241 – Numbers 29 – Feast of Trumpets
I’m using the Lexham English Bible (LEB), specifically because they do not translate God’s proper name as LORD. They instead transliterate the name into the English spelling Yahweh, which I personally find refreshing because it is accurate. The LEB is a fine translation that attempts to be as accurate as possible. In an attempt to demonstrate to the reader when they chose “readability” over “exactness” the translators put their decision in “L” brackets and provide a note describing the more literal translation. Look at the bracketed sentence fragment in Numbers 29:1 quoted below that reads, “you will not do any regular work”. The accompanying note reveals the more exact translation to read, “you will not do work of labor.” Moving forward if I choose to use the LEB I may or may not provide the translation note, but feel free to look it up for yourself.
One last comment about the Lexham English Bible. It was translated by Logos Bible software in 2012. It is only available electronically as a free Bible in Logos (using their free Logos app), or as a translation option at BibleGateway.com. I believe it can also be downloaded into various file formats.
1 On the seventh month, on the first day of the month, you will have a holy convocation; ⌊you will not do any regular work⌋. It will be a day for you of blowing trumpets.
2 You will offer a burnt offering as a fragrance of appeasement for Yahweh: one bull, one ram, and seven male lambs ⌊in their first year⌋; they will be without defect.
3 Their grain offering will be finely milled flour mixed with oil: three-tenths for the bull, two-tenths for the ram;
4 and one-tenth for each of the seven male lambs;
5 with one male goat for a sin offering, to make atonement for you,
6 in addition to the burnt offering of the new moon and its grain offering, the continual burnt offering and its grain offering, and their libations, according to their stipulations, as a fragrance of appeasement by fire for Yahweh.
Harris, W. Hall, III et al., eds. The Lexham English Bible. Bellingham, WA: Lexham Press, 2012. Print.
I’ve taken the liberty of bolding some of the above text as a way of calling out a particular observation, which we’ll get to in a minute. But first, a question. If you’ve thought about it at all when you think about the Israelites observing different feasts what is your perspective?
Maybe you notice they were far more ritualistic than the majority of modern-day believers.
Maybe you dismiss it as Old Testament, and therefore no longer relevant for today.
Maybe you don’t think it matters at all and wonder why I’m calling attention to it.
Well, I would like to submit something for your consideration. According to the above passage, the Israelites didn’t just create a tradition called the “Feast of Trumpets”. Look at the words used. “You will” (vs 1), “You will not” (vs 1), “You will offer” (vs 2). Yahweh was not offering a suggestion, but rather issuing an imperative. “You will observe the Feast of Trumpets and this is exactly how you are going to do it” (My paraphrase).
“Yeah, but isn’t that just Old Testament and therefore no longer relevant?” Consider the following verse.
James 1:17 (LEB)
1 Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow of change.
If God does not change then should the modern-day Jews be observing the feasts?
Let’s throw one more verse in for consideration.
Malachi 3:6 (LEB)
6 For I, Yahweh, have not changed, and you, O children of Jacob, have not perished.
Here’s the same verse in the New King James.
Malachi 3:6 (NKJV)
6 For I am the Lord, I do not change; Therefore you are not consumed, O sons of Jacob.
So let me ask again if God does not change then should the modern-day Israelite (or us for that matter) be observing the feasts?
To answer that question fully would take some exploration followed up by explanation. Let me say this much. If God told them to observe something perpetually then it seems to me the modern-day Israelite should be doing so. But I think it goes beyond observance. I believe Yahweh would have us all understand that the significance of each of the feasts and all of the sacrifices are found in that they point to some aspect of the person and or work of Jesus Christ. Simply put the feasts and sacrifices are about Jesus and the sacrifice He made.
Maybe we will circle back around to these six verses next time. There are many more observations to be made in the text.
I hope you agree that God is good and worthy of all Praise, Worship, and Adoration. Actually, He is worthy of so much more than we could ever provide!
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