Month 7:15, Week 2:7 (Shibi'i/Sukkot), Year:Day 5936:192 AM|
SUKKOT (1/7) SHABBAT
Gregorian Calendar: Sunday 30 September 2012
I. The River Within
"Then Yahweh spoke to Moses, saying, 'Speak to the children of Israel, saying: 'The fifteenth day of this seventh month shall be Sukkot (the Feast of Tabernacles) for seven days to Yahweh. On the first day there shall be a holy convocation. You shall do no customary work on it. For seven days you shall offer an offering made by fire to Yahweh. On the eighth day you shall have a qodesh (holy, set-apart) convocation, and you shall offer an offering made by fire to Yahweh. It is a sacred assembly, and you shall do no customary work on it...Also on the fifteenth day of the seventh month, when you have gathered in the fruit of the land, you shall keep the feast of Yahweh for seven days; on the first day there shall be a sabbath-rest, and on the eighth day a sabbath-rest. 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 Yahweh your Elohim (God) for seven days. You shall keep it as a feast to Yahweh for seven days in the year. It shall be a statute forever in your generations. You shall celebrate it in the seventh month. You shall dwell in booths for seven days. All who are native Israelites shall dwell in booths, that your generations may know that I made the children of Israel dwell in booths when I brought them out of the land of Egypt: I am Yahweh your Elohim (God)'" (Lev.23:33-37,39-43 NKJV).
Shabbat shalom and Chag sameach Sukkot kol beit Yisra'el as we gather together once more under a large sukkah or tent in our assembly room to remember both the simplicity of the lifestyle of our Israelite ancestors as they wandered throughout Sinai as well as to look forward to that great banquet on the very last pre-Millennial Sukkot of all when the faithful gather with the Master Yah'shua (Jesus) after His second coming at Yom Teruah (Trumpets).
But this will be no ordinary gathering - for we will not only be immortal and resurrected but we will also be at total rest! The trials and vicissitudes of the world will be over. We will be under His shelter, celebrating with simcha (joy), the enemy subjected and locked away. Finally, the total shalom (peace) we have so looked forward to will be ours! There will be paradise on earth for a millennium. How do I know? Two reasons - firstly, the Scriptures say so, and secondly, I have seen it in vision - at least the town or city which will be my home and in a climate best suited to my temperament. I can't wait for it, for this is a wearisome world to live in, so alien to the one which is the natural home of of the b'nei Elohim (sons of God).
Today is also the 15th birthday of my fourth son, Adriel, the first time that it has coincided with the first day of Sukkot, and I so much wish he could have been here celebrating with us, his family. May Yahweh bless Him, may he always know that he is loved, and may he be with us again soon.
The Feast of the Kingdom
Sukkot, the last of the autumnal moedim (appointments) and the final annual feast of Yahweh, is distinguished from all the other six in one very important respect: where as the preceeding six point to the Kingdom, Sukkot IS the Kingdom! Just as Pesach (Passover) was the declaration by Israel to leave the slavery of Egypt for the Promised Land by taking refuge under the blood of the Paschal Lamb, Yah'shua (Jesus) the Messiah, so Sukkot WAS the freedom and home that was the Promised Land!
If the Kingdom is not in us today - or at the very least, if our paramount desire is not the Kingdom of our Elohim (God) but our own private kingdoms or the kingdoms of others - then we have not come up to Sukkot inwardly and we will not be prepared for the final one when Yah'shua (Jesus) returns.
The Pull of the World
Perhaps an illustration will help. This morning I awoke after having a long dream about going back to my homeland of England. I was wearied from the battle with the Marxist system here in Scandinavia for I have been in these northern countries now for nearly 25 years now. I wanted to be back home with a familiar culture speaking my own language and relating to people with a shared history and getting involved with a community I could understand and influence. I periodically get these urges as my family knows. We all do ourselves as none of us are native Swedes. And had there been no Elohim (God) I would have returned long, long ago, in spite of there being things that I genuinely like here which are absent in my own native land and in spite of the fact that having got back to England I know I would soon discover plenty of things about it that I never did like, not to mention the fact that I know the country had moved strongly in a Marxist direction too, this being a global trend. The grass always appears greener on the other side of the hill...until you get there. I had not been long awake when I remembered how Jeremiah did not want his calling particularly and had to remember whose servant I was. So I told Yahweh how I felt, that I yielded to His will, and would remain in this icy Marxist realm for as long as He wanted me to, even if for the rest of my life.
