You pick up your Bible and wonder, is there more here than meets the eye?
Is there something here for me? I mean, it's just words printed on paper, right? Well, it may look like just print on a page, but it's more than ink. Join us for the next half hour as we explore God's Word together, as we learn how to explore it on our own, as we ask God to meet us there in its pages.
Welcome to More Than Ink. Hey, when somebody in the neighborhood is barbecuing, everybody for blocks knows it because of the aroma. It smells great. Well, today we're going to consecrate the priests and that aroma will be in the air. And it smells good.
Not only in our nostrils, but in God's. Today on More Than Ink. Well, good morning.
You're listening to More Than Ink. I'm Jim. And I'm Dorothy. And we're sitting around our kitchen table, literally. Well, actually our dining table.
Dining room table. Yeah, but it's very informal because we love to informally sit around, look at the Word, you know, kind of run it through our minds and taste it with our lips and talk about it. So I don't know if you know this, but Dorothy and I both look at these passages before we record these, but we don't have a clue what the other person's going to say. Which leads to a little bit of tension and suspense.
And lots of laughing on my part. So let me bring you up to where we are. We're looking at chapter 29 of Exodus today. And we just finished getting the high priest and his sons all clothed last week. And now we need to get them well installed into their role as priests. So we need to consecrate them as priests. And that's the primary topic in chapter 29 is how to get them consecrated into their role as being intermediaries for the nation. So to consecrate this.
This is the ceremony of setting them apart. And it's in full view of everybody. There's nothing secret about it. Everyone sees this entire thing.
Everybody sees this happen. So they know these men have been fully vested in this job. And since they do see it, this is God's way of saying in a graphical way. He's trying to tell you something very important about what the role of this man, the high priest, and his sons is by how they are consecrated. So take notes as we go and see if you can figure out what this is telling you visibly as we consecrate them. So turn your Bibles to chapter 29. We're jumping into verse 1.
Here we go. Let's consecrate the priests. Okay, now this is what you shall do to them to consecrate them, that they may serve me as priests. Take one bowl of the herd and two rams without blemish and an unleavened bread, unleavened cakes mixed with oil and unleavened wafers smeared with oil.
You shall make them a fine wheat flour. You shall put them in one basket and bring them in the basket and bring the bowl and the two rams. You shall bring Aaron and his sons to the entrance of the tent of meeting and wash them with water. Then you shall take the garments and put on Aaron the coat and the robe of the ephod and the ephod and the breastpiece and gird him with the skillfully woven band of the ephod. And you shall set the turban on his head and put the holy crown on the turban. And you shall take the anointing oil and pour it on his head and anoint him. And then you shall bring his sons and put coats on them. And you shall gird Aaron and his sons with sashes and bind caps on them. And the priesthood shall be theirs by a statute forever. Thus you shall ordain Aaron and his sons. Okay.
Stop there. So we're ready to do some offerings, but we've got them all dressed. So you notice that the dress we talked about in the previous chapter, they're putting that on right here in front of the people. Right. Now bring it all together.
They've got the animals and the foods and everything. And then they're going to start into the process. They wash them, they clothe them, and then they anoint them.
Aaron first and then the sons. That's right. And we bring the recipe for the sacrifices, right? We've got a bowl, some rams, some weed-made cakes and stuff like that.
So we're ready to go. And presumably, you know, Aaron shows up in his street clothes. Well, in his normal daily clothes. Yeah, he doesn't wear his priestly garb all the time. And as they're getting ready to do this, he puts these things on ceremonially. He puts all the stuff we talked about in the previous chapter. And, you know, the names of the tribes of Israel over his heart and on the onyx pieces on his shoulders, the turban, the gold that says holy to the Lord.
He puts all that stuff on. Everyone gets ready. And we have all the ingredients set. And we're going to go into the consecration. And did you catch it that all of that is done for Aaron?
Yes. And then you bring the sons and do that. So really the focus is on Aaron as the high priest.
As the high priest. And the sons as servants of the high priest. And they assist. And you'll see why they're needed to assist when you see the magnitude of the sacrifices.
Well, yes. So perhaps there are people who are farmers listening to this and you're thinking are people who have killed their own cows or slaughtered their own livestock. And you think, well, that's a lot of work. Well, there's a lot of different kinds of sacrifices coming up here.
A lot of work. Well, we have a bull, which is a large animal. A big animal. That's the first one. That's not a one man sacrifice. And then you've got rams, which are feisty sheep, right?
