Every year at this time, a well-meaning Christian friend will ask me, “Why do you still celebrate the Feast of Trumpets?”
I know that they are not saying this to be offensive, or to be attacking my faith. These friends know that I am a Messianic Jew and, as such, I believe that Yeshua is the Messiah. In truth, it is the fact that I believe that Yeshua is the Messiah that causes these friends to ask the question. They are wondering why I would continue keeping these Jewish Holy Days if Yeshua fulfilled the Law and we are now in the New Covenant.
It is because I get asked this question every year that I thought I would write out my answer today, and I don’t think my answer will be the answer that you are expecting.
First: I do not celebrate the Day of Trumpets because I believe that on the first day of the Hebrew month of Tishri, the gates of repentance are open and that it is only during those 10 days a year that people can come to repentance and right standing before G-D. It may also surprise you that this 10-day period is not viewed that way in Judaism either.
As a matter of fact, this 10-day period of time is not about individual repentance and right standing between an individual on G-D. The time between the start of Yom Teruah (Day of Trumpets, also known as Rosh HaShanah/New Year) and the end of Yom Kippur (Day of Atonement) has to do with corporate repentance and an offering made for all Israel once a year. For individual repentance, people used to make sacrifices and offerings every day of the year. These special appointed times were specifically for corporate offerings.
Second: I do not celebrate the Day of Trumpets because I believe that my observing these Holy Days makes me righteous before G-D by my obedience or good works. The truth is that these days were never observed out of a legalistic obedience in order to do works that would make those people observing righteous.
Third: I do not celebrate the Day of Trumpets because I am Jewish or because it is a Jewish Holy Day. The truth is that when Moses was given the Torah and told to speak those words to the people who were standing around Mount Sinai, that group of people was made up of those who were physical descendants of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, and a mixed multitude made up of people from a variety of nations. These days are called Feasts of the L-RD in the Bible. Never once are they called Jewish Holy Days.
Fourth: I do not celebrate the Day of Trumpets because I want to convince Jewish people that I am still Jewish so I can share the message of Yeshua with them. For that matter, none of the things I do as I walk out my faith within Messianic Judaism are done for that reason. My observance of Judaism is not an advertising gimmick to attract other Jewish people.
Fifth: I do not celebrate the Day of Trumpets because the sound of the shofar has supernatural power and causes me to get goose bumps and makes the hairs on my arms stand up. Although, the shofar sound does have supernatural aspects, and it does cause me to get goose bumps and cause the hairs on my arms to stand up.
The real reason that I celebrate the Day of Trumpets is really much simpler than any of the above reasons, or any of the other reasons people have assumed and/or questioned me about. I observe the Day of Trumpets simply because G-D asked me to. My reason is strictly relational. I love G-D; He is my Father and in His Word, He asked me to observe the Day of Trumpets.
In Leviticus 23, speaking of Yom Teruah, Yom Kippur, Sukkot, Pesach, Shavuot, and Shabbat, G-D said: “It is a statute forever throughout your generations in all your dwellings.”
When G-D said forever, He knew Yeshua would be born, live, die and rise again, yet G-D still said forever. So, because I love my heavenly Father, I simply try to do those things He asked me to
I don’t do them to earn righteousness. I don’t do them to be Jewish. I don’t do them because of supernatural ramifications. I don’t do them to convince other Jewish people that I am Jewish so they will listen to me talk about Yeshua. Nope, not at all.
I celebrate The Day of Trumpets because My Father invited me to spend the day with Him and I love Him and it is my hope that if you celebrate these biblical appointed times that your only reason for doing so will be the same.
Eric Tokajer is the author of Overcoming Fearlessness, What If Everything You Were Taught About the Ten Commandments Was Wrong?, With Me in Paradise, Transient Singularity, OY! How Did I Get Here?: Thirty-One Things I Wish Someone Had Told Me Before Entering Ministry, #ManWisdom: With Eric Tokajer, Jesus Is to Christianity as Pasta Is to Italians and Galatians in Context. Visit his website at rabbierict.com.