Full Text for Propitiation in the Language and Typology of the Old Testament (Text)

CONCORDIA 3 THEOLOGICAL QUARTERLY Volume 48, lriumbers 2 & 3 APRIL-JULY 1984 The Use of the Church Fathers in the . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Formula of Concord J .A .O. Preus 97 Clergy Mental Health and the Doctrine of . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Justification .Robert Preus 113 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Luther's Last Battles .Mark U. Edwards 125 The Doctrine of Man: . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Christian Anthropology Eugene F. Klug 141 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Luther the Seelsorger George Kraus 153 Wittenburg and Canterbury . . . . . . . . . . . . . .John Stephenson 165 The Grace of God as the . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Foundation for Ethics Jeffery Gibbs 185 Implications of Recent Exegetical Studies for the Doctrine of the Lord's Supper: A Survey of the Literature . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . John T. Pless203 Propitiation in the Language and . . . . . . . . . . Douglas Judisch 22 1 Typology of the Old Testament Theological Observer . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .245 Book Reviews . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 25 1 CONCORDlA TH EOLOGICAI: SEMI NARY, L1 BRARY FT. WAYNE, IlNDlAKA 35525 Propitiation in the Language and of the Old Testament Douglas McC. L . Judisch Derived ultimately from the Latin pro (which can be used to signify that someone acts "in favor of" or is "on ths side of" someone else), "propitiation" refers to appeasing someone's wrath, even rendering someone favorable.' Synonyms are "con- ciliation" and "atonement" in its original sense.* Even without special revelation man can recognize the finger of a wrathful God in disease and death, fire and flood. Indeed, man's own conscience, recoiling from the fiery wrath aroused in a just God by human sin, often poses the same question as that ascribed to Satan by Milton: ... which way shall I fly Infinite wrath, and infinite despair? Which way I fly is hell; myself am hell; And in the lowest deep a lower deep Still threatening to devour me open wide, To which the hell I suffer seems a heaven.' It is no wonder, then, that so much of the liturgical practice of the various religions of the world is designed to propitiate angry deities-so much so that Sir James Frazer in his classic Golden Bough enunciated this definition of religion: "By religion, then, I understand a propitiation or conciliation of powers superior to man which are believed to direct and control the course of nature and of human life. "' Only through special revelation, however, can men appreciate either the extent of God's wrath or the means of its propitiation. Indeed, the proclamation of these truths was as pivotal to the prophets of the Old Testament as to the apostles of the New Testament. Already in Psalm 90, the oldest of the psalms, Moses laments (vv. 7-9, 11): For we have been consumed by Thine anger, And by Thy wrath we have been dismayed. Thou hast placed our iniquities before Thee, Our secret sins in the light of Thy presence. For all our days have declined in Thy fury; We have finished our years like a sigh ... Who understands the power of Thine anger, And Thy fury, according to the fear that is due Thee?' The propitiation of this consuming wrath is likewise already a significant concept in the oldest books of Scripture, those of Moses, as we shall see. 1. Language A. The Etymology of k p r The Hebrew root to which one must pay special attention in discussing propitiation in the Old Testament is k p r.' In the nineteenth century the original meaning of the word was generally assumed to be "to cover" on the basis of the similar Arabic root kaphara, which means "cover" or "~onceal ;"~ the kapporeth (or so-called mercy-seat) was said to receive its name from its role as the "cover" of the ark of the t e s t im~ny .~ The theological use of k p r supposedly involved the covering over of human sin by Old Testament ritual (until it could be dealt with in a more effective fashion by Christ, according to some scholar^).^ The concept of covering is still held by some recent authors, l o but there is no consensus. ' I There is some evidence in its favor, k s h ("cover") sometimes appearing parallel to k p r in poetry (e.g . , Ps. 32: 1 ; 85:2). l 2 Many contemporary scholars, however, connect k p r with the Syriac kephar (in the pa 'el kap- par, "wipe, wipe away") and the Akkadian kuppuru ("wash away, erase")." Biblical confirmation of this identification is sought in the use of k p r in parallel with m h h ("blot out, wipe away"; e-g., Jer. 18:23).14 Still others suggest by way of com- promise that the original meaning of k p r was simply "rub," so that it could refer either to rubbing a substance off of something or rubbing a substance on something and so covering it. There are also those who have sought to derive the Hebrew root from Egyptian origins, but these endeavors have met with little accep- tance. l 6 In such a situation it would be dangerous to base any theological freight on a supposed original meaning of k p r." B . The Meaning of k p r The task which is, of course, much more important-indeed, essential-is the determination of the usus loquendi of k p r in Biblical Hebrew. Here, however, there is also some disagree- ment. conservative scholars have traditionally maintained that Propitiation in the Old Testament 223 the common meaning of k p r is "to propitiate" someone or "to placate" wrath aroused by an offense.18 There are also critical scholars who are impartial enough to concede this significance to the root.19 This was the understanding of the men who pro- duced the King James Version when they translated forms of k p r with "make atonement" in seventy of its ninety-nine oc- currences in the Old Testament.'O In 1611 "atone" was a relatively new word which had been composed by combining "at" and "one" and so referred to the creation of unity be- tween parties who may previously have been at variance. 2 1 In other words, "make atonement" was a synonym of "pro- pitiate" and "conciliate. "" Most critical exegetes, however, deny the meaning "pro- pitiate" to k p r in those cases involving God and will allow as a translation at most "expiate," that is, "make amends" for an offense.23 The quite unhidden presupposition which leads to this position is that the propitiation of God is foreign to Scrip- ture. And the propitiation of God is alien for the simple reason that the wrath of God itself is pagan, according to such critics.24 The more impartial critics previously mentioned generally find the concepts of divine wrath and its propitiation just as obnox- ious as do their comrades, but they feel no tension in finding remnants of paganism in the Old Testament, as they would see them.25 The centrality of God's wrath to Old Testament theology we have already deduced from the oldest of the psalms, and there is no need here to multiply parallel passages.26 It will be ap- propriate, however, to cite some evidence in favor of the tradi- tional connection between k p r and propitiation-assuaging the wrath of someone, whether God or