Category Archives: One Christian’s Perspective

Halloween Thought – One Christian’s Perspective

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Halloween Thought – One Christian’s Perspective

Just a thought…
At the end of the Great Tribulation, Jesus will return to earth. Jesus’ feet will stand on the Mount of Olives near Jerusalem. He will defeat the antichrist and throw Satan into a bottomless pit for 1000 years. During this time Jesus will reign over the earth.

Do you think that they will celebrate Halloween during the millennial reign? If you answer no, then why are people who profess to be followers of Christ celebrating it today?

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Simchat Torah – One Christian’s Perspective

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Simchat Torah – One Christian’s Perspective

The day after Shemini Atzert is referred to as Simhat Torah. It is a time that that the Jewish people rejoice in the gift of God’s Word, and in His promise to write His law on their hearts and in their minds. They focus on the first five books of the Bible known as the Law of Moses or the Pentateuch.

Simchat Torah is also called the Rejoicing of the Torah. This festival takes place in the synagogue. On this day the scrolls are taken out of the ark and a lighted candle is placed inside. A procession of elders march around the reading desk carrying the scrolls. The scrolls are placed back in the ark, except the one of Deuteronomy. It is read aloud, with everyone being called up front to read a portion of it – even the children.

As a Christian this festival reminds us of God’s Word, the Holy Bible. Simchat Torah is a time to be thankful for the Word of God. A time of rejoicing in the gift of God’s Word, and in His promise to write His law on our hearts and in our minds.

Jeremiah 31:33 NKJV
“But this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, says the Lord: I will put My law in their minds, and write it on their hearts; and I will be their God, and they shall be My people.”

Hebrews 8:10 NKJV
“For this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, says the Lord: I will put My laws in their mind and write them on their hearts; and I will be their God, and they shall be My people.”

The day after the Feast of Tabernacles Jesus went to the temple early in the morning. He sat down and began to teach the people that came to Him there. As Jesus was teaching a group of scribes and Pharisees brought a woman to Him whom they said was caught in adultery. These men knew what the Law of Moses stated concerning adultery, but they were hoping to trap Jesus into saying something that was contrary to the law.

John 7:53-8:1-11 NKJV
“And everyone went to his own house. But Jesus went to the Mount of Olives. Now early in the morning He came again into the temple, and all the people came to Him; and He sat down and taught them. Then the scribes and Pharisees brought to Him a woman caught in adultery. And when they had set her in the midst, they said to Him, ‘Teacher, this woman was caught in adultery, in the very act. Now Moses, in the law, commanded us that such should be stoned. But what do You say?’ This they said, testing Him, that they might have something of which to accuse Him. But Jesus stooped down and wrote on the ground with His finger, as though He did not hear.
So when they continued asking Him, He raised Himself up and said to them, ‘He who is without sin among you, let him throw a stone at her first.’ And again He stooped down and wrote on the ground. Then those who heard it, being convicted by their conscience, went out one by one, beginning with the oldest even to the last. And Jesus was left alone, and the woman standing in the midst. When Jesus had raised Himself up and saw no one but the woman, He said to her, ‘Woman, where are those accusers of yours? Has no one condemned you?’ She said, ‘No one, Lord.’ And Jesus said to her, ‘Neither do I condemn you; go and sin no more.’ ”

Jesus did not condemn the woman brought to Him, however He did tell her to “Go and sin no more.“

True repentance is turning from your sin and going the opposite way, to make a conscience decision to turn away from sin. As a believer when we encounter Jesus, we too are to go and sin no more. We must allow God’s Word to be more than words on a page. God has given us His Holy Spirit who can write His law on our hearts and in our minds

Shemini Arzert – One Christian’s Perspective

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Shemini Arzert  – One Christian’s Perspective

An eighth day, Shemini Atzert (meaning “the eighth day of assembly), was added to the Feast of the Tabernacles (Sukkot) during the time of Ezra. This day became known as the Great Day of the Feast.

During the temple times the custom was to draw water from the Siloam spring as a ‘libation” to accompany the offerings. This was done with great rejoicing and expressions of thanksgiving. On this day the High Priest would pour water from the pool of Siloam into a basin at the foot of the altar. The water was a symbol of God’s Spirit.

It was on the eighth day that Jesus told the people if they were thirsty to come to Him and drink. Jesus declared Himself to be the source of the spring – that He was the source of living water.

