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How God’s Fall Festivals Reveal His Love for Humanity

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How God’s Fall Festivals Reveal His Love for Humanity

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God’s four fall* festivals teach us about His plan of salvation for you and all of humanity. They express God’s love for you. God greatly desires for you to be a spiritual child in His family. They also teach us the fate of Satan the devil and how God will work with each person so they, too, can be in His Kingdom.

Did you know there is an order in which humanity’s eyes are opened to truly understand Jesus’ message and our incredible purpose? God’s festivals show this plan. Please read Leviticus 23:23-44 Leviticus 23:23-44 [23] And the LORD spoke to Moses, saying, [24] Speak to the children of Israel, saying, In the seventh month, in the first day of the month, shall you have a sabbath, a memorial of blowing of trumpets, an holy convocation. [25] You shall do no servile work therein: but you shall offer an offering made by fire to the LORD. [26] And the LORD spoke to Moses, saying, [27] Also on the tenth day of this seventh month there shall be a day of atonement: it shall be an holy convocation to you; and you shall afflict your souls, and offer an offering made by fire to the LORD. [28] And you shall do no work in that same day: for it is a day of atonement, to make an atonement for you before the LORD your God. [29] For whatever soul it be that shall not be afflicted in that same day, he shall be cut off from among his people. [30] And whatever soul it be that does any work in that same day, the same soul will I destroy from among his people. [31] You shall do no manner of work: it shall be a statute for ever throughout your generations in all your dwellings. [32] It shall be to you a sabbath of rest, and you shall afflict your souls: in the ninth day of the month at even, from even to even, shall you celebrate your sabbath. [33] And the LORD spoke to Moses, saying, [34] Speak to the children of Israel, saying, The fifteenth day of this seventh month shall be the feast of tabernacles for seven days to the LORD. [35] On the first day shall be an holy convocation: you shall do no servile work therein. [36] Seven days you shall offer an offering made by fire to the LORD: on the eighth day shall be an holy convocation to you; and you shall offer an offering made by fire to the LORD: it is a solemn assembly; and you shall do no servile work therein. [37] These are the feasts of the LORD, which you shall proclaim to be holy convocations, to offer an offering made by fire to the LORD, a burnt offering, and a meat offering, a sacrifice, and drink offerings, every thing on his day: [38] Beside the sabbaths of the LORD, and beside your gifts, and beside all your vows, and beside all your freewill offerings, which you give to the LORD. [39] Also in the fifteenth day of the seventh month, when you have gathered in the fruit of the land, you shall keep a feast to the LORD seven days: on the first day shall be a sabbath, and on the eighth day shall be a sabbath. [40] And you 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 you shall rejoice before the LORD your God seven days. [41] And you shall keep it a feast to the LORD seven days in the year. It shall be a statute for ever in your generations: you shall celebrate it in the seventh month. [42] You shall dwell in booths seven days; all that are Israelites born shall dwell in booths: [43] 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. [44] And Moses declared to the children of Israel the feasts of the LORD.
American King James Version×
, where the festival commandments are found.

The Feast of Trumpets (Leviticus 23:24-25 Leviticus 23:24-25 [24] Speak to the children of Israel, saying, In the seventh month, in the first day of the month, shall you have a sabbath, a memorial of blowing of trumpets, an holy convocation. [25] You shall do no servile work therein: but you shall offer an offering made by fire to the LORD.
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)

First, the Feast of Trumpets depicts nothing less than the return of Jesus Christ to the earth to establish the Kingdom of God!

Through this festival we learn how those whose eyes are opened now have an opportunity to be in the first resurrection, to eternal life. This will begin a 1,000-year period symbolized in the Feast of Tabernacles. These firstborn members of God’s family will be given a vital part to play in God’s great work.

Raised to glorified eternal spirit life at Christ’s return, they will reign with Him as kings and priests on the earth, assisting in the teaching of God’s truth to all humanity (Revelation 5:10 Revelation 5:10And have made us to our God kings and priests: and we shall reign on the earth.
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; 20:6; Isaiah 30:20-21 Isaiah 30:20-21 [20] And though the Lord give you the bread of adversity, and the water of affliction, yet shall not your teachers be removed into a corner any more, but your eyes shall see your teachers: [21] And your ears shall hear a word behind you, saying, This is the way, walk you in it, when you turn to the right hand, and when you turn to the left.
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). God intends this life we live now to be a training ground so that we will have the good character needed to teach and guide others.

