Google+ Followers

Google+ Followers

Sunday, September 14, 2014

Shofar Resource Page

Shofar Resource Page

The Shofar wakes up our souls - Saadia Goan

Arthur L. Finkle




The Shofar is a holy ancient instrument used to celebrate Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish New Year and the Jubilee Year. This website tells the history, practical techniques and Jewish law of sounding the Shofar. (short)

The Shofar is a holy ancient instrument used to celebrate Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish New Year. It is also sounded during the Jubilee Year on Yom Kippur. This website tells the history, practical techniques and Jewish law of sounding the Shofar.

Blast From the Past

“Nothing so much enhances a good as to make sacrifices for it”.

George Santayana (1863-1952) American philosopher and poet



Early Horn Uses

Pre-historic humankind utilized whatever was useful in their environment. Wherever the primitive lived, they utilized the available materials to signal. Those in the Indian and Caribbean Seas used the Conch shell. The Australian aborigines, the didjeridoo (a bamboo hollowed out by fire ants).

Hindus also utilize the Conch Trumpet. In ancient China, the primitives played the Yu – a reed wind instrument made of bamboo.

Where is the Shofar in the Bible?


Commentators have tracked the word “Shofar” in 7 parts of the Hebrew Scripture: Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, Joshua Chronicles and 5-psalms

In the first five books of Moses, Shofar is cited:

Exodus 19:12-14

13 . . . Only when the ram's horn sounds a long blast may they go up to the mountain."

In Leviticus 23 and 24, there is a priestly commandment:

"In the seventh month, on the first day of the month, you shall observe complete rest, a sacred occasion commemorated with loud blasts" (Lev. 23:24).

There are references to the Shofar in the Hebrew Scriptures and the New Testament, that Gabriel will announce the Messiah with the sound the Shofar. (16;Matthew 24:29-31; I Thessalonians 4:16-17; I Corinthians 15:51-52 .

Temple Sacrifices

The burnt, grain, peace, sin, and guilt offering composed the basic sacrificial system of Israel. These sacrifices were commonly used in conjunction with each other and were carried out on both an individual and a corporate basis. The sacrificial system taught the necessity of dealing with sin and, at the same time, demonstrated that God had provided a way for dealing with sin.

1. Burnt offering (olah). The burnt offering of certain animals was offered both in the morning and in the evening, as well as on special days such as the Sabbath, the new moon, and the yearly feasts (Numbers 28-29; 2 Kings 16:15; 2 Chronicles 2:4; 2 Chronicles 31:3; Ezra 3:3-6). 

2. Grain offering (minchah; “meat offering” in KJV). An offering from the harvest of the land is the only type that required no bloodshed. (Leviticus 2:13)
 
3. Peace offering . This consisted of the sacrifice of a bull, cow, lamb, or goat that had no defect. As with the burnt offering, the individual laid a hand on the animal and killed it. The priests, in turn, sprinkled the blood around the altar. The priest received the breast and the right thigh (Leviticus 7:28-36), but the offerer was given much of the meat to have a meal of celebration (Leviticus 7:11-21).

4. Sin offering was designed to deal with sin that was committed unintentionally. The sacrifice varied according to who committed the sin.

5. Guilt offering. This is hard to distinguish from the sin offering (Leviticus 4-5). In Leviticus 5:6-7, the guilt offering is called the sin offering.

Interestingly the sacrifice system is found in the New Testament. Hebrews portrays Jesus as the sinless high priest who offered himself up as a sacrifice for sinners (Leviticus 7:27). The book ends with an encouragement to offer sacrifices of praise to God through Jesus.

After the Romans destroyed the Holy Temple, the sacrificial cult terminated. During this time, moreover, the early Church also disbanded the sacrificial rites because Christianity began to differ materially form Judaism.

The Sounds

Thereafter, two Priests stood atop of a marble stand near the altar signaling trumpet blasts: tekiah, tekiah and teruah. A long note followed a series of short notes; then another long note.
In the Mishnah (gathering the laws of the Bible, written in 200 CE by great-grandchildren of those who worshipped at The Temple in Jerusalem) there is a difference of opinion when reciting the manner of Shofar sounding in the Temple in Jerusalem. The Sages indicate that on Rosh Hashanah (Jewish New Year) Two Shofars and one trumpet are sounded at the sacrifices. The remainder of the year, two trumpets and one Shofar. There are others who contend that the Shofar was sounded only on Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur during the Jubilee Year (every 50-years when debts and servitude is forgiven). The fact is that whatever was the system was forgotten in three generations.