someone else. The word is used in Genesis 32:21 (MT, 20 EV) in the account of Jacob's return to Canaan and his imminent reunion with his brother Esau. At the time of Jacob's speedy departure from Canaan two decades previously, Esau had been enraged enough with his brother to be intent upon murdering him.27 Now some twenty years later Jacob, in sending presents to Esau, whose vengeance he still feared greatly, had this idea in mind: "I will appease him with the present that goes before me. Then afterward I will see his face; perhaps he will accept me."28 The first four words of this quotation represent bkhapperah panaw, literally, "I shall propitiate his face"; the last four words render yissa' panai, literally, "he will lift up my face." Both phrases find their basis in the usual connection between the expression of one's face and 224 CONCORDlA THEOLOGICAL QUARTERLY his attitude toward someone else-wrath, friendliness, or whatever.29 Proverbs 16:14 is another verse worthy of attention here. Verses 10 to 16 speak about kings-their obligations and the proper conduct in relation to them. Verse 13 encourages the manner of speech in which kings (presumably good kings) delight. Verse 15 explicitly states the desirability of enjoying a king's "favor" or the "light of a king's face." Between these two verses comes a warning against the reverse situation and what to do if it should occur: "The wrath of a king is as messengers of death, but a wise man will appease it.''30 Here the feminine suffix of yekhappe rennah shows that h a, math ("wrath") is equivalent to the direct object of the verb.3' A third relevant passage is 2 Samuel 21:3. The concern there is that Saul and some other members of his family had urljustly put to death many of the Gibeonites to whom Israel had bound itself by a covenant of friendships3* This perfidious persecution had, of course, created enmity in the hearts of the Gibeonites against Israel; but the wrath of God too was evidently aroused, as is indicated by the famine of three years' duration which had befallen Israel. The implication is that the famine would con- tinue until the just resentment of the Gibeonites was assuaged. It is in this context that David asks the Gibeonites, "What should I do for you? And how can I make atonement that you may bless the inheritance of the Lord?"" Thus, the purpose of the action denoted by k p r is to make someone bless someone else instead of nursing enmity toward him-in other words, pro- pitiation. It is no wonder, then, that in the Septuagint k p r and its cognates are ordinarily translated with derivatives of hileoos, of which the basic meaning is "friendly" or "fa~orable ."~~ Thus, the verb k p r itself is translated exilaskomai eighty-three times out of ninety-nine, three times as hilaskomai, and once as hileoos gignomai. 11. Typology Other indications of the propitiatory connotation of k p r ap- pear in passages dealing with the sacrificial system. That evidence, however, we may allow to emerge incidentally as we proceed to discuss the contribution of typology to an under- standing of the significance of propitiation in the Old Testa- ment. By a "type" we mean, in accord with the traditional con- ception, a person or thing ordained by God to predict some other person or thing in some re~pect. '~ The most important Propitiation in the Old Testament 225 aspect of typology is surely the sacrificial system of the Old Testament. A. The Sacrificial System in General 1. THE PROPITIATORY NATURE OF SACRIFICE In regard to this system, then, it is first of all necessary to postulate that the sacrifices of the Old Testament in which blood was shed assuaged the wrath of God-by virtue of the future self-sacrifice of the Messiah which they symbolized and the results of which they mediated. This truth is implicit in the favorable manner in which God looked upon Abel and his slain sheep (Gen. 4:4)," and it becomes explicit already in Genesis 8 in the record of Noah's post-diluvian sacrifice of at least one representative of every clean kind of animal.38 Verse 21 states that the Lord smelled the reah-hannihoah. The King James Version translates this construct chain as "a sweet savour," the Revised Standard Version as "the pleasing odor," and the New American Standard Bible as "the soothing aroma." The noun nihoah is derived from the verbal root nuah, "rest," and so is defined as "a quieting, a soothing, a tranquilizing" and occurs only, as here, in conjunction with reah.39 Literally, then, the phrase means "the smell of pacification." Taking the olfactory reference, of course, as an anthropomorphism, the idea is clear- ly that Noah's sacrifices assuaged God's wrath. Indeed, the result was that God promised never to destroy every living thing at one swoop again despite His knowledge that all the waters of the worldwide flood had been insufficient to wash away the in- nate sinfulness of men.40 The construct chain "smell of pacificaticn" is used thir- ty-nine times in the Old Testament to describe the -effect of sacrifices upon the true God; the other three times it refers to the effect which idoIaters desire their sacrifices to have upon their false gods (Ezek. 6: 13; 16: 19; 20:28). In those cases where k p r is conjoined with the phrase, the propitiatory nature of the sacrifice is underlined. The first chapter of Leviticus, for exam- ple, lays down rules concerning the offering of the 'olah, usually called in English the "burnt ~ffer ing."~ ' In verse 4 k p r is used to designate the goal of this sacrifice: "And he shall lay his hand on the head of the burnt offering, that it may be accepted for him to make atonement on his behalf?"' In verse 9, however, reah nihoah serves the same purpose: "And the priest shall offer up in smoke all of it on the altar for a burnt offering, an offer- 226 CONCORDIA THEOLOGICAL QUARTERLY ing by fire of a soothing aroma to the Lord."J3 Leviticus 4 stipulates the manner of offering the h a t t a ' ~ h , ~ ~ usually known in English as the "sin offering." Forms of k p r a r e used several times (vv. 20, 26, 31, 35). Verse 26 tells us, for example, that, by burning the fat of the sacrificial goat, "the priest shall make atonement for him" who has brought the goat "in regard to his sin, and he shall be forgiven." Concerning the sin offering verse 31 declares that "the priest shall offer it up in smoke on the altar for a soothing aroma to the Lord. Thus the priest shall make atonement for him" who has brought the animal "and he shall be forgiven." Here the propitiatory nature of the sacrifice is attested in triplicate by the addition of that final clause, "and he shall be forgiven," using the verb s / h (of which God is always the explicit o r implicit agent).45 The other sacrifices in which blood was shed likewise assuag- ed the wrath of God. Leviticus 5 sets down the regulations governing the 'asham, usually denominated the "guilt offering'' in E n g l i ~ h . ~ ~ Verse 16 uses both k p r a n d s / h to state the goal of this kind of sacrifice: "The priest shall then make atonement for him" who has brought the victim "with the ram of the guilt offering and it shall be forgiven him." Numbers 5: 18 compounds the effect of k p r by using both the verb and the noun kippurim derived from it, referring t o the sacrificial victim as "the ram of atonement by which atonement is made."" As far as the sh ~lamim, usually called "peace offer- ings," are concerned, the account of David's sinful census of Israel in 2 Samuel 24 is instru~tive.'