The Fast of Prophets
November 23, 2022
Mankind was bestowed a hope of salvation as the prophet foretold prophecy about the mystery of “Lord and Savior Jesus Christ” to be born from Holy Mother Saint Mary. Conferring the word of God, Christians fast “The Fast of Prophets.” This fast is amongst the seven fast and thus all in the name of Orthodox Tewahedo religion shall fast. This year’s fast begins at November 24, (Hidar 15) 2022 (2015 E.C) and lasts until January 6, (Tahisas 28), 2023 (2015). At January 7 (Tahisas 29), on the celebration of the Birth of Lord Jesus Christ, it is festival.
In the Old Testament Prophets prophesied about “The Holy Son” to be born, migration to Egypt, His baptism in Jordan river, suffering for the salvation of mankind, crucifixion, resurrection, ascension and second coming on Judgment day.
The Prophets prayed and fasted with the hope of salvation of humans vowed to Adam. Though they haven’t’ witnessed the “Birth of Lord Jesus Christ” with their own eyes, they had faith of the fulfillment of the redemption of human. Thus, we fast this fast with the hope of Lord Jesus Christ birth and the contentment of the prophet’s prophecy.
Following, we will see the weeks of “The fast of Prophets.”
Sermon (Zemene Sebeket)
The period beginning December 16 (Tahisas 7) up to December 22 (Tashisas 13) is known as “Zemene Sebeket” meaning “Sermon” in English. It is the time of the commemoration from the Birth of Father Abraham until The Birth of David, with the remembrance of Lord Jesus to come down and be born” by the Moses in Torah, Prophets by the Prophecy and David by his psalm. The song sung in this era is “we will preach the Holy Son who existed before the world and the medicine.” (Saint Jared)
During this week, the Sermon about the birth of Abraham up to the Birth of David and Christ is commemorated. The bible reading of Moses by Law and according to the inscription of prophets by the prophecy about Lord Jesus Christ. (John 1:41-44)
Light is the period from December 23 up to December 29. During this time, the Birth of David up to the migration of Babylon which are fourteen generations is commemoration. As the prophet David said “Oh, send out Your light and Your truth! Let them lead me; Let them bring me to Your holy hill.” (Psalm 43:3)
Saint John witnessed saying, “He was not that Light, but was sent to bear witness of that Light. That was the true Light which gives light to every man coming into the world.” Lord Jesus Christ Himself has said, “I am the light of the world. He who follows Me shall not walk in darkness, but have the light of life.” (John 1:6-9, 8:12)
The song sung in this period states “Light came to the world, Lord foretold in Torah about The word of Praise to Tshion.”
Nolawi is the Amharic word referring to “Shepherd.” The period from December 30 up to January 5. It is termed as Nolawi to represent God who safeguards His children. Commemorating the congregation of His people who were strewn were all over the world and His safeguarding of God as prophets foretold.
The song sung in this period is “The Son of God and word Lord Christ is who came down and Sphered.” The reading during this season is Saint John’s Gospel l0:1-22 “Very truly I tell you Pharisees, anyone who does not enter the sheep pen by the gate, but climbs in by some other way, is a thief and a robber. The one who enters by the gate is the shepherd of the sheep. The gatekeeper opens the gate for him, and the sheep listen to his voice. He calls his own sheep by name and leads them out. When he has brought out all his own, he goes on ahead of them, and his sheep follow him because they know his voice. But they will never follow a stranger; in fact, they will run away from him because they do not recognize a stranger’s voice.” Jesus used this figure of speech, but the Pharisees did not understand what he was telling them.
Therefore, Jesus said again, “Very truly I tell you, I am the gate for the sheep. All who have come before me are thieves and robbers, but the sheep have not listened to them. I am the gate; whoever enters through me will be saved. They will come in and go out, and find pasture. The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full. “I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep. The hired hand is not the shepherd and does not own the sheep. So when he sees the wolf coming, he abandons the sheep and runs away. Then the wolf attacks the flock and scatters it. The man runs away because he is a hired hand and cares nothing for the sheep. “I am the good shepherd; I know my sheep and my sheep know me just as the Father knows me and I know the Father and I lay down my life for the sheep. I have other sheep that are not of this sheep pen. I must bring them also. They too will listen to my voice, and there shall be one flock and one shepherd. The reason my Father loves me is that I lay down my life only to take it up again. No one takes it from me, but I lay it down of my own accord. I have authority to lay it down and authority to take it up again. This command I received from my Father.” Saint Peter have said for you were like sheep going astray, but have now returned to the Shepherd and Overseer of your souls.
The Prophecy of prophets saying, “Lord will come down and be born” was fulfilled in the apostasy era and with the hope of Lord Jesus Christ’s birth day that Angels, Humans and even Animals sung in joy, we shall fast “The Fast Prophets.”
May it be the will of God to save us with the intercession of prophets, Amen!