Monday, September 8, 2014

Moon Festivals

Jewish feasts are mostly moon festivals. The feast of Passover falls on the 15th of Nisan and the coming feast of Tabernacles, a month from now, falls on the 15th day of Tishri. Today is the Moon Festival for the Chinese, 15th day of the 8th month, also known as the mid Autumn festival. I did not know about it until told by a friend this morning because I am a spiritual Jew more than anything else as Paul says in Roms 2 that it is the one who is inwardly circumcised who is a Jew and his praise comes from God and not men. I am excited by lunar festivals this year. Next full moon, Feast of the Tabernacles is the second blood moon, a full eclipse, part of a tetrach of eclipses for 2014 and 2015 all falling on key Jewish festivals. The Feast of Tabernacles or booths or in Hebrew, hag hasukkoth commemorates the wanderings of the Jews for forty years in the wilderness, bemidbar. Imagine that the greatest festival of the year is a festival of wanderings or time in the wilderness.
That tells us God sees his people as a wandering people, as Jacob is known as a wandering Aramean. God is also a God who travels, one who moves from one place to another. The Jews are commanded to build booths for 7 days and live in them outside their permanent dwelling to remind them that their permanent home is not the land of Israel, not the earthly Jerusalem but the heavenly Jerusalem whose builder is God and his dwelling is eternal and one day He will take us home with him for himself even as Jesus says in John 14, "In My Father's house are many mansions/rooms and I am going there to prepare a place for you."

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