click here for PDF version

11th of the 7th month 2021/2022.

Shalom all,

In just a couple of days we will be ‘performing’ the Festival of Sukkot and with that in mind, I want to, once again, highlight the joy of guarding the Appointed Times of our Master and Elohim, and remind us that we are to be strengthened in His joy and be bold in our rejoicing in His Truth. .

Each year, I share on the importance of guarding to keep each of the Appointed Times of our Creator and therefore, I am once again, sending out this brief overview of Sukkoth and the importance of us being ready, and excited, to perform this Feast with great joy! .

As we see from the following passage, regarding the festival of Sukkoth, we are commanded to ‘perform’ this Festival!

Are you ready to do just that?.

Deḇarim/Deuteronomy 16:13-15Perform the Festival of Sukkot for seven days after the ingathering from your threshing-floor and from your winepress, 14 and you shall rejoice in your festival, you and your son and your daughter, and your male servant and your female servant, and the Lĕwite, and the stranger and the fatherless and the widow who are within your gates. 15 “For seven days you shall celebrate to יהוה your Elohim in the place which יהוה chooses, because יהוה your Elohim does bless you in all your increase and in all the work of your hands, and you shall be only rejoicing!

As we consider this passage, there are a number of key words that I would like to expand upon, in order to help present a better overview of what Sukkoth is about and the importance of us guarding to do what is commanded for us to do..

Firstly, as mentioned, we are to PERFORM this Festival!

The Hebrew word that is translated as ‘perform’ comes from the primitive root verb עָשָׂה asah – Strong’s H6213 which means, to do, work, make, produce, to act with effect, to observe, to bring about, institute and can also mean, celebrate, which I think is very fitting.

This word עָשָׂה asah – Strong’s H6213 is often translated as ‘works’ and is a clear reference to what one does, physically and practically. .

It is truly a great joy TO DO the laws and right-rulings, as prescribed, and more specifically, in terms of the Feasts of יהוה, it is a joy for us to ‘perform’ them, as we are instructed to!

So many today think that it is a huge burden to do what is commanded, yet that is so far from the truth!

When we diligently observe and guard to do all that our Master and Elohim commands us to do, we quickly discover that it is indeed a great joy and a delight and is not heavy at all!

A derivative of this root word עָשָׂה asah – Strong’s H6213 is the word מַעֲשֶׂה ma’aseh – Strong’s H4639 which means ‘a deed, work or acts, accomplishments.

The Book of Acts is known in the Hebrew as ‘Ma’asei’, which is a record of the ‘Acts of the Apostles/Emissaries’!

The “Acts” of the Apostles speaks of the deeds, or acts, of that which the Apostles did and records their ‘acts’ of obedience, from which we are able to learn many great and valuable lessons. .

We shall be known by our fruits, based on our proper reverence and submission to our Master, which shall be evidenced in our “acts of obedience”, as we walk in righteousness, guarding to do all He has commanded us to do, all the time!!! .

We are to become doers of the Word and not just hearers only!

So many may study much, on the Appointed Times of Elohim, while lack the proper obedience to do what is instructed, and we learn very quickly, how a greater understanding of the Word comes in the doing of the Word, for without the proper doing, or performing, of the Word, we can be in danger of being easily deceived by falsehood, which highlights the urgency that we are to have in being diligent, in having our ears attentive to the Torah of Elohim, so that we can delight in guarding to do all that He commands us and express a true and proper love for Elohim, in complete obedience to His Word..

Ya’aqoḇ/James 1:22-25 “And become doers of the Word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves. 23 Because if anyone is a hearer of the Word and not a doer, he is like a man who looks at his natural face in a mirror, 24 for he looks at himself, and goes away, and immediately forgets what he was like. 25 But he that looked into the perfect Torah, that of freedom, and continues in it, not becoming a hearer that forgets, but a doer of work, this one shall be blessed in his doing of the Torah..

As we consider this root verb עָשָׂה asah in terms of our need to be doers of the Word, we recognise that we can only be proper doers if we are in fact looking intently into the Word, and when we see this word in the ancient pictographic script, we gain further understanding of what it is to be a proper doer of the Word!.

In the ancient pictographic script, the verb עָשָׂה asah – Strong’s H6213 looks like this:.

.

Ayin עָ:

The original pictograph for this letter is: blankand represents the idea of ‘seeing and watching’, as well as ‘knowledge’ as the eye is the window of knowledge..

Sin שָׂ:

This is the letter ‘sin/shin’ which in the ancient script is pictured as: blank, which is ‘two front teeth’ and carries the meaning of ‘sharp or press, chew or devour’; which is what the teeth do, and also speaks of the sharpened word that comes forth from the mouth, as the teeth ‘chew’ or ‘meditate’ on the Truth, making what comes forth pure and sharp! It also carries the understanding of consuming or destroying – as teeth do to food..

Hey ה:

The ancient script has this letter as blank and is pictured as a man standing with his arms raised up and out as if pointing to something, and in essence carries the meaning of ‘behold’ as in when looking at something very great. It can also have the meaning to ‘breath’ or ‘sigh’ as when looking at a great sight and having your breath taken away so to speak! It also has the meaning of revelation or to reveal something by pointing it out, as well as ‘praise’ through the lifting up of our hands in complete awe and surrender..

When looking at this word עָשָׂה asah in the ancient pictographic form, we are able to further understand how critical it is for us to be doers of the Word and so perform and do that which is instructed for us to do. From this picture we can see the meaning of: .

LOOKING AT THE WORD THAT HAS BEEN REVEALED!.

This clearly teaches us that we are unable to DO or PERFORM the Word if we are not looking intently at the Word!

The Word became flesh and dwelt among us!

The clear revelation of the Word, יהושע Messiah, has been made known to us; and as we look to the Princely Leader and Perfecter of our belief we are able to lay aside every weight and the sin which so easily entangles us, and be enabled to run, with endurance, the race set before us, as we look at the Word and actually DO IT!!!.

Now, in terms of the Feast of Sukkoth, we recognise that the clear instruction that is given to us, is to perform it!

The Greek word that is used in the LXX (Septuagint – Greek translation of the Tanak (O.T.)) for ‘perform’ is the root word ποιέω poieō – Strong’s G4160 which means, to make, do, accomplish, keep, work, acts, and it is translated as ‘does’ in:

Mattithyahu/Matthew 7:24 “Therefore everyone who hears these words of Mine, and does them, shall be like a wise man who built his house on the rock

A derivative of this word is ποιητής poiētēs – Strong’s G4163 which means, a doer, a maker, which is translated three times as ‘doer’ in the passage that I quoted above, from Ya’aqoḇ/James 1:22-25.

I certainly do hope you are already getting the clear picture of how important it is for us to be doers of the Word, which we can never be if we are not looking intently into the Word and meditating on it day and night!

When we become diligent doers of the Word, we learn that we must be meditating upon, studying and doing the Word, day and night, so that it can be the proper light to our path and lamp to our feet! .

With the Festival of Sukkoth, we are commanded to perform this Feasts for 7 days, after the ingathering from the threshing floor and winepress.

This highlights the clear timing that shadow pictures when our Master and Elohim, יהושע Messiah, will gather His Ready Bride, after having trampled the winepress in His wrath, when He comes out of the Most Set-Apart Place on Yom Kippur. .

The Festival of Sukkoth celebrates the joy of a Bride being gathered to Her Returning Husband and Saviour, and that is certainly something to celebrate!.

The Hebrew word that is translated as ‘ingathering, comes from the root word אָסַף asaph – Strong’s H622 which means, to be gathered, assemble, to be brought in or into (association with others).

