The feast of Booths/Tabernacle is the last of the appointed feasts of the LORD, for the year. It is one of the feasts which He commanded Moses on Mount Sinai, on behalf of the House of Israel to be observed in their seasons. The feast begins on the seventh month of the Hebrew calendar, will last the same number of days as the feast of Passover and Unleavened bread. The LORD command for this feast is that:
Also in the fifteenth day of the seventh month, when ye have gathered in the fruit of the land, ye shall keep a feast unto the LORD seven days: on the first day shall be a Sabbath, and on the eighth day shall be a Sabbath. And ye shall take you on the first day the boughs of goodly trees, branches of palm trees, and the boughs of thick trees, and willows of the brook; and ye shall rejoice before the LORD your God seven days. And ye shall keep it a feast unto the LORD seven days in the year. It shall be a statute for ever in your generations: ye shall celebrate it in the seventh month. Ye shall dwell in booths seven days; all that are Israelites born shall dwell in booths: That your generations may know that I made the children of Israel to dwell in booths, when I brought them out of the land of Egypt: I am the LORD your God. And Moses declared unto the children of Israel the feasts of the LORD (Leviticus 23:39-44).
The LORD’S Glory tabernacled with them in the wilderness during the period they wandered in the wilderness those forty years.The feast is a reminder that the people of Israel dwelt in tents in the wilderness after their deliverance from Egypt. During the forty years of wandering in the wilderness, the LORD’S Presence (His manifest Glory) dwelt with them. Despite the seeming dangers of wilderness journey, their unbelief and inconsistencies, the LORD’s manifest Glory that dwelt among them, was a canopy over them. The Glory was fire by night to lead their way, and cloud by day. The Glory was their total sustenance, providing them manna every morning and meat in the evening. …
he had commanded the clouds from above, and opened the doors of heaven, And had rained down manna upon them to eat, and had given them of the corn of heaven. Man did eat angels' food: he sent them meat to the full. He caused an east wind to blow in the heaven: and by his power he brought in the south wind. He rained flesh also upon them as dust, and feathered fowls like as the sand of the sea: And he let it fall in the midst of their camp, round about their habitations. So, they did eat, and were well filled: (Psalm 78:23-29).
He was also the Rock that followed them, providing them the water they needed throughout their forty years of wandering. He shielded them from heat, rain and dangerous animals. Prophetic Significance Of The Feast Of Booths This feast points to this time of the Millennium when the LORD’S Glory again has Tabernacled with us on Earth. His Glory which is resting upon His Holy Mountain covers the Earth. He is a canopy for Isaiah said:
When the LORD shall have washed away the filth of the daughters of Zion, and shall have purged the blood of Jerusalem from the midst thereof by the spirit of judgment, and by the spirit of burning. And the LORD will create upon every dwelling place of mount Zion, and upon her assemblies, a cloud and smoke by day, and the shining of a flaming fire by night: for upon all the Glory shall be a defense. And there shall be a Tabernacle for a shadow in the daytime from the heat, and for a place of refuge, and for a covert from storm and from rain (Isaiah 4:4-6)… Jerusalem shall be inhabited as towns without walls for the multitude of men and cattle therein: For I, saith the LORD, will be unto her a wall of fire round about, and will be the Glory in the midst of her (Zachariah 2:4-5).
The Presence of the LORD upon His Holy Mountain is great blessings, healing, multiplication and healing upon the Earth (See The Blessings of the Glory upon Mount Zion on the book: The Messianic Temple: The LORD is There). It is a time of great rejoicing for His abundant provision, grace and mercy.Thou shalt observe the feast of tabernacles seven days… And thou shalt rejoice in thy feast… Seven days shalt thou keep a solemn feast unto the LORD thy God in the place which the LORD shall choose: because the LORD thy God shall bless thee in all thine increase, and in all the works of thine hands, therefore thou shalt surely rejoice (Deuteronomy 16:13-15).