John 7:37-38 NKJV
“On the last day, that great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried out, saying, ‘If anyone thirsts, let him come to Me and drink. He who believes in Me, as the Scripture has said, out of his heart will flow rivers of living water.’ ”

Jesus told the people that were gathered, as the High Priest poured water from the pool of Siloam into the basin, that if they believed in Him rivers of living water would flow out of them. By this Jesus was referring to the Holy Spirit. The water the High Priest would pour out was just a symbol of God’s Spirit but Jesus offered them the real thing, the Holy Spirit (rivers of living water).

In the natural realm when a person is thirsty they have a desire or need for drink. They have a strong desire to quench their thirst. The same is true in the spiritual realm. When we are spiritually thirsty we have a need for living water. Jesus invites every person that is thirsty to go to Him, the only one that can truly satisfy their thirst.

Observing Shemini Atzert – A Shemini Atzert Service
On this day the scrolls are taken out of the ark and a lighted candle is placed inside. A procession of elders march around the reading desk carrying the scrolls. The scrolls are then placed back in the ark, except the one of Deuteronomy. It is read out loud, with everyone being called up front to read a portion of it – even the children.

At one point, during the service, all the children are called forward. Adults form a canopy over them by holding up their talitot (prayer shawls), over their heads. Then the blessing of Jacob is recited over them.

Genesis 49:3-28 NKJV
“Reuben, you are my firstborn, My might and the beginning of my strength, The excellency of dignity and the excellency of power. Unstable as water, you shall not excel, Because you went up to your father’s bed; Then you defiled it— He went up to my couch.
“Simeon and Levi are brothers; Instruments of cruelty are in their dwelling place. Let not my soul enter their council; Let not my honor be united to their assembly; For in their anger they slew a man, And in their self-will they hamstrung an ox. Cursed be their anger, for it is fierce; And their wrath, for it is cruel! I will divide them in Jacob And scatter them in Israel. “Judah, you are he whom your brothers shall praise; Your hand shall be on the neck of your enemies; Your father’s children shall bow down before you. Judah is a lion’s whelp; From the prey, my son, you have gone up. He bows down, he lies down as a lion; And as a lion, who shall rouse him? The scepter shall not depart from Judah, Nor a lawgiver from between his feet, Until Shiloh comes; And to Him shall be the obedience of the people. Binding his donkey to the vine, And his donkey’s colt to the choice vine, He washed his garments in wine, And his clothes in the blood of grapes. His eyes are darker than wine, And his teeth whiter than milk. “Zebulun shall dwell by the haven of the sea; He shall become a haven for ships, And his border shall adjoin Sidon. “Issachar is a strong donkey, Lying down between two burdens; He saw that rest was good, And that the land was pleasant; He bowed his shoulder to bear a burden, And became a band of slaves. “Dan shall judge his people As one of the tribes of Israel.
Dan shall be a serpent by the way, A viper by the path, That bites the horse’s heels So that its rider shall fall backward. I have waited for your salvation, O Lord! “Gad, a troop shall tramp upon him, But he shall triumph at last. “Bread from Asher shall be rich, And he shall yield royal dainties.
“Naphtali is a deer let loose; He uses beautiful words. “Joseph is a fruitful bough, A fruitful bough by a well; His branches run over the wall. The archers have bitterly grieved him, Shot at him and hated him. But his bow remained in strength, And the arms of his hands were made strong By the hands of the Mighty God of Jacob (From there is the Shepherd, the Stone of Israel), By the God of your father who will help you, And by the Almighty who will bless you With blessings of heaven above, Blessings of the deep that lies beneath, Blessings of the breasts and of the womb. The blessings of your father Have excelled the blessings of my ancestors, Up to the utmost bound of the everlasting hills. They shall be on the head of Joseph, And on the crown of the head of him who was separate from his brothers. “Benjamin is a ravenous wolf; In the morning he shall devour the prey, And at night he shall divide the spoil.” All these are the twelve tribes of Israel, and this is what their father spoke to them. And he blessed them; he blessed each one according to his own blessing.”

As a symbol of the blessings falling upon the children of Israel, the children are showered with candy while the people sing. This part of the service is called Kol HaNe’arim..