We all of us experience the continual and bothersome tug of the flesh to go in a direction in our lives that is not pleasing to the Most High and which is definitely not beneficial to our souls. Our part - our responsibility - is to choose the Kingdom in spite of the flesh. Those who make the choice each autumn/fall to come up to the 8 day-long Sukkot assemblies are therefore making a choice for the Kingdom lifestyle, however they may have bungled things along the way, and therefore for the King. On that basis we are accepted by Him and not because we have overcome every carnal thing that would want us to go elsewhere. It boils down to choices - to face Him and walk to Him or to turn around and walk away. So long as we are facing Him and moving towards Him we behold His face and we are in right relationship with Him, but the moment we turn away and allow ourselves to yield to the gravitational pull of the world we are lost, and will be permanently lost if we do not turn back. And the longer we allow ourselves to be pulled into the darkness of the kingdom of Satan, the harder it is to turn back. Repentance is always to our advantage sooner rather than later.
So for those who are backslidden and have turned to evil and are warring against the King and the Kingdom, all I can say is this: come up to Sukkot now while there is yet a little time!
The Hope of the Future
We are observing Sukkot (Taberbacles) today and for the next week for one reason only: to affirm our blessed hope for the future. Now I have been blessed to see my future, albeit only a glimpse, and I know without a doubt that I want it with all my soul. I also know how I am to attain it, for Yah'shua (Jesus) has spoken of the derech (way) that leads to it:
The Way of the Master or Plan of Salvation
"Come to Me, all you who labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in lev (heart), and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light" (Matt.11:28-30, NKJV).
Believers have, sadly, long debated the nature of that derech (way). So many churches and groups exist that give contrary instructions as to what the Plan of Salvation actually is. A careful study of the festivals tells us exactly what it is. So I think it would be appropriate, for those of you who are new to this Messianic Evangelical message, and as a refresher to those of you who may have forgotten or have let the edges of emet (truth) get a bit blurred because of the many voices claiming to know this derech (way) when they do not, to summarise just what that derech (way) is:
The True vs. the False Way Compared
- 1. Yahweh has chosen Israel and Israel has accepted this election;
- 2. In His divine rôle as King of Israel, Yahweh gave Israel a divine tavnith (pattern) of mitzvot (commandments) (the Torah) which they are to obey as best they can;
- 3. Obedience is rewarded and disobedience punished;
- 4. In case of failure, man has recourse to divinely ordained means of atonement, in all of which making teshuvah (repentance) and (where possible) restitution is required;
- 5. Under the Old Covenant, a system of animal sacrifices had to be made to effect that atonement, but under the B'rit Chadashah (New Covenant), trusting in our heavenly Cohen Gadol (High Priest) and King, Yah'shua (Jesus) the Messiah, the Son of Yahweh, now alone effects that atonement;
- 6. As long as a talmid (disciple) maintains his desire to stay in the B'rit Chadashah (New Covenant), he has a share in Yahweh's covenantal promises as a part of Messianic Israel, including life in the world to come; and
- 7. The intention and effort to be obedient constitute the condition for remaining in the B'rit (Covenant), but they do not earn it - it is by grace or undeserved loving-kindness on the part of Elohim (God) that a man is saved.
I think it is important to reiterate this emet (truth) that salvation is only in Messianic Israel. Yah'shua's (Jesus') death and resurrection was to buy our lives back from the death penalty our rebellion earned. Yet we are taught by so many 'Christians' that He did it to give us the right to continue in our sin and rebellion consequence-free (excepting whatever sins each particular denomination hates). As one minister has put it:
Repent of Antinomian Ways
"It's almost as though modern theology teaches a Messiah that 'flipped the bird' towards His Father, striking down the 'cruel and unkeepable' laws He made just in order to prove that we were utter failures. Well, I can see why some folks would teach and believe that, because there are a lot of 'fathers' out there just like that. But [Yahweh] is NOT like that, and Messiah never had to protect us from Him -- remember that Messiah said He was "good Father?" (Matthew 7:11) Modern theology practically teaches the cross as an act of rebellion, as the Son strikes down His Father's unrealistic laws. The modern church bears the scars of that attitude, it is a house divided, where the Son struck down the ways of the Father. But they are one, gracious and full of loving-kindness and patience".