There is also a dispute as to what the Shofar sounds should be. The Sages agreed on the “Teki'ah" blast) but differed in “Teruah" note. Some of the Rabbi’s indicated that Teruah was 9 staccato sounds; others, three weeping wounds. The Rabbis compromised by adding all both sounds in the service. 

Reasons for Sounding the Shofar

The Saadiah Gaon (10th century CE, head of a famous Babylonian university) offers ten reasons, two of which are cited below:

(1) as a reminder to be faithful to the teachings of the Torah, since the Shofar was heard at the giving of the Torah;

(2) as a reminder of the prophets, the teachers of righteousness, who raised their voices desire the Shofar to touch our consciences (Abudarham [Jerusalem, 1959 ed.], 269f.).


Temporary WebRing Code
Until You Join A Ring

Is this your site?
ID/U# has no memberships? Click for assistance.


Ceaseless Sound of the Shofar

Ceaseless Sound of the Shofar

Arthur L. Finkle

The great Hassidic master, Rabbi Levi Yitzhak of Berdichev (Michael Chusid’s descendent), taught:

There are those who hear the Shofar on Rosh HaShana, and then continue to hear the Shofar every day of the year. But there are those, on an even higher level, who heard the Shofar at the Revelation at Mt. Sinai, and who continue to hear that Shofar every day of their lives.

 Rabbi Marc Angel http://www.jewishideas.org/angel-shabbat/shofar-mt-sinai-thoughts-parashat-yitro-februa


What did this mystical master mean? He declared that those who hear the Shofar as a Warning, stirring, a wake up call, a call to repentance and an alarm will continue to hear this sound throughout the year in terms of possessing the attributes that the Shofar bestirs.

For those hearing the ceaseless sound of the Shofar in a different spiritual dimension have possessed these attributes from the time of Mount Sinai (when God presented revelation and a guide of principles b which to measure your moral life) to today and for evermore.

Indeed, the mystics believe that Rosh Hashanah, the feast of the blasts of the Shofar, takes away some of the light of the world to regenerate souls to achieve powers that they never would have achieved had there not been the shofar blasts.

Jewish Mysticism has been of major historical importance in the development of Western Esoteric traditions since the Renaissance. The phenomenon of "Christian Kabbalah" is a central phenomenon, reciproly influencing Jewish mysticism in the modern period.

In this system, the heavenly imperative is sensed even though not having a physical presence.



Another chasisdic teaching is that, although there are differing sounds from the Shofar, (short staccato sounds  and other extended, unbroken sounds), the Torah tells us to do teru’ah on Rosh Hashanah, which by its word,  suggests making broken sounds, or sounds that break obstacles.
Yet, with regard to the Great Shofar of the future Redemption, it says “On that day the Great Shofar will be takia,” alluding to the unbroken, drawn-out sound called tekiah. This is a sound of strength and confidence, rather than brokenness. “Tekiah” comes from the word teka, which can mean physical intimacy or coupling. (Bavli Talmud, Yevamos, 54a.) Therefore it’s a sound that “gathers” and unites.
http://iyyun.com/teachings/holidays/sounds-of-the-shofar-explored


In the Holy Temple in Jerusalem, the shofar was blown even on the Sabbath because there the state of bitul (neglect) so penetrating that there was no separateness at all. Everyone’s existence simply expressed Divine desire, whatever it may be—to act or not to act was the same.
.http://iyyun.com/teachings/holidays/sounds-of-the-shofar-explored

What does this say about the Shofar as an instrumentality of yearning for God’s will? The Shofar, indeed, is a reminder, a symbol of awareness that there is much more to this world than its material pleasure and even its hurts. It reminds us of the sublime ecstasy of revelation and being at one with our Maker.






Shofar as a Temple Musical Instrument

Shofar as a Temple Musical Instrument
Arthur L. Finkle
The Shofar is the only musical Jewish musical instrument that survived two millennia in its original form and is still used to the sounding of the Shofar. Rabbi Saadia Gaon (11th century) stated that the sound of the Shofar raised awe and emotion in the hearts and souls of the people. Maimonides interpreted the sounding as reminding humankind of its duties to God. The mystical Zohar holds that the sound of the Shofar awakens the Higher Mercy.
The Shofar is the most-mentioned instrument in the Bible (72 times). It held a special religious and secular role in the life of the Jewish people. Only Priests and Levites (as Levites) were allowed to perform the religious function of sounding the Shofar in the Jewish Commonwealth.


