“Who is a God like you, who pardons sin and forgives the transgression of the remnant of his inheritance? You do not stay angry forever but delight to show mercy. You will again have compassion on us; you will tread our sins underfoot and hurl all our iniquities into the depths of the sea. You will be faithful to Jacob, and show love to Abraham, as you pledged on oath to our ancestors in days long ago.” Micah 7:18-20
Reflection and repentance
Tonight we will mark Rosh haShana, the Jewish New Year or the biblical Feast of the Trumpet (Leviticus 23). The above prayer from Micah 7:18-20 is very commonly recited by observant Jews, acknowledging our dependence on God’s mercy and forgiveness of sin. And the God of Heavens, the Holy One of Israel, loves to show mercy and forgive. What an awesome God we serve – there is none like Him!
The following “Days of Awe” leading up to Yom Kippur, or Atonement Day, are a time of reflection of one’s shortcomings in life and especially during the preceding twelve months. It is a season of repentance, turning back to God, realigning with His will and statutes. A season to remember our life’s eternal perspective – the impact our actions and choices have on where we will spend eternity.
Written in the Book of Life
According to Jewish tradition, during the Days of Awe God opens the Book of Life and goes through the records of our life. His judgment then follows on Yom Kippur. As believers in Yeshua, we know that our names are already written in the Book of Life (Luke 10:20). God has shown mercy on us and has cast our sin into the depth of the sea and remembers them no more (Isaiah 43:25, Hebrews 8:12).
The Feast of the Trumpet is a picture for Christ’s Second Coming, when at the trumpet’s sound God will gather us to Himself (1 Thessalonians 4:15-17), inaugurating Judgement Day on which He, the Judge of All the Earth (Genesis 18:25) will open His books and judge those who have not accepted His offer of grace and forgiveness according to the record of their life.