Priestly Glory and Blessings

Priestly Glory and Blessings

Preacher Huijun - 3 December 2023

Priestly Glory and Blessings

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<Exodus 28>
1 “Have Aaron your brother brought to you from among the Israelites, along with his sons Nadab and Abihu, Eleazar and Ithamar, so they may serve me as priests.

  • Priesthood is by God’s sovereign calling and appointment.

 

<Exodus 28> 2 Make sacred garments for your brother Aaron to give him dignity and honor. 3 Tell all the skilled workers to whom I have given wisdom in such matters that they are to make garments for Aaron, for his consecration, so he may serve me as priest. 4 These are the garments they are to make: a breastpiece, an ephod, a robe, a woven tunic, a turban and a sash. They are to make these sacred garments for your brother Aaron and his sons, so they may serve me as priests.

6 “Make the ephod of gold, and of blue, purple and scarlet yarn, and of finely twisted linen—the work of skilled hands.

9 “Take two onyx stones and engrave on them the names of the sons of Israel 10 in the order of their birth—six names on one stone and the remaining six on the other. 11 Engrave the names of the sons of Israel on the two stones the way a gem cutter engraves a seal. Then mount the stones in gold filigree settings 12 and fasten them on the shoulder pieces of the ephod as memorial stones for the sons of Israel. Aaron is to bear the names on his shoulders as a memorial before the Lord. 

15 “Fashion a breastpiece for making decisions—the work of skilled hands… 17 Then mount four rows of precious stones on it…  

21 There are to be twelve stones, one for each of the names of the sons of Israel, each engraved like a seal with the name of one of the twelve tribes.

29 “Whenever Aaron enters the Holy Place, he will bear the names of the sons of Israel over his heart on the breastpiece of decision as a continuing memorial before the Lord. 30 Also put the Urim and the Thummim in the breastpiece, so they may be over Aaron’s heart whenever he enters the presence of the Lord. Thus Aaron will always bear the means of making decisions for the Israelites over his heart before the Lord.

36 “Make a plate of pure gold and engrave on it as on a seal: holy to the Lord. 37 Fasten a blue cord to it to attach it to the turban; it is to be on the front of the turban. 38 It will be on Aaron’s forehead, and he will bear the guilt involved in the sacred gifts the Israelites consecrate, whatever their gifts may be. It will be on Aaron’s forehead continually so that they will be acceptable to the Lord.

39 “Weave the tunic of fine linen and make the turban of fine linen. The sash is to be the work of an embroiderer. 40 Make tunics, sashes and caps for Aaron’s sons to give them dignity and honor. 41 After you put these clothes on your brother Aaron and his sons, anoint and ordain them. Consecrate them so they may serve me as priests.

42 “Make linen undergarments as a covering for the body, reaching from the waist to the thigh. 43 Aaron and his sons must wear them whenever they enter the tent of meeting or approach the altar to minister in the Holy Place, so that they will not incur guilt and die.

“This is to be a lasting ordinance for Aaron and his descendants.

 

The glorious beauty of priesthood.

  • Priests are set apart.
  • God’s representative before men; the people’s representative before God.
  • God takes every little detail of worship very seriously.
  • While priestly garments not required in new covenant, what they signify still apply today.
  • God’s priests should be clothed with His righteousness <Ps 132:9>.

 

The functions of the high priest.

  • Represents the people of Israel before God to atone for his and their sins.
  • Serves both God and the people.
  • A reminder of Israel’s ongoing sins and their perpetual need for God’s forgiveness.
  • Also signifies God’s merciful willingness to forgive His people.
  • The “Urim and the Thummim” – Consult God’s will on behalf of the people.
    • <Exodus 28:30> Also put the Urim and the Thummimin the breastpiece, so they may be over Aaron’s heart whenever he enters the presence of the Lord. Thus Aaron will always bear the means of making decisions for the Israelites over his heart before the Lord.
    • God didn’t normally use the Urim and Thummim to reveal His will.
    • First consult His written word, or spoken words to OT prophets.
    • Today, we don’t need the Urim and Thummim, because we have Bible and the Holy Spirit.

 

“The iniquity of the holy things”.

<Exodus 28:38> It will be on Aaron’s forehead, and he will bear the guilt involved in the sacred gifts the Israelites consecrate, whatever their gifts may be. It will be on Aaron’s forehead continually so that they will be acceptable to the Lord.

  • “The iniquity of the holy things” <KJV; NASB>.
  • “Guilt from the holy things” <ESV>.
  • Is there any hint of ‘guilt’ (sin) in our holy things?
  • “…all our righteous acts are like filthy rags” <Isa 64:6>.
  • Even Aaron the high priest is not adequate, for he also needed to offer sacrifices for his own sins <Lev 16:6>.

 

We need a greater high priest.

  • Aaron is a “type” of Christ the Great High Priest.
  • Jesus’ priesthood is of a different order from that of the old covenant.
    • <Heb 7:11> If perfection could have been attained through the Levitical priesthood… why was there still need for another priest to come,one in the order of Melchizedek, not in the order of Aaron?
    • <Heb 7> 23 Now there have been many of those priests, since death prevented them from continuing in office; 24 but because Jesus lives forever, he has a permanent priesthood. 25 Therefore he is able to save completely those who come to God through him, because he always lives to intercede for them.
  • Christ became human like us, so that He can be our representative.
    • <Heb 2> 17 For this reason he had to be made like them, fully human in every way, in order that he might become a merciful and faithful high priest in service to God, and that he might make atonement for the sins of the people.
Preacher Huijun
Preacher Huijun
huijun@lifechurchmissions.com

Huijun joined The Life Church and Missions (Singapore) as a preacher in 2012. She is effectively bilingual and preaches occasionally at the Chinese service. She graduated from Singapore Bible College and currently lives in Singapore with her husband, Chengji.

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