Omer: Making Every Day Count

From the day after the Sabbath, the day you brought the sheaf of the wave offering, count off seven full weeks. — Leviticus 23:15

Most people are familiar with the holiday of Passover, which commemorates the Exodus of the children of Israel from Egypt. Many, however, are probably not as familiar with the Festival of Weeks,Shavuot, which occurs seven weeks later. My Christian friends will be more familiar with this festival from its Greek name, Pentecost, which in the Jewish faith is a celebration of the giving of theTorah on Mount Sinai.

However, it is the time period in-between these two holidays that we will be discussing in this month’s Limmud. Called the Omer, this is a profoundly important time period on the Jewish calendar. In fact, the Omer connects the holidays of Passover and Shavuot. Moreover, the Omer gives meaning to the holiday of Passover and justifies the holiday of Shavuot.

In this month’s Limmud, we will study the laws and significance surrounding this little-known, yet hugely significant ritual. We will explore its connection to the two holidays that are two of the most holy celebrations of the Jewish year. More importantly, we will discover ways that this ancient ritual is still very much relevant today. Through its modern-day observance, we will come to learn the power of this time period and the potential that it carries for each of us who love God’s Word and seek to grow closer to Him.

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