Parasha for this week:
Parashah: Moed Yom Kippur (Day of Atonement):
Vayikra (Leviticus) 16-18;
B’midbar (Numbers) 29:7-11
Haftorah Moed Yom Kippur:
Yesha’yahu (Isaiah) 52:13-53:12; 57:14–58:14;
Yonah (Jonah) 1-4;
Mikhah (Micah) 7:18-20
B’rit Hadashah Moed Yom Kippur:
Ivrim (Hebrews) 7-10
This Week’s Torah Reading
Complete Jewish Bible (CJB)
1 Adonai spoke with Moshe after the death of Aharon’s two sons, when they tried to sacrifice before Adonai and died; 2 Adonai said to Moshe, “Tell your brother Aharon not to come at just any time into the Holy Place beyond the curtain, in front of the ark-cover which is on the ark, so that he will not die; because I appear in the cloud over the ark-cover.
3 “Here is how Aharon is to enter the Holy Place: with a young bull as a sin offering and a ram as a burnt offering. 4 He is to put on the holy linen tunic, have the linen shorts next to his bare flesh, have the linen sash wrapped around him, and be wearing the linen turban — they are the holy garments. He is to bathe his body in water and put them on.
5 “He is to take from the community of the people of Isra’el two male goats for a sin offering and one ram for a burnt offering. 6 Aharon is to present the bull for the sin offering which is for himself and make atonement for himself and his household. 7 He is to take the two goats and place them before Adonai at the entrance to the tent of meeting. 8 Then Aharon is to cast lots for the two goats, one lot for Adonai and the other for ‘Az’azel. 9 Aharon is to present the goat whose lot fell to Adonai and offer it as a sin offering. 10 But the goat whose lot fell to ‘Az’azel is to be presented alive to Adonai to be used for making atonement over it by sending it away into the desert for ‘Az’azel.
11 “Aharon is to present the bull of the sin offering for himself; he will make atonement for himself and his household; he is to slaughter the bull of the sin offering which is for himself. 12 He is to take a censer full of burning coals from the altar before Adonai and, with his hands full of ground, fragrant incense, bring it inside the curtain. 13 He is to put the incense on the fire before Adonai, so that the cloud from the incense will cover the ark-cover which is over the testimony, in order that he not die. 14 He is to take some of the bull’s blood and sprinkle it with his finger on the ark-cover toward the east; and in front of the ark-cover he is to sprinkle some of the blood with his finger seven times.
15 “Next, he is to slaughter the goat of the sin offering which is for the people, bring its blood inside the curtain and do with its blood as he did with the bull’s blood, sprinkling it on the ark-cover and in front of the ark-cover. 16 He will make atonement for the Holy Place because of the uncleannesses of the people of Isra’el and because of their transgressions — all their sins; and he is to do the same for the tent of meeting which is there with them right in the middle of their uncleannesses. 17 No one is to be present in the tent of meeting from the time he enters the Holy Place to make atonement until the time he comes out, having made atonement for himself, for his household and for the entire community of Isra’el. (ii) 18 Then he is to go out to the altar that is before Adonai and make atonement for it; he is to take some of the bull’s blood and some of the goat’s blood and put it on all the horns of the altar. 19 He is to sprinkle some of the blood on it with his finger seven times, thus purifying it and setting it apart from the uncleannesses of the people of Isra’el.
20 “When he has finished atoning for the Holy Place, the tent of meeting and the altar, he is to present the live goat. 21 Aharon is to lay both his hands on the head of the live goat and confess over it all the transgressions, crimes and sins of the people of Isra’el; he is to put them on the head of the goat and then send it away into the desert with a man appointed for the purpose. 22 The goat will bear all their transgressions away to some isolated place, and he is to let the goat go in the desert.
23 “Aharon is to go back into the tent of meeting, where he is to remove the linen garments he put on when he entered the Holy Place, and he is to leave them there. 24 Then he is to bathe his body in water in a holy place, put on his other clothes, come out and offer his burnt offering and the burnt offering of the people, thus making atonement for himself and for the people. (iii) 25 He is to make the fat of the sin offering go up in smoke on the altar.
26 “The man who let go the goat for ‘Az’azel is to wash his clothes and bathe his body in water; afterwards, he may return to the camp.
27 “The bull for the sin offering and the goat for the sin offering, whose blood was brought in to make atonement in the Holy Place, is to be carried outside the camp; there they are to burn up completely their hides, meat and dung. 28 The person burning them is to wash his clothes and bathe his body in water; afterwards, he may return to the camp.
29 “It is to be a permanent regulation for you that on the tenth day of the seventh month you are to deny yourselves and not do any kind of work, both the citizen and the foreigner living with you. 30 For on this day, atonement will be made for you to purify you; you will be clean before Adonai from all your sins. 31 It is a Shabbat of complete rest for you, and you are to deny yourselves.
