Almost everyone wrestles with me. Why? There was a fight over how I would be named. My mother wanted my name to be spelled JON. She thought I was born on Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement. I was born three days after during an amazing star-shower.
Because of EVENTS and SIGNS, I will now REVEAL the truth I am a Angel of God. What else could I be? I suspect the Angel with no name was named ISRAEL “one who wrestles with God”. SHE is the Angel of Nazarites and Barren Women. She reigned in the Promised Land before Moses brought the multitude to HER strange land. SHE is the CONSORT of another God. She wrestles the God that Moses adopted via his brother-in-law, Jethro.
In the movie ‘The Seventh Seal’ we see Death and a Knight on a beach that looks like McClure’s Beach, where three Seers said I died. This is un-canny because I played chess with two armed men, and won the life of the person they took hostage.
I am a Anti-Zionist. I believe God wants the United States to be the NEW ISRAEL. I will show you HIS REVELATIONS on this matter.
I am bid to cast our The Seven Fears that have found a home in Rena. She was plagued with daemon fears when I met her. She must write about her revelations as one who was frozen with fear – and is afraid no more?
Mary and Jesus were Nazarites and followers of John the Baptist. Why then do they get near a dead body? Why is there a prohibition for Nazarites to stay away from The Dead?
Answer: The newly dead are wrestling the Angel with No Name, otherwise know as……THE HOLY GHOST.
Did Jacob have a near-death-experience?
Jon the Nazarite
Now after He had risen early on the first day of the week, He first appeared to Mary Magdalene, from whom He had cast out seven demons. 10She went and reported to those who had been with Him, while they were mourning and weeping.…
The Seventh Seal (Swedish: Det sjunde inseglet) is a 1957 Swedish drama-fantasy film written and directed by Ingmar Bergman. Set in Sweden during the Black Death, it tells of the journey of a medieval knight (Max von Sydow) and a game of chess he plays with the personification of Death (Bengt Ekerot), who has come to take his life. Bergman developed the film from his own play Wood Painting. The title refers to a passage from the Book of Revelation, used both at the very start of the film, and again towards the end, beginning with the words “And when the Lamb had opened the seventh seal, there was silence in heaven about the space of half an hour”.[Rev. 8:1] Here the motif of silence refers to the “silence of God” which is a major theme of the film.
The film is considered a major classic of world cinema. It established Bergman as a world-renowned director and contains scenes which have become iconic through parodies and homages.
THE DAY OF ATONEMENT
IN THE NEW TESTAMENT
Samuele Bacchiocchi, Ph. D., Andrews University
Sometimes Christians wonder, What on earth is Jesus doing in Heaven? Almost two millennia have passed since He resurrected and ascended to heaven, and yet He has not returned. Has Christ, who loved us so much to give His life for us, forgotten us? Is Christ on vacation recovering from His exhaustive earthly redemptive mission? By no means! God has not abandoned the plan of salvation He carefully laid before the creation of this earth (1 Cor 2:7; Eph 3:9; 1 Pet 1:20).
One reason some Christians are confused about what Jesus is doing in heaven is their limited understanding of the ministry of Jesus in the heavenly sanctuary, which is illustrated especially by the annual Holy Days. The Springs Feasts of Passover and Pentecost typify, as we have seen, the inauguration of Christ’s redemptive ministry, while the Fall Feasts of Trumpets, Atonement, and Tabernacles represent the consummation of His redemptive ministry. An understanding of the typological meaning of the annual Feasts can help us appreciate the fact that Christ is not on vacation. He is working intensively to bring to consummation the redemption obtained at the Cross (Heb 7:25).
The Spring Feasts inaugurate Christ’s redemptive ministry with Passover, which is the Feast of our Redemption. The sacrifice of Jesus on the Cross as our Paschal Lamb (1 Cor 5:7) at Passover is the foundation and beginning of Christ’s redemptive ministry. The crowning of Christ’s Paschal sacrifice occurred at Pentecost when He was officially enthroned at the right hand of God (Acts 2:32; Rev 5:9-12) and began His intercessory ministry in the heavenly sanctuary on behalf of believers on earth: “God exalted him at his right hand as Leader and Savior, to give repentance to Israel and forgiveness of sins” (Acts 5:31). On that occasion, Christ “entered once for all into the Holy Place, taking not the blood of goats and calves but his own blood, thus securing an eternal redemption” (Heb 9:12).
