“In the seventh month, in the first day of the month, shall ye have a Sabbath, a memorial of blowing of trumpets, an holy convocation.” Lev. 23:24.
We began this week asking, “Do you want more of God?” My prayer is for us to have seen through Leviticus how God fills that desire in us. Today, we finish Leviticus with the final feasts of Israel. They are three in one known as the Festival of Tabernacles.
God chose Israel for His own, not as an exclusion of others, but for the avenue of blessing to others. “…and in thee shall all families of the earth be blessed.”
“I say then, Have they stumbled that they should fall? God forbid: but rather through their fall salvation is come unto the Gentiles, for to provoke them to jealousy. Now if the fall of them be the riches of the world, and the dimishing of them the riches of the Gentiles; how much more their fullness?” Rom. 11:11,12.
The nation of Israel is the recipient of certain of God’s promises, but even these are our blessing. We are remembered in the celebration of Israel’s feasts, recipients of the fulfillment of those days. There are three yet to come.
The summer is past. The time of harvest looms ahead. The trumpet sounds. The time of gathering arrives, but before there is a gathering a scattering occurs.
“a memorial of blowing of trumpets, an holy convocation…And the LORD shall scatter thee among all people, from the one end of the earth even unto the other; and there thou shalt serve other gods, which neither thou nor thy fathers have known, even wood and stone.” Deut. 28:64.
This scattering has happened to Israel twice, once in the Assyrian/Babylonian captivity and beginning again in 70 A. D. after the temple of Herod was destroyed by the Romans. In A.D. 135 the Jews were forbidden to enter Jerusalem by Hadrian the Roman emperor. But God is a covenant-keeping God.
“Behold, I will gather them out of all countries, whither I have driven them in mine anger, and in my fury, and in great wrath; and I will bring them again unto this place, and I will cause them to dwell safely: And they shall be my people, and I will be their God: And I will give them one heart, and one way, that they may fear me for ever, for the good of them, and of their children after them: And I will make an everlasting covenant with them, that I will not turn away from them, to them do them good; but I will put my fear in their hearts, that they shall not depart from me. Yea, I will rejoice over them to do them good, and I will plant them in this land assuredly with my whole heart and with my whole soul. For thus saith the LORD; Like as I have brought all this great evil upon this people, so will I bring upon them all the good that I have promised them.” Jer. 32: 38-42.
Until 1948, Israel remained a scattered flock, with no sheepfold of their own. They are now one nation. I believe the trumpet has sounded for their gathering in preparation for their Day of Atonement.
“in the seventh month, on the tenth day of the month, ye shall afflict your souls…And this shall be an everlasting statute unto you, to make an atonement for the children of Israel for all their sins once a year… they shall look upon me whom they have pierced, and they shall mourn for him as one mourneth for his only son…In that day shall there be a great mourning in Jerusalem… Behold, he cometh with clouds; and every eye shall see him, and they also which pierced him: and all kindreds of the earth shall wail because of him.”(Lev. 16:29,34; Jer. 12:10,11; Rev. 1:7).
God is specific in His times as He lays out Israel’s future and ours.
“And so all Israel shall be saved: as it is written, THERE SHALL COME OUT OF SION THE DELIVERER, AND SHALL TURN AWAY UNGODLINESS FROM JACOB: FOR THIS IS MY COVENANT UNTO THEM, WHEN I SHALL TAKE AWAY THEIR SINS.” Rom. 11:26.
So begins the Feast of Booths.
“…The fifteenth day of this seventh month shall be the feast of tabernacles for seven days unto the LORD…and ye shall rejoice before the LORD your God seven days…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 ye shall dwell in the land that I gave to your fathers: and ye shall be my people, and I will be your God. I will also save you from all your uncleannessesss… 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…In that day shall there be upon the bells of the horses, HOLINESS UNTO THE LORD…and in that day there shall be no more the Canaanite in the house of the LORD of hosts.” (Lev. 23: 34,40,43; Ezek. 36:28,29; Zech. 14:16,20,21).
The gathering of Israel, I believe, is among us. The Day of Atonement and the Feast of Booths are yet to come, when the fullness of the blessing of Israel will be the fullness of the blessing of all nations.
“Rejoice ye with Jerusalem,
and be glad with her, all ye that love her:
rejoice for joy with her, all ye that mourn for her:
That ye may suck, and be satisfied with the breasts of her consolations;
that ye may milk out, and be delighted with the abundance of her glory.
For thus saith the LORD,
I will extend peace to her like a river,
and the glory of the Gentiles like a flowing stream:
then shall ye suck, ye shall be borne upon her sides,
and be dandled upon her knees.
As one whom his mother comforteth,
so will I comfort you;
and ye shall be comforted in Jerusalem.”
What from Leviticus causes you amazement? What blessing of Israel do you see as your own?