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Day of Atonement


Atonement

“11 And Aaron shall present the bullock of the sin-offering, which is for himself, and shall make atonement for himself, and for his house, and shall kill the bullock of the sin-offering which is for himself.

29 And it shall be a statute forever unto you: in the seventh month, on the tenth day of the month, ye shall afflict your souls, and shall do no manner of work, the home-born, or the stranger that sojourneth among you.

30 For on this day shall atonement be made for you, to cleanse you; from all your sins shall ye be clean before YHWH.”

Leviticus 16

“20 And when he hath made an end of atoning for the holy place, and the tent of meeting, and the altar, he shall present the live goat.”

Leviticus 16

atone

: to do something good as a way to show that you are sorry about doing something bad

Merriam-Webster dictionary

לכפר (ancient Hebrew)

v. to cover, atone; to put a protective covering over something or to cover a debt or wrong

In the name of Yah YAHWAH Most High, peace and blessings in this High Holy Day season.

In the days of our fore fathers, the season of the Day of Atonement was a very solemn time because it was a time in which the sins and transgressions of the previous year were brought to mind. This day was given to the Children of Israel as they began their journeying thru the wilderness, after the deaths of Aaron’s two sons for offering “strange fire” upon the altar. The instructions given were for the purpose of “covering/atoning for” any wrongs first in Aaron’s or his family’s deeds that were considered defiling in the sight of the Most High. Aaron made the offering on behalf of his whole family first, which means that he was seen as responsible for the actions of the members of his family. His offering was given to seek forgiveness for those wrongs; to do that, he had to first admit that the wrongs had been committed.

After the deaths of his sons, Aaron, in his heart, did not feel what they did was worthy of the punishment they received, he was hurt at his loss and questioned the Most High. As a result, he was shown that he was not only responsible for the actions of his personal family, but, as the High Priest, also those of the Nation! He was to seek forgiveness for the wrongs of the people on their behalf; if he received absolution for himself and his family, he could then seek to cover/atone for the wrongs of the Nation. He even sanctified the Holy places that had been defiled by the presence of a sinful population.

So we see from this that one person making an offering on behalf of the multitude was a yearly occurrence when the nation was functioning as was intended. The problem was that the hearts of the people, including the Priests, turned from the Most High, therefore, their offerings became unacceptable. As a consequence, first Israel and then Judah went into captivity.

Now we find ourselves with a new opportunity to forge an acceptable relationship with our Creator, who has kept His promise to return His people back to the land given to our fore fathers. If we have been obedient to His instructions, we will not approach this day with any misgivings in our hearts, because all differences between individuals were to be resolved before this day. This is not the day for those actions, because on this day the offering is made and all blemishes must be removed for the offering to be acceptable. The High Priest can’t change the goat or the bullock on the Day of Atonement itself, this is why it says that first the animals are presented and then they are afterwards killed. If any blemish was found, they would not have been accepted!

“When you were a child or young adult in the household with your brothers and sisters, sometimes there was resentment or dissension which sometimes led to a physical confrontation. If you got the upper hand, you would prepare your fist to give the crushing blows, but understandably you could not. Each time you brought the fist down you would break the force of the blow, for in your heart you knew he or she was not an enemy of yours. Then Mom or Dad would come in and sit you down and “preach the gospel”.This was certainly a serious matter, but it was in the family, so they admonished you to get it together; to not hold grudges, or seek revenge at a later date. You said “I hate him; I’ll kill her; I’ll hurt him”, or “we can’t live together”, but with all of your harsh words and feelings, there was an inherent feeling limiting the injuries which you could cause him or her to sustain. There was always someone in the family who had some bad habits that needed correcting; still Mom and Dad knew, even as Jesus of Nazareth, that except the angry feeling were immediately extinguished, they would soon become an all-consuming, unquenchable fire.”

Ben Ammi, God the Blackman and Truth, pg. 151-153

May the words of the Master Teacher resonate in all of our hearts as we enter this High Holy Day, and cause us all to deeply introspect and to remove the left-over leaven which has caused all of the bitter feelings and inability to forgive in our midst. No one is exempt from what is expressed in these words; we must all let bygones be just that, bygones. Let us all vow in this season to go forward seeking to forge new bonds of Brotherhood and Sisterhood based on love of one another first as “Family”. We cannot undo the past, but we can learn from it and use that knowledge to build a better tomorrow.

May the Most High and Holy bless you all with an inspiring High Holy Day, one that will find us truly ascending to higher heights as one people, one “Yah/God Family”!

Anaviel Ben Eleazer

22.09.2015


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