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- "And YaHuWaH spake unto Mosheh, saying,"
- "Speak unto the children of Israel, saying, The fifteenth day of this seventh month shall be the feast of tabernacles for seven days unto YaHuWaH."
- "On the first day shall be an holy convocation: ye shall do no servile work therein."
- "Seven days ye shall offer an offering made by fire unto YaHuWaH: on the eighth day shall be an holy convocation unto you; and ye shall offer an offering made by fire unto YaHuWaH: it is a solemn assembly; and ye shall do no servile work therein."
- "These are the feasts of YaHuWaH, which ye shall proclaim to be holy convocations, to offer an offering made by fire unto YaHuWaH, a burnt offering, and a meat offering, a sacrifice, and drink offerings, every thing upon his day:"
- "Beside the Sabbaths of YaHuWaH, and beside your gifts, and beside all your vows, and beside all your freewill offerings, which ye give unto YaHuWaH."
- "Also in the fifteenth day of the seventh month, when ye have gathered in the fruit of the land, ye shall keep a feast unto YaHuWaH seven days: on the first day shall be a Sabbath, and on the eighth day shall be a Sabbath."
- "And ye shall take you on the first day the boughs of goodly trees, branches of palm trees, and the boughs of thick trees, and willows of the brook; and ye shall rejoice before YaHuWaH your Elohiym seven days."
- "And ye shall keep it a feast unto YaHuWaH seven days in the year. It shall be a statute for ever in your generations: ye shall celebrate it in the seventh month."
- "Ye shall dwell in booths seven days; all that are Israelites born shall dwell in booths:"
- "That your generations may know that I made the children of Israel to dwell in booths, when I brought them out of the land of Egypt: I am YaHuWaH your Elohiym."
- "And Mosheh declared unto the children of Yashar'el the feasts of YaHuWaH".
Feast Of Ingathering
Feast Of Booths,
Feast of Tabernacles
YaHuWaH's Sukkot | Nature & Purpose
This presentation of the Feast of Tabernacles, a most important divine holiday and holy day, will seek to lead the Disciple to understand the following aspects of this Feast:
- Origin & Nature, In Scripture.
- The Law
- Significance, in history, at present and eternity
- The Spirit of Prophecy's Position on this Feast
The Law Of YaHuWaH
The Bible reveals YaHuWaH's Ten Commandments, Statutes and Judgments. These are all laws targeted at different aspects of the lives of Elohiym's people. The Decalogue is at the Top and over-arches everything else, revealing the height a mind which, led by the Ruach haQodesh, can reach - sinlessness, and revealing what sin is. The Statutes are designed to explain the Decalogue (Ten commandments) and guard them; and the Judgments are designed for deterrence or punishment in the event of transgression by man against man in some cases, and by man against Elohiym in others. Pentecost is a Statute
- What Is a Statute:
- A Statute is a written law that is formally created by a government; a written rule or regulation
Because that Abraham obeyed my voice, and kept my charge, my commandments, my statutes, and my laws."
Genesis 26:5 [KJV]
Ye shall therefore keep my statutes, and my judgments: which if a man do, he shall live in them: I [am] YaHuWaH.
- Leviticus 18:5 KJV
In every generation and in every land the true foundation for character building has been the same - the principles contained in the word of Elohiym. The only safe and sure rule is to do what Elohiym says. "The statutes of YaHuWaH are right," and "he that doeth these things shall never be moved." Psalm 19:8; 15:5. It was with the word of Elohiym that the Apostles met the false theories of their day, saying, "Other foundation can no man lay than that is laid." 1 Corinthians 3:11.
A Joyous Occasion:
The Scriptures state that both YaHuWshuaH and His Disciples were called to this marriage feast [at Cana]. Messiah has given Natsariym (Natsarene) no sanction to say when invited to a marriage, We ought not to be present on so joyous an occasion. By attending this feast Messiah taught that He would have us rejoice with those who do rejoice in the observance of His statutes.
The teaching which has become so wide-spread that the divine statutes are no longer binding upon men, is the same as idolatry in its effect upon the morals of the people. Those who seek to lessen the claims of Elohiym's holy law are striking directly at the foundation of the government of families and nations. Religious parents, failing to walk in his statutes, do not command their household to keep the way of the Master.
In consequence of continual transgression, the moral law was repeated in awful grandeur from Sinai. Messiah gave to Mosheh religious precepts which were to govern everyday life. These statutes were explicitly given to guard the Ten Commandments. They were not shadowy types to pass away with the death of Messiah. They were to be binding upon men in every age as long as time should last. These commands were enforced by the power of the moral law, and they clearly and definitely explained that law
Feast Of Tabernacles | The Statute
- And יהוה spoke to Mosheh, saying,
- “Speak to the children of Yisra'ĕl, and say to them, 'The appointed times of יהוה, which you are to proclaim as set-apart gatherings, My appointed times, are these:
- And YaHuWaH spake unto Mosheh, saying,
- Speak unto the children of Israel, saying, The fifteenth day of this seventh month shall be the feast of tabernacles for seven days unto YaHuWaH.