Another part of the service is the Hattan HaTorah. During this part of the service, someone who is a good example of love and practices the Torah is called up to read the Torah. He stands under a canopy and reads the last chapter of Deuteronomy.

Deuteronomy 34:1-12 NKJV
“Then Moses went up from the plains of Moab to Mount Nebo, to the top of Pisgah, which is across from Jericho. And the Lord showed him all the land of Gilead as far as Dan, all Naphtali and the land of Ephraim and Manasseh, all the land of Judah as far as the Western Sea, the South, and the plain of the Valley of Jericho, the city of palm trees, as far as Zoar. Then the Lord said to him, “This is the land of which I swore to give Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, saying, ‘I will give it to your descendants.’ I have caused you to see it with your eyes, but you shall not cross over there.” So Moses the servant of the Lord died there in the land of Moab, according to the word of the Lord. And He buried him in a valley in the land of Moab, opposite Beth Peor; but no one knows his grave to this day. Moses was one hundred and twenty years old when he died. His eyes were not dim nor his natural vigor diminished. And the children of Israel wept for Moses in the plains of Moab thirty days. So the days of weeping and mourning for Moses ended. Now Joshua the son of Nun was full of the spirit of wisdom, for Moses had laid his hands on him; so the children of Israel heeded him, and did as the Lord had commanded Moses. But since then there has not arisen in Israel a prophet like Moses, whom the Lord knew face to face, in all the signs and wonders which the Lord sent him to do in the land of Egypt, before Pharaoh, before all his servants, and in all his land, and by all that mighty power and all the great terror which Moses performed in the sight of all Israel.”

The last part of the service is the Hattan HaTorah. During this part of the service someone is chosen that has given outstanding service to the community. This person reads the first chapter of Genesis.

Genesis 1:1-31 NKJV
“In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.
The earth was without form, and void; and darkness was on the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God was hovering over the face of the waters. Then God said, “Let there be light”; and there was light. And God saw the light, that it was good; and God divided the light from the darkness.
God called the light Day, and the darkness He called Night. So the evening and the morning were the first day. Then God said, “Let there be a firmament in the midst of the waters, and let it divide the waters from the waters.” Thus God made the firmament, and divided the waters which were under the firmament from the waters which were above the firmament; and it was so. And God called the firmament Heaven. So the evening and the morning were the second day.
Then God said, “Let the waters under the heavens be gathered together into one place, and let the dry land appear”; and it was so. And God called the dry land Earth, and the gathering together of the waters He called Seas. And God saw that it was good. Then God said, “Let the earth bring forth grass, the herb that yields seed, and the fruit tree that yields fruit according to its kind, whose seed is in itself, on the earth”; and it was so. And the earth brought forth grass, the herb that yields seed according to its kind, and the tree that yields fruit, whose seed is in itself according to its kind. And God saw that it was good. So the evening and the morning were the third day. Then God said, “Let there be lights in the firmament of the heavens to divide the day from the night; and let them be for signs and seasons, and for days and years; and let them be for lights in the firmament of the heavens to give light on the earth”; and it was so. Then God made two great lights: the greater light to rule the day, and the lesser light to rule the night. He made the stars also. God set them in the firmament of the heavens to give light on the earth, and to rule over the day and over the night, and to divide the light from the darkness. And God saw that it was good. So the evening and the morning were the fourth day. Then God said, “Let the waters abound with an abundance of living creatures, and let birds fly above the earth across the face of the firmament of the heavens.” So God created great sea creatures and every living thing that moves, with which the waters abounded, according to their kind, and every winged bird according to its kind. And God saw that it was good. And God blessed them, saying, “Be fruitful and multiply, and fill the waters in the seas, and let birds multiply on the earth.” So the evening and the morning were the fifth day. Then God said, “Let the earth bring forth the living creature according to its kind: cattle and creeping thing and beast of the earth, each according to its kind”; and it was so. And God made the beast of the earth according to its kind, cattle according to its kind, and everything that creeps on the earth according to its kind. And God saw that it was good. Then God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over the cattle, over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.” So God created man in His own image; in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them. Then God blessed them, and God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply; fill the earth and subdue it; have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over every living thing that moves on the earth.” And God said, “See, I have given you every herb that yields seed which is on the face of all the earth, and every tree whose fruit yields seed; to you it shall be for food. Also, to every beast of the earth, to every bird of the air, and to everything that creeps on the earth, in which there is life, I have given every green herb for food”; and it was so. Then God saw everything that He had made, and indeed it was very good. So the evening and the morning were the sixth day.”

