Yom Teruah

The moed of Yom Teruah is known by many names. Yom Teruah literally means the Day of the Shofar Sound. In Christian nomenclature it is called The Feast of Trumpets. It occurs six cycles of the new month (i.e. six months) after Pesach on the first day of the seventh month in the Biblical calendar. It marks the end of a long, hot, and dry summer and the beginning of the fall festivals.

As we examine this moed and discover what Scripture has to tell us about it, we should consider that the very same Elohim Who granted favour and mercy by sending His Son to atone for our lawlessness will send that same Son again to defeat His enemies and judge the world.

What does Scripture tell us about this festival and what commandments are given regarding it? What are we to do and when are we to do it?

We pray once more in the words of King David: oh, YaHuWaH, please “open our eyes that we might behold wonderful things from your Torah” and see our returning Messiah in this moed. Scripture was given to mankind to speak of Him and we should listen and hear its voice… His voice… especially during His appointed times.

What Scripture Says About Yom Teruah

Yom Teruah [יום תרועה, Strong’s #3117 + Strong’s #8643] means “day [of the] shout”.

“Speak unto the Bnei Yisra’El, saying, In the seventh month, in the first day of the month, shall ye have a Shabbaton, a zikhron teru’ah mikra kodesh. Ye shall do no melekhet avodah therein; but ye shall offer an offering made by eish unto YaHuWaH.” Wayyiqra‬/Leviticus ‭23:24-25

Although translated as “trumpet”, teruah is not an actual “trumpet” as Westerns know it. Rather, it is a type of sound made with a ram’s horn: a shofar. A shofar is a ram’s horn that is hollowed out and used as a musical instrument. It is “played” by blowing and vibrating pursed lips much like a modern brass instrument like a trumpet or trombone.

The NASB adds the words “of trumpets” in this passage. Teruah is used in Scripture to describe both the sounding of a shofar as well as people shouting (e.g. the “great shout” mentioned in Joshua 6:5 is the Hebrew word teruah).

“And it shall come to pass, that when they make a long blast with the keren hayovel, when ye hear the sound of the shofar, Kol HaAm shall shout with a teruah gedolah; and the Chomat HaIr shall fall down, and HaAm shall go up every ish charging straight in.” Yehoshua/Joshua‬ ‭6:5

The Septuagint translates the word teruah into Greek as σαλπιγγων (salpiggon, Strong’s #4536) “trumpets”. This word is used only 11 times in the Apostolic Writings.

Who: Bnei Yisra’El.

“Speak unto the Bnei Yisra’El, saying, In the seventh month, in the first day of the month, shall ye have a Shabbaton, a zikhron teru’ah mikra kodesh.” Wayyiqra‬/Leviticus ‭23:24

What:

Special commands

• It is a day of rest [Heb: sabbaton]
“Speak unto the Bnei Yisra’El, saying, In the seventh month, in the first day of the month, shall ye have a Shabbaton, a zikhron teru’ah mikra kodesh.” Wayyiqra‬/Leviticus ‭23:24

• It is a reminder by “blowing of trumpets”
“Speak unto the Bnei Yisra’El, saying, In the seventh month, in the first day of the month, shall ye have a Shabbaton, a zikhron teru’ah mikra kodesh.” Wayyiqra/Leviticus ‭23:24

• It is a day for a holy convocation
“Speak unto the Bnei Yisra’El, saying, In the seventh month, in the first day of the month, shall ye have a Shabbaton, a zikhron teru’ah mikra kodesh.” Wayyiqra‬/Leviticus ‭23:24

• You shall not do any “laborious work” [Heb: מלאכת עבדה (melachot avodah)]
“Ye shall do no melekhet avodah therein; but ye shall offer an offering made by eish unto YaHuWaH.” ‭‭ Wayyiqra‬/Leviticus ‭23:24

• You shall present an “offering by fire” [Heb: אשּׁה (isheh)] to YaHuWaH
“Ye shall do no melekhet avodah therein; but ye shall offer an offering made by eish unto YaHuWaH.” ‭‭ Wayyiqra/Leviticus ‭23:24

The Sound of the Shofar

There are traditionally three types of sounds made with the shofar:

• The tekiah (the “blast”) is a single long note:
• The shevarim (“broken”) is a series of three rising notes:
• The teruah (the “alarm”) is a rapid series of nine or more very short notes:

Since it is not known with certainty which of these three types of sounds is actually the teruah commanded by YaHuWaH for this moed, all three are traditionally sounded in a series in order to “cover all the bases”.

