The Biblical Fall Feasts – A Time of Trumpets, Tears, and Triumph

The Biblical Fall Feasts – A Time of Trumpets, Tears, and Triumph

The Zadok calendar places these Biblical Fall Feasts — the Feast of Trumpets, Day of Atonement, and Sukkot — in the seventh month of the ecclesiastical year. On the fourth day of this week (Wednesday), we will kick off this season of celebration with a day of Trumpets. Ten days later will be a day of humble reflection known as the Day of Atonement, followed by a week of joyous celebration and fellowship at Sukkot.

Before we summarize the significance of each festival, let us pause to reflect on a few important points regarding how we as disciples living in the 21st century should view our participation in these appointed times.

biblical fall feasts

Church or Ekklesia?

The Greek word ekklesia is used in several writings of the New Testament such as the book of Acts, 1 Corinthians, and 1 Peter. Most English translations have replaced ekklesia with the word church, which is unfortunate because it camouflages the term’s deeper meaning.

The word church denotes a gathering place set aside for worship amongst those of a particular denomination who agree on doctrine and styles of worship. The New Testament use of this word connotes any assembly of people. Following the Reformation, the term church was more or less a generalized umbrella term for either a place of worship, a body of believers collectively, or ecclesiastical authority.

Christian1 is a description that was first coined in the city of Antioch. This word identified those who were followers of Christ – the anointed one.

Then Barnabas went to Tarsus to look for Saul, and when he found him, he brought him back to Antioch. So for a full year they met together with the church and taught large numbers of people. The disciples were first called Christians at Antioch.

Acts 11: 25,26

However, instead of the word church, the descriptive term ekklesia elevates our understanding of the unique purpose of disciples of Messiah who identify and connect with the Torah from a Hebraic mindset.

But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for God’s own possession, to proclaim the virtues of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light.

1 Peter 2:9

Now if you will indeed obey My voice and keep My covenant, you will be My treasured possession out of all the nations–for the whole earth is Mine.

Exodus 19:5

Remember, the collective books of the so-called New Testament did not exist during the time of the first apostles. The word church was never uttered by the apostles and early disciples. Followers of Yeshua were mostly known as the people of the Way — followers of the path of righteousness taught by Yeshua.

Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. Because the gate is narrow and the way is hard pressed which leads to life, and there are few who find it

Matthew 7:13,14

And there will be a highway called the Way of Holiness. The unclean will not travel it–only those who walk in the Way–and fools will not stray onto it.

Isaiah 35:8

The letters and writings that would eventually make up the New Testament had yet to be published in a Bible that was split into two parts called the Old and New Testaments. This publishing “line of demarcation” was artificially imposed on readers by Bible publishers.

According to Tomas Bokedal, associate professor at the University of Aberdeen:

The first New Testament books to be written down are reckoned to be the 13 that comprise Paul’s letters (circa 48-64 CE), probably beginning with 1 Thessalonians or Galatians. Then comes the Gospel of Mark (circa 60-75 CE). The remaining books – the other three Gospels, letters of Peter, John, and others as well as Revelation – were all added before or around the end of the first century. By the mid-to-late hundreds CE, major church libraries would have had copies of these, sometimes alongside other manuscripts later deemed apocrypha.

As followers of Yeshua and people of the Covenant who have been grafted into Israel (Yashar’el), we are expected to obey the terms of this eternal covenant. This means we should practice memorializing all appointed feast days as best we can.

The Biblical Fall Feasts

The Feast of Trumpets

On the first day of the seventh month, you are to hold a sacred assembly, and you must not do any regular work. This will be a day for you to sound the trumpets. Numbers 29:1

In the Old Testament, trumpets were used to call Yahuah’s people to war, announce victories won by Him, and declare the coming of the King. On the Day of the Lord, the trumpet sound believers hear will be a joyful noise that means resurrection. However, unbelievers will be terrorized by it since it will signal the coming of Yeshua with his great army of angels.

