Leviticus 9 Commentary

THE LEVITICAL OFFERINGS
SUMMARIZED
  BURNT
OFFERING
GRAIN
OFFERING
PEACE
OFFERING
SIN
OFFERING
TRESPASS
OFFERING
Description

1) Sweet aroma

2) Voluntary

Heb = 'olah

1) Sweet aroma

2) Voluntary

Heb = minchah

1) Sweet aroma

2) Voluntary

Heb = selemim

1) Non-sweet aroma

2) Compulsory

Heb = chattath

Aka-Purification Offering

Atoning sacrifice of animals with no physical defects. The required offering varied with the situation and station of the person receiving its benefits

1) Non-sweet aroma

2) Compulsory

Heb = asam

Aka - Reparation or Guilt Offering

Atoning sacrifice of a ram or lamb with no physical defects

Scripture Lv 1:3-17-note
Lv 6:8-13-note
Cp Nu 15:1-16
Lv 2:1-16-note
Lv 6:14-18-note
Lv 7:12-13-note
Cp Nu 15:17-21
Lv 3:1-17-note
Lv 7:11-21-note, Lv 7:28-34-note
Cp Deut 12:20-28
Lv 4:1-5:13-note
Lv 6:24-30-note
Cp Nu 15:22-31
Lv 5:14-6:7-note
Lv 7:1-7-note
Purpose
Summarized

IN COMMUNION
WITH GOD

FOR COMMUNION
WITH GOD

Purpose
Detailed

1) To propitiate for sin in general -Lv 1:4-note

2) To signify complete dedication & consecration to God hence called the whole burnt offering.

Acceptance before God for worship & service

Maintenance of fellowship with God

Recognition of the sovereignty of God

This offering accompanied all burnt offerings.

Signified homage & thanksgiving to God.

Recognition of God's bountiful provision

Expression of dedication, praise & thanksgiving to God

Acknowledging God as the source of provision and prosperity.

Celebration of peace & of God's covenant faithfulness…

Generally expressed peace & fellowship between the offerer & God & thus culminated in a community meal.

1) Thank offering: express thanks for unexpected blessing or deliverance

2) Votive Offering: to express gratitude for a blessing or deliverance granted when a vow had accompanied the petition.

3) Freewill Offering: to express gratitude to God without regard to any specific blessing or deliverance.

To atone for sins committed unknowingly, especially where no restitution was possible. Note Nu 15:30, 31: The sin offering was of no avail in cases of defiant rebellion against God.

Confession to God for impurities and offenses

Recognition of the effects of one's sins on others in the covenant community

Restoration of fellowship with God

To atone for sins committed in ignorance, esp where restitution was possible

Confession to men for impurities and deceptions

Willingness of the repentant believer to make proper restitution

Consists of According to wealth:
1) Bull without blemish-Lv 1:3–9-note

2) Male sheep or goat without blemish-Lv 1:10–13-note); 3 Turtledoves or young pigeons-Lv 1:14–17-note

3) Turtledoves or young pigeons-Lv 1:14–17-note

Three Types:
1) Fine flour mixed with oil and frankincense-Lv 2:1–3-note

2) Cakes made of fine flour mixed with oil and and baked an oven Lv 2:4-note, in a pan Lv 2:5-note or in a covered pan Lv 2:7-note

3) Green heads of roasted grain mixed with oil and frankincense-Lv 2:14, 15-note

According to wealth:
1) From the herd, a male or female without blemish-Lv 3:1–5-note

2) From the flock, a male or female without blemish-Lv 3:6–11-note

3) From the goats-Lv 3:12–17-note

Note: Minor imperfections were permitted when the peace offering was a freewill offering of a bull or a lamb-Lv 22:23

1) For the high priest, a bull without blemish-Lv 4:3–12-note

2) For the congregation, a bull without blemish-Lv 4:13–21-note

3) For a ruler, a male goat without blemish-Lv 4:22–26-note

4) For a commoner, a female goat or lamb without blemish-Lv 4:27–35-note

5) In cases of poverty, two turtledoves or two young pigeons (one for a sin offering, the other for a burnt offering) could be substituted-Lv 5:7–10-note

6) In cases of extreme poverty, fine flour could be substituted-Lv 5:11–13-note; cp Heb. 9:22-note

1) If the offense was against the Lord (tithes, offerings, etc), a ram w/o blemish was offered; restitution was reckoned according to the priest's estimate of the value of the trespass + 20% (Lv 5:15-16-note)

2) If the offense were against man, a ram w/o blemish was offered, restitution reckoned according to the priest's estimate + 20% (Lv 6:4-6-note)

God's
Portion
Entirety burned on the altar of burnt offering-Lv 1:9-note except the skin-Lv 7:8-note Memorial portion burned on the altar of burnt offering-Lv 2:2, 9, 16-note Fatty portions burned on the altar of burnt offering-Lv 3:3–5-note 1) Fatty
portions to be burned on the altar of burnt offering Lv 4:8–10-note, Lv 4:19. 26-note, Lev 4:31, 35-note

