Leviticus Chapter 16  PDF  MSWord

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Go to Bible: Leviticus 16
Lev 16:1(top)
Lev 16:2

“Holy Place.” This holy place behind the inner veil of the Temple is often called “the Holy of Holies,” (cp. Exod. 26:33).

“appear in the cloud.” The bright glory that surrounds God was often described as a cloud. See commentary on Ezekiel 1:28.

Lev 16:3(top)
Lev 16:4(top)
Lev 16:5(top)
Lev 16:6(top)
Lev 16:7(top)
Lev 16:8

“Azazel.” This is almost certainly a name of the Devil, and many scholars believe it likely means “Mighty Goat.” “Mighty Goat” would fit the Hebrew etymology well, and also fit with both experiences from the spiritual world and with the teachings of the Bible. Practitioners of the black arts, such as Satanists, have long known that Satan is worshiped in the form of a goat or goat-man being, and also that demons sometimes manifest themselves as goats or goat-men (cp. the “Goat of Mendes,” “Baphomet,” “Sabbatic Goat,” etc.). This is very ancient, and also is true across many cultures.

The different theories for what Azazel means are discussed at length in many commentaries on Leviticus, but the most common ones are: that “Azazel” is a basically combination of “goat” and “go away,” and thus the “scapegoat,” or “goat that is sent away.” Or, as many Jewish commentators believe, “Azazel” is the name of a place and the goat for the sin offering is sent away to the place called Azazel. However, most commentators now lean toward the interpretation that Azazel is the proper name of the Devil (some say a ruling demon of the desert), and that it comes from the word for “goat” combined with the Hebrew word el, or “mighty,” such that the name means “Mighty Goat” (see text note on Lev. 16:8 in the NET Bible; First Edition).

The term “Mighty Goat” would fit with what we see in the spiritual world and also what the Bible says. The Devil would be the “Mighty Goat.” Some of his demons would appear and be represented in art, and be worshiped as goat-demons, even as they were in the ancient world (Lev. 17:7; 2 Chron. 11:15). Evil leaders would be known as “he-goats” (Isa. 14:9; Zech. 10:3), and unbelievers are known as “goats” (Matt. 25:33). [For more on goats and ungodly leaders being called he-goats,” see commentary on Isa. 14:9].

Lev 16:9(top)
Lev 16:10

“Azazel.” See commentary on Leviticus 16:8.

Lev 16:11(top)
Lev 16:12(top)
Lev 16:13(top)
Lev 16:14

“before the mercy seat he is to sprinkle some of the blood.” So after sprinkling blood on the Mercy Seat itself, the High Priest would sprinkle blood on the ground in front of the Mercy Seat.

Lev 16:15(top)
Lev 16:16

“that dwells with them in the midst of their uncleanness.” God does not like sin, but He understands human weakness and sin, so here we see the text making the point that God, who dwells in the Tent of Meeting over the ark of the covenant between the cherubim, lives in the midst of His people in spite of their sin. People should never feel that God abandons them because of their sin and weakness. Sin can cause God to limit His interaction with us, and continued purposeful sin can cause Him to withdraw from us, but His arms are always open to welcome us back to Him if we want to come back to Him. It is sometimes taught that God had to forsake Jesus because he “became sin,” but that is not accurate (see REV commentary on Matt. 27:46). One of the comforting messages in Scripture is that God loves people and continues to love and support us in spite of our sin and shortcomings.

Lev 16:17(top)
Lev 16:18(top)
Lev 16:19(top)
Lev 16:20(top)
Lev 16:21(top)
Lev 16:22(top)
Lev 16:23(top)
Lev 16:24(top)
Lev 16:25(top)
Lev 16:26

“Azazel.” See commentary on Leviticus 16:8.

Lev 16:27(top)
Lev 16:28(top)
Lev 16:29

“forever.” The Hebrew word olam (#05769 עוֹלָם), often translated “forever,” could mean “forever” or it could simply mean for a long time. We now know that it means for a long time, but the Israelites did not necessarily know that at the time.

“afflict your souls.” This was an idiomatic phrase which meant to fast, to go without food. God commanded the people to fast on the Day of Atonement. This led to the Day of Atonement simply being referred to as “the Fast” (Acts 27:9).

Lev 16:30(top)
Lev 16:31

“It is a Sabbath of complete rest.” The Hebrew is shabbath shabbathon, more literally, “a Sabbath of Sabbath observance.” As any regular Sabbath, the affliction of the Day of Atonement was to last from sunset one day to sunset the next (cp. Lev. 23:32). [For more information on shabbath shabbathon, see commentary on Leviticus 25:4].

Lev 16:32(top)
Lev 16:33(top)
Lev 16:34(top)

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