The Purpose

Sukkot is known two ways in scripture, the “Feast of Tabernacles or Sukkot and Feast of the Ingathering.” The word “Tabernacle” here refers to a temporary dwelling place. This feast is an annual reminder of GOD’s miraculous provision during the time Israel wandered in the wilderness for 40 years. This season is the most joyous and festive of the all feasts, because it celebrates GOD’s “goodness and provision” and wonderfully portrays the coming of the Messiah.

The Time

Sukkot occurs on the fifteenth day of Tishri, which is the 1st month on the civil calendar and the 7th month of the religious calendar. This translates to late September / mid-October (5 days after Yom Kippur – Day of Atonement). Sukkot Is a 7-day celebration with the 1st day and the 8th day observed as Sabbaths in themselves, thus no work is to be done on these 2 days.

The History

In Scripture, Israel is called to make a celebratory pilgrimage to Jerusalem each year for Sukkot. They would construct Sukkah's (leafy temporary dwellings or booths) located within a Sabbath’s journey of the Temple. At sundown, the Shofar’s blast from the temple would announce the arrival of the season.

It was during Sukkot that Solomon dedicated the Temple and the Skekinah glory of GOD descended to light the fire on the altar and filled the Holy of Holies with HIS divine presense. (2 Chron. 5:3, 7:1-10; I Kings 8)

The Elements

Water

Water is one of the central themes of this feast. Since Sukkot occurs during Israel’s change of seasons and often marks the beginning of their winter / rainy season, prayers for rain for the next year’s crops may be heard.

The Water Libation Ceremony

A spectacular picture of GOD’s Glory. Shortly after dawn the High Priest would journey to the Pool of Siloam, accompanied by a joyful procession of music. He would carry a golden pitcher, which he would fill at the pool and take back to the Temple. Once there he would pour out the water (referred to as “living water”) in the one of the silver basins of the altar.

At the same time wine would be poured in the second silver basin. Immediately there were 3 trumpet blasts as the Levites to begin singing the Hallel (praise Psalms, 113 – 118). Then the congregation would wave their palm branches singing the Messianic Psalm 118.

Light

It was Sukkot when YESHUA proclaimed; “I am the light of the world. He who follows ME will not walk in darkness, but have the light of life.” (Jn 8:12) For throughout the season, the people had celebrated the light radiating from the huge menorah that stood in the center of the Temple court, and now the True Light offered HIS light (salvation- Is. 49:6) not just to light the Temple, but to light the whole world!

Hashanah Rabbah

On the last day of the feast, called the “Great Hosanna,” YESHUA stood and cried out; “If anyone is thirsty, let him come to ME and drink. He who believes in ME, as the Scripture has said, out of his heart will flow rivers of living water.” Just as everyone had seen the Priest descend each day to draw living water from the Pool of Siloam and daily heard him proclaim the words of prophet Isaiah, they now heard the invitation of the ONE who created all living and who was the true source of the wells of salvation!

Spiritual Focus

Sukkot is a time of celebrating GOD’s goodness and provision. It is also a time to invite the True Light of the World into our lives to expose any darkness and receive HIS salvation, HIS light, as Isaiah prophesied, I will also make you a light to the nations, so my salvation can spread to the ends of the earth.” (Is. 49:6).

SHOFAR CELEBRATION

See our EVENTS page for details regarding our Sukkoth Celebration Schedule