26 May 2012


Today is the last day of  the counting of the Omer, and tomorrow is Shavuot. Shavuot is also call the Feast of Weeks. Being Karaite Jews, we do not adhere to the Talmudic (Oral/Rabbinic law) mandates to determine the day, but use the mandate of  the Torah only for observation of this feast. According to Leviticus 23:15-16, "The Counting of the Omer" would always be on the Saturday that falls during the week of  Unleavened Bread. Forty nine days are counted off and the 50th day, which is a Sunday, is a holy convocation, a day set apart to celebrate before God. No customary work is to be done...it is a day of rest.
During the time when the YHWH's Temple stood in Jerusalem, this was a day when the two loaves of leavened wheat bread were presented to Him as a Wave Offering by the Priest. This was a  first fruits offering for the wheat harvest, the day after this offering, the wheat harvest would commence. The day goes back much further than the temple though, Shavuot is the day that God gave the Ten Commandments to Moses on Sinai, 50 days after the exodus from Egypt.
For our family, the giving of Yahweh's instruction is a red letter day. It reminds us of how much He loves us, through His salvation, liberating us from the bondage of the oppressor, His instruction, the 10 commandments and their explanation to guide our way, and His provision for our need for food and shelter. We are so grateful and there is much cause to celebrate!

Baruch atah Adonai Eloheinu Melech Haolam shehechiyanu vekeyehmanu vehegianu lahzman hazeh. 

Blessed you are O Lord our God, King of the Universe who has let us live and sustained us and brought us to this time.
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