The Shofar is first mentioned in Exodus 19:16 at the theophany on Sinai. It was used to proclaim the Jubilee Year and the proclamation of "freedom throughout the land" (Lev. 25:9–10); this verse is engraved upon the Liberty Bell in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. It was to be sounded on Rosh Ha-Shanah, which is designated as "yom teru'ah" ("A day of blowing"; Num. 29:1). It was also used as an accompaniment to other musical instruments (Ps. 98:6), in processionals (Josh. 6:4ff.), as a signal (Josh. 6:12ff., II Sam. 15:10), as a clarion call to war (Judg. 3:27), and in order to induce fear (Amos 3:6). 
When used in the Temple, the Shofar was usually sounded in conjunction with the trumpet (hazozrah). The Talmud (RH 27a) states that the trumpet was made of silver while the processed horn of one of the five species of animal—sheep, goat, mountain goat, antelope, and gazelle—was used to fulfill the ritual commandment of the sounding of the Shofar. It further declares (ibid. 26b) that the Shofar should preferably be made of a ram's or wild goat's horn, because they are curved. Rabbi Judah states "the Shofar of Rosh Ha-Shanah must be of the horn of a ram, to indicate submission." Traditionally a ram's horn is sounded on those days because of its connection with the sacrifice of Isaac (the Akedah), the story of which is the Torah reading for the second day of the festival. Conversely, a cow's horn may not be used because of the incident of the golden calf (RH 3:2). The Shofar may not be painted, though it can be gilded or carved with artistic designs, so long as the mouthpiece remains natural. A Shofar with a hole in its sidewall or a chip in its mouthpieceIN ITS SIDEWALL is deemed halakhically unfit, though it may be used if no other is available (Sh. Ar., OH 586).

The Shofar had several religious roles recorded in the Tanakh (the Bible), such as the transfer of the Ark of the Covenant (2 Sam. 6:15; Chronicles 15:28); the announcement of a New Moon (Psalms 81:4); the beginning of the religious New Year (Num. 29:1; the Day of Atonement (Lev. 25:9); the procession preparatory to the Feast of Tabernacles (Mishnah Hullin 1:7); the libation ceremony (Mishnah:  RH 4:9); and the Havdalah ceremony marking the end of a festival (Mishnah, Hullin 1:7)

In addition, the Shofar had a number of secular roles, such as coronating a king (2Sam, 5:10; 1 Kings 1:34; 2 Kings 1:13) and signaling in times of war to assemble troops to attack, to pursue, and to proclaim victory (Num. 10:9; Judges 6:4; Jeremiah 4:5 and Ezekiel 33:3-6)


Sacrificial Cult

After King David supervised the building of the first Temple (1000 BCE), he dedicated holy building as a sanctuary to house the written law (10 commandments) and to practice the sacrificial cult (which was how people in the Middle East worshipped.) 

The Sacrificial Ceremony

The Priests consecrated five different sacrificial types  preponderantly involving animals or dough.  When the Priests stood on top of the ramp holding the parts of sacrifice, placing them into the fire as he carried them up. He then throws the sacrifice into the great fire; he walks over and places it neatly on the burning logs. 

Accompanying this ritual were a choral group and a small orchestra. Special lyrics and songs played according the time of the week and the type of sacrifice (the Bible counts 5 different types of sacrifices in Leviticus 1:1).

Leviticus 1-7 gives the most detailed description of Israel's sacrificial system. Rituals performed after childbirth (Leviticus 12:6-8), for an unclean discharge (Leviticus 15:14-15) or hemorrhage (Leviticus 15:29-30), or after a person who was keeping a Nazirite vow was defiled (Numbers 6:10-11) required a burnt offering, as well as a sin offering..

