Day 1—Feast of Tabernacles

So that I may walk and dwell among you

Fred R. Coulter—October 14, 2019

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Greetings, brethren! Welcome to the first day of the Feast of Tabernacles! What a Feast this is going to be. The Feast of Tabernacles is a great time for all the brethren to get together to renew old friendships, to make new friendships. To visit with the brethren, the children get know each other, and for us to come to God with:

  • His Spirit
  • His Truth
  • His love

So that we can be together and look forward to the time when we will be dwelling with God! That's the whole overall knowledge of the Feast of Tabernacles.

As usual, we start in Lev. 23, which is the only place in the entire Bible where all the Holy Days are listed out in sequence according to the Calculated Hebrew Calendar.

Leviticus 23:33: "And the LORD spoke to Moses saying, 'Speak to the children of Israel, saying, "The fifteenth day of this seventh month shall be the Feast of Tabernacles for seven days to the LORD"'" (vs 33-34).

The 15th day of the 1st month, and the 15th day of the 7th month is a full moon day. In order for it to be a full moon for the whole world, there has to be two days of a full moon, which there is. There is one point in time when it is actually completely full, but it is waxing or growing toward full and waning a little bit away from full as it goes around the earth.

Here in Hollister, where we're keeping the Feast of Tabernacles, it is morning, but down in Australia it's the next day. So, they had their full moon yesterday, and we had our full moon last night.

Verse 35: "On the first day shall be a Holy convocation…. [which is today] …You shall do no servile work therein. Seven days you shall offer an offering made by fire to the LORD…." (vs 35-36). That's not every individual! These are the offering listed out in Num. 29.

"…On the eighth day shall be a Holy convocation to you. And you shall offer an offering made by fire to the LORD. It is a solemn assembly. And you shall do no servile work therein" (v 36).

Notice what He says in v 37, because this is a summary of everything that has gone before: "These are the Feasts of the LORD…" They belong to Him!

  • they're not of the Jews
  • they're not of the Israelites
  • they're of God given to them

Later we will see the whole world is going to be keeping the Feast of Tabernacles. If they don't keep the Feast of Tabernacles, there are going to be consequences to pay.

"…which you shall proclaim to be Holy convocations…" (v 37). You have no choice! They must be proclaimed in their seasons, and now is the time for the Feast of Tabernacles.

"…to offer an offering made by fire to the LORD, a burnt offering and a grain offering, a sacrifice, and drink offerings, everything on its day; besides the Sabbaths of the LORD…" (vs 37-38).

This is talking about all the Sabbaths in Lev. 23, and it starts out with the weekly Sabbath. The fourth commandment sanctifies all of the other Sabbaths! The weekly Sabbath is called 'ha Shabbat'—it has the definite article. The Holy Days are called 'Shabbat'—not the Sabbath.

"…and besides your gifts, and besides all your vows, and besides all your freewill offerings, which you give to the LORD" (v 38).

Deut. 16—here we see the difference between the daily offerings that were commanded to be done by the priests and Levites at the temple. Here we have it for what we are to do when we come:

Deuteronomy 16: "Three times in a year shall all your males appear before the LORD your God…" The women and children are also to come as well as the strangers that dwell within us!

However, all the males representing the head of every family will come! Some women can't come because of awaiting childbirth or just after childbirth, whatever the case may be.

"…in the place which He shall choose…" (v 16). Wherever there are two or three gathered together, and Christ is in our midst and the Father is with us, that is a place that God has chosen!

So, when decide to have the Feast of Tabernacles, we look and see what's the best we can do for the brethren wherever we are in the world. We ask God's blessing on it, which we have today with the opening prayer, and God is here in spirit. This is a wonderful time for all the people of God.

"…in the Feast of Unleavened Bread, and in the Feast of Weeks, and in the Feast of Tabernacles. And they shall not appear before the LORD empty, every man shall give as he is able, according to the blessing of the LORD your God, which He has given you" (vs 16-17).

This is something you should plan for, for the Feast of Tabernacles.

God shows us through Paul that if we sow sparingly, we will reap sparingly. If we sow bountifully, we will reap bountifully. In this age in which we are living today, when we have the whole Word of God for us and understood:

  • because of God's Spirit
  • because of God teaching us
  • because of God leading us
  • because we love God
  • because we keep His commandments
  • because we do the things that are pleasing in His sight

God has given us many, many things that we can use to teach the brethren and to preach the Gospel to the world! All the funds that come into Christian Biblical Church of God we give full account every single year!

(pause for offering)

Let's understand something about the Word of God. It's not something that you can just pick up and start reading. A lot of people have tried it, but the one key that's interesting all the way through the Bible is that mankind—made in the image of God, and even though is able to reproduce children after his kind, which God made to be a wonderful and tremendous blessing—we cannot understand the Word of God naturally without the revelation of God!