~ The last verse of the chapter includes peace offerings along with burnt offerings as bringing to an end the calamitous pestilence-and evidently its wellspring, the "anger of the Lord" which "burned against Israel" (24: 1): "Thus the Lord was moved by entreaty for the land, and the plague was held back from Israel" (2 Sam. 24:25b). Numbers 28 and 29 codify the legislation requiring the people of Israel as a whole t o offer certain sacrifices in the morning and evening, on the sabbath, and on the various holy days of the year. In these chapters clauses containing k p r or the phrase "smell of pacification,'' used interchangeably, become a virtual refrain, so as to stress the propitiatory nature of all these daily, weekly, monthly, and yearly sacrifices. The Feast of Weeks, for example, requires "a burnt offering for a soothing aroma to the Lord, two young bulls, one ram, seven male lambs one year old" (28:27), and "one male goat to make atonement for you" Propitiation in the Old Testament 227 (28:30)." Indeed, the Lord commands concerning all these sacrifices: "You shall be careful to present My offering, My food for My offerings by fire, of a soothing aroma to Me, at their appointed time" (Num. 28:2). The most comprehensive statement, however, occurs in Leviticus 17 in the midst of regulations concerning the treatment of blood. In verse 11 God lays down a definitive principle which applies to all the Old Testament sacrifices in which the blood of animals was shed: "For the life of the flesh is in the blood, and I have given it to you on the altar to make atonement for your souls; for it is the blood by reason of the life that makes atone- ment." In Psalm 40, to be sure, the Messiah Himself asserts: "Sacrifice and meal offering Thou hast not desired. . . Burnt offering and sin offering Thou hast not required" (v. 7 MT; 6 EV). 50 The Epistle to the Hebrews, moreover, adduces .this very passage in connection with the statement that "it is im- possible for the blood of bulls and goats to take away sins" (v. 4). The point of Psalm 40 and Hebrews 10, however, is not to deny the propitiatory role of the blood spilt upon the altar of God in Old Testament times, but rather to remind Israelites that it stilled the wrath of God, not in and of itself, but only by vir- tue of the blood of the promised Messiah which it symbolized and the effects of which it mediatedSs' In Article XXIV of the Apology, therefore, Melanchthon contends that the sanguinary sacrifices of the Old Testament did not intrinisically merit the forgiveness of sins but that they may be called propitiatory for two reasons. In the first place, some of them reconciled in- dividual sinners to the visible churchSs2 Secondly and more im- portantly, they symbolized the coming self-sacrifice of the Messiah, which would intrinsically propitiate a wrathful God." Indeed, as Article VII of the Formula of Concord (Solid Declaration) teaches, these sacrifices actually conveyed to the people of the Old Testament era the very propitiation which they symbolized. s4 2. THE PROPITIATORY SCOPE OF SACRIFICE It is quite plain, then, that the Old Testament sacrifices in which blood was shed assuaged the wrath of God by virtue of the self-sacrifice of the Messiah which they symbolized. An in- quiry, therefore, into the extent of this propitiation would be of value. John Calvin, after all, acknowledged that the propitia- tion of God was accomplished by a Messianic self-sacrifice 228 CONCORDIA THEOLOGICAL QUARTERLY which had been symbolized by the sanguinary sacrifices of the Old T e ~ t a m e n t . ~ ~ Thus, in commenting on the clause, "and He is the propitiation for our sins," in the First Epistle of John (2:2),56 Calvin observes that "no one is fit to be a high priest without a sacrifice. Hence, under the Law, no priest entered the sanctuary without blood; and a sacrifice, as a usual seal, was wont, according to God's appointment, to accompany prayers. By this symbol it was God's design to shew, that whoever ob- tains favour for us, must be furnished with a sacrifice; for when God is offended, in order to pacify Him a satisfaction is re- quired."" Yet when the Apostle John proceeds to proclaim that Christ is the propitiationnot only for our sins,"but also for the sins of the whole world, " Calvin still restricts this pro- pitiation to the elect: "For the design of John was no other than to make this benefit common to the whole Church. Then under the word all or whole, he does not include the reprobate, but designates those who should believe as well as those who were then scattered through various parts of the In actuality, however, not only the self-sacrifice of Christ itself, but even the general Old Testament sacrifices-since they symbolized it and mediated its effects-did provide a com- prehensive propitiation. There were, of course, circumstances in which individuals could or had to offer sacrifices which were designed to affect those particular individual^.^^ Much more frequent, however, were the general or national sacrifices, and these, in the first instance, assuaged the wrath of God with respect to all Israelites-whether elect or not, whether believers or unbelievers. Leviticus 4, for example, makes provision for the sacrifice of a sin offering if "the whole congregation of Israel" should "commit error" and so "become guilty" (v. 13). By means of the sin offering "the priest shall make atonement for them, and they shall be forgiven" (v. 20); here forms of both k p r and s 1 h speak of the effect upon the whole people.60 Leviticus 9 describes the first day of Aaron's new ministry as high priest, his week-long consecration having come to an end. On this occasion Moses directs Aaron to sacrifice two sets of sin offering and burnt offering. The point of the first set is to pro- pitiate God with respect to the high priest himself. The purpose of the second set, on the other hand, is t o placate the divine wrath aroused by the sins of the rest of the "sons of Israel" (v. 3). Moses tells Aaron in verse 7: "Then make the offering for the people, that you may make atonement for them, just as the Lord has commanded." Aaron fulfilled this directive when "he Propitiation in the Old Testament 229 presented the people's offering, and took the goat of the sin of- fering which was for the people, and slaughtered it and offered it for sin. . . . Then he slaughtered the ox and the ram, the sacrifice of peace offerings which was for the people; and Aaron's sons handed the blood to him and he sprinkled it around on the altar" (vv. IS, 18).6' We have already seen how Numbers 28 and 29 emphasize the propitiatory power of the various sacrifices offered every morn- ing and evening, every week on the sabbath, every month on the first day, and every year on the holy days. These regular sacrifices were the real heart of the sacrificial system, much more important than any others. The point which we have to stress at this juncture is that these sacrifices were offered on behalf of the "sons of Israel" in general (v. 3). Numbers 28, for example, speaks of .the burnt offering (two bulls, one ram, and seven male lambs) and the sin offering (one male goat) required on the Passover. When verse 22 asserts that these sacrifices serve "to make atonement for you," all Israelites are embraced by the propitiation acc~mpl i shed .