Any nation that did not celebrate the Feast of Booths/Tabernacle/ingathering in the Millennium, such a nation will not experience rain…the blessings of the LORD. Also, the LORD shall smite such a nation with plague as He did with Egypt:And it shall come to pass, that every one that is left of all the nations which came against Jerusalem shall even go up from year to year to worship the King, the LORD of hosts, and to keep the feast of Tabernacles. And it shall be, that whoso will not come up of all the families of the Earth unto Jerusalem to worship the King, the LORD of hosts, even upon them shall be no rain. And if the family of Egypt go not up, and come not, that have no rain; there shall be the plague, wherewith the LORD will smite the heathen that come not up to keep the feast of Tabernacles. This shall be the punishment of Egypt, and the punishment of all nations that come not up to keep the feast of Tabernacles (Zechariah 14:16-19). For the nation and kingdom that will not serve thee shall perish; yea, those nations shall be utterly wasted (Isaiah 60:12)
ORDINANCE FOR WORSHIP
The prescribed sacrifices for the feast of Booths is the same as prescription for the feast of Passover.
And upon that day shall the prince prepare for himself and for all the people of the land a bullock for a sin offering. And seven days of the feast he shall prepare a burnt offering to the LORD, seven bullocks and seven rams without blemish daily the seven days; and a kid of the goats daily for a sin offering. And he shall prepare a meat offering of an ephah for a bullock, and an ephah for a ram, and an hin of oil for an ephah. In the seventh month, in the fifteenth day of the month, shall he do the like in the feast of the seven days, according to the sin offering, according to the burnt offering, and according to the meat offering, and according to the oil (Ezekiel 45: 22-25).
The prescribed sacrifices are symbol of the true worship in the spirit and in truth. It is a time of rededication of lives unto the LORD, to present our lives and those of our loved ones as burnt offerings and meat offerings which are sweet smelling flavor unto the LORD, as living sacrifices unto Him. It is time of:…repentance and re-dedication of our lives to the LORD, hence the prescribed burnt sacrifices of Ram and goats for sin (Psalm 51; Romans 12: 1&2) …judging oneself (Psalm 139)…a time gratefully consider the wondrous works of the LORD as He sustained His people though the wilderness journey, and bless His name for His mercy endures for ever …thanksgiving offerings for his mercy endures forever…rejoicing in the LORD and bringing Him thanksgiving offerings of the fruits of the Earth. As we present our offerings unto the LORD with a thankful heart, through the Blood of Jesus, it is the Blood (of Jesus we present unto the LORD) and the fat offerings (or praises, worship, thanksgiving and prayers), that are sweet smelling savor unto our God. By him therefore let us offer the sacrifice of praise to God continually, that is, the fruit of our lips giving thanks to his name. But to do good and to communicate forget not: for with such sacrifices God is well pleased (Hebrews 13:15-16).
Offer unto God thanksgiving; and pay thy vows unto the most High: And call upon me in the day of trouble: I will deliver thee, and thou shalt glorify me (Psalm 50:14-15).
The order of worship shall be as we shall see in Nehemiah 8. When the people returned from exile, they celebrated the feast of Booths unto the LORD. On this feast, the LORD commanded Moses that the people shall have holy convocations unto Him during these feasts wherein, they shall make the required sacrifices unto Him, and rejoice in Him.
On the first day shall be an holy convocation: ye shall do no servile work therein. Seven days ye shall offer an offering made by fire unto the LORD: on the eighth day shall be an holy convocation unto you; and ye shall offer an offering made by fire unto the LORD: it is a solemn assembly; and ye shall do no servile work therein. These are the feasts of the LORD, which ye shall proclaim to be holy convocations, to offer an offering made by fire unto the LORD, a burnt offering, and a meat offering, a sacrifice, and drink offerings, every thing upon his day: (Leviticus 23:35-37).
When the people returned from captivity, they kept this feast of the LORD. They held the holy convocation as the LORD God commanded:
And all the people gathered themselves together as one man into the street that was before the water gate; and they spake unto Ezra the scribe to bring the book of the law of Moses, which the LORD had commanded to Israel. And Ezra the priest brought the law before the congregation both of men and women, and all that could hear with understanding upon the first day of the seventh month. And he read therein before the street that was before the water gate from the morning until midday, before the men and the women, and those that could understand; and the ears of all the people were attentive unto the book of the law. And Ezra the scribe stoodupon a pulpit of wood, which they had made for the purpose; and beside him stood Mattithiah, and Shema…on his right hand; and on his left hand, Pedaiah, and Mishael, and Malchiah, and Hashum, and Hashbadana, Zechariah, and Meshullam. And Ezra opened the book in the sight of all the people; (for he was above all the people;) and when he opened it, all the people stood up: And Ezra blessed the LORD, the great God. And all the people answered, Amen, Amen, with lifting up their hands: and they bowed their heads, and worshipped the LORD with their faces to the ground. Also, Jeshua, and Bani, and Sherebiah, Jamin, Akkub, Shabbethai, Hodijah, Maaseiah, Kelita, Azariah, Jozabad, Hanan, Pelaiah, and the Levites, caused the people to understand the law: and the people stood in their place. So, they read in the book in the law of God distinctly, and gave the sense, and caused them to understand the reading… Also, day by day, from the first day unto the last day, he read in the book of the law of God. And they kept the feast seven days; and on the eighth day was a solemn assembly, according unto the manner (Nehemiah 1:1-8,18).