1. Burnt offering (olah). The burnt offering was offered both in the morning and in the evening, as well as on special days such as the Sabbath, the new moon, and the yearly feasts (Numbers 28-29; 2 Kings 16:15; 2 Chronicles 2:4; 2 Chronicles 31:3; Ezra 3:3-6). was defiled (Numbers 6:10-11) required a burnt offering, as well as a sin offering.
The animal for this sacrifice could be a young bull, lamb, goat, turtledove, or young
pigeon; but it had to be a perfect and complete specimen. The type of animal chosen for this sacrifice seems to be dependent on the offerer's financial ability.
2. Grain offering (minchah; “meat offering” in KJV). An offering from the harvest of the land is the only type that required no bloodshed. It was composed of fine flour mixed with oil and frankincense. Sometimes, this offering was cooked into cakes prior to taking it to the priest. These cakes, however, had to be made without leaven. Every grain offering had to have salt in it (Leviticus 2:13),  It may have symbolized the recognition of God's blessing in the harvest by a society based to a large degree on agriculture. The bringing of a representative portion of the grain harvest was another outward expression of devotion.
3. Peace offering . This consisted of the sacrifice of a bull, cow, lamb, or goat that had no defect. As with the burnt offering, the individual laid a hand on the animal and killed it. The priests, in turn, sprinkled the blood around the altar. Only certain parts of the internal organs were burned. The priest received the breast and the right thigh (Leviticus 7:28-36), but the offerer was given much of the meat to have a meal of celebration (Leviticus 7:11-21).
4. Sin offering was designed to deal with sin that was committed unintentionally. The sacrifice varied according to who committed the sin. If the priest or the congregation of Israel sinned, then a bull was required. A leader of the people had to bring a male goat, while anyone else sacrificed a female goat or a lamb. The poor were allowed to bring two turtledoves or two young pigeons.
5. Guilt offering. This is hard to distinguish from the sin offering (Leviticus 4-5). In Leviticus 5:6-7, the guilt offering is called the sin offering. Both offerings also were made for similar types of sin. The guilt offering was concerned supremely with restitution. Someone who took something illegally was expected to repay it in full plus 20 percent of the value and then bring a ram for the guilt offering. Other instances in which the guilt offering was prescribed included the cleansing of a leper (Leviticus 14:1), having sexual relations with the female slave of another person (Leviticus 19:20-22), and for the renewing of a Nazirite vow that had been broken (Numbers 6:11-12).
The burnt, grain, peace, sin, and guilt offering composed the basic sacrificial system of Israel. These sacrifices were commonly used in conjunction with each other and were carried out on both an individual and a corporate basis. The sacrificial system taught the necessity of dealing with sin and, at the same time, demonstrated that God had provided a way for dealing with sin.
Although the Prophets excoriated the sacrificial rites because the people seemed to be more impressed with ritual than the reason why the rituals were offered, the Prophets, conceding the collective mores of the people, did not want to abolish the sacrificial system.
Interestingly the sacrifice system is found in the New Testament. The New Testament consistently describes Jesus’ death in sacrificial terms. Hebrews portrays Jesus as the sinless high priest who offered himself up as a sacrifice for sinners (Leviticus 7:27). The book ends with an encouragement to offer sacrifices of praise to God through Jesus.
After the Romans destroyed the Holy Temple, the sacrificial cult terminated. During this time, moreover, the early Church also disbanded the sacrificial rites because Christianity began to differ materially form Judaism.

Thereafter, two Priests stood atop of a marble stand near the altar signaling trumpet blasts: tekiah, tekiah and teruah. A long note followed a series of short notes; then another long note.


On Rosh Hashanah and other full holidays (Full holidays are generally a Rosh Hashana, Yom Kippur and the three pilgrmage fesitvals – Sukot, Pesach and Shavuot) a single Priest perfected two sacrifices in honor of the full holiday, Note that festivals such as Hanukah and Purim), are not considered full holidays requiring an extra sacrifice. On Rosh Hashanah, something special occurred during the special sacrifice. Arguably two Shofar Sounders played the long notes and one Trumpet player played the short note. Accordingly, Rosh HaShanah is called Yom Teruah (the day of the blast) Otherwise, the Trumpets had “top billing.” Rosh Hashanah27a, supports this claim: “Said Raba or it may have been R. Joshua B. Levi: What is the scriptural warrant fore this? – Because  it is written, “With trumpets and the sound of the Shofar shout ye before the King in the Temple, we require trumpets and the sound of the Shofar; elsewhere not.” See also Sidney B. Hoenig, Origins of the Rosh Hashanah Liturgy, The Jewish Quarterly Review, New Series, Vol. 57, The Seventy-Fifth Anniversary Volume of the Jewish Quarterly Review (1967), pp. 312-331.   Published by: University of Pennsylvania Press.

Indeed, on Yom Kippur, the Shofar was sounded to announce the Jubilee Year (every 50-years, Jews were granted freedom, forgiveness and debts and reclamation of sold lands. Shofar first indicated in Yovel (Jubilee Year -  Lev. 25:8-13). Indeed, in Rosh Hashanah 33b, the sages ask why the Shofar sounded in Jubilee year.  Further support is found in Rosh Hashanah 29a, where the Talmud talks of trumpets for sacrifices but Shofar in the Jubilee Year does not apply to priests who are exempt from the obligations of the jubilee. Perhaps, we have the first mention of Shofar Sounding by non-Priests. Perhaps the first distancing away from the Sacrificial Cult.