Nobody comes to Sukkot (Tabernacles) - the Kingdom - who takes such a blasphemous attitude toward the Father and His laws or the fully Torah-based B'rit Chadashah (New Covenant) which He has established through the death and resurrection of His Son. Yahweh, the Torah, the B'rit (Covenant) and Yah'shua (Jesus) are utterly inseparable and nobody comes up to the Marriage Feast of the Lamb who tries exclude any one of them, but must, if he does, accept a lesser kingdom and glory for his offense once he has paid the price for his arrogance.
So what must we do? Simply:
An Obligatory Festival
- 1. Totally love the Father;
- 2. Totally obey the Covenant Rules of the Father; and
- 3. Totally trust the Son who totally loves the Father and totally obeys His Rules.
Those who come up to the Final Sukkot (Tabernacles) are those who have done this and nothing less. It really is that simple. And the festival is not optional. Attendance is commanded, not just anciently, not just today, but in the future and on into the Millennium, even as it is written:
You see, Sukkot (Tabernacles) is not a party that you can decline to attend if you don't fancy going or because you haven't made adequate preparations - that's why a third of the tithe is to go towards saving up so you can attend - it's a mitzvah (commandment) of the King - the Creator of this vast Cosmos! Sukkot is not for our entertainment but for His glory! Does that mean we aren't to have a good time? On the contrary - it is the Festival of Simcha (Joy), the Festival of Our Complete Redemption! And it will be our privilege to be there at the behest of the Master. If you, knowing that coming up is a commandment, refuse to do so, know that you are in serious trouble! And, no, there is no New Jerusalem yet, but that does not excuse you from assembling with other talmidim (disciples). For Sukkot is one of the three compulsory Pilgrim Feasts of our Elohim (God) . Proper talmidim (disciples) don't get to pick and choose.
"And it shall come to pass that everyone who is left of all the nations which came against Jerusalem shall go up from year to year to worship the King, Yahweh of hosts, and to keep Sukkot (the Feast of Tabernacles). And it shall be that whichever of the families of the earth do not come up to Jerusalem to worship the King, Yahweh of hosts, on them there will be no rain. If the family of Egypt will not come up and enter in, they shall have no rain; they shall receive the plague with which Yahweh strikes the nations who do not come up to keep Sukkot (the Feast of Tabernacles). This shall be the punishment of Egypt and the punishment of all the nations that do not come up to keep Sukkot (the Feast of Tabernacles)" (Zech.14:16-19, NKJV).
Beware the Oral Law of the Talmudists
It is, of course, of considerable interest to believers to know how we are to celebrate this festival. We have seen, in today's opening passage, that we are to dwell in specially constructed booths: "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". Quite obviously we are limited in the way we construct our booths depending on our geographical location. There are no palm trees up here in Scandinavia and we would have to go a very long way to find any, not to mention the expense of transporting them here by which time they would hardly be in pristine condition.
How Do You Make a Sukkah?
Now the Talmudic rabbis insist that these tabernacles must be constructed in a certain way. They not only insist that we have to build them a certain size but with mandatory fixed materials. As is well known, the rabbi's so-called 'Oral Law' is of their own invention, and not only that, it blasphemously claims a special status above Yahweh's written Torah. Like their Catholic cousins, they alone claim the right to interpret the Scriptures. And so they absolutely insist that sukkot or booths are built exclusively of four species of plant native to the Promised Land - palm, myrtle, willow and etrog - and then ascribe mystical meanings to them. They have invented a ritualistic way of building the huts too - you have to take a bundle of these four species in your hand, shake it, wave it three times to each of the four points of the compass, include an upwards and downward movement, and so make exactly 36 movements. These shakings or na'anu'im are then given a mystical interpretation, a 'specfial revelation', if you like, given to the rabbis which idiots like you and me are not privy to, and can never be. The reason for this mumbojumbo, they say, is "to restrain harmful winds and dews in each winter season, when water is abundant, which also testifies of Him who is the Master of the four directions, plus heaven and earth" .
