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The Atonement in Type and Antitype


The Sanctuary and Two Apartments


What did God command Israel to make?


“Then have them make a sanctuary for me, and I will dwell among them.” Exodus 25:8.


What was offered in this sanctuary?


“This is an illustration for the present time, indicating that the gifts and sacrifices being offered were not able to clear the consciences of the worshiper.” Hebrews 9:9.


Besides the court, how many parts had this sanctuary?


“Hang the curtain from the clasps and place the ark of the Testimony behind the curtain. The curtain will separate the Holy Place from the Most Holy Place.” Exodus 26:33. 


What was in the first apartment, or holy place?


A tabernacle was set up. In its first room were the lampstand, the table and the consecrated bread; this was called the Holy Place.” Hebrews 9:2.  “Moses placed the golden altar in the Tent of the Meeting in front of the curtain.” Exodus 40:26.


What was contained in the second apartment?


‘Behind the second curtain was a room called the Most Holy Place, which had the golden altar of incense and the gold-covered ark of the covenant. This ark contained the gold jar of manna, Aaron’s staff that had budded, and the stones tablets of the covenant ”Hebrews 9:3,4.


By what name was the cover of the ark known?


“Place the cover [mercy seat] on top of the ark and put in the ark the Testimony, which I will give you.” Exodus 25:21.  


Where was God to meet Israel?


“There above the cover [mercy seat] between the cherubim that are over the ark of the testament, I will meet with you and give you all my commands for the Israelites.” Verse 22.


What was in the ark, under the mercy seat?


‘The Lord wrote on these tablets what he had written before, the Ten Commandments he had proclaimed to you on the mountain, out of the fire, on the day of the assembly. And the Lord gave them to me. Then I came down the mountain and put the tablets in the ark I had made, as the Lord commanded me, and they are there now.” Deuteronomy 10: 4,5.


When did the priest minister in the first apartment?


“When everything had been arranged like this, the priests entered regularly into the outer room to carry on their ministry.” Hebrews 9:6.  


Who went into the second apartment? When and why?


“But only the high priest entered the inner room, and only once a year, and never without blood, which he offered himself and for the sins of the people had committed in ignorance.” Verse 7. 


The Daily Service


What were sinners desiring pardon instructed to do?


“If a member of the community sins unintentionally and does what is forbidden in any of the Lord’s commands, he is guilty. When he is made aware of the sin he committed, he must bring as his offering for the sin he has committed a female goat without defeat. He is to lay his hand on the head of the sin offering and slaughter it at the place of the burnt offering.” Leviticus 4:27-29.


Note – According to this, if a man sinned in Israel, he violated one of the Ten Commandments that were in the ark under the mercy seat. These commandments are the foundation of God’s government. To violate them is to commit sin, and so become subject to death. (1 John 3:4; Romans 6:23.) But there was a mercy seat reared above these holy and just commandments. In the dispensation of His mercy God grants the sinner the privilege of confessing his sins and bringing a substitute to meet the demands of the law, and thus obtaining mercy.


What was done with the blood of the offering?


‘Then the priest is to take some of the blood with his finger and put it on the horns of the altar of burnt offering and pour out the rest of the blood at the base of the altar.” Verse 30.


Note – After a person discovered their sin by the law which demanded death of the transgressor, he first brought his offering; then he confessed his sin while laying his hands on the head of the victim, thus, in figure, transferring his sin to the victim; the victim was next slain in the court, or the outer part of the sanctuary, and its blood put on the horns of the altar and poured at the foot of the altar. In this way sins were pardoned and, in the typical service, transferred to the sanctuary.


The Day of Atonement


After this accumulation of the sins of the year, what service took place yearly on the tenth day of the seventh month?    


“This will be a lasting ordinance for you: On the tenth day of the seventh month you must deny yourselves and not do any work – whether native-born or an alien living among you – because on this day atonement will be made for you, to cleanse you. Then, before the Lord, you will be clean from all your sins.” Leviticus 16: 29, 30.


How was the sanctuary itself to be cleansed, and how were the sins of the people to be finally disposed of?


“From the Israelite community he is to take tow male goats for a sin offering and a ram for a burnt offering. Aaron is to offer a bull for his sin offering to make atonement for himself and his household. Then he is to take the two goats and present them before the Lord at the entrance to the Tent of Meeting. He is to cast lots for the two goats – one lot for the Lord and the other for the scapegoat.” Verses 5-8.   


Note – The Hebrew word for scapegoat is Azazel. It is used as a proper name and, according to the opinions of the most ancient Hebrews and Christians, refers to Satan, the angel who revolted and persisted in rebellion and sin.


What was done with the blood of the goat upon which the Lord’s lot fell?


“He shall then slaughter the goat for the sin offering for the people and take its blood behind the curtain and do with it as he did with the bull’s blood: He shall sprinkle it on the atonement cover [mercy seat] and in front of it. Verse 15.


Was it necessary to make this atonement?


“In this way he will make atonement for the Most Holy Place because of the uncleanness and rebellion of the Israelites, what ever their sins have been. He is to do the same for the Tent of the Meeting, which is among them in the midst of their uncleanness.” Verse 16.


