The 7th and Final Feast of Israel is the Feast of Tabernacles, also known as Sukkot or the Feast of Booths. This year (2019) it is celebrated Sunday, October 13 through Sunday October 20. Although most Christians typically think of the Feast of Tabernacles as a “Jewish Festival”; the Lord calls this Feast one of HIS appointed times. The Hebrew word for “feast” is Moed(im)..means Appointed times, or God’s appointments with mankind. God has mapped out His plan of Salvation and Restoration in the Old Testament “Feasts” (appointments). We can think of them as a sort of “dress rehearsal” for the “Big day” when all is fulfilled. Each Old Testament Feast points to Jesus the Messiah (Anointed One).
Leviticus 23 The Lord spoke again to Moses, saying, 2 “Speak to the sons of Israel and say to them, ‘The Lord’s appointed times which you shall proclaim as holy convocations—My appointed times are these:
Leviticus 23: 39: On exactly the fifteenth day of the seventh month, when you have gathered in the crops of the land, you shall celebrate the feast of the Lord for seven days, with a rest on the first day and a rest on the eighth day. 40 Now on the first day you shall take for yourselves the foliage of beautiful trees, palm branches and boughs of leafy trees and willows of the brook, and you shall rejoice before the Lord your God for seven days. 41 You shall thus celebrate it as a feast to the Lord for seven days in the year. It shall be a perpetual statute throughout your generations; you shall celebrate it in the seventh month. 42 You shall live in booths for seven days; all the native-born in Israel shall live in booths, 43 so that your generations may know that I had the sons of Israel live in booths when I brought them out from the land of Egypt. I am the Lord your God.’” 44 So Moses declared to the sons of Israel the appointed times of the Lord.
Per Leviticus 23, The Feast of Tabernacles is a 7 Day HARVEST FESTIVAL that is observed in the Fall from Tishrei 15 to Tishrei 22. The Feast of Tabernacles is also known as “The Days of Joy’ because the Israelites were instructed to REJOICE before the Lord their God for 7 days. It was a time of joyous celebration as the Israelites celebrated God’s continued provision for them in the current harvest and remembered His provision and protection during the 40 years in the wilderness. The Feast of Tabernacles is a HARVEST FESTIVAL, pointing us to the GREAT HARVEST OF SOULS that comes at the end of the age.
In Leviticus 23, the Lord commanded the Israelites to celebrate the Feast of Tabernacles perpetually (forever) throughout all generations to REMIND them of how HE brought them out of the land of Egypt and remained WITH them in the wilderness while they lived in tabernacles (temporary dwellings.(tents)). During this time, God Himself also dwelt in a Tabernacle so that He could once again walk WITH mankind.
If we think about it, after the Fall in the Garden of Eden, God could no longer dwell with mankind. Our sin separated us from a Holy God. But God had a plan to again walk with mankind. A very important phase in God’s plan was when God gave Moses the exact instructions (blueprint) to build the Tabernacle while on Mt. Sinai. Perhaps this is why Moses was on the Mountain with God for 40 days. The blueprint for the Tabernacle that was built in the Wilderness is a COPY of the TRUE TABERNACLE in HEAVEN. The first and second Temple in Jerusalem were also built according to the basic blueprint that was provided for the Tabernacle. The Bible tells us that God never intended to dwell in a Tabernacle (or Temple) permanently because God had something MUCH BETTER in mind. The word Tabernacle means TEMPORARY dwelling.
Exodus 25:8: Let them construct a sanctuary for Me, that I may dwell among them. 9 According to all that I am going to show you, as the pattern of the tabernacle and the pattern of all its furniture, just so you shall construct it.
Hebrews 8:5: The place where they serve is a copy and shadow of what is in heaven. This is why Moses was warned when he was about to build the tabernacle: “See to it that you make everything according to the pattern shown you on the mountain.”
Acts 17:24: The God who made the world and everything in it is the Lord of heaven and earth and does not live in temples made by human hands.
Isaiah 66:1 Thus says the Lord, “Heaven is My throne and the earth is My footstool. Where then is a house you could build for Me? And where is a place that I may rest?
During Israel’s time in the wilderness, God’s Glory was present in the Tabernacle, guiding them through the wilderness. He appeared as a pillar of fire during the night to provide light for them and to warm them, and as a pillar of cloud to shade them from the desert sun, and to lead them. God’s Glory cloud was operating as the Holy Spirit does today, to comfort and guide the Believer. As God promised the Israelites He would NOT take away the pillar of cloud and fire, He has promised the believer that His Holy Spirit will be with us FOREVER.
Exodus 13:21: The Lord was going before them in a pillar of cloud by day to lead them on the way, and in a pillar of fire by night to give them light, that they might travel by day and by night. 22 He did not take away the pillar of cloud by day, nor the pillar of fire by night, from before the people.
