In this month’s Kaleidoscope, Dr. Sarvadi introduced us to “omer,” quite an unusual word. The truth is, Scripture is filled with unusual words—primarily in the ancient language in which it was written—Hebrew.
The word “omer” occurs five times in the Bible; in Exodus 16, Leviticus 23, Deuteronomy 24, Job 24 and Ruth 2.
In Exodus 16 it refers to the daily gathering of manna into a specific quantity or measurement. So then, an “omer of manna” was connected in biblical meaning to look like coriander seed and to be enough for a single day’s consumption.
In Ruth 2, omer is used in the ordinary sense of harvest. The book of Ruth is Messianic as David’s lineage is detailed throughout and it also demonstrates the ingathering or ‘engrafting” of a gentile (Ruth) into the Commonwealth of Israel. This was achieved significantly, by means of Boaz who was the descendant of Rahab, who in fact, was another engrafted gentile. These two women—Ruth and Rahab—are mentioned by name in the genealogy of our Lord in Matthew 1:5. In this case, the emphasis of the Bible concerning the omer is focused on the fulfillment of the gathering of all of those who will submit to Him as Lord.
The Lord Jesus referred repeatedly in His parables regarding grain and the harvest of grain to the key principles of the Kingdom of God. He actually explains that the parable of “the four soils” in Mark 4:13 was the key to understanding all His parables. Thus, to our Lord, “grain” was likened to the souls of men and “harvest” to their being gathered into the Kingdom of God through faith in the Messiah. This faith was highly qualified as an active walk of obedience to Messiah’s commandments, especially His Law of Sacrificial Love. Matthew 11:28 also tell us this faith is the acceptance of His yoke.
Messiah’s last command to the apostles and disciples was to wait in Jerusalem for the giving of the Holy Spirit according to promise. According to Acts 1 and 2, on Shavu’ot (Pentecost) the Holy Spirit descended in supernatural power and authority on the “gathered” or assembled Body of Christ. This began the implementation of God’s purpose for the sacrifice of Yeshua on the cross as The Lamb of Pesach. (We’ll talk more about this aspect in a future article.)
In effect, the disciples were to continue the ministry of Jesus in the same power and authority by which He operated in His earthly ministry (Luke 4). The first fruits of that continuing ministry of Messiah was actually accomplished through 120 of His followers, on the day of Pentecost as three thousand Jewish men (and their households!) were “gathered” into the Messianic Kingdom of God.
What a blessing that the perpetual ministry of Christ continues today through the Church by the Blessed Holy Spirit.
Dr. Bron Barkley
The Bethany Center