Have you ever wished that you were able to understand the times so that you could make good decisions for the future and live the way God intended? I have, and see that we have a model for this in Leah's 5th son with Jacob. Issachar is his name, and it means "to be a reward or wage." He was a man who understood the times and was a hard worker. Before Jacob died he spoke a prophetic word to Issachar that recognized his son's strong work ethic and willingness to do whatever it takes to secure a pleasant resting place. When the tribes marched, Issachar went second after Judah and before Zebulun. These three tribes camped together on the east side of the tabernacle.
1 Chronicles 12:32 tells us how the tribe of Issachar joined David in battle and "understood the times and knew what Israel should do." It is no wonder that they marched after Judah. I think that this tribe's understanding of the times helped to lead them into prosperity. Here is what Moses said to Issachar: "They will summon peoples to the mountain and there offer sacrifices of righteousness; they will feast on the abundance of the seas, on the treasures hidden in the sand." (Deuteronomy 33:19)
Monday was the day that we moved from the month of Nissan to the month of Iyar. Iyar is also called Ziv, which means “radiance.” VAV is the Hebrew letter associated with this month and means "connection or linking." Indeed, Iyar is the connecting month between Nissan (Passover) and Sivan (Pentecost) just as Issachar is the tribe that links Judah (praise) to Zebulun (dwelling/habitation). (Remember that the place where we dwell will always be connected to our praise of God.) This is our month to receive increased revelation (light) and pursue new levels of relationship with the Lord.
During the month of Iyar the children of Israel were learning about their God. He showed them that He is "The God Who Heals"--Yahweh Rapha--by healing the bitter waters and revealing that He also heals people. He showed them that He is "The Lord Who Provides"--Yahweh Jaira--by providing quail and manna. He also revealed that He is "The Lord, My Banner of Victory"--Yahweh Nissi--when He helped the Israelites win the battle against the Amalekites.
The secrets of God's covenant with His people were revealed to them in the month of Iyar. Just as Issachar was blessed with revelation and understanding, those who seek Him may have these gifts. "You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart." (Jeremiah 29:13) Jesus told His disciples, "The knowledge of the secrets of the kingdom of heaven has been given to you..." (Matthew 13:11) Prophet and prophetic dream interpreter, Doug Addison, says, "Every year, the weeks following Passover bring about a lot of changes, as God is still parting seas and giving us prophetic strategies to get through things that have been holding us back."
This is the month when God wants to strengthen us for the coming months in this year. Isn't it appropriate that it is connected with the constellation Taurus (the bull)? Here is what Psalm 84 says: "Blessed are those whose strength is in You, who have set their hearts on pilgrimage...They go from strength to strength, till each appears before God in Zion." (Verses 5 and 7)
This is the time for us to seek the Lord and ask Him to activate our prophetic voices. For those who pursue Him, God has established this month as a time to reveal the secrets of heaven and to prepare us to receive the increase of His Spirit next month. 1 Kings 6:37 tells us that the foundation for the temple was laid during Ziv (Iyar). This is also the time for us to lay the foundation of God in our lives so that His temple can be built in us. Call upon the Lord, dear ones. Pursue Him with everything that is within you and pay attention as He imparts revelation and understanding from heaven.
Joan E. Mathias