Sounding The SHOFAR

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Ester:
Shalom!
Many of us love the sound of shofar being blown.
We've recently passed the Day/Yom Terua; this article gives us a revelation of the shofar.

Love and blessings in Yahshua,
Ester.


Rosh Hashana is "the day of the sounding of the shofar [ram's horn]," according to its biblical definition (Numbers 29:1). However, Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement and Forgiveness, likewise involves shofar blasts following the poignant ne'ila (closing) prayer and generally serving as the conclusion of the fast.

What is the biblical basis - if any - for the shofar sound on Yom Kippur, and how does it differ from the shofar on Rosh Hashana?

Let us first explore the significance of the Rosh Hashana shofar. Fascinatingly, the sages of the Talmud teach that the biblical "day of the sound of the shofar" refers to the straight (tekiya), broken (shevarim, terua) and straight ram's horn blasts linked to the musaf amida (additional standing prayer). Indeed, the initial custom was to sound the shofar even during the silent amida - something still done in most Sephardi and Hassidic synagogues, but considered too confusing for most Ashkenazim (B.T. Rosh Hashana 33).

Logic would dictate that if the shofar blasts are not considered an "interruption" (hafsaka) of the amida prayer, they must be seen as a part of the prayer. And so Rabbi Joseph B. Soloveitchik explains the true significance of the shofar sounds (based on the rulings of Maimonides and the explication of Rabbi Haim Brisker) as prayer by means of sounds. We pray with words - the verbal formulations of God's Kingship (malchuyot), God's Remembrances (zichronot) and God's rams's horn blasts (shofarot) - and we pray with sounds: the exultant, victorious tekiya shout, the sighing and sobbing shevarim-terua cries, and the concluding, victorious tekiya once again for final emphasis.

The crafted verbal formulation interconnected with the primal shofar sounds provide a powerful message: God is King not only of Israel but of the entire world; there is an architect to creation, and life is not "a tale told by an idiot, filled with sound and fury, signifying nothing." But if God is truly King, then He can rightfully hold us mortals accountable - especially for the fact that His ethical monotheism has not yet been accepted by the world, and not even by the majority of Israel. Hence we express sighs and sobs at our failings. We nevertheless conclude with an exultant shout, since repentance holds out the possibility of forgiveness, reconstruction and repair.

The same is true regarding remembrances. The axiom that there is also a divine plan for history, with a specific function set aside for nations as well as individuals, deserves an exultant shout, engendered by the knowledge that there is a more perfect society toward which we are heading; however, it also occasions sighs and sobs, lest we are not successfully fulfilling our mission, lest we are on the wrong track, in the wrong ball-park.

And finally shofarot, the ram's horn blast which emanated from atop Mount Sinai at the time of the Revelation. Here too, we express the consummate joy of the tekiya with the realization that God has given us His Torah, His formula for a proper and satisfying moral, ethical and spiritual life, which we must learn ourselves and then communicate to the world. Herein lies the means through which we can become a "holy nation and a kingdom of priest-teachers." However, the sighs and sobs emanate from the fact that we ourselves are often found wanting; how can we teach others what we ourselves have failed to learn?

In all these instances, the sound of the shofar is the sound of the Jew, a primal sound emanating from the most essential inner "divine portion," his exultant prayer of gratitude and his beseeching request for strength and discipline to fulfill his mission. Indeed, we pray with words and sounds.

However, there is one crucial difference between the first two instances of malchuyot and zichronot - wherein the sounds emanate from the individual at prayer - and shofarot, wherein the sound initially emanated from God: "God rose up through the sound of the terua, the Lord was in the sound of the shofar." Similarly, at the time of the redemption "all the inhabitants of the world and the dwellers on earth will see, when the banner on the mountains is held aloft; and they will all hear, when [God] will blast the shofar" (Isaiah 18:3), and then again, "And it will happen on that day that the great shofar shall be sounded [by God], and those who are lost in the land of Assyria and scattered in the land of Egypt shall come up and bow down before the Lord on the holy mountain in Jerusalem" (Isaiah 18:30).