Offerings

The book of Numbers provides the list of offerings required for this moed.

‘Now in the seventh month, on the first day of the month, you shall also have a holy convocation; you shall do no laborious work. It will be to you a day for blowing trumpets. You shall offer a burnt offering as a soothing aroma to YaHuWaH: one bull, one ram, and seven male lambs one year old without defect; also their grain offering, fine flour mixed with oil: three-tenths of an ephah for the bull, two-tenths for the ram, and one-tenth for each of the seven lambs. Offer one male goat for a sin offering, to make atonement for you, besides the burnt offering of the new moon and its grain offering, and the continual burnt offering and its grain offering, and their drink offerings, according to their ordinance, for a soothing aroma, an offering by fire to YaHuWaH. Bemidbar/Numbers 29:1-6

“In the seventh month, on the first day of the month, you are to have a holy convocation; do not do any kind of ordinary work; it is a day of blowing the shofar for you. Prepare a burnt offering to make a fragrant aroma for YaHuWaH — one young bull, one ram and seven male lambs in their first year and without defect — with their grain offering, consisting of fine flour mixed with olive oil — six quarts for the bull, four quarts for the ram, and two quarts for each of the seven lambs — also one male goat as a sin offering to make atonement for you. This is to be in addition to the burnt offering for Rosh-Chodesh with its grain offering, the regular burnt offering with its grain offering, and their drink offerings, according to the rule for them; this will be a fragrant aroma, an offering made by fire to YaHuWaH.” Bemidbar/Numbers‬ ‭29:1-6

1)The olah [burnt offering] for Yom Teruah:
One bull (+ 3/10 ephah fine flour mixed with oil + 1/2 hin of wine)
One ram (+ 2/10 ephah fine flour mixed with oil + 1/3 hin of wine)
Seven male lambs one year old without defect (+ 1/10 fine flour mixed with oil + 1/4 hin of wine for each lamb)

2)One male goat for a sin offering

3)The olah for the new moon (Bemidbar/Numbers 28:11-15):
One bull (+ 3/10 ephah fine flour mixed with oil + 1/2 hin of wine)
One ram (+ 2/10 ephah fine flour mixed with oil + 1/3 hin of wine)
Seven male lambs one year old without defect (+ 1/10 fine flour mixed with oil + 1/4 hin of wine for each lamb)

4)The continual olah (Bemidbar/Numbers 28:3-8):
Two male lambs one year old without defect, one in the morning and one in the afternoon (+1/10 ephah fine flour mixed with 1/4 hin of oil + 1/4 hin of “strong drink” for each lamb)

When:

In the seventh month on the first of the month (Wayyiqra/Leviticus 23:24)

“Speak to the children of Yisra’ĕl, saying, ‘In the seventh month, on the first day of the month, you have a rest, a remembrance of Teru‛ah.” Wayyiqra/Leviticus‬ ‭23:24

Where:

No specific mention of place is given in Scripture, although the offerings must be made in the Tabernacle (or later the Temple) according to Wayyiqra/Leviticus 17:3-9.

