Rosh Hashanah is a Jewish Festival that is celebrated in Israel every fall. What is Rosh Hashanah and what is its significance? Is there anything in the Ancient Pictographs that might paint a clearer picture of this event for us? Is there any connection to Messiah? Let’s find out.
The roots for this celebration go all the way back to Leviticus Chapter 23 where YHVH gave these instructions to Moses in verse 24:
Speak unto the children of Israel, saying, In the seventh month, in the first day of the month, shall ye have a sabbath, a memorial of blowing of trumpets, an holy convocation.
A literal reading of this Torah passage shows us this event given to Moses by YHVH is on the religious calendar on the first day of the seventh month. But Israel also has a civil calendar. This agricultural calendar is for keeping track of the years of the Shmita or the year of release. Every seventh day the land was to have a day of rest, every seventh year, or the Shmita, was to be a year for the land to rest. Every seventh Shmita was to be a Jubilee year in which the land not only rested but that all debts were to be forgiven.
Rosh Hashanah literally means the head of the year and now you can see why it is so called. It establishes the beginning of the year that is used for marking both Shmita and Jubilee years. This same event is also often called Yom Teruah or the day of the blast referring to the blowing of the Shofar or the trumpet as we just read in Leviticus.
What will we discover in the ancient pictographs for these two words that will establish more about their meanings? Rosh is spelled Reysh Aleph Sheen.
Reysh is the picture of the head and means the leader, the master, or the prince.
Aleph is the picture of the ox and means the strong leader, the head of the family, or God the Father.
Sheen is the picture of teeth and means to press, to consume, or to destroy, and is the one letter God uses to identify Himself.
The pictographs here could not be more clear. The leader, the Prince, a reference to Jesus Christ, is united with the strong leader, God the Father, who is the one that can be identified as He who can consume or destroy. This is most interesting when we realize this festival is leading up to Yom Kippur or the Day of Atonement where God’s people hope to have the blood of the lamb cover their sins for one more year. This is a picture of Christ, the Prince, saving them from the judgment of God the Father not just for one year, but for all time.
What about the word Hashana? What can the pictographs here add to what we just learned about Rosh? Hashana is actually composed of two words, Ha which is the word the, and Shanah which is the word commonly translated year. Hashanah is spelled Hey Sheen Noon Hey.
Hey is the picture of the man with arms uplifted to the heavens and means to behold, to pay attention to what follows, or the Holy Spirit as the Revelator.
Sheen again is the picture of teeth and means to press, to consume, or to destroy and is the one letter that God uses to identify Himself.
Noon is the picture of the fish and means life or activity.
Hey is again the picture of the man with arms uplifted to the heavens and means to behold, to pay attention to what follows, or the Holy Spirit as the Revelator.
The first mystery we can find here is that we are to behold something special in this new year:
God the Father is going to reveal Himself to His people through His Holy Spirit and give them life for another year. How will He do this? That’s what we discovered in Rosh. Temporarily, there will be the sacrifice of a lamb for the sins of the people on Yom Kippur, but this is only a picture of the future Sacrifice of the Perfect Lamb of God in union with the Father that will never have to be repeated.
But there is something more to be discovered here. The word Shanah is an auto-antonym or an antagonym which means this is one of the rare words that has two opposite meanings. We just said Shanah it is commonly translated year, but that comes from one of its real meanings which is to repeat. So, Rosh Hashana as the head of the year is something that is repeated at the head or the beginning of each new year.
Shanah also means to change. That means when we read this word we don’t know if it means that we are to repeat something or we are to change our direction and not repeat it again.
The first two letters of Shanah are Sheen Noon which makes the word tooth. Remember the pictographs for Sheen and Noon are teeth and life. When we are young the tooth matures, then dies and falls out and then is replaced with a new one. This is a picture of the cycle found in the Hebrew new year. The old year is gone, there will be Shanah or change. There will be a year of new life, different from the last even though we will be Shanah or repeating it.
Remember that Rosh Hashanah is leading to Yom Kippur where the sacrifice of the lamb by the High Priest for the sins of the nation had to be Shanah or repeated every year. That is until the sacrifice by the perfect Lamb of God. Now that yearly need has forever been Shanah or changed. The writer of the Book of Hebrews reminds us of this in Chapter 10 verses 12 through 14:
But this man, after he had offered one sacrifice for sins for ever, sat down on the right hand of God; From henceforth expecting till his enemies be made his footstool. For by one offering he hath perfected for ever them that are sanctified.
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