The Counting of the Omer

Prepared by P. R. Reid, a Bondservant of Yeshua HaMashiach

Article Seventeen

April 25, 2024

ברוך אתה יהוה אלהינו מלך העולם אשר קדשנו

במצותיו וצונו על ספירת העומר

Baruch ata YaHaVah Elohenu melech haolam, asher

kidshanu b’mitzvotav v’tzivanu al sefirat ha Omer.

Blessed are You, Lord our God, King of the universe, who has sanctified us with His commandments, and commanded us concerning the counting of the Omer.
Today is the 8th  day of the counting of the Omer.

Counting the Omer

  • The first mention of the word “omer” is found in Ex. 16:16 – 18:  
  • “This is the thing which the LORD has commanded: ‘Let every man gather it according to each one’s need, one omer for each person, according to the number of persons; let every man take for those who are in his tent.’   Then the children of Israel did so and gathered, some more, some less. So when they measured it by omers, he who gathered much had nothing left over, and he who gathered little had no lack. Every man had gathered according to each one’s need.
  • The Hebrew word for “omer” is עֹמֶר.  In its ancient form “omer” would read as follows:  “We watch for the mighty one who was from the beginning.”  The numerical value of “omer” is 310; reducing to a single digit, 3 + 1 = 4.  The number four provides a relationship to Yeshua as the Aleph Tav.  The first intact Aleph Tav of Scripture is the fourth word of the first line of Scripture.  Thus creating the pattern of four.
  • The definition of “omer”  is a dry measure, 1/10th of an ephah or sheaf.  The “omer” in connected to the wave offering which takes place on the 16th day of the first month.
  • The word “omer” is used fourteen times in the Tanakh.  Since this word is used only fourteen times, it provides a connection to Pesach which occurs on the fourteenth day of the first month.  
  • Out of the fourteen usages, four had the Aleph Tav attached; Lev. 23:10, 23:11, 23:12 and 23:15.
  • Recall the book of Leviticus, V’Yikra, is the book of holiness.  Lev. 23:10:  “Speak to the children of Israel, and say to them: ‘When you come into the land which I give to you, and reap its harvest, then you shall bring a sheaf (אֶת־עֹמֶר ) of the firstfruits of your harvest to the priest.
  • Lev. 23:11:  “He shall wave the sheaf (אֶת־הָעֹמֶר ) before the LORD, to be accepted on your behalf; on the day after the Sabbath the priest shall wave it.”
  • Lev. 23:12:  “And you shall offer on that day, when you wave the sheaf (אֶת־הָעֹמֶר) a male lamb of the first year, without blemish, as a burnt offering to the LORD.”
  • Lev. 23:15:  “And ye shall count unto you from the morrow after the Sabbath, from the day that ye brought the sheaf (אֶת־עֹמֶר ) of the wave offering; seven Sabbaths shall be complete.”
  • By the placement of the Aleph Tavs, Scripture is showing us that the “omer” is connected to the “Strength of the Covenant.”
  • The count equals 49 days.  We are counting down to something very special.  We are counting down to the giving of the Torah, the Ten Words, on Mt. Sinai.
  • This count is duplicated in our count down to a jubilee.  Forty nine years with the fiftieth year being the year of jubilee.  The jubilee is announced on Yom Kippurim (see Lev. 25:8:55).

The Sheaf, Omer

  • The term “sheaf” refers to a bundle of harvested grain or stalks of crops that are gathered and tied together. It represents the fruits of labor, the result of hard work and cultivation. In biblical times, the harvesting of crops played a vital role in the livelihood of the people, and the sheaf became a powerful symbol of provision and sustenance.  (  
  • “You shall bring the sheaf of the firstfruits of your harvest to the priest, and he shall wave the sheaf before the LORD, so that you may be accepted. On the day after the Sabbath, the priest shall wave it.” – Leviticus 23:10-11 (ESV)
  • Another profound symbolism attached to sheaves in the Bible is the concept of resurrection and new life. In the New Testament, Yeshuas’ resurrection is often compared to a grain of wheat that dies and produces many sheaves. This imagery signifies the hope of eternal life and the promise of a new beginning through Messiah. ( 
  • “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies, it remains alone; but if it dies, it bears much fruit.” – John 12:24 (ESV)

