are prevented because we are not in the land and in captivity. However the most High prophesied of our captivity and exile. With this knowledge he still commanded us to bring an offering otherwise we are unable to eat bread, parched corn, or green ears until the offering is brought.
The first fruits offering were the best of all that the Heavenly Father blessed the children of Israel with. Numbers 18:12 “All the best of the oil, and all the best of the wine, and of the wheat, the firstfruits of them which they shall offer unto the LORD, them have I given thee.” Verse 13: “And whatsoever is first ripe in the land, which they shall bring unto the LORD, shall be thine; every one that is clean in thine house shall eat of it.” A common concern pertaining to the offering relates to the fact that most of our people do not possess farms; this same question also applies to tithes. We are not hindered from eating because we are not owners of a farm, then there is nothing stopping us from giving freely. See, Deuteronomy 16:9-12.
The feast of first fruits is known by several other names. One of the names comes from the way we arrive at the date it must be kept. Numbers 28:26 “Also in the day of the firstfruits, when ye bring a new meat offering unto the LORD, after your weeks be out, ye shall have an holy convocation; ye shall do no servile work:” The feast is unique, it is determined by weeks, hence this scripture indicates to us why it is named the Feast of Weeks. Exodus 34:22 “And thou shalt observe the feast of weeks, of the firstfruits of wheat harvest, ….”
Leviticus 23:15 “And ye shall count unto you from the morrow after the sabbath, from the day that ye brought the sheaf of the wave offering; …” The most High is going to specify when to begin counting the weeks, since the “morrow after the sabbath” mentioned earlier is a confusing statement. Leviticus 23:15 “…. seven sabbaths shall be complete:” Often the confusion is, what sabbath is the most High referring to? The “morrow” or next day “after the sabbath” is the first day of the week. This we could say with confidence since we must count seven weeks or sabbaths complete. As this feast does not use the new moons to decide the date, it also shows us that weeks or the Sabbath could not be by the new moons. The creation is the reason that there are seven days in a week. See, the Sabbath report. These seven sabbaths will give us 49 consecutive days, which could not be accomplished with the new moon, or any of the Passover (feast of unleavened bread) sabbaths.
Once the Passover has ended, we wait for the weekly Sabbath, and once it is finished being the first day of the week we begin to count. Seven days complete for each week, seven sabbaths complete, will give us 49 days. Leviticus 23:16 “Even unto the morrow after the seventh sabbath shall ye number fifty days; and ye shall offer a new meat offering unto the LORD.” After the seventh Sabbath a day is added to make it 50 days; this is when the feast is held once the weekly sabbath has passed. As it was mentioned earlier, “after your weeks be out” is when the holy convocation or the Sabbath is held. This means that the first day when the sheaf is waved is not a Sabbath day. Leviticus 23:21 “And ye shall proclaim on the selfsame day, that it may be an holy convocation unto you: ye shall do no servile work therein: it shall be a statute for ever in all your dwellings throughout your generations.”
The feast was also called Pentecost because in Greek it means the fiftieth day. Tobit 2:1 “Now when I was come home again, and my wife Anna was restored unto me, with my son Tobias, in the feast of Pentecost, which is the holy feast of the seven weeks, there was a good dinner prepared me, in the which I sat down to eat.” We should follow the example of Tobit that sought to keep the holy convocation by looking for fellowship and brotherhood.
Tobit 2:2 “And when I saw abundance of meat, I said to my son, Go and bring what poor man soever thou shalt find out of our brethren, who is mindful of the Lord; and, lo, I tarry for thee.” At this time the children of Israel were in captivity under the Assyrians. All the feast days teach us charity, to love our neighbors therefore we should gather with fellow believing Israelites. A good dinner is prepared to celebrate this day, this is the only feast that you do not have to worry about it coinciding with the weekly Sabbath, therefore cooking is permitted. Remember no servile work is allowed that means no business or chores of any kind could be done. Like the Sabbath, buying and selling is forbidden. See, Nehemiah 10:31. Therefore we have to make sure to prepare well since it would be two consecutive Sabbaths days; the weekly Sabbath and then the Feast of First Fruits.
Exodus 23:16 “And the feast of harvest, the firstfruits of thy labours, which thou hast sown [planted] in the field: ….” The Feast of Harvest is another name by which this feast is called. For those in captivity that might have never been done farm work, it might seem like a simple commemoration of a different era and lifestyle. However this feast has underlying prophetic significance that as believers of Christ we should not ignore. 1st Corinthians 15:23 “But every man in his own order: Christ the firstfruits; afterward they that are Christ’s at his coming.” As we present the best and first ripe as an offering, so did the most High for the nation of Israel. This is what the Apostle Paul explained, by stating that Christ is the first fruits because he was the first to resurrect and the best at righteousness.
