See the thousands rejoicing with their branches at the Western retaining wall of the temple today – in pictures – on Hoshana Rabbah; The Last Great [seventh] Day of The Feast of Tabernacles; before The Feast of The Eighth Day!
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Hoshanna Rabbah: The Last Great Day of: The Feast of Tabernacles!
In a semi arid or desert region, water is a very scarce and valuable commodity essential to life.
Psalm 114:8 Which turned the rock into a standing [pool of] water, the flint into a fountain of waters
Psalm 114 speaks about that physical rock where Moses spoke and God brought water gushing out of it, and that is a picture – an allegory – of Jesus Christ, the rock of our salvation, and out of Him comes forth the living waters of salvation.
As the waters in the desert came out of the rock and saved the people from dying of physical thirst; so the water, the spiritual water of salvation, comes forth out of Jesus Christ to bring us spiritual salvation, to save us from a lack of the water of God’s Word and Spirit.
We should be hungering and thirsting after the Word of God. Jesus Christ came and gave himself for us and poured out the water of the Word, out of himself to us. And the whole earth will tremble at His presence when He returns to the earth, the mountains and highlands are going to shake and tremble at the presence of His power and His glory when He comes with His saints.
1 Corinthians 10:4 And did all drink the same spiritual drink: [the people who left Egypt all drank the same water in the desert – a type of the spiritual water of the Word and Spirit of God], for they drank that spiritual rock that followed them: and that Rock was Christ.
In the wilderness desert they came to a fountain of living waters
The living waters that came out of the rock in the wilderness, were a type of the living waters of the Spirit of Salvation, that come out of Jesus Christ in the spiritual sense.
In the wilderness we find two occasions where water came out of the rock.
On the first occasion Moses was commanded to strike the rock and the water came forth. And that is a picture of the death of Christ, Christ being struck down and giving his life for the sins of humanity. He died, He was crucified so that salvation could be opened up to the world. And the living water of salvation, the word of Christ and the salvation of Christ could be poured out on humanity as the striking of that rock in the wilderness brought physical water gushing out.
The second time, Moses was commanded; speak to the rock and water will come out; which speaks of the water of salvation being given freely to the sincerely repentant who being baptized and committing to go and sin no more; need only speak asking in prayer and the water of the Word and the water of Salvation [the Holy Spirit] would be poured out on us.
Moses was commanded to speak to the rock, and he did make an error there in striking it the second time. He was only to speak to the rock a second time because Christ was only to die once.
The second time Moses was only to speak to the rock, for Christ only died once; and after that at the appointed time: all who call on the name of the Lord shall be saved.
When we sincerely repent of past law breaking and commit to go and sin no more,we can ask that the water of salvation [the Holy Spirit] be poured out on us. Christ died as an effectual sacrifice atoning for our sins, so that we can be washed clean when we sincerely repent.
Ephesians 5:25 Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church [brethren, bride], and gave himself for it;
26 That he might sanctify and cleanse it [God’s faithful from all sin] with the washing of water by the word [washing away all sin by his sacrifice and giving his Spirit to empower the sincerely repentant to live by every Word of God, replacing sin with godliness],
27 That he might present it to himself a glorious church [spiritual body of faithful] , not having spot, or wrinkle [of the uncleanness of sin], or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish.
Right now the water of Holy Spirit and Word of Salvation – which is living by every Word of God – is only being offered to a few called out, but when He comes with His saints and the Kingdom is established; all who call on the name of the Lord shall be saved.
During the days of Moses the water pouring ceremony of Tabernacles was not commanded, but later during the restoration under Ezra, this water pouring ceremony was instituted, based on the understanding about Moses bringing the water of salvation from the Rock; and it was later revealed by Paul that that Rock was the one who became Jesus Christ who led Israel in the desert.
The water pouring ceremony and the rejoicing with branches
These ceremonies began at the temple during the days of Ezra and that great revival, and these things were used by Jesus Christ in His earthly ministry.
In the second temple celebration, on every day of the Feast of Tabernacles, the people in the temple courtyard would hold their clusters of branches, waving them before the Lord and making a circular procession around the altar.
The altar is a symbol; it is the table of the Lord. It is where the sacrifices are made – representing the sacrifice of the Lamb of God, Jesus Christ – and it is the table of the Lord.
Malachi speaks about people today calling the table of the Lord contemptible. Spiritually this is about people not being zealous to live by every Word of God and departing from a zeal to keep the whole Word of God; this is calling the altar and the sacrifice of Christ to atone for breaking God’s Word, contemptible.
And the false idea which is cropping up, is that Jesus paid for our law breaking and we do not have to be zealous, or we do not have to care that much; and we can just kind of float along justifying our sins instead of changing our lives. What that attitude really is, is holding the table of the Lord, His altar, His place of sacrifice, in contempt.
To say, He did it, so we do not have to really stop sinning and we can continue living our own way is expressing contempt for the sacrifice of Jesus Christ.
People say they love God, but they continue in sin: Which is holding the table of the Lord, the sacrifice of Christ, in contempt.
God brought water out of the rock for Israel in the wilderness, first by commanding Moses to strike the rock to bring forth water, Exodus 17:6 Behold, I will stand before thee there upon the rock in Horeb; and thou shalt smite the rock, and there shall come water out of it, that the people may drink. And Moses did so in the sight of the elders of Israel [Which signified the death of the Rock of Salvation – Messiah the Christ – for the sins of the world, opening the way for the gift of the Holy Spirit, symbolized by the Living Waters of Salvation].