The Festival of Sukkoth celebrates us being gathered together, as a unified Bride in Messiah and highlights the importance of gathering, and doing so with rejoicing! .

As we look intently into the clear instructions given to us, in regards to performing the Feast of Sukkot, we take note that a key component of our performing this Feast, is one of rejoicing!.

The Hebrew root word that is translated as ‘feast’ is the noun חַג ḥag – Strong’s H2282 which means, a festival, feast, sacrifice, festival gathering, solemnity, which comes from the root verb חָגַג ḥagag – Strong’s H2287 which means, to make a pilgrimage, keep a pilgrimage, celebrate a feast, observe a feast, dance’..

This Hebrew word חַג ḥag – Strong’s H2282 which means, a festival, feast, sacrifice, festival gathering, solemnity, in the ancient pictographic text looks like this:.

blank blank.

etחַ:

The ancient script has this letter as blank which is a tent wall’, and carries a meaning of SEPARATION’, as a tent wall separates two halves of the tent; or it can also reflect the outside walls that separate the people inside from that which is outside and so can also symbolise protection and security to those inside, while picturing a cutting off of those who are outside. Hence this letter can mean ‘established, secure’ as well as ‘cut off, and separated from’.

As a tent wall we are also able to recognise the picture of stones being built up to make a complete wall, having been separated from the world and built up in the master! .

Gimel – ג:

This is the letter ‘gimel’, which in the ancient script in pictured as – blank –which is ‘a foot’ and carries the meaning to ‘walk, gather, carry’, as clearly referring to the functions of a foot; and it can also give the meaning of a gathering of people, and we know that ‘feet, in Hebrew, often speaks of one’s walk and ability to keep the Feasts of יהוה, and represents one’s ‘walk, and therefore also pictures for us the idea of ‘gathering’..

This word in its ancient pictographic form can have the meaning of:

SEPARATED GATHERING.

This teaches us the necessity of being gathered together as commanded, in order to properly guard and perform the Feasts of יהוה..

We take note, from the text that we read from in Deḇarim/Deuteronomy 16:15, that we are to celebrate for 7 days, to יהוה our Elohim, in the place which יהוה chooses!

We, as a growing fellowship, are so thankful to יהוה for choosing for us a wonderful place for us to perform and celebrate His Feast of Sukkot each year, and this also emphasises the importance of unity and fellowship, within the body, teaching us that we should not neglect the gathering of the set-apart ones, as some are in the habit of doing, and we therefore need to be obedient in gathering where יהוה has chosen!

We are extremely blessed, as a small fellowship, to have what יהוה has given us and chosen for us in terms of our ability to gather together every Sabbath and Feast; and to neglect the instruction to gather where He has chosen for each of us, is to neglect the instruction to perform as we should!.

There are many around the world that do not have the opportunity to gather as we do, and therefore, we should not overlook the joy it is, to have that which He has caused for us to have as a small ATFOTC family!

This past year we have seen how others across the world have been able to join in with us on the Sabbaths, via the internet streaming that we began to do… and so, we are able to celebrate the joy of having others who are unable to find a suitable gathering place, to join us live on Shabbat for our separated gatherings, and it is our hope this year that we will be able to do some live streaming from our Sukkoth camp too! .

The Hebrew word that is translated as ‘celebrate’ is חָגַג ḥagag – Strong’s H2287 which means, to make a pilgrimage, keep a pilgrimage, celebrate a feast, observe a feast, dance, which is the root verb of חַג ḥag – Strong’s H2282, and is also used in:

Shemoth/Exodus 23:13 “Three times in the year you are to observe a festival to Me:

Keeping the Feasts of יהוה are to be done with exceeding joy – after all, they are His FEASTS – and a feast implies a joyous occasion with singing and dancing! .

AREYOU READY TO PERFORM THE FEAST OF SUKKOTH?.

Let us take a look at the instructions that are given to us, in:

Wayyiqra/Leviticus 23:41-43 “And you shall celebrate it as a festival to יהוה for seven days in the year – a law forever in your generations. Celebrate it in the seventh new moon42 ‘Dwell in booths for seven days; all who are native born in Yisra’ěl dwell in booths, 43 so that your generations know that I made the children of Yisra’ěl dwell in booths when I brought them out of the land of Mitsrayim. I am יהוה your Elohim.’” 

The law forever in your generations, is that we are to celebrate Sukkoth as a festival to יהוה for 7 days, and dwell in booths for 7 days, while doing that!.

The Hebrew word that is translated as ‘dwell, comes from the root verb יָשַׁב yasha – Strong’s H3427 which means, sit, dwell, remain, abide, inhabit, sitting still; and a derivative of this word which is also used for ‘sojourner’ is תּוֹשָׁב toshaḇ – Strong’s H8453 which means, stranger, foreign resident, sojourner, tenant.

A modern Hebrew word derived from this root word יָשַׁב yasha – Strong’s H3427, which is translated as ‘school’, is ‘yeshiva’.

This is a very powerful lesson for us here as we understand the root from which the word for ‘sojourner’ comes from – we are ‘foreign residents’, if you will, and as we dwell here, we are to abide in the Most-High and make Him our dwelling as we ‘sit under the teaching of the Torah’ and live accordingly!

And so, ‘sitting’ in the Hebraic mind-set, is an idiom for learning; and therefore, we recognise that it is at the Master’s Feet that we come and sit and drink of His Pure and Clear Living Water and get great clarity and insight and strength to sojourn with joy!

The idea of sitting, in the Hebrew mind-set, is to learn, and not to simply sit and vegetate, but rather sit and pay attention to the instructions of their teacher. .

This word יָשַׁב yasha – Strong’s H3427 also highlights for us our need to dwell in Truth and, in being obedient to dwelling in booths for 7 days, it reminds us that we are to continually stay in the Master, as we sojourn here as strangers longing for His soon return. .

So, for 7 days a year we get to dwell together in the Master’s presence, away from all the hustle and bustle that we face each day, so that we can focus on the pure joy it is to serve and worship the Most-High, while learning a great deal about Him, as we guard to perform His Feast with joy!.

The Hebrew word יָשַׁב yasha – Strong’s H3427, which means, sit, dwell, remain, abide, inhabit, sitting still’, is pictured in the ancient pictographic text as follows:.

beit shin yad.

Yodיָ:

יָThis is the letter ‘yad or yod’ which in the ancient script is pictured as – yad – which is the picture of an arm and hand and carries the meaning of ‘work, make, throw’ from the primary functions of the arm and hand and also represents worship or giving thanks in the extending of hands as a gesture of this..

Shin – שַׁ:

שַׁThis is the letter ‘shin’ which in the ancient script is pictured as – shin – which is the picture of ‘two front teeth’ and carries the meaning of ‘sharp or press’ which is what the teeth do and also speaks of the sharpened word that comes forth from the mouth as the teeth ‘chew’ or meditate on the Truth making what comes forth pure and sharp!

Beyt ב:

ב – This is the letter ‘beyt’, which in the ancient script is pictured as blank, which pictures a tent floor plan and means, ‘house’ or ‘tent’. It represents family and the importance of those who are inside the tent as opposed to the tent structure itself.

.

Looking at this word, in the ancient script, helps us further understand how we are to dwell as sojourners – for it is by the ‘outstretched arm and hand of יהוה’ that we are able to sit and listen, meditate on and guard to do His Word, giving thanks to Him, as we are built up in Messiah as the Dwelling Place of Elohim!.

In our ability to properly ‘dwell’, as we should, then we are to work the Word of the House, which instructions we have clearly been given as we have been diligently sitting and hearing, in order to become doers of the Word.

We know that the Torah of The House is set-apartness and that we are to pursue apartness and in order to do that, to ‘dwell’, emphasises one who is diligently being a hearer and doer of the Word and not just a hearer only!

