Top 10 Hebrew Words to Know for Yom Kippur

“For on this day atonement shall be made for you to cleanse you of all your sins; you shall be clean before Hashem.” Leviticus 16:30 (The Israel Bible™)

From Friday evening through sundown on Saturday, the nation of Israel will celebrate the holiest day of the year, Yom Kippur. Yom Kippur is mentioned several times in the Bible as a day to cleanse oneself of sins, both between man and man and between man and God.

Yom Kippur completes the period known in Judaism as the High Holy Days or Yamim Nora’im (ימים נוראים). During this time of year, God is considered the most easily accessible. Therefore, this is the time of year when one is granted extra strength to amend his or her behavior and seek forgiveness for one’s weaknesses and mistakes from those he or she may have wronged.

“It is interesting to note that, in Hebrew, there isn’t a word for ‘sin’,” explained Roni Segal, academic adviser for The Israel Institute of Biblical Studies, a company which teaches Hebrew language and Biblical studies online, to Breaking Israel News. “The word used is chet (חֵטְא). Chet is actually a term used in archery when one misses the target. The idea here is that, when one misses the target, they adjust themselves and try again. One can always repent.”

Here are 10 important Hebrew words to know for Yom Kippur:

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