The Search for the Scriptural Calendar
Which calendar was the one kept throughout the scriptures? This is a hotly debated question and one that seems can never be resolved. Indeed, there are a few different points of view out there ranging from solar calendar, to lunar, to lunisolar. Which one is right?
It is a great point of disagreement, especially as it pertains to the feasts. It is not a good feeling to be keeping the feasts in what you believe to be the right time, only to hear someone else proclaiming the same feast at another time. How do we know who is correct?
This writer has been patiently waiting for the right time to find out which is the true scriptural calendar. The reality hit me that I could not figure it out through my human effort alone. Hence, I had to rely on the Most High to reveal it to me in his due time.
In the end, after a process of elimination, it boiled down to one calendar, and I will soon let you know which one it was. Today I would like to share what I believe is the closest we have to the scriptural calendar.
SEVERAL CALENDARS, WHICH ONE IS CORRECT? THE PROCESS OF ELIMINATION
Now here is the process of elimination that brought me to the Zadokite calendar.
For each calendar in the process, I will just give one or two reasons for its elimination. Note that it will not be a detailed look at the advantages and disadvantages of each calendar.
First of all, the easiest calendar to eliminate is our Gregorian calendar and its predecessor, the Julian calendar. Both of these calendars are Roman, and different from the so-called Hebrew calendar of the so-called Jews. The Jews’ Hebrew calendar is at least an attempt at a scriptural calendar, but the Roman calendars do not attempt to match up with scripture.
Judging from the times of their inception though, the Roman calendars were obvious counterfeits. The Gregorian was introduced in 1582 and before that, the Julian in 46 BC. To find the scriptural calendar, we want to know the calendar given to Moshe in Exodus 12:1-2, which took place around 1446 BC. No other calendar will do.
So having rejected the Roman calendars (Gregorian and Julian), we now turn our attention to the luni-solar Jewish calendar.
The first sour point to me, is that a year that starts upon citing a plant is not one I can put all my trust in.what do I mean? The following is an excerpt from Nehemiah’s Wall:
The period between one year and the next is either 12 or 13 lunar months. Because of this, it is important to check the state of the Barley crops at the end of the 12th month. If the barley is Aviv at this time, then the following New Moon is Hodesh Ha-Aviv (“New Moon of the Aviv”). If the barley is still immature, we must wait another month and then check the barley again at the end of the 13th month.
There is nowhere in scripture that I can see that instructs us to check the state of barley crops to know when a year begins.
Additionally, the years in the Hebrew calendar can contain either 12 or 13 months. So another problem is, there is nowhere in scripture that tells us of a 13th month. This year (Gregorian year 2019) has 13 months in the Hebrew calendar.
However, this is the calendar that most of the world believes to be correct. Incidentally, it is the one kept by the last institutional assembly of which I was a part, which was a sacred name assembly. This assembly believes these Jewish have some things right, including the calendar.
However, I believed we are deceived by many of their beliefs (including the calendar), just as most Sabbath-keepers today are deceived by the evening to evening Sabbath tradition of these same so-called Jews.
Also, a common Hebrew calendar year can have a length of 353, 354 or 355 days, while a leap Hebrew calendar year can have a length of 383, 384 or 385 days.
WARNING FROM THE BOOK OF JUBILEES
Significantly, I do believe the Book of Jubilees warning against departing from a 364 day year through a lunar based calendar such as the Hebrew calendar:
And all the children of Israel will forget and will not find the path of the years, and will forget the Months, and Seasons, and Sabbaths and they will go wrong as to all the order of the years.
For I know and from henceforth will I declare it unto thee, and it is not of my own devising; for the book (lies) written before me, and on the heavenly tablets the division of days is ordained, lest they forget the feasts of the covenant and walk according to the feasts of the Gentiles after their error and after their ignorance. For there will be those who will assuredly “MAKE OBSERVATIONS OF THE MOON −how (it) DISTURBS THE SEASONS and comes in from year to year TEN DAYS TOO SOON.
For this reason the years will come upon them when they will Disturb (the order), and make an Abominable (Day) the Day of Testimony, and an Unclean Day a Feast Day, and they will confound all the days, the holy with the unclean, and the unclean day with the holy; for THEY WILL GO WRONG AS TO THE MONTHS AND SABBATHS AND FEASTS AND JUBILEES.