There is, of course, nothing wrong in making up some private rituals to express your faith in Yahweh's mastery of the universe, but it is another thing to then command people to observe it as though Yahweh had given it as a law when He has not. As far as this ministry is concerned, we are sola scriptura like the Protestants, meaning we do not believe anything is commanded that is not clearly stated in the Torah whilst being given the freedom to interpret within reason. In our home we have plastic and cloth tents with immitation vegetation because there is not very much to choose from here at this time of year. We used to use one of the plants in the garden to make our booths but the leaves all died and fell off within two or three days of the festival leaving a very dead look and the vegetation smelling like tea-leaves! It is, after all, autumn here and the leaves are falling off everywhere. It was a mess and detracted from what we were doing. One brother in Wisconsin used to build a booth outside on the balcony of his house and was most miserable as he near froze to death. This is not the land of Israel (for most of us) and we must improvise.
The Spiritual Reason for the Season
But really the physical details aren't even the most important thing. Making teshuvah (repentance) is why this festival is preceeded by Yom Kippur. The main substance of this festival is WATER because this is what gives chayim (life) and is the most potent symbol of chayim (life) there is in Scripture, more so in a land like Israel that was prone to very dry seasons. Thus Yah'shua (Jesus) testified, speaking at the last day of this festival (Shemini Atseret) one year in Jerusalem:
The Real Basis of the Inheritance
"On the last day, that great day of the feast (Sukkot), Yah'shua (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 lev (heart) will flow rivers of living mayim (water). But this He spoke concerning the Ruach (Spirit), whom those believing in Him would receive; for the Ruach haQodesh (Holy Spirit) was not yet given, because Yah'shua (Jesus) was not yet glorified" (John 7:37-39, NKJV).
This was in the midst of an awesome spectacular pageant of ritual. The following biblical year, Yah'shua (Jesus) would be crucified at Pesach (Passover) and on Shavu'ot (Weeks, Pentecost) the Ruach haQodesh (Holy Spirit) would be poured upon the believers! Yet Yah'shua (Jesus) spoke these words at Sukkot (Tabernacles), not at Shavu'ot (Weeks, Pentecost). Why? The reason, as I explain elsewhere, is because there are two major anointings of the Ruach (Spirit): the Shavu'ot Anointing, first received in Jerusalem after the resurrection and received by all truly surrendered talmidim (disciples) trusting in Messiah, and the Sukkot Anointing which is yet to come, which will be given to the remnant firstborn children of the Father to do a marvelous work and a wonder in these very end times just as those first believers did after the resurrection. Therefore one of the reasons we gather at Sukkot in this ministry is in the hope that the time has arrived for this great anointing which Yah'shua (Jesus) hinted at during the last day of this festival, Shemini Atseret or the Last Great Day. It's this anointing which marks and qualifies the children of the First Resurrection, those who receive their inheritance in the Millennium.
The Living Waters of Zechariah
Now that this proclamation by Yah'shua (Jesus) at Shemini Atseret is understood to be of the greatest importance, we ought therefore to try and understand it better. The mayim chayim or living waters that Yah'shua (Jesus) speaks of is a reference to the prophet Zechariah who said:
Though this describes a literal physical event yet to happen, it also conceals a spiritual one which Yah'shua (Jesus) is here explaining. Jerusalem is not only a city but a picture of the Messianic Bride - the true talmidim (disciples) out of whom these mayim chayim or living waters will flow. Yah'shua (Jesus) is connecting these event to Sukkot and saying that it will meet its fulfilment in this festival, of which Shavu'ot - the traditional 'Pentecost' of Protestantism - is but a foreshadowing. If you think the first New Covenant Pentecost was fantastic enough, with the tongues of fire resting on the heads of the believers equipping them to speak foreign languages supernaturally so that they could witness the Besorah (Gospel) to all peoples of all languages, then how much more fantastic do you think the Sukkot Anointing is going to be?
"And in that day it shall be that mayim chayim (living waters) shall flow from Jerusalem, half of them toward the eastern sea [pointing to Sukkot] and half of them toward the western sea [pointing to Shavu'ot]; in both summer and winter it shall occur. And Yahweh shall be King over all the earth. In that day it shall be -- 'Yahweh is echad (one)', and His shem (name) echad (one)" (Zech.14:8-9, NKJV).
