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Bible Commentaries
Exodus 29

The Biblical IllustratorThe Biblical Illustrator

Verses 1-37

Exodus 29:1-37

To minister unto Me in the priest’s office.

The consecration of priests

The priests were washed first.

1. Regeneration.

2. Remission of sin.

After being washed, the priests were clothed. We must have the fine linen of an inward sanctification, and the outer garment for glory and for beauty, of the imputed righteousness of Christ.

1. These garments were provided for them.

2. These garments formed a complete apparel.

3. These garments were very comely to look upon.

4. The dress provided was absolutely necessary to be worn.

These priests were anointed. Be filled with the Spirit. A man in Christ is fragrant with a holy perfume before the Lord, but out of Christ he is an unclean thing, and cannot approach the altar.

They had next to share in the sin-offering. Lift your eyes to Jesus, your ransom and substitute.

After the sin-offering the consecrated ones went on to take their share in the burnt-offering. The sin-offering indicated Christ as bearing our sin, but the burnt-offering sets Him forth as presenting an acceptable offering unto the Lord.

After the priests had seen for themselves the sin-offering and the burnt-offering, it was needful that they should partake of a third sacrifice, which was a peace-offering. This was shared between the Lord and the priest or offerer. Thus it was an open declaration of the communion which had been established between God and man, so that they ate together, rejoicing in the same offering.


1. Do you and I offer sacrifice continually? Do we every day feel that our whole being is “Holiness unto the Lord”?

2. What have you to offer now? Bring continually of your--

(1) Substance.

(2) Talent.

(3) Influence. (C. H. Spurgeon.)

Verse 10

Exodus 29:10

The Tabernacle of the congregation.

The tent of meeting

The Tabernacle of the congregation--or, rather, tent of meeting--was the place where God’s presence was manifested. This was granted to the people of Israel, first in the pillar of fire and cloud, then in the Tabernacle and Temple. And now for us in Jesus Christ there is “God manifested in the flesh.”

In and through Christ God is revealed.

Through Him and by Him the Lord God is approached.

1. We have the right of approach through Jesus Christ. His life embodied a perfect righteousness. His death is the accepted sacrifice.

2. We have not only the right of approach, but also the power to approach, sharing the Spirit of the Divine Redeemer; for the final result and crowning proof of our Lord’s exaltation was this--He sent the Comforter. (J. Aldis.)

Verses 26-28

Exodus 29:26-28

Which is waved, and which is heaved up.

The wave-offerings and heave-offerings

1. As illustrating the state of the heart in those who truly offer themselves up to God, there is something impressive and beautiful in the ancient wave-offerings and heave-offerings. Waving is one of nature’s universal laws. The whole creation, with its myriads of planets, suns and heavens, lives because it waves to and fro the central life. The life of God waves to and fro between our spirits and Him.

2. In prayer our souls are heaved up towards the eternal Soul of our souls. Nothing heaves up the soul like a perfect love. Our daily heave-offering is a labour that has a great reward. Our aspirations, our inner hearings and upliftings, are the works which will follow us into the eternal world. They will follow us by being actually constituent elements of our future body.

3. Some persons think it strange that we should be exhorted to hasten the coming of the kingdom of God. But all who have a thrilling expectation of it may be sure that the vital element of the new coming is waving in upon them, and that as they heave up their souls and expand with desire to draw down the heavenly fire they are unconsciously hastening the coming of the day of God. (J. Pulsford, D. D.)

The peace-offering

This was the most important sacrifice of all. It consisted of a ram, called “The Ram of Consecration,” or more literally, the “Ram of the Fillings,” because the hands of the consecrated persons were filled by portions of it being placed upon them. Of this ram of consecration, after Aaron and his sons had imposed hands upon it, and it had been slain, some of the blood was placed upon the tip of Aaron’s right ear, and upon the thumb of his right hand, and upon the great toe of his right foot, and similarly upon the same three members of his sons, the remainder of the blood being sprinkled upon the altar round about (Exodus 29:19-20; Leviticus 8:22-24). This represented the consecration to God of such members of the body as would be more especially called into exercise by the duties of the priestly vocation. The ear was consecrated to listen to the voice of God, the hand to do His will, the foot to walk in His ways. Secondly, those parts of the peace-offering, which hereafter, in the exercise of their priestly office, it would be their duty to receive of the offerer and burn upon the altar, were laid upon the hands of Aaron and his sons, together with a meat-offering, and waved as a wave-offering before the Lord (Exodus 29:22-24; Leviticus 8:25-27), and then burnt upon the altar (Exodus 29:25; Leviticus 8:28). This ceremony was called the filling of the hands, and so essential a part of the consecration ceremony was it, that the expression to “fill the hand” became equivalent to “consecrate to the priesthood.” The sacrifice itself was called the ram of consecration, or the ram of fillings. The intention of this action was to deliver to the ordained persons the sacrifices which they were in future to offer to God; it was a formal initiation into the sacrificial duties of their office. It indicated that from that time forward, the right and duty of officiating at the altar, and of superintending the burning of the sacrifices, would be theirs. Similarly, in the early ordinals of the Greek Church, a portion of the “sacrifice,” i.e., of the consecrated elements, was placed in the hands of the person who was ordained priest: a tradition still observed in the Eastern Church, and which, in a remarkable manner, links together the priesthoods of the Jewish and Christian Churches. The next part of the ceremony connected with the ram of consecration, was the sprinkling of Aaron and his sons and their vestments with its blood, mingled with anointing oil (Leviticus 8:30). Hence it could be said that the sons of Aaron were anointed as their father was anointed (Exodus 40:15); they, like him, were sprinkled with oil, but he alone, as high priest, had the oil poured upon his head, and could thus be called, in contradistinction to the other priests, preeminently “the anointed priest.” In this secondary anointing, it is to be observed, that the clothes were sprinkled and consecrated upon and with the persons. The clothes represented the office filled by the person. The person and the clothes together represented the priest; therefore the consecration was performed on both together. Lastly came the sacrificial meal: the solemn eating of the body of the consecrating peace-offering by Aaron and his sons within the precincts of the Tabernacle (Leviticus 8:3). It is interesting to observe that the apostles were consecrated to their priestly office by a like “filling of the hands,” and by a like sacrificial meal, when our Lord placed in their hands the broken bread with the words, “Take, eat, this is My body.” (E. F. Willis, M. A.)

Verses 38-46

Exodus 29:38-46

I will dwell among the children of Israel.

The Divine presence in the Church

The condition of the Divine presence, moral and spiritual condition: everything must be holy. Entirely, daily, permanently, must we yield ourselves to God.

The blessedness of the Divine presence.

1. Enlightening (Exodus 29:42).

2. Glorifying (Exodus 29:43-44).

3. Redeeming (Exodus 29:46).

4. Abiding. “Dwell.” “Pleasures for evermore.” (J. S. Exell, M. A.)


Bibliographical Information
Exell, Joseph S. "Commentary on "Exodus 29". The Biblical Illustrator. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/tbi/exodus-29.html. 1905-1909. New York.
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