- On the first day shall be a set-apart convocation: ye shall do no servile work therein.
- Seven days ye shall offer an offering made by fire unto YaHuWaH: on the eighth day shall be a set-apart convocation unto you; and ye shall offer an offering made by fire unto YaHuWaH: it is a solemn assembly; and ye shall do no servile work therein....
- Also in the fifteenth day of the seventh month, when ye have gathered in the fruit of the land, ye shall keep a feast unto YaHuWaH seven days: on the first day shall be a Sabbath, and on the eighth day shall be a Sabbath.
- And ye shall take you on the first day the boughs of goodly trees, branches of palm trees, and the boughs of thick trees, and willows of the brook; and ye shall rejoice before YaHuWaH your Elohiym seven days.
- And ye shall keep it a feast unto YaHuWaH seven days in the year. It shall be a statute for ever in your generations: ye shall celebrate it in the seventh month.
- Ye shall dwell in booths seven days; all that are Israelites born shall dwell in booths:
- That your generations may know that I made the children of Yisra'el to dwell in booths, when I brought them out of the land of Egypt: I am YaHuWaH your Elohiym.
- And Mosheh declared unto the children of Yisra'el the feasts of YaHuWaH.
Deprecations In The Ceremonial Law
The Ceremonial Law is the part of the Torah, that specified in great details every ritual sacrifice in the sacrificial system. The Sacrificial system was the object lesson, demonstrated day by day, all representing the coming antitypical Sacrifice of the Son of YaHuWaH. They included animal offerings, grain offerings, incense, oils, etc. Of these, the Bible looking forward to the death of YaHuWshuaH on the Cross, said these:
And he YaHuWshuaH shall confirm the covenant with many for one week: and in the midst of the week he shall cause the sacrifice and the oblation to cease, ...
And after the Savior's sacrifice, Humanity was no longer permitted to do certain things. Some of which may be discerned very clearly in the following biblical passages:
- Thus saith YaHuWaH, The heaven [is] my throne, and the Earth [is] my footstool: where [is] the house that ye build unto me? and where [is] the place of my rest?
- For all those [things] hath mine hand made, and all those [things] have been, saith YaHuWaH: but to this [man] will I look, [even] to [him that is] poor and of a contrite spirit, and trembleth at my word.
- He that killeth an ox [is as if] he slew a man; he that sacrificeth a lamb, [as if] he cut off a dog's neck; he that offereth an oblation, [as if he offered] swine's blood; he that burneth incense, [as if] he blessed an idol. Yea, they have chosen their own ways, and their soul delighteth in their abominations.
- I also will choose their delusions, and will bring their fears upon them; because when I called, none did answer; when I spake, they did not hear: but they did evil before mine eyes, and chose [that] in which I delighted not.
Folks there's this thing which we have almost completely lost sight of and which on the authority of the Divine Word above, shall invariably, but avoidably, lead to the loss of many souls! There are only three reasons given in Scripture for the killing of animals:
After Adam's creation his food was defined by his Creator YaHuWshuaH in this manner:
"And Elohiym said, Behold, I have given you every herb bearing seed, which [is] upon the face of all the Earth, and every tree, in the which [is] the fruit of a tree yielding seed; to you it shall be for meat."
Adam and his family were to eat nothing but fruits, grains and nuts. But after the fall, vegetables were added to Adam's diet to enhance protein replacement as degradation and dying had taken hold of the human family.
...; and thou shalt eat the herb of the field;
Following Adam's fall, the shedding of blood for the atonement of his sin became a life-long lesson he and his descendants must learn in preparation for the arrival of the promised seed (Genesis 3:15). But at this time, the slain animals were wholly burnt and never eaten. Their skin did also serve for clothing for the fallen race. Before the fall we needed no clothing. A cloak of light was our clothing. For the first 1500 years of human existence, no man ate flesh of any kind.
Unto Adam also and to his wife did YaHuWaH Elohiym make coats of skins, and clothed them.
The sacrificial offerings were ordained by Elohiym to be to man a perpetual reminder and a penitential acknowledgment of his sin and a confession of his faith in the promised Redeemer. They were intended to impress upon the fallen race the solemn truth that it was sin that caused death. To Adam, the offering of the first sacrifice was a most painful ceremony. His hand must be raised to take life, which only Elohiym could give. It was the first time he had ever witnessed death, and he knew that had he been obedient to Elohiym, there would have been no death of man or beast. As he slew the innocent victim, he trembled at the thought that his sin must shed the blood of the spotless Lamb of Elohiym. This scene gave him a deeper and more vivid sense of the greatness of his transgression, which nothing but the death of Elohiym's dear Son could expiate. And he marveled at the infinite goodness that would give such a ransom to save the guilty. A star of hope illumined the dark and terrible future and relieved it of its utter desolation.
There was the 'necessity' at the end of the world-wide flood which destroyed all vegetation. When Noah and his co-survivors came off the Ark, there was nothing in the world that they could eat except for what was in the Ark. And after over 150 days in the Ark while the flood raged, they had with the animals with them in the Ark, depleted their stock of food! For their survival until the replanting of the Earth, YaHuWaH said this to them:
- And Elohiym blessed Noah and his sons, and said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the Earth.
