BLESSINGS TO THOSE RECEIVING THE JOY OF SHAVUOT/PENTECOST,
I hope that you’ve been having a fulfilling week so far! This may sound like an unusual question, but are you a fan of cheesecake?
Let me explain. This evening, we begin celebrating Shavuot here in Israel. It has become a tradition in Israel to celebrate this holiday by eating vast amounts of dairy products, but especially cheesecake! And don’t worry – the broad cuisine of this land offers plenty of options.
On Shavuot, Jewish people celebrate receiving God’s commandments at Mount Sinai. Ron, did you know that you, and other believers around the world, recognize this same holiday?
Millenia after the events at Sinai, Acts 2 tells us that the Jewish people were gathered in Jerusalem for “the Feast of Pentecost.” Now you might be thinking… Wait, is Pentecost Jewish? YES! You can read more about Shavuot and Pentecost here: https://firmisrael.org/learn/shavuot-pentecost-tongues-fire-70-languages/As Christians, we usually celebrate the outpouring of the Holy Spirit on the believers gathered in Jerusalem that day. Tongues of fire, rushing wind and speaking in many languages – certainly a memorable event, probably the first of its kind, but maybe not?
You might be as surprised to hear this as I was: some rabbinic commentaries and writings on the events that took place at Mount Sinai sound similar to those describing the outpouring of the Holy Spirit!
One commentary quotes a prolific rabbi saying that, as God was speaking, His voice split into 70 languages so that the nations could understand. It’s worth noting that the number 70 in Scriptures is usually associated with “the nations”.
Ron whether you prefer to call it Shavuot or Pentecost, I want to invite you to reflect on the first Shavuot, when God revealed Himself to the Israelites at Mount Sinai, and the much later Shavuot when God equipped 120 disciples to speak the Gospel to the nations.
There is so much to celebrate—with or without cheesecake!
Would you join us in prayer for:
- The Jewish people to see that the Law is not enough, even as they celebrate receiving it
- The Holy Spirit to equip believers to bring the message of the Gospel to more people in Israel in an effective way
- An outpouring of the Holy Spirit on people everywhere (as described in Joel 2:28), especially as an Isaiah 62 fast for Israel concludes this SundayUntil All Israel Believes,
P.S. If you want to watch a 2-hour Isaiah 62 Fast culmination event I'm hosting in Jerusalem on Shavuot, wait to click this link on May 28, this Sunday at 12:30pm PST, 3:30pm EST, 8:30pm UK, 10:30pm Israel time! And in the meantime, you can read our article.