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Answering Jewish Objections to Blood Atonement
 

“However, Jews who read their bible know that there are SEVERAL ways to atone for sins -- not just "blood sacrifices," as is mindlessly repeated ad nauseum by deceptive Christian missionary cults.” (Letter from a Jewish counter-missionary)

    The Scriptures listed in this presentation come from a Jewish anti missionary who challenged the need for a vicarious death and shed blood to atone for sin.  He claimed there were many ways to atone for sin.  Anti-missionaries are specially trained to try and thwart the gospel of the Lord Jesus and win Messianic Jews back to Judaism.  When reading this section, please keep in mind that the prophets did not alter the message of Moses and the Torah.  Their message was in complete accord with Moses.  The Torah is the foundation and the prophets built on this foundation.  The foundation that was laid in the Torah: that blood atonement is needed for iniquity, transgression, and sin to reconcile sinful man with the holy God of Israel.

No prophet altered this message, and the New Covenant was also based on the need for blood for sin.  The New Covenant is in complete harmony with the Torah.  It is the anti-missionaries who are out of line with Moses.  In an attempt to do away with the need for the blood, the counter-missionaries pit the prophets against Moses.  The prophets are to be harmonized and not pitted against Moses.

Moses was very clear how to be clean from sin before the holy God of Israel.  Being clean is the result of repentance and coming under atoning death and shed blood on the Day of Atonement.  The only way to be clean before the holy God of Israel is found in Leviticus 16 and the Day of Atonement.  This is God’s way to have forgiveness of sin and fellowship with Him.  This is a fundamental truth of the law of Moses.  The prophets never changed or altered this truth.  Their ministry was to turn Israel from sin to repentance and to come back under God’s law which included the blood.  Here are the verses which show the only way to be clean before the holy God of Israel:

 

Leviticus 16: 30 “For on that day shall the priest make an atonement for you, to cleanse you, that ye may be clean from all your sins before the LORD. (31) It shall be a sabbath of rest unto you, and ye shall afflict your souls, by a statute for ever.

(33) And he shall make an atonement for the holy sanctuary, and he shall make an atonement for the tabernacle of the congregation, and for the altar, and he shall make an atonement for the priests, and for all the people of the congregation.

(34) And this shall be an everlasting statute unto you, to make an atonement for the children of Israel for all their sins once a year...”

 

My response to the counter-missionary follows the posting of the verses. First posted is the Scripture used in an attempt to refute the need for the shed blood and then follows my response.  Remember when reading this section, no prophet altered the message of the Torah and Leviticus is the only way in the Old Testament to be clean before the holy God of Israel.  

 

Leviticus 17:11  

Leviticus 17:10 “And whatsoever man there be of the house of Israel, or of the strangers that sojourn among you, that eateth any manner of blood; I will even set my face against that soul that eateth blood, and will cut him off from among his people.

(11) For the life of the flesh is in the blood: and I have given it to you upon the altar to make an atonement for your souls: for it is the blood that maketh an atonement for the soul.

(12) Therefore I said unto the children of Israel , No soul of you shall eat blood, neither shall any stranger that sojourneth among you eat blood.”

 

This verse needs special attention because it is a powerful verse to show the need for blood to atone for sin.  This verse therefore comes under direct attack by those who deny the need for the blood.  The argument of the anti missionaries against this verse goes like this: the context of the chapter is about not eating blood and has nothing to do with atoning for sin.  They also claim that Leviticus 17:11 does not state blood is the only way to atone for sin, but it is one of many ways.  The counter-missionaries will go as far to say that the blood is the least of the way to atone for sin.

Response:  The life of the flesh is in the blood, and it is blood that makes an atonement for the soul.  Just go back one chapter to chapter 16 and the Day of Atonement and see how of major importance the blood is to atonement for sin.  It was the death of the animals and the sprinkled blood which atoned for ALL iniquities, transgressions, and sins.

In chapter 17, God is telling why blood is not to be eaten.  God in the strongest terms commanded that blood was not to be eaten.  People were to focus on the importance of the blood for atonement for sin and not eating it.  The life force is in the blood and this is what atones for sin.  This is the clear message of Leviticus 17:11.  This verse is extremely powerful to show the need for blood to atone for sin.  The verses from the Day of Atonement which are the foundation for chapter 16 follow:

 

Leviticus 16:9 “And Aaron shall bring the goat upon which the LORD'S lot fell, and offer him for a sin offering.

(15) Then shall he kill the goat of the sin offering, that is for the people, and bring his blood within the veil, and do with that blood as he did with the blood of the bullock, and sprinkle it upon the mercy seat, and before the mercy seat:

(16) And he shall make an atonement for the holy place, because of the uncleanness of the children of Israel , and because of their transgressions in all their sins: and so shall he do for the tabernacle of the congregation, that remaineth among them in the midst of their uncleanness.

(30) For on that day shall the priest make an atonement for you, to cleanse you, that ye may be clean from all your sins before the LORD.”

 

The Bible says in Leviticus 16 that ALL the iniquities, transgression and sins of Israel were dealt with by the death and shed blood.  I repeat ALL which includes ALL intentional as well as ALL unintentional.  Notice one goat died on the altar for the sin, and its blood was sprinkled on the mercy seat.  The second goat became the vicarious carrier of ALL the sin of Israel , again ALL.  A person cannot be righteousness with God apart from Leviticus 16 being fulfilled.  Leviticus 17:11 ties directly back to what happened on the Day of Atonement.

 

Leviticus 16:21 “And Aaron shall lay both his hands upon the head of the live goat, and confess over him all the iniquities of the children of Israel, and all their transgressions in all their sins, putting them upon the head of the goat, and shall send him away by the hand of a fit man into the wilderness:

(22) And the goat shall bear upon him all their iniquities unto a land not inhabited: and he shall let go the goat in the wilderness.”