Pentecost celebrates the official inauguration of Christ’s ministry in the heavenly sanctuary which was made manifest on earth through the outpouring of the Holy Spirit on the Day of Pentecost (Acts 2:4). Since Pentecost, Christ has been ministering as our intercessor, sustaining the Church (Rev 1:13, 20), mediating repentance and forgiveness to believers (Acts 5:31; 1 John 2:1-2; 1:9), making our prayers acceptable to God (John 16:23-24; Rev 8:3), providing us with the invisible and yet real assistance of His angels (Heb 1:14; Rev 5:6; 1:16, 20), and bestowing upon believers the essential gift of the Holy Spirit (Acts 2:33).
The three Fall Feasts of Trumpets, Atonement, and Tabernacles typify the three steps leading to the consummation of Christ’s redemptive ministry: repentance, cleansing, and rejoicing for the final restoration. The Feast of Trumpets, as we have seen in chapters 2 and 3, represents God’s last call to repentance while the destiny of God’s people is being reviewed by the heavenly court during the antitypical ten days preceding the Day of Atonement. We refer to this period as the “Pre-Advent Judgment.”
The Day of Atonement typifies Christ’s final act of cleansing that will be accomplished at His coming when He will cleanse His people of their sins and will place all accountability on Satan (Azazel). The cleansing accomplished by Christ at His Return makes it possible to celebrate the Feast of Tabernacles which foreshadows the rejoicing of the saints at the inauguration of a new life in the new earth.
Objectives of the Chapter. This chapter examines the New Testament understanding of the Day of Atonement in the light of its Old Testament typological meaning and function. We have found that in the Old Testament, the Day of Atonement was the climactic Holy Day that cleansed the earthly sanctuary from the accumulated sins of God’s people. Our question now is: When and how does Christ accomplish the antitypical fulfillment of the cleansing of the sanctuary?
To answer this question, one must address several important related questions. Is there a real heavenly sanctuary that needs to be cleansed like the earthly one? What is the nature of the heavenly sanctuary? What causes the defilement of the heavenly sanctuary? Does the New Testament teach that the typological cleansing of the Day of Atonement was fulfilled at the Cross or is yet to be fulfilled at the Second Advent? What is the meaning and relevance of the Day of Atonement for today?
We endeavor to answer these questions by examining the relevant information provided especially by the books of Hebrews and Revelation. These books provide us with the largest number of allusions to the sanctuary in general and the Day of Atonement in particular. We shall see that while Hebrews is concerned with the priestly functions of Christ’s ministry in the heavenly sanctuary, Revelation focuses on the divine activity in the heavenly sanctuary to the end of the world. We might say that while the major thrust of Hebrews is intercession, that of Revelation is judgment.
This chapter divides into four parts. The first part endeavors to establish whether the New Testament’s references to the heavenly sanctuary should be taken metaphorically as symbolic of the spiritual presence of God, or literally as allusions to a real place where Christ ministers on our behalf. The second part considers the nature of the heavenly sanctuary by examining the vertical and horizontal correspondence between the earthly and heavenly sanctuaries. The third part analyzes the allusions to the Day of Atonement in both Hebrews and Revelation. The aim is to ascertain the meaning and function of the Day of Atonement in the New Testament. The fourth part considers the relevance of the meaning and message of the Day of Atonement for the Christian life today.
PART I: THE HEAVENLY SANCTUARY
REAL OR SYMBOLIC?
The New Testament understanding of the Day of Atonement is closely related to its understanding of the heavenly sanctuary. The reason is that the cleansing of the Day of Atonement affected in a special way the sanctuary itself. What this means is that if the New Testament references to the heavenly sanctuary are taken to be metaphorical, that is, symbolic of the spiritual presence of God, then there is no actual heavenly sanctuary, no actual heavenly priesthood of Christ, and no actual Day of Atonement “cleansing” of the heavenly sanctuary. On the other hand, if the New Testament references to the heavenly sanctuary are taken to be literal, that is, allusions to a real, heavenly sanctuary, then there is in heaven an actual sanctuary with an actual priesthood of Christ, and an actual Day of Atonement “cleansing” of the heavenly sanctuary.
