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The Rapture in the Light of Tabernacles

The resurrection is the fulfillment of the Feast of Trumpets, and the "catching away" of the saints is the fulfillment of the Feast of Tabernacles. Since most teaching on the "Rapture" does not take the Biblical feast days into account, this is a very valuable and different study.

Category - Short Book

Chapter 6

The Feasts in Jacob's Life

Before moving on to explain the Feast of Tabernacles and its fulfillment in the time of Christ's coming, let us look one more time at the Old Testament types and shadows to glean more insights on the Feast of Trumpets.

Israel's feast days, of course, were meant to commemorate the main events of Israel's journey from Egypt to Canaan.

Passover: The Exodus from Egypt (Ex. 12, 13)

Wave Sheaf Offering: Crossing the Red Sea (Ex. 14)

Pentecost: Giving the Law at Sinai (Ex. 20)

Trumpets: Building the Silver Trumpets (Num. 10)

Atonement: The Twelve Spies give an Evil Report (Num. 13)

Tabernacles: The Day Israel was Supposed to Enter Canaan, but did not (Num. 14).

Yet there is a previous feast-day pattern inherent in the story of Jacob-Israel a few centuries prior to the exodus of his descendants. Jacob himself made a journey to Haran, and each of the major events of his journey also prefigured these same feast days.

Passover: Jacob's journey began at Beer-sheba, the "well of the oath" (Gen. 28:10). The place was named after Isaac (representing Christ) made a peace covenant and an oath with the Philistine king (Abimelech) in Gen. 26:26-33. This was a type of the New Covenant, which Christ made with the world at the Cross when He fulfilled the feast of Passover.

Wave-sheaf Offering: The Bible is silent about this, but the book of Jasher tells us that Jacob was robbed by Eliphaz, son of Esau-Edom, on his way to Bethel. Eliphaz was supposed to kill him, but settled for the wealth that was supposed to be for Jacob's dowry when he found a wife in Haran (Gen. 28:2). The biblical dowry was paid by the man's father, not the woman's father.

The only biblical evidence of this robbery is the fact that Jacob was sent to obtain a wife, but by the time he arrived in Haran, he had no money. Surely his father would not have sent him to Haran with no money for the customary dowry. But since he had nothing, he had to work for his uncle for fourteen years as a substitute for the dowry in order to marry Leah and Rachel.

The robber, Eliphaz, was an Edomite. Edom means "red." It foreshadowed Israel’s Red Sea experience many years later.

Pentecost: Jacob stopped at Bethel, where he had a dream of angels ascending and descending upon him. He then anointed the stone used for his pillow and made a vow (Gen. 28:20). Years later, Israel saw the descent of God upon Sinai, and they made a vow to God (Ex. 19:4-8).

This ended the first set of feast days in the Spring. Jacob's stay in Haran separates the two sets of feasts. The pattern begins again when Jacob returns to Canaan. Meanwhile, he had married Leah and Rachel, but because he had no dowry, he had to work seven years for each of them.

Trumpets: As Jacob approached Canaan, "the angels of God met him" (Gen. 32:1). He called the place Mahanaim, which means "two camps" or "two companies." It is here that he learned that Esau was coming with 400 men to kill him (32:6). Out of fear, Jacob divided his family and cattle into two camps (32:7). He then prayed for deliverance.

According to the book of Jasher, the angels of God met Esau also, appearing to him in three companies of horsemen, each having 2,000 warriors. Needless to say, by the time Esau reached Jacob, he had become quite friendly.

The point to remember, however, is the fact that Jacob's family was divided into two companies, or camps. This speaks of the Feast of Trumpets, where the believers will be divided into two companies: the congregation (church) and the rulers (overcomers). They are also represented by Leah and Rachel, the two wives of Jacob, for Leah had weak eyes, while Rachel was beautiful (Gen. 29:17).

Leah produced the most children, even as the Church is in the majority. Though she was a lawful wife, she did not have a love relationship with Jacob. This foreshadows those believers who are Christians only because they are afraid of burning in hell forever. Their love is not yet perfected, for they are still afraid of God. "Perfect love casts out fear" (1 John 4:18).

Rachel, the beloved wife, produced the fewest children, but her son, Joseph, was the inheritor of the birthright. Joseph represents the overcomers.

And so, the two companies at Mahanaim show us the type and shadow of the Feast of Trumpets and the fact that on this day the overcomers will be raised out from among the dead. The first resurrection will divide people into two camps. For this reason, the apostle Paul said in Phil. 3:11, "in order that I may attain to the out-resurrection from among the dead” [ek-anastasis ek nekron].

The usual word for resurrection is anastasis, as used in the previous verse. But verse 11 uses the Greek word, ek-anastasis, which literally means the "out-from-resurrection." In The Companion Bible, Bullinger comments on this, saying,

"Resurrection from the dead (ek nekron) implies the resurrection of some, the former of these two classes, the others being left behind."

In other words, Paul was speaking of a resurrection of SOME, not of all. He longed for the first resurrection, which was not yet assured to him. Hence, he immediately says in the next verse, "Not that I have already obtained it, or have already become perfect." In verse 13, he again says, "Brethren, I do not regard myself as having laid hold of it yet."

In verse 14 Paul speaks of it as being "the high calling of God." Paul was not speaking of his justification by faith. He had been justified on the road to Damascus and sanctified by the Spirit through the ministry of Ananias a few days later. His goal, however, was the prize of the high calling of God, which was the first resurrection out from among (the rest of) the dead.

And so, Mahanaim speaks of the feast of Trumpets and the first resurrection, when God separates His people into two camps: rulers and congregation. The rulers are gathered by a single trumpet; the congregation is gathered by the sound of both trumpets.

Also, Jasher's account of the angels of God confronting Esau-Edom at this time may be an indication of the destruction of Jerusalem on the Feast of Trumpets. In the destructions by Babylon and Rome, Jerusalem was destroyed on the 9th of Av. But the final time appears to be set for the first of Tishri (Trumpets).

Day of Atonement: Jacob wrestled with the angel in Gen. 32. This day is also the Jubilee. Because there are now two camps, there must be two differing fulfillments of these feasts. The Church will fulfill this feast as a time of repentance and mourning, as the five foolish virgins. The Overcomers will celebrate a Jubilee in a time of jubilation and rejoicing, as the five wise virgins.

Jacob's name was changed to Israel at this time. Even so, the Overcomers will receive their new name to fulfill the Jubilee. While the Feast of Trumpets represents the call to go meet the Bridegroom, the Jubilee represents the time when the foolish virgins return with the oil of truth and find the door to immortality shut to them for a thousand years.

Tabernacles (Succoth): After wrestling with the angel, Jacob crossed the Jordan and camped in Succoth, "booths, tabernacles" (Gen. 33:17).

17 And Jacob journeyed to Succoth, and built for himself a house, and made booths for his livestock, therefore the place is named Succoth.

Again, we see two fulfillments at Succoth. A fixed house for Jacob; and booths (temporary structures) for the livestock. This type is pictured also in the difference between Moses' tabernacle (tent) and Solomon's temple (house). Like Israel in the wilderness, the Church will have to learn to dwell in booths in order to learn how to live in the light of Succoth, the Feast of Tabernacles, or Booths.

They will learn this in the thousand-year Tabernacles Age that lies ahead.