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News Letter 5847-001
1st day of the 1st month 5847 years after creation
The 1st Month in the Second year of the third Sabbatical Cycle
The Third Sabbatical Cycle of the 119th Jubilee Cycle
April 5, 2011

Rosh Hashanah Sameach, Happy New Year, Chanah Tovah,

May Yehovah bless this year for those of you who doing His word; who are walking it out on a daily basis. May He open the floodgates and give you understanding in Torah unlike any previous years and may He bless each of your families.

Last month the Barley was declared not Aviv and as such a thirteenth month was added to the calendar year. A year with 13 months is referred to in Hebrew as Shanah Me’uberet (pronounced shah-NAH meh-oo-BEH-reht), literally: a pregnant year. In English, we commonly call it a leap year.

The reason we do this is because of the command in Lev 23 to have a wave sheaf on the morrow after the Sabbath during the days of Unleavened Bread. You cannot have a wave offering if the Barley is not mature. And last month the barley was not mature.

In the Hebrew calendar they add a 13th month at certain years on a 19 year cycle. In the fourth century, Hillel II established a fixed calendar based on mathematical and astronomical calculations. This calendar, still in use, standardized the length of months and the addition of months over the course of a 19 year cycle, so that the lunar calendar realigns with the solar years. Adar I is added in the 3rd, 6th, 8th, 11th, 14th, 17th and 19th years of the cycle.

There is nothing biblical about this and it does not give any heed to the Barley whether it is Aviv or not. Nor does it allow Yehovah to determine when the year begins and when His Holy appointed times are to be. But waiting for the barley to be Aviv and then watching for the sighted moon, we always let Yehovah decide when His appointments are for us to keep.

Nehemiah went out and checked the barley again this past weekend with Avi ben Mordechai and to check on the erroneous reports that the barley was Aviv. It was not barley that these others were looking at but wheat as you can read in this report. On a side note take note of the drought in Israel as they mention it and what this drought has done to the wheat which is needed for human food.

Karaite Korner Newsletter #505

Aviv Found in the Jordan Valley!

On Wednesday March 30, 2011 Aviv was found in the Jordan Valley at Tel Malkoach south of Beth Shean. A search in the Northern Negev on Thursday March 31, 2011 only turned up cotton stage to worm stage barley but no Aviv. The Aviv in the Jordan Valley is enough for the wave-sheaf to be brought during Chag HaMatzot (Feast of Unleavened Bread) beginning April 18 at sunset. Pictures of the Aviv barley in the Jordan Valley and the non-Aviv in the Northern Negev are posted at:
http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=293928&id=371892568628&l=117d55c868

Reports have been going around that Passover was supposed to be in mid-March and 30% of the wheat was already harvested by the end of March. I went down to the Northern Negev to investigate this and found that there was not a single field of harvest-ripe wheat. Many fields were cut for silage (cow-feed) before the wheat was fully ripe. We spoke to a dairy-farmer overseeing the harvest of unripe wheat. He explained that due to a drought the farmers expected low yields of seed and decided to sell off the unripe empty-headed grain as cow-feed. A video with the (admittedly obnoxious) title “Wheat Harvest in Israel. Oh, Really?” showing these fields and a brief interview with the cow-dude is posted at:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4Hmku0d6bv8

My thanks to Israeli state-licensed tour guide Avinoam Marcus of http://ComingHome.co.il for editing the video and accompanying me on the followup Aviv Search to the Northern Negev. My thanks to Yoel Halevi for accompanying me on the followup Aviv Search to the Jordan Valley.

We’ll be looking for the new moon on Monday night at sunset.

Nehemia Gordon
Jerusalem, Israel

Here is the notice from Nehemiah Gordon from Israel as to the sighting of the moon.

Karaite Korner Newsletter #506

New Moon Report
April 2011
First Biblical Month

On Monday April 4, 2011 the new moon was sighted from Israel. The moon was first sighted from Mount Hezekiah at 7:28 pm by Nehemia Gordon and at 7:29 pm by Yoel Halevi. The moon was also sighted from Ashdod by Magdi Shamuel at 7:40 pm.

A photograph of the moon sighted from Mount Hezekiah in the Eilat Mountains is posted at:
http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=293928&id=371892568628&l=117d55c868
Chag HaMatzot (Feast of Unleavened Bread) will begin April 18 at sunset.

Looks like I messed up the dates on my last newsletter about finding Aviv barley on March 30 in the Jordan valley when it was in fact March 29. Thanks to Botaniska Föreningen for catching this oversight. This doesn’t change the conclusions.