Jesus said that 'it is given to us'—those whom He has called, the New Testament Church—to understand the secrets or mysteries of the Kingdom of God! God has not revealed it to the world! Because of sin and going against God, they are blinded! God will take away that blindness upon repentance, baptism and receiving His Holy Spirit.

Deuteronomy 29:29: "The secret things belong to the LORD our God…" Just think of all the things that we're going to learn when we enter into the Kingdom of God!

We're going to be amazed how little that we really, really know even though we think that there's a lot we know. How much is that compared to God? Very little! He has to reveal His secrets because we can't discover it by ourselves.

"…but the things, which are revealed, belong to us and to our children forever so that we may do all the words of this Law" (v 29).

After God created Adam and Eve, they were living in the Garden of Eden, and God was living in the Garden of Eden. So, you could kind of put it this way: part of the Feast of Tabernacles is to dwell with God! A little later we will see that it also means that God will be our God and we will be His people!

That's a tremendous thing to understand! God created the heavens and the earth, and the vastness of the universe. He has made it for His plan, and He made it before the ages of time (2-Tim. 1:9).

God's plan is so fantastic! Once we are in the Kingdom of God we will understand it. Just to understand what we understand now is awesome, indeed, a wonderful thing!

Let's notice how we come to God beginning with Adam and Eve. God created Adam first, then Eve. He put them in the Garden of Eden and said to 'dress it and keep.' That also means to guard it!

Genesis 2:16: "And the LORD God commanded…" Whenever God enters into a covenant with anyone, which He did:

  • with Adam and Eve
  • with the patriarchs of old
  • with Abraham, Isaac and Jacob
  • with Israel
  • with the Church

A covenant! And a covenant always has laws and commandments, because God is God, and we are His creatures. He created us!

"…the man, saying, 'You may freely eat of every tree in the garden'" (v 16). God gives a lot of latitude, a lot of leeway! What God is doing is setting before Adam and Eve the choice! What will you do?

Verse 17: "But you shall not eat of the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil, for in the day that you eat of it in dying you shall surely die."

This phrase doesn't mean that they would die instantly. If that were the case there wouldn't be any human race. You get old and getting old is dying little-by-little, because 'as in Adam we all die.'

We know that they ate of it. What happened? They sinned! They disobeyed God! They chose to go their own way!

Think of that for a minute. Here their Creator made them, perfect physically, mentally and they had a language that they could converse with God. God was right there living in the Garden of Eden. He met them everyday in the 'cool of the afternoon' when it was toward the end of the day.

Then you know that Satan came in and they ate of the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil. They brought upon themselves the judgment of God, because whenever anyone sins, the judgment of God comes! That's just the way that it is!

We know what happened with everything after that. Cain sinned, killed his brother. The whole line of Cain—because God did not execute him—became the line of evil. Things became so bad that God had to destroy the earth with a flood. In the Greek that is called 'kataklusmos.' That was quite a thing!

Gen. 12—Abram—who later had his name changed to Abraham—obeyed God. Abraham did what God said. There was not a time when Abraham did not obey God. That's why he is called the father of the faithful! The covenant that God made with Abraham carried all the way down to the covenant that Christ made with the Church: If we be Christ then we are Abraham's seed and heirs according to the promise!

So, here is what God called on Abram to do. This applies to every one of us! I want you to notice the parallel. When God calls us, He calls us to walk in His way and quit walking in our way. To live by His laws and commandments and not by our thoughts and standards; but His! So, God began the same way in Gen. 12, and let's see what God said to Abram:

Genesis 12:1: "And the LORD said to Abram, 'Get out of your country, and from your kindred, and from your father's house into a land that I will show you. And I will make of you a great nation. And I will bless you and make your name great. And you shall be a blessing" (vs 1-2).

Sidebar: When the resurrection takes place and we're all on the Sea of Glass, Abraham is going to be stunned how God fulfilled His promises, and all the children—physically—that he had. And all the children—spiritually—that are of seed of Abraham through Christ.

Abraham was to leave everything, v 2: "And I will bless you and make your name great. And you shall be a blessing. And I will bless those that bless you and curse the one who curses you. And in you shall all families of the earth be blessed" (vs 2-3).

That's going to go all the way down through time. It has and here we are. We are here because of Abraham. Then we know the promise that God made to Abraham in Gen. 15. God said on that Passover night, 'Look to the stars, if you're able to count them so shall your seed be.'

So, we have the spiritual seed as the stars of heaven, and we have the physical seed as the seed that is of the sand of the sea. We find that in Gen. 22.

This always happens: there is something that comes along in our lives during our Christian growing and overcoming. When this took place Abraham was 115-years-old, right around in there. From 75-115 is 40 years. The trial came, not when he started, but right toward the end of the 40 years; to take you your only begotten son—that God promised Abraham and Sarah—and take him up  and offer him for an offering.

