Feasts of Israel (Part 7)

FEASTS OF ISRAEL (PART 7: FEAST OF TABERNACLES)
(PASTOR LEE JACKSON – FFWC)
I) INTRODUCTION – TODAY WE HAVE OUR 7TH AND FINAL INSTALLMENT ON THE FEASTS OF ISRAEL AND HOW THEY POINTED TO AND WERE FULFILLED BY JESUS CHRIST. WE HAVE SEEN HOW THE FEAST OF PASSOVER REPRESENTS OUR THE FIRST MAJOR ENCOUNTER WITH GOD, THROUGH JESUS CHRIST. THE FEAST OF PASSOVER, AS FULFILLED BY JESUS CHRIST ENABLES US TO HAVE PEACE WITH GOD THROUGH JESUS CHRIST. THE FEAST OF PENTECOST REPRESENTS THE SECOND MAJOR ENCOUNTER WITH GOD. THE FEAST OF PENTECOST AS FULFILLED IN THE BOOK OF ACTS WHEN THE HOLY SPIRIT CAME AND GAVE BIRTH TO THE CHURCH, GIVING US THE POWER TO BE HIS WITNESSES. TODAY WE WILL CONTINUE TO MINISTER ON THE FEASTS OF TABERNACLES, WHICH WAS IMMEDIATELY PRECEDED BY THE FEAST OF TRUMPETS AND “THE DAY OF ATONEMENT” OR “YOM KIPPUR”, WHICH WE DISCUSSED LAST WEEK. TODAY, WE WILL DISCUSS THE FEAST OF TABERNACLES, AND HOW WE BELIEVE THAT THIS IS FULFILLED IN CHRIST. THE CELEBRATION OF THESE FEASTS BEGAN WITH THE CELEBRATION OF THE FEAST OF TRUMPETS ON THE 1ST OF TIRSHI, FOLLOWED BY “THE DAY OF ATONEMENT” ON THE 10TH OF TIRSHI AND CONCLUDED WITH THE FEAST OF TABERNACLES ON THE 15TH DAY OF TIRSHI THROUGH THE 21ST DAY OF TIRSHI, THE 7TH MONTH OF THE JEWISH RELIGIOUS CALENDAR, WHICH WOULD BE IN SEPTEMBER OR OCTOBER ON OUR CALENDAR.
II) HISTORICAL SETTING OF THE FEAST OF TABERNACLES (SUKKOT), LEV 23:33-36 & LEV 23:39-43
A) THE FEAST OF TABERNACLES IS THE VERY LAST FEAST OF THE JEWISH RELIGIOUS CALENDAR. IT COMES IMMEDIATELY AFTER THE FEAST OF TRUMPETS (ROSH HASHANAH) AND THE DAY OF ATONEMENT (YOM KIPPUR). HISTORICALLY, IT IS THE MOST WIDELY KNOWN AND CELEBRATED OF THE JEWISH FEASTS. .
B) IT COMES IN MONTH OF TIRSHI, THE 7TH MONTH, THE SABBATH OF SABBATHS, WHICH SPEAKS OF GOD’S REST AFTER THE HARVEST.
C) TABERNACLES LIKE THE FEAST OF PASSOVER AND PENTECOST IS A HOLY CONVOCATION, A DATE AND TIME DIRECTED BY GOD, SET ASIDE FOR GOD’S PURPOSE AND SIGNIFICANCE. A GREAT NUMBER OF ANIMALS WERE SACRIFICED EVERY DAY OF THE FEAST: 1 GOAT, 14 LAMBS, 2 RAMS AND A NUMBER OF BULLS, TESTIFYING THAT THERE IS NO JOY OR REASON CELEBRATION UNTIL OUR SINS ARE DEALT WITH AND WE HAVE MADE OUR PEACE WITH GOD.
D) THE FEAST OF TABERNACLES MEMORIALIZED THE TIME PERIOD WHEN GOD CAME DOWN AND TABERNACLED OR DWELT WITH ISRAEL IN THEIR WILDERNESS JOURNEY. GOD GAVE MOSES SPECIFIC, DETAILED DIRECTS FOR BUILDING THE TABERNACLE. IT WAS CONSTRUCTED TO BE EASILY MOVED AND TRANSPORTED.
