"Your statutes have been my songs in the house of my pilgrimage." Psalm 119:54
Text: Exodus 23 : 16
THE FEAST OF INGATHERING
This Feast was closely associated with the Feast of Harvest. The third Feast where all males were to make a special effort to appear before God (in Jerusalem) was called The Feast of Ingathering.
“And the Feast of Harvest…
and the Feast of Ingathering at the end of the year,
When you have gathered in the fruit of your labours in the field.”
This Feast would be celebrated with the following features in mind:-
1. Thanksgiving for God’s faithfulness
The faith in God expressed in the Feast of Harvest was now rewarded fully. With God’s fullness of blessing, there would be a great Ingathering of the full harvest!
2. Celebration of the Lord’s goodness
The Feast of the Ingathering would be a special time of rejoicing. When a good crop comes in, that would be cause for celebration indeed!
3. Joyful worship
Celebration and worship go hand in hand! The spirit of worship at the Feast of the Ingathering would be marked with a great sense of exuberance and joy!
4. Taking a well-earned break from hard labour
All who worked hard to till the ground, sow the seed and bring in the harvest must be rewarded with a good break from hard work!
DIFFERENT NAMES FOR THE FEASTS OF THE LORD
These Feasts were sometimes called by other names. This should not surprise us. There are many different perspectives and sometimes, one perspective is highlighted above another.
1. Feast of the Passover/ Feast of the Unleavened Bread
In this context, the Passover was not mentioned at all. Nevertheless, Israel knew that it need not be mentioned for it to be celebrated. The celebration lasts up to a week
2. Feast of Harvest/ Firstfruits
This is a simple worship service, where sheaves of grain are brought to the Lord in faith and hope. This is a single day celebration!
3. Feast of Ingathering / Feast of Tabernacles
This celebration lasts a week! Tabernacles or Booths celebrate the time when Israel lived in tents in the wilderness!