So, God watched what Abraham was doing. Abraham took the wood, a couple of donkeys and a couple of extra men with him and took Isaac and went to the place on Mt. Moriah where God said to offer Isaac. Abraham made an altar, laid out the wood and Isaac said, 'Father, where is the sacrifice?' Abraham said, 'God will provide.'

Think about that for a minute. Why did Abraham do this. In Heb. 11 it says that 'Abraham did it because he counted God worthy and had the ability to bring his son back to life.' So, he operated on that faith. Even if it happened, God would bring Isaac back to life. But just when he was ready to take the knife and start the sacrifice to offer Isaac:

Genesis 22:11: "And the angel of the LORD called to him from the heavens and said, 'Abraham! Abraham!' And he said, 'Here I am.'" I guess so!

Verse 12: "And He said, 'Do not lay your hand upon the lad, nor do anything to him, for now I know that you fear God, seeing you have not withheld your son, your only son, from Me.'"

Now, after 40 years don't you think that God knew that Abraham would fear Him? It comes down to us, too. How many people today do you know that left after years; I'll just let you think upon that. We don't know what's going to happen with them. We don't know what the situation is. But only God is Judge!

But Abraham did not do that!

"'…I know that you fear God, seeing you have not withheld your son, your only son, from Me.' And Abraham lifted up his eyes and looked, and behold, behind him a ram was entangled in a thicket by its horns…." (vs 12-13).

How did that get there? Must have come up quietly, an angel sending it up, of course—because Abraham said that God would provide—then caused it to be entangled in the bush. Or God created it right there for the purpose of the sacrifice, a substitute sacrifice!

That's what it is with us. Here we have with this account: Abraham is like God the Father, Isaac is like the only Begotten Son: Christ, and the sacrifice was given. In the case of Christ, He died! But was resurrected three days later, according to the promise of God. God never lies! His plan always works out!

"…And Abraham went and took the ram and offered it up for a burnt offering instead of his son. And Abraham called the name of that place The LORD Will Provide…" (vs 13-14).

Think of that when you have a trial or trouble. God will provide! It may not be exactly as you figured out, but if you have faith and trust in God and look to Him for everything, He will provide!

"…so that it is said until this day, 'In the mount of the LORD it will be provided.' And the angel of the LORD called to Abraham out of heaven the second time, and said…" (vs 14-16).

Here is a tremendous promise. There is nothing greater that God can swear by than Himself, because everything else He made! He didn't swear by the heavens or the earth, He swore by Himself. Since it's impossible for God to lie, and God lives forever, how great is this promise? It has, has been and will be continuously be fulfilled!

"…'By Myself have I sworn,' says the LORD, 'because you have done this thing, and have not withheld your son, your only son; that in blessing I will bless you, and in multiplying I will multiply your seed like the stars of the heavens, and as the sand, which is upon the seashore….'" (vs 16-17).

When we're resurrected, what are we going to look like? We covered that on Pentecost. Jesus said that 'the righteous shall shine as the sun in the Kingdom of their Father.' That's a tremendous thing to understand. Those words of Christ are as true as these words right here:

"…and as the sand, which is upon the seashore…" (v 17)—the children of Israel!

Note book: America and Britain in Prophecy by Philip Neal—get it because it is active today!

"…And your seed shall possess the gate of his enemies. And in your seed shall all the nations of the earth be blessed, because you have obeyed My voice" (vs 17-18). That's the key thing in everything we have—obeying the voice of God!

Genesis 26:2: "And the LORD appeared to him [Isaac] …and said, 'Do not go down into Egypt. Live in the land, which I shall tell you of. Stay in this land, and I will be with you and bless you…'" (vs 2-3).

That's the most important thing we need in our lives: God being our God, we being His people, and He being with us! How is God with us today, those of us who are converted with the Holy Spirit of God? That they both dwell within us (John 14) because:

  • we love God
  • we love Jesus Christ
  • we love God's way

They dwell here within us to fulfill and carry out Their plan, of which the Feast of Tabernacles, as we will see through the Feast, is a tremendous fulfillment of the plan of God.

"…for to you and to your seed, I will give all these lands; and I will establish the oath, which I swore to Abraham your father. And I will multiply your seed as the stars of the heavens and will give to your seed all these lands. And in your seed shall all the nations of the earth be blessed" (vs 3-4).

Notice v 5 and how important one man is: "Because Abraham obeyed My voice and kept My charge, My commandments, My statutes, and My laws." Doesn't sound a little like a preview of Psa. 119?

Let's go on and see what it's going to be all about with the children of Israel. Exo. 20 is where God gave the Ten Commandments. This was the only time in the history of the whole world where that many people, though they were at the base of Mt. Sinai…. God came down in His glory on top of Mt. Sinai, and the top of the mountain smoked, there was an earthquake, and there was a trumpet blasting loud and long. Then all of a sudden God spoke and gave the Ten Commandments.

