A daily break to celebrate our salvation in Yeshua (Jesus) and our abundant life through the Torah

The New Moon – Who Knew?

Sighting of the New Moon

New Moon Observance

I had been reading the five books of Moses (Genesis through Deuteronomy) every year for five years and observing the Sabbath, Feasts and Festivals for five years.  But as many times as I’ve read the Bible and practiced the Feasts, Yehovah never fails to show me new insights every time.  This year has been no exception.

I had signed up to speak on the portion of scripture called “Phineas,” Numbers 25-30.  Not knowing what I would speak about, I figured there was plenty to choose from.  Numbers 28-29 are commonly referred to for teachings on observing Yehovah’s appointed times or Holy Days.

As I came to those chapters, I read quickly through the list: The daily offerings, the Sabbath, the New Moon, Passover, Unleavened Bread, Pentecost… Wait, the New Moon?  When did they start that?  Is that one of Yehovah’s appointed times?  Why have I never observed this day?  I decided I had to look into this.

I immediately turned back to Leviticus 23, which is the first place in the Bible where all Yehovah’s appointed times are spelled out.  There was no mention of a celebration on the New Moon.  In fact, the first mention of the New Moon celebration is in Numbers 10, where it specifies that the trumpets should be sounded over the offerings, including offerings for the New Moon.  The offerings themselves or any other details of the New Moon observance are not mentioned until the list in Numbers 28.

On the Hebrew calendar the Bible refers to, each month starts on the night the new moon is visible in the sky, when just the first sliver is showing (called Rosh-Hodesh in Hebrew).  So I looked up every scripture I could find referring to the New Moon or the first day of the month.  It turns out the Israelites had been celebrating the New Moon from Numbers 10 through Colossians 2, including notable patriarchs such as Moses, David, Elisha, Isaiah, Ezekiel, Hosea, Amos, Ezra, Nehemiah, King Solomon, King Hezekiah and the Jews of Paul’s day.  There’s even reference to it as something we’ll be observing in the Millennium (Isaiah 66:23-24).

Besides those, I found 20 incidents that took place on New Moons – two in Noah’s ark, the setting up of the tabernacle in the wilderness, Yehovah speaking to Moses and Haggai and repeatedly to Ezekiel, Ezra’s reading of the Torah to the Israelites, the death of Aaron, and the Feast of Trumpets falls on the first day of the month of Tishrei.  It seems this is a busy time on Yehovah’s calendar.

So how are we to observe it?  Unlike some of the other appointed times, there’s no scripture that tells exactly what we are to do or not do on a New Moon.  In my research, I found references to sounding the trumpet, bringing offerings, worshipping, dining, and avoiding buying and selling.

These reminded me of observances of some of the other appointed times:

  • The offerings are very similar to those commanded for the daily offering, the Feast of Unleavened Bread and Pentecost.
  • Avoiding buying and selling is also commanded on the Sabbath.
  • The Sabbath and The Feast of Tabernacles are also both mentioned as appointed times we’ll be celebrating in the Millennium.
  • The New Moon celebration occurs the same day as the Feast of Trumpets and includes blowing the trumpet over the offering, as do many of the offerings presented for other purposes.

However, its unique distinctions are what I found most compelling about the New Moon:

  • Unlike others of Yehovah’s appointed times, the New Moon will never be the same day of the week or the same day year after year.  This requires us to note a timeframe on our calendar, but look for the sliver of moon every month.  Not having a set day each month (i.e. the third Thursday) or year (i.e. the 5th of June) challenges us to interrupt our normal schedule and break our routine.  For planners like me, this is a great gauge as to the priority of my appointments with Yehovah.  How easily can I be interrupted by Yehovah?  How quickly will I change my schedule for Him?
  • The New Moon is the only appointed time not mentioned in the original list of them in Leviticus 23. I could not find an explanation in the Bible for the omission of the New Moon in Lev. 23.  As I thought about the idea of not designating this until later and how it reminds us of many of the other appointed times, I wondered if Yehovah added it as a monthly reminder for us to watch for the other appointed times.

