Updated: May 12
Photo courtesy of promiselandjourney.org
In the first lesson we learned that there was only one door to the Tabernacle. It faced east, and anyone wishing to approach God had to enter in by that door. This door pointed to Yeshua who became the only door for anyone desiring to approach Yahweh. Yeshua made this declaration in John Chapter 10 when He declared Himself to be the “door” of the sheep.
After entering through the only door in the Tabernacle, the first piece of furniture that was encountered was the Brazen, or Bronze Alter.
Here is where the worshiper would bring their unblemished clean animal for sacrifice. The worshiper would lean upon the animal and lay their hands upon the animal to signify the transferring of their sins into the animal. Then they were responsible for slaughtering the animal. The priest would finish the sacrifice by offering the required parts of the animal upon the brazen altar and sprinkling the blood.
The innocent animal had to die for the sins of the person bringing the sacrifice. This was a shadow of the work that Yeshua did upon the cross when He took our sins upon Him; the innocent dying for the guilty, 2 Cor. 5:21, I Peter 2:24. Technically, all of humanity were guilty of sending Yeshua to the cross because we were all guilty of sins. The curses for breaking the Torah of Yahweh were upon Him that should have been upon us. These curses for breaking Torah can be found in Deuteronomy 27:11-26. This was what was being spoken of in
Colossians 2:14-15: “Blotting out the handwriting of ordinances that was against us, which was contrary to us, and took it out of the way, nailing it to his cross; And having spoiled principalities and powers, he made a shew of them openly, triumphing over them in it.” (KJV) Yeshua took upon Himself the curses that were ours and He nailed them to the cross. He bore our sins. The scripture, contrary to what some teach, is not saying that the Torah was nailed to the cross, but it was the “curses” of our guilt and shame, from breaking Torah, that was nailed to the tree.
Our sins need to be atoned for. We cannot approach unto God with sins, unless of course we are coming before Him as a sinner repenting of those sins by the blood of Yeshua. Our sin has separated us from God. We must come in through Yeshua and then have our sins atoned for at the brazen altar. This is first and foremost in our approach to God.
Sin is our first problem. “The soul that sins shall die.” (Ezekiel 18:20). We are dead with our sin. This is us at the brazen altar and the sacrifice (innocent for the guilty) is the blood of Yeshua. The penalty for sin is death !!!! Yeshua died the death for us at the Brazen Altar and also entered into the Most Holy Place to make atonement for our sins. The forgiveness of our sin is based on God’s justice. God’s justice demands payment. Yeshua paid the payment for our sins. His blood is the only sacrificial blood accepted at this point in history; after His coming and dying on the cross. He is the only door to God and His is the only blood accepted for atonement of our sins before God. God’s justice is satisfied only by the blood of His Son.
Throughout scripture, the blood is the atonement factor. “The life of the flesh is in the blood”.
(Lev. 17:11) Blood shed meant life given!!! The innocent always had to die for the guilty. In the Passover story we are told that “death” passed over when He saw the blood. Actually, It is God’s Passover. He spreads out His wings of protection over the homes where the blood was applied and they were protected as death passed by. It was His Passover, not the death angel’s. “I will pass over you”. (Ex. 12:13)
We must take personal responsibility for our sins. When the person bringing the sacrifice to the Tabernacle entered and approached the brazen altar, they , in effect, were admitting guilt. They would not be there unless they were admitting guilt of sin. (unless they were bringing peace/ grain offering or sometimes a whole burnt offering for thanksgiving). Likewise, the first approach unto God is that we must admit guilt of sin and accept the forgiveness offered to us through the blood of the only acceptable sacrifice, provided by God Himself, that of His Son Yeshua.
Blood was applied to the four horns of the altar, as well as sprinkled all around on the altar and the ground; by the priests. See Lev. 1:1-17, Lev. 4:7, Lev. 4:25, 30, 34.
We must understand that the brazen altar and the altar of incense are not the same thing. We will discuss the altar of incense in another lesson. The altar of incense was in the Holy Place just before entering the Most Holy Place.