The Commandments of God:
Are They Burdensome? Are They Abolished?   May The Truth Be Known.
Tract 13E. STUDY-Tract. Psalm 81:3. Rev July 24, 2015.

Psalms 81:3

In this study tract I'll try to clear up a few misunderstandings in a Scriptural text in which God's Feast Days are commanded to be kept at His appointed times. That text is the Hebrew word <kece'>, word #3677 in STRONG's Concordance, and is used twice in the KJV Scriptures, and are both cited below.

It's being understood by some that Psalms 81:3 refers to only the Day of Trumpets; a Holy Day which God commands His people to observe on the first day of the seventh month. Likewise, this belief suggests that the Full Moon marks the first day of the month; for which the KJV Scriptures use the New Moon. I'll cite a few Scriptures together with a few Hebrew words from which they were translated, in hopes to show what message Psalms 81:3 actually portrays, thus summarizing it.

Psalms 81:3; Blow up the trumpet <showphar>1 in the new moon, <chodesh>2 in the time appointed, <kece'>3 on our solemn feast <chag>4 day.

Proverbs 7:20; He hath taken a bag of money with him, and will come home at the day appointed <kece'>3

1 07782. showphar, sho-far'; or shophar {sho-far'}; from 8231 in the original sense of incising; a cornet (as giving a clear sound) or curved horn:--cornet, trumpet.

2 02320. chodesh, kho'-desh; from 2318; the new moon; by implication, a month:--month(-ly), new moon.

2a 02318. chadash, khaw-dash'; a primitive root; to be new; causatively, to rebuild:--renew, repair.

3 03677. kece', keh'-seh; or keceh {keh'-seh}; apparently from 3680; properly, fulness or the full moon, i.e. its festival:--(time) appointed.

3a 03680. kacah, kaw-saw'; a primitive root; properly, to plump, i.e. fill up hollows; by implication, to cover (for clothing or secrecy):--clad self, close, clothe, conceal, cover (self), (flee to) hide, overwhelm. Compare 3780.

3b 03780. kasah, kaw-saw'; a primitive root; to grow fat (i.e. be covered with flesh):--be covered. Compare 3680.

3c 04372. mikceh, mik-seh'; from 3680; a covering, i.e. weather-boarding:--covering.

4 02282. chag, khag; or chag {khawg}; from 2287; a festival, or a victim therefor:--(solemn) feast (day), sacrifice, solemnity.

4a 02287. chagag, khaw-gag'; a primitive root (compare 2283, 2328); properly, to move in a circle, i.e. (specifically) to march in a sacred procession, to observe a festival; by implication, to be giddy:--celebrate, dance, (keep, hold) a (solemn) feast (holiday), reel to and fro.


2 Chronicles 8:13; Even after a certain rate every day, offering according to the commandment of Moses, on the sabbaths, and on the new moons <chodesh>2, and on the solemn feasts <mow`ed>5, three times in the year, even in the feast <chag>4 of unleavened bread, and in the feast <chag>4 of weeks, and in the feast <chag>4 of tabernacles [tents - boothes].

Numbers 4:8; And they shall spread upon them a cloth of scarlet, and cover <kacah>3a the same with a covering <mikceh>3c of badgers' skins...

Numbers 10:10; Also in the day of your gladness, <simchah>8 and in your solemn days, <mow`ed>5 and in the beginnings of your months, <chodesh>2 ye shall blow with the trumpets <chatsots@rah>6 over your burnt offerings, and over the sacrifices of your peace offerings...

5 04150. mow`ed, mo-ade'; or moled {mo-ade'}; or (feminine) moweadah (2 Chronicles 8:13) {mo-aw-daw'}; from 3259; properly, an appointment, i.e. a fixed time or season; specifically, a festival; conventionally a year; by implication, an assembly (as convened for a definite purpose); technically the congregation; by extension, the place of meeting; also a signal (as appointed beforehand):--appointed (sign, time), (place of, solemn) assembly, congregation, (set, solemn) feast, (appointed, due) season, solemn(-ity), synogogue, (set) time (appointed).

