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The Feast of Tabernacles Forecasts Better Days Ahead

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The Feast of Tabernacles Forecasts Better Days Ahead

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God's ultimate goal for human beings is to enjoy peace and prosperity (Luke 2:14 Luke 2:14Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.
American King James Version×
; Amos 9:13 Amos 9:13Behold, the days come, said the LORD, that the plowman shall overtake the reaper, and the treader of grapes him that sows seed; and the mountains shall drop sweet wine, and all the hills shall melt.
American King James Version×
). Today, you and I enjoy peace and at least spiritual prosperity as members of God's Church. Still the shock of 9/11 motivates us to pray, "Thy Kingdom come." While we patiently wait for Christ's return, we are encouraged to enjoy peace and prosperity at the Feast of Tabernacles. The Feast is a foretaste of better days ahead.

Today's World: Confusion, Violence and Sorrow

You and I live in Babylon (that is, confusion) the Great (Revelation 17:5 Revelation 17:5And on her forehead was a name written, MYSTERY, BABYLON THE GREAT, THE MOTHER OF HARLOTS AND ABOMINATIONS OF THE EARTH.
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). Check out the Middle East and see how confusion, violence and sorrow are characterized as Palestinian children strapped in vest bombs. As if this weren't crazy enough, Muslim extremists vow to utterly destroy the infidels of America. But Christ will dispatch Babylon the Great and transform those who remain alive (Revelation 18; 19; Hebrews 8:10-12 Hebrews 8:10-12 [10] For this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, said the Lord; I will put my laws into their mind, and write them in their hearts: and I will be to them a God, and they shall be to me a people: [11] And they shall not teach every man his neighbor, and every man his brother, saying, Know the Lord: for all shall know me, from the least to the greatest. [12] For I will be merciful to their unrighteousness, and their sins and their iniquities will I remember no more.
American King James Version×
). One day peace will pervade international societies: "Nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more. But everyone shall sit under his vine and under his fig tree, and no one shall make them afraid; for the mouth of the Lord of hosts has spoken" (Micah 4:3-4 Micah 4:3-4 [3] And 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. [4] But they shall sit every man under his vine and under his fig tree; and none shall make them afraid: for the mouth of the LORD of hosts has spoken it.
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).

Today's world, stumbling around in spiritual darkness (John 12:35 John 12:35Then Jesus said to them, Yet a little while is the light with you. Walk while you have the light, lest darkness come on you: for he that walks in darkness knows not where he goes.
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; 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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), cannot be compared to the spiritual light of the world tomorrow. Yet right now, you and I possess the light of Christ (John 1:9 John 1:9That was the true Light, which lights every man that comes into the world.
American King James Version×
). As spiritual lights to and in a darkened world, we have the privilege to illuminate God's way of peace and prosperity during the Feast of Tabernacles. Our examples count!

Feast of Booths Speaks of Peace and Prosperity

Once a year God commands us to come under His tabernacle (Deuteronomy 14:26 Deuteronomy 14:26And you shall bestow that money for whatever your soul lusts after, for oxen, or for sheep, or for wine, or for strong drink, or for whatever your soul desires: and you shall eat there before the LORD your God, and you shall rejoice, you, and your household,
American King James Version×
; Leviticus 23:34-42 Leviticus 23:34-42 [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:
American King James Version×
) during the Feast of Ingathering (Exodus 23:16 Exodus 23:16And the feast of harvest, the first fruits of your labors, which you have sown in the field: and the feast of ingathering, which is in the end of the year, when you have gathered in your labors out of the field.
American King James Version×
) and rejoice in His freedom, peace and prosperity. That means we pull up stakes and head where God has placed His name. There we dwell in a booth or temporary dwelling for eight inspiring days.

Dwelling in a booth (a temporary habitation) at the Feast of Tabernacles is a very positive act. At once we get away from our everyday surroundings, our jobs, repetitive thoughts and familiar personal contacts; and we show by our thoughts, words and actions, God's promise of world peace.

Please don't assume that God intended dwelling in a booth as a test, although things of God can test the human condition. "The booth in Scripture is not an image of privation and misery, but of protection, preservation, and shelter from heat, storm, and tempest; refer to Psalms 27:5 Psalms 27:5For in the time of trouble he shall hide me in his pavilion: in the secret of his tabernacle shall he hide me; he shall set me up on a rock.
American King James Version×
; 31:20; Isaiah 4:6 Isaiah 4:6And there shall be a tabernacle for a shadow in the day time from the heat, and for a place of refuge, and for a covert from storm and from rain.
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; (Unger's Bible Dictionary, 1966, page 359). In fact, the word booth can substitute for the word tabernacle. The Feast of Tabernacles can also be expressed as the Feast of Booths.

How did ancient Israel view the Feast of Tabernacles? "The dwelling in booths was a matter of joy to Israel. The dwelling in booths was to be a reminder to them of the fatherly care and protection of Jehovah while Israel was journeying from Egypt to Canaan (the Promised Land). In comparison with the 'house of bondage' the dwelling in booths on the march through the wilderness was in itself an image of freedom and happiness" (ibid.).

Feast Promises Better Days Ahead

God has prepared better days ahead for all mankind. Until the ultimate fulfillment of God's coming Kingdom, you and I can enjoy eight days of Utopia while in this life. What we enjoy during the Feast of Tabernacles today portrays the prophesied promise of a coming universal Garden of Eden (Ezekiel 36:35-38 Ezekiel 36:35-38 [35] And they shall say, This land that was desolate is become like the garden of Eden; and the waste and desolate and ruined cities are become fenced, and are inhabited. [36] Then the heathen that are left round about you shall know that I the LORD build the ruined places, and plant that that was desolate: I the LORD have spoken it, and I will do it. [37] Thus said the Lord GOD; I will yet for this be inquired of by the house of Israel, to do it for them; I will increase them with men like a flock. [38] As the holy flock, as the flock of Jerusalem in her solemn feasts; so shall the waste cities be filled with flocks of men: and they shall know that I am the LORD.
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).

King David asked, "Lord, who may abide in Your tabernacle?" (Psalms 15:1 Psalms 15:1Lord, who shall abide in your tabernacle? who shall dwell in your holy hill?
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). The implication is that some can abide within God's tabernacle, and today, that group is the New Testament Church. This protective environment is made possible through Christ's shed blood to cover our sins (Romans 5:8-9 Romans 5:8-9 [8] But God commends his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. [9] Much more then, being now justified by his blood, we shall be saved from wrath through him.
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) and His resurrected life, now reckoned as our life (Romans 5:9-10 Romans 5:9-10 [9] Much more then, being now justified by his blood, we shall be saved from wrath through him. [10] For if, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by his life.
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; Colossians 3:4 Colossians 3:4 When Christ, who is our life, shall appear, then shall you also appear with him in glory.
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). God's tabernacle today is not a convention center, though it certainly can serve as a type of Christ's ultimate tabernacle/temple, the Body of Christ, His Church (Ephesians 2:19-22 Ephesians 2:19-22 [19] Now therefore you are no more strangers and foreigners, but fellow citizens with the saints, and of the household of God; [20] And are built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ himself being the chief corner stone; [21] In whom all the building fitly framed together grows to an holy temple in the Lord: [22] In whom you also are built together for an habitation of God through the Spirit.
American King James Version×
). Christ is building His tabernacle or temple and we feast with God within that spiritual temple. Though we see and feel the shadow of 9/11, we can still enjoy the peace and prosperity under and within God's tabernacle. This Feast of Tabernacles forecasts better days ahead in the wonderful world tomorrow. Prepare now to enjoy every single day of this Feast. UN

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