Why does there need to be the shedding of blood for the atonement of sin?

Numbers 31:50, Make atonement. 

What is the big deal about the concept of vicarious atonement, that is, someone dying in another persons’s place to repair a wrong or an injury? Does the really need to be the shedding of blood for the antonement of sin? This is a concept shared only by Christianity and no other major religions in the world including Judaism. The Christians are always making a big deal about “the cross” and “Jesus dying for our sins,” or “Jesus paying for our sins.” Is this a biblical concept or some idea of man to put people under bondage to some ancient religious and irrational superstition? Knowing the answer to this question is a matter of life and death.

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

In this verse 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?

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 related to the blood of Yeshua, the Lamb of YHVH, being shed for the remission of man’s sins, which is the means through which reconciliation between Elohim and man occurs. In the Hebrew Scriptures (Old Testament), however, the idea of atonement is somewhat broader and at times more generalized in scope. Herein lies the confusion and the misconceived disparity between the Former (Old) and Latter (New) Testaments or Covenants. Are they in opposition to one another, or is the latter the logical outgrowth of the former and compliments or ­elucidates the former?

The Hebrew word for atonement is kapar. A verb, it means “to make an atonement, make reconciliation, purge. In its noun form, kapar means a ransom, gift, to secure favor”(see Theological Dictionary of the Old Testament [or TWOT], word 1023). Kapar also means “to cover over”and is the same Hebrew word meaning “to cover or smear with pitch”as in caulking the seams of a wooden ship so that it becomes waterproof (see Brown-Driver-Briggs H3722). Our English words cap (as well as the Hebrew kipah, which is a small hemispherical hat that many religious Jewish men wear)and cover are related etymologically to kapar (see The Word—The Dictionary That Reveals the Hebrew Source of Our English, by Isaac E. Mozeson). 

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The Overview of the Red Heifer Ceremony and Its Greater Implications

Numbers 19:1–11. The red heifer (Heb. parah adumah). 

The Jewish sages teach that the commandment (mitzvah) of the red cow is “beyond human understanding.” Like the afikoman (the middle broken matzah that is “buried” and “resurrected,” which is a picture of the death, burial and resurrection of Yeshua) in the Passover (Pesach) Seder, the meaning of which to this day remains unclear to the Jewish scholars, the red cow is a ritual that makes sense only when Yeshua the Messiah is added to the picture.

While the symbolism of the red heifer was, to Jewish Torah scholars, admittedly incomprehensible to human reason, by the second temple era they began to speculate about its spiritual significance in their aggadic literature. Some felt that it was an atonement for the sin of the golden calf (The Encyclopedia of Jewish Religion, Massada – P.E.C. Press, 1965, p. 327; The ArtScroll Chumash, p. 839). Others viewed it as somehow relating to the azazel or scapegoat and the bullock sin offering of Yom Kippur, since all were sacrificed outside the camp of Israel (Lev 16:27).

The sacrifice of the red heifer was for the purpose of purifying someone who had become ritually impure or polluted through contact with the dead, or for purifying metal war booty (Num 31:21ff). This sacrifice was to be made outside of the camp of Israel, and later occurred outside of the walls of the city of Jerusalem on the Mount of Olives, not far from the Temple. The concept of the camp signifies outside of or away from the divine presence or shekinah of YHVH meaning outside the tabernacle courtyard (The ArtScroll Chumash, p. 839).

