[Prayer] Our heavenly Father we come Thee in the name of our Lord and savior Jesus Christ, our great high priest, who ever lives to make intercession for us. And we thank Thee for the sacrificial work that he has accomplished by which we had been redeemed and upon the basis which in our acts as our high priest. We thank Thee for a priest who makes intercession for us who also acts as our advocate and we thank Thee, Lord, for the assurance that our problems are resting in the secure hands of someone who is not only one of us and, therefore, able to sympathize but also one with Thee and possessed of the power to satisfy all of the desires of his heart. Again, we ask, Lord, that Thou give us understanding as we look into the Scriptures, enable us to understand these passages from the Book of Leviticus which so wonderfully foreshadow all of the ministry of our great priest. And so we ask, Lord, Thy blessing upon this hour and upon the hour that follows. May Thy name be honored and glorified in all that is said.
For Jesus’ sake. Amen.
[Message] Tonight is the first of two studies in the Day of Atonement and we’re turning to Leviticus chapter 16, and looking at the opening part of this chapter tonight and then next week we shall conclude our study of this chapter by looking primarily at the remainder of the chapter and some of the typical significance of the ministry of Aaron as the great high priest on this day which we do not cover for tonight. So take your Bibles and turn with me Leviticus chapter 16.
You know, from the study of the Old Testament that Israel was given seven important festivals or feasts. The first of these was the feast of the Passover celebrated on the fourteenth day of the month, Nisan, which is equivalent to roughly our April although the date of the fourteenth of Nisan may vary from April on into the first of May. The second of the feasts was the Feast of Unleavened Bread which began on the fifteenth day nysam and continued for one week. Passover suggests the death of Christ and the Feast of Unleavened Bread is designed to represent the life of the believer and holiness having come to know the Lord Jesus as the Passover lamb who was sacrificed for us. Then there was the Feast of First Fruits which occurred on the sixteenth day of nysam. So three of the feasts took place within three days. Then fifty days later there was the feast of Pentecost. All of these I’m sure you’re acquainted with from the Bible because we have the Feast of the Passover and the death of our Lord, the Feast of Unleavened Bread which began on that Friday night after his crucifixion continued for a week, the Feast of First Fruits beginning on the first day of the week the day of the resurrection and the first fruits is a symbol or a type of the resurrection of our Lord.
Fifty days later the Feast of Pentecost occurred on the day of the Feast of Pentecost according to Acts chapter 2, that feast was designed to represent the union of the Jew and Gentile in the one body and so it illustrates what did take place on the Day of Pentecost when the Holy Spirit came and formed the church on that particular day. Then for several months there are no feasts until finally the seventh the month of Tishrei, three more feasts take place. The fact that the last three feasts are reserved for a later time in Israel’s calendar the seventh month to be exact and the fact that there is a period of time of some length that intervenes between the fourth feast and the last three of the seven would suggest that these feasts are to occur later on in the history of the Jewish people.
On the first day of the month Tishrei there was the Feast of Trumpets and then on the tenth day the feast of the Day of Atonement and finally on the fifteenth day the Feast of Tabernacles. Trumpets suggest to us the regathering of the nation Israel. Atonement suggests, of course, the application of the benefits of the work of Christ to the remnant of Israel and the Feast of Tabernacles is a beautiful illustration of the kingdom of our Lord and the dwelling of the redeemed on the land.
The greatest day of the Jewish New Year was Yom Kippur or the Day of Atonement. It is called in chapter 23 in verse 27, the day of expiations. There it is called yom hag purim. The plural being used and so the stress of the Day of Atonement rests upon the expiation or atonement of Israel’s sin. Kippurim suggests the idea of atonement. We have already talked about the Hebrew verb kafar and what it means and this is a noun built upon that particular stem. In the Talmud, the Day of Atonement was so reckoned to be so important among the children of Israel that it was called not simply the Day of Atonement but “the day.” And the children of Israel knew what day was referred to when it was referred to the day. The true Day of Atonement in the typical anticipation or the typical fulfillment is the Day of Calvary.
Now, it is as I said the holiest day in Israel. It was spent it is spent today in prayer, fasting, and in exercises which are thought to bring reconciliation with God. It is, I think, a very striking thing that today we do not have in the celebration of Yom Kippur any of the celebration of the ritual that is set forth here in the sixteenth chapter of the Book of Leviticus. All of this which still stands in the Old Testament which Israel is supposed to observe is unobserved today.