- And the fear of you and the dread of you shall be upon every beast of the Earth, and upon every fowl of the air, upon all that moveth [upon] the Earth, and upon all the fishes of the sea; into your hand are they delivered.
- Every moving thing that liveth shall be meat for you; even as the green herb have I given you all things.
- But flesh with the life thereof, [which is] the blood thereof, shall ye not eat.
- And surely your blood of your lives will I require; at the hand of every beast will I require it, and at the hand of man; at the hand of every man's brother will I require the life of man.
- Whoso sheddeth man's blood, by man shall his blood be shed: for in the image of Elohiym made he man.
- And you, be ye fruitful, and multiply; bring forth abundantly in the Earth, and multiply therein.
And Noah began [to be] an husbandman, and he planted a vineyard:
The necessity ended after the family replanted and reaped. Unfortunately the first thing recorded at the first harvest following the flood was Noah's getting drunk! It appeared that having tasted flesh foods, man would refuse to let go of flesh foods even when they are no longer required. But the consequence was the catastrophic reduction in human longevity from almost a thousand years of lifespan to just a hundred and below today!
The second major aspect of the 'Necessity', was the need for the Sinner to partake of the 'sin offering'. This was developed at Sinai. And from Sinai, until the Cross, Man needed to eat animal flesh during the Sacrificial process. But when the Savior died on the Cross, the Flood and Sacrifices, as the basis for eating flesh, became eternal history. Thus the need for the Bible to warn that slaying animals after the Cross would be viewed by Heaven as 'Murder'. All who today are killing animals for food or partaking of the flesh as killed by another, are guilty of murder. And the blood of those animals shall be required at their hands.
- What man soever [there be] of the house of Israel, that killeth an ox, or lamb, or goat, in the camp (at home), or that killeth [it] out of the camp,
- And bringeth it not unto the door of the tabernacle of the congregation, to offer an offering unto YaHuWaH before the tabernacle of YaHuWaH; blood shall be imputed unto that man; he hath shed blood; and that man shall be cut off from among his people:
The killing of any animal which has not been presented to YaHuWaH at HIS Tabernacle, is expressly forbidden. The only Tabernacle existing today is the one in Heaven. We have no physical access to it to take the 'food animals' there! The Law forbids killing animals both at home and outside our home ("outside the Camp"). We do not have any right or reason today to kill animals other than in self-defense. Think about this.
"Great peace have they which love thy law: and nothing shall offend them."
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YaHuWaH's Sukkot | In History
The annual Feast of Tabernacles was a beautiful custom, when the whole people removed from their dwellings to spend the days and nights in the booths, constructed out of the verdant boughs gathered from woodland and forest. How the children must have reveled in the experience, and what a healthy change it made for them all! The great lesson, of course, was to recall the Wilderness experience of their fathers, during which the Almighty was their fellow-pilgrim.
In figure they confessed that they were still pilgrims and strangers on the Earth, and had no abiding city, but sought one to come. It was the custom of the feast in later years to pour water, drawn from Siloam, on the Temple pavement, in memory of the water supplies of the Wilderness-the rock that followed them. And it was on that occasion that YaHuWshuaH uttered His memorable appeal. See Yahuwchanon 7:37.
The Feast of Tabernacles, celebrated for a week beginning on the fifteenth clay of the seventh month, was the last and most joyous harvest-home festival of the year. Historically, it looked back to the day of joy when, safe in their booths at Succoth, the children of Yisra'el felt the happiness of the freedom from Egyptian bondage which they had at last attained (Exodus 12:37); and it looked forward to the period of peaceful enjoyment which was to come with the institution of Christ's kingdom on Earth, and beyond that time, to the glories of the Church triumphant in heaven.
RegulationsWe have here, the institution of the feast of tabernacles, which was one of the three great feasts at which all the males were bound to attend, and celebrated with more expressions of joy than any of them.
- It was to be observed on the fifteenth day of the seventh month (Leviticus 23:34), but five days after the day of atonement. We may suppose, though they were not all bound to attend on the day of atonement, as on the three great festivals, yet that many of the devout Yahuwdiym came up so many days before the feast of tabernacles as to enjoy the opportunity of attending on the day of atonement. Now,
[1.] The afflicting of their souls on the day of atonement prepared them for the joy of the feast of tabernacles. The more we are grieved and humbled for sin, the better qualified we are for the comforts of the Ruach haQodesh.(sic)
[2.] The joy of this feast recompensed them for the sorrow of that fast; for those that sow in tears shall reap in joy.
- It was to continue eight days, the first and last of which were to be observed as Sabbaths, days of holy rest and holy convocations, Leviticus 23:35, Leviticus 23:36, Leviticus 23:39. The sacrifices to be offered on these eight days we have a very large appointment of, Numbers 29:12, etc.