For this reason I command and testify to thee that thou mayst testify to them; for after thy death thy children will disturb (them), so that THEY WILL NOT MAKE THE YEAR THREE HUNDRED AND SIXTY−FOUR DAYS ONLY, and for this reason they will go Wrong as to the Months and Seasons and Sabbaths and Festivals, and they will eat all kinds of blood with all kinds of flesh.
OTHER LUNAR/LUNI-SOLAR CALENDARS
Noticeably, the much-touted lunar calendars which are 354 days, again go against the warning in the book of Jubilees.
This lunar calendar says the new moon starts the month and that new moon is the first day of the month. The Sabbaths are then always on fixed days of the month: the 8th, 15th, 22nd and 29th.
This calendar can easily be debunked when it is revealed that scriptural Sabbaths did indeed fall on dates that were not the 8th, 15th, 22nd or 29th. Just go to Lunar Sabbath Debunked.
NEW MOON OR NEW MONTH
Additionally, their calendar is based on-premise of the term “new moon” being in scripture. However, the English translation often rendered new moon should have been rendered new month (see from about minute 44 in the video below).
The mistranslation of the Hebrew yerach (which means “month”) to be yareach (which means “moon”) has caused an entire calendar to be based on a false premise.
As a result of this calendar, the lunar Sabbath varies on different days over time.
See Related: Lunar Sabbath Debunked.
SATURDAY IS SABBATH IN OVER 100 LANGUAGES
What’s more, the name Sabbath is used to describe the 7th day in over 100 languages worldwide. That means there was a fixed 7th day in ancient times, not one that floated around. Importantly, the lunar calendar says the 7th day called Saturday is not the Sabbath day.
Furthermore, the video below does an excellent job of debunking all the lunar and lunisolar calendars as well as the Gregorian calendar. It says all I want to say and more.
So the task for me continued until I got to the Enoch calendar. This is the calendar found in the book of Enoch, which is a solar calendar of 364 days.
Then I found out about the Zadokite calendar found at Qumran. Here are some details.
In 1948, there was a great find at Qumran. In a cave in that location, many manuscripts where found that predate the scriptures from which our modern English scriptures were translated.
Every book of the Bible except the book of Esther was found there. Additionally, fragments of the book of Enoch and the book of Jubilees were also found there.
It was once the home of the Essenes and Zadokite priests.
A calendar was found there at Qumran that gave detail of the calendar the Zadokites used at the time. It is based on the 364 days Enoch calendar. This is the Zadokite calendar to which I was led.
A Little History about the Qumran Scrolls
The following excerpt is from https://www.bibliotecapleyades.net/scrolls_deadsea/uncovered/uncovered04.htm
The calendar texts from Qumran Cave 4 are numerous and significant. They comprise eighteen texts (4Q319-330 and 4Q337), not including many which, while not strictly related to a calendar, present a calendar system.
Especially noteworthy is the absence among the Qumran find is any text advocating a different calendar. This absence is important because the calendar found in the Qumran materials was only one of several in use and seems to have represented a minority position.
The calendar texts are, therefore, central to any attempt to understand the significance of the Dead Sea Scrolls. In order to follow the rather technical expositions of these texts, one must know a few facts about the calendar they advocate, and about the priestly courses (mishmarot) which served in the Temple at Jerusalem.
The Zadokite calendar is purely solar, based on a particular understanding of the Creation account found in Genesis. In its exclusive reliance on the sun, it stands in stark contrast to later Rabbinic Judaism, which followed a lunisolar calendar of 354 days relying mainly on the moon.
Earlier, the Pharisaic forerunners of Rabbinic Judaism seem to have followed an even more lunar-oriented calendar, though from the evidence of the Qumran texts, the lunisolar calendar seems already to have gained currency during at least some of the period of the Scrolls.
In the system that finally emerged, probably under Greco-Roman influence, in Rabbinic Judaism at the end of the fourth century AD, extra lunar months were intercalated seven times in every nineteen years to produce the kind of harmonization necessary to ensure that the calendar remained fixed to the seasons of the solar cycle.
The Muslims, for their part, reflecting probably an earlier phase of this historical process, never made the complicated mathematical and calendrical intercalations necessary for passage from a lunar to a lunisolar calendar.