E) THE FEAST OF TABERNACLES IS ALSO KNOWN AS THE FEAST OF LIGHTS, THE FEAST OF BOOTHS, THE FEAST OF NATIONS AND THE FEAST OF INGATHERING. WE WILL DISCUSS THE SIGNIFICANCE OF EACH OF THESE NAMES:
1) THE NAME OF FEAST OF TABERNACLES COMES FROM THE LATIN WORD TABERNACULUM MEANING “BOOTH” OR “HUT”. IT COMMEMORATES ISRAEL’S WILDERNESS JOURNEY WHEN THEY LIVED IN BOOTHS, TEMPORARY SHELTERS, THAT WERE EASILY ERECTED, AS THEY JOURNEYED TO THE LAND OF PROMISE. GOD HAD INSTRUCTED ISRAEL TO CONSTRUCT THESE TEMPORARY SHELTERS TO MEMORIALIZE THE TIME WHEN GOD DELIVERED THEM FROM EGYPT AND LED THEM THROUGH THE WILDERNESS TO THE LAND OF PROMISE.
2)
AS THE FEAST OF LIGHTS, IT COMMEMORATED THE PILLAR OF FIRE THAT LED THE CHILDREN OF ISRAEL BY NIGHT IN THE WILDERNESS. AT THE END OF THE 1ST DAY OF THE FEAST THE PRIESTS AND LEVITES WOULD SING PRAISES AND WAVE TORCHES WHILE 16 YOUNG MEN WOULD CLIMB LADDERS OF FOUR HUGE CANDLE HOLDERS WITH 4 CANDLES ON EACH BRANCH AND POUR 7 GALLONS OF OIL INTO EACH BASIN BEFORE LIGHTING THE 16 CANDLES. THE CANDLE HOLDERS WERE ON BASES 50 CUBITS HIGH. THE WICKS WERE MADE OF HOLY GARMENTS THE PRIESTS HAD WORN IN THE PREVIOUS YEAR. THE MISHNAH SAYS THAT EVERY COURTYARD IN JERUSALEM WAS LIT UP WITH THE LIGHT OF THE CANDLES.
3) AS THE FEAST OF NATIONS, THE PROPHETS ZECHARIAH AND MICAH PROPHESIED THAT ALL NATIONS WOULD COME UP TO JERUSALEM TO CELEBRATE SUKKOT ALONG WITH THE JEWS.
(a) MIC 4:1, 2 BUT IN THE LAST DAYS IT SHALL COME TO PASS, THAT THE MOUNTAIN OF THE HOUSE OF THE LORD SHALL BE ESTABLISHED IN THE TOP OF THE MOUNTAINS, AND IT SHALL BE EXALTED ABOVE THE HILLS; AND PEOPLE SHALL FLOW UNTO IT. 2 AND MANY NATIONS SHALL COME, AND SAY, COME, AND LET US GO UP TO THE MOUNTAIN OF THE LORD, AND TO THE HOUSE OF THE GOD OF JACOB; AND HE WILL TEACH US OF HIS WAYS, AND WE WILL WALK IN HIS PATHS: FOR THE LAW SHALL GO FORTH OF ZION, AND THE WORD OF THE LORD FROM JERUSALEM.
(b) ACCORDING TO JEWISH BELIEF AND TRADITION SEVENTY BULLOCKS WERE OFFERED UP IN THE TEMPLE FOR THE 70 GENTILE NATIONS THAT WERE KNOWN TO EXIST AT THAT TIME.
4) AS THE FEAST OF INGATHERING, THE JEWISH PEOPLE CELEBRATED THE END OF THE HARVEST AND A TIME OF SABBATH REST. IT WAS A JOYOUS OCCASION WHERE THEY THANKED GOD FOR THE HARVEST AND PRAYED FOR THE WINTER RAINS THAT WOULD PREPARE THE LAND FOR PLANTING. DURING THE FEAST OF THE HARVEST PEOPLE JOYOUSLY BROUGHT THEIR TITHES AND OFFERINGS TO THE TEMPLE, “FOR THEY WERE NOT TO APPEAR BEFORE THE LORD EMPTY HANDED” (DEUT. 16:16).
F) ACCORDING TO DEUT 31:10 – 13 EVERY 7TH YEAR DURING THE FEAST OF TABERNACLES THEY WERE TO READ THE LAW OF MOSES IN THE HEARING OF ALL THE PEOPLE (MEN, WOMEN, CHILDREN AND ALIENS AMONG THEM) THAT THEY MIGHT LEARN TO FEAR GOD AND FOLLOW HIS COMMANDMENTS.
G) ANOTHER TRADITIONAL ASPECT OF THE CELEBRATION WAS PRAYING FOR RAIN, PRAYING FOR THE WINTER RAINS THAT WERE SO ESSENTIAL FOR NEXT YEARS CROP. THE HIGH PRIEST WOULD LEAD A PROCESSION EARLY IN THE MORNING TO THE POOL OF SILOAM. THE PRIEST DIPPED THE PICTURE INTO THE POOL AND BROUGHT IT BACK TO THE TEMPLE, ENTERING THROUGH THE WATER GATE. AS HE ENTERED THE TEMPLE, 3 BLASTS OF THE SILVER TRUMPET RESOUNDED IN COURTYARD AS THE PRIEST RECITED THE WORD OF ISAIAH, “THEREFORE WITH JOY YOU WILL DRAW WATER FROM THE WELLS OF SALVATION. (ISAIAH 12:3) AS THE WATER WAS POURED INTO A BASIN WHICH DRAINED AT THE BASE OF THE ALTER. WINE WAS SIMULTANEOUSLY POURED INTO THE ADJACENT BASIN, WHICH POURED OUT AT THE BASE OF THE ALTER AS A DRINK OFFERING.
