Matt Hagee - The Final Inauguration and the Feasts
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Here in the United States, we have a unique practice of transitioning government. And it's something that has endured for now more than 200 years. We, the people, get to decide who would lead over us. And the first time that we put this to practice was in 1789 when president George Washington came to power. The event was commemorated by what is known as an inauguration. Then, George Washington established several precedents that are even put into place to this day. For example, he went to his church before he was giving his inaugural speech to pray and ask for God's counsel. Then in the inauguration, he put his hand upon a Bible, not a book of government, not a book of education, not a book of finance, but the living Word of God.
And when he put his hand on the Bible, he raised his right hand and took the oath to fulfill his responsibilities, something that presidents even to this day do. Why? Because from the very beginning of this nation, we have always been one nation under God. Our founding fathers, our first president, recognized unless the Lord build the house, they labor in vain who build it. They realized blessed is the nation whose God is the Lord. And while it may be something that is inconvenient for modern historians to recognize and relate to, the truth is this: this nation has the fingerprints of God all over it from the foundation until late last night, because it is by his grace that we stand.
In every inauguration, every president would speak to the nation. They would speak about how they intended to govern the people. They would speak about financial policies and what they would do for the economy to give the citizens an opportunity to thrive. They would discuss matters of foreign relations and military and defense, because it was their job, as the leader, to protect and defend the citizens. They would speak about domestic issues like health care and how they were going to provide opportunity for every person in the nation to be equally cared for and taken care of. All of these things would happen in an inauguration. And it really didn't matter what was being said: there was one portion of the nation that would applaud loudly and cheer, and there was another portion of the nation that would be frustrated on day one, looking forward to the change that was coming four years from now. But that's how it works on the earth.
That's how it works in our modern kingdom. Today, I didn't come to speak about the next inauguration. Today, I wanted to tell you about the final inauguration. I want to tell you what's going to happen when we inaugurate the King of kings and the Lord of lords. It's not going to Mark the victory of one party over another. It's not going to define conservative from liberal, and left from right, and red from blue. There's not going to be a national anthem played at this inauguration. There's not going to be one tribe, one tongue, one kindred, one people: for this is going to be when all of the saints throughout all of the ages stand in unison and recite the anthem of Revelation 5, "Thou art worthy, o Lamb of God that was slain, to receive power, and to receive riches, and to receive wisdom, and to receive strength, and glory, and honor, and blessings".
At this inauguration, there will be no need for campaign promises, because at this inauguration, every promise that has ever been made throughout all of the ages will be fulfilled when we see him face to face. There will be no need to talk of defense and foreign policies, because at this inauguration, men will beat their swords into plow shears, and they'll study war no more. There will be no need for health care, because the one who sits upon the throne, has conquered sickness and disease, and destroyed death and hell itself. There will be no need to speak of the environment, because the lion will lay down with the lamb. And there will be a New Heaven and a new earth. "The former things have passed away, and behold, all things have become new".
Child of God, at this final inauguration, there will not be a need for another election. There will be no reason for objection. There will be no more votes to cast, because the one who sits upon the throne is called faithful and true! He's the lion of the tribe of Judah! He is king above kings! He is Lord above Lords! He has all wisdom, and knowledge, and understanding! He is the way! He is the truth! He is the life! He is Jehovah Jireh, our provider! He is El Shaddai, the all-sufficient God! He is Elohim, the God of everything! I can testify that he is the way maker! He is a mountain mover! He is the conqueror! Give the Lord praise in this house!
What I want to ask you today is, "How do you get invited to the final inauguration"? You can miss out on every inaugural ball that is ever going to be thrown. But the one that you don't want to miss is the one that happens when king Jesus comes. When he comes, the Bible says that three times a year, we're going to go before him in the place that he chooses. The place that he chooses is the Temple Mount of Jerusalem, and he's going to sit upon his throne there. In Leviticus 23, Moses is telling the children of Israel that the feasts of the Lord shall be proclaimed. Now there's several things that I want you to recognize here. One, these are the feasts of the Lord. Whose feasts are they? It's not our feast. It's not your feast. It's his feast. "And they shall be proclaimed".
