1. In Judaism, Shavuot is known also as the Festival of Weeks or the Feast of Pentecost. God determined that it should be celebrated exactly seven weeks (49 days) after the first Passover in Egypt (Exodus 12).
2. At this first Passover, Moses instructed the Israelites, who were being enslaved in Egypt, to put the blood of a lamb on their door frames to protect them from the angel of death that subsequently devastated Egypt just prior to the exodus (Exodus 11; 12:1-30). This was God's final act to free the Israelites from their enslavement, and the blood was to be a sign that they were under God's protection. None of the Israelites who placed the blood on their door frames suffered loss, but every Egyptian household lost their firstborn. Pharaoh eventually acceded to God's demand, through Moses, to "Let my people go."
3. Shavuot celebrates the freedom from slavery in Egypt and the giving of the Law, which is the Ten Commandments and the basics of the first five books of the Torah (the Old Testament) to Moses on Mount Sinai (Exodus 20-34). The Israelites began a new chapter in their relationship with God. The Ten Commandments trained God's people in avoiding certain thoughts and actions that have a negative spiritual effect on their relationship with him, and the Law trained them in the physical aspects of their social and other interactions in accordance with God's commands.
4. When Jesus resurrected from the dead on the third day after his crucifixion, he defeated death and paid the penalty for all sins, past, present and future. He became the eternal Passover Lamb whose blood was shed for our protection (1 Corinthians 5:7-8; Luke 22-23). Baptism by full immersion in water connects us with Jesus' shed blood (Matthew 26:27-29; 1 Peter 3:20-21). As the blood on the door frames protected the Israelites in Egypt, our Messiah's shed blood at his crucifixion now offers eternal protection so that those who believe and appropriate the protection of his blood will not experience spiritual death. His blood is symbolized by the cross, which is placed spiritually on the back of the neck of a person who has been cleansed by his blood and sealed with the indwelling Holy Spirit. It is symbolic of a yoke on the doorpost of the soul that helps to protect the soul from corruption and death. He calls us to yoke ourselves to him daily and follow in his steps (Matthew 16:24-25; 11:29; 1 Peter 2:21). Merely making the sign of the cross on oneself can be a daily reminder to remain yoked to our Messiah and Passover Lamb, and to walk as he walked (1 John 2:6).
5. Ten days prior to Shavuot, and forty days after His resurrection, Jesus ascended into heaven, after warning his apostles to stay in Jerusalem until they receive the gift promised by God, the indwelling Holy Spirit (Luke 24:49; Ezekiel 37:14, 39:29; Zechariah 12:10; Joel 2:28; Acts 2:1). They received God's gift on Shavuot or Pentecost. It was the day on which God's Holy Spirit descended first on Jesus' apostles to lead, teach, sanctify them and enable them to do the work of their spiritual ministry in preparation for the coming kingdom of God (Acts 2: 1-4; 2 Thessalonians 2:13; 1 Peter 1).
6. For Israel, Shavuot is a celebration of freedom from their enslavement in Egypt and the first fruits of the wheat harvest (Exodus 34:22). For the church, the sons and daughters of Zion, Shavuot or Pentecost is a celebration of freedom from their enslavement to sin and depravity, as well as the first human fruits of the Gospel message. The Gospel's first human fruits were the apostles and the 3,000 people who were immediately baptized on Pentecost when they heard the apostle Peter's message and received God's indwelling Holy Spirit (Acts 2:5-46; Isaiah 66:8; Ezekiel 11:29-20). Receiving God's indwelling Holy Spirit is mandatory for anyone who seeks to be part of God's millennial kingdom (John 3:3; Revelation 20).
7. The Holy Spirit is God's Spirit enabling man to seek to become like God in righteousness and holiness (Matthew 5:48). The indwelling Holy Spirit seals us and marks us as people belonging to God (Ephesians 4:17-32; 1:13-14). He embodies the spiritual laws by which we should live. Instead of rules governing the physical aspects of the life of God's people, as was given to Moses, the Holy Spirit is now capable of indwelling a cleansed humanity. He directly leads and guides us in the spiritual ways of God in order to ensure the soul's protection. He is the law and we now can all "know" the Lord (Jeremiah 31:34). It is the Holy Spirit that Adam and Eve lost after they disobeyed God, hence the nakedness of their soul. They no longer had a protective aural covering.
8. After the giving of the law on Sinai, the Holy Spirit proceeded to lead and guide the Israelites for forty years until their arrival in the Promised Land (Exodus 13:21; 16). He appeared to them as a pillar of fire in the sky, but today he indwells God's new temples--bodies that have been cleansed by the blood of Jesus (Ezekiel 36:27, 37:14; 1 Corinthians 6:19). God expects that we would use the fire of God's Holy Spirit in the same way that Moses used it--to reveal and lead the path to the Promised Land, the coming kingdom of God (Exodus 40:36-38). We not only must allow the indwelling Holy Spirit to purify and sanctify us, we also must stop when God says stop and go only when he says go.
9. Pentecost is the culmination in the spiritual realm of this process planned by God for centuries. Just as the Jews were saved because of the blood on their door posts when the angel of death visited Egypt, so every disciple of Jesus is saved by the blood of Jesus when they demonstrate acceptance through their baptism. God is the God of Jews, Christians, Muslims and everyone who seeks a relationship with him as God (Isaiah 65:16-25; Zechariah 2; Micah 4:2). He now says that the celebratory banquet is ready (Matthew 22:1-14; Isaiah 25; Galatians 4). The plan of redemption that began when he made clothing to cover the nakedness of Adam and Eve (Genesis 3:21) has come full circle as we once again can have his indwelling Holy Spirit. God will reject anyone who rejects his plan of redemption and creates a different plan (Isaiah 66:1-4; Mark 8:38; Matthew 22:11-14).
10. On the cover of my new book (see www.rekehahisaac.us) is depicted the fire of God's Holy Spirit. I encourage everyone who so desires to look deeply into the flames and experience its purifying power. As occurred during the exodus from Egypt, it is the Holy Spirit who will lead and guide you in the days ahead during the global exodus from the world's enslavement to sin and depravity. God's Holy Spirit will direct you in exactly what you are to do, what you are to say, and where you are to go in order to escape the plots of the devil who will endeavor to draw you back into his enslavement (John 12:49-50; Exodus 4:15).