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A HEBREW SAGE MIGHT SAY. . .
Sometimes forgetting can be a higher form of love than forgiving.
SCAPEGOAT, THE AZAZEL
"And he (Aaron) shall take from the congregation of the children of Israel two kids of the goats for a sin offering, and one ram for a burnt offering. Aaron shall offer the bullock of the sin offering, which is for himself, and make atonement for himself and for his house. He shall take the two he-goats and present them before the LORD at the door of the Tabernacle of the Congregation. Then Aaron shall cast lots upon the two goats; one lot for the LORD, and the other lot for the scapegoat. And Aaron shall bring the he-goat on which the LORD'S lot fell, and offer him as a sin offering. But the goat on which the lot fell to be the scapegoat, shall be presented alive before the LORD, to make atonement over him, and to let him go for a scapegoat into the wilderness." [Leviticus (Vayikra) 16. 5 – 10 Tanakh, Torah]
The Hebrew word for scapegoat or goat of departure is azazel — the word also refers to the evil one or his dwelling. Literally, the lots were cast so that one goat would go to the LORD and the other (according to tradition) to the Devil. However, the HOLY ONE OF ISRAEL said the goat was to be led away into a solitary land bearing the sins of the people after the High Priest laid his hands on the head of the goat and confessed over it the sins of the people. [Leviticus/Vayikra 16. 20 – 22] This ceremony was one of GOD’S historical pictures foretelling of the "coming atonement" for human sin by the death of MESSIAH YESHUA. The PRINCE OF PEACE became sin for us bearing our sins, taking on HIMSELF the punishment that was due us.
On the Day of Atonement under the OLD COVENANT, the High Priest would cast lots on two goats. The lot which fell on one goat would be "slain unto the LORD" — then it’s blood would be carried by the same High Priest into the Holy of Holies and placed upon the Mercy Seat. The High Priest had already taken the blood of the bullock into the Holiest for himself. When he returned to the people after their atonement — it was the second time he had made his appearance before them! And so it is with the GREATER HIGH PRIEST WHO came once to give HIS OWN blood and then after the FATHER’S acceptance of the Sacrifice when the sins of the people were forgiven, YESHUA ha’MASHIACH would again return — at the appointed time!
The goat which was slain unto the LORD and its blood shed, is a type of a new and living way into the PRESENCE OF GOD in the Holy of Holies: "For when Moses had spoken every precept to all the people according to the Law, he took the blood of calves and goats, with water, scarlet wool, and hyssop, and sprinkled both the book itself and all the people, saying, "This is the blood of the covenant which GOD has commanded you." Then likewise he sprinkled with blood both the tabernacle and all the vessels of the ministry. And according to the Law almost all things are purified with blood, and without shedding of blood there is no remission. Therefore it was necessary that the copies of the things in the heavens should be purified with these, but the heavenly things themselves with better sacrifices than these. For MESSIAH has not entered the holy places made with hands, which are copies of the true, but into heaven itself, now to appear in the presence of GOD for us; not that HE should offer HIMSELF often, as the high priest enters the Most Holy Place every year with blood of another — HE then would have had to suffer often since the foundation of the world; but now, once at the end of the ages, HE has appeared to put away sin by the sacrifice of HIMSELF... And every priest stands ministering daily and offering repeatedly the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins. But this MAN, after HE had offered one sacrifice for sins forever, sat down at the right hand of GOD." [Hebrews 9. 19 – 26; 10. 11, 12]
The other lot would fall upon the Azazel/Scapegoat: "Aaron shall lay both his hands on the head of the live goat, confess over him all the iniquities of the children of Israel, and all their transgressions in all their sins, putting them on the head of the goat, and shall send him away by the hand of a fit man into the wilderness. And the goat shall bear upon him all their iniquities to a land not inhabited; and he shall release the goat in the wilderness." [Leviticus (Vayikra) 16. 21 – 22 Tanakh, Torah]
This scapegoat would carry the sins of the people far from them; it was a substitute; it was made sin that the people might be excused from the penalty of their sins! And YESHUA ha’MASHIACH was the SCAPEGOAT, for HE was the SUBSTITUTE WHO died outside the city of Jerusalem ("in the wilderness" – Hebrews 13.12) WHO carried our sins far from us, WHO was made sin that we might be made the righteousness of GOD in HIM! JESUS THE CHRIST has done more than cover up our sins, HE has blotted them out completely! HE has moved them as far as the east is from the west; HE has cast them behind HIS back to be remembered against us No More!
