Feast of Tabernacles (Christian holiday)

The Feast of Tabernacles is an eight-day Biblical pilgrimage festival, also known as the Feast of Booths, the Festival of Tabernacles, or Tabernacles. it is celebrated by a small number of Christians who have revived some Old Testament festivals. Among followers, it is one of the most important holy days as it lasts the longest and normally requires a great deal of preparation and travel to be able to attend. It is celebrated on the 15th of "Tishrei" in the Hebrew calendar (October), the same date of the Jewish festival "Sukkot", with which it shares its origin. The Feast of Tabernacles is a great Holy Day.

In the New Testament

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

The issue of how non Israeli Christians related to Israeli Christians was a very serious issue in the early church. Jesus and all his first followers were Israeli. However, from the Biblical evidence, only a short time elapsed before non-Israeli people became convinced that Jesus was the Messiah. For Gentiles (races) coming to Adamic Messiah, the issue of what was essential for them to adopt and what was [legitimate but] optional Israeli custom amongst the Israeli followers of Jesus Christ came to the fore. It is significant that the Israeli Apostle Paul himself kept the Feast of Tabernacles. As it is noted in Acts 18:21:

Interpretation

One group that observes the Feast of Tabernacles, the Living Church of God, states:

:::Old Testament meaning

:::A seven-day celebration of the great fall harvest, observed by living in temporary dwellings for the duration of the Feast. (Leviticus 23:33-43)

:::New Testament meaning

:::Symbolizes the Millennium, when the earth will be ruled by Jesus Christ and His saints. [http://www.lcg.org/cgi-bin/tw/booklets/tw-bk.cgi?category=Booklets1&item=1104358140 The Holy Days]

The seven day Feast of Tabernacles is immediately followed by a separate festival, on the eighth day, called the "Last Great Day" based on these verses in John 7:37-38:

: 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."

The Living Church of God states this about the eighth day of the feast:

:::Old Testament meaning

:::Adjacent to the Feast of Tabernacles, this eighth day is considered a separate Feast. (Leviticus 23:36, 39)

:::New Testament meaning

:::Symbolizes the future "Great White Throne Judgment" at which all of humanity not previously called will have the chance to hear the True Gospel and accept salvation. [http://www.lcg.org/cgi-bin/tw/booklets/tw-bk.cgi?category=Booklets1&item=1104358140 The Holy Days]

Most of the groups that observe the Feast of Tabernacles and the Last Great Day that follows it are in basic agreement with the statements quoted from the Living Church of God. Most who do not observe it (the vast majority of the Christian world) have varying opinions on the possible meanings, but do not consider that this festival is highly relevant for Christians.

Current observances

An estimated 50,000 Christians observe the Feast of Tabernacles today. The United Church of God is one of the largest groups that observes this festival, as well as the other appointed times of God. Most of those that do observe it were at one time affiliated with the Worldwide Church of God, though some associated with the Church of God (Seventh Day) and even with the Seventh-day Adventist Church (a very small minority) also observe it, though it is not an official practice of those latter two churches.

Nothing transcends the Sabbath except for Christ.

Most ministers do not limit their observance to Jerusalem, but observe it in several hundred places around the world.

The vast majority of the Christians celebrate this event every Sunday and it is the very essence of the faith.

There was a feast on the eighth day after Tabernacles began. It was the end date – the leave-taking of the Feast of Tabernacles. It completed the feasts of the seventh month as well (A memorial of Trumpets (seventh month): New Year (Lv 23:23); The Day of Atonement [the seventh month] (Lv 23:26); & the Feast of Tabernacles [seventh month] (Lv 23:33).

This final day was the consummation, or great high point, of the feast. It was the eighth day – the first day of the season of rest. The day itself was to be a complete rest; no work whatever was to be done. The planting, the cultivating, and the harvesting had all been accomplished. Now it was time to rest.

That eighth day was a type of the new creation – the day that never ends – the day “when all our labors and trials are over.” It is the day of the establishment of the eternal kingdom of God in its fullness. All is completed. All is renewed. All is at rest. The true New World has begun. It is the fulfillment of the work of Christ for us.

Definition of Tabernacle/Sanctuary: The Holy of Holies or Most Holy Place - The place in the Old Testament Tabernacle or Temple, containing the Ark of the Covenant, the dwelling place of God. Only the high priest could enter the Most Holy Place on the Day of Atonement, but now our high priest Jesus Christ has entered the Most Holy Place on the Day of His Ascension, 40 days after His Resurrection (Acts 1:9-11).

Further reading

* Chumney, Edward (1994). "The Seven Festivals of the Messiah". Treasure House. ISBN 1560437677
* Howard, Kevin (1997). "The Feasts of the Lord God's Prophetic Calendar from Calvary to the Kingdom". Nelson Books. ISBN 0785275185

External links

* [http://www.cogwriter.com/feast.htm The Feast of Tabernacles]
* [http://www.yrm.org/biblical_feasts.htm Why I keep the Biblical Feasts]
* [http://www.cogwriter.com/fallholy.htm Did Early Christians Keep the Fall Holy Days?]
* [http://ucg.org/booklets/HD/ God's Holy Day Plan - Hope For All Mankind]
* [http://www.lcg.org/cgi-bin/tw/booklets/tw-bk.cgi?category=Booklets1&item=1104358140 The Holy Days-God's Master Plan]
* [http://www.herbert-w-armstrong.org? Literature about the Feast of Tabernacles]
* [http://cgi.org/site/index.php/Booklets-Brochures.html God's Seasonal Plan - Did Christ come to ABOLISH these so-called "Jewish" Feasts?]
* [http://www.feastgoer.org List of locations to Keep the Feast of Tabernacles]


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