. . .means no posts. I have been stuck in posting gridlock. I have started posts and then changed my mind and had too many things going through my head at once to get a coherent post put together. It is Feast of Tabernacles time. May you who pay attention to such things have a blessed Succot. I was going to put a shelter together in my backyard this year, but the cold snap made that somewhat unworkable. I found myself quite unprepared and being very new to this I am still learning. This year has been an unusual one for me to say the least. I am looking forward to the beginning of the Torah readings as I have decided to try and keep up with those this year for the first time in my life. If you don’t know what I am talking about, you can check out a couple of different sites. El Shaddai Ministries has audio torah studies that you can listen to for an example.
I have been reading a bunch of stuff at an old site that I used to enjoy. There is an entire section of the site that deals with the Hebraic concepts of time and eternity. It may seem out of place to some people, but there are some interesting concepts that I have thought about before. There are also some neat things there that apply to this festive season.
Well, what do we know? First, says Paul, we know that we now live in an earthly tent. Twice he calls the present body a tent. Tents are usually temporary dwellings. Once I visited a family who lived in a tent in their yard while waiting for their new house to be finished. It wasn’t very comfortable, but they were willing to put up with it until they could move into their real house. This is the case, Paul says, with Christians. They are living temporarily in tents.
Further, he says that in this tent we both groan and sigh. Do you ever listen to yourself when you get up in the morning? Do you ever groan? It is quite evident that the apostle is right, isn’t it? There is the groan of daily experience. Perhaps the tent is beginning to sag. The cords are loosening and the pegs are growing wobbly. There may also be the sigh of expectancy. “We sigh with anxiety,” says the apostle, “not that we would be unclothed, but that we would be further clothed.” No one wishes to be disembodied (unclothed), but nevertheless, we do long sometimes for something more than this body offers. We feel its limitations. Have you ever said when invited to do something, “I wish I could; the spirit is willing but the flesh is weak”? That is the sigh of anxiety, longing to be further clothed.
The Feast of Tabernacles is a reminder of the temporary nature of our lives. We aren’t living in a house. Our body is a tent, a temporary dwelling. Tabernacles is a reminder that God wants to live with us. Jesus came and tabernacled among us (John 1). Someday, we will live in a permanent house, whose builder is God (2 Corinthians 5:14). I will try and make a more complete posting of these thoughts in the next day or two.