To be proper dwellers is to be proper doers of the Word of the house!.

Kěpha Aleph/1 Peter 2:11-12 “Beloved ones, I appeal to you as sojourners and pilgrims, to abstain from fleshly lusts which battle against the life, 12 having your behaviour among the nations good so that when they speak against you as evil-doers, let them, by observing your good works, esteem Elohim in a day of visitation..

The Greek word that is used here for ‘sojourners’ is πάροικος paroikos – Strong’s G3941 which means, dwelling near, foreign, alien and the word used for ‘pilgrims’ is παρεπίδημος parepidēmos – Strong’s G3927 meaning, sojourning in a strange place, exiles, reside as aliens..

What we can clearly see here, in the Greek too, is that we are not to get ‘pegged down’ by the world and its ways, but are to live as strangers and foreigners who do not make their ‘permanent dwelling’ here!

We may certainly be strangers and foreigners here in our sojourning, but we are not strangers and foreigners to the house of Elohim, to which we belong and are citizens of the Kingdom of the Most-High!

Eph’siyim/Ephesians 2:19 “So then you are no longer strangers and foreigners, but fellow citizens with the set-apart ones and members of the household of Elohim

As members of the household of Elohim, we recognise the joy it is for us to be able to have the ability to celebrate the Festival of Sukkoth for 7 days, with the continued assurance of the firm expectation that we have of His soon return, where we will be able to dwell with Him forever!.

There is something that I do need to make clear, in terms of keeping the Feast of Sukkoth!

And that is the need for us all to dwell in booths for 7 days!

Many people often question whether they should stay in a tent/temporary booth for 7 days, as they claim that this command, given to us in Wayyiqra/Leviticus 23:42, is only for ‘native born’ and therefore they assume it does not apply to all.

Well, for those who think so, I am going to burst your bubble! .

The question that we need to be able to answer is:

What is a native born? or, better put, what makes one a native born?

In order to answer this, let us take a look at the following passage:

Shemoth/Exodus 12:48 “And when a stranger sojourns with you and shall perform the Passover to יהוה, let all his males be circumcised, and then let him come near and perform it, and he shall be as a native of the land. But let no uncircumcised eat of it.

Do you see what this verse tells us?

First of all, what we must recognise, is that only those who were circumcised were able eat the Pěsaḥ Meal.

And today we uphold this command, as we take note that our immersion in the Name of יהושעis our circumcision and therefore, those who have been immersed in Messiah, become as a native of the land.

And we all need to be immersed in His Name, as there is no slave nor free, Yehudi or Greek, male or female, in Messiah, and as we partake of the Pěsaḥ Meal, we become as a native of the land!!!

There you have it: By being immersed in Messiah, we become as a native born of Yisra’ěl, giving us access to eat of the Pěsaḥ Meal. .

So, all who are grafted in to the Covenants of Promise, by the Blood of Messiah, become as a native born of Yisra’ěl and must keep this feast, by dwelling in ‘booths/temporary dwellings’ for 7 days.

And just another quick side note, before going on with this teaching: a hotel is not regarded as a ‘booth’, for we are to dwell in tents for 7 days, not 5-star hotel rooms, as we see some doing these days!.

The Hebrew word for ‘booths’ is סֻּכֹּת Sukkoth, which is the plural of the root word סֻכָּה sukkah – Strong’s H5521 which means, a thicket, booth, shelter, hut, temporary shelter, canopy, tent which comes from the noun סֹךְ soḵ – Strong’s H5520 which means, a thicket, lair, hiding place, booth, den, which comes from the primitive root verb סָכַךְ saḵaḵ – Strong’s H5526 which means, ‘to overshadow, screen, cover, hedge or fence about or to entwine as a screen, weave together, knit together’, and this helps us understand a little more of just how important this performing of the Feast of Sukkoth is, for we are being knit together as a body of Messiah, under whose wings we find rest, shelter and safety!

Now that is something to rejoice about! .

This root verb סָכַךְ saḵaḵ – Strong’s H5526 is translated as ‘shelter’ in:

Tehillah/Psalm 5:11 “But let all who take refuge in You rejoice; let them ever shout for joy, because You shelter them; and let those who love Your Name exult in You.

Other translations have translated this word סָכַךְ saḵaḵ – Strong’s H5526, in this verse, as ‘defend’ or ‘protect’, which speaks, not only of יהוה being our defender and protector, but also pictures for us how His ‘boothing or dwelling with us, brings that protection in which we can freely rejoice. .

The Hebrew noun סֹךְ soḵ – Strong’s H5520 which means, a thicket, lair, hiding place, booth, den, is written in the ancient pictographic script, as:.

blank blank.

Samekסֹ:

The ancient script has this letter pictured as blank, which is a thorn and has the meanings of ‘pierce and sharp’ and can also carry the meaning of ‘a shield, protection’, as thorn bushes were used by shepherds to build a wall to enclose their flock in the night against the attack of predators. Another meaning would be ‘to grab hold of’ as a thorn is a seed that clings to hair and clothing. .

Kaph – ךְ:

The ancient form of this letter is blank – meaning ‘the open palm of a hand’. The meaning behind this letter is ‘to bend and curve’ from the shape of a palm as well as ‘to tame or subdue’ as one has been bent to another’s will (under their hand), as an open hand symbolises submission. The picture of the palm of the hand also represents ‘covering’.

When we look at these two pictographic letters, we are able to see that the thorn that represents protection and the hand that represents covering, we get a combined meaning of:.

PROTECTED COVERING!.

Having said that, when we look further at the word סֻּכֹּת Sukkoth, we take note of the additional letter – ת – ‘taw’ that is added and looks like this:.

blank  blank  blank.

Taw – ת

The ancient script has this letter as blankwhich is pictured as two crossed sticks, and can represent for us seal, covenant, mark or sign; as this once again points to the complete work of Messiah in the renewal of the Covenant in His Blood that brings the two Houses of Yisra’ĕl and Yehuḏah together in Him, as One, for He is not only the ‘aleph’, but is also the ‘taw’ – the beginning and the end of all creation!.

Can you see the clear significance of Sukkoth? With the additional of this letter ‘taw’ that has the meaning of covenant or seal we take note that the Word סֻּכֹּת ‘Sukkoth’ in the ancient pictographic lettering can render for us the following:.

PROTECTED COVERING OF THE COVENANT!.

I do hope that by now you are enjoying these word pictures, which certainly do help us gain a greater understanding of how vital it is for us to be guarding to do this Feast of Sukkoth, with great rejoicing, especially when we understand how Sukkoth is the final festival/Appointed Time of the 7 Feasts/Appointed Times of יהוה and therefore, pictures for us the completed protection of His Covenant with us, as we are covered in Him, and with great joy, we look forward to His boothing with us!.

I would like to therefore take a look at another word in the ancient pictographic alphabet, and that is the word for ‘rejoice’, as we are told in Deḇarim/Deuteronomy 16:14 that we shall ‘rejoice’ in our festival!.

The Hebrew word that is translated as ‘rejoice’ is שָׂמַח samaḥ – Strong’s H8055 and means, ‘to rejoice, be glad, be joyful, delight in and be elated’, and can also carry the meaning ‘to brighten up’, giving us the picture how we are to carry His joy as the light of the world and let praise and rejoicing abound!

In the ancient pictographic script this word שָׂמַח samaḥ looks like this:.

blank  blank  blank.