- During the first seven days of this feast all the people were to leave their houses, and the women and children in them, and to dwell in booths made of the boughs of thick trees, particularly palm trees, Leviticus 23:40, Leviticus 23:42. The Yahuwdiym make the taking of the branches to be a distinct ceremony from the making of the booths. It is said, indeed (Nechemyahuw 8:15), that they made their booths of the branches of trees, which they might do, and yet use that further expression of joy, the carrying of palm-branches in their hands, which appears to have been a token of triumph upon other occasions (Yahuwchanon 12:13), and is alluded to, Revelation 7:9. The eighth day ... the day on which they returned from their booths, to settle again in their own houses.
- They were to rejoice before YaHuWaH Elohiym during all the time of this feast, Leviticus 23:40. The tradition of the Yahuwdiym is that they were to express their joy by dancing, and singing hymns of praise to Elohiym, with musical instruments: and not the common people only, but the wise men of Yisra'el, and their elders, were to do it in the court of the Sanctuary: for (say they) the joy with which a man rejoices in doing a commandment is really a great service.
Design of The Feast,
- It was to be kept in remembrance of their dwelling in tents in the wilderness. Thus it is expounded here (Leviticus 23:43): That your generations may know, not only by the written history, but by this ocular tradition, that I made the children of Yisra'el to dwell in booths. Thus it kept in perpetual remembrance:
Elohiym's former mercies to us and our fathers ought to be kept in everlasting remembrance. The eighth day ... they returned to their own houses again, and remembered how, after they had long dwelt in tents in the wilderness, at length they came to a happy settlement in the land of promise, where they dwelt in goodly houses. And they would the more sensibly value and be thankful for the comforts and conveniences of their houses when they had been seven days dwelling in booths. It is good for those that have ease and plenty sometimes to learn what it is to endure hardness.
- The meanness of their beginning, and the low and desolate state out of which Elohiym advanced that people. Those that are comfortably fixed ought often to call to mind their former unsettled state, when they were but little in their own eyes.
- The mercy of Elohiym to them, that, when they dwelt in tabernacles, Elohiym not only set up a tabernacle for himself among them, but, with the utmost care and tenderness imaginable, hung a canopy over them, even the cloud that sheltered them from the heat of the sun.
- It was a feast of in-gathering, so it is called, Exodus 23:16. When they had gathered in the fruit of their land (Leviticus 23:39), the vintage as well as the harvest, then they were to keep this feast in thankfulness to Elohiym for all the increase of the year; and some think that the eighth day of the feast had special reference to this ground of the institution. Note, The joy of harvest ought to be improved for the furtherance of our joy in Elohiym. The Earth is YaHuWaH's and the fullness thereof, and therefore whatever we have the comfort of he must have the glory of, especially when any mercy is perfected.
- It was a typical feast. It is supposed by many that our blessed Saviour was born much about the time of this feast; then he left his mansions of light above to tabernacle among us (Yahuwchanon 1:14), and he dwelt in booths. And the worship of Elohiym under the New Testament is prophesied of under the notion of keeping the feast of tabernacles, ZekarYahuw 14:16. For,
[1.] The gospel of Mashiach teaches us to dwell in tabernacles, to sit loose to this world, as those that have here no continuing city, but by faith, and hope and holy contempt of present things, to go out to Mashiach without the camp, Hebrews 13:13, Hebrews 13:14.
[2.] It teaches us to rejoice before YaHuWaH our Elohiym. Those are the circumcision, Israelites indeed, that always rejoice in YaHuWshuaH HaMashiach. Philippians 3:3. And the more we are taken off from this world the less liable we are to the interruption of our joys.
Summary and Conclusions
- Elohiym appointed these feasts (Leviticus 23:37, Leviticus 23:38), besides the Sabbaths and your free-will offerings. This teaches us,
(1.) That calls to extraordinary services will not excuse us from our constant stated performances. Within the days of the feast of tabernacles there must fall at least one sabbath, which must be as strictly observed as any other.
(2.) That Elohiym's institutions leave room for free-will offerings. Not that we may invent what he never instituted, but we may repeat what he has instituted, ordinarily, the oftener the better. Elohiym is well pleased with a willing people.
- Mosheh declared them to the children of Israel, Leviticus 23:44. He let them know what Elohiym appointed, and neither more nor less. Thus Paul delivered to the churches what he had received from YaHuWaH. We have reason to be thankful that the feasts of YaHuWaH, declared unto us, are not so numerous, nor the observance of them so burdensome and costly, as theirs then were, but more spiritual and significant, and surer sweeter earnests of the everlasting feast, at the last in-gathering, which we hope to be celebrating to eternity.
In the seventh month came the Feast of Tabernacles, or of ingathering. This feast acknowledged Elohiym's bounty in the products of the orchard, the olive grove, and the vineyard. It was the crowning festal gathering of the year. The land had yielded its increase, the harvests had been gathered into the granaries, the fruits, the oil, and the wine had been stored, the first fruits had been reserved, and now the people came with their tributes of thanksgiving to Elohiym, who had thus richly blessed them.