 

Leviticus 17:11, when tied directly back to chapter 16, is overwhelming evidence from the Torah that the blood is the only way to atone for ALL sin.  It is the only way to be clean before God.  The holy God of Israel has showed the method to be clean before Him.  This is God’s way and the only way.  Without coming under the shed blood of Leviticus 16, it is impossible to be clean from sin before God.

 

Exodus 30:12  

Exodus 30:11 And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying, (12) When thou takest the sum of the children of Israel after their number, then shall they give every man a ransom for his soul unto the LORD, when thou numberest them; that there be no plague among them, when thou numberest them.

(13) This they shall give, every one that passeth among them that are numbered, half a shekel after the shekel of the sanctuary: (a shekel is twenty gerahs:) an half shekel shall be the offering of the LORD.

 

Response:  God ordered the census to be taken of the people.  If God requested it, then this could not be sinful.  This verse is not about the atonement for sin.  The ransom was for a specific reason, the census.  For some reason, God does not seem to like the taking of a census.  After the census was completed, the money had to be given for an atonement.  This was a one time occurrence and not for a foundation of a doctrine.  God cannot cause people to sin:

 

James 1:13 “Let no man say when he is tempted, I am tempted of God: for God cannot be tempted with evil, neither tempteth he any man: (14) But every man is tempted, when he is drawn away of his own lust, and enticed.”

 

The money went into building the tabernacle which of course had the altar of sacrifice and the mercy seat on which the atonement was made to cleanse Israel before the Lord.  This was not a universal doctrine showing money could be given to atone for sin.  If this was universal, why did not David and Israel give shekels to stop the plague when David took a census?  When David unauthorized by God took the census, a plague broke out among the people.  David took the census in disobedience to God who forbids it.  David did not offer money but burnt offerings to stop the plague. Look at the following verses:

 

2 Samuel 24:1 “And again the anger of the LORD was kindled against Israel , and he moved David against them to say, Go, number Israel and Judah .

(10) And David's heart smote him after that he had numbered the people. And David said unto the LORD, I have sinned greatly in that I have done: and now, I beseech thee, O LORD, take away the iniquity of thy servant; for I have done very foolishly.

(15) So the LORD sent a pestilence upon Israel from the morning even to the time appointed: and there died of the people from Dan even to Beersheba seventy thousand men.

(25) And David built there an altar unto the LORD, and offered burnt offerings and peace offerings. So the LORD was entreated for the land, and the plague was stayed from Israel .”

 

There is no doctrine to be made of offering money for atonement.  Exodus 30 was a one time event, and the money was used to build the tabernacle where true atonement for sin was offered.

 

Exodus 30:16  

Exodus 30:16 “And thou shalt take the atonement money of the children of Israel, and shalt appoint it for the service of the tabernacle of the congregation; that it may be a memorial unto the children of Israel before the LORD, to make an atonement for your souls.”

 

Response:  This was just answered under Exodus 30:12, and no doctrine can be based on this.

 

Leviticus 5:16  

Leviticus 5:16 “And he shall make amends for the harm that he hath done in the holy thing, and shall add the fifth part thereto, and give it unto the priest: and the priest shall make an atonement for him with the ram of the trespass offering, and it shall be forgiven him.”

 

Response:  The argument is that if a person repents and restores what he stole that will make atonement for sin.  The verse is in two parts.  Just read the last part of this verse which clearly shows a vicarious death is needed.  The priest was to offer a ram as a trespass offering as part of this repentance for sin.  Without repentance and the death of the ram, there would be no forgiveness of this sin.  The blood was needed to be forgiven.

 

Numbers 16:47  

Numbers 16:46 “And Moses said unto Aaron, Take a censer, and put fire therein from off the altar, and put on incense, and go quickly unto the congregation, and make an atonement for them: for there is wrath gone out from the LORD; the plague is begun.

(47) And Aaron took as Moses commanded, and ran into the midst of the congregation; and, behold, the plague was begun among the people: and he put on incense, and made an atonement for the people. (48) And he stood between the dead and the living; and the plague was stayed.

 

Response:  The children of Israel rebelled against the LORD and a plague broke out.  Moses told Aaron, who was the high priest, to get hot coals off the altar of sacrifice.  Aaron then put the coals in a censer with incense and went among the people and the plague stopped.  Notice the coals came from the altar of sacrifice.

The coals were soaked with the shed blood of all those animals that were killed for sin.  It was the coals from the altar of sacrifice which burned the incense that stopped the judgment.  The burning of incense was also an integral part of the Day of Atonement:

 

Leviticus 16:12 ”And he shall take a censer full of burning coals of fire from off the altar before the LORD, and his hands full of sweet incense beaten small, and bring it within the veil: (13) And he shall put the incense upon the fire before the LORD, that the cloud of the incense may cover the mercy seat that is upon the testimony, that he die not:”

 

Numbers 31:50  

Numbers 31:49 “And they said unto Moses, Thy servants have taken the sum of the men of war which are under our charge, and there lacketh not one man of us.

(50) We have therefore brought an oblation for the LORD, what every man hath gotten, of jewels of gold, chains, and bracelets, rings, earrings, and tablets, to make an atonement for our souls before the LORD.

(54) And Moses and Eleazar the priest took the gold of the captains of thousands and of hundreds, and brought it into the tabernacle of the congregation, for a memorial for the children of Israel before the LORD.”

 

Response:  This event had nothing to do with sin.  Please note that this was the army making an offering to the Lord for the men that were not killed in battle.  It had nothing to do with sin.  Also, this money went into the building of the tabernacle and was for a memorial not for sin.  This never happened again the Bible.

 

Job 22:23-27  

Job 22:23 “If thou return to the Almighty, thou shalt be built up, thou shalt put away iniquity far from thy tabernacles. (25) Yea, the Almighty shall be thy defence, and thou shalt have plenty of silver. (26) For then shalt thou have thy delight in the Almighty, and shalt lift up thy face unto God. (27) Thou shalt make thy prayer unto him, and he shall hear thee, and thou shalt pay thy vows.”