Now we can begin to see the difference: the shofar blast on Yom Kippur is not derived from the biblical "day of the broken, staccato sound which is unto you," because the biblical text there relates to the people ("unto you") who are sounding the shofar at prayer, and since on Rosh Hashana the major emotion on this first of the Ten Days of Repentance is that of inadequacy, sighing and sobbing, terua, the very day is biblically defined as a "day of terua."

The shofar blast on Yom Kippur, on the other hand, is derived from the straight and exultant tekiya of Yom Kippur on the Jubilee year, the majestic declaration of "freedom throughout the land," the glorious announcement of redemption. (Leviticus 25:9-11, utilizing the Hebrew word shofar, signifying a beautiful, joyous straight sound). This is proper for Yom Kippur, the day when God promises - and guarantees - forgiveness and purification after five prayers in which we affirm (and request) that our Temple be a House of Prayer for all nations. And even though the Yom Kippur blast nowadays is only a rabbinical reminder of the Jubilee, every traditional Jew awaits the final blast by God, with its inherent vision of universal Revelation - when "He will enable us to hear again before the eyes of all living beings" - the redemptive shofar call to the entire world in the days of the Messiah.

The writer is the founder and chancellor of Ohr Torah Stone Colleges and Graduate Programs, and chief rabbi of Efrat.

Ester:
Shalom!
This artcle brings to mind Proverbs 13: 20, He that walks with the wise shall be wise: but......
Take heed to the rest of that verse above! Speaks of the influence/power of wealth too?
Blessings in Yahshua, the Revealer of truth,
Ester.



"Michael Jackson becomes a Muslim: report
November 21, 2008.
 
 London - Pop star Michael Jackson has converted to Islam and changed his name to Mikaeel according to a UK newspaper report.

Jackson, 50, wore a special Islamic dress and hat to pledge allegiance to the Koran, Islam's holy book,  in a ceremony at a friend's
mansion in Los Angeles, The Sun said.

Jackson, brought up as a Jehovah's Witness, reportedly converted after a music produer and songwriter working on his new album
spotted him looking "a bit down" .
The two, both Muslim converts, then spoke to him about Islam.
The ceremony, held before an Imam, took place at the home of Steve Porcaro, former keyboardist of rock band Toto, who composed music for Jackson's Thriller album, The Sun added.
British singer Yousef Islam - formerly Cat Stevens - reportedly turned up to help Jackson  celebrate , to recite the shahada, the Muslim declaration of belief.

Jackson had rejected an initial name choice of Mustafa in favour of Mikaeel, the name of an angel in Islam, the Sun reported. His older brother Jermaine is a Muslim convert who calls himself Muhammed Abdul Aziz.

The reclusive Jackson is due to testify in court next week in a US$7-million lawsuit brought by a Bahraini prince, who claims the singer agreed to record songs and failed to deliver.
Sheikh Abdulla bin Hamad Al Khalifa, second son of the King Bahrain, is suing cash-trapped Jackson, demanding the re-payment of several advances which the artiste has argued were gifts.

Mr. Thanki, the Sheikh's lawyer, said Jackson signed a contract to record albums, write an autobiography and stage shows, under which US$7 million would be deducted from the srtiste's royalties to pay for the expenses. These included, he said, a US$35o,ooo bill for "mind-mapping" motivational guru Tony Buzan to fly to Bahrain for a week to work with Jackson.
The guru was to help stimulate Jackson's creative brain.
The singer howeve left Bahrain in May 2006 to go to Europe and Japan. A month later, he asked the Shikh to sign a document releasing him from his obligation, a request the Sheikh refused, Mr. Thanki said.
"My client felt a strong sense of personal betrayal because this was someone he considered a close personal friend," he told the court.

Sheikh Al Khalifa, 33, gave Jackson millions of dollars to fund the singer's lifesyle, considering the money an advance on the profits the latter would reap from their project.
But Mr Englehart said the money was a gift. Hesaid jackson was not bound by the contract as it was technically signed on behalf of 2 Seas Records, a venture which never got off the ground.
"This (contract) was one brick in the building that was never built," he said. AP

Ester:
"Pressing Toward God's Goal!"