That word "Proclaimed" in Hebrew means to broadcast, to call out, to publish, to make known on a wide basis. You are all invited to attend. Now everything that's in the Old Testament is God's word concealed. And in the New Testament, it's God's truth revealed. So Jesus Christ comes from heaven to earth. And in Matthew 22, he speaks about a similar thing, as we read in Leviticus 23. In Matthew 22, he says that, "The kingdom of heaven is like a certain king (that's God), who arranged a marriage for his son". "His son" is Jesus. The bride in this marriage is you and i, the church. And it says, "He sent out his servants to invite those who were to come, but they were not willing to attend". So then later on, he sent out more servants in verse 4. And he told them, "Invite them, saying these things, 'all things are ready. Come to the feast'".
Now there's two invitations here. There's the general invitation that went out in the beginning, and nobody came. But then, as the preparation for the party got closer, the master, the king, God, he wanted everyone to know there's nothing left that has to be fulfilled. You don't want to miss what I'm about to do. Come to the feast. And so here's what I believe the Lord wants me to tell you today: as his servant, he has sent me into this sanctuary to proclaim to everyone who is in the sound of my voice and those of you who are watching: you are invited to the feast. You are invited to the celebration. You are invited to the marriage supper of the lamb.
All things have been ready. All things are prepared. The price for your redemption, it has been paid. Your dazzling garment of righteousness. Don't worry about what you're going to wear. He has already set it aside for you. He's got a crown of life that he wants to give you. He's got a mansion of splendor that he's prepared for you. The table for the marriage supper has been set. And ten thousand times ten thousand are ready to attend. No matter who you are, no matter where you're from, no matter what you've been through, no matter all the things you've endured in this life: you're invited! Those of you who are watching us this morning, you're invited!
When you're watching from a foreign nation where the church is suppressed, you're invited! When you're watching from that hospital bed where you're battling sickness, you're invited! When you're watching from the window of your home where you've been shut in and alone, you're invited! You're invited to shake off those heavy bands! You're invited to swing open wide the gates of heaven! You're invited to enter into his gates with thanksgiving and into his courts with praise, because all things have been prepared! And when the king comes, we're going to celebrate!
You have to accept this invitation. Because if you reject the invitation, you're going to stand in judgment. Here on this earth, people will go out of their way to reject an invitation. You can slip invitations from your friends here on this earth. But here's the thing that you need to know about the invitation that God sends for you to attend this feast. In Zechariah 14:16 and 17, the prophet said, "And it shall come to pass to everyone left of the nations", those are the individuals that have survived the tribulation, "That whenever they do go up to worship the king, the Lord of hosts, they will keep the feast of tabernacles. And it shall be whichever of the families on the earth do not come, they shall receive no rain".
Now understand that in an agricultural society, if you didn't get rain, you suffered an economic collapse. And then in verse 18, if you didn't think he was serious, the Lord says, "And they shall receive the plague, which the Lord strikes the nations with, for those who do not come to the feast of tabernacles". Now how many of you think it's pretty important that we accept this invitation? God says, I'm going to accomplish my son and if you do not come to the celebration that I'm going to throw for him, I'm going to put the plagues of Egypt on you. You can tell people here on earth that you're busy, and they may accept it and they may not accept it. But whenever you tell God Almighty, who knows all things, what you're doing, you better tell the truth. What's the importance of the feast of tabernacles? It is a celebration of joy.
When you look in the Word of God, there are several themes that are connected with this feast. But the primary theme is it is a celebration of joy. The Bible is a book that is filled with joy. It says in Nehemiah, "The joy of the Lord is our strength". It says in the Psalms that in his presence is the fullness of joy. Paul told the New Testament church, "Rejoice in the Lord always. And again, I say, rejoice". Every Sunday should be an explosion of joy, as we are having the rehearsal dinner for what we're going to do when we sit in the presence of God Almighty. The theme of joy is something that the world needs now more than ever. And the thing that we rejoice in is the fact that God wants to tabernacle with us. The reason we rejoice is found in the title of the feast, "The feast of tabernacles". That word "Tabernacle" means to dwell with.
