The second of the fall feasts (The Appointed Times of the LORD) is the Day of Atonement––in Hebrew, Yom Kippur. This is the holiest day of the year for Jewish people. It was the only day the High Priest was permitted to enter into the Holy of Holies. The call of God to observe this day is written in Leviticus 23:26-32. However, I draw your attention to Leviticus 16, which describes the activity of the High Priest, which is a prophetic picture of our High Priest Yeshua (Jesus) and what He accomplished on the Cross.
“Aaron shall enter the holy place with this: with a bull for a sin offering and a ram for a burnt offering.” (Leviticus 16:3)
“And he shall take from the congregation of the sons of Israel two male goats for a sin offering and one ram for a burnt offering. Then Aaron shall offer the bull for the sin offering which is for himself, that he may make atonement for himself and for his household. And he shall take the two goats and present them before the LORD at the doorway of the tent of meeting. And Aaron shall cast lots for the two goats, one lot for the LORD and the other lot for the scapegoat. Then Aaron shall offer the goat on which the lot for the LORD fell, and make it a sin offering. But the goat on which the lot for the scapegoat fell, shall be presented alive before the LORD, to make atonement upon it, to send it into the wilderness as the scapegoat.” (Leviticus 16:5-10)
“Then you shall slaughter the goat of the sin offering which is for the people, and bring its blood inside the veil, and do with its blood as he did with the blood of the bull, and sprinkle it on the mercy seat and in front of the mercy seat. And he shall make atonement for the holy place, because of the impurities of the sons of Israel, and because of their transgressions, in regard to all their sins; and thus he shall do for the tent of meeting which abides with them in the midst of their iniquities. When he goes in to make atonement in the holy place, no one shall be in the tent of meeting until he comes out, that he may make atonement for himself and for his household and for all the assembly of Israel. Then he shall go out to the altar that is before the LORD and make atonement for it, and he shall take some of the blood of the bull and of the blood of the goat, and put it on the horns of the altar on all sides. And with his finger he shall sprinkle some of the blood on it seven times, and cleanse it, from the impurities of the sons of Israel consecrate it. When he finishes atoning for the holy place, and the tent of meeting and the altar, he shall offer the live goat. Then Aaron shall lay both of his hands on the head of the live goat, and confess over it all the iniquities of the sons of Israel, and all their transgressions in regard to all their sins and he shall lay them on the head of the goat and send it away into the wilderness by the hand of a man who stands in readiness. And the goat shall bear himself all their iniquities for a solitary land; and he shall release the goat in the wilderness.” (Leviticus 16:15-22)
Can you see the two goats are the prophetic picture of what Yeshua accomplished on the Cross? He is our sacrificial offering! As born again believers, His blood has cleansed us and our sins have been laid on Him just as the sins of the sons of Israel were laid on the scapegoat.
“He made Him who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.” (II Corinthians 5:21)
“And He Himself bore our sins in His body on the cross, that we might die to sin and live to righteousness; for by His wounds we were healed.” (I Peter 2:24)
The roots of the Christian faith are Hebraic!
In Leviticus 16:21 we read the High Priest laid his hands on the scapegoat and confessed over it the iniquities, transgressions and sins of the sons of Israel. I want to point out to you the frequency of these three words and how they are used together: iniquities, transgressions and sins.
“(5) He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities. (6) The LORD laid on Him the iniquities of us all. (8) For the transgression of my people was He stricken. (12) And He bare the sins of many, and made intercession for the transgressors.” (Isaiah 53:5,6,8,12)
“How blessed is he whose transgression is forgiven whose sin is covered. How blessed is the man to whom the LORD does not impute iniquity and in whose spirit there is no deceit.” (Psalm 32:1,2)
“I acknowledged my sin to Thee, And my iniquity I did not hide; I said, ’I will confess my transgressions to the LORD;’ And Thou did forgive the guilt of my sin.” (Psalm 32:5)
“The LORD, the LORD GOD, compassionate and gracious, slow to anger, and abounding in lovingkindness and truth, who keeps lovingkindness for thousands, who forgives iniquity, transgression and sin…” (Exodus 34:6,7)
“Be gracious to me, O God, according to Thy lovingkindness; According to the greatness of Thy compassion blot out my transgressions. Wash me thoroughly from my iniquity, And cleanse me from my sin. For I know my transgressions, And my sin is ever before me.” (Psalm 51:1-3)
The Scriptures above speaking of iniquities, transgressions and sins are all Old Testament Scriptures, yet they are applicable to us all today. The Word of God clearly teaches us: ‘a little leaven leavens the whole lump’ (Galatians 5:9). Let us take the opportunity on The Day of Atonement––Yom Kippur to receive the fullness of the LORD GOD’s atoning power.
“Today, if you hear His voice, do not harden your hearts” (Hebrews 4:7)