Otherwise, for all other special days, the Shofar is sounded shorter and two special silver Trumpets announced the sacrifice.

When the trumpets sound the signal, all the people who are within the sacrifice prostate themselves, stretching out flat, face down and on the ground.

Indeed, the idea that rabbinic prayer modeled itself of that of the
Temple is supported by:

·        Jeffrey H. Tigay. On Some Aspects of Prayer in the Bible, AJS Review, Vol. 1, (1976), pp. 363-379, Published by: Cambridge University Press on behalf of the Association for Jewish Studies

·        Holman Bible Dictionary: http://www.studylight.org/

·        Arthur L. Finkle, , Easy Guide to Shofar Sounding, Torah Aura, Los Angeles, CA, 2002.

Further support for this occurrence come from Alfred Edersheim, a 19th century biblical scholar:

The Shofar was blown at the temple to begin the Sabbath each week. There was within the temple an inscription on the lintel of the wall at the top of the Temple that said, "To the house of the blowing of the trumpet (Shofar)".    Each Sabbath 2 men with silver trumpets and a man with a Shofar made three trumpet blasts twice during the day.  On Rosh haShanah, this was different.  The Shofar is the primary trumpet. According to Leviticus 23:24 and Numbers 29, Rosh HaShanah is the day of the blowing of the trumpets.  The original name is Yom (Day) Teruah (The staccato sound of the horn, which also means  “Shout”).  According to the Mishnah (Rosh HaShanah 16a, Mishnah RH 3:3), the trumpet used for this purpose is the ram's horn, not trumpets made of metal as in Numbers 10. On Rosh HaShanah, a Shofar delivers the first blast, a silver trumpet the second, and then the Shofar the third. 
Alfred Edersheim, by boldly setting out his aim: It has been my..." published in 1874, republished by Gregal Publishing, Grand Rapids, MI 1997.

Another source bespeaks this conclusion:

According to rabbinic tradition, “In the Temple on Rosh Hashanah two men blowing silver trumpets stood on either side of the one who blows the Shofar. Citing the Gemara, referring to verses [Psalms 47:5; 81:3; 98:6; 150:3] requiring trumpets along with the Shofar,”we also read that, “A community beset by calamity is under a Rabbinic obligation to...[be] assembled for supplication and prayer, and this is always accomplished with trumpets,  as written in Numbers 10:2”

And they shall be yours for summoning the assembly....we sound the trumpets in order to stir the hearts of the people and bring them to repentance by causing them to realize that the disaster resulted because of their sins. In the Temple, Shofars were blown along with the trumpets. The Shofar [blows] short...and the trumpets [blow] long...for the primary commandment is with trumpets.”
In these rabbinic statements, the word “Shofar” is footnoted: “The use of two Shofars, one on each side, is a Rabbinic innovation, to publicize that the special mitzvah of the day is with trumpets (Rosh HaShanah also called Yom Teruah).” (Schottenstein Gemara, chap. 3, “Rosh Hashanah,” pp 24b2, notes 21, 24, 27,28,)  “Trumpets” is footnoted with: “The purpose of sounding an instrument on a fast day is to assemble the people for supplication and prayer....blowing the trumpets is more important, for it is mandated by the Pentateuch, whereas the Shofar accompaniment is derived from the aforementioned verse in Psalms” (Schottenstein Gemara, chap. 3, “Rosh Hashanah 24b2, notes 21, 24, 27,28, Mesorah Publications, Brooklyn, NY.) Also see The Writings of Flavius Josephus, “Antiquities of the Jews,” Bk. 3, Chap. 12, www.bible.crosswalk.com.)
It is also noted that we have confusion as to wher there was a Shofar with two trumpets or two trumpets and a Shofar. This is underastandsable because  Rosh HaShana 27a notes trumpets (plural) and Shofar (singular). On the other hand, in The Interpreter’s Dictionary of the Bible (Musical instruments) p 172) the trumpets (chuzotzrot) were the the ususal Temple instruments and the Shofar was used only for special occasions.
Moreover, the word for trumpet is used interchangeably with Shofar (See Maimonides, Yad. Hilchot Shofar 21.1; and the baraita in Rosh Hashanah 33b.




For more information about Shofar and other Holy Temple instruments.

