Think of the Star Wars trumpet fanfares composed by John Williams. Listen in your mind to morning reveille’s rousing notes or evening taps’ plaintive cry drifting down upon your ears.
God loves the sound of trumpets too.
Long ago God ordered trumpets blown to coordinate the Exodus of the Israelites from Egypt. Like more modern armies, trumpets directed and motivated the Israelite army in battle. He had His priest sound trumpets to announce religious events and ceremonies around His temple in ancient Israel.
With danger or great events on the line, you’ve got to have trumpets. Years ago a comedian imagined an army marching to a guitar: “Strummm…here they come on the run. Strummm…hurry up and get your gun. Strummm.” Doesn’t work, does it?
Horn horns and metal
God likes trumpets, all kinds of trumpets made of metal or even horn. The earliest trumpet of the Bible was made from the horn of a ram or a bull and was called in Hebrew the shofar. As a simple horn, the shofar played no variety of notes, but yielded a rich, haunting resonance or blast that could be heard over great distances. A signal horn to alert the locals in time of war, it was also a trumpet of celebration and praise toward God.
Metal trumpets, not unlike those used to play fanfares for Olympic Games ceremonies, served many purposes (see Numbers 10:1-10 Numbers 10:1-10 1 And the LORD spoke to Moses, saying,
2 Make you two trumpets of silver; of a whole piece shall you make them: that you may use them for the calling of the assembly, and for the journeying of the camps.
3 And when they shall blow with them, all the assembly shall assemble themselves to you at the door of the tabernacle of the congregation.
4 And if they blow but with one trumpet, then the princes, which are heads of the thousands of Israel, shall gather themselves to you.
5 When you blow an alarm, then the camps that lie on the east parts shall go forward.
6 When you blow an alarm the second time, then the camps that lie on the south side shall take their journey: they shall blow an alarm for their journeys.
7 But when the congregation is to be gathered together, you shall blow, but you shall not sound an alarm.
8 And the sons of Aaron, the priests, shall blow with the trumpets; and they shall be to you for an ordinance for ever throughout your generations.
9 And if you go to war in your land against the enemy that oppresses you, then you shall blow an alarm with the trumpets; and you shall be remembered before the LORD your God, and you shall be saved from your enemies.
10 Also in the day of your gladness, and in your solemn days, and in the beginnings of your months, you shall blow with the trumpets over your burnt offerings, and over the sacrifices of your peace offerings; that they may be to you for a memorial before your God: I am the LORD your God.
American King James Version×). The Bible first talks about a pair of silver trumpets used during the Exodus and later in the Promised Land. Metal trumpets produced a more piercing and musical sound than the shofar.
In the priesthood of ancient Israel the number of trumpets grew to 120, accompanying the great choir and orchestra for religious musical performances at God’s temple in Jerusalem (see 2 Chronicles 5:12-14 2 Chronicles 5:12-14 12 Also the Levites which were the singers, all of them of Asaph, of Heman, of Jeduthun, with their sons and their brothers, being arrayed in white linen, having cymbals and psalteries and harps, stood at the east end of the altar, and with them an hundred and twenty priests sounding with trumpets:)
13 It came even to pass, as the trumpeters and singers were as one, to make one sound to be heard in praising and thanking the LORD; and when they lifted up their voice with the trumpets and cymbals and instruments of music, and praised the LORD, saying, For he is good; for his mercy endures for ever: that then the house was filled with a cloud, even the house of the LORD;
14 So that the priests could not stand to minister by reason of the cloud: for the glory of the LORD had filled the house of God.
American King James Version×).
A festival made for trumpets
Extra trumpets were sounded longer and louder to herald the seven festivals or Holy Days that God gave His people —and ultimately all people, everywhere—to worship Him. The most trumpet-related of those annual Holy Days comes in the autumn in the northern hemisphere.
This Christian festival is called the Feast of Trumpets and, incidentally, corresponds to the Jewish New Year. God specifically designed it to be “a memorial of blowing of trumpets” (Leviticus 23:24 Leviticus 23:24Speak to the children of Israel, saying, In the seventh month, in the first day of the month, shall you have a sabbath, a memorial of blowing of trumpets, an holy convocation.
American King James Version×). The Hebrew for “blowing of trumpets” is teruah, which denotes the alarm blast of the shofar.
Each of God’s annual festivals illustrates something of His plan for man historically or prophetically. This one heralds the second coming of Jesus Christ. Every year these holy festivals let true believers relive history, past and future.
