“Now, O Israel, listen to the decrees and to the ordinances that I teach you to perform, so that you may live, and you will come and possess the Land that HaShem, the Elohim of your forefathers, gives you. You shall safeguard and perform them, for it is your wisdom and discernment in the eyes of the peoples, who shall hear all these decrees and who shall say, ‘Surely a wise and discerning people is this great nation!'” Deuteronomy 4:1,6
As I finish preparing this Op, it is Shabbat, 21 Sept 2019 and the Torah portion for today is Ki Tavo which is found in Deuteronomy 26:1-29:8/Isaiah 60:1-22. This Torah portion is all about Israel, HaShem’s people, being set apart unto Him and the means to do that is through His Torah! I would recommend reading this Torah portion before reading this Op as they do go hand in hand.
I think we all can agree the world as it is today, is in complete chaos and corruption while being consumed in misery, debauchery, war and just about every horrific thing imaginable. The only comfort we can take in this, is that HaShem knew all along it would get like this and as such He made a way for us to survive in the midst of this madness.
HaShem has His people whom He calls ‘Yisrael’. A people set apart to Him to live as He has decreed His nation to live. What nation on earth doesn’t have its own constitution, its own government, its own military, its own court system, its own customs, its own traditions, its own calendar, its own holidays, its own laws of obtaining citizenship, etc? His people whom He calls Yisrael is no different, which is why in His Word, He declares what days are kadosh (Holy/set apart), what is to be done on those days, what those days represent and what is to be celebrated and or remembered!
In His Word, His Torah is the Constitution of His nation Yisrael which includes the Holidays He set apart along with His weekly Shabbat and everything needed for a nation to thrive on earth! This does not in any way diminish that HaShem is the Great King over all of His creation nor the truth that at some point His Agent, i.e. Messiah will be crowned King over Yisrael and will bring peace to the entire world…Baruch HaShem! May it be very soon in our days!
On a side note, it should be cited that HaShem says there is ONE Torah for both the native and the proselyte per Exodus 12:49, which means the Torah applies to EVERY person who has chosen to follow HaShem, the Elohim of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, the Elohim of Israel regardless of DNA!
This is what will be addressed in this Op as we quickly approach Rosh HaShanah at the end of this month (29-30 Sept 2019). For the record I know and understand there are MANY versions of the biblical calendar floating about in cyberspace and it is NOT my intention to challenge any of them, so when I reference the biblical calendar in this Op, it is from the perspective of what I currently know and if people disagree with it, that is just fine, no issues. I just choose not to engage in arguments over the topic. I digress.
I should add, this Op will be extra long in order to capture all the relevant information I want to include, so please bear with me on this. Also I will be heavily referencing various tractates from the Mishnah, Talmud Bavli and the Mishnah Torah i.e. the Oral Torah.
Before we can get started, as I always state in my Op’s, never forget the following facts concerning HaShem:
– HaShem never changes per Num 23:19/Mal 3:6/Hebrews 13:8/James 1:17
– His Word is firmly established per Psalm 119:89
– He reveals the end out of the beginning per Is 46:10
– He does nothing without first revealing it to His prophets per Amos 3:7
– He says there is nothing new under the sun per Ecclesiastes 1:9
– He says His Torah is eternal per Proverbs 3:19 and Psalm 119:160
– He says His Torah is perfect and restores the soul per Psalm 19:7
– He says His Torah makes the simple one wise per Psalm 19:7
– He says His Torah Is freedom and liberty per Psalm Ps 119:45 and James 1:25
– He says His Torah is the only good doctrine there is Proverbs 4:2
– He says His Torah will add length of days and years of life and peace per Proverbs 3:2
– He says all of the ways of His Torah are ways of pleasantness and peace per Proverbs 3:17
– He says His Torah is for our good and well-being per Deuteronomy 6:24
– He says His Torah is health for our lives per Proverbs 3:8
– He says His Torah is life to our soul and a graceful ornament for our neck per Prov 3:22
– He says His Torah is better than pearls and all desires cannot compare to it per Prov 8:11
– He says those who walk with His Torah are praiseworthy per Psalms 119:1
– He says observing His Torah is how we purify our path per Psalms 119:9
– He says His Torah is better than thousands in gold and silver per Psalms 119:72
– He says His Torah brings abundant peace to those who love Him and His Torah per Psalms 119:165
– He says there is one Torah for all per Exodus 12:49/Leviticus 24:22
– He says those who hate His Torah love death per Proverbs 8:36
Before we can discuss the significance of Rosh HaShanah, we must first address the calendar that HaShem uses in His Word. Again let me state I understand there are many ideas and thoughts concerning the calendar, which I choose to avoid the arguments and conflict. Point is if you disagree with me on this topic, that is okay.
