God’s Reckoning and Support

You need two calendars.

Did you know we just passed through a New Moon? It was on the 18th. Most of us who passed through Western Christianity struggle with the lunar calendar. Yet it’s quite clear the Old Testament put quite a lot of emphasis on the lunar cycle. There were ritual observations of it. But it’s not a question of lunar versus solar calendars; both were tracked. A critical element of this was the provision of God:

And God said, Let there be lights in the expanse of the heavens to divide between the day and the night. And let them be for signs, and for seasons, and for days and years, and let them be for lights in the expanse of the heavens to give light upon the earth. (Genesis 1:14-15 MKJV)

In other words, it’s so you’ll know what to expect. So it’s on you to pay attention; otherwise you are the one who suffers. Your testimony of shalom depends on this.

On the one hand, you could reduce it down to established science and know that there are complex-yet-subtle effects on human existence. You already know about ocean tides, I’m sure. Mariners pay a lot of attention to the lunar cycle for that reason; it’s a matter of gravity. They also pay attention to the slight variation in the moon’s distance from the earth as it travels in an elliptic orbit. Gravity pulling from two directions will affect the tides and it will most certainly affect your body. Again, it can be quite subtle, but quite real.

For example, if women paid attention to it, they would find God blesses them in various ways regarding their menstrual cycles. And while it’s more subtle for men, our bodies do respond to the lunar cycle with variations in different kinds of energy and rest.

On the other hand, the Bible offers substantial warnings not to turn this into another religion, as if the sun, moon and stars were deities. Don’t worship the creature, but the Creator. And I note in passing that while the stellar cycles do signal something to us, it’s not because the stars have much of a direct effect like the sun and moon. Pay attention to the messengers, but don’t bow down to them.

I’ll be honest: I’m not really good with this stuff. I have a hard time paying attention to what time of day it is, much less all the other stuff going on. There’s a good reason for that — I have a very prominent internal prophetic regime — but it doesn’t change what God has done and what He demands of us. I wish we had a trustworthy source on this, because no one of us can do it all.

So this raises another major problem we have to face here in our virtual parish. In a real physical parish, we would have different folks with different divine callings who would contribute their gifts and blessings to the common welfare of the parish. It’s not as if we would issue swords of any kind with powers of enforcement, but that each member would contribute something useful, and others could take what they needed. We can emulate that to some degree in our virtual parish, but it’s not the same.

Still, if someone in our circle of members felt led to keep track of the lunar cycles and such with a respect to Biblical traditions, it would sure make life better for all of us. There is no good widget for this that I can install to the blog interface, and I don’t want to entangle this blog with someone else’s tracker schemes. But the point here is that if you have a specialty site or blog that can contribute to the common welfare of our parish, I’d love to know about it. That covers the whole range of things we need to pursue Biblical Law and shalom.

Final note: We aren’t slaves to what came before. The Old Testament is not directly binding in the sense of ritual law, but is indicative in the sense of parable. We need to discover the blessings and promises as they apply in our context with all the crap that belongs to our age. There is a lot of silly nonsense, and some quite legalistic, offered out there on the Net about this very issue of lunar calendaring. Learn, but follow your own heart.

About Ed Hurst

Disabled Veteran, prophet of God's Laws, Bible History teacher, wannabe writer, volunteer computer technician, cyclist, Social Science researcher
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16 Responses to God’s Reckoning and Support

  1. Oooh, what a tantalizing thought. I’m an old hand at using the lunar calendar (lots of gardeners are) but I wouldn’t know a thing about how to tie it to Biblical traditions. I was just remarking to Paul how odd it is that Christmas is tied to a specific day but Easter moves around because it’s still determined by the phase of the moon.

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  2. Ed Hurst says:

    Well, for example, Moses mandates a ritual celebration on the new moon. Some would argue it merely reflects the agronomy-centric life of Ancient Israel, but my reading of ancient literature indicates it was much more. Christmas as a holiday was established under the Roman Emperor Constantine, a devotee of Sun worship. Easter is based on the Old Testament Passover.

