Fred Coulter - September 16, 2002

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And greetings, brethren. This is the Day of Atonement, 2002. We know the Day of Atonement’s a very special day. And we know that it is a day of fasting, a day of affliction, a day that we come before God. And it’s one of those days which has a great and tremendous fulfillment in the plan of God. And it helps unlock some of the mysteries of what God is doing.

Now, let’s begin in Leviticus 23, as we always do. And we’re going to see how important this day is. We’ve come through Passover, Unleavened Bread, Pentecost, Trumpets, and now we’re at the Day of Atonement, which then is the fifth feast, as it were, counting the Passover as one. It’s very interesting. You have the holy days - two days of Unleavened Bread, Pentecost, and then you have Trumpets, which is number four. Then you have Atonement, which is number five, and number five is grace. And the greatest grace that we can possibly have, as we will see, is to be at-one with God. Which, if you take the word atonement and you break it down into three words you have at-one-ment. And that means at-one-ment with God, which would be the greatest grace of all, wouldn’t it? Yes, indeed. Now we’re going to learn some important things concerning the Day of Atonement today.

Let’s begin right here in Leviticus 23, and let’s pick it up here in verse 26. “And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying, Also 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,…” (Lev. 23:26-27). Now to afflict your souls means that you are to fast. And to fast without water, and without food. And there’s a reason for it. And the reason is so that we understand that we are temporary, that we are physical, and that our lives depend on God, and the only way we can be at-one with God is to be a spirit being. And that’s the whole ultimate lesson of the Day of Atonement.

Now here in His instructions to the children of Israel He says, “…And offer an offering made by fire unto the LORD” (vs. 27). Now today we don’t offer offerings by fire. We do take up an offering on every one of the holy days. And as we have covered before, you know that it has to be from the heart, and you know that it has to be something that you desire to do, and it has to be the thing that is pleasing to God most of all is your attitude and your thoughts toward God in these kind of situations. So at this time we’ll go ahead and pause, and we’ll take up an offering.

(Pause)          

Now the Day of Atonement has special requirements that the other holy days do not have. On the other holy days whatever is necessary for fixing of the meal, whatever is necessary for participating in the feast, that work is allowed to be done. But the Day of Atonement is entirely different. Now here it says, verse 28, “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” (vs. 28-29). And we’ve seen this time and time again. The worst thing that can ever happen to a person is to be cut off from God. And “cut off from among your people”, that means cut off from God for the blessings that He gives to His people, see. And too many people have given up on the ways of God, the holy days of God. Matter of fact I just recently got a letter from a man saying that in the New Testament you don’t have to keep the holy days. You know, it’s the same kind of arguments that people use. “Well, God does not require tithing in the New Testament, you know, and it really doesn’t matter about the Sabbath.” And all of these things all come from self-serving, non-Biblical motives. Because when you read the scriptures, it’s very, very clear. And especially when we get to the last part here of the section concerning Atonement, God makes it absolutely clear that we are to keep His Sabbaths.

Now verse 30, “And whatsoever soul it be that doeth any work in that same day, the same soul will I destroy from among his people.” Now God has many ways of destroying people. It doesn’t necessarily mean that He’s going to come down and instantly zap them. It means that He can do it in many different ways. And we’ve seen how God has done that too. And I think all we have to do is just witness the whole thing that we know of the Worldwide Church of God, and we just ask the question: has it been destroyed? Answer: yes. And what was one of the first things they decided that they didn’t need to do? Well, they didn’t need to put leaven out of their homes. Matter of fact, even some people say that Jesus ate leavened bread for the Passover. And it shows how many people are out there with all sorts of cockamamie ideas and doctrines, and yet they always have people to follow them and believe them. So it’s an incredible thing that people just do not read the Bible, believe the Bible, believe God, and do what He says. So it’s a very important thing to keep the Day of Atonement, wouldn’t you say, so that you’re not cut off from God and His people, and that you’re not destroyed from among the people of God? “Ye shall do no manner of work: it shall be a statute for ever throughout your generations in all your dwellings” (vs. 30-31).

Now verse 32 is a key verse. “It shall be unto you a sabbath of rest, and ye shall afflict your souls: in the ninth day of the month at even [ba erev, sunset ending the ninth day], from even unto even, shall ye celebrate your sabbath.” So this means that beginning the ninth day at sunset we start the Day of Atonement. That’s when we start fasting. And we are to observe it from even to even. Now it’s very interesting here the way that the Septuagint brings this out, as well as the Hebrew. This means, “you shall sabbathize your Sabbaths.” It uses the plural. So this is a summary of all the holy days of God, which are called Sabbaths. So if you keep the weekly Sabbath then you’re surely bound to keep the rest of the Sabbaths because they are Sabbaths, correct? It just is that they come at set times during the year. And the same thing goes with the argument for the calculated Hebrew Calendar. We’re going to have some good material on that, so just hang on. Just hang on and don’t be dismayed by people who try and tell you strange tales about the calendar.

So this Day of Atonement is an important day. Now why do we have the Day of Atonement to make at-one-ment, and why do we have the Passover? Now let’s go back to Exodus 12 and let’s see something here very important. I’ve mentioned this in the past, but I’m going to go ahead and go into it in a little bit more detail, so come back here to Exodus 12, and let’s understand something: the blessing of the firstborn. Now you see this also helps explain the whole situation as to when and how God is going to save the rest of the world. Now we know He’s not doing it now. But it begins right here with the Passover and the meaning of the Passover, so let’s come here to Exodus 12 and let’s begin here in verse 12. “For I will pass through the land of Egypt this night, and will smite all the firstborn…” Now I want you to key in on the word “firstborn” because that has a lot to do with our relationship with God now, and the Day of Atonement, and the Day of Atonement in relationship to the rest of the world.

Now, when He executed His judgment He said here, verse 13, “And the blood shall be to you for a token upon the houses where ye are: and when I see the blood, I will pass over you, and the plague shall not be upon you to destroy you, when I smite the land of Egypt.” Now then, the meaning of the Passover begins with the sparing of the firstborn, not leaving Egypt.

