Friday, 25 September 2015

skēnoō and Sukkot feast of tabernacles

The Feast of Tabernacles or Sukkot is something that fills the Christian heart with enticement.


What is so enticing about this age old Jewish feast?

How is it significant?

Should it be observed in any way?

Yes the enemy entices!

The enemy likes to deceive followers of Jesus into believing that they have to celebrate and take part in these legalistic feasts as if they were not fulfilled by Jesus.

Join us in this post to discover how Sukkot was indeed fulfilled in the finest of details and let's behold the finished work of Jesus on the cross!

Remember our previous posts on some of the Jewish feasts hereherehereherehere and here?

Let's look at some Sukkot details

Following Yom Kippur (click if you missed that post) as the holiest day on the Hebrew calendar on the tenth of Tishri, the Jewish feast of Sukkot or Tabernacles is celebrated on 15 to 22 of the month of Tishri.

Sukkot is the feast of tabernacles during which the legalistic Jewish nation would erect temporary shelters (sukkah) at their homes to stay in during the feast. It is reminiscent of the temporary structures erected by the nation of Israel during their 40 year tenure in the wilderness. 

During the 8 day feast God's redemption of the nation of Israel from slavery out of Egypt is celebrated along with the 40 years they wandered in the wilderness until Joshua (meaning- God saves, as in Yah'shua) lead them into the promised land.

Hugging the shadow again

Today it is easy for the bride of Christ to realize that they are in fact celebrating the shadow of things to come ... eh, of what already came. Isn't exactly what Jesus says when He says these people look and look but do not see, - listen and listen, yet do not hear John 7:33-39?

But God was made flesh

All the law, the prophets and the other books of the old covenant, including the feasts are fulfilled in by Messiah Yah'shua!

And he said unto them, These are the words which I spake unto you, while I was yet with you, that all things must be fulfilled, which were written in the law of Moses, and in the prophets, and in the psalms, concerning me.

Then opened he their understanding, that they might understand the scriptures
 Luk 24:44-45

What is the context?

Sukkot follows Yom Kippur (day of atonement, five days earlier) which is the single most important day of the year when the high priest traditionally entered the holy of hollies (click to check it out) to bring an atonement offer for the whole of the Jewish nation.

By making use of the dates of temple service determined in the days of David we can make some interesting and profound calculations (see this post for the exact day of the birth of Christ).

The temple duty of  Zachariah, the father of John the Baptist can be used to determine the exact date of the birth of Jesus Christ.

No coincidence then that Jesus was born during the feast of Tabernacles (Sukkot) and it was for this very reason that the Gospel of John very accurately records that the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father full of grace and truth. Joh 1:14

So, what's with dwelt?

The word translated dwelt here in the Greek is skēnoō meaning to fix one’s tabernacle, have one’s tabernacle, abide (or live) in a tabernacle (or tent), tabernacle.

Jesus tabernacled amongst man.

And even today He indwells the tabernacles of His elect, temples not fashioned by the hands of man, by His Spirit.


Let's see how Jesus fulfills even the finest details of the feast of tabernacles

The Gospel of John (7:37-38)* captures the scene.

In the last day, that great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried, saying, If any man thirst, let him come unto me, and drink.

He that believeth on me, as the scripture hath said, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water.

It was on day 8 of the feast of Sukkot (tabernacles) and during the priestly rituals that Jesus cried out these words.

How on earth is this significant?

Jesus, Yah'shua, was in Jerusalem during Sukkot (John 7:32-39). On the last day of the feast of Sukkot the Jews would break free from their melancholy and their reenactment of the times spent in Egypt. They would now ensue in a spirit of freedom from slavery, in dancing and singing and feastivities.

During all this Isaiah 12 is traditionally recited over and over again.

The actual fulfillment of this scripture is astonishing!

The chief priest (Kohen Gadol) performs a ritual which in essence, is a prophetic by nature. Even today rabbis are blissfully unaware of the symbolic fact acted out in this ritual.

Prophesy uttered

With a golden vessel the Kohen Gadol would draw water from the pool of Siloam, just outside the walls of Jerusalem.

Whilst doing so he recites Isaiah 12:3: ...with joy I draw water out of the wells of salvation ...

What he doesn't know is that he is in fact giving glory to Yah'shua, Jesus Christ. By reciting Isaiah 12:3 he is not pronouncing the word normally used in Hebrew for salvation that is yasha, but instead he is pronouncing the full Hebrew word
יְשׁוּעָה or yeshû‛âh - the very name of Jesus (Yah'shua)!

The High Priest had just uttered and used the full name of Jesus in the Hebrew whilst drawing the water. All along the people had been shouting the same words from Isaiah 12 - a recital to glorify Jesus!

So, here it goes

The High Priest would now make his way, taking much care not to spill the water, towards the altar in the temple.

At the altar two things happen.

One - from his left and right hand the priest would simultaneously pour the water from the dipped vessel along with wine from another vessel onto the altar. He does this from apposing corners of the altar. The water and the wine flows together at the opposite end of the altar. This is a perfect picture of Yah'shua on the cross when His blood was mixed with water as He was pierced - the Ultimate Offer!

Two - when Jesus uttered the words in John 7:37-38*, His timing was perfect. As the priest was going through these rituals, Jesus spoke of Himself ... Life Himself spoke about Life!

Not only does the priestly rituals point prophetically to what Jesus did on the cross, but it also points to the outpouring of His Holy Spirit!

Go ahead ...

Draw your life from the depths of the wells of His Love, He is Salvation!

Draw Life from the One Who Tabernacled amongst us, from the One Who now indwells the tabernacle not made by the hands of man.

Celebrate Him Who is called Yahweh is Salvation!

Celebrate Yah'shua!

Celebrate Jesus!
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