Who is Azazel/ scapegoat?
The word Azazel/scapegoat is mentioned only once in the bible, we read it in the book of Leviticus chapter 16.
Azazel was not a man or a priest but a goat set apart for the atonement of the sins of the children of Israel, was not slaughtered for sin like any other goat but was taken alive to the wilderness and abandoned there. such kind of goat is known by that name.
These instructions was given to the children of Israel by God, to be held on the great day of Atonement only once a year, on the 10th day of the seventh month of the Jewish calendar, when the High Priest went to atone for the sins of all the Jews
On that day no one was allowed to work, but to dwell in his house, tormenting himself with his own sins.
Now in this day the High Priest is first responsible for making atonement first for himself and for his people ( his households), and then he goes to make atonement for the sins of others, otherwise he will die.
After he has finished to make an atonement for his sins now he is ready to make atonement for the children of Israel, here he was commanded to take two goats from the congregation for a sin offering and one ram for a burnt offering (Leviticus 16:5), after which the high priest stood before the tabernacle and voted between the two goats.
Leviticus 16:7 KJV
And he shall take the two goats, and present them before the Lord at the door of the tabernacle of the congregation.
When he has finished, one is taken for the burnt offering for the sins of all the people, then his blood was sprinkled in the tent of meeting and the altar, and the second one is not killed but rather the high priest puts both his hands on the horns of the goat (who is called Azazel) and then the priest confesses all the sins of children of Israel which they have committed against God, before the goat that stood before them, after which the goat is delivered to one man and then taken to the desert far away from the dwelling of the people and get abandoned there. Then due to that act the iniquity of Israel is covered.
21 And Aaron shall lay both his hands upon the head of the live goat, and confess over him all the iniquities of the children of Israel, and all their transgressions in all their sins, putting them upon the head of the goat, and shall send him away by the hand of a fit man into the wilderness:
22 And the goat shall bear upon him all their iniquities unto a land not inhabited: and he shall let go the goat in the wilderness.
It is a complete picture we see in the New Testament, Christ as our Azazel took our sins and all our accusations, was crucified outside the city, was counted as Nothing for us. And through him our sins are blotted out, unlike the goat who in the coming year should be given another… How happy you are to be redeemed by Christ,. If you have been forgiven of your sins, you have been forgiven indeed.