Dear Readers, Beloved of God,
Welcome! I pray you have been blessed beyond measure from these teachings. I have been notified that I have readers all over the world and for that I am truly thankful to God the Father! Our God is concerned for each and every one of us regardless of where we call “home” on this earth! His love runs far and wide! Just think, I can pray for you right here in Georgia (United States) and in less than milliseconds it reaches you wherever you may be. What an awesome God we serve!
I must admit that today I find myself a bit “giddy”. For those of you who may not know, “giddy” is the equivalent of “excitement” or “joyful”. I have the song of Jesus in my heart and I can just about hear that trumpet blow! Jesus is returning soon my friends and what a wonderful time that will be! Well, shall we begin in our traditional manner?
Father, in the name of Jesus I pray, asking that You open our spiritual eyes and ears as we engage again in the study of Your Holy Word. Let not one soul leave this teaching unfulfilled. Speak to us Mighty God! Our hearts are open and our minds as sponges. Fill us to overflowing! Father I ask that if any person reads these teachings and does not have a relationship with You, that You would melt their heart and again introduce Yourself to them. The days are short and the harvest is plenty. Send forth laborers into Your fields. And as they go forth surround them with protection, Wisdom, strength and power in Your Holy Spirit! I love You Father and it is with thankful hearts we pray.
The Feast of Atonement (The Day of Atonement):
I must warn you ahead of time, that if any of these teachings will set your spirit on fire, this is it! So prepare yourself for excitement! What you will learn here will forever change your entire vision! Shall we begin?
“And the Lord spoke to Moses, saying: “Also the tenth day of this seventh month shall be the Day of Atonement. It shall be a holy convocation for you; you shall afflict your souls, and offer an offering made by fire to the Lord. And you shall do no work on that same day, for it is the Day of Atonement, to make atonement for you before the Lord your God. For any person who is not afflicted in soul on that same day shall be cut off from his people. And any person who does any work on that same day, that person I will destroy from among his people. You shall do no manner of work; it shall be a statute forever throughout your generations in all your dwellings. It shall be to you a Sabbath of solemn rest, and you shall afflict your souls; on the ninth day of the month at evening, from evening to evening, you shall celebrate your Sabbath.”
(Leviticus 23:26-32) NKJV
To help us better understand the meaning, impact, and beauty of the “The Day of Atonement”, I would like to provide the Hebrew meaning of two words from the above scripture; “Atonement” and “Afflict”.
Atonement in Hebrew is defined as “expiation” “reconciliation” or “to make amends or reparations for”. It is also the equivalent of “expunge”, as used in criminal and civil law. If you have been “expunged”, you are cleared of any wrongdoing and your record wiped clean. Now let’s look at “afflict” in the Hebrew; “to be bowed down, humbled, or meek.” It kind of suggests being “brought to our knees” don’t you think?
The Day of Atonement in the Old Testament:
The following scriptures describe the Atonement Day celebration and how it was to be performed:
“He shall take the two goats and present them before the Lord at the door of the tabernacle of meeting. Then Aaron shall cast lots for the two goats: one lot for the Lord and the other lot for the scapegoat. And Aaron shall bring the goat on which the Lord’s lot fell, and offer it as a sin offering. But the goat on which the lot fell to be the scapegoat shall be presented alive before the Lord, to make atonement upon it, and to let it go as the scapegoat into the wilderness.”
(Leviticus 16:7-10) NKJV
“Then he shall kill the goat of the sin offering, which is for the people, bring its blood inside the veil, do with that blood as he did with the blood of the bull, and sprinkle it on the mercy seat and before the mercy seat. So he shall make atonement for the Holy Place, because of the uncleanness of the children of Israel, and because of their transgressions, for all their sins; and so he shall do for the tabernacle of meeting which remains among them in the midst of their uncleanness.”
The High Priest, Aaron, was to select two goats for a sin offering for the people and present them before God. Aaron was to “cast lots” to select the “one for the Lord” as a sacrifice. This goat represented Jesus who would be sacrificed for our sins. The blood of this goat was taken into the “Most Holy Place” (beyond the veil) and sprinkled on the “Mercy Seat”. The Mercy Seat represents a “type” of the throne of God!
