Sermon #351 Leviticus Sermons
Title: The Day Of Atonement
Text: Leviticus 16:1-34
Subject: The Typical Significance of the Day of Atonement
Date: Sunday Morning – May 5, 2002
Tape # W-98b
Reading: Leviticus 16:1-34
The most important and most instructive of all the typical ceremonies of the Old Testament was The Day Of Atonement.—The day of atonement pictured, foreshadowed, and typified the sin-atoning work of our Lord Jesus Christ, who is our great High Priest, our substitutionary Sacrifice for sin, our Scapegoat, our Altar, and our Mercy-Seat, through whom alone sinners have access to and find acceptance with the Holy Lord God.
Mercy and Truth
Divisions: As we take a brief survey at this chapter and try to picture the events of this, the greatest of all days on the Jewish calendar during the Old Testament time, I want to draw your attention to five specific things about that great day.
I. The atonement was made by a specifically appointed man, Aaron, the great high priest of Israel—The great high priest (v. 3).(Leviticus 16:3) "Thus shall Aaron come into the holy place: with a young bullock for a sin offering, and a ram for a burnt offering."
A. He was a chosen man.
B. He was robed in garments of humility (v. 4).(Leviticus 16:4) "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." On this great day Aaron laid aside his gorgeous, glorious garments and put on the garments of humility.— No Bells And Pomegranates! (2 Corinthians 8:9) "For ye know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that, though he was rich, yet for your sakes he became poor, that ye through his poverty might be rich." (Philippians 2:5-11) "Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus: (6) Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God: (7) But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men: (8) And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross. (9) Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name: (10) That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth; (11) And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father."
C. Israel’s great high priest was a ceremonially holy man (vv. 3, 4, 6, 11, 12).(Leviticus 16:3-4) "Thus shall Aaron come into the holy place: with a young bullock for a sin offering, and a ram for a burnt offering. (4) 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." (Leviticus 16:6) "And Aaron shall offer his bullock of the sin offering, which is for himself, and make an atonement for himself, and for his house." (Leviticus 16:11-12) "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: (12) And he shall take a censer full of 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." Though Aaron was a sinner like us, he had to be a ceremonially holy man to act as God’s high priest, picturing the Lord Jesus Christ. In order to approach God as the high priest of his people, Aaron had to have in type, and Christ had to have in reality, these four things…
D. In all his work on the day of atonement Aaron acted alone (v. 17).(Leviticus 16:17) "And there shall be no man in the tabernacle of the congregation 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." No one else was present. No one was allowed into the holy of holies but Aaron. Aaron was alone with God to make atonement for the people. The whole nation was entrusted to one representative man. The whole nation rested upon the shoulders of one man. If that man succeeds, the nation shall live. If he fails, the nation must die! (Psalms 69:20) "Reproach hath broken my heart; and I am full of heaviness: and I looked for some to take pity, but there was none; and for comforters, but I found none." (Isaiah 63:3-5) "I have trodden the winepress alone; and of the people there was none with me: for I will tread them in mine anger, and trample them in my fury; and their blood shall be sprinkled upon my garments, and I will stain all my raiment. (4) For the day of vengeance is in mine heart, and the year of my redeemed is come. (5) And I looked, and there was none to help; and I wondered that there was none to uphold: therefore mine own arm brought salvation unto me; and my fury, it upheld me." In all things, Aaron, the high priest, typified our great, sin-atoning High Priest, the Lord Jesus Christ.
II. Next, let’s read verses 5, 7-10. We will consider the meaning of the scapegoat in a few minutes. Right now I want you to get a picture of the goat that was slain as a victim for a sin-offering to God.—This goat represents the Lord Jesus Christ as the Lamb of God. Christ is both our High Priest and our Sacrificial Lamb, the victim, not of man’s will, but of God’s justice!(Leviticus 16:5) "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." (Leviticus 16:7-10) "And he shall take the two goats, and present them before the LORD at the door of the tabernacle of the congregation. (8) And Aaron shall cast lots upon the two goats; one lot for the LORD, and the other lot for the scapegoat. (9) And Aaron shall bring the goat upon which the LORD'S lot fell, and offer him for a sin offering. (10) But the goat, on which the lot fell to be the scapegoat, shall be presented alive before the LORD, to make an atonement with him, and to let him go for a scapegoat into the wilderness."
A. It was an innocent victim.B. It was taken from among the people.
Divine justice must be avenged upon and compensation must be made by man, for man sinned.
