Exploring the Concept of Atonement as It Relates to the Tabernacle and Salvation

This is a lengthy article that explores the concept of the blood atonement as it relates to the salvation of the sinner. The idea of atonement for sin is rooted in the Torah and is not simply a New Testament concept. Redemption through atonement is the foundation of the gospel message. Understanding this will strengthen your faith in the message of Yeshua’s atoning death on the cross.

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In Numbers 31:50 we read, “We have therefore brought an oblation for YHVH, what every man has gotten, of jewels of gold, chains, and bracelets, rings, earrings, and tablets, to make an atonement for our souls before YHVH.” In a similar passage in Exodus 30:15–16, we read, “The rich shall not give more, and the poor shall not give less than half a shekel, when they give an offering unto YHVH, to make an atonement for your souls. And you shall take the atonement money of the children of Israel, and shall appoint it for the service of the tabernacle of the congregation; that it may be a memorial unto the children of Israel before YHVH, to make an atonement for your souls(emphasis added). The question before us is this: Do these passages in the Torah imply that YHVH grants man absolution based something other than the shedding of blood, and by logical extension, does this call into question our redemption from sin through our faith in Yeshua the Messiah’s blood atonement?

Lamb sacrifice

The concept of atonement can be a confusing one. Some in rabbinic Jewish circles teach that the Torah (i.e., the first five books of the Bible) does not require the shedding of blood for atonement of one’s sin to occur. According to the above Scripture, this could appear to be the case. Before briefly discussing the subject of atonement, let us not forget the stern warnings of the Apostle Peter when he warned end-time Saints against false teachers who would lure people away from the simple truth of the gospel:

But there were false prophets also among the people, even as there shall be false teachers among you, who privily shall bring in damnable heresies, even denying the Lord that bought them, and bring upon themselves swift destruction. And many shall follow their pernicious ways; by reason of whom the way of truth shall be evil spoken of. And through covetousness shall they with feigned words make merchandise of you: whose judgment now of a long time lingers not, and their damnation slumbers not…. But these, as natural brute beasts, made to be taken and destroyed, speak evil of the things that they understand not; and shall utterly perish in their own corruption; and shall receive the reward of unrighteousness, as they that count it pleasure to riot in the day time. Spots they are and blemishes, sporting themselves with their own deceiving while they feast with you; having eyes full of adultery, and that cannot cease from sin; beguiling unstable souls: an heart they have exercised with covetous practices; cursed children, which have forsaken the right way, and are gone astray, following the way of Balaam the son of Bosor, who loved the wages of unrighteousness; but was rebuked for his iniquity: the dumb ass speaking with man’s voice forbad the madness of the prophet. These are wells without water, clouds that are carried with a tempest; to whom the mist of darkness is reserved for ever. For when they speak great swelling words of vanity, they allure through the lusts of the flesh, through much wantonness, those that were clean escaped from them who live in error. While they promise them liberty, they themselves are the servants of corruption: for of whom a man is overcome, of the same is he brought in bondage. For if after they have escaped the pollutions of the world through the knowledge of the Lord and Saviour Yeshua Messiah, they are again entangled therein, and overcome, the latter end is worse with them than the beginning. For it had been better for them not to have known the way of righteousness, than, after they have known it, to turn from the holy commandment delivered unto them. But it is happened unto them according to the true proverb, The dog is turned to his own vomit again; and the sow that was washed to her wallowing in the mire. (2 Peter 2)

In the Testimony of Yeshua (New Testament), there is no question that when the concept of atonement (i.e., to make ransom for or to cover over man’s sins) is presented it is Continue reading

 

What Is Sin and How to Overcome It

1 John 3:4, Sin is the transgression of the Torah. For a list and discussion the use of the word sin in the Testimony of Yeshua along with all of its synonyms, see The Companion Bible (appendix 128).

Why must we overcome sin?The Scriptures teach us to be overcomers (Rom 12:21; 1 John 2:13–14; 5:4). We must overcome the world, the flesh and the devil (Jas 3:15). Yeshua admonished each of the seven Messianic assemblies to be overcomers (Rev 2:7, 11, 17, 26; 3:5, 12, 21; see also Matt 24:13). For those who overcome, there will be great rewards—a spiritual inheritance; they will be sons of Elohim (Rev 21:7).

Sin

The Greek word for overcome is nikao (Strong’s G3528) meaning “to conquer, to get the victory, prevail.” Nikao is where the word nike comes from.

What is Sin?

