Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Day of Atonement - Yom Kippur

"G'mar Hatimah Tovah" or "May You Be Sealed for a Good Year (in the Book of Life)."  
The Day of Atonement, or better known as “Yom Kippur” falls on the 10th of Tishrei (the 7th Biblical month corresponding with September/October of our calendar.)  This is a holy day that remains “a statute forever”.
The Day of Atonement is the most important day on the Biblical calendar. Once a year the High Priest is allowed to enter into the Holy of Holies in the Temple and Tabernacle to approach  G-d at His Mercy Seat. The High Priest had to go through a complex set of sacrifices to atone for his sins and the sins of all the people of the nation. On this one day of the year, the atoning blood brought into the Holy of Holies by the High Priest as the representative of the people.  

A goat would be led outside the walls of the city to die, symbolically taking the sins of the people of the nation with it. The High Priest was then able to enter the Holy of Holies and sprinkle blood on the Ark of the Covenant. 

The High Priest could not make any mistakes, because one error would cost him his life and the nation of Israel’s atonement. He spoke one word on this day that was not allowed to be spoken at all other times. He voiced the name of G-d. When the people heard the name of G-d they would fall to the ground.

As a believer in Yeshua (Jesus) we know that only His Son could provide us with true forgiveness of sins as he was the only perfect sacrifice. We know that Yeshua was led outside of the city walls of the city and put on the tree to die for our sins, and not just for the the Nation of Israel did He give His life but, for all the people of the world to this very day. He is the perfect and unblemished sacrifice.  We are written in The Lambs Book of Life if you believe in Him.

After the Babylonians and Romans destroyed the Temple the Jewish people had no way atone for their sins. They used this day in the synagogue in prayer and fasting. They would petition G-d to have their name written in the Book of Life for another year.   

So what do we do today for The Day of Atonement? 

Yom Kippur, is the “10 Days of Awe” which begins with the Feast of Trumpets. This 10 day period is used for prayer, and fasting “(You shall afflict your souls) (Lev. 16:31, 23:27-32, Num. 29:7) in preparation for the most solemn day of the year, the Day of Atonement.  We do not work as this is a Sabbath.

Before the fast begins you have a special meal in your home before sundown. That way you can direct your mind to your spiritual need rather than your physical needs.  The fast is for 25 hours on this day. 

The Day of Atonement begins at sundown, and a service called, Kol Nidre is done. Typically other services are held throughout the solemn day. The shofar is blown to assemble the people together.

Traditionally white is worn on this day. White symbolizes purity.  Isaiah 1:18. It’s also a tradition for some to spend the night in the synagogue reciting the Psalms.
The book of Jonah is read on the Day of Atonement. We spend this day reflecting on our previous year and confessing our sins. 

At sunset one long  blast of the shofar is blown. Then we can break our fast. 

Some will start constructing their sukkah for the Feast of Tabernacle.

I'm glad that I can take my sins before Yeshua any day of the year and 24/7. I know that I'm written in the Lamb's Book of Life. My salvation is assured by His death on the tree and the day I accepted His salvation. I'm saved not by works but, by His ultimate sacrifice. 

Scriptural references: Leviticus 16:29-34, 23:26-32; and Hebrews 9:11-14, 22-24, 10:1-

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