Monday, November 4, 2013


Thanksgiving is not far away! I can almost taste the Turkey now!

Currently there are ten official federal holidays in America. We start out the year with NewYears Day, then Martin Luther King's Birthday. In the middle, we celebrate the 4th of July and at the end of the year, Thanksgiving and Christmas. I live in a traditionally Jewish neighborhood where our Jewish friends celebrate many more Jewish holidays.

Holidays may often be celebrated, not for their original intent, but because they are days off from work. Other perhaps look forward to time with family or the traditional foods served during these holidays.

When God brought the children of Israel out of Egypt, He commanded only three great annual feasts for His chosen people:

14 “Three times you shall keep a feast to Me in the year:
15 You shall keep the Feast of Unleavened Bread (you shall eat unleavened bread seven days, as I commanded you, at the time appointed in the month of Abib, for in it you came out of Egypt; none shall appear before Me empty);
16 and the Feast of Harvest, the firstfruits of your labors which you have sown in the field; and the Feast of Ingathering at the end of the year, when you have gathered in the fruit of your labors from the field.
17 “Three times in the year all your males shall appear before the Lord God.
Exodus 23:14-17

Christian scholars suggest that these three feasts have New Testament counterparts!

1. The Feast of Unleavened Bread (Passover) - Celebrated in the Old Testament as the day the Angel of the Lord "passed over" the houses of those who killed the sacrificial lamb and then spread its blood on their doorposts, as God commanded.

The Passover, of course, is the  equivalent of the Christian celebration of Easter. We celebrate the death and resurrection of Jesus, signifying the initiation of the New Covenant sealed with the blood of Jesus! He is the Final Passover Lamb!

2. The Feast of Harvest (Pentecost) - Celebrated fifty days after passover, a time of rejoicing for the firstfruits of the summer (wheat) harvest. In the New Testament, it was the day when the Holy Spirit came mightily on the disciples as tongues of fire, empowering them to be witnesses of Jesus!
All who are born again are said to have the "firstfruits" of the Spirit, a down payment of the full inheritance which is to follow at a future time!

Not only that, but we also who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, eagerly waiting for the adoption, the redemption of our body.
Romans 8:23

Jesus death as the final Passover Lamb purchased our inheritance in the Kingdom of God! If you are left a vast fortune in a will, you technically have the legal right to it as soon as the person dies!

You immediately have that right but you don't yet have physical possession of it. Legal documents have to be processed to transfer the inheritance into your name. A portion of it may be yours immediately. If you live in the house left to you, you are already living there and it will simply be a matter of paperwork. If your name is listed bank accounts with the deceased, the money may be available to you without any delay.

When we accept the death and resurrection of Jesus on our behalf, we immediately have a legal right to our inheritance in the Kingdom of God. Some of our inheritance is available now!

On that day of Pentecost after Jesus' death, the Holy Spirit was released to be poured out on believers who lived in that day and for those who are far off - people like us who live today - and in every era since that original day of Pentecost!

Now He who has prepared us for this very thing is God, who also has given us the Spirit as a guarantee.
I Corinthians 5:5

The pouring out of the Holy Spirit on believers is the guarantee, or down payment, of what God has prepared for us! We do not and can not have it all now! 

3. The Feast of Ingathering (The Final Harvest!) - The third great feast is that of the Ingathering of the last harvest at the end of the year.

It is also called The Feast of Booths or The Feast of Tabernacles. It is celebrated today by the Jewish people as Sukkot. It commemorates the the small dwelling places the children of Israel lived in during their forty years of wandering in the desert. Today people still construct forms of these booths and even sleep and/or eat in them at times during the seven-day celebration.

This feast did not have a regular date but was set according to when the harvest was ripe and ready to be gathered.

For the Christian, this feast is yet to come! It will not be at the end of the year but at the end of the age! 

6 And I heard, as it were, the voice of a great multitude, as the sound of many waters and as the sound of mighty thunderings, saying, “Alleluia! For the Lord God Omnipotent reigns!
7 Let us be glad and rejoice and give Him glory, for the marriage of the Lamb has come, and His wife has made herself ready.” 
Then he said to me, “Write: ‘Blessed are those who are called to the marriage supper of the Lamb!’” And he said to me, “These are the true sayings of God.”
Revelation 19:6-7, 9

This will be a time when God brings in His great harvest of souls to celebrate The Marriage Supper of the Lamb with Him.

This will be a time of rejoicing beyond any that the world has ever known!

1 Now I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away. Also there was no more sea.
2 Then I, John, saw the holy city, New Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband.
3 And I heard a loud voice from heaven saying, “Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and He will dwell with them, and they shall be His people. God Himself will be with them and be their God.
4 And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes; there shall be no more death, nor sorrow, nor crying. There shall be no more pain, for the former things have passed away.”
Revelation 21:1-4

It will be a time when we turn in our small earthly tents for a new eternal battalion from God! 

1 For we know that if our earthly house, this tent, is destroyed, we have a building from God, a house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens.
2 For in this we groan, earnestly desiring to be clothed with our habitation which is from heaven
3 if indeed, having been clothed, we shall not be found naked.
4 For we who are in this tent groan, being burdened, not because we want to be unclothed, but further clothed, that mortality may be swallowed up by life.
5 Now He who has prepared us for this very thing is God, who also has given us the Spirit as a guarantee.
2 Corinthians 5:1-5

God has given us the Holy Spirit now as a deposit, down payment or guarantee. He guarantees that He will return for us when the time is ripe! But we cannot even begin to imagine what it will be like when we celebrate THE GREATEST FEAST THAT IS YET TO COME!

But as it is written:   
     “Eye has not seen, nor ear heard,
      Nor have entered into the heart of man
     The things which God has prepared for those who love Him.”

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