Full Moon and Leavened Bread?
This study is a rebuttal to arguments that the full moon determines the dates of the Feast of Unleavened Bread and Tabernacles,
and that Yahshua gave leavened bread to His disciples at Passover.
At one Feast of Tabernacles, it was alleged by some of the leaders that they had incorrectly set the time for that Feast. They explained that “the first day of the Feast must be on a full moon, in the evening of the first day, and clearly, the full moon had occurred the evening before the first day of the Feast.” So, they shortened the length of the Feast to six days and moved the final High Sabbath, the Last Great Day, up one day in order to “bring the Feast into line with Yahweh’s calendar.”
Those same leaders subsequently set the date for the next Feast of Tabernacles on September 19, 2005. Examine any calendar or any website that identifies the full moon for that month, and you will see that the full moon in September is on the 17th! The full moon for this particular Feast will have occurred two days prior to the time they professed that it should occur, according to their statements. Did they change their minds? Or, will they present data that is in error (for example, using “Universal Time” rather than Local Time)? Check it out for yourself. Go to the USNO website, http:// aa.usno.navy.mil/ and click on the box that says “Data Services,” then click on “Complete Sun and Moon data for one day.” Under the heading, “Form A - U.S. Cities or Towns,” fill out the section for the year, month, day, State or Territory and City or Town Name (where you live), and then click “Get Data.” For Fulton, MO, on the 18th of September, Full Moon and Leavened Bread, you will read at the bottom of the data table:
“Phase of the Moon on 18 September: waning gibbous with 99% of the Moon's visible disk illuminated. Full Moon on 17 September 2005 at 9:00 p.m. Central Daylight Time.”
The full moon occurs on the 17th. It will be a waning moon on the 18th. The previous year, it was obvious that the full moon occurred the evening before the first day of the Feast of Tabernacles. Their new calendar shows a full moon symbol on the 19th, and the legend indicates that the full moon occurred the evening before. That was the exact situation the previous year, and they argued that the Feast was one day late. At best, these men have acted in haste and without fully searching the Scriptures for truth.
We hold to the manner of determining the Feasts of Yahweh, by sighting the new moon.
In an article purporting to prove the doctrine of using leavened bread for Passover, a proponent of this doctrine wrote, “There are three verses in the New Testament that describe the bread as consecrated or sacred: Mark 2:26, Luke 6:4, and Hebrew [s] 9:2. In each case, the word used in the Greek Interlinear is showbread.” What the author left out is the fact that this sacred, consecrated bread is UNLEAVENED bread. The Greek word that conveys the concept of this unleavened bread is ... ARTOS!
The author further professed that, “Unleavened bread in the New Testament is also different than the word for bread alone.” This sentence is a picture-perfect example of how one can hide the truth with a true statement. When examined out of context, this statement is in fact correct. However, as the author is using it, to prove that two separate Greek words are used to distinguish between leavened and unleavened bread, it is incorrect! Let me clarify. He neglects to mention that there is no word in the New Testament for a loaf, slice, chunk or a piece of unleavened bread! It simply does not exist. The Greek word translated into the phrase, “unleavened bread” ONLY refers to 1) the FEAST of Unleavened Bread or 2) the quality of Uncorruptedness. The following exposition proves this point.
Artos is the Greek word #740, which means bread. The concordance adds, “also as raised, a loaf, and shewbread.” This is elementary; what type of bread is there other than a raised loaf? Unleavened bread, of course! Artos is THE Greek word for unleavened bread and a raised, leavened loaf.
The Greek word #106, azumos, most often refers to “the Feast of Unleavened Bread,” not a loaf of unleavened bread. Elsewhere in Scripture, it means “Uncorrupted.”
Matthew 26:17, “Now the first [day] of the [feast of] unleavened bread the disciples came to Yahshua, saying unto him, Where wilt thou that we prepare for thee to eat the Passover?” KJV
This verse is incorrectly translated. Most obviously, how can it be the FIRST day of Unleavened Bread, and the disciples are asking Yahshua where to prepare to eat the Passover? Passover occurs on the 14th of Abib and Unleavened Bread begins on the 15th. What is He going to say to them, “Are you so dull, Passover was yesterday!?” No, the correct translation is “BEFORE azumos [the Feast of Unleavened Bread], the disciples came to Yahshua ...” The first use of the Greek word, azumos, means, “The Feast of Unleavened Bread”, not a loaf of unleavened bread.