Now, I said the true day of the Day of Atonement is Calvary but at the same time I think it is also true to say that it refers principally to the future or Israel’s national day of reconciliation which is to come when at the second advent of the Lord Jesus they look upon him whom they have pierced and mourn over him in a great national day of repentance preceding the establishment of our Lord’s kingdom upon the earth. Zechariah says that at that time the iniquity of the land shall be removed in one day. That is the great Day of Atonement for Israel.
One might ask the question well how is possible for the Day of Atonement to be both future and Calvary. And I would like to explain that by the use of a biblical illustration. You’ll remember in the story of Ishmael in the Old Testament in Genesis chapter 21, Sarah turned against Hagar and as a result a conflict took place between Ishmael and Isaac. In Genesis chapter 21 in verse 8, we read.
“And the child grew and was weaned, and Abraham made a great feast on the day that Isaac was weaned. Now, Sarah saw the son of Hagar the Egyptian whom she had born to Abraham mocking.” [Later on as we study Galatians we’ll see that this has a relationship to the problem of law and grace.] But Sarah saw Ishmael mocking Isaac; therefore, she said to Abraham drive out this maid and her son for the son of this maid shall not be an heir with my son Isaac. Abraham loved Ishmael and so he was very disturbed over this and he asked or rather the Lord appeared to him and said, ‘Don’t be distressed because of the lad and your maid. Whatever Sarah tells you listen to her.’”
As if the Lord had to tell Abraham that he had been doing that all his life listening to Sarah] [laughter] but anyway he said, “Whatever Sarah tells you, listen to her.” That verse incidentally does not have universal application but only specific reference to this situation.
“Now, a result was that as God spoke to Abraham he said that Ishmael was to be sent out and Hagar and Ishmael went out into the desert. After all of their water had been drunk and it became clear to Hagar that Ishmael and she were going to die she went and sat down opposite him about a bowshot away for she said, ‘Do not let me see the boy die.’ And she sat opposite him, and lifted up her voice and wept. God heard the lad crying; and the angel of God called to Hagar from heaven and said to her, ‘What is the matter with you, Hagar? Do not fear, for God has heard the voice of the lad where he is. Arise, lift up the lad, and hold him by the hand, for I will make a great nation of him.’ [Then notice the words of Genesis chapter 21 in verse 19,] “Then God opened her eyes and she saw a well of water; and she went and filled the skin with water and gave the lad a drink.”
Now, taking those words as they stand it would appear that this well of water was there all along but at the precise moment when it was needed God illuminated Hagar so that she saw the well that had been there all that time. Now, I take it that that illustrates the fact of Calvary and Israel’s great day of national reconciliation that is to follow in the future. Calvary has been here ever since our Lord came and suffered upon it but Israel does not see. Israel’s eyes are blind just as Hagar’s were to the well but the day is coming when the Lord is going to open the eyes of Israel. They shall look at him whom they have pierced. They shall see him as the messiah whom they have crucified and in the 13th chapter in the Book of Zechariah after that it is said in that day a fountain will opened for the house of David and for the inhabitants of Jerusalem for sin and for impurity. In other words, the fulfillment of the promises of Israel’s national reconciliation shall take place then but the fountain that is opened then is really or has really been opened in the past at Calvary. It is then that Israel comes to understand.
This past week I read a little book on the celebration of Yom Kippur by a Jewish rabbi. I was interested particularly to see what he would say about the sacrifices of the 16th chapter of Leviticus. It’s a rather extensive description of what takes place when the Day of Atonement come around in the Jewish year but I was not surprised, although I guess one should be surprised, no reference whatsoever was made to the fact that in the 16th chapter in the Book of Leviticus God sets forth a whole series of sacrifices that are to take place on that day. It is obvious that Israel does not today fulfill her own Old Testament law. She does not keep the Scriptures. Of course, in a sense she cannot keep the Scriptures but she does not keep the Scriptures and she does not even mourn the fact that she is unable to carry out the ritual of the Day of Atonement which still stands in the Old Testament or their Bible which many of them claim to adhere to. Not one explanation of the atoning offerings. They do not exist for the nation Israel. At the conclusion of the particular book, it was stated that the hope of Israel rests in two things. It rests in the fasting and the repentance that takes place on that day and death. What a gloomy hope for a nation that had such a beautiful revelation of a coming redeemer.
Well, now let’s look at the 16th chapter and what I want to do in the time that we have tonight is to read through a few of the verses point out some of the things that occur in the opening verses that illustrate our Lord’s ministry and say a word about the ritual of the day.
