The Day of Atonement

Christians claim that only through the shedding of blood can people’s sin be forgiven. But the Hebrew Bible teaches otherwise. Have a read of The Day of Atonement as described in Leviticus 16. Notice three things:


1) the high priest offers a bull as a sin offering for himself.

2) then the high priest offers a goat as the sin offering to purify the holy place from the people’s sins over the last year.

3) then the high priest takes another goat, lays his hands on it, confesses the people’s sins, and sets the goat loose into the wilderness. The goat carries the sins away. Notice the animal is not sacrificed or killed. The Day of Atonement refutes the Christian claim that only through a sacrifice can sin be removed.

The following brief paragraph neatly summarises how sins were removed on the Day of Atonement. Excerpt from The Bible: A Historical and Literary Introduction by Bart D. Ehrman, page 76.


Categories: Bible, Judaism

21 replies

  1. Reblogged this on The Quran and Bible Blog and commented:

    A blood sacrifice was not required for the removal of sins after all!

  2. The sad thing about the subject is that christians believe blindly and ironically, that the holiness & the greatness of God is based on God being taking the place of jews’ animals. This for them the best thing God has done for the humanity ( i.e. to do a job which can be done by animals).
    Can you imagine this? The best thing God has done is doing job which was held and known for animals?
    Satan is doing his job on them very well. May Allah protect our hearts!

    • Pennywise: Blah, blah, blah. I have no response so I will babble the same garbage I always babble, which doesn’t prove anything.

    • Here we see Pennywise lying again. The rabbi in the video merely says that if you wanted a parallel for the Christian understanding of atonement, it was Yom Kippur and not the Passover sacrifice, which is what the gospel of John was referencing.

      Moreover, as is typical of deceitful missionaries, Pennywise ignores the numerous proofs the rabbi gave to refute the Christian understanding of atonement. The best one starts around the 1:15 mark, where he talks about the book of Ezekiel. I have pointed this out many times as well. The book of Ezekiel talks about the rebuilding of the temple after the battle of Gog and Magog and the reinstatement of the temple sacrifices. This by itself refutes Christianity as it negates the idea of a be all/end all sacrifice for sins by Jesus. After that, the rabbi gave more evidence for why the Christian concept of sacrifice contradicts the concept as given in the Tanakh.

      • The rabbi also condemned the Christian deification of Jesus as basically the same as every other pagan religion. Similarly, I have asked Pennywise and other Christians how their worship of Jesus is any different from that of a Hindu. Naturally, I’ve never gotten a reasonable answer.

      • Again, Faizywise does not know the definition of lying, since I acknowledged that the Rabbi was denying that Jesus’ death was also parallel with the Passover atonement: beginning of my own article:

        “In this lecture, beginning at around the 1:29:00 mark (between the one hour and 29 minute mark and 1 hour 32 minute mark)- Rabbi Michael Skobac admits that the Day of Atonement (Yom Kippur = יום כפר ) of Leviticus 16 is the closest parallel to the sacrifice of Jesus Christ! He tried to argue that Jesus did not fulfill the Passover the Sacrifice, yet the New Testament teaches just that. (John 1:29; 1 Corinthians 5:7) Jesus fulfilled the passover lamb also, as “not a bone of him was broken”. (see Exodus 12:46 and John 19:33, 36) One of the most amazing things he says is that the Passover sacrifice has nothing to do with sin! Really? The idolatry and the false gods of Egypt was not sin? The Passover sacrifice was a judgment against the idolatry and false gods of Egypt. (Exodus 12:12) Only by the substitutionary sacrifice of an innocent lamb and the blood applied to the doorposts would the judging angels of the wrath of God be stopped. This is also a further development of what Abraham said when Isaac asked him, “Where is the lamb for the sacrifice?” Abraham answered, “God will provide for Himself the lamb”. (see Genesis 22:7-8)”

        So, you don’t know the definition of lying, so your comprehension skills and language skills are deficient.

      • @ QB

        Accusing gentle Kenny of lying about what a Rabbi believes/said? Why I never….

      • Oh Kennywise, you pathetic liar! Let me break it down for you.

        Kennywise: Jewish Rabbi admits that the Day of Atonement is parallel to the sacrifice of Jesus Christ

        Reality: The rabbi said that the gospel of John sought to create a parallel between Jesus’ sacrifice and the Passover sacrifice, which is wrong, and that IF he wanted to find an actual parallel with Jesus’ sacrifice as an ATONEMENT for sins, then the correct parallel would the Yom Kippur sacrifice, since that was literally for the ATONEMENT of sins. He wasn’t saying that the “Day of Atonement is parallel to the sacrifice of Jesus Christ”.