ALMIGHTY GOD ordained that the Blood should be the only way of approaching HIM. This was shown from the very beginning with Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden. After they transgressed HIS Law, GOD HIMSELF slew an animal, shedding its blood, made coats of skin and with them, and covered their nakedness. Their sins were covered through the shedding of blood, by the sacrifice of substitute.
"Cain brought an offering to the LORD from the fruit of the ground; and Abel, for his part, brought the choicest firstlings of his flock…and the LORD had respect to Abel and his offering, but to Cain and his offering HE paid no heed." [Genesis/Bereshith 4. 3 - 5] This looks like the institution of Blood Sacrifice, right at the start, as the condition of man’s acceptance with the RIGHTEOUS & HOLY GOD — an archaic hint, and the beginning of a long line of pictures and predictions of MESSIAH’S Atoning Death for the sin of mankind.
When the LORD commanded the people of Israel concerning their deliverance from Egypt, HE commanded them to take the firstling of the flock, an innocent lamb without spot or blemish, to shed its blood and place that blood on the doorpost, then said: "When I see the blood I will pass over you!" That first Passover, they had to stay where the blood was, had to stay inside their houses until morning; they had Blood Protection!
"Much more then, having now been justified by HIS blood, we shall be saved from wrath through HIM." [Romans 5. 9 – 10] "Not with the blood of goats and calves, but with HIS OWN blood HE entered the Most Holy Place once for all, having obtained eternal redemption. For if the blood of bulls and goats and the ashes of a heifer, sprinkling the unclean, sanctifies for the purifying of the flesh, how much more shall the blood of CHRIST, WHO through the ETERNAL SPIRIT offered HIMSELF without spot to GOD, cleanse your conscience from dead works to serve the LIVING GOD?" [Hebrews 9. 12 - 14] Only the blood of GOD’S ONLY-BEGOTTEN SON can give life eternal. Not blood flowing in the veins of the man, even the perfect GOD-MAN, but the blood shed of HIM WHO was with GOD in the creation of all things. Only such blood has power to purify an unclean soul and give a perfect body at the time of the resurrection so that we may appear unashamed, at last, in HIS presence.
Before the foundation of the earth, in the mind of GOD ETERNAL there was set a Day of Atonement for both Jew and Gentile which was fulfilled 2,000 years ago on the Altar of Calvary! We who have accepted GOD’S wondrous salvation can praise the LORD declaring: “MESSIAH YESHUA is my LORD, HE is my REDEMPTION for HE was slain in order that I might be admitted to life everlasting; HIS blood covering my sins.”
There is no longer a priest to cast lots, no scapegoats to send into the wilderness, and no blood to be poured on the Mercy Seat. For those who know the LORD MESSIAH YESHUA OF ISRAEL, has finished it all. Our WONDERFUL SAVIOR, by the sacrifice of HIMSELF, has inscribed our names in the LAMB’S BOOK OF LIFE and we shall never be separated from HIM. No longer is it necessary that a goat or a bullock or even a fowl (a ceremony still performed by many Orthodox Jews over all the world substituting a fowl for a man — called Kapporas Schlagen) shed it’s blood for the remission of sins once every year, for GOD’S LAMB shed HIS blood once and for all, Jew or Gentile who believes in HIM can rejoice that there is a Yom Kippur (Day of Covering) for time and eternity, made possible through the PERFECT KAPPORAH (Sacrifice) WHO is YESHUA (JESUS), the ONLY-BEGOTTEN SON OF THE TRUE & LIVING GOD!
Sha'alu (Pray) for the Shalom (Peace) of Jerusalem and all of Israel!
I praise and thank YOU, ALMIGHTY ONE, for YOU comfort and delight my soul. YOU are my ROCK and my REFUGE, in YOU alone do I have hope and place my trust completely. May gladness reign and joy increase throughout this Season of the LORD'S Festivals!
Praying for the peace of Jerusalem, is praying for the return of our Messiah and Lord and for the Kingdom of God He is bringing when He comes. Then God's Will shall be done on earth as it is in Heaven and the world will experience true godly universal peace.
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