~~ This comprehensiveness is likewise apparent when the same formula is applied to the burnt offering (two young bulls, one ram, seven male lambs, and one male goat) necessary to the Feast of Weeks (28:30) and similar burnt and sin offerings necessary to the Feast of Trumpets (29:5).634 It comes as no surprise, therefore, when the Chronicler connects the whole nation with the propitiation of God effected through the sacrificial system in general: "Aaron and his sons offered on the altar of burnt offering and on the altar of incense, for all the work of the most holy place, and to make atonement for Israel, according to all that Moses the servant of God had commanded" (1 Chron. 6:49). B. The Day of Atonement Of all the occasions of general sacrifice, however, the one in which the concept of propitiation is enunciated most em- phatically is the Day of Atonement. The tenth day of the seventh month of the year (Tishri) was the only day of fasting laid upon the ancient Israelites, and it was the only time during the course of the year that anyone went past the veil into the ho- ly of holies in the tabernacle or temple.64 The name of the day itself is evidence of the propitiatory emphasis, being a transla- tion of the term yom-hakkippurim, which occurs in Leviticus 23: "On exactly the tenth day of this seventh month is the day 230 CONCORDIA THEOLOGICAL QUARTERLY of atonement; it shall be a holy convocation for you, and you shall humble your souls and present an offering by fire to the Lord. Neither shall you do any work on this same day, for it is a day of atonement, to make atonement on your behalf before the Lord your God'' (vv. 27-28). Leviticus 25:9 applies to the day the same terminology, employing again kippurim, a noun (derived, of course, from k p r) which occurs only as an abstract plural in the Old Testament; whereas in modern Hebrew the singular is used in the name "Yom Kippur."" Since the word "atonement" has shifted its meaning since the reign of King James VI, a better translation than "Day of Atonement" would be "Day of Propitiation. "66 The observance of the Day of Propitiation, then, is prescrib- ed in most detail in Leviticus 16, which abounds in forms of the verb k p r and occurrences of the derivative noun k a p p ~ r e t h . ~ ~ This object was a slab of gold which lay atop the ark of the testimony in the holy of holies. The length was two and a half cubits and the width a cubit and a half.68 Atop it, in turn, were two golden cherubim whose outstretched wings met above it. It symbolized the throne of God, who sometimes manifested His presence there visibly or audibly,69 although on the Day of Pro- pitiation it was enveloped in a cloud of incense which filled the holy of holies (vv. 12-13). For on the Day of Propitiation the high priest twice entered the most holy place with the blood of a sacrificial victim and sprinkled it once on the plate of gold and seven times in front of it (vv. 14-15). In English the kapporeth is usually called the "mercy-seat , " a paraphrastic rendition which William Tyndale based upon Luther's Gnadenst~hle.'~ The idea is presumably that God's wrath was changed to grace or (somewhat less aptly) mercy by virtue of the blood sprinkled upon His symbolic seat." The kapporeth had been translated more literally by John Wycliffe as the "pr~piciatorie."~~ The rendition in the first English Bible was, of course, based upon the propitiatorium of the V~lgate . '~ The Latin term, in turn, may have been suggested or at least influenced by the hilasteerion of the Septuagint, a noun derived, of course, from the same Greek stem as the words which, as previously noted, were used to translate forms of k p r.74 This Greek word, moreover, is aptly applied to Christ by the Apostle Paul in Romans 3:25. 75 We have already observed that nineteenth-cen- tury scholars generally explained kapporeth as meaning merely "lid" or "cover"-in accord with the theory that the original meaning of k p r was "to cover."76 Modern Hebraists, however, Propitiation in the Old Testament 23 1 regardless of their etymologies of k p r, concede that the denota- tion of kapporeth derives from the theological significance of the verb. Thus, Brown, Driver, and Briggs give "propitiatory" as the definiti~n,~' and the margin of the New American Stan- dard Bible gives the same word as the literal counterpart to "mercy-seat."7e Since we are unaccustomed, however, to using "propitiatory" as a noun, "place of propitiation" may be more appropriate. The sprinkling of sacrificial blood, moreover, on and before the "place of propitiation" on the Day of Propitiation placated God with respect to all Israelites. First of all, to be sure, the high priest was to sacrifice a bull and to sprinkle its blood in the holy of holies to assuage the wrath of God against himself and his family (Lev. 16:6, 1 1, 14). The priest proceeded, however, to slaughter a goat and sprinkle its blood in the most holy place. Leviticus 16: 15 describes this goat as a "sin offering for the peo- ple," and its blood ensured the ,presence of a gracious God in the tabernacle despite "the impurities of the sons of Israel" and "their transgressions, in regard to all their sins" (v. 16). By this means the high priest "made atonement for himself and for his household and for all the assembly of Israel" (v. 17). The com- prehensiveness of the propitiation achieved in this way was con- firmed when a second goat was symbolically laden with "all the iniquities of the sons of Israel and all their transgressions in regard to all their sins" and was then sent into the wilderness bearing "all their iniquities" (w. 10, 21-22).'9 The point was underscored when the priest would then bathe and "come forth and offer his burnt offering and the burnt offering for the peo- ple, and make atonement for himself and for the people" (v. 24). Thus, God is addressing all Israelites and even includes the aliens who reside among them (v. 29) when He makes this pro- mise: "It is on this day that atonement shall be made for you to cleanse you; you shall be clean from all your sins before the Lord" (v. 30)." Verse 33 declares once again that the Day of Propitiation would placate God with respect to "all the people of the assembly"; and verse 34, that it would "make atonement for the sons of Israel for all their sins once every year." C. The Appropriation of Propitiation A consideration of various aspects of the sacrificial system leads us, then, to the conclusion that the general sacrifices of the 232 CONCORDIA THEOLOGICAL QUARTERLY Old Testament did provide a comprehensive propitiation. They assuaged the wrath of God with respect to all Israelites by sym- bolizing the future self-sacrifice of the Messiah and mediating the propitiation of God which He was thereby to accomplish on behalf of all men of all nations. From this awesome truth it does not at all follow that all Israelites actually benefited from the propitiation accomplished for all. Eternal life with God came