Truth beats fiction to a pulp
Anticipating the return of Christ and the prophecies preceding it, the Feast of Trumpets features trumpet-blowing angels—seven of them. These angelic trumpets herald one earthshaking event after the other in the countdown to the Kingdom of God on earth.
The trumpet angels are described in Revelation, the last book in the Bible. Revelation reads like a dynamite combination of awe-inspiring but terrifying science fiction and an edge-of-your-seat techno-thriller. Truth beats fiction to a pulp.
Seven angels, seven trumpets
After Jesus speaks, a host angel escorts John through the spiritual-virtual reality of the end of this evil world and the beginning of a new and incredible world tomorrow.
John lived before books had pages. The book of Revelation was a scroll—one long page rolled up and locked in its case, sealed so that only Christ was authorized to open it.
Seven seals sealed the scroll. The first four are also known as the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse—religious deception, war, famine and pestilence (see Revelation 6). Apocalypse is the Greek word for revelation.
The fifth seal is the Great Tribulation, a short but devastating time of trouble during which humanity will be threatened with extinction and the true followers of Jesus Christ persecuted (Matthew 24:21-24 Matthew 24:21-24 21 For then shall be great tribulation, such as was not since the beginning of the world to this time, no, nor ever shall be.
22 And except those days should be shortened, there should no flesh be saved: but for the elect’s sake those days shall be shortened.
23 Then if any man shall say to you, See, here is Christ, or there; believe it not.
24 For there shall arise false Christs, and false prophets, and shall show great signs and wonders; so that, if it were possible, they shall deceive the very elect.
American King James Version×; Revelation 6:9-11 Revelation 6:9-11 9 And when he had opened the fifth seal, I saw under the altar the souls of them that were slain for the word of God, and for the testimony which they held: 10 And they cried with a loud voice, saying, How long, O Lord, holy and true, do you not judge and avenge our blood on them that dwell on the earth? 11 And white robes were given to every one of them; and it was said to them, that they should rest yet for a little season, until their fellow servants also and their brothers, that should be killed as they were, should be fulfilled.
American King James Version×). The sixth seal signals the start of the great Day of the Lord, a time of divine intervention and retribution toward those who persecuted God’s people. When this seal opens there are terrifying signs in the day and night skies—perhaps meteors and asteroids striking earth. It’s scarier than science fiction because it’s science fact.
The trumpets are coming! The opening of the seventh seal reveals seven trumpets: “And I saw the seven angels who stand before God, and to them were given seven trumpets” (Revelation 8:2 Revelation 8:2And I saw the seven angels which stood before God; and to them were given seven trumpets.
American King James Version×).
When each phenomenally powerful angelic being sounds his trumpet, cataclysmic environmental and battle devastations rock the planet and whoever is still alive (see Revelation 8 and 9).
The seventh trumpet and hope
Stop and consider. In movies this imagery is all smoke, mirrors and computer-generated graphics—only make believe. Not so in Revelation. This drama is real —to be believed.
Now comes the seventh trumpet of the seventh seal, the greatest trumpet of all the trumpets everywhere (see Revelation 11:15 Revelation 11:15And the seventh angel sounded; and there were great voices in heaven, saying, The kingdoms of this world are become the kingdoms of our Lord, and of his Christ; and he shall reign for ever and ever.
American King James Version×)! When the seventh angel blows his trumpet, the world has hope again. In the trumpet countdown to Christ’s return, this is the final horn blown, so it is the “last trumpet” (1 Corinthians 15:52 1 Corinthians 15:52In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed.
American King James Version×). Here’s what happens when the events anticipated by the Feast of Trumpets unfold:
1. Jesus Christ returns to earth.
2. His true believers are resurrected (changed from physical to spiritual).
3. The nations or kingdoms of this world become Christ’s kingdoms.
4. With the seventh trumpet’s seven final judgments, Christ neutralizes the rebellious armies who resist Him (see Revelation 16).
5. The Kingdom of God on earth begins with divinely installed peace among men.
There are more details found in the prophecies. To learn about them, request or download your free copy of The Book of Revelation Unveiled .
You and God’s trumpets
Where do you fit? Did you notice the subtheme of the faithful and true believers? Only the few in this age understand the significance of God’s annual Feast of Trumpets. The rest of mankind will understand later.
There will be trumpets, trumpets everywhere, but for those who know God’s truth and choose to follow the true Jesus Christ of the Bible, their sound will in the end be very sweet. VT