God had given instructions for the Day of Atonement sacrifices. There were to be two goats considered one offering. One goat would be chosen as a blood sacrifice and the other goat, the scapegoat, would symbolize the sins of the people being taken away.
Instructions for the Goats
The High Priest was to choose two male goats without defects. Then, by lot, he was to choose one goat to be the sin sacrifice and the other goat to be the scapegoat.
The High Priest would kill the goat chosen to be the sin offering for the nation. Then the goat’s blood would be sprinkled on the mercy seat of the Ark in the Most Holy Place followed by sprinkling of the blood on the brazen altar.
Then the High Priest would put both hands on the head of the living scapegoat and confess over it the sins of the nation. This goat was then led out to the wilderness, never to be seen again. Thus, the releasing of the goat symbolized the sins of the people being carried away, never to be seen again. (Summary of Leviticus 16:7-28)
The Goat Offering Foreshadows What Christ will Do
John the Baptist prophesied what Jesus would do. John 1: 29 The next day John saw Jesus coming toward him and said, “Look! The Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world!  The author of Hebrews gives us even more insight.
Hebrews 9: 11 So Christ has now become the High Priest over all the good things that have come. He has entered that greater, more perfect Tabernacle in heaven, which was not made by human hands and is not part of this created world. 12 With his own blood—not the blood of goats and calves—he entered the Most Holy Place once for all time and secured our redemption forever.
A scapegoat is defined as, “one that bears the blame for others.” Jesus, who never sinned became sin for us and bore the blame we deserved. Then He removed our sins far away. Psalm 103: 10 He does not punish us for all our sins; he does not deal harshly with us, as we deserve…
12 He has removed our sins as far from us as the east is from the west.
Jesus accomplished the work of the Day of Atonement goats once and forever. Jesus fulfilled the Day of Atonement with His work on the cross. What a great Savior we have.
To hear more about two goats, but considered one offering, listen here: