You may be wondering what is a wave sheaf? Until a few years ago, I had never heard of this either, not having grown up around farming. God uses a lot of agricultural metaphors to teach us Spiritual realities. So it is with the Wave Sheaf. In-fact, God’s entire plan of Salvation (God’s Rescue Plan) is mapped out in the Old Testament Feasts that revolve around the Harvest seasons. Though these feasts often include actual celebrations with food, drink, and fellowship, the word Feast (Moed) literally means appointment. These are God’s appointments with mankind. This is why Israel was commanded to observe these feasts year after year. They’re basically a “dress-rehearsal” of God’s Rescue Plan. If we can understand the Feasts, we can better understand God’s Plan to rescue all mankind.
In Leviticus 23, the third book of the Bible, God lays out these Old Testament “feasts”. They begin with the Passover, in early Spring. We discussed the Passover in a previous thread and showed how Jesus fulfilled this Old Testament Feast by offering Himself as the Passover Sacrifice for all mankind. He was literally crucified on the day of the Passover.
The Sunday after the Passover was known as the Feast of First-fruits. This feast corresponded to the Barley Harvest in ancient Israel. Barley was always harvested much earlier than wheat. The custom was to take a Sheaf of the Barley Harvest and bring it to the Jewish Priest so that he could wave it before the Lord as the First fruit offering. If the Lord accepted the Wave Sheaf (also called Omer), then the entire harvest would be accepted by the Lord. At this point, the reaping of the rest of the Harvest could begin. (Leviticus 23).
The Sunday after the Passover, the Feast of First-fruits, was the day of the Resurrection. Jesus ascended to the Father to act as the Wave Sheaf Offering. He had to be “waved” before the Lord on this day, as symbolized by the ancient custom of the Feast (Moed) of First-Fruits. Once Jesus was accepted by the Father, having lived a sinless life and dying as the sacrifice for the sins of all mankind, then the “harvest” of souls could begin. We see this in the Bible. There was a small group of women who came to the tomb very early on Sunday after the Passover. These women were followers of Jesus, and they had come to anoint His body with perfumes, as was their custom. When they arrived at the tomb, the stone had already been rolled away, and Jesus was gone. They were very upset. But, then Jesus appeared to Mary, one of the ladies. As soon as Mary recognized Jesus, she ran to Him to to hug Him. But Jesus told her not to “hold onto Him” because He had not yet ascended to the Father. Jesus had to ascend to the Father on the Feast of First Fruits to fulfill the Wave Sheaf Offering.
After Jesus’ Ascended, He returned and presented Himself to the rest of the Disciples, having fulfilled this important Spring Feast. Jesus is the Firstfruit of the Harvest, and the Wave Sheaf, or Omer offering. Once Jesus had been accepted by the Father, so will we, the rest of the Harvest. That’s really Good news for you and me!