For Jews around the world, the last 10 days were spent in introspection and repentance culminating in this day of Atonement till Wednesday evening.
Historically this day was when the High Priest entered into the Holy of Holies with the blood of a slain animal. He was to place the blood on the Mercy Seat between the two cherubim on the ark of the covenant–the wooden box covered in gold leaf inside and out. The blood of the sacrifice atoned for his sins and also the sins of all the nation….until next year when he had to do it all over again.
But the good news is that another sacrifice was made –even Jesus of Nazareth- whose precious blood not only covers our sins like the Kippur symbolises on a Jews head…but took our sin away! One sacrifice once and for ALL people and all time. Thank you Lord!! The sorrow shall turn to Joy for all –when one day all shall believe in Jesus.
But until that day the GROANING continues for billions of souls.
Ro 8:18 For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us. 19 For the earnest expectation of the creation eagerly waits for the revealing of the sons of God. 20 For the creation was subjected to futility, not willingly, but because of Him who subjected it in hope; 21 because the creation itself also will be delivered from the bondage of corruption into the glorious liberty of the children of God. 22 For we know that the whole creation groans and labors with birth pangs together until now. 23 Not only that, but we also who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, eagerly waiting for the adoption, the redemption of our body. 24 For we were saved in this hope,
I heard in my heart tonight the first line of Isaiah 40
COMFORT YES COMFORT MY PEOPLE!!
And how does God comfort us?
By preaching the PAYMENT OF ALL OUR SINS!
LEB(i) 1 “Comfort; comfort my people,” says your God. 2 “Speak to the heart of Jerusalem, and call to her,
that her compulsory labor is fulfilled, that her sin is paid for, that she has ⌊received⌋ from the hand of Yahweh double for all her sins.”
The meaning in the above passage however is commonly rendered that Jerusalem had received DOUBLE PUNISHMENT for all her sins…
Isa 40[AMP] Comfort, comfort My people, says your God.
2 Speak tenderly to the heart of Jerusalem, and cry to her that her time of service and her warfare are ended,
that [her punishment is accepted and] her iniquity is pardoned,
that she has received [punishment] from the Lord’s hand double for all her sins.
The Hebrew does not say she received double punishment...the translation does. And another thing to remember is that Jerusalem is a plural having the “im” on the end . There are two Yerushalyim as Paul explains in Gal 4. The city of earthly J/Lem has certainly suffered twice for her sins of not listening to God. Twice her Temple has been built and destroyed on the 9th of Av. But for the Heavenly J/Lem we receive from the Lord’s hand DOUBLE HONOUR because He paid for all our sins.
We see this double payback for sins when the Lord said of Mystery Babylon – in Rev 18
“Come out from her, my people, so that you will not participate in her sins, and so that you will not receive her plagues, 5 because her sins have reached up to heaven, and God has remembered her crimes. 6 Pay back to her as she herself also paid out, and ⌊pay back double⌋ according to her deeds; in the cup that she mixed, mix double for her.
Jesus says come out of that sinful city because it shall be plagued. We come out of Babylon first and foremost in our heart and out of the mindset and understanding–TEACHING of Babylon.
7 As much as she glorified herself and lived in luxury, give to her so much torment and mourning, because in her heart she said, ‘I sit as a queen, and am not a widow, and I will never see mourning!’ 8 Because of this her plagues will come in one day— death and mourning and famine— and she will be burned up with fire, because the Lord God who passes judgment on her is powerful!”
The penalty for any kind of theft is for the thief to pay back DOUBLE.
Exodus 22:4If the theft is certainly found alive in his hand, whether it is an ox or donkey or sheep, he shall restore double.“If a man delivers to his neighbour money or articles to keep, and it is stolen out of the man’s house, if the thief is found, he shall pay double.Zacchaeus went even further than this!Lu 19:8 Then Zacchaeus stood and said to the Lord, “Look, Lord, I give half of my goods to the poor; and if I have taken anything from anyone by false accusation, I restore fourfold.
The point is that restitution must be made to the victims of theft by the one who stole from them.
What did Jesus say?
33 “And if a man opens a pit, or if a man digs a pit and does not cover it, and an ox or a donkey falls in it, 34 the owner of the pit shall make it good; he shall give money to their owner, but the dead animal shall be his
Isa 40:10 Behold, the Lord God shall come with a strong hand,
And His arm shall rule for Him;
Behold, His reward is with Him,
And His work before Him.
Obviously referring to the coming of the Messiah…
11 He will feed His flock like a shepherd;
He will gather the lambs with His arm,
And carry them in His bosom,
And gently lead those who are with young
Jn 10:7 Then Jesus said to them again, “Most assuredly, I say to you, I am the door of the sheep. 8 All who ever came before Me are thieves and robbers,but the sheep did not hear them. 9I am the door. If anyone enters by Me, he will be saved, and will go in and out and find pasture. 10 The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly.
Jn 10:11 “I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd gives His life for the sheep.
The thief steals from us and Jesus is God’s Love restoring to us ALL THAT WE LOST!!
This is so wonderful!
God is a restoring God!!
All that has been destroyed
All that has perished
All that has been stolen
SHALL BE RESTORED!!
Job said it like this…
For I know that my Redeemer lives,
And He shall stand at last on the earth;
26 And after my skin is destroyed, this I know,
That in my flesh I shall see God,
27 Whom I shall see for myself,
And my eyes shall behold, and not another.
The hope of the righteous is the resurrection of the dead – when the graves shall not hold us and the dead shall arise to their rewards. Immortality –the full redemption of our body.
All because of Jesus Christ…the Messiah who STOPPED THE (enmity)WARFARE that was between God and Man…and whose blood sacrifice removed our iniquities…as Isa 40:1-2 says.
Isaiah 40 is of course what John the Baptiser came preaching to Judah announcing the coming One who is the Lamb of God who takes away the sins/iniquities of the world. John was no ordinary man- but was from the priestly line and knew the Scriptures. He testified that Jesus is the Anointed One of Israel the Messiah.
Jews mostly were blinded to the fact that Jesus came the first time to give His life as a ransom for many(all)….so that he could restore DOUBLE TO MAN for all his sins.