Have you ever wondered what the significance is of the 8th day of Sukkot? When we read the instructions for the feast of Sukkot in the book of Leviticus, there seems to be some distinction between the first seven days and the 8th day. Is there a special prophetic significance to this day? There is indeed! We have come to understand that this day is very significant in YHVH’S plan. Allow us to explain…
YHVH commanded us to celebrate the feast for seven days, starting with a holy convocation on the first day. He then continues by giving instructions for the offerings which are to be done, once again, for seven days. Subsequently, on the eighth day, there is to be a holy convocation, it is to be an assembly.
34 â€œSpeak to the sons of Israel, saying, â€˜On the fifteenth of this seventh month is the Feast of Booths for seven days to YHVH. 35 â€˜On the first day is a holy convocation; you shall do no laborious work of any kind. 36 â€˜For seven days you shall present an offering by fire to YHVH. On the eighth day you shall have a holy convocation and present an offering by fire to YHVH; it is an assembly. You shall do no laborious work.
In the book of Numbers, we see an even greater distinction.
12 â€˜Then on the fifteenth day of the seventh month you shall have a holy convocation; you shall do no laborious work, and you shall observe a feast to YHVH for seven days.
The passage continues on giving a detailed description of the sacrifices for each day. Seventeen verses later, the eighth day is mentioned.
35 â€˜On the eighth day you shall have a solemn assembly; you shall do no laborious work.
What could be the reason for this distinction? Is there a special significance to the eighth day of the feast?
There are many references to the 8th day in Scripture. The 8th day is also the first day of the week; the 8th year is the first year of a new sabbatical cycle. It is taught that the 8th day always refers to new beginnings. Let us search the Scriptures to find out what the significance could be.
There are 21 references to “eighth day” in Scripture. The first occurrence is in Exodus 22; it is a picture of mercy.
The eighth day in Scripture
Mercy to animals
The context here is the firstborn of animals belongs to YHVH. A baby animal is left with its mother for the first seven days of his life, before it is taken away. It is then given to YHVH on the eighth day.
30 â€œYou shall do the same with your oxen and with your sheep. It shall be with its mother seven days; on the eighth day you shall give it to Me.
This is also applicable to sacrificial animals.
27 â€œWhen an ox or a sheep or a goat is born, it shall remain seven days with its mother, and from the eighth day on it shall be accepted as a sacrifice of an offering by fire to YHVH.
The ordination of the priests
The second occurrence is when Aaron and his sons were ordained as priests, they were to separate themselves for seven days. At this time, they were commanded not to go out of the doorway of the tent of meeting.
33 â€œYou shall not go outside the doorway of the tent of meeting for seven days, until the day that the period of your ordination is fulfilled; for he will ordain you through seven days.
35 â€œAt the doorway of the tent of meeting, moreover, you shall remain day and night for seven days and keep the charge of YHVH, so that you will not die, for so I have been commanded.â€ 36 Thus Aaron and his sons did all the things which YHVH had commanded through Moses. 1 Now it came about on the eighth day that Moses called Aaron and his sons and the elders of Israel;
Look what happened afterward…
22 Then Aaron lifted up his hands toward the people and blessed them, and he stepped down after making the sin offering and the burnt offering and the peace offerings. 23 Moses and Aaron went into the tent of meeting. When they came out and blessed the people, the glory of YHVH appeared to all the people. 24 Then fire came out from before YHVH and consumed the burnt offering and the portions of fat on the altar; and when all the people saw it, they shouted and fell on their faces.
The glory of YHVH appeared to the people, fire came down from heaven and consumed the offering.
The next reference is about circumcision. This is commanded to be done when a baby boy is eight days old.
3 â€˜On the eighth day the flesh of his foreskin shall be circumcised.
Circumcision is the sign of the covenant.