These commandments were in effect for well over 2,500 years, from creation to this point. But Israel had lost all knowledge of God being slaves in Egypt. God brought them out. He wanted them to be His people. But just like with Adam and Eve, they had to obey! There were laws that were given. You know all the Ten Commandments—don't you? Do you have the long version memorized? You might try that!

After hearing that, the people were so afraid. It was day in which they were just absolutely stunned with the power of God. They came to Moses:

Exodus 20:18: "And all the people saw the thunderings, and the lightnings, and the sound of the trumpet, and the mountain smoking. And when the people saw, they trembled and stood afar off.  And they said to Moses, 'You speak with us, and we will hear. But let not God speak with us, lest we die'" (vs 18-19).

A man between God and the people! Today we don't have anyone between us and God individually. That is called grace!

Verse 20: "And Moses said to the people, 'Do not fear…'"

Then Moses went up the mountain and had other things given to him (Exo. 21-23). He came back down, the covenant was made! God always has a witness, and that witness is always profound.

Exodus 24:1: "And He said to Moses, 'Come up to the LORD, you and Aaron, Nadab, and Abihu, and seventy of the elders of Israel, and worship afar off. And Moses alone shall come near the LORD, but they shall not come near. Neither shall the people go up with him.' And Moses came and told the people all the words of the LORD, and all the judgments. And all the people answered with one voice and said…" (vs 1-3),

Notice, this similar to what happens in baptism. Are you willing to obey God in everything? And love Him with all your heart, mind, soul and being? Yes!

"…'All the words which the LORD has said, we will do'" (v 3).

God doesn't want anything by word or mouth. That's why we have the Bible today.

Verse 4: "And Moses wrote all the words of the LORD, and rose up early in the morning, and built an altar at the base of the mountain and twelve pillars according to the twelve tribes of Israel. And he sent young men of the children of Israel who offered burnt offerings, and sacrificed peace offerings of bullocks to the LORD. And Moses took half of the blood, and put it in basins, and half of the blood he sprinkled on the altar. And he took the Book of the Covenant, and read in the ears of the people. And they said, 'All that the LORD has said we will do, and be obedient'" (vs 4-7). Again!

Remember how it was when you were baptized. Very similar! They all went up and saw everything there. And there was a Sea of Glass, and God was on the Sea of Glass:

Verse 9: "And Moses went up, and Aaron, Nadab, and Abihu, and seventy of the elders of Israel. And they saw the God of Israel…. [not in His full glory, because no man can be in the presence of God and live] …And there was under His feet as it were a paved work of a sapphire stone, and as it were the heavens in clearness. And upon the nobles of the children of Israel He did not lay his hands. Also they saw God, and ate and drank. And the LORD said to Moses, 'Come up to Me in the mountain…'" (vs 9-12).

And the first thing God instructed Moses to do was to build a tabernacle. Why? That has a lot to do with the Feast of Tabernacles!

Exodus 25:8: "And let them make Me a sanctuary so that I may dwell among them." Think about that! That was the whole purpose in it.

What happened after that? Well, Moses was up there such a long time that the people wondered what happened to Moses. 'We don't know.' Remember that they had 70 of the elders of Israel who saw God. They had Aaron, Nadab and Abihu who saw God. So, they should have said:

Moses is up there receiving more instructions from God. Why don't you be patient and wait and Moses will be back.

He was up there 40 days and 40 nights getting all of these instructions. But the people couldn't wait, so we know what they did: they built a golden calf! Actually, who built it? Aaron built it! It makes you wonder what Aaron was doing in Egypt.

Here is the thing that is so ironic about this section right here. The commands that God gave were the commands for the Sabbaths—plural—and that keeping the Sabbaths of God—like we saw in Lev. 23—was a sign between God and the people, that they were His people and He was their God! But they couldn't wait, so the people came to Aaron and said, 'Up! Make us gods!'

Aaron, Nadab and Abihu after seeing God should have said, 'Look, we saw God. Don't come up here and tell us to make gods.' But they did make it, and caused them to sin! It was so bad, just terrible what they did, it caused the death of a lot of people. From that time forward the special tabernacle of meeting with Moses and God was removed outside the camp. God was not dwelling among them!

Let's see the whole purpose of what God wants. Remember, God gives blessings and He gives cursings. He gives blessings for loving and obeying, and there are penalties for disobeying and rejecting God, which are called curses. God has created them and set them in motion so that they happen automatically.

If you love God and live by His way, He will bless you automatically. Not all at once, not too much to spoil you. That's what's wrong with the Laodiceans today; they have so many physical things that they put that ahead of God. All the physical things come from God, and if you are blessed, don't get lifted up and say, 'Look at what God has done for us,' because He can take it away with a snap, just like that!

