Keeping Yahweh’s Feast Days
Yahweh specifically commanded Israel and all His people today to keep seven Feasts to Him throughout the year. These seven Feasts were in addition to the weekly Sabbath.
The purpose of the Feasts was to keep Yahweh always in the minds and hearts of His people so that they can align with Him. Observing the Feasts also brought people together as a family and helped unite them as a nation under Yahweh. The Feasts lay out the plan of salvation and show prophetically where we are in that plan today.
With all that the Feasts embody, and as central as they are in scriptural law, it is nothing short of stunning that they have been completely disregarded and ignored by churchianity for 2,000 years! Most churchgoers would never deliberately go break the Ten Commandments. Yet the Feasts, which were also commanded at Sinai along with the Commandments, have all been deliberately broken for millennia by denominational worship claiming an otherwise dedicated faith.
Feast Days : Key to the Future
It is as much a sin to break the Feast commands as it is to break the Ten Commandments. Each violates Yahweh’s law. The only defense is ignorance. But once you know you are then responsible to make them a key part of your life or else stand guilty of lawbreaking. “Therefore to him that knoweth to do good, and doeth it not, to him it is sin,” James 4:17.
It is time we learned more about Yahweh’s sacred Feasts. In addition to the Feast of Tabernacles, two other convocations are also known as “Pilgrim Feasts.” These are the Feast of Unleavened Bread and the Feast of Weeks.
We are expected to leave our homes and travel to attend these “appointed times” (Hebrew moed, moedim, plural). These three Feasts depict our journey through life as pilgrims and travelers seeking a better country, the city Yahweh has prepared for us (Heb. 11:16).
We aspire to the Kingdom of Yahweh, which will come to this earth. His Feasts help us understand that future Kingdom and how it will be administered.
These three great Feasts celebrated the three times fruits of the earth were gathered; the barley harvest at Unleavened Bread; the wheat harvest at Pentecost, and the oil, honey, and grapes at Tabernacles.
Just as Israel tabernacled in the wilderness, Yahshua the Messiah “tabernacles” with His people today. This is one of the many lessons we learn from the Feast of Tabernacles and other Feasts observed by True Worshipers.
The Feasts are also reminders of Israel’s historical events. Passover in the first month of the year (March or April) memorializes the deliverance of Israel from Egyptian bondage. Fifty days later Pentecost marks the ratifying of the Law (making a Covenant) at Sinai.
Tabernacles and the Wilderness
Tabernacles on the fifteenth day of the seventh month commemorates Israel’s establishment in the Land of Promise. Now they were home and finally at peace under King Solomon. After 40 years of wandering in the wilderness they at last possessed the land.
Tabernacles was a thankful and a holy remembrance of past wanderings in temporary dwellings. At that time Israel took boughs of palm and willows of the brook and made temporary huts. They sat under these succoth just as did Joshua when settling the land: “And all the congregation of them that were come again out of the captivity made booths, and sat under the booths: for since the days of Joshua the son of Nun unto that day had not the children of Israel done so. And there was very great gladness” (Neh. 8:17).
During the time of Solomon (Heb. “king of peace”), Israel was at home and enjoyed peace and quiet throughout the land of Judea. “And Judah and Israel lived safely, every man under his vine and under his fig tree, from Dan even to Beersheba, all the days of Solomon” (1Kings 4:25).
Tabernacles and the Ark
The last vestige of wilderness life ended when the Ark of the Covenant was taken from the portable tent and placed in the magnificent Temple of stone in the seventh month. The event was further celebrated by observing the Feast of Tabernacles on the fifteenth day of the seventh month: “Then Solomon assembled the elders of Israel, and all the heads of the tribes, the chief of the fathers of the children of Israel, unto Jerusalem, to bring up the Ark of the Covenant of Yahweh out of the city of David, which [is] Zion. Wherefore all the men of Israel assembled themselves unto the king in the feast which was in the seventh month. And all the elders of Israel came; and the Levites took up the ark” (2Chron. 5:24).
Finally, on the 23rd of the seventh month, Solomon sent the great congregation away, glad in heart for the goodness Yahweh had showed to David, Solomon, and His people Israel. Home at last! The Ark of the Covenant was now in the security of its Temple home. It was a wonderful event to associate with the Feast of Tabernacles. Take note, it was at the beginning of the seventh month after their return from Babylonian captivity that the Jews gathered under Ezra and Nehemiah.
Nehemiah 8:23 says, “And Ezra the priest brought the law before the congregation both of men and women, and all that could hear with understanding, upon the first day of the seventh month. And he read therein before the street that [was] before the water gate from the morning until midday, before the men and the women, and those that could understand; and the ears of all the people [were attentive] unto the book of the law.”
