The Feast of Trumpets

 

Leviticus 23:25; Numbers 29:1

In the previous studies we saw how, at His first advent, Christ fulfilled the four spring feasts. The next three studies will show how Christ will fulfill the fall feasts at His second coming.

Following Pentecost, where there are three months with little or no rain, the three fall feasts begin in the seventh month of Tishri. These feasts, Trumpets, Day of Atonement, and Tabernacles, are collectively known as the Feasts of Tabernacles. The time between the spring feasts and the fall feasts corresponds to the present Church Age.

The Feast of Trumpets, also called Rosh Hashanah, or "Head of the Year," acts as both a day of rest and a reminder of the next feast, the Day of Atonement. Together, these two comprise what Judaism calls the "High Holy Days." Trumpets is the only holy day to occur on the first day of the month, when the new moon is only a slim crescent. Leviticus 23:2 (NIV) says that the seven feasts were "sacred assemblies." In Hebrew, the word "assembly" is also translated "rehearsal." All seven feasts are rehearsals for the primary event, and Trumpets is a time of repentance in anticipation of the Day of Atonement.

Trumpets is observed on Tishri 1, usually mid-September to early October, with the Day of Atonement falling on the tenth, and Tabernacles arriving on Tishri 15. A natural progression can be seen in these feasts: Trumpets teaches repentance, the Day of Atonement teaches redemption, and Tabernacles teaches rejoicing. Naturally, repentance must precede redemption, and only the redeemed can truly rejoice in the Lord.

In the Bible, there are numerous reasons to blow a trumpet: to announce a new king (2 Samuel 15:10; 1 Kings 1:39; 2 Kings 9:13; 11:12-14), to sound a battle alarm (Joshua 6:20; Judges 7:18), or to gather the people in an assembly before the Lord (Numbers 10:2-4).

The Feast of Trumpets teaches us about the resurrection of the dead and the coronation and wedding of the Messiah. When the Bridegroom returns for His bride, the Church, it will be accompanied with a shout (Matthew 25:6) and the blowing of a trumpet (1 Thessalonians 4:16-17; Revelation 4:1).

In relation to the feasts of Israel, Trumpets ushers in the "Days of Awe," the seven-day period between the blowing of the trumpet and the Day of Atonement. The Feast of Trumpets occurs on Tishri 1, and the Day of Atonement occurs on the tenth. The first two days of Trumpets are considered as one day, so that the witnesses of the new moon could communicate their sightings to all the Jewish people, including those dispersed into foreign lands. The seven-day period between Tishri 3 and Tishri 9 is called the "Days of Awe."

According to Jewish tradition, three books of life are opened on the Feast of Trumpets--for the righteous, the unrighteous, and those in between. For those caught in between, ten days are given for them to repent and seek forgiveness, until the Day of Atonement arrives and their fate is sealed. The days between Trumpets (Tishri 1) and the Day of Atonement (Tishri 10) contain seven days of repentance. Two days are given to the blowing of the trumpet, so from the third to the ninth the people have time to repent. This corresponds to the seven years of tribulation the earth will experience after the rapture of the Church (Trumpets) and before the final judgment (Day of Atonement). After this will be the Feast of Tabernacles, where the Bride dwells in the eternal presence of our Bridegroom, Jesus.

By Jim Thornber