On this eve of Rosh Ha-Shana, when the whole nation of Israel is preparing to celebrate the commencement of a new year according to the Jewish calendar, we can’t help but look back at the past year and be amazed at what God has done and is doing in this nation.
Despite the tremendous turmoil and changes taking place all over the world, and especially in Israel, where we seem to feel the “heat” more than any other place on earth, there are some awesome things that have taken place, as well as some challenging ones.
One of such amazing things is to see that despite the hatred that surrounds this tiny nation, it never ceases to grow, just like God had promised. This year alone the birth rate in Israel was four time that of the death rate; 189,000 babies were born during the past year and 46,000 people dying. Israel’s population has hit over 8.5 million people! That is pretty amazing for such a small country that is only 68 years young.
God is faithful and his promises are true.
Rosh Ha-Shana is a very special Jewish festival that has deep significance, because among its other names, it is also called: Feast of Trumpets. During Rosh Ha-Shana, Jews blow the shofar with signified the call to repentance and return to God. It also serves a reminder of the covenant Israel has with God.
Throughout the bible the shofar blow has always meant a commemoration of something significant. Whether is was the announcement of war, alerting of approaching enemies, or when King David was bringing the Arc of the Covenant back into Jerusalem. Shofar was also blown to announce the anointing of a new king of Israel. It is also is a call for joy and praise to God: “…with trumpets and the blast of the ram’s horn—shout for joy before the Lord, the King.” (Psalm 98:6)
In the Book of Revelation 4:1, when John said he heard God’s voice and it sounded like a trumpet, it came to announce what was to come.
“Then will appear the sign of the Son of Man in heaven. And then all the peoples of the earth will mourn when they see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven, with power and great glory. And he will send his angels with a loud trumpet call, and they will gather his elect from the four winds, from one end of the heavens to the other. (Matthew 24:30-31)
1 Thessalonians 4:16-17,
“For the Lord himself will come down from heaven, with a loud command, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet call of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. After that, we who are still alive and are left will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And so we will be with the Lord forever.”
1 Corinthians 15:52,
“…in a flash, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, the dead will be raised imperishable, and we will be changed.”
And so as the whole nation of Israel is preparing to celebrate the New Jewish Year blowing the shofars (trumpets), we as believers remains our gaze on the Lord, in eager await of the last shofar blow that will announce the imminent return of our King Yeshua.
God has done so much over the past year with us and through us, to Him be the glory forever!
We wish you a joyful new year with an abundance of God’s presence in your life!
Beit Hallel is a Messianic Jewish congregation in Ashdod, led by pastor Israel Pochtar, serving holocaust survivors and the poor and needy locally and throughout the nation of Israel, while building up the body of Messiah in the promised land of Israel.