Leviticus 26:1: "You shall make no idols to yourselves; and you shall not set up for yourselves graven images, or a standing pillar. And you shall not set up any image of stone in your land in order to bow down to it, for I am the LORD your God"—based on the first and second commandments!

Verse 2: "You shall keep My Sabbaths…"—plural—the weekly, the Passover and all the Sabbaths of God.

"…and reverence My sanctuary. I am the LORD" (v 2)—think about that for a minute!

We today, through the grace of God—and this is the greatest grace possible—we can have direct contact through prayer with God the Father Himself and Jesus Christ. Think about what an awesome promise that is.

One man asked me how far away from me is God? I said, 'As close is the ground is to your knees!' so, if you get on your knees and pray to God, He hears! He delights in the prayers of the saints. That's why when we pray, love God and serve, we don't have the pretentiousness, the vanity and all of the arrogance of overlording over the brethren, because they are the children of God!

Verse 3: "If you walk in My statutes and keep My commandments and do them, then I will give you rain in due season, and the land shall yield her increase, and the trees of the field shall yield their fruit. And your threshing shall reach to the vintage, and the vintage shall reach to the sowing time. And you shall eat your bread to the full and dwell in your land safely" (vs 3-5).

Think about what it is today with the land, and how terrible that it is because we've gone against God.

Verse 6: "And I will give peace in the land, and you shall lie down and none shall make you afraid. And I will cause evil beasts to cease out of the land; neither shall the sword go through your land. And you shall chase your enemies, and they shall fall before you by the sword. And five of you shall chase a hundred, and a hundred of you shall put ten thousand to flight. And your enemies shall fall by the sword in front of you, for I will have respect to you, and make you fruitful, and multiply you, and establish My covenant with you. And you shall eat of the old provision, and clear away the old because of the new. And I will set My tabernacle among you. And My soul shall not abhor you" (vs 6-11).

This is the whole purpose of the Feast of Tabernacles, right here, v 12: "And I will walk among you and will be your God, and you shall be My people"

God dwelling with His people!

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Let's understand that God wants us to be His people, to be the children of God! In dealing with the children of Israel, and in this case the Jews in Jerusalem before destroying the city because of their sins, God gave them every opportunity. God gave them everything that they needed. He brought them into a wonderful land flowing with milk and honey; He gave them everything that they needed. We will see that God always offers an opportunity of repentance!

Jeremiah 11:1: "The word that came to Jeremiah from the LORD saying, 'Hear the words of this covenant, and speak to the men of Judah and to the people of Jerusalem. And say to them, "Thus says the LORD God of Israel'…" (vs 1-3).

Think about this in relationship to us. Theirs was in the letter of the Law. Ours is in the spirit of the Law. Theirs was for physical salvation and physical blessings and goodness. Ours are for spiritual blessings and eternal life. But the same thing applies.

Remember what Jesus said to those who came to Him saying, 'Lord, Lord…' He said, 'Why do you call Me Lord, Lord and do not the things that I command you.' We have the same thing here.

Verse 3: "And say to them, 'Thus says the LORD God of Israel, "Cursed is the man who does not obey the words of this covenant."'"

Think about the words of the New Covenant. Think of the problems that happen when people leave that and go astray. What is the ultimate punishment of anything like that? The Lake of Fire!

"…'Cursed is the man who does not obey the words of this covenant, which I commanded your fathers in the day that I brought them forth out of the land of Egypt, from the iron furnace, saying, "Obey My voice…"'" (vs 3-4). Remember those three words! Those are three simplest words in:

  • How do I understand the Bible?
  • How do I understand God?

Before we were ever thought of, God already provided His Word! How? Written so we would know!

God had everything of the Old Testament written; likewise with the New Testament. Just like men always do, they like to come along and think that they can improve on a perfect God. But the Word of God is so established that even the mistakes that they make and the deliberate perversion of the Word of God can be known. This is why we have The Holy Bible in Its Original Order to eliminate all of those things,

"…Obey My voice and do according to all that I command you; so you shall be My people, and I will be your God" (v 4).

A wonderful thing, indeed! That's what God wants! Then He gives the warning IF they don't! Let's see the same thing in Jer. 30, and then we will begin to see one of the things that is going to happen just before the beginning of the Millennium, that God is going to be bringing the people back, right after Satan is put away.

Jeremiah 30:18: "Thus says the LORD, 'Behold, I turn back the captivity of Jacob's tents… [right at the beginning of the Millennium] …and will have mercy on his dwelling places. And the city shall be built on her ruins, and the palace shall remain in its own place. And out of them shall come thanksgiving, and the voice of those who rejoice. And I will multiply them, and they shall not be few; I will also honor them, and they shall not be disdained. Also, their children shall be as they were before, and their congregation shall be established before Me, and I will punish all who oppress them" (vs 18-20). Let's see how all of this is going to be:

Verse 22: 'And you shall be My people, and I will be your God."

