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    The twofold voice of the shofar

    The sounding of the Shofar, by Bernard Picart, c. 1733

    The voice of the Lord is in the winds and rushing water, in the conscience, love and laughter of human beings, in the work of man in science, literature, art, music and poetry.

    People are sometimes deaf to the call of God in its other forms. But none can pretend that they cannot hear the piercing blast of the shofar.

    The Divine shofar comes from Sinai, to proclaim the commandments. Through the prophets, to speak forth the dictates of truth and justice. To announce the Sabbath and its serenity, a foretaste of the redemptive World to Come.

    Man responds with the shofar, proclaiming alertness to duty, love of God’s law, loyalty to tradition.

    It assures God that though frailty enmeshes us in the frivolities of the moment, our conscience is awake to seek forgiveness and forbearance.

    How does God reply?

    He takes up His own shofar to say, “Wherever My name is remembered, I will come to you and will bless you”.

    O God who calls with the shofar,
    Make us receptive to the sound of Your call.
    May we respond to You with love and loyalty.
    May we merit Your revelation and redemption
    When Messiah will come to the world
    And all the children of flesh will call upon Your holy name.

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