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In the prosecution of the same important subject, the Lord gives Moses direction in this Chapter for the priests. Having prepared the hallowed spot for his worship, he here appoints the servants who are to minister in it before him. Aaron's dress, as the high-priest, is particularly described; and that of his sons in the priesthood is also mentioned.
The Holy Ghost hath taught us to consider this appointment of Aaron to the priesthood as the special call of God. And the inference from it is also made: Hebrews 5:4-5 . And if the Lord Jesus did not assume this office uncalled, so neither do his servants. Matthew 10:1-16 ; Acts 13:4; Acts 13:4 . But what an awful scripture is that of persons not commissioned, Jeremiah 23:21 . Dearest Jesus! be thou our high priest, seeing thou ever livest to make intercession for sinners. And for thy ministering servants acting under thy great name, let that promise be fulfilled in their appointment. Jeremiah 3:15 .
And thou shalt make holy garments for Aaron thy brother for glory and for beauty. Are not these garments emblematical of the glory and beauty of the Lord Jesus? Zechariah 9:16-17 ; Hebrews 7:26 .
Isaiah 28:24-26 .
Were not these robes worn by the priests to remind the people of the robe of Jesus' s righteousness, and his garments of salvation? Isaiah 61:10 ; Psalms 132:9-16 .
In the priests putting off their own clothes and putting on these robes of splendor, was it not meant to show how the Lord Jesus laid aside his glory, when he clothed himself in our nature; and when he who knew no sin became sin for us, that we might be made the righteousness of God in him? 2 Corinthians 5:21 . And was it not meant to show also, how sinners by the Holy Ghost are stripped of that clothing which is theirs by nature, and are clothed in the garments of grace. Zechariah 3:3-4 ; Ephesians 4:22-24 ; Isaiah 61:6 .
Is not this beautifully explained to us in a spiritual sense, where the church begs to be set upon the Redeemer's heart and arm? Song of Solomon 8:6 .
Who will not see the government of the Lord Jesus strikingly represented in this verse? Isaiah 9:6 . Was not this unfolded to the beloved apostle, when he saw the Lord Jesus going in before the mercy-seat? Revelation 5:6-9; Revelation 5:6-9 . See also Ephesians 5:27 .
Was not the fastening here of the garments meant to show, that all the offices of the Lord Jesus are united? He that was the high priest was also the lamb in the midst of the throne, testifying both his priestly and his kingly office; and also him alone that was found worthy to open the book, and loose the seals thereof, thus denoting his prophetical office also. See Psalm Exodus 4:0 ; Revelation 5:6-7 .
God's people are called his jewels. Malachi 3:17 . And agreeably to this, the new Jerusalem is thus described, Revelation 21:19-21 .
Sweet thought! every name was to be engraven on the high priest's breast-plate. So on the heart of Jesus, every name of his people, however low or insignificant among men, is held in everlasting remembrance before God. Reader! do you hope that your name is on the heart of Jesus? And shall not Jesus be in yours? Isaiah 49:16 .
What is said of the ephod of the high priest with the curious girdle, proves that this ornament differed from the common ephod which had no girdle. Thus Samuel when a child had an ephod, 1 Samuel 2:18 . And David when he danced before the ark, 2 Samuel 6:14 . But this of the high priest had a girdle. Probably in allusion to what is said of Jesus, Isaiah 11:5 . John saw the Lord Jesus thus cloathed. Revelation 1:13 .
Concerning this Urim an d Thummim, which mean lights and perfections, no one alive can give any certain account. All that is said of them in scriptures leads to this conclusion, that when the high priest wore them, it was by way of testifying, that the people through him waited for the Lord's directions. Exodus 25:22 . Thus Phinehas, Judges 20:27-28 . And again Abiathar, 1 Samuel 23:9-12 , etc. But was not the whole a symbolic reference to the person and offices of the Lord Jesus. Are not all revelations made in and by him? Is he not the gracious medium by whom prayers go up, and answers come down to all his people? Hebrews 1:2 ; John 1:18 .
Was not the care recommended that this robe should not be rent, designed to show the seamless garment of Jesus, as that was the perfect nature of his righteousness? John 19:23-24 .
Probably those bells were intended to inform the people by their sound, that the high priest when rising up by which they rung was then going to offer incense; so that they which were in the outward court might join in prayer. See Luke 1:9-10 . Some have thought, that that expression in the Psalms hath an allusion to it: Psalms 89:15 . But whether this or not, it is sweet to hear the bells of Christ's gospel, I mean the joyful sound of his words: and in the same moment to recollect, that he as our high priest is gone in before the throne, there to appear in the presence of God for us. Hebrews 9:23-24 .
This glorious inscription of "holiness to Jehovah, " could mean no other, than that the Lord Jesus was hereby represented. For Aaron, considered in himself, had no holiness. He was sprung from that stock of whom it is said, Romans 3:12 . But beheld as personating him, how precious is the sight. Hebrews 7:26 . And through him and in him his people are said to be so too, Zechariah 14:20 ; 2Co 5:21 ; 1 Corinthians 1:30 .
How striking the expression, to bear the iniquity of the holy things! See Leviticus 10:17 . then Isaiah 53:5-6 then turn to the gospel, Galatians 3:13 ; Romans 3:25 .
Was not this fine linen emblematical of the righteousness of Christ upon his saints? See Revelation 19:8 .
No ministration was to be performed even by the inferior priests of the four sons of Aaron, without being clad in their vestments. Was not this intended to show, that in all the approaches of the Lord's people before God, they must be clothed in the robes of Jesus' s righteousness? In ourselves we are polluted, and without Jesus we bear our own iniquity and must die. The man in the parable without the wedding garment is a type of this. Matthew 22:11-13 ; Isaiah 61:10 .
Is not this covering to conceal the nakedness of the priests, an emblem of the sinners want, whose soul is in himself polluted and naked before God. Oh! for the complete covering of the righteousness of the Lord Jesus! Reader! may that blessedness be your portion and mine, which is pronounced by the sixth angel: Revelation 16:15 .
Look up, my soul, and see that great high priest of thy profession, that Almighty Aaron of the New Testament dispensation, the Lord Jesus Christ, going in, clothed in his holy garments of everlasting glory and of eternal beauty, before God and the Father; and still wearing on his precious person as a lamb that had been slain, the marks of thy redemption. And oh for grace in full exercise, to come trader the all-powerful, all-prevailing, all-atoning, all-sufficient merits and righteousness of his person an offering! Oh! do thou bear me on thine heart and on thine arm, when thou presentest thy memorial before the throne. Behold, thou blessed Jesus, what my wants are, and do thou supply them all. Let every case and every circumstance of my soul, and the souls of thy people, come in for a part in thy remembrance. And when thou bringest me near my Father's footstool, to receive the grace to help in every time of need, do thou put on, by thy blessed Spirit, those robes of thy righteousness and garments of thy salvation, that I may be accepted in thee, the beloved. For it is thy province to do all this, both to provide, and to put on, both to furnish and to make meet, thy people for thy salvation. I humbly pray for grace, into thy dear hands to commit all my concerns, for time and for eternity. Thou hast purchased our eternal redemption, and it is thine to bestow it, to preserve it, to carry it on, and to perfect it in us, unto the day of thy coining. Oh! do thou keep that which I have committed unto thee against that day.
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Hawker, Robert, D.D. "Commentary on Exodus 28". "Hawker's Poor Man's Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/
the Week of Proper 24 / Ordinary 29