From the title you can assume I’m going to compare and contrast Feast of Trumpets and Rosh Hashanah. Often, we as Christians confuse the two, I know I sure did. After careful study and much prayer, I am presenting this lesson in hopes that 1) you will find joy in celebrating this feast today and 2) you understand that Rosh Hashanah is man’s tradition (as rich as it is) in Jewish customs.
I want to first state that I believe we should follow the instructions YHWH (God) has presented throughout the ENTIRE Bible. I do NOT believe that Yeshua Hamashiach (Jesus Christ) did away with them. However, he did fulfill the sacrificial system. I could go into detail later on this topic. But I wanted to touch on it here so that you can have a foundation as to why I encourage you to honor the Feasts as they are part of these instructions/commandments.
Let us begin with Leviticus 23:23-25 where we first read about the Feast of Trumpets or in Hebrew Yom Teruah, “The Lord spoke to Moses, saying, ‘Speak to the Israelites, saying: In the seventh month, on the first day of the month, you shall observe a day of complete rest, a holy convocation commemorated with trumpet blasts. You shall not work at your occupations, and you shall present the Lord’s offering by fire.'” Through this passage, the Lord is telling us on a particular day to rest as with all Sabbaths and to honor the day by blowing a trumpet (or shofar in Hebrew). During this time, a trumpet was usually made from a ram’s horn. It was used to announce a war or victory, a battle of some sort.
Now, Leviticus 23:23-25 is not the only passage that YHWH instructs us to observe Yom Teruah. If you go over to Numbers 10:10 it states, “Also on your days of rejoicing, at your appointed festivals, and at the beginnings of your months, you shall blow the trumpets over your burnt offerings and over your sacrifices of well-being; they shall serve as a reminder on your behalf before the Lord your God: I am the Lord your God.” In this section, the Heavenly Father is giving more detailed instructions on how He wanted the offerings to take place on this Holy Day. He explains WHY we were to do these things, a reminder of who YHWH is. I want to pause here and agree with most mainstream Christians in that Yeshua Hamashiach did indeed stop the sacrifices and offerings when he died on the cross for ALL sins. We read that 1 John 2:1-2.
Ok, now we know some of the Biblical instructions to uphold the Feast of Trumpets but how does it differ from Rosh Hashanah? Well, I want to first direct your attention to Psalms 81:3, “Blow the trumpet at the new moon, at the full moon, on our festal day.” Many believe that Rosh Hashanah is associated with this verse as it says “new moon”, however, that word in Hebrew is Rosh Hodesh (also meaning head of the month). While Rosh Hashanah means “head of the year”. Our Jewish siblings see this celebration as their Biblical New Year. It is the first of the Jewish High Holidays. 18Doors.org explains when it first came to be, “The history of Rosh Hashanah can be traced back to the sixth century B.C.E., though the holiday was never mentioned in the Torah [the first 5 books of the Bible or the books of Moses]. The phrase ‘Rosh Hashanah’ was first mentioned in the Mishna ( the first major written collection of the Jewish oral laws) in 200 C.E…While the holiday might have originated with the Babylonians, the rabbis associated Rosh Hashanah with Jewish meaning as the anniversary of the creation of the earth, or the creation of mankind. Another reason is the importance of Tishrei as the seventh month, and therefore the year’s Sabbath.” This is quite different than what is stated in our Scriptures.
When Yeshua Hamashiach walked the Earth in his ministry, he came to condemn the acts of the religious leaders. They were adding to YHWH’s instructions as we see in Matthew 23:13–36. GotQuestions.org explains, “The scribes and Pharisees were supposed to know God and help others know Him and follow His ways. Instead, the religious leaders added to God’s Law, making it a cumbersome and onerous burden.” We were never to add or take away from YHWH’s instructions. His ways are perfect. This is why the Feast of Trumpets and Rosh Hashanah are different. They are BOTH beautiful, however, one has cultural practices significant to the modern Jewish people and the other is specifically Biblical. How we celebrate this day will depend on the person, but we ARE to commemorate it with trumpet blasts.
And so, as you enjoy today, I pray you consider observing this HOLY holiday. It is a perpetual reminder that YHWH is our God. He is the ultimate and sent His one and only son for our salvation. Be blessed on this day my friends.
Until next time,
-Rev. Alex Burchnell
If you have questions about this topic or others, feel free to leave a comment or send a message.
18 Doors Unlocking Jewish (n.d.). What is the Meaning of Rosh Hashanah (a Cheat Sheet). 18Doors.Org. https://18doors.org/what-is-the-meaning-of-rosh-hashanah/#:~:text=The%20history%20of%20Rosh%20Hashanah,oral%20laws)%20in%20200%20C.E.
Got Questions Your Questions. Biblical Answers. (n.d.). Why did Jesus rebuke the scribes and Pharisees so harshly in Matthew 23:13–36? GotQuestions.org. https://www.gotquestions.org/scribes-and-Pharisees.html