What Does Sukkot Mean For the Noahide?

One of the unique features of the Sukkot service in the Beit HaMikdash was the daily offering of bulls, with the number declining from thirteen on the first day to seven on the seventh and last day. Throughout the holiday of Sukkot, a total of seventy bulls were offered, corresponding to the proverbial seventy nations of the world.

These bulls served as atonement for their sins, which would ensure that they, too, were blessed with heavenly rain and prosperity.

Rabbi Yochanan said: Woe to the idolaters who lost something and they don’t know what they lost. For when the Beit HaMikdash existed, the altar atoned for them. And now [with the Temple destroyed], who will atone for them?” (Masechet Sukkah 55b)

Indeed, who – or what – atones for the nations of the world today?

– Rabbi Steven Pruzansky

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