1564.) Leviticus 14

April 30, 2015
 Global Leprosy Situation 2000 © World Health Organization

Global Leprosy Situation 2000 © World Health Organization

Leviticus 14   (NRSV)

Purification of Lepers

The Lord spoke to Moses, saying: 2This shall be the ritual for the leprous person at the time of his cleansing: He shall be brought to the priest; 3the priest shall go out of the camp, and the priest shall make an examination. If the disease is healed in the leprous person, 4the priest shall command that two living clean birds and cedarwood and crimson yarn and hyssop be brought for the one who is to be cleansed.

14. hyssop

Psalm 51:7 (NASB)

Purify me with hyssop, and I shall be clean;
Wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow.

5The priest shall command that one of the birds be slaughtered over fresh water in an earthen vessel. 6He shall take the living bird with the cedarwood and the crimson yarn and the hyssop, and dip them and the living bird in the blood of the bird that was slaughtered over the fresh water. 7He shall sprinkle it seven times upon the one who is to be cleansed of the leprous disease; then he shall pronounce him clean, and he shall let the living bird go into the open field.

8The one who is to be cleansed shall wash his clothes, and shave off all his hair, and bathe himself in water, and he shall be clean. After that he shall come into the camp, but shall live outside his tent seven days. 9On the seventh day he shall shave all his hair: of head, beard, eyebrows; he shall shave all his hair. Then he shall wash his clothes, and bathe his body in water, and he shall be clean.

10On the eighth day he shall take two male lambs without blemish, and one ewe lamb in its first year without blemish, and a grain offering of three-tenths of an ephah of choice flour mixed with oil, and one log of oil. 11The priest who cleanses shall set the person to be cleansed, along with these things, before the Lord, at the entrance of the tent of meeting.

12The priest shall take one of the lambs, and offer it as a guilt offering, along with the log of oil, and raise them as an elevation offering before the Lord.

14. Lim Lamb to the slaughter

“Lamb to the Slaughter” by Australian artist Dawn Lim

13He shall slaughter the lamb in the place where the sin offering and the burnt offering are slaughtered in the holy place; for the guilt offering, like the sin offering, belongs to the priest: it is most holy. 14The priest shall take some of the blood of the guilt offering and put it on the lobe of the right ear of the one to be cleansed, and on the thumb of the right hand, and on the big toe of the right foot. 15The priest shall take some of the log of oil and pour it into the palm of his own left hand, 16and dip his right finger in the oil that is in his left hand and sprinkle some oil with his finger seven times before the Lord. 17Some of the oil that remains in his hand the priest shall put on the lobe of the right ear of the one to be cleansed, and on the thumb of the right hand, and on the big toe of the right foot, on top of the blood of the guilt offering. 18The rest of the oil that is in the priest’s hand he shall put on the head of the one to be cleansed.

Then the priest shall make atonement on his behalf before the Lord: 19the priest shall offer the sin offering, to make atonement for the one to be cleansed from his uncleanness. Afterward he shall slaughter the burnt offering; 20and the priest shall offer the burnt offering and the grain offering on the altar. Thus the priest shall make atonement on his behalf and he shall be clean.

14. Jesus cleanses a leper

Mark 1:40-45 (New Living Translation)

A man with leprosy came and knelt in front of Jesus, begging to be healed. “If you are willing, you can heal me and make me clean,” he said.

Moved with compassion, Jesus reached out and touched him. “I am willing,” he said.“Be healed!” Instantly the leprosy disappeared, and the man was healed.  Then Jesus sent him on his way with a stern warning: “Don’t tell anyone about this. Instead, go to the priest and let him examine you. Take along the offering required in the law of Moses for those who have been healed of leprosy. This will be a public testimony that you have been cleansed.”

But the man went and spread the word, proclaiming to everyone what had happened. As a result, large crowds soon surrounded Jesus, and he couldn’t publicly enter a town anywhere. He had to stay out in the secluded places, but people from everywhere kept coming to him.

21But if he is poor and cannot afford so much, he shall take one male lamb for a guilt offering to be elevated, to make atonement on his behalf, and one-tenth of an ephah of choice flour mixed with oil for a grain offering and a log of oil; 22also two turtledoves or two pigeons, such as he can afford, one for a sin offering and the other for a burnt offering.

23On the eighth day he shall bring them for his cleansing to the priest, to the entrance of the tent of meeting, before the Lord; 24and the priest shall take the lamb of the guilt offering and the log of oil, and the priest shall raise them as an elevation offering before the Lord. 25The priest shall slaughter the lamb of the guilt offering and shall take some of the blood of the guilt offering, and put it on the lobe of the right ear of the one to be cleansed, and on the thumb of the right hand, and on the big toe of the right foot. 26The priest shall pour some of the oil into the palm of his own left hand, 27and shall sprinkle with his right finger some of the oil that is in his left hand seven times before the Lord. 28The priest shall put some of the oil that is in his hand on the lobe of the right ear of the one to be cleansed, and on the thumb of the right hand, and the big toe of the right foot, where the blood of the guilt offering was placed. 29The rest of the oil that is in the priest’s hand he shall put on the head of the one to be cleansed, to make atonement on his behalf before the Lord. 30And he shall offer, of the turtledoves or pigeons such as he can afford, 31one for a sin offering and the other for a burnt offering, along with a grain offering; and the priest shall make atonement before the Lord on behalf of the one being cleansed.

32This is the ritual for the one who has a leprous disease, who cannot afford the offerings for his cleansing.

_________________________

Music:

Psalm 103:2-3 (NIV)

Praise the LORD, O my soul,
and forget not all his benefits-

who forgives all your sins
and heals all your diseases.

HERE  is “Jesus, You Are My Healer”  sung by Don Moen.

_________________________

Purification of Leprous Houses

 "A leprous disease" -- perhaps mold -- in a house is a health hazard.

“A leprous disease”  (perhaps mold or mildew)  in a house is a health hazard.

33The Lord spoke to Moses and Aaron, saying: 34When you come into the land of Canaan, which I give you for a possession, and I put a leprous disease in a house in the land of your possession, 35the owner of the house shall come and tell the priest, saying, “There seems to me to be some sort of disease in my house.” 36The priest shall command that they empty the house before the priest goes to examine the disease, or all that is in the house will become unclean; and afterward the priest shall go in to inspect the house. 37He shall examine the disease; if the disease is in the walls of the house with greenish or reddish spots, and if it appears to be deeper than the surface, 38the priest shall go outside to the door of the house and shut up the house seven days.

May I suggest BLEACH!!!

May I suggest — BLEACH!

39The priest shall come again on the seventh day and make an inspection; if the disease has spread in the walls of the house, 40the priest shall command that the stones in which the disease appears be taken out and thrown into an unclean place outside the city. 41He shall have the inside of the house scraped thoroughly, and the plaster that is scraped off shall be dumped in an unclean place outside the city. 42They shall take other stones and put them in the place of those stones, and take other plaster and plaster the house.

14. Vallotton

Drawing by Annie Vallotton for the Good News Bible.