They're rams. But we have two of them. Not just one of them. So this is why you can see Aaron and his sons are needed to do this kind of thing. So we need to get them consecrated. And part of the idea of consecration is, first off, before they can be good intermediaries for the sins of the people, we have to do something about their sins. Right. And that's what we step up to next.
And Hebrews actually talks about that, about how the priests used to have to offer sacrifice first for themselves before they could offer sacrifice for the people. Yeah, yeah. So let's read. Let's read.
By the way, I might just point out, and you can noodle over this as we go along. We just read that this is, you shall ordain Aaron and his sons. We've talked a lot about the fact that Jesus is our high priest. But you know, Jesus is not related of Aaron.
So what does that mean? Well, we'll get to that some other time. Well, we talked about that last year when we did Hebrews. That's right. We talked about Jesus being a priest of a different order, the order of Melchizedek.
That's right. So you all, if you're just picking up the program now, you can go back and listen to those shows on Hebrews. Or just sit down and read the letter to the Hebrews. I just wanted that little penny to fall if you had me, because that was the problem with the writer of Hebrews is saying.
Right. Jesus is a high priest. And a Jew would say, he can't be me.
He can't be. Because according to Exodus 29 and 28, he's got to be from Aaron. Well, he's a different kind of priest, but he is no less the high priest. Okay. Let's look at the offering that consecrates the high priest. You want to read for us?
Sure. This is the first offering. The sin offering. This is the bull. Verse 10. Then you shall bring the bull before the tent of meeting. Aaron and his sons shall lay their hands on the head of the bull. Then you shall kill the bull before the Lord at the entrance of the tent of meeting. And you shall take part of the blood of the bull and put it on the horns of the altar with your finger. The rest of the blood you shall pour out at the base of the altar. And you shall take all the fat that covers the entrails and the long lobe of the liver and the two kidneys and the fat that's on them and burn them on the altar.
But the flesh of the bull and its skin and its dung you shall burn with fire outside the camp, for it's a sin offering. Wow. So we're just killing the bull to start with. Right.
Yeah. And you need to take notice of the fact of what happens with the blood. Because the blood is sort of the central actor in this entire sacrifice. Right.
The central actor of it. And notice where the blood goes. That's really, really important. Because remember we talked about the fact that the blood isn't just a weird Dracula horror film kind of thing.
Right. The blood is a symbol of carrying life from one to another. So when the animal loses its blood it loses its life. But when that blood is applied somewhere else it symbolically is being applied to you. So it's the moving of life from one sacrifice to someone else to benefit it. So where does the blood go in this particular picture?
Where does the life go? This one goes on the altar. On the altar. The sin offering, the blood purifies the altar.
Yes. And so the question crossed my mind, whose finger is putting the blood on the altar? Yeah, that's a really good question. It must be Moses at this point because it's Aaron who's being ordained. But the text is not real clear. But Moses is the one, at this point in Exodus, Moses is receiving the instructions. And we're having a recounting here of the instructions. And then we're going to actually have the execution a few chapters ahead.
Yeah, right. And I think in Leviticus 8 we actually see this happen. It's documented. But yeah, so it could be Moses because Aaron's not dipping the finger and putting it on himself. But look what happens to the animal now.
That's important. The blood gets applied to the altar and poured out at the base. And then you take all the guts, the fat and the guts and the deepest inside part of the animal and burn those on the altar. But the flesh and the skin and the dung, the refuse, is burned with fire outside the camp because of the sin offering.
Outside the camp. Right, now Hebrews 13 refers to that. It says, now remember, the flesh of the sin offering gets burned outside the camp. Only the blood serves its purpose.
Yes, yes. So the blood here, very symbolically, purifies and brings an offer of life, a hope of life, around what functions at the altar. What happens now at the altar is going to be, in a real sense, a source of life. Even though the altar is known as a killing place, it's a place of death.
Because the blood, the transference of the blood, it says, yeah, but there's going to be life that comes from these deaths. From this place. From this holy place. Exactly. Very clear picture of what the altar is all about. It's not just to give gifts to God, it's actually to affect the transference of life. This exchange of life. Right.
Very clear picture right here about that. And yet still, the bull itself, in its flesh, in its larger body, is considered kind of sinful. Right. Yeah, the body of flesh.
The only important part about this sin offering bull is the blood. Yeah. Well, the guts. The guts, too. The deep inner part.
The deep inner parts. Yeah. Yeah. Now we passed right over at the beginning of the fact that Aaron and his sons lay their hands on the head of the bull. Right.
