28 The Day After Tabernacles
The Feast of Tabernacles was the final Mosaic feast of the Hebrew year. It was the feast of harvest, the model for Thanksgiving for the Pilgrims in 1621. Hence, it was in the fall of the year. It was one of the three feasts that all the Israelites were to attend annually (Exodus 23:16,17). It is explained in Leviticus 23:33-44. Per verse 34, it began on the 15th day of the seventh month and lasted seven days. Verse 35 indicates the first day shall be a holy convocation, a sabbath-rest per verse 39. However, verses 36 indicates the day after the seven-day feast is also a holy convocation, a sabbath rest per verse 39. Apparently, they are referring to High Sabbaths, days considered Sabbaths regardless of the day of the week. It seems to me easier to call it an eight-day feast with High Sabbaths on each end, but Tabernacles only lasts seven days according to the Scriptures.
Tabernacles is also known as the Feast of Booths (Leviticus 23:42,43) to commemorate the forty years Israel wandered in tents in the desert. Faithful Jews build three-sided temporary shelters with branches for roofs. One must be able to see the stars through the roof at night. Many Jews live and eat in these “booths” for the seven days of the feast. At the end of the seventh day (Remember a Jewish day goes sundown to sundown), they leave their temporary shelters to reside in their permanent homes. Is the eighth day when Christians leave our tents, these temporary bodies, to go to our permanent heavenly bodies? Is this the model?
Per Numbers 29:12-40, on the first day of the feast, thirteen bullocks are offered to God. This is reduced by one each day till seven are offered on the seventh day of Tabernacles for a total of seventy. Then, on the day after the feast is concluded, a High Sabbath, one more bullock is offered. I have read that the seventy were for the seventy nations noted after the Flood, and the final single bullock is for Israel. If the LORD raptured His church on this day, Israel would stand alone. I believe U.S. support for Israel would quickly vanish if America’s Christians were raptured.
Jonathan Cahn who wrote The Harbinger in 2012, followed by The Paradigm, followed by The Harbinger II, The Return, which was published on September 1, 2020, all excellent books, has a very interesting DVD in which he notes, in Judaism, seven was the number for complete, and eight was the number beyond complete. I have read that eight means a new beginning. The baby boy is circumcised on the eighth day. There were eight people on Noah’s ark. Cahn notes that the number eight is transcendent, because it follows seven. It breaks the mold. It is the first number beyond complete, from which all subsequent numbers follow. The eighth day would also refer to Sunday, the day after the Jewish Sabbath, the day Christians worship.
The eighth day is also noted in the Jubilee year, noted in Leviticus 25. Per verse 3, for six years, the Israelites would sow their fields and tend their vineyards, but the seventh year was a Sabbath year of rest. After seven cycles of seven years, the fiftieth year, i.e. the eighth year following the seventh seven-year cycle would be the Jubilee year. This was a year of release, freedom, and return. Per verse 9, the trumpet was to sound throughout the land on the tenth day of the seventh month, Yom Kippur (Why Yom Kippur and not Trumpets, the traditional start of the New Year? Perhaps, it is the day, the LORD returns to reign and vanquish His enemies), and they would proclaim liberty throughout all the land and to all the inhabitants. If an Israelite had become so poor that he had to sell himself to another Israelite as a slave, then the slave was to be freed in the year of Jubilee per verses 39- 40. This did not apply to all slaves but only those who were Israelites. The Israelites were primarily farmers. Except for the Levites, each had his own land after Joshua brought them into Canaan. The land could not be sold, but it could be rented out. However, it had to return to the owner or his family in the year of Jubilee. This would prevent the rich from taking over vast tracts of land (their economy) as has happened in present day America, and likely, most of the rest of the world. As fields could not be sown in this year or the preceding Sabbath year, the LORD promised a triple crop in the preceding sixth year per verse 21.
There is no evidence than ancient Israel and Judah ever kept the Sabbath years. I recall reading that in present day Israel, when the Sabbath year occurs, the Jews sell or rent their agricultural land to a nonJew for one year with the proviso that it must return to the seller or renter at the end of that year, i.e. the land does not rest as intended in the Scriptures. Man does not change much. For this reason, God sent Judah to Babylon for 70 years because He was owed 70 Sabbath years per 2 Chronicles 36:21. If this were so, then 420 years from the first deportation of Daniel and his friends circa 605 BC would be about 1025 BC, when David fought Goliath. God had planned that David of Judah (Genesis 49:10) would be the first king of Israel, but when the people demanded a king 25 years earlier, they got Saul of Benjamin. If the 420 years began with the destruction of Jerusalem in 586 BC, then it would go back to about 1006 BC, about the middle of the time David was king of Judah, beginning circa 1010 BC for 7 ½ years and ending about 1003 BC when David became king of all Israel and took Jerusalem.
The eighth day is also found in the Hebrew wedding. For seven days, they feasted. On the eighth day, the couple removed their garments, and the reality of marriage began. Hanukkah, another eight-day feast, celebrated the rededication of the temple after its desecration by Antiochus Epiphanes in the second century BC. Curiously, the body of a Christian is referred to as a temple of the Holy Spirit in First Corinthians 6:19. Hanukkah is also known as the Feast of Lights, and Christ referred to His followers as the light of the world in Matthew 5:14.
The baby boy is shorn of his flesh (his foreskin) on the eighth day. The eighth day ends the High Sabbaths of the seven-month Mosaic feasts that begin in Nisan the first month, and end during the seventh month of Tishri. Per John 6:40, Christ said He would resurrect us on the last day. We believe the last day of the church, i.e., when the rapture occurs, but could it also refer to the last day of this cycle?
Every year, the Jews read the first five books of the Bible, the Torah. On each Jewish Sabbath, there is a Torah reading. On this High Sabbath, the old Torah scroll is removed and a new Torah scroll is begun. The Jews open this new scroll with the books of Genesis on the beginning of Creation and Joshua when the conquest of the Promised Land was about to begin. Is Israel about to vastly expand her land borders, likely after being attacked by Shia Islam? After all, the Russo-Islamic invasion of Ezekiel 38 & 39 requires Israel to be invaded when she has no walls per 38:11. At present, there are walls all over Israel. When did they go down?
Shemeini Atzeret refers to the gathering of the 8th day. Does it also refer to the rapture of the church?
This year of 2020, the eighth day which immediately follows the 7-day Feast of Tabernacles begins on Friday at sunset in Jerusalem to Saturday sunset, October 9-10.