43If the disease breaks out again in the house, after he has taken out the stones and scraped the house and plastered it, 44the priest shall go and make inspection; if the disease has spread in the house, it is a spreading leprous disease in the house; it is unclean. 45He shall have the house torn down, its stones and timber and all the plaster of the house, and taken outside the city to an unclean place.

46All who enter the house while it is shut up shall be unclean until the evening; 47and all who sleep in the house shall wash their clothes; and all who eat in the house shall wash their clothes.

48If the priest comes and makes an inspection, and the disease has not spread in the house after the house was plastered, the priest shall pronounce the house clean; the disease is healed. 49For the cleansing of the house he shall take two birds, with cedarwood and crimson yarn and hyssop,

Lev14 cleaning

Israelite cleaning products:  cedarwood, crimson yarn, and hyssop!

cedarwood — an aromatic wood.  God often calls for fragrant offerings.

crimson yarn — looking forward to the blood of Christ and forgiveness.  “Come now, let us reason together,” says the Lord.  “Though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be white as snow; though they are red as crimson, they shall be as wool.”  –Isaiah 1:18

hyssop — often used in purification rites in the Bible.  In the Passover story, hyssop was used to apply the blood of the sacrificed lamb to the doorpost.

50and shall slaughter one of the birds over fresh water in an earthen vessel, 51and shall take the cedarwood and the hyssop and the crimson yarn, along with the living bird, and dip them in the blood of the slaughtered bird and the fresh water, and sprinkle the house seven times. 52Thus he shall cleanse the house with the blood of the bird, and with the fresh water, and with the living bird, and with the cedarwood and hyssop and crimson yarn; 53and he shall let the living bird go out of the city into the open field; so he shall make atonement for the house, and it shall be clean.

54This is the ritual for any leprous disease: for an itch, 55for leprous diseases in clothing and houses, 56and for a swelling or an eruption or a spot, 57to determine when it is unclean and when it is clean. This is the ritual for leprous diseases.

All this is part of our fallen world . . . humanity and nature . . .

Romans 8:22   (NIV)

We know that the whole creation has been groaning as in the pains of childbirth right up to the present time.

_________________________

The New Revised Standard Version, copyright 1989 by the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

Images courtesy of:
map showing world distribution of leprosy.    http://www.microbiologybook.org/fox/lepmap2000.jpg
hyssop.  http://www.mountainvalleygrowers.com/orimaru.htm
Jesus cleanses a leper.   https://dwellingintheword.files.wordpress.com/2009/11/14-jesus-cleanses-a-leper.jpg
Lim.   https://dwellingintheword.files.wordpress.com/2009/11/14-lim-lamb-to-the-slaughter.jpg 
mold.    http://www.heritage.com/content/articles/2010/05/02/chelsea_standard/news/doc4bd9f1250a4482344761481.jpg
bleach.   http://www.wormsandgermsblog.com/uploads/image/Clorox%20Bleach.jpg
Vallotton.    https://dwellingintheword.files.wordpress.com/2009/11/14-vallotton.jpg?w=450
cleaning supplies.   http://static1.savingstar.com/images/coupons/521cbda11f80ef6cb2735d30/SC-Johnson-OOM-Sep-139d12a32d-c5a0-4ee9-af28-0fcb1e836438.png
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1563.) Leviticus 13

April 29, 2015
Baby skin

Baby skin, so new and soft.

Leviticus 13   (NRSV)

Leprosy: Varieties and Symptoms

The Lord spoke to Moses and Aaron, saying: 2When a person has on the skin of his body

Skin:

The largest organ in your body is . . . your skin! It makes up 15% of your total body weight.  The thinnest skin is found on your eyelids, and the thickest, on your feet. Skin holds your body together, covering and protecting your bones and muscles and other organs. It helps keep your body at the proper temperature, and it enables you to have a sense of touch. Your skin keeps out bacterial invasions, and it has cells which can make Vitamin D out of sunlight.

a swelling or an eruption or a spot, and it turns into a leprous disease on the skin of his body, he shall be brought to Aaron the priest or to one of his sons the priests. 3The priest shall examine the disease on the skin of his body, and if the hair in the diseased area has turned white and the disease appears to be deeper than the skin of his body, it is a leprous disease; after the priest has examined him he shall pronounce him ceremonially unclean. 4But if the spot is white in the skin of his body, and appears no deeper than the skin, and the hair in it has not turned white, the priest shall confine the diseased person for seven days. 5The priest shall examine him on the seventh day, and if he sees that the disease is checked and the disease has not spread in the skin, then the priest shall confine him seven days more. 6The priest shall examine him again on the seventh day, and if the disease has abated and the disease has not spread in the skin, the priest shall pronounce him clean; it is only an eruption; and he shall wash his clothes, and be clean. 7But if the eruption spreads in the skin after he has shown himself to the priest for his cleansing, he shall appear again before the priest. 8The priest shall make an examination, and if the eruption has spread in the skin, the priest shall pronounce him unclean; it is a leprous disease.

9When a person contracts a leprous disease, he shall be brought to the priest. 10The priest shall make an examination, and if there is a white swelling in the skin that has turned the hair white, and there is quick raw flesh in the swelling, 11it is a chronic leprous disease in the skin of his body. The priest shall pronounce him unclean; he shall not confine him, for he is unclean.

Feet of a leper, photographed by Candace Scharsu, who writes, "Deformities are caused by accidents because lepers lose their sense of touch due to nerve damage.  Fingers are caught on fire, cut, stabbed, stubbed, and broken till they're chiseled to nothing; toes are nibbled off by rats as they sleep."

Feet of a leper, photographed by Candace Scharsu, who writes, “Deformities are caused by accidents because lepers lose their sense of touch due to nerve damage. Fingers are caught on fire, cut, stabbed, stubbed, and broken till they’re chiseled to nothing; toes are nibbled off by rats as they sleep.”

12But if the disease breaks out in the skin, so that it covers all the skin of the diseased person from head to foot, so far as the priest can see, 13then the priest shall make an examination, and if the disease has covered all his body, he shall pronounce him clean of the disease; since it has all turned white, he is clean.

13. blood of Jesus

“Behold, if the leprosy have covered all his flesh, he shall pronounce him clean that hath the plague.”
–Leviticus xiii.13.

“We, too, are lepers, and may read the law of the leper as applicable to ourselves. When a man sees himself to be altogether lost and ruined, covered all over with the defilement of sin, and in no part free from pollution; when he disclaims all righteousness of his own, and pleads guilty before the Lord, then he is clean through the blood of Jesus, and the grace of God. Hidden, unfelt, unconfessed iniquity is the true leprosy; but when sin is seen and felt, it has received its deathblow, and the Lord looks with eyes of mercy upon the soul afflicted with it. Nothing is more deadly than self-righteousness, or more hopeful than contrition.”

from Morning and Evening, by Charles Haddon Spurgeon

14But if raw flesh ever appears on him, he shall be unclean; 15the priest shall examine the raw flesh and pronounce him unclean. Raw flesh is unclean, for it is a leprous disease. 16But if the raw flesh again turns white, he shall come to the priest; 17the priest shall examine him, and if the disease has turned white, the priest shall pronounce the diseased person clean. He is clean.