“This is a permanent regulation. 32 The cohen anointed and consecrated to be cohen in his father’s place will make the atonement; he will put on the linen garments, the holy garments; 33 he will make atonement for the Especially Holy Place; he will make atonement for the tent of meeting and the altar; and he will make atonement for the cohanim and for all the people of the community. 34 This is a permanent regulation for you, to make atonement for the people of Isra’el because of all their sins once a year.” Moshe did as Adonai had ordered him.
1 (iv) Adonai said to Moshe, 2 “Speak to Aharon and his sons and to all the people of Isra’el. Tell them that this is what Adonai has ordered: 3 ‘When someone from the community of Isra’el slaughters an ox, lamb or goat inside or outside the camp 4 without bringing it to the entrance of the tent of meeting to present it as an offering to Adonai before the tabernacle of Adonai, he is to be charged with blood — he has shed blood, and that person is to be cut off from his people. 5 The reason for this is so that the people of Isra’el will bring their sacrifices that they sacrifice out in the field — so that they will bring them to Adonai, to the entrance of the tent of meeting, to the cohen, and sacrifice them as peace offerings to Adonai. 6 The cohen will splash the blood against the altar of Adonai at the entrance to the tent of meeting and make the fat go up in smoke as a pleasing aroma for Adonai. 7 No longer will they offer sacrifices to the goat-demons, before whom they prostitute themselves! This is a permanent regulation for them through all their generations.’
(v) 8 “Also tell them, ‘When someone from the community of Isra’el or one of the foreigners living with you offers a burnt offering or sacrifice 9 without bringing it to the entrance of the tent of meeting to sacrifice it to Adonai, that person is to be cut off from his people. 10 When someone from the community of Isra’el or one of the foreigners living with you eats any kind of blood, I will set myself against that person who eats blood and cut him off from his people. 11 For the life of a creature is in the blood, and I have given it to you on the altar to make atonement for yourselves; for it is the blood that makes atonement because of the life.’ 12 This is why I told the people of Isra’el, ‘None of you is to eat blood, nor is any foreigner living with you to eat blood.’
13 “When someone from the community of Isra’el or one of the foreigners living with you hunts and catches game, whether animal or bird that may be eaten, he is to pour out its blood and cover it with earth. 14 For the life of every creature — its blood is its life. Therefore I said to the people of Isra’el, ‘You are not to eat the blood of any creature, because the life of every creature is its blood. Whoever eats it will be cut off.’
15 “Anyone eating an animal that dies naturally or is torn to death by wild animals, whether he is a citizen or a foreigner, is to wash his clothes and bathe himself in water; he will be unclean until evening; then he will be clean. 16 But if he doesn’t wash them or bathe his body, he will bear the consequences of his wrongdoing.”
1 Adonai said to Moshe, 2 “Speak to the people of Isra’el; tell them, ‘I am Adonai your God. 3 You are not to engage in the activities found in the land of Egypt, where you used to live; and you are not to engage in the activities found in the land of Kena‘an, where I am bringing you; nor are you to live by their laws. 4 You are to obey my rulings and laws and live accordingly; I am Adonai your God. 5 You are to observe my laws and rulings; if a person does them, he will have life through them; I am Adonai.
(vi) 6 “‘None of you is to approach anyone who is a close relative in order to have sexual relations; I am Adonai. 7 You are not to have sexual relations with your father, and you are not to have sexual relations with your mother. She is your mother — do not have sexual relations with her. 8 You are not to have sexual relations with your father’s wife; that is your father’s prerogative. 9 You are not to have sexual relations with your sister, the daughter of your father or the daughter of your mother, whether born at home or elsewhere. Do not have sexual relations with them. 10 You are not to have sexual relations with your son’s daughter or with your daughter’s daughter. Do not have sexual relations with them, because their sexual disgrace will be your own. 11 You are not to have sexual relations with your father’s wife’s daughter, born to your father, because she is your sister; do not have sexual relations with her. 12 You are not to have sexual relations with your father’s sister, because she is your father’s close relative. 13 You are not to have sexual relations with your mother’s sister, because she is your mother’s close relative. 14 You are not to disgrace your father’s brother by having sexual relations with his wife, because she is your aunt. 15 You are not to have sexual relations with your daughter-in-law; because she is your son’s wife. Do not have sexual relations with her. 16 You are not to have sexual relations with your brother’s wife, because this is your brother’s prerogative.
