Yom Kippur

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Leviticus 23:26-32
And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying, Also on the tenth day of this seventh month there shall be a day of atonement: it shall be an holy convocation unto you; and ye shall afflict your souls, and offer an offering made by fire unto the LORD. And ye shall do no work in that same day: for it is a day of atonement, to make an atonement for you before the LORD your God. For whatsoever soul it be that shall not be afflicted in that same day, he shall be cut off from among his people. And whatsoever soul it be that doeth any work in that same day, the same soul will I destroy from among his people. Ye shall do no manner of work: it shall be a statute for ever throughout your generations in all your dwellings. It shall be unto you a sabbath of rest, and ye shall afflict your souls: in the ninth day of the month at even, from even unto even, shall ye celebrate your sabbath.

Information from Judaism 101:

Yom Kippur is probably the most important holiday of the Jewish year. Many Jews who do not observe any other Jewish custom will refrain from work, fast and/or attend synagogue services on this day. Yom Kippur occurs on the 10th day of Tishri. The holiday is instituted at Leviticus 23:26 et seq. The name “Yom Kippur” means “Day of Atonement,” and that pretty much explains what the holiday is. It is a day set aside to “afflict the soul,” to atone for the sins of the past year. In Days of Awe, I mentioned the “books” in which God inscribes all of our names. On Yom Kippur, the judgment entered in these books is sealed. This day is, essentially, your last appeal, your last chance to change the judgment, to demonstrate your repentance and make amends.

Yom Kippur is a complete Sabbath; no work can be performed on that day. It is well-known that you are supposed to refrain from eating and drinking (even water) on Yom Kippur. It is a complete, 25-hour fast beginning before sunset on the evening before Yom Kippur and ending after nightfall on the day of Yom Kippur. The Talmud also specifies additional restrictions that are less well-known: washing and bathing, anointing one’s body (with cosmetics, deodorants, etc.), wearing leather shoes (Orthodox Jews routinely wear canvas sneakers under their dress clothes on Yom Kippur), and engaging in sexual relations are all prohibited on Yom Kippur.

Days of Awe (Rosh Hashanah to Yom Kippur)

One of the ongoing themes of the Days of Awe is the concept that God has “books” that he writes our names in, writing down who will live and who will die, who will have a good life and who will have a bad life, for the next year. These books are written in on Rosh Hashanah, but our actions during the Days of Awe can alter God’s decree. The actions that change the decree are “teshuvah, tefilah and tzedakah,” repentance, prayer, good deeds (usually, charity). These “books” are sealed on Yom Kippur.

The Shabbat (Sabbath) that occurs in this period is known as Shabbat Shuvah (the Sabbath of Return). This is considered a rather important Shabbat. The Sabbath of Return is for Israel to return to God.

Possible Yom Kippur Fulfillments?

Matthew 25:31-46
When the Son of man shall come in his glory, and all the holy angels with him, then shall he sit upon the throne of his glory: And before him shall be gathered all nations: and he shall separate them one from another, as a shepherd divideth his sheep from the goats: And he shall set the sheep on his right hand, but the goats on the left. Then shall the King say unto them on his right hand, Come, ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world: For I was an hungred, and ye gave me meat: I was thirsty, and ye gave me drink: I was a stranger, and ye took me in: Naked, and ye clothed me: I was sick, and ye visited me: I was in prison, and ye came unto me. Then shall the righteous answer him, saying, Lord, when saw we thee an hungred, and fed thee? or thirsty, and gave thee drink? When saw we thee a stranger, and took thee in? or naked, and clothed thee? Or when saw we thee sick, or in prison, and came unto thee? And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me. Then shall he say also unto them on the left hand, Depart from me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels: For I was an hungred, and ye gave me no meat: I was thirsty, and ye gave me no drink: I was a stranger, and ye took me not in: naked, and ye clothed me not: sick, and in prison, and ye visited me not. Then shall they also answer him, saying, Lord, when saw we thee an hungred, or athirst, or a stranger, or naked, or sick, or in prison, and did not minister unto thee? Then shall he answer them, saying, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye did it not to one of the least of these, ye did it not to me. And these shall go away into everlasting punishment: but the righteous into life eternal.
The Sheep-Goat Judgment is a teaching given to us by Jesus in the Olivet Discourse. It is also a very important prophecy of what will happen to those outside the covenant at the end of this age. The Sheep-Goat Judgment is not the judgment seat of Christ. The Elect are not in view here. The judgment here concerns the nations, the gentiles, the heathen, if you will. This judgment will take place at the return of Christ. It is a judgment of individuals who are not under the Eternal Covenant. These people have not yet been saved. They are not covered under the blood of Christ, the promised Sacrifice Lamb.