The Good Seed

  • A sheaf, i.e. an “omer,” of grain has its beginning when good seed is sown, hence the parable of the “good seed.”
  • Mt. 13:1 – 9:  “On the same day Yeshua went out of the house and sat by the sea.  And great multitudes were gathered together to Him, so that He got into a boat and sat; and the whole multitude stood on the shore. Then He spoke many things to them in parables, saying: ‘behold, a sower went out to sow.  And as he sowed, some seed fell by the wayside; and the birds came and devoured them.
  • Some fell on stony places, where they did not have much earth; and they immediately sprang up because they had no depth of earth. But when the sun was up they were scorched, and because they had no root they withered away.  And some fell among thorns, and the thorns sprang up and choked them. But others fell on good ground and yielded a crop: some a hundredfold, some sixty, some thirty. He who has ears to hear, let him hear!’”
  • The explanation of this parable is recorded for us beginning in Mt. 13:18 – 23:  “Therefore hear the parable of the sower:  When anyone hears the word of the kingdom, and does not understand it, then the wicked one comes and snatches away what was sown in his heart. This is he who received seed by the wayside.
  • But he who received the seed on stony places, this is he who hears the word and immediately receives it with joy; yet he has no root in himself, but endures only for a while. For when tribulation or persecution arises because of the word, immediately he stumbles. Now he who received seed among the thorns is he who hears the word, and the cares of this world and the deceitfulness of riches choke the word, and he becomes unfruitful. But he who received seed on the good ground is he who hears the word and understands it, who indeed bears fruit and produces: some a hundredfold, some sixty, some thirty.” 
  • Covenant Israel are those who have received His Word on good ground.  We can then be considered a sheaf, an “omer” of good grain, His wheat that will be gathered into His barn.
  • Mt. 13:38 – 43:  “The field is the world, the good seeds are the sons of the kingdom, but the tares are the sons of the wicked one. The enemy who sowed them is the devil, the harvest is the end of the age, and the reapers are the angels. Therefore as the tares are gathered and burned in the fire, so it will be at the end of this age. The Son of Man will send out His angels, and they will gather out of His kingdom all things that offend, and those who practice lawlessness, and will cast them into the furnace of fire. There will be wailing and gnashing of teeth. Then the righteous will shine forth as the sun in the kingdom of their Father. He who has ears to hear, let him hear!’

We are His Wheat

  • Mt. 3:12:  “His winnowing fan is in His hand, and He will thoroughly clean out His threshing floor, and gather His wheat into the barn; but He will burn up the chaff with unquenchable fire.”  
  • Mt. 3:24 – 30:  “Another parable put he forth unto them, saying, ‘the kingdom of heaven is likened unto a man which sowed good seed in his field:  But while men slept, his enemy came and sowed tares among the wheat, and went his way.  But when the blade was sprung up, and brought forth fruit, then appeared the tares also.
  • So the servants of the householder came and said unto him, ‘sir, didst not thou sow good seed in thy field? from whence then hath it tares?’  He said unto them, ‘an enemy hath done this.’ The servants said unto him, ‘wilt thou then that we go and gather them up?’  But he said, ‘nay; lest while ye gather up the tares, ye root up also the wheat with them.  Let both grow together until the harvest: and in the time of harvest I will say to the reapers, gather ye together first the tares, and bind them in bundles  ( sheaf’s/omers ) to burn them: but gather the wheat into my barn.”
  • The concept of “gathering” His wheat, His grain, is repeated throughout Scripture many times.  He needs us to understand.
  • It’s interesting to me that the children of Israel traveled for forty seven days to finally reach their destination, Mt. Sinai.  They had three days to prepare for the giving of the Ten Words.  It’s the combination of the four and seven that get my attention; 4 + 7 = 11.  Eleven is connecting us to Yeshua.
  • The fourth letter of the Aleph Bet is the Dalet which means to enter or pathway.  The seventh letter is the Zayin which means to cut of cut off.  The giving of the Torah on the fiftieth day will be the capstone of the Book of the Covenant.  The Book of the Covenant relates to the “Gospel of the Kingdom.”  The pathway to the restored Abrahamic covenant.

The Wave Offering

  • Recall Pesach is the “covenant” festival.  Part of the Pesach instructions speak to the barley grain being in the state of aviv which is a particular state of ripeness.

Lev. 23:10 – 11:  “Speak to the children of Israel, and say to them: ‘when you come into the land which I give to you, and reap its harvest, then you shall bring a sheaf (omer) of the firstfruits of your harvest to the priest. He shall wave the sheaf before the LORD, to be accepted on your behalf; on the day after the Sabbath the priest shall wave it.”

  • Num. 8:11:  “…and Aaron shall offer (wave  נוּף ) the Levites before the LORD, like a wave ( נוּף ) offering from the children of Israel, that they may perform the work of the LORD.”
  • It’s not an inconceivable notion to me that at the final ingathering, Covenant Israel will be “waved” before YaHaVah as well.  Such an event would be supernatural to be sure.
  • The counting of the “omer” is the link that connects the first festival of Pesach with the fourth festival, Shavuot.  In the Hebrew Aleph Bet the letter that signifies the “link” is the letter Vav, the sixth letter.
  • This letter means to add to or to secure.  It’s for certain that at Yeshuas’ second advent, which will occur at the end six thousand year mark, He will gather in His sheaves, His good grain, placing them in his barn.
  • In conclusion, the counting of the “omer” is a representation of the following:
  • 1.)  Yeshua, the Living Word is the good seed.
  • 2.)  His death, burial and resurrection made our salvation possible.
  • 3.)  When we receive the good seed, we become His good grain.
  • 4.)  At the final ingathering, we are gathered together and bound into a sheave and delivered into the barn of the High Priest after the order of Melchizedek.