Day 41: The Day of Atonement

Exodus 23:1-9 These verses primarily apply to the Eighth Commandment, which forbids lying and false testimony. Verse 7 includes a prohibition against slaying the innocent, who implicitly are wrongly convicted. (CCC 2261, 2475-2487)

Ch 23:10-19 The Sabbath provides a respite from daily work and an opportunity to assist the poor, who receive no respite from their poverty. An extension of the Sabbath is the “Sabbath of years,” which allows the poor to eat of the fruit of the landowners’ fallow land every seventh year. Here are issued some of the first of the dietary laws that would become part of Israel’s tradition. (CCC 345-348, 2161-2175, 2189-2190)

Ch 23:20-33 The Lord’s objection to associating with the original residents of the newly acquired Promised Land was on account of their worship of false idols, something the Israelites were enjoined to avoid. (CCC 2110-2114, 2132, 2567, 2779)

STEWARDSHIP REQUIRES A RECOGNITION THAT THE RESOURCES of the earth, in keeping with God’s instructions at creation, are meant for EVERYONE. Therefore, everyone has a right to private property, especially those most in need. Since the goods of this world are meant for every person’s benefit for all times, the goods of this world need to be cared for and used responsibly. Those who “have” more than the basic essentials for a dignified human existence are obliged to help those who “have not”; this obligation exists at both the personal and international level. The Church maintains a preferential love for the poor and encourages works of mercy to alleviate human misery. These examples are derived from the Church’s principle of the “universal destination of goods.”

Leviticus 16:1-34 This chapter describes the rituals for the Day of Atonement (in Hebrew, Yom Kippur). (CCC 578)

Ch 16:2 A veil in the tabernacle separated the holy, inner room, from the rest of the sanctuary; the Ark of the Covenant was reserved there. On top of the Ark was the MERCY SEAT, which represented the presence of God. Only the high priest could enter this inner room once a year to offer blood sacrifices and prayers for the forgiveness of his sins and the sins of the Jewish people, and when the Temple was finally built, the inner sanctuary was called the HOLY OF HOLIES. (CCC 433)

Ch 16:15-16 Atonement for sins was obtained by the high priest through the sprinkling of blood upon and around the mercy seat. This repeated sacrifice of the Old Covenant is a type (TYPOLOGY!!) of the ONE SACRIFICE of the New Covenant in which Christ himself reconciled the world to the Father through his own bloody Sacrifice on the Cross. (CCC 613)

Psalm 77 The psalm begins with sentiments of anguish, but gradually this pain gives way to hope and peace. In the moment of pain, grief, or oppression, it may seem that God is distant and has even abandoned us. Through reflection on the history of the Chosen People, it is clear that God allows suffering for the sake of repentance and purification. In the end, God reveals himself as a loving Father who protects and strengthens us. It is my grief: In the early Greek and Vulgate translations of the Old Testament, this phrase is translated, “Now have I begun” (in Latin, Nunc coepi), which alters the sense of the verse to indicate that the psalmist was prepared to trust the Lord once again. (CCC 1221)

(*The Didache Bible RSV-CE Ignatius Edition, 2006)

Prayer by Fr Mike: “Heavenly Father, you are good and you do lead us. We thank you for your Word, we thank you for calling us your own. Thank you for making us your own. Thank you for giving yourself to us that we can not only know who you are, infinite in your might and infinite in your goodness and in your love. But also, so that we can know who we are, so that we can also know not only your rule, but can also be in a deep relationship with you. So today we call upon the name of your son, Jesus Christ, the only begotten son of God. In His name, Father in Heaven, we thank you. In the name of Jesus Christ we praise you. In the name of Jesus Christ we ask you to continue to be with us now and always. Amen.”


This chapter is just screaming the divine laws that the Sanhedrin broke, pushing forth false witnesses in order to convict and sentence and innocent and righteous man, Jesus Christ, to death.

Sabbath Year for Land- Just like the duration of slavery, the toil of the land follows the liturgical pattern of Creation- six years of labor, one year to rest and restore.

God promises his chosen people that an angel will guide them to the place he prepared them, just as Christ promised his Church that the Holy Spirit will guide them to all truth, while he goes to prepare a place for us all.

The censer full of coals mingled with incense covering the mercy seat recalls a detail about the first trumpet in Revelation, when a censer is filled with coals, and incense mingled with the prayers of the saints rose before God, before the censer is hurled down to earth.

Upon the scape goat is placed all the sins of Israel, just like how Christ has all our sins paced upon him on the Cross.