Biblical Audio Commentary – Rapture & Feast of Trumpets?
One of the bedrock beliefs I’ve had concerning the Rapture is that it is analogous to the Galilean wedding. After the Son’s betrothal to His Bride, He goes back to His Father’s house, prepares the bridal chamber, and then comes to get His Bride when the Father determines it is time to do so (John 14:1-3). As a result, the Rapture is an imminent event, not tied to anything earthly that someone could point to in order to predict Christ’s return.
Then we have those who associate the Rapture to the Israelite Feast of Trumpets. In this view, Christ will come for us during this festival. Even JD Farag was hinting at this in his recent Prophecy Update, in which he speculates the Rapture could be even as soon as this September. For the record, I would like nothing better. He also briefly showed his chart in this episode that outlines the various feasts and the eschatological events they are tied to. Interestingly, I know that Pastor JD is a staunch believer in the wedding motif, so in a sense, he’s kind of mixing these two ideas.
I’ve always had a problem with the concept of the Rapture coming at this predictable time, and I’ve been pondering it lately. Reviewing various passages of Scripture, I have a thought. Naturally, it goes against the grain of this Rapture ≈ Feast of Trumpets timing idea.
First, let’s see what Got Questions has to say about the Feast of Trumpets:
The Feast of Trumpets marked the beginning of ten days of consecration and repentance before God . . . The Feast of Trumpets began on the first day (at the new moon) of the seventh month . . .
The Feast of Trumpets was important for several reasons. First, it commemorated the end of the agricultural and festival year. Also, the Day of Atonement fell on the tenth day of this month, and the Festival of Booths began on the fifteenth day. The blowing of the trumpets on the first day of the month heralded a solemn time of preparation for the Day of Atonement; this preparation time was called “Ten Days of Repentance” or the “Days of Awe.” The trumpet sound was an alarm of sorts and can be understood as a call to introspection and repentance.
The prophets linked the blowing of trumpets to the future Day of Judgment: “Blow the trumpet in Zion; sound the alarm on my holy hill. Let all who live in the land tremble, for the day of the LORD is coming. It is close at hand” (Joel 2:1; see also Zephaniah 1:14, 16).
From this we see the Feast of Trumpets revolves around repentance, introspection, and preparation for Judgment. It is very much associated with the nation of Israel and its future with the Lord Jesus Christ coming to judge them.
Question: How does this relate to the Rapture of Christ’s church?
That’s the issue, isn’t it? Can we legitimately connect this Feast with the Rapture? I’m not so sure that’s a valid context.
As I said, what JD conveyed got me thinking more about this, although I’ve certainly pondered it in the past to no effect. How are these two events tied together, if in fact, they are?
Since at the time of this writing, I’ve been working on my fiction project Tribulation Rising with current efforts focused on the Trumpet Judgments, I wondered if there might be a connection in this regard. After all, we’re dealing with trumpets – right?
What would be the occasion for a trumpet sounding from God that might relate to Israel leading eventually to her repentance and atonement? In the scheme of the chronological progression of events in the Tribulation, I believe that all the Trumpet Judgments sound prior to the Midpoint. It is at this crucial juncture that Antichrist desecrates the temple, announces that he is god, and begins persecuting the Jews. The covenant agreement Antichrist facilitated is shredded completely. No more peace will come from him toward Israel. This marks the Time of Jacob’s Trouble. It’s also the time when the prophecy of Isaiah 28:14-19 comes to pass:
Therefore hear the word of the Lord, you scoffers,
who rule this people in Jerusalem!
Because you have said, “We have made a covenant with death,
and with Sheol we have an agreement,
when the overwhelming whip passes through
it will not come to us,
for we have made lies our refuge,
and in falsehood we have taken shelter”;
therefore thus says the Lord God,
“Behold, I am the one who has laid as a foundation in Zion,
a stone, a tested stone,
a precious cornerstone, of a sure foundation:
‘Whoever believes will not be in haste.’
And I will make justice the line,
and righteousness the plumb line;
and hail will sweep away the refuge of lies,
and waters will overwhelm the shelter.”
Then your covenant with death will be annulled,
and your agreement with Sheol will not stand;
when the overwhelming scourge passes through,
you will be beaten down by it.
As often as it passes through it will take you;
for morning by morning it will pass through,
by day and by night;
and it will be sheer terror to understand the message.
This passage describes what happens when this false treaty is annulled. Israel becomes the recipient of great terror. Surely this is when Jacob’s Trouble begins. It also marks the point at which the Jews need to seriously consider who their Messiah is – who they will worship. What will it require of them? Introspection and repentance. What does this time period lead to? Christ’s 2nd Coming and the Day of Atonement.
Since this is so important in God’s dealing with Israel, might He announce this in some manner? Let’s look at Revelation 11:15-19 to see if there might be a correlation between this final Trumpet and what is to come:
Then the seventh angel blew his trumpet, and there were loud voices in heaven, saying, “The kingdom of the world has become the kingdom of our Lord and of his Christ, and he shall reign forever and ever.” And the twenty-four elders who sit on their thrones before God fell on their faces and worshiped God, saying,
“We give thanks to you, Lord God Almighty,
who is and who was,
for you have taken your great power
and begun to reign.
The nations raged,
but your wrath came,
and the time for the dead to be judged,
and for rewarding your servants, the prophets and saints,
and those who fear your name,
both small and great,
and for destroying the destroyers of the earth.”
Then God’s temple in heaven was opened, and the ark of his covenant was seen within his temple. There were flashes of lightning, rumblings, peals of thunder, an earthquake, and heavy hail.
Perhaps you see what I see? This 7th Trumpet prepares the way for the final Bowl Judgments. More than that, it heralds God’s wrath and judgment following this Midpoint event at the end of next 1260 days, which is when Christ returns.
In my thinking, this makes a lot more sense than conflating the Rapture of the true church with the Israelite Feast that looks forward to atonement. It takes away the confusing idea that the Rapture is imminent and likened to the Galilean wedding, while at the same time associating it with a specific time period.
Just for context and timing’s sake, here is a summary statement about the Feast of Trumpets:
The Feast of Trumpets, also known as Yom Teruah, will begin on September 15th, 2023, at sunset and will run through nightfall on September 17th. It is a festival that revolves around hearing the blast of the shofar, connecting with God, and repentance. The sound of the shofar is a call to wake up and re-examine our commitment to God and to correct our ways. It is recorded in the Old Testament book of Leviticus 23:23-25 and also in Numbers 29:1-6. The Day of Atonement will be on September 26th, and the Feast of Tabernacles will be on October 1st-7th.
If the Rapture is to take place this year because it’s associated with the Feast of Trumpets, that means we’re out of here sometime between September 15-17. If not this year, then next year at the Feast at that time? Or, perhaps there’s no connection between the Rapture and this Feast. In other words, it will truly be an imminent event. We’ll know soon enough how this plays out.
Lord, let me be wrong. Bring on the Rapture with all its glory!