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Yom Kippur and Christmas

Updated: Dec 22, 2022

If the priest Zechariah was performing the Yom Kippur avodah when he was visited by the angel Gabriel (as seems to be the case given the context, see Luke 1:8-23), and if his wife Elizabeth conceived about that time (see Luke 1:24, that is, sometime in the middle of the month of Tishri), and her cousin Mary was then told of the incarnation six months later, during Passover season (Luke 1:26, 36), then the birth of Yeshua could have been sometime during the middle of the month of Tevet, which is indeed close to the traditional December 25th date observed by the majority of Christians...

After all, as you read the the prophetic announcement of the birth of John given in Luke, it certainly seems that Zechariah was performing the Yom Kippur ritual at the Temple, offering incense before the parochet before he entered the sacred chamber of the Holy of Holies. Indeed, one implication of this interpretation is that the Lamb of God (שׂה הָאֱלהִים) was conceived during Passover, which seems appropriate as the time of the Incarnation...

ὁ λόγος σὰρξ ἐγένετο καὶ ἐσκήνωσεν ἐν ἡμῖν -- "The Word became flesh and dwelt among us" (John 1:14) -- which of course is the essence of the gospel message. As it is written concerning the birth of Messiah: "For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the dominion shall be upon his shoulder; and his name shall be called 'Wonderful Counselor,' 'the mighty God,' 'the everlasting Father,' 'Prince of Peace'" (Isa. 9:6).


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