Paul did not invent this understanding, an angel of God revealed this to the prophet Daniel. Daniel 9:24 “Seventy weeks are determined upon thy people [Israel] and upon thy holy city [Jerusalem], to finish the transgression, and to make an end of sins, and to make reconciliation for iniquity, and to bring in everlasting righteousness, and to seal up the vision and prophecy, and to anoint the most Holy [Christ].” Verse 25: “Know therefore and understand, that from the going forth of the commandment to restore and to build Jerusalem unto the Messiah the Prince shall be seven weeks, and threescore and two weeks: the street shall be built again, and the wall, even in troublous times.” Like the holy feast of the seven weeks, the birth of Christ is to be counted by seventy weeks.
Daniel 9:26 “And after threescore and two weeks shall Messiah be cut off, but not for himself: and the people of the prince that shall come shall destroy the city and the sanctuary; and the end thereof shall be with a flood, and unto the end of the war desolations are determined.” Verse 27: “And he shall confirm the covenant [agreement] with many for one week: and in the midst of the week he shall cause the sacrifice and the oblation to cease, and for the overspreading of abominations he shall make it desolate, even until the consummation, and that determined shall be poured upon the desolate.” Christ was cut off or crucified for the sins of Israel, since he did not die for himself. Afterwards his resurrection proved he had no sins. He showed himself to the disciples and confirmed the covenant that God made with Israel.
Many in Churchianity have heard the word Pentecost due to the miraculous event of the Apostles receiving the Holy Spirit. See, Acts 1:3-9 and Acts 2:1-6. However they do not know what Pentecost really pertains to. Christ was chosen by the most High to be the High Priest, and to usher a royal priesthood. Exodus 19:6 “And ye shall be unto me a kingdom of priests, and an holy nation. These are the words which thou shalt speak unto the children of Israel.” This prophecy did not remove the Levites from their special position, instead it included the other tribes as laborers to gather the harvest. Matthew 9:37 “Then saith he unto his disciples, The harvest truly is plenteous, but the labourers are few;” Verse 38: “Pray ye therefore the Lord of the harvest, that he will send forth labourers into his harvest.”
The Pharisees and Sadducees (unbelieving Israelites) caused great schisms against the disciples who were the first to partake in this royal priesthood. See, 1st Corinthians 16:15. Many of the hard sayings of Paul expressed how they used the laws of sacrifice to assert their authority and convince many away from believing in Christ. Hebrews 7:12 “For the priesthood being changed, there is made of necessity a change also of the law.” The unbelieving sects were filled with envy against the disciples, because they prospered and the people honored them as the priests with their offerings. Matthew 21:43 “Therefore say I unto you, The kingdom of God shall be taken from you, and given to a nation bringing forth the fruits thereof.” As predicted in the book of Daniel, the sacrifice and the oblation ceased when the Romans destroyed the sanctuary. This finally brought an end to the schisms and the authority of the chief priests and Pharisees.
Today it is believed that the nation chosen to bring forth the fruits has been replaced by their religions. How ironic is it that there is a religion called Pentecostal which claim to believe in Christ yet they do not even keep the feast! If all of Churchianity were to keep the feast, there will be no choice but to renounce their religions and acknowledge the true priesthood of Christ. Matthew 13:24 “Another parable put he forth unto them, saying, The kingdom of heaven is likened unto a man which sowed good seed in his field:” The most High is planting his good seed in Israel. Luke 8:11 “Now the parable is this: The seed is the word of God.”
1st Corinthians 3:9 “For we are labourers together with God: ye are God’s husbandry, ye are God’s building.” The prophecies will show us that the laborers and the field (husbandry) continued to be the nation of Israel. The Heavenly Father is causing brothers to repent and become ripe in righteousness. James 1:18 “Of his own will begat he us with the word of truth, that we should be a kind of firstfruits of his creatures.” Through the scriptures we are born again, this mercy is shown to us that we may become like Christ a kind of firstfruits.
In the end times the most High spoke of an 144,000 men that will be his priests. Revelations 7:4 “And I heard the number of them which were sealed: and there were sealed an hundred and forty and four thousand of all the tribes of the children of Israel.” The great offense of usurping the office of priest is performed by all of Churchianity. To return again to the true teachings and royal priesthood established by Christ, is what keeping this feast teaches us. We must NOT submit to those that are illegitimate. Revelations 14:3 “And they sung as it were a new song before the throne, and before the four beasts, and the elders: and no man could learn that song but the hundred and forty and four thousand, which were redeemed from the earth.” The gift of the Holy Spirit given unto the true priests could no man learn in theological college or seminary school.
Revelations 14:4 “These are they which were not defiled with women; for they are virgins. These are they which follow the Lamb whithersoever he goeth. These were redeemed [saved] from among men, being the firstfruits unto God and to the Lamb.” Verse 5: “And in their mouth was found no guile: for they are without fault before the throne of God.” The 144,000 men will be the best and first ripe in Israel that follow sincerely the teachings of Christ. They are the priest that will gather the harvest, and will teach only the truth and not speak any guile (lies). We pray and hope that this edifies you in keeping the day holy as we are commanded by the Lord. To embrace your heritage and future that is in store for our nation. Romans 8:23 “And not only they, but ourselves also, which have the firstfruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting for the adoption, to wit, the redemption of our body.” All praise and glory to the most High and may he fulfill his word upon Israel in the name of Christ. Shalam (Peace)!