I will sanctify - both Aaron and his sons - So we find the sanctification by Moses according to the Divine institution was only symbolical; and that Aaron and his sons must be sanctified, i.e., made holy, by God himself before they could officiate in holy things. From this, as well as from many other things mentioned in the sacred writings, we may safely infer that no designation by man only is sufficient to qualify any person to fill the office of a minister of the sanctuary. The approbation and consecration of man have both their propriety and use, but must never be made substitutes for the unction and inspiration of the Almighty. Let holy men ordain, but let God sanctify; then we may expect that his Church shall be built up on its most holy faith.
The continual burnt-offering - The primary purpose of the national altar is here set forth. The victim slain every morning and every evening was an acknowledgment that the life of the people belonged to Yahweh; the offering of meal was an acknowledgment that all their works rightly done were His due (see Exodus 29:39
At even - See Exodus 12:6.
A tenth deal - i. e. the tenth part of an Ephah; it is sometimes called an Omer (Exodus 16:36; see Leviticus 23:13). The Ephah seems to have been rather less than four gallons and a half (see Leviticus 19:36 note); and the tenth deal of flour may have weighed about 3 lbs. 2 oz.
An hin - The word appears to be Egyptian. The measure was one-sixth of an ephah. The quarter of a bin was therefore about a pint and a half. See Leviticus 19:36 note.
Beaten oil - See Exodus 27:20.
Wine for a drink offering - The earliest mention of the drink-offering is found in connection with Jacob‘s setting up the stone at Bethel Genesis 35:14. But it is here first associated with the rites of the altar. The law of the drink-offering is stated Numbers 15:5 following. Nothing whatever is expressly said in the Old Testament regarding the mode in which the wine was treated: but it would seem probable, from the prohibition that it should not be poured upon the altar of incense Exodus 30:9, that it used to be poured on the altar of burnt-offering.
At the door of the tabernacle - At the entrance of the tent.
The (tabernacle) shall be sanctified - The word “tabernacle” is certainly not the right one to be here supplied. What is probably meant is the spot in which Yahweh promises to meet with the assembly of His people. The verse may be rendered, And in that place will I meet with the children of Israel, and it shall be sanctified with my glory. See also the margin.
The purpose of the formal consecration of the sanctuary and of the priests who served in it was, that the whole nation which Yahweh had set free from its bondage in Egypt might be consecrated in its daily life, and dwell continually in His presence as “a kingdom of priests and an holy nation.” Exodus 19:6.
Compare Genesis 17:7.
By divine direction the tribe of Levi was set apart for the service of the sanctuary. In the earliest times every man was the priest of his own household. In the days of Abraham the priesthood was regarded as the birthright of the eldest son. Now, instead of the first-born of all Israel, the Lord accepted the tribe of Levi for the work of the sanctuary. By this signal honor He manifested His approval of their fidelity, both in adhering to His service and in executing His judgments when Israel apostatized in the worship of the golden calf. The priesthood, however, was restricted to the family of Aaron. Aaron and his sons alone were permitted to minister before the Lord; the rest of the tribe were entrusted with the charge of the tabernacle and its furniture, and they were to attend upon the priests in their ministration, but they were not to sacrifice, to burn incense, or to see the holy things till they were covered. PP 350.1
In accordance with their office, a special dress was appointed for the priests. “Thou shalt make holy garments for Aaron thy brother, for glory and for beauty,” was the divine direction to Moses. The robe of the common priest was of white linen, and woven in one piece. It extended nearly to the feet and was confined about the waist by a white linen girdle embroidered in blue, purple, and red. A linen turban, or miter, completed his outer costume. Moses at the burning bush was directed to put off his sandals, for the ground whereon he stood was holy. So the priests were not to enter the sanctuary with shoes upon their feet. Particles of dust cleaving to them would desecrate the holy place. They were to leave their shoes in the court before entering the sanctuary, and also to wash both their hands and their feet before ministering in the tabernacle or at the altar of burnt offering. Thus was constantly taught the lesson that all defilement must be put away from those who would approach into the presence of God. PP 350.2
The garments of the high priest were of costly material and beautiful workmanship, befitting his exalted station. In addition to the linen dress of the common priest, he wore a robe of blue, also woven in one piece. Around the skirt it was ornamented with golden bells, and pomegranates of blue, purple, and scarlet. Outside of this was the ephod, a shorter garment of gold, blue, purple, scarlet, and white. It was confined by a girdle of the same colors, beautifully wrought. The ephod was sleeveless, and on its gold-embroidered shoulder pieces were set two onyx stones, bearing the names of the twelve tribes of Israel. PP 350.3Read in context »