Shanah Tovah!
Happy New Year!

Nehemia Gordon
Jerusalem, Israel

With the sighting of the moon, you can now count out to each Holy Day as you are instructed in Lev 23.
The Foot Washing is done on the evening of April 17, 2011
Passover is then on April 18 at Evening
1st day of Unleavened Bread is April 19 There is to be no Leaven found in any of your properties.
7th day of Unleavened Bread is April 25 You are to eat Unleavened Bread on each of these 7 days of Unleavened bread.
The Wave sheaf day will be on the Morrow after the weekly Sabbath on Sunday April 24, 2011.
From the Wave Sheaf day you can count out 50 days to arrive at Pentecost on June 12, 2011.

But there is still more that I want to share with you. Anyone who is going to be in Israel for Passover, I have a very pleasant surprise. Normally we all just show up for Passover. It is very hard to organize for it with tours on such a short notice because of the Barley and the sightedmoon. You cannot plan these things far in advance with tour companies and make the proper arrangements.

Well I have only just today found out the Avi ben Mordecahai is offering some very exceptional tours in and around Jerusalem. And I well be taking him up on a few of his tours this Passover season. Space is limited so you do need to register quickly. For those of you who are coming at another time to Jerusalem in the future, please plan on taking in one of these tours from Avi the author of Galatians [which you can learn more about Galatians at http://www.m7000.com/Avi/Galatians.htm ] To view some of the Tours Avi has done in the past go to http://cominghome.co.il/ and if you are interested in registering for any of the tours being offered at Passover 2011 please contact Avi by email at avidm@013net.net

Here is a Avi’s itinerary this Pesach 2011 and also know I have taken one of the places on this tour already. So you do need to act fast.

Joe, shalom.

Below, you will find the information for the programs that I am offering for Passover/Unleavened Bread. If you would please, send this information out to your list, as we discussed and if anyone is interested in registering for the programs, they can contact me directly. Please, DO THIS AS SOON AS POSSIBLE. I NEED TO HAVE A REGISTRANT HEAD COUNT BY THE MIDDLE OF NEXT WEEK, AT THE LATEST.

Take care
Avinoam

Passover April 2011
Chol haMoed One-Day Field Trips with your Israeli State Licensed Tour Guide Avi ben Mordechai

Will you be in Jerusalem for Pesach (Passover) / Unleavened Bread Week? Are your plans simply to just “hang out” in Jerusalem and find some interesting things to do? May I interest you in taking advantage of your precious time
in Jerusalem, with one or more of the following half-day and full-day field trips and biblical study programs that I am offering?

During Pesach Week Chol haMoed (Intermediate Days), I will be hosting a couple of half-day and full-day study tours in and around Jerusalem and one, to the north of Israel. The programs include transportation (as needed), Israel National Park entry fees (where required), and the guiding services of Israeli State Licensed Tourguide - me, Avi ben Mordechai.

The price for each program is clearly stated and based on a specified minimum number of registrants. HOWEVER, each program also has a maximum cut-off so as to avoid unnecessary transportation costs.

If one or more of the field trips/ study programs below are of interest to you, PLEASE REGISTER PROMPTLY by replying to this email and in the subject line, state which field trip you are interested in. Upon receiving your
email, I will direct you to the next step.

Your registration will require a per registrant down payment of fifty (50%) percent of the advertised stated price. I will ask you to make your fifty (50%) percent down payment via PayPal, Mastercard, Visa, American Express,
or Discover. The balance of payment MUST BE MADE in cash (US Dollars or Israeli Shequels) on the day of the program. In the event that you do not show up, you forfeit your down payment. In the event that the program is
cancelled due to our not meeting the minimum number of program participants, you will be notified by email and/or mobile phone in Israel (if you have one) and will receive a full 100% refund of your down payment.

PLEASE NOTE: None of the offered programs below include lunch. Therefore, you must either bring a lunch or bring enough cash to purchase lunch at the site or sites that we will be at.

Have a look at the programs that I am offering below and again, if any one of them interests you, please register promptly because we will NEED the stated minimum number of participants to do the program and further, we
cannot exceed the maximum number of participants either, in most cases – 14 people.

Shalom from Jerusalem
Avi ben Mordechai
—————————————-

Wednesday, April 20 (First Half of the Day) 7:30am- 11:30am. An early morning biblical study tour on the Temple Mount and at the tombs of the Qidron Valley

7:15am Meet at the Davidson Center

Minimum Number of Participants: Four (4).
Maximum Number of Participants: Twelve (12)
Time: 7:30am - 11:30am
Cost: $20.00 USD, per person. Lunch is NOT included. Please bring lunch or snacks in your knapsack or buy lunch in the Jewish Quarter.