only through faith in the Messianic propitiation for the sins of the whole world symbolized and mediated by the sacrifices of the Old Testament Indeed, the wrath of God revived against those who continued to rely, lot on the work of the Messiah to placate God, but rather upon their own works. To offer up divinely ordained sacrifices without faith in the Messiah's mis- sion symbolized by them was, moreover, a form of works-righteousness which provoked the anger of God even more than the ignorant unbelief of the heathen. In Isaiah 1, for example, God equating the wickedness of Judah with that of Sodom and Gomorrah, excoriates the Jews for their careful but faithless observance of His cultic commandments (vv. 1 1-14): What are your multiplied sacrifices to Me?. . . I have had enough of burnt offerings of rams, And the fat of fed cattle. And I take no pleasure in the blood of bulls, lambs, or goats. When you come to appear before Me, Who requires of you this trampling of My courts? Bring your worthless offerings no longer, Their incense is an abomination to Me. New moon and sabbath, the calling of assemblies- I cannot endure iniquity and the solemn assembly. I hate your new moon festivals and your appointed feasts, They have become a burden to Me. I am weary of bearing them.82 In Article IV of the Apology Melanchthon explains that similar passages in Psalm 50 and Jeremiah 7 condemn, not the divinely ordained sacrifices themselves, but rather "the wicked belief of those who did away with faith in the notion that through these works they placated the wrath of God," those who offered "sacrifices with the notion that on account of them they had a gracious God, so to say, ex opere operato. "83 Propitiation in the Old Testament 233 Conclusion Several lessons, then, may be learned from a study of the con- cept of propitiation in the language and typology of the Old Testament: (1) The wrath of God and His propitiation are pivotal elements in the theology of the Old Testament. (2) The concept of divine propitiation lies at the heart of the elaborate sacrificial system of the Old Testament. (3) The sanguinary sacrifices had propitiatory power, but o ~ l y because they sym- bolized the propitiating self-sacrifice of the Messiah and mediated its effects. (4) The Messiah, who would be both God and man, was to propitiate God for all sins on behalf of all sin- ners by means of His sinless life and vicarious death. (5) Only those people of the Old Testament era enjoy eternal life with God who trusted in the propitiation of God which the Messiah was to accomplish. Footnotes 1. "Propitiation," Oxford English Dictionary, ed. James Augustus Henry Murray (Oxford: The Clarendon Press, 1933), VIII, p. 1476. In his translation of 1388 John Wycliffe used the phrase "the tyrne of pro- piciacioun" in Leviticus 25:9. 2. Ibid. The original sense of "atonement" will be discussed later. 3. John Milton, Paradise Lost and Other Poems, ed. Maurice Kelley (Roslyn, New York: Walter J. Black, 1943), p. 167. Satan makes this statement in his first discourse in Book IV of Paradise Lost as he nears Eden in his expedition to involve Adam and Eve in his rebellion against God. 4. James George Frazer, The Golden Bough: A Study in Magic and Religion (New York: The Macmillan Company, 1951), pp. 57-58. An example of this phenomenon is furnished by the propitiatory goal of an- cient Celtic sacrifice as described by T. G. E, Powell, The Celts (new edition; London: Thames and Hudson, 1980), pp. 180-181. 5 . The superscription (v. 1 MT) ascribes the psalm to Moses; there is no textual reason to doubt its authenticity, The translation used here and elsewhere in this study, except where indicated, is The New American Standard Bible (Carol Stream, Illinois: Creation House, 19731, hereafter cited as NASB. 6 . The root with which we are dealing here is usually distinguished from another root with identical radicals which has to do with "pitch" ("11. k p r," BDB, p. 498) and a third root with identical radicals which is the CONCORDIA THEOLOGICAL QUARTERLY assumed root of words meaning "young lion," "village, " and "henna" or some other plant ("Ill. k p r," BDB, pp. 498499). Brown, Driver, and Briggs, indeed, distinguish a fourth root with the same radicals as the assumed root of k epor , meaning (1) a bowl of gold or silver used in the tempIe and (2) hoarfrost ("IV. k p r," BDB, p. 499). Francis Brown, S. R. Driver, and Charles A. Briggs, eds., A Hebrew and English Lexicon of the Old Testament (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 195 I), here abbreviated BDB. Caution in the assignment of words with identical radicals to dif- ferent roots has rightly been urged by Roger Nicole (" 'Hilaskesthai' Revisited," The Evangelical Quarterly, 49 [I 9771, pp. 173- 1 77) but not in such a way as to affect the meanings of the words under consideration here. William Gesenius, "k p r," Hebrew-Chaldee Lexicon to the Old Testa- ment Scriptures, tr . and ed. Samuel Prideaux Tregelles ( 1846; rep. Grand Rapids: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, 1978), p. 41 1. Ibid., "kapporeth," p. 412. Cf. R. Laird Harris, "kaphar," Theological Wordbook of the Old Testament, ed. R. Laird Harris, Gleason L. Archer, and Bruce K. Waltke (Chicago: Moody Press, 1980), 1, p. 452. Ludwig Koehler, Lexicon in Veteris Testamenti Libros (Leiden: E. J. Brill, 195 I) , p. 452. On the basis of Koehler, indeed, J. Barton Payne (The Theology of the Older Testament [Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 19621, p. 249) continued to describe this etymology as the one "general- ly accepted. " R. Laird Harris, for example, states: "There is, however, very little evidence for this view. This connection of the Arabic word is weak and the Hebrew root is not used to mean 'cover7" (op. cit., pp. 452453). BDB, "I. [k s h]," pp. 491-492, which lists Job 31:33; Proverbs 17:9; 28:13; and Psalm 32:s as places where the word refers to covering transgressions or, in the final case, iniquity. W. Robertson Smith (The Old Testamenr in the Jewish Church: A Course of Lectures on Biblical Criticism, second ed. [London: Adam and Charles Black, 18921, p. 38 1) is cited by BDB (p. 4W) as taking this line of thought but is actually non-directive. He will only go as far as to say of the conjunction of k p r or h I h with "face" that, although not decisive, "on the whole it seems easiest to take this to mean 'to wipe clean the face' blackened by displeasure, as the Arabs say 'whiten the face."' The term kuppuru comes to have already in the expiation ritual of Babylon the significance of "set aside" or ''cancel," according to W. Schrank, Bobylonische Suehneriten (Leipziger semitistische Studien, III:l, 1908), p. 86, cited by J. Herrmann, p. 302). BDB, "I. m h h," p. 562, which lists as places where the word refers to blotting out transgressions so that they may be "no more remembered Propitiation in the Old Testament 235 by God against [the] sinner" Psalm 51 :3; Isaiah 435; and 44:22. 