The people showed their deep thirst for the LORD during this feast, and so they all gathered from morning till the midday, listening as Ezra read the Word of God to them, while the Levites assisted in teaching the people, to help them understand the Word being read out to them. At the end of reading the Word, the people bowed in worship of the LORD and proclaimed with one voice: Amen, amen, amen. Thus, they all gathered for the reading of the Word and for worship for seven days. The reading of the Word is in obedience to the LORD’S command through Moses. The zeal and eagerness of the people in hearing and understanding the Word foreshadowed the same hunger in the LORD’S Holy Mountain, as prophesied by Isaiah and Micah. Nations of the world eagerly invite one another to come to the LORD’S House to learn His Ways. Like Mary, who chose to sit at the feet of the LORD Jesus, to listen and learn from Him the Words of Life, so many nations hunger and thirst after the Words of the LORD, to learn and understand His Ways:
And it shall come to pass in the last days, that the mountain of the LORD'S house shall be established in the top of the mountains, and shall be exalted above the hills; and all nations shall flow unto it. And many people shall go and say, Come ye, and let us go up to the mountain of the LORD, to the house of the God of Jacob; and he will teach us his ways, and we will walk in his paths: for out of Zion shall go forth the law, and the word of the LORD from Jerusalem (Isaiah 2:2-3; Micah 4:1-3).
Thus, saith the LORD of hosts; It shall yet come to pass, that there shall come people, and the inhabitants of many cities: And the inhabitants of one city shall go to another, saying, Let us go speedily to pray before the LORD, and to seek the LORD of hosts: I will go also. Yea, many people and strong nations shall come to seek the LORD of hosts in Jerusalem, and to pray before the LORD (Zechariah 8:20-22).
THEY DWELT IN BOOTHS
And on the second day were gathered together the chief of the fathers of all the people, the priests, and the Levites, unto Ezra the scribe, even to understand the words of the law. And they found written in the law which the LORD had commanded by Moses, that the children of Israel should dwell in booths in the feast of the seventh month: And that they should publish and proclaim in all their cities, and in Jerusalem, saying, Go forth unto the mount, and fetch olive branches, and pine branches, and myrtle branches, and palm branches, and branches of thick trees, to make booths, as it is written. So, the people went forth, and brought them, and made themselves booths, every one upon the roof of his house, and in their courts, and in the courts of the house of God, and in the street of the water gate, and in the street of the gate of Ephraim.And all the congregation of them that were come again out of the captivity made booths, and sat under the booths: for since the days of Jeshua the son of Nun unto that day had not the children of Israel done so. And there was very great gladness (Nehemiah 8:13-17). One thing have I desired of the LORD, that will I seek after; that I may dwell in the house of the LORD all the days of my life, to behold the beauty of the LORD, and to enquire in his Temple (Psalm 27:4) They make and stay in booths, as the LORD commanded. This is a symbol of intimacy with the LORD as they tabernacle with the LORD, while the Glory of the LORD covers them as a canopy. In this intimacy, whereby they are enclosed with the LORD for seven days, it is a time of repentance and refreshing with the LORD. It is time of renewal of strength, deeper walk with the LORD and focusing on Him alone. David desired this intimacy every day of his life as indicated Psalm 27:4. IT IS A FEAST OF JOY AND REJOICING IN THE LORDThou shalt observe the feast of tabernacles seven days, after that thou hast gathered in thy corn and thy wine: And thou shalt rejoice in thy feast, thou, and thy son, and thy daughter, and thy manservant, and thy maidservant, and the Levite, the stranger, and the fatherless, and the widow, that arewithin thy gates. Seven days shalt thou keep a solemn feast unto the LORD thy God in the place which the LORD shall choose: because the LORD thy God shall bless thee in all thine increase, and in all the works of thine hands, therefore thou shalt surely rejoice (Deuteronomy 16:13-15).And Nehemiah, which is the Tirshatha, and Ezra the priest the scribe, and the Levites that taught the people, said unto all the people, This day is holy unto the LORD your God; mourn not, nor weep. For all the people wept, when they heard the words of the law. Then he said unto them, Go your way, eat the fat, and drink the sweet, and send portions unto them for whom nothing is prepared: for this day is holy unto our LORD: neither be ye sorry; for the joy of the LORD is your strength. So the Levites stilled all the people, saying, Hold your peace, for the day is holy; neither be ye grieved. And all the people went their way to eat, and to drink, and to send portions, and to make great mirth, because they had understood the words that were declared unto them (Nehemiah 8:9-12).
