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Harvest of Asher is a Messianic congregation of Jewish and Gentile believers in Acco, Israel.

The foundation of the community

"The harvest is bountiful, the laborers are few"

Luke 10:2

Harvest of Asher is a Messianic congregation of Jewish and Gentile believers in Acco, Israel. Acco is part of the unclaimed inheritance of the Tribe of Asher (Judges 1:31), strategically located at the northwest gateway into Israel. God has called us to conquer Acco, not with swords and spears but by reaching out with the love of God. We believe that by restoring the altar of worship to Yeshua, the altars of Baal and Asharath will be torn down. Prayer and intercession will cleanse the land of the blood which was spilt for 5,000 years through the sacrifice to idols and the brutality of foreign conquerors. We proclaim the blood of Messiah Yeshua over Acco and the surrounding area preparing the way for His return.

The foundation of the Harvest of Asher community life is based on Yeshua's instructions to His disciples as He sent them out to spread the good news. Luke 10:2-7: 

1 . Prayer and worship 

 

   "Therefore said he unto them, The harvest truly is great, but the labourers are few: pray ye therefore the Lord of the harvest, that he would send forth labourers into his harvest." 

Luke 10:2                     

2. Outreach

   

    "Go your ways: behold, I send you forth as lambs among wolves."

Luke 10:3                       

 

3. Discipleship

 

   "And into whatsoever house ye enter, first say, Peace be to this house. And if the son of peace be  there, your peace shall rest upon it: if not, it shall turn to you again."

 Luke 10:5-6                

                          

4. Fellowship

 

   "And in the same house remain, eating and drinking such things as they give: for the labourer is  worthy   of his hire. Go not from house to house."

 Luke 10:7                       

5. Service

  "And heal the sick that are therein, and say unto them, The kingdom of God is come nigh unto you."

Luke 10:7                  

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Jewish roots of our faith

1. The Sabbath.

“There are six days when you may work, but the seventh day is a day of sabbath rest, a day of sacred assembly."
Leviticus 23:3

Here at HOA, we observe the beginning of Shabbat which begins on Friday evening, by coming together for our weekly service.     We celebrate the seventh day of rest which points to Yeshua, as written in Mark 2:28; “Therefore the Son of man is Lord of the Sabbath”. 

The true sabbath rest is found in what Yeshua accomplished for us on the cross, providing us with the ability to rest in His salvation; a shadow of the seventh day of rest for God’s people.

2. Passover

The Lord’s Passover begins at twilight on the fourteenth day of the first month. 
Leviticus 23:5

Passover was first mentioned in Exodus 12 and also in Deuteronomy 16:1-8. It is a memorial day, a lasting ordinance, commemorating Israel’s release from bondage through the Exodus from Egypt.

Just as the blood of the sacrificial lamb on the doorposts of the Hebrews’ dwellings in Egypt was a sign which protected them from the plague sent to strike down the first born of every household; in the same way the blood of Yeshua, the perfect lamb of God protects those who believe in Him.

Yeshua fulfilled the Passover by becoming the unblemished Passover lamb, sacrificed for the forgiveness of the sins of mankind on the fourteenth day of the first month.

 

He did not enter by means of the blood of goats and calves; but he entered the Most Holy Place once for all by his own blood, thus obtaining eternal redemption. The blood of goats and bulls and the ashes of a heifer sprinkled on those who are ceremonially unclean sanctify them so that they are outwardly clean. How much more, then, will the blood of Messiah, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself unblemished to God, cleanse our consciences from acts that lead to death, so that we may serve the living God! Hebrews 9:12-14

Jewish roots of our faith

3.  The Feast of Unleavened Bread.

"On the fifteenth day of that month the Lord’s Festival of Unleavened Bread begins; for seven days you must eat bread made without yeast…."

   Lev. 23:6-8
 

The origin of this feast begins in Exodus 12:15-20. It is a reminder of how the Israelites were forced to leave Egypt before the yeast was added to the dough, hence unleavened bread (Exodus 12:33-34, 39).

In 1 Corinthians 5:6-8 we find the prophetic meaning behind the events of that first Passover and Feast of Unleavened Bread. When we meet our Messiah we figuratively come out of Egypt, leaving the old leven (yeast) which represents our life in slavery, our old nature, sins and all that makes us puffed up and full of self, behind.