Leaving Egypt is the first day of the Feast of Unleavened Bread. Now let’s notice this in verse 26. “And it shall come to pass, when your children shall say unto you, What mean ye by this service? That ye shall say, It is the sacrifice of the LORD’S passover, Who passed over the houses of the children of Israel in Egypt, when He smote the Egyptians, and delivered our houses. And the people bowed the head and worshipped” (vs. 26-27). So He passed over all the firstborn.

Now let’s stop and think for a minute what would have happened if there was a house where there was not the blood, as in the case of the Egyptians. Let’s read it here in verse 29, “And it came to pass, that at midnight the LORD smote all the firstborn in the land of Egypt, from the firstborn of Pharaoh that sat on his throne unto the firstborn of the captive that was in the dungeon; and all the firstborn of cattle.” That is, whatever were remaining. Now then, if there was no blood on the door-post, or on the lintels then the firstborn would die. The others would not. So this is a special day for those of the firstborn. And the firstborn then become a very particular thing to God under the Old Covenant, which then was a shadow of the things to come in the New Covenant. And we will see then, how that applies to the church, and then we will see how the Day of Atonement applied to Israel, and then we will see how that applies to the rest of the world.

Now, let’s come here to Exodus 13:2. “…Sanctify unto Me all the firstborn, whatsoever openeth the womb among the children of Israel, both of man and of beast: it is mine.” Now verse 12. It says when you’re in the land, verse 12, see “That thou shalt set apart unto the LORD all that openeth the matrix, and every firstling that cometh of a beast which thou hast; the males shall be the LORD’S. And every firstling of an ass thou shalt redeem with a lamb; and if thou wilt not redeem it, then thou shalt break his neck: and all the firstborn of man among thy children shalt thou redeem” (Ex. 13:2, 12-13). So there is a tremendous emphasis that is put here, you see.

And then when the sons would ask, “Well what about this thing with the firstborn?”, you see. Verse 14, “And it shall be when thy son asketh thee in time to come, saying, What is this? that thou shalt say unto him, By strength of hand the LORD brought us out from Egypt, from the house of bondage: and it came to pass, when Pharaoh would hardly let us go, that the LORD slew all the firstborn in the land of Egypt, both the firstborn of man, and the firstborn of beast: therefore I sacrifice to the LORD all that openeth the matrix, being males; but all the firstborn of my children I redeem” (vs. 14-15).

Now there is a great significance for us in the plan of God between the Passover and the Day of Atonement. So under the Old Covenant the Passover pictured the sparing of the firstborn. Now what happened with all the rest of the children of Israel? They were also blessed because the firstborn were spared, weren’t they? Even though the Passover itself did not apply to only but the firstborn. It applied to all the children of Israel in as much as they were to eat the Passover, that is correct. But the specific act of God of passing over the firstborn because of the blood is a very profound and most interesting thing in relationship to the New Covenant, as we will see a little later.

But let’s come here to Leviticus 16 now, and let’s see something very important concerning the Day of Atonement. Let’s look at these. Let’s see how important the Day of Atonement is. Now here in Leviticus 16, we’re going to go through it in quite detail, because this is a very important part in the symbolism of the offerings and everything is very important for us to understand.

Now let’s begin here right in verse 1. “And the LORD spake unto Moses after the death of the two sons of Aaron, when they offered before the LORD, and died; and the LORD said unto Moses, Speak unto Aaron thy brother, that he come not at all times into the holy place within the veil before the mercy seat, which is upon the ark; that he die not: for I will appear in the cloud upon the mercy seat. Thus shall Aaron come into the holy place:…” (Lev. 16:1-3). Now here were the requirements for Aaron, because you see, as we’ve been studying in the book of Hebrews, that the priest also had to make offerings for himself because of his sins, and because of his weaknesses.

Now verse 3, “Thus [or that is, in this manner] shall Aaron come into the holy place: with a young bullock for a sin offering, and a ram for a burnt offering. He shall put on the holy linen coat, and he shall have the linen breeches upon his flesh, and shall be girded with a linen girdle, and with the linen mitre shall he be attired: these are holy garments; therefore shall he wash his flesh in water, and so put them on” (vs. 3-4). Now that’s very interesting, isn’t it? What is called the righteousness of the saints? The holy garments.

Here, just hold your place and let’s come back here to Revelation 19 for a minute, and let’s see that this is a type of righteousness, and that we also when we come in the presence of God, are going to have to have this righteousness. Now here, Revelation 19:7, “Let us be glad and rejoice, and give honour to Him: for the marriage of the Lamb is come, and His wife hath made herself ready. And to her was granted that she should be arrayed in fine linen, clean and white: for the fine linen is the righteousness of saints” (Rev. 19:7-8). And so we’re admonished about having our garments clean, we are admonished about having ourselves ready, so just like…(let’s come back to Leviticus 16)…just like the high priest had to have on the holy linen garments, because this symbolized the righteousness of God, so do we have to have on the linen garments of the marriage ceremony when the wedding comes.

Now, here’s a very unusual ceremony. Verse 5, “And he shall take of the congregation of the children of Israel two kids of the goats for a sin offering, and one ram for a burnt offering. And Aaron shall offer his bullock of the sin offering, which is for himself, and make an atonement for himself, and for his house. And he shall take the two goats, and present them before the LORD at the door of the tabernacle of the congregation” (Lev. 16:5-7). Right in front, before you go into the altar of burnt offerings. Now this special ceremony was very unusual, and in none of the other sacrifices of anything that God commanded the children of Israel to do, do we have one like this.

