When lining up the end-time events described in the book of Revelation with the description of end time events in the book of Joel, it becomes clear that the first two fall feasts, the Day of Trumpeting and the Day of Atonement mirror the progression of the great and terrible day of the Lord just before His return, when the armies of the antichrist descend upon the land of Israel and surround Jerusalem:

Day of Trumpeting (Joel 2: 1-11)

 Blow the trumpet in Zion;
    sound the alarm on my holy hill.

Let all who live in the land tremble,
    for the day of the Lord is coming.
It is close at hand—
    a day of darkness and gloom,
    a day of clouds and blackness.

~Joel 2:1-2

In the above passage of Joel, the sounding of the trumpet is an alarm to assemble the people together because a horrible and fierce enemy has invaded the Land—it is the “last” Day of Trumpeting. It is also the moment that the Lord Yeshua appears in the sky with the voice of the trumpet and the those who are in the Lord are raptured:

Rapture at the Last Trumpet (Matt. 24:30-31)

Then the sign of the Son of Man will appear in heaven, and then all the tribes of the earth will mourn, and they will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory. And He will send His angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they will gather together His [elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other.

~Matt. 24:30-31

Day of Atonement (Joel 2:12-17 )

 Blow the trumpet in Zion,
    declare a holy fast,
    call a sacred assembly.
 Gather the people,
    consecrate the assembly

~Joel 2:16-17

In this passage, the prophet Joel is calling all the people to declare a holy fast, to weep, mourn and cry out to the Lord to save them—a description which sounds like  the Day of Atonement. While this passage clearly speaks about the Day of Atonement, it also calls for a trumpet to be blown in Zion, which makes one think that it might be referring to the Day of Trumpeting since no trumpets blown on the Day of Atonement. Well, yes and no: there are no trumpets blown on the Day of Atonement except for once every fifty years during the Jubilee year:

Count off seven sabbath years—seven times seven years—so that the seven sabbath years amount to a period of forty-nine years. Then have the trumpet sounded everywhere on the tenth day of the seventh month; on the Day of Atonement sound the trumpet throughout your land.  Consecrate the fiftieth year and proclaim liberty throughout the land to all its inhabitants. It shall be a jubilee for you; each of you is to return to your family property and to your own clan. The fiftieth year shall be a jubilee for you.'”

~Leviticus 25:9-11

If the last “Day of Atonement” at the Lord’s return takes place in the Jubilee Year (which we believe it will!) it adds another powerful dimension of prophetic meaning to this “last” Day of Atonement when a trumpet will sound declaring salvation, liberation and restoration.  

All Israel Will Be Saved

Jewish worshippers at the Western Wall during Sukkot (Tabernacles) bearing palm, willow and myrtle branches and citron fruit


Joel 2 describes a fierce and mighty army attacking the Land of Israel — the great and terrible day of the Lord. The prophet Zechariah describes the same day when all the nations of the earth are gathered against Judah and Jerusalem: at that critical moment when Israel is surrounded by enemies, God tells the prophet Zechariah:

I will pour out on the house of David and the inhabitants of Jerusalem a spirit of grace and supplication. They will look on me, the one they have pierced, and they will mourn for him as one mourns for an only child, and grieve bitterly for him as one grieves for a firstborn son. On that day the weeping in Jerusalem will be as great as the weeping of Hadad Rimmon in the plain of Megiddo. The land will mourn, each clan by itself, with their wives by themselves…

~Zechariah 12:10-12

Here Zechariah describes the moment when Paul’s Romans 11:26 prophetic declaration that all Israel shall be saved comes to pass. Israel will go through terrible tribulation and suffering, but Israel will also be the only nation in the earth that collectively accepts the Messiah and is saved. Joel 2 describes that final moment: “And everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.”

So, if the Day of Trumpeting marks the Lord’s appearing in the sky and the rapture, and the Day of Atonement marks Israel’s calling a fast and solemn assembly to weep and mourn over “the one they have pierced”, then the Feast of Tabernacles can be none other than Yeshua’s triumphant entry into Jerusalem where He will tabernacle with His people!

by Tamar Afriat


On June 2nd we celebrated Jerusalem Day here in Israel, a national holiday commemorating the liberation of Jerusalem during the Six Day War in 1967 and its unification under Israeli rule. But why is this one ancient city so important, so contentious, and why does who controls it raise to many issues? The bible has a lot to say about it, and so do hot geo-political debates around the world today, not to mention charged religious arguments as well. Put all of that together and what you have is a mess of conflicting and misleading narratives about Jerusalem. In order to dispel the fog about this special city, let’s first take a quick look at some historical facts about it.

Jerusalem from 638 to 1917: Muslim Rule

After Jews were exiled from Jerusalem in 70 AD, the Romans and then Byzantines controlled the city until the Arab Muslim takeover in 638. Apart from a short inglorious stint by Christian Crusaders, from 638 until the modern era Jerusalem was controlled by Muslims, first by Arab Muslims and then by the Ottoman Turks from 1516 until 1917. Having defeated the Turks in World War I, the British instituted their mandate rule in 1917 in what was then called British Mandate Palestine. The British Mandate lasted just about 30 years, when the British pulled out and Israel declared its independence.