The Sheep-Goat Judgment occurs at the Second Coming of Christ. As we shall see further along in this article, the biblical study of the two turtledoves sheds some further light on this epic event. Because the Sheep-Goat Judgment is not made upon the basis of someone knowing Messiah directly. It is a blood covenant connection to be sure. It is not a judgment based upon “works” as many evangelicals erroneously assert. But the covenant connection in the Sheep-Goat Judgment involves a triangle. Three people or three parties are involved. This is what sets this judgment apart from the other judgments we see in scripture. A person is either allowed entry into the Millennium as a sheep or they are cut off and damned as a goat. This covenant assessment is not made under the basis of a direct covenant with Messiah. There is not one to be had. These people are gentiles. They are outside the covenant of salvation. They do not have a saving knowledge and a relationship with the God of Israel. If they did they would not be considered gentiles. Rather, this judgment is an indirect second order covenant. It is based upon the witness of a third party. And the covenant with Messiah is confirmed through the sponsoring witness of that third party contact, someone who does know Messiah.

The Sheep-Goat Judgment as we see it outlined in Matthew 25:31-46 a blood covenant judgment. It sets forth the basis for the returning Messiah’s judgment of the people of the nations. This judgment will occur after the Battle of Armageddon at the end of the age.

It is important to understand that this is a judgment made here on earth. It is not the Final Judgment of souls before the throne of God. This is not the entry into the pearly gates of heaven. Nor is it the judgment seat of Christ. The entry of souls into the heavenly realms is not in view here. The people in question here are those remaining on the earth in their mortal bodies at the end of this age. The saints, both the living and the dead, have been raised up or harpazod. They will have already been glorified at the Resurrection-harpazo. They will be in new spiritual bodies not unlike the sort of body Jesus was seen with after His resurrection. The sheep and the goats will be those left behind on earth.

The Sheep-Goat Judgment is not the judgment of souls for entry into heaven. Rather, it is a judgment of living mortal individuals here on earth before they are permitted entry into the earthly Millennium of Messiah. This is a covenant matter between God and mankind. The returning Messiah is back on earth judging the nations. After the awful history of humanistic mankind during the Apocalypse Messiah has every right to come in judgment of the nations. Because man-centered government during the final seven years of this age will have brought this planet to the very brink of disaster.

The sheep and the goats are people who remain here on earth and are at the threshold of the new Millennium. This is that glorious new age which will be established by Messiah for a literal 1,000 years. He has every right to judge who comes into His Kingdom. and to accept or reject whomsoever He wills. The scriptures are quite clear as to what happens. The sheep will enter in. The goats will not.

Here in this judgment we see certain mortals being given permission to pass into the Messiah’s earthly Kingdom. The Sheep-Goat Judgment is the judgment of the gentiles or heathen nations. Christian and Messianic believers, those who had been in direct personal covenant with Christ/Messiah are not in view here. At the time of the Sheep-Goat Judgment they will no longer be earthbound mortals. They will have been glorified. They will no longer be bound by time or space.

List of Dates

Yom Kippur will occur on the following days of the secular calendar:

  • Jewish Year 5773: sunset September 25, 2012 - nightfall September 26, 2012
  • Jewish Year 5774: sunset September 13, 2013 - nightfall September 14, 2013
  • Jewish Year 5775: sunset October 3, 2014 - nightfall October 4, 2014
  • Jewish Year 5776: sunset September 22, 2015 - nightfall September 23, 2015
  • Jewish Year 5777: sunset October 11, 2016 - nightfall October 12, 2016