"To Seek out that which was Lost..."

We Interrupt This Page to Bring You an IMPORTANT ANNOUNCEMENT!!

The Real Weekly ShaBBaT (Sabbath) Is Also Determined by the Sighting of the New Moon.

Weekly ShaBBaTs
  ) 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th 6th Rest
2 3 4 5 6 7 8
  9 10 11 12 13 14 15
  16 17 18 19 20 21 22
  23 24 25 26 27 28 29

This is not merely an Opinion or Interpretation but Scripturally Verifiable FACT!
For Proof See:
Calendar of Set-Apart days 2006

Is Lunar Shabbat observance Really disproved by the Feast of Weeks?

A Sabbath Study

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"To Seek out that which was Lost..."

We present this Information and its Links as a Service to our readers... Its inclusion should not be construed as the Authors'
or the Relays' endorsement of our Beliefs
... or as our endorsement of theirs.. the Truth will stand on its own Merit!

By: Voy Wilks7/1/88
Assembly of Yahweh (7th day)
Cisco, Texas

Since man was created for Yahweh's pleasure, we should make every effort to please Him. One way of adding to His pleasure is to keep the festivals which He has ordained to be observed forever (Lev. 23:14, 21, 31, 41). Naturally, it is important that we keep these festivals on the dates which He has chosen. This leads us to a consideration of the calendar recognized by Yahweh and the saints of old.

The Scriptural calendar is basically quite simple, but because of our education away from the natural phenomena of the sun and moon, this ancient calendar may, to some, seem difficult. This booklet is presented in an effort to show the simplicity of the calendar which has been from the beginning.

The Annual Festival Dates

Passover, Abib 14th.
Feast of Unleavened Bread, Abib 15th - 21st.
The 15th and the 21st are high, annual rest days.

Feast of Weeks, the 50th after the weekly Sabbath which falls during the days of unleavened bread; always on the first day of the week.

Feast of Trumpets, 1st day of the 7th month.

Atonement (a fast), 10th day of the 7th month.

Tabernacles, 15th - 22nd of the 7th month .
The 15th and the 22nd are high, annual rest days.

The Names

The personal names of the Savior (Yahshua) and of the Father (Yahweh) have been used in this booklet instead of the psuedonymns, "Jesus" and "LORD." Originally, the True Names were written into the text of the Scriptures, but were later deleted. Since these deletions were without proper authorization, the Names have been restored.

All quotations are from the Revised Standard Version unless otherwise indicated. Other free literature is available by writing the above address. (I am not sure the address is active.. (III))


The most commonly used. Jewish calendar is the result of changes over many centuries. After the destruction of the temple in C.E. 70, confusion prevailed to such an extant that Rabbi Akiba, who died in 135, once proclaimed three years in succession as years of 13 months each. This was to restore Passover to the spring season once again. 1

The greatest change came in C.E. 358/359 when Hillel adapted the Metonic calendar to the needs of the Jewish people. 2 (Meton was a Greek astronomer of the fifth century B.C.E.) Whereas a natural lunar calendar will allow all the festivals (except Pentecost) to fall on any day of the week, the Hillel calendar is arranged so that the festivals never fall on certain days of the week. 3

Originally, Israel and the ancient saints reckoned each month by the visible new crescent of the moon, but due to the dispersion and other forces, the calendar underwent major changes. Months were established by the following criterea: 4

(1)Originally, by visual sightings only.
(2)Later, by both calculation and visual sightings.
(3)Since the time of Hillel, by calculation only.

Jewish scholars have acknowledged that the third (and present) method is incorrect, but accepted it as a temporary measure. They expected later to return to "a system based on true values more akin to the earlier Jewish calendar in which the new moons ... and intercalations were proclaimed on the basis of both observation and calculation." 5

The Karaite Jews, who returned to Scriptures for most if not all their doctrine, disallow the Hillel calendar, and allow the festivals to fall on any day of the week.

What the Scriptures Say

"And Elohim said, Let there be lights in the firmament of heaven to divide the day from the night; and let them be for signs, and for seasons, and for days, and for years: and let them be for lights in the firmament of heaven to give light upon the earth: and it was so. And Elohim made the two great lights; the greater light to rule the day, and the lesser light to rule the night: he made the stars also" (Gen. 1:14-16) The Sacred Scriptures - Bethel Edition).