Now, beginning at verse 1.
“Now, the Lord spoke to Moses after the death of the two sons of Aaron.”
Now, there may be a connection between the death of Nadab and Abihu and the 16th chapter that would seem to be the point that should be made by the mention of them here and the dating of the revelation concerning the Day of Atonement by their death. And if that is so then it would be connected in this way. The fact the he opens by saying, “The Lord spoke to Moses after the death of the two sons of Aaron,” shows the importance and the holiness attached to entrance into the sanctuary on the Day of Atonement. Nadab and Abihu had with strange fire sought to offer to the Lord and here in the context of a false entrance into the holiest God speaks to Israel concerning the Day of Atonement. So, “the Lord spoke to Moses after the death of the two sons of Aaron.”
It is a very important thing to enter into the sanctuary which typifies the presence of the Lord and no unholy person can do that. When they had approached the presence of the Lord and died and the Lord said to Moses, “Tell your brother Aaron that he shall not enter at any time into the holy place inside the veil before the mercy seat which is on the arc lest he die for I will appear in the cloud over the mercy seat.” There are several things here in this text I think call for attention. Notice he says that Aaron shall not enter at any time into the holy place. Now, what he is saying as is evident from the rest of this chapter is that Aaron could only enter into the holy place on one day out of the year. Now, he entered the holy place several times on that one day. As a matter of fact, he entered it at least three and probably four times on this one day but only on this one day was the high priest able to enter into the holiest of all -- that part of the Tabernacle in which was contained the Ark of the Covenant and the mercy seat and the cherubim overshadowing. So only on one day shall the priest enter into the holiest of all. Now, that in itself tells us that access in the Old Testament was incomplete.
Now, the point of it would seem to suggest that the Old Testament revelation is an incomplete revelation. It is an unfinished revelation. The New Testament revelation is the complete and final one. Furthermore, he says, “lest he die,” stressing the fact that to enter into the presence of God out of order, contrary to the prescription set forth in the word of God is to expose oneself to death for no one can stand in the presence of the Lord on the basis of his own righteousness.
Now, one of the reasons why or he goes on to explain the reasons why this is so in that last clause he says, “For I.” Now, I think you should underline that I because that’s the point, “For I will appear in the cloud over the mercy seat.” So the reason that Aaron was not allowed to go into the holiest of all except on this one day is because that was the place where God dwelt. I will appear in the cloud over the mercy seat. Incidentally, the cloud is not the cloud of incense which he will bring in later as some of the Jewish interpreters contended but is rather the kind of glory that overshadows the mercy seat symbolic and also that which contained the presence of God. Reading on in the 3rd verse, “Aaron shall enter the holy place with this.”
The New American Standard Bible properly has a colon after this because this includes all of the other prescriptions of this chapter. “Aaron shall enter the holy place with this,” all the requirements that are set forth as following not only the change of garments but also the particular animals that by which obtained access and also reconciliation for the people. “Aaron shall enter the holy place with this: with a bull for a sin offering and a ram for a burnt offering. He shall put on the holy linen tunic, and the linen undergarments shall be next to his body, and he shall be girded with the linen sash and attired with the linen turban (these are holy garments), then he shall bathe his body in water and put them on.”
Now, there are two or three things in this verse that are interesting but before we look at the specifics let me remind you that it is clear from these opening verses that it is not Israel that has established the priesthood nor has Israel set forth the conditions for access into the presence of God. It is God who has called the priests to the office and it is God who sets out the conditions for entrance into the presence of God. This has some very important application to us today. No man has the right of himself to lay down conditions for access into the presence of God. No man has any right to say now God ought to save people on this basis and he ought to permit men to enter into his presence on these conditions. That does not rest with us. That rests with God. He is the sovereign God who has absolute authority over the means of access to him, and the basis upon which we can have fellowship with him.
The person who says that we ought to have fellowship with God if we repent of our sins apart from any atonement for our past guilt and condemnation is laying down a set of conditions which have proceeded from human autonomy and not divine autonomy, or a person, to put it more simply, the person who says that we ought to give to heaven and to have access with God on the basis of good works is laying down his own conditions for access into the presence of God and the enjoyment of fellowship with him. He comes under the same condemnation that a Nadab and Abihu would come under for falsely seeking to enter the holy place or Aaron too if he had sought to enter on any other day then on the Day of Atonement. You see it is God who is the king and the God and it is his sovereign right to lay down conditions for access and fellowship. And he’s laid them down very plainly and very clearly. He said I am the way the Lord Jesus has said as the spokesman for our triune God, I am the way the truth and the light no man cometh under the Father but by me. The apostles reiterate this. “Neither is their salvation in any other for there is none other name under heaven given among men whereby we may be saved.” So the conditions are set forth plainly by God and they are laid out here for Aaron. He is not to enter into the holiest of all at any time only on the Day of Atonement. This one day out of the year he has the right to enter on certain conditions then into the holiest of all.