C. It was chosen and ordained by God (vv. 7-9—Pro. 16:33; Acts 2:23; 4:26-28; 13:29).(Leviticus 16:7-9) "And he shall take the two goats, and present them before the LORD at the door of the tabernacle of the congregation. 8 And Aaron shall cast lots upon the two goats; one lot for the LORD, and the other lot for the scapegoat. 9 And Aaron shall bring the goat upon which the LORD'S lot fell, and offer him for a sin offering." (Proverbs 16:33) "The lot is cast into the lap; but the whole disposing thereof is of the LORD." (Acts 2:23) "Him, being delivered by the determinate counsel and foreknowledge of God, ye have taken, and by wicked hands have crucified and slain:" (Acts 4:26-28) "The kings of the earth stood up, and the rulers were gathered together against the Lord, and against his Christ. 27 For of a truth against thy holy child Jesus, whom thou hast anointed, both Herod, and Pontius Pilate, with the Gentiles, and the people of Israel, were gathered together, 28 For to do whatsoever thy hand and thy counsel determined before to be done." (Acts 13:29) "And when they had fulfilled all that was written of him, they took him down from the tree, and laid him in a sepulchre."
D. It was slain by Divine order as a sacrifice for sin (v. 15; Zech. 13:7).(Leviticus 16:15) "Then shall he kill the goat of the sin offering, that is for 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:" (Zechariah 13:7) "Awake, O sword, against my shepherd, and against the man that is my fellow, saith the LORD of hosts: smite the shepherd, and the sheep shall be scattered: and I will turn mine hand upon the little ones." Thus the Lord Jesus Christ our Substitute, the Lamb of God, was sacrificed for us…
E. The blood of this slain goat was sprinkled upon the mercy seat seven times (vv. 14-15)(Leviticus 16:14-15) "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. 15 Then shall he kill the goat of the sin offering, that is for 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:"
Illustration: The Rent Veil (Matt. 27:50-51).(Matthew 27:50-51) "Jesus, when he had cried again with a loud voice, yielded up the ghost. 51 And, behold, the veil of the temple was rent in twain from the top to the bottom; and the earth did quake, and the rocks rent;"
III. The Lost Scapegoat (vv. 20-22).(Leviticus 16:20-22) "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: 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, and all their transgressions in all their sins, putting them upon the head of the goat, and shall send him away by the hand of a fit man into the wilderness: 22 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." The scapegoat is a picture of the complete removal of our sins by Christ. The first goat, the Lord’s goat, the slain victim gave us a picture of the atonement. The second goat, the scapegoat gives us a picture of the result of the atonement.—Look at these two great, instructive pictures.
A. The Imputation Of Our Sins To Christ (v. 21).(Leviticus 16:21) "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, and all their transgressions in all their sins, putting them upon the head of the goat, and shall send him away by the hand of a fit man into the wilderness:" (Isaiah 53:4-6) "Surely he hath borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows: yet we did esteem him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted. 5 But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed. 6 All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and the LORD hath laid on him the iniquity of us all." (2 Corinthians 5:21) "For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him."
B. The Removal Of Our Sins By Christ (v. 22).(Leviticus 16:22) "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."
Illustration: Mark Warta’s Letter
IV. The People’s Response.
At the close of the day, when the work of atonement was finished, Aaron took off his linen garments and put on his glorious, gorgeous garments again. Then, on the basis of atonement made, he lifted up his hands and blessed the people (Numbers 6:24-26).(Numbers 6:24-27) "The LORD bless thee, and keep thee: 25 The LORD make his face shine upon thee, and be gracious unto thee: 26 The LORD lift up his countenance upon thee, and give thee peace. 27 And they shall put my name upon the children of Israel; and I will bless them." When the people saw what God did for them, they had a threefold response.
A. They repented – "Ye shall afflict your souls" (v. 29).
B. They rested – "Ye shall do no work at all" (v. 29).
Illustration: The Sabbath (Heb. 4:9-10).
C. They rejoiced (Lev. 25:9). Jubilee proclaims…(Leviticus 25:9) "Then shalt thou cause the trumpet of the jubilee to sound on the tenth day of the seventh month, in the day of atonement shall ye make the trumpet sound throughout all your land."
V. The Act of Faith symbolized in verses 21 and 22.
I call upon each of you to join me in the act of faith symbolized on the day of atonement. – Lay your hands upon Christ the Scapegoat’s head, confess your sins. Now, watch them go away!
Illustration: Charlotte Elliot – "Just As I Am"