        So yes, Kennywise the lying clown lied about what the rabbi said, and now to cover his lie, he lies again.

        There is also a third lie, or perhaps we can chalk it up to stupidity. The rabbi correctly points out that the Passover sacrifice has nothing to do with atonement for sins. Kennywise claims this the Egyptian idolatry was sinful, which is correct of course, but what he fails to understand is that the Passover sacrifice was not meant to ATONE for the sins of the Egyptians! It had nothing to do with sin atonement. That was the point the rabbi was making, which is why the gospel of John was wrong to try to create a parallel between Passover and Jesus’ crucifixion.

  3. From my article, which Faizywise failed to read.

    20 “When he finishes atoning for the holy place and the tent of meeting and the altar, he shall offer the live goat. 21 Then Aaron shall lay both of his hands on the head of the live goat, and confess over it all the iniquities of the sons of Israel and all their transgressions in regard to all their sins; and he shall lay them on the head of the goat and send it away into the wilderness by the hand of a man who stands in readiness.22 The goat shall bear on itself all their iniquities to a solitary land; and he shall release the goat in the wilderness. (Leviticus 16:20-22)

    34 Now you shall have this as a permanent statute, to make atonement for the sons of Israel for all their sins once every year.” And just as the Lord had commanded Moses, so he did. (Leviticus 16:34)

    A very important point I want to make is about the word “bear” or “carry” in verse 22. This is the Hebrew word Nasa’ = נשא and it also used several times in Isaiah 53.

    Surely our griefs He Himself bore [Hebrew: נשא]
    And our sorrows He carried;
    Yet we ourselves esteemed Him stricken,
    Smitten of God, and afflicted. (Isaiah 53:4)

    Therefore, I will allot Him a portion with the great,
    And He will divide the booty with the strong;
    Because He poured out Himself to death,
    And was numbered with the transgressors;
    Yet He Himself bore [ נשא ] the sin of many,
    And interceded for the transgressors. (Isaiah 53:12)

    There is also another Hebrew word for “carry” and “bear” or “take away” [ סבל – “sabal” ] used in Isaiah 53:4 and 53:11, that would emphasize the taking away aspect of the scape-goat (literally: “the goat of sending away”, or “the goat of escaping” = עז- אזל = “Az” = goat; “azel” [ אזל ] = sending away or escaping)

    Isaiah 53 really starts in 52:13, according to context, as the chapter divisions were a later invention. “Behold, My servant, will act wisely and succeed, and He will be high and lifted up and greatly exalted.” Note, the Hebrew word Nasa’ [ נשא ] is also used in this verse, but in this context, it means, “lifted up”. This may be pointing to the “lifting up” of the Son of Man on the cross (John 3:14, 12:32) or the lifting up of the Son of Man in the resurrection and ascension to heaven. Almost every verse in Isaiah 52:13 to 53:12 is either quoted in the NT or alluded to the NT (see examples at end); and many aspects are alluded to back to earlier parts of the TaNakh. (the Hebrew Bible – T = Torah; N = Nabi’im = prophets; “Kh” = Ketuvim = writings (the Psalms, poetry, wisdom, and historical books. These are the three sections of the Hebrew Bible that Jesus also affirmed in Luke 24:44.)

    The whole section, beginning in Isaiah 52:13-15 and 53:1-12 has several indicators that Isaiah 52:13-53:12 is about atonement aspects of both goats in the Day of Atonement of Leviticus 16. Because the suffering servant (52:13 – “My servant”; and 53:11 – “My servant, the righteous one, will justify the many”) both bears our sins and is slaughtered, He is fulfilling both aspects of the Day of Atonement. By both aspects, I mean both goats – one was slaughtered and one was “sent away”, representing 2 aspects of atonement. Because He is also called “a lamb”, He is fulfilling the aspect of the Passover lamb of Exodus 12, which turned God’s wrath away from those that had the blood on the doorposts, and He is the lamb that Abraham said “God will provide for the lamb for the sacrifice” in Genesis 22.

    Isaiah 53:6 also points to the scapegoat of the Day of Atonement.

    “All of us like sheep have gone astray,
    Each of us has turned to his own way;
    But the Lord has caused the iniquity of us all
    To fall on Him.” ( Isaiah 53:6)

    The concept of the iniquity “falling upon” or “encountering” Him seems to allude back to the lot falling upon the scapegoat. And that the priest placed his hands on the head of the scapegoat and confessed all the sins of the sons of Israel over the goat was a symbol of transference of sin from us humans onto the goat.