17 “‘You are not to have sexual relations with both a woman and her daughter, nor are you to have sexual relations with her son’s daughter or her daughter’s daughter; they are close relatives of hers, and it would be shameful. 18 You are not to take a woman to be a rival with her sister and have sexual relations with her while her sister is still alive. 19 You are not to approach a woman in order to have sexual relations with her when she is unclean from her time of niddah. 20 You are not to go to bed with your neighbor’s wife and thus become unclean with her.
21 “‘You are not to let any of your children be sacrificed to Molekh, thereby profaning the name of your God; I am Adonai.
(vii) 22 “‘You are not to go to bed with a man as with a woman; it is an abomination.
23 “‘You are not to have sexual relations with any kind of animal and thus become unclean with it; nor is any woman to present herself to an animal to have sexual relations with it; it is perversion.
24 “‘Do not make yourselves unclean by any of these things, because all the nations which I am expelling ahead of you are defiled with them. 25 The land has become unclean, and this is why I am punishing it — the land itself will vomit out its inhabitants. 26 But you are to keep my laws and rulings and not engage in any of these disgusting practices, neither the citizen nor the foreigner living with you; (Maftir) 27 for the people of the land have committed all these abominations, and the land is now defiled. 28 If you make the land unclean, it will vomit you out too, just as it is vomiting out the nation that was there before you. 29 For those who engage in any of these disgusting practices, whoever they may be, will be cut off from their people. 30 So keep my charge not to follow any of these abominable customs that others before you have followed and thus defile yourselves by doing them. I am Adonai your God.’”
7 “‘On the tenth day of this seventh month you are to have a holy convocation. You are to deny yourselves, and you are not to do any kind of work; 8 but you are to present a burnt offering to Adonai to make a fragrant aroma: one young bull, one ram, and seven male lambs in their first year (they are to be without defect for you), 9 with their grain offering, fine flour mixed with olive oil, six quarts for the bull, four quarts for the one ram, 10 and two quarts for each of the seven lambs; 11 also one male goat as a sin offering; in addition to the sin offering for atonement and the regular burnt offering with its grain offering, and their drink offerings.
Yom Kippur’s Haftorah Reading
13 “See how my servant will succeed!
He will be raised up, exalted, highly honored!
14 Just as many were appalled at him,
because he was so disfigured
that he didn’t even seem human
and simply no longer looked like a man,
15 so now he will startle many nations;
because of him, kings will be speechless.
For they will see what they had not been told,
they will ponder things they had never heard.”
1 Who believes our report?
To whom is the arm of Adonai revealed?
2 For before him he grew up like a young plant,
like a root out of dry ground.
He was not well-formed or especially handsome;
we saw him, but his appearance did not attract us.
3 People despised and avoided him,
a man of pains, well acquainted with illness.
Like someone from whom people turn their faces,
he was despised; we did not value him.
4 In fact, it was our diseases he bore,
our pains from which he suffered;
yet we regarded him as punished,
stricken and afflicted by God.
5 But he was wounded because of our crimes,
crushed because of our sins;
the disciplining that makes us whole fell on him,
and by his bruises* we are healed.
6 We all, like sheep, went astray;
we turned, each one, to his own way;
yet Adonai laid on him
the guilt of all of us.
7 Though mistreated, he was submissive —
he did not open his mouth.
Like a lamb led to be slaughtered,
like a sheep silent before its shearers,
he did not open his mouth.
8 After forcible arrest and sentencing,
he was taken away;
and none of his generation protested
his being cut off from the land of the living
for the crimes of my people,
who deserved the punishment themselves.
9 He was given a grave among the wicked;
in his death he was with a rich man.
Although he had done no violence
and had said nothing deceptive,
10 yet it pleased Adonai to crush him with illness,
to see if he would present himself as a guilt offering.
If he does, he will see his offspring;
and he will prolong his days;
and at his hand Adonai’s desire
will be accomplished.
11 After this ordeal, he will see satisfaction.
“By his knowing [pain and sacrifice],
my righteous servant makes many righteous;
it is for their sins that he suffers.
12 Therefore I will assign him a share with the great,
he will divide the spoil with the mighty,
for having exposed himself to death
and being counted among the sinners,
while actually bearing the sin of many
and interceding for the offenders.”
14 Then he will say,
“Keep building! Keep building! Clear the way!
Remove everything blocking my people’s path!”
15 For thus says the High, Exalted One
who lives forever, whose name is Holy:
“I live in the high and holy place
but also with the broken and humble,
in order to revive the spirit of the humble
and revive the hearts of the broken ones.
16 For I will not fight them forever
or always nurse my anger;
otherwise their spirits would faint before me,
the creatures I myself have made.
17 It was because of their flagrant greed
that I was angry and struck them;
I hid myself and was angry,
but they continued on their own rebellious way.
