Celebrating the Feast of Huts

Oct 08 2020

The Feast of Huts (aka Tabernacles) celebrates a major chapter in Israel’s formation–the time when the exodus generation lived in portable, temporary shelters. The nation remembered (by re-enacting a part of) the journey from Egypt to the Promised Land.

The Gospel of John specifies that Jesus attended the Feast of Huts…in secret at first (John 7:10). None of the Gospel accounts mention the palm-branch huts specifically, so did Jesus participate in the re-enactment? Did he live in a hut?

Moses’ Law records the instruction from God for people attending the Feast. First, every able-bodied man in the nation must participate. Then, “Live in the huts for seven days” as a national remembrance of Israel’s history. (Leviticus 23:42)

Josephus reiterates the command, “Upon the fifteenth day of the same month, when the season of the year is changing for winter, the law enjoins us to pitch tabernacles [huts] in every one of our houses, so that we preserve ourselves from the cold of that time of the year” (Josephus, Antiquities 3.10.4  244).

The Mishnah states that “All seven days [of the feast] a person treats his sukkah [hut] as his regular dwelling and his house as his sometimes dwelling” (Sukkah 2.9).

Did Jesus have a feast hut? Yes, naturally … if Jesus was an able-bodied male who followed God’s law recorded by Moses.

On a very earthy level, it seems that he would have been more conspicuous if Jesus did not have a hut.

For more on understanding Jesus’ story, see Earth-Bound Experience.

No responses yet

Leave a Reply