Tuesday, November 21, 2006


Happy Hag ha-Asif

Hag ha-Asif, Feast of Ingathering! Literally just opened the book yesterday and already, Thanksgiving has taken on a whole new meaning…deeper, more sacred, Divine. David Brickner brings to our narrow understanding of our faith and history, Christ in the Feast of Tabernacles.
Yes, Hag ha-Asif is past in the Jewish tradition and calendar, but Mr. Brickner offers a convincing argument that the Pilgrims, who surely knew Old and New Testament alike, were very much aware of this celebration of the final harvest! My, my, where have we been? I asked my husband how we could have missed this connection, as a body of believers. Are we that awful at passing on traditions? His answer, “The two faiths, Judaism and Christianity, have always been considered as separate.” True BUT supposing the Pilgrims DID get it! When did we lose it?
Anyway, ha-Hag, THE Feast, as it is sometimes called, happens two weeks after Rosh Hashanah. The Day of Atonement, Yom Kippur, is in between and the forgiven peoples are called to journey to Jerusalem for the daddy of all the feasts! Seven days of glorious celebration and worship! God, in His abundance and goodness, has provided. David Brickner points out the two pillars of the worship festival, God’s provision and God’s actual presence! The author is right on when he says that while surrounding peoples were cowering in fear and servitude to their gods, the Hebrew nation was rejoicing and dancing with the Creator of all mankind!
Tabernacle, sukkah, is the dwelling place of God. God will tabernacle with His people for all time in the future rendering of ha-Hag. That has always been the plan. In the Garden of Eden, He walked with Adam and Eve. They had lovely little chats with their Creator God, holy yet most intimate. The return of Messiah will be the ultimate Sukkah, God with us, protecting and providing for those who trust and rejoice in His salvation, FOREVER.
So, here I am, preparing for a journey. We will be worshipping with loved ones, a feast of Thanksgiving, or is that Sukkot (sue-KOTE). Even if God had not provided us with the ampleness to which we are accustomed, we would come together in our reliance on Him. (Grandma attested to that fact during the Great Depression.) The Pilgrims did worship during the hardship of their first meager ingathering. The little shelters or tabernacles that God commanded the Israelites to dwell in for seven days were a symbol of that dependence. We were never meant to be self-sufficient in this existence we call life. What a picture of humility and submission. Creator, Sustainer, Provider, Protector, we adore You! We thank You! Dance, sing, eat…watch football! Remember your God.
“God is the greatest history teacher of all time. Like any good historian, He
does not point us to the past out of some fixation for things that are over and
done. God established the Feasts of Israel so that by remembering His deeds from
the past, His people might recognize His rightful place in their lives today—and
look forward to His promises for the future.”
~David Brickner, Christ in the Feast of Tabernacles

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