At that time the sign of the Son of Man will appear in heaven, and all the tribes of the earth will mourn. They will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven, with power and great glory. And He will send out His angels with a loud trumpet call, and they will gather His elect from the four winds, from one end of the heavens to the other.

Matthew 24:30,31

Listen, I tell you a mystery: We will not all sleep, but we will all be changed— in an instant, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, the dead will be raised imperishable, and we will be changed. For the perishable must be clothedf with the imperishable, and the mortal with immortality.

1 Corinthians 15: 51-53

The Feast of Trumpets not only marks the beginning of the seventh month but it is a time for reflection, repentance, and anticipation of the future. In 1 Corinthians 15:51, the type of trumpet referred to was likely a silver trumpet. In Leviticus 23:24, the Israelites were instructed to use silver trumpets instead of shofars or ram’s horns. Silver trumpets were used for various ceremonial purposes throughout the year. They were blown to announce important events, such as the gathering of the congregation, the start of festivals, the calling of leaders, and even during times of war. the shofar had a unique sound and was seen as a call for repentance, awakening, or reflection. It was blown on specific set-apart days while the silver trumpets seemed to serve more general ceremonial purposes.

Yahuah said to Moses, “Speak to the Israelites and say, ‘On the first day of the seventh month you are to have a day of rest, a sacred assembly announced by trumpet blasts. You must not do any regular work, but you are to present an offering made by fire to the LORD.’ ”

Leviticus 23:23-25

This feast day is a Sabbath, so no servile work is to be done. On the GWDF Zadok calendar, the Feast of Trumpets happens this week on the fourth day (Wednesday). The countdown clocks for each appointed feast that follows are set to Central time (USA) based on the Zadok calendar.

Day of Atonement

Again YHWH said to Moses, “The tenth day of this seventh month is the Day of Atonement. You shall hold a sacred assembly and humble yourselves, and present an offering made by fire to YHWH. Leviticus 23:26-27

The Day of Atonement is a Sabbath — a holy convocation or feast day. Although many who follow Judaism feel this is a time of fasting, there is no instruction given in the Bible for us to abstain from food. So, what does it mean to humble yourself if we do not follow the definition given in Isaiah 58?

The answer can be found in Jubilees 34 which gives the origin of this day of Atonement — the 10th day of the 7th month. After Joseph had been sold into slavery by his 10 brothers, they deceived their father Jacob by showing him Joseph’s bloody coat. Upon hearing the news of his son’s (presumed) death, Jacob’s entire household went into mourning. Bilhah and his daughter Dinah died during this time as well.

And he mourned for Joseph one year, and did not cease, for he said “Let me go down to the grave mourning for my son.” For this reason it is ordained for the children of Israel that they should afflict themselves on the tenth of the seventh month — on the day that the news which made him weep for Joseph came to Jacob his father — that they should make atonement for themselves thereon with a young goat on the tenth of the seventh month, once a year, for their sins; for they had grieved the affection of their father regarding Joseph his son. And this day hath been ordained that they should grieve thereon for their sins, and for all their transgressions and for all their errors, so that they might cleanse themselves on that day once a year.

Jubilees 34: 22-25

The affliction of the soul is mourning over sin. Symbolically Joseph would be Yeshua and we are the guilty brothers. However, Yeshua shows great compassion toward us and will not only resurrect us to eternal life but ultimately bring us into the goodly land of the Kingdom to come.

On this day you are not to do any work, for it is the Day of Atonement, when atonement is made for you before the LORD your God. If anyone does not humble himself on this day, he must be cut off from his people. I will destroy from among his people anyone who does any work on this day.You are not to do any work at all. This is a permanent statute for the generations to come, wherever you live. It will be a Sabbath of complete rest for you, and you shall humble yourselves. From the evening of the ninth day of the month until the following evening you are to keep your Sabbath.”