This Temple Mount biblical study tour will show and give you some compelling reasons why the death and burial of Yeshua more likely occurred east of the Temple Mount, on the Mount of Olives, and not northwest of the Temple Mount at “Gordon’s Calvary” (the Garden Tomb), or anywhere else, for that matter.

We’ll study what could be called “the sacred line” from Moses in Deuteronomy 34:5 to Yochanan (”John”) in Mark 1:4 to Yeshua in Matthew 27:45-56. We’ll look for scriptural and physical evidence to determine where the ancient
Holy of Holies of the Temple once stood. We’ll examine the various theories and determine what makes the most sense according to scripture.

Leaving the Temple Mount, we will then hike down into the ancient Qidron Valley and descend into ancient Hebrew history for a study of the Yehudi royal tombs that are found in that area, between the Mount of Olives and the
Holy Hill - Moriah. We’ll read and study on-location, Matthew Chapters 15 and 23, among other topics.

Lunch in the Old City Jewish Quarter 11:40am - 12:20pm

REQUIREMENTS and COMMENTS:

-Backpack to carry all your personal things
-A SMALL pocket Bible (nothing large and pretentious to draw attention to
yourself)
-Passport and identification (if needed)
-Camera, notepad, pen and/or pencil for note-taking
-One or two liters of purchased bottled water
-Good walking or hiking shoes. This is a walking tour. There will be no
transportation for the morning activity
-Women: only pants or dresses for the Temple Mount and no “bare shoulders”
-Men: no shorts
-Kippah, not advised. Wear a cap in place of a kippah.
-Tzitziot hanging out, not advised (tucking them in, okay)
-Sunglasses (if needed)
-Hat for sun protection

————————————————–

Wednesday, April 20 (Second Half of the Day) 12:30pm - 4:30pm. A half-day
4×4 Jeep tour into the western Judean foothills and into the historical
narratives of 1 Samuel Chapters 6, 17, 21:10 and 23:13

12:30pm Meet at the Old City Jaffa Gate, next to the Plaza

Minimum Number of Participants: Six (6)
Maximum Number of Participants: Fourteen (14)
Time: 12:30pm - 4:30pm
Cost: $75.00 USD, per person. Includes transportation only. NO lunch included. If our registration numbers are sufficiently more than the minimum, then our transportation costs will be lower and we promise to pass
those savings on to you!
Full-Day: you may combine both events of the day into one full-day, if you wish.

Leaving Jerusalem in a 4 x 4 Jeep, we will drive to an archaeological site called Tel Tzafit (ancient Gath of the Philistines). We’ll learn about Goliath and the culture of the Philistines. We’ll also learn about David, who later fled from the pursuit of King Saul to Achish, King of Gath (1 Samuel 21:10). We’ll also learn about Solomon’s servant Shimi and his actions of breaking his word, in 1 Kings 2:36-46. Further, we’ll also learn about the Crusaders and their White Castle “Blanche Guarde” of Gath. We’ll also learn about their Kingdom of Israel and how its presence greatly
influenced the coming centuries of history in Eretz Israel.

Leaving Gath we will travel to a new archaeological site that is not yet open to the public. The site is mentioned in 1 Samuel 17:52 and is referred to as the “Elah Fortress” or Sha’arayim (Two Gates). From this site, we’ll learn about the battle between David and Goliath in the Elah Valley. We’ll also study ancient Israelite gate complex architecture and how it relates to the periods that are before and after King Solomon.

Leaving the Elah Fortress, we’ll continue our journey to Tel Beit Shemesh, tracing the movement of the ancient Ark of the Covenant as it left Philistine Ekron (1 Samuel 6) and came through for a stop at Beit Shemesh, where about 50,000 men lost their lives because of the Ark. We’ll then follow the movement of this Ark up to Jerusalem, stopping only briefly to talk about it at Keriyat Ye’arim (1 Samuel 7:1)

If time permits (between Gath and the Elah Fortress), we’ll consider a short stop at the cave of Adullam as it is mentioned in 1 Samuel 23:13 and have a look at the area where David and his thirty “mighty men” hid in this
stronghold against the Philistines (again, time permitting).

