A Scriptural Study

Forwarded by Petr, Radim and Magdalena

According to the Bible, the Feast of Weeks (Shavuot) and the Feast of Pentecost are two distinct Feasts that are different: in the way of counting, the time of the beginning of the counting, the way in which the sacrifices are offered, and in the way of celebrating them.

The Feasts are different from each other in the following ways:

1) In the way of counting:
The origin and method of their calculations differ: The Feast of Weeks is according to the Deuteronomy 16:9 and the Feast of Pentecost is according to the Leviticus 23:15-16.

2) What a sacrifice is made:
The Feast of Weeks is according to the Deuteronomy 16:10 and Feast of Pentecost is according to the Leviticus 23:17-20.

3) In the way of celebrating:

The Feast of Weeks is according to the Deuteronomy 16:11and Feast of Pentecost is according to the Leviticus 23:21.

Point 1:
Consider the differences between the beginning and the way of calculating it. The Feast of Weeks (Shavuot) is calculated this way:

Seven Weeks shalt thou number unto thee: begin to number the Seven Weeks from such time as thou begins to put the sickle to the corn. (Deuteronomy 16:9)

Only seven weeks (not complete) are counted, and the calculation begins from the day the barley harvest begins (the grain harvest begins with the barley harvest). This usually happens before the Feast of Unleavened Bread. This holiday is always in the Spring.

And the Feast of Pentecost is calculated this way:

And ye shall count unto you from the morrow after the sabbath, from the day that ye brought the sheaf of the wave offering; seven sabbaths shall be complete: Even unto the morrow after the seventh sabbath shall ye number fifty days; and ye shall offer a new meat offering unto the LORD. (Leviticus 23:15-16)

The counting begins at the time of the Feast of Unleavened Bread. First, seven full weeks are counted (it does not correspond to a mere sum of 49 days), and then another 50 days are added, which brings us to the time of summer.

Point 2:
On the Feast of Weeks (Shavuot) the following sacrifices are made:

And thou shalt keep the feast of weeks unto the LORD thy God with a tribute of a freewill offering of thine hand, which thou shalt give unto the LORD thy God, according as the LORD thy God hath blessed thee. (Deuteronomy 16:10)

Other offerings (sacrifices) offered are listed in detail in Numbers 28:26-31; in particular, they differ in that they do not sacrifice leavened bread, but only white flour mixed with oil. And they also differ, for example, in the numbers of sacrificed animals being offered. In contrast, on the Feast of Pentecost the following offerings (sacrifices) are made:

Ye shall bring out of your habitations two wave loaves of two tenth deals: they shall be of fine flour; they shall be bake them with leaven; they are the firstfruits unto the LORD.

And ye shall offer with the bread seven lambs without blemish of the first year, and one young bullock, and two rams: they shall be for a burnt offering unto the LORD, with their meat offering, and their drink offerings, even an offering made by fire, of sweet savor unto the LORD.

Then ye shall sacrifice one kid of the goats for a sin offering, and two lambs of the first year for a sacrifice of peace offerings. And the priest shall wave them with the bread of the firstfruits for a wave offering before the LORD, with the two lambs: they shall be holy to the LORD for the priest. (Leviticus 23:17-20)

Point 3:
The Feast of Weeks (Shavuot) is, in contrast to the Feast of Pentecost, a Pilgrimage Holiday:

Three times in a year shall all thy males appear before the LORD thy God in the place which he shall choose; in the feast of unleavened bread, and in the feast of weeks, and in the feast of tabernacles: and they shall not appear before the LORD empty. (Deuteronomy 16:16)

And on the Feast of Weeks (Shavuot), in contrast to the Feast of Pentecost, God commands them to rejoice. (It is much harder to rejoice at the beginning of the harvest than at the end, when everything is done).

And thou shalt rejoice before the LORD thy God, thou, and thy son, and thy daughter, and thy manservant, and thy maidservant, and the Levite that is within thy gates, and the stranger, and the fatherless, and the widow, that are among you, in the place which the LORD thy God hath chosen to place his name there. (Deuteronomy 16:11)

Other Differences:
In the New Testament, in Acts 2:1, in the original Greek is said: And when the fiftieth day came...

It follows that some counting of fifty days must have been completed. That is exactly how it is in Leviticus 23:16. In contrast, the counting of the Feast of Weeks does not include any counting of fifty days.

The Feast of Pentecost is mentioned in the New Testament in three places (Acts 2:1, Acts 20:16 and 1 Corinthians 16:8), but the Feast of Weeks is not mentioned in it. We know that Paul left his missionary service in Asia Minor and hurried to reach Jerusalem on the day of Pentecost (The Feast of Pentecost). (Acts 20:16)

Here are the names of these two Feasts in the original Hebrew:

The name of the Feast of Weeks (Shavuot) comes from a Hebrew word shabuwa`, which means: seven, period of seven (days or years), week (for this see Strong's number H7620).

The name of the Feast of Pentecost comes from the Hebrew word chămishshîym, which literally means fiftieth (for this see Strong's number H2572). In the New Testament there is a Greek word Pentecost [pentēkostē], which literally means the fiftieth day (for this see Strong's number G4005).


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