Shin – שָׂ:

This is the letter ‘sin/shin’ which in the ancient script is pictured as: blank, which is ‘two front teeth’ and carries the meaning of ‘sharp or press, chew or devour’; which is what the teeth do, and also speaks of the sharpened word that comes forth from the mouth, as the teeth ‘chew’ or ‘meditate’ on the Truth, making what comes forth pure and sharp! It also carries the understanding of consuming or destroying – as teeth do to food. This can give us the meaning of WORD or Words..

Mem – מַ:

The ancient script has this letter as blank and is pictured as ‘water’, and also carries the meaning of ‘chaos’ (from the storms of the sea) and can also picture that which is mighty or massive as well as the unknown. We are also able to understand this letter as representing the nations, for the nations are often likened to the seas in Scripture. This also carries for us the picture of washing, as we understand the function of water being that which cleanses us and sustains us, showing us how we are washed and sustained by the Living Waters of the Word! This letter also can represent any liquid, especially blood!.

etח:

The ancient script has this letter as blank which is a tent wall’, and carries a meaning of SEPARATION’, as a tent wall separates two halves of the tent; or it can also reflect the outside walls that separate the people inside from that which is outside and so can also symbolise protection and security to those inside, while picturing a cutting off of those who are outside. Hence this letter can mean ‘established, secure’ as well as ‘cut off, separated from’. As a tent wall we are also able to recognise the picture of stones being built up to make a complete wall, having been separated from the world and built up in the master!.

When looking at this word in its pictographic form, in terms of our command to rejoice, we are able to see why we are able to rejoice as we recognise the following:.

THE WORD THAT WASHES US,

HAS SEPARATED US AND SECURED US!.

This is a clear reason to rejoice, for as long as we allow the Word to wash us and keep us clean, we are able to confidently make our boast in Elohim, whom we praise and rejoice in, as we are built up as living stones in the Master; living stones that offer up lives as a daily living offering with rejoicing praise!.

A derivative of the verb שָׂמַח samaḥ – Strong’s H8055 is the adjective שָׂמֵחַ sameaḥ – Strong’s H8056 and carries the meaning, glad, joyful, merry, pleased, rejoicing.

Both of the words are used in the command to rejoice, in Deḇarim/Deuteronomy 16:14 & 15, where שָׂמֵחַ sameaḥ – Strong’s H8056 is translated as ‘rejoicing’, in verse 15, when we are clearly told that we shall ONLY be REJOICING! .

The Hebrew word that is translated as ‘only’ is the adverb אַךְ aḵ – Strong’s H389 which means, surely, only, alone, nevertheless, verily, and is often a word that is not translated, yet it is used to convey emphasis, and, in this instance, it is used as an affirmative emphasis that is translated as ‘only’ and in other translations it has been translated here as ‘surely’ or ‘altogether’, which makes it clear, in regards what is being instructed for us for the proper performing of Sukkoth, and that is that it can only be properly performed with rejoicing and gladness!.

The Greek word used in the LXX (Septuagint – Greek translation of the Tanak – O.T.) in Deḇarim/Deuteronomy 16:14 & 15 for ‘rejoice’ and ‘rejoicing’ is εὐφραίνω euphrainō – Strong’s G2165 which means, to cheer, celebrate, rejoice, make glad, joyous livingand comes from two root words:

1) εὖ eu – Strong’s G2095 which is an adverb meaning, good, well done and

2) φρήν phrēn – Strong’s G5424 which means, midriff, heart, mind, thought, thinking.

It can therefore be understood that this word εὐφραίνω euphrainō can have the meaning of, to put in a good frame of mind.

This word denotes the mood of joy and it involves an inner process that affects the outward physical well-being, especially in situations which give rise to a mood of common cheerfulness and joy!

This makes perfect sense, as we recognise the joy of coming together for the purposes of rejoicing in our Master and Elohim – where the mood of cheerful joy is expressed by all due to the inner process of recognising the greatness of the occasion!.

Another word, in the Greek, that is translated as ‘rejoice’, in giving reference to the rejoicing at harvest time, is χαίρω chairō G5463 which meansto be full of cheer, be delighted and be glad and is used in:

Yoḥanan/John 4:36He who is reaping receives a reward, and gathers fruit for everlasting life, so that both he who is sowing and he who is reaping rejoice together..

This Feast is known as the Feast of Ingathering, as it is a picture of the harvest that is being brought in with great joy, after the threshing and winepress phases are completed and the true fruit is offered as an acceptable offering.

First Fruits have already been offered, guaranteeing for us the harvest to come, where we will rejoice with our Maker and Husband, aměn!

WILL YOU OBEY THE COMMAND TO REJOICE?.

This will mean putting aside your worries and fears; as it is time to throw off all the excuses and simply worship יהוה, as He has commanded us too, and embrace the true privilege and joy of delighting in יהוה. .

This Greek word χαίρω chairō G5463 is also used in:

Tas’loniqim Aleph/1 Thessalonians 5:16 “Rejoice always.

With the command to rejoice, while dwelling in tents for 7 days, helps us to be reminded how we are to be a people that are rejoicing always!

As you ready yourself for this rejoicing festival of Sukkoth, come before the Master with great joy and give Him your all – do not come empty handed, come before Him with a rejoicing heart and make this Feast truly a Feast of note!

After all, we don’t need pagan festivals of giving, we have יהוה’s – it is now time to rejoice – it is a command – will you obey?.

As you look intently into the revealed Word of Elohim, take heed to the instruction to be separated for gathering together unto יהוה, with the full assurance and promise of His protected covering of His Word that washes, protects and secures us, in His Covenants of Promise, to which we have now been brought near to, by the blood of Messiah!.

Wayyiqra/Leviticus 23:42-43 tells us that we are to dwell in booths for 7 days, so that we know that יהוה made Yisra’ĕl dwell in booths, when He brought them up out of Mitsrayim, and it is also a joyous reminder of how He has called us out of darkness into His marvellous light:

Kěpha Aleph/1 Peter 2:9-10But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a set-apart nation, a people for a possession, that you should proclaim the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvellous light, 10 who once were not a people, but now the people of Elohim; who had not obtained compassion, but now obtained compassion.

The Greek word that is translated as ‘you should proclaim’ is ἐξαγγέλλω exaggellō – Strong’s G1804 which means, tell out, proclaim, publish, declare, make known by praising or proclaiming, and we see this word being used in the LXX (Septuagint) and translated as ‘we show forth’ in:

Tehillah/Psalm 79:13 “And we, Your people and the sheep of Your pasture, we give thanks to You forever; from generation to generation we show forth Your praise.

The Greek word that is used in Kěpha’s letter for ‘praises’ is ἀρετή aretē – Strong’s G703 and it carries the meaning of moral excellence, virtue, purity, praise etc. .

In essence, this can carry the understanding of being faithfully set-apart, as well as our ability to bring the proper rejoicing praise to Elohim, in declaring the excellence of Him who has called us out of darkness into His marvellous light and are now the sheep of His pasture, who hear His voice and gather and rejoice at His command!.

As you approach this coming Feast of Sukkoth, I trust that you are prepared to rejoice, and shall only be rejoicing; for this Feast is the Booths of Rejoicing.

As you consider the few pictographic words that we have looked at in this brief message, I hope that you will see the clear simplicity of the command to rejoice, and do just that, as we faithfully and boldly proclaim the praises of our Master and Elohim, יהושע Messiah, our soon coming King!.

In Deḇarim/Deuteronomy 16:15 we are told that we are to celebrate for 7 days in the place where He chooses for, He does bless us in all our increase and the work of our hands!

Why would anyone not want to guard to keep Sukkoth, when we recognise His blessing that is upon us, when we do keep it as instructed!.

The Hebrew word that is translated as ‘blesscomes from the root word בָּרַךְ baraḵ – Strong’s H1288 and means, to abundantly blessand literally carries the meaning, to kneel or bow down, to show respect, to bring a gift to another while kneeling out of respect..

