The chapter (Lev. 16) starts with “Yom Kippur.” The national Day of Atonement. The sons of Aaron had previously met the wrong end of a sacrifice. Fire consumes as a pleasing aroma for sacrifice, and that same fire extinguishes ignorant-unauthorized offerings.
Yahweh is not like shifting sand. Hebrews knew all about sand, as it filled their sandals on a daily basis. He is deadly serious when it comes to sin and the removal of it. His presence will not tolerate a hint, a trace-mineral of sin in the proverbial camp.
The Day of Atonement process covered the sin of the Israelite nation thru the High Priest, and only for the one year. A collective group of sinners that are collectively atoned for.
This portrays the many of man with a singular problem: All need covering over. All need a High Priest, blood sacrifice, and a scapegoat to carry our sins into the proverbial desert and removed from God’s sight.
( Heb 9:11) Christ came as the High Priest and offered His sacrifice once-and-for-all.
No more sin. That’s an upgrade never to be upgraded. 1.0 for eternity.
We are a collection of sinners, bond together by sin. In Christ we are a collection of the forgiven. His once-and-for-all sacrifice saves us from the God-fire that consumed the sons of Aaron.
Back to the goats…
The live goat which was sent into the wilderness (Hebrew ‘to Azazel’) and was accompanied by a attendant (Lev. 16:21) carried the burden of sin for a nation to a solitary place in the desert. The attendant led the goat away from the camp to die for the people. I’m sure the people didn’t want to see the scapegoat accidentally return with the sin-baggage still attached. The attendant may have made sure of it.
This is a picture of Christ. Taking the sin away from our camp and removing them completely from sight. He needed no attendant but offered himself without resistance. He removed the sin from God’s presence, far from the camp. He died alone on a lonely hill.
Christ is that scapegoat that removes our guilt, or sin. Who enters the holy of holies, the presence of God, heaven itself (Heb. 9:24) as the new High Priest, and presents us as Holy before a Holy God.
Be holy as He is holy.