__________________________

Music:

HERE  is a “skin” song!  “Dancing Cheek to Cheek” — sung with attitude by jazz singer Jane Monheit!

_________________________

18When there is on the skin of one’s body a boil that has healed, 19and in the place of the boil there appears a white swelling or a reddish-white spot, it shall be shown to the priest. 20The priest shall make an examination, and if it appears deeper than the skin and its hair has turned white, the priest shall pronounce him unclean; this is a leprous disease, broken out in the boil. 21But if the priest examines it and the hair on it is not white, nor is it deeper than the skin but has abated, the priest shall confine him seven days. 22If it spreads in the skin, the priest shall pronounce him unclean; it is diseased. 23But if the spot remains in one place and does not spread, it is the scar of the boil; the priest shall pronounce him clean.

24Or, when the body has a burn on the skin and the raw flesh of the burn becomes a spot, reddish-white or white, 25the priest shall examine it. If the hair in the spot has turned white and it appears deeper than the skin, it is a leprous disease; it has broken out in the burn, and the priest shall pronounce him unclean. This is a leprous disease. 26But if the priest examines it and the hair in the spot is not white, and it is no deeper than the skin but has abated, the priest shall confine him seven days. 27The priest shall examine him the seventh day; if it is spreading in the skin, the priest shall pronounce him unclean. This is a leprous disease. 28But if the spot remains in one place and does not spread in the skin but has abated, it is a swelling from the burn, and the priest shall pronounce him clean; for it is the scar of the burn.

Leper in a hospital.

Man in a leper hospital in India.

29When a man or woman has a disease on the head or in the beard, 30the priest shall examine the disease. If it appears deeper than the skin and the hair in it is yellow and thin, the priest shall pronounce him unclean; it is an itch, a leprous disease of the head or the beard. 31If the priest examines the itching disease, and it appears no deeper than the skin and there is no black hair in it, the priest shall confine the person with the itching disease for seven days. 32On the seventh day the priest shall examine the itch; if the itch has not spread, and there is no yellow hair in it, and the itch appears to be no deeper than the skin, 33he shall shave, but the itch he shall not shave. The priest shall confine the person with the itch for seven days more. 34On the seventh day the priest shall examine the itch; if the itch has not spread in the skin and it appears to be no deeper than the skin, the priest shall pronounce him clean. He shall wash his clothes and be clean. 35But if the itch spreads in the skin after he was pronounced clean, 36the priest shall examine him. If the itch has spread in the skin, the priest need not seek for the yellow hair; he is unclean. 37But if in his eyes the itch is checked, and black hair has grown in it, the itch is healed, he is clean; and the priest shall pronounce him clean.

38When a man or a woman has spots on the skin of the body, white spots, 39the priest shall make an examination, and if the spots on the skin of the body are of a dull white, it is a rash that has broken out on the skin; he is clean.

40If anyone loses the hair from his head, he is bald but he is clean.

13. bald head cap

41If he loses the hair from his forehead and temples, he has baldness of the forehead but he is clean. 42But if there is on the bald head or the bald forehead a reddish-white diseased spot, it is a leprous disease breaking out on his bald head or his bald forehead. 43The priest shall examine him; if the diseased swelling is reddish-white on his bald head or on his bald forehead, which resembles a leprous disease in the skin of the body, 44he is leprous, he is unclean. The priest shall pronounce him unclean; the disease is on his head.

45The person who has the leprous disease shall wear torn clothes and let the hair of his head be disheveled; and he shall cover his upper lip and cry out, “Unclean, unclean.” 46He shall remain unclean as long as he has the disease; he is unclean. He shall live alone; his dwelling shall be outside the camp.

The separation of the infected persons from the general population served to protect the community.  Leprosy, then, became a metaphor for the defilement and separation caused by sin.

The separation of the infected persons from the general population served to protect the community. Leprosy, then, became a metaphor for the defilement and separation caused by sin.

47Concerning clothing: when a leprous disease appears in it, in woolen or linen cloth, 48in warp or woof of linen or wool, or in a skin or in anything made of skin, 49if the disease shows greenish or reddish in the garment, whether in warp or woof or in skin or in anything made of skin, it is a leprous disease and shall be shown to the priest.

50The priest shall examine the disease, and put the diseased article aside for seven days. 51He shall examine the disease on the seventh day. If the disease has spread in the cloth, in warp or woof, or in the skin, whatever be the use of the skin, this is a spreading leprous disease; it is unclean. 52He shall burn the clothing, whether diseased in warp or woof, woolen or linen, or anything of skin, for it is a spreading leprous disease; it shall be burned in fire.

53If the priest makes an examination, and the disease has not spread in the clothing, in warp or woof or in anything of skin, 54the priest shall command them to wash the article in which the disease appears, and he shall put it aside seven days more. 55The priest shall examine the diseased article after it has been washed. If the diseased spot has not changed color, though the disease has not spread, it is unclean; you shall burn it in fire, whether the leprous spot is on the inside or on the outside. 56If the priest makes an examination, and the disease has abated after it is washed, he shall tear the spot out of the cloth, in warp or woof, or out of skin. 57If it appears again in the garment, in warp or woof, or in anything of skin, it is spreading; you shall burn with fire that in which the disease appears. 58But the cloth, warp or woof, or anything of skin from which the disease disappears when you have washed it, shall then be washed a second time, and it shall be clean.

59This is the ritual for a leprous disease in a cloth of wool or linen, either in warp or woof, or in anything of skin, to decide whether it is clean or unclean.

The NIV calls this contamination “infectious skin diseases” when it is found on people and “mildew” when it is found on items of clothing. Many scholars doubt whether any of the various the skin-related problems described above actually refer to modern leprosy (Hansen’s disease). Rather, the term covers a whole variety of skin diseases.

_________________________

The New Revised Standard Version, copyright 1989 by the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

Images courtesy of:
baby skin.    http://www.teluguone.com/tonecmsuserfiles/Baby%20Skin%20Care%20Tips%20in%20Winter%281%29.jpg
leper feet.    http://www.candacescharsu.com/new%20scharsu%20pics/Concerned%20/LeperFeet2a.jpg
power of the blood of Jesus.   http://mirrorministries.org/wp-content/uploads/power_blood.jpg
leper in hospital.   http://crmin.org/02india/images/SH%2031%20leper.jpg
bald head cap.   http://rlv.zcache.com/my_bald_head_is_cuter_than_your_bad_haircut_embroidered_hat-p233117174993203287a1j3b_400.jpg
quarantine sign.    http://www.australiasigns.com.au/gal/safetygal/thumbs/lrg-181-rbw-quarantine.jpg

1562.) Leviticus 12

April 28, 2015

12. maternity door

Leviticus 12   (NRSV)

Purification of Women after Childbirth

The commanded time of ceremonial impurity should not be regarded as a negative attitude towards birth or child-bearing on God’s part. God commands child bearing, in that man is commanded to be fruitful and multiply (Genesis 1:28), children are regarded as a gift from God (Psalm 127:3), and a woman with many children is considered blessed (Psalm 128:3). The key to understanding this ceremony is to understand the idea of original sin. As wonderful as a new baby is, God wanted it to be remembered that with every birth another sinner was brought into the world, and the woman was here symbolically responsible for bringing a new sinner into the world. Perhaps just as importantly, the time of ceremonial impurity gave the new mother a time of rest and seclusion that she would no doubt have welcomed.