 

Response:  Verse 23 states to return to the Almighty.  Job knew all about sacrifice for sin as he was doing it for his children in case they sinned against the LORD.  Job knew about the principal of sacrificing for sin way before Moses and the law.

 

Job 1:5 “And it was so, when the days of their feasting were gone about, that Job sent and sanctified them, and rose up early in the morning, and offered burnt offerings according to the number of them all: for Job said, It may be that my sons have sinned, and cursed God in their hearts. Thus did Job continually.”

 

God states later in Job how to return to Him.  He gave clear instruction to Job’s false counselors how to be reinstated with God for their false teaching about Him they gave to Job.  They were to offer burnt offering for their sin!

 

Job 42:7 “And it was so, that after the LORD had spoken these words unto Job, the LORD said to Eliphaz the Temanite, My wrath is kindled against thee, and against thy two friends: for ye have not spoken of me the thing that is right, as my servant Job hath.

(8) Therefore take unto you now seven bullocks and seven rams, and go to my servant Job, and offer up for yourselves a burnt offering; and my servant Job shall pray for you: for him will I accept: lest I deal with you after your folly, in that ye have not spoken of me the thing which is right, like my servant Job. (9) So Eliphaz the Temanite and Bildad the Shuhite and Zophar the Naamathite went, and did according as the LORD commanded them: the LORD also accepted Job.”

 

Job was waiting for his redeemer which was the coming of the Lord Jesus.  He knew that one day his Redeemer would come and pay the final price for sin for which the burnt offerings had atoned.  Job was looking for the penalty of his sin to be paid for and the resurrection from the dead.

 

Job 19: 25 “For I know that my redeemer liveth, and that he shall stand at the latter day upon the earth: (26) And though after my skin worms destroy this body, yet in my flesh shall I see God:

(27) Whom I shall see for myself, and mine eyes shall behold, and not another; though my reins be consumed within me.”

 

1 Samuel 15:22  

1 Samuel 15:22 “And Samuel said, Hath the LORD as great delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices, as in obeying the voice of the LORD? Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice, and to hearken than the fat of rams.”

 

The argument here is that God is not concerned with sacrifice.  He is concerned with obedience and listening to Him.

Response:  The context of this verse was King Saul fighting Amalek.  He was clearly told to destroy everything of the Amalekites, EVERYTHING see verse three.

 

1 Samuel 15:3 “Now go and smite Amalek, and utterly destroy all that they have, and spare them not; but slay both man and woman, infant and suckling, ox and sheep, camel and ass.”

 

God's instructions are crystal clear.  However, Saul did not obey God's command, but what did he do? Verse nine tells us.

 

1 Samuel 15:9 “But Saul and the people spared Agag, and the best of the sheep, and of the oxen, and of the fatlings, and the lambs,”

 

Notice Saul disobeyed the direct command of the Lord.  HE DISOBEYED!!!  He did not utterly destroy all of Amalek, and he kept the best of the sheep.  Next, Saul was going to use the sheep which came from his disobedience to sacrifice.  Samuel rebuked him for this disobedience.

 

1 Samuel 15:15 “And Saul said, They have brought them from the Amalekites: for the people spared the best of the sheep and of the oxen, to sacrifice unto the LORD thy God; and the rest we have utterly destroyed.”

 

Here is Samuel rebuking Saul:

1 Samuel 15:19 “Wherefore then didst thou not obey the voice of the LORD, but didst fly upon the spoil, and didst evil in the sight of the LORD?”

 

Keeping the sheep for sacrifice was evil, not the sacrificing of the sheep!  Then Samuel says that Saul's sacrifice was of no value because of his rebellion.  This has NOTHING to do with sacrifice for sin, it has to do with Saul not obeying the word of God.

 

1 Samuel 15:22 “And Samuel said, Hath the LORD as great delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices, as in obeying the voice of the LORD? Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice, and to hearken than the fat of rams.”

 

Without obeying God, any sacrifice is worthless.  The message of this verse is obedience is needed for the sacrifice to be accepted.

 

1 Kings 8:33  

1 Kings 8:33 “When thy people Israel be smitten down before the enemy, because they have sinned against thee, and shall turn again to thee, and confess thy name, and pray, and make supplication unto thee in this house:

(34) Then hear thou in heaven, and forgive the sin of thy people Israel , and bring them again unto the land which thou gavest unto their fathers.”

 

Response:  The Torah gives the exact remedy needed for the children of Israel to be restored to the land.  The Bible is clear what the people had to do and that was repent and confess their sin to the LORD.  To be forgiven and restored the people had to confess their sin and the sin of their fathers.  If they repented, God would remember His covenant with Abraham, Isaac and Jacob over the land.  He would restore them to land based on the covenant. 

 

Leviticus 26:40 “If they shall confess their iniquity, and the iniquity of their fathers, with their trespass which they trespassed against me, and that also they have walked contrary unto me; (41) And that I also have walked contrary unto them, and have brought them into the land of their enemies; if then their uncircumcised hearts be humbled, and they then accept of the punishment of their iniquity:

(42) Then will I remember my covenant with Jacob, and also my covenant with Isaac, and also my covenant with Abraham will I remember; and I will remember the land. (44) And yet for all that, when they be in the land of their enemies, I will not cast them away, neither will I abhor them, to destroy them utterly, and to break my covenant with them: for I am the LORD their God.

(45) But I will for their sakes remember the covenant of their ancestors, whom I brought forth out of the land of Egypt in the sight of the heathen, that I might be their God: I am the LORD.”

 

After Israel returned from the Babylonian captivity, the people immediately rebuilt the altar and began sacrifices.  In the captivity they could not sacrifice because the temple was destroyed.  When Israel was sent into captivity, it was because of judgment.  God would no longer accept their sacrifices for sin as fellowship with God was broken.  When they repented of the sin, God would forgive the sin and restore the fellowship.  Then immediately, Israel offered the sacrifices to keep in fellowship with God.  The verses to show this follow:

 

Ezra 3:1 “And when the seventh month was come, and the children of Israel were in the cities, the people gathered themselves together as one man to Jerusalem .