Shavu'ot Heads and Sukkot Hearts
The Shavu'ot Anointing (what we call 'Pentecost') rested on the heads of the talmidim (disciples) and enabled them to speak in tongues or foreign languages, the organ for which is also located in the head. But the Sukkot anointing does not consist of tongues of fire and is not concerned with the supernatural ability to speak in foreign languages necessarily (though that will undoubedly be a component, since Shavu'ot is still real and relevent) - rather, as one Bible version puts it:
The 'midst' here renders the Greek word koilia which literally means a 'hollow' or 'cavity' and is a reference to the abdomen of the human body. The head-anointing belongs to Shavu'ot but this is literally a 'guts anointing'. Bible translators struggle with this, some calling this the "belly" (KJV) and more modern ones "heart" (NKJV) but really its more than either of these - it's the whole 'guts' of a person, very much including the lev (heart). Thus whilst the Shavu'ot anointing gives us the mind of Yahweh, the Sukkot anointing gives us the whole lev (heart) of Yahweh, the guts or core of His Being. So I think it ironic, not to mention out of divine tavnith (pattern), that Pentecostals (so-called) and charismatics lay stress to the feeling aspect of 'Pentecost' (Shavu'ot) whilst almost totally ignoring Torah, in effect reversing the order of the festivals in the divine scheme by putting heart before head. This is why Christendom is spiritually the 'Wild West' - it has everything out of order, and is why so much of Messianism is dry, stuffy intellectualism, as is its rebellious, Messiah-rejecting father, Judaism.
"The one with emunah (faith) in Me, as the Kitvei haQodesh (Holy Scriptures) said: 'Out of the midst of him, rivers of MAYIM CHAYIM will flow'" (Jn.7:38, OJB).
Messianic Evangelical as Shavu'ot-Sukkot
That is one reason we are 'Messianic Evangelicals' because Shavu'ot is the true 'messianic' festival (commemorating the time the Torah was given to Israel as her Betrothal Covenant) and Sukkot is the true 'evangelical' festival representing the total transformation of the guts, heart and soul, leading to simcha (joy) and spontaneous worship. It is the final Marriage Covenant too, that which makes betrothal /(Shavu'ot) a complete, consumated marriage (Sukkot). But without Shavu'ot it cannot be, but must be a counterfeit, as the whole charismatic movement is, or dead as much of Messianism is.
So what is Messianic Evangelicism? It is Shavu'ot-Sukkotism, the witness and lifestyle that the true Besorah (Gospel) can only exist when the true tavnith (pattern) is followed. And over the next few days I am going to explain what this means in practical terms in every day life. This is the revelation that Yahweh has given to me for you this Sukkot. It is His gift in preparation for an event which will bring wholeness, completion and echad (oneness).
The War Between Messianics and Evangelicals
Messianics pride themselves, as a rule, in being 'in the know' when it comes to the Torah, and not often pridefully look down on antinomian Christians as ignoramuses who are totally lost. Likewise, evangelical Christians often look down on Messianics as stuffy, dead legalists who don't know the simcha (joy) of redemption, and likewise often view them as unsaved. They are both missing the mark, and don't understand that they both need each other. Messianism is, for the most part, a foetus that is never born, a foetus which thinks it has been born when it's still in the womb, tucked comfortably in protective darkness - whereas Christianity is, for the most part, life outside the womb without the womb - like an early birth, a giant clump of cells without form or structure. And these two war against one another as though the other were anathema.
There are, in my view, no 'Messianics' or 'Evangelicals' in the final expression of the Kingdom just as there are no real people who are walking foetuses or giant clumps of cells. The enemy has blocked certain spiritual understandings of processes (messianism) or turned things on their head (evangelicism). This does not invalidate the contribution of either but rather is to say that until they have been properly married together in Yahweh's proper order that there can be no true experience of Sukkot, let alone its celebration, for which we are gathered today. This is, as should now be obvious, one of the main callings of this ministry. For Mesasianism and Evangelical Christianity will not survive in their present forms if they do not come together but will either die out or mutate and eventually merge into the One Word Religion. This is our message.
The Marriage of Mind and Heart
Sukkot is about what comes out of your belly but what comes out will not be pure or kosher before Yahweh until what comes out of the head is right first. Paul said:
He also said:
"With the mind I myself serve the Torah (Law) of Elohim (God), but with the flesh the law of sin" (Rom.7:25, NKJV).
