The Eighth Day Assembly… ‘Shemini Atzeret,’… The Assembly of the Eighth (Day).”

When YHWH gave us the Torah Calendar, He did not

choose the days at random. Rather, He incorporated

specific days into His calendar in order to give us

prophetic shadow pictures of the things He has

purposed to come to pass.

In the last chapter on Sukkot we spoke briefly about the

Last Great Day of the feast. This Last Great Day is

also called ‘Shemini Atzeret,’ which means, essentially,

‘The Assembly of the Eighth (Day).”

While the Assembly of the Eighth is often thought of

simply as the final day of the Feast of Sukkot, it is

actually a separate festival. This is in much the same

way as the Passover is followed by the seven Days of

Unleavened Bread. However, in this case, the seven

days of Sukkot are followed by the one day Assembly

of the Eighth (Shemini Atzeret).

In Hebrew, the word ‘Atzeret’ ( עֲצֶרֶת ) means not just ‘an

assembly,’ but a very special kind of assembly. It

indicates that one’s host is not letting one go home.

Rather, one’s host is ‘holding one over’ for an extended

period of time. Strong’s Concordance defines the word

atzeret ( עצרת ) in this way:

OT:6116 `atsarah (ats-aw-raw’); or

`atsereth (ats-eh’-reth); from OT:6113;

an assembly, especially on a festival

or holiday:

When we look up the root at Strong’s OT:6113, we get: 

OT:6113 `atsar (aw-tsar’); a primitive

root; to enclose; by analogy, to hold

back; also to maintain, rule, assemble:

KJV – be able, close up, detain, fast,

keep (self close, still), prevail, recover,

refrain, reign, restrain, retain, shut

(up), slack, stay, stop, withhold (self).

Shemini Atzeret, then, shows us that YHWH intends to

hold us back, to detain us, or to ‘close us up’ in some

fashion for the eighth day. But in what way does

YHWH intend to ‘detain us’, or to ‘hold us over’?

The Apostle Kepha (Peter) tells us that one prophetic

day can symbolize a thousand earth years.

Kepha Bet (2nd Peter) 3:8

8 But, beloved, do not forget this one

thing: that with YHWH, one day is as a

thousand years, and a thousand years

is as one day.

Notice, then, that Scripture tells us that the Creation

Week was seven days long.

B’reisheet (Genesis) 2:2

2 And on the seventh day Elohim

ended His work which He had done,

and He rested on the seventh day from

all His work which He had done.

If the Creation Week lasted seven days, and if one

prophetic day can represent a thousand earth years,

then the Creation Week is symbolic of a seven

thousand year plan for the earth and its inhabitants.


But if the earth is to last for seven thousand years, then

why would the Feast of Sukkot last for eight days? And

what is the symbolism of the eighth day?

In truth, the Feast of Sukkot lasts only seven days. We

know this because it is only for seven days that the

children of Israel are to dwell in booths.

Vayiqra (Leviticus) 23:41-43

41 You shall keep it as a feast to

YHWH for seven days in the year. It

shall be a statute forever in your

generations. You shall celebrate it in

the seventh month.

42 You shall dwell in booths for seven

days. All who are native Israelites shall

dwell in booths,

43 that your generations may know

that I made the children of Israel dwell

in booths when I brought them out of

the land of Egypt: I am YHWH your


The eighth day of Sukkot, then, is really a separate

festival. Leviticus 23:36 tells us that we are to hold an

assembly ( עֲצֶרֶת ) on this eighth day in order to bring an

offering made by fire. We are also to do no ordinary or

laborious work.

Vayiqra (Leviticus) 23:36

36 For seven days you shall offer an

offering made by fire to YHWH. On the

eighth day you shall have a set-apart

assembly, and you shall offer an

offering made by fire to YHWH. It is a

set-apart assembly, and you shall do

no customary work on it.

Verse 39 then tells us to keep the first and the eighth

days of the festival as set-apart sabbaths of rest.

Vayiqra (Leviticus) 23:39

39 ‘Also on the fifteenth day of the

seventh month, when you have

gathered in the fruit of the land, you

shall keep the feast of YHWH for seven

days; on the first day there shall be a

sabbath-rest, and on the eighth day a


It may be that the first day of the feast symbolizes the

first day of the Creation Week, when YHWH Elohim

created the heavens and the earth.

B’reisheet (Genesis) 1:1-2

1 In the beginning Elohim created the

heavens and the earth.

2 The earth was made formless and

void; and darkness was on the face of

the deep.

If the first day of the Feast of Tabernacles symbolizes

the first day of Creation, could it be that Shemini

Atzeret symbolizes how we will go to the New Earth,

which Isaiah speaks of?

Yeshayahu (Isaiah) 65:17-25

17 "For behold, I create new heavens

and a new earth; and the former shall

not be remembered or come to mind.

18 But be glad and rejoice forever in

what I create; for behold, I create

Jerusalem as a rejoicing, and her

people a joy.


19 I will rejoice in Jerusalem, and joy

in My people; the voice of weeping

shall no longer be heard in her, nor the

voice of crying.

20 "No more shall an infant from there

live but a few days, nor an old man

who has not fulfilled his days; for the

child shall die one hundred years old,

But the sinner being one hundred

years old shall be accursed.”

While the Feast of Tabernacles is symbolic of many

things, it is also symbolic of the New Earth, for the

Book of the Revelation tells us that in the New Earth,

the Tabernacle of Elohim will be with men.

Gilyana (Revelation) 21:1-4

1 Now I saw a new heaven and a new

earth, for the first heaven and the first

earth had passed away. Also there was

no more sea.

2 Then I, Yochanan, saw the set-apart

city, New Jerusalem, coming down out

of heaven from Elohim, prepared as a

bride adorned for her husband.

3 And I heard a loud voice from

heaven saying, "Behold, the

Tabernacle of Elohim is with men, and

He will dwell with them, and they shall

be His people. Elohim Himself will be

with them, and be their Elohim.

4 “And Elohim will wipe away every

tear from their eyes; there shall be no

more death, nor sorrow, nor crying.

There shall be no more pain, for the

former things have passed away.” 

If YHWH wills, we will explore this topic in much more

detail in the

Joseph’s Return study, as well as explore

why Yeshua returns to take us to the New Earth at the

end of the earth’s seven thousand years.

Once we understand the prophetic symbolism of the

number eight, we can begin to see this symbolism turn

up throughout the Torah.

Vayiqra (Leviticus) 22:26-27

26 And YHWH spoke to Moshe, saying:

27 "When a bull or a sheep or a goat is

born, it shall be seven days with its

mother; and from the eighth day and

thereafter it shall be accepted as an

offering made by fire to YHWH.”

Yeshua tells us that those who believe on Him are like

unto sheep, or to goats.

Mattai (Matthew) 25:33

33 "When the Son of Man comes in His

glory, and all the set-apart messengers

with Him, then He will sit on the throne

of His glory.

32 All the nations will be gathered

before Him, and He will separate them

one from another, as a shepherd

divides his sheep from the goats.

33 And He will set the sheep on His

right hand, but the goats on the left.”

For seven days, our sheep and our bulls and our goats

are not acceptable as sacrifice offerings unto YHWH.

In much the same way, for seven thousand years, the

‘sheep’ and the ‘goats’ and the ‘bulls’ who believe on

Yeshua are not acceptable into YHWH’s kingdom.


Rather, we must wait until the start of the ‘Assembly of

the Eighth’, after the Judgment, when YHWH will ‘hold

us over’ in the New Earth. Then we will Tabernacle

with Him.

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