The Reality of the Heavenly Sanctuary. The existence and reality of the heavenly sanctuary is clearly affirmed in both the Old and New Testaments. In fact, the New Testament understanding of the heavenly sanctuary is dependent upon the Old Testament view of the same. The books of Hebrews and Revelation provide us with the clearest affirmation of the reality of the heavenly sanctuary.
In the book of Hebrews, Jesus is presented as “a minister in the sanctuary and the true tent which is set not by man but by the Lord” (Heb 8:2). The reality of the heavenly sanctuary is established in Hebrews by means of the typological correspondence that exists between the earthly and heavenly sanctuary. The author affirms that the earthly sanctuary was “a copy (hupodeigma) and shadow (skia) of the heavenly sanctuary” (Heb 8:5). He supports this assertion by quoting Exodus 25:40: ” For when Moses was about to erect the tent, he was instructed by God, saying, ‘See that you make everything according to the pattern (tupos) which was shown you on the mountain” (Heb 8:5).
It is evident that the author of Hebrews derives the correspondence between the earthly and heavenly sanctuary from the original account of the construction of the tabernacle, where God instructs Moses, saying: “Let them make me a sanctuary, that I may dwell in their midst. According to all that I show you concerning the pattern [tabnit] of the tabernacle, and all its furniture, so you shall make it. . . . And see that you make them after the pattern [tabnit] for them, which is being shown you on the mountain” (Ex 25:8-9, 40).1
The Hebrews word tabnit (“pattern”) which is used three times in Exodus 25:9, 40, is derived from the verb banah, “to build.” The word occurs 23 times in the Hebrew Bible and conveys “the general meanings of ‘likeness’ (as in an image),2 ‘form’ (as in an appearance),3 ‘model’ (as used to make a copy),4 and ‘plan’ (as in design or sketch).”5 From the usages of tabnit we may reasonably infer that Moses received not only verbal instructions, but also some kind of a model of the structure he was to build.
“The significance of the term tabnit (pattern),” as Frank Holbrook points out, “is not dependent on whether Moses was shown a model or simply architectural specifications, or both. The question rather is whether the term signifies only an idea in the mind of God or points to a higher reality with objective existence–namely, a heavenly sanctuary, a heavenly dwelling place of the Deity.”6
The Correspondence Between Earthly and Heavenly Sanctuaries. Two major facts indicate that the “pattern” (tabnit) shown to Moses reflected in some ways an objective heavenly sanctuary. First, is the Biblical understanding of a vertical correspondence between the earthly and heavenly sanctuaries. In the Old Testament, this correspondence is expressed in a variety of ways.
At the establishment of the first temple, God promised Solomon: “Concerning this house which you are building, if you will walk in my statutes . . . I will dwell among the children of Israel” (1 King 6:12-13). However, in his dedicatory prayer Solomon acknowledges that the real dwelling place of God is in heaven. “Hearken thou to the supplication . . . of thy people Israel, when they pray toward this place; yea, hear thou in heaven thy dwelling place” (1 King 8:30). These texts suggest that there is a correspondence between the dwelling place of God in the heavenly temple, and His dwelling place in the earthly temple.
In the Psalms are numerous references where the heavenly sanctuary is placed in close parallelism with the earthly sanctuary. “The Lord is in his holy temple, the Lord’s throne is in heaven” (Ps 11:4).7 God’s sanctuary is located in Zion: “May he send you help from the sanctuary, and give you support from Zion” (Ps 20:2). Yet it is also located in heaven: “Ascribe power to God, whose majesty is over Israel, and his power is in the skies [heaven]. Terrible is God in his sanctuary” (Ps 68:34-35).
