On Saturday, September 15, we experienced what many are calling a “perfect Dogtown Day!” I’d have to say that it was certainly one of the best.
On the previous Sunday evening, we observed our Erev Rosh HaShana service, with our Ba’al T’kiah ushering in the season with the shofar. Ba’al T’kiah is Hebrew for “master of the blast” and it is the person who blows a specific series of tones on the shofar, or ram’s horn. Trust me, it’s not that easy, but we are blessed to have a young lady who is a trombone player, and she gives us the clarion call to usher in the High Holy Days. Those are then followed by ten days, called the Days of Awe, where observant Jews pray, fast, repent and do good works, hoping for some sense of redemption on Yom Kippur. On Erev Rosh HaShana, Genesis 22 is read in the synagogues, and while we admire Abraham for his faithfulness and are grateful for the substitute ram given for Isaac’s sacrifice, if we’re at all sincere, then we have to be hoping for a substitute for ourselves, even if on the surface it is just our own works.
Of course, works don’t cut it for redemption. Isaiah tells us that with regard to redemption, all our works are filthy rags. So, in the midst of these Days of Awe, we had our “perfect Dogtown Day.” We had a Family Festival, with a “Half-way to St. Patrick’s Day” celebration, our monthly Dogtown Craft Walk, and that was all topped off by the Great Forest Park Balloon Race that happens every year in the park that borders our community. So there were a lot of people around that day, and we took the opportunity to engage them as our same Ba’al T’kiah manned her craft booth for the kids, and I wrote a gospel tract to hand around, challenging some of the Jewish people, and hopefully giving pause to think for some of the rest of the folks around.
You see, while good works don’t cut it for redemption, good works flow from the faith that God pours into us when we receive the substitute that He provides for us, the work of Y’shua on the cross. The Holy Spirit moves us to do and tell the Gospel, and I am so grateful for those who respond and share their faith with our Jewish people and with all people, today, tomorrow and until that day when the Shofar blasts and Y’shua returns (1 Thess. 4). Then a truly perfect day will come! Gut Yontiff (Happy holidays) and God bless.