2) When the sin offering was for the high priest or congregation, the remainder of the bull was to be burned outside the camp-Lv 4:11, 12-note, Lev 4:20, 21-note

Fat burned on altar of burnt offering-Lev 7:3-5-note
Priests
Portion
Skin only-Lv 7:8-note Remainder eaten in court of tabernacle-Lv 2:3, 10-note, Lev 6:16-18-note, Lv 7:14-15-note Breast (wave offering) & right thigh (heave offering)-Lv 7:30-34-note   Remainder eaten in holy place-Lv 7:6-7-note
Offerer's
Portion
None None Remainder to be eaten in the court by the offerer & family
1) Thank offering = eaten same day-Lv 7:15-note
None None
The
Christian
Consecration Service Fellowship Redemption for the sinner that he is Redemption for the sinner he commits
Christ He presented Himself to the Father to do His will He served His Father and men as Son of Man He is the common bond of fellowship between God & man He atoned for the guilt of sin He atoned for the damage of sin.
Prophetic
Significance
Signifies complete dedication of life to God

1) On part of Christ-Mt 26:39-44, Mk 14:36, Lk 22:42, Php 2:5-11-note

2) On part of believer-Ro 12:1-2-note, Heb 13:15-note

Signifies perfect humanity of Christ:

1) Absence of leaven ~ sinlessness of Christ-He 4:15-note, 1Jn 3:5

2) The presence of oil is emblematic of the Holy Spirit-Lk 4:18; 1Jn 2:20-note, 1Jn 2:27-note

Shadow of the peace believer has through Christ-Ro 5:1-2-note, 1Cor 10:16-18, 11:17-34, Col 1:20-note

NB: Only offering in which offerer shared

Thank Offering:

1Th 5:18-note

Heb 13:15-note

Prefigures fact that Christ's death…

1) Was made sin for us - 2Cor 5:20-21-note

2) He suffered outside the gate - Heb 13:11-13-note

Cp Lv 4:3-note, 1Ti 5:20

Cp Lv 4:27-note, 1Cor 8:9-13

Cp Lv 5:5-note, 1Jn 1:9-note

See Heb 9:22-note

Shadow of Christ as our Trespass offering - Col 2:13-note

Cp Lv 5:15-note, Lv 22:14-16

Cp Lv 6:2-5-note, Eph 4:25-32, Jas 5:16

See Isa 53:10

Adapted from Believer's Bible Commentary & Irving Jensen

Leviticus 9:1 Now it came about on the eighth day that Moses called Aaron and his sons and the elders of Israel; (Lev 8:33 14:10,23 15:14,29 Nu 6:10 Eze 43:26,27 Mt 28:1)

PRIESTLY MINISTRY BEGINS

THE PATTERN FOR WORSHIP

John Butler's outline of Leviticus 9:

A. The Precept for the Offerings (Leviticus 9:1–6)

B. The Priests’ Offerings (Leviticus 9:7–14)

C. The Peoples’ Offerings (Leviticus 9:15–22)

D. The Postlude of the Offerings (Leviticus 9:23, 24)

See Dr. Barrick's nice chart (on page 2) A Comparative Study of Three Biblical Priesthoods

The eighth - Not the 8th day of the month but on the day after completion of the 7 days of dedication (cp Lev 8:33, 34-note).

The idea of uncleanness which was "perfected" on the eighth day is repeatedly emphasized - Lev 12:2, 3; Lev 14:8-10; Lev 15:13, 14; Lev 22:27; Nu 6:9, 10.

Guzik - The call to the priesthood came on the eighth day, the day of new beginnings. After seven days of patient fellowship with the LORD in His tabernacle, God was ready to do a new work in and through the priests.

Baker on the eighth day - This numbered day became an important part of other aspects of Israelite ritual, including the dedication of the firstborn to God (Ex 22:29–30), circumcision (Lev 12:3), purification of one suffering from a skin disease (Lev 14:10) or from a bodily discharge (Lev 15:14, 29), the age of sacrificial animals (Lev 22:27), the conclusion of the Feast of Shelters (Lev 23:36, 39), and purification of a defiled Nazirite (Nu 6:10; 29:35). (Cornerstone Commentary)

Eugene Merrill - The eighth day in Scripture has connotations both literal (i.e., this is the day after the seven days of ordination; see Lev. 8:33) and symbolic. The eighth day was the day of circumcision (Gen. 17:12; Lev. 12:3), which bound the generations of Israelites to the Abrahamic Covenant. It was on the eighth day that the Abrahamic Covenant took effect for the child and now it was the eighth day that the priests were confirmed in their dedicated role of serving before the LORD on behalf of the nation. It was another unique day since on this day the LORD appeared to them (Lev. 9:4, 23). (The Bible Knowledge Key Word Study)

The elders of Israel - Lxx = gerousia - in NT this describes the council of elders, especially the Sanhedrin (Acts 5:21). It is interesting that it is used in Lev 9:3 to translate "to the sons of Israel" which in the Septuagint is "the elders of Israel."