This feast was to be pre-eminently an occasion of rejoicing. It occurred just after the great Day of Atonement, when the assurance had been given that their iniquity should be remembered no more. At peace with Elohiym, they now came before Him to acknowledge His goodness and to praise Him for His mercy. The labors of the harvest being ended, and the toils of the new year not yet begun, the people were free from care, and could give themselves up to the sacred, joyous influences of the hour. Though only the fathers and sons were commanded to appear at the feasts, yet, so far as possible, all the household were to attend them, and to their hospitality the servants, the Levites, the stranger, and the poor were made welcome.
Like the Passover, the Feast of Tabernacles was commemorative. In memory of their pilgrim life in the wilderness the people were now to leave their houses and dwell in booths, or arbors, formed from the green branches "of goodly trees, branches of palm trees, and the boughs of thick trees, and willows of the brook." Leviticus 23:40,42,43.
The first day was a holy convocation, and to the seven days of the feast an eighth day was added, which was observed in like manner.
At these yearly assemblies the hearts of old and young would be encouraged in the service of Elohiym, while the association of the people from the different quarters of the land would strengthen the ties that bound them to Elohiym and to one another. Well would it be for the people of Elohiym at the present time to have a Feast of Tabernacles — a joyous commemoration of the blessings of Elohiym to them. As the children of Yisra'el celebrated the deliverance that Elohiym had wrought for their fathers, and His miraculous preservation of them during their journeyings from Egypt, so should we gratefully call to mind the various ways He has devised for bringing us out from the world, and from the darkness of error, into the precious light of His grace and truth.
The Feast of Tabernacles was not only commemorative but typical. It not only pointed back to the wilderness sojourn, but, as the Feast of Harvest, it celebrated the ingathering of the fruits of the Earth, and pointed forward to the great day of final ingathering, when the Master of the harvest shall send forth His reapers to gather the tares together in bundles for the fire, and to gather the wheat into His garner. At that time the wicked will all be destroyed. They will become "as though they had not been." ObadYahuw 16. And every voice in the whole universe will unite in joyful praise to Elohiym. Says the Revelator, "Every creature which is in heaven, and on the Earth, and under the Earth, and such as are in the sea, and all that are in them, heard I saying, Blessing, and honor, and glory, and power, be unto Him that sitteth upon the throne, and unto the Lamb forever and ever." Revelation 5:13.
The people of Yisra'el praised Elohiym at the Feast of Tabernacles, as they called to mind His mercy in their deliverance from the bondage of Egypt and His tender care for them during their pilgrim life in the wilderness. They rejoiced also in the consciousness of pardon and acceptance, through the service of the day of atonement, just ended. But when the ransomed of YaHuWaH shall have been safely gathered into the heavenly Canaan, forever delivered from the bondage of the curse, under which "the whole creation groaneth and travaileth in pain together until now" (Romans 8:22), they will rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory. Mashiach's great work of atonement for men will then have been completed, and their sins will have been forever blotted out.
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YaHuWaH's Sukkot | In Spirit Of Prophecy
In every generation and in every land the true foundation for character building has been the word of Elohiym that the Apostles met the false theories of their day, saying, "Other foundation can no man lay than that is laid." 1 Corinthians 3:11.
A Joyous Occasion:
- The Scriptures state that both YaHuWshuaH and His Disciples were called to this marriage feast [at Cana]. Messiah has given Natsariym (Natsarene) no sanction to say when invited to a marriage, We ought not to be present on so joyous an occasion. By attending this feast Messiah taught that He would have us rejoice with those who do rejoice in the observance of His statutes.
The teaching which has become so wide-spread that the divine statutes are no longer binding upon men, is the same as idolatry in its effect upon the morals of the people. Those who seek to lessen the claims of Elohiym's holy law are striking directly at the foundation of the government of families and nations. Religious parents, failing to walk in his statutes, do not command their household to keep the way of the Master.
In consequence of continual transgression, the moral law was repeated in awful grandeur from Sinai. Messiah gave to Mosheh religious precepts which were to govern everyday life. These statutes were explicitly given to guard the ten commandments. They were not shadowy types to pass away with the death of Messiah. They were to be binding upon men in every age as long as time should last. These commands were enforced by the power of the moral law, and they clearly and definitely explained that law.
At the Feast of Tabernacles
Three times a year the Yahuwdiym were required to assemble at Yerushalayim for religious purposes. Enshrouded in the pillar of cloud, Israel's invisible Leader had given the directions in regard to these gatherings. During the captivity of the Yahuwdiym, they could not be observed; but when the people were restored to their own land, the observance of these memorials was once more begun. It was Elohiym's design that these anniversaries should call Him to the minds of the people. But with few exceptions, the priests and leaders of the nation had lost sight of this purpose. He who had ordained these national assemblies and understood their significance witnessed their perversion.
The Feast of Tabernacles was the closing gathering of the year. It was Elohiym's design that at this time the people should reflect on His goodness and mercy. The whole land had been under His guidance, receiving His blessing. Day and night His watch-care had continued. The sun and rain had caused the Earth to produce her fruits. From the valleys and plains of Palestine the harvest had been gathered. The olive berries had been picked, and the precious oil stored in bottles. The palm had yielded her store. The purple clusters of the vine had been trodden in the wine press.