“What man soever there be of Bais Yisra’El, that sacrificeth an ox, or lamb, or goat, in the machaneh, or that sacrificeth it outside of the machaneh, And bringeth it not unto the petach (entrance) of the Ohel Mo’ed, to offer a korban unto YaHuWaH before the Mishkan of YaHuWaH, [shefach] dahm (shedding of blood) shall be imputed unto that man; he hath committed shefach dahm; and that man shall be cut off [see Daniel 9:26 regarding Mashiach] from among his people; To the end that the Bnei Yisra’El may bring their zevakhim, which they offer in the open sadeh, even that they may bring them unto YaHuWaH, unto the petach of the Ohel Mo’ed, unto the kohen, and offer them for zivkhei shelamim unto YaHuWaH. And the kohen shall sprinkle [see Yeshayahu 52:15] the dahm upon the Mizbe’ach of YaHuWaH at the petach of the Ohel Mo’ed, and burn the fat for a re’ach nichoach unto YaHuWaH. And they shall no more offer their zevakhim unto goat demons, after whom they have gone a-whoring. This shall be a chukkat olam unto them throughout their dorot (generations). And thou shalt say unto them, Whatsoever man there be of the Bais Yisra’El, or of the ger which sojourn among them, that offereth an olah (burnt offering) or zevakh, And bringeth it not unto the petach of the Ohel Mo’ed, to offer it unto YaHuWaH; even that man shall be cut off [see Daniel 9:26 on Mashiach’s being cut off] from among his people.” Wayyiqra/Leviticus‬ ‭17:3-9

Other Observations

There are a number of reasons to sound the shofar aside from this festival. Two of the most common reasons given in Scripture are: the arrival of a king or the anointing of a king. For example: 2 Samuel 15:10, 1 Kings 1:34, 1 Kings 1:39, 2 Kings 9:13.

All of these mention a shofar being sounded as a person is anointed and proclaimed king. So, too, we can recognize the King who reigns over Kings, the Holy One, blessed be He when we hear the shofar being sounded on Yom Teruah.

Finding Messiah in Yom Teruah

The Return of the Messiah

After the spring moedim (Pesach, Chag HaMatzot and Shavuot) comes a long, hot, and dry summer in the Land of Yisra’El. But the moedim return in the Fall and with them comes cooler weather and relief from the heat.

Like the spring moedim that foretold Messiah’s first coming, Yom Teruah marks the beginning of the fall festivals that foretell His second coming (oh, YaHuWaH, may it be soon!). In this moed we can see Messiah returning with a great trumpet blast and vanquishing His enemies in preparation for Judgment Day and the Day of Atonement.

The blessing of the moedim return with Yom Teruah: the Feast of Trumpets, the first of the fall moedim.

Prophecy speaks of the Great Trumpet that will herald the return of the Messiah King following the long, hot, and dry centuries since His appearing.

We noted above that the Greek word used in the Septuagint for teruah was salpiggon (“trumpets”, singular salpigx). This word is used in the writings of the apostles eleven times including these prophetic passages:

“And then the sign of the Son of Man will appear in the sky, and then all the tribes of the earth will mourn, and they will see the SON OF MAN COMING ON THE CLOUDS OF THE SKY with power and great glory. And He will send forth His angels with A GREAT TRUMPET and THEY WILL GATHER TOGETHER His elect from the four winds, from one end of the sky to the other.” Mattithyahu/Matthew 24:30-31

“And then will appear the Ot Ben Adam (the Sign of the Son of Man) in Shamayim. All the tribes of kol haaretz (all the earth) will see the Ben HaAdam Mashiach and his Bias, his Coming, on the ananim of Shamayim (clouds of glory of Heaven) with gevurah (power) and great kavod (glory). Mashiach will send his malachim with a loud blast of the Shofar, and the malachim will gather together Mashiach’s Bechirim from the four winds, from one end of Shamayim to the other.” Mattithyahu/Matthew‬ ‭24:30-31

Behold, I tell you a mystery; we will not all sleep, but we will all be changed, in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet; for the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised imperishable, and we will be changed. For this perishable must put on the imperishable, and this mortal must put on immortality. 1 Corinthians 15:51-53

“Hinei! I speak a sod (mystery) to you: we will not all sleep the sleep of the Mesim, but we will all be changed. In a rega (moment), in the wink of an eye, at the last shofar blast. For the shofar will sound, the Mesim (dead ones) will be raised imperishable, and we will be changed. For it is necessary for this perishable nature to put on the imperishable, and this mortal nature to put on the immortal.” Kehilah in 1 Corinthians‬ ‭15:51-53

For the Master Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet of Elohim, and the dead in Messiah will rise first. Then we who are alive and remain will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Master in the air, and so we shall always be with the Master. 1 Thessalonians 4:16-17

“For Yahusha Himself, at the signal, at the bat kol of the Sar HaMalachim (the Archangel), and at the shofar blast of YaHuWaH, shall come down from Shamayim, and the Mesim in Mashiach shall stand up alive in the Techiyas HaMesim first. Then [next in sequence], we who are alive and who have been left behind simultaneously with them shall be snatched up in the ananim (clouds) to meet Yahusha in the air. And so always with Yahusha we shall be.” Kehilah in Thessalonika I‬ ‭4:16-17

The day or the hour?

