Day of Atonement: Day of Coverings


Many meanings for this day

  • Satan will be bound
  • We will be at one with God
  • We see God’s love in that He was willing to give His Son
  • God’s Justification and Reconciliation, Redemption, Liberation and etc

Multifaceted feast day as we can see; we will look at yet another aspect of today

One of the names for the day is: The Day of Coverings


Where Does the Name Come From?

Leviticus 23:27 “Also the tenth day of this seventh month shall be the Day of Atonement.H3725 It shall be a holy convocation for you; you shall afflict your souls, and offer an offering made by fire to the LORD.

Yom HaKippurrim (plural)

We see this word reflected more accurately:

KJV: Exodus 30:10 And Aaron shall make an atonementH3722 upon the horns of it once in a year with the blood of the sin offering of atonements:H3725 once in the year shall he make atonementH3722 upon it throughout your generations: it is most holy unto the LORD.

H3722 כּפר kâphar

H3724 כּפר kôpher

H3725 כּפּר kippûr

kappôreth כּפּרת H3727

H3722 כּפר kâphar BDB Definition: to cover, to cover over Part of Speech: verb

H3725 כּפּר kippûr BDB Definition: atonement Part of Speech: noun masculine plural

A Related Word by BDB/Strong’s Number: from H3722


Make Atonement (Leviticus 16)

Every time we see this terminology (make atonement) we can read it as cover the way the Israelites would have seen it.

Leviticus 16:11 “And Aaron shall bring the bull of the sin offering, which is for himself, and make atonement for himself and for his house, and shall kill the bull as the sin offering which is for himself.

Leviticus 16:15 “Then he shall kill the goat of the sin offering, which is for the people, bring its blood inside the veil, do with that blood as he did with the blood of the bull, and sprinkle it on the mercy seat and before the mercy seat.
Leviticus 16:16 So he shall make atonement for the Holy Place, because of the uncleanness of the children of Israel, and because of their transgressions, for all their sins; and so he shall do for the tabernacle of meeting which remains among them in the midst of their uncleanness.

ORDER Leviticus 16:17 There shall be no man in the tabernacle of meeting when he goes in to make atonement in the Holy Place, until he comes out, that he may make atonement for himself, for his household, and for all the assembly of Israel.
Leviticus 16:18 And he shall go out to the altar that is before the LORD, and make atonement for it, and shall take some of the blood of the bull and some of the blood of the goat, and put it on the horns of the altar all around.
Leviticus 16:19 Then he shall sprinkle some of the blood on it with his finger seven times, cleanse it, and consecrate it from the uncleanness of the children of Israel.
Leviticus 16:20 “And when he has made an end of atoning for the Holy Place, the tabernacle of meeting, and the altar, he shall bring the live goat.
Leviticus 16:21 Aaron shall lay both his hands on the head of the live goat [azazel], confess over it all the iniquities of the children of Israel, and all their transgressions, concerning all their sins, putting them on the head of the goat, and shall send it away into the wilderness by the hand of a suitable man.
Leviticus 16:22 The goat shall bear on itself all their iniquities to an uninhabited land; and he shall release the goat in the wilderness.


Repetition of all above: Leviticus 16:33 then he shall make atonement for the Holy Sanctuary, and he shall make atonement for the tabernacle of meeting and for the altar, and he shall make atonement for the priests and for all the people of the assembly.

So after sending the azazel out the people and the tabernacle were effectively sin free!


It is Blood that Covers

This is the mechanism in place that allows sin to be atoned for:

Leviticus 17:11 For the life of the flesh is in the blood, and I have given it to you upon the altar to make atonement for your souls [lives]; for it is the blood that makes atonement for the soul [life].’

Leviticus 17:11  ForH3588 the lifeH5315 of the fleshH1320 is in the blood:H1818 and IH589 have givenH5414 it to you uponH5921 the altarH4196 to make an atonementH3722 forH5921 your souls:H5315 forH3588 itH1931 is the bloodH1818 that maketh an atonementH3722 for the soul.H5315 


Noah Covers

We get more and a better understanding of what it means to cover:

Genesis 6:14 Make yourself an ark of gopherwood; make rooms in the ark, and cover it inside and outside with pitch.

Genesis 6:14  MakeH6213 thee an arkH8392 of gopherH1613 wood;H6086 roomsH7064 shalt thou makeH6213 (H853) in the ark,H8392 and shalt pitchH3722 it withinH4480 H1004 and withoutH4480 H2351 with pitch.H3724

The cover provided salvation for righteous Noah and his family in much the same way that Christ’s blood covers mankind and saves it


Jesus Christ our Atoning Sacrifice

Romans 3:21 But now the righteousness of God apart from the law is revealed, being witnessed by the Law and the Prophets,

The righteousness of God is in us — by justification apart from the law since it does not come by the law. The function of the law is separate from the function of justification by faith so it is not saying the law is done away with.

No law can forgive sin. No law can give eternal life. That is not the function of law.