Later God brought water out of the rock by commanding Moses to speak to the Rock, Numbers 20:8 Take the rod, and gather thou the assembly together, thou, and Aaron thy brother, and speak ye unto the rock before their eyes; and it shall give forth his water, and thou shalt bring forth to them water out of the rock: so thou shalt give the congregation and their beasts drink [thus signifying that ultimately all who call upon the LORD in sincere repentance, will receive the waters of the Holy Spirit freely to understand and internalize the Word of God; and will be saved.
Joel 2:28 And it shall come to pass afterward, that I will pour out my spirit upon all flesh;
Through the scriptures the pouring out of water before the LORD was considered to seal a Covenant of dedication to God in a most solemn manner
The water essential for life itself, representing an acknowledgment that life itself came by the blessing of God; and the pouring out of water represented a complete Covenant and commitment to live by every Word of God, the giver of the life giving water.
When Israel repented and turned to God in the days of Samuel, they poured out water as a sign of their repentance and commitment to live by every Word of God.
David also poured out water as representative of the lives of his three friends. Water is essential for life and is life itself.
2 Samuel 23:16 And the three mighty men brake through the host of the Philistines, and drew water out of the well of Bethlehem, that was by the gate, and took it, and brought it to David: nevertheless he would not drink thereof, but poured it out unto the Lord. 23:17 And he said, Be it far from me, O Lord, that I should do this: is not this the blood of the men that went in jeopardy of their lives? therefore he would not drink it.
From these examples we can see clearly that God uses physical water as representative of the Holy Spirit of eternal life and the cleansing nature of the Word of God, which casts out all sin and replaces that sin with the nature of God, if we live by that Word. The pouring out of water is therefore a prophecy of that pouring out of God’s Spirit on the people in God’s due time.
From the days of at least Ezra and Nehemiah; water and willows were brought to the temple before the first High Day of the Feast of Tabernacles began [bringing it before the Holy Day began] and the water was poured out on every Feast day.
Far from criticizing these things; Jesus used these things to instruct us further in the truth of God.
The willows with their long-hanging supple branches, give a whooshing sound when whipped about and this waving of willow branches was used on Holy Days and during the Festivals to produce the whooshing sound like that of a rushing wind of the Holy Spirit.
Acts 2:1 And when the day of Pentecost was fully come, they were all with one accord in one place. 2 And suddenly there came a sound from heaven as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting.
This whooshing sound was to represent the sound of the wind or the Holy Spirit, the Ruach.
When the Spirit came down; there was a sound of a mighty rushing wind, as well as the appearance of fire. This whoosh-whoosh sound was to represent the pouring out of the Spirit of God in the temple ceremony; inspired by Christ to be done in the temple from at least the time of Ezra and Nehemiah.
While the priests gathered the willows, the other priest would proceed to come back from the Pool of Siloam from which the high priest had taken a flask-full of living water as they termed it.
The water was then poured out on every day of the Feast of Tabernacles.
During the intermediate festival days they would go to get the water and fresh willows on the morning of that day and pour it out the same day. On the Sabbath and the High Day they would go out the day before and gather the water and willows, so as not to do even that much work on the Sabbath or High Day, and the water was then kept in the temple and poured out when the High Day or Sabbath came.
When both groups returned to the temple, the one with their willows would circle the altar, waving their willows to make a whoosh-whoosh sound; the sound of the rushing of wind or the rushing of the Holy Spirit.
Then the high priest with his flask of water and his assistant with a flask of wine; wine in the sacrificial system, pictures the pouring out of the blood of Christ the Lamb of God in sacrifice which atones for sin and opens the way for the washing of water of the Holy Spirit and the Word of God. Hence the wine and water were poured out together.
The physical high priest was a type of our spiritual High Priest, Jesus Christ. And the physical high priest physically poured out this water during the ceremony, as a type that Jesus Christ our spiritual High Priest, would pour out his blood in atoning sacrifice for the people and also pour out the Water of Salvation [the Holy Spirit] upon humanity.
The two priests would both go to the altar as the whooshing was taking place, and pour out their pitchers on the southeast corner of the altar, the whooshing picturing the coming of the Holy Spirit, and the pouring out of water pictured the living water of salvation coming from Christ, and the wine pictured the sacrificial blood of the Lamb of God, the blood of reconciliation and atonement.
Wine, is a type of blood and the physical life of Jesus Christ the Lamb of God being shed for us, while water which was made directly by God is a type of the Holy Spirit of God being poured out on the sincerely repentant to bring eternal life in the spirit.
These things indicate that a very deep spiritual inspiration by God was given to Ezra and those people who came from Babylon and began to rebuild the temple and set up these ceremonies.
The seventh day of the Feast of Tabernacles is the: Hoshanna Rabbah The Great Day of Salvation, because Tabernacles or Sukkot was a festival celebrating the final harvest of the year. As such, it pictures the main harvest of humanity.
This daily ceremony was a thanking of God for the main physical harvest and an allegorical instruction about the pouring out of the Holy Spirit and the Word of God, and the final harvest of humanity, which is represented by the Feast of Tabernacles.
Before the Feast of Tabernacles there were weeks of Sabbath lessons, going through every passage of the scripture dealing with water. During the water drawing ceremony at the pool, the high priest would recite
Isaiah 12:1-3 And in that day you shall say, O LORD, I will praise you: though you were angry with me, your anger is turned away, and you have comforted me. 12:2 Behold, God is my salvation [the word meaning salvation being shortened from Yehoshua to Yeshua (Strong’s H3444) also see Nehemiah 8:17]; I will trust, and not be afraid: for the LORD is my strength and my psalm; he also is become my salvation. 12:3 Therefore with joy shall you draw water out of the wells of salvation.