5a 03259. ya`ad, yaw-ad'; a primitive root; to fix upon (by agreement or appointment); by implication, to meet (at a stated time), to summon (to trial), to direct (in a certain quarter or position), to engage (for marriage):  -agree,(maxke an) appoint(-ment,a time), assemble (selves), betroth, gather (selves, together), meet (together), set (a time).

6 02689. chatsots@rah, khats-o-tser-aw'; by reduplication from 2690; a trumpet (from its sundered or quavering note):--trumpet(-er).


Psalms 8:3; When I consider thy heavens, the work of thy fingers, the moon <yareach>7 and the stars...

7 03394. yareach, yaw-ray'-akh; from the same as 3391; the moon:--moon.

7a 03391. yerach, yeh'-rakh; from a unused root of uncertain signification; a lunation, i.e. month:--month, moon.


Ezra 6:22; And kept the feast <chag>4 of unleavened bread seven days with joy <simchah>8: for the LORD had made them joyful <samach>8b,...  

8 08057. simchah, sim-khaw'; from 8056; blithesomeness or glee, (religious or festival):--X exceeding(-ly), gladness, joy(-fulness), mirth, pleasure, rejoice(-ing).

8a 08056. sameach, saw-may'-akh; from 8055; blithe or gleeful:--(be) glad, joyful, (making) merry((-hearted), -ily), rejoice(-ing).

8b 08055. samach, saw-makh'; a primitive root; probably to brighten up, i.e. (figuratively) be (causatively, make) blithe or gleesome:--cheer up, be (make) glad, (have, make) joy(-ful), be (make) merry, (cause to, make to) rejoice, X very.


Exodus 2:2; And the woman conceived, and bare a son: and when she saw him that he was a goodly child, she hid him three months <yerach>7a.

1 Kings 6:38; And in the eleventh year, in the month <yerach>7a Bul, which is the eighth month <chodesh>2, was the house finished throughout all the parts thereof...

Leviticus 23:24; Speak unto the children of Israel, saying, In the seventh month <chodesh>2, in the first day of the month <chodesh>2, shall ye have a sabbath, a memorial of blowing <t@ruw`ah>9 of trumpets, an holy convocation.

Leviticus 23:34; Speak unto the children of Israel, saying, The fifteenth day of this seventh month <chodesh>2 shall be the feast <chag>4 of tabernacles for seven days unto the LORD.

Numbers 29:1; And in the seventh month <chodesh>2, on the first day of the month <chodesh>2, ye shall have an holy convocation; ye shall do no servile work: it is a day <youm> of blowing <t@ruw`ah>9 the trumpets unto you.

03117. yowm, yome; from an unused root meaning to be hot; a day (as the warm hours), whether literal (from sunrise to sunset, or from one sunset to the next), or figurative (a space of time defined by an associated term), (often used adverb):--age, + always, + chronicals, continually(-ance), daily, ((birth-), each, to) day, (now a, two) days (agone), + elder, X end, + evening, + (for) ever(-lasting, -more), X full, life, as (so) long as (... live), (even) now, + old, + outlived, + perpetually, presently, + remaineth, X required, season, X since, space, then, (process of) time, + as at other times, + in trouble, weather, (as) when, (a, the, within a) while (that), X whole (+ age), (full) year(-ly), + younger.

9 08643. t@ruw`ah, ter-oo-aw'; from 7321; clamor, i.e. acclamation of joy or a battle-cry; especially clangor of trumpets, as an alarum:--alarm, blow(- ing) (of, the) (trumpets), joy, jubile, loud noise, rejoicing, shout(-ing), (high, joyful) sound(-ing).


Summary: There are words used in the Scriptures that relate to the monthly cycles of the moon, which is called a lunation. As indicated in the KJV Scriptures, the Hebrew words that correlate with the different phases of a lunation are <chodesh>2, <kece'>3, and <yerach>7a.

The word <yareach>7 relates directly to the moon itself, as the object which we see moving through the sky. This word is translated in the KJV as 'moon' all 26 times that it's used.

