Lectionary Calendar
Wednesday, July 17th, 2024
the Week of Proper 10 / Ordinary 15
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Bible Commentaries
Leviticus 21

Hawker's Poor Man's CommentaryPoor Man's Commentary

Verse 1


This Chapter hath a peculiar reference to the priesthood, and contains precepts by which they who ministered in holy things, were to be regulated in certain particulars. An ordinance is appointed, by which the priests that have blemishes are disqualified from the service of the sanctuary.

Leviticus 21:1

And the LORD said unto Moses, Speak unto the priests the sons of Aaron, and say unto them, There shall none be defiled for the dead among his people:

If the Reader will turn to Leviticus 10:10 , he will there discover the LORD'S jealousy concerning the sanctity of the priesthood. And is it not under this, and every other precept respecting the priests, intended to typify the sanctity of him whom all priests taken from among men represent? Hebrews 7:26 .

Verses 2-3

The nearest of kin in natural ties is not so near as spiritual. There is a friend that sticketh closer than a brother. Proverbs 18:24 .

Verses 4-7

Doth not the Reader discern somewhat in these which point to JESUS? Surely in all these appointments respecting ceremonial uncleanness among the priests, the peculiarity of the law for them only, plainly intimates that it represents him, and his spotless purity, who is the priest of his people forever, and is untainted with either moral or ceremonial uncleanness. Hebrews 8:13 .

Verse 8

Was not this typical of the bread of life? John 6:31-33 .

Verse 9

Nothing can be more evident respecting the sanctity required in the priests household and family, than that JESUS was all along shadowed forth under these precepts. This law may serve to teach, at the same time, what a sanctity of life and conversation ought to distinguish the children of godly ministers. It was graciously said by the LORD of Abraham, that this should be the pattern in his family. Genesis 18:19 .

Verses 10-15

Here are still more striking references, under the figure of the high priest, to the person and offices of the LORD JESUS. As the high priest had the anointing oil poured upon his head, and thereby typified him on whom the spirit was poured forth without measure, he was thereby so completely separated from his brethren, that in his office he was to know them not. Deuteronomy 33:9 . And as the high priest was to marry only a wife in her virginity, who doth not see in this the figure of him who betrothed himself to his church, as a chaste virgin. But let it not be overlooked, while beholding the LORD JESUS thus shadowed out in the typical high priest, that he himself in the days of his flesh, was not, because he could not, from the immaculate holiness of his nature, be subject to any ceremonial uncleanness. He contracted no defilement from intercourse with men, and therefore we find him going among the dead to manifest his power over the bodies of men, when his chief object upon earth was to display the sovereignty of his grace over the souls of sinners, which were dead in trespasses and sins; witness the grave of Lazarus, John 17:26 . the widow's son at Nain, Luke 7:11 ; Luke 7:15 and the daughter of Jairus, the ruler of the synagogue, Luke 8:55; Luke 8:55 .

Verses 16-24

Here again nothing can be more clear and expressive than that these things were all intended to represent him and his priesthood, who is holy, harmless, undefiled, (and as the apostle speaks) a lamb without blemish and without spot. As in every ministration of the priests, both their persons and their services became accepted only in his person and righteousness, whom they represented, the LORD was pleased to appoint that nothing blemished should be qualified to this service. Under the gospel dispensation the same precept holds equally binding, in our spiritual ministry. Hence that sweet precept of the apostle, Romans 12:1 . In this ministry all believers in JESUS are included. See 1 Peter 2:9; 1 Peter 2:9 .

Verse 24


READER! let you and I pause over this chapter, and with an eye of faith, behold that great high priest of our profession sweetly pointed out. Let us not forget that this JESUS of ours, is, and hath been, our Priest forever; for he hath an unchangeable priesthood. And while, therefore, we read of these priests, taken from among men, who were not suffered to continue priests, by reason of death, thus prohibited from all ceremonial uncleanness; let you and I look beyond the letter of the law to him who is the Spirit of it, and contemplate his immaculate unspotted holiness, whose human nature united to the GODHEAD, forever separated him from all uncleanness. He could and did bear our sins, in his own body on the tree, and while borne down on the cross with the burden of sin, partook of none of its defilements. His church he betrothed to himself, as a chaste virgin: and all the mystical members of it, are now as chaste virgins presented unto CHRIST: without spot or wrinkle, or any such thing; being brought before him as holy in his holiness, and without blemish, before him in love. Dearest JESUS! be thou my holiness, wisdom, righteousness, sanctification, and redemption. And since thou hast so loved all thy people, as not only to wash them from their sins in thine own blood, but hast made them kings and priests to GOD and the FATHER; Oh! give both to thy ministers and people, grace to separate themselves from the pollutions of the world, and to come out from among them, touch no unclean thing. We would pray to be holy, as thou art holy, and that through thy righteousness and salvation, the gracious acceptation of our persons and our prayers, may come up before GOD; that that sweet promise may be our portion, in which the LORD hath said; I will be a Father you, and ye shall be my sons and daughters, saith the LORD Almighty.

Bibliographical Information
Hawker, Robert, D.D. "Commentary on Leviticus 21". "Hawker's Poor Man's Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/pmc/leviticus-21.html. 1828.
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