The ancient pictographic script has the Hebrew word for blessבָּרַךְ baraḵ – Strong’s H1288 pictured as:.

blank blank blank.

Beyt בָּ:

The ancient script has this letter as blank, which pictures a tent floor plan and means, ‘house’ or ‘tent’. It represents family and the importance of those who are inside the tent as opposed to the tent structure itself..

Reshרַ:

The ancient pictographic script has this letter pictured as blank, which is ‘the head of a man’ and carries the meaning of ‘top, beginning, first, chief’, as in being the top of the body or the head of a tribe and the one who rules; and also speaks of possession or inheritance that is decided by the chief..

Kaph – ךְ:

The ancient pictographic script has this letter pictured as blank – which is a picture of an open palm of a hand and can symbolise that to which submission is given – ‘under the hand, as an open hand symbolises submission. This also can picture for us a palm or palm branch from the curved palm shape. The hand also speaks of one’s work, or under whose hand you submit and obey!.

From the pictographic rendering of this word, we are able to clearly see who it is who blesses us, as we can see the following be expressed:.

THE HOUSE/ASSEMBLY OF ELOHIM IS BLESSED

AS THE HEAD/CHIEF COMES DOWN

AND EXTENDS HIS OPEN AND REVEALED HAND,

TO HIS OWN!.

Our Mighty Master and Elohim came down to bless us and redeem us from all lawlessness!

That is more than enough reason for us to respond positively, to the commanded call to rejoice, shout for joy and exult in יהושע Messiah, our Master, Elohim, Saviour and King!

This Festival of Sukkoth celebrates the sure hope that we have, of Him coming again in order to dell in our midst forever!.

The Hebrew word that is translated as ‘increase’ in Deḇarim/Deuteronomy 16:15 is תְּבוּאָה teḇuah – Strong’s H8393 which means, increase, revenue, produce, crops, fruit, yield, and in essence, refers to what one earns or produces through work. .

Keeping His Feasts as we should, comes with the sure promises of His blessed provision in our work!

When we simply obey His Word and guard to do all that He commands, and joyfully celebrate His Feasts, then we need not worry at all about what we are to eat, where we are to sleep or what we are to wear, as we have the full assurance of our complete provision, in Messiah, being made secure, as we stay in Him and be joyful doers of His Word.

In Zeḵaryah/Zechariah 14 we are told that the Feast of Sukkoth will still be celebrated during the Millennial Reign, as those nations that do not come up to Yerushalayim will not receive rain.

In Scripture, rain is also symbolic for provision, as well as speaking about the two comings of Messiah, as the former and latter rains, with the latter rains symbolising this time of year when our Provider comes and dwells with us, Forever! .

Now, in also understanding rain, as pictured for provision, as we rehearse and perform this Feast each year, I too believe that it also prophetically carries for us the promise of His faithful provision in our lives.

And so, to neglect to keep this Feast would not be very wise, especially as we desire to grow in knowledge and be properly equipped, with His strengthening joy, to properly keep His Feasts, expressing our love for Him through our diligent obedience..

The Feast of Sukkoth is an annual reminder of יהוה’s provision, protection, presence and promise, during the 40 years in the Wilderness from Mitsrayim/Egypt to the Promised Land – the land of milk and honey!

For it was during these years that Yisra’ĕl lived in tents; and during this journey יהוה gave them water from the rock, as well as manna from heaven in the morning and quail in the evening (all symbolic pictures themselves of the coming Messiah). .

During that time יהוה went before them on their journey, in a pillar of fire by night and pillar of cloud by day, and He was their rear guard..

SUKKOTH IS A FESTIVAL OF REJOICING!

And the reason for this is:

1 – It commemorates יהוה’s goodness and provision during the wilderness wanderings of Yisra’ĕl and reminds us that we too are sojourners here, as we await the Promise of dwelling in His Presence fully when He comes again..

2 – It commemorates יהוה’s present goodness and provision, with the completion of the harvest, and reminds us of His daily provision and that we are truly not to worry, but place our full trust in Him.

3 – It looks forward to the future and the fullness of the harvest that is to come – for He is coming again! יהושע has offered up a sheaf of the first fruit offering of the harvest that is to come, and so, as this is also called the feast of ingathering, as it was the culmination of the years harvesting of fruits, so too do we have the assurance that we will be gathered together, in order to dwell with Him forever!.

Sukkoth, as we see in Scripture, was celebrated at the dedication of the Temple under King Shelomoh/Solomon, as well as at the time of the rededication of the Temple when Neḥemyah/Nehemiah brought Yisra’ĕl back.

And the fulfilment of this festival will take place when the New Yerushalayim comes down from Heaven and יהוה dwells permanently with His people! .

And, we are reminded of the voice that declares from Heaven, as recoded in:

Ḥazon/Revelation 21:3See, the Booth of Elohim is with men, and He shall dwell with them, and they shall be His people, and Elohim Himself shall be with them and be their Elohim.

This is certainly something to rejoice about!.

The command to dwell in ‘booths’ or ‘tents’, is so that we are reminded how יהוה made Yisra’ĕl dwell in booths when He brought them out of Mitsrayim.

The frail sukkah, or temporary booth, reminds us of the frailty of life, and so, surviving the winds and elements, reminds us of His great love and His favour for us, as we become living testimonies of the work of יהושע in our lives, as we too are living in a body that is temporary, which is the flesh that will one day be changed in the twinkling of an eye, and how we are now, as we go through the storms and winds of life, guarded by His great love!.

The Sukkah is a testimony of our confidence, hope and faith in יהוה Yireh (our Provider) – who is the source of our strength and salvation, and reminds us once gain how we are to depend on יהוה for provision of food, water and shelter, just as He provided Yisra’ĕl in the Wilderness journeys!

For we are to be reminded that יהושע is the Bread of Life, and He is the One who satisfies the thirsty, through giving of Living Waters and He is our refuge and shelter, aměn!.

Sukkah’s/Booths were typically made very rough, signifying man’s weakness and they would be made out of branches that Yisra’ĕl had gathered on their journey that would symbolise the various aspects of their journey from Mitsrayim to the land flowing with milk and honey. .

We take note of the command given in:

Wayyiqra/Leviticus 23:40 “And you shall take for yourselves on the first day the fruit of good trees, branches of palm trees, twigs of leafy trees, and willows of the stream, and shall rejoice before יהוה your Elohim for seven days. .

1 – Fruit of good trees:

These came from the fertile hillsides – reminding them of יהוה’s provision and the Land that they were Promised would be fruitful, as well as the abundant fruit they were to produce, in righteous living, being offered up before Him with praise. .

2 Branches of palm trees:

These symbolised the oasis in the wilderness – that is, those places of refreshing and rest from the sun amidst the hot dessert – showing us a clear picture of provision in the hottest climate..

3 Twigs of leafy trees:

These were in the mountains, which reminded them of the rough terrain and mountainous routes that were taken and how יהוה was with them through the rough and hilly times..

4 Willows of the stream:

These are trees that are typically found at the places of streams, or wadis, in the desert – places that they could find refreshing and restoration.

En Geḏi, where Dawiḏ found refreshing is a ‘wadi’ in the dessert – a place where there is a waterfall, lush trees and pools of running water, where one could find fresh living water and be strengthened for the road ahead and .

All of these reminded them of the various terrains that had been travelled, in the wilderness.

So, we too, take various branches and trees and fruit, from our surrounding terrain, as a remembrance, and rejoice before our Mighty Master and Elohim!.