Genesis 1:14 tells us one of the reasons the sun, moon and stars were created was to “serve as signs to mark sacred times, and days and years.”  Although the sun indicates the season and the time of day, it cannot tell us what day it is, only the moon can.  The moon is what determines the months and Yehovah’s appointed times.  Could the New Moon be our day each month to acknowledge that we are keeping track of the days and Yehovah’s appointed times?  It just may be a specific day designated for us to mark off where we are on His calendar, a chance to say, “I’m on your schedule and excited to be another month closer to one of your special days!”

However you decide to observe the New Moon, let the spontaneity and the other special times it reminds us of guide you to a meaningful personal expression of thanksgiving to Yehovah for His faithfulness to us from month to month.

View a list of this year’s expected dates of new moons and the dates of this year’s Feasts and Festivals.

Postscript:  Since writing this post, I studied each of the Hebrew months.  My discoveries are posted here:  Rosh Hodesh.

29 responses

  1. Thank you for your excellent , explanation of the New Moon Feasts.
    The one scripture that stands out to me about the new moon is in Isaiah , where YHWH is furious about the heart of the people celebrating the New Moon feasts- saying He hates their New Moon feasts. .

    March 18, 2023 at 10:42 am

  2. Norman

    Very exciting .. its wat God says thats important…thank you 😊 for the presentation…

    January 6, 2023 at 12:38 pm

  3. Memma Throndsen

    Good article about Rosh Chodesh.
    I couldn’t find a reference to this in your exposition: before Numbers 10, there’s a reference to the New Moon Day in Exodus 12:12. Shalom

    October 26, 2022 at 11:05 am

    • Hello Memma, Ex. 12:12 is about Passover. I could not see any mention of it there. Is it a different reference?

      November 2, 2022 at 7:03 pm

  4. Patricia mills

    Shalom how would i get Calendar with all of the Hebrew fest Celebration

    August 2, 2019 at 8:25 pm

  5. John Learnard

    Looking for a congregation in Maryland or people interested in starting one.

    March 24, 2019 at 3:59 pm

  6. Judy

    Some things were lost, changed,or simply ignored in translations, I wish there was more info regarding new moons.

    May 19, 2018 at 4:40 pm

  7. Laquetta. Anderson

    Thank u so much for excellent research and imparting it to others.Truly this helps make end time disciples.
    The Daughter’s of ZION MINISTRIES.

    March 18, 2018 at 8:02 pm

    • You’re welcome, Laja. Thanks to Yehovah for faithfully revealing himself when we seek him.

      June 28, 2021 at 7:36 pm

  8. Dr Rose Sharon

    Thanks Rabbi, this is a great news about God Almighty, s new moon, thank you so much for the insight and revelation, I never saw a teaching like this on the new moon, God Almighty bless you richly with more wisdom and knowledge

    March 18, 2018 at 2:27 pm

    • You’re welcome, Dr Sharon. I was so happy to discover a whole new way that Yehovah instructs us to worship him!

      June 28, 2021 at 7:39 pm

  9. Vort

    Some symbolism I noticed:

    Firstly, the prince shall provide the offerings for the feasts and new moons (Ezekiel 45:17).

    Secondly, the Tree of Life bears its fruit every month (Revelation 22:2). Considering they were picked the month prior, this may be a call to witness of the fruiting.

    Thirdly, solar and eclipses always happen the day before the new moon (1st day) or the full moon (14th day). If those signs In Heaven imply anything more, like a lunar eclipse falling on the feast days (2014 & 2015), there can only be speculation until it unfolds.

    March 14, 2018 at 10:22 am

    • Good points, Vort. Thank you for sharing those.

      March 16, 2018 at 6:11 am

  10. Katongo Kapaya

    I love your work well research please sign me up

    February 20, 2018 at 1:25 pm

  11. Valenice C.

    It is first mentioned in Exodus 12. It’s actually the first commandment given to the Isreal in Egypt.

    February 10, 2016 at 2:10 pm

    • I see the commandment to start the year with the month of Nisan, but don’t see any reference to the first day of the month or new moon. What verse are you referring to?

      February 10, 2016 at 7:15 pm

  12. JP Meek

    How did Noah observe a crescent moon during 40 days of rain? There is zero references in Scripture to a crecent moon. But you are sure to find it in the Quran. The Hebrew word for new moon is also new month. Change your new moon in your Scripture to new month and things will look a bit different. There is nothing new to a crescent, its a moon that has been there a few days. We need to test everything against Scripture and if it is not written, like the crescent, then its not to be followed.

