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The Day of Atonement

16:2–34pp—Lev 23:26–32; Nu 29:7–11

16 The Lord spoke to Moses after the death of the two sons of Aaron who died when they approached the Lord.z The Lord said to Moses: “Tell your brother Aaron that he is not to come whenever he choosesa into the Most Holy Placeb behind the curtainc in front of the atonement coverd on the ark, or else he will die. For I will appeare in the cloudf over the atonement cover.

“This is how Aaron is to enter the Most Holy Place:g He must first bring a young bullh for a sin offeringa and a ram for a burnt offering.i He is to put on the sacred linen tunic,j with linen undergarments next to his body; he is to tie the linen sash around him and put on the linen turban.k These are sacred garments;l so he must bathe himself with waterm before he puts them on.n From the Israelite communityo he is to take two male goatsp for a sin offering and a ram for a burnt offering.

“Aaron is to offer the bull for his own sin offering to make atonement for himself and his household.q 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 lotsr for the two goats—one lot for the Lord and the other for the scapegoat.b s Aaron shall bring the goat whose lot falls to the Lord and sacrifice it for a sin offering. 10 But the goat chosen by lot as the scapegoat shall be presented alive before the Lord to be used for making atonementt by sending it into the wilderness as a scapegoat.

11 “Aaron shall bring the bull for his own sin offering to make atonement for himself and his household,u and he is to slaughter the bull for his own sin offering. 12 He is to take a censer full of burning coalsv from the altar before the Lord and two handfuls of finely ground fragrant incensew and take them behind the curtain. 13 He is to put the incense on the fire before the Lord, and the smoke of the incense will conceal the atonement coverx above the tablets of the covenant law, so that he will not die.y 14 He is to take some of the bull’s bloodz and with his finger sprinkle it on the front of the atonement cover; then he shall sprinkle some of it with his finger seven times before the atonement cover.a

15 “He shall then slaughter the goat for the sin offering for the peopleb and take its blood behind the curtainc and do with it as he did with the bull’s blood: He shall sprinkled it on the atonement cover and in front of it. 16 In this way he will make atonemente for the Most Holy Placef because of the uncleanness and rebellion of the Israelites, whatever their sins have been. He is to do the same for the tent of meeting,g which is among them in the midst of their uncleanness. 17 No one is to be in the tent of meeting from the time Aaron goes in to make atonement in the Most Holy Place until he comes out, having made atonement for himself, his household and the whole community of Israel.

18 “Then he shall come out to the altarh that is before the Lord and make atonement for it. He shall take some of the bull’s blood and some of the goat’s blood and put it on all the horns of the altar.i 19 He shall sprinkle some of the blood on it with his finger seven times to cleanse it and to consecrate it from the uncleanness of the Israelites.j

20 “When Aaron has finished making atonement for the Most Holy Place, the tent of meeting and the altar, he shall bring forward the live goat.k 21 He is to lay both hands on the head of the live goatl and confessm 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 wilderness in the care of someone appointed for the task. 22 The goat will carry on itself all their sinsn to a remote place; and the man shall release it in the wilderness.

23 “Then Aaron is to go into the tent of meeting and take off the linen garmentso he put on before he entered the Most Holy Place, and he is to leave them there.p 24 He shall bathe himself with water in the sanctuary areaq and put on his regular garments.r Then he shall come out and sacrifice the burnt offering for himself and the burnt offering for the people,s to make atonement for himself and for the people.t 25 He shall also burn the fat of the sin offering on the altar.

26 “The man who releases the goat as a scapegoatu must wash his clothesv and bathe himself with water;w afterward he may come into the camp. 27 The bull and the goat for the sin offerings, whose blood was brought into the Most Holy Place to make atonement, must be taken outside the camp;x their hides, flesh and intestines are to be burned up. 28 The man who burns them must wash his clothes and bathe himself with water; afterward he may come into the camp.y

29 “This is to be a lasting ordinancez for you: On the tenth day of the seventh montha you must deny yourselvesc b and not do any workc—whether native-bornd or a foreigner residing among you—30 because on this day atonement will be madee for you, to cleanse you. Then, before the Lord, you will be clean from all your sins.f 31 It is a day of sabbath rest, and you must deny yourselves;g it is a lasting ordinance.h 32 The priest who is anointed and ordainedi to succeed his father as high priest is to make atonement. He is to put on the sacred linen garmentsj 33 and make atonement for the Most Holy Place, for the tent of meeting and the altar, and for the priests and all the members of the community.k

34 “This is to be a lasting ordinancel for you: Atonement is to be made once a yearm for all the sins of the Israelites.”

And it was done, as the Lord commanded Moses.


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