We also take note of that which we read about, at the time of restoration, under the leadership of Neḥemyah as governor and Ezra as scribe, when Yisra’ĕl did according to the commands regarding Sukkoth:

Neḥemyah/Nehemiah 8:14-18And they found written in the Torah, which יהוה had commanded by Mosheh, that the children of Yisra’ěl should dwell in booths in the festival of the seventh new moon15 and that they should announce and proclaim in all their cities and in Yerushalayim, saying, “Go out to the mountain, and bring olive branches, branches of oil trees, and myrtle branches, and palm branches, and branches of leafy trees, to make booths, as it is written.” 16 So the people went out and brought them and made themselves booths, each one on the roof of his house, and in their courtyards and in the courtyards of the House of Elohim, and in the open space of the Water Gate and in the open space of the Gate of Ephrayim. 17 And the entire assembly of those who had come back from the captivity made booths and sat under the booths, for since the days of Yěshua son of Nun until that day the children of Yisra’ěl had not done so. And there was very great rejoicing. 18 And day by day, from the first day until the last day, he read from the Book of the Torah of Elohim. And they performed the festival seven days. And on the eighth day there was an assembly, according to the right-ruling..

As you will notice, in verse 17 of the above text from Neḥemyah/Nehemiah 8, there was a very great rejoicing!

The Hebrew word that is translated as ‘gladness’ is שִׂמְחָה simḥah – Strong’s H8057 which means, joy, gladness, delight, festival, pleasure, and comes from the root שָׂמַח samaḥ – Strong’s H8055 and means, ‘to rejoice, be glad, be joyful, delight in and be elated’, which we have already looked at, in its pictographic form, giving us the picture how we are to carry His joy as the light of the world and let praise and rejoicing abound!.

In the ancient pictographic script this word שִׂמְחָה simḥah – Strong’s H8057 looks like this:

blank blank blank blank.

As you will notice, the extra letter in this word is:

Hey – ה:

The ancient script has this letter pictured as blank, which is ‘a man standing with his arms raised out’. The meaning of the letter is behold, look, breath, sigh and reveal or revelation; from the idea of revealing a great sight by pointing it out. It also carries for us the meaning of surrender, as we lift up our hands and submit to יהוה as we lift our hands in praise, declaring His authority under which we humbly submit!.

When looking at this word in its pictographic form, in terms of our command to rejoice, we are able to see why we are able to rejoice as we recognise the following:.

BEHOLD, THE WORD THAT WASHES US, HAS SEPARATED US AND SECURED US AND IS TO BE PRAISED!

This is a clear reason to serve with gladness, for as long as we allow the Word to wash us and keep us clean, we are able to confidently make our boast in Elohim, whom we give continual thanks and praise to with much gladness, as we are built up as living stones in the Master; living stones that offer up our lives as a daily living offering with rejoicing praise and obedient thanksgiving!.

Once again, the commands that we see, regarding the keeping of this feast, and one thing that you will notice here in the passages that we have looked at, is that there is a clear command to rejoice!!!.

WE ARE TO CELEBRATE!.

Now, people typically celebrate that which they are glad about, right?

Well, we celebrate the joy of יהוה and we celebrate the coming of our Redeemer and King – יהושע Messiah!

Let me ask you this:

Is it a joy for you to celebrate Him?

Again, let me ask you the following:

When you come to celebrate His Feasts: who are you appearing before?”

“When you celebrate His Feasts: are you just making sure that you are seen by others, so as to appease your conscience that you were there and can tick of a to do list, or are you truly coming to worship the maker of Heaven and Earth?.

What are you bringing to the Creator and King?.

When it speaks here, of an offering made by fire – it speaks here of a pure reflection of worship with passion – wholehearted worship is an offering made by fire to יהוה. And our lives are our worship before His face! Does the offering that you bring, reflect the pure joy of worshipping our Master and Spirit and Truth?

It is an all or nothing deal – once again I ask:

“Is it a joy for you to worship and celebrate יהוה our Maker?”

The essence of Sukkoth is joy – and being joyful in His provision – and being joyful in our deliverance that He has brought to us.

I am tired of people who have no joy in coming to worship our King and sit under His Word.

I am tired of people with the wrong attitude, in their approach to worship.

יהוה’s Feasts are His Feasts, which He has given us and commanded us to partake in.

I am tired of people who say things like, “Oh, I will see if I can do it!

Who are they trying to impress?

It is about worship unto יהוה, coming before Him with great joy and expectancy – for His joy is our strength and so, as we prepare to celebrate this Feast, may our joy be complete, as we come and rejoice before our Maker!

To rejoice is a command and we know that His commands are good!.

Another thing that is worth taking note of, in the example given to us in Neḥemyah/Nehemiah 8:18, is that from the first day until the last day, he read from the Torah of Elohim, and performed the festival for 7 days..

This highlights, for me, the joy of being immersed in the presence of our Master and His Word.

So many today are against the hearing of the Torah, with a wicked assumption that it has been done away with, yet here, we are able to see a restoration of a proper keeping and performing of the Feast of Sukkoth, done with a reading from the Torah of Elohim. .

This year (2021), as a group, we will again be reading the Scripture each day, as we always do, during the 8 days that we will be camping for Sukkoth, and we will be reading through the Torah of Mosheh from Berěshith/Genesis to Deḇarim/Deuteronomy.

This we have done on a couple of our Sukkoth camps and it truly is a joy to have the Torah of our Elohim being read and heard during our boothing with Him, as it strengthens our unity in the belief, which comes from a hearing of the Word

The Torah of our Master is perfect, Sha’ul tells us – and we know that His Torah is good – it is for our good, as it keeps us within His provision, protection, presence and promises.

If we love Him, we will obey His commands! It is as simple as that!

In 2018 we read through the entire Tehillim/Psalms and on a previous Sukkoth, we read through Yeshayahu/Isaiah, Yirmeyahu/Jeremiah and Yeḥezq’ěl/Ezekiel.

Last year (2020) we read through the following books:

Yehoshua/Joshua, Shophetim/Judges, Ezra, Neḥemyah/Nehemiah and Ḥazon/Revelation.

This is a season to celebrate the very Word that was made flesh and ‘tabernacled’ with us.

It was at this time, when יהושע Messiah was born in a Sukkah – which certainly makes this a time to rejoice.

He brought us deliverance, which will be fully revealed to us in the culmination of these 7th month Feasts, causing us to enter in to the Wedding of all Weddings!.

This is a Feast where we are mandated to rejoice – regardless of what your situation or current circumstances are like.

Just imagine this for a moment – your circumstances suck – you have no home, you are an orphan or a widow, it feels like you have no future, you have financial woes, health issues, relational issues and you are instructed to be joyful!!!

You see, this is a reminder to us that joy is not determined by circumstances – it is something that is yours because of יהושע Messiah, aměn!

They were told go and be joyful!

Listen up – the joy of יהוה is our strength, not good circumstances!

In those days, as well as today, we find that many people were/are without joy, and do you know what?

So many are looking for joy, whether they realise it or not, in the wrong places – be it bars, brothels, casinos, shopping malls, exotic holiday destinations etc; or they are simply losing themselves in their work – thinking that the harder they work and the more that they achieve success, the more joy they will have.

Many today, run from relationship to relationship or engulf themselves in a new hobby or false religion, seeking fulfilment and joy – and of course, these are all the wrong places.

We all need to fully come to the realisation that true and pure joy can only be found in Messiah!.

At the time of יהושע, booths were still being constructed as commanded, however there were some additional ceremonies that were added and carried great prophetic significance.

The first of these was the Water Pouring Ceremony.

This ceremony involved the priests, accompanied by a procession of singing people, that would go down to the pool of SilōamΣιλωάμ – Strong’s G4611, which is a word that means sent.