REQUIREMENTS AND COMMENTS:

-Backpack to carry all of your personal things
-A Bible
-Passport and identification
-Camera, notepad, pen and/or pencil for note-taking
-One and a half or perhaps two liters of purchased bottled water
-Good walking or hiking shoes. The hike up Tel Gath demands that you are in
reasonably good physical condition.
-Shorts okay
-Sunglasses (if needed)
-Hat for sun protection
-Men: Kippa and Tzitziot, fine
———————————————————–

Thursday, April 21: 8:00am - 4:30pm. A five to six hour trail hike through the “Strongholds of Ein Gedi” (1 Samuel 23:29)

7:45am Meet at the Old City Jaffa Gate, next to the Plaza

Minimum Number of Participants: Six (6)
Maximum Number of Participants: Twelve (12)
Time: 8:00am (Leave Jerusalem) - 4:30pm (approximate return to Jerusalem)
Cost: $80.00 USD, per person. Includes transportation only. NO lunch provided. You must provide your own lunch and bring it in your knapsack. You can also purchase your lunch at the visitors center. If our registration
numbers are sufficiently more than the minimum required, then our transportation costs will be lower and we promise to pass those savings on to you!

One of the most celebrated stories of the Bible - David, King of Israel and his flight from King Saul. He takes 600 of his men and finds refuge in the Wilderness of Ein Gedi (1 Samuel 24:1 - the Spring of the Kid).

Ein Gedi was a wilderness city of ancient Judah (Joshua 15:62) and much later, it was mentioned by Josephus in the context of the First Jewish Revolt against Rome (66 -73). Further, it was a center of Jewish activity during the Bar Kokhba Revolt (132-136).

We’ll start our hike at Nahal David, at the visitors center and finish in Nahal Arugot. We’ll hike our way up through the rocky crags towards the Falls of David and Shulamit’s Spring, where you can jump in and get a much needed refreshment in the natural pools of spring water. We’ll continue hiking up into the canyon (Nahal David), along some rather narrow paths and then on steel rungs, climb down into a cave area (Dodim Cave) that may have likely been the scene of the confrontation story between David and Saul in 1 Samuel 24:1-3.

Climbing our way back up out of the cave, we’ll continue hiking up through the mountain crags and then make our way over to the Ein Gedi water spring and then down the mountain to Tel Goren and the ancient Ein Gedi synagogue
with its fascinating inscriptions and incredible stories dating back to the 500s.

All along the way, we’ll learn some valuable biblical lessons as we study the awesome flora of Ein Gedi - the Acacia Tree of the Bible, the Jujube, the Sodom Apple of Genesis, the Salt Plants, the reed plants, the Eshel Tree of Abraham, and so much more.

REQUIREMENTS AND COMMENTS:

-NOTE: This is a five to six hour strenuous trail hike. Only those that are in reasonably good to excellent physical condition are allowed to register.
-Reasonably good hiking shoes, a must
-Three liters of bottled water, per person. You can fill up your bottles, as
needed, for more spring drinking water from its natural source.
-Backpack or Knapsack for all of your personal things
-Camera
-Sunglasses (as needed)
-Hat for sunlight protection
-A Bible
-Passport and Identification
-Shorts, okay
—————————————————————-

Friday, April 22: 8:00am - 3:00pm. The Bible, Eclectic Art and Jewish
History: the unique artistic landscapes of Jerusalem from Armon haNatziv and
the sculptures of Israeli artists Ron Morin (the Olive Trees Park) and Natan
Rappaport (Scrolls of Fire)

8:00am Meet at the Old City Jaffa Gate, next to the Plaza

Minimum Number of Participants: Six (6)
Maximum Number of Particpants: Twelve (12)
Time: 8:00am (Leave Jerusalem) - 3:00pm (approximate return to Jerusalem)
Cost: $75.00 USD, per person. Includes transportation only. NO lunch included. Please bring lunch in your knapsack. If our registration numbers are sufficiently more than the minimum, then our transportation costs will be lower and we promise to pass those savings on to you!

We’ll begin our day with an artistic, divinely sculpted overview of Jerusalem looking to the north from the south, atop the hill called Armon haNatziv (the Palace of the Commissioner), traditionally the general location where Genesis chapter 22:1-6 took place. This will teach us about Israel’s biblical history from Abraham to David to Yeshua (Matthew 1:17).
We’ll also learn about “pre-state” Israel during the years of the “British Mandate.” We’ll get an overview of how Jerusalem looked in those days and how it got its water and how the Almighty Holy One of Israel emblazoned His
Name into the topography of Jerusalem so that His Name and Memory would NEVER be blotted out.

Leaving Armon haNatziv, we’ll travel to the Olive Trees Park, a creation of sculptor Ron Morin. Here, we’ll let our imaginations run wild with all kinds of interesting interpretations from his work. We’ll learn about his approach
to divine faith and learn how the prophets of ancient days were very much on the same page, understanding faith and trust by actions and not by theology (Jeremiah Chapter 11).

