Today’s article is part of Brother Frank Natoli’s guest column on the Seven Feasts of Israel.
The Feast of Trumpets is a type and shadow of the Book of Mormon
- Leviticus 23:24 and Numbers 29:1-6
- Occurs exactly on the seventh full moon of the Jewish year
While the first four feast observances all occurred within a relatively short duration of time, it’s worth noting that this feast and the following two feasts occur only after a much longer period had elapsed. This gap of time may help to achieve a better understanding of why the Book of Mormon’s fulfillment of this feast takes place at a much later time in our natural history.
The Trumpet Rallies the Troops
The trumpet (or “shofar” in Hebrew) originated as the horn of a ram (Joshua 6:4) and was used to call the people of God to assemble and gather, or it served as an alarm in time of trouble (Numbers 10:1-7).
The Lord promised Israel that in blowing the trumpets their salvation would be assured.
“And if you go to war in your land against the enemy that oppressive you, then ye shall blow an alarm with the trumpets: and ye shall be remembered before the Lord your God, and ye shall be saved from your enemies.” (Numbers 10:9)
It’s also interesting to note that it was of utmost importance how the trumpet was blown. The Apostle Paul referred to this in his writings: “For if the trumpet give an uncertain sound, who shall prepare himself to the battle?” (1 Corinthians 18:8) The trumpet served to rally and focus the people and unify them in their cause.
Two Trumpets, One Sound
In contrast, by following the teachings contained within the Book of Mormon, one can be assured and comforted by the salvation offered by God. It’s also evident that His people must strictly adhere to the true word of God, as found in the Bible and the Book of Mormon.
It should come as no surprise that God commissioned two trumpets to be created and used in the Old Testament, among His chosen people, both constructed of the same material (Numbers 10:2). That parallels the two records: Bible and Book of Mormon!
Only in these words can one receive the clarity of God’s warnings, commandments, and promises. Giving place or listening to other books or versions of the gospel will no doubt lead to the uncertain sounds of strange doctrine or unauthorized practices, as mentioned by the Apostle Paul above.
As noted earlier, the first recorded trumpet in the scriptures was the ram’s horn, which became Isaac’s replacement for sacrifice, provided by God (Genesis 22:13). In a like manner, through the latter-day trumpet, the Book of Mormon, it promotes mankind’s replacement for sacrifice also provided by God, namely Jesus Christ and His plain and precious teachings (1 Nephi 13).
Those in this dispensation of time see the latter-day trumpet as the Book of Mormon. Ultimately, through the conviction of truth found in this trumpet, the Church is figuratively calling the assembly of the people of God to gather and to sound the alarm in a time troubled by sin.
The Book of Mormon Is God’s Latter-Day Trumpet
Some scholars believe the feast of the trumpets originated during the Babylonian captivity as a way of counteracting the influence of the Babylonian New Year Festival. This theory is particularly pointed when considering the Book of Mormon as the literal fulfillment of this feast. What better way to counteract society’s influence, acceptance, and celebration of sin (as is evident today) than to bring forth a proclamation of purity and truth?
The stinging rebuke that its pages bring to those involved in sinful activities and lifestyles has resulted in its outright rejection by those who would be convicted by the truth it contains. It should come as no surprise that the devil has worked tirelessly to discredit and minimize its worth in the eyes of the world. If he couldn’t stop the coming forth of the Book of Mormon, though he diligently tried, his next best plan of attack was to give the Book of Mormon the worst possible reputation.
As the trumpet sounded the signal for Israel to gather, the people regarded it as a warning to prepare and repent, to make ready for the coming day of atonement just 10 days in the future (Leviticus 23:24-25), and for each person to reexamine his covenant with God.
Upon examination of the Book of Mormon, the subject of the covenant is throughout the text, starting with the title page and continuing to the closing verses of the last book – Moroni 10: 33. The Book of Mormon boldly proclaims the message of repentance and encourages the reader to prepare himself for what is soon to unfold in God’s plan. It’s interesting to discover that the word “repent” appears over 260 times in the text of the Book of Mormon, which is nearly twice as often as it occurs in the Bible at 146 occurrences.
Further evidence of the fulfillment of the Feast of Trumpets by the way of the Book of Mormon is that Joseph Smith received the plates of the Book of Mormon from the Angel Moroni on the exact day of the feast of trumpets for that year, September 22, 1827!
By no coincidence, Joseph was instructed to meet Moroni four consecutive years on the same exact date prior to obtaining possession of the plates for translation. Surely the Book of Mormon is God’s trumpet in the latter days (Joel 3:9). Let there be no question that the Book of Mormon is a treasure to be read and its teaching to be followed.
Join us next Friday as we explore the next feast, the Day of Atonement, also known as Yom Kippur.
Image by Zachi Evenor Flickr: https://www.flickr.com/photos/zachievenor/29468402304, CC BY 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=52038346
This article has undergone ministry review and approval.