God’s Holy Days constantly remind us how, step by step, God is working out His Master Plan. The first three of these, Passover, the Days of Unleavened Bread, and Pentecost picture the first harvest of human beings--the preparation, training and final reaping of the firstfruits-- those few now being called. The last four show the plan God has for completing salvation for the rest of the world.
Jesus Christ will come suddenly; he will then intervene in this world’s affairs at His return. He will be swift and firm in punishing the nations.
But what about Satan? What happens to him?
The fifth annual Sabbath, or the Day of Atonement, (or At-one-ment) reveals the answer. It pictures Jesus Christ deposing Satan the Devil from his present position as this world’s ruler, and removing him to a place completely away and apart from mankind. He will be bound, no longer able to deceive the nations, for one thousand years (Rev. 20:1-2).
The Day of Atonement has also a deep personal meaning for members of God’s Church. When Satan and his demons are dethroned and removed from office, they must be replaced by qualified rulers. Satan will be replaced by Jesus Christ. His demons by those who have surrendered to God and been willing to obey Him.
The Day of Atonement is perhaps the most unusual Holy Day. On this one day God commands His people to fast. Fasting is to humble oneself, to help us to see ourselves as we are. And to see God as he is.
Fasting on the Day of Atonement reveals to us how much we still love ourselves. Just how difficult it is to give up some of “self”. This day is a test to see which we will put first. Will it be the cry of the body for food or the sincere desire to obey God.
The Day of Atonement is a vivid illustration of the state of mind necessary for salvation, of the humility, the godly sorrow, the earnest seeking for the right way.
The whole world needs to learn obedience to God, faith instead of skepticism, reliance on the superior wisdom and experience of the Creator instead of human wisdom. We must do away with reasoning, feelings, desires and emotions based on the pulls of the flesh when it come to obeying God.
The first step for the establishment of a utopia on this earth is the reinstitution of God’s authority, with enforcement of God’s law through a world wide system of perfectly righteous kings and priests.
At-one-ment will not be complete with merely putting Satan away. The greatest task will be yet remaining. Man’s mind, man’s nature, must be refashioned, his character reshaped and remolded until it becomes at-one with God.
What a blessing it will be when Satan is bound! Freed from their spiritual captivity, the whole world will be taught God’s way to real peace, harmony and salvation (Isa. 11:9). How wonderful and refreshing that day will be.