The seventh and final feast appointed to Israel by God to be literally fulfilled by Jesus Christ is the Feast of Tabernacles (Feast of Booths or Sukkot). It is first mentioned in the scriptures as the Feast of Ingathering, “Celebrate the Festival of Ingathering at the end of the year, when you gather in your crops from the field.” (Exodus 23:14-16). It was to be celebrated after they entered the Promised Land and it was to be celebrated in conjunction with the Feast of Tabernacles (Lev 23:33-44). For seven days they were to live in hastily constructed “booths” (the Hebrew word for booth is “sukkot”) to commemorate their time in the wilderness and God’s tabernacle that dwelled in the middle of the desert tents of the nation of Israel. The Feast of Tabernacles (Sukkot) is not only a time of remembrance but also a time of great celebration, celebrating the bountiful harvest and the joy of community (Deut 16:14,15).
Because this feast follows a time of great repentance and judgment, the symbolic representation of this Feast of Tabernacles (Sukkot) is deliverance from bondage and restored fellowship with God among His people and the bountiful harvest of souls that will dwell with Him. God dwelled among His people in the Tabernacle in the desert and He will once again dwell among His people here on earth, when Christ returns to dwell among us and rule the earth as King of Kings and Lord of Lords.
We must always be ready for the appearance of Jesus our Lord. We are commanded by Jesus to watch expectantly for his return. Each year, the month of Elul prepares us for the Feast of Trumpets on the 1st of Tishri. This year, the Jewish month of Elul begins at sunset on Saturday, September 3rd and it ends on the Feast of Trumpets on the 1st of Tishri, which begins at sunset on October 2nd. This time period before the Feast of Trumpets is spent in honest, rigorous self-examination and repentance. It is an annual purging and realigning, purging ourselves of any spiritual baggage and realigning ourselves with the lives that God calls us to live as those saved and washed by the precious blood of Christ. Repentance is not a one-time thing we do when we come to the cross for salvation, but rather it is a lifestyle of perpetual self-evaluation and surrender that Christ calls us to live.
“For you are fully aware that the day of the Lord will come like a thief in the night… But you, brothers, are not in the darkness so that this day should overtake you like a thief.” (1 Thess 5:2,4)