There is much confusion about whether or not Yom Kippur still needs to be observed today and it comes from this myth: that Yom Kippur is the Day of Atonement. It’s not.
The root of kippur is kapar (Strong’s 3722), which means covering. Yom Kippur is the Day of Covering. Atonement is another word entirely, with different etymological roots.
The Bible does not refer to Yom Kippur as the Day of Atonement. Atonement means, “to stand as an equivalent, satisfaction, to make amends, or to procure reconciliation.” Does Yom Kippur accomplish this? It does not.
Yom Kippur provides covering, not atonement. It is a limited, conditional reprieve. If it provided all-encompassing reconciliation to YHWH it wouldn’t need to be done year after year.
Scripture does not teach that the blood of bulls and goats brings atonement or brought atonement before Yeshua. Let's not bend the truth to support years of mistranslation.
The root of kippur, kapar is spelled with a qof, peh, and resh. Their meanings in Paleo Hebrew:
Qof q = open hand
Peh p = open mouth
Resh r = head of a person
Or when you put them together, “The open hand covering the mouth of the accuser.” This is what Yom Kippur is all about!
Yom Kippur is the day when YHWH stretches out his hand to cover the accusations against us. This is absolutely something we should participate in. While our sins are atoned for in the Messiah, we still live with their consequences. YHWH graciously covers us from accusation and condemnation.
Yom Kippur accomplishes covering, not atonement. YHWH commands us to keep this holy day in Vayikra 23 and in B’midbar 29. There is no instruction from Yeshua or Shaul to discontinue it. Celebrating Yom Kippur is an outward expression of our inward repentance and it enables YHWH to cover the accusations against us.
Only in Yeshua is a person fully reconciled, but Yom Kippur a person is covered for another year. These things are different.