"I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of YHWH* in Yahshua*." Philippians 3:14 (emphasis added) Many have heard this familiar Scripture rightly used for encouragement for us to finish the race and get the prize.  However, the Apostle Paul used a word for "mark" that is worth reviewing. The Hebrew Word, skopos, is derived from the ancient languages, which interprets this word as meaning "watching skeptically and looking very carefully." Yes, skopos does incorporate the meaning of a "marker" or goal set before us, but together both meanings combined gives us a better understanding of what I feel Paul was offering us: "Watch and pray as you proceed to your goal!"

We must now be observant in the spiritual realm as never before. That means we must abandon the "cerebral" (carnal mind) for the "spiritual," pressing in to ABBA's*  heart. If you want something you have never had in your walk with ABBA*, you will have to do something you have never done to get there!

Watch and Pray!

"Keep watching and praying that you may not enter into temptation; the spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak." Matthew 26:41 (emphasis added)This is a Greek word, gregoreuo (pronounced: gray-gor-yoo'-o), which means to keep awake, to be vigilant, to be watchful, and to be alert. Although skopos and gregoreuo are two different words for "watch," it carries the same connotation to be very wary, prepared and alert so you can "dig in" and let nothing come between you and the goal of the High Calling of YHWH*.
Consequently, the parable of the ten virgins in Matthew 25 speaks about us being very watchful and prepared for a long night season! Oh yes, and remember that He is coming back for His spotless Bride, and no one knows the time, but we have equal time to be vigilant, sober, on guard and watching!
Remember, Yahshua's* parable ended with: "Watch therefore, for ye know neither the day nor the hour wherein the Son of man cometh" (Matthew 25:13).Also, Paul places a reminder that in watching, in pressing toward that goal, in praying to keep ourselves wary of the wiles of the enemy, we are becoming hyper-focused in order that we may be rewarded in the end with a prize for completing the high calling of YHWH - through Yahshua the Messiah*!
There is a key to watching and praying - "Looking unto Yahshua* the Author and Finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before Him endured the stake*, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of YHWH*" Hebrews 12:2 (emphasis added)
 

Don't Let Trials and Hardships Get You Down

As we began the  Year of 2009 (Gregorian calendar*), do not think it strange that you go through many trials and hardships, but remember, in our weakness, we become strong. If Yahshua* had to embrace the shame and suffering of those whom He created - yet He came for one purpose: to save all - how much of the suffering do you think we must escape if we are to be His family?
Remember that the sufferings of Yahshua* made Him qualified to be the leader of mankind's salvation.
The Apostle Paul (with a "doctorate on suffering") did not look for affliction in the process, he simply came to consider it a part of the blessings that Yahshua* had given him.
Also, Apostle Paul considered it his portion, causing him to press harder for a greater reward! Yet in the end, if we press towards that goal of the High Calling of YHWH*, we can also say as Paul, in whatever assignment that YHWH has placed us here on this earth:"For I am now ready to be offered, and the time of my departure is at hand. I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith: Henceforth there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which YHWH*, the righteous judge, shall give me at that day: and not to me only, but unto all them also that love his appearing" (2 Timothy 4:6-8, emphasis added).YHWH* has given us such an array of spiritual gifts, the living powerful Word , the fire of the Holy Set-Apart* Spirit, and the love of our Heavenly ABBA* with Yahshua* our Savior forever making intercession for us - and all of that includes a true family of YHWH* to encourage each other so that all might be able to begin afresh pressing toward YHWH's* goals!

Mark and Sandy Pool [/size]

===============================

Shalom! Emails from remnant believers relating the tribulations and difficult situations they are going through, break our hearts.  This article is to encourage these precious brethren.
From where I am presently, folks are living in a completely oblivious world of comfort and ignorance as they celebrate the Chinese lunar new year though many are affected by pay-cuts of up to 20%!!
Even so, Come quickly, Yahshua! Amein!