Although the authors of the Qumran calendrical texts disdained the lunisolar calendar, a number of their writings synchronize the two versions. The reasons for this synchronization are not entirely clear, but they may have found it necessary to be able to point out errors with the current system and to know the correct answers.
The only question that must be asked is whether this calendar goes back to Maccabean times, as the third text on Priestly Courses implies – or even earlier – and whether the Maccabeans themselves preferred it before the Pharisees took over with the rise of Herod once and for all. However this may be, the anti-Pharisaic and consequently, the anti-Herodian character of the calendar cannot be denied.
Zadok Priestly Order
Let us never forget, that the Zadok priests were lauded in the book of Ezekiel for having kept the charge of the Most High, even when other Levites and fellow Israelites went astray. As such, a special inheritance has been laid up for them in the coming kingdom of YAHUAH.
Eze 48:10-11 And for them, even for the priests, shall be this holy oblation; toward the north five and twenty thousand in length, and toward the west ten thousand in breadth, and toward the east ten thousand in breadth, and toward the south five and twenty thousand in length: and the sanctuary of YAHUAH shall be in the midst thereof.
It shall be for the priests that are sanctified of the sons of Zadok; which have kept my charge, which went not astray when the children of Israel went astray, as the Levites went astray.
For this reason, we believe they still kept the charge while in their exile in Qumran.
Consequently, we believe their version of the calendar to be was what was faithfully preserved from the time YAHUAH told Moses that this was the beginning of months (Exo 12:2).
To make our belief even more profound is the fact that the calendars found in the Qumran scrolls were reckoned not only by months but also by the rotation of the priestly courses (mishmarot).
The courses would come into Jerusalem for service at the temple for one week, then rotate out as the next group arrived to serve.
Qumran texts relied upon this ‘eternal cycle’ not only for their calendar but also for their chronology and history. Every Sabbath, month, year and feast bore the name of a priestly family.
The priestly rotation required six years before the same group would be serving once again in the same week of the year. The order of the priestly courses was originally determined by lot, and is laid out in 1 Chr. 24:7-18 as follows:
The exile of the Zadok order
In 167 BCE, King Antiochus returned to Jerusalem after his second campaign in Egypt, and he immediately banned the Hebrew religion and the Zadok Priestly order and prohibited all religious practices.
He dedicated the Temple in Jerusalem to Zeus, the Lord of Heaven (Baal Shamen), and ordered the Hebrew people to worship Zeus and to participate in the festival honoring Dionysus, who was Zeus’ son, (who was called Bacchus by the Romans), and Dionysus/Bacchus was known as the “dying and rising god” as he was “twice-born.”
This festival, called Bacchanalia, was held on March 16th and March 17th to pollute the Hebrew Spring Equinox Day and New Year’s Day. When King Antiochus began sacrificing swine and making abominable offerings in the Temple, this began the Maccabean revolt (1 Maccabees Chapter 1, and 2 Maccabees Chapters 4, 6 and 7).
After the death of King Antiochus, in 164 BCE, some of the Hebrew priests tried to restore the Solar Calendar, but the Greek “New Moon” influence was all around them. Later, in 359 CE, Hillel II introduced the fixed calculated New Moon Calendar which is based on the conjunction of the moon, and it is the Lunar Calendar that has been used by Jews and others to this day to determine the 1st Day of the Months and the Annual Feast Days.
However, the term “New Moon” (yareach chadash יָרֵחַ חָדָשׁ) ) is not written anywhere in the Hebrew Scriptures.
Source: Torah is Light (link in resources below).
In my search for the scriptural calendar, the Zadokite calendar is the most convincing one I have found. This article by no means is intended to be convincing. Rather it is just an introduction as to how I came to find the Zadokite calendar.
The resources shared below are a good starting point, as well as the detailed videos shared below. Together, they will show why I believe this is the real calendar of scripture.
VIDEOS EXPLAINING THE ZADOKITE CALENDAR
This will not be one of those articles explaining the calendar in details. Instead, I will leave a few resources that thoroughly explain the Zadokite calendar.
DOWNLOAD ZADOKITE CALENDAR
The 2021-2022 Zadokite Qumran calendar is now available courtesy of Zadok Way. Download it from the link below. To save to your computer, right click, and then save link.
Here is the previous year’s calendar (2020-2021):