The people wept when they understood the laws of the LORD, for most of their leaders: the priests and prophets even before the exile, did not teach them the laws of the LORD. They were, therefore, sorry that they did not know about the LORD’S ways. But they were encouraged not to weep or be sorry for the feast days are holy unto the LORD and are times of rejoicing and feasting with the LORD. The LORD’s command is that we rejoice with the sign of the bountiful harvest.And ye shall take you on the first day the boughs of goodly trees, branches of palm trees, and the boughs of thick trees, and willows of the brook; and ye shall rejoice before the LORD your God seven days. And ye shall keep it a feast unto the LORD seven days in the year (Leviticus 23:40-41).It is a season of rejoicing for the abundance of harvest. The LORD gives His people abundant harvest f wheat and wine, which also celebrates the firstfruits of these increases. As the people of God appear before Him with their firstborn of all things both human and animals to celebrate this feast, they also bring in the first batch of their corn and wine (the firstfruits) of their agricultural harvests so the LORD’S blessings will rest upon the entire dough…for if the firstfruits be holy, the whole lump shall be holy. The harvest of this season celebrates both the summer and the fall harvest together as there is double increase on the feast of Ingathering. Other feasts such as the Feast of Passover: each also celebrates the firstfruits of Barley Harvest (for Passover and Unleavened Bread), while the Feast of Weeks/Pentecost also celebrates (apart from its spiritual significance) the firstfruits of wheat, whereby two leavened loaves of bread are waved unto the LORD). For more on Firstfruits offerings, check the book: The LORD’S offerings: Worshiping the LORD with Acceptable Offerings.The people of God, therefore, rejoice greatly on this feast of Tabernacle because of the Glory of the LORD in their midst, tabernacling and sustaining them. They rejoice with their firstfruits offerings for the abundance of harvest and the blessings of God being poured upon their harvests. It is a season of the renewal of strength for the joy of the LORD is our strength. The people also, rejoice with their neighbors and give gifts. It is the LORD’S feast, and it is the feast of Joy. Jerusalem, the City of appointed feasts, is also the City of joy and rejoicing; the joy of the whole Earth:
For, behold, I create new heavens and a new Earth: and the former shall not be remembered, nor come into mind. But be ye glad and rejoice for ever in that which I create: for, behold, I create Jerusalem a rejoicing, and her people a joy. And I will rejoice in Jerusalem, and joy in my people: and the voice of weeping shall be no more heard in her, nor the voice of crying (Isaiah 65:17-19; 25:6).
On the final day of the feast, which is the eight-day called the Great Day of the feast, the LORD Jesus made a proclamation: 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. (But this spake he of the Spirit, which they that believe on him should receive: for the Holy Ghost was not yet given; because that Jesus was not yet glorified.) (John 7:37-39).
The Holy Spirit was poured upon all flesh after the LORD Jesus was glorified in fulfillment to the LORD’s promise. Before He left the Earth, He asked the disciples to wait in Jerusalem until they were filled with the Holy Spirit to become witnesses. As the Spirit of grace, He is the fullness of the Presence of God in our lives. He is the seven pillars of Christ’s life while He walked the Earth, and He (Christ) continues to walk among the seven candlesticks, being the seven expressions of the Holy Spirit, which burns as unquenchable torch before the LORD. He is the giver of the Holy Spirit, which is being poured unto all flesh, to empower us and burn in our lives as unquenchable touch, empowering us, guiding us into all truth; filling us with the Spirit of Wisdom, Understanding, Revelation, Might and Council. He is the Living Water of Life flowing out of our bellies. On the eight day, the great day of the feast, the LORD therefore, commanded His people to have a holy convocation. Having restored all things to us, He will continue to pour His Spirit unto His people to for to fruitful walk with Him. The rain of the Holy Spirit therefore, is the rain of His blessings for abundance of provision and continuous blessings through His Presence.