The months on the calendar HaShem established in His Word are the following:
The names of the month also can cause controversy as many reject the names because they derive from the Babylonian exile, but there is a reason this was done which was to always remind Israel of the reason for the Babylonian exile and to not make the same mistakes which caused that exile again. The Tanakh (Old Testament) does in fact call some of these months by name such as in 1 Kings 6:37 when it mentions the month of ‘Ziv’ which is the Hebrew word for ‘Iyar’ mentioned above. Further in 1 Kings 6:38, when King Solomon finished building the first Temple, the verse says ‘In the month of Bul.’ Bul is the Hebrew name for the month of Cheshvan listed above. So there is a precedent for calling the months by name. Again, this is another topic in which I will avoid the arguments. I digress.
Just as here in America there are multiple heads of years in each calendar year such as the fiscal year, the school year, the tax year, the new year, etc, so it is the same in HaShem’s Word. As a rule of thumb, if we want to know what calendar to get on when reading His Word, we start on the Civil Calendar which begins with the month of Tishrei from Genesis 1 through Exodus 11. Then HaShem modifies things a bit and we transition to the Religious Calendar which begins with the month of Nissan from Exodus 12 through Revelation 22. Keep this in mind as it will be VERY important!
An example is reading in Genesis 6 about the Flood of Noah in verse 11 it says “In the six hundredth year of Noah’s life, in the second month, on the seventeenth of the month, on that day all the fountains of the great deep burst forth; and the windows of the heavens were opened.” The 17th day of the 2nd month on the Civil Calendar would be the 17th day of Cheshvan. In 1 Kings 6:38 the verse says “In the eleventh year (Solomon’s reign as king), in the month of Bul, which is the eighth month, the Temple was completed according to all its particulars and all its specifications; he built it over seven years.” Remember we have to switch to the Religious Calendar which begins in Nissan, so eight months from Nissan is the month of Cheshvan! So Solomon completed the First Temple in the same month the Flood occurred! Is there a connection? Yes there is but that is an entirely different Op so we will save that for later. Point is, see how we have to analyze and pay very close attention to the dates because HaShem IS communicating something to us, we just have to use what He gave us to understand what it is He is saying!! Moving on.
The annual Feasts of HaShem and what they are celebrating are divided up into two portions i.e. the Spring Feasts and the Fall Feasts. The Spring Feasts are:
- Pesach (Passover) – The festival of Pesach (Which includes Unleavened Bread and Firstfruits) is also known as ‘Chag HaMatzos’ or literally the Festival of Matzos. Pesach celebrates the central event of Israeli history, the redemption of Israel from Egypt. Yeshua died on Pesach and arose from the grave on Firstfruits. This feast is in the month of Nissan.
- Unleavened Bread – See above
- Firstfruits – See above
- Shavuot (Pentecost) – We count 50 days after Pesach. This Feast commemorates the day HaShem brought Israel to Mt. Sinai and He descended, offered His Torah to Israel who accepted it. It is the time where we re-dedicate our lives to HaShem and His Torah as His people. This Feast is in the month of Sivan. This is the Feast where we read in the Apostolic Writings where the Ruach HaKodesh (Holy Spirit) was poured out on the Kahal (Assembly) of Israel.
The Fall Feasts are as follows:
- Season of Teshuvah – (Repentance) On Elul 1 we begin 40 days of Teshuvah i.e. Repentance/Returning to HaShem and His Torah. During these days we are to examine ourselves and restore relationships between us and HaShem and others in preparation for the Day of Judgment. We read Psalm 27 twice each day until Shemini Atzeret on the 22nd day of Tishrei after Sukkot also known as ‘The Eighth Day’ and we blow the shofar daily so we can hear the sound of the shofar and get our hearts ready. It is during this season HaShem is especially close and His mercies and forgiveness are especially available as He desires for people to repent/return to Him. See Zephaniah 2:1-3 and Matthew 5:23-24.
