Lesson 5

Primary texts:
    Leviticus 16
    Hebrews 9

The Day of Atonement

  1. After Nadab and Abihu died, what was Moses to tell Aaron according to Lev. 16:1-2?
  2. What is the precise phrase in verse 2 that distinguishes the place which Aaron was not to enter from the place mentioned in verse 3?
  3. The one exception to this restriction was on the Day of Atonement, at which time Aaron was to enter within the veil. Although the procedures of the holy day are discussed in detail in Lev. 16, its date is not specified until Lev. 16:29. There we are told it would be on the 10th day of the 7th month (Lev. 16:29) of the Jewish calendar.
    1. By our calendar, when will the Day of Atonement be this year? (It's known by its Hebrew name, Yom Kippur.)
    2. In view of the date of the Day of Atonement, consider Acts 27:9 where the Day of Atonement is referred to as "the Fast." Why would the fact that "the Fast was now already gone by" be the reason for saying that "the voyage was now dangerous"? (Hint: see Acts 27:12.)


  4. What do Lev. 16:32 and Num. 18:7 tell us about who would be permitted to go within the veil to perform service on the Day of Atonement in future generations? What is meant by "outsider" or "stranger" (depending on your translation) and was to be done to an "outsider" or "stranger" who "came near"?
  5. From whom was Aaron to take two goats?
  6. How was it decided which goat would be offered and which goat would be a "scapegoat"?
  7. Why is the one called a "scapegoat"? Using Strong's concordance, or an online source, find out what the Hebrew word is, and then find out what is the meaning of each of the two words from which this one Hebrew word comes. Online, you can go to http://bible.crosswalk.com/Lexicons/Hebrew/heb.cgi?number=05799&version=kjv or http://www.blueletterbible.org/tmp_dir/words/5/1108897056-6838.html
  8. Besides wearing special garments, what else does verse 4 say the priest must do on this occasion?
  9. He was to offer a bull as a sin offering for whom?
  10. What similarities are there between the offering described in Lev. 4:13-21 and the offering of the bull on the day of atonement (Lev. 16:11-14)?
  11. What differences are there  between the offering described in Lev. 4:13-21 and the offering of the bull on the day of atonement (Lev. 16:11-14)? Especially note the exact place where the blood is sprinkled.
  12. What was the "mercy seat"? (Ex. 25:17-22)
  13. In the Septuagint, the Greek word used in Lev. 16:14 for the mercy seat was ἱλαστήριον (hilastērion). This word is used in the New Testament in Heb. 9:5 and also in Rom. 3:25 where it is translated "propitiation." To what does it have reference in Rom. 3:25?
  14. What kind of offering was the goat that was killed, and for whom was it offered?
  15. Explain what the priest was to do with the second goat.
  16. What is the meaning of "humble your souls" (Lev. 16:29, cf. Num. 29:7)
  17. Was the Day of Atonement a sabbath day, i.e., a day of rest? (Lev. 16:29, Num. 29:7)
  18. Does Heb. 9:25 have reference to the Day of Atonement? Explain.
  19. According to Heb. 9:6-8, what was signified by the limitation on entering the "second" (the holy behind the veil)?
  20. What happened when Jesus was crucified according to Mt. 27:51, and is there a connection with the answer to the previous question?
  21. By way of contrast to the Day of Atonement, how often did Christ offer himself?
  22. Ellen G. White, the woman whose claims of divine revelation served as the founding authority for the Seventh Day Adventist church, wrote, "As the priest, in removing the sins from the sanctuary, confessed them upon the head of the scapegoat, so Christ will place all these sins upon Satan, the originator and instigator of sin." What do you think of that?