We have three websites

1) Shofar Sounders WebPage
                   https://web.archive.org/web/20091026135103/http://geocities.com/afinkle221/

2) Joint Effort with Michael Chusid,an expert Shofar sounder and commentator

http://www.hearingshofar.com
3) Shofar WebPage

If you have any questions or comments, do not hesitate to ask

Wednesday, April 02, 2014

Shabbat and Shofar

 Shofar Sounds for the Shabbat

 Arthur L. Finkle






When I was in Babylon  I thought,  That which was taught, If the Day of Atonement fell on the eve of the sabbath [Friday], it [the Shofar] was not sounded,  while [if it fell] at the termination of the Sabbath, habdalah was not recited,  is a unanimous opinion. But when I emigrated thither [to Palestine]. I found Judah the son of R. Simeon b. Pazzi sitting and saying, This is according to Akiba [only];  for if [it agrees with] R. Ishmael, — since he maintains, The fats of the Sabbath may be offered on the Day of Atonement, let it [the Shofar] be sounded, so that it may be known that the fats of the Sabbath can be offered on the Day of Atonement,  Whereupon I said to him, The priests  are zealous.
Mar Kashisha son of R. Hisda said to R. Ashi: Do we then say, Priests are zealous? Surely we learnt: Three [blasts were blown] to cause the people to cease work; three, to distinguish between the holy [day] and weekdays?  — As Abaye answered, it was for the rest of the people in Jerusalem; so here too it was for the rest of the people in Jerusalem.
Yet let it [the Shofar] be blown, so that they might know that the trimming of vegetables is permitted [on the Day of Atonement] from the [time of] minhah  and onwards?  Said R. Joseph: Because a shebuth  is not superseded in order to give permission. While R. Shisha son of R. Idi answered: A shehuth [of] immediate[importance] was permitted; a shebuth [of] distant [importance] was not permitted  But did they permit a shebuth [of] immediate [importance]? Surely we learnt: If a Festival falls on Friday, we sound [the shofar] but do not recite habdalah;  [if it falls] at the termination of the Sabbath, we recite habdalah  but do not sound [the shofar]. But why so: let it be sounded so that it may be known that killing [animals for food] is permitted immediately [the Sabbath ends]?  Rather it is clear that it is as R. Joseph [answered].
R. Zera said in R. Huna's name — others state, R. Abba said in R. Huna's name: If the Day of Atonement falls on the Sabbath, the trimming of vegetables is forbidden. R. Mana said, It was taught likewise: How do we know that if the Day of Atonement falls on the Sabbath, the trimming of vegetables  is forbidden? Because it is said, Sabbathon; it is a shebuth.  Now, in respect of what [is it stated]: shall we say. In respect of labour  — surely it is written, thou shalt not do any work?  Hence it must surely refer to the trimming of vegetables;  this proves it.
A. Hiyya b. Abba said in R. Johanan's name: If the Day of Atonement falls on the Sabbath, the trimming of vegetables is permitted. An objection is raised: How do we know that if the Day of Atonement falls on the Sabbath, the trimming of vegetables is forbidden? Because sabbathon is stated: it is a shebuth. In respect of what: shall we say in respect of labour, — surely it is written, 'thou shalt not do any work'? Hence it must surely refer to the trimming of vegetables! — No: in truth it refers to actual work, but [it is stated] to [show that] one violates an affirmative and a negative injunction on account thereof.  It was taught in accordance with R. Johanan: If the Day of Atonement falls on the Sabbath,


Although the sounding of the shofar on Shabbat violates no biblical precept—as it's not included in any of the 39 creative works forbidden on the Day of Rest. The Sages nevertheless forbade the sounding of the shofar on any Shabbat, because it is a "weekday-like activity." See Alter Rebbe's Shulchan Aruch, Orach Chaim 588:4.)

Below you will find an article the posts Rabbi’s asserting their independence over Temple custom:

SUNDAY, MARCH 21, 2010
Shabbat and Shofar: Initiation of Rabbinic Independence

Arthur L. Finkle

However, on Rosh Hashanah (Jewish New Year, usually the first new moon in September), the Priests sounded two Shofars and one Trumpet. (See Chofetz Chaim, Mishnah Berurah 586 et seq.) Another differing source indicates that, although normally the trumpet plays the long notes and a Shofar sounds the short notes. On Rosh Hashanah, however, the trumpet takes the short notes; the Shofar, long notes. See Rosh Hashanah 33b. Either way, the Shofar accompanied the special sacrifices on Rosh Hashanah, the holiday designated as "Yom Teruah" ("A day of blowing"; Num. 29:1). The Shofar also proclaimed the Jubilee Year on Yom Kippur (Lev. 25:9–10). The special year freed property to its original owners, forgave debts and gave freedom to slaves, among other things.
Indeed, the Temple service provided Shofar sounds on the Sabbath, itself. There was within the temple an inscription on the lintel of the wall at the top of the Temple that said, "To the house of the blowing of the trumpet (Shofar)". Each Sabbath 2 men with silver trumpets and a man with a Shofar made three trumpet blasts twice during the day. On Rosh haShanah, this was different. The Shofar is the primary trumpet. According to Leviticus 23:24 and Numbers 29, Rosh HaShanah is the day of the blowing of the trumpets. The original name is Yom (Day) Teruah (The staccato sound of the horn, which also means “Shout”). According to the Mishnah (Rosh HaShanah 16a, 3:3), the trumpet used for this purpose is the ram's horn, not trumpets made of metal as in Numbers 10. On Rosh HaShanah, a Shofar delivers the first blast, a silver trumpet the second, and then the Shofar the third.

