A medical definition of scapegoating is:
Process in which the mechanisms of projection or displacement are used in focusing feelings of aggression, hostility, frustration, etc., upon another individual or group; the amount of blame being unwarranted. Scapegoating is a hostile tactic often employed to characterize an entire group of individuals according to the unethical or immoral conduct of a small number of individuals belonging to that group. Scapegoating relates to guilt by association and stereotyping.
King James Bible
Leviticus 16:10 But the goat, on which the lot fell to be the scapegoat, shall be presented alive before the LORD, to make an atonement with him, and to let him go for a scapegoat into the wilderness.
Gesenius also thought the term referred to the object, and emended the name to עזלזל utter removal, theoretically the name of a demon. However, neither this demon nor the root עזל (comp. אזל) are attested.
In Greek Septuagint and later translations
8and Aaron shall cast lots upon the two goats, one lot for the Lord and the other lot for the scapegoat (Greek apodiopompaio dat.).9And Aaron shall present the goat on which the lot fell for the Lord, and offer it as a sin offering; 10but the goat on which the lot of the sent away one fell shall be presented alive before the Lord to make atonement over it, that it may be sent away (Greek eis ten apopompen acc.) into the wilderness.
Following the Septuagint, the Latin Vulgate, Martin Luther and the King James Version also give readings such as Young's Literal Translation: "And Aaron hath given lots over the two goats, one lot for Jehovah, and one lot for a goat of departure'".
The Pesher on the Periods A (4Q180) possibly mentions Azazel:
According to the Peshitta, Azazel is rendered Za-za-e'il strong one against/of God. Pesher on the Periods A (4Q180) reads, " . . . on Azazel (some read Uzael) and the angels . . ." If the name is in fact Azazel's, it is spelled עזזאל, equivalent to the Peshitta's version. Targum Neofiti reads עזזל, without the aleph.
The ransom theory of atonement was a theory in Christian theology as to how the process of Atonement in Christianity had happened. It therefore accounted for the meaning and effect of the death of Jesus Christ. It was one of a number of historical theories, and was mostly popular between the 4th and 11th centuries, with little support in recent times. It originated in the early Church, particularly in the work of Origen. The theory teaches that the death of Christ was a ransom sacrifice, usually said to have been paid to Satan, in satisfaction for the bondage and debt on the souls of humanity as a result of inherited sin.
The Scapegoat in Christianity
Do the Synoptic passion narratives portray Jesus (and Barabbas) as one (or both) of the goats of the Day of Atonement? This question currently has no consensus in biblical scholarship but four contrasting positions: The evangelists portray (1) Jesus as the abused scapegoat in his maltreatment by the Roman soldiers (Mk 15.16-20 parr.); (2) Jesus as a pharmakos-like scapegoat patterned after Hellenistic motifs of redemptive suffering; (3) Barabbas as the scapegoat and Jesus as the immolated goat (Mt. 27.15-26 parr.); and (4) Jesus as neither goat, but the typological fulfillment of alternative (suffering) figures: Isaiah’s Servant, the Psalms’ Righteous Sufferer, the Son of Man, and the divine warrior. This article reviews and evaluates these four positions, suggesting avenues for future research. see:
Azazel in modern Hebrew
בעברית מודרנית, המילה עזאזל נמצאת בשימוש בקללה: "לך לעזאזל" שמשמעותה דומה לביטוי "לך לגיהנום". אמירת "לעזאזל" סתם, ללא הפנייה למישהו מסוים, בדרך כלל משקפת מצב של כעס או תסכול.
המשורר חיים נחמן ביאליק, שנתבע לדין לאחר שאמר לצעיר (שהעיר לו על כך שהוא מדבר יידיש בתל אביב) שילך לעזאזל, התייחס בכתב הגנתו להבדל בין משמעות המילה בעברית המודרנית למשמעותה המקורית, לדעתו: "אפשר שהמלה חריפה קצת לפי הפירוש הרגיל של מילה זו בשוק, אבל לפי פירושה המדויק והאמיתי הוא שם הר במדבר, לא רחוק מירושלים מהלך שתיים שלוש שעות במדבר יהודה. והמקום הזה, לדעתי, די מכובד לטיול בשביל אותו האיש"
A Shared Ritual Tradition in the Ancient Near East
Some may argue that the biblical scapegoat rite was influenced by Hittite culture, despite the substantial geographic and chronological disparities between the two cultures, but this is unlikely. Rather, this practice’s wide distribution, from the 24th century onward, among the inhabitants of Ebla and Ugarit, as well as the Luwians and the Hurrians—in contrast to its rarity in Mesopotamia—demonstrates that this is another shared practice of the Syro-Anatolian region, which the ancient Israelite civilization is part of.
Additional examples for this shared cultural region include the purification by blood and the burning of sacrifices on altars, which have been found or are echoed in neighboring cultures stretching from Asia Minor through Syria and down to the Sinai Peninsula. In speaking of such practices, it is best not to speak of the Israelites borrowing the custom either directly or through nomadic mediators, but of Israel inheriting them from their predecessors of the 2nd millennium Syro-Anatolian region.
See: The Scapegoat Ritual and Its Ancient Near Eastern Parallels, Dr. Noga Ayali-Darshan, Bar Ilan University
For an alternative view, see: https://www.jstor.org/stable/1585003