Christian observances of Jewish holidays

Christian observances of Jewish holidays

A number of Christian denominations observe religious holidays inspired by Jewish observances or derived from the Hebrew Bible. The original Jewish holidays may be honored in their original form in recognition of Christianity's Jewish roots, or altered to suit Christian theology. Symbolic and thematic features of Jewish services are commonly interpreted in a Christian light, for example, the Paschal Lamb of the Passover Seder being viewed as a symbol of Christ's sacrifice.


Christian Passover

There are Christian groups that celebrate some parts of the Jewish holiday of Passover. Christian Passover is a religious observance celebrated by a small number of First Century Belivers instead of, or alongside, the more common Christian holy day and festival of Easter. The redemption from the bondage of sin through the sacrifice of Christ is celebrated, a parallel of the Jewish Passover's celebration of redemption from bondage in the land of Egypt.[1]

Christian Pentecost

The Christian holiday of Pentecost is based on the Jewish holiday of Shavuot (celebrated seven weeks after the start of Passover). Pentecost is part of the Movable Cycle of the ecclesiastical year. According to Christian tradition, Pentecost is always seven weeks after Easter Sunday; that is to say, 50 days after Easter (inclusive of Easter Day). In other words, it falls on the eighth Sunday, counting Easter Day (see article on Computus for the calculation of the date of Easter). Pentecost celebrates the birth of the Church, when thousands of Jews were in Jerusalem to celebrate Shavuot, and heard Peter and the disciples speaking in their own language.

Pentecost falls in mid- to late spring in the Northern Hemisphere and mid- to late autumn in the Southern Hemisphere.

Feast of Trumpets

The Feast of Trumpets models itself on the Jewish holiday of Rosh Hashanah (the Jewish New Year). Not normally celebrated in Mainstream Christianity, a small number of evangelical Christians celebrate the Feast of Trumpets. Some connect the observance with the "sound of the trumpet" that they believe will occur at the return of Jesus Christ ("For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of an archangel, and with the trumpet of God," 1 Thessalonians 4:16).

Day of Atonement

A Christian-style Day of Atonement models itself on the Jewish holiday of Yom Kippur. The Day of Atonement has deep theological significance in the New Testament.

The New Testament refers to Day of Atonement in Acts 27:9.[2] Because of the apostolic practice of observing Yom Kippur, a small number of evangelical Christians observe it today. Roderick C. Meredith, leader of the Living Church of God, believes that the Day of Atonement "pictures the binding of Satan at the beginning of the Millennium and the world becoming at one with God."[3]

Many groups affiliated with Messianic Judaism and Hebrew Christians have provided instruction describing the evangelical significance for observance of this day.[4][5][6]

Feast of Tabernacles

Jesus observed the Feast of Tabernacles or Festival of Booths in John 7:1-52. The Christian-observed Feast of Tabernacles is based on the Jewish holiday of Sukkot. It is a remembrance of God living with them in the desert 40 years, and is reflected with the coming of Jesus, being "God became flesh to dwell among us." [7]

The Feast of Tabernacles is celebrated by some Christian groups,[8] among them churches affiliated with Armstrongism[9][10] or the Kingdom of Jesus Christ,[11] as well as the International Christian Embassy Jerusalem (ICEJ).[12] They cite God's and the prophets' injunctions in the Old Testament that the Israelites observe the holiday, and accounts in the New Testament of how Jesus and his apostles kept this commandment.[12][13] Christian observance of the Feast of Tabernacles has been traced back to the early 17th century, among Sabbatarians in Transylvania.[14]


4th century theologian John Chrysostom said, "The festivals of the pitiful and miserable Jews are soon to march upon us one after the other and in quick succession: the feast of Trumpets, the feast of Tabernacles, the fasts. There are many in our ranks who say they think as we do. Yet some of these are going to watch the festivals and others will join the Jews in keeping their feasts and observing their fasts. I wish to drive this perverse custom from the Church right now."[15]

Such a strong expression of this view, especially if associated with Anti-Judaism, is not common in the contemporary church. However, it is an exaggeration to claim that Christians in general tend to adopt and adapt Jewish festivals.[16]

See also


  1. ^ The United Church of God
  2. ^ F. F. Bruce, The Book of Acts (NICOT; Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1964), 506.
  3. ^ Roderick C. Meredith, The Holy Days—God's Master Plan at
  4. ^
  5. ^
  6. ^
  7. ^ John 1:14
  8. ^ Feast of Tabernacles celebrations, 2010, USA
  9. ^ From the Fringe to the Fold (Armstrongism),
  10. ^ Worldwide Church of God and the Feast of the Tabernacles
  11. ^ Davao sect draws top politicos (Kingdom of Jesus Christ)
  12. ^ a b International Christian Embassy in Jerusalem: About the Feast
  13. ^ "Today there are still Christians faithfully observing the same festivals Christ kept. These annual occasions were instituted to keep God's people, in all ages, aware of the key aspects of the mission and work of the true Messiah." Good News magazine, September/October 1997
  14. ^ The Feast of Tabernacles at the Restored Church of God website.
  15. ^ John Chrysostom, Homily 1 in Adversus Judaeos
  16. ^ Lieske, Bruce J. "Jewish Feasts in Gentile Congregations"

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Игры ⚽ Нужно сделать НИР?

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Christian observances of Yom Kippur — occur when a Christian style Day of Atonement models itself on the Jewish holiday of Yom Kippur. Contents 1 Background 2 Jews for Jesus 3 Messianic Jewish congregations …   Wikipedia

  • Christian Zionism — For the similar 19th century Christian movement, see Christian Restorationism. For Christians who belong to Zionist denominations in southern Africa, see Zionist Churches. Christian Zionism is a belief among some Christians that the return of the …   Wikipedia

  • Passover (Christian holiday) — This article is about how a Jewish holiday is celebrated by Christians. See Passover for Judaism s Jewish holiday celebrating the Exodus of the Israelites from Ancient Egypt. See Easter for the major Christian festival usually linked to Passover …   Wikipedia

  • Judeo-Christian — A monument at the Texas State Capitol depicting the Ten Commandments revered in Judaism and Christianity Judeo Christian is a term used in the United States since the 1940s to refer to standards of ethics said to be held in common by Judaism and… …   Wikipedia

  • Jewish religious year — Introduction       the cycle of Sabbaths and holidays that are commonly observed by the Jewish religious community and officially in Israel by the Jewish secular community as well. The Sabbath and festivals (feast) are bound to the Jewish… …   Universalium

  • Jewish holiday — Candles lit on the eve of Shabbat and Jewish holidays For the Gregorian dates of Jewish Holidays, see Jewish holidays 2000 2050. Jewish holidays are days observed by Jews as holy or secular commemorations of important events in Jewish history. In …   Wikipedia

  • Jewish prayer — Part of a series on …   Wikipedia

  • Christian Calendar —     Christian Calendar     † Catholic Encyclopedia ► Christian Calendar      GENERALITIES     All civilized peoples and even those which seem to be only just emerging from utter barbarism keep some kind of record of the flight of time and are… …   Catholic encyclopedia

  • List of holidays by country — Contents 1 Afghanistan 2 Albania 3 Algeria 4 Andorra …   Wikipedia

  • Lists of holidays — This is a of holidays and observances by various categorization.Consecutive holidays* Beginning in 2000, Spring Festival, and National Day are week long holidays in the mainland territory of the People s Republic of China, known as Golden Weeks …   Wikipedia

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”