Monday, March 19, 2018

The Feast of the Tabernacles … The Season of Our Joy

September 30, 2012 by  
Filed under Focus On Israel, Monthly Articles

The Feast of Tabernacles

the Season of Our Joy

The Festivals

The Feast of Tabernacles (or Booths, as the name implies) is one of the three “pilgramige” festivals mandated by God in the Old Testament.  Leviticus 23 teaches that along with the weekly Sabbath day, the Israelites are to observe the festival of Pesach (Passover as well as the 7 days of unleavened bread), Shavuot (Penitcost), and Sukkot (Yom Teruah (Trumpets)), Yom Kippur (Atonement), and Tabernacles or Booths along with the one day festival call ‘Shemini Atzoreth’, the ‘Eighth Day’).  Each of the festivals (except for the weekly sabbath) are centered around an agricultural harvest, and as such, illustrate God’s plan of salvation for all mankind. Without a good understanding of the festivals, a person simply can not have a biblically based understanding of how God intends to bring salvation to His people.

In spite of the fact that today the Jewish people are the most visible people observing these festivals, the festivals are not necessarily Jewish.  The text shows that these are ‘Feasts of the Lord’, given to all twelve tribes of Israel, not just the Jews.  Because of a person’s belief in Yeshua (Jesus), the observance of these festivals is extended to him, since . . .

. . . if you are Christ’s, then you are Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise.   NKJ Galatians 3:29

In verse 2 of Leviticus 23, the Hebrew word for ‘feast’ is ‘moed’.  In Hebrew thought, a moed is likened unto an appointment.  It’s as if God Himself was taking time off from His duties to meet with us.  It’s sort of like a date – a special time between God and His people.  For those of us who are married, we know how important it is to be there when you’ve “got a date”, and we would do practically anything not to miss it.  A study of Biblical history will show that many major events took place on one or more of the ‘moedim’ (the plural form of ‘moed’).

Also in verse 2, we find the word ‘convocation’ which is translated from the Hebrew word ‘mikrah’.  This Hebrew word implies a reading, presumably of a historical event.  It comes from another word that can mean ‘rehearsal’.  The Biblical text is very clear that the Sabbath is a rehearsal of the seventh day of creation – when God rested from His work.  The moedim are likewise rehearsals of God’s 7000 year plan, culminating with the marriage of The Messiah to His bride.

Leviticus 23:6 uses the word ‘feast’ for the translation of another Hebrew word “chag”.  This word implies an assembly.  This word is derived from another Hebrew word which means “to be giddy and to dance”.  Thus, God’s festivals are to be happy occasions, a time for rejoicing in song, dance, good food, etc..

Each year, more and more Christians are coming to the understanding that there is value in observing the festivals. In doing so, they see the scriptures begin to open up and make greater sense.  We invite you to share in the JOY of observing the Festivals of God.


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