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Bible Commentaries

Bridgeway Bible Commentary
Leviticus 8

 

 

Verses 1-36

8:1-10:20 THE PRIESTHOOD ESTABLISHED

Ordination of the priests (8:1-36)

After giving instruction concerning the sacrifices, Moses put into practice God's commands for the ordination (or dedication) of the priests. (For the details and meaning of this ordination ceremony see notes on Exodus 29:1-37.)

First Moses washed the priests, symbolizing cleansing, then clothed and anointed them, symbolizing their appointment to office (8:1-13). (For the significance of the priests' clothing see notes on Exodus 28:1-43.) Since the priests themselves were not free from sin, they had to carry out acts of atonement for themselves before they could act on behalf of others. They offered a bull as a sin offering, according to the laws laid down in the previous chapters (14-17). Once cleansed from sin, they offered a ram as a burnt offering, dedicating themselves to God's service (18-21).

The priests then offered a second ram in a special offering of ordination. This offering was not listed in Chapters 1-7, as it was used only in the ceremony for ordination of the priests. Blood was applied to the ears, hands, feet and clothing of the priests, to indicate the consecration to God of all that they were and all that they did. They gave further demonstration of their dedication to God by taking the most valued parts of the animal and other sacrificial food, waving them up and down in symbolic offering to God, and then sacrificing them to him by burning them on the altar. Since Moses was acting as officiating priest in this service, he also received his portion (22-30).

After the presentations to God and Moses, the priests received their portions, which they ate in holy fellowship with one another and with God, as in the peace offering. The whole ceremony was repeated seven days, giving time to think calmly and solemnly on its importance and on the life of priestly service that lay ahead (31-36).

 


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Bibliography Information
Flemming, Donald C. "Commentary on Leviticus 8:4". "Brideway Bible Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bbc/leviticus-8.html. 2005.

Lectionary Calendar
Tuesday, October 15th, 2019
the Week of Proper 23 / Ordinary 28
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