http://www.Shofars.org/theShofararticle.htm. Accessed March 1, 2010.

Subsequent Rabbinic Prohibition of Sounding Shofar on the Sabbath

However, the Midshnah makes clear that , prior to the destruction of the Temple, the Shofar was sounded on Rosh Hashsnah from in the Temple. Rosh HaShanah Mishnah 4:1; 4:2

After the destruction of the Temple, Yochanan ben Zakkai substituted the Shofar to be played first in Jerusalem; then he enlarged to the area to Jerusalem and its environs; then in Jamnia (where the Rabbi’s were situated immediately after the Temple’s destruction. Thereafter the Rabbi’s enlarged the areas to cover those area on Judea that had Jewish courts, which bespoke a population at oeast 120 people. RH 4:1 and notes from Yad Avraham.

• As time passed, the further away from the rituals of the Temple practice and the predominance of the Rabbi’s, the practice came to be that the Shofar was not sounded on the Shabbat. It was later codified in Shulchan Aruch, Orach Chaim 588:5, Taz, Mishna Brurah 13; Shulchan Aruch, Orach Chaim 143:1 ; Ran to Tractate Rosh Hashana ch. 4; and Shulchan Aruch, Orach Chaim 135:14


Indeed, we look to the Code of Jewish Law (Shulchan Aruch 588:4) and we see:

When the festival of Rosh HaShanah fall on Shabbos, the Shofar is not sounded. Sounding the Shofar is not a forbidden labor; it is forbidden [because ] it is considered mundane activity which can lead to a mundane assembly which is forbidden on the Sabbath.


The Rabbi Sholom Dovber ("Rebbe Rashab" -1860-1920) clears this up when he staters athat the ban of sounding is Rabbinic; not Biblical. But the ban is due to Rabbah’s Decree. In another Chasidic interpretation is that the Sabbath takes on a spiritual glory and does not need another spiritual glory to carry the day. But, on other days, the Shofar sounds provide this spiritual glory; which otherwise is lost after the Sabbath.
After the Temple was destroyed, Rabban Yohanan ben Zakkai established that they would blow in every place in which there is a Rabbinic court." (Rosh Hashanah 4:1)

The first statement of the Mishnah is puzzling. If blowing Shofar is melakhah (the category of work forbidden on the Sabbath), then why is it not forbidden inside the Temple? And if blowing Shofar is not melakhah, why would it be forbidden outside of the Temple? Clearly, any solution to this problem will need some other kind of understanding of blowing Shofar.

Nevertheless, the Gemara (the commentary/interpretation of the Mishnah by the sages of the 3rd-6th centuries CE) continues:
"From where in the Torah does this law come? Said R. Levi bar Lachma said R. Hama bar Haninah: One verse says "a day of complete rest commemorated with the blowing of the Shofar"(Leviticus 23:24), and one verse says "it will be for you a day of blowing the Shofar"(Numbers 29:1). There is no problem. The [first] one is when the festival occurs on Shabbat. The [second] one is when the festival occurs on a weekday" (Babylonian Talmud, Rosh Hashanah 29b).

The Gemara asks a typical question: What is the biblical basis for the law that one does not blow the Shofar on Shabbat outside of the Temple? R. Hama bar Haninah is quoted, providing a clever reading of the Torah. Since the rabbis assume that the Torah is perfect, and perfection implies that no words are wasted, the two verses quoted above from Leviticus and Numbers, which appear to say the same thing, cannot, indeed, be saying the same thing. According to Hama bar Haninah, the verse from Leviticus which uses the language שבתון זכרון תרועה--shabbaton zikhron teru’ah (a day of complete rest commemorated with the blowing of the Shofar)--should be understood as “on the Shabbat, a remembrance of the blowing,” or as Rashi explains, “and not a real blowing; rather, they recite verses about the blowing of Shofar.” This is a very clever reading of the verse from Leviticus.