–David Guzik

The Lord spoke to Moses, saying:

Our grandson, William Patrick Arwood, born October 30, 2008.  I call him Liam.

Our grandson, William Patrick Arwood, was born October 30, 2008.  We call him Liam, and here he is at 3 months old.

And I remember with much joy and thanksgiving another little boy born exactly 100 years ago today — my father, Jasper Riskedahl, now absent from the body but present with the Lord!

2Speak to the people of Israel, saying: If a woman conceives and bears a male child, she shall be ceremonially unclean seven days; as at the time of her menstruation, she shall be unclean. 3On the eighth day the flesh of his foreskin shall be circumcised. 4Her time of blood purification shall be thirty-three days; she shall not touch any holy thing, or come into the sanctuary, until the days of her purification are completed.

Calli Grace, 2 days old

Liam’s sister, Calli Grace, was born 4 years later, on November 5, 2012.  Here she is at 2 days old.

5If she bears a female child, she shall be unclean two weeks, as in her menstruation; her time of blood purification shall be sixty-six days.

12. children

Psalm 127:3 (Contemporary English Version)

Children are a blessing

and a gift from the LORD.

6When the days of her purification are completed, whether for a son or for a daughter, she shall bring to the priest at the entrance of the tent of meeting a lamb in its first year for a burnt offering, and a pigeon or a turtledove for a sin offering. 7He shall offer it before the Lord, and make atonement on her behalf; then she shall be clean from her flow of blood.

a sin offering — not that the act of sex for the purpose of creating a child is sinful, but rather that the woman, aware of her own sinfulness, asks God to let it be that her baby is born from a forgiven sinner.

This is the law for her who bears a child, male or female. 8If she cannot afford a sheep, she shall take two turtledoves or two pigeons, one for a burnt offering and the other for a sin offering; and the priest shall make atonement on her behalf, and she shall be clean.

12. Jesus' presentation

Joseph and Mary observed this “law for her who bears a child” — there’s Simeon holding the Baby Jesus as Mary smiles, while Anna is  looking on and Joseph is bringing the pair of doves as an offering.

Luke 2:22-24 (New International Version)

When the time of their purification according to the Law of Moses had been completed, Joseph and Mary took him to Jerusalem to present him to the Lord (as it is written in the Law of the Lord, “Every firstborn male is to be consecrated to the Lord”, and to offer a sacrifice in keeping with what is said in the Law of the Lord: “a pair of doves or two young pigeons.”

_________________________

Music:

Speaking of children:  One of my very most favorite hymns (it was sung at my wedding) is something of a lullaby.  “Children of the Heavenly Father,” written by the Swedish poet and hymn-writer Caroline V. Sandell Berg, is sung  HERE  by the Concordia College Choir from Moorhead, MN. Imagine how well we would sleep if we listened to this piece each night as we lay down in bed!

_________________________

The New Revised Standard Version, copyright 1989 by the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

Images courtesy of:
maternity cartoon.    https://dwellingintheword.files.wordpress.com/2009/11/12-maternity-door.jpg?w=450
children.   http://dcf.wisconsin.gov/bcs/images/children.png
Mary and Joseph bring the purification offering.   http://www.jesusmafa.com/wp-content/themes/dt-nimble/timthumb.php?src=/wp-content/uploads/2013/01/3a.jpg&zc=1&w=710

1561.) Leviticus 11

April 27, 2015

Leviticus 11   (NRSV)

Clean and Unclean Foods

The Lord spoke to Moses and Aaron, saying to them: 2Speak to the people of Israel, saying: From among all the land animals, these are the creatures that you may eat. 3Any animal that has divided hoofs and is cleft-footed and chews the cud—such you may eat.

4But among those that chew the cud or have divided hoofs, you shall not eat the following: the camel, for even though it chews the cud, it does not have divided hoofs; it is unclean for you.

You may not eat camel. (Don't laugh -- I ate a camel burger in Syria. Very stringy meat, as I remember!)

You may not eat camel. (Don’t laugh — I ate a camel burger in Syria. Very stringy meat, as I remember!)

5The rock badger, for even though it chews the cud, it does not have divided hoofs; it is unclean for you. 6The hare, for even though it chews the cud, it does not have divided hoofs; it is unclean for you. 7The pig, for even though it has divided hoofs and is cleft-footed, it does not chew the cud; it is unclean for you. 8Of their flesh you shall not eat, and their carcasses you shall not touch; they are unclean for you.

Pork chops are out, too. And forget about bacon!

Pork chops are out, too. And forget about bacon!

9These you may eat, of all that are in the waters. Everything in the waters that has fins and scales, whether in the seas or in the streams—such you may eat. 10But anything in the seas or the streams that does not have fins and scales, of the swarming creatures in the waters and among all the other living creatures that are in the waters—they are detestable to you 11and detestable they shall remain. Of their flesh you shall not eat, and their carcasses you shall regard as detestable. 12Everything in the waters that does not have fins and scales is detestable to you.

No shrimp cocktail, either.

No shrimp cocktail, either.  Also no fried catfish, lobster roll, calamari, turtle soup, crab legs, or clam chowder.

13These you shall regard as detestable among the birds. They shall not be eaten; they are an abomination: the eagle, the vulture, the osprey, 14the buzzard, the kite of any kind; 15every raven of any kind; 16the ostrich, the nighthawk, the sea gull, the hawk of any kind; 17the little owl, the cormorant, the great owl, 18the water hen, the desert owl, the carrion vulture, 19the stork, the heron of any kind, the hoopoe, and the bat.

Bat soup is a speciality for the people in the Palau Islands --

Bat soup is a specialty for the people in the Palau Islands.  What a shame — the Israelites would not have been permitted even to try it!

20All winged insects that walk upon all fours are detestable to you. 21But among the winged insects that walk on all fours you may eat those that have jointed legs above their feet, with which to leap on the ground. 22Of them you may eat: the locust according to its kind, the bald locust according to its kind, the cricket according to its kind, and the grasshopper according to its kind. 23But all other winged insects that have four feet are detestable to you.

Generally speaking, all insects are considered unclean.  Even your favorite chocolate-covered brandied beetles!

Generally speaking, all insects are considered unclean. Even your favorite chocolate-covered brandied beetles!

Unclean Animals

11. unclean chart

24By these you shall become unclean; whoever touches the carcass of any of them shall be unclean until the evening, 25and whoever carries any part of the carcass of any of them shall wash his clothes and be unclean until the evening.