John 16:13: But when He, the Spirit of truth, comes, He will guide you into all the truth; for He will not speak on His own initiative, but whatever He hears, He will speak; and He will disclose to you what is to come.
John 14:16: I will ask the Father, and He will give you another Helper (comforter), that He may be with you forever;
There is a direct correlation between the Physical meaning of the Feast of Tabernacles for the Hebrew people and the SPIRITUAL SIGNIFICANCE of the Feast of Tabernacles for all of God’s people.
|Physical Remembrance||Spiritual Significance|
|The Israelites spread the blood of the Lamb over their doorposts and lintels/angel of death PASSED OVER their houses.|
God’s people apply the BLOOD of the LAMB (JESUS CHRIST) over the doorposts and lintels of our hearts, and the angel of permanent death will PASSOVER our “houses”.
|Coming out of EGYPT, The Israelites were brought through the water (Red Sea) TO mt. Sinai to meet the LORD.||Coming out of SPIRITUAL EGYPT (SIN) The Christian is WASHED by the water of the Word in preparation to meet the LORD.|
|OLD COVENANT…God gave Moses the 10 Commandments written on STONE…AND the blueprint to build the TABERNACLE (Temporary Dwelling)||NEW COVENANT… Jesus Has WRITTEN HIS LAWS on HUMAN HEARTS, GIFT of the HOLY SPIRIT…GOD WITH US.|
|God dwelt with the Israelites in the Tabernacle in the Wilderness, visible in His Pillar of cloud and fire who led them through the wilderness, and ultimately to the PROMISED LAND (Canaan).||God dwells in the hearts of mankind via His Holy Spirit, leading God’s people through the “wilderness” of life, and ultimately to the PROMISED LAND (KINGDOM OF GOD).|
|While in the Wilderness, Israelites also lived in tents or tabernacles, temporary dwelling places. God dwelt among them.||Mankind’s human flesh is a type of tabernacle, or temporary dwelling place for both us and for God, who dwells inside of His people.|
This was God’s plan all along….God would again dwell among His Creation, among mankind. First, the Lord Tabernacles (temporary dwelling) among man until Jesus RESTORES ALL THINGS.. At the End of the Millennium, Jesus will hand the Kingdom back to the Father, and God will dwell PERMANENTLY with MANKIND.
The Tabernacle in the wilderness is a type or SHADOW of YESHUA, who TABERNACLED among mankind when the WORD became FLESH. God’s presence in the TABERNACLE in the WILDERNESS is a FORESHADOWING of how GOD’S PRESENCE would TABERNACLE inside of HUMAN HEARTS via HIS HOLY SPIRIT. From the Tabernacle in the Wilderness, God guided His people through the difficulties and pitfalls, He protected them from enemies, He fed them manna from Heaven, the bread of LIFE, and He ultimately led them to the PROMISED LAND, the land of Canaan. So it is with the HOLY SPIRIT, who TABERNACLES inside of HUMAN HEARTS, guiding the believer into ALL TRUTH, through the pitfalls of this earthly life, protecting the believer from the devilish attacks of the enemy, feeding the believer GOD’S WORD, JESUS, THE BREAD of LIFE, comforting the believer through the Love of Jesus Christ, and ultimately leading the Believer TO the PROMISED LAND, KINGDOM OF GOD. When Jesus returns and sets HIS FEET upon the MOUNT OF OLIVES, HE will again TABERNACLE with mankind for 1000 years in His Millennial Kingdom of God on earth! At the end of the 1000 years, when all enemies are put under Jesus’ Feet, He will hand the Kingdom back over to the Father (1 Corinthians 15:24)
The Feast of Tabernacles is a JOYOUS HARVEST celebration! It is one that celebrates VICTORY and NOURISHMENT, which is GOD’S PROVISION during this WILDERNESS EXPERIENCE, as God continues to LEAD HIS PEOPLE OUT OF EGYPT (SIN), WASH them with the water of the WORD, and into the PROMISED LAND. Jesus is currently dwelling WITH MANKIND (EMMANUEL), via HIS HOLY SPIRIT; however, JESUS IS COMING AGAIN TO TABERNACLE WITH MANKIND during HIS MILLENNIAL REIGN AS KING OF KINGS AND LORD OF LORDS!
Revelation 21: 1: Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth; for the first heaven and the first earth passed away, and there is no longer any sea. 2 And I saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, made ready as a bride adorned for her husband. 3 And I heard a loud voice from the throne, saying, “Behold, the tabernacle of God is among men, and He will dwell among them, and they shall be His people, and God Himself will be among them,
One more thing we can close with is that there is strong evidence that Jesus’ TRUE BIRTHDAY was likely during the FEAST OF TABERNACLES, when God again Tabernacled among men. We’ll post that information in another post. God Bless!