    Isaiah 53:6 is alluded to in 1 Peter 2:25 – “For you were continually straying like sheep, but now you have returned to the Shepherd and guardian of our souls.”

    Also, the shepherd imagery points to Psalm 23:1, Isaiah 40; and Micah 5:2-5, and Jesus makes that claim that He is the Messiah who is the good shepherd who will shepherd My people, etc. (John chapter 10)

    Getting back to the idea of “bearing sin” – from Isaiah 53:4 and 11-12 – this is picked up a lot in the New Testament.

    1 Peter 2:24

    ” and He Himself bore our sins in His body on the cross, so that we might die to sin and live to righteousness; for by His wounds you were healed. ”

    The last phrase, “for by His wounds you were healed” is a direct reference to Isaiah 53:5; and the first part that He “bore our sins” is a reference to Isaiah 53:4, 11, and 12. In fact, the LXX translation of “bore” in Isaiah 53:4 and 12 is the same Greek word in I Peter 2:24. (ανηνεγκεν, from ανα-φερω – to carry, to carry away, to bear, to offer up (a sacrifice). This word is also used in Hebrews 7:27 (twice, offering up sacrifices, and Jesus offered Himself up); Hebrews 9:28, and James 2:21 about Abraham offering up Isaac.

    Another argument that the Rabbi makes is about Isaiah 53:10 – that phrase, “He would render Himself as a guilt offering . . . ” is harkening back to Leviticus 5:15-19 and the guilt offering there, but it states that it is only for unintentional sins, not intentional ones. But if one keeps reading into Leviticus chapter 6:1-7, one can see that the “guilt offering” [ אשם ] also includes intentional sins. (Thanks to Michael Brown for that insight! Answers to Jewish Objections to Jesus. 5 Volumes. In volume 2, “Theological Objections, on page 128 and following. ) Furthermore, the day of atonement emphasizes several times “for all the iniquities of the sons of Israel”. (see Leviticus 16:20-22 and verse 34) All would include both intentional and unintentional sins.

    But the Lord was pleased
    To crush Him, putting Him to grief;
    If He would render Himself as a guilt offering, [ אשם ]
    He will see His offspring,
    He will prolong His days,
    And the good pleasure of the Lord will prosper in His hand. (Isaiah 53:10)

    Allusions or quotes in the NT:

    Isaiah 52:13 – “My Servant” – Mark 10:45; Matthew 20:28. Matthew 12:1-4 also about “My servant” which is a quote from Isaiah 42:1-4. Jesus, as the servant who serves and “give His life a ransom for man” alludes to all of Isaiah 53, and He was clearly claiming to be the servant of Isaiah 42 and 53.

    “He will act wisely or prudently” = the Hebrew word here is a deep word, meaning, “He will act wisely so as to succeed or prosper”, in carrying out the will of God. This word is also used in Joshua 1:8.

    “He will be high, and lifted up, and great exalted.” This points to the numerous concepts of Jesus’ glorification and victory over sin in His resurrection, and ascension to heaven, and His taking His seat of authority at the right hand of the Father.

    Isaiah 52:14 – “His appearance was marred more than any man” – refers to the beatings and sufferings of the brutal crucifixion. He was so disfigured that the disciples did not recognize Him when He rose from the dead, because the last memories of His dis-figurement was so seared into their brains.

    Isaiah 52:15 – “what had not been told them, they will see, and what they had not heard, they will understand” – this is quoted by the apostle Paul in Romans 15:20-21, that when the gospel goes to new areas and new people groups, the mission of the suffering servant is being fulfilled and accomplished. The mission of the Suffering Servant of Isaiah 52-53 is not complete until all the unreached people groups have heard, and some of them come to know the true God, the fulfillment when some from all the nations will be redeemed by the blood of the lamb. (see Revelation 5:9)

    Isaiah 53:1 – quoted in John 12:38 and Romans 10:16

    Isaiah 53:2- 3 – alluded to back in Isaiah 11:1 and as the “Netzer” [ נצר ] and the branch and tender shoot, (with Jeremiah 23:5; 33:15; and Zechariah 3:8 and 6:12) – as the “Netzer” – he was despised and rejected and this is what Matthew 2:23 is talking about when it says, “this was to fulfill the word of the prophets, He will be called a Nazarene.” (“Netzer” or “Nazer” is the root of “Nazarene”) The Jews of the south around Jerusalem were disgusted with the area of Galilee, “Galilee of the Gentiles”, and the Samaritans, because they were half Jews, mixed with the Assyrians and others peoples (see 2 Kings 17); and so many Greeks and Romans and other foreigners were up there in around Galilee. “can anything good come out of Galilee?” was a common saying.