Now let’s read it. “And he shall take the two goats, and present them before the LORD at the door of the tabernacle of the congregation. And Aaron shall cast lots upon the two goats;…” Now, lots are cast when it’s impossible for human beings to make the decision. God has to reveal which one of the goats is for Him, and which one was for Azazel. And this becomes very profound and has great meaning indeed. Now let’s read it. It says, “…one lot for the LORD, and the other lot for the scapegoat” (vs. 7-8). Which if you read in the margin is Azazel, and Azazel means “the one carried out into the wilderness.” And Azazel is another name for Satan the devil. Now why would God have lots cast between the LORD and Satan the devil? God knows the difference, but human beings don’t know the difference, do they?

Now what happened when the Serpent appeared to Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden? They were not able to distinguish between Satan and his message, and God and His message. In other words, this way: no human being can correctly select the right God. God has to reveal it. Very profound. Very important. God has to reveal Himself to you in some manner or other, and generally it’s through the power of the Holy Spirit to begin to draw you to the Father, and through His word that you begin to understand it. And even then, look how many people through the centuries have studied the Bible, have read the Bible, commented on the Bible, written books about the Bible and don’t understand the Bible? And the reason is because no human being of himself can discern between the true God and the god of this world. Now there is no other, no other being in the whole Bible that is called the god of this world except Satan the devil. Now we know that back in 2 Corinthians 4:4. It says, “If our gospel be hid, it is hid from those whom the god of this world has blinded.” Now, the children of Israel… let’s ask the question concerning the children of Israel and why they needed to have this selection between God and Satan.

Now let’s come back here to 2 Corinthians 3. Just hold your place in Leviticus 16 because we’re going to come back there. Here’s a very important thing that we need to understand concerning the children of Israel and why God dealt with them in this manner on the Day of Atonement with this particular ceremony. And it shows a very profound thing. Now let’s pick it up here in 2 Corinthians 3:13. “And not as Moses, which put a veil over his face,…” Now what happened was this: when Moses first went up on top of Mount Sinai to receive the Ten Commandments with God, from God, written on the table of stone, the children of Israel down below the mountain (because he was up there for forty days and forty nights) went to Aaron and said, “Up make us gods”, so then they made the golden calf and worshipped it. Moses came down. He was so angry that he broke the tables of the Ten Commandments. And after God got done punishing the people and things finally got set down, He told Moses, “You take two tablets and you come back up on Mount Sinai, and I will write the Ten Commandments again for you.” And he went up there again for the second forty days. And tradition has it that he came down off the mountain on the Day of Atonement and his face shined with glory because he was in the presence of God as a sign to the children of Israel that he was in the presence of God. And it was so bright that it scared the children of Israel. So Moses had to put a veil over his face. And this is what it’s talking about here in 2 Corinthians 3:13.

“…That the children of Israel could not stedfastly look to the end of that which is abolished:…” That was the glory and also the Old Covenant. “…But their minds were blinded:…” Now then, just like Satan who blinds the minds, their minds were blinded. Now notice. “…The same veil untaken away in the reading of the old testament; which veil [that is, the blindness] is done away in Christ. But even unto this day, when Moses is read, the veil is upon their heart. Nevertheless when it [or that is, when they] shall turn to the Lord, the veil shall be taken away” (vs. 13-16).

So let’s come back here to Leviticus 16 and let’s understand something very important. Even the high priest could not discern which goat was for God and represented Christ, and which goat was for Azazel and represented Satan. And we’re going to see a little bit later on that there were some profound things to happen on the Day of Atonement during the forty years between the crucifixion of Christ and the destruction of Jerusalem, which happened on the Day of Atonement, and which happened in the casting of lots. So this is why God has to make the determination.

Now let’s come back to Leviticus 16:9. “And Aaron shall bring the goat upon which the LORD’S lot fell, and offer him for a sin offering.” Very profound and important, and remember that, because when you have an offering made for a sin offering for sin, then that covered the sin and that’s what atonement means - kippur. And that’s why it’s called in Hebrew, yom kippur, that which covers.

“But the goat, on which the lot fell to be the scapegoat [that is, for Azazel], shall be presented alive before the LORD, to make an atonement with him [or, upon him],…” (vs. 10). See, because you can never have complete atonement and forgiveness of sin unless you remove the author of sin. And that’s what this whole ceremony is all about. To show the children of Israel that unless you remove the one who’s the author of sin, you can never truly overcome sin. And you can never have a society without sin. Now we’ll see that a little later on. Very important things that we need to know and understand concerning the Day of Atonement. Now there are some people who mistakenly say that both of these goats represent Christ. Well, that is not the case. We’ll see that a little later on.

Now verse 11, “And Aaron shall bring the bullock of the sin offering, which is for himself, and shall make an atonement for himself, and for his house, and shall kill the bullock of the sin offering which is for himself: and he shall take a censer full of [incense] burning coals of fire from off the altar before the LORD, and his hands full of sweet incense beaten small, and bring it within the veil: and he shall put the incense upon the fire before the LORD, that the cloud of the incense may cover the mercy seat that is upon the testimony, that he die not:…” (vs. 11-13). See, because no man, except Moses could see God in the holy sanctuary and live. So therefore the holy of holies was completely unilluminated. As a matter of fact, it was absolutely pitch black and dark in there. So when the high priest went in there, whether it was the tabernacle, or whether it was later at the temple, he could barely see. And as a matter of fact, the Jews later had the practice of tying a rope around the midriff of the high priest when he went behind the veil, because when the veil was put back in place it was absolutely pitch dark in there. And they put the rope on him, that if he died, then they could pull him out, because no one else was to go in the holy of holies. That shows you the extreme caution that they took in this thing. So it was really quite a situation here.

Now once he got in to the mercy seat, this is the only time that blood was sprinkled on the mercy seat. Otherwise, when there was a sin offering, and the sin offering was offered at the altar of burnt offerings, the blood was to be sprinkled on the altar of burnt offerings. But now, once a year he goes on the Day of Atonement, and this is sprinkled on the mercy seat.

