Edition 134: September 14th 2012
The Feast of Trumpets
News events and commentary:
●Israel’s greatest enemy, Iran’s Ahmadinejad to address the UN General Assembly on Israel’s holiest day, Yom Kippur (September 26th) Netanyahu is to address the General Assembly the next day. At the recent Islamic Non-Aligned Movement’s summit in Tehran Ahmadinejad said that Israeli’s were “ferocious wolves, feeding on the Palestinians.” He renewed his call for the destruction of Israel.
●Netanyahu praises Canada for cutting diplomatic ties with Iran. He says, “Those who refuse to set a red line for Iran can’t give Israel the red light.”
●Nuclear experts in Israel say that a strike on Iran’s nuclear facilities will only delay their nuclear weapons capability by two years.
●The massive open-ended stimulus (QE) just announced by the US Fed is so substantial and large, it will delay any economic melt-down in the US. But it will debase the US dollar in the process. Gold will now begin to fly high.
The Feast of Trumpets:
This Feast goes by a number of names. They are: Trumpets, Rosh Hashanah, Yom Teruah, Teshuvah and The Feast of which no one knows the day or hour. It is also called “Yom Hadin” meaning the Day of Judgement.”
The name Rosh Hashanah means “the head of the year” (New Year) It is celebrated for two days.
The last three Feasts together, are referred to as the High Holy Days. (See diagram at top of previous edition.)
Trumpets is the next of the seven Feasts of the Lord to be fulfilled. The previous one was Pentecost (previous edition.) There is almost unanimous agreement that this feast will be fulfilled by the start of the tribulation period. Some do believe that the fulfilment will be the Second Advent. That would leave no time for all three unfulfilled Feasts to be fulfilled and would be out of character, since all three would have to be fulfilled on the same day.
The next Feast to be fulfilled after Trumpets is the Day of Atonement also called the Days of Awe. This feast finds it’s fulfilment at the Great Tribulation, which is the second half of the seven year Tribulation. If Trumpets is to be fulfilled at the Second Coming, Atonement would have to occur before Trumpets.
The Feast of Trumpets is the announcement. It’s the call to repentance, it’s the “shout” that judgement is about to fall. It’s not the full tribulation period, neither is it the last day or Second Advent, although it obviously points to those events as well.
The Feast of Trumpets announces great danger and warning. It calls for a solemn assembly and national repentance.
This Feast has a personal application for all believers (see further down), but it deals primarily with the Jewish people. The Feast marks the tribulation period and the judgement and salvation of the Jews in large numbers.
As far as believers go, Trumpets is already fulfilled in that we have received our judgement. This was in fact the judgement on Christ at the cross. We who believe have accepted this and been given the grace of salvation, but Trumpets still has many important applications and factors for us.
The meaning of trumpets:
It’s important to know that there are many types of Biblical trumpet blasts, all of which have different meanings. You can’t lump them all together. For example there are occasions where only a silver trumpet may be used. There are occasions where the shofar (rams horn) is used. There are other occasions where one long trumpet blast is required and others where many short blasts are required.
There is a “first trump” a “last trump” and the “great trump.” They are all different.
The one central theme of this Feast is the announcement of judgement. God never brings judgement, especially in such a severe form as the tribulation without warning first.
God always warns before judgement. If people ignore the warnings it’s not God’s fault.
The Feast of Trumpets is not the seven trumpet judgements of the Revelation. Some of the events do run concurrently but there is no mention at all of any feast in association with the Revelation seven trumpet judgements. Besides, the Feast of Trumpets is the announcement of all judgements to come, but is not any one of the individual judgements.
Zephaniah 2:3 “Seek the Lord all you meek of the earth, who have upheld His justice, seek righteousness, seek humility. It may be that you will be hidden in the day of the Lord’s anger.”
The word “Teruah,” associated with Trumpets means, “Awakening blast” but it is also translated a great shout in some places like Isaiah 12:6; 44:23, Zephaniah 3:14, Zechariah 9:9. Could it be that the great “shout” of 1Thessalonians 4:16-17 is synonymous?
The shofar blown on Rosh Hashanah is known as the “last trumpet”. We must understand that there is a last trumpet for the church and a last trumpet for the end of the tribulation and Second Coming. Rosh Hashanah’s “last trump” must be referring to the end of the church era and the introduction of the tribulation.
On this Feast the shofar is blown 101 times, which has a relationship with the angel Michael, who is the protector of Israel. This is one of the many associations with coming war.
Trumpets and the Messianic era:
By the way, in customary tradition, Matzos always has to be made with unleavened bread (a type of holiness), it must be pierced and striped. If only the Jews knew what they were signifying!
Okay, they will know soon!
Zechariah 12:10 “They will look upon the One whom they have pierced.”
Revelation 1:7 “Behold He is coming in the clouds and every eye will see Him and they also who pierced Him and all the tribes of the earth will mourn because of Him.”