The feast continued for seven days, and for its celebration the inhabitants of Palestine, with many from other lands, left their homes, and came to Yerushalayim. From far and near the people came, bringing in their hands a token of rejoicing. Old and young, rich and poor, all brought some gift as a tribute of thanksgiving to Him who had crowned the year with His goodness, and made His paths drop fatness. Everything that could please the eye, and give expression to the universal joy, was brought from the woods; the city bore the appearance of a beautiful forest.
This feast was not only the harvest thanksgiving, but the memorial of Elohiym's protecting care over Yisra'el in the wilderness. In commemoration of their tent life, the Israelites during the feast dwelt in booths or tabernacles of green boughs. These were erected in the streets, in the courts of the temple, or on the housetops. The hills and valleys surrounding Yerushalayim were also dotted with these leafy dwellings, and seemed to be alive with people.
With sacred song and thanksgiving the worshipers celebrated this occasion. A little before the feast was the Day of Atonement, when, after confession of their sins, the people were declared to be at peace with Heaven. Thus the way was prepared for the rejoicing of the feast. "O give thanks unto YaHuWaH; for He is good: for His mercy endureth forever" (Psalm 106:1) rose triumphantly, while all kinds of music, mingled with shouts of hosanna, accompanied the united singing. The temple was the center of the universal joy. Here was the pomp of the sacrificial ceremonies. Here, ranged on either side of the white marble steps of the sacred building, the choir of Levites led the service of song. The multitude of worshipers, waving their branches of palm and myrtle, took up the strain, and echoed the chorus; and again the melody was caught up by voices near and afar off, till the encircling hills were vocal with praise.
At night the temple and its court blazed with artificial light. The music, the waving of palm branches, the glad hosannas, the great concourse of people, over whom the light streamed from the hanging lamps, the array of the priests, and the majesty of the ceremonies, combined to make a scene that deeply impressed the beholders. But the most impressive ceremony of the feast, one that called forth greatest rejoicing, was one commemorating an event in the wilderness sojourn.
At the first dawn of day, the priests sounded a long, shrill blast upon their silver trumpets, and the answering trumpets, and the glad shouts of the people from their booths, echoing over hill and valley, welcomed the festal day. Then the priest dipped from the flowing waters of the Kedron a flagon of water, and, lifting it on high, while the trumpets were sounding, he ascended the broad steps of the temple, keeping time with the music with slow and measured tread, chanting meanwhile, "Our feet shall stand within thy gates, O Yerushalayim." Psalm 122:2.
He bore the flagon to the altar, which occupied a central position in the court of the priests. Here were two silver basins, with a priest standing at each one. The flagon of water was poured into one, and a flagon of wine into the other; and the contents of both flowed into a pipe which communicated with the Kedron, and was conducted to the Dead Sea. This display of the consecrated water represented the fountain that at the command of Elohiym had gushed from the rock to quench the thirst of the children of Israel. Then the jubilant strains rang forth, "YaHuWaH is my strength and my song"; "therefore with joy shall ye draw water out of the wells of salvation." YeshaYahuw 12:2,3.
As the sons of Joseph made preparation to attend the Feast of Tabernacles, they saw that Mashiach made no movement signifying His intention of attending. They watched Him with anxiety. Since the healing at Bethesda He had not attended the national gatherings. To avoid useless conflict with the leaders at Yerushalayim, He had restricted His labors to Galilee. His apparent neglect of the great religious assemblies, and the enmity manifested toward Him by the priests and rabbis, were a cause of perplexity to the people about Him, and even to His own disciples and His kindred. In His teachings He had dwelt upon the blessings of obedience to the law of Elohiym, and yet He Himself seemed to be indifferent to the service which had been divinely established. His mingling with publicans and others of ill repute, His disregard of the rabbinical observances, and the freedom with which He set aside the traditional requirements concerning the Sabbath, all seeming to place Him in antagonism to the religious authorities, excited much questioning. His brothers thought it a mistake for Him to alienate the great and learned men of the nation. They felt that these men must be in the right, and that YaHuWshuaH was at fault in placing Himself in antagonism to them. But they had witnessed His blameless life, and though they did not rank themselves with His disciples, they had been deeply impressed by His works. His popularity in Galilee was gratifying to their ambition; they still hoped that He would give an evidence of His power which would lead the Pharisees to see that He was what He claimed to be. What if He were the Messiah, the Prince of Yisra'el! They cherished this thought with proud satisfaction.
So anxious were they about this that they urged Christ to go to Yerushalayim. "Depart hence," they said, "and go into Judea, that Thy disciples also may see the works that Thou doest. For there is no man that doeth anything in secret, and he himself seeketh to be known openly. If Thou do these things, show Thyself to the world." The "if" expressed doubt and unbelief. They attributed cowardice and weakness to Him. If He knew that He was the Messiah, why this strange reserve and inaction? If He really possessed such power, why not go boldly to Yerushalayim, and assert His claims? Why not perform in Yerushalayim the wonderful works reported of Him in Galilee? Do not hide in secluded provinces, they said, and perform your mighty works for the benefit of ignorant peasants and fishermen. Present yourself at the capital, win the support of the priests and rulers, and unite the nation in establishing the new kingdom.
