Why is it Customary to Eat Pomegranates on Rosh Hashanah?

Image result for rosh hashanah and pomegranate

Pomegranates are in season in Israel…just in time for Rosh Hashanah. But what’s the connection? We’ll get to that, but first let’s talk about the significance of Rosh Hashanah, the 5th of 7 major feasts of Israel.

At sundown tomorrow in Israel, Jews will celebrate Rosh Hashanah (“head of the year”), their civil New Year. It is also known as Yom Teruah, which means “day of shouting or blasting.” Think of how Americans celebrate New Years and perhaps that definition makes sense!

But consider it from a Biblical perspective: Leviticus 23:23-25 characterizes this feast as the blowing of trumpets, and it has become known as the Feast of Trumpets!

In the secular sense, Jews celebrate this day as a social holiday that marks a new civil year. In the Biblical sense, we see it as another Jewish feast in which Jesus made Himself known. Jesus is the fulfillment of each of the 7 feasts, and collectively, the feasts are God’s prophetic calendar! How? Here are the 7 feasts, in the order given by Leviticus:

  • Passover – Jews sacrificed a lamb to serve as the Passover sacrifice. Jesus is the Sacrificial Lamb who was slain for our sins.
  • Feast of Unleavened Bread – The Jews fled captivity from Egyptian slavery and didn’t even have time to allow the leavened bread to rise. Unleavened bread is pierced, bruised and broken…just as Jesus was in dying for us on the cross.
  • Feast of First Fruits – In the spring, all things become new and Jews offer the first fruits of their harvest. Jesus was the First Fruit, as He rose from the grave, He made a way for us to defeat death as well!
  • Pentecost – Moses was given the Law on Pentecost. Jesus fulfills the law and offers us grace!
  • Feast of Trumpets – Celebration of a new beginning and the coronation of God as king. This is the first of the feast of which Jesus has not yet fulfilled, but will in the future. The last trumpet signals the rapture, when we will be raised to join Him in the air! (1 Corinthians 15:51-52, 1 Thessalonians 5:13-18)
  • Yom Kippur – Day of Atonement, which is a very solemn day of repentance for Jews. However, one day, they will gaze upon the One they have rejected and realize He has atoned for their sins! (This will happen as a result of the Tribulation.)
  • Feast of Tabernacles – Commemorated today as a celebration of the Jews release from captivity. Jews gather together for this joyful feast. But ultimately, Jesus will fulfill the Feast of Tabernacles when believers gather from the four corners of the world to worship together. (This is the Millennial Kingdom!)

So, as believers, we yearn for that trumpet sound which will signal our rapture from this broken world to join our Lord Jesus in the air! What a joyful time, and that is how we should celebrate the Feast of Trumpets!

But, back to those pomegranates! They are a symbol of health, joy and happiness. But, unfortunately, religious Jews remain under the law unless/until they come to know Jesus as Messiah and savior. Pomegranates are said to contain 613 seeds…the same number of laws given to the Jewish people in Old Testament times. May they find their health, joy and happiness in Yeshua (Jesus), the fulfillment of every Jewish feast…then enjoy an incredible pomegranate/orange smoothie!!! (A sweet delight in Israel!)

Shanah Tovah! (Happy New Year!)

PS: Be sure to join us at 2:00 this afternoon (9/28/2019) to hear Debbie Denison share her experience as part of a Christian medical team smuggled into Syria by the IDF to provide trauma care to war-wounded men, women and children deep inside the Syrian border. Find information here.

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