The goat on which the lot fell was the “scapegoat”. The scapegoat was to be presented to the Lord alive to make atonement upon it and then released into the wilderness. Aaron was to lay both hands on the scapegoat and confess all the wickedness and rebellion of Israel, “putting them on the goats head.” This goat would “carry” on itself all the sins to a solitary place. The “scapegoat” (has also been called “the goat of departure”) represents Satan, who bears the responsibility for the sins of humanity because of the deception he has brought to mankind.
This live released “scapegoat”, is the symbolism of the fate of Satan and his demons, which will be removed at the reign of Jesus over all the nations:
“Then I saw an angel coming down from heaven, having the key to the bottomless pit and a great chain in his hand. He laid hold of the dragon, that serpent of old, who is the Devil and Satan, and bound him for a thousand years; and he cast him into the bottomless pit, and shut him up, and set a seal on him, so that he should deceive the nations no more…”
(Revelation 20:1-3) NKJV
Complete global reconciliation to God cannot occur until the cause of so much sin and suffering has been locked away! The devil blinds people of the understanding of God’s truth:
“But even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled to those who are perishing, whose minds the god of this age has blinded, who do not believe, lest the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine on them.”
(II Corinthians 4:3-4) NKJV
The Apostle Paul warns us that Satan can present himself as righteous to lead people astray, to be aware of his deceitful methods, and confirms that our battle is spiritual:
“And no wonder! For Satan himself transforms himself into an angel of light. Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also transform themselves into ministers of righteousness, whose end will be according to their works.”
(II Corinthians 11:14-15) NKJV
“But I fear, lest somehow, as the serpent deceived Eve by his craftiness, so your minds may be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ. For if he who comes preaches another Jesus whom we have not preached, or if you receive a different spirit which you have not received, or a different gospel which you have not accepted —you may well put up with it!”
(II Corinthians 11:3-4) NKJV (Emphasis mine)
“For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places.”
(Ephesians 6:12) NKJV
The Day of Atonement through New Testament Eyes:
We have already seen through the symbolism of “Passover” that Christ’s shed blood atones for our sins past, present, and future. The Day of Atonement symbolizes the reconciliation of God to all humanity. Both Passover and The Day of Atonement teach us the forgiveness of sin and reconciliation with God through Jesus’ sacrifice! Passover concerns the redemption of the “Firstborn” and applies most directly to Christians whom God called in this age, while Atonement carries universal implications.
Sin does not occur without a cause! This feast day not only symbolizes the forgiveness of sin, but also the removal of the primary cause of sin- Satan and his demons. Until God removes the primary cause of sin, mankind will continue to struggle with and battle this dreadful disease. How do we experience the removal of sin while we remain on the earth? Simply BELIEVE and RECEIVE!
The high priest of the Old Testament acted out the function Christ performed for repentant Christians. Having ascended to the very throne of God to present His own precious blood sacrifice, His blood! Jesus now intercedes for us- as He has since His resurrection- as our High Priest!
The book of Hebrews makes this symbolism quite clear:
“But Christ came as High Priest of the good things to come, with the greater and more perfect tabernacle not made with hands, that is, not of this creation. Not with the blood of goats and calves, but with His own blood He entered the Most Holy Place once for all, having obtained eternal redemption.”
HALLEJUAH! PRAISE GOD! THANK YOU JESUS!
Many verses in Hebrews speak of Christ’s role as our High Priest and intercessor. Because of the sacrifice He made for us we can boldly approach the throne of grace!
“Seeing then that we have a great High Priest who has passed through the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our confession. For we do not have a High Priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but was in all points tempted as we are, yet without sin. Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need.”
(Hebrews 4:14-16) NKJV
The Day of Atonement pictures the loving reconciliation that all people can have with God through the sacrifice of Jesus. We would look in vain in the New Testament to find the “fulfillment” of Atonement by the “church”, because it was something that only Jesus Christ could do Himself!
As we see, the slain goat of the Old Testament represented the sacrifice of Jesus in our place, Who took upon Himself the death penalty we have earned by our sins. But He did not stay dead; He came back to resurrected life, ascended to the Father in heaven, and sprinkled His own Blood on the throne, The Mercy Seat of God!
Beloved, I warned you that this teaching would excite you! But that is okay because it’s something to get excited and shout about! The Blood of Jesus Christ has paid the price for all the sins of humanity!
Until we meet again, I pray the abundant blessings of God over each one of you. From near to far may you come to know the only true and living God, Jesus Christ! Next is the seventh and last of this series, The Feast of Tabernacles. Please come back and join me for our conclusion…