Revealing Historical Accounts

So, what was Jerusalem like during the Muslim period? In 1867, a mere fifteen years before the first Jewish immigrants began returning to the Land, Mark Twain, not a religious man himself, joined a group of tourists and religious pilgrims on a journey to the Holy Land which was then under Ottoman rule. His humorous and acerbic observations paint a fascinating portrait of what Jerusalem was like after 1,000 years of Muslim rule:

Rags, wretchedness, poverty and dirt, those signs and symbols that indicate the presence of Moslem rule more sure than the crescent-flat itself, abound…Lepers, cripples, the blind, and the idiotic, assail you on every hand…Jerusalem is mournful, dreary, and lifeless. I would not desire to live here.

Six hundred years before Twain’s account of Jerusalem, famous biblical commentator Rabbi Moses ben Nachman headed to Jerusalem from Spain in 1267. In a letter home to his family, he wrote that of all the forsaken, desecrated and devastated places he saw in the Land, “Jerusalem is the most desolate place of all.”

Jerusalem from 1948 to 1967: Part of the Kingdom of Jordan

From 1948 until 1967, East Jerusalem was considered a part of Jordan which annexed the area at the end of Israel’s War of Independence. While they ruled Jerusalem, the Jordanians expelled all Jewish residents and barred Jews from visiting holy sites in East Jerusalem. Adding insult to injury, they desecrated the ancient Jewish cemetery on the Mount of Olives, using the headstones in construction, to pave roads and line latrines, and all but one of the 35 synagogues in the city were either razed to the ground or used to house animals.

Jerusalem in 1967: The Miracle

After failing to defeat the Jewish settlement in the Land, the Arab coalition led by Egypt, Jordan and Syria were waiting for an opportunity to attack and defeat Israel once and for all. Several months before the outbreak of war, troubling incidents began happening on Israel’s borders and Arab armies began mobilizing. Everyone in Israel, from the average citizen to those in the highest levels of leadership, knew that war was imminent and could very well end the short life of the fledgling Jewish state. At a moment when Israel was more than 2 times outnumbered in troops, 3 times outnumbered in tanks and aircraft, Israel decided to launch a pre-emptive strike against Egypt’s forces in the Sinai on June 5th. In those first few decisive hours, Israel destroyed nearly all of Egypt’s air force.

Israel wasn’t spoiling for a fight though: after destroying the Egyptian air force, Israel appealed to Jordan to stay out of the war. What Israel didn’t know was that the Egyptians had sent false reports of victory against the Israelis, galvanizing Arab armies to attack. However, as soon as they did, Israel responded in full force, annihilating Jordan’s and Syria’s air forces and granting Israel total air dominance. After a difficult battle to take the ascent into Jerusalem where the Jordanians sat entrenched, Moshe Dayan ordered the IDF to take the Old City of Jerusalem on June 7th , which it did with little resistance. Three days after the start of the war, Israel had control of Jerusalem, the heart and longing of exiled Israel for nearly two-thousand years, expressed by General Shlomo Goren:

“The city of God, the site of the Temple, the Temple Mount and the Western Wall, the symbol of the nation’s redemption, have been redeemed today by you, heroes of the Israeli Defense Forces.”

Jerusalem Today: Prophetic Miracle, Spiritual Barometer

At the start of the Six Day War, the feeling was of imminent death. On June 7th, three days into the war, Israeli paratroopers liberated Jerusalem, and when Colonel Gur broadcasted the fateful announcement, “The Temple Mount is in our hands!”, spontaneous celebrations broke out all over the country: it was like the resurrection on the 3rd day. Exactly one week later, on June 14th, the holiday of Pentecost (Shavuot) began, reminding us that 2,000 years before God poured out His Spirit on a group of Jews meeting in Jerusalem, a group that would spread the gospel to the world. It’s no coincidence that the “Jesus Movement”, a powerful spiritual awakening which swept the US, coincided with the liberation of Jerusalem in 1967—a movement in which many Jews came to faith in Messiah, no few of whom are prominent leaders in the Body of Messiah in Israel today.

In the physical, Jerusalem is a beautiful, thriving city with universities, museums, and culture. In the spiritual, Jerusalem is much more: it’s the one place God has chosen to place His name (1 Kings 11:36), is called God’s holy mountain (Isaiah 66:20) the Throne of the Lord (Jeremiah 3:17). Beyond that, it’s the one city which must collectively invite the Messiah back before His return (Luke 13:34-35). The devil has put much energy into keeping Jews from accepting their Messiah and bringing the city of Jerusalem into dispute, which means we should heed David’s call to pray for the peace of Jerusalem more than ever and contend for the spiritual end time awakening in Jerusalem which will welcome back the Great King, Yeshua!