ELUL 5782: Trumpet’s Blast
Elul is the domino that is about to kick off the beginning of a series of global events that will be shocking in scale, and is the gateway into the new year, a special new year that comes around only once every 7 years, the Shmita (Sabbatical) year. It is a month of incredible expectation, introspection, personal preparation, overcoming, and being upgraded. It was on the first day of Elul that Moses ascended Mount Sinai for the second time for 40 days and nights for the forgiveness of Israel’s sins to receive the second ten commandments. The timing of YHWH is perfect, and from the first day of Elul to Yom Kippur (Day of Atonement) is exactly 40 days as was Moses’ time on Mount Sinai.
On the 30th day, the last day of Elul we celebrate Yom Teruah (The Feast of Trumpets) otherwise known as Rosh Hashanah (Sep. 26th) which marks the beginning of the New Year. And remember this is not just any new year, but the end of the Shmita year which marks the beginning of an entirely new 7 year Biblical cycle marking a major global shift in the natural and the Spirit. This is followed by ten days called “The Days of Awe”, ending on the 40th day with the celebration of Yom Kippur (The Day of Atonement). Yom Kippur marks the day that Israel was forgiven by God for worshipping the golden calf and their covenant with Him was restored. This first 30 days (Elul) we have entered into is not to be taken lightly. Expect this month to see and hear around the globe about things that have been done in the darkness being brought to the light, and justice being served on a massive scale.
This is a month of Teshuvah, a Hebrew word that means “to turn back” to God. It is a time for each of us personally to shine the Light inwards, asking ourselves, what is paralyzing our personal and corporate relationship and walk with Adonai, to expose it, and be done with it forever. Pride, specifically is the obstacle we must stare down and tear down this month as it is what s getting in the way of true repentance. The same goes for our towns, cities and nations. In English we always say that we should turn away from sin, sin being the object, but in Hebrew we say turn back to Adonai (Teshuvah), the Savior being the object. Sin and death are not the focus, but rather as we focus on Adonai, the sins become apparent, and as we do teshuvah, Yeshua it wipes sin clean in an instant so that no division remains between us and Him. The Biblical blueprint for this month is amazing, but whether we apply it or not is up to us.
Roadmap To Restoration
There are three passages in Scripture that took place during this month of Elul, which paint a beautiful picture of how we can go through critical transformation and preparation to personally get clean of all sin in our lives, but also nationally. Ezekiel 8 begins on the fifth day of Elul with Adonai taking him in the Spirit to witness the idolatry of the leaders and people of Jerusalem who had turned their backs on Him to worship false gods. Adonai saw everything, just as He sees everything we do, but instead of doing teshuvah they continued down the path they knew was wrong. In the end, it led to the deaths or exile of all of them and the destruction of the walls and the temple. Interestingly however, something that is often overlooked is that one of the main reasons for Adonai exiling Israel to Babylon was because they had not been keeping the Shmita year and allowing the land to rest every 7th year as He commanded Israel to do in Leviticus 25:1-5, nor did they follow the rule of forgiving debts on the Shmita year. (Deuteronomy 15:1-11). The consequences were catastrophic and Adonai sovereignly took the Israelites from the land through King Nebuchadnezzar “to fulfill the word of the Lord by the mouth of Jeremiah, until the land had restored its Sabbaths (Shmitas); for as long as the land lay desolate it kept Sabbath until seventy years were complete” (2 Chronicles 36:21).
As Elul is the entry into the Shmita year we need to seriously ask Adonai if this is the year that He is going to sovereignly make the land rest. It is also important to look at the pattern of global economic recessions and crashes every Shmita year since 1973, and question what such an event would look like in the current state of the world’s financial system if it were to happen again as scheduled. Read more about this here
This begs the question, are there things in your life, old or new habits that are taking you down a path away from your relationship with The Father, Yeshua, and the Holy Spirit? No matter what you have done, when you repent and turn back to the Father, He is waiting for you with a robe, a ring, and a feast just like the prodigal son. He is weeping because of your absence at His table and will rejoice at your return, not punish you. As we all go through our process of teshuvah this month let us also be intentional about reaching out to our neighbors and the ones Abba puts on our hearts to pray for and speak to. Take action, and get excited about getting out of your comfort zone, remembering that the fear you feel telling you not to approach that person or pray for that person, is not the fear of the Most High, it is the enemy trying to keep you from releasing the blessing and message Adonai has put on your heart. Let’s make it a point to step on the enemy every time he tries to stand between us and teshuvah, as well as any soul that needs Yeshua, salvation, and everlasting life.
