We had five questions on our Passover Poll and you can see the Numerical Results here:
http://survey.constantcontact.com/survey/a07e75xsvquhe1hu56y/results

Here, we offer an Overview including our personal comments on the Comments Section, and at the end of this page, we have listed your Comments as they appeared in the Poll.

Question Number 1:
Many Believers have quit Easter celebrations and now INSTEAD celebrate Passover, but they do not keep a separate celebration of the Messiah’s Resurrection. Do you agree?

We received some interesting Comments on this question:

  • Death must be followed by Life.
  • To refuse to celebrate the resurrection is to miss the whole meaning of Passover today.
  • I believe more emphasis has been given to the Passover, yes and so the Resurrection has been overshadowed; it is acknowledged but not celebrated as such.
  • We also observe the 7 days of Matzah as well as First of Firstfruits (as His resurrection day).
  • We need to reject the syncretism of Easter, but it is a joy to celebrate the Resurrection of Yahshua who IS the First Fruits. The feasts of the Lord provide a way to celebrate the fulfillment of both His death and resurrection.
  • One of the reasons for this…is that they are sometimes being taught to keep the biblical feasts by Messianic Jewish believers who themselves do not celebrate Messiah’s Resurrection… They seem not to want to associate with Easter Sunday, just as I do not wish to do now BUT our Messiah’s great resurrection from the dead on the first day of the week is so important to remember and be thankful for, just as much as is His death on the tree.

 

Question Number 2:
Do you celebrate Passover?

Almost 94% of you said you now celebrate Passover. It is usually the first Feast that non-Jews become acquainted with, and the following comment gives an indication of what happily follows having them learn about that celebration:

  • I am blessed to understand now that I should keep Passover and all our Abba’s Feasts….

 

Question Number 3:
Have you ever celebrated the “Day of the Wave Sheaf” (the First of Firstfruits)?

With this question, we offered an “Other” selection, two statements were:

  • Again, it depends on the definition of “celebrate.”
  • Not “celebrated” but acknowledged.

 

A few of the Comments on the Question were:

  • I never realized what this actually represented. I am becoming quite excited to continue learning…I can’t get enough.
  • It is hard to separate it from the pagan easter day…don’t want family to think we agree with their way of celebrating.
  • ….His Resurrection is just as crucial to understand and celebrate as is His death.

 

In our opinion, these comments indicate that interest in learning about the Day of the Wave Sheaf is growing and its potential is exciting people, because they realize the importance that Messiah’s Resurrection plays in our life. But, there is some concern about separating it from “the pagan easter day” and possibly having family think we “agree” with their ways.
To address this problem, we suggest that we try to find points of agreement with those whom we want to communicate. To do this, we can tell those who celebrate Easter that we too, celebrate Messiah’s Resurrection, but, we do it on the Day of the Wave Sheaf. This non-confrontational statement should lead people to ask, “What is the Day of the Wave Sheaf?” With that, you have an opportunity to explain the Resurrection from a Scriptural standpoint. We suggest this method because, the way a bank trains a teller, is to have them study “real money,” and not counterfeit money. If we can gently show people the real thing, the Holy Spirit can then gently help them to identify anything that is counterfeit in their lives.

 

Question Number 4:
Do you think it is important for Believers to remember the “Resurrection” on the Day of the Wave Sheaf (Day of the First of Firstfruits)?

An overwhelming 92.5% of you voted “yes” on this question and your Comments were positive. Some, not being able to find Messianics to celebrate with, go to Church on Easter so they can experience some of the joy of the Resurrection. This fact should tell us that Messianics need to learn to honor this important day:

  • I think this is one of the most important festivals, if not THE MOST because if He hadn’t risen, none of the other festivals would mean very much.
  • I believe all believers are meant to celebrate and be grateful for Yeshua’s Resurrection – no ifs or buts!!
  • Most definitely!
  • I miss this terribly! I have even gone back to the church on Resurrection Sunday just to be able to celebrate the glorious Gospel!

 

Question Number 5:
Do you think Believers need more Scriptural teaching about the Day of the Wave Sheaf (Day of the First of Firstfruits)?

