Yeshua observed the Holy Days as set forth by the Parushim (Pharisees) and he taught his disciples to as well (Matthew 23:2,3). This leads to several questions. What happened to the Parushim after 70 C.E.? Was there a change made in how to determine holy days by blinded Israelites? Were there burdensome rules placed upon Yahweh’s true lunar/solar calendar after 70 C.E.? I believe there were changes made that were not authorized by Yahweh, Yeshua, or the Apostles.

The “Present Jewish Calendar” was introduced by Hillel ha-Nasi II in 358/59 C.E. This corresponds to the same time period in which many false doctrines arose among believers. After the death of the Apostles and the firstfruits of the Jews, the remaining Gentile converts, who were not as strong in the faith, yielded to many of these false doctrines. Any changes made in the determination of the calendar would have gone unopposed by true believers.

Proponents of the Hebrew calendar say it was passed down through Moses. If that is so, how did the Israelites back then reckon time so accurately as to be able to follow Postponement Rules #3 & 4?

Rule 3: “Any time the molad of Tishri occurs in a common year, on a Tuesday after 20 seconds past 3:11 A.M., the Feast of Trumpets is postponed to Wednesday – and, by rule 2, again postponed to Thursday.”

Rule 4: “When the molad of Tishri – in a common year immediately following an intercalary year – occurs on a Monday, on or after 43 1/3 seconds past 9:32 A.M., the Feast of Trumpets is postponed to a Tuesday.”

Did they have the means to determine seconds or minutes, or even more impossible, fractions of seconds? How could they possibly know when the molad (conjunction) of Tishri was if the moon is invisible for several days during the time of conjunction? Since they could not be that accurate in Moses’ day, that tells me that at least those two rules were added hundreds of years later when man became capable of such accuracy.

Assuming they did have the capability to measure time that accurately, The Mishnah proves the Jews were not keeping time according to the Hillel calendar. Keep in mind The Mishnah was written around 200 C.E. whereas the Hillel calendar was introduced in 358 C.E.

In Pesahim  7:10 B we read,

“[If] the sixteenth of Nisan coincides with the Sabbath, they are to be burned on the seventeenth.”

If the 16th of Nisan [Abib] = Sabbath then,

the 15th of Abib = Friday and,

the 14th of Abib (Passover) = Thursday.

Yet, what does the Hillel Hebrew Calendar teach? According to this calendar, Passover cannot fall on a Tuesday, Thursday, or Sunday. Therefore, this calendar teaches the Jews to keep Passover contrary to what the Mishnah was teaching Jews 150 years earlier.

Another example is found in Menahot 10:1 A, (1) and (2).

“R. Ishmael says, ‘The omer was brought

(1) “on the Sabbath from three seahs [of barley],

(2) “and on a weekday, from five.”

Here again, in speaking of Abib 16 in which the omer (wave sheaf offering) was brought, it could have fallen on a Sabbath or a weekday (including Sunday). If it fell on Sabbath, Abib 14 would be a Thursday. This would again contradict the Hillel Calendar and prove it did not exist since the time of Moses.

The entire Hebrew calendar is based upon the proper determination of the molad of Tishri. If that determination is wrong, all the Holy Days for that year will be incorrect. The reason Tishri 1 is the foundation is because it is the only new moon that is holy. But according to Yahweh’s calendar Abib 1 is the first day of the religious year (Exodus 12:2). Since when does one determine holy days by starting in the seventh month and working backward and forward? Abib 1 is the first day and all succeeding holy days are based on that day.

If the foundation of a building is weak it will collapse. The foundation of the Hebrew calendar is Tishri 1. Since the molad of Tishri 1 can only be determined by scientific computation, which was unavailable to ancient Israel, the entire calendar structure must collapse. The Parushim of Yeshua’s day did not have such scientific capabilities either. Therefore the rules and regulations governing the current Hebrew calendar are man-made and uninspired. They were added by blinded Israelites who did not have Yahweh’s Holy Spirit to guide them.

