Now the Jews’ Feast of Tabernacles was at hand.
It was common for every male in Israel to go up to Jerusalem for Sukkot, which is one of the 3 main biblical feasts God commanded His people to go up to Jerusalem for.
When Yeshua’s brethren came to Him and told Him it was time to go up to Jerusalem for the feast. He told them to go ahead without Him, and later He would also come, but in secret.
But when His brothers had gone up, then He also went up to the feast, not openly, but as it were in secret.
In continuation to this verse, we can see that rabbis and Jewish leaders were looking for Yeshua in Jerusalem because they knew He was there in Jerusalem for every feast without fail. This time however He wasn’t there.
Now about the middle of the feast Jesus went up into the temple and taught.
We know that Sukkot is celebrated for 7 whole days. So Yeshua kept His presence a secret until the middle of the Feast when He presented Himself in the temple and began to teach.
John goes on to give us a fascinating account of what Yeshua taught here in Jerusalem regarding the Feast of Tabernacles. The most powerful and prophetic message of Sukkot was actually given to us by Yeshua Himself that is transforming our lives even today.
On the last day, that great day of the feast (of Tabernacles), Jesus stood and cried out, saying, “If anyone thirsts, let him come to Me and drink. He who believes in Me, as the Scripture has said, out of his heart will flow rivers of living water.
It’s interesting to note that during the “last great day of the feast” — Sukkot in Jerusalem until today, people gather and pray for rain. One of Israel’s more valuable necessities, and the scarcest, is rain. Today we have various sources of water, such as the lake of Galilee, desalinated seawater, etc., but in the time of Yeshua people of Israel depended on rain as their only source of water.
Praying for rain during the last day of the great Feast of Tabernacles was something that was taken very seriously, because it was crucial for God to send rain, without which the Land could not survive.
The ceremony of praying for rain was monumental; hundreds of thousands of people would join in that elaborate ceremony which culminated with the pouring of water over the altar. At that moment, when the entire nation was united in their prayer for rain, pouring bucketfuls of water over the altar, so much so, that channels of water would form and flow from the altar onto the streets of Jerusalem.
In that moment is when Yeshua said: “If anyone thirsts, let him come to Me and drink.”
There is no other water source aside from Yeshua that can give man life. Only Him! Our faith in Yeshua turns us into a vessel that carries living water.
Yeshua then went on to speak about the Holy Spirit that He would send to His disciples.
That is the powerful illustration given by Yeshua Himself of the great Feast of Tabernacles. It’s about the Holy Spirit in us giving us life from within, and we become a source of living water for the world around us. Not only receiving salvation from the Lord, but also spreading it to others around us, along with the message of His Kingdom.
During this beautiful Feast of Sukkot, I encourage you to think of your neighbors, remembering who you are in Christ, and share His life with everyone around you.
That is the ultimate message of Yeshua for this glorious Feast of Tabernacles.
Beit Hallel is a Messianic Jewish congregation in Ashdod, led by pastor Israel Pochtar, serving holocaust survivors and the poor and needy locally and throughout the nation of Israel, while building up the body of Messiah in the promised land of Israel.