This means that if a dead rat was found in an Israelite village, it would be carefully and promptly disposed of, and the one disposing of it would wash afterward. This would help prevent disease in a significant way; after all, the Black Death – bubonic plague – killed one quarter of Europe’s population around 1350, but Jewish communities were largely spared because they followed these hygienic regulations. Sadly, because they were often largely preserved, they were often accused and punished for being “masterminds” behind the plague.

–David Guzik

26Every animal that has divided hoofs but is not cleft-footed or does not chew the cud is unclean for you; everyone who touches one of them shall be unclean. 27All that walk on their paws, among the animals that walk on all fours, are unclean for you; whoever touches the carcass of any of them shall be unclean until the evening, 28and the one who carries the carcass shall wash his clothes and be unclean until the evening; they are unclean for you.

29These are unclean for you among the creatures that swarm upon the earth: the weasel, the mouse, the great lizard according to its kind, 30the gecko, the land crocodile, the lizard, the sand lizard, and the chameleon. 31These are unclean for you among all that swarm; whoever touches one of them when they are dead shall be unclean until the evening.

Read the remainder of these instructions while thinking about this dead mouse in your home!

Read the remainder of these instructions while thinking about this dead mouse in your home!

32And anything upon which any of them falls when they are dead shall be unclean, whether an article of wood or cloth or skin or sacking, any article that is used for any purpose; it shall be dipped into water, and it shall be unclean until the evening, and then it shall be clean. 33And if any of them falls into any earthen vessel, all that is in it shall be unclean, and you shall break the vessel. 34Any food that could be eaten shall be unclean if water from any such vessel comes upon it; and any liquid that could be drunk shall be unclean if it was in any such vessel. 35Everything on which any part of the carcass falls shall be unclean; whether an oven or stove, it shall be broken in pieces; they are unclean, and shall remain unclean for you. 36But a spring or a cistern holding water shall be clean, while whatever touches the carcass in it shall be unclean. 37If any part of their carcass falls upon any seed set aside for sowing, it is clean; 38but if water is put on the seed and any part of their carcass falls on it, it is unclean for you.

Cleanliness is next to godliness!

Cleanliness is next to godliness!

39If an animal of which you may eat dies, anyone who touches its carcass shall be unclean until the evening. 40Those who eat of its carcass shall wash their clothes and be unclean until the evening; and those who carry the carcass shall wash their clothes and be unclean until the evening.

41All creatures that swarm upon the earth are detestable; they shall not be eaten. 42Whatever moves on its belly, and whatever moves on all fours, or whatever has many feet, all the creatures that swarm upon the earth, you shall not eat; for they are detestable. 43You shall not make yourselves detestable with any creature that swarms; you shall not defile yourselves with them, and so become unclean. 44For I am the Lord your God; sanctify yourselves therefore, and be holy, for I am holy. You shall not defile yourselves with any swarming creature that moves on the earth.

45For I am the Lord who brought you up from the land of Egypt, to be your God; you shall be holy, for I am holy.

_________________________

Music:

The overwhelming message of Leviticus is the holiness of God — “Be holy, because I am holy.”

HERE  is “Holy, Holy, Holy”  by Messianic praise and worship musician Paul Wilbur.

_________________________

46This is the law pertaining to land animal and bird and every living creature that moves through the waters and every creature that swarms upon the earth, 47to make a distinction between the unclean and the clean, and between the living creature that may be eaten and the living creature that may not be eaten.

11. Peter's vision

Acts 10:9-15 (New Living Translation)

The next day as Cornelius’s messengers were nearing the town, Peter went up on the flat roof to pray. It was about noon,  and he was hungry. But while a meal was being prepared, he fell into a trance.  He saw the sky open, and something like a large sheet was let down by its four corners.  In the sheet were all sorts of animals, reptiles, and birds.  Then a voice said to him, “Get up, Peter; kill and eat them.”

“No, Lord,” Peter declared. “I have never eaten anything that our Jewish laws have declared impure and unclean.”

But the voice spoke again: “Do not call something unclean if God has made it clean.”

_________________________

The New Revised Standard Version, copyright 1989 by the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

Images courtesy of:
What’s for dinner?  http://stacysrandomthoughts.com/http://stacysrandomthoughts.com/wp-content/2011/08/Dinner1.gif
camel meat shop.   https://dwellingintheword.files.wordpress.com/2009/11/11-camel-meat-shop.jpg?w=450
pork chops.    http://howardhilton.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/03/Pork-Chop.jpg
shrimp cocktail.    http://www.notyourmotherscookbook.com/images/ShrimpCocktail-1-259×300.jpg
bat soup.   http://www.uglyfood.com/wp-content/uploads/2008/02/bat_soub_whole_bat.jpg
chocolate-covered beetles.  http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3226/2713239159_109047fc3e.jpg
unclean foods chart.  http://itodyaso.files.wordpress.com/2008/03/unclean.jpg
dead mouse.   http://farm1.static.flickr.com/198/507464793_1e716c8946.jpg
woman with bucket.    https://dwellingintheword.files.wordpress.com/2009/11/11-cleanliness.jpg?w=450
Peter’s vision.    https://pompeypioneer.files.wordpress.com/2010/03/tuvision1.gif

 


1560.) Leviticus 10

April 24, 2015
"Strange Fire" by Michael Yosef Robinson, a California-based artist and poet, shows Nadab and Abihu offering the Lord "unauthorized fire."

“Strange Fire” by Michael Yosef Robinson, a California-based artist and poet, shows Nadab and Abihu offering the Lord “unauthorized fire.”

Leviticus 10   (NRSV)

Nadab and Abihu

Now Aaron’s sons, Nadab and Abihu, each took his censer, put fire in it, and laid incense on it; and they offered unholy fire before the Lord, such as he had not commanded them.

Nadab and Abihu had a legacy of great spiritual experiences. They saw first-hand:

  • All the miracles God did in bringing the nation out of Egypt.
  • The voice of God and saw the fire, lightning, smoke, and felt the thunder and the earthquake with the rest of the nation at Mount Sinai.
  • They went up with Moses, Aaron, and the seventy elders for a special meeting with God on Mount Sinai (Exodus 24:1-2), where they saw the God of Israel . . . so they say God, and they ate and drank (Exodus 24:9-11).

This shows that even a legacy of great spiritual experiences can’t keep us right with God – only an abiding relationship grounded in the truth of God’s word can.

–David Guzik

2And fire came out from the presence of the Lord and consumed them, and they died before the Lord.

1 Samuel 15:22 (New International Version)

But Samuel replied:
“Does the LORD delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices
as much as in obeying the voice of the LORD ?
To obey is better than sacrifice,
and to heed is better than the fat of rams.”

.

10. dog obedience cartoon

3Then Moses said to Aaron, “This is what the Lord meant when he said,
‘Through those who are near me
I will show myself holy,
and before all the people
I will be glorified.’”

And Aaron was silent.