(2) Then stood up Jeshua the son of Jozadak, and his brethren the priests, and Zerubbabel the son of Shealtiel, and his brethren, and builded the altar of the God of Israel, to offer burnt offerings thereon, as it is written in the law of Moses the man of God.

(3) And they set the altar upon his bases; for fear was upon them because of the people of those countries: and they offered burnt offerings thereon unto the LORD, even burnt offerings morning and evening. (4) They kept also the feast of tabernacles, as it is written, and offered the daily burnt offerings by number, according to the custom, as the duty of every day required;

(5) And afterward offered the continual burnt offering, both of the new moons, and of all the set feasts of the LORD that were consecrated, and of every one that willingly offered a freewill offering unto the LORD.

(6) From the first day of the seventh month began they to offer burnt offerings unto the LORD. But the foundation of the temple of the LORD was not yet laid.”

 

1 Kings 8:46-50  

1 Kings 8:46 “If they sin against thee, (for there is no man that sinneth not,) and thou be angry with them, and deliver them to the enemy, so that they carry them away captives unto the land of the enemy, far or near;

(47) Yet if they shall bethink themselves in the land whither they were carried captives, and repent, and make supplication unto thee in the land of them that carried them captives, saying, We have sinned, and have done perversely, we have committed wickedness;

(48) And so return unto thee with all their heart, and with all their soul, in the land of their enemies, which led them away captive, and pray unto thee toward their land, which thou gavest unto their fathers, the city which thou hast chosen, and the house which I have built for thy name:

(49) Then hear thou their prayer and their supplication in heaven thy dwelling place, and maintain their cause, (50) And forgive thy people that have sinned against thee, and all their transgressions wherein they have transgressed against thee, and give them compassion before them who carried them captive, that they may have compassion on them:”

 

Response:  This was answered in 1 Kings 8:33.

 

2 Chronicles 30:18,19  

2 Chronicles 30:18 “For a multitude of the people, even many of Ephraim, and Manasseh, Issachar, and Zebulun, had not cleansed themselves, yet did they eat the passover otherwise than it was written. But Hezekiah prayed for them, saying, The good LORD pardon every one

(19) That prepareth his heart to seek God, the LORD God of his fathers, though he be not cleansed according to the purification of the sanctuary.”

 

Response:  These people wanted to be clean and offer sacrifice but couldn't because of the crowd.  God honored this because they wanted to eat the Passover but couldn't because there were not enough priests.  See the preceding verses:

 

2 Chronicles 30:15 “Then they killed the passover on the fourteenth day of the second month: and the priests and the Levites were ashamed, and sanctified themselves, and brought in the burnt offerings into the house of the LORD.

(16) And they stood in their place after their manner, according to the law of Moses the man of God: the priests sprinkled the blood, which they received of the hand of the Levites.

(17) For there were many in the congregation that were not sanctified: therefore the Levites had the charge of the killing of the passovers for every one that was not clean, to sanctify them unto the LORD.”

 

The people from the northern tribes were ready and willing to come under the blood sacrifice. They were present ready for the blood, but there were not enough priests.  God honored their heart that they wanted to come under the blood.  How does this say the blood was not needed?  It reinforces the need.  God being merciful because of the shortage heard Hezekiah’s prayer and honored their hearts wanting to be in obedience to His word.  This is a far cry from someone who says there is no need for the shed blood and sacrifices.

 

Psalm 37:27  

Psalm 37:27 “Depart from evil, and do good; and dwell for evermore.”

 

Response:  To do good, means to live according to God’s word and obey all His commandments, statutes and laws.  The need for shed blood to atone for sin is more of His statutes forevermore.  If one wants to dwell forevermore with God, that person has to come under the blood for atonement for sin to be clean before the holy God of Israel.

 

Psalm 40:6  

Psalm 40:6 “Sacrifice and offering thou didst not desire; mine ears hast thou opened: burnt offering and sin offering hast thou not required. (7) Then said I, Lo, I come: in the volume of the book it is written of me”

 

Response:  This is the Messiah speaking.  The section of the Psalm was written about Him and not David.  No sacrifice is needed for the Messiah because He is righteous before God.  All others need a sacrifice for sin, just as Leviticus 16 shows.  The book mentioned in verse seven is none other than the word of God.

 

Psalms 51:18  

Psalm 51:16 “For thou desirest not sacrifice; else would I give it: thou delights not in burnt offering. (17) The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit: a broken and a contrite heart, O God, thou wilt not despise.”

 

Response:  Verses 16 and 17 are favorite verses of those who deny the need for blood atonement.  However, just continue reading to verse 19 and you will see the previous verses were talking about the right heart and not saying sacrifice was not needed.  Verse 19 clearly shows that sacrifice is most certainly needed and it pleases God.

 

Psalm 51:19 “Then shalt thou be pleased with the sacrifices of righteousness, with burnt offering and whole burnt offering: then shall they offer bullocks upon thine altar.”

 

Psalm 69:30-33  

Psalm 69:30 “I will praise the name of God with a song, and will magnify him with thanksgiving.(31) “This also shall please the LORD better than an ox or bullock that hath horns and hoofs. (32) The humble shall see this, and be glad: and your heart shall live that seek God. (33) For the LORD heareth the poor, and despiseth not his prisoners.”

 

Response:  This has nothing to do with atonement for sin.  God loves the praises of His people.  He responds to praise and thanksgiving.  The Bible states that God inhabits the praises of His people.  It is the shed blood for sin which reconciles the people with the holy God of Israel so they could praise Him free of condemnation.

 

Psalm 22:3 “But thou art holy, O thou that inhabitest the praises of Israel .”

 

Psalm 78:22-39  

Psalm 78:22 “Because they believed not in God, and trusted not in his salvation:

(31) The wrath of God came upon them, and slew the fattest of them, and smote down the chosen men of Israel . (32) For all this they sinned still, and believed not for his wondrous works.

