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The Month of Barley ABIB The Month of Barley ABIB

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The Month of Barley ABIB

Posted by: Apostle Jacob Ballard III on Wed, Mar 23, 2016

Aviv Barley in the Biblical Calendar

 

Biblical 13 Lunar Moon

The Biblical year begins with the first New Moon after the barley in Israel reaches the stage in its ripeness called Aviv. The period between one year and the next is either 12 or 13 lunar months. Because of this, it is important to check the state of the Barley crops at the end of the 12th month. If the barley is Aviv at this time, then the following New Moon is Hodesh Ha-Aviv ("New Moon of the Aviv"). If the barley is still immature, we must wait another month and then check the barley again at the end of the 13th month.

By convention, a 12-month year is referred to as a Regular Year while a 13th month year is referred to as a Leap Year. This should not be confused with Leap Years in the Gregorian (Christian) Calendar, which involve the "intercalation" (addition) of a single day (Feb. 29). In contrast, the Biblical Leap Year involves the intercalation of an entire lunar month ("Thirteenth Month", also called "Adar Bet"). In general, it can only be determined whether a year is a Leap Year a few days before the end of the 12th Month. This is why we must be given to much prayer to see the signs I which the Lord gives to us that we may keep his feast in their appointed times and not set times before the sign. I ask that you all follow me as I follow Christ to do his good and perfect will.

Where is Aviv Mentioned in the Hebrew Bible?

The story of the Exodus relates " Exo 13:4 This day came ye out in the month Abib”. The word Abib in Hebrew mean aw-beeb' From an unused root (meaning to be tender); green, that is a young ear of grain; hence the name of the month Abib or Nisan: - Abib, ear, green ears of corn.

To commemorate that we left Egypt in the month of the Aviv, we are instructed to bring the Passover sacrifice and celebrate the Feast of Unleavened Bread at this time of year. In Dt 16:1 we are commanded:

Deu 16:1 Observe the month of Abib, and keep the passover unto the LORD thy God: for in the month of Abib the LORD thy God brought thee forth out of Egypt by night. Similarly, we are commanded in Ex 23:15,

" Exo 23:15 Thou shalt keep the feast of unleavened bread: (thou shalt eat unleavened bread seven days, as I commanded thee, in the time appointed of the month Abib; for in it thou camest out from Egypt: and none shall appear before me empty:)

The same is commanded in Ex 34:18,

Exo 34:18 The feast of unleavened bread shalt thou keep. Seven days thou shalt eat unleavened bread, as I commanded thee, in the time of the month Abib: for in the month Abib thou camest out from Egypt.

What is Aviv?

Aviv indicates a stage in the development of the barley crops. This is clear from Ex 9:31-32 which describes the devastation caused by the plague of hail:

Exo 9:31 And the flax and the barley was smitten: for the barley was in the ear, and the flax was bolled.

Exo 9:32 But the wheat and the rie were not smitten: for they were not grown up.

The above passage relates that the barley crops were destroyed by the hail while the wheat and spelt were not damaged. To understand the reason for this we must look at how grain develops. When grains are early in their development they are flexible and have a dark green color. As they become ripe they take on a light yellowish hue and become more brittle. The reason that the barley was destroyed and the wheat was not is that the barley had reached the stage in its development called Aviv and as a result had become brittle enough to be damaged by the hail. In contrast, the wheat and spelt were still early enough in their development, at a stage when they were flexible and not susceptible to being damaged by hail. The description of the wheat and spelt as "dark" (Afilot) indicates that they were still in the stage when they were deep green and had not yet begun to lighten into the light yellowish hue which characterizes ripe grains. In contrast, the barley had reached the stage of Aviv at which time it was no longer "dark" and at this point it probably had begun to develop golden streaks.

Parched Aviv

We know from several passages that barley which is in the state of Aviv has not completely ripened, but has ripened enough so that its seeds can be eaten parched in fire. Parched barley was a commonly eaten food in ancient Israel and is mentioned in numerous passages in the Hebrew Bible as either "Aviv parched (Kalui) in fire" (Lev 2,14) or in the abbreviated form "parched (Kalui/ Kali)" (Lev 23:14; Jos 5:11; 1Sam 17:17; 1 Samuel 25:18; 2 Samuel 17:28; Ruth 2:14).

