Dedicate Aaron and His Sons
so They May Serve Me as Priests

Exodus 29:1-9, 30:22-33, 40:9-16 and Leviticus 8:1-13

    DIG: When was this ceremony held? Why was it important to gather the leaders of the nation, the seventy elders of Isra'el, to witness this dedication ceremony?

    REFLECT: Do you think dedication of spiritual leaders is as important for the community of believers today as it was for ancient Isra'el? Why or why not?

    After the Tabernacle was completed, Aaron and his sons were dedicated by a series of sacrifices and offerings, an anointing with oil (30:30-33), and the donning of the tunics, headbands and sashes. The entire ceremony is neatly summarized here. The end of this section begins to focus on Aaron’s descendents, not jut his own sons. The priesthood would be theirs by a lasting ordinance.

    Moses functioned as the mediator between ADONAI and the priesthood during the dedication. But after the dedication, Aaron assumed the duties of the high priest. This is what you are to do to set them apart, or dedicate them, so they may serve Me as priests. Take a young bull and two rams without defect. And from fine wheat flour, without yeast, make bread, and cakes mixed with oil. Put them in a basket and present them in it, along with the bull and the two rams. Then gather the leadership of the nation, the seventy elders of Israel who went up on Mount Sinai (24:9-10a), at the gate of the Tabernacle (Exodus 29:1-3; Leviticus 8:2b-4).

    The bull and two rams chosen were to be young and without defect. They were to be the best the worshiper had – in the prime of life and showing no visible scars blemishes. Since God never asks His people to do anything that He is unwilling to do Himself, He offered to us His one and only Son, Jesus Christ – in the prime of life and without blemish or defect (First Peter 1:19). Every step in the sacrificial process of the Old Covenant typifies the perfect sacrifice of Christ Himself.637

    Then Moses said to the leadership of the nation: This is what God has commanded to be done. In other words, Moses did not pick Aaron as the high priest because he was his brother. He was merely dedicating the one whom the LORD had already chosen. Then Moses, as mediator, brought Aaron and his four sons to the bronze basin and washed them with water. This was the normal practice before putting on priestly garments. Aaron was dressed as the high priest in his white linen undergarments, robe, ephod, the breastpiece that contained the Urim and the Thummim, the turban on his head with the golden plate or sacred diadem attached to it. Aaron’s sons were dressed in tunics and sashes with headbands on them. They were dedicated for the ministry just as their father had been thus honored, so that they would also serve as priests for all generations to come (Exodus 29:4-6, 40:12-16; Leviticus 8:1-2a, 5-9a).

    Then Moses took the oil of dedication and sprinkled the Sanctuary and everything in it, thus, anointing everything to the priesthood (30:22-29). Then he went out into the courtyard of the Tabernacle and sprinkled some of the oil on the bronze altar seven times, dedicating it with all its utensils, and he also dedicated the bronze basin with its foot stand. After dedicating the Tabernacle, Moses anointed Aaron, the high priest. Moses took some of the oil and poured it on Aaron’s head. Then Moses brought Aaron’s sons forward, put tunics on them, tied sashes around them and put headbands on them as the LORD commanded. The priesthood was theirs until the Dispensation of Torah had ended (Exodus 19:1 to Acts 1:26), and the Dispensation of Grace had begun (Acts 2:1 to Revelation 19:21). That was how Aaron and his sons were dedicated to the ministry of the Tabernacle (Exodus 29:7 and 9b, 40:9-11; Leviticus 8:10-13).


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