15. Milgrom, citing B. Landberger (The Date Palm and Its By-Products ac- cording to the Cuneiform Sources [Archiv fuer Orient forschung, Beiheft 17, 19671, pp. 30-34), cIaims that both "wipe" and "cover" are attested as usages of the Akkadian word in medical-magical texts where "the step between 'rubbing off' and 'rubbing on' is so short we cannot distinguish between cleaning and treatment." J. Milgrom, "Atonement in the OT," The Interpreter's Dictionary of the Bible: An Illustrated Encyclopedia, Supplementary Volume (Nashville, Tennessee: Ab- ingdon Press, 1976), p. 78. 16. M. Goerg ("Eine neue Deutung fuer Kapporet," Zeitschrift fuer die all- testamentliche Wisenscha ft 89 (1 977), pp. 1 15- 1 1 8) sees an Egyptian term meaning "sole" or "bottom of the foot" as the source of the Hebrew noun kapporeth, which he defines as the pIace on which the feet of the enthroned Lord rested. Y. M. Grintz, on the other hand (Leshonenu 39 [1974-751, pp. 163-168), proposes a derivation of kap- poreth from an Egyptian root meaning "roof" and uses this proposal to support an "early date" of the so-called P source of the Pentateuch. Goerg, however, has characterized the Grintz theory as philologically and historically impossible in his "Nachtrag zu Kapporet" (Biblische Notizen, 5 (19781, p. 12). 17. Thus, J. Herrmann ("hilaskomai, hilasmos: A. Expiation and Forms of Expiation in the Old Testament," Theological Dictionary of the New Testament, ed. Gerhard Kittel, tr. Geoffrey W. Bromiley, I11 [Grand Rapids: Eerdmans Publishing Company, 1 %5], p. 302) accepts the judgment of W. Robertson Smith (The Old Testament in the Jewish Church): "The question of the etymological meaning of the Hebrew root k p r is obscure." Likewise Bernd Janowski ("Suehne als Heilsgeschehen. Studien zur Suehnetheologie der Priesterschrift und zur Wurzel KPR im Alten Orient und im Alten Testament," Theologische Literaturzeitung, 106 (1 98 I), pp. 779-780, a summary of a dissertation written in Tuebingen) concludes from an investigation of the etymological relation of k p r to the Akkadian kapparu and the Arabic kafara that no conclusion is possible. 18. E-g., Payne, pp. 249-250: "The meaning of 'atone' in the Old Testa- ment is therefore to 'propitiate (placate),' and not simply to 'expiate (make reparation)'; for expiation specifies neither the why nor the how of atonement. Propitiation, by contrast, necessarily connotes the idea of an offended person (Personj, against whose wrath the propitiatory covering is sought for protection." 19. E.g., Adrien Schenker ("koper et expiation," Biblica, 63 [19821, pp. 32-36), arguing from the use of the noun in Exodus 21:28-32 and the use of the verb elsewhere. concludes that kopher means a placation or 236 CONCORDIA THEOLOGICAL QUARTERLY means of placation. 20. In two more cases the King James Version used "atonement be made" to translate forms of k p r (in the one case a pual rather than the usual piel). Employing close synonyms of the original sense of "atone," the KJV used "appease" once, "pacify" once, "be pacified" once, "make reconciliation" four times, and "reconcile" three times. More distant synonyms employed by the KJV were "forgive," occurring twice; "be forgiven," once (nithpael); "pardon," once; "be merciful," twice; "purge," twice; "purge away," twice; "be purged," five times (once in the hithpael, otherwise in the pual); "be cleansed," once (pual); "put off," once; "be disannulled," once (pual). The KJV makes use of the word "atonement" to translate a word other than k p r or kipprim (which is so rendered nine times) on only one occasion-in the New Testament, namely, kata!lagee in Romans 5:11, a word which it other- wise renders "reconciliation" or "reconciling. " The term -propitia- tion" does not occur in the Old Testament of the KJV, figuring in only three New Testament passages as the counterpart to hilasmos ( I John 2:2; 4: 10) or hilasteerion (Rom. 3 :25). 21. "Atone," Oxford Englkh Dictionary, I, p. 539: "From the frequent phrases 'set at one' or 'at onement,' the combined atonement began to take the place of onement early in the 16th c., and atone to supplant one vb. about 1550. Atone was not admitted into the Bible in 161 1, though atonement had been in since Tindale." 22. "Atonement," ibid., pp. 539-540, which observes again that the noun was apparently in use before the verb by virtue of development from the earlier substantive "onement." 23. The most influential statement of this position is the famous essay, "Hilaskesthai: Its Cognates, Derivatives, and Synonyms in the Sep- tuagint,': written by the late "doyen of British New Testament scholar- ship," C. H. Dodd (originally published in 1931 in the Journal of Theological Studies [32; pp. 352-3601 and reprinted in C. H . Dodd, The Bible and the Greeks [London: Hodder and Stoughton, 1935, pp. 82-95]). The influence of this essay was such that already in 1939 Vin- cent Taylor could assert that Dodd had "conclusively proved" the non-classical (i.e., non-propitiatory) sense of hilaskesthai and its relatives in the Septuagint ("Great Texts Reconsidered: Romans 3, 25f. ," Expository Times, 50 [1938-391, p. 2%). The supposed non-classical use of these words in the Septuagint was assumed, of course, to arise from the force of the original Hebrew words which Greek vocables were being used to translate. Thus, Dodd was describing his own concept too of k p r when he contended that those who produced the Septuagint did not understand k p r "as conveying the sense of propitiating the Deity" (p. 359). Propitiation in the Old Testament 237 C. H. for example, in his essay so widely acclaimed in the critical world was again speaking not simply of ancient Jewish thought, but also of his own when he concluded (p. 359): "Hellenistic Judaism, as represented by the LXX, does not regard the cultus as a means of paci- fying the Deity.. . ." His comments on Romans show that an aversion t o the doctrine of divine wrath lies behind the aversion to the doctrine of propitiation (The Epistle to the Romcns [New York: Harper and Brothers, 19321, pp. 21 -22). Indeed, Norman H. Young ("C. H. Dodd, 'Hilaskest hai ' and His Critics, " The Evangelical Quarterly, 48 [1976), p. 78) uses the adjective "grotesque" to express his disgust: "If one ad- vocates 'propitiation,' the word must be radically applied i~ the first in- stance to the removal of pollution and only secondarily to the cessation of wrath. The initiative of God in this action must be jealously preserved and all intimations of the grotesque notion of God propitiating himself, or his justice, banished." Perhaps the ultimate potential of the higher-critical method of interpretation is realized, by Henri Clavier ("Note sur un Mot-Clef du Johannisme.. . Hilasmos," Novum Testamenturn, 10 [October 19681, pp. 287-304) when he eschews the idea of propitiating God while still preserving the propitiatory denota- tion of the Greek vocables concerned and so proposes that, in the Johannine literature at least, it is God who propitiates man. Johannes Herrmann (p. 305) sees in 1 Samuel 26:19, for instance, "the firm statement that when God is unfriendly the savour of sacrifice will propitiate Him. The element of expiation seems to be lacking here, since this isolated primitive statement provides no motive for the wrath of the deity." Herrmann adds that Genesis 8:20-22 and 2 Samuel 2425 are to be understood along the same lines. Leon Morris (The Apostolic Preaching of the Cross, third edition [Grand Rapids: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, 19651, pp. 149-150) estimates the occurrence of more than 580 references in the Old Testament to the wrath of God aroused by sin and requiring punish- ment to satisfy His justice. According to the author's chronology, Jacob set off t o Haran-Padanararn in the year 1929 B.C. (Gen. 28) and returned t o Palestine in 1909 B.C. (Gen. 31). This is the one passage where the KJV (followed here by the NASB) uses "appease" to translate k p r. BDB, "[panah], pl. panim," pp. 81 5-816. This is the one occasion on which the KJV uses the word "pacify" t o translate k p r. BDB, "hemah," pp. 404-405. This covenant, derived from the days of Joshua, had involved an Israelite oath sworn by the name of "the Lord God of Israel," and the CONCORDIA THEOLOGICAL QUARTERLY princes of Israel had, consequently, scrupled to harm the Gibeonites ''lest wrath," clearly the wrath of God, "be upon us for the oath which we swore to them" (Josh. 9%-21). 