Sunday, September 12, 2010

The Day Of Atonement






Guest blogger, Stan Nussbaum, takes us on a journey through the messianic year calendar.



Welcome to the journey of our Messiah through the year with Dr. Hussbaum.


”And the curtain in the Temple was torn in two, from top to bottom.” Mk. 15:38 (NLT)

Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement, was and is the holiest day on the Jewish calendar, the 10th day of the 7th month (10 and 7 both symbolizing completeness). On our calendars this year Yom Kippur is from sundown on Sept. 17th to sundown on the 18th. Just another Friday night and Saturday to most of us, but there is plenty to celebrate if we recognize this day as the pinnacle and the final day of the Season of Forgiveness.

Nothing distinguishes the world’s religions as sharply as forgivenenss. Some say you must earn it; others say you can’t. Some say it involves a sacrifice and a priest; others say it does not. Some say it is crucial; others say it is unimportant or even unnecessary. But as far as I know, only one says it is handled exclusively by someone who is sitting down.

“But our High Priest offered himself to God as one sacrifice for sins, good for all time. Then he sat down at the place of highest honor at God’s right hand.” (Heb. 10:12) Our High Priest is seated because he does not make sacrifices any more. He made atonement for us once, got it absolutely right, and it lasts forever. The value of his sacrifice, the blood of a perfect person, more than offsets the staggering total weight of all the sins of all the billions of imperfect people who have ever lived and ever will.

The day he made the perfect sacrifice in heaven God dramatically proved on earth that the sacrifice was accepted. (The actual day was a Passover day, not Yom Kippur—see March 28th reading.) Just when Jesus died, the thick heavy curtain separating the Holy of Holies from the rest of the Temple was ripped from top to bottom. (Mk. 15:38) By tearing the curtain, God was in effect “ripping his clothing,” a sign of grief according to Jewish custom. He was incredibly grieved that his chosen people kept up their sacrifices in the Temple as if to please him while at the same time they were accomplices in the Messiah’s crucifixion.

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