The name of this pool is of Hebrew origin, and comes from the word שִׁלֹחַShiloaḥ – Strong’s H7975 which comes from the primitive root שָׁלַח shalaḥ – Strong’s H7971 which means to send or to bring forth or send forth, and this was one of the principle sources of water supply to Yerushalayim that originated from the ‘Giḥonspring which emptied into this pool..

The Hebrew word גִּיחוֹן Giḥon – Strong’s H1521 means, bursting forthand comes from the primitive root word גִּיחַ giaḥ – Strong’s H1518 which means, to break forth, gush forth, labour to bring forth, draw up, take out’.

Scripture speaks of the river called Giḥon, that Ḥizqiyahu the king channelled as a water supply for Yisra’ĕl, which enabled them to endure and withstand an Ashshurian siege.

This, in itself, is a great picture for us of how we are able to draw, with joy, the pure water of the Word, from deep within our hearts, no matter the circumstances that we find ourselves in, as long as we are drinking from the pure Living Waters of Messiah..

יהוה is the provider of water and rain and so, this abundant source of water was understood as being sent by יהוה for His city.

At the time of Messiah, this custom of the water pouring ceremony that was developed, would see the priest fill a gold pitcher with water and march back to the Temple, where it would be mixed with wine and poured upon the slaughter-place, as the drink offering that was required and was symbolic of יהוה’s salvation, as described in:

Yeshayahu/Isaiah 12:3 “And you shall draw water with joy from the fountains of deliverance.

This was prophetically speaking of the Messiah, and on this last great day of the feast of Sukkoth, after the drink offering was done, our Master stood up and proclaimed, very clearly, that He is the source of Living Waters.

Here יהושע was fulfilling this ceremony at the Feast, by declaring that He is the One who gives the water of life! .

Now, see the fulfilment of this being prophesied, as seen by Yoḥanan, again in:

Ḥazon/Revelation 21:6 And He said to me, “It is done! I am the ‘Aleph’ and the ‘Taw’, the Beginning and the End. To the one who thirsts I shall give of the fountain of the water of life without payment...

Here we see יהושע, at the fulfilment of this Feast, in a revelation that was given to Yoḥanan, declaring that He, the Aleph and Taw, will give a drink to whoever is thirsty, without cost, and in Ḥazon/Revelation 22 you can read about the River of the water of life that flows from the very throne of Elohim..

This concept of the pouring of the water along with the prescribed drink offerings, and Messiah making it clear that He is the source of the very living waters, that we are to draw from with joy, helps us further understand the power of His provision, through His sacrifice for our sins and the cost of Him being poured out for us, so that we may have access to life and be filled with His Spirit!

Prayers were offered up with the pouring of the water, to thank יהוה for His provision in watering the land, as well as asking יהוה for rain for the next season’s crops!

So, Sukkoth was also a time to ask for rain and from Scriptures we know that rain was יהוה’s provision for obedience to His decrees, and in effect they would, by asking for rain, be declaring their continued obedience to Him and ask Him to once again bless them with rain.

This ceremony also carried with it a deeper spiritual meaning, as it signified the hope of the Messiah for the Yisra’ĕl throughout the ages and was also a symbolic picture of the outpouring of the Ruaḥ HaQoḏesh (Set-Apart Spirit)..

Are you ready to PERFORM this Feast of Sukkoth?

Are you ready to rejoice before YAHWEH?.

In recognising that we are commanded to REJOICE, I would like to briefly share with you some of the other Hebrew and Greek words that are used, in speaking of our ability and responsibility to rejoice, in order that we are able to fully embrace the need for an obedient rejoicing to be adhered to at this Feast..

Other words that we find in Hebrew, which we translate as ‘rejoice’ are as follows:.

1 – עָלַץ alats – Strong’s H5970 which means,rejoice, exult, be in a state of joy which includes verbal expressions of joy and praise’ and in essence can carry the meaning ‘to shout or jump for joy’, used in:

Tehillah/Psalm 9:2 “I rejoice and exult in You; I sing praise to Your Name, O Most High.

Both sama and ‘alatsare used here..

2 – גִּיל gil – Strong’s H1523 which means, rejoice, be glad, tremble with exceeding fear’ and also can give us the picture to ‘spin around under the influence of an emotion’ and is used in;

Tehillah/Psalm 9:14 “So that I declare all Your praise in the gates of the daughter of Tsiyon. I rejoice in Your deliverance..

3 – שׂוּשׂ sus – Strong’s H7797 which means, to be bright, cheerful, exult, rejoice, display joyand is used in:

Tehillah/Psalm 40:16 “Let all those who seek You Rejoice and be glad in You; let those who love Your deliverance always say, “יהוה be exalted!

Both sus and sama is used here.

Tehillah/Psalm 68:3 “But the righteous are glad, they exult before Elohim. And they rejoice with gladness.

In this verse you have sama, ‘alats and sus..

4 – רָנַן ranan – Strong’s H7442 which means, to overcome, cry out, shout for joy, give a ringing cry, sing aloud’, often also translated as praise, and is translated as ‘rejoice’ in:

Tehillah/Psalm 98:4 “Raise a shout to יהוה, all the earth; Break forth in song, rejoice, and sing praises..

Yeshayahu/Isaiah 61:10 “I greatly rejoice in יהוה, my being exults in my Elohim. For He has put garments of deliverance on me, He has covered me with the robe of righteousness, as a bridegroom decks himself with ornaments, and as a bride adorns herself with her jewels.

This wonderful declaration will be fulfilled at this Feast, and this verse uses both sus and gil.

What a wonderful day this will be, when we are together, as a body, dressed in the completed garments of deliverance!!!.

Now, in the Greek, we too see the expression of this rejoicing being mentioned, giving us a much-needed understanding in our ability to rejoice – rejoice and rejoice as we are commanded to..

Kěpha describes how we are to allow this sure expectation that we have in Messiah and His return and our dwelling with Him to result in praise says:

Kěpha/Peter 1:3-8 Blessed be the Elohim and Father of our Master יהושע Messiah, who according to His great compassion has caused us to be born again to a living expectation through the resurrection of יהושע Messiah from the dead, 4 to an inheritance incorruptible and undefiled and unfading, having been kept in the heavens for you, 5 who are protected by the power of Elohim through belief, for a deliverance ready to be revealed in the last time, 6 in which you exult, even though for a little while, if need be, you have been grieved by manifold trials, 7 in order that the proving of your belief – much more precious than gold that perishes, and proven by fire – might be found to result in praise and respect and esteem at the revelation of יהושע Messiah, 8 whom having not seen, you love; in whom you exult with unspeakable and esteemed joy, yet not seeing, but believing, 9 obtaining the goal of your belief: a deliverance of lives..

The Greek word that translated here in verses 6 & 8, as ‘exult’, and is often translated in other translations as ‘rejoice’, is ἀγαλλιάω agalliaō G21 which means ‘to exult, leap for joy, to show one’s joy by leaping and skipping denoting excessive or ecstatic joy and delight, and it is often spoken of as rejoicing with song and dance and comes from the word that means to leap or jump as well as to gush forth like water!.

Let me ask you:

How often have you expressed true rejoicing, by jumping and skipping with great joy and delight in song and dance?

If not often or perhaps never – then now is the time to start expressing true rejoicing!!!.

Just think for a moment, how ecstatic Dawiḏ was, when he brought the Ark of the Covenant back – he was dancing and skipping and enjoying a great time of rejoicing.

He even took off his outer garment, so as to have no hindrance, in expressing true and pure rejoicing of having the Ark, which represented the very presence of יהוה, back in their midst!