These brothers of YaHuWshuaH reasoned from the selfish motive so often found in the hearts of those ambitious for display. This spirit was the ruling spirit of the world. They were offended because, instead of seeking a temporal throne, Christ had declared Himself to be the bread of life. They were greatly disappointed when so many of His disciples forsook Him. They themselves turned from Him to escape the Cross of acknowledging what His works revealed—that He was the Sent of Elohiym.
"Then YaHuWshuaH said unto them, My time is not yet come: but your time is alway ready. The world cannot hate you; but Me it hateth, because I testify of it, that the works thereof are evil. Go ye up unto this feast: I go not up yet unto this feast; for My time is not yet full come. When He had said these words unto them, He abode still in Galilee." His brothers had spoken to Him in a tone of authority, prescribing the course He should pursue. He cast their rebuke back to them, classing them not with His self-denying disciples, but with the world. "The world cannot hate you," He said, "but Me it hateth, because I testify of it, that the works thereof are evil." The world does not hate those who are like it in spirit; it loves them as its own.
The world for Christ was not a place of ease and self-aggrandizement. He was not watching for an opportunity to seize its power and its glory. It held out no such prize for Him. It was the place into which His Father had sent Him. He had been given for the life of the world, to work out the great plan of redemption. He was accomplishing His work for the fallen race. But He was not to be presumptuous, not to rush into danger, not to hasten a crisis. Each event in His work had its appointed hour. He must wait patiently. He knew that He was to receive the world's hatred; He knew that His work would result in His death; but to prematurely expose Himself would not be the will of His Father.
From Yerushalayim the report of Christ's miracles had spread wherever the Yahuwdiym were dispersed; and although for many months He had been absent from the feasts, the interest in Him had not abated. Many from all parts of the world had come up to the Feast of Tabernacles in the hope of seeing Him. At the beginning of the feast many inquiries were made for Him. The Pharisees and rulers looked for Him to come, hoping for an opportunity to condemn Him. They anxiously inquired, "Where is He?" but no one knew. The thought of Him was uppermost in all minds. Through fear of the priests and rulers, none dared acknowledge Him as the Messiah, but everywhere there was quiet yet earnest discussion concerning Him. Many defended Him as one sent from Elohiym, while others denounced Him as a deceiver of the people.
Meanwhile YaHuWshuaH had quietly arrived at Yerushalayim. He had chosen an unfrequented route by which to go, in order to avoid the travelers who were making their way to the city from all quarters. Had He joined any of the caravans that went up to the feast, public attention would have been attracted to Him on His entrance into the city, and a popular demonstration in His favor would have aroused the authorities against Him. It was to avoid this that He chose to make the journey alone.
In the midst of the feast, when the excitement concerning Him was at its height, He entered the court of the temple in the presence of the multitude. Because of His absence from the feast, it had been urged that He dared not place Himself in the power of the priests and rulers. All were surprised at His presence. Every voice was hushed. All wondered at the dignity and courage of His bearing in the midst of powerful enemies who were thirsting for His life.
Standing thus, the center of attraction to that vast throng, YaHuWshuaH addressed them as no man had ever done. His words showed a knowledge of the laws and institutions of Israel, of the sacrificial service and the teachings of the prophets, far exceeding that of the priests and rabbis. He broke through the barriers of formalism and tradition. The scenes of the future life seemed outspread before Him. As one who beheld the Unseen, He spoke of the earthly and the heavenly, the human and the divine, with positive authority. His words were most clear and convincing; and again, as at Capernaum, the people were astonished at His teaching; "for His word was with power." Luke 4:32. Under a variety of representations He warned His hearers of the calamity that would follow all who rejected the blessings He came to bring them. He had given them every possible proof that He came forth from Elohiym, and made every possible effort to bring them to repentance. He would not be rejected and murdered by His own nation if He could save them from the guilt of such a deed.
All wondered at His knowledge of the law and the prophecies; and the question passed from one to another, "How knoweth this Man letters, having never learned?" No one was regarded as qualified to be a religious teacher unless he had studied in the rabbinical schools, and both YaHuWshuaH and Yahuwchanon the Baptist had been represented as ignorant because they had not received this training. Those who heard them were astonished at their knowledge of the Scriptures, "having never learned." Of men they had not, truly; but the Elohiym of heaven was their teacher, and from Him they had received the highest kind of wisdom.
As YaHuWshuaH spoke in the temple court, the people were held spellbound. The very men who were the most violent against Him felt themselves powerless to do Him harm. For the time, all other interests were forgotten.