The returned captives were gathered in Jerusalem the second day of the seventh month to listen to Ezra the priest read from the book of the law. In it they learned that there was a convocation to be observed on the fifteenth of this seventh month: “And they found written in the law which Yahweh had commanded by Moses, that the children of Israel should dwell in booths in the feast of the seventh month: And that they should publish and proclaim in all their cities, and in Jerusalem saying, Go forth unto the mount, and fetch olive branches, and pine branches, and myrtle branches, and palm branches, and branches of thick trees, to make booths, as it is written” (Neh. 8:14:15). “Also day by day, from the first day unto the last day, he read in the book of the law of Elohim. And they kept the feast seven days; and on the eighth day [was] a solemn assembly, according unto the manner” (Neh. 8:18).
Just as the returning captives were unaware of the Feast of Tabernacles, many of our readers are unfamiliar with Yahweh’s Feast of Tabernacles. As soon as the Jews learned that they were expected to keep the Feast, they urged those in all their cities to prepare for the full eight days of the Feast.
Spiritual Meaning of the Feast Days
The Passover points to Yahshua as the true Passover Lamb Who was sacrificed for the sins of the world. Because we believe in the atoning work of His sacrifice, we are to keep the feast of Unleavened Bread: “Purge out therefore the old leaven, that you may be a new lump, as you are unleavened. For even Messiah our Passover is sacrificed for us: Therefore let us keep the feast, not with old leaven, neither with the leaven of malice and wickedness; but with the unleavened [bread] of sincerity and truth” (1Cor. 5:7-8).
• Pentecost (Feast of Weeks) is a memorial of the giving of the Law at Sinai, and the descent of the Holy Spirit to enable us to keep the Law. Having the Law written on our hearts is more effectual than having it written on stone. His law within us guides us day by day and we make His law come alive as we obey and follow it day by day: “Forasmuch as you are manifestly declared to be the epistle of Messiah ministered by us, written not with ink, but with Spirit of the living Elohim; not in tables of stone, but in fleshy tables of the heart” (2Cor. 3:3).
• The day of Trumpets is announced by the thin crescent moon just after sunset, which ends the sixth and begins the seventh month, in our September or October. It is the beginning of the civil year in Judaism. However, the month of Abib in spring is Yahweh’s beginning of His religious year, usually March or April. The day of Trumpets calls our attention to the beginning of Yahweh’s seventh month. The sounding of the trumpet traditionally warned of an alarm, war or danger such as we find in Zephaniah: “A day of the trumpet and alarm against the fenced cities, and against the high towers” (Zeph. 1:16). Trumpets is to prepare us for the return of the Messiah and His setting up the Kingdom. We keep our mind on heavenly things, being alert to signs of His return.
• Ten days after the day of Trumpets comes the day of Atonement. It is known in rabbinical writings as the holiest day of the year. From the day of Trumpets to Atonement is a time of deep introspection and self-appraisal.
It was the time when the High Priest emerged from the Holy of Holies to the people’s shouts of joy, knowing their sacrifice was acceptable. Atonement marks the day our High Priest Yahshua comes out from the heavenly Holy of Holies to assure us His atoning sacrifice for our sins was acceptable to the Heavenly Father.
You Shall Rejoice During the Feast Days!
There is much rejoicing at the Feast of Tabernacles, which starts on the biblical 15th of the seventh month, with the celebration ending with the Last Great Day on the 22nd (Oct. 10-17, 2014). “The voice of rejoicing and salvation [is] in the tabernacles of the righteous: the right hand of Yahweh does valiantly” (Ps. 118:15).
The Jews of the captivity had not kept Tabernacles in their exile, but were now excited over the command to observe it: “And all the congregation of them that were come again out of the captivity made booths, and sat under the booths: for since the days of Yahshua the son of Nun unto that day had not the children of Israel done so. And there was very great gladness” (Neh. 8:17).
Those Yahweh is calling out of this world to keep His Feast of Tabernacles and the Feasts of the seventh month should make every effort to do so. If Yahweh’s Spirit has sparked an interest in your heart to start keeping His Feasts, do not quench that desire. The entire family is expected to keep and enjoy the Feasts together. Once you do you will never go back to the superficial, empty, and pointless holidays of the world.
The Bible also speaks of a second tithe that we set aside throughout the year so that we have the means to keep the Feasts. This second tithe is to assure Yahweh’s people that if they are diligent they can enjoy the Feasts to the fullest. It is retained by the individual at home and is often called “the Festival Tithe.”