Those who are sharp right now can recognize in part of this quote from Isaiah, the song of Moses, which Moses sang, when Israel came up out of the Red Sea and Moses sang this song about the glory of God and His deliverance.
The word salvation in the Hebrew was Yehoshua which originated in Joshua “But Ho-shea, son of Nun, Moses called Yeho-shua” (Num 13:1-16). This name was later shortened to “Yeshua” (Is 12:1-3, Neh 8:17). And the name of Messiah the Christ, His personal name that His parents called Him by; was Yeshua which was the short form of Yehoshua.
Yeshua means salvation. The direct English variation of that is Joshua, and the English variation which came from the Hebrew Yeshua through the Greek Iesous, is the English word Jesus. Jesus is the same as Yeshua. It means salvation.
Isaiah says “with joy shall you draw water out of the wells of salvation [Draw salvation from Yeshua]”.
Salvation comes from Jesus Christ coupled with our own sincere repentance. We draw the water of salvation [The Holy Spirit] from Jesus Christ. It is through Jesus Christ that we receive the Water of Salvation, which is the Word of God and the Holy Spirit.
This is the Water of Salvation which gives life eternal by washing us clean from sin, making us purer and purer as we overcome, and bringing us closer and closer to full spiritual unity with God the Father, to become like God the Father.
The ceremony itself was quite a sight to see. If you can imagine just a little bit about what this was like. There was this tremendously beautiful temple and many thousands of priests dressed in their priestly robes looking so impressive, and all the people there with their bunches of branches dressed in their best, as we do today; and they are gathered in the courtyard of the temple, with tens of thousands of people there, and with all the priesthood.
The whole ceremony, with the parade and the musicians and the singing of the Psalms of Ascent and people dancing joyfully to the Lord, was a tremendously joyful occasion.
The gates of the temple were thrown open soon after midnight and the ceremony began in the early morning.
The time till the beginning of the early morning daily sacrifice was spent in examining the sacrifices and offerings that were to be brought for this special day.
When the morning sacrifice had been prepared, a priest accompanied by a joyous procession with music went down to the Pool of Siloam to draw the water and bring it back, close to three logs, which is about three liters or quarts. On the Sabbath and High Holy Day they fetched this in a golden vessel to the temple itself on the previous day.
The priesthood served in stages by courses through the year. But at the Holt Festivals they were all present, and of course they were the whole body of the descendants of Aaron, so that was many thousands of people at various times in history.
In one court of the temple stood the altar, with all the thousands of priests, and fifteen steps below that, in the court of Israel; many hundreds of thousands of people gathered.
The group of worshipers were led by flutists [wind instruments] also representing the “Rushing Wind” of the Holy Spirit.
Acts 2:1 And when the day of Pentecost was fully come, they were all with one accord in one place. 2:2 And suddenly there came a sound from heaven as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting.
The Levites were playing music on wind instruments and they along with many people followed the high priest as he went down to the pool to get the water. following as he goes and returns with a pitcher of water and his associate brings the wine, each in golden pitchers.
As the priestly procession left the temple for Siloam, another procession left the temple for a place in the Kidron Valley close by, where they brought willow branches.
There were two groups, one going to Kidron to get the willows and the other going to Siloam to get the water.
One group brought back a pitcher of wine which represents the blood representing the atoning sacrifice of Christ; and another pitcher filled with water from the pool, which represents the living waters of salvation, the whole Word of God; flowing out from Jesus Christ!
The other group brought back willow branches, which were whipped about, making a whooshing sound of the wind of the Holy Spirit; the willow also being specifically commanded to be cut and rejoiced with at this Feast (Lev 23:40).
And as the two groups were coming back, there were continual blasts of the priests’ trumpets, the singing of Psalm 136; and the whooshing-swooshing of the willows, to represent the sound of the rushing wind of the Holy Spirit.
And amid the blasts of the trumpets, when the morning daily was about to be offered; the priests arrived with the water and the wine, and as the water and wine arrived those who had the willows stuck them in the ground and bent them over to form a canopy over the altar.
The ordinary daily sacrifice proceeded; while the priest who had gone to Siloam to get the water, timing his arrival so that he returned just as his brethren carried up the pieces of the daily sacrifice to lay them on the altar.
The morning and evening burnt offerings represented the work and sacrifice of Jesus Christ on behalf of all Israel into which ultimately all humanity will be spiritually grafted!
As the regular daily was being burned on the altar, the two groups of priests arrive, to the accompaniment of the flutes and the whooshing of the willows symbolizing the presence of the holy spirit, and a choir of thousands of Levites singing the Great Hallel (Psalm 136).
These thousands of Levites are singing Psalm 136. And as the whole procession heads into the Temple through the Water Gate this Psalm is being sung.
Then as they reached the temple, the shofars and silver trumpets blast loudly and the high priest approaches the altar, where there are two silver basins waiting.
And as he entered by the Water Gate, [that is why that particular gate was called the Water Gate,] because the water from the pool was brought through that gate, which got its name from the ceremony; the priests with the water and the wine were received with a threefold blast from the silver trumpets.
Then the priests went up the rise, up to the level to where the altar was, and turned to the left where there were two silver basins which had narrow holes in them. And they poured the water in one, and poured the wine in the other, and filled the basins, that the liquids would dribble in a small stream through the holes down to the bottom of the basin. The eastern had a hole a little wider for the wine and the western basin a somewhat narrower hole for the water, so that when the same amount is poured in, because of the different densities, they would all flow out completely at the same time.