    Isaiah 53:4 – quoted in Matthew 8:17;

    the “bearing of sin” is alluded to in 1 Peter 2:24 and other places. The word for “pain”/”sickness” is used in Isaiah 1:3-9 about the sins of the people. Also, Jeremiah 17:9 speaks of the heart being sick and deceitful, and although a different word for “sick”, the concept points to spiritual sickness in sin.

    Isaiah 53:5 – the last phrase is quoted in 1 Peter 2:24

    Isaiah 53:6 – alluded to in 1 Peter 2:25

    Isaiah 53:7 – 8

    He was oppressed and He was afflicted,
    Yet He did not open His mouth;
    Like a lamb that is led to slaughter, (see John 1:29)
    And like a sheep that is silent before its shearers,
    So He did not open His mouth.

    By oppression and judgment He was taken away,

    And as for His generation, who considered that He was cut off out of the land of the living,

    For the transgression of My people, to whom the stoke was due?

    Isaiah 53:7-8 is quoted in Acts 8:30-35

    30 Philip ran up and heard him reading Isaiah the prophet, and said, “Do you understand what you are reading?” 31 And he said, “Well, how could I, unless someone guides me?” And he invited Philip to come up and sit with him. 32 Now the passage of Scripture which he was reading was this:

    “He was led as a sheep to slaughter;
    And as a lamb before its shearer is silent,
    So He does not open His mouth.
    33 “In humiliation His judgment was taken away;
    Who will relate His generation?
    For His life is removed from the earth.”

    34 The eunuch answered Philip and said, “Please tell me, of whom does the prophet say this? Of himself or of someone else?” 35 Then Philip opened his mouth, and beginning from this Scripture he preached Jesus to him.

    Another interesting note is the phrase “cut off from the land of the living”. This concept of being “cut off” is similar to the passage about the Messiah in Daniel 9:26 – “Then after the sixty-two weeks the Messiah will be cut off and have nothing, and the people of the prince who is to come will destroy the city and the sanctuary.” Clearly this is about the death of the Messiah predicted by Daniel, and then after His death, the temple will be destroyed, in 70 AD, as Jesus predicted in Matthew 23:36-39 and 24:1-3 and 15.

    Isaiah 53:9 –

    His grave was assigned with wicked men,
    Yet He was with a rich man in His death, (allusion to Joseph of Arimathea’s grave in Matthew 27:57)
    Because He had done no violence,
    Nor was there any deceit in His mouth. (Quoted in 1 Peter 2:22)

    Isaiah 53:10 –

    But the Lord was pleased – (pointing to the wrath of God being satisfied by His atonement in willingly being a guilt offering- Leviticus chapter 5 and 6)

    To crush Him, putting Him to grief;
    If He would render Himself as a guilt offering, (Leviticus 5 and 6:1-7)
    He will see His offspring, (The Messiah’s “seed” is His spiritual sons and daughters by faith – also referred to later in the passage in Isaiah 54:1-4 and Galatians 3-4)
    He will prolong His days,
    And the good pleasure of the Lord will prosper in His hand.

    Isaiah 53:11-12

    As a result of the anguish of His soul,
    He will see it and be satisfied;
    By His knowledge the Righteous One,
    My Servant, will justify the many, (Jesus alludes to this in Mark 10:45; and Romans 5:11-21 speaks of the justification of many by the death of Christ)
    As He will bear their iniquities. (referred to at the beginning of the article)
    12 Therefore, I will allot Him a portion with the great,
    And He will divide the booty with the strong;
    Because He poured out Himself to death,
    And was numbered with the transgressors; (quoted in Luke 22:37; and also probably fulfilled by being crucified between 2 other criminals.)
    Yet He Himself bore the sin of many, (I Peter 2:24; Hebrews 7:27; 9:28)
    And interceded for the transgressors. (see Luke 23:34; Christ continues to intercede for us now – Romans 8:34, Hebrews 7:25)

    So, Isaiah 53 was a further development of the substitutionary sacrifice and the bearing of sins of the goats of the day of atonement in Leviticus 16, 17:11, (also in Leviticus 5-6) and a prediction of the Messiah to come, as almost every verse in Isaiah 52:13-53:12 is either directly quoted or alluded to in the NT.