The heifer was to be three to five years of age and totally red in color, blemish free and to have never born a burden and, according to Jewish tradition, to be without a single black or white hair on its body. The animal was slaughtered with the priest sprinkling its blood seven times toward the tabernacle’s entrance (later this occurred at the temple in Jerusalem). The entire carcass (hide, entrails and meat) was then burned on a wood pyre. Into the fire were tossed cedar wood, hyssop and a scarlet thread. The ashes were then divided into three portion: one part was kept in a secure place on the Mount of Olives (during the second temple period), one part was kept in the area immediately outside the wall of the temple courtyard, and one part was divided among the priests throughout the land of Israel to be used, as needed, in purifying the people (Mishnah Parah 3:11). The ashes to be used in the temple service were then mixed with fresh water (in Jerusalem, from the Pool of Siloam), and then called “waters of separation” (meyi nidahnidah means “impurity, filthiness, menstruous, set apart, ceremonial impurity”), and were ritually sprinkled over something or someone that was impure. Numbers 19:9 states that the waters of sprinkling were for purification. The Hebrew word for purification is chatat, which according to some rabbinic interpreters is a reference to a sin offering (Ibid.). Others disagree arguing that the plain (pashat) meaning of the text does not speak of the red heifer atoning for sin (see Rashi’s commentary on this verse). This is an interesting debate, but regardless of what the Jewish sages think, the ritual of the red heifer shows striking parallels to Yeshua’s salvific work at the cross, as we discuss below.

The crucifixion implications of the red heifer were not missed by the Jewish-Christian scholar Alfred Edersheim. He links the Yom Kippur scapegoat, which was to remove the personal guilt of the Israelites (Lev 16), with the red heifer, which was to take away the defilement of death that stood between man and Elohim, with the “living bird,” dipped in “the water and the blood,” and then “let loose in the field” at the purification from leprosy (Lev 14:1–7), which symbolized the living death of personal sinfulness, were all, either wholly offered, or in their essentials completely outside the sanctuary. He then observes that the Old Testament sanctuary had no real provision for spiritual wants to which they symbolically pointed; their removal lay outside its sanctuary and beyond its symbols (The Temple and Its Ministry, pp. 280–281). This is why Yeshua had to be sacrificed outside of the temple area. Additionally, he had to be the sacrifice for sin outside of the temple area (Heb 13:12), which symbolized the shekinah or divine presence of YHVH. This speaks of the fact that the Father looked away, turned his back on and forsook Yeshua while he bore the sins of the world on his shoulders (Isa 53:4–6Matt 27:46).

The writer of Hebrews understood the greater implications of the red heifer as it pointed to Yeshua when he wrote:

Which stood only in meats and drinks, and various washings, and carnal ordinances, imposed on them until the time of reformation. But Messiah being come an high priest of good things to come, by a greater and more perfect tabernacle, not made with hands, that is to say, not of this building; neither by the blood of goats and calves, but by his own blood he entered in once into the holy place, having obtained eternal redemption for us. For if the blood of bulls and of goats, and the ashes of an heifer sprinkling the unclean, sanctifies to the purifying of the flesh: how much more shall the blood of Messiah, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without spot to Elohim, purge your conscience from dead works to serve the living Elohim? And for this cause he is the mediator of the renewed covenant, that by means of death, for the redemption of the transgressions that were under the first covenant, they which are called might receive the promise of eternal inheritance. (Heb 9:11–15, emphasis added)

Eighteenth-century Christian commentator, Matthew Henry, asks why does the Torah make a corpse a defiling thing? He answers that it is because death is the wages of sin, which entered into the world by it, and reigns by the power of it. The law could not conquer death, nor abolish it, as the gospel does, by bringing life and immortality to light, and so introducing a better hope. As the ashes signified the merits of Messiah’s perfect sin-free life, so the running water signified the power and grace of the blessed Spirit, who is compared to rivers of living water; and it is by his work that the righteousness of Messiah is applied to us for our cleansing (Matthew Henry Concise Commentary on the Whole Bible, p. 137, Moody).

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What does it mean to be like Yeshua in this world?

1 John 4:17, As he is, so are we in this world. If this phrase were taken cherry picked out of its context and made to stand along, as some Christian Bible teachers have done, one could assume that as Yeshua currently is in heaven in his fully power, glory, perfection and deity, so are the saints on this earth here and now. Is this what John is really saying? No!