Justification is separate from commandment-keeping in this respect. Forgiveness and justification of one’s past sins can only come through the life, death and resurrection of Christ.

Romans 3:22 even the righteousness of God, through faith in Jesus Christ, to all and on all who believe. For there is no difference;
Romans 3:23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,
Romans 3:24 being justified freely by His grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus,

Definition of redemption is a deliverance from death by means of payment – How?:

Romans 3:25 whom God set forth as a propitiation by His blood [this is the atoning or covering sacrifice; Colossians 1:14], through faith, to demonstrate His righteousness, because in His forbearance God had passed over the sins that were previously committed, [let the sins of earlier times go without punishment; ie showed mercy (remember that)].

The ceremony of Leviticus 16 could never sufficiently cover. It was a symbol of things to come…of Christ to come and the blood He would shed for us.


What Does it Take to Cover?

It has to be of equal or greater value in order to truly cover

The life of a bull, goat or any animal does not cover the life of a human sufficiently

Hebrews 9:6 Now when these things had been thus prepared, the priests always went into the first part of the tabernacle, performing the services.
Hebrews 9:7 But into the second part [Holy of Holies] the high priest went alone once a year [at atonement], not without blood [of the bull and goat], which he offered for himself and for the people’s sins committed in ignorance;
Hebrews 9:8 the Holy Spirit indicating this, that the way into the Holiest of All was not yet made manifest while the first tabernacle was still standing. [the veil was still blocking the way].
Hebrews 9:9 It was symbolic for the present time in which both gifts and sacrifices are offered which cannot make him who performed the service perfect in regard to the conscience— [it could never remove sin, it pointed to a time in the future].
Hebrews 9:10 concerned only with foods and drinks, various washings, and fleshly ordinances imposed until the time of reformation. [when Christ’s coming and actions did away with these].
Hebrews 9:11 But Christ came as High Priest of the good things to come, with the greater and more perfect tabernacle not made with hands, that is, not of this creation.
Hebrews 9:12 Not with the blood of goats and calves [since they could never do that], but with His own blood He entered the Most Holy Place once for all, having obtained eternal redemption.
Hebrews 9:13 For if the blood of bulls and goats and the ashes of a heifer, sprinkling the unclean, sanctifies for the purifying of the flesh,
Hebrews 9:14 how much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered Himself without spot to God, cleanse your conscience from dead works to serve the living God?

Hebrews 9:22 And according to the law almost all things are purified with blood [some others with water or fire], and without shedding of blood there is no remission.
Hebrews 9:23 Therefore it was necessary that the copies of the things in the heavens should be purified with these, but the heavenly things themselves with better sacrifices than these.
Hebrews 9:24 For Christ has not entered the holy places made with hands, which are copies of the true, but into heaven itself, now to appear in the presence of God for us;
Hebrews 9:25 not that He should offer Himself often, as the high priest enters the Most Holy Place every year with blood of another—
Hebrews 9:26 He then would have had to suffer often since the foundation of the world; but now, once at the end of the ages, He has appeared to put away sin by the sacrifice of Himself.

Now back to the top and we will further tie this into Romans 3:25 and Leviticus 16

Hebrews 9:1 Then indeed, even the first covenant had ordinances of divine service and the earthly sanctuary.
Hebrews 9:2 For a tabernacle was prepared: the first part, in which was the lampstand, the table, and the showbread, which is called the sanctuary;
Hebrews 9:3 and behind the second veil, the part of the tabernacle which is called the Holiest of All,
Hebrews 9:4 which had the golden censer and the ark of the covenant overlaid on all sides with gold, in which were the golden pot that had the manna, Aaron’s rod that budded, and the tablets of the covenant;
Hebrews 9:5 and above it were the cherubim of glory overshadowing the mercy seat. [hilasterion] Of these things we cannot now speak in detail. [not for the time being, maybe later he is saying].

This word hilastērion which is translated propitiation in Romans 3:25 is now translated mercyseat in Hebrews 9:5. The very interesting aspect of this is that the Septuagint [Greek translation of the Hebrew Old Testament] uses this word [hilasterion] for mercy-seat in Leviticus 16.

What we can surmise is that the mercy seat was a place of propitiation.


Mercy Seat


Exodus 25:10 “And they shall make an ark of acacia wood; two and a half cubits shall be its length, a cubit and a half its width, and a cubit and a half its height.

Note the dimensions above and what was in it:

Exodus 25:16 And you shall put into the ark the Testimony which I will give you. [confirms two tablets of 10 Commandments elsewhere].

Now note that the dimensions of the mercy seat are the same as the ark:

Exodus 25:17 “You shall make a mercy seat of pure gold; two and a half cubits shall be its length and a cubit and a half its width.