- Rosh HaShanah – It is the Head of the year, the anniversary of creation, the Feast in which the books in Heaven are opened where HaShem judges each of us to determine if we will live or if we will die in the coming year i.e. the Day of Judgment. It is the time prophesied for the shofar/trumpet blast causing the resurrection of the righteous, the coronation of the King, the Gathering and the time of the wedding, the beginning of the Messianic Kingdom!!! It is the annual rehearsal for the time that begins The Day of HaShem i.e. the last one thousand years in which the first seven are known as Jacob’s Trouble here on earth.
- Yamim Nora’im – The Awesome Days: These are the ten days between Rosh HaShanah and Yom Kippur.
- Yom Kippur – Ten days after Rosh HaShanah is The Day of Atonement where HaShem judges and forgives Israel’s willful/malicious sin. It is the most solemn day of the year.
- Sukkot – Five days after Yom Kippur is the Feast of Tabernacles when Israel resides in booths/succah’s for seven days. It is the THE Feast because it is a time of great rejoicing. It is THE Feast where it is rehearsed each year the event when the Messiah will march into Jerusalem seven years after the Gathering on Rosh HaShanah and not only defeat the ruling and reigning False Messiah but will also destroy Israel’s enemies once and for all! It will be a time of great rejoicing!
- Chanukah (Yes Chanukah is a Feast of HaShem!) – Chanukah is the time of re-dedication of the Temple after it had been defiled by Antiochus Ephiphanes. It is referenced in Haggai chapter 2 when it discusses the “24th day of the ninth month”….Chanukah falls on the 24th day of the month of Kislev, which is nine months after the beginning of the religious calendar i.e. Nissan!
The term we have heard many times especially in Christendom i.e. The Former Rain and The Latter Rain (Joel 2:23) are pointing to the Feasts of HaShem: The Fall Feasts = The Former Rain. The Spring Feasts = The Latter Rain. I digress.
With this foundation laid, lets now discuss Rosh HaShanah and its significance.
Tractate Rosh HaShanah 1:1 from the Mishnah says “There are FOUR new year days: On the first of Nissan is the new year for reckoning the reigns of Jewish kings (Meaning when a king of Israel took the throne, his reign began on 1 Nissan) and for establishing the order of the holidays (HaShem’s annual Feasts are set from 1 Nissan.) On the first of Elul is the new year for the tithe of animals. The first of Tishrei is the new year for reckoning the years for the Sabbatical years, for the Jubilee years, for the planting of trees, and for the vegetables. On the first of Shevat is the new year for the tree.”
Tractate Rosh HaShanah 1:2 from the Mishnah says “At four junctures of the year the world is judged: On Pesach (Passover) for the grain (Per Lev 23:10); on Shavuot (Pentecost) for the fruit of the tree (Per Lev 23:17); on Rosh HaShanah all who walk the earth pass before HaShem like young sheep, as it is said: Who fashions all their hearts together, Who understands all their deeds (Psalms 33:15); and on the Festival (Sukkot/Feast of Tabernacles) they are judged for the water (Per Deut 16:16).”
From the Talmud Bavli tractate Rosh HaShanah 16b says “R. Kruspedai said in the name of R. Johanan: Three books are opened in heaven on Rosh HaShanah: One for the thoroughly wicked, one for the thoroughly righteous, and one for the intermediate. The thoroughly righteous are forthwith inscribed definitively in the Book of Life; the thoroughly wicked are forthwith inscribed definitively in the Book of Death; and doom of the intermediate (The majority of humanity is in this category in which they haven’t made a decision one way or another to serve HaShem or to reject Him) is suspended from Rosh HaShanah till the Day of Atonement (Yom Kippur); if they deserve well, they are inscribed in the Book of Life; if they do not deserve life, they are inscribed in the Book of Death.”
The following is an excerpt from a book I HIGHLY recommend people get a hold of: ‘Rosh HaShanah and the Messianic Kingdom to Come’ by Joseph Good. His book can be ordered from Amazon. Joseph states on page 105 “The first category is that of the wholly righteous. In this category are all those who by faith in haMashiach have received the righteousness of Elohim. They are known as the Tzaddikim or Saints. If you are a believer in Yeshua, then you belong to this group. Believers who are alive at the end of the 6,000 years, the beginning of the seventh day or the Messianic Kingdom, will be gathered (2 Thess 2:1) to G-d and totally removed from the cleansing period in the theater on earth (Zephaniah 1:18-2:3).”
