The Feast of Tabernacles, which is the 7th and concluding holy day in the Biblical calendar in Leviticus 23:33-44, ends this week. This is the 7th Feast in the seventh month, otherwise called Sukkot. The Feast started at sundown on 13 October and ends at nightfall on Sunday, 20 October.
This Feast is also called the Feast of Ingathering as it’s observed after all crops had been harvested and gathered. This is a time of great rejoicing and we’re to ‘rejoice before Yahweh, our God for seven days.’ (Lev 23:40)
This Feast points to the fullness of God’s plan for Israel, for her salvation, for God to dwell among His redeemed remnant, comprising both redeemed Jews and Gentiles. This is also the time of ultimate eternal rejoicing in the long-awaited Messianic Kingdom.
So how does this Feast apply to our generation in these last days on earth?
I believe the Holy Spirit is compelling us to be fully prepared. He desires that we understand Biblical truth so that all our hope and joy are focused on the eternal King and His Kingdom, and we be far removed from this perishing world.
The prophetic importance of this last Biblical feast points to the greatest feast of rejoicing, which is the ‘marriage supper of the Lamb’ in Revelation 19:6-9, when Jesus and His redeemed righteous Bride are united forever.
In John14:3, Jesus says, “If I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself, that where I am, there you may be also.” We’re not to settle for anything less than to know Jesus intimately as our Bridegroom Redeemer. And, as His Church, we’re to be made fully ready for His return. Just as the Apostle Paul reminds us we’re to keep seeking the things above, where Jesus is, seated at the right hand of God (Col 3:1-2).
And, though we’re in this world, we’re not of this world for the Holy Spirit’s work is to lead us out with its temporary worthless trappings and cheap thrills. Instead, we’re to be constantly refreshed and renewed in our hearts and minds to re-prioritise and wholeheartedly seek God and do His will.
The Word of God is true, and He doesn’t lie, ‘No eye has seen, no ear has heard, and no mind has imagined what God has prepared for those who love him.’ (1 Cor 2:9)
And, as the Holy Spirit has been highlighting the Parable of the Five Wise and Five Foolish Virgins in Matthew 25, He impressed upon me to revisit this parable and speak about it. Therefore, I believe we’re closer to that Day than we think.
In this parable, all the virgins went out to meet the Bridegroom. They’d said goodbye to the world to seek the things that are above, where Jesus is, and all took their lamps with them. But, there was only one difference: the wise virgins took oil in their vessels together with their lamps; the foolish virgins didn’t. The five foolish virgins did have some oil in their lamps because they said, “Our lamps are going out.” So, something must have been crushed in them as well, but it didn’t last.
“And at midnight a cry was heard: Behold, the bridegroom is coming; go out to meet him!” (Matt 25:6). All the virgins could hear that call, and all awoke to trim their lamps. As they were preparing their lamps, and the time was at the midnight hour, they realised they needed more oil than what was in their lamps to burn brightly. It was then that the foolish ones made the terrible discovery that their lamps were going out and they had no oil in their vessels.
Discovering they’d neglected to bring what was necessary, they tried to get oil from the wise virgins. But the wise didn’t have enough to supply themselves and the foolish. So, the foolish had to go out to buy oil, which means they had to take the time to crush the olives to get oil in their vessels.
Know this – when the bridegroom came, it was too late to buy oil, for those who were ready went with Him. ‘Afterwards the other virgins came also, saying, “Lord, Lord, open to us!” But he answered and said, “Assuredly, I say to you, I do not know you.”
It’s imperative to understand that the life in us is the light of men and no one can borrow light from another. Today, there are people who live in sin but try to hide in the Church among Christians. People trust them because they attend church and seem to be good people. But the time is coming when these will be manifested for who and what they really are.
I urge us all to awake to gather oil in our vessels and be counted worthy to escape the things that will come to pass and to stand before the Son of Man. May we all by His grace and mercy truly experience the great rejoicing in the Feast of Tabernacles that points to an eternity spent with our Saviour and King!
Ps. Daphne Yang