10 â€œThis is My covenant, which you shall keep, between Me and you and your descendants after you: every male among you shall be circumcised. 11 â€œAnd you shall be circumcised in the flesh of your foreskin, and it shall be the sign of the covenant between Me and you. 12 â€œAnd every male among you who is eight days old shall be circumcised throughout your generations, a servant who is born in the house or who is bought with money from any foreigner, who is not of your descendants. 13 â€œA servant who is born in your house or who is bought with your money shall surely be circumcised; thus shall My covenant be in your flesh for an everlasting covenant. 14 â€œBut an uncircumcised male who is not circumcised in the flesh of his foreskin, that person shall be cut off from his people; he has broken My covenant.â€
Y’shua was circumcised on the eighth day and so was John the Baptist and the Apostle Paul.
21 And when eight days had passed, before His circumcision, His name was then called Yâ€shua, the name given by the angel before He was conceived in the womb.
The New American Standard translation provides a rather clumsy translation. The word “before” was added in as well as the word “then, ” but that really is of no consequence because we know the Y’shua had to be circumcised in order to be perfect according to the Torah. The ESV and Complete Jewish Bible translated it better.
21 And at the end of eight days, when he was circumcised, he was called Y’shua, the name given by the angel before he was conceived in the womb. (ESV)
21 On the eighth day, when it was time for his bâ€™rit-milah, he was given the name Yeshua, which is what the angel had called him before his conception. (Complete Jewish Bible)
Here is the reference to John being circumcised
59 And it happened that on the eighth day they came to circumcise the child, and they were going to call him Zacharias, after his father.
5 circumcised the eighth day, of the nation of Israel, of the tribe of Benjamin, a Hebrew of Hebrews; as to the Law, a Pharisee;
This commandment is still in effect, even today.
The eighth day is also significant when it comes to ritual cleanness..
Uncleanness due to leprosy, unhealthiness or menstruation
A leper who is healed of leprosy
A leper healed of leprosy will undergo an extensive cleansing ritual, thereafter, on the seventh day, shave off all his hair and bathe. On the eighth day, he will offer sacrifices and be pronounced clean by the priest, and he will be allowed to return into the camp. (Lev 14:1-32 describes the cleansing ritual in detail.)
8 â€œThe one to be cleansed shall then wash his clothes and shave off all his hair and bathe in water and be clean. Now afterward, he may enter the camp, but he shall stay outside his tent for seven days. 9 â€œIt will be on the seventh day that he shall shave off all his hair: he shall shave his head and his beard and his eyebrows, even all his hair. He shall then wash his clothes and bathe his body in water and be clean. 10 â€œNow on the eighth day he is to take two male lambs without defect, and a yearling ewe lamb without defect, and three-tenths of an ephah of fine flour mixed with oil for a grain offering, and one log of oil; 11 and the priest who pronounces him clean shall present the man to be cleansed and the aforesaid before YHVH at the doorway of the tent of meeting.
Lev 15:1-15 describes how a man with an unhealthy discharge is to be cleansed after he has healed. There are similarities with the cleansing of the leper in the sense that he has to wait seven days after he has healed, wash himself and his clothes, offer sacrifices, and then he will be clean.
13 â€˜Now when the man with the discharge becomes cleansed from his discharge, then he shall count off for himself seven days for his cleansing; he shall then wash his clothes and bathe his body in running water and will become clean. 14 â€˜Then on the eighth day he shall take for himself two turtledoves or two young pigeons, and come before YHVH to the doorway of the tent of meeting and give them to the priest;
A menstruating woman
A woman who has her normal monthly menstruation or bears a son, is unclean for seven days, on the 8th day she is clean again. A woman with an unhealthy discharge, on the other hand, is to count seven clean days and shall be clean on the 8th day.
Once again, we see similarities, the period of seven days of uncleanness, then on the eighth day she is ritually clean again. We have done a more detailed study about this topic, “Family purity and the law of Niddah” if you would like to read it just click on the hyperlink.
A Nazrite who becomes defiled from a dead person
9 â€˜But if a man dies very suddenly beside him and he defiles his dedicated head of hair, then he shall shave his head on the day when he becomes clean; he shall shave it on the seventh day. 10 â€˜Then on the eighth day he shall bring two turtledoves or two young pigeons to the priest, to the doorway of the tent of meeting.