The Feast of Trumpets has a specific identity with God’s promise to gather His scattered children from the four corners of the earth and open their eyes to our Messiah.
But as the shofar announces Messianic deliverance it also announces judgement on a Messiah rejecting world both Jew and Gentile. Not all Jews will accept salvation through their Messiah.
Warning of impending judgement is the grace and mercy of God magnified. If God warns over and over again, and people pay no attention then the verse becomes true: “They are without excuse.”
Romans 2:3 “Do you suppose, O man that you will escape the judgement of God?”
If God brought judgement on the world without warning first, that would not be love, would it?
This Feast is also known as “Teshuvah” which means “to turn around or repent.”
The Feast of Trumpets begins the solemn times of awe and repentance, but it’s also associated with great joy. In fact repentance always leads to great joy.
The returned, redeemed, saved of Israel will dance before the Lord in Messianic Jerusalem (not Islamic Jerusalem)
Jeremiah 31:13 “Then shall the virgin rejoice in dance and the young men and old together; for I will turn their mourning to joy, will comfort them and make them rejoice rather than sorrow.”
Jeremiah 31:31 “Behold the days are coming says the Lord, when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and the house of Judah.”
The Great White Throne Judgement:
Rosh Hashanah is also referred to as the great Day of Judgment. The Rabbis believe that this marks a future day on which “books are opened” from which the wicked are judged.
Although many of the traditional Rabbis still reject the New Testament, they don’t know that this aspect of the Feasts obviously refers to the Great While Throne of Revelation.
If you will not repent in the face of the Tribulation judgements, you will one day stand before God in total terror, whether you are a toilet janitor, a king or queen, a president or an average Joe.
This Great White Throne judgement is the final judgement of all who have rejected the salvation plan of God through the cross of Messiah.
This is the judgement where all who have trusted in themselves and the god of this world will receive their greatest shock ever. At this judgement the unbeliever’s works will be compared to the perfect works of Yeshua / Jesus and they will be found wanting. This judgement is the eternal door to hell.
Why the Feast of which no one knows the day and hour?
Matthew 24:33-36 “So when you see all these things, know that it very near even at the doors. Assuredly I say you to you that this generation will by no means pass away until all these things are fulfilled. ...but of that day and hour no one knows, not even the angles of heaven, but My Father only.”
This is a well known Hebrew idiom or figure of speech. It refers to the Feast of Trumpets, which is the only of the seven Feasts which begin on the “day and hour that no one knows.” This is because it begins at the sighting of the new moon. Obviously the sighting of the new moon doesn’t take place many days or months away, but within hours of expectation.
They didn’t sit on roof tops for weeks waiting for it. They know within a short space of time. If you look up that phrase and the Feast of Trumpets or Rosh Hashanah, you’ll see hundreds of Jewish websites putting the two together.
So, what our Lord is saying is that He is coming for His bride on Rosh Hashanah!
Trumpets, the rapture and the tribulation:
The trumpet blasts of Rosh Hashanah are synonymous with the “last trumpet” of church era, yes they also point to the last trump at the end of the Tribulation.
This Feast relates to the judgement of Israel in particular, but also has an application for the self-judgement of believers.
So, if the Feast of Trumpets occurs on and marks the start of the tribulation period it also relates to our works-judgement if the rapture occurs at this point.
Luke 21:36 “Watch therefore and pray always that you may be counted worthy to escape all these things.”
1 Corinthians 15:51-52 “Behold I show you a mystery, we shall not all sleep but we will be changed in a moment in a twinkling of an eye at the last trumpet, for the trumpet will sound and the dead will be raised incorruptible and we all shall be changed.”
1 Thessalonians 4:16-17 “For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of an archangel and with the trumpet of God and the dead in Christ will rise first. Then we who are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air, and thus we shall always be with the Lord.”
If the Feast of Trumpets will see it’s fulfilment in the tribulation period, this then has a relationship to the rapture. If you believe in a pre-tribulation rapture, then this Feast marks the rapture.
It’s very important to understand that the tribulation period begins with the revealing of antichrist. So in some ways this Feast is also dreadful and fearful as Satan himself is released for his final act.
●This Feast heralds the season of ripe figs! Mark 13:28-29
●This Feast is the feast of corpses and vultures! Matthew 24:28
●This Feast heralds world lawlessness, rebellion and deception. Matthew 24:1-15
But we must also know that the tribulation itself is the birth pangs of the Millennium reign of perfection, peace and wonder, with Satan bound and cast out.
What is most important is not where you place the rapture, but that you take deadly seriously the messages of Trumpets and apply them into your life.
We don’t know exactly when the tribulation will begin. I will deal with this again in another edition, but there are many indicators implying that the tribulation will start in 2014. Again, I say we don’t know that for sure. Let’s assume that the tribulation period may begin at Trumpets 2014.
If that is the case, then we can assume that Trumpets 2013 and 2012 may have some messages in terms of forerunners. It could be that some major events take place pointing towards the big event.
Remember, God always warns first.