Jeremiah 31:1: "'At that time,' says the LORD, 'I will be the God of all the families of Israel…'" We're going to Expand way beyond that when we understand what God is doing in the New Covenant.

"'…and they shall be My people.' Thus says the LORD, 'The people who were left of the sword found grace in the wilderness; even Israel, when I will go to give him rest.'…. [the Millennium] …The LORD has appeared to me from afar, saying, 'Yea, I have loved you with an everlasting love…'" (vs 1-3).

Sidebar: God's love is everlasting! However, it is not unconditional and never has been unconditional. Otherwise, there would be no need for the word if in the Bible.

"…therefore, with loving kindness I have drawn you. Again, I will build you…" (vs 3-4). But:

  • God can't do it until there is the Church
  • God cannot do it until those who are of the people of God today

What is it that we are to seek? Matt. 6 tells us what we are to do, all the way through the Gospels. This becomes important in every way.

Matthew 6:33: "But as for you, seek first the Kingdom of God…"—because it is the Kingdom that Christ is going to bring, and the Kingdom of God is going to rule!

It is going to reign! It is going to bring peace, blessing, goodness and righteousness to the whole world! That's why we are to seek it first! The very first thing in our lives!

"…and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you" (v 33).

This is quite a tremendous thing, and we'll look at some other places so that we understand what God is doing and how He's doing it. It's going to be a tremendous thing! There can be nothing greater than the Kingdom of God on earth, restoring everything having peace, prosperity, thanksgiving, love, kindness, goodness and obedience, all for a thousand years!

Revelation 20:4: "And I saw thrones; and they that sat upon them, and judgment was given to them…"

We are going to rule with Christ! We are going to be:

  • judges
  • priests
  • kings
  • city administrators

So, when you look at it, we're all in training to take over the world and to bring:

  • God's way
  • His Truth
  • His salvation
  • His government

to the world, God's way! That's fantastic when you understand it.

"…and I saw the souls of those who had been beheaded for the testimony of Jesus, and for the Word of God, and those who did not worship the beast or his image, and did not receive the mark in their foreheads or in their hands; and they lived and reigned with Christ a thousand years" (vs 3-4).

Now, here's a parenthetical statement, because people always say, 'What about the rest of the world?' The truth is, God hasn't forgotten the rest of the world! But the rest of the world, and all of those who lived prior to the return of Christ has something else special for them, which we will cover on the Last Great Day. But we'll have a little preview of it right here:

Verse 5: "(But the rest of the dead did not live again until the thousand years were completed.)…." That's an amazing thing! To live again for those who knew nothing of God, to be given a second physical life! That, brethren, is one of the greatest secrets in the Bible! We'll cover that at the end of the Feast. But let's see the beginning:

"…This is the first resurrection. Blessed and Holy is the one who has part in the first resurrection…" (vs 5-6). Blessed and Holy are characteristics of God!

"…over these the second death has no power. But they shall be priests of God and of Christ, and shall reign with Him a thousand years" (v 6).

Now then, in order for that to happen, we've got to be growing and overcoming. We have got to, right now, do the things that God wants us to do. There's quite a bit for us in 1-Pet. that we are to learn, and we also will see what Peter calls us.

This is why baptism after repentance and the laying on of hands, is so important, so that you receive the Spirit of God, the begettal from the Father! With that we are to grow in grace and knowledge, we are to have, as Paul wrote in Heb. 10, the laws and commandments of God inscribed in our minds and written in our hearts. We are to love God, obey His voice and keep His commandments. Let's see how Peter explains it.

  • yes, we have trials
  • yes, we have difficulties
  • yes, we have things that seem almost impossible

All of those are tests to see:

  • if we love God
  • if we are faithful
  • if we are obedient

that we don't be like the children of Israel and give up on God, reject God and go back to Satan's way! Because the whole world today is deceived by Satan the devil, without a doubt, except those who are faithful to God!And God knows where they are!

1-Peter 1:1: "Peter, an apostle of Jesus Christ, to the elect strangers…"—those who are selected!

Think about that! Who are we, that we are anything? We're nothing! Always remember: we came from a speck of dust so small that you need a microscope to see the smallest thing possible! Micro means the smallest and scope means to see. Yet, look at us, here we are! The only way we can be anything is to be faithful to God.

"…scattered in Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia, and Bithynia…" This was written when Peter was no longer in the area, because that was Peter's territory.

Verse 2: "Who have been chosen..." Think about that for a minute!

Next time you have trial and you wonder why you have to go through it. It's because God has chosen you, and when you get to the other side if the trial and you look back at it, and you learn the lessons of it, you will see why God did it!

