This year as friends prepare to celebrate Rosh Hashanah—which is also called Yom Teruah or the Feast of Trumpets in the English Bible—the signing of the Abraham Accords on September 15, 2020 was not only historic, but prophetic.
The Trump administration is to be commended for bringing Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel, Foreign Minister Abdullah bin Zayed (United Arab Emirates) and Foreign Minister Sheikh Khalid bin Ahmed al-Khallaf (Bahrain) together for the first peace agreements and normalization of relations with Israel in 25 years.
Amazingly, the prospect of at least five more countries eager to do the same was formally announced by President Trump prior to the stately ceremony at the White House.
Is there a connection linking the President’s surname “Trump” to the first in the cycle of fall feasts. Let’s have a look at the Bible context.
The Bible Provides the Background for Understanding Yom Teruah
God gave Moses the directive for the holy day while the nation of Israel was camped at Mount Sinai.
LEVITICUS 23:23-25 (NKJV)
“Then the Lord spoke to Moses, saying, ‘Speak to the children of Israel, saying: In the seventh month, on the first day of the month, you shall have a Sabbath-rest, a memorial of blowing of trumpets, a holy convocation. You shall do no customary work on it; and you shall offer an offering made by fire to the Lord’”.
Yom Teruah, which is actually the Hebrew transliteration of the phrase “day of trumpets,” more accurately describes the holiday. The shofar used for Yom Teruah comes from the horn of the ram. Rabbinic tradition requires a minimum of one hundred shofar blasts on both days of the celebration. Unlike the blowing of noisemakers during New Year’s Eve parties on the Gregorian calendar, there are prophetic implications associated with sounding the shofar.
The daily blowing of the shofar climaxes on the new moon that begins the Feast of Trumpets and the month of Tishrei. The Feast of Trumpets is the beginning of the Jewish civil New Year and in that context is called Rosh Hashanah.
The following portion from the Psalms is read before the shofar is blown:
“Blessed are the people who know the joyful sound!
They walk, O Lord, in the light of Your countenance.
In Your name they rejoice all day long,
And in Your righteousness they are exalted.
For You are the glory of their strength,
And in Your favor our horn is exalted.
For our shield belongs to the Lord,
And our king to the Holy One of Israel” (Ps. 89:15-18).
The word translated “joyful sound” is actually the Hebrew word teruah or trumpet. Rendered “joyful shout” in the Tanakh, a side note in the Hebrew Study Bible describes the word as a “blast of the ram’s horn.” (1) The word “know” is yawdah in Hebrew and conveys the idea of understanding or comprehension. The psalmist states the blessed people are those who grasp the prophetic implications of the shofar blast.
The Shofar Has Prophetic Implications for Israel
According to rabbinic tradition, blowing the shofar on Yom Teruah symbolizes the final regathering of Israel. The Hebrew Scriptures indicate that, “a great trumpet shall be blown,” to call the scattered descendants of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob back to their ancestral homeland (Isa. 27:13). Many believe the final regathering will coincide with a future celebration of Yom Teruah.
The 89th Psalm confirms the Davidic Covenant in the context of a plea for God to restore the nation of Israel. The remainder of the psalm affirms the following:
- God’s covenant with David will endure (vv. 3-4, 20-23).
- God’s promises to Israel will be literally fulfilled (vv. 24-29).
- The Messianic Kingdom will be established on the earth as God promised (vv. 34-37).
The promises God made to King David will culminate in the coming of Messiah to inaugurate the Messianic Kingdom. The blast of the shofar—the joyful sound—captures the hope of the Messianic Kingdom!
The Shofar Has Prophetic Implications for Christians
Christians should also be listening for the sound of a trumpet that signals the moment when all Church Age saints are caught up literally and bodily to meet the Lord in the air (1 Th. 4:13-18).
Bible scholars and Messianic teachers suggest this event could happen during a celebration of Yom Teruah. There are several reasons why.
- The Roman government’s crucifixion of Jesus the Christ occurred on Pesach (Passover). He rose victorious from the grave on the Feast of Bikkurim (First Fruits). Pesach and Bikkurim are the first two spring feasts. The Church Age began on the Feast of Shavuot (Pentecost), which is the last of the three in the cycle of spring feasts (Acts 2).
- Yom Teruah/Feast of Trumpets follows Shavuot and begins the cycle of fall feasts. Since each of the spring feasts align with the fulfillment of God’s redemptive program, the same can be expected for the fall feasts.
- It is reasonable to believe that the Rapture of the church initiated with, “a shout, the voice of the archangel, and the trumpet of God,” is the next event on the prophetic calendar (1 Th. 4:16-17 cf. 1 Cor. 15:51-58; Heb. 10:35-38; Jas. 5:7-8; 1 Pet.4:7-8).
If the Rapture marks the end of the Church Age, the final seven years of God’s 490-year program to inaugurate the Messianic Kingdom—as revealed to the prophet Daniel—will resume (Dan. 9:24-27).
The Stage Is Being Set for Last Days Scenarios
The President is highly regarded in Israel. For the first time in modern history, Israel’s ancient connection to the land was recognized by a world leader who established an embassy in the capital city of Jerusalem. The Sanhedrin minted a coin commemorating Donald J. Trump’s role, “in the unfolding prophetic process.” (2)
The timing of the Abraham Accords in close proximity to the Feast of Trumpets was not lost on discerning Christians.
Could Yom Teruah be the day that Christians will hear the trumpet sound and be caught up to meet the Lord in the air? Is that the day God’s program for Israel will be resumed in preparation for establishment of the Messianic Kingdom? Will that event occur this year?
The Rapture is imminent. Only time will tell.
For all who revere and believe the Bible, however, these new developments on the political scene days before Yom Teruah 5781 are a reminder that God’s promises will be fulfilled. Much in the prophetic word centers not only on how the nations interact with Israel, but is a warning of God’s impending judgement for any who dare to harm the apple of His eye (Zech. 2:8 cf. Gen. 12:3).
May the psalmist’s prayer be daily on our lips: “Pray for the peace of Jerusalem” (Ps. 122:6).
2) Adele Berlin and Marc Zvi Brettler, The Jewish Study Bible, (New York: Oxford University Press, 2004), 1392.
2) Berkowitz, Adam Eliyahu, “Sanhedrin Mints Coin for the Battle of the Army of Light Against the Army of Darkness,”Israel 365News.
1) The Joyful Sound. (Used for illustrative purposes) (Photo and detail credit: foreground image courtesy, Lin Applegate. Background image, Pixabay/[Public domain]/Digital composition, MKM Portfolios)
Copyright © 2020 Charles E. McCracken, updated commentary only. Repost/Reprint with permission. Scripture taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson. Used by permission. All rights reserved.