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(Last update 6/23/00)

In chapter 28 of Exodus we have God's instruction concerning the priesthood and the garments of the priest. These garments themselves contain a great deal of meaning, some of it easily understood through Scripture and some of it less so. Of particular interest are the garments of the Cohen Gadol (High Priest) worn only on the feast of Yom Kippur. Whereas the regular attire of the High Priest was made up of eight separate garments, on Yom Kippur He would wear only four garments, all of them white.

The feast of Yom Kippur has a definite connection to the events in the book of Revelation that usher in the New Covenant. The book of Hebrews offers a lot of insight into Yeshua's role as High Priest and as the final Yom Kippur salvation sacrifice. (This will be part of our Hebrews study later this year.)

Isaiah shows that God Himself dresses as a High Priest for the dual purpose of atonement for faithful Israel and judgment for adulteress Israel and the nations:

Isaiah 59:15-17 - Yea, truth faileth; and he that departeth from evil maketh himself a prey: and the LORD saw it, and it displeased him that there was no judgment. And he saw that there was no man, and wondered that there was no intercessor: therefore his arm brought salvation unto him; and his righteousness, it sustained him. For he put on righteousness as a breastplate, and an helmet of salvation upon his head; and he put on the garments of vengeance for clothing, and was clad with zeal as a cloak.

At the same time His garments are red with the blood of judgment. There is a connection between the garments of vengeance and the Lord's Day of vengeance:

Isaiah 63:1-6 - Who is this that cometh from Edom, with dyed garments from Bozrah? this that is glorious in his apparel, travelling in the greatness of his strength? I that speak in righteousness, mighty to save. Wherefore art thou red in thine apparel, and thy garments like him that treadeth in the winefat? I have trodden the winepress alone; and of the people there was none with me: for I will tread them in mine anger, and trample them in my fury; and their blood shall be sprinkled upon my garments, and I will stain all my raiment. For the day of vengeance is in mine heart, and the year of my redeemed is come. And I looked, and there was none to help; and I wondered that there was none to uphold: therefore mine own arm brought salvation unto me; and my fury, it upheld me. And I will tread down the people in mine anger, and make them drunk in my fury, and I will bring down their strength to the earth.

The language is the same as found in Revelation 14:14-20 and 19:11-15:

Revelation 14:14-20 - And I looked, and behold a white cloud, and upon the cloud one sat like unto the Son of man, having on his head a golden crown, and in his hand a sharp sickle. And another angel came out of the temple, crying with a loud voice to him that sat on the cloud, Thrust in thy sickle, and reap: for the time is come for thee to reap; for the harvest of the earth is ripe. And he that sat on the cloud thrust in his sickle on the earth; and the earth was reaped. And another angel came out of the temple which is in heaven, he also having a sharp sickle. And another angel came out from the altar, which had power over fire; and cried with a loud cry to him that had the sharp sickle, saying, Thrust in thy sharp sickle, and gather the clusters of the vine of the earth; for her grapes are fully ripe. And the angel thrust in his sickle into the earth, and gathered the vine of the earth, and cast it into the great winepress of the wrath of God. And the winepress was trodden without the city, and blood came out of the winepress, even unto the horse bridles, by the space of a thousand and six hundred furlongs.

Revelation 19:11-15 - And I saw heaven opened, and behold a white horse; and he that sat upon him was called Faithful and True, and in righteousness he doth judge and make war. His eyes were as a flame of fire, and on his head were many crowns; and he had a name written, that no man knew, but he himself. And he was clothed with a vesture dipped in blood: and his name is called The Word of God. And the armies which were in heaven followed him upon white horses, clothed in fine linen, white and clean.   And out of his mouth goeth a sharp sword, that with it he should smite the nations: and he shall rule them with a rod of iron: and he treadeth the winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God.

Using Hillel's second rule of interpretation, Gezerah Shavah, (where similar terminology is used in different verses and it follows that the same considerations apply to both), we see that Isaiah was speaking of Yeshua as well.