18 I have seen their ways, and I will heal them;
I will lead them and give comfort
to them and to those who mourn for them —
19 I will create the right words:
‘Shalom shalom to those far off
and to those nearby!’ says Adonai;
‘I will heal them!’”
20 But the wicked are like the restless sea —
unable to be still,
its waters toss up mud and dirt.
21 There is no shalom, says my God,
for the wicked.
1 Shout out loud! Don’t hold back!
Raise your voice like a shofar!
Proclaim to my people what rebels they are,
to the house of Ya‘akov their sins.
2 “Oh yes, they seek me day after day
and [claim to] delight in knowing my ways.
As if they were an upright nation
that had not abandoned the rulings of their God,
they ask me for just rulings
and [claim] to take pleasure in closeness to God,
3 [asking,] ‘Why should we fast, if you don’t see?
Why mortify ourselves, if you don’t notice?’
“Here is my answer: when you fast,
you go about doing whatever you like,
while keeping your laborers hard at work.
4 Your fasts lead to quarreling and fighting,
to lashing out with violent blows.
On a day like today, fasting like yours
will not make your voice heard on high.
5 “Is this the sort of fast I want,
a day when a person mortifies himself?
Is the object to hang your head like a reed
and spread sackcloth and ashes under yourself?
Is this what you call a fast,
a day that pleases Adonai?
6 “Here is the sort of fast I want —
releasing those unjustly bound,
untying the thongs of the yoke,
letting the oppressed go free,
breaking every yoke,
7 sharing your food with the hungry,
taking the homeless poor into your house,
clothing the naked when you see them,
fulfilling your duty to your kinsmen!”
8 Then your light will burst forth like the morning,
your new skin will quickly grow over your wound;
your righteousness will precede you,
and Adonai’s glory will follow you.
9 Then you will call, and Adonai will answer;
you will cry, and he will say, “Here I am.”
If you will remove the yoke from among you,
stop false accusation and slander,
10 generously offer food to the hungry
and meet the needs of the person in trouble;
then your light will rise in the darkness,
and your gloom become like noon.
11 Adonai will always guide you;
he will satisfy your needs in the desert,
he will renew the strength in your limbs;
so that you will be like a watered garden,
like a spring whose water never fails.
12 You will rebuild the ancient ruins,
raise foundations from ages past,
and be called “Repairer of broken walls,
Restorer of streets to live in.”
13 “If you hold back your foot on Shabbat
from pursuing your own interests on my holy day;
if you call Shabbat a delight,
Adonai’s holy day, worth honoring;
then honor it by not doing your usual things
or pursuing your interests or speaking about them.
14 If you do, you will find delight in Adonai —
I will make you ride on the heights of the land
and feed you with the heritage of your ancestor Ya‘akov,
for the mouth of Adonai has spoken.”
1 The word of Adonai came to Yonah the son of Amitai: 2 “Set out for the great city of Ninveh, and proclaim to it that their wickedness has come to my attention.”
3 But Yonah, in order to get away from Adonai, prepared to escape to Tarshish. He went down to Yafo, found a ship headed for Tarshish, paid the fare and went aboard, intending to travel with them to Tarshish and get away from Adonai. 4 However, Adonai let loose over the sea a violent wind, which created such stormy conditions that the ship threatened to break to pieces. 5 The sailors were frightened, and each cried out to his god. They threw the cargo overboard to make the ship easier for them to control.
Meanwhile, Yonah had gone down below into the hold, where he lay, fast asleep. 6 The ship’s captain found him and said to him, “What do you mean by sleeping? Get up! Call on your god! Maybe the god will remember us, and we won’t die.”
7 Then they said to each other, “Come, let’s draw lots to find out who is to blame for this calamity.” They drew lots, and Yonah was singled out. 8 They said to him, “Tell us now, why has this calamity come upon us? What work do you do? Where are you from? What is your country? Which is your people?” 9 He answered them, “I am a Hebrew; and I fear Adonai, the God of heaven, who made both the sea and the dry land.” 10 At this the men grew very afraid and said to him, “What is this that you have done?” For the men knew he was trying to get away from Adonai, since he had told them. 11 They asked him, “What should we do to you, so that the sea will be calm for us?” — for the sea was getting rougher all the time. 12 “Pick me up,” he told them, “and throw me into the sea. Then the sea will be calm for you; because I know it’s my fault that this terrible storm has come over you.”
13 Nevertheless, the men rowed hard, trying to reach the shore. But they couldn’t, because the sea kept growing wilder against them. 14 Finally they cried to Adonai, “Please, Adonai, please! Don’t let us perish for causing the death of this man, and don’t hold us to account for shedding innocent blood; because you, Adonai, have done what you saw fit.” 15 Then they picked up Yonah and threw him into the sea, and the sea stopped raging. 16 Seized with great fear of Adonai, they offered a sacrifice to Adonai and made vows.
