The 11th Month - the Month of Sh'vat
The Hebrew Months Continued
The 11th month of the Biblical year is named Sh’vat/Shebat – this month is first mentioned by name in Zechariah 1:7:
Shevat in Hebrew - Shin bet tet
The assumed Akkadian origin of the month is Šabātu meaning ‘strike or lashing’ that refers to the heavy rains of the season.
What happened in Sh’vat throughout history?
- 1 Shevat – Moses repeats the Torah (Deuteronomy 1:3)
- 15 Shevat – Tu Bishvat – the anniversary of the trees
- 24 Shevat (517 BC) – Zechariah's prophecy (Zechariah 1:7–16)
- 28 Shevat (circa 134 BC) – Antiochus V abandoned his siege of Jerusalem and his plans for the city's destruction.
The anniversary of the trees, also called "Rosh HaShanah La'Ilanot" (Hebrew: ראש השנה לאילנות), - "New Year of the Trees," is a beautiful celebration that enabled the people in Israel to mark the years of the trees so that they knew when each tree was ready to be harvested under the law of fruit trees (Leviticus 19:23 -24). Only in the 5th year of the tree could the fruit be harvested for sale or consumption.
It is not recorded who first gave the month this special acrostic, but the word Shevat can stand for the Hebrew expression ‘Shenishma Besurot Tovot’, that we should be blessed to share good reports.
Two significant days took place in this month and both of them speak of fruit and abundance. Moshe begins his summary of the Torah to the Israelites before entering the land and we celebrate the abundance of life in the fruit of the trees that He has provided for us.
Our Father wants us to be abundance in all things. Yeshua says in John 10:10 that He has come to bring us life and life in abundance. This abundance comes from the Word of our Adonai, it is through meditation on His Word day and night that our lives produce fruit that brings righteousness and fullness in Him. The trees in scripture often linked to the image of man and so these two events within this month serve as a reminder to each of us to work out our salvation with fear and trembling (Philippians 2:12) considering each day what fruit our tree is bearing.
Not only was there abundance in fruit but also in victory as we see it was in this month that Antiochus V abandoned his attack against Jerusalem! Smay this month be a month of victory for each of us as we choose YHVH's ways.
Shenishma Besurot Tovot – may you be blessed this Sh’vat as you walk out His Torah in your lives.