Yom Teruah is the only moed that falls on the first day of the month. All of the other moedim fall on a day that is well into the month: the fourteenth, the tenth, fifty days after Passover, etc.

Messiah Himself pointed to Yom Teruah as the day of His return using this well-known condition:

“And He will send forth His angels with A GREAT TRUMPET and THEY WILL GATHER TOGETHER His elect from the four winds, from one end of the sky to the other. Now learn the parable from the fig tree: when its branch has already become tender and puts forth its leaves, you know that summer is near; so, you too, when you see all these things, recognize that He is near, right at the door. Truly I say to you, this generation will not pass away until all these things take place. Heaven and earth will pass away, but My words will not pass away. But of that day and hour no one knows, not even the angels of heaven, nor the Son, but the Father alone.” Mattithyahu/Matthew 24:31-36

“Mashiach will send his malachim with a loud blast of the Shofar, and the malachim will gather together Mashiach’s Bechirim from the four winds, from one end of Shamayim to the other. And from the etz teenah (fig tree), learn its parabolic lesson: when its branch has become tender already and sprouts leaves, you know that Kayitz (Summer) is near; thus also you, when you see all these things, know that it is near, at the very doors. Omein, I say to you, that this dor (generation) will by no means pass away until all these things come about. Shamayim vHaAretz will pass away, but my Dvar will by no means pass away. But concerning that day and hour, no one has daas, not the malachim of Shamayim, but only HaAv (the Father) of me.” Mattithyahu/Matthew‬ ‭24:31-36

Messiah uses a parable of a fig tree to indicate that there will be indications of the season of His return. Then He uses an expression that clearly points to Yom Teruah, the day of the shofar blast that announces the arrival of the King! We should be aware of the time and the seasons and keep a lookout for Him. He tells us:

“Be dressed in readiness, and keep your lamps lit. Be like men who are waiting for their master when he returns from the wedding feast, so that they may immediately open the door to him when he comes and knocks. Blessed are those slaves whom the master will find on the alert when he comes; truly I say to you, that he will gird himself to serve, and have them recline at the table, and will come up and wait on them. Whether he comes in the second watch, or even in the third, and finds them so, blessed are those slaves. Luqas/Luke 12:35-38

“Tighten your gartels for action and have your menorahs lit. And you should be like bnei Adam who expectantly khakeh l’vo’o shel (await the arrival of) their Adon when he returns from the Chasunoh, in order that, when he comes and knocks, ofen ort they may open the delet for him. Ashrey are those avadim (servants), whom, having come, the Adon will find keeping shomer. Omein, I say to you, that he will fasten his gartel, and have those avadim (servants) sit down to tish, and he will come and serve them. And if in the second or if in the third watch he comes and finds it thus, ashrey (happy, blessed) are those.” Luqas/Luka‬ ‭12:35-38

Can We Know?

Messiah uses phrasing that points clearly to the day of which “no man knows the day or the hour” to describe the date of His return: Yom Teruah.

Some have made note of various passages in Scripture that appear tell us that we cannot know when Messiah will return. For example:

Be on the alert then, for you do not know the day nor the hour. Mattithyahu/Matthew 25:13

“Be shomer, be on the alert, therefore, for you do not have daas of the Yom or the Shaah (hour, time).” Mattithyahu‬/Matthew ‭25:13

This passage is found in relation to the parable of the ten virgins. It is the foolish virgins who were unprepared to whom Messiah is speaking in this verse. The five prudent virgins were prepared for the coming of the bridegroom.