Day after day He taught the people, until the last, "that great day of the feast." The morning of this day found the people wearied from the long season of festivity. Suddenly YaHuWshuaH lifted up His voice, in tones that rang through the courts of the temple:
"If any man thirst, let him come unto Me, and drink. He that believeth on Me, as the scripture hath said, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water." The condition of the people made this appeal very forcible. They had been engaged in a continued scene of pomp and festivity, their eyes had been dazzled with light and color, and their ears regaled with the richest music; but there had been nothing in all this round of ceremonies to meet the wants of the spirit, nothing to satisfy the thirst of the soul for that which perishes not. YaHuWshuaH invited them to come and drink of the fountain of life, of that which would be in them a well of water, springing up unto everlasting life.
The priest had that morning performed the ceremony which commemorated the smiting of the rock in the wilderness. That rock was a symbol of Him who by His death would cause living streams of salvation to flow to all who are athirst. Christ's words were the water of life. There in the presence of the assembled multitude He set Himself apart to be smitten, that the water of life might flow to the world. In smiting Christ, Satan thought to destroy the Prince of life; but from the smitten rock there flowed living water. As YaHuWshuaH thus spoke to the people, their hearts thrilled with a strange awe, and many were ready to exclaim, with the woman of Samaria, "Give me this water, that I thirst not." Yahuwchanon 4:15.
YaHuWshuaH knew the wants of the soul. Pomp, riches, and honor cannot satisfy the heart. "If any man thirst, let him come unto Me." The rich, the poor, the high, the low, are alike welcome. He promises to relieve the burdened mind, to comfort the sorrowing, and to give hope to the despondent. Many of those who heard YaHuWshuaH were mourners over disappointed hopes, many were nourishing a secret grief, many were seeking to satisfy their restless longing with the things of the world and the praise of men; but when all was gained, they found that they had toiled only to reach a broken cistern, from which they could not quench their thirst. Amid the glitter of the joyous scene they stood, dissatisfied and sad. That sudden cry, "If any man thirst," startled them from their sorrowful meditation, and as they listened to the words that followed, their minds kindled with a new hope. The Ruach haQodesh presented the symbol before them until they saw in it the offer of the priceless gift of salvation.
The cry of Christ to the thirsty soul is still going forth, and it appeals to us with even greater power than to those who heard it in the temple on that last day of the feast. The fountain is open for all. The weary and exhausted ones are offered the refreshing draught of eternal life. YaHuWshuaH is still crying, "If any man thirst, let him come unto Me, and drink." "Let him that is athirst come. And whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely." "Whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst; but the water that I shall give him shall be in him a well of water springing up into everlasting life." Revelation 22:17; Yahuwchanon 4:14.
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YaHuWaH's Sukkot | The End & Eternity
- And it shall come to pass afterward, that I will pour out my spirit upon all flesh; and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, your old men shall dream dreams, your young men shall see visions:
- And also upon the servants and upon the handmaids in those days will I pour out my spirit.
- And I will shew wonders in the heavens and in the Earth, blood, and fire, and pillars of smoke.
- The sun shall be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood, before the great and the terrible day of YaHuWaH come.
- And it shall come to pass, that whosoever shall call on the name of YaHuWaH shall be delivered: for in mount Zion and in Yerushalayim shall be deliverance, as YaHuWaH hath said, and in the remnant whom YaHuWaH shall call.
During the Secondary fulfillment of Yahuw'el's prophecy, the Disciples in the Upper Room were filled with the Ruach haQodesh. It is important to note that being filled with the Ruach haQodesh is synonymous with being filled with the Law, the Ten Commandments printed in the Heart, and Scripture in the heart. For the event that commemorates the giving of the Law on tables of stone, must commemorate the writing of the same law in the heart. Following the experience, some of the observers accused the Disciples of being drunk with the recently harvested grapes and the abundance of 'new wine'. But Kepha (Peter), explained the experience by referencing Yahuw'el's prophecy. Said he in, Acts 2:15-17 RNKJV
(15) For these are not drunken, as ye suppose, seeing it is but the third hour of the day (9am).
(16) But this is that which was spoken by the prophet Yahuw'el;
(17) And it shall come to pass in the last days, saith YaHuWaH, I will pour out of my Spirit upon all flesh: and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, and your young men shall see visions, and your old men shall dream dreams:
However, this prophecy shall be primarily fulfilled soon when the 144000 shall be sealed. When the Latter Rain falls to kick off the 'Loud Cry' of the 'Third Angel's message.
- And it shall come to pass, that every one that is left of all the nations which came against Yerushalayim shall even go up from year to year to worship the King, YaHuWaH of hosts, and to keep the feast of tabernacles.
- And it shall be, that whoso will not come up of all the families of the Earth unto Yerushalayim to worship the King, YaHuWaH of hosts, even upon them shall be no rain.
- And if the family of Egypt go not up, and come not, that have no rain; there shall be the plague, wherewith YaHuWaH will smite the heathen that come not up to keep the feast of tabernacles.
- This shall be the punishment of Egypt, and the punishment of all nations that come not up to keep the feast of tabernacles.
Therefore Saint of YaHuWaH, celebrate this feast. YaHuWaH your Elohiym means well for you that He has blessed us with His holy law printed in our hearts.
For each Feast, scripture declares: a law forever in all your dwellings throughout your generations.
For even more light on this most important feast and holiday, download this article.Back To Tab Top