Friday, October 14, 2016

Succot's Seventh Day Mystery

Have you every wondered why Succot’s seventh day is not a day of rest, while ‘Shmini Atzeret,’ (Eighth Day) the day that follows the Feast, is a Shabbton which seems to be actually separate from the seven days of the Feast. “Also on the fifteenth day of the seventh month, when you have gathered in the fruit of the land, you shall keep the feast of YHVH for seven days; on the first day there shall be a sabbath-rest, and on the eighth day a sabbath-rest” (Leviticus 23:39).  Why, contrary to Pesach for example, is Succot’s seventh day not a Shabbaton?   As the feast days are prophetic of things yet to come, (see Colossians 2:17) Succot, being the last mo’ed, is symbolic of the Last Days and it therefore behooves us to seek YHVH for a clearer understanding of this Shabbaton discrepancy.  The answer to this question may also give us a better handle on the restoration of the Kingdom to Israel and the millennial reign of Messiah.

The Israelites were commanded to live in a “succah” for seven days.  What does the succah represent?   The imagery used in Psalm 139:13, as applied to us, humans, may help us discover the meaning of the “succah”: “You formed my inward parts; You covered me in my mother's womb.”  The Hebrew term which is used for “covered” (“te’sukeni”) in this instance is more like “you have made a succah of me,” that is, ‘You formed me as an outwardly temporary dwelling.’  If we take this idea one step further, adding it to Succot’s seven days, “You shall dwell in succahs for seven days. All who are native Israelites shall dwell in succahs” (Leviticus 23:42), it could imply that man was destined to live in his succah - “flesh body” - for seven days. Bearing in mind the concept of a day being as a thousand years (ref 2 Peter 3:8), what would the seventh day, and then the eighth, represent?

As pointed out above, if we are still in our ‘temporary dwellings’ on the seventh day of Succot, then 1 Corinthians 15:51-57 (“But we shall all be changed --  in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet... death is swallowed up in victory”), for example, would not be applicable. If we are still in our flesh bodies, then death has not yet been swallowed up.  So how are we to view Succot’s seventh day? Could it represent the Millennial Kingdom, when Yeshua the Messiah of Israel will rule the nations with a rod of iron (Revelation 19:15) through the united House of Jacob and set up His everlasting Kingdom for a thousand years?   

As we know, Elohim declared the seventh day of Creation to be a day of rest. It may be assumed that when creation (all that has been created) comes to its full rest then, Yeshua and the Father also cease from all their work. Yeshua, however, pointed out that He and the Father are (presently) at work (ref. John 5:17).  This would indicate that we are still in the sixth day of Creation.  But if that is the case, with Adam having been around for over 5777 years (according to the Jewish calendar, so what does that say about the sixth day?  We must conclude, therefore, that there are seven thousand-year ‘eras’ within the sixth day of Creation, which means that the seventh millennium is just ahead of us.  If that indeed is so, it would explain why the seventh day of Succot is not a rest day, as Yeshua and the Father will still be working during the seventh millennium, which is within the sixth day (of Creation). 

To reiterate: If we look at the seven days of Succot from the perspective of “a day is as a thousand years,” then Messiah’s millennial reign would start in the last day, or in the seventh millennium of the sixth day of Creation, which would not be a rest day. Thus the Father and Son will complete their work through the restored nation of Israel, and bring all things into subjection to Messiah’s dominion.  Therefore, like Succot’s seventh day, it will not be a day of rest. The following day, however, called the Eighth Day, is a Shabbaton and would actually represent, or be the fulfillment of the seventh day of Creation (the “Shabbat”). It is on that day that Yeshua will return everything back to the Father.  How will He do this?  As the High Priest He must offer up this present creation as a burnt offering.  “But the day of YHVH will come as a thief in the night, in which the heavens will pass away with a great noise, and the elements will melt with fervent heat; both the earth and the works that are in it will be burned up" (2 Peter 3:10). Thus on the eighth day we will see the fulfillment of the following scripture "For behold, I create new heavens and a new earth; and the former shall not be remembered or come to mind" (Isaiah 65:17).