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Ask the Rabbi - Why are Special Prayers and Special Offerings (Korban) given on the High Holy Days?

As we enter into the High Holy Days of Rosh Hashana, Yom Kippur, and Succot, it may not be clearly understood why both Special Prayers and Special Offerings (Korban) are given.

As Messianic Jewish Believers in Messiah, lets look at each of these and see how they relate to us today.

Special Prayers

As we can see from the full schedule over the next month, many additional services have been added to our normal Shabbat schedule. These services correspond directly to the additional services, sacrifices and offerings given during the High Holy Days in the Temple, as commanded by G-D.

Prayer was a key ingredient during the High Holy Days of the Temple and should still be for us today. These prayers glorify ADONAI and seek His presence amongst His people. Prayers of repentance, supplication, and intercession arise like the incense that was offered in the Temple.

The additional services will give us many opportunities to seek ADONAI's face and offer up our incense of prayer & praise. Thus we will fulfill the giving of additional prayers during this time by attending these additional services.

Special Offerings

One often mis-taught belief in Scripture was that Yeshua's death did away with all sacrifices. This comes from a very poor understanding of the difference types of sacrifices and their purpose. Only 20-25% of sacrifices were for sin; these were the ones that were directly replaced by Yeshua. The remaining sacrifices were Thanksgiving offerings, Peace offerings, etc.

It should be noted that the Apostles continued to sacrifice after Messiah was resurrected. Even Sha'ul (Paul) paid for sacrifices for a Nazarite vow in Acts 21. All text and historical sources show the Apostles still participated in Temple worship in Jerusalem.

Why would the very followers of Yeshua continue to offer sacrifice? There are several reasons: Identification with the people, fulfilling the commands of G-D, and remembering the sacrifice of Messiah. Interestingly, in the Millennium Kingdom, sacrifices are restored. Why? Identification with the people, fulfilling the commands of G-D, and remembering the sacrifice of Messiah. Thus, we see the same worship we saw historically by the first Believers in Messiah will return in the Kingdom to come.

So what does all that have to do with a Believer in Messiah today?

Quite a bit, for we are much like the early followers of the Messiah in that we worship Him in a 1st century manner as Messianic Believers (both Jew and grafted-in G-D Fearer's). But unlike then, we have no Temple, thus we cannot make animal sacrifices. Instead we bring our special offerings into His sanctuary of the synagogue. These offerings are replacing the Thanksgiving, Praise and Peace offerings made during this Holy Time.

May we all respond to G-D's Word with our sincere Special Prayer & Special Offerings for these High Holy Days.

Rabbi Gavri'el

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