After creating man in His own image, God's first pronouncement was one of blessing. (Genesis 1:28) He made His desire to bless creation known in Scriptures and sealed that desire when Jesus came to earth so that we could have life, "and have it to the full." (John 10:10) I wonder; however, if the Church is missing the fullness of the blessing by not understanding the times and the seasons. God puts together kairos seasons--times when there are divine alignments of circumstances and situations that grant us opportunities to take more territory and grow into the image of Christ. Such an opportunity occurs on April 6, 2019, which is also the Nisan 1 and the Sabbath.
Robert Heidler, in his book A Time to Advance, says this about God's design for pouring out blessings: "Blessings come to those who align themselves with God's purposes and timing...God introduced three very important cycles for His people in the Bible, which were designed to break the power of the enemy and draw them closer to God with an ever-increasing revelation of His blessing.
The weekly cycle of blessing consists of six days for work and the seventh day for rest and is called the Sabbath or Shabbat in Hebrew. The seventh day is to be a time to rest and meditate on the goodness of God. It is a time for our refreshment and renewal. Scripture calls the monthly blessing cycle "the new moon festival." It occurs on the first of each month on the Hebrew calendar that is based on the moon's cycles. The Hebrew name is Rosh Chodesh or "Head of the Month." God's people are to set aside time to gather together to celebrate the goodness of God by bringing Him a "firstfruits" offering that recognizes that He is the one who supplies all our needs. God's people also study the events of history during the month and seek Him for how to live out the month accordingly. The yearly gatherings are called the appointed times or Feasts of the Lord and are described in several passages in the Bible. (e.g. Exodus 23:14-17 and Leviticus 23) They are called "Pilgrim Feasts" because the Jews made a pilgrimage to Jerusalem during the three feasts of Passover, Pentecost and Tabernacles. Each feast is meant to draw us progressively closer to God.
There is a unique opportunity for us to join God's cycle of blessings on Saturday, April 6. I believe this is a particularly significant day because of the convergence of several events. April 6 is the Sabbath, the Head of the Month (Nissan 1) and the Biblical New Year. "This month (Nissan) is to be for you the first month, the first month of your year." (Exodus 12:2) During Nissan there are three important festivals: Passover, Unleavened Bread and Firstfruits. Nissan means "the beginning of miracles," and the fact that it occurs in the spring time when the earth is awakening before our eyes is so encouraging! God's desire is that we begin the new year and month by remembering how He delivered and redeemed us. Jesus was our Passover Lamb and redeemed us through His blood. He died and was resurrected that we might be delivered from the bondage of sin and brought into a position of blessing.
There are two more events that converge with Nissan 1 (April 6) and the Sabbath. First, according to Exodus 40:1-2, the tabernacle or Tent of Meeting was set up on Nissan 1. Interesting! But it gets better. In addition, on April 6, 1865, the Battle of Sailor's Creek took place between the Union and Confederate forces on the acreage of Lockett's Farm. The Union army prevailed and set into motion the signing of the document that would give freedom to the slaves in the United States and end the civil war.
Could it be that God is highlighting freedom from all forms of bondage and slavery for this Biblical year? Could it be that He is calling us to cleanse our temples so that we are free to move forward into more intimacy with Him? Nissan is the deliverance month and the beginning of God's yearly cycle of blessings for us. Here is what I do know. God chooses certain times and places for revelation and new blessings that are strategic for our growth and for us to walk into our destinies. This could be our time and season to gain the fullness of our inheritance. Celebrate this special day and month and year--One of deliverance, redemption and new life. Let us pursue the fullness of God's blessings and keep our eyes upon Him as He draws us closer.
Joan E. Mathias