33. This is one of only four passages outside the books of Exodus, Leviticus, and Numbers in which the KJV uses "atonementH to translate k p r (the others being 2 Sam. 21 :3; 1 Chron. 6:49; 29:24; Neh. 10:33). It is the only occasion aside from Leviticus 16:23 on which the KJV uses the phrase "make the atonement" (although the passive for- mulation "the atonement was made" occurs in Exodus 29:33), thus diverging from the usual usage of the word with the indefinite article (the anarthous construction, "make atonement," occurring five times). 34. Friedrich Buechsel, " hileoos, " Theological Dictionary of [he New Tsstame~t, 111, p. 300. Therefore George Smeaton (The Apostles' Doc- trine of the Atonement [Edinburgh, 18701, p. 455) could assert of hilasmos: "The uniform acceptation of the word in classical Greek, when applied to the Deity, is the means of appeasing God, or of averting His anger; and not a single instance to the contrary occurs in the whole Greek literature." Moulton and Milligan ascribe the same uniform pro- pitiatory denotation to the word group in Hellenistic Greek as do Lid- dell and Scott in respect to the classical language [Henry George Liddell and Robert Scott, A Greek-English Lexicon, rev. Henry Stuart Jones (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1940; supplement, 1%8), p. 8281. Even Dodd admits that outside of the Septuagint and New Testament hilaskomai and exilaskomai "have regularly the meaning 'placate', 'propitiate"' (p. 352). He produces two instances in the rest of Greek literature, to be sure, in which he sees a n expiatory (and non - pro- pitiatory) significance of exilaskomai, but they are quite unconvincing. Dodd's main thesis that the word group refers in the Septuagint and the New Testament t o expiation rather than propitiation has, of course, car- ried much more weight in the scholarly world, but it too has been satisfactorily parried by the thrusts from various angles of Nicole, Hill, and, above all, Morris: Roger R. Nicole, "C. H. Dodd and the Doctrine of Propitiation, " Westminsrer Theological Journal, 17 (1 954- 1959, pp. 11 7- 157; " 'Hilaskesthai' Revisited," The Evangelical Quarterly, 49 (1977), pp. 173- 177. David Hill, Greek Words and Hebrew Meanings: Studies in the Semantics of Soteriological Terms (Cambridge: Cam- bridge University Press, 1%7), which deals with "The Interpretation of hilaskesthai and Related Words in the Septuagint and in the New Testa- ment," pp. 23-48. Morris took up the guantlet thrown down by Dodd in "The Use of Hilaskesthai etc. in Biblical Greek," The ~xposi tory Times, 62 (195&1951), pp. 227-233, and continued his counteroffensive in "The Wrath of God," The Expository Times, 63 (1951-1952), pp. 142-145, and successive editions of The Aposfofic Preaching o f the Propitiation in the Old Testament 239 Cross (first published in 1955). The third edition (Grand Rapids: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, 1%5) also incorporates material previously published in "The Meaning of hilasteerion in Romans iii.25," New Testament Studies, 2 (1955-1956), pp. 33-43. Morris responds to Dodd in various ways in chapters five and six, pp. 144-213. Johannes Herrmann, p. 302. The other translations are hagiazoo (twice), katharizoo (twice), ek kutharizoo, perikatharizoo, katharos gignomai, aphieemi, athooooo, aphaireoo, apokathairoo, and apaleiph 00. Raymond Surburg , The Principles of Biblical Interpretation (Fort Wayne: Concordia Theological Seminary Press), p. 401. Thus, Chytraeus began his treatise on sacrifice with a summary of the plan by which "God's Son would take on human nature and become a sacrificial victim, thus placating the utterly just wrath of God and restoring righteousness and eternal salvation to the human race" (p. 33) and this affirmation (p. 34): "And in order that man might be ad- monished and instructed concerning the sacrifice of Christ, God in- stituted animal sacrifices immediately after His first creatures had been drawn back to Him." The distinction between "clean" and "unclean" animals in Genesis 8:20-indeed, already in the Lord's instructions to Noah in 7:2 and in Noah's observance of them in 7:8-clearly assumes not only the prior institution of sacrifice by God, but also his provision of a considerable quantity of sacrificial legislation (although not necessitating, of course, anything nearly so detailed as the later Mosaic Code). BDB, "nihoah," p. 629. Cf. the verbal root and its other derivative, in- cluding the name "Noah" (Gen. 5:29), pp. 628-629. The ki clause-echoing 6:5 and serving as one of our traditional proof- texts of universal depravity and original sin-provides, of course, the reason why it would seem appropriate to exterminate mankind and so underlines the propitiatory power of sacrifice in deflecting the thunder- bolt of divine wrath from so conducive a target. BDB, "'oluh," p. 750. The Hebrew word rendered "that it may be accepted" is a form of the verb r tz h, which will merit more attention in a future study. Suffice it to say at this point that its presence intensifies the spirit of propitiation which k p r woi~ld conjure even on its own. The "it" refers to "the young bull," as the NASB translates it, in verse 5 (literally, "the son of the herd"). BDB, "hatta'th," p. 308. BDB, "s I h," p. 699. BDB, "#'asham," p. 79. BDB, "kippurim," p. 498; it is found only in the plural, being allotted to the abstract category. CONCORDIA THEOLOGICAL QUARTERLY BDB, "shelem," p. 1023. The Feast of Weeks (later called Pentecost) was the second of the three annual pilgrimage feasts, marking the completion of the wheat harvest (therefore called also the Feast of Harvest o r the Feast of First-Fruits). The identity of the speaker is established by verse 8 (MT; 7EV) and con- firmed by Hebrews 10:5,10. Psalm 40 describes the ultimate sacrifice-the sufferings (vv. 15- 16, 18a MT), according to the human nature which He was t o assume (v. 8 MT and, by necessary implication, vv. 7, 9, etc.), of Him to whom God was t o impute all the sins of humanity (v. 13 MT)-in fulfilment of prophecy (v. 8 MT)-in order to save mankind from the consequences of those sins (vv. 10-11, 17 MT). This ultimate sacrifice was to make animal sacrifice obsolete (v. 7 MT). Hebrews 10, therefore, argues that there was no longer any purpose to the sacrifice of animals, since the One who was to come