Nepaug Bible Church - http://www.nepaugchurch.org - Pastor's Prayer Meeting Lesson Notes - http://www.nepaugchurch.org/pm/pm20080611.htm
THRU THE BIBLE EXPOSITION
Leviticus: Fellowship With A Holy God
Part III: Acceptable Living Before A Holy God, Leviticus 11:1-27:34
M. Honoring God's Great Works In History
7. Honoring God's Coming Messianic Kingdom
Lesson: The Feast of Tabernacles, or of Booths, predicts the coming agricultural bounty for the world that will spring from spiritual restoration of the world's peoples under Christ in the messianic kingdom.
- As premillennialists, we hold that after Christ returns at His Second Coming and Israel repents to accept Him as Messiah and Lord, the thousand year messianic reign of Christ will commence, Revelation 20:4-5.
- However, postmillennialists hold there is no such literal thousand year kingdom, but that it figuratively refers to the Church era, and amillennialists hold it figuratively refers to the eternal state, meaning in either case that the Church is to establish Christ' government over the earth versus simply making disciples like we do. (cf. John F. Walvoord, The Blessed Hope and The Tribulation, 1976, p. 13-14)
- Nevertheless, the Feast of Tabernacles prophetically asserts the premillennial view and its ministry focus:
- Honoring God's Coming Messianic Kingdom, Leviticus 23:33-44.
- We learned in this series that the feast of Trumpets predicts Israel's regathering under God into the Promised Land, and the Day of Atonement that follows predicts Israel's repentance toward Christ.
- Hence, the seventh and final feast of Leviticus 23, the Feast of Tabernacles (or Booths) prophetically anticipates the coming literal, earthly, messianic , thousand year reign of Christ (as follows):
- Similar to the seven days of the Feast of Unleavened Bread that we learned predicts the Christian's holy walk after he believes in Christ (Lev. 23:6-8 with 1 Cor. 5:7-8), the Feast of Tabernacles was observed for eight days, with the first and last days likewise being Sabbath Days, cf. Lev. 23:33-36; 23:7-8.
- Thus, as the Days of Unleavened Bread prefigured a holy walk in the Christian era, the Feast of Tabernacles held months later predicted another holy walk in A LATER era, the messianic kingdom!
- The Feast of Tabernacles originally recalled how God had caused Israel to dwell in booths when they left Egypt, Lev. 23:43. Hence, the directive for the people to dwell in shelters as He cared for them in their journey, Lev. 23:40. However, in the kingdom, the booths will point to another divine provision: "they shall sit every man under his vine and under his fig tree; and none shall make them afraid: for the mouth of the Lord of hosts hath spoken it," Micah 4:4; J. Vernon McGee, Thru The Bible, v. I, p. 432.
- Indeed, this Feast of Tabernacles will specifically be required to be celebrated of the Gentile nations; if they fail to keep it, neglecting to come up to Jerusalem to worship the Lord at this feast, God will cause them to have no rain to their agricultural harm, Zechariah 14:16-18; Ibid.
- Commemorating God's rich bounty of spiritual and resulting agricultural blessings, the total number of sacrifices required during this special time of feasting numbered 189 animals, Ryrie Study Bible, KJV, 1978 ed., ftn. to Lev. 23:34-43 (citing Numbers 29:12-38). This feast came at the autumn harvest time when fruits and olives were harvested, so ample bounty was available to celebrate this feast throughout Israel's history, and its celebration appropriately anticipates the coming agricultural bounty of the millennial kingdom of Christ as described in Amos 9:11-15 (as follows):
- In the messianic age when God raises up the fallen tabernacle of the Davidic kingdom (9:11), the plowman will overtake the reaper, and the treader of grapes at harvest will overtake him who sows the seed for the next crop, meaning that crops will be raised all year round, Amos 9:13a.
- Even the tops of the hills will lavishly produce grapes, something unknown today, Amos 9:13b.
- In that era, Israel's crops will not be raided by invaders as before [Judges 6:3-6]; she will return to build up the destroyed cities to dwell in them, and partake of the agricultural bounty around those restored cities with no one bothering her or causing her to fear invasion or destruction, Am. 9:14-15.
Application: May we CHRISTIANS NOT try to set up God's messianic government on the earth like posttribulationists or amillennialists suggest, but, as premillennialists, may we disciple men to be His subjects for Christ's FUTURE MESSIANIC kingdom that He will set up at His SECOND COMING.