We have made it to Adar, the last month of the spiritual year—or have we? There are actually two Adars this year, hence the notations: 1st Adar and 2nd Adar. Why two Adars you ask? It's called a Hebrew leap year. Who knew, right? When a leap year occurs on the Gregorian calendar, we add a day to the end of the month. But on the Hebrew calendar, we add a whole extra month. Quite amazing! So what are we waiting for? Let's leap right into 1st Adar.
Adar is the last month of the Lord's calendar. The word "Adar" means strength. In this last month of the Lord's spiritual calendar, I believe the Lord is telling us something here: "Finish Strong!"
How do we finish strong? Nehemiah tells us "the joy of the Lord is our strength" (Neh. 8:10). David's lyrics also lead us to the answer: "in Your presence is fullness of joy" (Ps. 16:11b). When we spend time in His presence. He fills us with His joy. and when we have His joy, we have His strength.
The month of Adar is known as the most joyful month of the year. It is a month of good fortune, but it can be dangerous. These attributes burst forth in the feast of Purim. Purim is a joyful feast commemorating the amazing defeat of the evil Haman's plot to massacre the entire Jewish race in 357 B.C. The captivating story is told in the book of Esther and is a must-read as we move through 1st and 2nd Adar.
Here's a quick overview: During the Babylonian captivity of the Jews, King Artaxerxes of Persia was searching for a new queen. The word got out to Mordecai, a well-known Jew, who insisted his beautiful niece, Hadassah, enter this "royal beauty pageant." He gave her a new name, Esther, to protect her Jewish identity. She agreed and was sequestered for months in the king's harem and eventually selected as the new queen of Persia.
During Esther's reign, Mordecai notified her of an edict calling for a total extermination of the Jews on Adar 13. Mordecai informed her of the dark heart of Haman, King Artaxerxes' right-hand man, who created and sealed this evil plot with the king's ring. Once sealed, this edict could not be expunged. Haman hated the Jews, especially Mordecai.
Mordecai ordered the Jews to fast and pray and summoned Esther to approach the king and reveal her identity for "such a time as this." Approaching the king in those days, even for a queen, could cost someone their life! Esther fasted and prayed and was received by the king. She prayerfully invited both King Artaxerxes and Haman to two feasts, and at the second one, revealed her identity as a Jew and exposed the evil Haman. The king ordered Haman to be hung and appointed Mordecai to his cabinet.
Although the edict could not be changed, King Artaxerxes issued a second edict declaring the Jews can fight against their enemies. On Adar 13, instead of being slaughtered, the Jews defended themselves and lived. To celebrate this tremendous victory in the Lord, the feast of Purim was established and is gregariously enjoyed to this day. During a leap year, Purim is celebrated in 2nd Adar so it properly aligns with Passover.
The Lord calls us to find strength in His joy this month and to rise up in courage like Mordecai and Esther. They both found their joy and strength in the presence of the Lord. Let us not focus on the "giants in the land" this month. May we bring our fears to the Lord and watch Him turn our fears to laughter (Prov. 31:25).
It's time to reveal our true identity as Esther did. It's time to take off our mask and be authentic with others, especially with the Lord. When we remove our masks before Him, He gives us our true identity, and our destiny begins to unfold. Masks stop joy. Transparency brings light and life.
Last but definitely not least, this is the month where the Lord reverses the curse. As in the story of Esther, there is an anointing for the curse to be reversed for this month. When a curse is reversed, you feel like a doe let loose! These are the exact prophetic words spoken over the tribe of this month, Naphtali (Gen. 49:21). Naphtali's name means "sweetness to me."
When you are set free from a curse, it sure is sweet. It's time for evil decrees to be broken. Other people may have spoken ill will against us, or we may have even spoken death over our own lives. It's time to declare the final decree over our lives, which is His word of truth over us. Hallelujah!
As you make your way through this first round of Adar, be sure to invest time in His presence so you can gain true strength, His joy. Be sure to read Esther and ask the Lord to speak to you through its pages. May you rise up and throw off fear and laugh at the days to come. As you throw off your mask, may you go out in joy and be led forth in the peace as your true identity in Him arises—for such a time as this! (Isa 55:12)
Christine Vales is an author and teacher of His Appointed Times: Hebrew /Gregorian Calendar & Journal and has been blessed with the privilege of uncovering the Lord's prophetic calendar, teaching others how to connect with His ancient timepiece in real time in their lives. Christine sends forth her creative monthly Chalkboard Teachings on YouTube and social media, and also goes forth teaching at live gatherings, large and small, all to draw hearts closer to The Ancient of Days Himself—truly, our times are in His hands (Ps. 90:12).
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