Leviticus 23:28-32

Sukkot/Feast of Tabernacles

And YHWH said to Moses, “Speak to the Israelites and say, ‘On the fifteenth day of the seventh month the Feast of Tabernacles to YHWH begins, and it continues for seven days. Leviticus 23:33-34

In just over two weeks, we will gather for Sukkot, or the Feast of Tabernacles.

On the first day there shall be a sacred assembly. You must not do any regular work. For seven days you are to present an offering made by fire to the LORD. On the eighth day you are to hold a sacred assembly and present an offering made by fire to the LORD. It is a solemn assembly; you must not do any regular work.

Leviticus 23: 35-36

On the first day there shall be a sacred assembly. You must not do any regular work. For seven days you are to present an offering made by fire to the LORD. On the eighth day you are to hold a sacred assembly and present an offering made by fire to the LORD. It is a solemn assembly; you must not do any regular work.

Leviticus 23: 35-36

After his brothers had gone up to the festival, the he also went up, not openly but secretly.

John 7:10

Sukkot is symbolic of life in the Kingdom — and beyond — when we will literally tabernacle with Yahuah, his son Yeshua, the righteous angels, and all the redeemed. We will finally be able to fulfill our calling as kings and priests under the sovereign rule of YHWH and his son Yeshua.

The 8th day of Sukkot — also called Addition — symbolizes the end of sin, the emptying of Sheol, and the destruction of the wicked. This day was commissioned by Jacob and ordained by the Father after he had bestowed the priesthood on Levi during Sukkot.

And in those days Rachel became pregnant with her son Benjamin. And Jacob counted his sons from him upwards and Levi fell to the portion of the Lord, and his father clothed him in the garments of the priesthood and filled his hands. And on the fifteenth of this month, he brought to the altar fourteen oxen from amongst the cattle, and twenty-eight rams, and forty-nine sheep, and seven lambs, and twenty-one kids of the goats as a burnt-offering, inconsequence of the vow which he had vowed that he would give a tenth, with their fruit-offering, and their drink offerings.

Jubilees 32:3-6

It was also during this time that Jacob’s name was changed to Israel.2 He was told that he would die peacefully in Egypt3 and be buried with honor in the Promised Land, alongside his father Isaac, and grandfather Abraham.

And he celebrated there yet another day, and he sacrificed thereon according to all that he sacrificed on the former days, and called its name ‘Addition’, for this day was added and the former days he called ‘The Feast’. And thus it was manifested that it should be, and it is written on the heavenly tablets: wherefore it was revealed to him that he should celebrate it, and add it to the seven days of the feast. And its name was called ‘Addition‘, because it was recorded amongst the days of the feast days, according to the number of the days of the year.

Jubilees 32:26-29

As you know, some members of the GWDF community will be gathering in Texas to memorialize Sukkot. We will pray, praise, and wave palm branches. Some of us will sleep in tents and all will fellowship around Yah’s word under the stars. We will share meals, pray for each other, and love one another as we memorialize this glorious feast week.

We pray blessings on everyone who will be gathering together — wherever you are in the world — to memorialize these wonderful feast days. Shalom!


1 The name was first given to the worshippers of Yeshua by the Gentiles (nations). From the second century Justin Martyr onward the term was accepted by them as a title of honor. Thayer’s Greek Lexicon: a Christian, a follower of Christ.

2 Compare Jubilees 32 with Genesis 35.

3 Read Genesis 48 and 49

10 Principles of Effective Prayer

10 Principles of Effective Prayer

Contrary to what you may think, prayer is not just casual conversation with Eloah — the living God. Our prayers should be based on Scriptural promises and taken seriously, without the need for excessive wording to gain Yah’s attention. Our approach to prayer matters.

Sadly, most believers have never received instruction in the proper protocol for entering the throne room of Heaven. Instead, many of us were fed a top 10 list of why we fail to pray. The good news is it is never too late to learn how to pray. The keys are in your Bible.

Disciples Pray

Yeshua expects his disciples to pray.

Therefore I say to you, whatever you pray and ask for, believe that you have received, and it will be done for you.