What does the first part of the verse say? “Love has been perfected among us…” Love is the issue here, not the full power, glory and deity of Yeshua. What John is saying is that the saints are to express Yeshua’s love in this world. That’s the context of the entire chapter of 1 John 4. It’s about loving one another. Period. After verse 17, John then goes on to reiterate the idea of the love of Yesua in the next two verses. There is nothing in this passage to suggest that John is implying that the saints currently have the full glory, power and perfection of Yeshua. Where do we see anyone on planet earth doing this? This idea is not even hinted at in the verse or the entire chapter. 

Shame on Bible teachers who cherry pick verses out of context, then read into them things that aren’t even said or implied and tickle the people’s ears with their nonsensical interpretations…and after making the people feel all warm and fuzzy, they often pass the offering plate. We’ve all seen this occur many times in various church meetings!

The bottom line message of 1 John 4:7–19 is that as Elohim IS love (vv. 8, 16), and he so loved us, as a result, we too are to be conduits of his love to this world. We’re to be a literal river of life of his love to those around us. 

Based on these wonderful verses in 1 John, we can add that when we are so full of the love of Yeshua, a fruit of the Spirit, and we love him and his word so much, and we’re obeying all of his commandments the best we can and are trying to imitate him in all areas of our thoughts, words and actions, we have nothing to be afraid of. We are fully in the grace of Elohim and our ultimate salvation and glorification is assured. This means we can stand boldly before the throne of Elohim on the judgment day with nothing to fear. No fear of hearing the words, “Depart from me you workers of iniquity….” This has nothing to do with our greatness, power, glory or anything like that. It has to do with knowing who we are in Yeshua, and having full confidence in his word pertaining to our spiritual standing before him, and that we have, by his grace and strength, overcome the world, the flesh and the devil and that we have passed from judgment into life because we believe in him (John 3:18; 5:24–25). Give him the glory!

 

Are YOU nosey? “Follow me!”

John 21:22–23, What is that to you…follow me. What Yeshua is telling the inquisitive, dare I say, nosey Peter is that it was none of his business what Elohim was doing in the life of John. Rather, Peter’s chief duty was to care for his own spiritual responsibilities of which the chief aim was to follow Yeshua.

Too many times, we get caught up in the affairs of others—in what YHVH is doing in the lives and ministries of other saints, which takes our eyes off of what we are supposed to be doing ourselves, and, more importantly, we take our eyes off of following and emulating Yeshua our Master, which should be our chief aim and purpose in life at all times. We must continually keep our eyes on Yeshua and be looking neither to the left nor to the right nor in the rear view mirror.

To emphasize this point, in the next verse Yeshua repeats the phrase, “What is that to you?” He is again reiterating to Peter that the purposes he was working out in John’s life was of no concern to Peter.

 

The Biblical Feasts, Yeshua the Sun of Righteousness and the Calendar

In Genesis chapter one when Elohim created the sun and moon, he called the former “the greater light” and the latter “the lesser light” (Gen 1:16). The former rules the day and the lesser rules the night (ibib.). This is prophetic of the role of Yeshua and the saints in the world. 

Yeshua the Messiah is the Light of the world (John 1:6–9; 8:12; 9:5) or the Sun of Righteousness (Mal 4:2) or the Greater Light to show man the path of spiritual light in the darkness of this world. The saints are like the moon or the lesser light that reflects the light of the sun or the greater light into the darkness of this world. Yeshua shines his spiritual light onto his disciples who then take that light and evangelize those lost in spiritual darkness with the message of the gospel. This is the great commission!

The biblical feasts are calculated based on the lunations of the moon. The seven biblical holidays speak of YHVH’s plan of salvation to show man the way to Yeshua who is the Greater Spiritual Light as represented by the sun. The feasts are like a tract or sermon by which the saints preach the gospel message of salvation to the world. The saints as the lesser light reflecting the message of salvation through Yeshua the Greater Light into the darkness of this world through their adherence to the biblical feasts. This is one reason why the moon—the lesser light—is so pivotal to YHVH’s calendar and feasts. 

