By Melissa McLaughlin
The Trumpet Sounds
There is no music sweeter to a parent’s ears than that of their own child. I love the sound of my children playing music. All three of my children play musical instruments and it is a great blessing from God. From the first tap on the drum, to the ringing chords on the piano, to the rhythmic strum on the guitar, to the echo of the trumpet after the last note is played. Each instrument, each melody is a heavenly grace to me.
I remember when my children first started their music lessons. Though the songs may have included only 3 or 4 notes, it was a symphony of joy to my soul. As the years went by my children became proficient on guitar, drums and trumpet.
The sound of the trumpet is unique. It is sometimes light and joyful, like a young child’s overflowing delight. And other times forceful, like a mighty river, rushing forward in power.
Given my love for the sound of the trumpet, I am intrigued at the number of times the trumpet is mentioned in the Bible. Adding to this, I have recently become very curious about The Feast of Trumpets.
Join me in a deeper look at this topic. Let’s begin by delving into the use of trumpets in the Bible.
What is the significance of trumpets in the Bible?
Below are scripture references to trumpets throughout the Bible.
- When God first revealed Himself to Moses and the Israelites on Mt. Sinai, among other extraordinary experiences, there was a loud trumpet sound. Exodus 19:16
- When God initially established Israel’s feasts (or festivals), The Feast of Trumpets was the first of the fall feasts. This is described in Leviticus 23:23-25 and Numbers 29:1-6
- God declared the making and use of trumpets for calling people to gather, to set out and move forward, to go into battle and for times of rejoicing. Numbers 10:1-10
- The Lord commanded Joshua to demolish the walls of Jericho with trumpets and marching. Joshua 6:1-5 and Joshua 6:20
- Under the Lord’s direction, Gideon defeated the Midianites with trumpet blasts and sounds of shouting. Judges 7:17-21
- David commanded the Levites to blow trumpets and play instruments to minister before the ark of the LORD, giving praise to the LORD. 1 Chronicles 16:1-6
- God’s people are commanded to praise the LORD and make music unto Him with the trumpet. Psalm 98:4-6
- A trumpet was blown to announce King Solomon. 1 Kings 1:39
- Blow the trumpet to sound the alarm. The day of the LORD is coming. Joel 2:1
- The clear trumpet call is needed for spiritual battles, too. 1 Corinthians 14:8
- The trumpet will sound at the second coming of Christ, followed by the resurrection and transformation of the believers. 1 Corinthians 15:51-52
- At the trumpet sound, believers will be caught up with Christ in the air at His second coming. 1 Thessalonians 4:16-17
- Trumpets are sounded by angels in heaven. Revelation 8:1-6
- Each trumpet sound described in Revelation 8 and 9 is announcing the coming judgment. Revelation 8-9
- The final judgment and coming kingdom of God are preceded by angelic trumpet sound. Revelation 11:15-19
From these scriptures, we can understand that trumpets are used in the Bible as
- a call to gather
- a call to move forward
- to go forth in battle
- a call for rejoicing
- a call to repentance
- for worship, praise and thanksgiving unto the LORD
- to announce a king
- a sound of alarm
- announcing Christ’s return
- announcing final judgment and reign of God’s kingdom
So how does The Feast of Trumpets fit into all of this?
What is The Feast of Trumpets in the Bible?
The Feast of Trumpets is the first of three Biblical Old Testament feasts held in the fall each year. The Feast of Trumpets marks the beginning of the civil calendar year for the Israelites. Therefore The Feast of Trumpets is also known as “The head of the year” or “Rosh Hashanah”. The Hebrew name for this holiday is Yom Teruah (יוֹם תְּרוּעָה), literally “day of shouting or blasting.”
When God first supplied Moses with the details outlining Israel’s feasts and festivals, there was very little information provided for The Feast of Trumpets.
The Feast of Trumpets was first established as one of Israel’s God-appointed feasts or festivals here in Leviticus 23:23-25 (and again in Numbers 29:1-6.)– And the Lord spoke to Moses, saying, “Speak to the people of Israel, saying, In the seventh month, on the first day of the month, you shall observe a day of solemn rest, a memorial proclaimed with blast of trumpets, a holy convocation. You shall not do any ordinary work, and you shall present a food offering to the Lord.”
On The Feast of Trumpets the people held a day of solemn rest, the sounding of the trumpet, sacred assembly and they brought sacrifices and offerings unto the LORD.
It is important to note this is the 7th month on the Hebrew calendar, called Tishri. The number 7 in the Bible is commonly known as a symbol of completion. This feast was held around the time of the fall harvest. A time of completion.
Three Biblical Fall Feasts in the 7th Month
Even more importantly, however, one should understand that the LORD directed His people to conduct 3 feasts during this 7th month as listed in Leviticus 23. The Feast of Trumpets began on the first day of the month.
On the 10th day of the month of Tishri is the solemn Day of Atonement, commonly known as Yom Kippur. On the Day of Atonement, special once-a-year sacrifices and offerings are made unto the LORD to atone for the sins of the people.
On the 15th day of this month, God’s people celebrate The Feast of Booths, also known as The Feast (or Festival) of Tabernacles or Sukkot. This is a time to celebrate and remember God’s protection and provision during their 40 years in the wilderness, as well as recounting other times God delivered and protected His people. In addition, people look forward to God’s continued blessing in the year ahead.
In summary, The Feast of Trumpets heralds 10 days of solemn consideration of sins, prior to The Day of Atonement. It is a time to repent and turn to the LORD in humility and reverence. Concurrently, The Feast of Trumpets marks the first day of the new year. Therefore, it is also a time to remember God’s blessings of the past and look forward to God’s blessings in the coming year.
Therefore, some wonder if The Feast of Trumpets may someday signal Christ’s second coming. As we consider Jesus’ return as a sign of completion in God’s plan of redemption, as we remember both the sins of our past, our need for a Savior and His future rule and reign in a new heaven and earth, it does seem fitting. Moreover, scripture teaches that Christ’s return will be announced with a trumpet call.
Though Jesus clearly stated no one knows the day or hour of His return, He also taught we can know the season. As the End Times pieces continue to assemble and interlock into place, one can only prayerfully ponder all of this in the upcoming days, weeks and months to come.
The Trumpet Sound at the Return of Christ
In these times of deception and evil, may all Christians be watching, praying and speaking about Jesus with truth, love and boldness in hopes that others turn or return to Christ… Before the last trumpet sounds.
For if the trumpet makes an uncertain sound, who will prepare for battle? 1 Corinthians 14:8
Oh Lord Jesus, let many more hear your voice today and confess you as Savior and LORD before the trumpet calls the saved ones home.
1 Corinthians 15:51-52 – Listen, I tell you a mystery: We will not all sleep, but we will all be changed— 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.
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.
Even if we do not celebrate The Feast of Trumpets in a formal way, may we remember the meaning of this special day:
- A call to gather in solemn rest
- A call for repentance of sins
- A call to offer thanksgiving to the Lord and look forward to God’s blessings in the year ahead
- A call to listen for the trumpet sound
Listen. Christ will return, at the last trumpet call. May we be humbly waiting, praying and listening. For those who are found in Christ, it will be the sweetest sound we have ever heard. For those who have rejected Him, it is the final alarm.
For such a time as this, perhaps this verse in Joel captures it best:
Joel 2:1 – Blow the trumpet in Zion;
sound the alarm on my holy hill.
Let all who live in the land tremble,
for the day of the Lord is coming.
This year The Feast of Trumpets will be from sundown September 18 to sundown September 20, 2020. The Messianic Sabbath website lists information and dates of additional Feast Days.