Focusing on the Hebrew months, Jewish festivals, and special days which continue to influence our lives.

Adar I TODAY: (Saturday) 13 February 2016 : 4 Adar I 5776
Adar I
(Sat) 13 February 2016 : 4 Adar I 5776

The Giving of Adar


As we come to the end of the cycle of months, you might make a double take at your Jewish calendar. No, it's not a typo or negligent editing. There are sometimes two months of Adar. Yes, it is true. Why? Because there are 7 leap years every 19 years in the Jewish calendar, and every leap year, the month of Adar is doubled. In order for Passover to fall during the spring,1 it is necessary to add a month to the calendar every so often to keep Passover from sliding back into winter. Imagine leaving Egypt in the already...

TOPICSAdar, charity, giving, mishloach manot, Purim, tzedakah

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The Trees of Shevat


As winter drones on, one often feels that the cold will never end. Thoughts of the warm sunshine seem like a distant memory. For those in more snowy climates, cabin fever takes effect. In the Land of Israel, the winter season is somewhat different. At this time when there is plenty of rain, the hills and fields all over the country turn a lush and emarald green as some new crops appear. Grasses and weeds also flourish and can turn the dry and arid landscapes into beautiful fields of green. As we enter into the month of Shevat, particularly in...

TOPICSfruit, new year, shevat, trees, Tu B'Shevat

From Miracles to Persecution


Last month during Kislev, we took a look at the miracles in the days of the Maccabees and in the life of our Master Yeshua. In Messianic Jewish tradition, Hanukkah commemorates both the victory of the Maccabees and Yeshua's discourse in John 10:22-39. The celebration of Hanukkah is unique in that it is the only festival that spans two months, beginning on the 25th of Kislev and lasting until the 3rd of Tevet. There's another side to the Hanukkah story, one that believers in Messiah can readily relate to: persecution. Hanukkah memorializes the cruel oppression of the Jewish people under...

TOPICSHanukkah, Kislev, martyrdom of Peter, persecution

Dedication, Commitment, and Devotion


Kislev is the ninth month of biblical calendar year. The name "Kislev" is the Babylonian name of the month. In the Bible, it is referred to as both "the ninth month" and "Kislev" as in Zechariah 7:1, "the word of the LORD came to Zechariah on the fourth day of the ninth month, which is Kislev" (NIV). Among other historical events that occurred during Kislev, none is perhaps more well known than the Festival of Hanukkah, an eight day festival which begins on Kislev 25. "Hanukkah" is a word that means "dedication," for it was during these days that the...

TOPICSAntiochus, commitment, Hanukkah, Kislev, kosher, Maccabees, perseverance, rededication, Sabbath, Temple