had now, in fact, fulfilled all the prophecies of Psalm &in short, "we have Seen sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all" (v.9). Apology of the Augsburg Confession, XXIV:21,24. Die Bekennt- nisschrifren der evangelisch -1urherischen Kirche, fifth edition (Goet- tingen: Vandenhoeck und Ruprecht, 1%3), pp. 355-356. Ibid. VII:50. Bekenntnisschriften, p. 988. Similarly, Chytraeus maintains that "the Levitical sacrifices were also sacraments for the pious, that is, they were symbols of belief in Christ, or signs and testimonies to awaken and encourage faith in God's promised forgiveness of sins, freely given because of Christ's future death on their behalf." David Chytraeus, On Sacrifice: A Reformation Treatise in Biblical Theology, trans. and ed. John Warwick Montgomery (St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1%2), p. 60, where he cites the example of Samuel before the Battle of Mizpah (1 Sam. 7:7-12). Calvin did not, of course, admit the sacramental role of the Old Testa- ment sacrifices, since he did not accept the existence of sacraments, in the Lutheran sense of the word, in either testament. His definition of a sacrament does not make it a medium through which God conveys to men the forgiveness of sins: "Now, I think it will be a simple and ap- propriate definition, if we say that it is an outward sign, by which the Lord seals in our consciences the promise of his good-kill towards us, t o support the weakness of our faith." John Calvin, Institutes of the Christian Religion, tr. John Allen, 2 vols.,(Philadelphia: Presbyterian Board of Christian Education), 11, p. 555. O n this passage see Douglas McC. L. Judisch, "I John 1:l-22," CTQ 46 (1982), pp. 44-46, where I observe that "the death of Christ has satisfied, with respect to all sinners who have ever lived, the wrath of Propitiatiori in the Old Testament 24 1 God aroused by sin" (p. 45). John Calvin, Commentaries on [he Cutholic Epislles, trans. and ed. John Owen (Grand Rapids: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, 1948), p. 171. Ibid., p. 173. Similarly, Payne calls both the ultimate sacrificial death of Chris; and the sacrifices connected with the effectuation of the Sinaitic testament (from which blood was sprinkled on the assembled Israelites) "a limited atonement, designed only for God's elect church" (p. 251). He explains his phraseology thus (p. 252, note 21): "The qualification 'limited' must not be understood as in any way minimizing, the polen- ti01 efficacy of the atonement. But it does signify that the actual pro- pitiation of God's wrath only occurs in reference to the elect. 'Limited' atonement is simply 'definite' atonement. There is no real atonement, unless it is efficacious; and therefore, since salvation is not universal, it is clear that God did not ordain the atonement of the sins of the non-elect." (The italics derive from Payne himself.) The burnt offering, for example, was requisite to the purification of women (Lev. 12:6-8), removal of ceremonial uncleanness, (Lev. 15: 14-1 5, 30), cleansing of former lepers (Lev. 14: 19), and restitution for breaking the Nazirite vow (Num. 6: 1 1, 14). See note 45 above. The altar clearly served, as the "altars" in our churches still serve (Charles McClean, ed., The Conduct of the Services [St. Louis: Clayton Publishing House, 19751, p. 7), as the symbol of the presence of God, whose presence with sinners, however, could be a blessing to them, rather than a curse, only by virtue of the death of His Son, symbolized by the sacrifices burnt upon the altar and the blood sprinkled on it, as here in Leviticus 9 (Heb. 13: 10). The form rendered "for you" by the NASB is the preposition 'a1 with a second person plural termination. The Feast o f T r u m p e t s , a t t h e beginning of T i sh r i (September-October), became Rosh Hashanah, the beginning of the civil year, signalled by the blowing of the shofar, or ram's horn (cf. Lev. 23~23-25). This veil clearly symbolized the separation created by sin between fallen mankind and a God of absolute holiness, a separation which could be removed only by the death of God the Son (Heb. 9:s; Matt. 27:51 and parallels). BDB, "kippurim," p. 498. The current usage of "atonement" centers in "expiation, reparation for wrong or injury" (although it may still serve as a synonym of "recon- ciliation" or "propitiation"). H. W. and F. G. Fowler, eds., The Con- cise Oxford Dictionary of Current English, fifth edition (Oxford: COKCORDIA THEOLOGICAL QUARTERLY Clarendon Press, 1964), p. 73. The verb occurs sixteen times and the noun six times in Leviticus 16. BDB, "kapporelh," p. 498. E.g., Leviticus 1:l; Numbers 1:l; and especially Numbers 7:89 (cf. Ex. 34:33-35). "Mercyseat ," Oxford English Dictionary, VII, p. 352. The Synodical Catechism defines "merciful" as "full of pity," while it invests "grace" with richer apparel as the "love and favor of God toward undeserving man." A Short Explanation of Dr. Marlin Luther's Small Catechism: A Handbook of Christian Doctrine (St. Louis: Con- cordia Publishing House, 1943), pp. 48, 216. "Mercyseat," loc. cit. Charlton T. Lewis and Charles Short, eds., A Latin Dictionary (Ox- ford: Clarendon Press, 1879), p. 1471. Liddell, Scott, and Jones, pp. 827-828, who classify hileos and hileoos (originaIIy an Attic form) as variants of hilaos, the more common form in classical Greek. Walter Bauer, WilIiam F. Arndt, and F. Wilbur Gingrich, A Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament and Other Early Chris- tian Lilerature, fourth edition (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1952), p. 376. Arndt and Gingrich give the definition "that which ex- piates or propitiates, concr. a means of expiation, gift to procure expia- tion" for the word in Romans 3:25, although some argue for "place of propitiation" (cf. T. W. Manson, " Hilasteerion," Journal of Theological Studies, 46 [1945], pp. 1-10). Arndt and Gingrich give "mercy-seat" as the meaning of hilasteerion in Hebrews 9:5. See note 8. See note 67. E.g., Exodus 25: 17-22. NASB, p. 1 17. Although the NASB text of verse 22 translates lamedh as "in regard to," the margin gives "in addition to" as an alternative. The Massoretic Text actually has an active form of k p r; i.e., "he shall make atonement," the subject of the verb presumably being the Lord, who is named in the following and parallel clause. Thus, Chytraeus correctly maintains that ". . . the sacrifices were prin- cipally representations or types of the sacrifice and benefits of Christ which are set forth in the New Testament." For the sacrifice of animals was designed "to bring to mind the future sacrifice of Christ, which alone was a lutron or ransom for the sins of the human race." David Chytraeus, pp. 58-59. The point appears from the last two words of verse 13 (in English the last five words). It is not the cultus itself ("the solemn assembly") but its conjunction with unbelief ("iniquity") which the ~ o r d finds Propitiation in the Old Testament 243 unbearable- indeed, hates (cf. " 'uwen," BDB, p. 20). 83. Apology IV: 207. "Apology of the Augsburg confession," tr. Jaroslav Pelikan, The Book of Concord: The Confessions of the Evangelical Lutheran Church, ed. Theodore G . Tappert (Philadelphia: Fortress Press, 1959), p. 135.