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Daily manna from the Torah by Dr Ketriel Blad

BeHar 32-1

On the mount

Leviticus 25:1-13

Speak to the Israelites and say to them: 'When you enter the land I am going to give you, the land itself must observe a sabbath to the LORD... 'Count off seven sabbaths of years‹seven times seven years‹so that the seven sabbaths of years amount to a period of forty-nine years. Then have the trumpet sounded everywhere on the tenth day of the seventh month; on the Day of Atonement sound the trumpet throughout your land. Consecrate the fiftieth year and proclaim liberty throughout the land to all its inhabitants. It shall be a jubilee for you; each one of you is to return to his family property and each to his own clan.

Lev. 25:2, 8-10 NIV

When is the next year of jubilee?

The year of jubilee that the state of Israel proclaimed on the 50th anniversary of its foundation is not a year of jubilee from the Torah. The Torah speaks of another kind of jubilee when all the tribes go back to their possessions and the land is restored to its original state according to the borders established through Moshe and conquered under the guidance of Yehoshua.

After the dispersion of the ten tribes of the north in the year 722 B.C.E. there has been no way of celebrating the year of jubilee. However, sabbatical years were counted during the time of both temples. During the time of the second temple the years of jubilee weren't celebrated but they were counted.

After the destruction of Yerushalayim and the beginning of the Diaspora caused by Rome there has been no keeping or counting of the year of shmitah sabbatical year or the year of yovel jubilee in the land of Israel.  

According to Maimonides (1137-1204), in the future, a new counting of the years of shmitah and jubilee on the third return (from the Diaspora by Rome) will start, just as it was done on the second return in the time of Ezra.

In the year 1881-1882 (5642) the first aliyah of the third return was made. The following year was counted as the first year of the seven year cycle of the sabbatical years. Then the first jubilee of the third return was in the year 1931-1932 (5692). The next jubilee was in 1980-1981 (5741) and the next one will be on year 2029-2030 (5790).

The first year of Yeshua's public ministry 27-28 (3788), was a sabbatical year according to ancient historical sources. He also said that his ministry started during a sabbatical year when he cited Isaiah 61:1-2, recorded in Luke 4:16-21. The prophecy in Isaiah 61 speaks of the Messiah's coming during a sabbatical year and a year of jubilee.

If his first coming was during a sabbatical year, it is highly probable that his second coming will be on a year of jubilee. It's also possible that he comes before the year of jubilee to put in order all the world and restore the twelve tribes so that the thousand year messianic kingdom can start on the next year of jubilee.

Time will prove if the counting that started from 1882-1883 (5643) is correct so that the next year of jubilee falls on 2029-2030 (5790), which would be the beginning of the messianic kingdom.

Shavua tov,


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