The physical high priest, representative of the spiritual High Priest Jesus Christ, then pours wine into one of the basins as a drink offering, a wine offering to God the Father. The wine representing the shed blood of Christ, and the water from the Pool of Siloam represents the salvation of the whole Word of God through the Holy Spirit from Jesus Christ.
The drink offering or wine offering was poured out, and at the same time the water from Siloam was poured into the other basin; at the same time as the daily began to burn!
Now, as soon as the wine and the water were poured out, the temple musicians began again and the “Hallel”, [the second Hallel is Psalm 113 to Psalm 118] was sung to the accompaniment of wind instruments and flutes. This again was to represent the whooshing of the wind of the Holy Spirit. These instrumental sounds represented the Holy Spirit while they sang Psalm 113 to 118.
On the Sabbath and on the first day of the Feast of the Ingathering of Nations [Tabernacles] they did not play the flute instruments, because they considered that work and offending the sanctity of the Sabbath and the Holy Day.
When the choir and the singers came to the words of Psalm 118:1, “O give thanks to the Lord”, and again when they sang Psalm 118:25, “O work then now salvation, Yeshua” and once again at the close [this is three times in Psalm 118:29,] “O give thanks unto the Lord”. Then all the worshipers shook their branches toward the altar, the emphasis here in the three verses was: To give thanks, to give thanks before God and to rejoice; and they shook their branches toward the altar.
Leviticus 23:49 And ye shall take you on the first day the boughs of goodly trees, branches of palm trees, and the boughs of thick trees, and willows of the brook; and ye shall rejoice before the Lord your God seven days.
This is alluded to when Jesus entered Jerusalem six days before his crucifixion. He entered Jerusalem and the people cut down branches from the trees and strewed them in the way and cried, saying “O then work now salvation to the Son of David”. (Matthew 21:8-9 and John 12:12-13).
As Christ entered Jerusalem for that last week, they threw down the palms which were representative of the palms they used in the temple to rejoice before God and to give thanks to God. And they strewed those down in the way as Christ entered the city. And they said “work now salvation”, the same as what they said during the Feast of Tabernacles, “give salvation”. And their name of the seventh day of the Feast of Tabernacles is; the day of salvation, or Hoshana Rabbah.
They did these things before Passover, in direct reference to Messiah, because of the ministry of Christ and the teaching of the disciples. Very many people thought that He was the Messiah and that He was going to set up the kingdom right then, and they were equating this to the Feast of Tabernacles and the coming of salvation to that nation and to the world.
We all know that salvation was not for all people at that particular time. But these people were praying that God would now from ‘the highest’ heaven manifest and send salvation in connection with the Son of David, which was symbolized by the pouring out of water.
The priests asked, Why is it called, The drawing out of water? And they answer, because of the pouring out of the Holy Spirit, according to what is said: “With joy shall you draw water out of the wells of salvation”. And that is what we just read in Isaiah.
The Feast of Tabernacles and the peculiar joyousness of it are designated as ‘the drawing out of the water of Salvation’; the pouring out of the water of salvation on all the people, as represented by the pouring out of water at the altar, being done on behalf of all the people and for all the people.
And these ceremonies and celebrations and the singing and blasting of trumpets continued throughout the entire seven days of the Feast of Tabernacles!
This was a time of great rejoicing, of singing Psalms and the pouring out of the water, of marching around the altar and rejoicing, celebrating salvation and victory over sin and the salvation of and the gathering of the main harvest of humanity into the family of God!
The Feast of Tabernacles really was an incredible seven day ceremony, if you can imagine all these vast numbers of people doing this during the days of Christ.
Jericho as a type of victory over sin; through Messiah our Salvation
Israel marched around Jericho one time each day for six days and on the the seventh day; instead of circling Jericho once, they circled it seven times and turned and shouted, and the city of Jericho fell. This is why Ezra began the ceremony of circling the altar once each day and on the seventh day the priests circled the altar seven times, turning and rejoicing at the fall of sin and the granting of salvation, and the destruction of the enemy of evil and sin, which Jericho represented.
The Astounding Allegorical Prophecy of JERICHO
The people were to march around the city representing sin for six days remaining silent except for the blasting of the trumpets of God. This representing that Satan has ruled this world for six thousand years; and the seventh day the trumpets are to sound and the people are to shout in rejoicing at the fall of Jericho as a type of the fall of Satan’s world and deliverance from bondage to Satan and sin.
6:3 And ye shall compass the city, all ye men of war, and go round about the city once. Thus shalt thou do six days.
The priests were to sound their seven trumpets daily during the once daily march and they were to march around the city of Sin, which was Jericho once each day; and then to march around the city seven times on the seventh day; and the city of sin would come crashing down!
Thus showing that at the end of six thousand years of a world ruled by Satan; this world of sin shall come crashing down!
The daily trumpet blasts announce the presence of Christ among his called out. The shouting of the seventh day pictures rejoicing over the total victory over sin!
6:4 And seven priests shall bear before the ark seven trumpets of rams’ horns: and the seventh day ye shall compass the city seven times, and the priests shall blow with the trumpets.
6:5 And it shall come to pass, that when they make a long blast with the ram’s horn, and when ye hear the sound of the trumpet, all the people shall shout with a great shout; and the wall of the city shall fall down flat, and the people shall ascend up every man straight before him.
6:6 And Joshua the son of Nun called the priests, and said unto them, Take up the ark of the covenant, and let seven priests bear seven trumpets of rams’ horns before the ark of the LORD. 6:7 And he said unto the people, Pass on, and compass the city, and let him that is armed pass on before the ark of the LORD.