Again, an overwhelming number voted “yes” on this question too. One lady asked that our teachings be kept “simple,” which is a reasonable request—except for the fact that the timing of Messiah’s Death and Resurrection is a hotly debated and complicated subject. And, many are dead set against anything that has to do with “Ishtar/Easter.” As we address the subject of Firstfruits, we will have to deal with the issue of Easter. We tried to give a simple overview of the problem so we can understand what we are facing in this hour. We also offered some celebration suggestions taken from Batya’s Feast book. See the Herald Newsletter titled, “Passover -The Day of The Wave Sheaf – and Our Liberation!”
http://www.redeemedisrael.com/category/the-herald/
The following comments give us an idea of how people feel about this subject and more teaching on it:

  • My very favorite Torah Teachers would be horrified to hear that I take my family to a “sunrise” service. Facing Jerusalem (east), and feeling the brightness of His rising on my face… SURELY He wants His bride to eagerly anticipate His return and celebrate His mighty victory!
  • The Festival of First Fruits, tucked on the “morrow after the Shabbat” after Passover… is biblical and delicious to the soul. It would be LOVELY to have teachings on how I can bring my American First Fruits to my King.
  • Absolutely!! There is not too many that understand the WHOLE Meaning concerning The Wave Sheaf!
  • Believers need a lot of teaching on a lot of subjects that have been throw when they leave Christianity to get in the messy antics movement….
  • It would be nice to have more teachings…Please make your explanation simple….
  • The fact that Yeshua is the firstfruits of the Resurrection should make this teaching crucial to all of us. Also, Paul states that the most important aspect of the gospel is that Yeshua died for our sins, he was buried and he rose on the third day….
  • Coming from Mainstream Christianity to Messianic life, there is much taught but many important truths are not taught or if so not very well. It takes time an a continual seeking of the Holy Spirit for divine direction.
  • I think we need to be reminded as your article has just done that celebrating that DAY is foundational to our beliefs and salvation. We also need a practical way to demonstrate our celebration…that is the biggest problem…
  • Very much, so that they can see and understand how it teaches us about His glorious resurrection. What a great blessing to know that because of His obedience to His Abba (and ours), we too will rise from the dead one day – HalleluYah and thank you, Yeshua.
  • I once had a pastor indicate that some friends of his had celebrated Passover with a Messianic couple, and these friends couldn’t understand where the celebration of the Resurrection had gone. Why, the pastor wondered in turn, was only the death of Yeshua commemorated? He didn’t understand the ordering and separateness of the Spring festivals, so I tried to explain to him that the Resurrection is commemorated by an entirely different Holiday altogether.

 

We close with a prayer that we might be led by the Holy Spirit, the Ruach HaKodesh, as we seek to honor this all but forgotten Feast Day in a way that brings glory to our Messiah and encourages His  people in a knowledge of His great love for us!
Amen and Amen.

 

Comments on Question #1:

  • This will be my first time.
  • We are not required to celebrate the resurrection. However, since it coincides with the First Fruits of the Barley Harvest (a day we are also not required to celebrate), and the first day of the 50 day count (a day we are also not required to celebrate), there is LOTS to celebrate if we choose to!
  • The Resurrection celebration is WORTHY of celebrating! What a fantastic Victory over sin and death!! What an incredible HOPE to celebrate!
  • We celebrate both at Fellowship of Messiah in Loveland, CO.
  • But it has been more difficult to find a place in the customs or traditions while swinging.
  • I celebrate his resurrection!
  • I think it all depends on the definition of “celebrate”. Considering that First Fruits is a working feast day, there are limitations as to how much can be done to gather as a congregation, as well as to what is expected and required of us by the Father. I acknowledge First Fruits in my heart and give thanks to Abba on that day. But perhaps more is needed to quantify “celebration”. I think requirements and expectations for this Feast need to be further examined.
  • To keep Pesach, absolutely! But how many truly understand what Yahushua did for all of us? If He had not come, taken the penalty and died, Yisrael would not have any way to come back and be married again, because of committing adultery against her husband. There has to be the death of the husband before the woman can be married again. Yahushua paid for the sin of adultery(beating and stoning) and then died. That is the only way Yisrael could have a chance. Yahushua loved His Betrothed so much!
  • From my understanding, Pesach is the meal (on the 14th) before the Feast of unleavened bread which begins on the 15th. For 7 days, we eat unleavened bread (matzah). Then, on the first day after the weekly Shabbat we celebrate Firstfruits.
  • If believers keep the 1st Day of the Days of Unleavened Bread, In the way that they should, then they would gather for teaching on that day. They would not be at work and they could learn about the resurrection. Their are few Messianic groups that I know of that meets on the 1st Day of unleavened Bread for teaching. Maybe this is what need to be taught.
  • We should celebrate First Fruits as a Torah command first and then apply its fulfillment to the Resurrection of Yeshua.
  • At our Passover we always remember His Death, Burial and Resurrection.
  • I celebrate Passover instead of the pagan day. But, I attend a church to celebrate the resurrection on the first day of the week. Shavaout, also on the first day of the week.
  • So much of my understanding of the Messianic faith has come from Gates of Eden. They celebrated Passover but not Easter. It was hard for me to stop celebrating Easter cause I always celebrated it as the resurrection of Christ. His birthday. I didn’t even know anything about the bad parts of Easter. We- (ARI) and I think so much alike. Jesus saved us from our sins through death and rose to gather us unto himself. His death and resurrection should both be celebrated and remembered.
  • Passover AND Firstfruits. Once again we must embrace a ‘both/and’ mindset and let go of the ‘either/or’ that has been so ingrained in us. Besides, had Messiah not been raised what purpose would His death have served?
  • To refuse to celebrate the resurrection is to miss the whole meaning of Passover today.
  • I believe more emphasis has been given to the Passover, yes and so the Resurrection has been overshadowed; it is acknowleged but not celebrated as such.
  • We also observe the 7 days of Matzah as well as First of Firstfruits (as His resurrection day).
  • We need to reject the syncretism of Easter, but it is a joy to celebrate the Resurrection of Yahshua who IS the First Fruits. The feasts of the Lord provide a way to celebrate the fulfillment of both His death and resurrection.
  • This is true. I don’t know why I never thought about this. I’d love to find in Scriptures where and how they celebrated the Resurrection…..both in the Torah and the Brit Hadashah.
  • I believe this is due to “lack of knowledge.”
  • One of the reasons for this I believe is that they are sometimes being taught to keep the biblical feasts by Messianic Jewish believers who themselves do not celebrate Messiah’s Resurrection; I experienced this once. They seem not to want to associate with Easter Sunday, just as I do not wish to do now BUT our Messiah’s great resurrection from the dead on the first day of the week, is so important to remember and be thankful for, just as much as is His death on the tree.
  • Death must be followed by Life.