The Day of Atonement (Leviticus 23:26-32 Leviticus 23:26-32 [26] And the LORD spoke to Moses, saying, [27] Also on the tenth day of this seventh month there shall be a day of atonement: it shall be an holy convocation to you; and you shall afflict your souls, and offer an offering made by fire to the LORD. [28] And you shall do no work in that same day: for it is a day of atonement, to make an atonement for you before the LORD your God. [29] For whatever soul it be that shall not be afflicted in that same day, he shall be cut off from among his people. [30] And whatever soul it be that does any work in that same day, the same soul will I destroy from among his people. [31] You shall do no manner of work: it shall be a statute for ever throughout your generations in all your dwellings. [32] It shall be to you a sabbath of rest, and you shall afflict your souls: in the ninth day of the month at even, from even to even, shall you celebrate your sabbath.
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)

The Day of Atonement involves not only the forgiveness of sin due to Jesus Christ’s sacrifice but also the removal of the primary cause of sin, Satan.

It pictures an essential step that must take place before humanity can experience true peace on earth. After the first two chapters in Genesis, we are introduced to a serpent whose real identity is identified in Revelation as that of a fallen angel (Revelation 12:9 Revelation 12:9And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which deceives the whole world: he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him.
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). Satan tried to destroy God’s relationship with the first human beings and ultimately with you.

Satan doesn’t care whether people believe in no God at all, worship a false god or are deceived into a false view of the true God and His plan for us; he still has them where he wants them—“alienated from the life of God, because of the ignorance that is in them, because of the blindness of their heart” (Ephesians 4:18 Ephesians 4:18Having the understanding darkened, being alienated from the life of God through the ignorance that is in them, because of the blindness of their heart:
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).

Paul explains that “the god of this age” has blinded those “who do not believe, lest the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine on them” (2 Corinthians 4:4 2 Corinthians 4:4In whom the god of this world has blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine to them.
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).

But God is committed to the success of His plan and His creation! Through the prophetic fulfillment of what the Day of Atonement pictures, He will lay a hold of that old serpent and bind him for 1,000 years (Revelation 20:2 Revelation 20:2And he laid hold on the dragon, that old serpent, which is the Devil, and Satan, and bound him a thousand years,
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).

The Feast of Tabernacles (Leviticus 23:33-35 Leviticus 23:33-35 [33] And the LORD spoke to Moses, saying, [34] Speak to the children of Israel, saying, The fifteenth day of this seventh month shall be the feast of tabernacles for seven days to the LORD. [35] On the first day shall be an holy convocation: you shall do no servile work therein.
American King James Version×
, Leviticus 23:37-44 Leviticus 23:37-44 [37] These are the feasts of the LORD, which you shall proclaim to be holy convocations, to offer an offering made by fire to the LORD, a burnt offering, and a meat offering, a sacrifice, and drink offerings, every thing on his day: [38] Beside the sabbaths of the LORD, and beside your gifts, and beside all your vows, and beside all your freewill offerings, which you give to the LORD. [39] Also in the fifteenth day of the seventh month, when you have gathered in the fruit of the land, you shall keep a feast to the LORD seven days: on the first day shall be a sabbath, and on the eighth day shall be a sabbath. [40] And you 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 you shall rejoice before the LORD your God seven days. [41] And you shall keep it a feast to the LORD seven days in the year. It shall be a statute for ever in your generations: you shall celebrate it in the seventh month. [42] You shall dwell in booths seven days; all that are Israelites born shall dwell in booths: [43] 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. [44] And Moses declared to the children of Israel the feasts of the LORD.
American King James Version×
)

The Feast of Tabernacles pictures the 1,000-year rule of Jesus Christ on this earth, known as the Millennium (Revelation 20:4-6 Revelation 20:4-6 [4] And I saw thrones, and they sat on them, and judgment was given to them: and I saw the souls of them that were beheaded for the witness of Jesus, and for the word of God, and which had not worshipped the beast, neither his image, neither had received his mark on their foreheads, or in their hands; and they lived and reigned with Christ a thousand years. [5] But the rest of the dead lived not again until the thousand years were finished. This is the first resurrection. [6] Blessed and holy is he that has part in the first resurrection: on such the second death has no power, but they shall be priests of God and of Christ, and shall reign with him a thousand years.
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).

Many human beings will live through the Great Tribulation into the 1,000-year reign of Jesus Christ. This period is pictured in the Bible as a time of peace, plenty and joy. All nations will follow God in His wonderful way of life.

An incredible spiritual change will take place among people. “The eyes of the blind shall be opened . . . ” (Isaiah 35:5 Isaiah 35:5Then the eyes of the blind shall be opened, and the ears of the deaf shall be unstopped.
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), and the Spirit of God will influence people to willingly and enthusiastically obey God from their hearts. People will begin to place the interests of others before their own. They will begin to think of others as “better than themselves” (Philippians 2:3 Philippians 2:3Let nothing be done through strife or vainglory; but in lowliness of mind let each esteem other better than themselves.
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, King James Version).