When the service is over, the children leave carrying banners with Hebrew inscriptions.

Hoshanah Harabbah – One Christian’s Perspective

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Hoshanah Harabbah – One Christian’s Perspective

The seventh day of the Feast of Tabernacles (Succoth) is referred to as Hoshanah (Hoshanah Harabbah, Great Hosanna, Hoshanna Rabbah or Festival of Willows). It was technically the last day of the Feast of Tabernacles. On this day the people would go to the synagogue and take a bundle of willows and some palm branches with them. The Hoshanot, The Psalms that begin with the word hoshana, were recited each of the seven days of the Feast of Tabernacles. It is from the word hoshana that the word hosanna. Hosanna is based on a Greek word of the New Testament that was derived from a combination of two Hebrew words of the Old Testament, pronounced yaw-shah, meaning to save or deliver, and naw, meaning pray. Originally intended as “Save/deliver us, I/we pray,” hosanna is now more often used as an exclamation of praise.

Psalm 118:25-26 NKJV
“Save now, I pray, O Lord; O Lord, I pray, send now prosperity.
Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord! We have blessed you from the house of the Lord.”

In the center of the synagogue the elders would march around the ark that held their torah scrolls. The people would march around the ark waving the palm branches seven times, crying, “Hoshana.” After the seventh time, the palm branches are laid down and the willows are beaten. This symbolized the casting away of sin.

The beating of the willows is also associated with the Geshem, or rain prayers. This physical act points to what happens in the spiritual realm. Succoth is a time of harvest, so literal rain is very much needed for the crops.

Joel 2:23-29 NKJV
“Be glad then, you children of Zion, And rejoice in the Lord your God; For He has given you the former rain faithfully, And He will cause the rain to come down for you— The former rain, And the latter rain in the first month. The threshing floors shall be full of wheat, And the vats shall overflow with new wine and oil. “So I will restore to you the years that the swarming locust has eaten, The crawling locust, The consuming locust, And the chewing locust, My great army which I sent among you. You shall eat in plenty and be satisfied, And praise the name of the Lord your God, Who has dealt wondrously with you; And My people shall never be put to shame. Then you shall know that I am in the midst of Israel: I am the Lord your God And there is no other. My people shall never be put to shame. “And it shall come to pass afterward That I will pour out My Spirit on all flesh; Your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, Your old men shall dream dreams, Your young men shall see visions. And also on My menservants and on My maidservants I will pour out My Spirit in those days”

A great spiritual harvest is also coming, so we must pray for the rain of the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit creates a spiritual thirst, convinces the world of sin, draws the sinner to Christ, and empowers us to be a witness for Christ.

John 16:7-11 NJKV
“Nevertheless I tell you the truth. It is to your advantage that I go away; for if I do not go away, the Helper will not come to you; but if I depart, I will send Him to you. And when He has come, He will convict the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment: of sin, because they do not believe in Me; of righteousness, because I go to My Father and you see Me no more; of judgment, because the ruler of this world is judged.”

Without the Holy Spirit the believer cannot be an effective witness, and there will not be a harvest of souls into the kingdom of God.

Lessons From The Sukkah – One Christian’s Perspective

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Lessons From The Sukkah – One Christian’s Perspective

You can learn many lessons from the sukkah. A few are:
(1) We are strangers in this land.
(2) This world is not our permanent home-it is only temporary.
(3) Any time God’s people become comfortable where they are at it spells problems.
(4) We must be able to move when God moves.
(5) We must not close God out.

1 Peter 2:11 NKJV
“Beloved, I beg you as sojourners and pilgrims, abstain from fleshly lusts which war against the soul”

As people in a land temporary, we must not hold on to things too tightly. Things control and manipulate us. Things can become our gods (idols) when we begin to hold on to them too tightly. When things become your god, you turn away from the only true and living God. God gave the Feast of Tabernacle as a reminder to the people of who He is. We need to seek God’s kingdom, not earthly comfort. As we seek first the kingdom of God, our material needs are provided for by the Lord.