 

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Comments on Question #2:

  • First time.
  • Every year we host a large Seder riveting our eyes on Yeshuah our Messiah. The parallels in the Exodus story are astonishing, and we use the Seder as an opportunity to explain to our Christian friends Yeshuah’s beautiful fulfillment of Torah.
  • We are all practicing! 🙂
  • Absolutely and with a lamb without any blemishes and no broken bones with Unleavened Lechem!
  • We try to eat a celebratory meal with our fellow believers on the 14th before sundown and on into the 15th day. Then, we observe the Feast of Unleavened Bread for 7 days.
  • This will be my first year to celebrate it.
  • Don’t have a Messianic church family-attend SDA church and they do teach Messiah’s death and resurrection.
  • We have a Seder and observe Unleavened Bread for the seven days. johnjoiecn@aol.com
  • Yes, for 21 years.
  • I am only now being brought into a deeper knowledge of all of this, greatly through your instruction.
  • I am blessed to understand now that I should keep Passover and all our Abba’s Feasts. I try to keep them as much like Yeshua would have done in what is in the scriptures and not incorporating any ‘teachings of men’ which have been added on over the years since He was on earth.

 

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Comments on Question # 3:

  • First time.
  • We are super non-traditional. We do go to a sunrise service, following Mary’s example of going to the garden in search of the King. How beautiful to watch the SON-rise and imagine that day of inexpressible JOY. The Lord has RISEN, He has RISEN INDEED!!! Then we go home and have unleavened crepes filled to bursting with the FIRST FRUITS of the season: blueberries, strawberries… smothered in whipped cream and powdered sugar! A SWEET celebration of the First of the Harvest, VICTORIOUS Y’SHUA!
  • I don’t really understand it. I have no congregation to celebrate with.
  • In 1997 Abba Yahuah taught my husband what The Wave Sheaf was all about! The Wave Sheaf are the ones that were chosen to be resurrected after Yahushua’s Resurrection. He took them with Him and presented them to Abba Yahuah. Yahushua could not appear before Abba empty handed. The “Day of the Wave Sheaf”is an Ascension Day or the first part of the First Resurrection. When “we” are changed, caught-up, judged and found worthy, receive our bodies, Wave Sheaf with “us” will be First Resurrection.
  • This will be my first year to celebrate it.
  • Every Year for the last 20.
  • Too new, don’t really have a clue how…
  • We celebrate it as the day of Resurrection.
  • I have always celebrated in respect of my understanding it as the Resurrection; it is only since I came into the Messianic understanding, I learned the names ‘Wave Sheaf’ and ‘Firstfruit’.
  • We always celebrate it. Haven’t celebrated “Easter” in a long time.
  • Again, I don’t know anyone who celebrates this Feast of the Lord. I’d love to find it mentioned about how they celebrated the “Day of the Wave Sheaf”.
  • I never realized what this actually represented. I am becoming quite excited to continue learning…I can’t get enough.
  • It is hard to separate it from the pagan easter day…don’t want family to think we agree with their way of celebrating.
  • I have celebrated this Feast our Messiah being the first fruits from the dead. His Resurrection is just as crucial to understand and celebrate as is His death.

