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One of the seven annual festivals commanded by God is the Feast of Trumpets. "And in the seventh month [corresponding to September/October], on the first day of the month, you shall have a holy convocation. You shall do no customary work. For you it is a day of blowing the trumpets" (Numbers 29:1). This year the annual Holy Day of the Feast of Trumpets is observed on Monday, September 26.
Those who observe the feast of Trumpets are looking forward to the time when an earth-shaking trumpet call will announce the most important event for humanity—the second coming of Jesus Christ: "Then the sign of the Son of Man will appear in heaven, and then all the tribes of the earth will mourn, and they will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory" (Matthew 24:30).
The return of Christ is also when the resurrection of God's faithful servants, referred to in Scripture as ‘saints’ or the ‘elect’ occurs: “And He will send His angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they will gather together His elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other" (Matthew 24:31). The reward of the saints is eternal life in the Kingdom of God, which Christ will establish on the earth when He returns (Revelation 5:10).
The end-time sequence of events leading up to Christ’s return is described in the book of Revelation as Christ breaking open seven seals (Revelation 5). The sequence of the seals is the same sequence of crises Jesus described in His prophecy about His return recorded in Matthew 24, Mark 13 and Luke 21. (See our free study guide The Book Of Revelation Unveiled for more information.)
The opening of the first four seals describes the Four horsemen of the Apocalypse representing false religion, war, famine and death by pestilence and various disasters (Revelation 6:1-8). The fifth seal portrays persecution and the Great Tribulation (Revelation 6:9-11; Matthew 24:21). Then heavenly signs are described with the opening of the sixth seal (Matthew 24:29-30; Revelation 6:12-16), which the prophet Joel tells us will happen just "before the coming of the great and awesome day of the Lord" (Joel 2:31).
The opening of the "seventh seal" is the time of God's major intervention on the earth, which is the Day of the Lord. It is described as seven trumpet blasts (Revelation 8:1-2) heralding calamities that will afflict rebellious mankind.
The sixth trumpet blast announces a vast army coming from the east, influenced by Satan and his demons, which will gather at Armageddon to battle Christ at His return (Revelation 16:16). Armageddon means Mount or Hill of Megiddo. It is situated northwest of Jerusalem and has been a gathering place for armies in the past.
Revelation 17 describes a powerful and evil worldwide system called "Babylon the great." Its armies and the armies of its enemies are about to fight each other when they instead turn to fight against the returning Jesus Christ. Revelation 17:14 tells us: "These will make war with the Lamb, and the Lamb will overcome them, for He is Lord of lords and King of kings; and those who are with Him are called, chosen, and faithful."
The blowing of the seventh trumpet ushers in the seven last plagues and the return of Jesus Christ as King of Kings to rule all nations, as well as the resurrection of the saints.
So the Feast of Trumpets portrays everything that happens from the angel blowing the first trumpet to Christ conquering His enemies at the time of His return. It warns of global catastrophes and war and yet, at the same time, celebrates the return of Jesus Christ as King of kings and the resurrection of the saints. This paves the way for peace on earth at last, as Jesus sets up His Kingdom.
The Good News magazine (Sep-Oct 2013)