Now notice verse 14. “And he shall take of the blood of the bullock, and sprinkle it with his finger upon the mercy seat eastward; and before the mercy seat shall he sprinkle of the blood with his finger seven times.” Showing complete atonement. “Then shall he kill the goat of the sin offering, that is for the people…” In other words he was to go in and do that for himself and then come back out. When he came back out he was to kill the goat of the sin offering that is for the people. Now isn’t it interesting…here we have the people of Israel, now we had on Passover the firstborn, correct? Yes. Now on Atonement we have the rest of the people. “…And bring his blood within the veil, and do with that blood as he did with the blood of the bullock, and sprinkle it upon the mercy seat, and before the mercy seat:…” (vs. 14-15). He was to do that. That was the sin offering. And offered right in the holy of holies means that, you can know for sure that their sins were forgiven and they were justified to the temple according to the ritual of God concerning the Day of Atonement, on the Day of Atonement.

Now let’s read on. “And he shall make an atonement for the holy place [that’s everything to do with the temple], because of the uncleanness of the children of Israel, and because of their transgressions in all their sins:…” Now when you have all your sins covered, do you need another method of forgiveness? No. But when you have all your sins covered, does that mean that you will sin no more? Absolutely not, because this was done every year, correct? And even the same with us. We know that because we have the law of sin and death within us that we’re still going to sin. That’s why we live under the grace of God, and as long as we repent we have forgiveness through Christ, and the blood of the New Covenant, don’t we? And that will become very important here in just a minute, as we will see. Now continuing, “…and so shall he do for the tabernacle of the congregation, that remaineth among them in the midst of their uncleanness. And there shall be no man [enter into] in the tabernacle… when he goeth in to make an atonement in the holy place, until he come out, and have made an atonement for himself, and for his household, and for all the congregation of Israel” (vs. 16-17). So the Day of Atonement was a time of complete atoning, or complete covering of the sins and transgressions of all the children of Israel, and the priest, and the priesthood.

Now let’s continue on right here in verse 18, Leviticus 16. “And he shall go out unto the altar that is before the LORD [that is, the altar of burnt offering], and make an atonement for it; and shall take of the blood of the bullock, and of the blood of the goat, and put it upon the horns of the altar round about.” Now on the first day of the Feast of Tabernacles you’ll be able to see what those were: the altar, and the horns, and so forth. “And he shall sprinkle of the blood upon it with his finger seven times, and cleanse it, and hallow it from the uncleanness of the children of Israel. And when he hath made an end of reconciling the holy place, and the tabernacle of the congregation, and the altar, he shall bring the live goat:…” (vs. 18-20). Now here is the only, as we could say, sacrifice…but it wasn’t a sacrifice because it wasn’t sacrificed…but one that could have been sacrificed but wasn’t. And there’s a reason for it, to show a great symbolism, not only to the children of Israel, but also for us.

Let’s read it here. Verse 21, “And Aaron shall lay both his hands upon the head of the live goat, and confess over him all the iniquities of the children of Israel,…” Now why do that when they’ve already been forgiven? Well, let’s understand something. Let’s ask the question: who is the author of sin? Satan the devil is the author of sin because he is sinning from the beginning. And he’s a liar from the beginning. But people cannot distinguish between Satan the devil and the true God. And even, like with Adam and Eve when they were there and had access to God, even though they had access to God they still couldn’t make the right decision, and they sinned, didn’t they? Why? Let’s ask a question: was there sin in the Garden of Eden before the Serpent came? No, there wasn’t. Was there sin in the Garden of Eden when Satan was allowed in? Yes. So this lesson is to teach the children of Israel and us, and we will see has yet to be fulfilled, that the author of sin must be removed, until you can have a world and society without sin.

Now here’s what he was to do. In all, he was to confess “…all their transgressions, in all their sins, putting them upon the head of the goat,…” Because after all who is the author of sin, and who made people sin? Satan the devil. That’s why in this world, as long as Satan is around you can never, never, ever, ever have a sinless society. You must always deal with sin. Here’s what he was to do with this goat. “…And shall send himaway by the hand of a fit man [as we will see that’s the type of an angel] into the wilderness:…” Now some people say this wilderness is heaven. Well of course not. The wilderness is symbolic of where demons and Satan live. And he’s returned back to where he should be.

“And the goat shall bear upon him all their iniquities unto a land not inhabited: and he shall let go the goat in the wilderness. And Aaron shall come into the tabernacle of the congregation, and shall put off the linen garments, which he put on when he went into the holy place, and shall leave them there: and he shall wash his flesh with water in the holy place, and put on his garments, and come forth, and offer his burnt offering, and the burnt offering of the people,…” And a burnt offering then, is an offering much like you would say a peace offering. That now that you’ve had your sins forgiven, now here’s the burnt offering, and with the burnt offering the one who offers shares in eating it as well as a part goes to the priest, which then symbolizes God eating of the offering. “…And make an atonement for himself, and for the people. And the fat of the sin offering shall he burn upon the altar. And he that let go the goat for the scapegoat shall wash his clothes, and bathe his flesh in water, and afterward come into the camp” (vs. 22-26).

“And the bullock for the sin offering, and the goat for the sin offering, whose blood was brought in to make atonement in the holy place, shall one carry forth without the camp [that is outside the camp]; and they shall burn in the fire their skins, and their flesh, and their dung” (vs. 27). Now that place where they burnt them was called the Miphkad Altar. So we have the temple here, and you come out the east gate and you go east across the Kiddron Valley (there was a bridge that went over there), and up to the Mount of Olives. And right at the Mount of Olives was the Miphkad Altar where all the carcasses and skin, and everything for sin offerings were burned, and then the ashes were pushed down a conduit into the valley of Hinnom. Now it is right next to this place where Christ was crucified. So some very profound things. Just like Paul said back in Hebrews 13, “Let us go without the camp [outside the camp]”, because all these physical rituals in the temple are not going to cause spiritual cleansing. They’re just for the flesh. “Let us go outside the camp to Him Who was crucified out there”, that is Jesus Christ, and His sacrifice, and His atonement.