Step 2: Heavenly Order
70 years later when Israel began returning from exile in Babylon, on the 1st day of (Elul) In Haggai 1, the Holy Spirit rested upon the prophet Haggai and he rebuked the newly returned exiles now living in the ruins of Jerusalem. They had all rebuilt their own houses and planted their fields, but they lacked everything. Why? Because they kept telling themselves it is not yet time to rebuild the Temple, the house of YHWH. They were so worried about everything else, they couldn’t imagine spending time to rebuild the Temple, there was too much to do and not enough time as it was. Sound familiar? I was going to read the Bible today, but… I was going to go to church, but… I was going to rest on Shabbat but… It was a struggle for the newly returned exiles just to keep food on the table even after working longer hours. A full generation of exile without worship had set in, but now it was time to break old habits. “Consider your ways and thoughtfully reflect on your conduct! Go up to the hill country, bring lumber and rebuild My house (temple), that I may be pleased with it and be glorified,” says Adonai [accepting it as done for My glory] (Haggai 1:5,7). Unlike in the time of Ezekiel, they listened, repented, and began rebuilding the Temple together on the 24th day of Elul. We so often get the order wrong and let the focus be on what we need to survive instead of on the One Who is our Provider. Yeshua covered this beautifully in Matthew 6:31-33, and if we but follow this one piece of Scripture our lives would be radically different.
“Therefore do not worry or be anxious (perpetually uneasy, distracted), saying, ‘What are we going to eat?’ or ‘What are we going to drink?’ or ‘What are we going to wear?’ For the [pagan] Gentiles eagerly seek all these things; [but do not worry,] for your heavenly Father knows that you need them. But first and most importantly seek (aim at, strive after) His kingdom and His righteousness [His way of doing and being right—the attitude and character of God], and all these things will be given to you also.”
Yeshua is telling us just like Haggai was telling the people in Jerusalem, get the order right, and everything else will be provided. Are you living according to worldly order or the heavenly order?
Step 3: The Hopeless Enemy
After the Temple was finished being built, Adonai sent another man to Jerusalem to complete Jerusalem’s re-construction, Nehemiah. “So the wall was completed in 52 days on the 25th day of Elul. “When all our enemies heard about it (the wall), and all the [Gentile] nations around us saw it, they lost their confidence; for they recognized that this work had been accomplished with the help of our God.” The same goes for each of us individually when we protect the sanctity of the temple, we being the temple of the Holy Spirit, forcing the enemy to lose all hope of gaining access to corrupt it. “So submit to [the authority of] God. Resist the devil [stand firm against him] and he will flee from you.” Notice again the order. It does not say resist the devil then submit to God, but the other way.
Focus on the Great I Am and anything not from Him will be forced out. Once we have this process down, then the enemy’s sole purpose becomes trying to keep us from bringing restoration (Yeshua/salvation) to other ruined cities (unsaved and backslidden people). Our ability to weather any storm, to love and bless our enemies, to live and die every day for Yeshua, is not possible without the King of glory being first. The rebuilt walls of Jerusalem were evidence to Israel’s enemies that YHWH had forgiven His people, they were still His people, and He was with them. He is with you, but unlike the Old Covenant, He is not judging you. This is the age of grace, so if you are in a moment right now where you feel like there are breaches in your walls causing you to turn away from Adonai, now is the opportune time to identify the intruders, kick them out, patch up the holes, set watchmen on the walls and guardians at the gates 24/7. With a sword in one hand and a hammer in the other make the enemy flee and repair the breach from whence they came.
FACES LIKE LIONS
The tribe of Elul is Gad. If you don’t know much about the tribe of Gad it will quickly become your favourite. “Courageous men from the Gadites came over to David in the stronghold in the wilderness, men trained for war, who could handle shield and spear, whose faces were like the faces of lions, and who were swift as gazelles on the mountains” (1 Chronicles 12:8). These are the kind of soldiers you want on your side, but not the ones you want to oppose. Is this the army the fallen kingdom of darkness sees when it looks at the Body of Messiah? There was a reason that Gad was so prepared for war, a very simple reason that we as the global remnant are beginning to take more seriously with each passing day. When Jacob prophesied over Gad he said, “As for Gad—a raiding troop shall raid him, but he shall raid at their heels and assault them [victoriously]” (Genesis 49:19). He was prophesying about when Gad would inherit its portion of the promised land, and Gad and his descendants did not forget. They knew Jacob had spoken from God, so they did what any God fearing people would do, they prepared for those who would inevitably attack them when they inherited their land. They were such fierce warriors that 1 Chronicles 12:14 says the sons (descendants) of Gad who joined David in the stronghold “were captains of the army; he who was least was equal to a hundred, and the greatest was equal to a thousand.”
So the question for the global remnant is this, Gad knew what to expect when the enemy came and how to react, but do we? When the enemy attacks, do we know what to do, or even know that the enemy is attacking? Are we aware of the battle we are in and our role and purpose in it? How can we see the kingdom of Adonai made manifest on earth as it is in heaven if we are not aware of our full identity in Yeshua and why we are here? The Acts church is a good reference of what should be happening in the midst of the sons and daughters of the Most High, and it is time, just like the Gadites, that the Body of Messiah releases the roar of the Lion of Judah who is in us, we in Him. The last day of this month is Yom Teruah, the Feast of Trumpets, a reminder of Yeshua’s inevitable return. It is tradition on each day of Elul to blow the shofar, a reminder for every believer in Yeshua that He is coming soon, and a terrifying prophetic declaration to the kingdom of lies that their time is running out. Numbers 10:9 tells us, “When you go towards in your land against an adversary who is oppressing you, you are to sound an alarm with trumpets; then you will be remembered before Adonai your God and you will be saved from your enemies.” Numbers 10:10 then goes on to tell us also to blow the trumpets in gladness, in the appointed feasts, and on the first day of the month. If you have a shofar then remember, blow it every day, not for tradition’s sake, but to remember to live like Yeshua is coming tomorrow and to remind the enemy that they are encroaching on Adonai’s land, and it isn’t for sale or for the taking. If you don’t have a shofar, God gave you a voice loud enough to roar.