What sort of forerunners can we expect? The big one of course is war with Iran. We may see the consolidation of Israel’s enemies in the Arab world. We may see Israel being drawn into the Syria conflict.
We may see a new round of 9/11 type events and a consolidating of the Arab world against most of the West.
Many other judgements will creep up like critical droughts and mass starvation in certain areas. We may see civil and social action as cities go bankrupt. We may see some imploding financially.
We may see Europe reform into a new type of beast.
We may see signs in the sky.
We may see a sharp rise in severe weather events and upheavals in the earth.
Many of the tribulation judgements will be instant and supernatural in origin, but many will natural events advancing slowly.
It’s pointless trying to figure out what the forerunners will be, but what we must do is prepare our hearts and watch and be ready.
Picture courtesy of the Temple Institute.
Rosh Hashanah has a very interesting association in Jewish tradition representing God’s creation. Some Rabbi’s believe it was the day of the creation of man.
This Feast then, has a backward looking aspect to it, and a forward looking aspect. It looks back to the creation before sin entered the world and forward to the new creation after sin has been judged and removed.
The sages of Israel believe that Adam’s original sin was on the Temple Mount. This was also the spot where Abraham brought Isaac to be sacrificed. This was where the angel stayed his knife-yielding hand. This is the spot where the First and Second Temples once stood and where the Third and Fourth Temples will stand. (That’s the Tribulation Temple and the Millennium Temple)
Could it be that the rebuilding of the Temple on Mount Moriah will have some association with this Feast? Could it be that the doom of the Dome will have some association with this Feast?
The blowing of the Shofar on this Feast was always done in the Temple in Jerusalem, made of stone. When the Feast fell on the same day as the Sabbath, this blowing of the Shofar extended to all of Jerusalem. Favour and blessing was proclaimed on the whole city.
The Temple of stone is important, but what is far more important is the temple of the Holy Spirit...your own heart.
Does Trumpets have a deeper message for us? Glad you asked:
As with all the Feasts they have a deep personal application as well. In this case it relates to judgment of self.
1 Corinthians 11:31“For if we would judge ourselves we would not be judged.”
Most people want nothing to do with judgment of self or otherwise, that’s why they’re impure unholy pigs!
Judgement always has a glorious relationship with holiness. Judgement removes sin and all that’s un-holy. Don’t ever be afraid of judgement. We have been given the incredible privilege of using the power of the cross to walk in purity and holiness in the face of a world going the other way.
As believers we received the judgement that fell on Christ at the cross, but our works are still to be judged. If we are following our Lord there will be much evidence in our lives. We will walk in holiness we will walk in restraint. Our lives will be a living testimony.
What we do as believers has eternal consequences in terms of reward or loss of reward.
The most, most, most important thing in anyone’s life is final, eternal judgement!
Can you hear the trumpet blasting in your own life, calling you to repentance or judgement? Are you cleaning up your act as a result? The appointment before the Judge of the universe is one appointment that no one will miss!
Psalm 97:10-11 “You who love the Lord, hate evil! He preserves the souls of His saints; He delivers them out of the hand of the wicked. Light is sown for the righteous, and gladness for the upright in heart.”
If we walk wisely, repent now, clean up our lives and walk in holiness we will “Tabernacle” with our Lord in a new close, deep, personal and wonderful way.
At the very least, Trumpets refers to personal judgement and holiness. Today the church has removed the Feasts. Is it any wonder that the church has also removed personal judgement from its theology and practice? Is it any wonder that the church is so full of sin?
►Please get this if you get nothing else. Holiness is always a choice. It doesn’t just descend on you. It’s a drastic radical choice that will set you apart from the world. It will make you odd with the world and good with God! It will be a battle initially, but soon it becomes easier and then completely desirable. In fact it becomes a passion, as the living God draws near to you.
The Feast is of major importance. It represents repentance and self judgement. It represents the sin-less old creation before the fall and the sin-less new creation after judgement. It represents the final terminal judgement of all the unsaved and wicked. It will signal the start of the seven year tribulation period.
God is holy, but He is also in the business of showing mercy, forgiveness and salvation. In His grace He always warns of judgement on those who reject His free offer of salvation. He is the God of a second, third and many more chances, but none after entering eternity.
The Feast of Trumpets announces the most terrifying time of judgement upon the world that anyone can imagine. “The Spirit of God will not strive with man forever.” (Genesis 6:3)
Judgement of self leads to great holiness, great security and peace in the face of terrible times!
Psalm 118:8 “It is better to trust in the Lord than to put confidence in man.”
This Psalm and verse is the very centre of the Bible. There are 594 chapters before it and 594 after it. If you add those two numbers together they come to 1188! Is our great God the centre of your life? Is the centre of your life supreme trust in Him and His word, or man and his god the media?
By the way, Psalm 118:8 is part of the traditional prayer of Rosh Hashanah.
My friends, the gate to glory is to trust entirely in our Lord and His word.
Shalom and grow in grace!