We can come to God just as we are, but we may not come to Him our own way. We must come the way He has provided, the way made in Jesus Christ.

–David Guzik

4Moses summoned Mishael and Elzaphan, sons of Uzziel the uncle of Aaron, and said to them, “Come forward, and carry your kinsmen away from the front of the sanctuary to a place outside the camp.” 5They came forward and carried them by their tunics out of the camp, as Moses had ordered.

6And Moses said to Aaron and to his sons Eleazar and Ithamar, “Do not dishevel your hair, and do not tear your vestments, or you will die and wrath will strike all the congregation; but your kindred, the whole house of Israel, may mourn the burning that the Lord has sent. 7You shall not go outside the entrance of the tent of meeting, or you will die; for the anointing oil of the Lord is on you.” And they did as Moses had ordered.

This perhaps was the hardest day of Aaron’s life. Two of his sons were dead before him, and he could not mourn them. To mourn might have implied,  even in the slightest way, that God was wrong in bringing this fire upon Nadab and Abihu, and Aaron or Moses could not communicate this.

10. flame clip

Hebrews 12:28-29 (English Standard Version)

Let us be grateful for receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken, and thus let us offer to God acceptable worship, with reverence and awe, for our God is a consuming fire.

8And the Lord spoke to Aaron: 9Drink no wine or strong drink, neither you nor your sons, when you enter the tent of meeting, that you may not die; it is a statute forever throughout your generations.

Unfortunately, this rule about strong drink and duty in the temple was later broken–

10. BeerInABag

Isaiah 28:7 (New American Standard Bible)

And these also reel with wine and stagger from strong drink:
The priest and the prophet reel with strong drink,
They are confused by wine, they stagger from strong drink;
They reel while having visions,
They totter when rendering judgment.

10You are to distinguish between the holy and the common, and between the unclean and the clean; 11and you are to teach the people of Israel all the statutes that the Lord has spoken to them through Moses.

The Lord Himself tells Aaron and the priests to do two things:

1) to distinguish between the clean and the unclean (in order to better reflect the holiness of God);
and
2) to teach the people of Israel the Lord’s decrees (in order to share God’s truth, which was not to be a secret held only by a few persons with privileged access).

These two instructions may be helpful to keep in mind as we continue reading the book of Leviticus.

12Moses spoke to Aaron and to his remaining sons, Eleazar and Ithamar: Take the grain offering that is left from the Lord’s offerings by fire, and eat it unleavened beside the altar, for it is most holy; 13you shall eat it in a holy place, because it is your due and your sons’ due, from the offerings by fire to the Lord; for so I am commanded. 14But the breast that is elevated and the thigh that is raised, you and your sons and daughters as well may eat in any clean place; for they have been assigned to you and your children from the sacrifices of the offerings of well-being of the people of Israel. 15The thigh that is raised and the breast that is elevated they shall bring, together with the offerings by fire of the fat, to raise for an elevation offering before the Lord; they are to be your due and that of your children forever, as the Lord has commanded.

16Then Moses made inquiry about the goat of the sin offering, and—it had already been burned!  He was angry with Eleazar and Ithamar, Aaron’s remaining sons, and said, 17“Why did you not eat the sin offering in the sacred area? For it is most holy, and God has given it to you that you may remove the guilt of the congregation, to make atonement on their behalf before the Lord. 18Its blood was not brought into the inner part of the sanctuary. You should certainly have eaten it in the sanctuary, as I commanded.”

19And Aaron spoke to Moses, “See, today they offered their sin offering and their burnt offering before the Lord; and yet such things as these have befallen me! If I had eaten the sin offering today, would it have been agreeable to the Lord?” 20And when Moses heard that, he agreed.

_________________________

Music:

How my heart aches for Aaron, for all who have had to bury a child or a grandchild.  And for all who suffer all manner of hurts.  May this song bring strength and comfort to us all.  HERE  is  “Yet I Will Praise You.”  Words and music by Andy Park, sung by Melissa Boraski.

I will praise You Lord my God
Even in my brokenness
I will praise You Lord
I will praise You Lord my God
Even in my desperation
I will praise You Lord

And I can’t understand
All that You allow
I just can’t see the reason
But my life is in Your hands
And though I cannot see You
I choose to trust You

Even when my heart is torn I will praise (trust) You Lord
Even when I feel deserted I will praise (trust) You Lord
Even in my darkest valley I will praise (trust) You Lord
And when my world is shattered and it seems all hope is gone
Yet I will praise You Lord

I will trust You Lord my God
Even in my loneliness
I will trust You Lord
I will trust You Lord my God
Even when I cannot hear You
I will trust You Lord

And I will not forget
That You hung on a cross
Lord You bled and died for me
And if I have to suffer
I know that You’ve been there
And I know that You’re here now

_________________________

The New Revised Standard Version, copyright 1989 by the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

Images courtesy of:
Robinson.  http://www.yosefdreams.com/images/gallery/jewish/eishzarah_lg.jp
dog obedience cartoon.    http://api.ning.com/files/YFEbRdbpUpGrIDKQlPt4vuuXN*zNYM4UT1q5IWfkm3Y-DaZSsELghigP1zrt9*HJJYJFbkFQakqOruviHOjaLWW-txwF9GhH/obedience.jpg
fire.   http://www.clker.com/cliparts/8/9/e/4/12170845631587244963flame.svg.hi.png
bottle in a bag.   http://estrip.org/elmwood/users/chico/images/0608/BeerInABag0611.jpg

1559.) Leviticus 9

April 23, 2015
Aaron and his sons sacrificed to the Lord, carefully following the instructions given before.  God showed his approval:  "Fire came out from the presence of the Lord and consumed the burnt offering . . ." (verse 24).

Aaron and his sons presented sacrifices to the Lord, carefully following the instructions given before. God showed his approval: “Fire came out from the presence of the Lord and consumed the burnt offering . . .” (verse 24).

Leviticus 9   (NRSV)

Aaron’s Priesthood Inaugurated

On the eighth day Moses summoned Aaron and his sons and the elders of Israel. 2He said to Aaron, “Take a bull calf for a sin offering and a ram for a burnt offering, without blemish, and offer them before the Lord. 3And say to the people of Israel, ‘Take a male goat for a sin offering; a calf and a lamb, yearlings without blemish, for a burnt offering; 4and an ox and a ram for an offering of well-being to sacrifice before the Lord; and a grain offering mixed with oil. For today the Lord will appear to you.’”

5They brought what Moses commanded to the front of the tent of meeting; and the whole congregation drew near and stood before the Lord. 6And Moses said, “This is the thing that the Lord commanded you to do, so that the glory of the Lord may appear to you.”

Everything Aaron did in the last week prepared him for this moment. This was the end goal of the week of separation and consecration to the Lord — the display of His glory.