  4. There are many false arguments he (the Rabbi) makes, such as the claim that a substitutionary sacrifice of blood is not necessary always for forgiveness; rather he claims that the main thing is repentance and contrition over sin, not the sacrificial system or substitutionary atonement by giving up life- by death by a violent, bloody death. Of course Christians agree that just going through the motions of a religious ritual, without inward heart repentance is empty and to no avail. Both the OT and the NT require both – the bloody substitutionary sacrifice and repentance on the part of the sinner. Genesis 22, Exodus 12 (Passover), Leviticus chapters 1-7 and 16-17, 1 Kings 8, Psalm 50:5; Isaiah 53, Psalm 22, and other passages all point to the necessity of blood sacrifice. Leviticus 17:11 is still teaching the necessity of blood sacrifice, despite the Rabbi’s argument against it, and is what Hebrews 9:22 is referring to – “without the shedding of blood, there is no forgiveness of sins.”

  5. “Notice the animal is not sacrificed or killed. The Day of Atonement refutes the Christian claim that only through a sacrifice can sin be removed.”

    But even the sacrifice of Christ itself is of no worth without the living obedience that it offered up to God. This is perhaps what the living goat is symbolizing. The perfect walk of Christ through the wilderness of this world.

    Thus the two goats picture the same atonement from two different vantage points. There is no contradiction and they complement each other.

    • LOL, the Christians with their desperate reaching…

      Even if we grant this GENEROUS interpretation, the fact remains that your Jesus did not walk “perfectly” in he “wilderness of this world”. Sorry Iggy, but your Jesus had committed sins.

    • Also, you are contradicting Paul, who said salvation was a free gift:

      “For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— 9 not by works, so that no one can boast. 10 For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.” (Ephesians 2:8-10)

      • As the second Adam Jesus was under a covenant of works. What he earned becomes a free gift to us.

      • That’s still a contradiction dummy. If it’s a free gift, then you shouldn’t have to do anything.

        Do you people ever listen to yourselves and see how ridiculous you sound trying to reconcile the contradictions in your religion?

      • @ Holmes

        If that’s the case he failed because he sinned:


        Meanwhile, the high priest questioned Jesus about His disciples and His teaching. “I have spoken openly to the world,” Jesus answered. “I always taught in the synagogues and at the temple, where all the Jews come together. I SAID NOTHING IN SECRET.” (John 18:17-18)

        10As soon as Jesus was alone with the Twelve and those around Him, they asked Him about the parable.

        He replied, “The mystery of the kingdom of God has been given to you, but to those on the outside everything is expressed in parables, so that, they may be ever seeing but never perceiving, and ever hearing but never understanding; otherwise they might turn and be forgiven.’ (Mark 4:11-12)

        He did not say anything to them without a parable. But privately He explained everything to His own disciples. (Mark 4:34)

        Therefore Jesus told them….Go up to the feast on your own. I am not going up to this feast, because My time has not yet come.”

        Having said this, Jesus remained in Galilee. 10But after His brothers had gone up to the feast, He also went—not publicly, but in secret. (John 7:6-9)

        The Bible straight up says he sins (especially before becoming the Son)

        Every high priest is appointed from among men to represent them in matters relating to God, to offer gifts and sacrifices for sins. 2He is able to deal gently with those who are ignorant and misguided, since he HIMSELF IS BESET BY WEAKNESS. That is why he is obligated to offer sacrifices for HIS OWN SINS, AS WELL AS for the sins of the people. No one takes this honor upon himself; he must be called by God, just as Aaron was. 5So also Christ did not take upon Himself the glory of becoming a high priest but He was called by the One who said to Him: “You are My Son; TODAY I have become Your Father.” (Hebrews 5:1-4)

        So we have a liar (not to mention a bigot I just didn’t want to make my post to long) who sinned more than what is recorded as the Book of Hebrews admits.

        To quote Qb you thus die in sin and therefore are doomed.


        As a bonus, the Book of Hebrews also refutes the Trinity because God says TODAY (at baptism) I have become your Father not before creation.

      • Oooh, that’s gotta hurt!

      • @ QB

        Indeed it does, but not as much as Hellfire if they die upon what they believe.


  1. Rabbi Admits that the Day of Atonement is parallel to Jesus Christ? Ken Temple caught lying again… – The Quran and Bible Blog

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