It has been over 2,000 years since the death and resurrection of Jesus. Since that time Christianity has grown, changed and reflected different eras, different cultures, and different beliefs. The expression of our faith has taken on various forms and faces. It is ever growing and ever transforming—sometimes with choices that are for the better and some for the worse. Since the 1970’s more and more Christians are finding themselves returning to the Jewish roots of their faith. And with this outpouring has come many questions regarding the importance of our roots and in what form should they or can they be expressed. In other words, “how deep do I really want to go?”
“Should I celebrate the Feasts of the Lord?” Believer’s everywhere are asking this question in particular.
The road of returning to the Hebrew roots of our faith is becoming increasingly well traveled with each passing year, and yet it has dangerous pit falls on either side. One side is the snare of legalism and on the other the lure of lawlessness. Perhaps, it could be said, “…narrow is the way, pressured is the gate, and few that find it.”
Personally, as a pastor with a flock, I have witnessed the transforming power of the revelation of the Father’s love that is revealed as we honor and celebrate the feasts and the miraculous fulfillment of Jesus in them. We have taken these times to celebrate and honor God for His faithfulness to His word; this celebration and honor, not legalistic observance, has created an added dimension to the depth of teaching within the church. Simple observance and understanding of the appointed times of the Lord removes fear and misconceptions while bridging the gap between Jews and Gentiles. It is human nature to fear what you do not know.
I believe the seriousness of this message, and the life changing power of walking in deeper revelation of our Father’s covenant with us, causes this subject to come under pressure from the enemy. The enemy is consistently attempting to separate us from our Father and His love for us; as Believers begin to discover the truth in the roots of their faith, they not only find out who they are and where they came from, but also who their Father is.
This is something that as an adopted child I can relate to. When I first met my biological father I realized, for the first time in my life, that so many things that make me who I am are things that were passed down to me from my father. I walk like him, I have his sense of humor, and we even have similar interests and gifting. As a child I did not grow up in his household, where I might have picked up these things by osmosis; but rather strengths and weaknesses alike were passed down from him to me through the laws of nature. In the same way we receive spiritual and natural gifts from our earthly father, we also receive gifts from our heavenly Father. In understanding these gifts, and the deep history behind them, we are empowered to use them.
Many times the body of Christ has so identified with the Son of God that we have lost sight of the Father, our Father. Jesus did not come to erase the past or bring confusion. He did not come to negate all of the traditions and customs His Father used to speak to His people. He was not a replacement; He was a bridge to connect us, even more so, to our Father. Customs and traditions become negative things if they simply become empty acts carried out step by step. However, when our traditions, such as the feasts, point us to our Father, and we see Him expressing Himself to us, our traditions become what He intended them to be, a bridge from His heart to ours.