The Blowing of the Shofar

shofar-2This last (September 30-October 1) we celebrated the Biblical Feast of Trumpets also known as Rosh Hashanah to modern Jews. God commanded this feast in Leviticus 23.

“Speak to the children of Israel, saying: ‘In the seventh month, on the first day of the month, you shall have a sabbath-rest, a memorial of blowing of trumpets, a holy convocation.” – Lev. 23:24

It is the first of the Fall Feasts commanded by God; Trumpets, Day of Atonement, Tabernacles. The Spring Feasts of Passover, Unleavened Bread, First Fruits, and Pentecost, were all fulfilled by Jesus on His first coming so, it is reasonable to believe that He will fulfill these Fall Feasts as well on His second coming. The Feast of Trumpets occurs on the first

new moon

New Moon

of the month of Tishri, the seventh month and a time of the new moon. Because the time the moon first appears as a tiny sliver is hard to tell, it is celebrated over a two day period. Is this the reason Jesus warned to be watchful because no man knows the time of His return?

“But of that day and hour no one knows, not even the angels of heaven, but My Father only.” – Matt. 24:36

“Remember therefore how you have received and heard; hold fast and repent. Therefore if you will not watch, I will come upon you as a thief, and you will not know what hour I will come upon you.” – Rev. 3:3

Many believe this Feast will mark the return of the Lord and it does begin a ten day countdown to the Day of Atonement, in which the books are opened in heaven and the Book of Life, to determine one’s destiny, heaven or hell. Jewish Rabbis teach that the first trumpet is blown announcing the Feast of Pentecost and the last trumpet will be blown to announce the Feast of Trumpets. Is this what Paul is referring to in his letter to the Corinthians?

“in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed.” – 1 Cor. 15:52

If so, the rapture will occur on the Feast of Trumpets. So what does the Bible teach about this Feast? It directs us to have a sabbath rest, in other words, a day when no customary work is done and the day is given over to honoring the Lord. It is a day to remember that we are but pilgrims on this earth and we have a heavenly home so we should prepare for it. Next, it was a day of memorial blowing of the shofars. The shofar was blown when God gave Moses the Ten Commandments –

“Then it came to pass on the third day, in the morning, that there were thunderings and lightnings, and a thick cloud on the mountain; and the sound of the trumpet was very loud, so that all the people who were in the camp trembled. … And when the blast of the trumpet sounded long and became louder and louder, Moses spoke, and God answered him by voice.” – Exo. 19:16-19

The shofars were also blown when the walls of Jericho came tumbling down –

So the people shouted when the priests blew the trumpets. And it happened when the people heard the sound of the trumpet, and the people shouted with a great shout, that the wall fell down flat. Then the people went up into the city, every man straight before him, and they took the city.” – Josh. 6:20

And they were blown when Solomon was crowned king –

“There let Zadok the priest and Nathan the prophet anoint him king over Israel; and blow the horn, and say, ‘Long live King Solomon!’ – 1 Kings 1:34

So we see that the shofar is sounded whenever God enters the scene of history, and it is blown with the shout of victory over God’s enemies, and it is blown to announce the arrival of the king.

This feast will celebrate all these things. As it is celebrated the shofars are sounded from morning to evening remembering all the times God answered their prayers and delivered them from the enemy. There was also to be a holy convocation. This means something called out, i.e. a public meeting  also a rehearsal:—assembly, calling, convocation, reading. The Word was to be read and the Lord’s coming was to be rehearsed. God wants the people to remember that He is coming one day and they are to live in expectation of His return.

There is a day coming, called the Day of the Lord, when He is going to once again enter the realm of man –

battle_of_armageddon_lg1“Now I saw heaven opened, and behold, a white horse. And He who sat on him was called Faithful and True, and in righteousness He judges and makes war. His eyes were like a flame of fire, and on His head were many crowns. He had a name written that no one knew except Himself. He was clothed with a robe dipped in blood, and His name is called The Word of God. And the armies in heaven, clothed in fine linen, white and clean, followed Him on white horses. Now out of His mouth goes a sharp sword, that with it He should strike the nations. And He Himself will rule them with a rod of iron. He Himself treads the winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God. And He has on His robe and on His thigh a name written: KING OF KINGS AND LORD OF LORDS.” – Rev. 19:11-16

This feast commemorates His coming. The next feast, the Day of Atonement, follows just ten days later and the final feast, Tabernacles, follows just 15 days later. So when the Lord comes, He will complete God’s work quickly. The world in its arrogant disregard of God will be judged, Satan and his Antichrist will be destroyed. And God’s faithful people will be delivered.

Choose wisely who’s side you are on for the time of Trumpets is not far off. One day soon the rehearsal will become reality.

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