With the coming of world peace, countries will “beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruning hooks; nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war anymore” (Isaiah 2:4 Isaiah 2:4And he shall judge among the nations, and shall rebuke many people: and they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruning hooks: nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more.
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; Micah 4:3 Micah 4:3And he shall judge among many people, and rebuke strong nations afar off; and they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruning hooks: nation shall not lift up a sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more.
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).

The Eighth Day (also known as the Last Great Day) (Leviticus 23:34-36 Leviticus 23:34-36 [34] Speak to the children of Israel, saying, The fifteenth day of this seventh month shall be the feast of tabernacles for seven days to the LORD. [35] On the first day shall be an holy convocation: you shall do no servile work therein. [36] Seven days you shall offer an offering made by fire to the LORD: on the eighth day shall be an holy convocation to you; and you shall offer an offering made by fire to the LORD: it is a solemn assembly; and you shall do no servile work therein.
American King James Version×
, 39; Revelation 20:11-13 Revelation 20:11-13 [11] And I saw a great white throne, and him that sat on it, from whose face the earth and the heaven fled away; and there was found no place for them. [12] And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened: and another book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works. [13] And the sea gave up the dead which were in it; and death and hell delivered up the dead which were in them: and they were judged every man according to their works.
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)

This festival points to an incredibly important phase of God’s plan, which is the resurrection and judgment of the vast majority of all the human beings who have ever lived.

What about those who are not raised first? Who are they? And what will happen to them? Are those billions of lives lost forever?

Revelation 20:4-5 Revelation 20:4-5 [4] And I saw thrones, and they sat on them, and judgment was given to them: and I saw the souls of them that were beheaded for the witness of Jesus, and for the word of God, and which had not worshipped the beast, neither his image, neither had received his mark on their foreheads, or in their hands; and they lived and reigned with Christ a thousand years. [5] But the rest of the dead lived not again until the thousand years were finished. This is the first resurrection.
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, answers those questions: “And they lived and reigned with Christ for a thousand years. But the rest of the dead did not live again until the thousand years were finished.”

The “rest of the dead” are those to whom it was not given to understand in their lifetime. This group represents the majority of all people who have ever lived. Many of the people standing before God in this second resurrection will have never even heard the name of Jesus Christ, much less believed in Him. Others will be surprised to learn that they had been misled by a counterfeit Christianity.

The “rest of the dead” points to the conclusion of God’s master plan, the great harvest illustrated by the Holy Day referred to as the Eighth Day or, traditionally, the Last Great Day. A merciful God, not willing that any should perish, will reach out to everyone to whom the “books” of the Bible had never been opened in terms of understanding (Revelation 20:12 Revelation 20:12And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened: and another book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works.
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). He will bring them back to life, offering an intimate relationship with Him by pouring out His Spirit on them—a powerful demonstration of God’s love for all of mankind.

He who has ears, let him hear!

God is calling you now to be part of the firstfruits and to be resurrected in the first resurrection. Don’t let your opportunity to rise first be taken away from you.

“Behold, a sower went out to sow. And as he sowed, some seed fell by the wayside; and the birds came and devoured them. Some fell on stony places, where they did not have much earth; and they immediately sprang up because they had no depth of earth. But when the sun was up they were scorched, and because they had no root they withered away. And some fell among thorns, and the thorns sprang up and choked them. But others fell on good ground and yielded a crop: some a hundredfold, some sixty, some thirty. He who has ears to hear, let him hear!” (Matthew 13:3-9 Matthew 13:3-9 [3] And he spoke many things to them in parables, saying, Behold, a sower went forth to sow; [4] And when he sowed, some seeds fell by the way side, and the fowls came and devoured them up: [5] Some fell on stony places, where they had not much earth: and immediately they sprung up, because they had no deepness of earth: [6] And when the sun was up, they were scorched; and because they had no root, they withered away. [7] And some fell among thorns; and the thorns sprung up, and choked them: [8] But other fell into good ground, and brought forth fruit, some an hundred times, some sixty times, some thirty times. [9] Who has ears to hear, let him hear.
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).

Will you prepare yourself as good ground in which the seed of understanding may grow now? We all have a part in determining the destiny of the seed of understanding we’ve been given. And so we are faced with a weighty question: What will you and I do with God’s generous offer to be part of His first resurrection?

As you come to worship God at His appointed festivals, remember: Blessed are your eyes, for it has been given to you to understand the mysteries of the Kingdom of God. Live a life of purpose—to rise first at Jesus Christ’s return!

* in the northern hemisphere