(34) When he slew them, then they sought him: and they returned and inquired early after God.(35) And they remembered that God was their rock, and the high God their redeemer.(36) Nevertheless they did flatter him with their mouth, and they lied unto him with their tongues.(37) For their heart was not right with him, neither were they stedfast in his covenant.

(38) But he, being full of compassion, forgave their iniquity, and destroyed them not: yea, many a time turned he his anger away, and did not stir up all his wrath. (39) For he remembered that they were but flesh; a wind that passeth away, and cometh not again.

 

Response:  God established the tabernacle, the priesthood, and the altar of sacrifice, and does this verse now mean the sacrificial system is no longer needed?  Was God wasting His time with the Tabernacle in the Wilderness?  Leviticus 16 shows you how God forgave their sin!

God was merciful and did not give Israel the full judgment the people deserved for rebellion against Him.  It is burnt offerings and other sacrifices which cause God to pass over judgment.  It was the death of the lamb and the sprinkled blood which caused the death angel to pass over the children of Israel .

When Noah offered sacrifices on the altar after the flood it was these burnt offerings which touched the heart of God and caused Him to say He would never again judge the earth like He just did with the flood.  The death and shed blood allowed God to have mercy.  This death and shed blood all pointed to what the Lord Jesus would do to reconcile sinful man with the holy God of Israel. Noah’s sacrifices follow:

 

Genesis 8:20 “And Noah builded an altar unto the LORD; and took of every clean beast, and of every clean fowl, and offered burnt offerings on the altar.

(21) And the LORD smelled a sweet savour; and the LORD said in his heart, I will not again curse the ground any more for man's sake; for the imagination of man's heart is evil from his youth; neither will I again smite any more every thing living, as I have done.”

 

Psalm 86:5,6  

Psalm 86:5 “For thou, Lord, art good, and ready to forgive; and plenteous in mercy unto all them that call upon thee. (6) Give ear, O LORD, unto my prayer; and attend to the voice of my supplications. (7) In the day of my trouble I will call upon thee: for thou wilt answer me.”

 

Response:  God is ready and willing to forgive when man does it God’s way and not our own way.  God is ready to forgive when a person repents of sin and comes under the shed blood God has provided to atone for the sin.  That was the message in Moses’ day, the Psalmist’s day and today.  Nothing has changed with God and the blood is needed today as much as it was when Psalm 86 was written.  These verses have nothing to do with the elimination of the need for blood atonement for sin.

 

Proverbs 10:2 and 11:4  

Proverbs 10:2 “Treasures of wickedness profit nothing: but righteousness delivereth from death.”

Proverbs 11:4 “Riches profit not in the day of wrath: but righteousness delivereth from death.”

 

Response:  Our righteousness come from God’s word.  It is God who makes us righteous as we come under His blood covenants.  It is the shed blood of the covenants and obeying His word that makes a person righteous.  We have no righteousness of our own apart from God.

 

Deuteronomy 6:25 “And it shall be our righteousness, if we observe to do all these commandments before the LORD our God, as he hath commanded us. (Is Leviticus part of the commandments that make a person righteous, yes!)

 

The law was a blood covenant and the New Covenant is also a blood covenant.  It is the blood of the covenants that makes us righteous.  These verses follow:

 

Exodus 24:6 “And Moses took half of the blood, and put it in basins; and half of the blood he sprinkled on the altar. (7) And he took the book of the covenant, and read in the audience of the people: and they said, All that the LORD hath said will we do, and be obedient. 8) And Moses took the blood, and sprinkled it on the people, and said, Behold the blood of the covenant, which the LORD hath made with you concerning all these words.”

Hebrews 13:20 “Now the God of peace, that brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus, that great shepherd of the sheep, through the blood of the everlasting covenant,”

 

Proverbs 14:22  

Proverbs 14:22 “Do they not err that devise evil? but mercy and truth shall be to them that devise good.”

 

Response:  This verse has nothing to do with the need for blood for atonement and the forgiveness of sin.

 

Proverbs 16:6  

Proverbs 16:6 “By mercy and truth iniquity is purged: and by the fear of the LORD men depart from evil.”

 

Response:  Does this verse now do away with the Day Atonement?  Of course it does not.  This verse is merely stating half of the equation while the other half is understood.  Sacrifice for sin is useless without the heart being repentive and right with God.  When a person is merciful and walks in truth then the sacrifices for sin have effect.

The following verses from Isaiah show that God will not accept sacrifices if the person’s heart is not right.  The ritual means nothing unless the heart is full of mercy and truth.

 

Isaiah 1:11 “To what purpose is the multitude of your sacrifices unto me? saith the LORD: I am full of the burnt offerings of rams, and the fat of fed beasts; and I delight not in the blood of bullocks, or of lambs, or of he goats.(13) Bring no more vain oblations; incense is an abomination unto me; the new moons and sabbaths, the calling of assemblies, I cannot away with; it is iniquity, even the solemn meeting. (14) Your new moons and your appointed feasts my soul hateth: they are a trouble unto me; I am weary to bear them.

(15) And when ye spread forth your hands, I will hide mine eyes from you: yea, when ye make many prayers, I will not hear: your hands are full of blood. (16) Wash you, make you clean; put away the evil of your doings from before mine eyes; cease to do evil; (17) Learn to do well; seek judgment, relieve the oppressed, judge the fatherless, plead for the widow.

 

Proverbs 21:3  

Proverbs 21:3 “To do justice and judgment is more acceptable to the LORD than sacrifice.”

 

Response:  See the responses to 1 Samuel 15:22 and Hosea 6:6.

 

Isaiah 27:9  

Isaiah 27:9 “By this therefore shall the iniquity of Jacob be purged; and this is all the fruit to take away his sin; when he maketh all the stones of the altar as chalkstones that are beaten in sunder, the groves and images shall not stand up.”

