The post really isn’t about making a layered cake, but, oh man, if someone made this for me, I wouldn’t resist eating it. It looks delicious. Do you think it has Jell-O in the layers or just a lot of food coloring? If it’s a ton of food coloring, then I might think twice about eating it. I’m not fond of the taste of food coloring. I did see another picture of a pastel layered cake, maybe that one had less food coloring. Of course, they could have used the food coloring paste and that’s not bad. As I recall, it doesn’t have a taste.
Today, my studies got side tracked a bit. I am studying in Luke 4 and I got stuck in verse 19. “To preach the acceptable year of the Lord.” Well, what does that mean? I did a ton of research – my books, cross referencing, dictionaries, the internet – a Hebrew site that was super interesting. I came away even more astounded at how amazing and precise God is. Wow!
So, if we go back one verse (v. 18, in case you got lost) Jesus talks about all of the things Father anointed Him to do: preach good tidings, bind up the brokenhearted, proclaim liberty, open the prison, and then, in verse 19, we have the preach the acceptable year of the Lord. Well, the first part sounds simple enough – preach, bind, proclaim, open. I get those things, but the acceptable year of the Lord left me with nothing and there might be a reason for that. I discovered, that the phrase is only used a couple of times and one of them is in cross reference to this one.
Here’s what I came up with and, I hope that I can do it justice, because in the end you should walk away with a new appreciation for how tidy Father is in wrapping up all of His lessons for us.
I started out with the “year” part. I found that it doesn’t necessarily mean 365 days. The way it’s used here looks like it means “season, period, cycle, a finished cycle of restoration.” Well, that puts a different spin on the phrase, huh? Thank you dictionary. My next stop was the topical guide for the scriptures, which pointed out that the word acceptable could also mean “living sacrifice, perfect, or will of God.” Hmm. So, if I put those two together, it could mean that the cycle of Christ’s restoration has begun. I found that combination somewhere else, but I never keep notes on where I find stuff, I just write down what I need and move on. (Which means, if you want me to back any of this up, you are going to have to do some work on your end because I have no idea. Sorry. Just bad journalism or blogging as the case may be.)
The idea of sacrifice led me to the feasts and seasons in the Old Testament. There are eight feasts and festivals. Boy, I hope I have this all right. I made notes and relied heavily on the Hebrew site to explain some of this, but it really just astounded me, so I was in awe as I was reading all of this information.
Here goes: Passover, Unleavened Bread, First Fruits, Pentecost, Trumpets, Atonement, Tabernacles, and, every fifty years, Jubilee.
Let’s start with Jubilee since it happens only every fifty years. I’m pretty sure many of us know what it means, so I’m just going to give it a cursory glance here. Basically it means, all of the land rests, slaves are freed, lands are returned to their original owners. We are freed from slavery and debt. OOhhh. The plot get started. Does any of that sound even remotely familiar?
I’ll tell you what I realized before I move on, so that I can sort of skim over my thought progression and get to the meat. All of these are symbols of Christ. Well, you might say – everything is. I know that, but this just really caught my attention today. Not only is each one a symbol of Christ, but in succession it is the Plan of Salvation. I mean, wow! This is the cycle if restoration or the “Acceptable year of the Lord.” All of these feasts together are one whole cycle, which makes a year.
- Old Testament: when the blood on the doorposts saved the households while they ate an unblemished, unbroken lamb standing up.
- New Testament: when Christ had the first Sacrament with His apostles
- also the day of Christ’s crucifixion
Feast of Unleavened Bread
- the day after Passover
- the day Christ was buried
- Christ was the “bread of life”
Feast of First Fruits
- we know this as Easter, but it is the resurrection of our Savior
- Christ was the “first fruit” of the resurrection
- 50 days after Passover
- this is the “new meal” offering
- this is when the Holy Ghost was given to the believers
- also represents the gospel being given to both Jew and Gentile
- our Pentecost occurs every time we become new in Christ through repentance
- a call for everyone to go to the temple
Feast of Atonement
- the Hebrew reference said that this is a reminder of the Second Coming
Feast of Tabernacles
- this refers to the temple which will be built in Jerusalem
- it is the “end” of the season
- the Atonement of all
So, we have the following:
- the Crucifixion
- Christ being buried
- the resurrection
- the Holy Ghost being poured out
- a call to the temple
- the Second Coming
- the kingdom of Christ and His reign in Jerusalem
Now, the part that really caught my attention is how this might look in my life:
- recognition of our need and our faith that Christ is the answer
- dying to Christ’s will (repentance)
- Holy Ghost being given
- temple ordinances
- the Second Coming (or our judgement)
- eternal life
The original question – what is the acceptable year of the Lord? To me, from what I learned, is that it is the entire Plan of Salvation that Christ came to preach Himself. It is the plan for the entire world’s existence, Christ’s individual work, and specific to each of us and our lives. Man! God is a-m-a-z-i-n-g!!