When Was Yeshua Born?
Birth date of Yeshua
was Yeshua (Jesus) born. Tradition
says Dec 25th (Christmas), but as has been demonstrated in earlier
articles (Roots of the Christian Faith), this date was done to convert a Pagan
Festival into a “Christian” Festival. The
motive appears to have been to make alternatives to the Pagan Festivals.
This has had unfortunate side-effects as outlined in the previous
when was Yeshua born? Below is the
explanation of why many believe Yeshua was born on Succot (Feast of
Tabernacles). This Theory is
consistent with scripture, historical events and Jewish Culture.
More importantly, it is consistent with G-d’s prophetic foreshadowing
of major events. As we have seen in
the Feasts of the L-rd article, G-d gives extra purpose to His ordained Feasts,
in that they are “foreshadows” of the coming of Messiah.
work includes major portions from Dr. David Hargis, President of Messianic
Bureau International (MBI, www.messianic.com).
with that brief introduction, consider this amazing work of Ha’Elyon (The Most
Conception of John
In order to establish the
date, we must first rely on clues found iin scripture, then add external
historical and cultural elements. The
Birth of Yochanan (John) is key as he is a forerunner who announces Messiah.
First Chronicles tells us that the Levitical priesthood was
divided into 12 divisions of priests. The ancient Jewish Historian Josephus
(Antiquities 7) tells us that each division served for a period of one week. The
first division began its period of service on the first day of the year — 1
Nisan (also called Aviv or Abib) — as God had established the calendar in
Exodus 12:2. Three weeks out of each year — during the weeks of Pesach
(Passover), Shavuot (Pentecost), and Sukkot (Tabernacles) — all 24,000 priests
As Zekharyah was in the division of Aviyah (Luke 1:5), his
term of service began in early Spring on the first day of the eighth week (27th
of Ayyar) and ran for one week through the 4th of Sivan. As the following week
(5-11 Sivan) was Shavuot, the Feast of Pentecost, he would have stayed in the
temple and served that week also with all the priests. Luke 1:23-24 tells us
that Zekharyah finished his duties at the
Conception of Yeshua
know from scripture that Yeshua (Jesus) was conceived after Yochanan (John),
further more, with this information we can now ascertain When Yeshua was
conceived. An interesting point, The
early Church may have agreed on December for the reason that was His conception
date, not birth.
Near the end of the sixth month of Elisheva’s pregnancy
the angel Gavri'el appeared to Miryam and told her about Elisheva saying,
“this is the sixth month with her who was called barren.” Miryam immediately
left Natzeret (verse 39, “with haste”) and went to the “hill country”
This sets the conception of Yeshua about end of Kislev
during Chanukah (mid-December), the Feast of Lights, thus demonstrating in a
very special way that Yeshua is the Light of the World.
“Yeshua is shown celebrating Chanukah in John 10:22,23. It is at this
celebration that He declares ‘I and My Father are One’ [John 10:30], which
testifies to His Divine origin in His conception. It also reinforces Chanukah as
the time of His conception.”
Birth of John
the above events, it is now straight forward to calculate when Yochanan was
The prophet Mal'akhi (Malachi) tells us that Eliyah
(Elijah) the prophet must come to prepare the hearts of the fathers and their
children before Mashiach comes.
the law of Moshe [Moses] my servant, which I commanded to him in Horev for all
Yisra'el, even statutes and ordinances. 5 Behold,
I will send you Eliyah the prophet before the great and terrible day of the LORD
comes. 6 He will
turn the hearts of the fathers to the children, and the hearts of the children
to their fathers, lest I come and strike the eretz with a curse.” (Malachi 4, HNV)
Therefore, in anticipation of the coming of Mashiach, when
Pesach (Passover) is celebrated, a place at the table is set and a cup of wine
is poured for Eliyah (Elijah), and the door of the house is left open so that he
may come in to the celebration. It is clear that for centuries before the birth
of Messiah the Jews had been anticipating the return of Eliyah during Pesach.
The way in which Gavri'el worded his announcement to
Zekharyah makes it clear that Yochanan was to be the fulfillment of Mal'akhi’s
prophecy: “He will turn many of the
children of Yisra'el to the Lord, their God. He will go before his face in the
spirit and power of Eliyah, ‘to turn the hearts of the fathers to the
children,’ and the disobedient to the wisdom of the just; to make ready a
people prepared for the Lord.”
Luke 1:56 tells us that Miryam stayed with Elisheva for
three months, which would have been up until the time Yochanan was born. We can
now calculate the date of Yochanan’s birth with a great deal of accuracy.
• A full term pregnancy term is 41 weeks.