While still early in its development, barley has not yet produced large enough and firm enough seeds to produce food through parching. This early in its development, when the "head" has just come out of the shaft, the seeds are not substantial enough to produce any food. At a later stage, the seeds have grown in size and have filled with liquid. At this point the seeds will shrivel up when parched and will only produce empty skins. Over time the liquid is replaced with dry material and when enough dry material has amassed the seeds will be able to yield "barley parched in fire".

Aviv and the Harvest

The month of the Aviv is the month which commences after the barley has reached the stage of Aviv. 2-3 weeks after the beginning of the month the barley has moved beyond the stage of Aviv and is ready to be brought as the "wave-sheaf offering". The "wave-sheaf offering" is a sacrifice brought from the first stalks cut in the harvest and is brought on the morrow after the Sabbath which falls out during Passover. This is described in Lev 23:10-11,

Lev 23:10 Speak unto the children of Israel, and say unto them, When ye be come into the land which I give unto you, and shall reap the harvest thereof, then ye shall bring a sheaf of the firstfruits of your harvest unto the priest:

Lev 23:11 And he shall wave the sheaf before the LORD, to be accepted for you: on the morrow after the Sabbath the priest shall wave it.

 From this it is clear that the barley, which was Aviv at the beginning of the month, has become harvest-ready 15-21 days later. Therefore, the month of the Aviv cannot begin unless the barley has reached a stage where it will be harvest-ready 2-3 weeks later.

That the barley must be harvest-ready 2-3 weeks into the month of the Aviv is also clear from Dt 16:9 which states:

Deu 16:9 Seven weeks shalt thou number unto thee: begin to number the seven weeks from such time as thou beginnest to put the sickle to the corn.

Lev 23:15 And ye shall count unto you from the morrow after the sabbath, from the day that ye brought the sheaf of the wave offering; seven sabbaths shall be complete:

Therefore, the "sickle commences on the standing grain" on the day after the Sabbath during Passover, i.e. 2-3 weeks after the beginning of the month of the Aviv. If the barley is not developed enough so that it will be ready for the sickle 2-3 weeks later, then the month of the Aviv can not begin and we must wait till the following month.

It should be noted that not all the barley ripens in the Land of Israel at the same time. The wave-sheaf offering is a national sacrifice brought from the first fields to become harvest-ready. However, the first-fruit offerings brought by individual farmers can vary in ripeness anywhere from "Aviv parched in fire" to fully ripe grain which may be brought "crushed" or "coarsely ground". This is what is meant in Lev 2:14,

Lev 2:14 And if thou offer a meat offering of thy firstfruits unto the LORD, thou shalt offer for the meat offering of thy firstfruits green ears of corn dried by the fire, even corn beaten out of full ears.

"And when you bring a first-fruit offering to the Lord; you shall bring your first-fruit offering as Aviv parched in fire or crushed Carmel" (Carmel is grain which has hardened beyond Aviv to the point where it can be "crushed" or "coarsely ground").

In Lev 2:14 they translated Carmel as "full ears" and "Aviv" as "green ears" whereas in Lev 23:14 they translated Carmel as "green ears"!

Carmel: H3760 karmel kar-mel'

The same as H3759; Karmel, the name of a hill and of a town in Palestine: - Carmel, fruitful (plentiful) field, (place).

Abib:  H24 'âbı̂yb  aw-beeb'

From an unused root (meaning to be tender); green, that is a young ear of grain; hence the name of the month Abib or Nisan: - Abib, ear, green ears of corn.

In summation, barley which is in the state of Aviv has 3 characteristics:

  1. It is brittle enough to be destroyed by hail and has begun to lighten in color (it is not "dark").
  2. The seeds have produced enough dry material so it can be eaten parched.
  3. It has developed enough so that it will be harvest-ready 2-3 weeks later.

 

 

 

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