III) HOW JESUS FULFILLED THE FEAST OF TABERNACLES
A) MANY BIBLE SCHOLARS BELIEVE THAT JESUS WAS BORN ON THE FEAST OF TABERNACLES. ONE REASON FOR BELIEVING THIS IS THAT LUKE 2: 8 RECORDS THAT SHEPHERDS WERE WATCHING THEIR FLOCKS ON THE NIGHT OF JESUS BIRTH. IN JESUS DAY, AS TODAY, SHEPHERDS BRING THEIR FLOCKS OFF THE HILLS INTO THE PENS AND CAVES TO PROTECT THEM FROM THE WINTER COLD BEGINNING IN OCTOBER. DUE TO NIGHTTIME COLD THE SHEPHERDS ARE NOT IN THE FIELDS IN DECEMBER. ANOTHER REASON IS FOR BELIEVING THAT JESUS WAS BORN AT THIS TIME IS THAT DURING THE TIME OF JESUS BIRTH THE JEWISH FAMILIES WERE TO GO TO THE CITY OF THEIR BIRTH TO BE TAXED. IT WOULD MAKE SENSE THAT THIS WOULD OCCUR IMMEDIATELY AFTER THE HARVEST SEASON.
B) THE FEAST OF TABERNACLES (SUKKOT) IS A CELEBRATION OF JOY; JESUS BIRTH WAS A TIME OF CELEBRATION AND JOY. LUKE 2:10 AND THE ANGEL SAID UNTO THEM, FEAR NOT: FOR, BEHOLD, I BRING YOU GOOD TIDINGS OF GREAT JOY, WHICH SHALL BE TO ALL PEOPLE. 11 FOR UNTO YOU IS BORN THIS DAY IN THE CITY OF DAVID A SAVIOR, WHICH IS CHRIST THE LORD.
C) THE FEAST OF TABERNACLES CELEBRATED THAT GOD CAME DOWN AND TABERNACLED (LIVED) AMONG MEN: JESUS WAS GOD IN THE FLESH, LIVING AMONG US:
1) ISA 7:14 THEREFORE THE LORD HIMSELF SHALL GIVE YOU A SIGN; BEHOLD, A VIRGIN SHALL CONCEIVE, AND BEAR A SON, AND SHALL CALL HIS NAME IMMANUEL. IMMANUEL TRANSLATED MEANS “GOD WITH US”.
2) REV 21:3 AND I HEARD A GREAT VOICE OUT OF HEAVEN SAYING, BEHOLD, THE TABERNACLE OF GOD IS WITH MEN, AND HE WILL DWELL WITH THEM, AND THEY SHALL BE HIS PEOPLE, AND GOD HIMSELF SHALL BE WITH THEM, AND BE THEIR GOD.
D) JESUS FULFILLED THE FEAST OF LIGHTS, AS THE LIGHT OF THE WORLD AND THE LIGHT TO THE GENTILES:
1) MATTHEW TESTIFIES OF CHRIST’S COMING THAT MATT 4:16 THE PEOPLE, WHICH SAT IN DARKNESS, SAW GREAT LIGHT; AND TO THEM WHICH SAT IN THE REGION AND SHADOW OF DEATH LIGHT IS SPRUNG UP.
2) JOHN WROTE OF JESUS IN JOHN 1:4 “IN HIM WAS LIFE; AND THE LIFE WAS THE LIGHT OF MEN. 5 AND THE LIGHT SHINETH IN DARKNESS; AND THE DARKNESS COMPREHENDED IT NOT.”
3) IN JOHN 9:5 JESUS SAID OF HIMSELF: “… I AM THE LIGHT OF THE WORLD.”
E) JESUS FULFILLED ISRAEL’S PRAYERS FOR THE WINTER TO PREPARE THE GROUND FOR PLOWING AND PLANTING: THE RELIGIOUS LEADERS WHO SOUGHT TO KILL HIM UNDERSTOOD WHAT HE WAS SAYING WHEN HE CAME TO FEAST OF TABERNACLES PROCLAIMING: JOHN 7:37, 38 IN THE LAST DAY, THAT GREAT DAY OF THE FEAST, JESUS STOOD AND CRIED, SAYING, IF ANY MAN THIRST, LET HIM COME UNTO ME, AND DRINK. 38 HE THAT BELIEVETH ON ME, AS THE SCRIPTURE HATH SAID, OUT OF HIS BELLY SHALL FLOW RIVERS OF LIVING WATER. SPEAKING OF THE COMING OF THE HOLY SPIRIT.