The traditional calendar currently used by the non-believing, rabbinic Jews is off; it’s not in accordance with the moon though the Jews erroneously purport it to be. At the same time, they’re not bringing the gospel message of Yeshua to the world—only the doctrines of men and men’s traditions. Their whole message is askew and fails to reflect the Greater Light of Yeshua.

Similarly, the mainstream church tries to preach the gospel, but without understanding the moon, feasts and biblical calendar their message of the gospel is only a partial one and is also off spiritually.

A time may come in the future when the calendar and feasts will go strictly off the sun and not the moon. This may occur when there is a new heaven and a new earth when Yeshua is ruling on this earth and he will be the only Light of the world. That time isn’t yet, though, for it’s still the saints’ job as the lesser light to be like the moon to reflect the truth of Yeshua, the Greater Light, to this world through a lunar-based calendar upon which the biblical feasts are based.

 

YHVH to Defeat the Enemies of His People and to Give Them Salvation (Yeshua)

Isaiah 61–63

Isaiah 61:10, He has clothed me with garments of salvation … robes of righteousness.The Hebrew word for salvation is Yesha (Strong’s H3468), which forms the root for the word yeshua meaning “salvation,” which, of course is the derivation of the Messiah’s personal name, Yeshua. How does Scripture define the word righteousness? (For the brief answer, reference Ps 119:172.) We see in this verse an interplay between the concepts of being clothed in Messiah’s salvation and works of righteousness, which is Torah obedience. Now relate these two concepts to Ephesians 2:8–9, which describes how we are saved spiritually, and then to Ephesians 2:10, which describes the proof of our salvation.

Now let’s take the next step in our line of logic by turning to Revelation 12:17 and 14:12 to discover what are the identifying marks of the end-time saints. Now relate this to the robes of righteousness the bride of Yeshua will be wearing in Revelation 19:7–9 with special emphasis on verse 8. The KJV reads, “for the fine linen is the righteousness of the saints,” while both the NIV and NAS read “righteous acts” for “righteousness.” What are the righteous acts of the saints? (Again read Ps 119:172 along with John 14:15 and 1 John 2:3–6. Now read 2 Pet 3:14; Eph 5:27; Heb 12:14; Matt 5:48 and John 12:48.) As a famous radio personality of our time likes to say, “Now go and do the right thing!”

Isaiah 62:2, The Gentiles shall see your righteousness. Compare this verse with Isaiah 60:1–3. How will the heathens see your righteousness if you dress, act, speak, live like a heathen and follow the heathen religious customs and doctrines that have made their way into the church system? Remember (from the comments on Isaiah 61:10 above) how Scripture defines righteousness?

Isaiah 62:6, I have set watchmen upon your wall.Who are these watchmen? (Read Isa 21:6, 11, 12; Ezek 3:17; 33:2, 6, 7; Hos 9:8.) What is the current state of many of the spiritual watchmen? (Read Isaiah 56:9–12 compared to John 10:7–13.) Other than guarding the sheep, what are the watchmen to be doing? Read Jeremiah 6:16–19 where we learn that they are to be turning YHVH’s people back to the ancient paths of YHVH’s instructions and precepts in righteousness—the Torah.

Isaiah 62:10, Lift up a standard.The Hebrew word for standard is nec, pronounced nace (Strong’s H5251/TWOT 1379a) meaning “signal pole, banner, ensign, sign or sail.” According to The Theological Dictionary of the Old Testament, nec generally refers to “a rallying point or standard, which drew people together for some common action or for the communication of important information.” A standard, banner or flag is usually placed at a high or conspicuous place within the camp or community. There, a signal pole, sometimes with a flag attached, would be raised as a point of focus or object of hope. In Exodus 17:15, we discover that one of YHVH’s covenant names is YHVH-Nissi or YHVH My Banner. Isaiah prophetically declares that Yeshua, the Root of Jesse, would be “an ensign to the nations” (Isa 11:10) signifying the lifting up of Israel’s messianic king around whom all men would gather (TWOT, vol. 2, p. 583). In Isaiah 62:10–12, the prophet declares that a standard will be lifted up over the nations for the daughter of Zion (the land of Israel) signalling their return to Israel from the nations among which they have been scattered. What makes this end-time remnant of Israel holy (set-apart) and redeemed? What is this standard or rallying point that YHVH will lift up over the nations causing them to return to their land and spiritual roots? How is this being fulfilled today among YHVH’s people? Who is that banner? The answer to this question can be found in some of the neighboring verses: 

