I like hearing the sound of the trumpet. Especially when the person playing it has mastered it. They sure can make that instrument sound good. The trumpet however wasn’t always used as a musical instrument. It started as a warning device. Other times it was kind of like a calling card. In the book of Numbers, it was used as a call to assemble.
Make two trumpets of hammered silver for calling the community to assemble and for signaling the breaking of camp. Numbers 10:2
Trumpets go way back in history. First mentioned in Leviticus, those were probably ram’s horns. They crafted the trumpets in Numbers out of silver. God mentioned the instructions for using them in the next few verses.
When both trumpets are blown, everyone must gather before you at the entrance of the Tabernacle. But if only one trumpet is blown, then only the leaders—the heads of the clans of Israel—must present themselves to you. Numbers 10:3-4
A few verses later, God gave instructions for future use of these silver-made trumpets.
When you arrive in your own land and go to war against your enemies who attack you, sound the alarm with the trumpets. Numbers 10:9
The Sound of the Trumpet had Many Functions
Then verse 10 expands the use of the trumpet from an instrument of warning and assembly to one of celebration.
Blow the trumpets in times of gladness, too, sounding them at your annual festivals and at the beginning of each month. And blow the trumpets over your burnt offerings and peace offerings. The trumpets will remind your God of his covenant with you. I am the Lord your God. Numbers 10:10
I don’t know if the first place in the history of metal trumpets started in Numbers as a signaling instrument. Using them for that reason though has caught on through the years.
In the history of our country, the cavalry used different tunes on the trumpet to convey different messages. When soldiers heard the sound of the trumpet, they knew exactly how to respond.
There is a trumpet call that I am waiting for. I personally don’t care if it is a ram’s horn or one made out of metal. As long as it is coming from the heavens it will be calling us home.
For the Lord, himself will come down from heaven with a commanding shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trumpet call of God. First, the believers who have died will rise from their graves. Then, together with them, we who are still alive and remain on the earth will be caught up in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. Then we will be with the Lord forever. 1 Thessalonians 4:16-17
This is an updated edition of a post originally published on Christian Perspectives