Rosh HaShanah–A Call to Listen

Shofar blowerIllustration:  “The Shophar Blower” by Marc Chagall, collotype, 1961.

“And the LORD spoke to Moses, saying, ‘Speak to the people of Israel, saying, In the seventh month, on the first day of the month, you shall observe a day of solemn rest, a memorial proclaimed with blast of trumpets, a holy convocation.” (Lev 23:23-24).

Yesterday, we began our journey. The destination is heaven. Our guide is God’s Holy Spirit. Our map is the Bible.  In it we see the road Jesus walked.  Throughout this book, we will look at the pictures of six festivals celebrated during the Jewish year.  Each festival foreshadows the saving work of God in Jesus Christ and the response of His faithful people.

We are walking on a road that leads to the cross, the cries of the crowd and the clarion call of the empty tomb. Rosh HaShanah, the beginning of our walk, the beginning of our year in the Lord, is the first picture.

Rosh HaShanah is the head of the year and the Feast of Trumpets. And the trumpets first call us to rest.

The trumpet of Rosh HaShanah is the ram’s horn.  God commanded Abraham to sacrifice his son, Isaac.  Abraham obeyed, but God had mercy and at the last moment provided a ram to be sacrificed instead.  The sounding of the ram’s horn at the Feast of Trumpets recalls God’s merciful act, reminds us of our responsibility to God and calls us to repentance.

It is unusual to begin a journey with rest. How much progress can we make? But rest is what God calls us to. Rest in Him. For even as we begin our journey, we are burdened by battling the world and too often we battle as if we are alone. But God says “Rest, I’ll take up the battle today.” And as we rest in God, we know that He enjoins the enemy every day in our stead. By our faith in Jesus, we are already victorious. Rest is a great way to begin our journey!

This fast also reminds believers in the Messiah to look forward to hearing the trumpet on the last day, when “the Lord himself will descend from heaven with a cry of command, with the voice of an archangel, and with the sound of the trumpet of God” (1 Thessalonians 4:16).

Prayer:  Abba Father, thank you for being merciful to Abraham and Isaac, and to me.  Help me to await Your victorious return every day.  Today, as you rest, as we begin our journey. May this truly be a time of refreshment in Your Spirit. In Y’shua’s name, Amen.

Ponder the path:  Listen to the sound of the trumpets!  Remember God’s mercy and live in anticipation of His return.

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