“You may not eat within your gates the tithe of your com, or of your wine, or of your oil, or the first-lings of your herds or of your flock, nor any of your vows which you vow, nor your freewill offerings, or heave offering of your hand: But you must eat them before Yahweh your Elohim in the place which Yahweh your Elohim shall choose, you, and your son, and your daughter, and your manservant, and your maidservant, and the Levite that [is] within your gates: and you shall rejoice before Yahweh your Elohim in all that you put your hands unto” (Deut. 12:17-19).
Of the three annual Sabbath celebrations known as “Pilgrim Feasts,” the Feast of Tabernacles still awaits complete spiritual fulfillment.
A Deeply Moving Time
Those who start attending Feasts of Tabernacles clearly remember their first time. Some newcomers arrive not fully knowing what to expect. But soon the experienced Feastgoers help their new neighbors get settled and ready for the eight wonderful days of fellowship, messages, and Bible studies. Friendships come easy as the brethren unite in purpose and goal, as Israel did.
Having once attended a Feast, one looks with great anticipation to the next one. It soon becomes a family reunion as spiritual brothers and sisters gather as Yahweh’s obedient to worship Him and study His Word.
The word feast is from the Hebrew moed, meaning appointment, a fixed time or season, specifically a festival. The sense or meaning is that these special times have been ordained by Yahweh and set aside for His worship.
Another word translated feast is chag (Strong’s No. 2282), meaning a festival and is from chagag meaning to celebrate, dance, keep or hold a feast and holiday. Chag is a joyful time.
We are reminded of Yahweh’s admonition as we at-tend these annual feast days, “And you shall rejoice before Yahweh your Elohim, you, and your son, and your daughter, and your manservant, and your maidservant, and the Levite that [is] within your gates, and the stranger, and the fatherless, and the widow, that are among you, in the place which Yahweh your Elohim has chosen to place his name there” (Deut. 16:11).
We come to the Feast days with great expectations, with the intent and attitude that above all we are going to enjoy Yahweh’s special times. We look forward to the good things of this life, yet with a greater anticipation of better things and joys to come. Gathering with others of like faith, the anticipation is strengthened as it is built on better and better memories.
Join Us for the Feast Days!
Feasts of Yahweh are primarily centered on learning more of Him. Great fellowship, food and fun are an added benefit. The Feasts are an appointment we make with Yahweh. We meet where His Name is placed. Yahweh is the One Who reveals His Name to His people and places it in the hearts and minds of His people.
We are to gather in convocation as a body to worship Him and fellowship with others of like mind and heart. Staying at home alone in a backyard tent does not satisfy Yahweh’s command. We are expected to join with others wherever He places His Name and observe all the Feast Days, Deuteronomy 14:23.
Yahweh’s Restoration Ministry keep the Feast Days at our facilities. We do so for several reasons. First, we are commanded to “come out” and keep a Feast, just as Israel had to leave Egypt to keep a Feast to Yahweh “in the wilderness,” Exodus 5:1. Camping is inexpensive and we urge all to stay at the facility where families can enjoy the Feast days to the utmost. (Contact us for more information.)
We Seek Another Kingdom
We are thankful that Yahweh has shown us His Name that we may call upon Him as our Father. He has shown us His Feast Days and Sabbaths that we might be sanctified (set apart) and that we might know Him through His days set apart: “Moreover also I gave them My Sabbaths, to be a sign between Me and them, that they might know that I [am] Yahweh that sanctify them” (Ezek. 20:12).
We are but sojourners on this earth, seeking the coming Kingdom of Yahweh. All those of good will are invited to join us in observing the Feast Days. We hope that this year will be your year.
I was informed by a minister that the Feast of the Tabernacles was a “temporary” ordinance.
In what way? The Feast of Tabernacles (and all of the other feasts) are to be celebrated now, and well into the future. Zech 14:16-19 Shows us that the Feasts will be celebrated in the Millennial kingdom.
I have been led I believe by Holy Spirit regarding Old Testament and New Testament fit together perfectly. I am a western Christian church going believer for years. But I have had great appetite for truth and finding Fathers heart.i don’t think there is a subject I haven’t dug my teeth into.recently I kept feeling something is missing many pieces were starting fit together and was seeing God revealing His purposes,plans. When I knelt down before our God asking wanting more than anything in life to see full picture I felt something was missing from the norm Christianity church it… Read more »
Shalom! We are happy to see you striving for Yahweh’s truth! that is what we all must do.
There is so much that is untaught in mainstream Churchianity. Praise Yahweh that you are working toward truth!