6:8 And it came to pass, when Joshua had spoken unto the people, that the seven priests bearing the seven trumpets of rams’ horns passed on before the LORD, and blew with the trumpets: and the ark of the covenant of the LORD followed them. 6:9 And the armed men went before the priests that blew with the trumpets, and the rereward came after the ark, the priests going on, and blowing with the trumpets.
6:10 And Joshua had commanded the people, saying, Ye shall not shout, nor make any noise with your voice, neither shall any word proceed out of your mouth, until the day I bid you shout; then shall ye shout.
6:11 So the ark of the LORD compassed the city, going about it once: and they came into the camp, and lodged in the camp. 6:12 And Joshua rose early in the morning, and the priests took up the ark of the LORD. 6:13 And seven priests bearing seven trumpets of rams’ horns before the ark of the LORD went on continually, and blew with the trumpets: and the armed men went before them; but the rereward [a rear guard followed the Ark of the Covenant] came after the ark of the LORD, the priests going on, and blowing with the trumpets. 6:14 And the second day they compassed the city once, and returned into the camp: so they did six days.
Right here please notice that the people OBEYED God, even though it would not have made any sense to them!
It is to the zealous faithful followers of Jesus Christ who live by every Word of God the Father in heaven; that the V I C T O R Y over DEATH; and the gift of the Promised Land of eternal life comes!
6:15 And it came to pass on the seventh day, that they rose early about the dawning of the day, and compassed the city after the same manner seven times: only on that day they compassed the city seven times. 6:16 And it came to pass at the seventh time, when the priests blew with the trumpets, Joshua said unto the people, Shout; for the LORD hath given you the city.
The resurrected shall Shout for Joy, for God has given us total victory over bondage to sin! Which of the chosen elect will not be overflowing with joy and humility before the great power of our Mighty God on that day?
The word “accursed” means receiving total destruction. Nothing of Jericho representing sin was to be taken or saved; except the repentant Rahab and her family.
The city of Jericho was to be accounted accursed because it represents the Satan and the wickedness of rebellion against God and unrepented sin!
As this symbolic city was accursed; so shall all those who refuse to repent from acting contrary to the Word of God, during their opportunity; be destroyed.
6:17 And the city shall be accursed, even it, and all that are therein, to the LORD: only Rahab the harlot shall live, she and all that are with her in the house, because she hid the messengers that we sent.
Joshua warns that to take of the accursed thing [a type of partaking in any sin] which was condemned to destruction; will make the partaker of the accursed thing accursed (condemned to destruction) himself. This why Paul reminded Timothy not to be a partaker of other men’s sins.
1 Timothy 5:22 . . . neither be partaker of [participate in] other men’s sins: keep thyself pure.
Joshua 6:18 And ye, in any wise keep yourselves from the accursed thing, lest ye make yourselves accursed, when ye take of the accursed thing, and make the camp of Israel a curse, and trouble it.
When we partake of other men’s sins like patronizing restaurants on Sabbaths and High days, we make ourselves anathema to God Almighty!
On the Last Great Day of the Feast of Tabernacles when the priests circled the altar seven times on the seventh day, they sang with loud voices a song of repentance, redemption and salvation — Save now, I pray, O Lord; O Lord, I pray, send now prosperity; Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord. . .(Psalm 118:25-26).
Of course this temple ceremony is nowhere commanded in the scripture – except in the command to Israel at Jericho – yet its principles are fully scriptural and Jesus Christ had no problem with it.
Jesus from His childhood, would have been very familiar with these things as He went up to Jerusalem with His parents for the Feast, and would have seen this year by year, and growing up would have learned all about this. Then in His ministry He used this water pouring ceremony, magnifying its meaning, from Moses getting water from the rock as a lesson in the pouring out of the Holy Spirit.
Jesus used the figures of blindness and the light of the world, the water of salvation and the Bread of Life, to teach those who could understand about the plan of salvation and Christ’s central role in the salvation of humanity.
The Waters of Salvation and the Woman at the Well
John 4:7 There cometh a woman of Samaria to draw water [from a well in Samaria]:, and Jesus said to her, Give me a drink. 4:8 (For His disciples had gone away [and He was just sitting there alone]. 4:9 Then said the woman of Samaria to Him, How is it that thou, being a Jew, asks water of me which am a woman of Samaria? for the Jews have no dealings with the Samaritans. 4:10 Jesus answered her and said, If you knew the gift of God, and who is it that says to you, Give me to drink; you would have asked of Him [that He give drink to you], that He would give to you living water. 4:11 The woman said unto Him, Sir, thou has nothing to draw up water with, and the well is very deep: from whence, then, hast thou this living water? 4:12 Art thou greater than our father Jacob, who gave us the well, and drank thereof himself, and his children, and his cattle?
4:13 Jesus answered and said unto her, Whosoever drinks of this water shall thirst again: 14 But whosoever drinks of the water that I give him shall never thirst [again],
Whoever drinks physical water is going to get thirsty again. Drink of physical water and after a while we get thirsty again; and we drink again, and we get thirsty again and so on.
4:14 But whosoever drinks of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst; for the water that I shall give him shall be in him a well of water, springing up into everlasting life.
The water that Jesus Christ gives is the Word of God and the Holy Spirit, which leads us into eternal life. And that water of the Spirit is in us and growing in us and flowing in us and was poured out on us, because we were called by God the Father and have sincerely repented, committing to go and sin no more; to keep all of the ways of God and to follow God’s Spirit.
