"The Altar That is Before God"

The High Priest has completed the sprinkling inside the Holy of Holies and within the Sanctuary. The Bible instructs us that he is now to sprinkle on the corners of "the altar that is before God" from the mixture of both vessels. This expression refers only to the golden incense altar within the Sanctuary, because of its proximity to the holy place - the outer altar that stands in the court is never referred to as being "before God." As to the Bible's instructions that he is now to "go out," this indicates that he is to go out from the place where he had been standing by the curtain, and serve on the outer side of the altar.

The High Priest walks around the incense altar and sprinkles on each of its four corners. Afterwards, he clears away some of the coals on top and exposes some of the gold surface of the altar. On this area, the "floor" of the small incense altar, he sprinkles an additional seven times, as per the verse (ibid. 19): "He shall sprinkle the blood on it seven times with his forefinger." Whatever was left in the mizrak when he concluded, he poured out onto the western side of the outer altar's foundation, in keeping with the instructions (ibid. 4:7): "He shall then spill out all the rest of the bull's blood at the base of the sacrificial altar, which is in front of the Communion Tent's entrance."

 

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