Dawn:
Saw your post in this thread today, Ester.  Re-reading the whole thread the phrase you mention about TRUTH really stands out.  It occurs to me that these posts all point to THE truth:  Y'shua, the Messiah, the Redeemer of all Mankind.  These days HIS truth is sadly misrepresented, misunderstood, and abandoned freely.  What a blessing it is to know those who are HIS, like yourself, who love, guard, and uphold the truth.  Like the Proverb you picked.  Excellent to reflect on. 


A wise son listens to his father's instruction, but a scoffer doesn't listen to rebuke. By the fruit of his lips, a man enjoys good things; but the unfaithful crave violence. He who guards his mouth guards his soul. One who opens wide his lips comes to ruin. The soul of the sluggard desires, and has nothing, but the desire of the diligent shall be fully satisfied. A righteous man hates lies, but a wicked man brings shame and disgrace. Righteousness guards the way of integrity, but wickedness overthrows the sinner. There are some who pretend to be rich, yet have nothing. There are some who pretend to be poor, yet have great wealth. The ransom of a man's life is his riches, but the poor hear no threats. The light of the righteous shines brightly, but the lamp of the wicked is snuffed out. Pride only breeds quarrels, but with ones who take advice is wisdom. Wealth gained dishonestly dwindles away, but he who gathers by hand makes it grow. Hope deferred makes the heart sick, but when longing is fulfilled, it is a tree of life. Whoever despises instruction will pay for it, but he who respects a command will be rewarded. The teaching of the wise is a spring of life, to turn from the snares of death. Good understanding wins favor; but the way of the unfaithful is hard. Every prudent man acts from knowledge, but a fool exposes folly. A wicked messenger falls into trouble, but a trustworthy envoy gains healing. Poverty and shame come to him who refuses discipline, but he who heeds correction shall be honored. Longing fulfilled is sweet to the soul, but fools detest turning from evil. One who walks with wise men grows wise, but a companion of fools suffers harm. Misfortune pursues sinners, but prosperity rewards the righteous. A good man leaves an inheritance to his children's children, but the wealth of the sinner is stored for the righteous. An abundance of food is in poor people's fields, but injustice sweeps it away. One who spares the rod hates his son, but one who loves him is careful to discipline him. The righteous one eats to the satisfying of his soul, but the belly of the wicked goes hungry. (HNV, Proverbs 13:1-25)

Ester:
Amein, Dawn!

"He that walks with the wise shall be wise..." 
I was doing a search on the name "Ham" -Noach's son, and found this!

"By: Jeff A. Benner


The Hebrew verb Mkx (hhakham) is usually translated as wise. But, the word wise is an abstract (Greek thought) and we will need to take a closer look at this word to find its original concrete (Hebrew thought) meaning. In order to do this we will begin by looking at the parent root Mx (hham) or as it would appear in its original pictographic script. The first letter, , is a picture of a tent wall and represents the idea of separating. The second letter, , is a picture of water. Combined these mean "separate water." The picture represented by these two words is the process of making cheese (curds) from milk by separating out the water (called whey). The noun hamx (hhemah) is derived from this parent root and means "curds."


By placing the consonant k (kh) in the middle of the parent root the adopted root Mkx (hhakham) is formed. While translated as wise the more appropriate meaning is the ability to separate out or distinguish between good and bad. The noun hmkx (hhakhmah) is derived from this adopted root and is usually translated as wisdom but in the sense of craftsmanship such as seen in Exodus 28:3; "(KJV) And I have filled him with the spirit of God, in wisdom (translated as ability in the RSV), and in understanding, and in knowledge, and in all manner of workmanship." A craftsman is one who is able to distinguish between good work and bad work or, one who is "wise."


As we have seen the connection between "curds" and "wisdom" is the separating out of something but interestingly there is another connection between these as found in Isaiah 7:15; "He will eat curds and honey (or possibly dates) to know to refuse evil and to choose good." There appears to be a physical connection between curds (hhemah) and wisdom (hhakhmah) as this passage indicates that eating curds can bring about wisdom."

That would be what we call 'discernment' in the spirit, that need to be excercised, Hebrews 5:14?
Never a day to be bored, so much to know and put into action. We've been robbed of our precious time in sitting at the feet of Yahshua!

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