Betulah is the Hebrew word for Virgin. It is the constellation visible above Israel during this Biblical month and part of understanding the current appointed time and season. This is not astrology, as stars are not meant to be worshipped, only YHWH the Creator of the heavens and the earth, and this is definitely not a horoscope as horoscopes are just the modern example of the enemy twisting and polluting the purpose of YHWH’s creation. For example, the wise men were not aware of the constellations in order to worship them, but to know the times and seasons, using them to find Yeshua the Messiah and worship Him, not the stars. We aim to do the same here, to glorify Adonai, and equip ourselves for this Biblical Month.
Interestingly enough, the letters of Elul form an acronym for the words in the verse that says “Ani le‑dodi ve‑dodi li–“I am my beloved’s and my beloved is mine” (Song of Songs 6:3). This is directly parallel with the constellation Betulah (the virgin), continuing the very clear theme of this month, to be prepared as the Bride of Yeshua before entering into Sukkot (The Feast of Tabernacles), a foreshadowing of Yeshua coming for His bride. When we think of the virgin in Scripture we immediately think of Mary the mother of Yeshua, but we rarely think about her reply when the angel Gabriel visited her with the big news in comparison to Zachariah’s reply when Gabriel told him his wife Elizabeth who was past child bearing age, also Mary’s relative, would give birth to John the Baptist. If you want to know the correct way to respond to a Word from YHWH do not follow the example of Zachariah. Oddly enough he is the one who we would think would know exactly how to respond to God as he was a priest in the Temple chosen to go into the Holy of Holies on Yom Kippur. Gabriel shows up out of nowhere, poof, to the right of the altar of incense (Luke 1:11) then Gabriel calms him down and prophesies about Elizabeth getting pregnant and tells him in detail who his son will be and what he will do. How would you respond? An Angel comes to you and says your prayer has been heard and God says He will do it. Maybe a Hallelujah, or thank you Abba would be in order, but Zachariah standing at the altar of incense with an angel in front of him who just appeared out of thin air, doesn’t believe what the angel says. Gabriel then makes Zachariah mute for the whole duration of Elizabeth’s pregnancy because he did not believe (Luke 1:1-24).
Mary on the other hand, during the sixth month of Elizabeth’s pregnancy (Luke 1:26) was just having a regular day in a not so special place going about her business when Gabriel shows up in a not so special way looking no different than a man according to her initial response to him. “And coming to her, the angel said, “Greetings, favored one! The Lord is with you.” But she was greatly perplexed at what he said, and kept carefully considering what kind of greeting this was.” Basically a random guy shows up and creates an awkward moment. Gabriel then goes on to tell her the most ridiculous thing you can think of, you are going to give birth to the Savior of the world, and the Holy Spirit (God) is going to be the Father. How would you respond? Mary’s response was perfect, “Behold, I am the servant of Adonai; may it be done to me according to your word.” And the angel left her” (Luke 1:26-38). Do you think there was a reason the Ancient of days chose Mary for one of the most important tasks in all of history? Clearly she was willing, not just at synagogue where everyone puts on their best face, but by herself at a time and place unexpected for one of the greatest messages ever sent by an angel to a human. This is how Yeshua will return, and we must be prepared. We already know He is coming, and we have Adonai to guide us and teach through His Word, and all of this time to personally be with Him in the Holy of Holies through the blood of Yeshua. How will you answer Him?
As we blow the trumpet daily during this month of Elul, it is a wake-up call for us all saying, “make way for the King!” We are being called to do teshuvah and shine the light inward so that we can be the light shining in the darkness of the world, causing the sinful things done in secret to be uprooted and brought to the light. It is time to focus on rebuilding Adonai’s house both personally and corporately during these turbulent times, focusing on Elohim first and foremost knowing that He provides all we need when our priority is our relationship with Him. Great shaking is coming to the earth, but Who is our Provider, our Hope, and Strong Tower? We look to Yeshua, not to the circumstances or situation, and seek first the Kingdom and righteousness. As we rebuild the right house we also look to the perimeter, repairing any breach in our walls with sword and hammer in hand.
We remember that we are warriors of the Lion of Judah, prepared to face down and defeat the fallen kingdom of darkness at a moments notice with faces like lions, causing hopelessness and fear to spread through the enemies ranks. We are the Bride of Yeshua, and like Mary the Mother of Yeshua, our answer to the call of YHWH over our lives, and as the global Body of Messiah is “Behold, I am the servant of Adonai; may it be done to me according to Your word.” Let the skies erupt with shofar blasts around the world and back to Jerusalem as we watch the enemies of YHWH try to run knowing their time is up with nowhere to hide. Arise, victorious bride, prepare and be ready, the King is coming soon!