What has God been trying to do since the beginning of creation? He wants to dwell with men here on earth. This is why David said in Psalm 8, "Who am I that you are mindful of me: that you would even know me"? In the Genesis of time, why did he create a garden in eden? So he could walk with Adam and Eve in the cool of the day. In Exodus 25, why did he tell Moses to build a tabernacle in the wilderness? So that he could come and dwell among his people. Think about this: the God, the Creator of heaven, the one who can do all things with himself and has need for no one, he wants to be with you! You can't say that of every person in your house all the time.
There are people you live with right now don't want to be with you. But God Almighty, he says, out of all the places that I could be, out of everything that I could have, the one thing I want is to dwell with you. That should be joy to your heart, knowing that the King of kings, the Lord of hosts, wants to be with you. This is what Jesus told his disciples in Luke 17: he said, "The Kingdom of God is within you". He told them that when they went to Jerusalem, they would be endued with power when the Holy Spirit came upon them. This is what the Bible says to the New Testament church, "Greater is he who is in you than he who is in the world".
Child of God, don't you ever walk out into this world, feeling like you're powerless, feeling like you have nothing on your side, because if God is for you, who can be against you? If the Holy Spirit is within you, you are endued with power. You have power over sickness and disease, because you can lay hands on the sick and they shall recover. You have power over principalities and powers of darkness, because at the name of Jesus, they are conquered and defeated. You have power over fear, because he did not give us a spirit of fear, but of power, and love, and of sound mind. You have power to endure and fight the good fight of faith, because he is a God who will bring you through the fire, through the flood, through the storm, through the battle, and crown you with victory! Child of God, rejoice today, because the power of the living God is living in you!
Why do we rejoice? The Bible says, "The joy of the Lord is your strength". Say that with me. "The joy of the Lord is your strength". The message of that is very simple. No joy: no strength. How many people have you talked to in the last ten months that say that they're just absolutely exhausted? Since this whole COVID and quarantine thing, "How are you doing"? "Oh, we're just so tired". You've been sitting at home. And you're exhausted? Do you know why? Because you don't get rest from doing nothing. "The joy of the Lord is your strength". If there's anything that the world needs to combat this contagious virus of sorrow and fear and cynicism that's going around the world, it is a good, old-fashioned, Holy Ghost dose of the joy of the Lord.
God required his children to rejoice at the feast. In Deuteronomy 16, he said, "Observe the feast of tabernacles seven days, and you shall rejoice". Say that with me. "And you shall rejoice". How many of you've ever been to a theme park, and you've seen the parent that paid $500,000 for the ticket? And their kid, poor child, he's standing outside the ride and he's going, "I don't want to ride it. I don't want to ride it. I don't want to ride it". And the parent looks at them, and goes, "You're going to enjoy this. Do you hear me"? And then the kid goes... God wants us to rejoice. Why? Because the price has been paid. The victory is ours. Death has been defeated. Hell has been conquered. The chains have been broken. The burden has been lifted. You don't have to struggle with the things of the world, the flesh, and the devil: because he made a spectacle of them when he went to a place called Calvary! Therefore, you can rejoice and be exceedingly glad, because Jesus Christ, our king: Jesus Christ, our Lord: Jesus Christ, our Savior, has given you the victory!
The feast of tabernacles began when the children of Israel were in the wilderness. And it has been practiced from then until now. So whenever Jesus was on the earth and he was here as a rabbi, they celebrated the feast. Now biblically, historians will tell you that during the feast, on the Temple Mount in the outer court, there were four menorahs. Those four menorahs had seven places that represented the candlesticks. And these menorahs were 50-cubits high, which in modern measurements is 162 feet. That's a big light. And in every one of these seven vessels, they would burn them every night during the feast because it's the feast of lights. God has always been the God who used light to conquer darkness. And Bible historians would say that these lights, 162-feet high, 28 in all on four menorahs, seven candlesticks a piece: that they would burn so brightly against the limestone walls of the City of Jerusalem that even in the middle of the night, it was as if it was noonday.
