This movie requires Flash Player 8. Download Flash Player 8

Issue Features
View this issue online as it looks in print
Discovery Magazine 11/1/2013

The Feast of Booths or Tabernacles

This seven-day feast took place during the seventh month of the Jewish calendar (our September to October). This third and final feast for the year had as its purpose to remember the wilderness wandering. Also called the feast of ingathering (Exodus 23:16; 34:22), it was a time for the people to express their joy for the completion of the harvests—which included their fruit trees, grain, and grapes.

The Hebrew term sukkahrefers to a temporary, fragile booth or shelter in which the Israelites lived when God brought them out of their slavery in Egypt (Leviticus 23:42-43). As they moved from place to place, they would build these portable mini-homes that gave them temporary shelter in the desert. After their arrival in the Promised Land, every year, God wanted the Israelites to be reminded of this fact by constructing booths in which to live for an entire week. Jews today who celebrate this feast often build a shelter in their backyard to remind them of the Israelites’ Exodus from Egypt, and the traveling hardships they endured.

God also wanted the Israelites to include four special items: “And you shall take for yourselves on the first day the fruit of beautiful trees, branches of palm trees, the boughs of leafy trees, and willows of the brook; and you shall rejoice before the LORD your God for seven days” (Leviticus 23:40). So today, Jews take a piece of fruit (to symbolize the fruit of the Promised Land), called an etrog (similar to a lemon), as well as a palm branch lulav that is wrapped with myrtle and willow branches. Once the Temple was built in Jerusalem, pilgrims would hold their lulavs and make a circular procession around the altar in the Temple courtyard. They would cry out to God the word hoshea-na (“Please save!”). We say "hosanna."

This fascinating feast looked forward to the day when the Son of God Himself approached Jerusalem sitting on a colt (suggesting royal honor). He was met by a crowd of excited worshippers (as a direct fulfillment of the kingly prophecy of Zechariah 9:9). Guess what they did. They waved the branches of palm trees, and some shouted: “Hosanna! Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord!” What an incredible scene! In a joyous, triumphant setting similar to the Feast of Tabernacles, with palm waving and littering the pathway, a group of people offered a heartfelt cry to God to bring salvation.

Copyright © 2013 Apologetics Press, Inc. All rights reserved.

*Please keep in mind that Discovery articles are written for 3rd-6th graders.

This document may be copied, on the condition that it will not be republished in print unless otherwise stated below, and will not be used for any commercial purpose, as long as the following stipulations are observed: (1) Apologetics Press must be designated as the original publisher; (2) the specific Apologetics Press Web site URL must be noted; (3) any references, footnotes, or endnotes that accompany the article must be included with any written reproduction of the article; (4) textual alterations of any kind are strictly forbidden; (5) Some illustrations (e.g., photographs, charts, graphics, etc.) are not the intellectual property of Apologetics Press and as such cannot be reproduced from our site without consent from the person or organization that maintains those intellectual rights; (6) serialization of written material (e.g., running an article in several parts) is permitted, as long as the whole of the material is made available, without editing, in a reasonable length of time; (7) articles, excepting brief quotations, may not be offered for sale or included in items offered for sale; and (8) articles may be reproduced in electronic form for posting on Web sites pending they are not edited or altered from their original written content and that credit is given to Apologetics Press, including the web location from which the articles were taken. Further, documents may not be copied without source statements (title, author, journal title), and the address of the publisher and owner of rights, as listed below.

For catalog, samples, or further information, contact:

Apologetics Press
230 Landmark Drive
Montgomery, Alabama 36117
Phone (334) 272-8558

Web Store

Defending the Faith Study Bible

We are very excited to announce the NEW AP Defending the Faith Study Bible now available.

Featured Audio


Click the following link to visit our Multimedia section.

Featured Audio