Furthermore, even on that day he must change his clothes. Now, Aaron ordinarily wore the clothes of a layman and as he wore ordinary clothes. He wore a sport coat or he may have worn a sport shirt. He dressed like other people except when he was carrying out his priestly ministry. Now, when he carry out his priestly he wore garments of glory and beauty. They were particularly noted for the gold that was contained within them. They were beautiful. It was a very beautiful outfit. But on the Day of Atonement he was to lay that aside and to use these linen garments that were pure white garments. Listen to it, “He shall put on the holy linen tunic, and the linen undergarments shall be next to his body, and he shall be girded with the linen sash and attired with the linen turban, these are holy garments, then he shall bathe his body in water and put them on.” That word bathe is the Hebrew word rachats which means essentially “to bathe all over.” You can tell that because he says he shall bathe the body not just his fingers or not just his feet not just the parts of his body but he shall bathe all over. And it has been estimated that on the Day of Atonement they bathed because they had to bathe every time they changed the garments and they changed the garments several times on this day. It has been estimated by some that he had to bathe himself ten times. Others say no it’s only five but that’s quite a number of baptisms to undergo on one day.
By the way, I’ve heard some Jewish men argue that the proper method for baptism is immersion because the priests were bathed all over when they carried out their functions. When they went into the ministry of priesthood and were ordained to it and also on the Day of Atonement. That’s probably not too cogent and argument but nevertheless it may have some point. So he had to bathe, by the way, well I’ll talk about that in just a moment, we’ll come back and mention this when we talk about the ritual. So he should bathe his body in water, put off the regular garments of the priesthood, and put on these special garments which were the holy garments to be used on the Day of Atonement. Now, these garments were noted for there whiteness and he says it signifies holiness. So the antitype of it is very plain. It is a reference to our Lord Jesus Christ who is the priest that is absolutely holy.
Now, in Hebrews chapter 7, the writer of that epistle and all through this section he has the Day of Atonement in the background of his thought as he illustrates the work of the priest. In chapter 7 in verse 26 in the Epistle to the Hebrews, he writes, “For it was fitting for us to have such a high priest, holy.” This word used here to express holiness is not the word that simply means set apart hagios. The word that is used of the saints of God but it is a word hagneia which refers to an inherent kind of purity. It’s the purity not of separation for a particular task although that, of course, would be applicable to our Lord but it is the purity of the inherent moral perfection of our Lord Jesus holy innocent undefiled separated from sinners and exalted above the heavens. So he puts on the holy garments for the carrying out of the ritual of the Day of Atonement which in themselves point to the absolute holiness of our Lord Jesus. Now, we must have a holy priest because our holy priest is to be not only the priest but the offering as well and it is only a holy offering that is able by God’s prescriptions to gain expiation and reconciliation and redemption for us.
Let me now say just a word of two about the order of events on this day. Seven days before the Day of Atonement the priest in the later days in the temple days, and I presume that something similar to this took place in the case of the tabernacle, seven days before the day of atonement the priest took up his abode in the temple. So he left his home. He left his family. He went to live in the temple just as a person might in preparation for some particular ceremony Believers Chapel might come and take up his dwelling in one of the rooms of this particular building. So he would do that seven days ahead of time. He would practice through the week the various rights that he was to carry out the ritual on the Day of Atonement. He only did it once a year and so, particularly, in his first time he would need to practice. He would study the Old Testament Scriptures which had to do with the Day of Atonement here chapter 23, other passages and be sure that he understood exactly what he was to do.
Furthermore, he would also practice some of the things that he would do like the sprinkling of the blood or the carrying in of the incense, the putting of the incense upon the fire the various parts of the ceremony. He would practice them so that when the Day of Atonement came he would be able to carry it out for the whole nation. It was a very important ceremony and the whole of the nation gathered around to observe it. So a great deal depended upon him doing it in good order. So he would begin by moving to the temple and there prepare for the Day of Atonement. On the Day of Atonement, there were three types of offerings that were offered. There were the daily morning and evening sacrifices which were still offered on this day. There were the festive sacrifices which were offered the expiatory offerings. These were the rams for the burnt offerings that are referred to in this chapter and other places and primarily the expiatory or the atoning sacrifices of the bull for the priest and the two goats for the chosen of Israel. Fifteen animals were slain on the Day of Atonement. So it was a day of slaughter of animals.
