The Feast of Weeks or Pentecost of the 36th year of the 120th Jubilee.

This Sabbath is the 49th day of the Omer Count and commences the Feast of Weeks, which is the two-day festival that completes the fifty days of the movement from Egypt counted from the Wave Sheaf to the end of seven perfect Sabbaths of 49 days and the Fiftieth Day of the Omer Count which is the Holy Day called Pentecost. This message follows the draft of a previous Pentecost message and is relevant to all Pentecost feasts. This is a Feast and none of us are to go empty-handed.  We are to take our offerings with us.

It is important that we look back on the original Pentecost at Sinai. God used Israel as an example when He brought them out of Egypt. Each section of the journey was symbolic. God dealt with the gods of Egypt in the move to Sinai. Also in that period He dealt with the people who murmured and who attacked the Faith and the work of God (see the paper Moses and the Gods of Egypt (No 105)).

Many people do not understand what happened at Sinai, and many people think that God gave the Law to Moses at Pentecost. God sent Christ to bring Israel out of Egypt using Moses, and at Sinai by progressive revelation, Christ revealed the Laws of God to Moses as he had given them to Adam and the Patriarchs Noah, Abraham, Isaac and Jacob (see the papers Pentecost at Sinai (No. 115) and also The Ascents of Moses (No 70)).

Pentecost at 30 CE is the time when the Holy Spirit was given to the Church, and from that time onwards it was used to perfect the Church. Until that time only selected prophets and judges were given the Holy Spirit. Salvation was not open to everyone and the priesthood had been confined to the Levites, and particularly the sons of Aaron from the structure of the Tribes under the Law as given to Moses within the ordinances. Up until Abraham the priesthood was vested in the order of Melchisedek, and that order was to be reinstituted from Christ as its High Priest, and Levi, who had tithed to Melchisedek in the loins of Abraham, was made subordinate to him.

This order was made open to the Gentiles, and the OT makes it abundantly clear that Salvation was to be extended to the Gentiles through the Messiah.  Jacob made it plain to Joseph that in Ephraim would come the fullness of the Gentiles and that would make Ephraim the great company of nations that it was to become.

This fact of the salvation of the Gentiles was cleared up and made evident to Peter, who was an apostle to the Dispersion, in Acts 10 and Acts 11.

Peter travelled extensively from Antioch and went to the Israelites of the Tribes scattered abroad through what is now Armenia and Georgia, in what was then Parthia and Asia Minor. These aspects are examined in the papers Origin of the Christian Church in Britain (No. 266) and Descendents of Abraham Part VI: Israel (No. 212F)).

It is true that the Church writers recorded him as going to Italy, but not specifically Rome. That claim was only made much later to back up the Roman claims to supremacy. Look also at the paper The Fate of the Twelve Apostles (No. 122B)for Hippolytus’ record of what happened to the Apostles and the rest of the Seventy. He is clear that the First Bishop of Rome was Linus taken from among the Seventy. Paul mentions him also in his epistles concerning them. Hippolytus was labelled an Antipope by the later Catholics but he was never Bishop of Rome and never claimed to be.  He was bishop of Ostia Attica which was the port city of Rome with its own diocese.  He constantly denounced the bishops of Rome for their immoral and unchristian doctrines and behaviour. He was trained by the Smyrna group and served under Irenaeus as assistant bishop until appointed bishop of Ostia Attica.

The Seventy did a great job in spreading the Faith and many died for the Faith. Many were attacked and slandered for the Faith but they gave an account of themselves and they worked ceaselessly for the Faith until they died or were killed. God allows some people to suffer for the Faith. Christ said that John came neither eating nor drinking and they said he had a devil. The Son of man came eating and drinking and they said he was a glutton and a winebibber and friend of publicans and sinners. But wisdom is justified of her children (Mat. 11:18-19). Beware when people speak well of you for so they did also of the false prophets.

This period up until Pentecost is the period for repentance and conversion of the mind. We should all be given the opportunity to repent and we should also give others the opportunity for repentance. God has designed the system that way. Hatred has no place in the Kingdom of God and those that allow it to eat at them will not grow. In the same way self-righteousness is an insidious disease that eats at the Spirit and is a Spirit of accusation.

Satan is the accuser of the brethren and those that accuse are of his spirit.

It is written, a false witness shall not go unpunished. In the same way God is patient with us and He hears and is slow to anger and is not a respecter of persons. Each of us should be concerned with how we stand with God and not how we stand with men. We all sin and that is the purpose of the Passover. So also in Unleavened Bread we proceed to prepare for the General Harvest of the First Resurrection that is symbolised by Pentecost.

From this period we should correct error and prepare ourselves for the Feast of Trumpets. The sequence is outlined in The Ascents of Moses (No. 70) and there are many lessons for us all.
In our process of forgiveness it must be remembered that it is always conditional to repentance. We ask God to forgive us as we forgive those who trespass against us. So we should. There is no limit to the requirement for forgiveness. Stephen said, “Father forgive them for they know not what they do”. But there are specific steps to be followed and God expects us to deal with each other justly. Justice is righteousness. There is only one word for both in Hebrew.

When we are members of the Body of Christ we support those in the Body and we do not take offence at our brothers and we serve with them and for them. He who would be leader must be servant of all.

The peace that we enjoy with each other in the service of God is a measure of the Spirit working with us. It has been a pleasure to see the work and productivity that all of you have achieved over the last few years and you have every reason to be proud of what you have done in the spirit of peace and harmony that is the hallmark of the Holy Spirit among us (see the paper Fruit of the Holy Spirit (No. 146)).

I have noticed over many years that this paper on the Fruit of the Holy Spirit is one of the most highly accessed papers in Spanish. The Spanish-speaking Bible students value that aspect of the Faith highly, and so they should.

As we love one another we show that we love God.

There are two aspects of the Faith in the Two Great Commandments and on these Two Great Commandments hang all the Law and the prophets. By this you shall know the Children of God for the elect are those that Keep the Commandments of God and the Faith or Testimony of Jesus Christ (Rev. 12:17; 14:12) (see the papers on The Law Series (L1) and also the paper The Elect as Elohim (No. 1)).

Correct your views and your ways and repent in the love of God.

It is at this time that we come to contemplate our progress in the Faith.

The Leaven of Pentecost in the loaves is representative of the Holy Spirit within us, and of our growth over the years in the Holy Spirit. If we esteem others better than ourselves we can grow in favour and grace in the eyes of God.

The person justified before God is not the one that points the finger and accuses but rather the one that beats his chest and says, “God have mercy upon me a miserable sinner”. That man is justified before the self-righteous.

Our job at the Passover was to humble ourselves and be reconciled to our brothers. From there at the Wave Sheaf we were to count fifty of the Omer count and come to Pentecost so that the Law of God could be written in our hearts through the Holy Spirit. 

May God bless and keep us all this Pentecost. May He lift up the light of His countenance upon us and give us peace.

Wade Cox
Coordinator General