1 (1:17) Adonai prepared a huge fish to swallow Yonah; and Yonah was in the belly of the fish for three days and three nights. 2 (1) From the belly of the fish Yonah prayed to Adonai his God; 3 (2) he said,
“Out of my distress I called to Adonai,
and he answered me;
from the belly of Sh’ol I cried,
and you heard my voice.
4 (3) For you threw me into the deep,
into the heart of the seas;
and the flood enveloped me;
all your surging waves passed over me.
5 (4) I thought, ‘I have been banished from your sight.’
But I will again look at your holy temple.
6 (5) The water surrounded me, threatened my life;
the deep closed over me, seaweed twined around my head.
7 (6) I was going down to the bottoms of the mountains,
to a land whose bars would close me in forever;
but you brought me up alive from the pit,
Adonai, my God!
8 (7) As my life was ebbing away,
I remembered Adonai;
and my prayer came in to you,
into your holy temple.
9 (8) “Those who worship vain idols
give up their source of mercy;
10 (9) but I, speaking my thanks aloud,
will sacrifice to you;
what I have vowed, I will pay.
Salvation comes from Adonai!”
11 (10) Then Adonai spoke to the fish, and it vomited Yonah out onto dry land.
1 The word of Adonai came to Yonah a second time: 2 “Set out for the great city of Ninveh, and proclaim to it the message I will give you.” 3 So Yonah set out and went to Ninveh, as Adonai had said. Now Ninveh was such a large city that it took three days just to cross it. 4 Yonah began his entry into the city and had finished only his first day of proclaiming, ‘In forty days Ninveh will be overthrown,’ 5 when the people of Ninveh believed God. They proclaimed a fast and put on sackcloth, from the greatest of them to the least. 6 When the news reached the king of Ninveh, he got up from his throne, took off his robe, put on sackcloth and sat in ashes. 7 He then had this proclamation made throughout Ninveh: “By decree of the king and his nobles, no person or animal, herd or flock, is to put anything in his mouth; they are neither to eat nor drink water. 8 They must be covered with sackcloth, both people and animals; and they are to cry out to God with all their might — let each of them turn from his evil way and from the violence they practice. 9 Who knows? Maybe God will change his mind, relent and turn from his fierce anger; and then we won’t perish.”
10 When God saw by their deeds that they had turned from their evil way, he relented and did not bring on them the punishment he had threatened.
1 But this was very displeasing to Yonah, and he became angry. 2 He prayed to Adonai, “Now, Adonai, didn’t I say this would happen, when I was still in my own country? That’s why I tried to get away to Tarshish ahead of time! I knew you were a God who is merciful and compassionate, slow to anger and rich in grace, and that you relent from inflicting punishment. 3 Therefore, Adonai, please, just take my life away from me; it’s better for me to be dead than alive!” 4 Adonai asked, “Is it right for you to be so angry?”
5 Yonah left the city and found a place east of the city, where he made himself a shelter and sat down under it, in its shade, to see what would happen to the city. 6 Adonai, God, prepared a castor-bean plant and made it grow up over Yonah to shade his head and relieve his discomfort. So Yonah was delighted with the castor-bean plant. 7 But at dawn the next day God prepared a worm, which attacked the castor-bean plant, so that it dried up. 8 Then, when the sun rose, God prepared a scorching east wind; and the sun beat down on Yonah’s head so hard that he grew faint and begged that he could die, saying, “I would be better off dead than alive.”
9 God asked Yonah, “Is it right for you to be so angry about the castor-bean plant?” He answered, “Yes, it’s right for me to be so angry that I could die!” 10 Adonai said, “You’re concerned over the castor-bean plant, which cost you no effort; you didn’t make it grow; it came up in a night and perished in a night. 11 So shouldn’t I be concerned about the great city of Ninveh, in which there are more than 120,000 people who don’t know their right hand from their left — not to mention all the animals?”
18 Who is a God like you,
pardoning the sin and overlooking the crimes
of the remnant of his heritage?
He does not retain his anger forever,
because he delights in grace.
19 He will again have compassion on us,
he will subdue our iniquities.
You will throw all their sins
into the depths of the sea.
20 You will show truth to Ya‘akov
and grace to Avraham,
as you have sworn to our ancestors
since days of long ago.