  • Sin is the anything that violates the Torah-instructions or laws of Elohim (1 John 3:4).
  • Sin is unrighteousness (1 John 5:17; YHVH’s Torah commands define what righteousness is, Ps 119:172).
  • Sin is not believing in Yeshua, who is the Torah-Word of Elohim incarnate (John 3:18; 16:9).
  • Sin is failing to do (or not to do) that we which we should be do (or not do)—i.e., a sin of omission (Jas 4:17).
  • Sin is putting me-first (my desires, impulses), not YHVH first (his will) in our lives. It is humanism. It is following the lie of the devil: man can have it his way regardless of what YHVH’s Word says, and not suffer any consequences for it. This is the big lie from the serpent in the Garden.
  • Sin is a direct challenge to YHVH’s authority in our lives. It is arrogance and self exaltation against YHVH’s will. It involves lack of belief in his Word. It is putting his will above his Word.

How to do we overcome sin? 

  • Know the biblical definition of sin.

Continue reading

 

Insights on the Feast of Unleavened Bread

The Feast of Unleavened Bread Is a Commemorative Ritual

Passover going into the first day of the Feast of Unleavened Bread is the birthday of the nation of Israel. In ancient times, universal Israel came together in Jerusalem to celebrate this event. Today, redeemed Israelites come together to celebrate these divine appointment sacred convocations.

Days of Unleavened Bread

Abstaining from leavened bread for seven days is symbolic of Elohim’s people separating themselves from sin and turning towards a holy relationship with him.

Removing leavening from our  homes is a symbolic activity just like taking communion, being baptized for the remission of sins, or building a sukkah during the Feast of Tabernacles. As humans, we need symbolic commemorative occasions for several reasons. They give us a sense of history by helping us to understand the past, so that we can move forward into the future knowing who we are and where we’ve come from. They give us guidance so that we’ll learn from the lessons of history, both the good and bad ones. Our culture is full of symbolic rituals and commemorative acts and markers (Christmas, Easter, birthdays, anniversaries, Independence Day, Memorial Day, Veterans Day, Thanksgiving Day, statues, historical markers, monuments, museums, heritage sites, etc.). Likewise, Biblical commemorative rituals help us in several ways.

  • They help us to both recall and commemorate past and future events.
  • They help us to understand who we are by recalling where we’ve come from which in turn helps us to understand where we’re going.
  • They can be something physical that helps us to wrap our minds around difficult-to-understand spiritual principle. Continue reading
 

New Video: Out With Leaven For the Feast of Unleavened Bread

What is leaven? Why does YHVH command his people to deleaven their homes for Passover and the Feast of Unleavened Bread? What are the important spiritual lessons to be learned from this physical exercise? How will this help you in your walk as a follower of Yeshua the Messiah? This video answers these questions and more.

 

Still a Death Penalty for Sin in the “Dispensation of Grace” Era?

Acts 5:1–11, The deaths of Ananias and Sapphira. Why did YHVH kill them? It is because they violated the Torah laws regarding the handling of devoted things. (See notes at Lev 27:28–29.)

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It’s interesting to note that YHVH struck Ananias and Sapphira dead after the cross in, what many Christians call, the dispensation of grace era when, in their minds, sin doesn’t carry the same severe penalty us under “old covenant,” law of  Moses era.

What we learn from this is that YHVH still views sin as sin, and the wages of sin is still death. This has never changed before or after the cross of Yeshua. Just because one isn’t struck dead immediately upon having sinned doesn’t mean one hasn’t incurred the death penalty. That death penalty is only waived when one repents of their sin and asks for YHVH’s forgiveness through faith in Yeshua whose death paid the death penalty price for our sins.

Now let’s see what the Torah has to say about the sin Ananias and Sapphira committed.

Leviticus 27:28–29, devote … devoted thing. Heb. charam and cherem meaning “a Continue reading

 

What’s the Big Deal with the Contamination of Sin?

Leviticus 12–13
Some Hebrew Terms Relating to This Passage:

  • tzaraas: a skin disease (improperly translated as “leprosy” in some Bibles). This Hebrew word means “to be struck with leprosy (BDB)” or “to smite heavily, to strike, or scourged of Elohim” since the leprosy was viewed as a special divine infliction (Wilson’s Old Testament Word Studies, pp. 248–249) against such sins as jealousy (cf. Miriam, anger, lack of full compliance with Elohim’s commands (cf. King Uzziah), and covetousness (cf. Gehazi, TWOT, p. 777).
  • niddah: someone who is separated or menstruous
  • tumah: spiritual impurity
  • metzora: one with a skin disease; a contraction of the Hebrew word motzi and ra meaning “one who speaks slander”

Leviticus 12 and 13 deal with the subject of human contamination and delineates what could seem to be a lot of irrelevant and archaic, if not arcane, regulations relating to childbirth and skin diseases.

Why is YHVH so concerned about “human contamination”? What is the larger picture here to help us gain understanding into the Father’s intent and heart behind these Torah-laws? Continue reading