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  3. Mr. T. says:

    I spotted this video on Youtube: Connecting with the Intuitive Guidance of the Heart, Deborah Rozman, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=apK8h1B9UbQ . The heart can sense even the future, maybe! Graphs and all. πŸ™‚

    What do you think about HeartMath Institute’s (https://www.heartmath.org/) research, techniques or products? Seemed pretty interesting to me.

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  4. Ed Hurst says:

    You probably don’t remember it, Mr. T, but we’ve addressed the Heart Math Institute before. They have the basic facts right, but insist on clinging to Western false mythology about what the heart does. So aside from the very fundamental principles of the heart as a sensory organ and its independent “brain,” they don’t have a freaking clue. I recommend folks stay away from them. As for the video; I’ll reserve comment until I watch it. There may be a second reply to your comment.

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  5. All of Creation certainly responds to the phases of the moon, and I think human beings do as well, whether we are aware of it or not. Paying attention those periods of transition like the New and the Full moon can show us underlying patterns to what might otherwise appear to be random fluctuations in our bodies and emotional states. It’s interesting how different cultures *appear* to view the affects of the moon differently, at least on the surface. The modern Wiccans would say that the Full Moon is a women’s festival; my Native American Medicine Woman friend taught me that at the Full Moon “men hold the power”. In both cases, when in sync with the natural lunar cycle, women are most fertile during the full moon. Make of that what you will! lol.

    Of course there’s no real conflict between the solar and the lunar calendars, just like there’s no conflict between the sun and the moon or between men and women. It just appears so sometimes. πŸ™‚

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  6. Ed Hurst says:

    No conflict: I agree wholeheartedly.

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  7. Ed Hurst says:

    As I expected, Mr. T., that video is right out of the HMI book. And that book is wrong. Their people place all their emphasis on the heart as the seat of emotion, a primary flaw based on Western mythology. Here on this blog, the heart is the seat of the will, a moral intelligence, as indicated by the Ancient Near Eastern civilizations, of which the Bible is a part.

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  8. I watched the video too (well, bits) and I have another beef – that using charts and measurements to “prove” the workings of the heart is just about as wrong-headed as can be.

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  9. Ed Hurst says:

    To be honest, I didn’t get that far with it, Christine.

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  10. Ha! Since when did I have more patience than you?

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  11. Ed Hurst says:

    Probably more a matter of curiosity πŸ˜‰

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  12. Mr. T. says:

    My memory probably isn’t the best, so I may have asked the question before, but I’m still often a sucker for empiricism and “simple facts”. Especially in other contexts. Even if they seem a bit silly sometimes. Apparently the HeartMath stuff didn’t register very strongly the last time since I forgot…

    Thanks for the comments!

    Life in general and spirituality is more complex, though.

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  13. Jay DiNitto says:

    I have a book written by a friend’s father, outlining the Ancient Hebrew view of the constellations. I haven’t heard of it anywhere else and I’m wondering if it was pulled out of the air. **rimshot**

    But seriously…I’ll try to find it and look into it.

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  14. Ed Hurst says:

    Here’s the crazy thing, Mr. T.: One of the bigshots at HMI has studied the ANE. He uses the frequent mention of the heart-mind as leverage to convince people we should take the heart seriously. He goes on to insist that the ANE cultures were not simply using the heart as a metaphor, that they had a significant body of tradition about how it worked. Then he ignores all of that and inserts his own Far Eastern bias into how he uses all of that research. The HMI product is a mixture of Western “science” and Far Eastern mysticism (defined as Indus River and east). They even admit to favoring the Far Eastern brand to the exclusion of every other ancient tradition, so it’s Hindu, Buddhist, etc., but totally zero about the ANE.

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  15. Hey awesome blog, I do keep sabbath follow the dietary laws, and use the names Yahoveh and Yeshua and Ruach Kadesh. But I believe its only a PART of the whole. The Message of the Gospel is more relevant right now and the Ministry gift of Evangelist.

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  16. Ed Hurst says:

    Thanks. Not enough people even know what their convictions demand, much less follow them.

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