The second issue is the translation itself, “the Feast of Unleavened Bread.” Here, the Greek is “toon azumoon,” literally translated as, “the unleavened.” The word, “day,” the word, “feast,” and the word, “bread,” do not exist in the Greek. “Feast” and “Bread” are implied. Azumos, by itself, is used to mean “The Feast of Unleavened Bread” – Azumos #106, means unleavened, and, figuratively, means uncorrupted; especially by implication, the Passover week. [Note that the phrase “Passover week,” used in concordant texts, is a Jewish phrase referring to the week of the Feast of Unleavened Bread, not the Scriptural Passover].
This pattern is repeated in the following 6 verses (the phrase, “unleavened bread,” is the English translation of the single word, azumos):
Mark 14:1 “After two days was the feast of the passover, and of unleavened bread: and the chief priests and the scribes sought how they might take him by craft, and put him to death.”
Mark 14:12 “And the first day of unleavened bread, when they killed the passover, his disciples said unto him, Where wilt thou that we go and prepare that thou mayest eat the passover?”
Verse 12 is extremely important when reading Exodus 12:15, which says that leaven must be removed from the home on the “first day of Unleavened Bread.” Notice that the Apostle Mark is saying that the first day of unleavened bread is the day that they killed the Passover. This confusion is part of the legalistic and doctrinal quagmire that existed at the time of Yahshua and is now perpetuated in translations of Scripture, using Jewish precepts to imply what the verse is saying. Yahshua fought against the traditions of man; He celebrated Passover on the correct day, one day before the “Passover, a feast of the Jews,” as described in John 6:4.
Exodus 12:15 “Seven days shall ye eat unleavened bread; even the first day ye shall put away leaven out of your houses: for whosoever eateth leavened bread from the first day until the seventh day, that soul shall be cut off from Israel.”
The words “the first day” is an incorrect translation which should read, “the day before.” Mark’s statement (see Luke 22:7, also, below) about “killing the Passover on the first day of unleavened bread” corroborates that Exodus 12:15 should read, “Seven days shall ye eat unleavened bread; [and on] the day before, ye shall put away leaven out of your houses.”
Those who are teaching new doctrine are accusing the majority of Believers of adhering to Jewish fables by using unleavened bread to honor Yahshua. However, they, themselves, are following Jewish tradition by declaring that leaven is removed ON the first High Sabbath of the Feast of Unleavened Bread. The one day of Passover plus the 7 days of the Feast of Unleavened Bread make an 8-day Feast, so Scripture says. However, Judaism has abandoned the memorial day of Passover (because it points to Yahshua the Messiah!), and instead has a 7-day Feast of “Passover.” When read in the context of the traditions of Judaism, THE FIRST DAY OF THE “FEAST” ... IS PASSOVER! That’s when leaven is to be removed, on the day before the first High Sabbath of the Feast of Unleavened Bread.
Luke 22:1 “Now the feast of unleavened bread drew nigh, which is called the Passover.” [This is more evidence of that quagmire, both then and now].
Luke 22:7 “Then came the day of unleavened bread, when the passover must be killed.”
This is amazing! Here, the translators seem to be pointing to the single day of Passover, but they are calling it “unleavened bread.” Who do you suppose the Greek translators went to in order to interpret the Hebrew writings of the New Testament? They must have gone to Jews – but, remember, the Jews (then and now) followed the dictates of the “oral tradition” which abandoned the true Passover of Yahweh. Are you beginning to see the confusion here, and the ability of false teachers to mislead Believers?
Acts 12:3 “And because he saw it pleased the Jews, he proceeded further to take Peter also. Then were the days of unleavened bread.”
Wow! Notice the phrase, “He saw it pleased the Jews?” What Jews was “he” trying to please? If you read the two verses preceding this, you will discover that King Herod pleased the Jews by killing James, and therefore acted to do the same to Peter. Here is an amazing thing; while imprisoned, Peter was set free by none other than “the Angel of Yahweh!” Yahshua came down from heaven to rescue him. I am certain that the timing was not coincidental. The members of the Sanhedrin were feeling the threat of followers of Yahshua disrupting the celebration of “Passover.” They did to the disciples what they did to Yahshua; they got Rome to do their murdering for them. This fear of the Believers in Yahshua persists to this day among the adherents of Judaism.
Acts 20:6 “And we sailed away from Philippi after the days of unleavened bread, and came unto them to Troas in five days; where we abode seven days.”
In the above 7 verses, the words, “day (or days) of unleavened bread,” are ALL translations of the word, azumos. Azumos means “the Feast of Unleavened Bread,” and does not refer to a loaf of unleavened bread at all.
Azumos is used in two other places in the New Testament.