Basically, R. Hama bar Haninah’s approach is that, based on a midrash on the Torah, blowing Shofar is permitted on weekdays, but forbidden on the Sabbath. But, as the Gemara asks next:

“Said Rava: If it [i.e. the prohibition to blow Shofar on shabbat] is based on the Torah, how did we blow Shofar in the Temple?…” 

Of course we knew this. At our first look at the Mishnah, we knew that any approach that argued that blowing Shofar was strictly forbidden on the Sabbath would not explain the Mishnah; if Shofar-blowing is forbidden on the Sabbath, how were they permitted to blow Shofar in the Temple. As clever as R. Hama bar Hanina’s reading is, it is inadequate to the task of explaining the Mishnah. 
So why did the Gemara even include his midrash if it was so plainly and obviously incorrect? 
The answer to this question reveals one of the underlying truths of rabbinic Judaism. More important than the conclusion is the process. The message of the Gemara is not that a correct understanding is irrelevant, or that there aren’t correct (and incorrect) understandings; to the contrary, careful thinking and evidence-based argument are crucial. But they are not as important as allowing diverse views to be expressed. When we examine and discuss the logic of the Mishnah, we make sure that diverse opinions, divergent opinions, and even clearly false opinions are given voice. To shut off the creativity of a Hama bar Haninah in this case might indicate that all that matters is the final word. To indulge that creativity, even when it is clearly wrong, sets the opposite precedent, and encourages creative thinkers to take intellectual risks for the sake of Torah. If the conversation of Torah she’b’al peh--"Oral Law"--is to proceed, we must foster and encourage our risk-takers.

Rava does end up revealing how the Mishnah makes sense. Rava quotes his teacher Rabbah, who argues that the prohibition against blowing Shofar outside of the Temple was a rabbinic prohibition (and not a biblical prohibition, as Hama bar Haninah argued), which simply did not apply to the Temple. 

The Talmud now turns to the second part of the Mishnah: “After the Temple was destroyed, Rabban Yohanan ben Zakkai established that they would blow in every place in which there is a Rabbinic court.” The Mishnah’s language “established” is bland and undramatic. The Talmud fills in the details:

Rabbah’s Decree includes three classic cases where Rabbah rules that a particular
mitzvah must be postponed or cancelled due to the concern that the mitzvah implement might be inadvertently carried on Shabbos. 

• Taking a lulav on the first day of Sukkos,
• Blowing Shofar on the first day of Rosh Hashana (Rosh Hashana 29a)
• Reading of Megillas Esther (Megilla 4b). 

In each case, the Gemara mentions that Rabbah made his ruling not only in the case being discussed, but in the other two cases, as well.
The opinion found in the Jerusalem Talmud and the subsequent Sifra is that blowing a Shofar on Shabbat is a Biblical prohibition which received a special dispensation to be blown in the Temple on Shabbat (Rosh HaShannah 4:1) On the other hand, in the Babylonian Talmud blowing a Shofar is interpreted as only a rabbinic prohibition and outside of the Temple it was prohibited lest one carry it more than four amot in the public domain (Rosh HaShannah 29b).

Indeed, the Sages are empowered to "overrule" a Torah precept (if their instruction involves restraint from action, not a proactive violation of a biblical command).See See Talmud Yevamot 89b-90b. This authority is subject to many limitations. For example, the Sages can only use this power in order to preserve another Torah statute (as in our case, the Torah prohibition against carrying in the public domain on Shabbat.
 
Our obligation to follow such directives is implicit in the verse,8 "And you shall do according to the word they tell you, from the place that G d will choose, and you shall observe to do according to all they instruct you." Although, It should be noted that the Jerusalem Talmud (Rosh Hashanah 4:1) maintains that the original biblical command to sound the Shofar on Rosh Hashanah only applied to when Rosh Hashanah falls on a weekday 

In a further emendation, the Alter Rebbe’s accents the prohibition of the mundane activity to buttress the argument that one should not carry rather than the other way around.

Halakhah (Jewish Law) rules that the Shofar may not be sounded on the Sabbath due to the potential that the Ba'al T'kiyah (Shofar Sounder) may inadvertently carry it, which is in a class of forbidden Sabbath work. (R.H. 29b) 

One can not blow the Shofar on Shabbat because of temptation to carry more than four cubits in a public domain [thus, breaking the prohibition of carrying on the Sabbath.] Mishnah Berurah, 588:5


The historical explanation is that in ancient Israel, the Shofar was sounded in the Temple on the Sabbath as were other sacrifices and musical instruments.