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Happy Feast of Tabernacles!

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Happy Feast of Tabernacles!

Happy Feast of Tabernacles to you!

I want to thank you for joining us here and making this festival an enriching experience for us all. We’re here to worship God, to learn and to rejoice. We’re here to spend time with our families and friends and strengthen those relationships. Our awesome God has provided this wonderful opportunity. Let’s make the most of it! The blessings are both physical and spiritual. We praise our God for what He’s giving us.

But I’d like for us to consider that, while we are here to rejoice in the wonderful future God has planned for mankind, we are also here to soberly reflect on the brokenness of our world as it currently is.

In His final prayer to His Father in John 17 Jesus prayed for us, His disciples, by saying that while we are IN the world, we are not OF the world. He asked God the Father to protect us from the evil one.

We live in a very dangerous world. This past year we have seen further advancement by rogue nations towards annihilating civilization. The only hope is an act of God that will save this planet. We are here to applaud and celebrate that event.

Just in the last few months we have seen natural disasters, among them wildfires, Harvey, Irma and magnitude-8 earthquakes that have further rocked this hurting planet. 

In 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.
American King James Version×
the apostle Paul identifies Satan as the god of this age world and the prince of the power of the air—of this environment.

Paul gives context to our times now with these words in Romans 8: “The creation looks forward to the day when it will join God’s children in glorious freedom from death and decay. For we know that all creation has been groaning as in the pains of childbirth right up to the present time. Not only that, but we also who have the first fruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, eagerly waiting for the adoption, the redemption of our body” (Romans 8:21-23 Romans 8:21-23 21 Because the creature itself also shall be delivered from the bondage of corruption into the glorious liberty of the children of God. 22 For we know that the whole creation groans and travails in pain together until now. 23 And not only they, but ourselves also, which have the first fruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting for the adoption, to wit, the redemption of our body.
American King James Version×
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This has also been a year of groaning through personal trials. We await deliverance and transformation. We will be learning about that here at the Feast of Tabernacles s that we can understand and stay strong.

We take comfort in the words of Jesus Christ: “These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer,  I have overcome the world” (John 16:33 John 16:33These things I have spoken to you, that in me you might have peace. In the world you shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.
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Jesus Christ taught His disciples to pray daily, “Thy Kingdom Come!” because it’s not here yet. We’ll learn about what will take place before that Kingdom returns to this earth. This has given Christians hope over the centuries.

We will assemble in more than 50 locations around the world. There is power and encouragement in assembly.

“And let us consider one another in order to stir up love and good works, not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as is the manner of some, but exhorting one another, and so much the more as you see the Day approaching” (Hebrews 10:24-25 Hebrews 10:24-25 24 And let us consider one another to provoke to love and to good works: 25 Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as you see the day approaching.
American King James Version×
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The day of redemption of this world and ourselves is indeed approaching.

Despite the trials and the problems we see in our lives and the lives of others, we can truly rejoice and have great joy right now because we know God’s Kingdom will heal all wounds and right all wrongs. That’s the reason we rejoice at this Feast, and it’s the reason we rejoice in our daily lives as we face life’s challenges.

I hope you make the most of the time you have at this Feast. Don’t let a day go by without connecting with one of your brothers and sisters in Christ. Try to make it a personal goal this Feast to meet someone new and start a new friendship. Don’t let a day go by without opening your Bible and soaking in God’s Word. Don’t let a day go by without praying to your Father in heaven.

Finally, though there is much to reflect on that sobers and humbles us, don’t let a day go by without truly rejoicing in God’s wonderful plan to heal and restore His world and the people He has made.

Have a wonderful Feast of Tabernacles!