Note – Sins were transferred to the sanctuary during the year by the blood and flesh of the sin offerings made daily at the door of the tabernacle. Here they remained until the Day of Atonement, when the high priest went into the Most Holy Place with the blood of the goat on which the Lord’s lot fell; and, bearing the accumulated sins of the year and coming before the mercy seat, he there, in type, atoned for them, and so cleansed the sanctuary. 


After having made atonement for the people in the most holy place, what did the high priest next do?


“When Aaron has finished making atonement for the Most Holy Place, the Tent of the Meeting and the altar, he shall bring forward the live goat. He is to lay his hands on the head of the live goat and confess over it all the wickedness and rebellion of the Israelites – all their sins – and put them on the goat’s head. He shall send the goat away into the desert in a care of a man appointed for the task. The goat will carry on itself all their sins to a solitary place; and the man shall release it in the desert.” Verses 20-22.   


Note – The offering of the Lord’s goat cleansed the sanctuary. By this offering the sins of the people, transferred there during the year, were, in type, atoned for, but they were not by this offering finally disposed of or destroyed. The scapegoat, symbolizing Satan, the great tempter and originator of sin, was brought to the sanctuary, and upon his head were placed these already atoned-for sins. The sending away of the goat into the wilderness separated the sins forever from the sanctuary. (On the scapegoat see M’Clintock and Strong, Cyclopedia of Biblical, theological, and Ecclesiastical Literature, Vol. 9, pp. 397, 398, art. “Scapegoat,” The Encyclopedia Dictionary, Vol. 1, p; 397; New Schaff-Herzog encyclopedia of Religious Knowledge, Vol. 1, p. 389, art. “Azazel.”)


A Type of Heavenly Sanctuary


What was this earthy sanctuary and its round of service?


“This is an illustration for the present time, indicating that the gifts and sacrifices being offered were not able to clear the consciences of the worshiper.” Hebrews 9:9.    


Of what sanctuary, or tabernacle, is Christ the minister?


‘And who serves in the sanctuary, the true tabernacle set up by the Lord, not by man.”

Hebrews 8:2.


Of what was the blood of all the sacrifices of the former dispensation only a type?


“He did not enter by means of the blood of goats and calves; but he entered the Most Holy Place once for all by his own blood, having obtained eternal redemption.” Hebrews 9:12.  (See Ephesians 5:2.)


Note – Through the sacrifices and offerings brought to the altar of the earthly sanctuary, the penitent believer was to lay hold, by faith, of all the merits of Christ, the Savior to come.


After Christ’s death, what miracle signified that the priestly services of the earthly sanctuary were finished?


“And when Jesus had cried out again in a loud voice, he gave up his spirit. At that moment the curtain of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom. The earth shook and the rocks split.” Matthew 27:50, 51.   


Note – Type had met antitype; the shadow had reached the substance. Christ, the great Sacrifice, had been slain, and was now to enter His work as our great High Priest in the sanctuary in heaven. The priestly work in the earthly sanctuary was typical of the work of Christ in the heavenly sanctuary.


How are the heavenly and earthly sanctuaries related?


“They serve at a sanctuary that is a copy and shadow of what is in heaven. This is why Moses was warned when he was about to build the tabernacle: See to it that you make everything according to the pattern shown you on the mountain.” Hebrews 8:5.  


By what comparison is it shown that the heavenly sanctuary will be cleansed?


“It was necessary, then, for the copies of the heavenly things to be purified with these sacrifices, but the heavenly things themselves with better sacrifices than these.” Hebrews 9:23.


When Christ has finished His priestly meditorial work in the heavenly sanctuary, what decree will go forth?


“Let him who does wrong continue to do wrong; let him who is vile continue to be vile; let him who does right continue to do right; and let him who is holy continue to be holy.”

Revelation 22:11.


Note – This declaration is made immediately before the Second Coming of Christ in the clouds of heaven.


According to Daniel’s vision of the judgment, what is given to Christ while He is still before the Father?


“In my vision at night I looked, and there before me was one like a son of man, coming with the clouds of heaven. He approached the Ancient of Days and was let into his presence. He was given authority, glory and sovereign power; all peoples, nations and men worshiped him. His dominion is an everlasting dominion that will not pass away, and his kingdom is one that will never be destroyed.”  Daniel 7:13,14. 


What will occur when the Lord descends from heaven?


‘For the Lord himself will come down from heaven, with a loud command, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet call from God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. After that, we who are still alive and are left will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And so we will be with the Lord forever.”

1 Thessalonians 4:16,17. 


What statement immediately following the announcement mentioned in Revelation 22:11, indicates that a judgment work had been in progress before Christ comes?

“Behold, I am coming soon! My reward is with me, and I will give to everyone according to what he has done. Revelation 22:12.


Note – The typical sanctuary service is fully met in the work of Christ. As the atonement day of the former dispensation was really a day of judgment, so the atonement work of Christ will include the investigation of the cases of His people prior to His coming the second time to receive them unto Himself.  


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