So... where have I been!? We were blessed to go to Florida for a great little get-away last week and enjoyed some amazing down time. And so I did a horrible job, again, at blogging last week. And I know you are all waiting with great anticipation for the next post on the Feast of Tabernacles and so here it goes!
"The feasts don't apply to us today." "The feasts are for the Jews." "Did you build your altar too?"
These are just a few responses I get/hear when the feasts are brought up and so before I go into more detail about the Feast of Tabernacles, I want to put some things out on the table. First of all, the feasts are not the Jews Feasts... they are the "Lord's Feasts." Scripture again and again refers to them as the "Lord's Feasts." The actual wording for "feasts" is "mo'ed" and means "an appointed time" so the Lord's "mo'ed" means the Lord's appointed time. These are days set aside BY GOD as important days with Israel. The Children of Israel were and are God's "chosen people." So many believers today quickly ignore anything having to do with Israel thinking it does not apply to them.
But we have missed a VERY important fact about WHO WE ARE IN CHRIST for many, many years (and it is by no accident). Romans 11:17 tells us that when we accepted Christ as our Savior, we were GRAFTED INTO ISRAEL. WE BECOME PART OF ISRAEL. WE BECOME GOD'S CHILDREN. And this scripture is referring to Gentile believers. What MOST Christians also have no idea about is that God scattered 10 tribes of Israel all over the world who then inter-married with Gentiles and took on Gentile traditions and beliefs. So MANY BELIEVERS are actual descendants from these scattered 10 tribes and have no idea. They assume they are Gentile because they are not Jewish. The Jews are ONE TRIBE of the TWELVE TRIBES of ISRAEL. THIS very fact and knowledge is part of what has changed my life. All of the sudden, I really began to care about what God had said to Israel and what He had promised them! Ephesians 2 also shows us that at one time we were "excluded from citizenship with Israel" but now we are "FELLOW CITIZENS" with them! Ephesians 2:12-22.
Now, Christ came and changed everything. We are no longer under the penalty of the law. The penalty of the law was death, separation from God. But now, through Christ, HE TOOK our sin and the penalty of our sins onto HIMSELF and satisfied God's HOLY need for justice. CHRIST fulfilled the law... but he did not destroy it. He Himself says this with His own mouth...
"Do not think that I came to destroy the Law or the Prophets. I did not come to destroy but to fulfill. For assuredly, I say to you, till heaven and earth pass away, one jot or one tittle will by no means pass from the law until all is fulfilled. Whoever therefore breaks one of these commandments, and teaches men so, shall be called least in the kingdom of heaven; but whoever does and teaches them, he shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven. Matthew 5:17-19~
And the key is "until ALL is fulfilled." Because "ALL" has not been fulfilled. And the Feast of Tabernacles has not been fulfilled yet. And in the book of Zechariah 14:16 (prophetic book of Old Testament) we are told that when Christ returns, we'll be joining Him in the Feast of Tabernacles during the Millennium!
We are called to obey God's commandments.
"So he said to him, "Why do you call Me good? No one is good but One, that is, God. But if you want to enter into life, keep the commandments. Matthew 19:17~
Then He goes on in verse 18 to list of 6 of the 10 commandments. Then in Matthew 22, the Pharisees ask Jesus which is the great commandment of the law. He answers with this,
"You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like it, You shall love your neighbor as yourself. On these two commandments hang all the Law and Prophets." Matthew 22: 37-40~
What was Jesus saying? He was quoting scripture. The only scripture they had was Torah, part of what we consider the Old Testament.
"Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God, the LORD is one! You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your strength." Deuteronomy 6:4,5~
"You shall not take vengeance , nor bear any grudge against the children of your people, but you shall love your neighbor as yourself: I am the LORD." Leviticus 19:18~
OK. I could go on and on here... and maybe I will go into all that further. But hopefully you can see that the Old Testament (named that by man) should not be thrown out with the bath water or used as a great story reference. It is FULL of wisdom, promises, commandments, prophesy, and JESUS! Yes. JESUS is ALL IN THE OLD TESTAMENT! Psalm 22 is about Jesus' death! Passover is about Christ being our Passover lamb! Jesus is in the book of Isaiah. The Lord appearing to Moses on Mt. Sinai. is the first Pentecost and a mirror of the Pentecost in Acts! It is ALL TIED TOGETHER.
So WHO MADE IT SO SEPARATE?
THAT is a whole other post and I WILL post about that soon!
So... on to Feast of Trumpets. God created the "appointed times" on the Biblical calendar. MANY of us have no idea about the Biblical calendar because it was replaced with the Roman calendar... again... a great crime against God's word out of Rome... go figure! Anyway... trying to stay focused! GOD'S calendar is where you find His appointed times to meet with His people. It is laid out in scripture, in the Old Testament. And we have already established that we are His people... whether a descendant of the scattered tribes, Jew, or Gentile who has been grafted in after accepting Christ. Don't you think it might be nice to know about God's calendar? Do you think there might be blessings in meeting with God on HIS appointed days? Of course there is! And that is part of the VERY reason Satan has used Rome to HIDE so much of our TRUE CHRISTIAN ROOTS! He comes to STEAL and DESTROY!
The Feast of Trumpets is the first in a string that have not been fulfilled yet! THAT got my attention even more! The Feast of Trumpets is also known as Rosh Hashanah. God gave one commandment for this feast, to listen to a blast of trumpets (the shofar). It is a wake up call. It is an attention getter. It sets the stage for the next appointed times... The Days of Awe, the Day of Atonement, and the Feast of Tabernacles. These are the fall feasts and are all linked together.
The ten days following the feast of trumpets are called the Days of Awe. It is a time to repent and return. I feel strongly we are in the "Days of Awe" right now as God is calling, gathering, and purifying His Bride. It is a time to cleanse oneself from idols, sin, and impurity to seek God with ALL your heart and prepare for the Holiest Day of the year, the Day of Atonement.
The Day of Atonement is the Holiest Day of the Year. Wow. Don't you want to know what day is the Holiest Day of the year!? I was mad when I learned all this. Mad that I had missed that day, over and over and over out of ignorance. I had missed a day that GOD set aside for me over and over! My heart was pricked. This year, that day was October 7. The biblical calendar is counted off according to the New Moon and that changes each year so these days are different each year! And biblical days start at sundown... so the Day of Atonement was from sundown on the 7th to sundown on the 8th. Biblical days start with evening instead of morning... it starts with rest... isn't that cool! I love that part. :0)
Jesus is our Atonement. On this day, I want to be on my face thanking Him for being my atonement... for taking my sin and taking the penalty for it... and for giving me His robe of righteousness in return. I am not going to sacrifice a goat, after Christ's final and perfect sacrifice, there is no need for further bloodshed. I don't want to celebrate this day because I feel I am bound by law to do so. I want to celebrate it because it is a HOLY DAY, THE HOLIEST DAY and I want to MEET WITH GOD on that day. It is because of my desire to be close to Him and MEET HIM that I want to set this day aside.
I am heartbroken to my core that this month, the month of these feasts, we scheduled ourselves to the MAX with "things". They were GOOD things! And they were things for others! But I did not stop and meet with the LORD. Although I was serving Him and trying to reflect His love... I missed this special time with Him. And I know He still loves me and I know that I am still forgiven and covered with grace. But next year, I want to set it aside.
The day after the Day of Atonement starts the Feast of Tabernacles. This 7 day feast celebrated the final ingathering of the Harvest. We are the harvest. We are the ones being gathered back to God!
It is a time to look back at how Israel wandered in the desert for forty years and dwelled in temporary shelters. And even during this time, God dwelled among them! It was a time to teach the children about their past generations and what God had done for them. It was a time to remember our life here is temporary! And Jesus is the ultimate tabernacle or dwelling place of God. And He comes to dwell inside us as believers! He dwells inside us through the Holy Spirit! Can you see the significance of knowing about and possibly celebrating this time each year?! It is beautiful!
Again, this is the cliff notes version. If you are interested in knowing more about this stuff, there are two amazing books listed below that will blow you away! There is so much more and it all is just amazing and beautiful! Thanks for letting me share! :0)
Celebrating Jesus in the Biblical Feasts, Dr. Richard Booker
The Messianic Church Arising! Dr. Robert Heidler
"I, Jesus, have sent my angel to testify to you these things in the churches. I am the Root and the Offspring of David, the Birght and Morning Star." And the Spirit and the bride say, "Come!" And let him who hears say, "Come!" And let him who thirsts come. Whoever desires, let him take the water of life freely." Revelation 22:16-17~
Note: I can not stress enough that we are not learning about/observing/celebrating these appointed times to try and gain salvation or earn our way to heaven. Salvation can't be earned! It is a gift that is given to those who believe in Jesus Christ as the Son of God and as their Savior and are baptized into Him. It is the gift of grace. Grace in itself gives glory to the name of God! Man can not earn anything with works.
We are learning about this and "celebrating" these times as we connect our Hebrew roots with our modern day Christianity. We find it a gift, not a burden. We find it beautiful and an incredible way to model a Deuteronomy 6 lifestyle. We do not judge anyone who does not want to look into any of this any further. I share it because it is beautiful and I feel God wants me to share it.