The Sun & Moon Establish the Calendar

We see clearly that the two "great lights" which rule day and night are the sun and moon. David the great psalmist, expressed it even more clearly.

"To him that made great lights, ... The sun to rule by day; ... The moon and stars to rule by night; ..." (Ps. 136:7-9).

These "great lights" were created
(1)To divide day from night,
(2)For "signs," and
(3)To establish seasons, days, and years.

Certainly the sun establishes the day, both the 12 hour day and the 24 hour day (Jn. 11:9; Gen. 1:23; Ps. 119:19-23). The moon establishes the month - beginning with the new moon. This is indicated by the fact that the same Hebrew word (Chodesh, Strong's #2320) is in the King James Version translated both moon an month, depending on how it is used in the sentence ("new moon" 20 times, and "month" 220 times). But what determines the year?

As noted above, Scriptures tell us that sun and moon establish the year; not the sun only, but both of the great lights (Gen.1:14).

"This month [chodesh, moon] shall be to you the beginning of months: it shall be the first month [or moon] of the year to you" (Ex. 12:2).

This was stated, evidently, on the first day of the first month because reference is made to the coming dates in the first month; the 10th and the 14th. Yahweh confirmed this calendar as a law in Israel, as is indicated by scripture:

"Blow the trumpet at the new moon, at the full moon, on our feast day. It is a statute for Israel, an ordinance of the Elohim of Jacob. He appointed it in Joseph for a testimony, when he went out over the land of Egypt, ..." (Ps. 81:3-5)

"Blow the horn for the new month, for the full moon on the day of our pilgrim feast. This is a law for Israel, an ordinance of the [Elohim] of Jacob laid as a solemn charge on Joseph when he came out of Egypt" (Ps. 81:3-5 NEB).

Each month starts with a new moon, and the major annual festivals are at the full moon.


We noted in Gen. 1:14 that the sun and moon are "for signs, and for seasons," as well as for days and years. The common view is that "seasons" refers to the four seasons of our year; spring, summer, fall and winter, but this is not the case. "Seasons" is from the Hebrew word moed which, as used here, indicates festivals. Of the thirteen times moed is (in the KJV) translated "seasons," all allude to the festivals except three or four. In addition, moed is in the KJV translated in the following ways, showing this word very often refers to the festivals.

Feast, 6 times
Set feast, 5 times
Solemn feasts, 9 times
Solemnity, 4 times
Solemn day, 1 time
Solemn assembly, 1 time
Time appointed, 9 times
Time, 4 times
Appointed times, 2 times
Assembly, 2 times
Place of assembly, 1 time
Congregation, 149 times (often in connection with the tabernacle, the place of worship).
Inexact translations, etc., 6 times

From the very beginning, even before man was created, Yahweh planned ahead for the observance of the annual festivals. Gen. 1:14 from the New English Bible and the Jerusalem Bible reads as follows:

"... Let there be lights in the vault of heaven to separate day from night, and let them serve as signs both for festivals and for seasons and years" (NEB).

"... Let there be lights in the vault of heaven to divide day from night, and let them indicate festivals, days and years" (JB).

Other versions which indicate moed (Gen. 1:14) refers to the festivals of Yahweh are as follows:
Good News Bible
(quotations are in the End Notes).
The Emphasised Bible (Footnote)
The New American Bible
The Complete Bible - An American Translation
The James Moffatt Translation
The Torah,
A new trans., (Jewish Pub. Soc.).

We see, then, that the sun and the moon set the dates for the annual festivals, as well as establishing days, months, and years. Are we prepared to accept these Scriptures as valid - Scriptures stating that sun and moon establish the festivals? We have no choice but to accept, if we wish to please our Creator. It was he who planned and created sun and moon for these very purposes.

The Day

As noted above, Scriptures recognize the 12 hour day (light), as opposed to night (darkness).

"Yahshua answered, Are there not twelve hours in a day?" (Jn. 11:9).

Until the 18th century an hour was usually reckoned, among both Jews and Gentiles, as one twelfth of the time from sunrise to sunset. The hour varied in length with the seasons, being longer in summer and shorter in winter. 6 There is also the 24 hour day - the calendar day - which includes both night and day.

