Rosh Hashanah

Rosh Hashanah… Also known as “head of the year.” Rosh is head. Ha is the. Shana is year.

This festival is considered one of the holiest in Judaism. This year it is considered a “high holy day” because it falls on a Friday/Saturday which is Shabbat. Any time that a festival falls on a Shabbat it becomes even more sacred and valued.

The festival was established in Torah.

Leviticus 23:23-25

23 Adonai said to Moshe, 24 “Tell the people of Isra’el, ‘In the seventh month, the first of the month is to be for you a day of complete rest for remembering, a holy convocation announced with blasts on the shofar. 25 Do not do any kind of ordinary work, and bring an offering made by fire to Adonai.’”

Blasts on the shofar. This is the one holiday that it is encouraged to blow the shofar. It is the beginning of their new year. They are bringing praise to Adonai.

It is on the first day of the month of Tishrei. Yes, it is considered the “seventh month,” but this is due to a civil cycle and a spiritual cycle. That can be explained in another segment.

The reason this festival is considered “head of the year” is because this is when it is believed that God created the world. It becomes the “birthday of the world.”

The importance of this day continues for 10 more which are called the “Days of Awe.” During these ten days the Jewish people spend time in reflection and asking for forgiveness. They want to make sure that their hearts are clean so that on the Day of Atonement they can be made pure for another year.

For those who believe in Jesus as their Messiah, I believe this day could be the birthday of Jesus. Based on the times and seasons of when the priests served in the Temple, and we know that Elizabeth was pregnant with John the Baptist when Mary came to visit her, pieces can be put together.

If we stop and think about this, it would make sense. Jesus is brought to earth as a baby on the day that the Jews consider to be the “beginning of the world.” He is going to return as King over all the earth” to a blast of the shofar.

These are great days of reflection. Passover is significant, because of what it represents as prophecies fulfilled. But, these are days that have happenings yet to come. Shofars blowing – then days of reflection about our lives – then the day of Atonement when we come before God – and then the ultimate celebration of Sukkot when we Feast together with Him.

How do I celebrate? Our family makes round challah bread with raisins which represent the crown for the coronation. We also eat apples dipped in honey to bring sweetness to the new year.

With all that is happening in the world, I believe that we should really stop and reflect this year on HIS times and seasons. TONIGHT (Friday the 18th) is when Rosh Hashana begins. As Shabbat enters, so does this joyous, and yet reflective festival. I urge you to prepare and be ready to spend time with your Father. Your Creator. The One Who made you in HIS image so you can be like Him.

Reflect on Psalm 81, known to be a Psalm for this day.

For the Leader. On the gittit. By Asaf:

Sing for joy to God our strength!

Shout to the God of Ya‘akov! Start the music! Beat the drum! Play the sweet lyre and the lute!

Sound the shofar at Rosh-Hodesh and at full moon for the pilgrim feast, because this is a law for Isra’el, a ruling of the God of Ya‘akov. He placed it as a testimony in Y’hosef when he went out against the land of Egypt. I heard an unfamiliar voice say, “I lifted the load from his shoulder; his hands were freed from the [laborer’s] basket.

You called out when you were in trouble,and I rescued you;

I answered you from the thundercloud; I tested you at the M’rivah Spring [by saying,] (Selah)

“‘Hear, my people, while I give you warning! Isra’el, if you would only listen to me! There is not to be with you any foreign god; you are not to worship an alien god.

I am Adonai your God, who brought you up from the land of Egypt. Open your mouth, and I will fill it.’

“But my people did not listen to my voice; Isra’el would have none of me. So I gave them over to their stubborn hearts, to live by their own plans.

How I wish my people would listen to me, that Isra’el would live by my ways! I would quickly subdue their enemies and turn my hand against their foes. Those who hate Adonai would cringe before him, while [Isra’el’s] time would last forever. They would be fed with the finest wheat, and I would satisfy you with honey from the rocks.”

Shabbat Shalom and Hag Semach!

Rose Horton

Photo by Igal Ness on Unsplash

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