Yeshua was crucified for us and through Him we were released from the bondage of sin and death. We are commanded to leave this old lifestyle behind, entering into the promised land with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth; our new nature.

4. The Feast of Firstfruits

The Feast of Firstfruits was also commanded by God as a lasting ordinance to be followed throughout the generations. We read in Leviticus 23:9-14 where the Lord commanded Moses, to speak to the Israelites and say to them - ‘When you come into the land which I give to you, and reap its harvest, then you shall bring a sheaf of the firstfruits (Omer in Hebrew) of your harvest to the priest. He shall wave the sheaf before the Lord, to be accepted on your behalf; on the day after the Sabbath the priest shall wave it.  And you shall offer on that day, when you wave the sheaf, a male lamb of the first year, without blemish, as a burnt offering to the Lord.

Yeshua fulfilled this festival through His death and resurrection on the day after the Sabbath (Matthew 28:1-6); becoming the firstfruits of those who have fallen asleep (1 Corinthians 15:20) - the firstborn from the dead (Colossians 1:18) Just as the sheaf of grain was offered to God on the day after the Sabbath, Yeshua through His resurrection offered Himself before God as a living, unblemished sacrifice.

5. The Feast of Weeks – Shavuot

 ‘And you shall count for yourselves from the day after the Sabbath, from the day that you brought the sheaf of the wave offering: seven Sabbaths shall be completed.  Count fifty days to the day after the seventh Sabbath; then you shall offer a new grain offering to the Lord. Lev. 23:15-16

 

The Feast of Weeks known in the New Testament as Pentecost, is described in Leviticus 23:15-21. The fulfillment of Yeshua’s promise to His disciples, that they would receive power from above when the Holy Spirit came upon them, as recorded in Acts 1:8 and Luke 24:29, took place exactly on the fiftieth day – Shavuot - the appointed day of the feast. (Acts 2:1-4)

 

This feast was one of the three feasts in which Jews are commanded to go up to Jerusalem (Aliyah). (Deut. 16:16) For this reason, “there were people from every nation under heaven” who heard, each in their individual language, the disciples speaking of the wonderful works of God. (Acts 2:5-12) Peter proclaims that this is the manifestation of what was spoken by the prophet Joel. (Acts 2:14-21, Joel 2:28-32)

 

The Feast of Firstfruits and The Feast of Weeks are representative of resurrection. The first sheaf was lifted up on the third day of Passover, symbolizing Yeshua’s resurrection. The new grain offering in the Feast of Weeks symbolizes our new birth through the infilling of the Holy Spirit; poured out that day, through which we are resurrected with Him. As a fulfillment of these feasts, Yeshua became that firstborn among many brethren - those who believe in Him and are born of the Spirit - as written in Romans 8:29

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6. The Feast of Trumpets – Rosh Hashanah - Leviticus 23:23-25

Then the Lord spoke to Moses, saying, “Speak to the children of Israel, saying: ‘In the seventh month, on the first day of the month, you shall have a sabbath-rest, a memorial of blowing of trumpets, a holy convocation.

Blowing of trumpets was a significant act in the desert wanderings of the Hebrews and thereafter as well. Whether for moving the camp, sounding an alarm, preparing for battle or any call to gather the people, the shofar (ram’s horn) was sounded. In the temple, trumpets were sounded before Shabbat and the festivals.

From the time of Ezra in Babylon, this feast was changed into a day marking the beginning of a New Year. The main reason for it is that this feast is a time of preparation for the day of atonement (Yom Kippur). It is the start of the ten days of repentance, where in Judaism it is believed that the book of life is opened.

In the New Testament we again read of the shofar when it speaks about Yeshua’s second coming in 1 Corinthians 15:51-52, 1 Thessalonians 4:16 and Matthew 24:31. These scriptures speak of future events, leading us to an understanding that Yeshua has not yet fulfilled what was written.

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7. The Day of Atonement - Yom Kippur - Leviticus 23:26-32

  And the Lord spoke to Moses, saying:  

   “Also the tenth day of this seventh month shall be the Day of Atonement. It shall be a holy convocation for you; you shall afflict your souls, and offer an offering made by fire to the Lord.

It shall be to you a sabbath of solemn rest, and you shall afflict your souls; on the ninth day of the month at evening, from evening to evening, you shall celebrate your sabbath.”