 

Response:  Of course, this act of repentance is needed to eliminate sin.  Does this verse do away with the shed blood on Yom Kippur?  Is Isaiah is now negating the Torah and Moses?  A part of forgiveness for sin has always been repentance which is this act of destroying the pagan altars and idols.  Without this the sacrifice in the temple meant nothing.

Does the following verse sound like Isaiah is calling for the end of sacrifices or that sacrifices aren't needed?

 

Isaiah 56:7 “Even them will I bring to my holy mountain, and make them joyful in my house of prayer: their burnt offerings and their sacrifices shall be accepted upon mine altar; for mine house shall be called an house of prayer for all people.”

 

Jeremiah 26:13  

Jeremiah 26:13 “Therefore now amend your ways and your doings, and obey the voice of the LORD your God; and the LORD will repent him of the evil that he hath pronounced against you.”

 

Response:  Jeremiah did not negate the Torah.  This verse shows that by amending your ways (repentance) and obeying the voice of the LORD, God will turn from judgment.  This is the steady message throughout the Bible, repent of sin and obey God’s word.  Keeping Leviticus 16 is part of God’s word.  Not one of the prophets did away with or altered the Torah!  Does this sound like Jeremiah is doing away with sacrifices?

 

Jeremiah 33:18 “Neither shall the priests the Levites want a man before me to offer burnt offerings, and to kindle meat offerings, and to do sacrifice continually.”

 

Jeremiah 36:3  

Jeremiah 36:3 “It may be that the house of Judah will hear all the evil which I purpose to do unto them; that they may return every man from his evil way; that I may forgive their iniquity and their sin.”

 

Response:  The Bible tells us how sin is forgiven.  Sin is forgiven by repentance and the shed blood as shown in Leviticus 16 on the Day of Atonement.  Did Jeremiah come with a new message, NO!!  Did Jeremiah do away with the Torah, NO!  Turning from evil is repentance and being cleansed from sin by the rituals in Leviticus.

 

Ezekiel 18:21-22  

Ezekiel 18:21 “But if the wicked will turn from all his sins that he hath committed, and keep all my statutes, and do that which is lawful and right, he shall surely live, he shall not die. (22) All his transgressions that he hath committed, they shall not be mentioned unto him: in his righteousness that he hath done he shall live.”

 

Response:  Ezekiel is in complete line with Moses, Isaiah, and Jeremiah.  Ezekiel mentions if a wicked person will turn (repent) of sin and keep ALL of God’s statutes, he will live and not die in his sin.  Leviticus 16 and the shedding of innocent blood to atone for sin is part of keeping God’s statutes.

 

Leviticus 16:29 “And this shall be a statute for ever unto you: that in the seventh month, on the tenth day of the month, ye shall afflict your souls, and do no work at all, whether it be one of your own country, or a stranger that sojourneth among you:

(30) For on that day shall the priest make an atonement for you, to cleanse you, that ye may be clean from all your sins before the LORD.

(31) It shall be a sabbath of rest unto you, and ye shall afflict your souls, by a statute for ever.

(33) And he shall make an atonement for the holy sanctuary, and he shall make an atonement for the tabernacle of the congregation, and for the altar, and he shall make an atonement for the priests, and for all the people of the congregation.

(34) And this shall be an everlasting statute unto you, to make an atonement for the children of Israel for all their sins once a year. And he did as the LORD commanded Moses.”

 

Daniel 4:24  

Daniel 4:27 (JPS) “Wherefore, O king, let my counsel be acceptable unto thee, and break off thy sins by righteousness, and thine iniquities by showing mercy to the poor; if it may be a lengthening of thy tranquillity.”

 

Response:  Daniel had just told King Nebuchadnezzar of the coming judgment on him for pride.  He now was telling the king how to avoid the judgment.  This could be accomplished by him doing righteousness and showing mercy to the poor.  If the king fulfilled these requirements, the judgment would be averted.  This had to do with averting judgment on the king.

 

Daniel 4:24 “This is the interpretation, O king, and this is the decree of the most High, which is come upon my lord the king:

(25) That they shall drive thee from men, and thy dwelling shall be with the beasts of the field, and they shall make thee to eat grass as oxen, and they shall wet thee with the dew of heaven, and seven times shall pass over thee, till thou know that the most High ruleth in the kingdom of men, and giveth it to whomsoever he will. (26) And whereas they commanded to leave the stump of the tree roots; thy kingdom shall be sure unto thee, after that thou shalt have known that the heavens do rule.”

 

Hosea 6:6  

Hosea 6:6 “For I desired mercy, and not sacrifice; and the knowledge of God more than burnt offerings.”

 

Response:  This is the same principle shown in 1 Samuel 15:22 with King Saul.  The ritual of sacrifice and burnt offerings meant nothing unless the person was merciful and had knowledge of God.  Did the prophet Hosea do away with the Leviticus 16?  I don't think so.

 

Hosea 14:1  

Hosea 14:1 “O Israel, return unto the LORD thy God; for thou hast fallen by thine iniquity. (2) Take with you words, and turn to the LORD: say unto him, Take away all iniquity, and receive us graciously: so will we render the calves of our lips.”

 

The argument with this verse is that turning to the LORD is enough to take all iniquity and the words spoken are like calves for sacrifice.

Response:  The way to return to the Lord was to come back to the Torah.  Leviticus and the need for blood to atone for sin is part of the Torah.  Did Hosea say you can now ignore Leviticus when you return to the Lord?  Of course he did not.  To return to the Lord, two things are needed which are repentance of sin and coming back to the Torah.  Coming under the shed blood of Leviticus 16 for the forgiveness of sin, is the message of Moses and ALL the prophets.

Notice in Hosea 14:1,2 the reason for the rendering of the lips was the iniquity was taken away by God.  The calves of the lips don’t take sin away, it is the result of having the sin being taken away.

 

Here is the way God wants us to use the “calves” of our lips.

 

Psalm 66:13 “I will go into thy house with burnt offerings: I will pay thee my vows, (14) Which my lips have uttered, and my mouth hath spoken, when I was in trouble.

