Feast of Firstfruits / Feast of Weeks (The Omer Count)
“Honor Me with the firstfruits of all your increase.” – God
And the LORD spoke to Moses, saying, “Speak to the people of Israel and say to them, When you come into the land that I give you and reap its harvest, you shall bring the sheaf of the firstfruits of your harvest to the priest, and he shall wave the sheaf before the LORD, so that you may be accepted [a Firstfruits Offering]. On the day after the Sabbath the priest shall wave it. And on the day when you wave the sheaf, the grain offering shall be of fine flour mixed with oil, a food offering to the LORD with a pleasing aroma, and the drink offering with it shall be of wine. And you shall eat neither bread or grain parched or fresh until this same day, until you have brought the offering of your God: it is a statute forever throughout your generations in all your dwellings.
You shall count seven full weeks from the day after the Sabbath, from the day that you brought the sheaf of the wave offering. You shall count fifty days to the day after the seventh Sabbath.”
Appointed Time: Feast of Firstfruits
Significance: … “so that you may be accepted” …
Observance: Bring a Firstfruits Offering to the priest. He shall wave it before ADONAI so that you may be accepted. Offer a food offering with a pleasing aroma to ADONAI and a drink offering of wine. Additionally, a practical way to observe the Feast is to have communion (with matzah) and worship our risen Messiah while bringing your Firstfruits offering before ADONAI
Length: Hours after the Sabbath following Passover
Feast of Firstfruits
We see that this cycle of firstfruits giving is a sign of our source of blessing – monthly in the Rosh Chodesh offerings and yearly in the Feast of Firstfruits.
Israel’s yearly pilgrimage of Passover to Jerusalem, to present themselves before ADONAI in commemoration of their corporate deliverance, redemption, salvation and provision, culminates at the end of the first weekly Shabbat following Passover, during the Feast of Unleavened Bread, with the Feast of Firstfruits.
Israel is to bring a Firstfruits Offering to the priest. The priest would then wave the offering before ADONAI as a dedication to Him to be accepted on behalf of the people. A male lamb was then sacrificed as a burnt offering to ADONAI along with a food offering of unleavened bread mixed with oil and a drink offering of wine (Lev. 23:12-13). All of these elements represent Messiah:
● A lamb
● Unleavened bread mixed with oil
Feast of Firstfruits is when the Anointed Messiah (the Sacrificial Lamb) rose from the dead (unleavened and oiled) as the accepted offering through the shedding of blood (the wine) to be presented before the Father for His acceptance on behalf of the people (wave-sheaf offering)! Hallelujah!!
A practical way for us to observe the Feast of Firstfruits today is to have communion (with matzah) and worship while bringing your Firstfruits offering before ADONAI.
The Feast of Firstfruits is the Resurrection of Messiah!
The week that Jesus died, He was entombed on a Wednesday before the High Shabbat of the first day of the Feast of Unleavened Bread. He was entombed for three days and three nights, Wednesday evening through Saturday evening, with Saturday night – after sunset – ending the weekly Shabbat and ushering in the Feast of Firstfruits, His resurrection. This schedule mimicked the pattern established by His Father in the Passover, Feast of Unleavened Bread and the Feast of Firstfruits as declared by Moses.
The Feast of Firstfruits is the Resurrection of Messiah, as has been clearly shown in both the TaNaKh and the New Testament. The instruction for observing the Feast of Firstfruits has no mention of it being a “holy convocation, a High Shabbat” or a Sabbath at all. It comes after the weekly Sabbath.
The resurrection of Messiah occurred on the Feast of Firstfruits after the weekly Sabbath following Passover during the Feast of Unleavened Bread as instructed by God through Moses and in accordance with the whole council of scripture.
The Feast of Weeks / The Omer CountAppointed Time: Feast of Weeks (Counting of the Omer)
Significance: The counting up to the wheat harvest, Shavuot / Pentecost, in anticipation and remembrance for what He was about to do; the covenant of Torah and the indwelling of the Holy Spirit
Observance: Every night at dinner during the Omer Count, we say the number of the day and week we are on for seven weeks / seven Shabbats, and on the 50th day it’s a High Shabbat
Length: 50 days (49 days / seven Sabbaths +1 day)
The Counting of the Omer / the Feast of Weeks is all about us counting up to the wheat harvest – Shavuot / Pentecost – in anticipation and remembrance for what He was about to do; the covenant of Torah and the indwelling of the Holy Spirit. Every night at dinner during the Omer Count, we say the number of the day and week we are on for seven weeks / seven Shabbats, and on the 50th day, it’s a High Shabbat.
The Passover, the exodus from Egypt, the 40-day trek through the wilderness to Mount Sinai; all has one motive behind it all:
"Say therefore to the people of Israel, ‘I am the LORD, and I will bring you out from under the burdens of the Egyptians, and I will deliver you from slavery to them, and I will redeem you with an outstretched arm and with great acts of judgment. I will take you to be my people, and I will be your God, and you shall know that I am the LORD your God, who has brought you out from under the burdens of the Egyptians.’”
Exodus 6:6-7 [Emphasis mine]