These photos were taken in early June and I wrote captions in the album. I just took so long to put them together into this post. Procrastinating, as always!
I had my birthday in the past month (07/2017) and the date itself has so many sevens! And my age also has so many 7’s and 8’s. So, I believe God is really speaking to me about Sabbath rest, the end of the “shemitah” cycle, and new beginnings (the number 8).
7 is the number of God, in many ways. For instance, there are 7 days in a week. God made the world in 6 days and He rested on the 7th day. It is the day of rest, a Sabbath rest for God and for His people, too. The 7th day is very important to God. The Bible talks about entering God’s rest on the Sabbath Day. Many preachers equate that to coming to know Jesus as your Lord and Savior, i.e. having true eternal rest in Christ even before the body finally rests from its labors at the end of its earthly life. (From Hebrews 4:1-11.) But I think there is more to that.
In the Old Testament, the 7th year is known as “shemitah,” the year when debts are reset to zero, the year when farmers rest their farm and themselves by not planting nor harvesting that year. They just eat from whatever grows from the ground (grains or fruit trees) naturally, and they let the poor people harvest those as well, besides the birds and animals that naturally feed on them. It is the year of rest both for the land and the farmers and farm hands. That’s how they naturally allow the land to replenish its nutrients and how their bodies rest from the stresses of life. Also, the jubilee year is on the 50th year, at the end of 7 “shemitah” cycles (7 x 7 years). That’s the year when slaves are allowed to be set free, if they desire to be set free. These are all God’s design!
Also, the Holy Spirit is known as the 7 Spirits of God (Isaiah 11:2) and the rainbow, the sign of God’s Covenant with Noah and all flesh, has 7 colors – red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo and purple. The lampstand (“menorah”) in the Holy Place inside the Tabernacle had seven lamps.
So, was last year a year of rest for me? It was a year of many struggles but it did turn out into rest. Let’s just say I had to fight to get that rest. LOL!
Well, 7 may seem to be the number of God but 8 is the number of Jesus! According to this site
, “eight is the number of Jesus, whose name in the Greek adds up to 888.”(1)
Every 8th day is the beginning of the new 7-day cycle and every 8th year is a new beginning for the “shemitah” year cycle. The 8th is the time of new beginnings and resurrections! Jesus is the resurrection and the life (John 11:25). Thus, Jesus always brings us new life, a new hope, a new beginning – if we want to have those – by believing in Him and following His ways. He said, “I am the Way, the Truth and the Life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” (John 14:6)
So, this month is the first month of the year of new beginnings for me. Yes, I believe that by faith!
“7th is completion but the 8th is a new beginning!” Even the prophets of our day say so. Watch this vid
. Just pull the toggle to 14:25 to hear what Cindy Jacobs has to say about the year 2017.(2)
When I turned into a born-again believer of Christ at age 23 I decided on my life verse which happened to be John 14:21. Whoa, more sevens in there, like 5! And a few years ago I had a dream from God which I didn’t understand but as I sought God it became clear to me. Based on that dream my life verse changed to Job 28:28; whoa, that’s 8 sevens in there, and two 8’s!
John 14:21 “He who has my commandments and keeps them, he it is who loves me and he loves me will be loved by my Father and I will love him and manifest myself to him.”
Ever wondered what the secret to seeing God’s face is? It’s in that verse above!
Job 28:28 “And he said to man, ‘The fear of the LORD – that is wisdom, and to shun evil is understanding.’ “
The more popular verse says, “The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom…” (Psalm 111:10, Prov. 1:7, Prov. 9:10)
Why is Job’s version different? Psalms is mostly attributed to King David and Proverbs to his son King Solomon. Whether they were the specific authors of these particular Psalm and Proverbs verses mentioned above is not really clear from commentaries. For one, Psalm 111 is not listed among those attributed to King David in particular, but just to a “psalmist.” But suffice it to say that this was the popular “version” in David’s and Solomon’s times and those were times of great success and glory in the nation of Israel. Job on the other hand, though I would also consider him a “king” in his own right, materially, was in the “worm” state when he spoke his version: “The fear of the Lord, that is wisdom…,” and he was quoting God Himself. I believe we truly get wisdom when God brings us to the “wilderness” of life, to the “between a rock and a hard” kind of places in our journeys; thus, Job was able to crystallize that for us and strip the scripture to its simplest form: “The fear of the LORD, that is wisdom….” Hence, whenever we lack wisdom, the simple rule of thumb is, “What does the word of God say? Do you tremble at His word? Do you have the fear of the LORD in your heart, right here, right now?” We need to be in that place where we tremble at God’s word, then we make the wisest decision.
Our special needs child went through a major spiritual attack in March until about end of July. It was a time of great testing for me and my family. But God brought a major victory and it changed all of us spiritually. From that experience we saw “death” of old selves and resurrection in our spiritual lives and our faith in God. We truly need to see death if we are to see new life! It’s the way of God. (1 Sam. 2:6) It also opened my eyes and brought me deeper into what the Gospel of Peace / Shalom truly means. It brings order into our lives. God’s Covenant of Shalom is for families and households, not just individuals. God is good!
“7 is for completion and 8 is for new beginnings!”
All Scripture references are from the 1984 New International Version, unless otherwise specified.