–David Guzik

9. kavod-glory

“the glory of the Lord”

The manifestation of the glory of the Lord was not a seeing of him, for no man may see him and live; but it was like a seeing; it was a realizing.  It was not something altogether different from the Christian religious experience.  The glory of the Lord, which was later to be manifested in the face of Jesus Christ, was in measure realized in the worship of the Old Testament.  The seraphim in the vision of Isaiah (6:3) declare that “the whole earth is full of his glory.”  At all times and in all places is the glory of the God, but only on special occasions is his glory or presence recognized and realized by men.  Even when “the Word was made flesh . . . and we beheld his glory” (John 1:14), it was from many a hidden glory; “their eyes were holden that they should not know him” (Luke 24:16).

–The Interpreter’s Bible

Are we brave enough to pray that the glory of the Lord may appear to us?

7Then Moses said to Aaron, “Draw near to the altar and sacrifice your sin offering and your burnt offering, and make atonement for yourself and for the people; and sacrifice the offering of the people, and make atonement for them; as the Lord has commanded.”

Aaron and all the priests and all their sacrifices point us to Jesus Christ:

9. sacrifice

Hebrews 10:11-13 (Contemporary English Version)

The priests do their work each day, and they keep on offering sacrifices that can never take away sins. But Christ offered himself as a sacrifice that is good forever. Now he is sitting at God’s right side, and he will stay there until his enemies are put under his power.

Aaron offers sacrifice for his own sin

8Aaron drew near to the altar, and slaughtered the calf of the sin offering, which was for himself. 9The sons of Aaron presented the blood to him, and he dipped his finger in the blood and put it on the horns of the altar; and the rest of the blood he poured out at the base of the altar. 10But the fat, the kidneys, and the appendage of the liver from the sin offering he turned into smoke on the altar, as the Lord commanded Moses; 11and the flesh and the skin he burned with fire outside the camp.

12Then he slaughtered the burnt offering. Aaron’s sons brought him the blood, and he dashed it against all sides of the altar. 13And they brought him the burnt offering piece by piece, and the head, which he turned into smoke on the altar. 14He washed the entrails and the legs and, with the burnt offering, turned them into smoke on the altar.

Aaron offers sacrifice on behalf of the people

15Next he presented the people’s offering. He took the goat of the sin offering that was for the people, and slaughtered it, and presented it as a sin offering like the first one.

16He presented the burnt offering, and sacrificed it according to regulation. 17He presented the grain offering, and, taking a handful of it, he turned it into smoke on the altar, in addition to the burnt offering of the morning.

18He slaughtered the ox and the ram as a sacrifice of well-being for the people. Aaron’s sons brought him the blood, which he dashed against all sides of the altar, 19and the fat of the ox and of the ram—the broad tail, the fat that covers the entrails, the two kidneys and the fat on them, and the appendage of the liver. 20They first laid the fat on the breasts, and the fat was turned into smoke on the altar; 21and the breasts and the right thigh Aaron raised as an elevation offering before the Lord, as Moses had commanded.

God blesses Israel with a display of His glory

22Aaron lifted his hands toward the people and blessed them;

Numbers 6:22-26 (New King James Version)

And the LORD spoke to Moses, saying:  “Speak to Aaron and his sons, saying, ‘This is the way you shall bless the children of Israel. Say to them:

“The LORD bless you and keep you;

The LORD make His face shine upon you,
And be gracious to you;

The LORD lift up His countenance upon you,
And give you peace.”’

and he came down after sacrificing the sin offering, the burnt offering, and the offering of well-being.

23Moses and Aaron entered the tent of meeting, and then came out and blessed the people; and the glory of the Lord appeared to all the people. 24Fire came out from the Lord and consumed the burnt offering and the fat on the altar; and when all the people saw it, they shouted and fell on their faces.

Lev9  fire on altar

Fire was often associated with God’s presence and work. Deuteronomy 4:24 tells us, the Lord your God is a consuming fire, a jealous God. John the Baptist promised Jesus would come with a baptism with the Holy Spirit and with fire (Matthew 3:11). The Holy Spirit manifested His presence on the day of Pentecost by tongues of fire (Acts 2:3). Jesus said: I came to send fire on the earth, and how I wish it were already kindled! (Luke 12:49).

–David Guzik

_________________________

Music:

Lord, let your glory fall.   HERE  is “Consuming Fire”  by Ted Hughes and Hillsong.

_________________________

The New Revised Standard Version, copyright 1989 by the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

Images courtesy of:
Tabernacle.  http://possessthevision.files.wordpress.com/2008/12/the-full-tabernacle.jpg
glory.    https://dwellingintheword.files.wordpress.com/2009/10/9-kavod-glory.jpg?w=450
cross with thorns.   https://dwellingintheword.files.wordpress.com/2009/10/9-sacrifice1.jpg?w=450
fire on the altar.    http://images47.fotki.com/v766/photos/9/513379/9447502/god_accepts-vi.jpg

1558.) Leviticus 8

April 22, 2015

8. ordination hands

Leviticus 8   (NRSV)

The Rites of Ordination

ordain:

to invest with ministerial functions or priestly authority;  to confer holy orders upon

Exodus 29 records the command God gave to Moses to carry out this consecration ceremony with Aaron and his sons. Now that the tabernacle was built it was time to perform the ceremony.

The Lord spoke to Moses, saying: 2Take Aaron and his sons with him, the vestments, the anointing oil, the bull of sin offering, the two rams, and the basket of unleavened bread; 3and assemble the whole congregation at the entrance of the tent of meeting. 4And Moses did as the Lord commanded him.

When the congregation was assembled at the entrance of the tent of meeting, 5Moses said to the congregation, “This is what the Lord has commanded to be done.” 6Then Moses brought Aaron and his sons forward, and washed them with water.

Titus 3:5 (Amplified Bible)

He saved us, not because of any works of righteousness that we had done, but because of His own pity and mercy, by [the] cleansing [bath] of the new birth (regeneration) and renewing of the Holy Spirit.

7He put the tunic on him, fastened the sash around him, clothed him with the robe, and put the ephod on him. He then put the decorated band of the ephod around him, tying the ephod to him with it. 8He placed the breastpiece on him, and in the breastpiece he put the Urim and the Thummim. 9And he set the turban on his head, and on the turban, in front, he set the golden ornament, the holy crown, as the Lord commanded Moses.

8. priest wardrobe-drawing

10Then Moses took the anointing oil

special anointing oil–

Exodus 30:22-32 (Contemporary English Version)

The LORD said to Moses: Mix a gallon of olive oil with the following costly spices: twelve pounds of myrrh, six pounds of cinnamon, six pounds of cane, and twelve pounds of cassia. Measure these according to the official standards. Then use this sacred mixture for dedicating the tent and chest, the table with its equipment, the lampstand with its equipment, the incense altar with all its utensils, the altar for sacrifices, and the large bowl with its stand. By dedicating them in this way, you will make them so holy that anyone who even touches them will become holy.

When you ordain Aaron and his sons as my priests, sprinkle them with some of this oil, and say to the people of Israel:  “This oil must always be used in the ordination service of a priest. It is holy because it is dedicated to the LORD. So treat it as holy! Don’t ever use it for everyday purposes or mix any for yourselves.”

and anointed the tabernacle and all that was in it, and consecrated them. 11He sprinkled some of it on the altar seven times, and anointed the altar and all its utensils, and the basin and its base, to consecrate them. 12He poured some of the anointing oil on Aaron’s head and anointed him, to consecrate him.