This Week’s B’rit Hadashah Reading
21 But now, quite apart from Torah, God’s way of making people righteous in his sight has been made clear — although the Torah and the Prophets give their witness to it as well — 22 and it is a righteousness that comes from God, through the faithfulness of Yeshua the Messiah, to all who continue trusting. For it makes no difference whether one is a Jew or a Gentile, 23 since all have sinned and come short of earning God’s praise. 24 By God’s grace, without earning it, all are granted the status of being considered righteous before him, through the act redeeming us from our enslavement to sin that was accomplished by the Messiah Yeshua. 25 God put Yeshua forward as the kapparah for sin through his faithfulness in respect to his bloody sacrificial death. This vindicated God’s righteousness; because, in his forbearance, he had passed over [with neither punishment nor remission] the sins people had committed in the past; 26 and it vindicates his righteousness in the present age by showing that he is righteous himself and is also the one who makes people righteous on the ground of Yeshua’s faithfulness.
1 This Malki-Tzedek, king of Shalem, a cohen of God Ha‘Elyon, met Avraham on his way back from the slaughter of the kings and blessed him; 2 also Avraham gave him a tenth of everything.[Genesis 14:17–20]
Now first of all, by translation of his name, he is “king of righteousness”; and then he is also king of Shalem, which means “king of peace.”
3 There is no record of his father, mother, ancestry, birth or death; rather, like the Son of God, he continues as a cohen for all time.
4 Just think how great he was! Even the Patriarch Avraham gave him a tenth of the choicest spoils. 5 Now the descendants of Levi who became cohanim have a commandment in the Torah to take a tenth of the income of the people, that is, from their own brothers, despite the fact that they too are descended from Avraham. 6 But Malki-Tzedek, even though he was not descended from Levi, took a tenth from Avraham.
Also, he blessed Avraham, the man who received God’s promises; 7 and it is beyond all dispute that the one who blesses has higher status than the one who receives the blessing.
8 Moreover, in the case of the cohanim, the tenth is received by men who die; while in the case of Malki-Tzedek, it is received by someone who is testified to be still alive.
9 One might go even further and say that Levi, who himself receives tenths, paid a tenth through Avraham; 10 inasmuch as he was still in his ancestor Avraham’s body when Malki-Tzedek met him.
11 Therefore, if it had been possible to reach the goal through the system of cohanim derived from Levi (since in connection with it, the people were given the Torah), what need would there have been for another, different kind of cohen, the one spoken of as to be compared with Malki-Tzedek and not to be compared with Aharon? 12 For if the system of cohanim is transformed, there must of necessity occur a transformation of Torah. 13 The one about whom these things are said belongs to another tribe, from which no one has ever served at the altar; 14 for everyone knows that our Lord arose out of Y’hudah, and that Moshe said nothing about this tribe when he spoke about cohanim.
15 It becomes even clearer if a “different kind of cohen,” one like Malki-Tzedek, arises, 16 one who became a cohen not by virtue of a rule in the Torah concerning physical descent, but by virtue of the power of an indestructible life. 17 For it is stated,
“You are a cohen FOREVER,
to be compared with Malki-Tzedek.”[Psalm 110:4]
18 Thus, on the one hand, the earlier rule is set aside because of its weakness and inefficacy 19 (for the Torah did not bring anything to the goal); and, on the other hand, a hope of something better is introduced, through which we are drawing near to God.
20 What is more, God swore an oath. For no oath was sworn in connection with those who become cohanim now; 21 but Yeshua became a cohen by the oath which God swore when he said to him,
“Adonai has sworn and will not change his mind,
‘You are a cohen forever.’”[Psalm 110:4]
22 Also this shows how much better is the covenant of which Yeshua has become guarantor.
23 Moreover, the present cohanim are many in number, because they are prevented by death from continuing in office. 24 But because he lives forever, his position as cohen does not pass on to someone else; 25 and consequently, he is totally able to deliver those who approach God through him; since he is alive forever and thus forever able to intercede on their behalf.
26 This is the kind of cohen gadol that meets our need — holy, without evil, without stain, set apart from sinners and raised higher than the heavens; 27 one who does not have the daily necessity, like the other cohanim g’dolim, of offering up sacrifices first for their own sins and only then for those of the people; because he offered one sacrifice, once and for all, by offering up himself. 28 For the Torah appoints as cohanim g’dolim men who have weakness; but the text which speaks about the swearing of the oath, a text written later than the Torah, appoints a Son who has been brought to the goal forever.
Here is the whole point of what we have been saying: we do have just such a cohen gadol as has been described. And he does sit at the right hand of HaG’dulah in heaven.[Psalm 110:1] 2 There he serves in the Holy Place, that is, in the true Tent of Meeting, the one erected not by human beings but by Adonai.
