“And on the fifteenth day of the same month is the Feast of Unleavened Bread to the Lord; seven days you must eat unleavened bread. On the first day you shall have a holy convocation; you shall do no customary work on it. But you shall offer an offering made by fire to the Lord for seven days. The seventh day shall be a holy convocation; you shall do no customary work on it.”-Leviticus 23:6-8
In the series of Biblical feasts, the festival immediately following PESACH or Passover is the Feast of Unleavened Bread.
Now there is a very important word that has been removed from verse 6 of Leviticus 23 in most English Bible translations.
In verse 6 where it says “the Feast of Unleavened Bread“, it should really say “the PILGRIMAGE Feast of Unleavened Bread“.
The Hebrew word for pilgrimage is HAG.
This is the word that is typically dropped and not translated.
Why is this word so important?
Well, it’s important because out of the seven Biblical Feasts, three are unique because they require a pilgrimage.
This means that any festival designated as a HAG is NOT allowed to be celebrated at home.
At the very least, the adult males are required to be present at the Temple in Jerusalem for these pilgrimage feasts.
Also understand that technically speaking, Passover is NOT a HAG or pilgrimage feast.
Yet because Passover and the Feast of Unleavened Bread each follow one right after another, for the purposes of making a pilgrimage, they are normally lumped together and treated as one festival.
Therefore, although not accurate, the three pilgrimage feasts are usually referred to as “Passover”, “The Feast of Weeks” and “Tabernacles”.
However, if we’re going to be technically correct, the three pilgrimage feasts are really…
Unleavened Bread (MATZAH)
Feast of Weeks (SHAVUOT)
Another thing you need to know is that first day of Unleavened Bread is to be considered a Sabbath.
Again, it is not the Sabbath, but a Sabbath.
On a Sabbath, one doesn’t have to completely rest but they are to cease from their regular work so that the special preparations required for the Feast of Unleavened Bread can be done.
Remember the 3 requirements for THE 7th weekly Sabbath day are as follows:
First, it is to be day of complete rest from ANY TYPE OF WORK WHATSOEVER.
Second, the 7th day Sabbath, as one of the Lord’s possessions, is HOLY.
Third, it is be observed by all of God’s people whether they are living in Israel or not.
As we can see, the first day of the Pilgrimage Feast of Unleavened Bread (Nissan 15) only meets two of those three criteria.
In other words, it was not to be a day of complete rest, but it was HOLY and was required to be observed whether one was dwelling in Israel or not.
Another interesting point is that although the Jews will refer to the first day of MATZAH as a Sabbath, the word Sabbath does not appear in that passage.
The Bible refers to it as a “sacred occasion” meaning that one is to cease from doing one’s regular work.
However, the Jews aren’t wrong by injecting the word “Sabbath” there.
Over the centuries, the difference between A Sabbath and THE Sabbath has always been common knowledge to Israel.
It’s the gentiles, who having no foundational knowledge of Torah, are the ones who always get confused.