Yochanan was born at Passover, most certainly on the first day of Unleavened
Bread. He was circumcised on the eighth day, which would be the last day of
Passover/Feast of Unleavened Bread. His birth therefore exactly fulfills both
Mal'akhi’s prophecy and the Jewish expectation of that fulfillment to occur at
The Birth of Yeshua
we have established that Yochanan was born at Passover.
Given this, and knowing Yeshua was conceived in December (Kislev), we
come to the time of His birth. Chanakuh
occurs on Kislev 25 (note a similarity to December 25th, adding weight to the
Theory the early church picked Dec. 25 because it was His conception).
Adding 9 months to Kislev, and you get Tishrei, Succot occurs in the
Hebrew month of Tishrei.
For the past several hundred years, Gentile Christians have
taught that poor Mary and Joseph were forced to go to Bethlehem to register for
their taxes, and that there were so many people trying to register at the same
time that all the motels and hotels were full. It’s a beautiful story, but
it’s simply not true ... it’s only a tradition.
First of all, when the decree was issued, citizens were
given a full year during which to register for the census. There was absolutely
no reason for thousands of Bethlehemites to have to come to their home town all
at once to register. That being the case, we must ask why Joseph would bring his
wife Mary all the way from
There were three great feasts during the year when the
people of Adonai were expected to make every reasonable effort to attend in
During these three feasts, the population of “the
However, during the feast of Sukkot [Tabernacles or Booths,
pronounced “sue-coat”], every family was expected to live at least part of
each day in their tabernacle or booth, called a sukkah, which is a temporary
dwelling usually made out of palm and/or bamboo branches, to remind them that
for 40 years their ancestors had lived in temporary shelters in the wilderness
on their trek to the Promised Land. At night, these sukkot [the plural form of
sukkah] were available for the overnight lodging of out-of-towners, and the
homeowners would stock them with food for the travelers. The food was placed on
a food-tray attached to
the inside wall of the Sukkah to keep it up off the ground.
can know for sure that December is wrong for the birth, the Sheppard's provide
As to establishing the date for His birth, one thing is
very certain … He was certainly not
born during the winter. Luke 2:8 tells us: “There were shepherds in the same country staying
in the field, and keeping watch by night over their flock."
The weather in
Since we have already demonstrated that Yeshua was exactly
six months younger that Yochanan, it is now easy to establish the time of His
birth as mid-Tishrei. The only reason that Beit-Lechem would possibly crowded in
mid-Tishrei would be for Sukkot. The first and last days of Sukkot were “high
Shabbats” and travel on those days was forbidden. Therefore Yoseph would have
planned their trip to arrive not later than a few hours before sunset preceding
the first day of Sukkot. According to Luke’s account, Yeshua was born that
night, on 15 Tishrei.
The circumcision of Yeshua
someone growing up in church, and probably never being taught the culture &
History of the “Roots of His Faith”, the circumcision may seem unimportant.
But in the culture, and to fulfill the commands of G-d, this event is
The “birth” of a Jewish baby boy was not considered
complete until he had been circumcised on the eighth day. On the eighth day,
Yeshua’s “presentation” in the
The Bread of Life
indeed this theory is correct, then it adds even more meaning to the “Bread of
Life” analogy. Scripture says that
Succot will be celebrated even by the gentiles, for all time, could the reason
be that it remembers the greatest miracle of all, G-d becoming a mna, and dying
for our sins?
At His birth he was placed on the food tray in the Sukkah, thus demonstrating that He is indeed the
true Bread of Life (John 6:33-51). God’s preparation of the Feast of Sukkot
centuries before His birth gives extra significance to Yochanan’s comment “The
Word became flesh, and lived [literally, “tabernacled”] among
us. We saw his glory, such glory as of the one and only Son of the Father, full
of grace and truth” (John 1:14).
that God provided two holy feasts that lasted eight days, Passover/Unleavened
Bread and the Feast of Tabernacles. John the Baptist, the forerunner of Messiah,
was born and circumcised in the eight days of the first, then six month later
Yeshua, the Messiah, was born and circumcised the eight days of the second. John
came in the first month of the year and Yeshua came in the seventh month. In
ministry, John introduced the way through Messiah and then Yeshua perfected it,
even as the first and seventh months signify. …
Feast of Tabernacles is a most important commemoration. Zechariah 14:16,17 tells
us that one day all nations will be required by law to honor this feast. For
what greater reason, than it is the birthday of the King of Kings! Why should we
I would like to gratefully
acknowledge the work of Dr. David Hargis, for adding insight into the birth of
Shalom, Cameron MMin.