Mark 11:24

Although this verse implies that we will get a blank check to receive whatever we ask, nothing could be further from the truth. Prayer has its protocol. We are instructed to pray to the Father in the name of the Son by the direction and power of the Ruach Ha’Kodesh (Holy Spirit). This will get us to the starting point. But there is more to consider.

Here is a list of 10 principles for effective prayer:

#1 Believe that the Father loves you

We do not have an emotionally distant heavenly Father. He loves us just as much as when we are obedient as when we fall into sin. After Adam and Chavah1 broke the covenant in the Garden of Eden, YHWH (Yahuah)provided a way for humanity to be redeemed through faith in a coming Messiah.2 (Genesis 3)

Just as the prodigal’s father welcomed him with open arms when he returned home, we can all expect a similar reception from Yahuah when we come to him in prayer. (Luke 15:11-32)

So if you who are evil know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good things to those who ask Him!

Luke 11:13

In his sermon on the mount, Yeshua gave us instructions on how to pray. (Matthew 6:5-13) He stressed the importance of getting alone with the Father in a private place. (Mark 1:35)

In corporate prayer, where two or more are gathered to petition the Father, we pray as one body for a desired outcome. (Acts 2:42) (Matthew 18:20) (Psalm 34:3)

When the disciples asked Yeshua why they were unable to drive a demon out of a boy he replied: ‘This kind is able to come forth with nothing except with prayer.’ (Mark 9:29)3

The Hebrew word for intercession is paga, which is defined as “having an effect by accident or violence, or (figuratively) by opportunity.” The Greek equivalent is huperentugchano, which simply means “to intercede on behalf of or for the sake of.” Jamie Rohrbaugh defines intercession as “colliding with God violently until His will is enforced on the earth.” This kind of aggressive prayer warfare is necessary when we face seemingly insurmountable odds such as catastrophic illness or the impending failure of a marriage.

    #2 Faith triumphs over wishful thinking

    Our prayers ought to begin with faith. We must believe that our petitions will be heard and answered in Yah’s way and in His timing.

    And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who approaches Him must believe that He exists and that He rewards those who earnestly seek Him.

    Hebrews 11:6

    According to Biblical Illustrator, the term faith “expresses a confidence or persuasion of the truth of anything not self-evident, received upon the testimony of another.” The testimony here is that of Yahuah’s character. He delights to hear and answer our prayers. But if we doubt his promise to come to our aid, then prayer is pointless.

    Now faith is the assurance of what we hope for and the certainty of what we do not see

    Hebrews 11:1

    Biblical faith is not a pipe dream or wishful thinking. In Matthew’s gospel, when Yeshua caused the fig tree to wither, the disciples wanted to know how he did it. His explanation tied the moving of a mountain to belief.

    “Truly I tell you,” Jesus replied, “if you have faith and do not doubt, not only will you do what was done to the fig tree, but even if you say to this mountain, ‘Be lifted up and thrown into the sea,’ it will happen. If you believe, you will receive whatever you ask for in prayer.”

    Matthew 21:21,22

    The Greek word for faith used here is pistis. It means being fully persuaded or having the moral conviction of the truthfulness of Yahuah. When we possess unwavering faith, we can be confident that we will receive whatever we ask for — in Yah’s timing and in His way.

    #3 The Holy Spirit must guide you

    Prayer is not a way for us to get Yah to do what we want. It is a way for us to become an instrument for Eloah to do what He wants. This mindset requires that we renounce our own will and embrace His.

    And this is the confidence that we have before Him: If we ask anything according to His will, He hears us.

    1 John 5:14

    According to theologian Albert Barnes, the limitation “according to His will” probably means in accordance with what He has declared He is willing to grant. Put another way, Yah limits the answer to prayer to what He believes to be best for us.

    The expression must limit the petition to what it will be consistent for God to bestow upon us. We can‘t expect that he will work a miracle to answer our prayers; we can’t ask him to bestow blessings in violation of any of the laws which he has ordained or in any other way than that which he has appointed. The expression must limit the promise to what will be for the good of the whole. The interests of the whole creation as well as the individuals are to be regarded.