So if you're just a bystander, Israelite, looking on in this, when you see that, what are you thinking? You are identifying. Exactly. That this bull represents me. Yes.
And they are participating in accepting the substitution on their behalf. Okay, so the part of the bull that goes on the altar is the deep inner part, the guts. Yeah. Right? Yeah. And the part that dies, burned outside the camp, is the dead, corrupted flesh. Yep. That's the picture. There's lots of theology in this.
Oh my goodness. Just a lot of theology. Deep theology here. This is not a picture that was lost on the Israelites.
They saw what was going on. Yeah. And the benefit of the transference of life from this bull, this mighty beast, and basically making the altar a place where life is gonna come out of death. Yeah.
That's an amazing thing. And at least right now, since we're consecrating the priests, Aaron and his sons, they lay their hands on this bull. Right. And they're saying, we basically accept this substitutionary transfer of life on our behalf. And that's what that putting on hands is really meant to be.
Right. We've identified this bull as me. We've identified with this, yeah. So clearly, as people are looking on, if the priests were standing off to the side and they just sacrificed this animal, it wouldn't mean much. But when they lay their hands on it, they realize this is for them.
That's what they're seeing. It's a very visual, clear visual of what the benefit and purpose of the sacrifice. A substitutionary sacrifice.
They are accepting the substitution. Yeah. Okay. So let's read on. Yeah. We're gonna get to the rams now.
That's right. Verse 15. Then you shall take one of the rams and Aaron and his sons shall lay their hands on the head of the ram and you shall kill the ram and take its blood and throw it against the sides of the altar. Then you shall cut the ram into pieces and wash its entrails and its legs and put them with its pieces and its head and burn the whole ram on the altar. It is a burnt offering to the Lord. It is a pleasing aroma, a food offering to the Lord. Wow. Okay. So the difference here is this whole burnt offering.
The whole ram. It probably smelled pretty good, right? Roasting meat. It says it was a pleasing aroma. Yeah.
Well, the ancient man, you know, barbecuing animals smells pretty darn good. Oh, okay. The imagery of the whole burnt offering is the whole self on the altar. Right.
Right. So this is similar again, too, because you've got to trace the direction of the blood and you kill the ram, take its blood, and you throw it against the sides of the altar again. So in a way, we're sort of making the altar an acceptable place of the transference of life from this altar. Life out of death.
That's clearly what it's saying. And then the totality, not just part of the animal like the bull, but the whole animal, the first of the two rams, first of the two rams is wholly, wholly invested in this process. And it's a burnt offering to the Lord. It's a pleasing aroma. It's a food offering.
And it's really clearly interesting. Yeah, it's a food offering and they can, they know what roasting, you know, right, right. It smells good. It smells really good. So not only does it smell good to them, but they can understand why this would smell good to God. And the offering that's made on behalf of the sins of the priest is something that smells good to God.
And they get that because it does smell good. It's the whole animal. Whole animal. Well, now that was the first of two rams. Okay. We got another ram coming. Verse 19, you shall take the other ram and Aaron and his sons shall lay their hands on the head of the ram and you shall kill the ram and take part of its blood and put it on the tip of the right ear of Aaron and on the tips of the right ears of his sons and on the thumbs of their right hands and on the great toes of the right feet and throw the rest of the blood against the sides of the altar.
Then you shall take part of the blood that's on the altar and of the anointing oil and sprinkle it on Aaron and his garments and on his sons and his sons garments and he and his garments shall be holy and his sons and his sons garments with him. Well, wow. Okay. Before we finish what they do with the rest of this ram, let's talk about this. This is for me like the focal point of this entire part we're going to look at today. It's so important.
Really interesting. So again, with the second ram, they lay their hands on. So they're- Identified with it. Visibly identifying with the sacrifice. And again, trace where the blood goes.
Trace the blood. And that's what's interesting here. So we're watching this kind of representative exchange of life happening. Yes.
Yes. Right? So where does the blood go? It gets marked on their right ear. Tip of the right ear. On their thumb on their right hand. Right hand thumb. Big toe of their right foot. Big toe of their right foot. So here- Now there's symbols here.
The hand and the feet represent something. And if we remember that the priests are representatives of the people to God, but they also represent God to the people. Yes. So we're talking about the exchange of life and a holy life, a hearing, a doing, a walking sanctified. Yes. Yeah.
Yeah. They're set apart for a purpose, so their ears are now set apart for a purpose. Their hands are set apart for a purpose.