I guess the Lord did this in order to impress upon the children of Israel that redemption is by the shedding of blood without shedding of blood there is no forgiveness. As the priest engaged in these activities he only wore the garments that were for the Day of Atonement in carrying out the expiatory sacrifices so he would when he arrived on the morning of the Day of Atonement take off his layman’s garb and put on his priestly garments of glory and beauty and exercise his office a priest in carrying out some of the daily sacrifices or supervising them. Then he would put off those garments wash himself get baptized, immersed in water, wash his body all over, put on the special garments for the Day of Atonement, carry out the expiatory sacrifice, and then at the conclusion take off those garments which incidentally were put in the temple and were never used again, and then put back on the others finish up the festive sacrifices, and the whole service all of the services concluded at the end of the day with a feast. And then at the end of the day he would say whew [laughter] one more year of relaxation just doing the ordinary work of the high priest. I am sure that he had the same feeling that preachers have when they marry somebody or engage in some other ceremony in which they are always fearful that somebody’s going to drop the ring or it’ll be kicked over underneath the pulpit or something like that. [Laughter]
Now, it began in early morning only the linen cloth excluded the high priest when he bathed. By the way, they set up a little place usually and the only thing that kept the people from seeing the high priest naked was just a piece of linen cloth that was hung up. So you could really practically see what he was doing. And the reason for this, so tradition says, is that he would not do anything contrary to the things that were set forth in Holy Scripture. They wanted to be sure that no changes were made because after all God has given us prescriptions in the word about what he should do. So he would then put on his garments for the expiatory sacrifices after concluding the other.
The expiatory sacrifices were composed of these things. First, there was a bullock that the high priest had to offer for his own sin. It was a sin offering. He himself brought a bullock and a ram and the bullock was for a sin offering and the ram for a burnt offering. He would in the presence of the children of Israel after he had taken his bullock, he would put his hand on the head of the bullock and this was the confession that he made later on in the days of the temple, “I Jehovah I have committed iniquity. I have transgressed. I have sinned. I am my house. Oh then Jehovah I entreat Thee. Cover over. That is atone for. Let there be atonement for the iniquities the transgressions and the sins which I have committed. Transgressed and sinned before thee. I am my house even as it was written in the law of Moses thy servant for on that day will he cover over for you to make you clean from all your transgressions before Jehovah ye shall be cleansed.”
Then he would go over after the confession of sin over the bullock for the sin offering and he would take an urn and in this urn there were two lots. One of the lots read l’adonai or for the Lord, l-a-donai. The other read l’azazel or for azazel or for departure depending on the mean of that expression. We’ll talk about it in our next study. But the urn would be taken out with the lots in it and the two goats had been selected for the offering of the children of Israel, and he would reach his take his hand and put his hand down inside the urn and he would take out the lots and look at it. And if the lot for the Lord rather he would do it for the animals and taking out for one of the animals if he pulled it out and it was for the Lord that goat was designated for the Lord. That is to be slain and the blood to be sprinkled on the mercy seat. The other had the expression on it for azazel and that lot would be for the other goat and the other goat then was then one to be later have the children of Israel sins confessed over it and set off into the wilderness. He would, incidentally, as he stood the tabernacle or the temple faced east and so he would face toward the building when he made the selection but after the selection the goats would be turned around toward the children of Israel who were over on the east and he would look out toward them and the goat too that was for departure and for the Lord would also look out toward the people. It’s a kind of a even a almost an illustration of our Lord Jesus who appeared with Pilate before the children of Israel as the goat of the sin offering. The next step would be to kill the bullock and he would kill the bullock for his own entrance into the holiest of all and when he slew the bullock for the sin offering, which was for himself, he would catch the blood and hand it to an attendant and the attendant would hold the blood of the slain bullock.
Now, remember on the Day of Atonement he must first he must first slay a bullock for his own sin in order that he might have access to carry out the work of atonement for the nation. So after he has caught the blood and given to an attendant to hold it, he would take some fire off of the altar of burnt offering and some incense and go into the holiest of all for the first time. When he got inside the place and had drawn the curtains back so he was in the presence of the instruments that were inside the tabernacle he would throw the incense on the fire and lean censer there so that the holiest of all in the holy place would be filled with smoke during that during the carrying out of the ceremony.