On the basis of an extensive analysis of these and similar texts, Niels-Erik Andreasen concludes: “The relationship between the two sanctuaries is expressed through the idea of a pattern, according to which the earthly sanctuary is modeled upon the heavenly. The resultant correspondence between the two sanctuaries is not a strictly material and spatial one in the sense that the earthly could take the ‘place’ of the heavenly. The relationship between them is functional rather than spatial and material. The heavenly sanctuary extends into the earthly, assuring it of efficacy or standing before it in judgment upon any empty formalities or idolatrous practices. The earthly sanctuary merges into the heavenly, providing a ladder connecting man with God and binding earth to heaven.”8
A second line of evidence is the common, ancient Near Eastern belief that an earthly temple is built as a copy of a heavenly original. “Behind Exodus 25,” writes Leonhard Goppelt, “stands the ancient oriental idea of a mythical analogical relation between the two worlds, the heavenly and the earthly, the macrocosm and the microcosm, so that lands, rivers, cities, and especially temples have their originals.”9 On a similar vein, Frank Cross, Jr., writes, “Probably the conception of tabnit the ‘model’ (Ex 25:9), also goes back ultimately to the idea that the earthly sanctuary is the counterpart of the heavenly dwelling of a deity.”10 Though the Bible is often countercultural in its teachings, and practices,11 in this area it agrees with ancient Near Eastern thought simply because there is a correspondence between the earthly and heavenly sanctuary.
The Heavenly Sanctuary in Hebrews. The book of Hebrews confirms the reality of the heavenly sanctuary which we found affirmed in the Old Testament. William G. Johnsson, who wrote his dissertation on the book of Hebrews, highlights the reality of the heavenly sanctuary in Hebrews, saying: “While he [the author] does not enter upon a description of the heavenly sanctuary and liturgy, his language suggests several important conclusions. First, he holds to their reality. His concern throughout the sermon is to ground Christian confidence in objective facts, as we have seen. Real deity, real humanity, real priesthood–and we may add, a real ministry in a real sanctuary.”12
The reality of the heavenly sanctuary is affirmed in Hebrews in three statements (Heb 8:2-5; 9:11-12, 2-24) which compare and contrast the earthly and heavenly sanctuaries. The earthly sanctuary was a human construction under the direction of Moses (Heb 8:5), while the heavenly sanctuary, is not set up “by man” (Heb 8:2), or “made with [human] hands” (Heb 9:11, 24).
The correspondence between the earthly and heavenly sanctuaries is established in Hebrews by means of the relationship between copy and original, shadow and substance. The earthly sanctuary was a “copy [hupodeigma] and shadow [skia] of the heavenly sanctuary” (Heb 8:2-5). “Thus it was necessary for the copies [hupodeigma] of the heavenly things to be purified with these rites [animal sacrifices], but the heavenly things themselves with better sacrifices than these. For Christ has entered, not in a sanctuary made with hands, a copy [antitupos] of the true one [alethinos], but into heaven itself, now to appear in the presence of God in our behalf” (Heb 9:23-24). Because of this “we have confidence to enter the [heavenly] sanctuary by the blood of Jesus” (Heb 10:19).
Being “a copy” and “a shadow” of the original heavenly sanctuary, the earthly sanctuary plays an important role in explaining to both ancient and modern believers the outworking of the plan of salvation. Furthermore, by defining the earthly sanctuary and its services as a “shadow,” it implies that these foreshadowed better things to come. In fact, the author speaks of the law with its ritual services as being “but a shadow [skia] of the good things to come instead of the true form of these realities” (Heb 10:1; cf. Col 2:17).
These statements concerning the reality of the heavenly sanctuary were intended to give assurance to the recipients of Hebrews. “Because of national and family opposition, the Jewish-Christian readers of Hebrews had suffered separation from the religious life of Judaism. And if, as seems likely, the destruction of Jerusalem and its temple was near, all the more would they need such assurances. These verses told them that they had access to a superior “temple”–an heavenly sanctuary where Jesus Christ ministered.”13
This message of reassurance is still relevant today. In an age of uncertainty and fear, when moral and religious values are largely rejected, we need the reassurance that “we have a great high priest who has passed through the heavens” (Heb 4:14) and who “is able for all time to save those who draw near to God through him, since he always lives to make intercession for them” (Heb 7:25).
The Heavenly Sanctuary in Revelation. The existence of the heavenly sanctuary is confirmed in the book of Revelation where the word naos, generally translated “temple,” occurs 15 times. With the exception of two instances where the word naos (temple) may be used metaphorically to refer to the Christian community (Rev 3:12; 21:22), in all the other instances the term refers to the heavenly sanctuary.