“Another example of the righteous being hidden from the wrath of G-d is found in Psalm 27, which is read daily during the season of Teshuvah: ‘For in the time of trouble (Jacob’s Trouble) He shall hide me in His pavilion: In the secret of His tabernacle shall He hide me; He shall set me upon a rock.'”
Per Joe Good on page 107 of his book I referenced above he says “As the shofar sounds (Rosh HaShanah) inaugurating the Last Day, not only the living Tzaddikim but also those who have died believing in the Messiah will be gathered to Him per Isaiah 26:19-21 as well as 1 Thess 4:13-5:3.”
Isaiah 26:19-21 says “May Your dead come to life, may my corpse arise. Awake and shout for joy, you who dwell in the dust! For Your dew is like the dew that revives vegetation. May You topple lifeless wicked to the ground! Go, my people, enter your chambers and close your door behind you; hide for a brief moment until the wrath has passed. For behold, HaShem is going forth from His place, to bring punishment for sin of the inhabitant of the land upon him; and the land will reveal its blood, and no longer cover over its slain.”
1 Thess 4:13-5:3 says “Now, brothers, we do not wish to be ignorant concerning those who have fallen asleep, lest you be sad as others who have no expectation. For if we believe that Yeshua died and rose again, so also Elohim shall bring with Him those who sleep in Yeshua. For this we say to you by the word of the Master, that we, the living who are left over at the coming of the Master shall in no way go before those who are asleep. Because the Master Himself shall come down from heaven with a shout (Rosh HaShanah), with the voice of a chief messenger, and with the trumpet of HaShem, and the dead in Messiah shall rise first. Then we, the living who are left over, shall be caught away together with them in the clouds to meet the Master in the air and so shall we always be with the Master. So, then, encourage one another with these words. Now, brothers, as to the times and the seasons, you do not need to be written to. For you yourselves know very well that the Day of HaShem comes as a thief in the night. For when they say, ‘Peace and safety!’ then suddenly destruction comes upon them, as labor pains upon a pregnant woman, and they shall not escape.”
The intermediate people will be given until Yom Kippur to repent and then HaShem seals their fates:
Joel 2:1-2 says “Sound a shofar in Zion and trumpet (Rosh HaShanah) upon My holy mountain; let all the inhabitants of the land tremble. For the Day of HaShem has come; it is near, a day of darkness and pitch darkness, a day of cloud and fog, like the dawn, spread over the mountains, a people numerous and mighty; its lie has never been and after it there shall never again be its like, until the years of generation upon generation.”
Isaiah 34:1-4,8 says “Come close, O nations, to hear, and regimes be attentive; let the earth and its fullness hear, the world and all its offspring. For HaShem has a fury against all the nations and a wrath against all their legions; He has destroyed them, He has delivered them to the slaughter. Their slain will be thrown aside and their corpses will bring up stench; the mountains will melt from their blood. All the host of the heavens will dissolve and the heavens will be rolled up like a scroll; all their host will shrivel as a leaf of a grapevine shrivels and like a shriveled leaf of a fig tree. For it is a day of vengeance for HaShem; a year of retribution for the grievance of Zion.”
Revelation 6:14-17 says “And the heavens departed like a scroll being rolled up, and every mountain and island was moved out of its place. And the sovereigns of the earth, and the great ones, and the rich ones, and the commanders, and the mighty, and every slave and every free one, hid themselves in the caves and in the rocks of the mountains, and said to the mountains and rocks, ‘Fall on us and hide us (Quoting Hoshea 10:8)’ from the face of Him sitting on the throne and from the wrath of the Lamb, because the Great Day of His Wrath has come and who is able to stand?”
It is amazing how much the Apostolic Writings speak about this topic…it is all over the place if we know what we are to look for. For example let’s look at 1 Corinthians 15:50-57 which says “And this I say, brothers, that flesh and blood is unable to inherit the reign of Elohim, neither does corruption inherit incorruption. See, I speak a secret to you: We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed, in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, AT THE LAST TRUMPET (Rosh HaShanah). For the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised inccoruptible, and we shall be changed. For this corruptible has to put on incorruption, and this mortal to put on immortality. And when this corruptible has put on incorruption, and this mortal has put on immortality, then shall come to be the word that has been written, ‘Death is swallowed up in overcoming (Quoting Isaiah 25:8)’. ‘O Death, where is your sting? O grave, where is your overcoming? (Quoting Hoshea 13:14)’ And the sting of death is the sin, and the power of the sin is the Torah. But thanks to Elohim Who gives us the overcoming through our Master Yeshua Mashiach.”
