Passage of the Day: Reference of Today’s Chronological Bible Study: Leviticus, Chapters 8-10 … To study these chapters, go to this link -
Leviticus 8: 1-5 : … [Priests Set Aside for Holiness]… 1 The LORD said to Moses, 2 “Bring Aaron and his sons, their garments, the anointing oil, the bull for the sin offering,[a] the two rams and the basket containing bread made without yeast, 3 and gather the entire assembly at the entrance to the tent of meeting.” 4 Moses did as the LORD commanded him, and the assembly gathered at the entrance to the tent of meeting. … 5 Moses said to the assembly, “This is what the LORD has commanded to be done.”
LEVITICUS 10; 1-2; 8-11; … : … [Aaron’s Disobedient Sons] … 1 Aaron’s sons Nadab and Abihu took their censers, put fire in them and added incense; and they offered unauthorized fire before the LORD, contrary to his command. 2 So fire came out from the presence of the LORD and consumed them, and they died before the LORD. …
8 Then the LORD said to Aaron, 9 “You and your sons are not to drink wine or other fermented drink whenever you go into the tent of meeting, or you will die. This is a lasting ordinance for the generations to come, 10 so that you can distinguish between the holy and the common, between the unclean and the clean, 11 and so you can teach the Israelites all the decrees the LORD has given them through Moses.”
My Journal for Today: Today in the passages of my chronological reading plan which stood out to me, God was teaching about the Priesthood, which was set aside – BY GOD – in a special way, to watch over the flock of God’s people. And in Leviticus, chapters 8-9, we read of the elaborate ordination scheme, in which God made plain that the priesthood was to represent God to man as well as man to God and the Priests were to be the picture of holiness to the people.
But actually this was God’s “Plan B” for the priesthood.
Earlier this year in Exodus 19: 5-6, I read about God’s “Plan A” for His Priesthood, which reads as follows, [God to Moses about His chosen people, the descendants of Joseph] 5 “ ‘ Now if you obey Me fully and keep My covenant, then out of all nations you [God’s chosen nation] will be my treasured possession. Although the whole earth is Mine, 6 you will be for me a kingdom of priests and a holy nation.’ These are the words you are to speak to the Israelites.”
For you bible students, does that passage ring a bell of connection for you with the New Testament? What about 1st Peter 2: 9-10 [?], which reads … 9 But you [God’s church] are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s special possession, that you may declare the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His wonderful light. 10 Once you were not a people, but now you are the people of God; once you had not received mercy, but now you have received mercy.
Yes, my fellow disciples of Christ, we – you and me – are God’s PLAN A for His priesthood. And we are the fulfillment of God’s original plan for His chosen people to become a nation of priests, set aside for holiness, and sanctified for God’s glory. But in those OT days, after the establishment of God’s Tabernacle, as God’s sinful peoples were being prepared for their 40-year purging in the wilderness, God knew that He was going to have a Plan B for the Priesthood; and so we have the ordination of the Levites as Priests, set aside by this elaborate ordination ceremony in Leviticus to be God’s representatives to the people and their representatives to God.
But as you read in Chapter 10 of Leviticus, even the first of these ordained priests couldn’t hack it; and Aaron’s sons lapsed into selfishness and disobedience and away from God’s commission of holiness. And we read how God purified the priesthood by fire, consuming those who would not follow His commandments, as His Priesthood, and could not be God’s representative of holiness to others of God’s chosen as well as their representative to Him.
My dear ones, do we see the implication? WE are God’s royal priesthood now that Christ has come to be the Chief Priest. He has ordained and anointed any and all who are truly born-again believers to be His Royal Priesthood; and it is the shed blood of the Lamb of God which has purified us for this New Covenant Priesthood. And we, representing God to man and man to God, must be committed to living in obedience and holiness as God charged Aaron and his sons to be. And if we cannot, we are subject to the penalty experienced by Aaron’s sons and that is the death of our Spiritual life [i.e., our witness as God’s representatives] which is consumed in disobedience and sin. We won’t lose our promised eternal life because of our sinfulness; but we can – and would – lose our effectiveness and power as witnessing Priests if we cannot live up to God’s charge of grace empowered holiness.
BUT … we can be purified priests every day and in every situation of our lives, if we keep short accounts of cleansing with our God through confession/contrition (again see 1st John 1: 9). And when we do, also choosing to receive and use God’s purifying and enabling grace, we can be God’s Royal Priesthood, His PLAN A of holiness to the sin-ridden world, … letting God’s pure light of redemption shine through us to a world which desperately needs more chosen ones in His Priesthood.
My Prayer Today: … Oh, LORD, let me be Your Priest today as I’m cleansed and purified by my confession and Your forgiveness. Amen