Scripture: Leviticus 16-18. Click here to view full scripture.
Observation: What was going on in the Bible at this time?
The Day of Atonement was the best day of the year for Israel. The Hebrew word for atone means “to cover,” for the Old Testament sacrifices could not remove sins, but only cover them. Christ’s sacrifice on the cross now gives us the opportunity to have sins removed forever. On the Day of Atonement, Aaron was to offer two male goats for a sin offering and a ram for a burnt offering. The Israelites were prohibited from sacrificing outside the Tabernacle area because God had established specific times and places for sacrifices. Eating blood was a common pagan practice, and God had forbidden the Israelites from eating or drinking blood from any animal they hunted. The Israelites were to keep themselves pure and set apart (from the people around them) for God.
Application: How can we apply this to our lives?
Aaron, as priest, had to spend plenty of hours preparing himself to meet God. We can approach God at any time. We should always prepare our hearts as we draw near to Him in prayer. The event of the two goats on the Day of Atonement represented the two ways that God was dealing with the Israelites – forgiving their sin through the first goat and removing their guilt through the second goat, which was sent into the desert. Nowadays, we can be forgiven for our sins and have our guilt removed by placing our trust in the Lord. Be sure to thank God every day for sending His one and only son to die for each and every one of us. God wants to participate and be a part of our lives. The Israelites were to keep themselves pure and set apart for God, for God did not want His people absorbed into the surrounding environment and culture. Today, society may try to pressure us into conforming to its way of life, but we should follow God and obey His Word.
Prayer: What can we pray for in regards to these passages?
Heavenly Father, Thank You for sending Your son Jesus to die for us. We are so thankful that we can approach You at any time. Please help us to always prepare our hearts as we draw near to You in prayer. Please help us to follow You, Father, and to always obey Your Word, even in the roughest of times when the world is trying to pressure us into conforming to its way(s) of life. Help us to stay close to You. Please protect us, our friends, families and pets, and be with those who need You most. We thank You for Your protection and guidance in this life. We love You and thank You for everything. – in Jesus’ name we pray, amen.