 God’s given command to Israel for observing the Day of Atonement, was the affliction of their souls, and the bringing of a sacrifice, an offering for the atonement of the sins of the previous year.

 If we look throughout history from a biblical perspective, affliction of the soul always included fasting, this is why for centuries the people of Israel fasted and humbled their souls in fear and trembling before God on this day.  Nowadays, in the absence of a temple and a sacrifice; Jewish people are still hoping that through repentance, prayer and good deeds, their sins will be forgiven and they will be written in the book of life.

 The author of the book of Hebrews writes that ‘the law having a shadow of the good things to come, and not the very image of the things, can never with these same sacrifices, which they offer continually year by year, make those who approach perfect … For it is not possible that the blood of bulls and goats could take away sins’ (Hebrews 10:1, 4).

 

 Yeshua, through the offering of His body has become the fulfillment of the ultimate offering - the sacrifice for the atonement of the sins of mankind forever. (Hebrews 10:10)

 We believe that the total fulfillment of Yom Kippur has yet to come. It will come to completion on the day when Messiah Yeshua, the perfect sacrifice - atonement for all sins, will be revealed to the Nation of Israel.

 For until this day the same veil remains unlifted in the reading of the Old Testament, because the veil is taken away in Messiah. But even to this day, when Moses is read, a veil lies on their heart. Nevertheless when one turns to the Lord, the veil is taken away. 2 Cor. 3:14-16

 For I do not desire, brethren, that you should be ignorant of this mystery, lest you should be wise in your own opinion, that blindness in part has happened to Israel until the fullness of the Gentiles has come in.  And so all Israel will be saved, as it is written:

“The Deliverer will come out of Zion, And He will turn away ungodliness from Jacob;
For this is My covenant with them, When I take away their sins.” 

Romans 11:25-27, Isaiah 59:20-21

 “And I will pour on the house of David and on the inhabitants of Jerusalem the Spirit of grace and supplication; then they will look on Me whom they pierced. Yes, they will mourn for Him as one mourns for his only son and grieve for Him as one grieves for a firstborn."

Zech. 12:10

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8. The Feast of Tabernacles - Sukkot

  Then the Lord spoke to Moses, saying, “Speak to the children of Israel, saying: ‘The fifteenth day of this seventh month shall be the Feast of Tabernacles for seven days to the Lord ……   You shall dwell in booths for seven days. All who are native Israelites shall dwell in booths, that your generations may know that I made the children of Israel dwell in booths when I brought them out of the land of Egypt: I am the Lord your God.”   (Leviticus 23:33-36, 39-43)

Even today, The Feast of Tabernacles continues to be observed as commanded by God to the Israelites; to live in temporary dwellings (booths) for seven days. During this time we remember God’s faithfulness and provision in bringing us out of Egypt, through the desert and into the Promised Land. There appears to be something very significant in remembering the command to live in booths, since it is emphasized by God multiple times in the above scripture.

Dwelling in booths is a prophetic picture of being led by God through the “wilderness” which is symbolic of a temporary place and the parallel to our lives here on earth. This then leads us through a terminal, so to speak, to our “promised land” which is parallel to our permanent residence in eternity.

… while we do not look at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen. For the things which are seen are temporary, but the things which are not seen are eternal. 2 Corinthians 4:18

It was never God’s intent for us to stay in the wilderness, but that it should be a process through which He brings us into the promised land – both here on earth and in eternity. God’s ultimate goal was and is to dwell with man.

“I will set My tabernacle among you, and My soul shall not abhor you.

I will walk among you and be your God, and you shall be My people.” Lev. 26:11-12

 

“My tabernacle also shall be with them; indeed I will be their God, and they shall be My people.  The nations also will know that I, the Lord, sanctify Israel, when My sanctuary is in their midst forevermore.” Ezekiel 37:27-28

 

 “Let not your heart be troubled; you believe in God, believe also in Me. In My Father’s house are many mansions; if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also.” John 14:1-3

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The fruition of God’s promise and desire to dwell with man, as given to Israel and extended to all mankind through Messiah Yeshua, will come to pass when all things are made new according to Revelation 21:1.

