Zikron Teruah

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Yom Teruah is here! The Lord described it as a zikron teruah(Lev. 23:24 & Num. 29:1). Zikron comes from the word zakar meaning remember and is translated either as memorial or remembrance. While teruah is a loud noise, either by shouting or the blast of a shofar. It could be an alarm as well. So zikron teruah basically means remembrance by keeping a lot of noise.
But what exactly are we to remember? Unlike the other shabbat, The Lord didn’t give us much details about this day. So how do we find out?
Yom Teruah is followed shortly afterwards by Yom Hakippurim, the Day of Atonement. A day that hinges upon repentance. Obviously if we wait until the actual day to consider our sins and repent, it’s going to be forced and fake. So Elohim allotted us ten days to consider our ways and prepare ourselves to let go of our errors. Yom Teruah is our call to repent and the warning of our coming Judgement. We are rehearsing the final days so we are prepared and ready when the time comes and the Lord returns. But wait, there’s more…
It is called a zikron teruah, because on this day, religious leaders and the spiritually mature among us should be crying out before the congregation and admonishing people for their sins. Just as The Lord and the prophets identified sin and urged people to turn back from their wicked ways, so should the spiritually mature be crying out and making a loud noise before the people, reminding us that The Lord isn’t only an Elohim of love, but one of justice and wrath.
They should be raising an alarm, reminding us that at the end of the ninth day, when Yom Hakippurim begins, we should have ourselves ready to sit in judgement before The Lord. They should be impressing the urgency of repentance upon believers. Reminding everyone that Yom Teruah isn’t just a festive celebration but a solemn affair.
To understand the relationship between Yom Teruah and Yom Hakippurim, read Isaiah 58. I believe this passage reveals the spirit of both holy days. Pay attention to verse 1. The Lord went on to explain the purpose of the fast He chose and the outcome if done correctly.


“1 Shout out loud! Don’t hold back! Raise your voice like a shofar! Proclaim to my people what rebels they are, to the house of Ya‘akov their sins.
2 “Oh yes, they seek me day after day and [claim to] delight in knowing my ways. As if they were an upright nation that had not abandoned the rulings of their God, they ask me for just rulings and [claim] to take pleasure in closeness to God,
3 [asking,] ‘Why should we fast, if you don’t see? Why mortify ourselves, if you don’t notice?’ “Here is my answer: when you fast, you go about doing whatever you like, while keeping your laborers hard at work.
4 Your fasts lead to quarreling and fighting, to lashing out with violent blows. On a day like today, fasting like yours will not make your voice heard on high.
5 “Is this the sort of fast I want, a day when a person mortifies himself? Is the object to hang your head like a reed and spread sackcloth and ashes under yourself? Is this what you call a fast, a day that pleases ADONAI?
6 “Here is the sort of fast I want — releasing those unjustly bound, untying the thongs of the yoke, letting the oppressed go free, breaking every yoke,
7 sharing your food with the hungry, taking the homeless poor into your house, clothing the naked when you see them, fulfilling your duty to your kinsmen!”
8 Then your light will burst forth like the morning, your new skin will quickly grow over your wound; your righteousness will precede you, and ADONAI ’s glory will follow you.
9 Then you will call, and ADONAI will answer; you will cry, and he will say, “Here I am.” If you will remove the yoke from among you, stop false accusation and slander,
10 generously offer food to the hungry and meet the needs of the person in trouble; then your light will rise in the darkness, and your gloom become like noon.
11 ADONAI will always guide you; he will satisfy your needs in the desert, he will renew the strength in your limbs; so that you will be like a watered garden, like a spring whose water never fails.
12 You will rebuild the ancient ruins, raise foundations from ages past, and be called “Repairer of broken walls, Restorer of streets to live in.”
13 “If you hold back your foot on Shabbat from pursuing your own interests on my holy day; if you call Shabbat a delight, ADONAI ’s holy day, worth honoring; then honor it by not doing your usual things or pursuing your interests or speaking about them.
14 If you do, you will find delight in ADONAI — I will make you ride on the heights of the land and feed you with the heritage of your ancestor Ya‘akov, for the mouth of ADONAI has spoken.””
‭‭Yesha ‘yahu (Isa)‬ ‭58:1-14‬ ‭CJB‬‬

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