Are you thirsting for more of God? Are these challenging days proving to be wearying and void of true joy, rest and contentment? Take heart! The Lord is extending an invitation to attend and partake of a glorious feast that He has prepared for His people. Jesus spoke the above words during the Feast of Tabernacles, the seventh primary Feast of Israel. This Friday, 2 October, marks the beginning of the Jewish Feast of Tabernacles. It is a feast that is not only historical, but one filled with insight and promise for the church of the last days. How can we come to understand and appropriate the blessings of Tabernacles?
Understand the Atonement
This is a critical truth! The Feast of Atonement is the sixth Primary Feast and it was one where God would address the sins of the people. The Bible warned that those who would not appropriate this feast would be cut-off from the congregation (Leviticus 23:29). The Feast of Atonement immediately precedes Tabernacles. In fact, the Jewish Feast of Atonement for 2020 began on Sunday, 27 September, and will last a period of 5 days. Here is the bottom line – the fulness of the Feast of Tabernacles is realised to the extent the Atonement message is acknowledged and embraced. Do we truly love and embrace the Truth? Remember, if we acknowledge the Truth, we will be set free and liberated by the Truth (John 8:32).
Nehemiah Chapter 8 – From Atonement to Tabernacles
This chapter is rich in content. In verses 8-10, an interesting transition took place. Ezra the priest was reading from the Book of the Law which resulted in the people lamenting over their sinful condition. This was taking place during the Feast of Atonement. Once Ezra knew that the message of the Atonement was having its effect, he shifted gear with a familiar verse that many of us already knew. Then he said to them, “Go your way, eat the fat, drink the sweet, and send portions to those for whom nothing is prepared; for this day is holy to our Lord. Do not sorrow, for the joy of the LORD is your strength.” (Nehemiah 8:10).
The Lord was turning their sorrow into joy (Psalm 30:5). Can you see the transition? The rest of Nehemiah Chapter 8 then speaks of the blessings of the Feast of Tabernacles. How many are in need of a good dose of the Joy of the Lord?
The many Names given to Tabernacles
The Feast of Joy is but one name of many that is attributed to this feast. Tabernacles is also known as the Feast of his Rest. How many of God’s people are found striving and labouring only to come to the end of the day exhausted and stressed? How many times of late have we heard the Lord’s invitation to come to Him so that we might enter into that Divine Rest (Matthew 11:28-30, Hebrews 4:11)?
These are just a few of the blessings that the Feast of Tabernacles entails. This week, let’s appreciate and embrace the message of the Atonement. This Feast allows for the cross to become personal for it is both painful and real. Understanding the Atonement is the ticket to the Blessings of Tabernacles. The Lord is inviting us to a feast of True Joy and Rest. May we drink from that river and may that river of life flow out of us in abundance (John 7:39).