There are various places in Scripture that speak of "from the rising of the sun to it's setting." Studying all the places which make such statements leads one to the conclusion that this is a way of Yahweh referring to the entirety of the earth, from the east to the west, all places which are habitable to humanity.
I ran across this in preaching through Malachi. Studying through Malachi chapter 1 verse 11 makes the following statement:
"For from the rising of the sun, even to its going down, My name shall be great among the Gentiles; In every place incense shall be offered to My name, And a pure offering; For My name shall be great among the nations, says Yahweh of hosts." (NKJV, Malachi 1:11)
Notice here that Yahweh makes reference to the rising and setting sun but then goes on in the second part of the verse to say "in every place." Furthermore, notice these other references in Scripture that are parallel:
Psalm 50:1 - "The Mighty One, Elohim Yahweh, Has spoken and called the earth from the rising of the sun to its goping down..."
Psalm 113:3 - "From the rising of the sun to its going down Yahweh's name is to be praised."
Isaiah 45:6 (KJV) - "That they may know from the rising of the sun, and from the west, that there is none beside me, I am Yahweh, and there is none else."
Isaiah 59:19 (KJV) - "So shall they fear the name of Yahweh from the west, and His glory from the rising of the sun..."
Commentator John Gill comments on Malachi 1:11 thusly (in part):
"...from East to West which is all habitable; not so North and South, as Kimchi observes, the extremes of which are not habitable..."
Pastor John MacArthur also comments similarly on the verse:
"The phrase is a way of referring to the whole earth... as the subsequent phrase, 'In every place,' indicates..."
It often comes as a shock to people I meet when I tell them that I celebrate the time of the new moon. I recently heard a speaker explain how that a person should not consider the observance of the new moon as important in this day and time. I guess these two positions on the new moon are entirely different though. One simply is ignorant of the celebration, maybe they've never even heard of such a celebration. The other knows of the occurence but believes the New Covenant era is not concerned with such a practice.
I remember talking to a very friendly woman one time about the Biblical Calendar. I explained to her, by going to Genesis 1:14-18, that according to the Bible we should based time on the sun, moon, and stars. Here response was, "Sounds like astrology to me!" I'll never forget that response.
Of course astrology was the furthest thing from my mind as well as Yahweh's mind when He inspired this text to be written. Maybe the word astronomy would better explain (at least to some extent) what I am speaking of. Genesis 1:14-18, when compared with Psalm 104:19, 136:7-9 and Jeremiah 31:34-35 teach that the sun and the moon were appointed for signs, festivals, days, and years. Most Bibles have the word "seasons" at Genesis 1:14 but many will footnote the word explaining that a fuller meaning of the Hebrew word here (moedim) has the meaning of appointed times or festivals. Some Bibles (HCSB, Moffat) will actually translate this Hebrew word as festivals or something of such like. What this teaches us clearly is that time, according to Scripture, should be based upon the heavenly lights created by the heavenly Father.
One such period of time that is sacred on Yahweh's calendar is the time of the new moon. We read in Scripture of special banquets at this time (1 Samuel 20), of people inquiring of prophets (2 Kings 4:23), of worship at the temple of Yahweh (Ezekiel 46:1-3), of Israelites refraining from commerce (Amos 8:5), and of not letting any man judge us in regards to celebrating the time (Colossians 2:16-17).
One of my favorite texts in regards to the sanctity and relavence of the new moon is Isaiah 66:22-23.
"For as the new heavens and the new earth that I make shall remain before me, says Yahweh, so shall your offspring and your name remain. From new moon to new moon, and from Sabbath to Sabbath, all flesh shall come to worship before me, declares Yahweh." [ESV]
Here we have what I like to call a "kingdom text." Verses 18-24 of this chapter have the idea of the kingdom written all over them. What I mean is the kingdom of Yahweh that Yeshua was sent to preach about (Luke 4:43). That is a king and domain or dominion that will rule in righteousness and holiness on the earth. According to this text in Isaiah we see not only Sabbath worship going on in the kingdom, but also worship taking place on the new moon! Thus a new moon celebration will be held in the kingdom! If that's the case, shouldn't there be relevance for a celebration on the new moon taking place now in preparation for the coming kingdom? I would think that this would be an accurate assessment.
Why not look up all the places in Scripture that deal with the new moon. I truly believe you will be astounded at what the Bible has to say about it.
Blog by Matthew Janzen. Lover of Yahweh, Yeshua, my wife and 5 children. All else is commentary.