On the eve of Rosh Hashanah, Arutz Sheva visited the "Sound of the Shofar" exhibition at the Bible Lands Museum in Jerusalem.
Throughout Jewish history the Shofar has played a significant role, not just on Rosh Hashanah, the Day of Judgment, but in calling men to war, announcing the onset of Shabbat and the Holidays, and in the Temple service.
It is actually that understanding, that the Shofar was used for a call to arms, that is one of the main reasons for its role on Rosh Hashanah, as the Shofar blasts are meant to awaken a Jew to repent and return to G-d. It will also be sounded at the time of Redemption.
The Jewish philosopher Philo Judaeus (early 1st century CE) explains the seeming contradiction between war and Redemption, saying that it is not only a military war that is announced by a trumpet blast but the struggle for the restoration of the inner state of the world at large, symbolised by the shofar to be blown at Redemption.
Today, the Shofar has symbolic meaning in official state events, where it is blown at the swearing in of the President of Israel, among other occasions.
The most famous Shofar in the exhibition is that of the late Chief Rabbi of Israel and of the IDF, Rabbi Shlomo Goren, blown at the Western Wall at the moment of the re-unification and liberation of Jerusalem after 28 years under Jordanian occupation. Other historic shofars, including shofars redeemed from the Holocaust are in the exhibit as well.