We took the gift of God’s Holy Spirit represented by the living water into ourselves when we sincerely repented and committed to follow and be cleanses by the Water of the Word of God.
He who has imbibed the living water, has taken into himself the whole Word of God and with it the Holy Spirit. The person who is zealous for the Word of God and thirsts after the living water of Salvation; has eternal life dwelling in him, unless he later rejects God’s Spirit and quenches it, but as long as he is faithful, he has eternal life living in him.
The occasion of the seventh or last day of the Feast of Tabernacles – on the last Feast of Tabernacles that Jesus observed before He was crucified the next spring – was used by Christ to teach that He was the Messiah, the source of salvation, the source of the Living Water of Salvation for all Israel and for all mankind.
We can understand this from the event in John 7:37.
The sixth day of the Feast of Tabernacles was drawing to a close and toward the seventh day of the Feast of Tabernacles which was the Last Great Day of the Feast of Tabernacles, not because it was a holy convocation, but because it was the “Day of the Great Hosanna”.
It was on this day, at the time when the priests had come from Siloam with the golden pitcher, and poured its contents to the base of the altar, that is, pouring it through the basin and it would run down onto the base of the altar, and the songs have been sung to the sound of the flute, the people responding and worshiping and rejoicing as the priest three times sounded three full blasts upon the two silver trumpets that Jesus cried out loudly in the temple to all the people.
With hundreds of thousands of people present and many thousands of priests dressed in their priestly vestments, all of them singing, rejoicing and praising God; and the pouring out of the water and wine, the wine typifying the pouring out of the life of Christ the lamb of God, for the salvation of the people as a sacrifice for their sins and the water being poured out representing the gift of the Word of God, salvation and the Holy Spirit; and with the willows whooshing, giving the sound of the rushing of the Holy Spirit, and then bent-over as a canopy over the altar, showing that the Holy Spirit was over these events.
As all of this was happening, suddenly, from the midst of the congregation came a loud, strong, clear voice; from a man, just as Psalm 118 had been completed.
Psalm 118:14, The LORD is my strength and my song, and is become my salvation. 118:15 The voice of rejoicing and salvation is in the tabernacles of the righteous: the right hand of the LORD doeth valiantly [for His people]. 118:16 The right hand of the LORD is exalted: the right hand of the LORD has done valiantly.
118:17, I shall not die, but live, and declare the works of the LORD. 118:18 The LORD hath chastened me sore: but He hath not given me over to death. 118:19 Open to me the gates of righteousness [which is commandment-keeping]: I will go into them [through the gates of righteousness], and I will praise God: 118:20 This gate of the LORD, into which the righteous shall enter.
When we are called, we repent of sin and we enter into the gates of righteousness, and righteousness is the keeping of the commandments and the whole Word of God, and we enter into the gates of righteousness which is the salvation of God.
118:21 I will praise thee: for thou hast heard me, and become my salvation.
Now a prophecy of Christ, 118:22 The stone which the builders refused is become the head stone of the corner [the headstone of the corner]. 118:23 This is the LORD’S doing; it is marvelous in our eyes.
118:24 This is the day which the LORD hath made; we will rejoice and be glad in it. 118:25 Save now, I beseech you, O LORD; O LORD, I beseech you, send now prosperity. 118:26 Blessed be He that comes in the name of the LORD: we have blessed you out of the house of the LORD. 118:27 God is the Eternal, which has showed us His light: bind the sacrifice with cords, even unto the horns of the altar. [Make His sacrifice and His salvation sure through repentance and following Him.] 118:28 Thou art my God, and I will praise thee: thou art my God, I will exalt thee. 118:29 O give thanks unto the LORD; for He is good: for His mercy endures forever.
This Psalm speaking of Christ leading physical Israel through the Red Sea, defeating Pharaoh in Egypt and delivering physical Israel from bondage to sin; in type representing a future spiritual salvation for all of humanity from bondage of sin.
And as the final pouring of water began to trickle out, picturing the gift of the Word of Salvation and the pouring out of the Holy Spirit, and the final pouring out of the wine, picturing the sacrifice of Christ, to give us salvation and atone for sin: A powerful voice cried out from among the hundreds of thousands, a strong voice which resounded through the temple:
Christ cries out John 7:37…‘If any man thirst, let him come unto me and drink.’ With those words, He was clearly telling all the people: I am your salvation, I am Messiah, I am the Christ. It is through Me that you receive salvation! and that impressed the people and it shocked the leaders.
Now when Jesus said this, He said if any MAN thirst. He did not say if any Jew thirst or any Israelite, He said ANY MAN, thereby revealing that salvation was being opened up to ALL humanity, and that the Feast of Tabernacles refers to the main harvest of humanity.
And He cried out in the midst of the seventh day of the Feast of Tabernacles, not on the Eighth Day as some wrongly suppose, because they misunderstand the term Great Day of the Feast.
John 7:37, In the last day, that Great Day of the Feast [of Tabernacles], Jesus stood and cried out, saying, If any man thirst, let him come unto Me and drink. 7:38 He that believeth on Me, as the scriptures hath said, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water.
That is, God pours His Spirit out on the sincerely repentant who are His, who zealously work to live by every Word of God; will filled with the Holy Spirit, the spiritual Water of eternal life.
Then as the Spirit of God fills the people, they are then enabled to follow God and to live by every Word of God.
. . . (But of this spake he of the Spirit [This is a direct quote; revealing that this Living Water represents the Holy Spirit], 7:39 But this spake He of the Spirit, which they that believe on Him should receive: for the Holy Spirit was not yet poured out or not yet given; because that Jesus was not yet glorified.)