This, I believe, is a wonderful picture for us, in throwing off those things which so easily entangle us and quickly restricts our joy-filled worship!

True rejoicing is not a hidden matter – it should be something that is evident to all.

I encourage you, especially this coming week of Sukkoth, and the days leading up to it – to not get bogged down with trivial matters or things that so often easily tick you off and steal your joy – throw them off.

Even when colleagues or clients or even a close family member doesn’t like the joy that you show in your ability to express pure rejoicing – do not stop.

Dawiḏ didn’t let his wife cause him to stop his rejoicing because she was all bitter inside!!!

This week is especially the time to hold on to joy and rejoice – it is a command!.

Another word that is used in the Greek, in giving reference to the rejoicing at harvest time, is χαίρω chairō G5463 meaning ‘to be full of cheer, be delighted and be glad and is used in:

Yoḥanan/John 4:36He who is reaping receives a reward, and gathers fruit for everlasting life, so that both he who is sowing and he who is reaping rejoice together..

As I have already mentioned, this Feast is known as the Feast of Ingathering, as it is a picture of the harvest being brought in with great joy, after the threshing and winepress phases are completed, and the true fruit is offered as accepting.

The First of the First Fruits have already been offered, guaranteeing us the harvest to come where we will rejoice with our Maker and Husband, aměn!.

Let me ask you again:

WILL YOU OBEY THE COMMAND TO REJOICE?

And I repeat:

This will mean putting aside your worries and fears; as it is time to throw off all the excuses and simply worship יהוה as He has commanded us too, and embrace delighting in יהוה. .

Come and give Him your all – do not come empty handed, come rejoicing and let us make this Feast truly a Feast of note.

We don’t need pagan festivals of giving, we have יהוה’s and it is now time to rejoice!.

IT IS A COMMAND – WILL YOU OBEY?.

With this being the 7th Feast of יהוה, we are also reminded that a part of coming into His presence, done so with rejoicing, is to make sure that one does not come empty handed!

Deḇarim/Deuteronomy 16:16-17Three times a year all your males appear before יהוה your Elohim in the place which He chooses: at the Festival of Matzot, and at the Festival of Shaḇuoth, and at the Festival of Sukkot. And none should appear before יהוה empty-handed, 17 but each one with the gift of his hand, according to the blessing of יהוה your Elohim which He has given you.

The Hebrew word that is translated as ‘times comes from the root word פַּעַם pa‘am Strong’s H6471 which means, ‘a beat, foot, step’ and can also be expressed as how one ‘conduct one’s life, formally – one’s walk, step or footstep, i.e., the patterns of behavior as a figurative extension of a stepping of a foot forward.

We keep these cycles with joy, as we press on forward and do not turn back but always moving forward in His cycle..

His Feasts are our rehearsals and we are to be diligent, in rehearsing according to His set forth instructions, for in it lies His complete plan of redemption, for which we continue to walk in faithfully.

His Feasts are, in a way, a sure roadmap that ensures The Bride’s complete preparation and are eternal appointments for every generation, that are prophetic in nature, helping the Bride be led in Truth to her wedding with the Master!

Coming into these celebrations, with Mosheh’s’ writings and the Sabbath, as our guides, leads the Bride to her wedding, preparing her, every step of the way, to that special day. .

These Feasts are also known as paths of right ways or paths of righteousness.

When the Feasts are not celebrated or honoured, the Bride can be unprepared and may even miss her own wedding day!

One of the key factors of these Feasts is the clear instruction to not come empty handed before יהוה! One’s thanksgiving is not complete until you put our hand to the task and do something to demonstrate your gratefulness.

And a thanksgiving offering is above and beyond the required offerings..

The Hebrew word that is translated as ‘empty-handed’ is רֵיקָם reyqam – Strong’s H7387 which means, empty, vainly, without effect, empty-handed and comes from the root verb רֵק req – Strong’s H7386 which means, empty, vain, foolish, worthless.

Each one is to appear before יהוה with the gift of his hand, according to the blessing of יהוה, which He has given you.

This is a time to declare thanks to יהוה for His blessing upon your life, showing it with the gift of one’s hand, which one is able to do as one carefully considers how much יהוה has blessed them.

It is a way to ‘give’, as an expression of thanks for what one has received!

And when one has come to Sukkoth, there is certainly an abundance of blessing that can be reflected upon, given the opportunity to express one’s thanksgiving, with the gift of one’s hand!.

The phrase ‘with the gift of his hand’ is translated from the Hebrew words כְּמַתְּנַת יָדוֹkemattenath yaḏo, which comes from the root words:

1) מַתָּנָה Mattanah – Strong’s H4979 which means, gift, as he is able, reward

2) יָד yaḏ – Strong’s H3027 and is a primitive root which is translated as, hand, command, authority, power, tenon, side, and the primary meaning of this noun is “the terminal part of the arm used to perform functions of man’s will.

This term is employed literally of man’s hand which does normal work functions, good or bad; and what we see here in this account is the hands being employed to do what is required in the service of the set-apart priesthood before יהוה.

3) הוּאhuw – Strong’s H1931 this is a pronoun that means, he, she, it .

Some translations render these Hebrew words as, ‘as he is able’, and what we are can clearly see being prescribed for us, is that each one is to bring a gift of their hand, as they are able to, according to the work of their hands, by which יהוה has caused them to be blessed in doing. .

When one comes to the Feasts of יהוה, they are given the privilege of bringing a gift before the face of יהוה, in a declaration of thanks for that which יהוה has blessed their hands with, in being able to work and be equipped with the gifts and talents that יהוה has given. .

While tithes and offerings are done on a regular basis, we take note that these ‘gift of the hand’ offerings, are done as an expression of extreme gratitude, over and above the required tithes and any other spontaneous offerings.

There is no specified amount that is to be brought, but rather, it is a gift that is based as an expression of thanks, measured according to the way in which יהוה has blessed you. .

The question one should ask, when asking how much should they bring, is

‘HOW MUCH HAS YAHWEH BLESSED YOU?’.

When you can stop and consider this, then that gift which your hand brings, will reflect the basis upon which you deem to be your thanks for His blessing upon your life.

Sha’ul reminds us of this, in:

Qorintiyim Bet/2 Corinthians 9:6-8 “And this: He who sows sparingly shall also reap sparingly, and he who sows on blessing shall also reap on blessing. 7 Let each one give as he purposes in his heart, not of grief or of necessity, for Elohim loves a joyous giver. 8 And Elohim is able to make all favour overflow toward you, that you, always having all you need in every way, have plenty for every good work..

Coming before יהוה to give the gift of one’s hand, must be done in a response to His goodness and not under compulsion. .

One must not come with impure motives and then do something in order to put on a show before others, as we can be reminded of the lesson we can learn, from the example of Ḥananyah and Shappirah, who lied to the Spirit about the price of their field and as a result were struck down and killed by the Spirit..

יהוה loves a joyous giver, and that is one that has not been devious in any way, but expresses an overflowing thankfulness, with much joy..

Therefore, we are able to see another clear instruction, on making sure that Sukkoth is celebrated with much rejoicing, having hands that are lifted in complete set-apartness, with thanksgiving, before the face of our Master and Elohim..

It’s Sukkoth that we are talking about – where we are to Rejoice, Rejoice and again I say Rejoice!

REJOICE!

Will you obey this wonderful command?

Then come this Sukkoth and let us rejoice, dance and leap before our King, with hearts and hands that are overflowing with much thanks for His goodness and blessing upon our lives!.

SUKKOTH 2021

BOOTHS OF REJOICING AND BLESSING!

..

יהוה bless you and guard you; יהוה make His face shine upon you and show favour to you; יהוה lift up His face upon you and give you shalom!.