It almost illustrates the fact that even though Aaron had access into the holiest of all it was a clouded kind of access and not the full and open access that we have through our great high priest today. He would then come out and he would take the blood of the bullock of the sin offering for himself. He would back into the holiest of all and he would sprinkle the arc of the covenant or the mercy seat in token of the fact that he deserved to die and that it was only through a substitute that he himself was able to stand before God. Having done that he would come back out and he would take the goat that was for Jehovah and he would slay that goat. And he would catch the blood of that goat and he would enter for the second time or rather for the third time into the holiest of all and he would then with the blood as he did with the blood of the bullock for himself. He would sprinkle the blood on the mercy seat and then on the way back he would also sprinkle the golden altar of incense thus sanctifying that particular piece of furniture for the Lord’s service as well.
Having come out again there remained the live goat and he would go over to the live goat and then he would put his hand over the head of the goat both hands in this case and the high priest would then confess in this way. He would shout out to all Israel gathered around the tabernacle or the temple could hear, “Ah, Jehovah they committed iniquity. They have transgressed. They have sinned. Thy people the house of Israel oh then Jehovah cover over. I entreat Thee upon their iniquities their transgressions and their sins which they have wickedly committed transgressed and sinned before Thee. Thy people the house of Israel as it is written in the law of Moses thy servants say for on that day shall it be covered over atoned for you to make you clean from all your sins before Jehovah you shall be cleansed.” And then after that the festive sacrifices would take place after he had changed his clothes and bathed again and he would enter the fourth time in the afternoon to retrieve the censer from the holiest of all having changed his clothes back again in order to get into the holy garments to go in or for the last time and finally coming out the whole ceremony would be closed as I say by a feast.
Now, let’s begin reading at verse 5, and just make a comment or two as we read along. “And he shall take from the congregation of the sons of Israel two male goats for a sin offering.” Now, notice that little word “a” because it shows us that the two goats do not represent two sin offerings but rather two aspects of one sin offering. The male goats shall be 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. That is the goat for departure or azazel. 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. Then Aaron shall offer the bull of the sin offering which is for himself and make atonement for himself and for his household, and he shall slaughter the bull of the sin offering which is for himself.”
Now, remember in the Epistle to the Hebrews in the very next text from the one we read it is stated the Lord Jesus is not like those priests of the Old Testament who have first to make an offering for themselves and the for the people but Aaron was different he had to offer for himself. Verse 12, “He shall take a firepan full of coals of fire from upon the altar before the Lord and two handfuls of finely ground sweet incense, and bring it inside the veil. He shall put the incense on the fire before the Lord that the cloud of incense may cover the mercy seat that is on the ark of the testimony, lest he die. Moreover, he shall take some of the blood of the bull and sprinkle it with his finger on the mercy seat on the east side; also in front of the mercy seat he shall sprinkle some of the blood with his finger seven times.” He would incidentally do it one time up and seven times down and he would say one up and then he would say one up and one down. He would do it again one up and two down one up and three down and so on and that’s the way he would count it out to be sure he did it exactly as he was supposed to do. Verse 15, “Then he 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.”
Let me just summarize what we’ve said so far. This is an offering the two goats signified two aspects of the offering. The slaying of the goat and the bringing of the blood into the mercy seat and the sprinkling of that mercy seat with the blood is designed to represent the fact that atonement can only occur after there has first of all been a satisfaction of the holiness and righteousness of our great triune God. So the blood is sprinkled on the mercy seat in token of the fact that his holiness and his righteousness must be satisfied before there can be any forgiveness of sins. “Lifted up was he to die. It is finished was his cry. Now in heaven exalted high. Hallelujah what a savior,” we often sing and we are singing about the antitype of these great events of the Old Testament. It was not morality. It was not integrity. It was not education. It was not culture. It was not character that lead to Israel’s forgiveness. It was the sprinkling of the blood on the mercy seat, atonement. It is only by atonement that we have forgiveness of sins.
Our time is up. We will complete the study next time.
[Prayer] Father, we thank Thee for these Old Testament pictures of the work of our Lord Jesus Christ, and we thank Thee for the Day of Atonement, Calvary, and for the remission of sins that is ours as a result of what he has done.
Accept our thanks in Jesus’ name. Amen.