Now let’s continue on here. Verse 28, “And he that burneth them shall wash his clothes, and bathe his flesh in water, and afterward he shall come into the camp. And this shall be a statute for ever unto you: that in the seventh month, on the tenth day of the month, ye shall afflict your souls, and do no work at all, whether it be one of your own country, or a stranger that sojourneth among you: for on that day shall the priest make an atonement for you, to cleanse you, that ye may be clean from all your sins before the LORD. It shall be a sabbath of rest unto you, and ye shall afflict your souls, by a statute for ever” (vs. 28-31). And that’s really a tremendous thing brethren, when we understand it. This is also a type of Christ going on the wave sheaf offering day to be accepted as the sacrifice for all the sins of all mankind, but we’re going to see that that sacrifice has not been applied to all mankind yet, just like the Passover was not applied to all Israel, only the firstborn.

Part 2

Now let’s tie some of these loose ends together and see some of their fulfillment in the New Testament. Where did Jesus officially meet Satan? In the wilderness. The wilderness of Judea. And that’s where the kid goat, or Azazel, was taken. Now let’s read it. Matthew 4:4. And it shows how tempting that Satan is in dealing even with Christ. And then we will see that when it was all done, Satan left Him for a season, see. Overcoming and defeating Satan here, and at the crucifixion, when Christ died on the cross, did not remove Satan. He is still here, see.

Let’s pick it up here, Matthew 4:1, “Then was Jesus led up of the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted of the devil. And when He had fasted forty days and forty nights, He was afterward an hungered” (Matt. 4:1-2). Now, none of us have fasted forty days and forty nights, have we? But you see, this is also carrying forward what Moses did when he was forty days and forty nights with God on the mountain. This time it is God in the flesh, Christ, Who is going to meet Satan the devil, who is the god of this world, and this is the battle as to who is God.

“And when the tempter came to Him, he said, If Thou be the Son of God, command that these stones be made bread.” And of course Christ had the power to do that, didn’t He? But this also shows several important things. Number 1, though He had the power, if He would have done it then He would have obeyed Satan the devil and then He would have disobeyed God and sinned against God. Now then, Christ’s answer is this, since He was God manifest in the flesh. He gave the very reason and purpose of how man should live. Verse 4, “But He answered and said, It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God” (vs. 3-4). And that’s quoted from Deuteronomy 8:3, and also is repeated again in Luke 4:4.

“Then the devil taketh Him up into the holy city,…” Right where the temple is, showing that Satan is interested in being there at the temple, isn’t he? Yes, indeed. “…And setteth Him on a pinnacle of the temple,…” Now, when you remember that from the floor of the Kiddron Valley up to the top of the wall was 450 feet, now that’s way high up there. “…And [the devil] saith unto Him, If Thou be the Son of God, cast Thyself down: for it is written, He shall give His angels charge concerning Thee: and in their hands they shall bear Thee up, lest at any time Thou dash Thy foot against a stone.” Well, if you go back and read that, you will see that it’s not exactly quoted the same, back there in Psalm 91. “Jesus said unto him, It is written again, Thou shalt not tempt the Lord thy God” (vs. 5-7).

“Again, the devil taketh Him up into an exceeding high mountain, and sheweth Him all the kingdoms of the world, and the glory of them;…” And as it says in Luke 4, “…in a moment of time.” “…And saith unto Him, All these things will I give Thee, if Thou wilt fall down and worship me.” See, because it was delivered to him. That’s why he’s the god of this world. And Satan wanted Christ to worship him. And if He did, Christ would have sinned. But Christ didn’t. Now then, the devil leaves Him and the angels came and ministered to Him, see. Jesus said, “You shall not tempt the Lord your God.” And He said to him, “…Get thee hence, Satan: for it is written, Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and Him only shalt thou serve” (vs. 8-10). Now, Satan will never worship God. Never, ever worship God. So here, Satan had this defeat in Matthew 4. He also had the defeat at the cross when He overcame them.

Now let’s come here to Revelation 20, and let’s see something very important. And we will see the fulfillment of Leviticus 16 in removing Satan the devil. Now, we have the Day of Trumpets when Christ and all the saints come back to the earth. Then we have the Day of Atonement, which has to happen before the beginning of the millennium, which then is pictured by the Feast of Tabernacles. So right after Christ comes on the earth, Revelation 19, then Revelation 20:1, here we have a fulfillment of Leviticus 16.

Now, Revelation 20:1, “And I saw an angel come down from heaven,…” Now this was likened to the “fit man” back in Leviticus 16. “…Having the key of the [abyss] bottomless pit and a great chain in his hand. And he laid hold on the dragon, that old serpent, which is the Devil, and Satan, and bound him a thousand years,…” Now Satan must be removed in order for there to be a society built upon righteousness. Now we’re going to see something else again here in just a minute. And you’ll have to come to the Feast of Tabernacles and the Last Great Day to get the full meaning of it, but we’ll just get a little hint of it here. “…And cast him into the [abyss] bottomless pit, and shut him up, and set a seal upon him, that he should deceive the nations no more, till the thousand years should be fulfilled: and after that he must be loosed a little season” (Rev. 20:1-3).

Now what happens when he’s loosed a little season? Verse 7, as soon as Satan comes back, who is the author of sin, he reintroduces sin, doesn’t he? Yes, he does. “And when the thousand years are expired, Satan shall be loosed out of his prison, and shall go out to deceive the nations which are in the four quarters of the earth, Gog and Magog, to gather them together to battle: the number of whom is as the sand of the sea” (vs. 7-8). So immediately Satan causes a rebellion and uprising against God. So the whole purpose and meaning of the Day of Atonement is that Satan must be removed, and he must have all his sins put upon him because he’s the author of sin and there can never really be any complete atonement for sin unless the author of sin has been removed.

