Seventh month, on the tenth day - The month Ethanim or Tisri, as being the seventh in the Sacred year, has been called the sabbatical month. On the first day was celebrated the Feast of Trumpets Leviticus 23:24, the tenth day was the Day of Atonement, and on the fourteenth day the Feast of tabernacles commenced (Leviticus 23:24 note; Exodus 23:16).
Afflict your souls - The old term for fasting; but its meaning evidently embraces, not only abstinence from food, but that penitence and humiliation which give scope and purpose to the outward act of fasting. The Day of Atonement was the only public fast commanded by the Law of Moses. See further directions in Leviticus 23:27-32. On fasts observed in later times, see Zechariah 8:19, and margin reference.
A stranger that sojourneth among you - Rather, the foreigner who dwelleth among you. See Exodus 20:10 note. The meaning is, one of foreign blood, who dwelt with the Israelites, had abjured false gods, and had become familiarly known to his neighbors, e. g. the Kenites (Judges 4:11, etc.); the Gibeonites Exodus 12:38, Exodus 12:48). As the foreigner had the blessing and protection of the Law he was bound to obey its statutes.
The seventh month, on the tenth day of the month - The commandment of fasting, and sanctifying this tenth day, is again repeated Leviticus 23:27-32; but in the last verse it is called the ninth day at even, because the Jewish day began with the evening. The sacrifices which the day of atonement should have more than other days, are mentioned Numbers 29:7-11; and the jubilee which was celebrated every fiftieth year was solemnly proclaimed by sound of trumpet on this tenth day, Leviticus 25:8, Leviticus 25:9. A shadow, says Mr. Ainsworth, of that acceptable year of the Lord, the year of freedom, which Christ has proclaimed by the trumpet of his Gospel, Luke 4:18-21; 2 Corinthians 6:2. This seventh month was Tisri, and answers to a part of our September and October. It was the seventh of the sacred and the first month of the civil year.
The great day of atonement, and the sacrifices, rites, and ceremonies prescribed for it, were commanded to be solemnized by the Jews through the whole of their dispensation, and as long as God should acknowledge them for his people: yet in the present day scarcely a shadow of these things remains; there is no longer a scape-goat, nor a goat for sacrifice, provided by them in any place. They are sinners, and they are without an atonement. How strange it is that they do not see that the essence of their religion is gone, and that consequently God has thrown them entirely out of covenant with himself! The true expiation, the Christ crucified, they refuse to receive, and are consequently without temple, altar, scape-goat, atonement, or any means of salvation! The state of the Gentile world is bad, but that of the Jews is doubly deplorable. Their total excision excepted, wrath is come upon them to the uttermost. What a proof is this of the truth of the predictions in their own law, and of those in the Gospel of Christ! Who, with the Jews and the Bible before his eyes, can doubt the truth of that Bible as a Divine revelation? Had this people been extinct, we might have doubted whether there were ever a people on the earth that acknowledged such a law, or observed such ordinances; but the people, their law, and their prophets are still in being, and all proclaim what God has wrought, and that he has now ceased to work among them, because they have refused to receive and profit by the great atonement; and yet he preserves them alive, and in a state of complete separation from all the people of the earth in all places of their dispersion! How powerfully does the preservation of the Jews as a distinct people bear testimony at once to the truth of their own law which they acknowledge, and the Gospel of Christ which they reject!
2. But while the Jews sit in thick darkness, because of the veil that is on their hearts, though the light of the glory of God is shining all around them, but not into them because of their unbelief; in what state are those who profess to see their unbelief and obstinacy, acknowledge the truth of the New Testament, and yet are living without an atonement applied to their souls for the removal of their iniquities, transgressions, and sins? These are also in the gall of bitterness, and bond of iniquity. An all-sufficient Savior held out in the New Testament, can do them no more good than a scape-goat and day of atonement described in the law can do the Jews. As well may a man imagine that the word bread can nourish his body, as that the name Christ can save his soul. Both must be received and applied in order that the man may live.
3. The Jews prepared themselves to get benefit from this most solemn ordinance by the deepest humiliations. According to their canons, they were obliged to abstain from all meat and drink - from the bath - from anointing themselves - to go barefoot - and to be in a state of perfect continency. He who is likely to get benefit for his soul through the redemption that is in Christ, must humble himself under the mighty hand of God, confess his iniquity, abstain from every appearance of evil, and believe on him who died for his offenses, and rose again for his justification. The soul that seeks not shall not find, even under the Gospel of Christ.
Oh, how many walk a dark path, looking to the objectionable, unlovely things on either side of them when a step higher are the flowers. They think they have no right to say they are children of God and lay hold on the promises set before them in the gospel because they do not have the evidence of their acceptance with God. They go through painful struggles afflicting their souls as did Martin Luther to cast himself upon Christ's righteousness. 2MCP 808.4Read in context »
Influence of an Erring Minister—Satan has made you his agent to carry out his mind. The great stir and great excitement you have made in discussions from time to time, and the apparent success you have had, has built you up in your own self-righteousness. Allowing you to labor as you have been permitted to labor when your heart was not right with God, has done you great injury. You have not searched your own heart and afflicted your soul before God. You have felt too lightly your terrible mistakes in the past. Everything has been done to save you from utter disgrace and ruin. You have been patiently borne with, and when wholly unfit for the sacred work, in order to save your soul you have been permitted to continue your labors while hearts have groaned and ached under the burden of your foolish, sinful course. TSB 170.1Read in context »
Jesus is our Advocate, our High Priest, our Intercessor. Our position is like that of the Israelites on the Day of Atonement. When the high priest entered the Most Holy Place, representing the place where our High Priest is now pleading, and sprinkled the atoning blood upon the mercy seat, no propitiatory sacrifices were offered without. While the priest was interceding with God, every heart was to be bowed in contrition, pleading for the pardon of transgression. LHU 319.2Read in context »
In the typical service only those who had come before God with confession and repentance, and whose sins, through the blood of the sin offering, were transferred to the sanctuary, had a part in the service of the Day of Atonement. So in the great day of final atonement and investigative judgment the only cases considered are those of the professed people of God. The judgment of the wicked is a distinct and separate work, and takes place at a later period. “Judgment must begin at the house of God: and if it first begin at us, what shall the end be of them that obey not the gospel?” 1 Peter 4:17. GC 480.1
The books of record in heaven, in which the names and the deeds of men are registered, are to determine the decisions of the judgment. Says the prophet Daniel: “The judgment was set, and the books were opened.” The revelator, describing the same scene, adds: “Another book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works.” Revelation 20:12. GC 480.2
The book of life contains the names of all who have ever entered the service of God. Jesus bade His disciples: “Rejoice, because your names are written in heaven.” Luke 10:20. Paul speaks of his faithful fellow workers, “whose names are in the book of life.” Philippians 4:3. Daniel, looking down to “a time of trouble, such as never was,” declares that God's people shall be delivered, “everyone that shall be found written in the book.” And the revelator says that those only shall enter the city of God whose names “are written in the Lamb's book of life.” Daniel 12:1; Revelation 21:27. GC 480.3Read in context »