Here is another passage that is used:

For you yourselves know full well that the day of the Lord will come just like a thief in the night. 1 Thes 5:2

“For you yourselves know very well that the Yom YaHuWaH comes like a ganav balailah (thief in the night).” Kehilah in Thessalonika I‬ ‭5:2

This verse is found in Paul’s first letter to the believers in Thessalonica. Just two sentences later he also tells them this:

But you, brethren, are not in darkness, that the day would overtake you like a thief; for you are all sons of light and sons of day. We are not of night nor of darkness; so then let us not sleep as others do, but let us be alert and sober. 1 Thes 5:4-6

“But you, Achim b’Mashiach, are not in choshech that the Yom should overtake you like a ganav. For all of you are Bnei Ohr and Bnei Yom; we are not of the Lailah nor of the Choshech. Therefore, let us not “sleep” as the rest, but let us keep awake with zililut da’as (sober-mindedness).” Kehilah in Thessalonika I‬ ‭5:4-6

Paul tells them that they are not in darkness that the day of Yahusha’s returning would overtake them like a thief! They knew the times and seasons and so they would not be unprepared. 

Another verse that is often used comes from Peter’s second letter:

But the day of YaHuWaH will come like a thief, in which the heavens will pass away with a roar and the elements will be destroyed with intense heat, and the earth and its works will be burned up. 2 Pet 3:10

“But the Yom YaHuWaH will come as a ganav (thief), in which the Shamayim with great suddenness will pass away and the elements, burning up, will be destroyed, and the Olam Hazeh and its ma’asim will be found out [BAMIDBAR 32:23].” Kefa II‬ ‭3:10

The last verse used to say we cannot know the time of the Yahusha’s return includes the words of the Master, Himself, from the book of Revelation:

So remember what you have received and heard; and keep it, and repent. Therefore if you do not wake up, I will come like a thief, and you will not know at what hour I will come to you. Rev 3:3

“Therefore, let there be zikaron (remembrance) of what has been handed over to you and what you heard, and be shomer and make teshuva. Therefore, if you are not shomer, I will come as a ganav, and never would you have da’as at what sha’ah (hour, time) I will come upon you.” Hisgalus/Hazon‬ ‭3:3

Here Yahusha is speaking to the believers in Sardis whom He declares to be “dead” Rev 3:1. It is these dead believers who, if they do not “wake up”, will be surprised at Messiah’s coming.

“And to the malach (angel) of the Kehillah in Sardis, write: These things says the One having the sheva ruchot of YaHuWaH and the shevat hakokhavim (seven stars): I have da’as of your ma’asim, that nominally you are Chai (Alive) but you are [spiritually] niftar (deceased).” Hisgalus/Hazon‬ ‭3:1

Messiah uses common phrasing that points clearly to the only well-known day of which “no man knows the day or the hour” to describe the date of His return: Yom Teruah.

The Traditions of Yom Teruah

A New Year?

Yom Teruah is also known as the “head of the year” or Rosh Hashanah. This day has been described as the “Jewish New Year”. Scripture describes Nisan and the time of Pesach as the “beginning of months” so why is Tishrei (the seventh month) called Rosh Hashanah?????

Leviticus 25 describes the sabbath of the Land and the Yovel [Jubilee] year and notes that this fiftieth year begins with the sounding of a shofar on the tenth day of the seventh month (Leviticus 25:9-10). In these verses we see an annual cycle that begins in the seventh month. Just like we have the Gregorian calendar years that start in January, school years that start in August, and fiscal years that start in September, so, too Scripture tells us about several annual cycles.

We see that the “biblical” year begins in Abib (the first month, Exodus 12:2), the “civil” year begins in Tishrei (the seventh month, Leviticus 25:9-10), and the “tree” year begins in Shevat (the eleventh month, Leviticus 19:23-25) when trees begin to bear fruit. These “biblical, civil, and tree” labels are the traditional labels associated with these annual cycles and are not explicitly given in Scripture.

WITH THAT SAID, ROSH HASHANAH IN THE 7TH MONTH IS NOT SCRIPTURAL. IT IS NOT PART OF YAHUWAH’S MOEDIM.

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rYm Covenant

To the Torah and to the witness! If they do not speak according to this Word, it is because they have no daybreak [light]. Yeshayahu (Isaiah) 8:20

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