Yom Kippur shows us the meaning of Yeshua’s life’s work.
Many people say that all religions are basically the same. They insist that everyone has their own way to approach Him. But the Scriptures say that there is only one way to God, and that is His way. Let’s explore this a bit…
The Yom Kippur sacrifice during biblical times was not like any of the other sacrifices during the year.
This once-a-year sacrifice required that the Kohen HaGadol (High Priest) enter the Holy of Holies alone, it was just him and God. He took with him a vessel containing the blood of the goat upon which the sacrificial lot fell. This blood was then sprinkled on the Mercy Seat, which covered the Ark of the Covenant found in the Holy of Holies. If acceptable, that is if the animal sacrificed was without spot or blemish, God received the offering and declared the sins of the children of Israel atoned for.
For the life of a creature is in the blood, and I have given it to you on the altar to make atonement for yourselves; for it is the blood that makes atonement because of the life. –Leviticus 17:11
So in Biblical days it was clearly understood that only the blood of a spotless lamb was acceptable to atone for our human sins. I don’t think God changed His mind just because the temple where the sacrifices took place was destroyed. In fact He didn’t. He simply provided one last sacrifice, the most perfect sacrifice ever, and that was His own beloved son; Yeshua the Messiah.
Yeshua’s sacrifice was like no other. He entered alone on our behalf, into the Holy of Holies, but not the one built by man. Yeshua entered the heavenly Holy of Holies to sprinkle His blood on the heavenly Mercy seat. This was now a one-time sacrifice, not only for the sins of the children of Israel, but now for the sin of all the world.
By accomplishing this Yeshua became our bridge to God. The Temple no longer exists, it has not existed now for two thousand years, but the fact of the matter is, it no longer has to exist. Yeshua has, and still is accomplishing this Yom Kippur atonement for us and for the world, in heaven.
Yom Kippur teaches us how we are to approach God. Anyone who does not come to Him His way; that is through the atonement accomplished by Yeshua, is coming to Him in an unacceptable way.
The Yom Kippur sacrifice had to be a blood sacrifice and that blood had to be handled as described in Leviticus 16. There was no other way for Yom Kippur atonement then, and there is no other way now. God eliminated the necessity of a Temple by satisfying His own commandment on our behalf. Let’s continue…
He shall put on the holy linen undergarment, and he shall have the linen breeches upon his body, and be girded with the linen girdle or sash, and with the linen turban or miter shall he be attired; these are the holy garments; he shall bathe his body in water and then put them on. —Leviticus 16:4
On Yom Kippur the Kohen Ha Gadol had to remove the beautiful garments he wore, which were an insignia of his high office. God described them as garments of “glory and beauty.” Instead, on this day he was to wear simple linen clothing.
This was after all the day he was approaching God, and he could not do so with garments of authority, because before God he had none. The Kohen’s beautiful clothing were given to him to represent God before the people… but on this day, Yom Kippur, the Kohen HaGadol was representing the people before G-d. All power and authority are the Lord’s.
Likewise Yeshua set aside His glory and honor and took upon Himself the humble garment of human flesh. In doing so He did not set aside His deity, He just set aside His glory so as to humble Himself for us before the Father.
God gave us the Feast of Yom Kippur as a shadow of things to come. It would remain in effect until the fullness of time, when a better sacrifice would take its place. That better and final sacrifice has come.
In biblical times they celebrated Yom Kippur by looking forward in anticipation of the Messiah’s coming. Today we celebrate Yom Kippur by looking back to what Yeshua has done for us and for the world.
God’s commandments to us are clear, we know what He wants us to do. If we fail to do what He wants and how He wants us to do it, it is willful disobedience on our part.
Are you willing to risk the consequences of such disobedience?
If we are not actively telling our family and friends and co-workers and other acquaintances about God’s plan, we are willfully disobeying God’s commandment to us;
…Go into all the world and preach the good news to all creation.Whoever believes and is immersed will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned. –Mark 16:15-16
But those who have not decided to accept Yeshua as God’s final atonement are either ignorant of their need to, or are willfully being disobedient.
God says… we perish for lack of knowledge (Hosea 4:6) and He also says:
For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him. Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because he has not believed in the name of God’s one and only Son. –John 3:16
Since none of us wants any of our friends, family, co-workers or other acquaintances to die and go to hell just because they didn’t know… then we must tell them!