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What is Sukkot?

Categories: Jewish Holidays,Other Bible Teachings

What is Sukkot? If you’re new to the Torah movement, you may be seeing posts on Facebook or YouTube about believers who are preparing for and celebrating it. Sukkot is one of the seven annual Biblical holy days (the Sabbath being a weekly holiday and the observance of the new month being monthly). It is also called the Feast of Tabernacles, Feast of Booths, or the Feast of the Ingathering.  It is one of three annual feast days on which Israelite men were commanded to go to Jerusalem to worship and present offerings to YHWH, the God of Israel (while there are seven annual holidays, only three are called feasts–the other two are the Feast of Unleavened Bread and Shavuot or Pentecost).

Many Messianic believers believe that Jesus (Yeshua in Hebrew) will establish His millennial kingdom on a future Sukkot, which they believe to be the great wedding banquet (feast) described in the new testament. Some believe that He was born on the first day of Sukkot and circumcised on the eighth and last day of the feast. Others believe that He was born on the Day of Trumpets (what Judaism calls Rosh Hashanah) fifteen days earlier.

Below are some great videos that briefly explain Sukkot. This first one contains a lot of Jewish tradition which some Messianic believers follow and others do not, but I like its emphasis on the nations coming up to Jerusalem to celebrate it:


This next video is from a Messianic believer, Dr. Joseph Dombek, who recorded this teaching while camping during Sukkot a few years back:


This next video is from Mark Biltz whom some of you will recognize as the one who first noticed the blood moon tetrads:


And this is also a good video introducing Sukkot as well as the other feast days:

More on the history of what is Sukkot:

Sukkot or Succot (Hebrew: סוכות‎‎ or סֻכּוֹת, sukkōt), in traditional Ashkenazi pronunciation Sukkos or Succos, literally Feast of Booths, is commonly translated to English as Feast of Tabernacles, sometimes also as Feast of the Ingathering. It is a biblical Jewish holiday celebrated on the 15th day of the month of Tishrei (varies from late September to late October). During the existence of the Jerusalem Temple it was one of the Three Pilgrimage Festivals (Hebrew: שלוש רגלים‎‎, shalosh regalim) on which the Israelites were commanded to perform a pilgrimage to the Temple.

Sukkot has a double significance. The one mentioned in the Book of Exodus is agricultural in nature – “Feast of Ingathering at the year’s end” (Exodus 34:22) – and marks the end of the harvest time and thus of the agricultural year in the Land of Israel. The more elaborate religious significance from the Book of Leviticus is that of commemorating the Exodus and the dependence of the People of Israel on the will of God (Leviticus 23:42-43).

The holiday lasts seven days in Israel and eight in the diaspora. The first day (and second day in the diaspora) is a Shabbat-like holiday when work is forbidden. This is followed by intermediate days called Chol Hamoed, when certain work is permitted. The festival is closed with another Shabbat-like holiday called Shemini Atzeret (one day in Israel, two days in the diaspora, where the second day is called Simchat Torah). Shemini Atzeret coincides with the eighth day of Sukkot outside of Israel.

The Hebrew word sukkōt is the plural of sukkah, “booth” or “tabernacle”, which is a walled structure covered with s’chach (plant material such as overgrowth or palm leaves). A sukkah is the name of the temporary dwelling in which farmers would live during harvesting, a fact connecting to the agricultural significance of the holiday stressed by the Book of Exodus. As stated in Leviticus, it is also intended as a reminiscence of the type of fragile dwellings in which the Israelites dwelt during their 40 years of travel in the desert after the Exodus from slavery in Egypt. Throughout the holiday, meals are eaten inside the sukkah and many people sleep there as well. Wikipedia


Related to What is Sukkot?:

Jewish holidays vs. Biblical holidays


More Messianic Bible Study


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