    We need to remember that He calls these times APPOINTED TIMES because they are appointed to certain days. Too many people follow their own dogma when it comes to the days of Yahuah.

    February 10, 2016 at 3:44 am

    • Good points, JP. I think the crescent moon is traditionally used because it was a visible indication to anyone watching that a new moon had begun. Do you observe it the day before the crescent is visible?

      February 10, 2016 at 7:40 pm

  13. Stephen Gregg

    I agree with what you said about the New Moon and the Lord has shown that the Sabbath Day (Seventh Day) is exactly 7 days after we see the New Moon…. Not Friday or Saturday because there was no Friday or Saturday in the Bible.

    Check out my video at http://www.SavedByTruth.com/sample-page and I have a video detailing this info. We have been honoring the Sabbath Day, the New Moon Celebration and the Feast Days based on the New Moon for 3 years and it is dead right everytime. The Sabbath is not based on the Gregorian calendar since there was none when the bible was written.

    This is one of the Secrets to the Kingdom of Heaven. The Lord Showed us this 3 years ago and now he is showing it to you.

    You are welcome to contact me if you have questions. We are holding a huge conference to explain this to the world in August. http://www.PreparingTheBrideConference.com

    My direct number is 714-814-6888 I would love to hear from y ou

    May 17, 2015 at 1:52 pm

    • JP Meek

      Does your Sabbath change on weekly days? Meaning will it be on Wednesday this year and on Friday next year?

      February 10, 2016 at 3:36 am

    • I have been wondering about this for quite some time, as I am frequently spirit-led to observe a Shabbat on a day that is not from Friday evening to Saturday evening.
      I know that Paul writes about people choosing different days to honor YHWH in his time, and that we all will need to eventually answer YHWH personally for our choices.

      March 18, 2023 at 10:51 am

  14. The new moon is also training for us regarding the Second Coming of Christ….Jesus told His disciples to be alert and ready for no man knows neither the day nor the hour of His return. This was the theme of the epistles of Paul, John, and Peter. In Matthew 25:1-13, Jesus was telling believers that they must stay alert because the Son of Man comes at an hour when no man expects it. Also his coming will be as a thief in the night, when no one is expecting Him. This ties in directly to The Feast of Trumpets which is known by Jews as “The Day That No Man Knows.” And why is it called this? Because it is the feast that can only be determined by the sighting of the new moon, and so “no man” can calculate the exact day or hour of when this feast day will begin.”

    April 20, 2015 at 7:26 pm

    • Stephen Gregg

      Hi Sandy, you are 100% correct.. Wow, you are one of the only people we have found that understood this. We are holding a huge conference on August 29th to explain this. http://www.PreparingTheBrideConference.com

      Me and my wife would love to keep in touch

      May 17, 2015 at 1:54 pm

    • Ah, good insights Sandy, thank you for sharing that. The case for Yeshua’s return on the Feast of Trumpets makes a lot of sense. I never want to miss a Feast of Trumpets celebration just in case!

      June 28, 2021 at 7:47 pm

  15. Nicole

    I had read somewhere that before Christ people had to watch for the new moon – specifically when it started to crest- imagine that! how joyous they must have been seeing it happen. At least that’s what I think…. we take a lot for granted these days – everything is calculated- technology even though good has somehow replaced the basic things we did. Watching for the new moon to me would strengthen any relationship – I believe that God speaks to us through Creation and by walking in faith towards His instructions we get to know Him more and love Him more…but so too even now He tells us to do things and we must obey and therein lies our true testimony – serving Him in obedience.

    October 12, 2014 at 8:41 am

    • Yes, I agree, Nicole. As we are faithful with what he’s already given us, he imparts more to us. “The secret of the Lord is with those who Revere him.” Ps. 25:14

      June 28, 2021 at 7:53 pm

  16. Jo

    What about rainy or cloudy nights?

    October 1, 2014 at 9:10 am

    • Jo, You’re right, it’s not always possible to “observe” the new moon. I have learned that while it is awesome to be able to to, the idea of observing is more in terms of honoring or practicing, i.e. observing the Sabbath. Actually looking at the moon is not all there is to the new moon observance. You can do the rest of it as YHVH leads you.

      October 9, 2014 at 6:38 am

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