I received an e-mail notification from Israel this week, that the search for barley in its head has been successful. They do this every year as the 12th biblical month is ending, to see if the barley has ripened enough to say that spring has arrived, and that the next new moon can mark the 1st biblical month of the year. Because a year of 12 lunar months is shorter than a solar year, sometimes the end of the 12th biblical month is out of sync with the solar year. In other words, spring has not truly arrived yet, since the agricultural year is slower than the accumulation of lunar months. When that happens, they add an extra lunar month, a 13th month to the year, and the 1st biblical month and Passover then waits for one more month.
Last year they had to add a 13th month, so it was pretty certain they would not need to this year. But it never hurts to be certain, just in case. Now the new moon might be visible tonight, a very thin sliver hanging over the western horizon after sunset. My husband and I will be looking for it this evening. If all goes according to prediction and plan, then that means the Passover feast will be exactly two weeks from tonight, on Friday evening April 10th, and the week of Unleavened Bread will run from Saturday April 11 through Friday April 17. Hooray for a new year of keeping the Lord’s appointed times in remembrance of Him and in expectation of Him!