The Day of Atonement brought a halt to almost every function in the country. Even most of the TV stations were off the air. The religious in the Land went to great lengths to ensure that not one drop of water nor piece of food would touch their lips. The whole evening and following day was spent in the Synagogues, in prayer for forgiveness. To hope to ensure that their names would be written in the book of life for it is on this day that the book is sealed.
Leviticus 23:23-32 deals with this holiest day of the year and despite most peoples beliefs it does not say one must abstain from all food and water. It does however, command a practice of 'self-denial'. I looked up the root for the word - it has to do with humbling oneself before God, making oneself poor in His sight and can include fasting along with this. Also, interesting, I thought was that the the word translated 'atonement' is actually plural. What, if any, significance this may have I'm not sure of. (but will keep looking) I did also find where it seems the practice of no food and no water comes from - the book of Jonah. When the people of Ninevah repent and call out to God, the king calls for this type of fast. It is even imposed on the animals. I'm certianly not claiming that it's improper to hold this kind of fast - my annoyance is only when people don't know why they do what they do or believe in reasons and traditions as Scripture that are not actually written.
-Know why you believe what you believe and why you do what you do!-
(yes, I'm still working on this too)
The book of Hebrews also deals some with atonement and Jesus as High Priest who entered the heavenly sanctuary and offered Himself once and for all as the sacrifice for our sins and does not have to continue doing this as He is "not like other high priests that had need to offer sacrifices day after day first for his sins and then for the sins of the people"(7:27)
I just thought this was awesome.
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March 24, 2015 06:30 AM PDT
Great Info. Thank you
October 3, 2006 08:52 PM PDT
---hey Speter--- I'd love to hear your take on this.... what was your family's observance like?
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