When it comes to holidays, both sacred and secular, I’ve heard the statement, “I don’t need a certain day to tell me to observe something.” For example, with a day like Thanksgiving, some well meaning person may quip, “We need to be thankful everyday. Not just one day out of the year.” While this sentiment is true, these observances do serve a purpose. First, let’s take a look at Scripture to get our bearings. Then, we will look at the practical implications. Maybe, holidays can be under stood as more than time off. Then again, maybe I am thinking to much.
Religious Feasts of Israel
In addition to the weekly Sabbath, Old Testament Israel observed seven feasts: Passover, Unleavened Bread, Firstfruits, the Feast of Weeks (Pentecost), the Feast of Trumpets, the Day of Atonement, and the Feast of Booths (Tabernacles or Tents). The question of “so what” may be asked.
First, God said so in Leviticus 23:1-2, “And the Lord spake unto Moses, saying, Speak unto the children of Israel, and say unto them, Concerning the feasts of the Lord, which ye shall proclaim to be holy convocations, even these are my feasts.” However, if you continue to read you will see repeated a call to teach on these days their unique meanings. This was done to pass on the generational values and for the people of God, the theological underpinnings of God’s work through sacred actions.
Education & Refocus
So, while we may know the importance of of a particular value or theological typology, the same can not be said of everyone. Holidays stand as days to educate children and outsiders to a culture. It also serves as an opportunity to refocus our lives with what is important. No one is above the distractions of life and getting pulled away from what is essentially the right things in life.
Or, again, I am just thinking to much. 🙂