On September 7, 2021, we moved into the month of Tishri and the New Year, 5782.
There are three holidays celebrated in the month of Tishri: Rosh Hashanah, Yom Kippur, and Sukkot (Feast of Booths or Tabernacles).
I would like to focus on Sukkot this week. The Jewish people have three festivals that are called “pilgrimage” festivals. The Feast of Tabernacles (Booths) is one of them.
The Feast of Tabernacles/Booths (Leviticus 23:33-44) — Sukkot recalls the journey of the Jews from Egypt to the Promised Land when they lived in a temporary booth called a Sukkah. The harvest season is symbolized by the lulav (palm branch), etrog (citron), myrtle, and willow, which are used together during the synagogue service.
One of the names of Sukkot is also the Festival of the Nations and we certainly see signs of the nations embracing it today. People from all over the world gather in Jerusalem to it.
“According to the prophet Zechariah, this holiday also has a prophetic dimension that is yet to be fulfilled. When Messiah returns and establishes His Kingdom, all the nations will be required to keep this holiday by coming up to Jerusalem to celebrate Sukkot. (Zechariah 14:16–17) In that day, Messiah Yeshua (Jesus) will become Israel’s sukkah (tabernacle). His presence will shelter Israel and she will no longer be oppressed by the nations”.
Visiting The Western Wall is a reminder to Jewish people of their history, but also gives them a link to the holiest site, the Temple. It is believed to be the closest Jewish people can get to the presence of God.
Also, as the Western Wall has not been destroyed, it is a symbol of hope to the Jewish people that they too will last forever. Some Jews believe that a Third Temple will be built when the Messiah comes in the future.
There are many rituals that take place at the Western Wall. People write prayers on small pieces of paper and push them in between the cracks of the wall. The prayers are collected twice every year and then buried on the Mount of Olives. This is so interesting to me, as I picture Jesus praying on the Mount of Olives before His crucifixion. I envision drops of blood coming from His skin, as He pushed through in love to become our Savior! My heart longs for His return!
This week, let’s focus on a few verses that refer to The Feast of Tabernacle (Booths, Sukkot):
“Then all who survive of the nations that have come against Jerusalem shall go up year after year to worship the King, the Lord of hosts, and to keep the festival of booths. If any of the families of the earth do not go up to Jerusalem to worship the King, the Lord of hosts, there will be no rain upon them. And if the family of Egypt does not go up and present themselves, then on them shall come the plague that the Lord inflicts on the nations that do not go up to keep the festival of booths. Such shall be the punishment of Egypt and the punishment of all the nations that do not go up to keep the festival of booths. On that day there shall be inscribed on the bells of the horses, “Holy to the Lord.” And the cooking pots in the house of the Lord shall be as holy as the bowls in front of the altar; and every cooking pot in Jerusalem and Judah shall be sacred to the Lord of hosts, so that all who sacrifice may come and use them to boil the flesh of the sacrifice. And there shall no longer be traders in the house of the Lord of hosts on that day.”
Zechariah 14:16-21 NRSV
“On the last day of the feast, the great day, Jesus stood up and cried out, “If anyone thirsts, let him come to me and drink. Whoever believes in me, as the Scripture has said, ‘Out of his heart will flow rivers of living water.’”
John 7:37-38 ESV
Notice, the last day of the feast, is referred to in scripture as “the great day”.
Sukkot 2021 will begin on the evening of
Monday, September 20
and ends in the evening of
Monday, September 27