Luke 12:31 NKJV
“But seek the kingdom of God, and all these things shall be added to you”

When the Israelites were wanderers in the desert they all lived in tents. It did not matter if you were rich or poor. During sukkot all men are equal before God and one another. Each one sits in his flimsy sukkah and considers God, not his own status. The Feast of Tabernacles give a person an opportunity to reflect on God’s great love and majesty, and how they treat others. The tabernacle (sukkah) is a flimsy tent where you reflect on God’s majesty. We too are flimsy tabernacles that should reflect God’s majesty.

We must be able to move when God moves. We should not get so involved with things of the world that it prevents us from moving when God tells us to. The tabernacle (sukkah) is a flimsy structure and can be taken down and put up in a very short period of time. It is sensitive to the wind, just as we are to be sensitive to the Holy Spirit.

The sukkah is open to the heavens–it cannot be closed off. We too are to be open to God. We should never close God out of our lives.

Amos 9:11 NKJV
“On that day I will raise up the tabernacle of David, which has fallen down. And repair its damages; I will raise up its ruins; and rebuild it as in the days of old”

The Tabernacle of David was a flimsy tent where glorious worship and fellowship with God took place. It may have been fragile and unsightly, but it enabled the Israelites to look out the door and see the glory of the Lord hovering over them.

Throughout Christian history, many great revivals were held in tents and brush arbors closely resembling the sukkah (tabernacle).

Isaiah 64:6 NKJV
“But we are all like an unclean thing, And all our righteousnesses are like filthy rags; we all fade as a leaf, and our iniquities, like the wind have taken us away”

When the sukkah is first put up it is fresh and green. As the days of the Feast of Tabernacles progresses, the leaves begin to dry. Soon they are falling as the wind blows. Our life here is short, but our hope is not in this world. God has provided a better place for the believers.

John 14:2-3 NKJV
“In My Father’s house are many mansions; if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also”

Inside of our houses it is easy to begin to feel permanent and self-sufficient and lose sight of our brief time on the earth. The sukkah also speaks of our frailty while we are here–we are but flesh. One day that will all change. Peter referred to our earthly bodies as tents. We live for only a short while and we must use every opportunity to encourage others toward Jesus Christ and toward His heavenly kingdom.

2 Peter 1:12-14 NKJV
“For this reason I will not be negligent to remind you always of these things, though you know and are established in the present truth. Yes, I think it is right, as long as I am in this tent, to stir you up by reminding you, knowing that shortly I must put off my tent, just as our Lord Jesus Christ showed me”

We should not get so involved with things of the world that it prevents us from moving when God tells us to. The sukkah is a flimsy structure and can be taken down and put up in a very short period of time. It is sensitive to the wind, just as we are to be sensitive to the Holy Spirit.

Feast of Tabernacles – One Christian’s Perspective

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Feast of Tabernacles – One Christian’s Perspective

The Feast of Tabernacles is a week long autumn harvest festival. It is also known as: The Feast of Ingathering, The Feast of Booths, Sukkoth, Succoth, or Sukkot (pronounced as “Sue-coat”). In Biblical times this feast was the final and most important holiday of the year. Some Bible scholars believe The Feast of Tabernacles points to the millennium reign of Jesus Christ

Leviticus 23:39-43 NKJV
“Also on the fifteenth day of the seventh month, when you have gathered in the fruit of the land, you shall keep the feast of the Lord for seven days; on the first day there shall be a sabbath-rest, and on the eighth day a sabbath-rest. And you shall take for yourselves on the first day the fruit of beautiful trees, branches of palm trees, the boughs of leafy trees, and willows of the brook; and you shall rejoice before the Lord your God for seven days. you shall keep it as a feast to the Lord for seven days in the year. It shall be a statute forever in your generations. You shall celebrate it in the seventh month. You shall dwell in booths for seven days. All who are native Israelites shall dwell in booths, that your generations may know that I made the children of Israel dwell in booths when I brought them out of the land of Egypt: I am the Lord your God.”