Now we’re going to read some very interesting things concerning what happened after the crucifixion of Jesus Christ, and the witness that He gave. Let’s go back to Luke 22, and let’s read about the blood of the New Covenant on the Passover night. Now remember in Exodus 12 the blood was put on the two side posts and the upper lintel of the door, and the firstborn were spared. Now then, at Passover, then Jesus says right here in verse 19, “And He took bread, and gave thanks, and brake it, and gave unto them, saying, This is My body which is given for you: this do in remembrance of Me. Likewise also the cup after supper, saying, This cup is the new testament [or, new covenant] in My blood, which is shed for you” (Luke 22:19-20). Now it’s also for the remission of sins. No question about it.

Let’s come back here to Mark 14 and let’s see that. And let’s pick it up in verse 23. “And He took the cup, and when He had given thanks, He gave it to them: and they all drank of it. And He said unto them, This is My blood of the new [covenant] testament, which is shed for [you] many” (Mark 14:23-24). Now then, just like the Passover atones for the sins of those in the New Covenant, the sacrifice of Christ is applied to us for the forgiveness of sin. The Passover. But it is only for the church, and as we saw on Pentecost, we are the church of the firstborn. Now, was there a blessing to all of ancient Israel because God spared the firstborn in the land of Egypt? Yes. Is there a blessing to the whole world because there is the church of God, wherever it may be in it’s many congregations and fellowships, is there a blessing to the world because God is sparing the firstborn of His church? Yes, there is.

Now then let’s come here to 1 John 2, and let’s see that. And let’s see that Christ right now is a propitiation for our sins, who are of the church of the firstborn, but the sacrifice of Christ has got to be applied to the whole world. And the Day of Atonement tells us this, it answers the question: when does God begin applying it to the whole world? And that is on the Day of Atonement when Satan is removed.

Now let’s read here in 1 John 2:1. “My little children, these things write I unto you, that ye sin not. And if any man sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous: and He is the propitiation for our sins:…” Now notice the next sentence here. “…And not for ours only, but also for the sins of the whole world” (1 John 2:1-2). So it is going to be applied to the whole world beginning with the fulfillment of the Day of Atonement when Christ returns. And then it’s going to be fulfilled again in the Great White Throne Judgment, as pictured by the Last Great Day. So you see, that’s when it’s going to be done.

Now let’s come back, and let’s read some interesting historical things that took place concerning the temple and the Day of Atonement. Now we know that the ministry of Christ and the beginning of the church was a tremendous witness to the Jews and the priesthood, the scribes, the Sadducees. And remember when you go through the book of Acts, chapter 3, chapter 4, chapter 5, chapter 6, how that the apostles were hauled before the Sanhedrin, and that they continually gave witness. Then we have in Acts 7, the martyrdom of Stephen. And he said, “You uncircumcised in heart, you always do resist the Holy Spirit.” Now then, God gave them the whole… that generation from 30 AD unto 70 AD, forty years, that generation, He gave them signs every Day of Atonement. And He gave them signs continually in the temple. Now let’s read of these things.

“The Babylonian Talmud,…” Now I’m reading from Restoring The Original Bible, by Earnest Martin. And he died this past spring. And continuing now, he says, “…lists the first sign as being that in which the lot for the Lord [that is, for the Day of Atonement] did not come up in the right hand. What was meant by this? The holy scriptures speak about this ceremony, Leviticus 16:5-34. On the Day of Atonement [he says] two identical goats were taken in,…”, and so forth, “…before the Lord. One source says the lots were in the form of a white and black stone. The white stone for the Lord. The black stone for the scapegoat. The priest would put his right hand into the receptacle containing the two stones without looking down. Select the stone with his right hand, and place it over the right goat. The Babylonian Talmud says that in the previous 200 years, the stone would sometimes be white and sometimes black, as most people would have expected.” That is, a random selection each year would bring up the black stone as often as the white stone. “But beginning in 30 AD, the very year in which Jesus prophesied the coming destruction of the temple, and the very year of His death and resurrection, the right hand of the high priest selected the black stone every time for forty straight years. The odds of the black stone coming up forty times in a row are almost astronomical in scope, and according to Paschel’s table of binomial coefficient, a table of odds, first devised by the French scientist, Paschel, the numerical chances of this happening under normal circumstances would be one chance in 1,099,511,000,627,776.”

Now then, since the Jews always look to a sign… Remember, Jesus said, “An evil generation seeks after a sign…”, and God gave them the sign of that selection of the black stone being picked first by the right hand of the priest, forty years in a row. “But the Jewish records show this rare phenomena occurred with regular consistency for forty years. The apostles would have been well aware of this occurrence, and with each passing year with the same consistency of the black stone coming up in the high priests hand, they would have been amazed with this phenomena. Some Jewish authorities at the time, and certainly later, were also impressed. That still does not conclude the matter.”

“Both Talmuds also report another sign from eyewitness accounts that boggles the imagination. Beginning in 30 AD, the very year of Jesus’ crucifixion, the western light of the menorah, which is the Hebrew name of the seven branch lampstand in the holy place, went out for a period of forty years. The menorah was positioned with it’s seven lamps facing north. The western lamp was that which was next to the holy place.” Now continuing, “This western lamp was to be kept lit at all times. For that reason the priests kept extra reservoirs of olive oil and other implements in ready supply to make sure that the western lamp, under all circumstances would stay lit. But what happened in the forty years from the very year Jesus Christ said the physical temple would be destroyed. And in the very year that Christ became a new resurrected temple for the Jewish people, and for all the world. Every night for forty years the western lamp went out. And this was in spite of the priests each evening preparing in a special way the western lamp so that it would remain constantly burning all night.” So then again, using the chances for that, you have all the astronomical things that take place. So that is something.

Now then, that really was quite a witness to the Jews. And what was it telling them? What was the message that God was sending to them? Those who operated in the temple, the high priest, the Levites, this was the message to them. Let’s come to the book of Hebrews, because you see the book of Hebrews was also written… Let’s come to Hebrews 7:20. The book of Hebrews was also written to prepare the people for the time when there would not be the physical temple. So they had the warnings, didn’t they? Forty years, the selection of the priests right hand was black every Day of Atonement. Forty years, the western lamp always went out every night, in spite of what they were doing to keep it lit. And what was the message of God? Not only that the destruction of the temple was coming, but that the priesthood had been replaced. And that by continuing to follow these rituals, as we will see, which could never take away sin, and rejecting Jesus Christ, they were selecting Satan the devil.