In Revelation 7:15, the heavenly temple is equated with the throne of God. Concerning the great multitude in white robes (Rev 7:9), John says: “Therefore are they before the throne of God, and serve him day and night within his temple” (Rev 7:15). This text clearly indicates that the throne of God is located in the heavenly temple, which is the dwelling place of God.
In Revelation 11:19, the opening of the temple reveals the ark of the covenant. “Then God’s temple in heaven was opened, and the ark of the covenant was seen within the temple.”14 Since the ark of the covenant was located in the Most Holy Place (Heb 9:3-4), it is evident that John saw the second apartment of the heavenly sanctuary. This does not necessary mean that the heavenly sanctuary consists of a bipartite structure with a Holy and Most Holy Place like the earthly sanctuary. After all, we have seen that the ark of the covenant typifies the throne of God which is established on mercy (mercy seat) and justice (Decalogue inside the ark). Presumably, what John saw was a representation of the heavenly sanctuary through the typology of the earthly sanctuary.
In one place, Revelation clearly ties the heavenly temple-sanctuary to the earthly tabernacle-sanctuary: “After this I [John] looked and in heaven [en to ourano] the temple, that is, the tabernacle of Testimony, was opened” (Rev 15:5, NIV).15 The phrase “the Tabernacle of Testimony” is used in the Old Testament to designate the earthly sanctuary (Num 1:50), because it enshrined within its walls the tables of the Decalogue, known as “The Testimony.” Within the heavenly temple, John also observed the seven-branched lampstand (menorah) of the earthly sanctuary (Rev 1:12-13; 4:5) and the golden altar [of incense] before the throne” (Rev 8:3; 9:13).
Conclusion. In light of the foregoing considerations, we conclude that there is abundant Biblical evidence for the reality of a heavenly sanctuary. The tabernacle built by Moses is seen in the Bible as reflecting the heavenly sanctuary, the dwelling place of God. The book of Hebrews defines the earthly tabernacle as a copy and shadow of the heavenly sanctuary. The apostle John testifies that he saw in vision the heavenly temple and some of its components. All of these indications point to the existence of a real sanctuary in heaven.
PART II: THE NATURE OF THE HEAVENLY SANCTUARY
Having concluded that the Bible affirms the existence of a real heavenly sanctuary where Christ ministers as our High Priest, we need to clarify the nature of such sanctuary. The question is: Should the Biblical references to the heavenly sanctuary-temple be interpreted metaphorically, that is, as figurative allusions to the presence of God, or literalistically, that is, as literal descriptions of a heavenly sanctuary which is a magnified and glorified version of the earthly sanctuary? Or should we avoid both extremes and interpret the references to the heavenly sanctuary-temple realistically, that is, as descriptive of a real heavenly sanctuary whose details, however, are not clear to us? The latter represents my view which I expound after commenting on the first two.
The Metaphorical Interpretation. Many modern authors deny any objective existence of a heavenly sanctuary. They believe that the heavenly sanctuary is simply a metaphor for the spiritual presence of God. Their view is based on the assumption that the conceptual world of Hebrews is that of Hellenistic Judaism, in particular the writings of the Jewish philosopher Philo (about 20 B. C. to A. D. 50). In an attempt to make the Jewish faith appealing to the Hellenistic world, Philo allegorized the Old Testament by using the dualistic and antithetical conception of the universe present in Platonic thought.
Philo allegorized the heavenly sanctuary and liturgy by making them symbols of the whole universe. He wrote: “The highest, and in the truest sense the holy temple of God is, as we must believe, the whole universe, having for its sanctuary the most sacred part of all existence, even heaven, for its votive ornaments the stars, for its priests the angels who are servitors to His powers, unbodied souls, not compounds of rational and irrational nature.”16
Allegedly, Hebrews shares this conceptual world because the terms it uses to describe the relation of the earthly to the heavenly sanctuary— “shadow–skia,” “image–eikon,” and “example–hupodeigma”—are used by Philo in a similar context.17 Moreover, Hebrews shares with Philo the cosmological dualism where the unseen is the real (“genuine” – Heb 8:2), while the seen the transient. To support this metaphorical interpretation, appeal is made to several texts (Heb 9:2, 3, 11,; 10:19-20) which allegedly spiritualize the heavenly sanctuary. 18