The Eighth Day שמיני עצרת Shemini Atzeret

This final Appointed Time/moed for the year is often a forgotten one. It is usually lumped in with Sukkot/Feast of Tabernacles, making the feast eight days long. However, reading Lev 23:36, we see that Sukkot is clearly a seven day feast, with the eighth day then being a day of a solemn assembly and no work, in its own right.

The day really isn’t explained any further in the Torah than what I’ve already written. However, the number eight seems to have some significance in Scripture. It was on the eighth day that Aaron and his sons were fully consecrated to work as priests in the tabernacle. It was on the eighth day that the first temple in Jerusalem had its altar fully dedicated after seven days of sacrifices. We also see that a leper who was healed, had to undergo a seven day period of cleansing, but it was on the eighth day that they would bring sacrifices and be declared clean. The circumcision of a baby boy was to be on the eighth day too, which was one of the signs of the covenant between YHWH and His people. (If Yeshua was born on the first day of Sukkot, as I currently believe, then His circumcision would have been on this Eighth Day). You may also recall that the Day of First Fruits during the Feast of Unleavened Bread (which signified resurrection) occurred on the eighth day too.

The eighth day is a time of new beginnings and of things becoming clean after the removal of uncleanness. It is possible then, that the Eighth Day that we are discussing may be the future time of the second resurrection (of the wicked), the great white throne judgment and the second death (Rev 20:5-15). All the uncleanness of sin and death is removed on that day. It will be a solemn day, just as the Eighth Day is a day of solemn assembly after the seven days of joy and praise of Sukkot.

If all of this is correct, then The Eighth Day will also be a day of ushering in new beginnings. It will be a time when our salvation reaches its fulfillment as we dwell forever with YHWH in a new and permanent home. All of the old will pass away as we leave our temporary dwellings of Sukkot and begin our time in a dwelling that will never end! It will be us and our King of kings forever! We also read about this in the book of Revelation:
“And I, John, saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. And I heard a great voice out of heaven saying, Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and he will dwell with them, and they shall be his people, and God himself shall be with them, and be their God.” (Rev 21:2,3)

The Eighth Day should be a day of contemplation and examining ourselves, and we need YHWH’s Spirit to help us in this endeavour. If we are YHWH’s redeemed people, we have such unthinkable joy and peace ahead of us.  But the question really is:  Who’s side are we truly on? Will the Eighth Day be a day of solemnity for us as we witness YHWH’s final judgement – or will it be a day of terror and absolute regret?

“And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire.”  (Rev 20:15)
“He that overcomes shall inherit all things; and I will be His GOD, and he shall be My son.”  (Rev 21:7)


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