Psalm 133:1-2 (New International Version)

How good and pleasant it is
when brothers live together in unity!

It is like precious oil poured on the head,
running down on the beard,
running down on Aaron’s beard,
down upon the collar of his robes.

Aaron, as high priest, had certain duties that only he could perform.  He alone of the priests could enter the Holy of Holies once a year on the Day of Atonement to receive forgiveness for the people of Israel.  The high priest Aaron points us to Christ:

8. Jesus thorns

Hebrews 7:23-28 (New Living Translation)

There were many priests under the old system, for death prevented them from remaining in office.  But because Jesus lives forever, his priesthood lasts forever.  Therefore he is able, once and forever, to save those who come to God through him. He lives forever to intercede with God on their behalf.

He is the kind of high priest we need because he is holy and blameless, unstained by sin. He has been set apart from sinners and has been given the highest place of honor in heaven. Unlike those other high priests, he does not need to offer sacrifices every day. They did this for their own sins first and then for the sins of the people. But Jesus did this once for all when he offered himself as the sacrifice for the people’s sins.  The law appointed high priests who were limited by human weakness. But after the law was given, God appointed his Son with an oath, and his Son has been made the perfect High Priest forever.

13And Moses brought forward Aaron’s sons, and clothed them with tunics, and fastened sashes around them, and tied headdresses on them, as the Lord commanded Moses.

14He led forward the bull of sin offering; and Aaron and his sons laid their hands upon the head of the bull of sin offering, 15and it was slaughtered. Moses took the blood and with his finger put some on each of the horns of the altar, purifying the altar; then he poured out the blood at the base of the altar. Thus he consecrated it, to make atonement for it. 16Moses took all the fat that was around the entrails, and the appendage of the liver, and the two kidneys with their fat, and turned them into smoke on the altar. 17But the bull itself, its skin and flesh and its dung, he burned with fire outside the camp, as the Lord commanded Moses.

Lev8 altar fire

The idea behind the ancient Hebrew word for altar is essentially, “killing-place.” The ancient altar — a place of death — was made holy and was consecrated to God. Like that ancient altar, the altar of the New Covenant — the cross — is transformed from a place to death to a place set apart to bring life.

–David Guzik

18Then he brought forward the ram of burnt offering. Aaron and his sons laid their hands on the head of the ram, 19and it was slaughtered. Moses dashed the blood against all sides of the altar. 20The ram was cut into its parts, and Moses turned into smoke the head and the parts and the suet. 21And after the entrails and the legs were washed with water, Moses turned into smoke the whole ram on the altar; it was a burnt offering for a pleasing odor, an offering by fire to the Lord, as the Lord commanded Moses.

22Then he brought forward the second ram, the ram of ordination. Aaron and his sons laid their hands on the head of the ram, 23and it was slaughtered. Moses took some of its blood and put it on the lobe of Aaron’s right ear and on the thumb of his right hand and on the big toe of his right foot. 24After Aaron’s sons were brought forward, Moses put some of the blood on the lobes of their right ears and on the thumbs of their right hands and on the big toes of their right feet; and Moses dashed the rest of the blood against all sides of the altar.

Ears, hands, and feet —

that we should willingly hear the commands of the Lord,
and cheerfully do them with our hands,
and reverently walk in holiness before God.

25He took the fat—the broad tail, all the fat that was around the entrails, the appendage of the liver, and the two kidneys with their fat—and the right thigh. 26From the basket of unleavened bread that was before the Lord, he took one cake of unleavened bread, one cake of bread with oil, and one wafer, and placed them on the fat and on the right thigh. 27He placed all these on the palms of Aaron and on the palms of his sons, and raised them as an elevation offering before the Lord. 28Then Moses took them from their hands and turned them into smoke on the altar with the burnt offering. This was an ordination offering for a pleasing odor, an offering by fire to the Lord. 29Moses took the breast and raised it as an elevation offering before the Lord; it was Moses’ portion of the ram of ordination, as the Lord commanded Moses.

30Then Moses took some of the anointing oil and some of the blood that was on the altar and sprinkled them on Aaron and his vestments, and also on his sons and their vestments. Thus he consecrated Aaron and his vestments, and also his sons and their vestments.

_________________________

Music:

HERE  is a song for Aaron and his sons and for us as well.  “Take My Life and Let It Be”  sung by Chris Tomlin.

_________________________

31And Moses said to Aaron and his sons, “Boil the flesh at the entrance of the tent of meeting, and eat it there with the bread that is in the basket of ordination offerings, as I was commanded, ‘Aaron and his sons shall eat it’; 32and what remains of the flesh and the bread you shall burn with fire. 33You shall not go outside the entrance of the tent of meeting for seven days, until the day when your period of ordination is completed. For it will take seven days to ordain you; 34as has been done today, the Lord has commanded to be done to make atonement for you. 35You shall remain at the entrance of the tent of meeting day and night for seven days, keeping the Lord’s charge so that you do not die; for so I am commanded.” 36Aaron and his sons did all the things that the Lord commanded through Moses.

Lev8 as the Lord commanded

from Whispers of His Power,
by Amy Carmichael:

Lev. 8:35-36:  Therefore shall ye abide at the door of the tabernacle of the congregation day and night seven days, and keep the charge of the Lord, that ye die not:  for so I am commanded.  So Aaron and his sons did all the things which the Lord commanded by the hand of Moses.

“As the Lord commanded Moses”:  the words recur often in these chapters.  Sooner or later every child of the Father, every servant of the heavenly Master, has to learn that he is not here to do as he likes, but as the Lord commands.  “For so I am commanded” is Moses’ single explanation as he gives a certain duty to men who might easily have preferred another.

Here is a beautiful word from St. Augustine’s City of God:  “In that blessed city no one, in any lower place, shall envy his superior; for no one will ever wish to be that to which he has not been appointed.  Together with his reward, each shall have the gift of a great contentment, so as to desire no more than he has got.  Then we shall rest and see, there we shall see and love, and there we shall all love and praise in the City of God.”

Ask for the gift of a great contentment in obeying God’s commands today.

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The New Revised Standard Version, copyright 1989 by the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.
Images courtesy of:
ordination.  https://dwellingintheword.files.wordpress.com/2009/10/8-ordination-hands.jpg?w=450
priest’s wardrobe.   http://www.templeinstitute.org/beged/images/wardrobe-drawing.jpg
Jesus.   https://dwellingintheword.files.wordpress.com/2009/10/8-jesus-thorns.jpg?w=450
altar fire.   http://i.ebayimg.com/00/s/MTY4WDMwMA==/z/pXcAAOSwrmdTpkCq/$_1.JPG?set_id=2
As the Lord commanded.   http://i.ytimg.com/vi/rD5VOhreRIA/hqdefault.jpg