    To be led by the Spirit is to submit to the Spirit’s influence and control. How does this translate practically? We strive to obey the Torah (instructions for living). The Spirit’s direction as we obey the commandments marks us as His children.

    Since prayer is a major weapon of spiritual warfare we must rely on the Ruach Ha’Kodesh (Holy Spirit) to guide us. (Romans 8:14) To become a child of Eloah, we must be born by His Ruach — without which we can not enter the Kingdom of Heaven.

    The key is learning how to be led by the Spirit. We must allow the Spirit to pray through us the type of prayer that needs to be prayed for the situation we face.

    When we release the reins of our soul, the Ruach liberates our spirit to pray effectively through “groaning too deep for words.” The Spirit gives us the right prayer to utter in our own language — a prayer we never would have prayed when left to ourselves. It is an activity of our spirit that goes beyond our mind’s ability to understand.

    #4 We must ask in the authority of Yeshua’s name

    And whatsoever you shall ask in my name, that will I do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If you shall ask anything in my name, I will do it.

    John 14:13,14

    Three things are implied when we pray in the name of Yeshua.

    1. We come to Eloah on the basis of what Yeshua has done for us (1 Peter 3:18) (Ephesians 2:13) (Hebrews 12:24)
    2. We come on the basis of Yeshua’s position as our mediator and High Priest (1 John 2:1)
    3. We come on the basis of the relationship we have with the Father through him (Ephesians 1:3-6)

    The Father had an eternal purpose before Creation ever took place. He had foreknowledge of us and determined that through Yeshua he would adopt us into his family as his children.

    When we pray in Yeshua’s name, it is equivalent to saying “on Yeshua’s account.” When someone with money in a bank authorizes another person to draw on their account, it is similar to how we are given permission to ask the Father for anything in the name of the Son. Because the Father is well pleased in Yeshua and we are friends of the Son, he answers our prayers.

    #5 Our motives must be pure

    Our desire to glorify Yah is always the right motive. It is our sole purpose for living. Prayer is just one of the ways Yah has ordained for us to give Him glory.

    And I will do whatever you ask in My name, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son. 

    John 14:13

    When we pray, we need to ask ourselves: Am I praying for this thing out of the old or new self (man)? Is my request being made because I want it or because Yahuah wants it for me? When we try to force our own will through, we do not make room for the will of Eloah.

    Now to the one who is able to do beyond all measure more than all that we ask or think, according to the power this is at work in us, to Him be the glory int he ekklesia and in Yeshua HaMoshiach to all generations forever and ever. Amen.

    Ephesians 3: 20,21

    Prayer is a way for us to become an instrument for Yah to do what He wants in our lives. The right motive for prayer is to bring glory to Yah. Our purpose for living is to glorify the Father through the Son.

    And I will do whatever you ask in My name, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son.

    John 14:13
    Man with head bowed in effective prayer.

    #6 Humility matters

    The hallmark of our Messiah’s life and ministry was humility.

    Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus,  who, being in the form of God, did not consider it robbery to be equal with God,  but made Himself of no reputation, taking the form of a bondservant, and coming in the likeness of men.  And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself and became obedient to the point of death, even the death of the cross.

    Philippians 2:5-8

    Like our Messiah, we must throw aside pride and self-centeredness when we approach the Father in prayer. We must come to a place in our spiritual maturity where we seek Yahuah’s solution to our problems and challenges in life. Ministry can not be motivated by selfish ambition. The only way to deal with it is to die to “self.”

    In the words of Hannah Whitehall Smith from The Christian’s Secret of a Happy Life:

    In laying off your burdens, therefore, the first one you must get rid of is yourself. You must hand yourself and all your inward experiences, your temptations, your temperament, your frames, and reelings, all over into the care and keeping of your God, and leave them there. He made you and therefore He understands you, and knows how to manage you, and you must trust Him to do it.

