Shaming and blaming have been the results of Adam and Eve’s Fall in the Garden of Eden.  ”Then the man said, "The woman whom You gave to be with me, she gave me of the tree, and I ate." Genesis 3:12

We are always like Adam, looking for someone to blame. We blame ANYONE but ourselves for the messes we get ourselves into. In the past century, the communists blamed the aristocracy for Russia’s economic and social problems. Hitler blamed the Jews annihilating more than 6 million of them because of perceived injustices against Germany and Europe. In the United States labor blamed “big business” and management for economic hardship and poverty. In US politics each political party blames the other for anything that goes wrong. The Islamist blames Christian America for their worldly, contaminating influence.

What do all these events have in common?  They all need to shift the responsibility off themselves and onto something or someone else. In short they all need a “scapegoat” onto which they can blame their sins. Ancient Judiasm used two goats on the day of “Yom Kippur,” the Day of Atonement to bear the sins of their people.

            Two very similar-appearing billy goats were brought into the courtyard of the Temple in Jerusalem on Yom Kippur as part of the Holy Service of that day. The high priest cast lots for the two goats. One goat was offered as a burnt offering.  The second goat was the scapegoat. The high priest placed his hands on the head of the goat and confessed the sins of the people of Israel. The scapegoat was led away and let go in the wilderness according to Leviticus 16:22, although the Talmud adds that it was pushed over a distant cliff.

In modern Hebrew Azazel is used derogatorily, as in ”lh la-Azazel”  ("go to Azazel"), as in "go to hell". (Azazel is the word translated as "scapegoat" in the King James Version of the Bible.) The term 'scapegoat' is the result of mistranslation by William Tyndale circa 1530. He confused 'azazel' (the name of the cliff the goat was pushed over) for 'ez ozel' (literally, the goat that departs). Azazel appears in the scripture as the receiver of the [second] goat bearing the sins on its head.

            Leviticus’ story of the scapegoat prefigures the willing scarifice of Jesus for the sins of all humanity. He takes humanity’s sins onto His own head.




O sacred Head, now wounded, with grief and shame weighed down,
Now scornfully surrounded with thorns, Thine only crown;
O sacred head, what glory, what bliss till now was thine!
Yet, though despised and gory, I joy to call thee mine.


What Thou, my Lord, hast suffered, was all for sinners' gain;
Mine, mine was the transgression, but Thine the deadly pain.
Lo, here I fall, my Savior! 'Tis I deserve Thy place;
Look on me with Thy favor, vouchsafe to me Thy grace.


What language shall I borrow to thank Thee, dearest friend,
For this Thy dying sorrow, Thy pity without end?
O make me Thine forever, and should I fainting be,
Lord, let me never, never outlive my love to Thee.


Can you see yourself taking all your sin(s) in hand and placing them on the thorn-pierced brow of Jesus. Can you give Him your guilt, shame and blame, and allow the atonement of His blood to heal you and set you free? Jesus is not only the Lamb of God that takes away the sin of the world, He is Azazel who bears away your sins into the wilderness of God’s forgetfulness where they are remembered against you no more.

March 25, 2007 - Sheepfold Ministries

Pastor Phil Roland


Leviticus 16:6-10; 20-22

"Only Godly sorrow expressed over the sins of a nation will turn the heart of God. Jesus took Azazel’s place and bore the blaming, guilt and shame." Pastor Phil

If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and will heal their land.” 2 Chronicles 7:14

AZAZEL - Azazel ”To depart, banish, remove to a desert place

ATONEMENT – To cover over that which offends –

In Biblical and Hebrew culture the covering was with blood.

There are seven Holy Feasts in Ancient Israel:

1. Feast of Passover 4. Pentecost (Feast of Weeks)

2. Feast of Unleavened Bread 5. Feast of Trumpets

3. Feast of Firstfruits 6. Feast of Booths (Tabernacles)


I. A Bull and Two Goats for a Nation’s Sin Offering – v. 6,7

A. One Goat is for DEATH – That man may not die for sins

1. Ezekiel 18:4 “The soul that sins, it shall surely die. . .”

2. Animal’s death is the result of man’s sins

B. One Goat is for SIN– That man may not live with sins

C. Jesus Christ is God’s Goat for Sin

D. Jesus Christ is God’s Goat for Death

II. Lots were Cast for the Two Goats – v.8

A. IRONY: Lots were cast at the foot of Jesus’ Cross – Matt. 27:35

B. One Goat was for the Altar of the Lord – v. 9

1. The Blood was a strong visual reminder

2. Blood settled mankind’s sin debt

3. Man’s indebtedness started in the Garden

4. Man’s indebtedness ended at Christ’s Cross

C. One Goat became Azazel: The Wilderness Goat

1. Azazel had to be presented alive to “lose the sins of the people in the wilderness”

2. Jesus went into the wilderness – Matt. 4:1

“Then Jesus was led up by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil.”