The mind must be trained at Shavu'ot (Weeks, Pentecost) with Torah so that when the Sukkot (Tabernacles) anointing, that comes out of the lev (heart), will be like the River of Life itself - intense feelings and passion rooted firmly in emet (truth) so that the 'Wild Lawless West' becomes the 'Passionate Truth-Filled East' - for passion without Torah is simply passionate lawlessness...that leads to death.
"But the natural man does not receive the things of the Ruach Elohim (Spirit of God), for they are foolishness to him; nor can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned. But he who is spiritual judges all things, yet he himself is rightly judged by no one. For 'who has known the mind of Yahweh that he may instruct Him?' But we have the mind of Messiah" (1 Cor.2:14-16, NKJV).
Now obviously I am not saying that the first believers were a group of passionless intellectuals who knew only the Torah because within the spiritual fulfilment of each festival is a seed of the ones yet to come. Therefore in the first Messianic Shavu'ot or 'Pentecost' there was a seed of Sukkot (Tabernacles) that fired them up with simcha (joy)! My point is that a seed is not the fullness and that what is to come is to be like a continually moving river out of our bowels, not an intermittant trickle or stream. But what this trickle or stream is not is a psychic flood, or wild emotional outbursts such as we see throughout much of the Wild West of Christendom. Being noisy and exuberant neither makes you spiritual nor in Yahweh - the River of Yahweh is rooted in Torah-Emet - the Truth of His Law. If it isn't, it's not the real thing but a counterfeit - a soulish, psychic, Adamic, carnal fake that does not produce the fruits of Torah that is the sign of righteousness.
"For when we were in the flesh, the sinful passions which were aroused by the law were at work in our members to bear fruit to death" (Rom.7:5, NKJV).
"And those who are Messiah's have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. If we live in the Ruach (Spirit), let us also walk in the Ruach (Spirit)" (Gal.5:24-25, NKJV).
Over the next few days we shall be exploring this theme further. May Yahweh bless you as we enjoy this Festival of Simcha (Joy) together as we look forward to the bright, bright future of Messiah's Return and of the growing presence of Messiah within us over the years inbetween. Amen.
Continued in Part 2
 The other two being Pesach (Passover) and Shavu'ot (Weeks/Pentecost).
 Avi ben Mordechai, Galatians: A Torah-Based Commentary in First-Century Hebraic Context (Millennium 7000 Communications Publication, Jerusalem: 2005), p.460
Comments from Readers
"While reading this, when I read Zech.14:16-19 again I felt like Elohim may also be revealing a deeper tavnith in that... that if we will refuse to come and both rejoice and be thankful for His provision and work He has done and is doing (the whole purpose of Sukkot), then we will also 'receive no rain' and experience plague in our lives - that there will be places where we will begin to experience lack and trouble as some of the provision we refused to be thankful for or rejoice in is withdrawn. And then, the way for this to be changed if someone *did* sin and not come, so that 'rain' was withheld and plague had come, was to realise they had sinned and to repent, and turn to come again in obedience to rejoice and be thankful, acknowledging Yah's provision - even when they first returned they may not have much to bring or feast on / celebrate with because of where the rain had been withheld and plagued given. It *will* be the start of change though as we repent and start to change and turn to Yah - and at times it will mean choosing to turn and be thankful and rejoice in Him and His provision, even if things are still difficult in our lives and haven't changed much in our situation yet, and we don't have much in on the outside to 'celebrate; or 'celebrate with', but that as we begin to be obedient and coming to be thankful and rejoice, things will change. (In some ways reminded of Paul and Silas rejoicing in Yah while in prison, even though their situation hadn't bee changed, and afterwards the earthquake coming that caused their changes to be removed)
"With this, it doesn't mean that 'coming up to rejoice' is always easy especially when we may be experiencing difficulties or may not 'feel' like it - even as it will require something of the families far away to travel to be able to keep's Yah's commandment to come to Sukkot to rejoice, at times it will require something to seek to rejoice and thank and worship Yah... and it especially at those times that we feel least like doing it that we need to be seeking His grace the most and choosing to do so" (DP, South Africa, 30 September 2012).
"Giving up on self and entitlements and lose one's life in this life, looking to eternal and true life in the next life... incredibly hard, and I may not be a good example, but only those who strive to fight will make it, says [Yahweh]" (SW, Germany, 30 September 2012).