Their feet are set apart for a purpose. So I mean, in the totality, and we already said this, because they're holy in this job. But it does say something about the fact that God is sanctifying their listening and their hearing. Sanctifying what they do with the works of their hands. What they do as a result of what they hear.
Yeah. And where they go. And how they walk.
And how they walk. So that's very clear symbolism right here. And remember, if you remember that blood is this transference of life, what God is saying is that now they're going to be involved in a sense that they're going to be participants in the conveying of life through what they hear, what they do, and where they go. That makes sense. It sure does. It makes a ton of sense. But it took a supernatural substitution in order to make them capable to do that. And that's what this is all about. And then eventually the blood, even after that, goes on the altar. Like again, life is going to come out of death that happens on this altar.
But it's what happens after that that blows my mind. So then read on. Well, no. No.
The anointing oil. Oh. Oh. Oh. Oh.
Yeah. The blood mixed with the anointing oil. And where does that go? It does not go on the altar. It doesn't go on their ears, thumbs, or toes. It goes on this beautiful clothing they're wearing. Remember how beautiful that was for beauty and for glory? And it gets sprinkled on their clothing.
And when I read that in the margin, I wrote, no. No, you're going to make them all icky with the blood and icky with the oil. And the oil is the Holy Spirit and the calling of God on their behalf.
I mean, you're going to wreck all this great clothing and all this great linen. Well, that raises an interesting question. Is it a literal splattering of blood, or is it a ceremonial flicking? It's not pouring. It does say sprinkle.
Right. So you'll sprinkle it on Aaron and his garment. It's very specific on his garments and his son's garments. So get the visual here, because now when you see Aaron and his son doing this stuff for God for the benefit of the people, not only are they going to see these precious stones with the precious names of the tribes of Israel and all these great linens and these colors, every time they see him, they're going to see blood as well. And that's meant to be a little jarring. And for me, visually, even if I put this picture in my head, it's jarring.
It's just jarring. They're taking this beautiful thing, and they've just wrecked it with all this blood. But the role of the high priest in terms of carrying the names of the people before God has to always have visually mixed with the fact that they don't come to God except with this blood.
Okay. Hebrews says, nothing is cleansed without the shedding of blood, without this imputation of life. Yeah. And that's where a beautiful picture of this clothing has to always carry around this marking with blood. I mean, it's just very clear.
It would just be jarring to me to see it. Because we're dealing with sin, right? And God had said at the beginning, now if you sin, there will be death, you will die, and I will have to pay for that for you.
You can't pay for that yourself. Yeah. And way back when we were in the Holy of Holies, we have the Ark of the Covenant today. And this beautiful gold covered box with the beautiful solid gold cherubims on top. In the use of that space, the high priest goes in and sprinkles blood on that beautiful gold piece of furniture. I mean, it's so jarring. It just marrs everything. It's a constant reminder of the fact that life does not come without the shedding of blood, even into the very presence of God.
It's everywhere. It marks the path into the Holy of Holies in the presence of God. It even marks the high priest himself. And Jesus as our high priest was marked with blood. His blood was shed on our behalf.
So this is a very direct connection. No, we actually see him eternally marked, right? He's identified in Revelation as the lamb who was slain. He carries that mark of the sacrifice of life into eternity.
I do not understand that, and yet here it is. Constant reminder. But all that time we spent looking at the garments, here what we've just done is we've consecrated the garments. We've consecrated the garments and with what?
With blood itself. I think that's a fascinating thing. It just wrecks the beauty of the garments to me. But it doesn't. It actually fulfills their purpose.
Fulfills their purpose. Yeah, yeah. You were going someplace. Oh, no. Let's read on.
We just have to finish what happens to this sacrifice. Okay. I'll take it from here. Okay. So 22, we're going to this what we call the wave offering. Wave?
You'll see why. We'll also take the fat from the ram and the fat tail and the fat that covers the entrails and the long lobe of the liver and the two kidneys with the fat that is on them and the right thigh, for it's a ram of ordination, and one loaf of bread and one cake of bread made with oil and one wafer out of the basket of unleavened bread that is before the Lord. And you shall put all these on the palms of Aaron and on the palms of his sons and wave them for a wave offering before the Lord. And you shall take them from their hands and burn them on the altar on top of the burnt offering as a pleasing aroma before the Lord. It's a food offering to the Lord.
That's what when we hear about a wave offering, well, you put these things in Aaron's hands, he lifts them up to God and he waves them before the Lord, and then they sacrifice it on the altar. Have nothing to say? I was waiting for you to stop. No, I really don't. I really don't. Yeah. Because there's a piece of this ram that's going to be also a wave offering that then becomes their portion to eat. Yeah. But at this point, this first part, the fat and the entrails and all of that, and part of the meat and the bread becomes a wave offering and gets burned, that beautiful fragrance to the Lord.