Now let’s read how powerful and important that this is concerning Christ and the New Covenant. Hebrews 7:20, “And inasmuch as not without an oath he was made priest: (For those priests were made without an oath;…” That is, Aaron was appointed. There was no oath made. It was by birth. It was birthright. “…But [with] this [high priest] with an oath by Him that said unto Him, the Lord sware and will not repent, Thou art a priest for ever after the order of Melchisedec:) By so much [more] was Jesus made a surety of a better [covenant] testament” (Heb. 7:20-22). They wanted to stick with just the physical things that they had and reject Christ, when He is a better covenant, and a better assurety, a better sacrifice, you see.

Now Paul explains here, verse 23. “And they truly were many priests, because they were not [allowed] suffered to continue by reason of death: but this [one] man, because He continueth ever, hath an unchangeable priesthood. Wherefore He is able also to save them to the uttermost that come unto God by Him, seeing He ever liveth to make intercession for them” (vs. 23-25). What a tremendous thing. And all during those forty years the Jews steadfastly rejected those signs from God. They steadfastly rejected the preachings of the apostles. And they steadfastly set out to persecute and destroy the church. And God pulled a miraculous change of hand on them when He converted Saul, who was their leading persecutor and slayer of Christians. Imagine that. It would be like having Heinrick Himmler converted out of Hitler’s regime in the second world war. Unheard of, see. An unchangeable priesthood. Able to save.

Now verse 26, “For such an high priest became us, Who is holy, harmless, undefiled, separate from sinners, and made higher than the heavens; Who needeth not daily, as those high priests, to offer up sacrifice, first for His own sins, and then for the people’s: for this He did once, when He offered up Himself.” Now that’s tremendous. “For the law maketh men high priests which have infirmity; but the word of the oath, which was since the law, maketh the Son, Who is consecrated for evermore” (vs. 26-28).

Now let’s continue right on in chapter 8, and verse 1 because he’s telling us the profound things of the high priesthood of Jesus Christ. “Now of the things which we have spoken this is the sum [or, the summary]: we have such an high priest, Who is set on the right hand of the throne of the Majesty in the heavens; a minister of the sanctuary, and of the true tabernacle, which the Lord pitched, and not man. For every high priest is ordained to offer gifts and sacrifices: wherefore it is of necessity [or, obligatory] that this man have somewhat also to offer. For if He were on earth, He should not be a priest, seeing that there are priests that offer gifts according to the law: who [that is, these priests] serve unto the example and shadow of heavenly things, as Moses was admonished of God when he was about to make the tabernacle: for, See, saith He, that thou make all things according to the pattern shewed to thee in the mount. But now hath He [that is Christ] obtained a more excellent ministry, by how much also He is the mediator of a better covenant, which was established upon better promises” (Heb. 8:1-6). Actually it means, superior. To be spiritual is superior to being physical, wouldn’t you say? And that’s what the Greek word means there, you see. So this is the high priesthood we have now.

And here is the covenant that God would make. Now let’s pick it up here in verse 10. “For this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, saith the Lord;…” Now He started with Judah and Israel, and then to the Gentiles. He is yet to make another covenant with Israel when they come back out of captivity, after they have gone through the great tribulation. So this will apply to them twice. Now it applies to us once because we have been called. And we being the firstborn, have the sacrifice of Christ applied to us now. They will not have the sacrifice applied to them until the Day of Atonement is fulfilled when Christ returns to this earth. So there is a difference between the Passover and the Day of Atonement.

So here’s the covenant that He desired to make. “…This is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, saith the Lord; I will put My laws into their mind, and write them in their hearts: and I will be to them a God, and they shall be to Me a people: and they shall not teach every man his neighbour, and every man his brother, saying, Know the Lord:…” And boy, don’t we have that today, with all the various false doctrines to go with it. My, my. “…For all shall know Me, from the least to the greatest. For I will be merciful to their unrighteousness, and their sins and their iniquities will I remember no more” (vs. 10-12). Then He says to the Jews, “The old, with the temple, is ready to vanish away” (vs. 13) paraphrased. And it did. Now you understand, why even if the Jews do build the temple, it will not result in any lasting righteousness, and why it must be destroyed again.

Now, let’s come to Hebrews 10, and here was the whole lesson that God was teaching them with those signs. And He did it for forty years. Now you couple that with all the preaching of the apostles, and the writings of the apostles, and the conversions of thousands and thousands of Jews, what a witness that that last generation of Jews had before the destruction of the temple. And the whole lesson was this: Hebrews 10:1, “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.” No, because Satan hasn’t been removed, and they didn’t have the Spirit of God. “For then would they not have ceased to be offered?” Well, of course. “…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.” And he’s talking specifically now about the Day of Atonement sacrifices. “For it is not possible that the blood of bulls and of goats should take away sins” (Heb. 10:1-4). Then he explains, that’s why Christ said, “Offering and sacrifice you didn’t desire, but a body you prepared for me:…” (vs. 5-6) paraphrased. And that was the body of Christ, which was the body of His sacrifice, which was the perfect sacrifice for all sins to cover the church under the Passover for the New Covenant, and to cover the world under the Day of Atonement when Christ returns. All of those things apply through His sacrifice.

Now let’s see that down in here verse 12. “But this Man, after He had offered one sacrifice for sins for ever, sat down on the right hand of God; from henceforth expecting till His enemies be made His footstool” (vs. 12-13). And that won’t happen until the complete fulfillment of the Last Great Day. So you see, this is why the holy days of God are so important in showing us how God is unfolding His plan, and how He does it step by step.

