By Sharon Anderson
This weekend Latter-day Saints will be participating in the annual conference of the http://www.lds.org/broadcast/gc/0,5161,8584,00.html .which will be broadcast from the Conference Center in Salt Lake City. This is a time listen to prophetic counsel and recommit ourselves to following the Savior and loving and serving our fellow men. All who are interested are invited to view the proceedings online
This weekend is significant for a couple of other reasons which are worth pondering. According to ancient calendars, it is the anniversary of the birth of Abraham’s son, Isaac, AND marks the 70th Jubilee year since Joshua and the children of Israel crossed the River Jordan and entered the promised land.
In ancient Israel, every 50th year was a year of jubilee. This year got its name from the fact that the beginning of the year was announced by the blowing of a trumpet on the. In it land that had changed hands, except in non-Levitical walled cities, reverted to the family to which it had belonged at the original settlement, and all bondmen of Israelitish birth were set free.
“And you shall consecrate the fiftieth year, and proclaim liberty throughout all the land to all its inhabitants. It shall be a Jubilee for you; and each of you shall return to his possession, and each of you shall return to his family.” (Leviticus 25:10)
Based on some calculations, we are about halfway through a jubilee year (Sept. 2008-Sept. 2009). This is a jubilee year of special significance. John P. Pratt has a Ph.D. in astronomy and specializes in religious chronology and ancient calendars. Proposed dates from his research, indicate that Joshua and the children of Israel crossed the River Jordan and entered the promised land on a date in 1422 BC which corresponds to 6 April 2009. So this weekend marks exactly seventy jubilees on (Perpetual) Hebrew Calendar since that date.
“And Joshua said to the people, ‘Sanctify yourselves, for tomorrow the LORD will do wonders among you.’. . Then Joshua spoke to the priests, saying, “Take up the Israel crossed over on dry ground, until all the people had crossed completely over the Jordan.”(Joshua chapter 3)and cross over before the people.” . . .Then the priests who bore the ark of the covenant of the LORD stood firm on dry ground in the midst of the Jordan; and all
Other events that could have been commemorated during this jubilee year which began last September are the raising of the Brazen Serpent, the giving of the, and the Sunday on which the manna ceased to come from heaven, but Dr. Pratt says, “of all the days to celebrate, the most outstanding will be anniversary of Joshua’s miraculous crossing of the River Jordan.”
This weekend is also significant for yet another reason. Isaac, as the father of Jacob/Israel and the grandfather of the Israel’s twelve sons, was the son through which God’s promises to Abraham would be fulfilled. John Pratt conttinues, “The quarter-day beginning at 6 p.m. on Sun 5 Apr 2009 is a once-in history repetition of the date of the birth of Isaac on four sacred calendars.”
Perhaps we will want to do something special this Sunday to celebrate this 70th Jubilee. Maybe this can be a time of spiritual significance to each of us as we consider the importance of jubilees and freedom, the, entering promised lands, and hearkening to the word of the Lord.
More information: http://www.meridianmagazine.com/sci_rel/060518jubilee.html