Summary: Jesus at the time of decision
Show Video Clip of John 7
JN 7:25 At that point some of the people of Jerusalem began to ask, "Isn't this the man they are trying to kill? 26 Here he is, speaking publicly, and they are not saying a word to him. Have the authorities really concluded that he is the Christ? 27 But we know where this man is from; when the Christ comes, no one will know where he is from."
28 Then Jesus, still teaching in the temple courts, cried out, "Yes, you know me, and you know where I am from. I am not here on my own, but he who sent me is true. You do not know him, 29 but I know him because I am from him and he sent me."
30 At this they tried to seize him, but no one laid a hand on him, because his time had not yet come. 31 Still, many in the crowd put their faith in him. They said, "When the Christ comes, will he do more miraculous signs than this man?"
32 The Pharisees heard the crowd whispering such things about him. Then the chief priests and the Pharisees sent temple guards to arrest him.
33 Jesus said, "I am with you for only a short time, and then I go to the one who sent me. 34 You will look for me, but you will not find me; and where I am, you cannot come."
35 The Jews said to one another, "Where does this man intend to go that we cannot find him? Will he go where our people live scattered among the Greeks, and teach the Greeks? 36 What did he mean when he said, `You will look for me, but you will not find me,' and `Where I am, you cannot come'?"
What Christmas is for us, Festival of Booths was for Jews. - women's courts lit up with torches so that the whole city glowed at night, reminder of Israel being led by a pillar of fire
Jews observe the custom of inviting seven spiritual "guests" Abraham - Isaac - Jacob - Joseph (the three Patriarchs and Jacob's most famous son) - Moses (the most important Hebrew prophet) - Aaron (Moses's brother, the first Kohen Gadol, or High Priest) - David (the most important king of Israel)
Booths, praying for winter rains, covered booths anticipate God answering prayer,
Leviticus 23:40, "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 the LORD your God for seven days."
Crowds gathered at Herods Temple with citrus fruit called Etrog (a fruit of the beautiful tree) in their left hands - a reminder of being given the promised land, a land of bounty. In their right hands were held Lulab - three branches, one from palm, one willow and one myrtle
Wave Offering "Psalm 117:25 (Ana HaShem, hoshia nah..", "We beseech you, O Lord, save us..."
The priest would dip a gold pitcher of water into the Siloam pool - the site of a sacred remembrance. Crowd followed the priest as he carried that pitcher of water to the alter to pour out. Each day of the feast they walked around the alter once but on the last and greatest day they marched 7 times
The last and final day - called Hoshanah Rabbah(great Hosanna - Deliver us! Ps. 118:25) is known as the day of the final sealing of judgment, which began on Rosh Hashanah. During the festival of Sukkot the world is judged for water and for the blessings of the fruit and crops. The seventh day of the festival is the final sealing and since human life depends on water, Hoshanna Rabbah is somewhat similar to Yom Kippur
It is here at this most dramatic moment that Jesus stands up and shouts
JN 7:37 On the last and greatest day of the Feast, Jesus stood and said in a loud voice, "If anyone is thirsty, let him come to me and drink. 38 Whoever believes in me, as the Scripture has said, streams of living water will flow from within him." 39 By this he meant the Spirit, whom those who believed in him were later to receive. Up to that time the Spirit had not been given, since Jesus had not yet been glorified.
40 On hearing his words, some of the people said, "Surely this man is the Prophet."
41 Others said, "He is the Christ."
Still others asked, "How can the Christ come from Galilee? 42 Does not the Scripture say that the Christ will come from David's family and from Bethlehem, the town where David lived?" 43 Thus the people were divided because of Jesus. 44 Some wanted to seize him, but no one laid a hand on him.