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6 “Aaron shall offer the bull as a sin offering for himself and shall make atonement for himself and for his house. 7 Then he shall take the two goats and set them before the Lord at the entrance of the tent of meeting. 8 And Aaron shall cast lots over the two goats, one lot for the Lord and the other lot for Azazel. 9 And Aaron shall present the goat on which the lot fell for the Lord and use it as a sin offering, 10 but the goat on which the lot fell for Azazel shall be presented alive before the Lord to make atonement over it, that it may be sent away into the wilderness to Azazel.……
15 “Then he shall kill the goat of the sin offering that is for the people and bring its blood inside the veil and do with its blood as he did with the blood of the bull, sprinkling it over the mercy seat and in front of the mercy seat. 16 Thus he shall make atonement for the Holy Place, because of the uncleannesses of the people of Israel and because of their transgressions, all their sins. And so he shall do for the tent of meeting, which dwells with them in the midst of their uncleannesses. ……
20 “And when he has made an end of atoning for the Holy Place and the tent of meeting and the altar, he shall present the live goat. 21 And Aaron shall lay both his hands on the head of the live goat, and confess over it all the iniquities of the people of Israel, and all their transgressions, all their sins. And he shall put them on the head of the goat and send it away into the wilderness by the hand of a man who is in readiness. 22 The goat shall bear all their iniquities on itself to a remote area, and he shall let the goat go free in the wilderness.
- The Day of Atonement is the most important religious date for the Israelites. The high priest had to sacrifice a bull for his own sin on the Day of Atonement. Only then could he sacrifice for the sins of his people. Each of us needs to approach God humbly, for we have all sinned.
- Two goats will be selected for the Day of Atonement. One was sacrificed, and its blood was sprinkled on the altar. The other was set apart “to azazel” meaning “complete removal”. The acting out of sin’s removal by the high priest (v22) was intended to convey to Israel a sense of assurance that their sins truly were gone. Israel was forgiven and accepted by the Lord.
- Hold a stuffed animal, a figurine, or even a pet, and put my hands on its head. Confess to God my acts of rebellion, my bad attitudes, and my harsh thoughts about others. Experience the feeling of transferring my sin to this animal. See myself sending it off as it takes my sin far away from me.
What do I wish to say to God about having sent my sins off without me?
Quiet my mind and wait on God to show my situations in which I need to remember what I just did. Practice resting assured of God’s love in those situations as I am resting assured now.