God Calls People to Special Service

Key Verse: “He poured of the anointing oil upon Aaron’s head, and anointed him, to sanctify him.”
—Leviticus 8:12

Selected Scripture:
Leviticus 8:1-13

AARON AND HIS SONS, from the tribe of Levi, were specially chosen by God to lead the nation of Israel in their religious worship. To signify this choosing, God instructed Moses to perform a ceremony of anointing, that all would know the important office to which these had been appointed. “Take Aaron and his sons with him, and the garments, and the anointing oil, and a bullock for the sin offering, and two rams, and a basket of unleavened bread; And gather thou all the congregation together unto the door of the tabernacle of the congregation. And Moses did as the Lord commanded him; and the assembly was gathered together unto the door of the tabernacle of the congregation. And Moses said unto the congregation, This is the thing which the Lord commanded to be done.”—Lev. 8:2-5

The first thing Moses was instructed to do was to wash Aaron and his sons. (vs. 6) This was done to signify their preparation for a holy work by being cleansed from sin. Next, Moses put upon Aaron special garments (vss. 7-9), which showed the glory of the priestly office to which he was being appointed. When the people would see Aaron arrayed in these garments, they would know that he was acting in his priestly capacity, for their spiritual benefit, to keep them in close covenant relationship to God. These garments covered every portion of Aaron, showing additionally that his service as high priest included every aspect of his life—his head, the thoughts of the mind; his arms and legs, signifying actions; and his heart, the seat of all his affections and motives.

Another very important part of this ceremony was the anointing of Aaron and his sons with the holy anointing oil. Our Key Verse speaks of the anointing of Aaron, while later in the chapter the anointing of his sons is mentioned. “Moses took of the anointing oil, … and sprinkled it upon Aaron, and upon his garments, and upon his sons, and upon his sons’ garments with him; and sanctified Aaron, and his garments, and his sons, and his sons’ garments with him.” (Lev. 8:30) This anointing oil was a picture of God’s Holy Spirit—the power and influence which was to guide and direct this priestly class in their activities on behalf of Israel.

This consecration of Aaron and his sons to the priestly office, although important to Israel, has a still deeper significance. It serves as a picture of the greater priesthood of Christ and his church, in which office they will lead mankind in their worship of God in the coming kingdom. This priesthood is being developed now, first with Jesus, who at the age of thirty was begotten with God’s Holy Spirit, and anointed to be a High Priest. Through his faithfulness, even unto the death of the cross, he has earned the right to be man’s High Priest. The church likewise, having also received the anointing of the Holy Spirit, as shown on the Day of Pentecost (Acts 2), has been developed during this Gospel Age for the purpose of joining their head, Christ Jesus, as the world’s high priest. Just as the typical priests were washed and wore special garments, the church also at the present time is washed with the water of truth and wears the garments of salvation.—Eph. 5:26; Isa. 61:10

Dawn Bible Students Association
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