F) JESUS FULFILLED THE READING OF THE LAW: HE BECAME THE WORD THAT BECAME FLESH THAT DWELT AMONG US…HE FULFILLED THE LAW AND THE PROPHETS AND WILL FUFILL THE WORDS OF JEREMIAH: JER 31:33 BUT THIS SHALL BE THE COVENANT THAT I WILL MAKE WITH THE HOUSE OF ISRAEL; AFTER THOSE DAYS, SAITH THE LORD, I WILL PUT MY LAW IN THEIR INWARD PARTS, AND WRITE IT IN THEIR HEARTS; AND WILL BE THEIR GOD, AND THEY SHALL BE MY PEOPLE.

IV) THE FEAST OF TABERNACLES MADE PERSONAL
A) JESUS FULFILLED GOD COMING TO TABERNACLE WITH MEN. HE WAS CALLED IMMANUEL, “GOD WITH US”, BUT NOW HIS SPIRIT CAN LIVE “IN US”: JESUS SPOKE OF THIS IN JOHN 14:17 EVEN THE SPIRIT OF TRUTH; WHOM THE WORLD CANNOT RECEIVE, BECAUSE IT SEETH HIM NOT, NEITHER KNOWETH HIM: BUT YE KNOW HIM; FOR HE DWELLETH WITH YOU, AND SHALL BE IN YOU.
B) CHRISTIANS CAN CELEBRATE THE FEAST OF TABERNACLES WITH EVEN MORE JOY THAN OTHERS: JOHN 15:11 THESE THINGS HAVE I SPOKEN UNTO YOU, THAT MY JOY MIGHT REMAIN IN YOU, AND THAT YOUR JOY MIGHT BE FULL.
C) DURING THE FEAST OF TABERNACLES BOOTHS WERE CONSTRUCTED WITH THATCHED ROOFS MADE OF THE BRANCHES OF FRUIT TREES AND PALM TREES. THEY WERE CONSTRUCTED SO THAT THEY COULD SEE THE MOON AND STARS IN THE AUTUMN SKY. THEY HAD A CLEAR VIEW OF GOD’S CREATION ANTICIPATING THE COMING OF THEIR MESSIAH. WE TOO ARE ON A PILGRIM JOURNEY. WE NEED TO BE CONSTANTLY LOOKING UP, ANTICIPATING CHRIST’S RETURN.
D) GOD HAS CALLED US TO BE LIGHT BEARERS. JESUS SAID IN MAT 5:14, 15 YE ARE THE LIGHT OF THE WORLD. A CITY THAT IS SET ON A HILL CANNOT BE HID. 15 NEITHER DO MEN LIGHT A CANDLE, AND PUT IT UNDER A BUSHEL, BUT ON A CANDLESTICK; AND IT GIVETH LIGHT UNTO ALL THAT ARE IN THE HOUSE.
E) THE WATER CEREMONY SPEAKS OF THE COMING OF THE HOLY SPIRIT PROMISED BY JESUS. JOHN 7:38 HE THAT BELIEVETH ON ME, AS THE SCRIPTURE HATH SAID, OUT OF HIS BELLY SHALL FLOW RIVERS OF LIVING WATER.
V) CONCLUSION: MANY BELIEVE THAT THE FEAST OF TABERNACLES WILL ULTIMATELY BE FULFILLED WHEN JESUS COMES BACK TO DEFEND ISRAEL AND SET UP HIS MILLENNIAL KINGDOM. IT WILL BE A TIME OF JOY AND A TIME OF PEACE. IT WILL BE IMMEDIATELY PRECEDED BY THE FINAL HARVEST OF THE EARTH, THE IN GATHERING OF THE PEOPLES OF THE EARTH AND ISRAEL WHO WILL FINALLY RECOGNIZE THEIR MESSIAH. DURING THIS 1000 YEAR REIGN OF CHRIST THE EARTH WILL BE AT REST – THE LION WILL LAY DOWN WITH THE LAMB. HE WILL RULE AND REIGN OVER PLANET EARTH AND THE REMNANTS OF THE NATIONS AND PEOPLE THAT ARE LEFT AFTER THE TRIBULATION PERIOD. THE NATIONS WILL SEND DELEGATES TO JERUSALEM TO CELEBRATE THE FEAST OF TABERNACLE IN ORDER TO RECEIVE THE RAIN FOR THEIR CROPS AND FIELDS AND TO RECEIVE GOD’S BLESSINGS.

 

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