3 For every cohen gadol is appointed to offer both gifts and sacrifices; so this cohen gadol too has to have something he can offer. 4 Now if he were on earth, he wouldn’t be a cohen at all, since there already are cohanim offering the gifts required by the Torah. 5 But what they are serving is only a copy and shadow of the heavenly original; for when Moshe was about to erect the Tent, God warned him, “See to it that you make everything according to the pattern you were shown on the mountain.”[Exodus 25:40]
6 But now the work Yeshua has been given to do is far superior to theirs, just as the covenant he mediates is better. For this covenant has been given as Torah on the basis of better promises. 7 Indeed, if the first covenant had not given ground for faultfinding, there would have been no need for a second one. 8 For God does find fault with the people when he says,
“‘See! The days are coming,’ says Adonai,
‘when I will establish
over the house of Isra’el and over the house of Y’hudah
a new covenant.
9 “‘It will not be like the covenant
which I made with their fathers
on the day when I took them by their hand
and led them forth out of the land of Egypt;
because they, for their part,
did not remain faithful to my covenant;
so I, for my part,
stopped concerning myself with them,’
10 “‘For this is the covenant which I will make
with the house of Isra’el after those days,’
‘I will put my Torah in their minds
and write it on their hearts;
I will be their God,
and they will be my people.
11 “‘None of them will teach his fellow-citizen
or his brother, saying, “Know Adonai!”
For all will know me,
from the least of them to the greatest,
12 because I will be merciful toward their wickednesses
and remember their sins no more.’”[Jeremiah 31:30–33(31–34)]
13 By using the term, “new,” he has made the first covenant “old”; and something being made old, something in the process of aging, is on its way to vanishing altogether.
Now the first covenant had both regulations for worship and a Holy Place here on earth. 2 A tent was set up, the outer one, which was called the Holy Place; in it were the menorah, the table and the Bread of the Presence. 3 Behind the second parokhet was a tent called the Holiest Place, 4 which had the golden altar for burning incense and the Ark of the Covenant, entirely covered with gold. In the Ark were the gold jar containing the man, Aharon’s rod that sprouted and the stone Tablets of the Covenant; 5 and above it were the k’ruvim representing the Sh’khinah, casting their shadow on the lid of the Ark — but now is not the time to discuss these things in detail.
6 With things so arranged, the cohanim go into the outer tent all the time to discharge their duties; 7 but only the cohen hagadol enters the inner one; and he goes in only once a year, and he must always bring blood, which he offers both for himself and for the sins committed in ignorance by the people. 8 By this arrangement, the Ruach HaKodesh showed that so long as the first Tent had standing, the way into the Holiest Place was still closed. 9 This symbolizes the present age and indicates that the conscience of the person performing the service cannot be brought to the goal by the gifts and sacrifices he offers. 10 For they involve only food and drink and various ceremonial washings — regulations concerning the outward life, imposed until the time for God to reshape the whole structure.
11 But when the Messiah appeared as cohen gadol of the good things that are happening already, then, through the greater and more perfect Tent which is not man-made (that is, it is not of this created world), 12 he entered the Holiest Place once and for all.
And he entered not by means of the blood of goats and calves, but by means of his own blood, thus setting people free forever. 13 For if sprinkling ceremonially unclean persons with the blood of goats and bulls and the ashes of a heifer restores their outward purity; 14 then how much more the blood of the Messiah, who, through the eternal Spirit, offered himself to God as a sacrifice without blemish, will purify our conscience from works that lead to death, so that we can serve the living God!
15 It is because of this death that he is mediator of a new covenant [or will].[Jeremiah 31:30(31)] Because a death has occurred which sets people free from the transgressions committed under the first covenant, those who have been called may receive the promised eternal inheritance. 16 For where there is a will, there must necessarily be produced evidence of its maker’s death, 17 since a will goes into effect only upon death; it never has force while its maker is still alive.
18 This is why the first covenant too was inaugurated with blood. 19 After Moshe had proclaimed every command of the Torah to all the people, he took the blood of the calves with some water and used scarlet wool and hyssop to sprinkle both the scroll itself and all the people; 20 and he said, “This is the blood of the covenant which God has ordained for you.”[Exodus 24:8] 21 Likewise, he sprinkled with the blood both the Tent and all the things used in its ceremonies. 22 In fact, according to the Torah, almost everything is purified with blood; indeed, without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness of sins.
23 Now this is how the copies of the heavenly things had to be purified, but the heavenly things themselves require better sacrifices than these. 24 For the Messiah has entered a Holiest Place which is not man-made and merely a copy of the true one, but into heaven itself, in order to appear now on our behalf in the very presence of God.
25 Further, he did not enter heaven to offer himself over and over again, like the cohen hagadol who enters the Holiest Place year after year with blood that is not his own; 26 for then he would have had to suffer death many times — from the founding of the universe on. But as it is, he has appeared once at the end of the ages in order to do away with sin through the sacrifice of himself. 27 Just as human beings have to die once, but after this comes judgment, 28 so also the Messiah, having been offered once to bear the sins of many,[Isaiah 53:12] will appear a second time, not to deal with sin, but to deliver those who are eagerly waiting for him.