Consecration of the altar and dedication of the Temple
King Solomon dedicated the Temple on the eighth day of the feast of Sukkot.
2 Chronicles 7:9
9 On the eighth day they held a solemn assembly, for the dedication of the altar they observed seven days and the feast seven days.
During the reign of King Hezekiah, the Temple was once more cleansed and consecrated after it had been defiled.
2 Chronicles 29:17
17 Now they began the consecration on the first day of the first month, and on the eighth day of the month they entered the porch of YHVH. Then they consecrated the house of YHVH in eight days, and finished on the sixteenth day of the first month.
In Ezekiel it is written of the consecration of the future Temple.
26 â€˜For seven days they shall make atonement for the altar and purify it; so shall they consecrate it. 27 â€˜When they have completed the days, it shall be that on the eighth day and onward, the priests shall offer your burnt offerings on the altar, and your peace offerings; and I will accept you,â€™ declares YHVH Elohim.â€
The other references are about the eighth day of the feast of Sukkot. It is the tradition in Judaism, that on this day, the Torah cycle starts anew.
From all these references, we learn that the eighth day is about a new beginning. The preceding seven days are either seven days of preparation, cleansing, sanctification or a combination of these. This is very profound!
A new beginning
The cleansing of uncleanness, the consecration of the altar and circumcision are all connected with the 8th day, which in each case signifies a new beginning. Those who were unclean could return to the camp on the 8th day, the altar was ready for use on the eighth day, and a baby boy receives the sign of the covenant when he is eight days old. When YHVH made a complete end to mankind, he spared eight people, who began anew.
2 Peter 2:4â€“5
4 For if Elohim did not spare angels when they sinned, but cast them into hell and committed them to pits of darkness, reserved for judgment; 5 and did not spare the ancient world, but preserved Noah, a preacher of righteousness, with seven others, when He brought a flood upon the world of the ungodly;
From all these Scriptures, proving that the 8th day is about new beginnings, we can deduce that the 8th day of Sukkot or the feast of Tabernacles is prophetic of a future new beginning. We have seen in the previous article “Sukkot-restoring the kingdom, one sukkah at a time“ that Sukkot is also known as the feast of Tabernacles. Why is this significant here?
At the endâ€¦
In the previous article, we mentioned the teaching done by Ephraim and Ramona Frank during Sukkot in Jerusalem. Here is a link https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vinwQJ-9EBA
Ramona mentioned the connection between the Chuppah (wedding canopy), the marriage feast and Sukkot in her part of the teaching, quoting Isaiah 4:5-6.
5 then YHVH will create over the whole area of Mount Zion and over her assemblies a cloud by day, even smoke, and the brightness of a flaming fire by night; for over all the glory will be a canopy. 6 There will be a shelter to give shade from the heat by day, and refuge and protection from the storm and the rain.
The Hebrew for “canopy” is “chuppah” and “sukkah” for “shelter” in verse 6. This “chuppah” or wedding canopy connects well with Revelation 19:9 and Rev 21:3 where it is written of the wedding feast after the return of Y’shua.
9 Then he said to me, â€œWrite, â€˜Blessed are those who are invited to the marriage supper of the Lamb.â€™ â€ And he said to me, â€œThese are true words of Elohim.â€
3 And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, â€œBehold, the dwelling of Elohim is with humanity, and he will take up residence with them, and they will be his people and Elohim himself will be with them.
These Scriptures show us this connection and also that YHVH will be dwelling with us. This is further confirmed in Ezekiel.
27 â€œMy dwelling place also will be with them; and I will be their Elohim, and they will be My people. 28 â€œAnd the nations will know that I am YHVH who sanctifies Israel, when My sanctuary is in their midst forever.â€ â€™ â€
Do you see the connection?
The word dwelling place is “mishkan” in Hebrew. The Greek word for tabernacle and dwelling is “skene” and it has the same meaning as “miskan” or “sukkah” in Hebrew, a temporary dwelling place, a tent.