  • Verse 8, Who is “the arm of his strength” (see Isa 53:1).
  • Verse 10, Who is the One who is likened to a gate that people are to go through? (See Ps 24:9; John 10:7, 9.)
  • Verse 10, Who is “the way for the people? (See John 14:6.)
  • Verse 10, Who is like a banner that literally gets lifted up causing eyes to look at him? (See John 3:14.)
  • Verse 11, Who is the salvation that Isaiah prophesied was coming? To answer this question, what is the Hebrew word for “he will save” and “salvation”? To find the answer, if you have a Strong’s Concordance, look up H3442 and H3444. (Hint: it’s the Hebrew word for Jesus.)
  • Verse 11, Who is the One coming who is bringing rewards with him? Rewards for both the righteous and the wicked?

Isaiah 63:1–6, Comes from Edom. Who is Edom? Both Christian and Jewish Bible commentators see this passage referring to YHVH avenging Israel for Edom’s perpetual hatred and persecution of Israel. The Jews relate Edom not only to the literal descendants of Esau, but see Edom as a metaphor for all those who have persecuted the Israelites down through the ages including the Babylonians, Greeks, Assyrians, Romans, and even the Germans. (Relate this passage to the parallel passages in Rev 14:14–20.) Even as Esau and his small army stood blocking the way of Jacob’s return to the Promised Land in Genesis 32, so Edom will attempt to prevent Jacob’s descendants from doing the same in the end days. How is this being fulfilled in the land of Israel today? Who is attempting to thwart Israel’s every attempt to re-establish itself in its homeland today? Isaiah 63 shows us how YHVH will eventually deal with Edom for their antagonism against YHVH’s people. Other Scriptures that deal with Edom’s demise and punishment at YHVH’s hands because of their perpetual hatred for Israel include Jeremiah 49:7–22; Ezekiel 25:12–14; 35 (entire chapter); 36:5 (where Idumea is another reference to Edom) Joel 3:19; Amos 1:6, 9, 11; 2:1; the entire Book of Obadiah, and Malachi 1:4.

Isaiah 63:9, The angel of his presence saved them. This is another one of those short prophetic passages that could be easily passed over, but which is significant. The word angel is malak (Strong’s H4397) meaningmessenger” or “representative” and can refer to both an earthly or human messenger, as well and a heavenly or divine/supernatural messenger. With regard to the latter, Scripture reveals that some are angelic messengers (e.g., Gen 19:1; Pss 91:11; 103:20), as well as a singular divine messenger who comes in the name of Elohim, from the Presence of Elohim acting as Elohim, and revealing himself to be Eohim, while presenting himself in humanesque form (e.g., Gen 22:11; 31:11; 48:16; Exod 3:2; 23:20, 23; etc.) The word presence in Isaiah 63:9 is panyim (Strong’s H6440) meaning “face.” To whom is this a reference? Compare Genesis 32:30 (Peniel means face of El/God) with Hosea 12:3–4. Most Christian Bible commentators see this messenger as a preincarnate appearance of Yeshua, which in theological terms is referred to as a theophany, or more specifically, a Christophany. In Isaiah 63:9, what does this Messenger from YHVH’s Presence or face of Elohim do for Israel? Discuss the concepts of salvation and redemption relating this to the work of Yeshua the Messiah as revealed in the Testimony of Yeshua (New Testament).