    Humble yourselves before the Lord, and He will exalt you.

    James 4:10

    #7 Prayer is our priestly duty

    As citizens of the coming Kingdom, we must learn to minister as priests, offering the kind of sacrifices — of prayer and praise — that Yah requires in this age.

    And yourselves, as living stones, are being built up a spiritual house for a holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Yeshua.

    1 Peter 2:5

    The word for priest in Hebrew is kohen. It means “chief ruler; one who officiates and judges or mediates in religious services.” The first mention of the word priest is in Genesis when Abraham encounters Melchizedek. This is the eternal order of priesthood that Yeshua belongs to. This priestly order came before the Levitical order, which was tied to genealogy.

    This Melchizedek was king of Salem and priest of God Most High. He met Abraham returning from the slaughter of the kings and blessed him, and Abraham apportioned to him a tenth of everything. First, his name means “king of righteousness.” Then also, “king of Salem” means “king of peace.” Without father or mother or genealogy, without beginning of days or end of life, like the Son of God, he remains a priest for all time.

    Hebrews 7:1-3

    One day believers will rule and reign with Yeshua in the Kingdom of Heaven on earth. In order to rule, we first have to learn to minister as priests in prayer. As we learn to pray, we become qualified to rule as priests. In essence, we learn to rule “rightly” through the discipline of prayer.

    Priests are intercessors and judges. Unlike corrupt judges in our secular world who are easily bribed, those who inherit positions of authority in the Kingdom will possess integrity. At that time we will be equipped to always judge righteously because of the permanent indwelling of the Spirit in an incorruptible resurrection body. Our judgments will be based on an error-free understanding of the eternal Word of Yahuah that will be permanently etched on our circumcised hearts. This is a promise of the New Covenant. (Hebrews 8:6-13)

    #8 Our personal relationships must be healthy

    Before praying, we should make every effort to reconcile with our brother or sister if there is something we have done that has wounded them.

    And when you stand to pray, if you hold anything against another, forgive it, so that your Father in heaven will forgive your trespasses as well.

    Mark 11:25

    Our modern-day, post-temple “gifts and sacrifices” that we bring to the altar are our prayers that are steeped in praise. Believers are not to behave like petulant children. We are called to handle disputes in mature love, with the goal of restoration and reconciliation in mind.

    So if you are offering your gift at the altar and there remember that your brother has something against you, leave your gift there before the altar. First go and be reconciled to your brother; then come and offer your gift.

    Matthew 5:23,24

    Through Jesus, therefore, let us continually offer to God a sacrifice of praise, the fruit of lips that confess His name. And do not neglect to do good and to share with others, for with such sacrifices God is pleased.

    Hebrews 13:15,16

    Healthy relationships between brothers and sisters in the faith matter to the Father. We can’t expect Eloah to hear our petitions or forgive us if our relationship with a fellow believer is broken. It is our responsibility to reconcile before entering Yahuah’s presence. In doing so we approach the Father with a clear conscience and renewed confidence that our prayers will be heard. (Matthew 18:23-24)

    #9 We approach the Father with confidence

    Yeshua laid down his life willingly so sinful humanity could be forgiven and become eligible to receive eternal life. This selfless act made on our behalf means we can be confident in our prayer life.

    When you were dead in your trespasses and in the uncircumcision of your sinful nature, God made you alive with Christ. He forgave us all our trespasses, having canceled the debt ascribed to us in the decrees that stood against us. He took it away, nailing it to the cross!

    Colossians 2:13,14

    Walking in the Spirit means we are doing our best to obey the Torah’s instructions on how to live righteously. Our conscience is clear knowing that we will not be condemned as a result of sin — which is transgression of the law. The gospel of grace made possible by our High Priest Yeshua sets us free from the condemnation of the law.

    There is therefore now no condemnation of those who are in Yeshua Hamashiach.