Yahweh’s calendar is simple and is based on the signs of the lights in the firmament of heaven (Genesis 1:14). We know that the visible sign of the setting of the sun determines the beginning and end of Yahweh’s appointed times. But the visible sign of the new moon is needed to determine the beginning of each month. There is no use in creating such heavenly sights as a sign if they will not be used when sighted. The Hebrew calendar does not use the visible new moon to determine the first day of the month. Instead, Tishri 1 is set by following a list of man-made rules that are manipulated by men to cause the feast days to fall on whatever day pleases them.

The first day of the seventh month is a holy day by Yahweh’s decree. Just as man cannot move the Holy Sabbath to Sunday, he cannot move the Holy High Sabbath of the Day of Trumpets to whatever day suits his needs. Even though the Parushim sat in Moses seat in Yeshua’s day, they would not have had the authority to alter that decree. Psalm 81:3 says, “Blow the trumpet in the new moon, in the time appointed,. . .” Who appointed the time, Yahweh or the Parushim? Genesis 1:14 says Yahweh appoints times, not man.

Consider also Psalm 104:19, “He appointed the moon for seasons:” “Seasons” is the Hebrew “mowadah,” a form of “moed.” In other words, Yahweh appointed the moon for festivals or sacred appointments. Why would He do that if man could set festivals without the use of a visible moon? An invisible moon (the molad of Tishri 1) would not fulfill this verse since the saints of old could not know the exact moment of the molad.

The history of Israel records the use of signal fires on mountain tops to notify the authorities to sanctify the new moon. Why would they use such a signal if they knew well in advance which day was the first of the month? According to the Hebrew calendar, even if they saw the moon it would not matter since their date was previously determined by computation.

1 Samuel 20:5 – “And David said unto Jonathan, Behold, to morrow is the new moon, and I should not fail to sit with the king at meat: but let me go, that I may hide myself in the field unto the third day at even.” Some people use this verse to show that David did not need to see the visible new moon to know when the month began. Since the new moon can be seen on the 29th or 30th day, it is logical to assume that David made this statement on the 29th day knowing that the moon was not seen that evening. Therefore it had to be seen the following evening since no months consist of 31 days.

The Encyclopedia Judaica states that Tishri 1 can occur as much as two days before the visible new moon. That would also mean the full moon would occur two days after the Feast of Tabernacles has begun when, in reality, the full moon should mark the first day of the feast. The same would hold true for the Feast of Unleavened. A great deal of emphasis is placed upon the seat of Moses and who sits in it today. However, it is irrelevant concerning this issue. When the Pharisees in Yeshua’s day had caused the people to break Yahweh’s commandments in order to keep their own traditions, the Messiah let them know about it (Matthew 15:1-20). Since Yeshua kept the feasts with the Jews and never mentioned any calendar errors, we can assume that there weren’t any. If there were calendar errors, then Messiah sinned with them. Yet we know that he was sinless. Therefore, calendar errors arose after Messiah’s day.

Yeshua pointed out the fact that the Pharisees, who sit in Moses’ seat, were causing the people to sin against Yahweh’s commandments. Since we are to sin no more, then we should not follow those who sit in Moses’ seat if they too, cause us to sin.

I do not believe any Jew who has not accepted Yeshua as the Messiah can sit in Moses seat. I base this belief on the Apostle Paul’s parable of the olive tree in Romans 11:17-21. Any Israelite who rejects Messiah and walks in unbelief is as a branch broken off the tree (vs.20). They will not be saved unless they emulate Paul by believing in Yeshua (vs.14). Some Israelites believed and are therefore called “the election” (vs.7). The rest were blinded including those who sat in Moses seat. All that is written from vs.7-15 pertains to them. Yes, they can be grafted onto the tree again, but only if they do not continue in unbelief. 2 Corinthians 3:14-16 says, “But their minds were blinded: for until this day remains the same veil untaken away in the reading of the old testament; which veil is done away in Messiah. But even unto this day, when Moses is read, the veil is upon their heart. Nevertheless when it shall turn to the Master, the veil shall be taken away.” Any modern day Parushim who refuses to believe that Yeshua Messiah has come in the flesh cannot possibly sit in Moses seat.