Donald W. Parry, “Seven and Sacred Time,” in The Jesus Christ Focused Old Testament: Making Sense of a Monumental Book (Springville, UT: Book of Mormon Central, 2022), 70–71.
Of all the symbolic numbers in the Bible, seven is the most prominent in terms of frequency. Seven is especially attested in the books of Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, and Revelation. In the Old Testament, seven is associated with the lord, His temple, and the sacred calendar of the Israelites. In short, seven is the lord’s sacred number. For an explanation of symbolic numbers, see the chart “One, Three, and Seven: Sacred and Symbolic Numbers.”
Seven and Sacred Time
Occurred on the seventh day of each week.
Occurred every seventh year.
Seven cycles of seven years—every fiftieth year.
Eating unleavened bread for seven days, sacrifices for seven days, and the sacrifice of seven lambs without blemish.
Lev. 23:6, 8, 18; Num. 28:17–24; Deut. 16:3–4
Feast of Tabernacles
Began during the seventh month of the year; lasted seven days; Israelites dwelt in booths for seven days and kept a feast for seven days; sacrificial offerings included seven bullocks and seven lambs.
Lev. 23:34, 39, 42; Num. 29:12, 32, 36
Day of Atonement
Sacrificial offerings of “seven lambs of the first year; they shall be unto you without blemish.”
Feast of Weeks
Lasted seven weeks and included the sacrifice of seven lambs.
Num. 28:29; Deut. 16:9
Feast of Trumpets
Included the sacrifice of “seven lambs of the first year without blemish.”
Monthly Sacrificial Offerings
“Seven lambs of the first year without spot.”
Hezekiah’s Purification of the Temple
When Hezekiah purified the temple, the priests sacrificed “seven bullocks, and seven rams, and seven lambs, and seven he goats, for a sin offering for the kingdom, and for the sanctuary, and for Judah.”
2 Chr. 29:21
Separation of a Woman with an Issue
“If a woman have an issue, and her issue in her flesh be blood, she shall be put apart seven days.”
Separation of a Leper
“The priest shall shut up him that hath the plague seven days.”
for the Altar
“Seven days thou shalt make an atonement for the altar.”
of the Priests
“Seven days shalt thou consecrate them.”
Ex. 29:35; Lev. 8:33
of a Male with an Issue
“When he that hath an issue is cleansed of his issue: then he shall number to himself seven days for his cleansing.”
Priests Wear Holy Garments
The “priest . . . shall put them [holy garments] on seven days.”