and on to Jerusalem. (Acts 20:3-5, 17, 22) There Trophimus was seen with Paul, and when Paul took several others along with him into the temple grounds the Jews thought that Trophimus, a Gentile, went beyond the Court of the Gentiles, thereby defiling the temple. On this false assumption they mobbed Paul. (Acts 21:26-30; 24:6) Some years later, after Paul’s first imprisonment, Trophimus traveled with him again. But when they got to Miletus, not far from Trophimus’ hometown, Trophimus became sick and was unable to continue.—2 Tim. 4:20.
[Heb., hhatso·tserahʹ; Gr., salʹpigx].
Before Israel had broken camp for the first time in the wilderness, Jehovah commanded Moses to make “two trumpets of silver . . . of hammered work.” (Num. 10:1-10, 13) Although no further description of the instruments is given, coins circulated at the time of the Maccabees and a relief on the Arch of Titus picture the trumpets as being from about eighteen inches to three feet (45.7 to 91.4 centimeters) in length, straight, ending in a bell. Josephus states that there was a slight expansion near the mouthpiece and that the bore was only a little wider than a flute, which would likely produce a shrill, high tone. At the inauguration of Solomon’s temple, 120 trumpets were played.—2 Chron. 5:12.
Three signals are described, employing two methods of playing: (1) blowing both trumpets called all the representative men of the whole assembly of Israel to the tent of meeting; (2) blowing one trumpet would summon only the chieftains who were heads over thousands; and (3) blowing fluctuating blasts signaled the breaking up of camp.—Num. 10:3-7.
Jehovah further directed that in times of war the trumpets should sound a “war call.” (Num. 10:9) This was done thereafter by the priest accompanying the army. (Num. 31:6) Abijah of Judah, when seeking to avert war with Jeroboam of Israel, pointed to these “trumpets for sounding the battle alarm” as a divine assurance of victory in warfare for Judah. When Jeroboam stubbornly persisted in his aggression, his forces were defeated by a Judean army that had been greatly encouraged by the priests’ “loudly sounding the trumpets.”—2 Chron. 13:12-15.
Trumpets were included among the musical instruments in the temple. (2 Chron. 5:11-13) The trumpeters were sons of Aaron, the priests. (Num. 10:8; 2 Chron. 29:26; Ezra 3:10; Neh. 12:40, 41) Every account where the trumpet (hhatso·tserahʹ) is mentioned without the priests being clearly identified as the players is an event of national importance when the presence of the priests would be expected. It is therefore reasonable to suppose that they were the ones playing the trumpets. (2 Chron. 15:14; 20:28; 23:13; compare 1 Chronicles 15:24 with verse 28.) There is a possibility, though, that a variety of trumpets existed, and some of these may have been possessed by nonpriests.
Jesus told his hearers not to blow a trumpet to attract attention to one’s acts of charity in imitation of hypocrites. (Matt. 6:2) It is generally suggested that the trumpet is here used metaphorically, Jesus warning against ostentatiousness in making gifts of mercy.
The Hebrew term ʼemethʹ, often rendered “truth,” may designate that which is firm, trustworthy, stable, faithful, true or established fact. (Ex. 18:21; 34:6; Deut. 13:14; 17:4; 22:20; Josh. 2:12; 2 Chron. 18:15; 31:20; Neh. 7:2; 9:33; Esther 9:30; Ps. 15:2; Eccl. 12:10; Jer. 9:5) The Greek word a·leʹthei·a stands in contrast with falsehood or unrighteousness and denotes that which conforms to fact or to what is right and proper. (Mark 5:33; 12:32; Luke 4:25; John 3:21; Rom. 2:8; 1 Cor. 13:6; Phil. 1:18; 2 Thess. 2:10, 12; 1 John 1:6, 8; 2:4, 21) A number of other original-language expressions can, depending upon the context, also be translated “truth.”
JEHOVAH, THE GOD OF TRUTH
Jehovah is the “God of truth.” (Ps. 31:5) He is faithful in all his dealings. His promises are sure, for he cannot lie. (Num. 23:19; 1 Sam. 15:29; Ps. 89:35; Titus 1:2; Heb. 6:17, 18) He judges according to truth, that is, according to the way things really are, and not on the basis of outward appearance. (Rom. 2:2; compare John 7:24.) Everything that emanates from him is pure and without defect. His judicial decisions, law, commandments and word are truth. (Neh. 9:13; Ps. 19:9; 119:142, 151, 160) They are always right and proper, and stand in opposition to all unrighteousness and error.
The creative works testify to the fact that God exists. But, according to Paul, even certain of those people who “knew God” suppressed this truth. Rather than serving God in harmony with the truth concerning his eternal power and Godship, they made idols and worshiped these. Being no real gods, idols were an untruth, a lie or falsehood. (Jer. 10:14) Hence, these persons, though having the truth of God, exchanged it “for the lie and venerated and rendered sacred service to the creation rather than the One who created.” Their turning to the falsehood of idolatry led them into all kinds of degraded practices.—Rom. 1:18-31.
Man’s sinfulness makes God’s truthfulness stand out
The degraded practices of non-Jews and the disobedience of the Jews to God’s law in no way brought harm to the Creator personally. Instead, his truthfulness, holiness and righteousness stood out in sharp contrast, and this to his glory. But the fact that man’s wrongdoing makes God’s righteousness stand out in even greater prominence provides no basis for claiming that God is unjust in executing an adverse judgment against wrongdoers. Being a creation of God, a person has no right to harm himself by sinning.
The above is the argument that Paul used in his letter to the Romans, saying: “If our unrighteousness brings God’s righteousness to the fore, what shall we say? God is not unjust when he vents his wrath, is he? (I am speaking as a man does.) Never may that happen! How, otherwise, will God judge the world? Yet if by reason of my lie [compare Psalm 62:9] the truth of God has been made more prominent to his glory, why am I also yet being judged as a sinner? And why not say, just as it is falsely charged to us and just as some men state that we say: ‘Let us do the bad things that the good things may come’? The judgment against those men is in harmony with justice.” (Rom. 3:5-8) God has delivered his people, not for a course of sin, but for a life of righteousness, that they may glorify Him. The apostle says later in his letter: “Neither go on presenting your members to sin as weapons of unrighteousness, but present yourselves to God as those alive from the dead, also your members to God as weapons of righteousness.”—Rom. 6:12, 13.
JESUS CHRIST IS “THE TRUTH”
Like his Father Jehovah, Jesus Christ is “full of undeserved kindness and truth.” (John 1:14; Eph. 4:21) While on earth, he always spoke the truth as he had received it from his Father. (John 8:40, 45, 46) “He committed no sin, nor was deception found in his mouth.” (1 Pet. 2:22) Jesus represented things as they really were. Besides being ‘full of truth,’ Jesus was himself “the truth,” and truth came through him. He declared: “I am the way and the truth and the life.” (John 14:6) And the apostle John wrote: “The Law was given through Moses, the undeserved kindness and the truth came to be through Jesus Christ.”—John 1:17.