“And I heard a loud voice from heaven saying, ‘Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and He will dwell with them, and they shall be His people. God Himself will be with them and be their God.’” Revelation 21:3

 

During the temple period, the drawing of water was an inseparable part of the festival. For seven days water was drawn from the Pool of Siloam and then carried up to the temple in Jerusalem as an offering, along with prayers for rain.

We read in John 7:37-39, how on the final day of Sukkot, Yeshua offered living water to those who thirst.

 On the last day, that great day of the feast, Yeshua stood and cried out, saying, “If anyone thirsts, let him come to Me and drink.  He who believes in Me, as the Scripture has said, out of his heart will flow rivers of living water.” But this He spoke concerning the Spirit, whom those believing in Him would receive; for the Holy Spirit was not yet given, because Yeshua was not yet glorified.

 

The above invitation made by Messiah Yeshua is a decision we make to humble ourselves in obedience to His call to receive living water which is Spirit and everlasting life. In the same way, every nation will be faced with this decision.

This feast will be celebrated during the millennium, when Yeshua will physically tabernacle with man and all the nations will be commanded to keep the Feast of Tabernacles by coming and worshipping Him in Jerusalem.

 

´And it shall come to pass that everyone who is left of all the nations which came against Jerusalem shall go up from year to year to worship the King, the Lord of hosts, and to keep the Feast of Tabernacles.  And it shall be that whichever of the families of the earth do not come up to Jerusalem to worship the King, the Lord of hosts, on them there will be no rain.”  Zech.14:16-17

9.  Shemini Atzeret - Simchat Torah  Leviticus 23:34-36

During the first and second temple period, on the eighth day (after the seven days of Succoth), just before returning home from Jerusalem, there is a command for a solemn assembly. This holy convocation begins at the same moment the seventh day of Succoth ends.

On the eighth day you shall have a sacred assembly; you shall do no laborious work. Numbers 29:35

During the last temple period it was called Shemini Atzeret (Day of Gathering). From the time of Ezra in the second temple period, until today, it is called Simchat Torah, (Rejoicing in Torah). Nehemiah 8:18

These eight days of rejoicing and dancing with the Word of God (the Torah Scrolls), is a reflection of the wedding of the Lamb, the Bride (the Body of Yeshua) with the Bridegroom (Messiah Yeshua), the Living Word.

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ADDITIONAL ANNUAL CELEBRATIONS

In addition to God’s given feasts in Leviticus 23, the following festivals are celebrated annually. Each has a significance to major events in the history of the Jewish Nation and her very existence.

1. Hanukkah – Festival of Dedication – Festival of Lights

The Festival of Hanukkah is celebrated by the lighting of one additional candle of the menorah each night for seven days.

This commemorates the miracle of oil that occurred at the rededication of the second temple which took place during the Jewish Revolt led by the Maccabees family in the second century BCE. These events are chronicled in the Books of The Maccabees.

In John 10:22-23 we read of Yeshua entering the temple during this feast.

“Then came the Festival of Dedication in Jerusalem. It was winter, and Yeshua was in the temple courts walking in Solomon’s Colonnade.” John 10:22-23

This festival is one of many instances where we witness how God delivers His people from oppression, over and over again.

2. The Feast of Purim

The Feast of Purim is found in the book of Esther. It is celebrated every year according to the command given through Mordechai - the decree made by Queen Esther and the written instructions and prescribed time which the Jews established and imposed upon themselves and their descendants.  Esther 9:20-32.  

The miracle of Purim is significant even today as it reminds us of God’s redemption of His People from annihilation, the threat against their very existence. Today as commanded, the fast is observed, the book of Esther read in all the synagogues, and the feast celebrated as instructed in the Book of Esther.

 

God is not mentioned once throughout the book of Esther, yet He is seen working throughout every situation. He is the same yesterday, today and forever. Even when it looks like He is not doing anything, He is working behind the scenes.

 

In Summary

Through God’s given feasts to His people Israel, the blueprint of His plans and purposes for all humanity was revealed. Within the feasts described above, we see His promises and their fulfillment as well as future events yet to be fulfilled. 

Through the yearly observance of God’s feasts, we are continually reminded of His acts of power and surpassing greatness, unfailing love and faithfulness.  Psalm 66:3, Deuteronomy 7:9

“For the Lord your God is God of gods and Lord of lords, the great God, mighty and awesome…” Deuteronomy 10:17

 

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