(15) I will offer unto thee burnt sacrifices of fatlings, with the incense of rams; I will offer bullocks with goats. Selah.

(16) Come and hear, all ye that fear God, and I will declare what he hath done for my soul. (notice this was said after the sacrifice)

(17) I cried unto him with my mouth, and he was extolled with my tongue. (18) If I regard iniquity in my heart, the Lord will not hear me: (The words mean nothing without true repentance)

(19) But verily God hath heard me; he hath attended to the voice of my prayer. (20) Blessed be God, which hath not turned away my prayer, nor his mercy from me.”

 

Jonah 3:10  

Jonah 3:10 “And God saw their works, that they turned from their evil way; and God repented of the evil, that he had said that he would do unto them; and he did it not.”  

Response:  Under the law of Moses, there was no requirement for the Gentiles to offer sacrifice for sin.  Israel was called as a kingdom of priests.  The temple was to be a house of prayer for all nations and not just Israel .  Israel was to be a witness to the Gentiles which meant showing them the way to be reconciled to the holy God of Israel.  This would be to repent of sin and to have Israel act as a kingdom of priests for the Gentiles.  When the Gentiles repented at Nineveh , the sacrifices at the temple covered them.  

Israel a kingdom of priests:

Exodus 19:5 “Now therefore, if ye will obey my voice indeed, and keep my covenant, then ye shall be a peculiar treasure unto me above all people: for all the earth is mine: (6) And ye shall be unto me a kingdom of priests, and an holy nation. These are the words which thou shalt speak unto the children of Israel .”

 

The temple was to be a house of prayer of all nations:

Isaiah 56:6 “Also the sons of the stranger, that join themselves to the LORD, to serve him, and to love the name of the LORD, to be his servants, every one that keepeth the sabbath from polluting it, and taketh hold of my covenant; (7) Even them will I bring to my holy mountain, and make them joyful in my house of prayer: their burnt offerings and their sacrifices shall be accepted upon mine altar; for mine house shall be called an house of prayer for all people.”

 

Israel was to be God’s witness to the Gentiles:

Isaiah 43:10 “Ye are my witnesses, saith the LORD, and my servant whom I have chosen: that ye may know and believe me, and understand that I am he: before me there was no God formed, neither shall there be after me.”

 

Micah 6:6-8  

Micah 6: 6-8 “Wherewith shall I come before the LORD, and bow myself before the high God? shall I come before him with burnt offerings, with calves of a year old?

(7) Will the LORD be pleased with thousands of rams, or with ten thousands of rivers of oil? shall I give my firstborn for my transgression, the fruit of my body for the sin of my soul?

(8) He hath showed thee, O man, what is good; and what doth the LORD require of thee, but to do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly with thy God?”  

Response:  This is the same message in Hosea 6:6.  The prophet is focusing on the spiritual heart attitude before God.  God wants your heart right with Him, then the sacrifice has meaning.  This verse does not eliminate Leviticus.

 

DID YOU KNOW Response?    

This section has a direct quote from a Jewish counter-missionary and then my response to it.  The concepts in this section are common to almost all the counter-missionaries, and they use them frequently.

 

Psalm 51:17

Did you know that Psalms, chapter 51, verses 18 and 19 (verse 17 in the Christians Bible) condemns blood sacrifices when it states: "The sacrifices of G-d are a broken spirit, and a contrite and crushed heart?”

  Response:  Why is verse 19 left out of the argument?   Verse 19 sums up the entire Psalm.  When you heart is right with God and you have repented, than God is pleased with the sacrifices and burnt offerings.  Verse 19 cannot be left out because you then have only half the equation.

 

Psalm 51:16 “For thou desirest not sacrifice; else would I give it: thou delightest not in burnt offering. (17) The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit: a broken and a contrite heart, O God, thou wilt not despise.”

Psalm 51:19 “Then shalt thou be pleased with the sacrifices of righteousness, with burnt offering and whole burnt offering: then shall they offer bullocks upon thine altar.”

 

Does All Mean All?

  Did you know that even during the years that the temple was standing, and sacrifices were offered on a daily basis, sacrificial offerings NEVER atoned for sins committed against human beings? For example, wounding another person's body or hurting someone's feelings could not be atoned for using sacrifices?

  Response:  The Scriptures are very clear in Leviticus 16 that on the Day of Atonement ALL iniquities, trespasses and sins were atoned.  All means all and not just unintentional sins.   All sin would include wounding a person or hurting someone's feelings.  Let’s look at the verses in Leviticus 16 which show all sin and not just a select type.

 

Leviticus 16:15 “Then shall he kill the goat of the sin offering, that is for the people, and bring his blood within the veil, and do with that blood as he did with the blood of the bullock, and sprinkle it upon the mercy seat, and before the mercy seat:

(16) And he shall make an atonement for the holy place, because of the uncleanness of the children of Israel , and because of their transgressions in all their sins: and so shall he do for the tabernacle of the congregation, that remaineth among them in the midst of their uncleanness.”

(21) And Aaron shall lay both his hands upon the head of the live goat, and confess over him all the iniquities of the children of Israel, and all their transgressions in all their sins, putting them upon the head of the goat, and shall send him away by the hand of a fit man into the wilderness: (22) And the goat shall bear upon him all their iniquities unto a land not inhabited: and he shall let go the goat in the wilderness.”

 

On the Day of Atonement all the iniquity of Israel was atoned by the death of the goats and bullock.  Let’s take a look at the Bible and see how God defines iniquity and can this sin be committed against a person.  One of the best sections in the Bible to identify iniquity is Leviticus 18.  Let’s look at these verses to see if they include iniquity against a person.

 

Leviticus 18:20 “Moreover thou shalt not lie carnally with thy neighbour's wife, to defile thyself with her.

(21) And thou shalt not let any of thy seed pass through the fire to Molech, neither shalt thou profane the name of thy God: I am the LORD.