An interesting side note I wanted to include from Joe’s book on page 121-122, he discusses the topic of the tradition within Judaism concerning the origin of the Shofars. “From where, specifically, does the phrase Last Trump come? In Judaism, there are three recognized and distinct shofarim or ram’s horn trumpets. They are the First Trumpet, the Last Trumpet, and Shofar haGadol. These shofarim should not be confused with the two silver trumpets in Numbers 10 however. According to Jewish tradition, the First Trump and the Last Trump relate to the two horns of a particular ram, the ram caught in the thicket on Mount Moriah when Abraham was ready to slay Isaac and offer him up as a burnt offering per Genesis 22:13. This ram became the substitute for Isaac, even as Yeshua haMashiach became the substitute for us and provided life for us by His death. In Pirke de Rabbi Eliezer, a rabbinic work, the ram’s left horn i.e. the First Trump, was blown on Mt. Sinai (Exodus 19:13) and its right horn i.e. the Last Trump, will be blown to herald the coming of Messiah.”
It should be noted that the Shofar HaGadol is blown at the conclusion of Yom Kippur, which is teaching of the ingathering of the exiles at The Messiah’s literal second coming. There is a difference between the Last Trump of Rosh HaShanah, where the dead are resurrected and the believers are caught away and that of the Shofar HaGadol of Yom Kippur where those who have become believers DURING the Birth-pangs are gathered from the four corners of the earth. I digress.
Now for the record, am I stating this coming Rosh HaShanah is THE one spoken about in prophecy? Not a chance!! I have no idea, I am simply pointing out how we can be looking and seeking HaShem as we approach this time and strive to get ourselves ready because we do not know. It could be this Rosh HaShanah…honestly I very much pray and cry out to HaShem that it is, but ultimately it is up to HaShem!
Mostly I am hoping this Op incites interest and hope in HaShem, His Feasts Days which are so very important and in which many of these prophetic events will occur on these Feasts Days! No wonder the Adversary has worked so hard to convince the people the Feasts have been done away with, replaced and tossed aside! He knows his demise and the final redemption of Israel is contained in these Feasts and the last thing he wants is for us to not only remember that but to rehearse it each year!
So to quickly recap the prophetic connection to the Fall Feasts – Rosh HaShanah the Feast of Judgment/Resurrection/The Wedding/Coronation of King Mashiach. Then seven years later after the Birth-pangs of Messiah on earth have completed, on that Yom Kippur, Yeshua returns to the earth and sets His feet on the Mount of Olives and marches into Jerusalem and fights the False Messiah and his armies, defeating and delivering Israel. Then five days later on that Sukkot we celebrate the greatest celebration of victory, joy and rejoicing never before observed on earth before as we go into the last 993 years of the final day (Remember a day is as a thousand years!). Yeshua will set up the Kingdom and rule from the rebuilt and re-dedicated Temple in Jerusalem and all the world will be living and following the Torah of HaShem as He prepares the world for the time when HaShem Himself will come down at the end of the one thousand years i.e. the end of the day, and we then enter into the Olam Haba (The World to Come/Eternity!).
There is much to consider here in this Op as I have thrown a ton of information in this and this is still just the tip of the iceberg per se. There is SO much for us all yet to learn as we slowly break away from understanding His Word from the pagan, Hellenistic ways we were all taught in church. Baruch HaShem He is patient and long suffering! Baruch HaShem He has called us out of the paganism and the Hellenism of Christendom and is bringing us home! Baruch HaShem He is stripping off all the gentile/Hellenistic clothing which were put on Yeshua which transitioned Him into the Torah abolishing, Hellenistic ‘Jesus Christ’ and is revealing Who He really is, a Torah observant, Feast/Shabbat keeping, tallit/tzitzit wearing, Pharisaical rabbi, Who brought animal and grain offerings to the Temple and always pointing to HaShem!
In learning these things, King David encapsulated it best: “I will safeguard Your Torah constantly, forever and ever. Then I will walk in broad pathways, for I sought Your precepts. I will speak of Your testimonies before kings and not be ashamed. I will be preoccupied with Your commandments, which I love!” Psalms 119:44-47
Much to consider!
- The Chumash
- The Tanakh
- The Apostolic Writings
- The Talmud Bavli
- The Mishnah
- Rosh HaShanah and the Messianic Kingdom to Come by Joseph Good of Hatikvah Ministries/Jerusalem Temple Study