 

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Comments on Question # 4:

  • Sure it is the most important thing, as He did all the work for us to be saved . Jesus is the first fruit after all.
  • Obviously, this is not a fertility-thing!!! I find SOOO many Messianics losing their JOY and forgetting their First Love. Cultivating passion for the Groom… is desperately important!
  • Crushing Love, Joy, Peace, Patience, Kindness, Gentleness…. is NO WAY to reach our Christian brothers and sisters. Embrace them, and find common ground… Then, make them jealous of our JOY! L’chaim!!!
  • Absolutely!! Yisrael needs to understand who and what “The Wave Sheaf” really is all about!
  • Yashusa raised on Sabbath between the evenings. not on Sunday morning.We have to be so careful not to let the celebration of the wave sheaf turn into a wrong service.
  • Christians should not be one up on us and if it falls on Easter, so what. Yah’s holy day trumps the pagan counterfeit every time.
  • I guess I never separated them out….I know Passover is all about His Death , Burial and resurrection…how can you separate them…?
  • Because it is listed as one of the three feast days we are going to celebrate in heaven I think it is a good idea that we have some understanding of it and practice it here on earth.
  • I think it is important to remember the Resurrection, but I am way too new to know when or how. Yeshua is the only one who was raised from the dead, not Mohammad or Tammuz or any other false god. I do not and will not ever do either Christmas or Easter any more. I learned the pagan roots of these days, long before I started to realize I need to be Torah observant.
  • I think this is one of the most important festivals, if not THE MOST because if He hadn’t risen, none of the other festivals would mean very much.
  • I believe all believers are meant to celebrate and be grateful for Yeshua’s Resurrection – no ifs or buts!!
  • Most definitely!
  • I miss this terribly! I have even gone back to the church on Resurrection Sunday just to be able to celebrate the glorious Gospel!

 

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Comments on Question # 5:

  • Just need to be well familiar with the details.
  • My very favorite Torah Teachers would be horrified to hear that I take my family to a “sunrise” service. Facing Jerusalem (east), and feeling the brightness of His rising on my face… SURELY He wants His bride to eagerly anticipate His return and celebrate His mighty victory!
  • The Festival of First Fruits, tucked on the “morrow after the Shabbat” after Passover… is biblical and delicious to the soul. It would be LOVELY to have teachings on how I can bring my American First Fruits to my King.
  • Absolutely!! There is not too many that understand the WHOLE Meaning concerning The Wave Sheaf!
  • We can always use more.
  • Believers need a lot of teaching on a lot of subjects that have been throw when they leave Christianity to get in the messy antics movement. The most important one is the Baptism of Fire in the HOLY SPIRIT.
  • It would be nice to have more teachings and please allow me to say without hurting anyone’s feelings- I am most grateful that you care enough to make the effort to teach through your writings—Please make your explanation simple and easy to read. Quite honestly, I really tried reading your original teachings per email and quit-i would get confused and lost in the transitions and truth be told I fell asleep. I pray I did not hurt anyone’s feelings writing this.
  • The fact that Yeshua is the firstfruits of the Resurrection should make this teaching crucial to all of us. Also, Paul states that the most important aspect of the gospel is that Yeshua died for our sins, he was buried and he rose on the third day. I would agree with Paul.
  • Coming frm Mainstream Christianity to Messianic life, there is much taught but many important truths are not taught or if so not very well. It takes time an a continual seeking of the Holy Spirit for divine direction. Shabbat shalom.
  • Yes, especially since we ARE the wave sheaf firstfruits.
  • I think we need to be reminded as your article has just done that celebrating that DAY is foundational to our beliefs and salvation. We also need a practical way to demonstrate our celebration…that is the biggest problem…
  • Very much, so that they can see and understand how it teaches us about His glorious resurrection. What a great blessing to know that because of His obedience to His Abba (and ours), we too will rise from the dead one day – HalleluYah and thank you, Yeshua.
  • I once had a pastor indicate that some friends of his had celebrated Passover with a Messianic couple, and these friends couldn’t understand where the celebration of the Resurrection had gone. Why, the pastor wondered in turn, was only the death of Yeshua commemorated? He didn’t understand the ordering and separateness of the Spring festivals, so I tried to explain to him that the Resurrection is commemorated by an entirely different Holiday altogether.
  • Thank you very much for this.