1 Corinthians 5:8 “Therefore let us keep the feast [hoertzomen], not with old leaven [“ferment, as if boiling;” in other words, “not with old anger and hostility”], neither with the leaven of malice and wickedness; but with the unleavened bread [azúmois, uncorruptedness] of sincerity and truth.” The verse should be read, “Let us keep the Feast ... with the UNCORRUPTEDNESS of sincerity and truth.” It is therefore NOT referring to bread at all. In fact, the word “bread” is added to the translation! It’s not there in the Greek!
The previous verse, 1 Corinthians 5:7, therefore reads, “Clean out the old leaven so that you may be a new lump, just as you are, in fact, unleavened. ... JUST AS YOU ARE ... UNCORRUPTED [and to VALIDATE this statement, Paul adds]: For the Messiah our Passover also has been sacrificed.”
Shema! Hear oh Israel! There is NO Greek word for a loaf of unleavened bread! The Greeks had ONE word which was used for either leavened or unleavened bread, and that word is artos. Here is more evidence of this truth:
Matthew 12:3-4 “But He said to them, ‘Have you not read what David did when he was hungry, he and those who were with him: how he entered the house of Yahweh and ate the showbread [ártous teés prothéseoos – “bread of the Presence (of Yahweh)”] which was not lawful for him to eat, nor for those who were with him, but only for the priests?’”
Showbread is unleavened bread. ARTOS is used to denote unleavened bread in this verse and three others.
Luke 6:4 “How he went into the house of Yahweh, and did take and eat the showbread [ártous teés prothéseoos], and gave also to them that were with him; which it is not lawful to eat but for the priests alone?”
The word showbread is translated from the Greek words, artos and prothesis. Prothesis specifically demonstrates the concept “exposed” in the phrase “the show-bread in the Temple as exposed before Elohim.” Again, artos, the part of this phrase meaning “bread” is unleavened.
Hebrews 9:2 “For there was a tabernacle made; the first, wherein was the menora, and the table, and the showbread; which is called the sanctuary.”
Showbread is, again, ártous teés prothéseoos.
Mark 2:26 “How he went into the house of Yahweh in the days of Abiathar the high priest, and did eat the showbread, which is not lawful to eat but for the priests, and gave also to them which were with him?”
Showbread, here, is indicated by the single word, artos – it is found by ITSELF – without the use of any modifiers to denote what it means! “Certainly, the Greek translators knew what they were doing!”
Leviticus 24:5-6 “Then you shall take fine flour and bake twelve cakes with it; two- tenths of an ephah shall be in each cake. You shall set them in two rows, six to a row, on the pure gold table before Yahweh.”
The showbread offering had to be pure. Were the Israelites pure? No. Then just WHO are those being pointed to as the unleavened bread in the presence of Yahweh? The answer is awesome!
Malachi 1:11 “‘For from the rising of the sun even to its setting, My name will be great among the nations, and in every place incense is going to be offered to My name, and a grain offering that is pure; for My name WILL BE great among the nations,’ says Yahweh of hosts.”
The word “nations” is the Hebrew word goyim. Yahweh’s name will be great among the nations, OTHER than the original Israelites! If anything, Yahweh is teaching us here that the unleavened bread of the Table of the Presence represents the future chosen generations among the gentiles. Brethren! We who have been cleansed by the blood of Yahshua, the Firstfruits – not the Israelites of old – are the unleavened bread on the Table of the Presence of Yahweh! If my assertion is correct, then those who make the argument, “The Unleavened Bread of Presence of Yahweh demonstrates an absence of the Spirit of Yahweh, and leaven therefore represents the Spirit of Yahweh,” are wrong!
SHEWBREAD (from Fausset's Bible Dictionary, unedited) “The table is described as ‘pure’ (Lev 24:6), both because of its unalloyed gold and because of the ‘pure offering’ on it (Mal 1:11). The table stood in the holy place on the N. side (Ex 26:35). The 12 cakes of unleavened bread, arranged in two piles, with a golden cup of frankincense on each (Josephus Ant. 3:10, section 7), were renewed every sabbath, and the stale loaves given to the priests. They represented the 12 tribes before Jehovah perpetually, (see Rev 21:12) in token that He was always graciously accepting His people and their good works, for whom atonement had been made by the victims on the altar outside.”
Yahshua made the atonement for us of the New Covenant. We are the unleavened bread set before Yahweh Almighty. That is, if we remain faithful to His Word.
May we continue to worship Yahweh in the name of Yahshua, in Spirit and Truth. Praise Yahweh!
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