For the Torah has in it a shadow of the good things to come, but not the actual manifestation of the originals. Therefore, it can never, by means of the same sacrifices repeated endlessly year after year, bring to the goal those who approach the Holy Place to offer them. 2 Otherwise, wouldn’t the offering of those sacrifices have ceased? For if the people performing the service had been cleansed once and for all, they would no longer have sins on their conscience. 3 No, it is quite the contrary — in these sacrifices is a reminder of sins, year after year. 4 For it is impossible that the blood of bulls and goats should take away sins.
5 This is why, on coming into the world, he says,
“It has not been your will
to have an animal sacrifice and a meal offering;
rather, you have prepared for me a body.
6 No, you have not been pleased
with burnt offerings and sin offerings.
7 Then I said, ‘Look!
In the scroll of the book
it is written about me.
I have come to do your will.’”[Psalm 40:7–9(6–8)]
8 In saying first, “You neither willed nor were pleased with animal sacrifices, meal offerings, burnt offerings and sin offerings,” things which are offered in accordance with the Torah; 9 and then, “Look, I have come to do your will”; he takes away the first system in order to set up the second. 10 It is in connection with this will that we have been separated for God and made holy, once and for all, through the offering of Yeshua the Messiah’s body.
11 Now every cohen stands every day doing his service, offering over and over the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins. 12 But this one, after he had offered for all time a single sacrifice for sins, sat down at the right hand of God, 13 from then on to wait until his enemies be made a footstool for his feet.[Psalm 110:1] 14 For by a single offering he has brought to the goal for all time those who are being set apart for God and made holy.
15 And the Ruach HaKodesh too bears witness to us; for after saying,
16 “ ‘This is the covenant which I will make
with them after those days,’ says Adonai:
‘I will put my Torah on their hearts,
and write it on their minds . . . ,’ ”[Jeremiah 31:32(33)]
17 he then adds,
“ ‘And their sins and their wickednesses
I will remember no more.’ ”[Jeremiah 31:33(34)]
18 Now where there is forgiveness for these, an offering for sins is no longer needed.
19 So, brothers, we have confidence to use the way into the Holiest Place opened by the blood of Yeshua. 20 He inaugurated it for us as a new and living way through the parokhet, by means of his flesh. 21 We also have a great cohen over God’s household. 22 Therefore, let us approach the Holiest Place with a sincere heart, in the full assurance that comes from trusting — with our hearts sprinkled clean from a bad conscience and our bodies washed with pure water.[Ezekiel 36:25] 23 Let us continue holding fast to the hope we acknowledge, without wavering; for the One who made the promise is trustworthy. 24 And let us keep paying attention to one another, in order to spur each other on to love and good deeds, 25 not neglecting our own congregational meetings, as some have made a practice of doing, but, rather, encouraging each other.
And let us do this all the more as you see the Day approaching. 26 For if we deliberately continue to sin after receiving the knowledge of the truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins, 27 but only the terrifying prospect of Judgment, of raging fire that will consume the enemies.[Isaiah 26:11]
28 Someone who disregards the Torah of Moshe is put to death without mercy on the word of two or three witnesses.[Deuteronomy 17:6; 19:15] 29 Think how much worse will be the punishment deserved by someone who has trampled underfoot the Son of God; who has treated as something common the blood of the covenant[Exodus 24:8] which made him holy; and who has insulted the Spirit, giver of God’s grace!
30 For the One we know is the One who said,
“Vengeance is my responsibility;
I will repay,”
and then said,
“Adonai will judge his people.”[Deuteronomy 32:35–36]
31 It is a terrifying thing to fall into the hands of the living God!
32 But remember the earlier days, when, after you had received the light, you endured a hard struggle with sufferings. 33 Sometimes you were publicly disgraced and persecuted, while at other times you stood loyally by those who were treated this way. 34 For you shared the sufferings of those who had been put in prison. Also when your possessions were seized, you accepted it gladly; since you knew that what you possessed was better and would last forever.
35 So don’t throw away that courage of yours, which carries with it such a great reward. 36 For you need to hold out; so that, by having done what God wills, you may receive what he has promised. 37 For
“There is so, so little time!
The One coming will indeed come,
he will not delay.
38 But the person who is righteous
will live his life by trusting,
and if he shrinks back,
I will not be pleased with him.”[Habakkuk 2:3-4]
39 However, we are not the kind who shrink back and are destroyed; on the contrary, we keep trusting and thus preserve our lives!