"…according to the predetermined knowledge of God the Father, by sanctification through the Spirit, unto obedience and sprinkling of the blood of Jesus Christ: Grace and peace be multiplied to you" (v 2)

That's what it's going to be here with the Feast of Tabernacles.

Verse 3: "Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, Who, according to His abundant mercy, has begotten us again…"

With the Holy Spirit that we have, that's the earnest of the Holy Spirit of God for eternal life! Eternal life will be granted to all of those who have the Spirit of God at the first resurrection!

"…unto a living hope…" (v 3). Jesus said, 'I am the Way, the Truth and the Life.'

  • the Way is God's Way!
  • the Truth is God's Truth!
  • the Life is eternal life!

"…through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead; unto an inheritance incorruptible…" (vs 3-4). Something that no man, no person, can take, rob, steal or remove from us!

"…and undefiled and unfading, reserved in heaven for us…. [because it will come when Christ comes] …Who are being safeguarded by the power of God through faith…" (vs 4-5).

God is watching over every one of us. The Spirit of God is dwelling in us, and that's the power of the Father and the Son combined together (John 14).

"…for salvation that is ready to be revealed in the last time" (v 5). They thought that they were living in the last time, but little did they know how much time was left. God's plan was far greater than they ever understood. They understood a lot, but not like we have it today.

Verse 6: "In this you yourselves greatly rejoice; though for the present, if it is necessary,you are in distress for a little while by various trials… [that happens, and here's the reason]: …in order that the proving of your faith, which is much more precious than gold that perishes, though it is being tested by fire, may be found unto praise and honor and glory at the revelation of Jesus Christ" (vs 6-7).

We're going to have those things. This is all part of being the sons and daughter's of God, the people of God.

Verse 8: "Whom, not having seen, you love… [we do] …in Whom, though at the present time you do not see Him, you believe, and rejoice with unspeakable joy, and filled with glory; and are receiving the end of your faith—even the salvation of your lives; concerning which salvation the prophets who prophesied of the grace that would come to you have diligently searched out and intently inquired" (vs 8-10).

But God never revealed it to them because it wasn't time. Just like He told Daniel.

Verse 11: "Searching into what way and what manner of time the Spirit of Christ which was in them was indicating, testifying beforehand of the sufferings of Christ, and these glories that would follow; to whom it was revealed that, not for themselves, but to us they were ministering these things, which now have been announced to you by those who have preached the Gospel to you by the Holy Spirit, sent from heaven—into which things the angels desire to look" (vs 11-12).

That's something! A plan of God so great that it's even difficult for the angels to understand. So, here's what we are to do so that we can enter into the Kingdom of God and we can rule with Christ.

Verse 13: "For this reason, be prepared in your minds, be self-controlled, and be fully hoping in the grace that will be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ. As obedient children, do not conform yourselves to the former lusts, as you did in your ignorance. But according as He Who has called you is Holy, you yourselves also be Holy in all your conduct" (vs 13-15).

That's the purpose of what God wants us to do now. That's why we come together at the Feast of Tabernacles, so we can:

  • fellowship together
  • learn more of the Word of God
  • understand the things of God
  • understand what we're going to do
  • understand how we're going to do it
  • receive the blessings of God
  • understand what kind of world we're going to bring

It's going to be a fantastic thing! I want you to understand something that's very important:

  • not because of anything 'good' that we do
  • not because we're important of ourselves

though we're all important to God, because God has:

  • called us
  • chosen us
  • selected us

That is true!

1-Peter 2:9: "But you are a chosen stock, a royal priesthood, a Holy nation… [not yet formed; we'll be formed at the resurrection] …a people for a possession of God, that you might proclaim His excellent virtues, Who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light."

Notice v 10, it is so true with all of us. God has called us, and you look at the calling that we have there in 1-Cor. 1. He didn't call the mighty, He didn't call the rich, He didn't call those who are important in the world. He called:

  • the weak
  • the lowly
  • what the world counts as nothing

so that when Christ returns, we can bring to nothing all the things that the world thinks is important under Satan the devil!

Verse 10: "Who once were not a people, but now are the people of God…" IF you love God He will be our God and we will be His people, and He will dwell among us!

In the New Testament He dwells in us! After the resurrection we will dwell with Him! See the whole progression there; that's quite amazing!

"…who had not received mercy, but now have received mercy" (v 10). That's quite a thing right there for us to understand!

Let's see what God is going to do and how He's going to do it. Let's see that to be the people of God applies to all races, all nations, all people out of whom God calls those who truly love Him and repent.

Romans 9:23: "In order that He might make known the riches of His glory unto the vessels of mercy… [that's us] …which He prepared before for glory, those of us whom He also called, not from among the Jews only, but also from among the Gentiles. Accordingly, He also said in Hosea, 'I will call those who are not My people, "My people," and those who were not beloved, "Beloved."'" (vs 23-25). Think about that! Beloved of God!