SUKKOTH
The word Sukkoth means booths, and refers to the temporary dwelling that the Jewish people were commanded to live in during this holiday, just as the Jewish people did in the wilderness after they left Egypt. This holiday commemorates the desert wanderings of the Jewish people on their way to the Promised Land. The people were caused to wander about through disobedience, but God was still with them. God still protected them and provided for them. The people were commanded to build temporary dwellings (tabernacles or booths) each year to live in during Sukkot, so that they could remember God’s presence and His faithfulness as a provider and protector. Today many Jewish people still build a sukkot for the festival. Almost any building material will do for the sides as long as they are not of a permanent nature. The top is loosely covered with branches so that you can still see the stars through parts of it. They are decorated with fruit, tinsel, paper chains, streamers and pictures of Bible stories. Meals are eaten in the sukkot, accompanied by singing and rejoicing. Some families sleep in their sukkot. It is a place to discuss and meditate on God’s goodness. God has redeemed us from a life of bondage to sin and brought us into His freedom in the Kingdom of God.

When the Israelites were wanderers in the desert they all lived in tents. It did not matter if you were rich or poor. During sukkot all men are equal before God and one another. Each one sits in his flimsy sukkah and considers God, not his own status. The Feast of Tabernacles gives a person an opportunity to reflect on God’s great love and majesty, and how they treat others. We too are flimsy tabernacles that should reflect God’s majesty.

CITRON AND LULAV
Sukkot is a season of joy and rejoicing. The men carry a citron and a lulav to the synagogue to wave as they rejoice before the Lord. The lulav has three branches tied together ( a palm, a willow, and a myrtle branch), and the citron is a citrus fruit that smells like a lemon. The lulav and the citron point to how our life should be spiritually.

The people took great care in picking out the citron and the items for the lulav. They were careful with what they offered to God. We too should be careful with the quality of the fruit that we are offering to God.

Palm – We should not be like the palm. It can only bears fruit (deeds / works). It is not fragrant (spiritual blessings). These people live by the letter of the law but they have no love or compassion, for themselves or others.

Myrtle – We should not be like the myrtle. It is only fragrant, but does not bear fruit. These people are sweet people, but their lives do not produce any real lasting fruit.

Willow – We should not be like the willow. It does not produce fruit or fragrance. These people are blown around by every wind of doctrine and never really know where they are spiritually.

Citron – We should be like the citron. It produces fruit and fragrance. These are God’s steadfast believers who live a balanced life in wisdom before God and man.

THIS IS NOT OUR HOME
You can learn many lessons from the sukkah. Five important lessons are:

(1) We are strangers in this land.

1 Peter 2:11 NKJV
“Beloved, I beg you as sojourners and pilgrims, abstain from fleshly lusts which war against the soul”

Inside of our houses it is easy to begin to feel permanent and self-sufficient and lose sight of our brief time on the earth. The sukkah also speaks of our frailty while we are here–we are but flesh. One day that will all change. Peter referred to our earthly bodies as tents. We live for only a short while and we must use every opportunity to encourage others toward Jesus Christ and toward His heavenly kingdom.

2 Peter 1:12-14 NKJV
“For this reason I will not be negligent to remind you always of these things, though you know and are established in the present truth. Yes, I think it is right, as long as I am in this tent, to stir you up by reminding you, knowing that shortly I must put off my tent, just as our Lord Jesus Christ showed me”

(2) This world is not our permanent home – it is only temporary.
As people in a land temporary, we must not hold on to things too tightly. Things control and manipulate us. Things can become our gods ( idols) when we begin to hold on to them too tightly. When things become your god, you turn away from the only true and living God.

Our life here is short, but our hope is not in this world. God has provided a better place for the believers.

John 14:2-3 NKJV
“In My Father’s house are many mansions; if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also”

(3) God provides for our needs.
God gave the Feast of Tabernacle as a reminder to the people of who He is. We need to seek God’s kingdom, not earthly comfort. As we seek first the kingdom of God, our material needs are provided for by the Lord.

Luke 12:31 NKJV
“But seek the kingdom of God, and all these things shall be added to you”

(4) We must be able to move when God moves.
We should not get so involved with things of the world that it prevents us from moving when God tells us to. The tabernacle (sukkah) is a flimsy structure and can be taken down and put up in a very short period of time. It is sensitive to the wind, just as we are to be sensitive to the Holy Spirit.

(5) We must not close God out.
The sukkah is open to the heavens–it cannot be closed off. We too are to be open to God. We should never close God out of our lives.