Mercy-seat: H3727 כּפּרת kappôreth kappôret Part of Speech: noun feminine

A Related Word by BDB/Strong’s Number: from H3722

Kappôreth is translated mercy seat here, but its root [H3722] is the verb to cover – so what do you think the noun version of this word should be: cover, lid

Kappôret was the cover for the ark

Exodus 25:18 And you shall make two cherubim of gold; of hammered work you shall make them at the two ends of the mercy seat.
Exodus 25:19 Make one cherub at one end, and the other cherub at the other end; you shall make the cherubim at the two ends of it of one piece with the mercy seat. [confirms one piece elsewhere].
Exodus 25:20 And the cherubim shall stretch out their wings above, covering the mercy seat with their wings, and they shall face one another; the faces of the cherubim shall be toward the mercy seat.
Exodus 25:21 You shall put the mercy seat on top of the ark, and in the ark you shall put the Testimony that I will give you.

When you read this as mercy seat the first then you say, Ok, I guess as you try to figure out where this is going, but when you read it as, You shall put the lid on top of the ark or the cover, then you say, Of course!

Now notice what is to happen here in the future, what the purpose of this was

Exodus 25:22 And there I will meet with you, and I will speak with you from above the mercy seat, from between the two cherubim which are on the ark of the Testimony, about everything which I will give you in commandment to the children of Israel.

It was where God spoke from – why?


Type of the Throne of God

Psalms 99:1 The LORD reigns; Let the peoples tremble! He dwells between the cherubim; Let the earth be moved!

Revelation 7:11 All the angels stood around the throne and the elders and the four living creatures, and fell on their faces before the throne and worshiped God,


Mercy Seat and the Day of Atonement (Leviticus 16)

Leviticus 16:2 and the LORD said to Moses: “Tell Aaron your brother not to come at just any time into the Holy Place inside the veil, before the mercy seatH3727 which is on the ark, lest he die; for I will appear in the cloud above the mercy seat.H3727

So not only does the word atonement tie into cover but so does the word for mercy seat. Now are we being to see just how much this all ties into this being a day of coverings?

Leviticus 16:13 And he shall put the incense on the fire before the LORD, that the cloud of incense may cover the mercy seat that is on the Testimony, lest he die.
Leviticus 16:14 He shall take some of the blood of the bull and sprinkle it with his finger on the mercy seat on the east side; and before the mercy seat he shall sprinkle some of the blood with his finger seven times.
Leviticus 16:15 “Then he shall kill the goat of the sin offering, which is for the people, bring its blood inside the veil, do with that blood as he did with the blood of the bull, and sprinkle it on the mercy seat and before the mercy seat.

In type this is Christ presenting his blood before the throne of God as an atonement for mankind.


Why call it a Mercy Seat

God of Mercy!

Psalms 136:1 Oh, give thanks to the LORD, for He is good! For His mercy endures forever.
Psalms 136:2 Oh, give thanks to the God of gods! For His mercy endures forever.
Psalms 136:3 Oh, give thanks to the Lord of lords! For His mercy endures forever:

Exodus 30:6 And you shall put it before the veil that is before the ark of the Testimony, before the mercy seat that is over the Testimony, where I will meet with you.

The analogy of the mercy seat being above the judgment based on the law is carried out when we see how God can extend mercy OVER judgment

Exodus 20:6 but showing mercy to thousands, to those who love Me and keep My commandments.

Justice and mercy go together

He extends though to those that try to keep all of the commandments

Then notice how the mercy-seat sitting above the ark of the covenant is an exact representation of what is going on at God’s throne in heaven:

Psalms 89:14 Righteousness [law] and justice are the foundation [commandments in ark] of Your throne ; Mercy and truth go before Your face.


Covering Sin

Psalms 85:1 To the Chief Musician. A Psalm Of the Sons of Korah. LORD, You have been favorable to Your land; You have brought back the captivity of Jacob.
Psalms 85:2 You have forgiven the iniquity of Your people; You have covered all their sin. Selah
Psalms 85:3 You have taken away all Your wrath; You have turned from the fierceness of Your anger.
Psalms 85:4 Restore us, O God of our salvation, And cause Your anger toward us to cease.
Psalms 85:5 Will You be angry with us forever? Will You prolong Your anger to all generations?
Psalms 85:6 Will You not revive us again, That Your people may rejoice in You?
Psalms 85:7 Show us Your mercy, LORD, And grant us Your salvation.


Jesus Christ is Our Example

Romans 5:6 For when we were still without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly.
Romans 5:7 For scarcely for a righteous man will one die; yet perhaps for a good man someone would even dare to die.
Romans 5:8 But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
Romans 5:9 Much more then, having now been justified by His blood, we shall be saved from wrath through Him.
Romans 5:10 For if when we were enemies we were reconciled to God through the death of His Son, much more, having been reconciled, we shall be saved by His life.
Romans 5:11 And not only that, but we also rejoice in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have now received the reconciliation.


We Follow His Example

1 Peter 4:8 And above all things have fervent love for one another, for “LOVE WILL COVER A MULTITUDE OF SINS.”

James 5:19 Brethren, if anyone among you wanders from the truth, and someone turns him back,
James 5:20 let him know that he who turns a sinner from the error of his way will save a soul from death and cover a multitude of sins.