Question: "What is the significance of a red heifer in the Bible? Is a red heifer a sign of the end times?"
Answer: According to the Bible, the red heifer—a reddish-brown cow, probably no more than two years old which had never had a yoke on it—was to be sacrificed as part of the purification rites of the Mosaic Law. The slaughtering of a red heifer was a ceremonial ritual in the Old Testament sacrificial system, as described in Numbers 19:1-10. The purpose of the red heifer sacrifice was to provide for the water of cleansing (Numbers 19:9), another term for purification from sin. After the red heifer was sacrificed, her blood was sprinkled at the door of the tabernacle.
The imagery of the blood of the heifer without blemish being sacrificed and its blood cleansing from sin is a foreshadowing of the blood of Christ shed on the cross for believers’ sin. He was “without blemish” just as the red heifer was to be. As the heifer was sacrificed “outside the camp” (Numbers 19:3), in the same way Jesus was crucified outside of Jerusalem: “And so Jesus also suffered outside the city gate to make the people holy through his own blood” (Hebrews 13:11-12).
The Bible does teach that one day there will be again be a temple of God in Jerusalem (Ezekiel chapters 41-45). Jesus prophesied that the antichrist would desecrate the temple (Matthew 24:15), and for that to occur, there obviously would have to be a temple in Jerusalem once again. Many anticipate the birth of a red heifer because in order for a new temple to function according to the Old Testament law, a red heifer would have to be sacrificed for the water of cleansing used in the temple. So, when a red heifer is born (which is quite unusual) it might be a sign that the temple will soon be rebuilt.
Sunday, April 5, 2015
Global SITREP B10-15: Parah Adumah in Howell, NJ (A Red Heifer)
5 April 2015: Lakewood, New Jersey is well known as having a very large Jewish community and the Beth Medrash Govoha (BMG), a Haredi Yeshiva founded five years prior to the creation of the State of Israel. With a student population of 6,500 students the BMG is one of the largest Haredi Yeshiva outside of Israel, if not the largest.
As reported by a local newspaper, The Lakewood Scoop, just three months ago, 11 January 2015, a group of the Rabbis from the BMG were called to a farm in nearby Howell, NJ that is run by a Jewish businessman named Herb Celler, the son of Auschwitz survivors, to investigate the possibility that a pure Parah Adumah - Red Heifer - is present on the farm (image above). Upon concluding their close inspection of the red heifer the now extremely impressed and excited Rabbonim sent word via eleven high definition photographs to their brethren in Eretz Israel.
As most of the Bride of Christ has come to be informed over the years, the Haredi expectations of the appearance of a pure Red Heifer has become eschatologically important to us as well. A living, unblemished (kosher) red heifer within just a very few miles drive of where I live in New Jersey, is almost inexpressible, but I'll try.
For Haredi Jews ever since the restoration of all Jerusalem, the site of the Temple Mount, to the state of Israel in June 1967, there has existed the expectation of the appearance of a pure Parah Adumah is a sure sign to them of the coming of the Moshiach and the rebuilding of the 3rd Temple. For us this red heifer represents a clear signal of the nearness of a specific God-breathed purification rite (in the above linked Numbers 19) for the construction of the 3rd Temple which is a real-world indicator concerning the imminent nearness for fulfillment of the angel Gabriel's prophecy regarding the 70th Week. Talk about chills going up and down one's spine and hairs standing on end! A truly incredible sight is this red cow!
By the way, Mr. Celler turned down an offer that came out of New York of one million dollars for this cow. He said this cow is not for sale and he is sending this gift from God to Israel as a gift.
Now, just to make sure everyone who reads this understands the issue clearly, here is the GotQuestionsDotOrg entry on this subject: