The Fall Feasts of the Lord Part 3: The Continuing Feast of the Lord

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The third and last of the Fall Feasts, which our Jewish friends celebrate each year, is known as the seven-day Feast of Tabernacles (or Sukkot in Hebrew).

Leviticus 23:34-42 explains that this last of seven annual, religious celebrations is to be observed on the 15th of the Jewish, lunar-based month of Tishri. Although it usually occurs in October, this year (2021), it begins at sunset on September 20 and continues until sundown on the 27th.

Observant Jewish families are to "live in booths (sukkot) for seven days" to remind them of the temporary housing constructed by their forefathers during the Exodus wandering. The word "booth" or "booths" — sukkah (singular) or sukkot (plural) — means a temporary dwelling or "tabernacle"; thus, the title, "Feast of Tabernacles."

Modern observers may construct these temporary dwellings ("huts" or "booths") from lumber, grass or any other natural substance. They are often decorated with natural materials, such as tree branches, leaves, flowers or even colorful vegetables or fruit of the fall season. Families visit other families and may share meals and special delicacies.

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Celebrating The Harvest Season

Whereas the first four annual feasts of the Lord (Passover, Unleavened Bread, Firstfruits and Pentecost — Leviticus 23:1-22) are celebrated in the spring season and point to the first coming of the Jewish Messiah and the Gentile's Savior, the last three feasts (Trumpets, Atonement and Tabernacles — Leviticus 23: 23-43) are celebrated in the fall. Being associated with its harvest season, they may also point us toward our Lord's second coming!

As a matter of fact, the Feast of Tabernacles is going to continue after the Second Coming and will be celebrated on earth even during the millennial kingdom of God. King Jesus will personally receive the praise and worship of the nations as He rules on earth for 1,000 years, fulfilling Messianic prophecies throughout the Old Testament. The prophet Zechariah tells us:

"Then it will be that all the nations who have come against Jerusalem [at Armageddon] and survived will go up each year to worship the King, the Lord of Hosts, and to celebrate the Feast of Tabernacles" (Zech. 14:16, MEV).

At that time of Messiah's return, Paul tells us that "all Israel will be saved" (Rom. 11:26) when Messiah Himself will lift the veil from their eyes:

'"Look! He is coming with the clouds, and every eye will see Him, even those who have pierced Him; and all the tribes of the earth will mourn over Him. Even so, Amen" (Rev. 1:7).

The Ultimate Conclusion

Israeli Messianic leader Ron Cantor speaks for many when he suggests that these fall festivals (Trumpets, Atonement and Tabernacles) not only remind us of events and traditions from the days of Moses but alert us to the rapidly-approaching, ultimate conclusion of prophecy for planet earth. These fall feasts can be seen as allusions to the yet-to-be fulfilled end-times events of Scripture.

Cantor reminds us there are four main passages in the new covenant that speak of the yet-future coming of Yeshua, the Son of Man, to planet earth. In these verses, we hear the clear teaching of Jesus Himself, along with insights and instructions from the apostles Paul and John.

In Matthew 24:29-31 (MEV), Jesus said;

"Immediately after the tribulation of those days, 'the sun will be darkened, the moon will not give its light; the stars will fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens will be shaken.'"

"Then the sign of the Son of Man will appear in heaven, and then all the tribes of the earth will mourn, and they will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory. And He will send His angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they shall gather His elect from the four winds, from one end of the heavens to the other."

When will the Son of Man come from heaven and His elect be gathered? "Immediately after the tribulation of those days."

In 1 Corinthians 15:50-55, Paul taught: "Listen, I tell you a mystery: We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed. In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet, for the trumpet will sound, the dead will be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed. For this corruptible will put on incorruption, and this mortal will put on immortality. When this corruptible will have put on incorruption, and this mortal will have put on immortality, then the saying that is written shall come to pass: 'Death is swallowed up in victory.' 'O death, where is your sting? O grave, where is your victory?'"

When will we all be changed? "At the last trumpet."

Also, Paul assured the Thessalonians: " For this we say to you by the word of the Lord, that we who are alive and remain until the coming of the Lord will not precede those who are asleep. For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trumpet call of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first. Then we who are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And so we shall be forever with the Lord. Therefore comfort one another with these words" (1 Thess. 4:15-18).

What sounds will accompany our Lord's descent from heaven? "...a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trumpet call of God."

Finally, in Revelation 11:15, the apostle John records that the lingdom of God is proclaimed when the last of the seven trumpets (or shofars) is blown, signifying that "The kingdoms of the world have become the kingdoms of our Lord, and of His Messiah, and He shall reign forever and ever."

All of these passages fit together in a great prophetic mosaic announcing the future kingdom of Yeshua coming to planet earth. Let us join in celebrating the prophetic realities of these fall festivals and eagerly anticipate our Lord's soon return!

Gary Curtis is a retired minister and Bible teacher. He served Foursquare churches in Illinois and California for over 50 years, including being part of the pastoral staff of The Church on The Way in Van Nuys, California for 27 years (1988-2015). Now retired, Gary and his wife have been married for more than 50 years and live in southern California. They have two married daughters and five grandchildren.

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