"And there was evening and there was morning, one day" (Gen. 1:5)

"... on the day that I struck down all the first-born in the land of Egypt I hallowed to myself all the first-born in Israel, ..." (Nu. 3:13).

Since the first-born of Egypt were struck down about midnight (Ex. 12:29), it is clearly evident that the word day sometimes refers to the 24 hour day - a calendar day. Unlike our Roman Calendar day which begins at midnight, the Scriptural calendar day begins at sunset.7

"And the evening and the morning were the fifth day" (gen. 1:23).

"And they went into Capernaum; and straightway on the sabbath day he entered into the synogogue and taught. ... and at evening, when the sun had set, they brought to him all that were sick, and them that were possessed with demons" (Mk. 1:21,32)

Because of the teachings of the Pharisees, the common people felt it was improper to ask for healing on the Sabbath, so they waited until the Sabbath ended (at sunset) and then came for healing.

"The soul that touches any [uncleanness] shall be unclean untill evening, and shall not eat of the holy things, unless he bathe his flesh in water. And when the sun is down, he shall be clean; ..." (Lev. 22:6,7).

It is interesting to note that Christian churches in Europe and early America (even while observing the first day of the week), continued for many centuries to observe the rest day and the festivals from sunset the preceeding evening. This custom was gradually abandoned and ceased totally by 1800, except by those who kept the seventh day. However, a reminder of this is still with us in such phrases as, "Christmas eve," and "New Year's eve;" the "eve" beginning at sunset the preceeding day. 8

The Week

At the very beginning Yahweh himself established the week by working six days and resting on the seventh (Gen. 1:1-2:4, Ex. 20:8-11; 31:17). The Messiah and his Apostles recognized as the true Sabbath the same day which the Jewish people observed (Mt. 12:1-14; Mk. 1:21; Acts 13:14-15 & 42-44). Reference works tell us:

" The week is a period of seven days, having no reference whatever to the celestial motions, a circumstance to which it owes it's unalterable uniformity. Although it did not enter into the calendar of the Greeks, and was not introduced at Rome till after the rule of Theodosius, it has been employed from time immemorial in almost all eastern countries; and as it forms neither aliquot part of the year nor of the lunar month, those who reject the Mosaic recital will be at a loss, ... to assign to it an origin having much semblance of probability." 9

The Month

The Scriptural Calendar, being solar/lunar, calls for the month to begin with the thin, new crescent of the moon, which is seen in the western sky after sunset. The lunar month averages 29.5305883 days; or 29 days, 12 hours, 44 minutes, and 2.8 seconds, but it can vary in length as much as 13 hours. 10 Even so, each month consists of 29 or 30 days. When skies are clear and the new moon does not appear by dusk following the 29th day, it will be visible the next night, making a month of 30 days. If skies are overcast during this time, visibility can be assumed.

In ancient Israel, watchers were stationed on vantage points, and runners carried this news to chosen members of the Sanhedrin, the Supreme court of Israel, located in Jerusalem. Once the evidence was weighed and accepted as true, a new month was proclaimed to all the communities of Israel, both local and distant. 11

Local or Jerusalem Sightings?

That witnesses from any point on earth should be heard is indicated by Jewish Authorities:

"Moreover it is no more than an assumption (no less difficult to prove or disprove) that the occurrences of the [new moons] are expressed in terms of local Jerusalem time." 12

Sightings should be accepted from any point on earth, and a new month proclaimed, as having begun at that meridian.

Just as we observe 24 hours of the weekly Sabbath when it comes to us, so we should recognize as the first of the month the new moon when it comes to us. Wherever the new crescent is first seen, that meridian becomes, for one month only, the Scriptural monthly date line, thus recognizing "local visibility" as the key for beginning the new month in each area. Wherever and when ever the new moon is first seen, the new month begins - always - thus showing the Creator we really believe Gen. 1:14-16; that sun and moon determine the festival dates.