    Romans 8:1

    #10 Fasting energizes prayer for a breakthrough

    Sometimes circumstances dictate that we combine prayer with fasting. Humbling ourselves by denying our bodies food (and sometimes water too) is a practice that few avail themselves of today. But the scriptures are full of examples where fasting sowed the seed for the miraculous to happen.

    • Esther’s preparation before petitioning the King on behalf of Israel (Esther 4:15-17)
    • Moses on Mt. Sinai (Deuteronomy 9:9-18)
    • When Darius spent the night fasting after Daniel was cast in the lion’s den. (Daniel 6:18)
    • The sparing of Nineveh (Jonah 3)
    • When Daniel sought understanding regarding the end of the 70 years in Babylon (Daniel 9:3)
    • Elijah’s escape from Jezebel (1 Kings 19:4-8)
    • Yeshua’s fast before his testing in the wilderness (Matthew 4:1,2)

    However, no amount of fasting will move Eloah’s heart if our behaviors and motives are rotten. Isaiah the Prophet makes this clear. (Isaiah 58) Fasting is not meant to twist the Father’s arm to get what we want. It is designed to prioritize the Spirit’s leading over the flesh’s demands. It helps us reign in our thoughts and emotions to line up with the Word.

    Final Thoughts on Effective Prayer

    As we come to our Father in prayer we must always remember that we have been invited to this throne to receive mercy. A throne denotes a King. In the case of the believer, the King is the Supreme ruler of Creation — Yahuah.

    Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.

    Hebrews 4:16

    According to the Theological Wordbook of the Old Testament, when grace is mentioned in scripture, the focus of attention is not on the giver, but on the recipient, of what is given. The Greek form of the word is charis (G5485), which is defined as “a pleasing circumstance, matter of approval, beneficial opportunity, or act of favor.” Eleos, the word for mercy, implies “compassion, kindness, or goodwill towards the miserable and afflicted, joined with a desire to help.” (G1656)

    We have been invited to enter the throne room of the Sovereign ruler of all things. We come, not relying on our own merits but on the shed blood of Yeshua, our righteous Savior. Knowing this allows us to approach with humble expectations of mercy and the blessed assurance that our Father will always act in our best interest.


    1 Chavah (H2332) is a Hebrew word meaning life giver or to live. This is harmonious with the description in Genesis 3:20 — “…because she was the mother of all living.” So where did the English transliteration Eve come from? According to Robert Alter [“The Five Books of Moses”, 2004, Commentary on Genesis iii.20]: “In the Hebrew here, the phonetic similarity is between hawah, “Eve,” and the verbal root hayah, “to live.” It has been proposed that Eve’s name conceals very different origins, for it sounds suspiciously like the Aramaic word for “serpent.” Others link the name “Eve” to the word “evil” and blame the woman for bringing sin down on the entire world.

    2 Albert Barnes Commentary on Genesis 3: “Up to a certain point there had been concord and alliance between these two parties. But, on the very opening of the heavenly court, we learn that the friendly connection had been broken. For the woman said, “The serpent beguiled me, and I did eat.” This expression indicates that the woman was no longer at one with the serpent. When God, therefore, said, “I will put enmity between thee and the woman,” this revulsion of feeling on her part, in which Adam no doubt joined, was acknowledged and approved. Enmity with the enemy of God indicated a return to friendship with God, and presupposed incipient feelings of repentance toward him, and reviving confidence in his word. The perpetuation of this enmity is here affirmed, in regard not only to the woman but to her seed. This prospect of seeing, and of a godly seed, at enmity with evil, became a fountain of hope to our first parents and confirmed every feeling of returning reverence for God which was beginning to spring up in their breast. The word heard from the mouth of God begat faith in their hearts, and we shall find that this faith was not slow to manifest itself in acts.”

    3 In some Bible translations, Mark 9:29 omits the word fasting. Similarly, in chapter 17 of Matthew’s gospel, there is no mention of prayer and/or fasting in many translations. The disciples’ inability to drive out the unclean spirit is attributed to a lack of faith. The Codex Sianaiticus and Codex Vaticanus do not include the verse.