He had not yet been sacrificed and raised up. 7:40 Many of the people [many of them], when they heard this saying, [they] said, Of a truth this is that Prophet.
The term ‘that prophet’ is a reference to Moses, who said ‘behold the day will come when a prophet will arise like unto myself, him you shall follow, him you shall obey.’
And they remembered the words of Moses and they said, ‘of a truth, this is that prophet that Moses spake of.’ And that prophet was Jesus Christ. That Prophet did not any other man, but Jesus the Christ ONLY! ‘This spake He of the spirit which they that believe on Him should receive.’ This is clearly explaining the water as representing the Holy Spirit; and revealing Jesus the Christ as “That Prophet” .
We can go back to the first verse again, ‘In the last day, that Great Day of the Feast [The seventh day of Tabernacles], Jesus stood and cried and said if any man thirst, let him come unto Me and drink, and he that believes on Me as the scripture hath said, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water.’
He cried out in the middle of all those thousands of people, in the middle of this incredibly impressive ceremony. The effect was probably instantaneous in that huge assembly. Jesus Christ was saying that He was the fulfillment of the various types and prophecies of scripture. And many people, were impressed and they wanted to follow Him.
But the high priests and the Pharisees and the top people immediately were struck with jealousy and envy, and they said, no way are we going to give up our high offices to this guy. So they became very angry.
Even the temple guard, whose duty it was to maintain order and arrest someone who interrupted the services like that, the security people, they accepted the authority of His word to the point that they dared not grab Him and drag Him off and arrest Him and put Him in the jail. They dared not lay hands on Him.
And when the chief priests and the Pharisees ordered the security people to go and arrest Him, they just said, ‘Never did a man speak like this man’; how can we do this when all the people are influenced by him and think Him to be a prophet? And that is all that they could answer to their masters. They did not want to believe, but they said how can we arrest this guy when all the people are counting Him a prophet? If we arrest Him, it will make a greater disturbance than if we leave Him alone.
Nicodemus who was one of the people in the Sanhedrin which was a follower of Christ, and when the Sanhedrin immediately met to condemn Christ for creating a disturbance during the ceremonies and for calling himself the Messiah and “That Prophet”, Nicodemus stood up and defended Christ with a declaration, ‘Doth our law, judge a man before it hears him,’ and knows what he does?
Nicodemus said, how can you sit here as a court and condemn this guy unless he is brought before you and testifies before you and you hear the whole case? It is not lawful for you to condemn him without hearing the whole case.
And so the Sanhedrin, made some comments, and condemned Christ, but they did not do anything of a legal nature since they could not arrest Him because they were not about to drag Him before them and cause a riot.
Yet from this time they began to earnestly seek ways to stop and kill him.
Right now those who are called of God to the Son, called to zealously live by every Word of God and do His will and please Him; all through history, right from righteous Abel until now; have had God’s Spirit poured out on them in direct proportion to how we use that Spirit, how they follow it, how they study to learn and keep the word of God.
The more zealously we study and learn and keep the whole Word of God, the more of God’s spirit and the more understanding we will be given.
The less we study and the less we zealously keep the Word of God, and the more we compromise, the more the Spirit will be held back from us, and we will be quenching that Spirit, and over time will have less and less.
But on the seventh day of the Feast of Tabernacles, when the wine was poured out representing the shed blood of Christ, and the water was poured out representing the Holy Spirit of Salvation. The whooshing of the branches representing the sound of a wind of the Holy Spirit coming—all these things, represent the main harvest of humanity; the ingathering of the nations into the family of God.
All of this ceremony was condoned by Jesus Christ, and all of it was used by Jesus Christ to present himself as the fulfillment of all of these things on that seventh day of the Feast of Tabernacles.
And all of this symbolism is clear and it is correct and it is godly and it is right, and although it may not be directly commanded in scripture, it is certainly backed up by scripture and it is not in any way contrary to scripture.
On this seventh and Last Great Day of the Feast of The Ingathering of Nations, the seventh day of Tabernacles, they sang Psalm 118, and I thought I would just read it here.
Psalm 118:1 O give thanks unto the LORD; for He is good: because His mercy endures for ever. 118:2 Let Israel now say, that His mercy endures for ever. 118:3 Let the house of Aaron [the priesthood], now say, that His mercy endures for ever. 118:4 Let them now that fear the LORD say, that His mercy endures for ever. 118:5 I called upon the LORD in distress: the Eternal answered me, and set me in a large place. 118:6 The Eternal is on my side; I will not fear: what man can do to me? [because whatever man does to us; the Eternal will deliver us. Maybe not right away, but ultimately in the resurrection of the just.]
118:7 The LORD takes my part [that He stands on my side because I am standing on His side by following Him.] The LORD takes my part with them that help me: therefore shall I see my desire upon them that hate me.
In other words, by our being faithful to Christ we are acceptable to Christ; and ultimately, maybe not right away but sooner or later: He will give us victory and will exalt us over all those who oppress us and seek to tempt us and lead us astray, or seek to oppress us and do us harm. We are to put our trust in God, and not in men.
This was read just before Christ cried out in the temple.
118:8 It is better to trust in the LORD than to put confidence in men. 118:9 It is better to trust in the Eternal than to put your confidence in princes [rulers].
The wicked shall ultimately be destroyed for their rebellions and destroyed by the authority of God in the name of God, but the righteous and the faithful shall be delivered.
118:10, All nations compassed me about: but in the name of the LORD will I destroy them [or gain a victory over them]. 118:11 My enemies compassed me about: yea, they compassed me about: but in the name of the LORD I will destroy them.