(22) Thou shalt not lie with mankind, as with womankind: it is abomination.

(24) Defile not ye yourselves in any of these things: for in all these the nations are defiled which I cast out before you: (25) And the land is defiled: therefore I do visit the iniquity thereof upon it, and the land itself vomiteth out her inhabitants. (26) Ye shall therefore keep my statutes and my judgments, and shall not commit any of these abominations; neither any of your own nation, nor any stranger that sojourneth among you:

 

When examining these verses, it is very clear iniquity can be against a person.  The sin of adultery is against a person.  Sacrificing a child to a pagan idol is killing a human being.  Committing a homosexual act is sin against a person.  In verse 25, God calls these acts iniquity.  It is very clear that iniquity can be deliberate acts against or with a person.  God links iniquity with the word abomination.

 

No Atonement For Deliberate Sin With Sacrifices Offered on Daily Basis

  Did you know that even during the years that the temple was standing, and sacrifices were offered on a daily basis, sacrificial offerings did NOT atone for deliberately committed sins?

Response:  Leviticus 6 gives very clear examples of deliberately committed sins that were atoned for by the daily sacrifices.  The sins that were specifically committed were: lying, stealing, violence, swearing falsely and deceit.  The remedy for these sins was repentance, restitution and sacrificing a ram.  It is very clear that deliberate sins were atoned for on a regular basis.  These verses follow:

 

Leviticus 6:2 “If a soul sin, and commit a trespass against the LORD, and lie unto his neighbour in that which was delivered him to keep, or in fellowship, or in a thing taken away by violence, or hath deceived his neighbour; (3) Or have found that which was lost, and lieth concerning it, and sweareth falsely; in any of all these that a man doeth, sinning therein:

(4) Then it shall be, because he hath sinned, and is guilty, that he shall restore that which he took violently away, or the thing which he hath deceitfully gotten, or that which was delivered him to keep, or the lost thing which he found, (5) Or all that about which he hath sworn falsely; he shall even restore it in the principal, and shall add the fifth part more thereto, and give it unto him to whom it appertaineth, in the day of his trespass offering.

(6) And he shall bring his trespass offering unto the LORD, a ram without blemish out of the flock, with thy estimation, for a trespass offering, unto the priest: (7) And the priest shall make an atonement for him before the LORD: and it shall be forgiven him for any thing of all that he hath done in trespassing therein.

 

Being Put to Death for Sin

 

Deuteronomy 24:16 “The fathers shall not be put to death for the children, neither shall the children be put to death for the fathers: every man shall be put to death for his own sin.”

 

Did you know that Deuteronomy 24:16 warns that a father cannot be put to death for a son,

and a son cannot be put to death for a father?

Response:  This has no connection to atonement for sin. 

 

Dying for the Sin of the Father

 

2 Chronicles 25:4 “But he slew not their children, but did as it is written in the law in the book of Moses, where the LORD commanded, saying, The fathers shall not die for the children, neither shall the children die for the fathers, but every man shall die for his own sin.”

 

Did you know that Second Chronicles 25:4 states that "every man shall die for his own sin" thus eliminating Jesus from atoning for the sins of anyone but himself?

Response:  This verse is about King Amaziah coming to power and slaying those who were involved in the death of his father.  He did not slay their children as they were not responsible for the murder of his father.  This verse is about capital punishment for murder and not forgiveness of sin before God.  This has nothing to do with the atoning death of the Lord Jesus.  Even if a person repented for the sin of murder, he is subject to the death penalty for the murder.

 

The New Testament And
The Fulfillment For The Need of Blood

 

Matthew 26:28 “For this is my blood of the new testament, which is shed for many for the remission of sins.”

 

Romans 3:25 “Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in his blood, to declare his righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God;”

 

Romans 5:9 “Much more then, being now justified by his blood, we shall be saved from wrath through him.”

 

Ephesians 1:7 “In whom we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his grace;”

 

Colossians 1:14 “In whom we have redemption through his blood, even the forgiveness of sins:”

 

Colossians 1:20 “And, having made peace through the blood of his cross, by him to reconcile all things unto himself; by him, I say, whether they be things in earth, or things in heaven.”

 

Hebrews 9:12 “Neither by the blood of goats and calves, but by his own blood he entered in once into the holy place, having obtained eternal redemption for us.”

 

Hebrews 9:14 “How much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without spot to God, purge your conscience from dead works to serve the living God?”

 

Hebrews 10:19 “Having therefore, brethren, boldness to enter into the holiest by the blood of Jesus,”

 

Hebrews 13:20 “Now the God of peace, that brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus, that great shepherd of the sheep, through the blood of the everlasting covenant,”

 

1 Peter 1:18 “Forasmuch as ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold, from your vain conversation received by tradition from your fathers; (19) But with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot”

 

1 John 1:7 “But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin.”

Revelation 1:5 “And from Jesus Christ, who is the faithful witness, and the first begotten of the dead, and the prince of the kings of the earth. Unto him that loved us, and washed us from our sins in his own blood”

 

Revelation 5:9 “And they sung a new song, saying, Thou art worthy to take the book, and to open the seals thereof: for thou wast slain, and hast redeemed us to God by thy blood out of every kindred, and tongue, and people, and nation;”

 

 

 

By John McTernan: Defend and Proclaim the Faith
Blog: John McTernan's Insights at www.johnmcternan.name

Meet author John McTernan
During numerous appearances on television, radio and in seminars, he has publicly defended Israel in light of Biblical prophecy. His current best selling book is As America Has Done To Israel.
He is author of the acclaimed book God's Final Warning to America, and co-author of the bestseller Israel: The Blessing or the Curse. From his experience debating, John wrote the Only Jesus of Nazareth series. This series includes: Only Jesus of Nazareth Can Sit on the Throne of David and Only Jesus of Nazareth Can Be Israel's King Messiah. Additionally, he has written several tracts, including Muhammad or Jesus: The Prophet Like Unto Moses, and The Koran vs the Bible.

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