This is a holy holiday
when all my Jewish neighbors pray
with gratitude that God forgives
our failure to achieve
the standard holiness demands
engraved in stone as His commands
and written in a moral code
that's known to one and all.
Atonement Day (or Yom Kippur)
attempts to clarify the blur
that keeps us all from focusing
on what we should confess.
For all have sinned. We've fallen short
and plead "no contest" in God's court.
Ironically, forgiveness comes
when we admit we're wrong.
Atonement calls for sacrifice.
The debt we owe demands a price
and Jews and Christians both concur
the currency is blood.
But where these two faiths disagree
is who the lamb of God might be.
A random sheep from someone's flock
or David's sinless Son.