This is speaking of destroying wickedness, and hopefully most of the wicked repent and they will not have to be destroyed. But anyone who is adamant and will not repent from his wickedness and rebellion against God and his persecution of the righteous will be destroyed.
118:12 They [the wicked] compassed me like [a swarm of] bees; they are quenched as the fire of thorns;
I suppose not a lot of us have seen a dry sagebrush set alight, but it just goes poof and it is gone. That is what this is about, the wicked are like dried out brambles and they are lit up and poof, in a great ball of fire they are just gone. And that will happen, as it says there is a lake of fire prepared for those who are adamant and unrepentant and rebellious.
118:13 Thou hast thrust sore at me that I might fall: but the Eternal helpeth me. 118:14 The LORD is my strength and my song, and is become my salvation.
And who are the righteous? None of us is righteous. God is righteous. But if we follow God’s ways and follow Him and seek to please Him, we slowly become like Him. And since He is righteous, if we become like Him, we also become righteous.
118:15 The voice of rejoicing and salvation is in the tabernacles of the righteous:
Do you notice the term ‘tabernacles’? This is applying to the season of the Feast of Tabernacles. So in the tabernacles or the tents of the righteous, in the tents of those who follow God and put Him first: is the Salvation of God.
There will be rejoicing in the salvation of God, for
. . . the right hand of the Eternal doeth valiantly. 118:16 The right hand of the LORD is exalted: the right hand of the LORD doeth valiantly.
As He delivered Israel out of Egypt, Jesus Christ shall deliver us out of all of our troubles, in due time, in His due time, when we learn what we need to learn in this life.
118:17 I shall not die, but live, It is not talking that you will never die physically, but talking about once the gift of eternal life is given, then you shall live and we and never die. We shall live and we shall declare the mighty deeds, the works of the Eternal. 118:18 For the LORD hath chastened me sore [each of us for our departure from His ways and our slipping and falling]: but He has not given us over to death. He has chastened us and corrected us to bring us back to Him, so that He might give us the gift of the salvation and eternal life.
118:19 Open to me the gates of righteousness [which is commandment keeping and faithfulness to Christ]: I will go into them, and I will praise the Eternal: 118:20 This gate of the LORD, into which the righteous shall enter, 118:21 I will praise thee: for thou has heard me, and are become my salvation.
118:22 [Jesus Christ is] The stone which the builders refused and has become the headstone of the corner. 118:23 And this is the LORD’S doing; it is marvelous in our eyes. 118:24 This is the day that the LORD hath made; let us rejoice and be glad in it. 118:25 Save us now, 118:26 Blessed be He that cometh in the name of the LORD:
118:27 God is the Eternal, which has showed us light [the light of God’s law, the light of salvation]: bind the sacrifice with cords, even unto the horns of the altar [that is, make sure our salvation, by binding ourselves to Jesus Christ and to His sacrifice and to His teachings and His ways].
118:28 Thou art my God, and I will praise thee: thou art my God, I will exalt thee. 118:29 O give thanks unto the LORD; for He is good: for His mercy endureth forever.
As that Psalm was concluded, Jesus stood up and cried out with a loud voice so that the thousands of people in the temple heard Him.
The Feast of Tabernacles pictures the fall harvest and rejoices over the fall harvest, and it pictures the fall harvest, as the main harvest of souls, salvation being extended, the sacrifice of Christ being extended; to all of humanity.
Salvation not just for the few called out for the early harvest; but now Salvation extended to all of humanity; and whoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.
As Christ said, ‘whosoever who believeth in me’, anyone, everyone that believes in Christ, not just believes but acts on that belief having the works of faith, because faith without works is dead. Anyone who believes on Christ and starts to keep His commandments, seeks to learn His ways, diligently works to zealously obey Him, to become like Him, to try and please Him; is going to have the living waters of salvation poured out upon them.
Many called out of the Ekklesia, who claim to be called and converted, very many have thought lightly of these things. When they were first converted they were probably filled with extreme enthusiasm and joy and zeal; but over time they began to become complacent and began to take things for granted and began to take things lightly.
I think it would be great if we had a temple and we could really do this in order to wake people up and shake them up and reveal a taste of the might and power and glory of God, and how much we need Him and how much we need to be faithful to God and the great salvation that He has promised; And He is promising salvation to all humanity if they are willing to accept it.
That is what the seven days of Tabernacles is about, with the thirteen bullocks the first day and the twelve on the second day, and so on, making seventy sacrificial bulls, picturing all of mankind, all the families of mankind serving God. And the holy spirit being given to repentant humanity, with the water of salvation poured out.
If you can just imagine that temple and these thousands of priests and tens of thousands of worshipers all singing Psalm 118, singing I will praise you, I will give thanks to God for He is good. His mercy endures forever. The Eternal is God. That His mercy endure forever. It must have been awesome and people would have gone home on a very positive note, thinking very positively about God and the greatness of God and how poor we are spiritually and how much we need God.
We need to realize how much we need God, because we cannot save ourselves. It is impossible. And no other man can save us either.
Salvation is a direct personal responsibility. We as individuals have to respond to the call and go directly to Christ and to God the Father and to the Word of God. Focus on that. Do not focus on anyone just because he says he is somebody; but take those words and test them by the Word of God and always the Word of God MUST come first.
Jesus Christ is the Fountain of the Living Waters of Salvation:
Jeremiah 17:13 O Lord, the hope of Israel, all that forsake thee shall be ashamed, and they that depart from me shall be written in the earth, because they have forsaken the Lord, the fountain of living waters [the Living Waters being God’s Holy Spirit].