Feast of Tabernacles About to Begin


Tonight at sunset, the faithful who are able will be observing the biblical Feast of Tabernacles in various locations around the world. The ”’Feast of Tabernacles”’ is an 8-day Biblical pilgrimage festival, also known as the “Feast of Booths,” the “Feast of Tabernacles,” or simply “Tabernacles.”

In the 7th day Church of God groups it is one of the most important festivals as it lasts the longest and normally requires a great deal of preparation and travel to be able to attend. But it is normally the physical and spiritual highlight of the year for those that do observe it.

Christians point out that Jesus kept the Feast of Tabernacles. This is discussed in detail in John chapter 7:10-26:

But when His brothers had gone up, then He also went up to the feast, not openly, but as it were in secret. Then the Jews sought Him at the feast, and said, “Where is He?” And there was much complaining among the people concerning Him. Some said, “He is good”; others said, “No, on the contrary, He deceives the people.” However, no one spoke openly of Him for fear of the Jews. Now about the middle of the feast Jesus went up into the temple and taught. And the Jews marveled, saying, “How does this Man know letters, having never studied?” 16 Jesus answered them and said, “My doctrine is not Mine, but His who sent Me. If anyone wants to do His will, he shall know concerning the doctrine, whether it is from God or whether I speak on My own authority. He who speaks from himself seeks his own glory; but He who seeks the glory of the One who sent Him is true, and no unrighteousness is in Him. Did not Moses give you the law, yet none of you keeps the law? Why do you seek to kill Me?” The people answered and said, “You have a demon. Who is seeking to kill You?” Jesus answered and said to them, “I did one work, and you all marvel. Moses therefore gave you circumcision (not that it is from Moses, but from the fathers), and you circumcise a man on the Sabbath. If a man receives circumcision on the Sabbath, so that the law of Moses should not be broken, are you angry with Me because I made a man completely well on the Sabbath? Do not judge according to appearance, but judge with righteous judgment.” Now some of them from Jerusalem said, “Is this not He whom they seek to kill? But look! He speaks boldly, and they say nothing to Him. Do the rulers know indeed that this is truly the Christ?

The Apostle Paul, after the Christ’s death and resurrection indicated that it was important to keep the Feast of Tabernacles. As it is noted in Acts 18:21,

I must by all means keep this coming feast in Jerusalem; but I will return again to you, God willing.

Paul taught Gentiles to follow him as he followed Jesus:

Imitate me, just as I also imitate Christ (1 Corinthians 11:1).

Jesus and Paul kept the Feast of Tabernacles. Are you following their example?

Notice that Paul does commend those in Thessalonica for initiating the church in Judea:

For this reason we also thank God without ceasing, because when you received the word of God which you heard from us, you welcomed it not as the word of men, but as it is in truth, the word of God, which also effectively works in you who believe. For you, brethren, became imitators of the churches of God which are in Judea in Christ Jesus (1 Thessalonians 2:13-14).

The church in Judea kept the Feast of Tabernacles, etc. And those in Thessalonica were commended for receiving the word of God and imitating the practices of the church in Judea. People considered saints by the Greco-Roman churches, such as Polycarp of Smyrna, kept the Feast of Tabernacles in the second century.

The Feast of Tabernacles is significant for Christians. It pictures the reality of Christ’s reign on the earth and that this current world is simply temporal.

Perhaps it might be helpful to realize that Catholic scholars do admit that early Christians did observe the Feast:

St. Jerome (PL 25, 1529 & 1536-7) speaking of how the Judaeo-Christians celebrated the Feast of Tabernacles…tells us that they gave the feast a millenarian significance (Bagatti, Bellarmino. Translated by Eugene Hoade. The Church from the Circumcision. Nihil obstat: Marcus Adinolfi. Imprimi potest: Herminius Roncari. Imprimatur: +Albertus Gori, die 26 Junii 1970. Franciscan Printing Press, Jerusalem, p.202).

The faithful in the Church of God in the 21st century also believe that this Feast foreshadows the coming millennium.  Millenarianism (a literal thousand year reign of Christ on Earth, often called the millennium) was taught by the early Christians.

Regarding the the Feast of Tabernacles, the latest commentary from the Living Church of God, states:

All around the world, faithful Christians are preparing to celebrate the great Feast that Jesus Christ and the apostles observed 2,000 years ago. This is the same Feast that all of the world will learn to celebrate in the coming Kingdom of God. The Feast of Tabernacles is a joyous celebration. It is also a commanded assembly that true Christians continue to observe…

Jesus observed the Feast of Tabernacles and that Christians are admonished to imitate Christ (1 Corinthians 11:1) and walk as He walked—the Feast of Tabernacles is also a joy to observe because it points to the wonderful reign of Jesus Christ on this earth which will be a time of great blessings:

  • The knowledge of the Lord will cover the earth “as the waters cover the sea” (Isaiah 11:9).
  • Perfect and righteous government will be established for all people. Christ will rule as King of kings, and His righteous saints will rule under Him for 1,000 years (Revelation 20:4-6), and then forever (22:5)!
  • God will restore Israel and will bless all nations that learn to worship Him. There will be peace and prosperity throughout the earth (Amos 9:11-15, Isaiah 19:24-25).
  • There will be abundant food for all people and all nations (Micah 4:3-4, Ezekiel 36:33-37).
  • Sickness and disease will be cured (Jeremiah 30:17; Malachi 4:2).
  • Fear and anxiety will be removed from the earth (Isaiah 51:11-13; 35:4).
  • Right worship of God will be taught throughout the world (Isaiah 30:21; Ezekiel 11:19-20, Hebrews 8:11-12; Revelation 20:1-6).

The Feast of Tabernacles pictures God’s kingdom on this earth, and faithful Christians emulate their Lord when they pray, “Thy Kingdom come” (Matthew 6:10). This will usher in the time when the promise described in Revelation 20:6 will be fulfilled: “Blessed and holy is he who has part in this first resurrection. Over such the second death has no power, but they shall be the priests of God and of Christ, and shall reign with Him a thousand years.”

Of course, it is not only those in COG groups LCG that try to keep the Feast of Tabernacles as the following news item, apparently mainly referring to Protestant groups, shows:

As we approach the festival of Succot, thousands of Christians are already gathering in Jerusalem for the annual Feast of Tabernacles celebration. John Black examines the significance of Succot for the gentiles – Succot being the only Jewish festival in which gentiles were also invited to participate – and traces how Tabernacles was celebrated throughout history. 

Out family should be arriving at the LCG Feast of Tabernacles site in Lihue, Kauai today to attend begin church services this evening.

Some articles of possibly related interest may include:

Did Early Christians Observe the Fall Holy Days? Did they? Did Jesus? Should you?

The Feast of Tabernacles: A Time for Christians? Is this pilgrimage holy day still valid? Does it teach anything relevant for today’s Christians?

LCG 2012 Feast of Tabernacles’ Information Here is information on many Feast of Tabernacles locations for this early October feast.

Holy Day Calendar This is a listing of the biblical holy days through 2017, with their Roman calendar dates. They are really hard to observe if you do not know when they occur 🙂

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