a. Azazel, God’s Goat must die in the wilderness

b. He must die to Self, Ambition and Personal Gain

c. If Jesus doesn’t bear your sins, then you bear them yourself

a. Must personally name them and repent of them

b. Or, live in the shadow and guilt of past sins

III. Sin must be Transferred to the Goat – v.21

A. Confession of All the Sins of the People

B. Put Upon the Head of the Goat

C. Goat was Taken to the Wilderness

D. Released to Die

IV. How Is this Accomplished Today?

A. CONFESS TO GOD - Your Own Sins – 1 John 1:9

“If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.”

B. CONFESS TO MAN – James 5:16

”Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous man is powerful and effective.”


”Surely he took up our infirmities and carried our sorrows, yet we considered

him stricken by God, smitten by him, and afflicted. But he was pierced for our

transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that

brought us peace was upon him, and by his wounds we are healed.”

We all, like sheep, have gone astray, each of us has turned to his own way; and

the LORD has laid on him the iniquity of us all.”

D. WHAT WE CAN DO? - Isaiah 1:16-18

"Wash yourselves, make yourselves clean; Put away the evil of your doings

from before My eyes. Cease to do evil, Learn to do good; Seek justice,

Rebuke the oppressor; Defend the fatherless, Plead for the widow.

"Come now, and let us reason together," Says the LORD, "Though your sins are

like scarlet, They shall be as white as snow; Though they are red like crimson,

They shall be as wool.”

D. Send Azazel into the Wilderness – Psalm 103:11,12

For as the heavens are high above the earth, So great is His mercy toward

those who fear Him; As far as the east is from the west, So far has He removed

our transgressions from us.”

V. Azazel Shall Bear All the Iniquities of the People - v.22

A. INFIRMITIES Worn down in strength, infirmed, sick,(CHA-LAH) weakened, pained

B. SORROWS To be sorrowful, marred, in pain,

(MA-KOB) To be destroyed

C. TRANSGRESSIONS Lawlessness, To break God's Law,

(PE-SHA) Rebellion, To fall or break away


D. INIQUITIES Perversity, Depravity, Generational

(A-VON) Guilt passed on by acts of sinning of sinning


Leviticus 16:6-10

"Aaron shall offer the bull as a sin offering, which is for himself, and make atonement for himself and for his house.

7 "He shall take the two goats and present them before the LORD at the door of the tabernacle of meeting.

8 "Then Aaron shall cast lots for the two goats: one lot for the LORD and the other lot for the scapegoat.

9 "And Aaron shall bring the goat on which the Lord's lot fell, and offer it as a sin offering.

10 "But the goat on which the lot fell to be the scapegoat shall be presented alive before the LORD, to make atonement upon it, and to let it go as the scapegoat into the wilderness.

11 "And Aaron shall bring the bull of the sin offering, which is for himself, and make atonement for himself and for his house, and shall kill the bull as the sin offering which is for himself.

12 "Then he shall take a censer full of burning coals of fire from the altar before the LORD, with his hands full of sweet incense beaten fine, and bring it inside the veil.

13 "And he shall put the incense on the fire before the LORD, that the cloud of incense may cover the mercy seat that is on the Testimony, lest he die.

14 "He shall take some of the blood of the bull and sprinkle it with his finger on the mercy seat on the east side; and before the mercy seat he shall sprinkle some of the blood with his finger seven times.

15 "Then he shall kill the goat of the sin offering, which is for the people, bring its blood inside the veil, do with that blood as he did with the blood of the bull, and sprinkle it on the mercy seat and before the mercy seat.

16 "So he shall make atonement for the Holy Place, because of the uncleanness of the children of Israel, and because of their transgressions, for all their sins; and so he shall do for the tabernacle of meeting which remains among them in the midst of their uncleanness.

20 "And when he has made an end of atoning for the Holy Place, the tabernacle of meeting, and the altar, he shall bring the live goat.

21 "Aaron shall lay both his hands on the head of the live goat, confess over it all the iniquities of the children of Israel, and all their transgressions, concerning all their sins, putting them on the head of the goat, and shall send it away into the wilderness by the hand of a suitable man.

22 "The goat shall bear on itself all their iniquities to an uninhabited land; and he shall release the goat in the wilderness.