When you read the Epistle of James, he talks all the way through there: beloved, beloved, beloved! What was Jesus called, 'My Beloved Son in Whom I have great delight.'

Let's see what Paul wrote to the Thessalonians; 1-Thessalonians 2:9: "For you remember, brethren, our labor and our toil; for we were working night and day so as not to be a burden to anyone among you, while we proclaimed the Gospel of God. You are witnesses, and also God, how holily and righteously and blamelessly we conducted ourselves with you who believe; even as you know how we were exhorting and consoling each one of you, as a father does his own children, and earnestly testifying, that you may walk worthily of God, Who is calling you to His own kingdom and glory" (vs 9-12). That's why we're here; we are here:

  • to fulfill the way of God
  • to learn the way of God
  • to prepare to rule the world

That's quite a thing, and Paul was telling them about that.

Verse 13: "Because of this, we give thanks to God without ceasing: that when you received the Word of God, which you heard from us, you did not accept it as the word of men, but even as it is in truth—the Word of God, which is also working in you who believe"—exhorting them on how to stay close to God!

For those Gentiles, remember, it's totally different than with the Jews. The Jews had the Word of God. When the Church[transcriber's correction] started on the Day of Pentecost after the preaching of the Gospel by Christ, then the apostles preached to the Jews exclusively for 12 years before God began to bring in the Gentiles. That started with Cornelius and his household (Acts 10). That was quite a fantastic thing that occurred, because God made all of us after His image. All of those whom He calls will be in the Kingdom of God IF we're faithful to the end.

Here's what it is; we're going to rule and reign with Christ, and what thing that's going to be to bring peace to this whole world. Let's see that in 2-Tim. 2 that there's a guarantee, and we will fill in all the missing parts of what we're going to do in the Millennium as we go through the Feast of Tabernacles.

2-Timothy 2:11: "This is a faithful saying: If we have died together with Him…" How do we die together with Christ? Through baptism, growing, overcoming and developing the character of God!

"…we shall also live together with Him; if we endure, we shall also reign together with Him; if we deny Him, He will also deny us" (vs 11-12).

Psa. 145—this is quite a tremendous Psalm about the Kingdom of God, and we're the ones who are going to receive all the blessings of the Kingdom of God. That's a tremendous thing, brethren!

Psalm 145:10: "All Your works shall praise You, O LORD; and Your saints shall bless You." That's us! Never will we ever stop worshipping Christ an the Father. Never will we go back on anything.

Verse 11: "They shall speak of the glory of Your kingdom and talk of Your power, to make known to the sons of men His mighty acts, and the glorious majesty of His Kingdom. Your Kingdom is an everlasting kingdom, and Your dominion endures throughout all generations" (vs 11-13)—an everlasting Kingdom!

It says that God inhabits eternity. When we are spirit beings, we are going to inhabit eternity. We'll be living in eternity! Everything is going to be completely different.

Here's what we are to do, and this is why we're here at the Feast of Tabernacles:

Luke 12:31: "But seek the Kingdom of God… [first (Matt. 6)] …and all these things shall be added to you. Do not be afraid, little flock…" (vs 31-32).

As this world looks at us, we are little! But God is looking to what we shall be so that we can overcome to do what He wants us to do.

"…for your Father delights in giving you the Kingdom" (v 32). That's quite a thing to understand, to have the Kingdom of God given to the saints of God!

Be back tomorrow and we're going to learn more of God's way and how great the Feast of Tabernacles is going to be for us and for the world!

Scriptural References:

  • Leviticus 23:33-38
  • Deuteronomy 16:16-17
  • Deuteronomy 29:29
  • Genesis 2:16-17
  • Genesis 12:1-3
  • Genesis 22:11-18
  • Genesis 26:1-5
  • Exodus 20:18-20
  • Exodus 24:1-7, 9-12
  • Exodus 25:8
  • Leviticus 26:1-12
  • Jeremiah 11:1-4
  • Jeremiah 30:18-20, 22
  • Jeremiah 31:1-4
  • Matthew 6:33
  • Revelation 20:4-6
  • 1 Peter 1:1-15
  • 1 Peter 2:9-10
  • Romans 9:23-25
  • 1 Thessalonians 2:9-13
  • 2 Timothy 2:1-12
  • Psalm 145:10-13
  • Luke 12:31-32

Scriptures referenced, not quoted:

  • Numbers 29
  • 2 Timothy 1:9
  • Genesis 15
  • Hebrews 11
  • John 14
  • Psalm 119
  • Exodus 21-23; 31
  • Hebrews 10
  • 1 Corinthians 1
  • Acts 10
  • Matthew 6

Also referenced: Book:
            America and Britain in Prophecy by Philip Neal

Transcribed: 7/21/19

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