 

The Two Birds Ceremony, Yeshua and YOU

Leviticus 14:4–32, Tsaraath, sin and Yeshua. Read this scripture passage and see how many clues you can find that point to Yeshua. We’ll give you hints along the way by providing you with the scriptures verses to look up that will give you the answers. The purpose of this exercise is to show you that all the ceremonies and rituals that were part of the sacrificial system all prophetically pointed to Yeshua the Messiah, who fulfilled them all. This means that if we place our trusting faith in him, we no longer have to do the laborious and involved rituals that our ancient forefathers had to do in order to atone for their sins—we simply have to repent and believe in, love, follow and obey Yeshua and his word.

Now let’s look at the ritual for cleansing a metzora (one with a skin disease—a picture of our sinfulness) who had tsaraath (an infectious skin disease caused by sin).

  • Verses 4–7, two birds: One bird (likely a dove or pigeon) was killed in a clay pot over running water. The other bird along with the cedar wood, scarlet cloth and hyssop were dipped into the clay pot containing the blood from the killed bird and the running water. The water blood mixture was then sprinkled on the diseased person (metzora) who was being purified, and the living bird was let loose and allowed to fly away. There is a lot going on here, but it all prophetically pointed to Yeshua’s death, burial and resurrection. Before deciphering this ritual out, perhaps it would help to understand the spiritual meaning of the wood, scarlet and hyssop, which we will explain next.
  • Verse 4, cedar wood: What was Yeshua crucified on? (Read John 19:17–18; Acts 5:30.)
  • Verse 4, scarlet: Scarlet is the color of blood and in the Bible pictures blood. What did Yeshua’s blood do for our sins? (Read Isa 1:18; Rev 1:5.)
  • Verse 4, hyssop: Hyssop (in reality, probably thyme or oregano) represented an essential oil that was known for its healing, cleansing and disease-killing properties. How would this point to Yeshua’s death on the cross? (Read Exod 12:22; Ps 51:7; John 19:29.)
  • Verses 7–8, The metzora was sprinkled with the water and blood mixture, he then bathed himself and washed his clothes. What is this a picture of in the redeemed believer’s life? (Read Acts 2:38; Rom 6:3–6.)
  • Verses 10–32, Three yearling lambs were offered for a trespass, sin and burnt offering. How does this point to Yeshua? (Read John 1:29, 36; Rev 13:8; 1 Pet 1:19.)
  • Now let’s take another look at verses 4–7 and the two birds to see how they pointed to Yeshua. The one bird being sacrificed and his blood being sprinkled as part of the cleansing process for the sinner is an obvious picture of what? But what about the bird that was let loose? What does this picture? Imagine letting a live bird loose out of your hands. What would he immediately do? Fly up and away, right? If the birds represent Yeshua, and the killed bird represents his death on the cross, then what does the live bird flying away represent? (Read Acts 3:15; 4:10; 1 Pet 1:3.)
  • What does the blood of the bird in verse 6 represent? How does it point to Yeshua? (Read Lev 17:11; Eph 1:7; Col 1:14; 1 Pet 1:18–19; 1 John 1:7; Rev 1:5).
  • What does the clay pot in verse 5 represent? How does this point to Yeshua? (Read Gen 2:7; 2 Cor 4:7; 5:1.)
  • What does the running or living water in verse 5 represent? (Read Eph 5:26.) Who is the Word of Elohim? (Read John 1:1–14.) Who is the sources of that living water? (Read John 4:10–14; 7:37–39.)

So now let’s connect the dots to form the complete picture. We have before us a picture of a clay pot filled with living water, into which is poured blood from a sacrificed bird. Into all that is dipped hyssop, a piece of wood and some scarlet cloth. This is a perfect picture of Yeshua’s death on the cross and how that death atoned for our sins. But though Yeshua died on the cross, he did not stay dead, but resurrected out of the grave three days later and returned to his Father in heaven. This is pictured by the bird that was let loose to fly away.

Although this was such a simple ceremony, described in a few short verses in Leviticus 14, yet when you look carefully at it, do you notice how rich in meaning it is? Thankfully, we have the Scriptures in the Testimony of Yeshua to help us to understand the meaning of this otherwise mysterious cleansing ritual!