****The Feasts of Israel
Session 8 | The Feast of Trumpets
The Biblical Instruction For the Feast
The feast is the first day of the seventh month, now known as Tishri, but not named in the Bible, except for 1 Kings 8:2, which uses the name Ethanim.
This feast is to be a memorial of blowing trumpets (v. 24) and is to involve no servile work (v. 25). Like the others, it is to have an offering made by fire unto the Lord (v. 25).
This passage elaborates on the offerings given but does not give any further purpose or instruction in the feast.
The Meaning Of The Feast
“call to arms," as the Hebrew word translated trumpets (Lev. 23:24) is neither the trumpet of silver (chazozra) nor the ram's horn (shofar). The word relates more to the sound than the instrument and is sometimes translated blow an alarm.
So, is the feast related to an alarm? There are several names for this holiday. According to Chabad.org,
Rosh Hashanah Talmud devoted to the holiday.
Torah refers to this day as Teruah (Day of Shofar Blowing).
I Yom Hazikaron (Day of Remembrance) and Yom Hadin (Day of Judgement) since this is the day when Gd recalls all of His creations and determines their fate for the year ahead.
Yom Kippur (which follows 10 days later), it is part of the Yamim Nora'im (Days of Awe, or: High Holidays).
Notice that the name Yom Hadin does have a judgement aspect. Even though the day is mostly celebratory, there is a reminder of alarm.
In Jewish tradition, the day celebrates the creation of Adam and Eve. The blowing of the shofar represents, in Jewish thought, the coronation of a king. It is therefore a reminder to the Jewish people that God is their creator and king and they are dependent upon Him.
This passage gives some insight into the meaning of the blowing of trumpets. The first eight verses are general in nature, speaking of various uses of the sound of trumpets. However, in verse 9 the Lord gives a promise that if the people, after arriving in the land, were to go to war against an invading enemy and were to blow and alarm with trumpets, then they would be remembered by God and saved from their enemies.
Verse 10 says that in the day of your gladness, and in your solemn days, and in the beginnings of your months, ye shall blow with the trumpets over your burnt offerings, and over the sacrifices of your peace offerings; that they may be to you for a memorial before your God. Thus the blowing of trumpets was done specifically on Rosh Hashana, but at other times as well, both for celebration and alarm.
The Feast As A Type For Rapture?
Each September millions of Christians look to the skies on Rosh Hashana, believing that the rapture will occur on this day. Is the Feast of Trumpets a type (prophetic foreshadow) of the rapture?
The argument is built on a Christological hermeneutic, seeing all things in the Hebrew Scriptures and point to to Christ, with no separation of the Body of Christ from its fulfillment. In general, the argument goes like this:
Jesus is our Passover Lamb and was crucified on Passover.
Jesus lived a sinless life, and thus fulfilled Unleavened Bread.
Jesus rose from the dead on First Fruits.
God sent the Holy Spirit on Pentecost, giving birth to the church (this is the standard interpretation, not my own).
With these things happening exactly on the day of the festivals, then the scenario believes that we can expect something prophetically significant to happen on the day of the next festival, Trumpets.
“next up," and thus the rapture will happen at some future Feast of Trumpets.
One of the biggest challenges to this way of thinking is that it presumes the rapture to be foreshadowed in the Hebrew Scriptures. A literal reading of Paul, however, prohibits such an idea. The rapture is for the Body of Christ, which was a mystery that was unknown during the times of the writing of the Hebrew Scriptures. That is, no Old Testament passage foreshadows the church nor anything in it.
But if the Feast of Trumpets is not a foreshadow of the rapture, could it have any prophetic significance?
Psalm 81 In Light of Prophecy
The Psalms are a repeating progressive pattern of revelation, remnant, reign. Revelation psalms give information. Remnant psalms show Israel in the tribulation in distress. Reign psalms show the Messianic age. Psalms 79 and 80 are remnant psalms, but Psalm 81 is a reign Psalm. What is significant is that it also begins with the blowing of the trumpets on the Feast of Trumpets.
The Psalm, therefore, helps us put the pieces of the puzzle together and see that Feast of Trumpets is not the rapture (which is not foreseen in the Old Testament), but rather the beginning of the national life of Israel.
Isaiah 27:12-13 Shedding Light On Prophecy
Like Psalm 81, this passage speaks about a future day when Israel shall be gathered one by one (v. 12) and the great trumpet shall be blown (v. 13). And at this future Feast of Trumpets, life for Israel shall truly begin.