Now verse 15, “Whereof the Holy [Spirit] Ghost also is a witness to us: for after that He had said before, This is the covenant that I will make with them after those days, saith the Lord, I will put My laws into their hearts, and in their minds will I write them; and their sins and iniquities will I remember no more. Now where remission of these is, there is no more offering for sin” (vs. 15-18). And instead of having a high priest come into the holy of holies once a year, we have the privilege through Christ, through the veil, through His flesh, in a new and living way, to come before the very throne of God every single day. And that’s why this Day of Atonement is so very important for us. To remind us that we are flesh. To remind us that we have the privilege, and blessing, and opportunity to come before God every single day, not just on the Day of Atonement. But on this day we especially understand and realize that it is a day where we are going to be at-one with God the Father and Jesus Christ when the prayer of John 17 is fulfilled.

Let’s go to John 17 and let’s read that, because this is the meaning of the Day of Atonement for us. And yes, it is tied in with the sacrifice of Christ, and it does tie in with being at-one with God. Now let’s come here to John 17, and let’s pick it up here when He was praying, verse 6. “I have manifested Thy name unto the men which Thou gavest Me out of the world: Thine they were, and Thou gavest them Me; and they have kept Thy word. Now they have known that all things whatsoever Thou hast given Me are of Thee. For I have given unto them the words which Thou gavest Me; and they have received them, and have known surely that I came out from Thee, and they have believed that Thou didst send Me” (John 17:6-8).

Now here’s something very important. He says, “I pray for them:…” He says, “…I pray not for the world,…” See, because the world will not have the sacrifice of Christ available to them until the Day of Atonement be fulfilled when Christ returns. He says, “I pray not for the world,…” See this also have…, understanding the truth of the Day of Atonement also gives us the understanding that God is not trying to save the world today. And if He were, He would certainly be doing a very poor job of it. But you see, this is still Satan’s world. Satan has not been removed, and the world still cannot tell between the true God and the false God. And we cannot tell between the true God and the false god unless God calls us and opens our minds, and gives us understanding, and grants us His Holy Spirit. That’s why He doesn’t pray for the world. “…But for them which Thou hast given Me; for they are Thine” (vs. 9). So this prayer is for you, for me. Not just for them back then, as we will see. Christ intercedes every day for us when we come before Him to pray, when we bring before Him our spiritual sacrifices of praise, and service, and love, and prayer for the brethren, and all of those things.

Now verse 10, “And all Mine are Thine, and Thine are Mine; and I am glorified in them. And now…”, Jesus said, “…I am no more in the world, but these are in the world, and I come to Thee. Holy Father, keep through Thine own name those whom Thou hast given Me, that they may be one, as We are.” That they may be at-one with Us. At-one-ment. The meaning of the Day of Atonement. “While I was with them in the world, I kept them in Thy name: those that Thou gavest Me I have kept, and none of them is lost, but the son of perdition; that the scripture might be fulfilled. And now come I to Thee; and these things I speak in the world, that they might have My joy fulfilled in themselves. I have given them Thy word; and the world hath hated them, because they are not of the world, even as I am not of the world” (vs. 10-14). And so brethren, the Day of Atonement separates us from the world. The Holy Spirit of God separates us from the world. The word and truth of God separates us from the world. The Passover, the Sabbath, all the holy days of God separate us from the world. We are not of the world.

Now then we still have one little problem. [chuckle] Jesus said, “I pray not that Thou shouldest take them out of the world,…” And too many times the way the world is, we wished that that could be. But that’s not going to happen. “…But…”, Jesus said, “…that Thou shouldest keep them from the evil [one]” (vs. 15). Not only are we to be delivered out of temptation, but to be delivered from the evil one. And if we are keeping the Day of Atonement, which shows the resistance against the evil one, which shows the removal of the evil one, we will be protected from the evil one by having faith, and belief in Jesus Christ, and the blood of His sacrifice, and that He’s our High Priest continuously reigning and ruling from heaven above to be there as a propitiation for our sins.

Then He again says, verse 16, “They are not of the world, even as I am not of the world. Sanctify them through Thy truth:…” And this Day of Atonement is a day of sanctification because through the truth of keeping it by fasting and drawing close to God, we are sanctified by the word of God. “…Thy word is truth” (vs. 16-17).

Now verse 18, “As Thou hast sent Me into the world, even so have I also sent them into the world. And for their sakes I sanctify Myself, that they also might be sanctified through the truth. Neither pray I for these alone, but for them also which shall believe on Me through their word;…” And that’s us brethren. And this prayer is being fulfilled today, right in front of our very eyes. That we are sanctified through the truth, by the word of God, through Jesus Christ, Who is our High Priest. And that’s a tremendous thing. Now notice the whole goal. And here is the final fulfillment of the Day of Atonement when we get into the first part of the rest of eternity. “…That they all may be one; as Thou, Father, art in Me, and I in Thee, that they also may be one in Us: that the world may believe that Thou hast sent Me. And the glory which Thou gavest Me I have given them;…” (vs. 18-22). And you have part of the glory of God because you have the Holy Spirit. And the Holy Spirit does give you that glory, which comes from God, though a little bit. And understanding the word of God is a glorious thing indeed. And that’s part of the glory, you see. But then we understand this is only the earnest, the down payment, and when the fullness of time comes at the resurrection, then we shall truly be at-one with God. Not only spiritually, but also bodily. We’ll have a spirit body, a spirit mind, spirit clothes, and live forever, and be at-one with Jesus Christ and God the Father. And that’s what this Day of Atonement means for us.

Notice verse 23, “I in them, and Thou in Me, that they may be made perfect in one;…” So again this shows the process. That’s why brethren, it is worth everything that we go through. All the trials, all the difficulties, all the suffering that we endure because it’s just but for a light moment, as the apostle Paul said. For the glory of eternal life to be at-one with God the Father, and Jesus Christ. “…And that the world may know that Thou hast sent Me, and hast loved them, as Thou hast loved Me.” And so brethren, that’s the meaning of the Day of Atonement. To be at-one with God, and the complete removal of Satan and sin.

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