5008 ÏƒÎºÎ·Î½Î® (skÄ“nÄ“), á¿†Ï‚ (Ä“s), á¼¡ (hÄ“): n.fem.; â‰¡ DBLHebr 185, 5438, 6109; DBLAram 10445; Str 4633; TDNT 7.368â€”1. LN 7.9 tent, dwelling; possibly temporary shelter booth (Mt 17:4), or a leather, animal hair, or possibly cloth tent (Heb 11:9); 2. LN 7.17 tabernacle tent (Ac 7:44; Heb 8:2, 5)1
There is another reference to YHVH spreading His tabernacle over us in Revelation.
13 Then one of the elders answered, saying to me, â€œThese who are clothed in the white robes, who are they, and where have they come from?â€ 14 I said to him, â€œMy lord, you know.â€ And he said to me, â€œThese are the ones who come out of the great tribulation, and they have washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb. 15 â€œFor this reason, they are before the throne of Elohim; and they serve Him day and night in His temple; and He who sits on the throne will spread His tabernacle over them. 16 â€œThey will hunger no longer, nor thirst anymore; nor will the sun beat down on them, nor any heat; 17 for the Lamb in the center of the throne will be their shepherd, and will guide them to springs of the water of life; and Elohim will wipe every tear from their eyes.â€
We have seen from this study that the eighth day is about new beginnings which is prophetic of the ultimate Eighth Day or the eighth millennium. We have written an article before on the prophetic significance of the phrase “one day is like a thousand years.”
On this day, the eighth day, YHVH will make everything new and dwell with mankind forever. All things will be restored. We see this described in Revelation 21.
1 Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth; for the first heaven and the first earth passed away, and there is no longer any sea. 2 And I saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from Elohim, made ready as a bride adorned for her husband. 3 And I heard a loud voice from the throne, saying, â€œBehold, the tabernacle of Elohim is among men, and He will dwell among them, and they shall be His people, and Elohim Himself will be among them, 4 and He will wipe away every tear from their eyes; and there will no longer be any death; there will no longer be any mourning, or crying, or pain; the first things have passed away.â€ 5 And He who sits on the throne said, â€œBehold, I am making all things new.â€ And He said, â€œWrite, for these words are faithful and true.â€ 6 Then He said to me, â€œIt is done. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the end. I will give to the one who thirsts from the spring of the water of life without cost. 7 â€œHe who overcomes will inherit these things, and I will be his Elohim and he will be My son.
This is what the eighth day is all about, YHVH dwelling among His people, like He did in the beginning. All creation will be restored as it was before sin…
8 They heard the sound of YHVH Elohim walking in the garden in the cool of the dayâ€¦
What about Y’shua?
Please continue to read Revelation 21 from verse 8, through to the end of the book. We shall just highlight a few verses
23 And the city has no need of the sun or of the moon to shine on it, for the glory of Elohim has illumined it, and its lamp is the Lamb.
1 Then he showed me a river of the water of life, clear as crystal, coming from the throne of Elohim and of the Lamb,
3 There will no longer be any curse; and the throne of Elohim and of the Lamb will be in it, and His bond-servants will serve Him;
5 And there will no longer be any night; and they will not have need of the light of a lamp nor the light of the sun, because YHVH Elohim will illumine them; and they will reign forever and ever.
How glorious it is going to be!
What are we to do now?
What are we to do now, in the meantime, as the Kingdom has not been restored yet? We get our answer in Leviticus 26. If we choose to obey YHVH, He will dwell among us…
11 â€˜Moreover, I will make My dwelling among you, and My soul will not reject you. 12 â€˜I will also walk among you and be your Elohim, and you shall be My people.
How are we to understand this? Have you noticed when you celebrate the Sabbath and the feasts, how wonderful it is? Maybe that is what is meant by this Scripture. Being obedient to YHVH gives us the opportunity to experience a tiny bit of what is to come.
We hope this study has inspired you and has given you a glimpse of what our future would be if we choose to follow the only true Elohim, YHVH. We do, however, have a responsibility now. We are to obey YHVH.
- Swanson, J. (1997). Dictionary of Biblical Languages with Semantic Domains: Greek (New Testament) (electronic ed.). Oak Harbor: Logos Research Systems, Inc