Pentecost, The Feast of Tabernacles, and Oz Behind the Curtain
We all know that the Christian feast of Pentecost is the celebration of the gift of the Holy Spirit to the Apostles. This story is told in the New Testament book of Acts. But, did you know that there’s a Pentecost celebrated in the Old Testament as well? The original celebration was an agricultural feast. Later, it came to be a celebration of the giving of the Law. So, if we see the gift of the Holy Spirit as a gift of the spiritual law, then the New Testament celebration of Pentecost seems to be a fulfillment of the Old Testament Pentecost. However, on the day we celebrate this feast, the Orthodox Church assigns us a Gospel reading that’s about the Feast of Tabernacles. Huh? Did the Church get the feasts mixed up, or is something more going on? The Bottom Line: Like Dorothy pulling back the curtain on the Wizard of Oz, the Church’s combination of the Feast of Pentecost with the Feast of Tabernacles allows us to also pull back the curtain to see greater depth to the feasts.