Saturday, July 27, 2013
Shofar as a Temple Instrument Part 3
Shofar as a Temple Instrument
Arthur L. Finkle
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.
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).” “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.)