Healing the Breach
The Day of Atonement, Jewish Holy Day, or Christian Observance? Did you know that the Apostle Paul used the Day of Atonement to explain the New Covenant? That said, how could the day not have meaning for us?
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Today’s title is Healing the Breach. It’s about the Day of Atonement, a biblical holy day.
What’s the most important of the biblical holy days? Some people would say Passover, because it’s about Christ’s sacrifice, and they wouldn’t be far wrong. Others would say the Feast of Trumpets, because it’s about what we’ve all been waiting for – Christ’s return – where the rubber meets the road, so to speak. Others might point to the Feast of Tabernacles, the festival that lasts for eight days and that represents the Kingdom of God on earth. Those who keep it spend most of their time and dedicate substantial sums on it, so we might say that expenditure of time and effort makes that the most important. It’s hard not to get excited about that festival.
For most of us, though, Atonement is a shadowy day, sandwiched in between Trumpets and the Feast of Tabernacles, but did you know that most Jews consider that day – the Day of Atonement – the most important of all holy days? More Jews go to synagogue on this day than any other day of the year. But we’re not Jews by religion. We don’t follow any of their traditions. We’re Christians. We observe Atonement as a Christian holy day, just like the first Christians did in the New Testament. If Atonement has become the most important day to the Jews, should it even matter to us if Atonement is the most important day to the Jews? Could Christians make a case for Atonement as the most important day? Or should we even try? God says, “Keep it.” Isn’t that enough?