Hold fast the form of sound words, which thou hast heard of me, in faith and love which is in Christ Jesus (2 Timothy 1:13)

Yom Kippur

Tuesday, October 03, 2006
where's the Atonement???

So yesterday was Yom Kippur, or translated into English, the Day of Atonement. This Jewish holiday actually has a holy origin; the day was instituted by God.

"Aaron shall make an atonement upon the horns of it (the altar) once in a year with the blood of the sin offering of atonements: once in the year shall he make atonement upon it throughout your generations: it is most holy unto the LORD." (Exodus 30:10)

"On the tenth day of this seventh month there shall be a day of atonement: it shall be an holy convocation unto you; and ye shall afflict your souls, and offer an offering made by fire unto the LORD. And ye shall do no work in that same day: for it is a day of atonement, to make an atonement for you before the LORD your God. For whatsoever soul it be that shall not be afflicted in that same day, he shall be cut off from among his people. And whatsoever soul it be that doeth any work in that same day, the same soul will I destroy from among his people. Ye shall do no manner of work: it shall be a statute for ever throughout your generations in all your dwellings. It shall be unto you a sabbath of rest, and ye shall afflict your souls: in the ninth day of the month at even, from even unto even, shall ye celebrate your sabbath." (Leviticus 23:27-32)

"Ye shall have on the tenth day of this seventh month an holy convocation; and ye shall afflict your souls: ye shall not do any work therein: but ye shall offer a burnt offering unto the LORD for a sweet savour; one young bullock, one ram, and seven lambs of the first year; they shall be unto you without blemish: and their meat offering shall be of flour mingled with oil, three tenth deals to a bullock, and two tenth deals to one ram, a several tenth deal for one lamb, throughout the seven lambs: one kid of the goats for a sin offering; beside the sin offering of atonement, and the continual burnt offering, and the meat offering of it, and their drink offerings." (Numbers 29:7-11)

Now Christians don't celebrate Yom Kippur. We don't have an annual ritual for the atonement of sin. Our atonement, or more precisely, our reconciliation to God is a fait accomplie in the sacrifice of the Cross. The Day of Atonement, according to New Testament teaching, was but a type, a picture of what the Lord Jesus Christ was going to accomplish at His first coming.

"Let no man therefore judge you in meat, or in drink, or in respect of an holyday, or of the new moon, or of the sabbath days: which are a shadow of things to come; but the body is of Christ." (Colossians 2:16-17)

"For the law having a shadow of good things to come, and not the very image of the things, can never with those sacrifices which they offered year by year continually make the comers thereunto perfect. For then would they not have ceased to be offered? because that the worshippers once purged should have had no more conscience of sins. But in those sacrifices there is a remembrance again made of sins every year. For it is not possible that the blood of bulls and of goats should take away sins." (Hebrews 10:1-4)

Now to get the whole picture of just how Christians view the Day of Atonement, one must really read Hebrews 9 and Hebrews 10 in their entirety. Actually, reading the whole book of Hebrews would be profitable.

So what's my point? The Jews believe in observing the Day of Atonement, and Christians do not. So what?

Question: Where's the atonement?

Christians profess that Jesus provided a perfect, complete and eternal reconciliation to all His saints. He provided this by offering Himself, through the eternal Spirit, without spot to God (Hebrew 9:14). This was done as His blood was shed on the Cross of Calvary. The Lamb of God was sacrificed for God's people. Past, present and future.

Where is the Atonement for the Jews? There is no sacrifice, there is no temple (there is actually an abominable mosque on the temple mount), there is no high priest... nothing. What do the Jews do on Yom Kippur? They go to the synagogue, they pray a bit, some may actually fast, some will wear religious garments, and many will read portions of Old Testament scripture. All very nice and sweet stuff, but NO ATONEMENT.

"He answered and said unto them, Well hath Esaias prophesied of you hypocrites, as it is written, This people honoureth me with their lips, but their heart is far from me. Howbeit in vain do they worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men. For laying aside the commandment of God, ye hold the tradition of men, as the washing of pots and cups: and many other such like things ye do. And he said unto them, Full well ye reject the commandment of God, that ye may keep your own tradition." (Mark 7:6-9)

This rebuke, which the Lord Jesus directed at the unbelieveing Jews, is still quite applicable to the unbelieveing Jews of our day. You see, Yom Kippur is no longer the biblical "Day of Atonement", it is a vain religious day in which the unbelieving follow the vain words of men (the Talmud). That's how it is in false religion. Whether it be Romanism, Judaism, Mormonism or any other "-ism" which replaces the plain and clear teachings of God, which can be found in the pages of the Bible, for the deceitful and vain words of men.

Friends, don't run after false religions. They are empty and they are wicked. Open your Bibles, read the sacred pages, and prosper.

"Ye shall walk after the LORD your God, and fear him, and keep his commandments, and obey his voice, and ye shall serve him, and cleave unto him." (Deuteronomy 13:4)