Well, yeah. And this whole part about waving is so when people are watching this, they clearly see that this part of the ram is being offered to God, lifted up to God, presented to God. But then another part of the ram's coming, you just said, that's going to be consumed by the priest.
So we look at that in 26, that's how it sets this apart. So you shall take the breast of the ram of Aaron's ordination and wave it for a wave offering before the Lord, and it shall be your portion, that's a food term, and you shall consecrate the breast of the wave offering that is waved and the thigh of the priest's portion that is contributed from the ram of ordination, from what was Aaron, Aaron's and his sons. And it shall be for Aaron and his sons as a perpetual dew. This is there for them. Right, this is theirs. Yeah, from the people of Israel, for it is a contribution.
It shall be a contribution from the people of Israel, from their peace offerings, their contribution to the Lord. So this part right here we just read is about the fact that this is the food that feeds the priests. Right. Yeah. It comes from the people.
Yes. It doesn't come from the sin offering. Exactly. It doesn't come from the other kinds of offerings. It comes from the peace offerings. It shall be your portion. And this explains, we've mentioned this before about how it is that when they subdivided the land, when they came from the land, they didn't get any land, the priests didn't get any land.
Right. So how are you supposed to raise flocks? How are you supposed to raise food? They lived off of this is how they lived. And they lived off of the peace offerings that came from the people. As God's provision for them. As God's provision for them.
So there's debates in the area we live in about whether or not it's right for say pastors or people in ministry to accept income for what they do. Well here, Aaron and his sons as priests, this is how they ate. They're literally, their food came from the offering of the people.
From what they did full time as servants of God on behalf of the people, this is basically their income. This is how they ate was from this. So this is food. This is their portion. It shall always be their portion. So and I find it kind of interesting, when we look at communion, when we take in the bread and the drink, we take it into ourselves and here the priests themselves are taking this in.
Right. And it occurred to me that you need to eat. We all need to eat.
But wouldn't it be silly, it does no good to just sit around food. You actually have to take it. Consume it. Have to consume it. And that's true of communion as we do that.
That's true right here too. So in a large measure the priests are participating in this by consuming it. Well Hebrews says that and Paul says that also in 1 Corinthians. Don't you know that when you eat the sacrifices you are becoming a participant in the altar. You're a participant, right. This is our way, like they put their hands on the sacrifice animals. This is how we participate here by taking it into ourselves. Now that's not a foreign concept in ancient peoples. Ancient peoples when they did pagan sacrifices did the same thing.
They take in the benefit of it by taking it into themselves. Well indeed that's you know in pagan idolatrous practices the drinking of blood was a common thing. Same thing. And you are taking into yourself the life of that animal that you've sacrificed. Yeah. Right and they were doing it in order to take on the characteristics of that creature. Yeah. Right but we do it, we don't drink literally the blood.
No. But representationally we take the body and blood of Christ into ourselves. Right and that's that idea extended from ancient times. Right.
His life in us. Yeah just being around the sacrifice doesn't do it. You have to actually take it into yourself.
Become a participant. Yeah exactly. Well we're running short on time on this one as well. We're going to continue next week on more consecration but more looking forward like to Aaron's successors because this what we just looked at right here was this first time consecration of Aaron the high priest, first one and his sons in this process.
So we'll look forward and there's more of this kind of thing next time. But just last impressions on this as we look at the consecration. Well I'm just struck by where the blood goes. Follow the blood. Always important. On the people, on the priests as representative on their what they hear, what they do with what they hear and how they walk. Right.
Both representing the people before God and representing God before the people. Yeah so in these sacrifices follow the blood. The blood is the medium through which. The blood is the issue. Life is transferred and that's how it always is. Life is in the blood it says in Leviticus so symbolically it's the moving of life from one to another and we know because of Christ who is not only our high priest but he's also the sacrifice lamb that that life confers to us through the blood of Christ and that's why we say that the blood is that's what blood is all about. So I'm Jim.
And I'm Dorothy. And next time we'll come back and we'll consecrate you know the future generations of high priests right here on More Than Ink. More Than Ink is a production of Main Street Church of Brigham City and is solely responsible for its content.
To contact us with your questions or comments just go to our website morethanink.org. That's a fair take. That might be it. I don't know, let's try it again just to see.
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