Is Our Heavenly Father "SPIRITUALLY CHALLENGED"?
It seems almost sacrilege to pose the question, doesn't it? But I would like to suggest that those among us who still hold a brief for Christmas, New Year's Day, and Easter observance do more than pose the question... they answer it — in the affirmative!
Consider for a minute; Christmas, New Year's Day, and Easter practitioners among us are literally and really presenting to us a Heavenly Father who can't seem to do better than to recycle a pagan/papal calendar and pagan holidays (holy days) to create teaching tools that might help His earthly children to understand eternal Heavenly truths. It's ridiculous just to think about it: our Heavenly Father Yahuah, the Almighty Sovereign of all, Master of every principality and power, ultimate Source and Origin for everything and everyone, Giver of every good and perfect gift, dwelling in glory unapproachable, knowing the end from the beginning, orchestrating the movement and interactions of suns, moons, galaxies, meteors, comets, asteroids, planets, novas, supernovas, etc., the Almighty in Whom is no darkness at all, the One Who is declared to be without variableness or shadow of turning, the One Who changes not, the One Who through His Son commanded us not to touch the unclean thing, not to use profane or strange fire in place of sacred fire, not to worship the Almighty in the way the heathen worship their deities, not to add or take away from what is written in the Torah, but rather to teach all or even the very least commandments of Torah, to buy gold tried in the fire (i.e. tested for purity), and not to mix the fibers of our garments............
caught a bit flat-footed, somewhat off guard, if you please, by the events of Calvary, and subsequently forced to abandon His own personal calendar and program of Holy Days and borrow heavily from the pagans in order to develop a viable worship program and lifestyle. Unthinkable! Ludicrous! Absurdity bordering on insanity! And, thankfully, totally different from scripturally-portrayed reality.
Inspiration sheds the following light on the situation:
1) The plan of salvation was worked out by Elohim before the foundation of the world.
2) The worship program given Israel at Sinai contained specific guidelines for worship and sacred service, the times given corresponding exactly to the times in the future when the actual events illustrated by the services of these special times would take place. Hence, these special appointed times are really "anniversaries ahead of time," or prophecies, which continually remind the true worshiper of what is in store for him in the future.
3) When the Messiah arrived and began His ministry, one of the first things he did was to make perfectly clear (in Matthew 5:17, 18) that His mission would not destroy a jot or a tittle of the Law of Moses (the "Torah"), which clearly defines these special appointed times for worship.
4) The first of these appointed times was Passover, which portrayed the sacrifice of the Son of Yahuah to provide a ransom for sinful, or iniquitous, or lawless mankind.
5) The Messiah laid down His life for the fallen race on that awesome Passover which capped off His 3 1/2 year ministry at His First Advent, and the events of the day corresponded exactly to the services which had prefigured them for hundreds or even thousands of years. The Chosen People acted their part right on cue, and the blood and water that were required for all subsequent service in the Heavenly Sanctuary were provided.
6) This momentous Passover fulfillment BEGAN the progression of appointed time fulfillments which will continue until ultimate Feast of Tabernacles fulfillment, when Deity finally and fully tabernacles, or dwells, with mankind. Far from nullifying or obsoleting Heaven's system of appointed times for worship, Passover provided the divine blood and water for service in the Heavenly Sanctuary that would make further appointed time/prophetic sabbath fulfillments possible!
The final battle is being fought on several different fronts simultaneously, with Lucifer going about as a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour. As one might expect from the "father of lies." he has several different grades or qualities of deception suited for different target markets. One of his Grade B deceptions, adequate for most casual students of Scripture, informs us that while the moral Law of the Almighty is eternal, the little detail in the fourth commandment that specifies only the seventh day for rest and worship, is "Jewish" and "ceremonial," and, like the rest of the "Jewish" and "ceremonial" law and the "Jewish" and "ceremonial" sabbaths, has been "nailed to the cross." This frees us, then, from the "burden" of the "ceremonial" law that was "against us," but also leaves us with a dearth of guidance for weekly and annual holiday observance. Enter, the devil's religious "green party," with great experience and sophistication in recycling pagan worship institutions (i.e. thinking to change times - the feast days - and laws, in the words of Daniel the prophet). A complete program of worship is provided, and the casual student is satisfied.
For the more diligent student, however, something more is needed - a real Grade A deception! Here we find a finely developed theology of the weekly Sabbath, PROVING that both the rest and the timing for that rest are still positive requirements of the Almighty Yahuah... combined with an equally finely developed theology (based on misinterpretation and mistranslation of key passages in the writings of Paul), "PROVING" ... that the annual sabbaths were "burdensome" and "against us," and were mercifully eliminated from the program of True Worship by a Heavenly Father who didn't want His children to get too bogged down in the details of the Plan of Salvation... Truly, a deception for the very elect, masterminded by the "father of lies" who fears nothing more than the outpouring of the Holy Spirit, and who knows that Heaven is waiting to pour out the Holy Spirit on those who will obey Torah instruction (Acts 5:32), including those statutes which call us to observe the annual sabbaths/festivals! And please understand that I am not talking about righteousness by works: the outpouring of the Holy Spirit here referred to is power transmission, not power generation!
Every annual sabbath observed is a renewed vote of confidence in the ability of the Heavenly Government to make good on its promise to restore to mankind the first dominion, PARADISE LOST. "Yahuah is not mocked, for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap." "Our Father which art in Heaven, hallowed be Thy name. Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done on earth, as it is heaven..."