Shana Tova! Today marks the beginning of the Jewish high holiday Rosh Hashanah, a celebration of the new year, a celebration of the creation of the world. Once again, we pause and reflect on what has been, what is, and most importantly, what is to come.
With each new year comes a deeper understanding of what is occurring in the world. This understanding is a gift from God, as we have all been given a unique dose of both wisdom and perspective. As Rosh Hashanah 5775 is upon us, God is calling each and every one of us to use the wisdom and perspective he has given us to carry on in our unique calling.
This year it has been given to us to explore quantam physics, and its how it explains any number of phenomena, such as prayer and eternity, which are often dismissed by natural science. It is a call to believe and walk in faith and courage.
It has also been given to us to present the healing miracles of Jesus presented in the Gospel of Luke, during the first ten weeks of 2015 on the Gregorian calendar.
It is now time to remind ourselves why Rosh Hashanah is especially important for those of us who believe that Jesus of Nazareth is the promised Messiah.
The Feast of Trumpets and the Messiah's Return
We are convinced that the Messiah, Jesus, is returning. We are equally convinced that it has not been given to any man to know the exact time of his return.
What we do know is that we will know the season of his return. The interpretations which we have heard of Jesus’s declaration recorded in Matthew 24:36 generally center around the premise that some sort of series of great catastrophes will be unfolding and a series of signs will be in some stage of fulfillment, implying that these things will mark the season of Jesus’s return.
Here at The Mint, we subscribe to a much simpler and more profound understanding of this scripture, drawn from an understanding of the Jewish wedding ceremony. Jesus will arrive during the fall season in the Northern Hemisphere.
In fact, based on the timing of His death and resurrection, the Passover, we believe that His triumphant return will logically take place over Rosh Hashanah. The celebrated Feast of Trumpets.
Not necessarily this fall, mind you. For it is impossible to know for certain. If one were to attempt to pick a specific year, the logical choices would be one of the upcoming Jubilee years, 2018 (starting on Rosh Hashanah 2017 on the Gregorian calendar) or 2068, or the final year of the 6000 year Jewish Calendar, 2240.
Yet it could be tomorrow, or the next day, as Rosh Hashanah has the element of uncertainty as to precisely when the new moon occurs. This detail fits nicely with Jesus’s declaration that we would not know the day or time.
With all of the things that are happening in the world, many have begun to speculate that the end is nigh.
Clearly, the end is always nigh, and calamities such as the ones humanity is currently suffering have always taken place to some degree ever since mankind chose to disobey God and turn their back on their Creator.
Today, with billions of us on the planet, these calamities are multiplied to a staggering degree. The good news is that God’s grace and mercy are experienced in abundance as well, and this will overcome all suffering and calamity as He daily establishes His Kingdom within and amongst us.
Rosh Hashanah may be the most important and least observed/understood holiday for anyone who is not Jewish. However, what occurs over the next nine days will set the tone for the coming year. They occurrences are of such magnitude that the Jewish title, the “days of awe,” may be the only appropriate descriptor.
The following is an excerpt from our teaching last year on the sixth sign performed by Jesus that is recorded in the Gospel of John, which took place during this season some 2000 years ago.
Sukkot and the days of aweUnder these circumstances, Jesus announced that He would not attend the upcoming Feast of Booths (Tabernacles), or Sukkot, the Jewish Festival which follows Yom Kippur, the day of atonement, which was the holiest day of the year. Jesus’ initial reluctance to attend the Feast, and ultimate decision to attend, has great significance, both for our understanding of the sixth sign and for Jesus’ future second coming.As you may recall, Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish new year, marks a new beginning. The Jews believe that on this day the fate of each person for the upcoming year is written by YHWH in theBook of Life. The days (approximately 9) between Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur, known as the the days of awe, are spent in deep reflection, fasting, and prayer. It is a time of confession and repentance, it is a time of recognition that we are but dust, yet infinitely precious in YHWH’s sight.The Jews believe that the fate which is written on Rosh Hashanah is then sealed by YHWH on Yom Kippur, at which point the Feast of Booths begins. It is our speculation that Jesus made the decision to ultimately attend the Feast of Booths to symbolically seal His fate. He would give His life for humanity on the upcoming Passover.Yom Kippur is regarded as the Sabbath of Sabbaths, as such, it is only appropriate that the Jewish leaders who were looking for a reason to kill Him, would carefully observe Jesus in hopes of catching Him breaking their observance of the Sabbath.
As Rosh Hashanah begins, we hold fast to our faith, cleanse our minds and spirits, and resolve to love and forgive as God has loved and forgiven us. May this year be filled with a generous portion of wisdom and perspective, and the faith and courage to use it to fulfill our calling. The Messiah is coming, the trumpet is about to sound!
Is your lamp lit?