Fall Feasts

 
Rosh Hashanah marks the traditional start of the Jewish New Year and the period known as the "High Holy Days." Yom Kippur, or the "Day of Atonement" occurs ten days later and traditionally is observed with a twenty-four hour fast. The crowning glory of the Fall Feasts is the Feast of Sukkot, or Tabernacles. These three Feasts of the Lord are rich with prophetic promise and meaning.

Rosh Hashanah

Rosh Hashana ChallahRosh Hashana marks the Jewish New Year and the start of what is often called the "High Holy Days," or "Days of Awe." Ten days after Rosh Hashana falls the Day of Atonement - Yom Kippur.

Rosh Hashana, also called the "Feast of Trumpets," is held in Jewish tradition as the day of creation, and marks a time of rebirth, and call to repentance, and divine judgment. The ram's horn, or shofar, has a prominent role in this feast.

Rosh Hashana in Hebrew literally means the "head (rosh) of the year (hashana)." A special round challah is baked for Rosh Hashana and is said to resemble a crown. Apples and honey are also enjoyed along with other sweets.

Yom Kippur

Also known as the "Day of Atonement" Yom Kippur is considered the most sacred day in the Jewish calendar by observant Jews. In a manner similar to Christians and church attendance for Easter, even many Jewish people who are not deeply religious will find their way to Temple on this very special day.

Yom Kippur is observed by many sects of modern Judaism with a 24 hour fast and prohibitions from work. In many cities in the northeast United States public schools and some colleges and universities are closed for this Jewish holiday. The service is a somber and introspective occassion.

Sukkot

Hananeel Sukkot - a tabernacle or "Sukka"Also referred to as the "Feast of Tabernacles" or "Booths," the feast of Sukkot is best known for the temporary structures that Jewish people erect and serve holiday meals in, during this week of thanksgiving and praise for God's provision. Scripture commands the Jewish people;

And ye shall take you on the first day the boughs of goodly trees, branches of palm trees, and the boughs of thick trees, and willows of the brook; and ye shall rejoice before the LORD your God seven days. And ye shall keep it a feast unto the LORD seven days in the year. It shall be a statute for ever in your generations: ye shall celebrate it in the seventh month.And ye shall keep it a feast unto the LORD seven days in the year. It shall be a statute for ever in your generations: ye shall celebrate it in the seventh month. Ye shall dwell in booths seven days; all that are Israelites born shall dwell in booths: That your generations may know that I made the children of Israel to dwell in booths, when I brought them out of the land of Egypt: I am the LORD your God. -- Leviticus 23:40-43

As a harvest feast, some call Sukkot, "Jewish Thanksgiving", but it is probably more appropriate to call the U.S. Thanksgiving holiday, "American Sukkot." The booths, or "sukkas" that are built as temporary dwellings for sukkot were undoubtedly referenced by the Apostle Paul in 2 Corinthians 5, "for we know that if our earthly house of this tabernacle were dissolved, we have a building of God, and house not made with hands."

Sharon Huckel has a CD available that focuses on the themes found in this very beautiful feast, called, appropriately, "Tabernacle."