The word <yerach>7a relates to the moon's monthly cycle - a lunation - by which months are determined. Certain phases of its cycle are used to determine the time of a month. This word is translated 2 times as 'moon', and 11 times as 'month'.

The word <chodesh>2 relates to the beginning of a new lunation cycle of the moon which begins a new month, often termed as the 'New Moon', or 'the first day of the month'. At this point the moon is in line between the sun and the earth, darkening it, caused by its own shadow facing toward the earth. This word is translated 21 times as 'new moon', and 253 times as 'month'.

The word <chadash>2a, which is the root of the word <chodesh>2, is translated as 'renewed' 7 times, and as 'repaired' 5 times.

The word <kece'>3 refers to the middle of the moon's lunation cycle, which is termed as the 'Full Moon'. That's when the moon and the sun are on the opposite sides of the earth, and the moon rises just before the sun sets thus reflecting the sun's light, thereby causing the moon to be completely full of light.

As we can see, the words <chodesh>2 and <yerach>7a have been used interchangeably by the translators as 'moon' and/or 'month'. Further study of their usage shows that <yerach>7a relates more specifically to the moon's lunation cycle by which the months are identified, and that its definition does not express any specific days of its cycle or phases. Both of the words <chodesh>2 and <kece'>3 express specific phases of the lunation cycle.

One of the terms that is used to argue that the New Moon IS the Full Moon, is that <chodesh>2 has no direct connection, or root, to the words <yareach>7 and <yerach>7a. Upon reviewing these words in the STRONG's Concordance, the definitions of both of the words <chodesh>2 and <kece'>3 have no direct ties or roots to connect them with the words <yareach>7 and <yerach>7a, and it shows that the definitions of both of these words identify a specific phase of the moon. So using the argument that <chodesh>2 has no ties with <yareach>7 and <yerach>7a as a proof that <chodesh>2 cannot mean New Moon, but that <kece'>3 does, becomes meaningless.

Conclusion: To allow Psalms 81:3 to align with the other Scriptures that also give insight and instructions relating to the Holy Days, the Feast Days, and their appointed times; and considering the role that the moon's lunation cycle plays regarding the setting of their appointed time as to which day of the month to observe them; I believe the meaning of it might be rendered somewhat as follows:

God commands His people to blow the trumpet on the New Moons <chodesh>2 (the first day of the months); on the solemn FEAST <chag>4 days (Days of Unleavened Bread, Pentecost, and the Feast of Tabernacles) of which two fall on a Full Moon <kece'>3 (the First day of Unleavened Bread, and the First day of the Feast of Tabernacles).

Note that the Hebrew word <chag>4 does not designate the Holy Days, but defines a FEAST. The Hebrew word that designates the appointed times in which God's Holy Days are to be observed is <mow`ed>5. In no place in the KJV Scriptures is the word FEAST <chag>4 ascribed directly to the Day of Trumpets, thus making it unlikely that this text singles out the Day of Trumpets; therefore, likewise ruling out the commanding of the Day of Trumpets to be observed on a Full Moon <kece'>3. Thus it would also rule out the concept that Psalm 81:3 commands the Full Moon to mark the first day of a month.

I believe that we can safely conclude that Psalms 81:3 ascribes equally to ALL of God's Holy Days. It doesn't matter whether they fall on the New Moon, on the Full Moon, or in between. Although the Day of Trumpets is not termed as a Feast <chag>4 Day, the instructions in this verse still includes that day because it is one of the solemn days <mow`ed>5, and it falls on a New Moon. That verse together with the context of the rest of that chapter, coupled with the other Scriptures with which it harmonizes; declares that His people are to celebrate ALL of His appointed Holy Days in great gladness and solemnity, in their appointed times.

Just a thought: The world began in darkness and then God made light. The day begins with darkness entering into light. Even though the whole week may pass by in darkness, the Sabbath is always a delight. We enter this world in darkness and then get called into light. Could it be that the month also begins with the dark phase of the moon, thus entering into light?



Scriptures cited from the KJV. All emphasis mine. Words amongst Scriptures in [] are added by me.

Hebrew word definitions are from the STRONG's Concordance. June 2015.