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Some Helpful Insights Into Feast Of Yom HaKippurim

The purpose of this short article is not to provide an in-depth analysis and understanding of the feast of Yom HaKippurim. It is to simply provide some helpful insights into its celebration that will enhance the experience.

First of all, many have heard this feast called Yom Kippur. However, this is a misnomer. It is called Yom HaKippurim (plural) because there is more than one aspect to what is being atoned for. There were at least five different aspects of atonement being realized during this feast in the Torah. They are atonement for:

1) The Kohen HaGadol/High Priests and the regular kohenim/priests
2) The Holy Sanctuary
3) The Mishkan/Tabernacle and later the Heikal/Temple
4) The Mitzbe’ach/Altar
5) The corporate assembly of all Yisrael

So, now we see why the feast is called Yom HaKippurim (plural) and not Yom Kippur. Also, paying attention to point five we learn that this feast is not about the individual. It is about the corporate nation. Pesach/Passover is about the personal relevance of redemption. Yom HaKippurim is about the nation. It is about the whole nation of Yisrael moving past judgment and into a fresh beginning again. The experience of Yom HaKippurim under the TaNaKh/Hebrew Scriptures before the redemptive work of Yeshua HaMashiach, is quite different. Again, we don’t have the space here for that consideration. The coming of Yeshua HaMashiach for redemption changed so many things from YHWH’s original covenant given at Mt. Sinai, and its subsequent renewals to the first and second generations of Yisrael. The final renewal of this covenant under the auspice of Yeshua HaMashiach (Yirmeyahu/Jeremiah 31:31-34) has provided a korban for sin that not only atones/cover the outside/the flesh. It goes past atonement/covering of sin. It obliterates it! It brings a resurrection of the believer’s spirit out of the deadness of sinful trespasses, and into LIFE. (Ephesians 1:7; 2:1) It literally removes the believer out from the condemnation of Torah (its purpose to identify sin), to a standing of righteousness in Mashiach of being accepted in the Beloved/Mashiach before YHWH our Mighty One, our Abba. (Romans 3:22; Ephesians 1:6) We have been reconciled to YHWH by the blood of Mashiach and shalom/peace now can be enjoyed by all who have believed upon the finished redemptive work of Yeshua HaMashiach. (11 Corinthians 5:18) But, beloved, this is Pesach/Passover. It is NOT about Yom HaKippurim.

Yom HaKippurim is about Yisrael as a nation, a community of faith. Yom HaKippurim is not about the personal sin of the individual believer before YHWH. It is about the corporate sinfulness of the nation and YHWH’s release and forgiveness as a whole. In the future, on another Yom HaKippurim, there will be a judgment of the nations…the sheep and the goats.(Mattityahu/Matthew 25:32-46) Yom HaKippurim was given by YHWH to release the nation from its sinfulness. Therefore, it is a call to corporate prayer, fasting, repentance, forgiveness and shalom between themselves and their Creator, YHWH.

There is some controversy over the incorporation of fasting into the Yom HaKippurim process. However, fasting is a clearly recognized part of afflicting the soul (Wayikra/Leviticus 16:29; 31, 23:37; 32) as can be seen from the following Scriptures. (Tehillim/Psalms 35:13; Zecharyah/Zechariah 7:4-5) The failure to afflict the soul carries serious repercussions. (Wayikra/Leviticus 23:29) The fast of Yom HaKippurim should begin early before sundown, unlike the regular Shabbat meal. It is to be a joyous experience full of good food and fellowship before the fast begins. This shows how the Hebraic mind recognizes both the joy and solemnity of keeping YHWH’s Torah. There is no conflict between the two. The fast will continue from sundown to sundown. It will be broken by the sharing of a meal. At GTZ we will break the fast corporately together with our congregation, and then gather for a time of encouragement and worship and praise.

There is much more concerning the feast of Yom HaKippurim. A full discussion of this feast will be forthcoming and posted on our website. This short article is meant to offer encouragement and some helps as we enter this important feast of YHWH. Below, are some Scripture references for you to read over and meditate on as you celebrate. May YHWH bless you, and all of the Whole House of Yisrael in this wonderful time.

Scripture Readings For Yom HaKippurim


Torah                                                Prophets                                        Messianic Writing

Wayikra/Leviticus 16                  Yeshayahu/Isaiah 57:14-58:14               Romans 3:21-26
Bamidbar/Numbers 29:7-11       Yeshayahu/Isaiah 52:13-53:12               Ivrim/Hebrews 7-8
Wayikra/Leviticus 17-18             Yonah/Jonah 1-4                                     Hebrews 9-10                                                    Yirmeyahu/Jeremiah 31

Chag Sameach,

Gates To Zion Ministries