Amos 9:11 NKJV
“On that day I will raise up the tabernacle of David, which has fallen down. And repair its damages; I will raise up its ruins; and rebuild it as in the days of old”

The Tabernacle of David was a flimsy tent where glorious worship and fellowship with God took place. It may have been fragile and unsightly, but it enabled the Israelites to look out the door and see the glory of the Lord hovering over them. Throughout Christian history, many great revivals were held in tents and brush arbors closely resembling the sukkah (tabernacle).

When the sukkah is first put up it is fresh and green. As the days of the Feast of Tabernacles progresses, the leaves begin to dry. Soon they are falling as the wind blows.

Isaiah 64:6 NKJV
“But we are all like an unclean thing, And all our righteousness are like filthy rags; we all fade as a leaf, and our iniquities, like the wind have taken us away”

LIVING SACRIFICE
During this feast the people were to bring a sacrifice each day. Preparing the sacrifices was costly and time-consuming. It required much commitment to God. It required faith and obedience. Without faith and obedience the work of Jesus Christ on the cross is of no avail. It is not enough to know the facts of the life, death and resurrection of Jesus. We must have a personal relationship with Him.

James 2:17 NKJV
“Thus also faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead”

We must personally act upon it by faith, then we will have the promised salvation. We have to receive it and live it.

Romans 12:1 NKJV
“I beseech you therefore brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service”

Each of us has much that we can give to the Lord:
1. We can give our lives to Him in service.
2. We can use what God gives us (income, food, clothing, shelter) for use in His service.
3. We can use our talents for God’s service.
4. We can share the message of God’s love and salvation with others.
5. We can allow the fruit of the Spirit to overflow on others.

Sukkot is a time to consider that we are God’s creation. We are to gather up our personal, spiritual fruits of faith and celebrate by giving ourselves in God’s service. The message of Sukkot is total commitment to the Lord and His service.

THE MILLENNIAL REIGN OF JESUS CHRIST
At the end of the Great Tribulation Jesus will return to earth (Second Coming Of Christ). Jesus’ feet will stand on the Mount of Olives near Jerusalem. He will defeat the antichrist and throw Satan into a bottomless pit for 1000 years. Jesus will reign over the earth for 1000 years (millennial reign).

Zechariah 14:4
“And in that day His feet will stand on the Mount of Olives, which faces Jerusalem on the east. And the Mount of Olives shall be split in two…”

When the millennial reign is over, Satan will again be loosed on earth for a short period of time. He will gather an army to fight against Jesus. Jesus will defeat Satan and his army. The earth will be destroyed by fire and sinners will be judged (The Great White Throne Judgment). Those who died as sinners will be resurrected (removed from Hell / Hades), to stand before God to be judged for what they did (or did not do) while they were here on earth. Every person whose name is not found in the Book of Life will be thrown into the Lake of Fire. The Lake of Fire is described several times in the Bible. It is an eternal fire. It is a fire that never goes out. It is black and dark . There will be constant torment with no end – it will NEVER stop.

Revelation 20:11-15 NKJV
“Then I saw a great white throne and Him who sat on it, from whose face the earth and the heaven fled away. And there was no place found for them. And I saw the dead, small and great, standing before God, and books were opened. And another book was opened, which is the Book of Life. And the dead were judged according to their works, by the things written in the books. The sea gave up the dead who were in it, and Death and Hades delivered up the dead who were in them. And they were judged, each one according to his works. Then Death and Hades were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death. And anyone not found written in the Book of Life was cast into the lake of fire.”

After the final judgment, God promised a new heaven and a new earth. Jesus will give His millennial kingdom to God the Father, the Supreme Ruler. All Christians will live with God forever in a beautiful new universe. God will wipe every tear from our eyes. There will be no more death, sickness or pain. The Holy City, the New Jerusalem, will come down from heaven and will shine with the glory of the Lord. The city will be made of gold and will be decorated with precious jewels.

Down the middle of the city will flow the river of life, and on each side of the river will grow trees of life. The throne of God will be in the city, and people will worship God forever and ever. Heaven will be far better than we can imagine. As we draw close to God here on earth, we can experience the same wonderful presence of God that we will experience when we stand before His throne.

1 Corinthians 15:25 NKJV
“Then the end, when He delivers the kingdom to God the Father, when He puts an end to all rule and all authority and power.”

Revelation 21:1-2 NKJV
“Now I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away. Also there was no more sea. Then I, John, saw the holy city, New Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband.”