Suppose the first crescent is first seen in Maine. The Scriptural month will begin at that meridian on that day at sunset. As the rotation of the earth progresses, bringing sunset to other parts of the earth, sunset and the new moon bring to each community the first day of the month. When sunset again returns to Maine, the second day of the month begins. 13

Certainly the new moon should not be ignored by any community, since it is this very thing (the appearance of the new moon) which signals the beginning of a new month. If we ignore the new crescent locally and begin each month only after the new moon is seen in Jerusalem, approximately one third of the months in our time zone will not begin on the first day the new crescent is seen, but on the second day. There should be no postponement rules, as this is one of the major flaws in the Hillel calendar presently in use. More discussion in the appendix.

The Full Moon

Can the first day of the month be established by observing the full moon, then counting back 14 days? No. There is too much variation in the motions of the moon.

"The necessary time for the full moon varies from 13.73 to 15.80 days after conjunction*.... Therefore knowing the precise time of the full moon does not [make it possible to] determine the day of the visible new crescent." 14

The full moon is usually on the 14th or 15th day after conjunction of sun and moon. Since the new crescent is not seen until one, two, or (rarely) three days after conjunction, the full moon sometimes appears only 12 days after the crescent is first sighted. This is because the moon does not travel at the same speed from day to day and from month to month. Therefore, the first of the month cannot be established by noting the time of the full moon. Again, the Scriptural month begins, not with the conjunction, but with the visible new crescent.

* Conjunction: The moment when the moon is directly between the earth and the sun (though on a different plane) and so is invisible. When on the same plane, an eclipse of the sun occurs. (back)

Don't Miss..

Part Two:

The Year


1. Encyc. Judaica, Keter Publishing House, Jerusalem; Vol. 5, Article: Calendar, p 49. (back)

2. Ibid, page 48.

  • Universal Standard Encyc., Standard Reference Works Pub. Co. Inc., NY; Vol. 16; Article: Metonic System, p 5699
  • Encyc. Brit., 9th Edition, Vol. 4; pp 593, 601. (back)

3. Research Paper, by R. V. York showing the Jewish festivals for 101 years. Sources: Encyc. Judaica, Vol. 1, pp 109 to 159. Free upon request. * (back)

4. The International Standard Bible Encyc., Eerdman's Publishing Co., Grand Rapids MI, 1984; Article; Calendar, p 541. (back)

5. Encyc. Judaica, Vol. 5, Article: Calendar, p 47.  (back)

6. Universal Standard Encyc., Standard Reference Works Pub. Co., Inc., NY; Vol. 12, Article: Hour, p 4424

  • The International Standard Bible Encyc., Eerdman's Publishing Co., Grand Rapids MI; Vol 2.  Article: Day, p 797. (back)

7. Ibid, pp 797, 798. (back)

8. The L-rds Day On a Round Earth, by Robert Leo Odom, Southern Pub. Co.; Nashville, TN; 1970, pp 25 - 57.

  • American History As Told by Contemporaries,  MacMillan Co., London; 1927, Vol. 1, p 338.
  • The Calendar G-d Gave to Moses, by Herbert Solinsky & Rob Anderson, 1982, p 32. (back)

9. Encyc. Brit. 9th Edition, Vol 4; Calendar, p 589. (back)

10. Ibid, p 593

  • The Calendar G-d Gave to Moses, by Solinsky & Anderson; 1982, p 8. (back)

11. The New Bible Dictionary, by J.D. Douglas; Eerdman's Pub. Co., Grand Rapids, MI; 1979, Article: Calendar, p 178.

  • Our People - History of the Jews, by Jacob Isaacs; Pub. by Merkos L'Inyonei Chinuch, Inc., 773 Eastern Parkway, Brooklyn, NY, 11213; 3rd Edition, 1974; Vol. 4, Book 7; pp 107, 173.
  • The Temple - Its Ministry & Service, by Alfred Edersheim; Eerdman's Pub. Co.; 1972,  p 200 - 204. (back)

12. Encyc. Judaica, Vol. 5, Articles: Calendar, p 46. (back)

13. A Paper, "The Monthly Date Line," by R.V. York & V. Wilks; (not to be confused with the International Date Line). Free upon request.*   (back)

14. The Calendar G-d Gave to Moses, by Solinsky & Anderson; 1982, p 31. (back)

    • A paper, "The Full Moon," by V. Wilks. Free.

TRACTS from the VAULT!