Leaving Armon haNatziv, we’ll make our way over to the western Judean Hills and to the Scrolls of Fire, designed by Israeli Holocaust sculptor Natan Rappaport. We’ll have a look at the details of his sculpture work and allow ourselves some time to think about his message and seek to enter into the pain of the Holocaust and to imagine the event from the perspective of an artist that understood its impact and implications, very well.

REQUIREMENTS AND COMMENTS:

-Backpack or Knapsack to carry all of your personal things
-A Bible
-Camera, notepad, pen and/or pencil
-Sunglasses (as needed)
-Hat
-Passport and Identification
-One and a half liters of purchased bottled water
-Reasonably good walking shoes
————————————————————-

Sunday, April 24: Full-Day 8:00am - 5:30pm. Jezreel Valley comparative studies into the actions of Saul, Elijah, Ahab, Jezebel, and Gideon

7:45am Meet at the Old City Jaffa Gate, next to the Plaza

Minimum Number of Participants: Eight (8)
Maximum Number of Participants: Fourteen (14)
Time: 8:00am (Leave Jerusalem) - 5:30pm (approximate return to Jerusalem)
Cost: $120.00 USD, per person. Includes transportation and all park entrance fees. No lunch provided. Bring your own lunch in your knapsack or purchase it. If our registration numbers are sufficiently more than the minimum, then
our transportation costs will be lower and we promise to pass those savings on to you!

God is not mocked. Whatsoever a man sows, this he will also reap (Galatians 6:7): comparative studies in the actions of King Saul (1 Samuel chapters 28-31), Elijah (1 Kings chapters 18-21), Ahab and Jezebel (1 Kings chapters
18-19; 2 Kings chapter 10), and Gideon (Judges chapters 6 - 7).

We’ll leave Jerusalem promptly at 8:00am and drive northwards through the Jordan Valley (Highway 90) to Israel’s famed Jezreel Valley - the setting for the final “mother of all battles” - “Armageddon (Revelation 16:16). While in the Jezreel Valley, we will stop at the following locations:

Ma’ayan Harod, to visit the story of Judges chapters 6 and 7 and retell of the courage and faith of Gideon and his men. Here, the Holy One of Israel pares down the army of Gideon from 32,000 to 300 and with that small army,
they defeat the army of the Midianites. Their faith and their courage stand out as a “never-to-forget-who-we-trust” lesson in biblical history.

Leaving Gideon in Judges chapters 6 and 7, we’ll come to 1 Kings chapter 21 on location at Tel Jezreel. This site marks a turning point for the Kingdom of Israel, when Ahab steals the land inheritance of Navot the Jezreelite (1
Kings 21) after his Phoenician wife Jezebel has the man framed and murdered. We’ll also learn more about Jezebel and how she is still very much alive today (2 Kings 10)!

From Tel Jezreel, we will break for some lunch at the new Jezreel Valley Gilboa “ski resort.” Then after lunch, for the adventurous, try some skiing or snow boarding down the slopes. No need to bring any warm clothes. You can ski in your summer shorts!

Finishing up at the Gilboa and Tel Jezreel, we will spend a couple of hours swimming and relaxing at Gan haShelosha (Garden of the Three). Here, at Gan haShelosha, you can swim in beautiful huge spring-fed ponds and splash your way through fast-flowing waterfalls. We’ll learn the story of Gan haShelosha on-location and touch on the events that shaped the history of “pre-state Israel” and learn about the challenges of what David ben Gurion meant when he once said, “No State is handed over on a Silver Platter.” We’ll learn about several modern and courageous men who led pre-state Israel to its destiny: Yehoshua Hankin; Orde Wingate; Chaim Sturmann, among many others.

Leaving Gan haShelosha, we’ll return to Jerusalem in time for dinner.

REQUIREMENTS AND COMMENTS:
-Backpack to carry all of your personal things
-A Bible
-Camera, notepad, pen and/or pencil
-Sunglasses (as needed)
-Hat
-Passport and Identification
-Men: swimming shorts and thongs
-Women: swimming suit and thongs
-Two liters of purchased bottled water
-Reasonably good walking shoes
———————————————————————-

Tuesday, April 26 - Friday, April 29

I am leaving my schedule open for private study tours, if you have an extended stay in Jerusalem; you have a rental car to get around; and you want to see some additional things while visiting in Israel.

Avi ben Mordechai
Licensed Tour Guide
Coming Home, Inc. (Avinoam’s Coming Home Study Tours)

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