Now in the Book of Revelation, we read these words that there will be no need for sun nor moon: for the lamb will be the light. So many types and shadows that we could stop and talk about here. But I want to draw your attention to John 8, because it's during the feast in John 8 where Jesus is standing on the Mount of Olives, and he says to his disciples, "I am the light of the world". The disciples are standing there, staring at these 28 lights that are burning so bright: that the darkness of night is gone. And I can assure you that Peter, James, and John, and Andrew, and Matthew were all looking, going, "Wow"! And Jesus goes, "You think that's bright? I'm the light of the world". It's in this conversation that the pharisees show up, the religious folks. And the Bible says, in John 8, that the pharisees had found a woman who was caught in the act of adultery.
I think it's ironic that during the time when the light in Jerusalem shined so brightly that it drove away the darkness: they had seen something exposed in someone else that they wanted to judge. You need to understand the light of Jesus Christ does not expose what he wants to judge. The light of Jesus Christ exposes what he wants to cleanse. But these religious men, they found this woman exposed in her evil and wicked behavior. And they brought her to Jesus, and they said, "The law says she's caught: she should be killed". Let me tell you something. Our accuser said the same thing about us. The law says, all who sin and fall short of the glory of God are worthy of the wages of sin, which is death: that we should be killed for what we had done.
And Jesus Christ, who looked at his 12 disciples and said, "I'm the light of the world. I shine brighter than those candlesticks," he knelt down in front of this woman. And the Bible says in John 8 that all he did was begin writing in the dirt. And the New Testament records that he says, "You, who have no sin, cast the first stone". Now theologians and Bible scholars will tell you that in the book of Jeremiah, it says that the Messiah is going to write their sins in the dirt. Now when you understand that in this chapter of John, that prophecy is being fulfill, what Jesus did is he knelt down in front of this woman, accused and caught in her sin, and in the dirt, he says, Chuck, you don't want to chunk that rock, man. I know what you did last night. Billy, put the boulder down. Tommy. (tat, tat, tat, tat, tat, tat, tat, tat) and as these pharisee look over his shoulder, and they see their names and their sins and their transgressions, they drop their rocks, one by one. Make sure you erase that when he leaves. Bleach the hard drive: okay?
And Jesus finishes his conversation. He says to this woman: he says, "Where are your accusers"? Those men who wanted to use a natural light to find the worst part of you, where did they go? And she picks up her head and she sees none. And he says, I'm the light of the world. I see all of you. I see the evil part of you and I see the part of you that I'm going to die to save. And what I want you to know is, "Neither do I condemn thee: go and sin no more". And with that moment in her life, she accepted the invitation to the final inauguration. And not only is she going to be standing there when king Jesus comes, but I want you to be standing with her. I don't want you to live under the condemnation of individuals who have pointed out all of the wrong and all of the evil that's in you. I want you to walk in the light and the love of Jesus Christ that sees the best part of you, who died to redeem you and set you free.
So right where you are, I want you to stand to your feet. And if you're under the sound of my voice, and you say, today I need to accept the invitation to receive Jesus Christ, I want you to hold your hand high before the Lord. Those of you, who are joining us this morning over television, wherever you're watching from, I want you to know you're invited to do the same. I want everyone here to raise their hands and repeat this prayer with me:
Lord Jesus Christ, today I receive you, your light, your love, your grace, your mercy in my heart. I'm asking you today to remove the bondage of my past, to remove the claim of sin against me, to set me free: for whom the son sets free is free indeed. Heavenly Father, thank you for the invitation to become the bride of Christ. Thank you for the joy of my salvation. Thank you for the power of your word and for your Holy Spirit that is making me new today. I receive this gift, in Jesus' name. Amen.