Matthew Henry - These many sacrifices, which were all done away by the death of Christ, teach us that our best services need washing in his blood, and that the guilt of our best sacrifices needs to be done away by one more pure and more noble than they. Let us be thankful that we have such a High Priest. The priests had not a day's respite from service allowed. God's spiritual priests have constant work, which the duty of every day requires; they that would give up their account with joy, must redeem time. The glory of God appeared in the sight of the people, and owned what they had done. We are not now to expect such appearances, but God draws nigh to those who draw nigh to him, and the offerings of faith are acceptable to him; though the sacrifices being spiritual, the tokens of the acceptance are spiritual likewise. When Aaron had done all that was to be done about the sacrifices, he lifted up his hands towards the people, and blessed them. Aaron could but crave a blessing, God alone can command it.

F Duane Lindsey - This description of the formal inauguration of the whole Israelite sacrificial system resembles the prescription for the Day of Atonement ritual (Leviticus 16:1-34-note) since on both occasions sacrifices were brought for both the priests and the people. However, here the people’s fellowship offerings replaced the scapegoat ceremony, making this a feast instead of a fast… According to the Jewish Talmudic tradition, the preceding week of priestly ordination began on the 23rd day of the 12th month so that this 8th day of the ordination ceremonies was identical with the 1st day of the 1st month mentioned in Exodus 40:2, 17 when the tabernacle was erected. (Bible Knowledge Commentary)

Leviticus 9:2 and he said to Aaron, "Take for yourself a calf, a bull, for a sin offering and a ram for a burnt offering, both without defect, and offer them before the LORD. (calf: Lev 9:7,8 Lev 4:3 Lev 8:14 Ex 29:1 2Co 5:21 Heb 5:3 Heb 7:27 Heb 10:10-14) (ram: Lev 8:18)

PREPARATION FOR MEETING WITH GOD!

And he said to Aaron - Remember Moses was just a mediator so the instructions he gave Aaron were from Jehovah. The instructions were to be performed as directed by the Lord and Lev 10:1-2 shows what happens when there was a deviation! Think of it -- for seven days they had dedicated themselves to the Lord offering sacrifices and yet the Lord (through Moses) emphasizes that they still have need for cleansing. The message is clear that most of us have very little sense or sensibility to just how sinful (and how often) we really are in our thoughts, words and deeds! Walter Kaiser has an additional thought on Aaron's repetition of sacrifices for himself writing "The closer one follows the Lord in obedience and service, the more conscious that person becomes of how short each individual falls from the holy standard of God.”

Resources on Aaron -

Aaron - Baker's Evangelical Dictionary of Biblical Theology

Aaron - Holman Bible Dictionary

Aaron - Hastings' Dictionary of the Bible

Aaron - Fausset's Bible Dictionary

Aaron - International Standard Bible Encyclopedia

Aaron - Kitto's Popular Cyclopedia of Biblical Literature

Take for yourself - A good lesson. The priests had to be clean before they could minister to the laity. This principle still applies dear pastor, teacher, elder, deacon, etc. Are you confessed up and repented up?

But the order of these sacrifices in this first great worship service is surely instructive all who would worship the King. Is "making a sin offering" the first order of business for us as we seek to enter into His holy presence in worship? The sin offering of course has been made once for all time on the Cross, but do we avail ourselves of its atoning, forgiving efficacy by bowing down and humbly confessing our sins of thought, word and deed? Would our personal experience in Sunday worship be more real and experiential if we were to first be certain we had clean hands and a pure heart. Let us practice the words of David in Psalm 24…

Who may ascend into the hill of the LORD? And who may stand in His holy place? He who has clean hands and a pure heart, Who has not lifted up his soul to falsehood, And has not sworn deceitfully. He shall receive a blessing from the LORD (cp the double blessing in Lev 9:22-23) and righteousness from the God of his salvation. This is the generation of those who seek Him (cp the appearance of His glory, indicative of His very presence among them - Lev 9:4, 6, 23), who seek Thy face–[even] Jacob. Selah (Pause and ponder!). (Ps 24:3-6)

Spurgeon - The men who shall stand as courtiers in the palace of the living God are not distinguished by race, but by character; they are not Jews only, nor Gentiles only, nor any one branch of mankind peculiarly, but a people purified and made meet to dwell in the holy hill of the Lord.

"Who shall ascend into the hill of the Lord?" It is uphill work for the creature to reach the Creator. Where is the mighty climber who can scale the towering heights? Nor is it height alone; it is glory too. Whose eye shall see the King in his beauty and dwell in his palace? In heaven He reigns most gloriously, Who shall be permitted to enter into His royal presence? God has made all, but He will not save all; there is a chosen company who shall have the singular honor of dwelling with Him in His high abode. These choice spirits desire to commune with God, and their wish shall be granted them. The solemn enquiry of the text is repeated in another form. Who shall be able to "stand" or continue there? He casts away the wicked, who then can abide in his house? Who is he that can gaze upon the Holy One, and can abide in the blaze of His glory? Certainly none may venture to commune with God upon the footing of the law, but grace can make us meet to behold the vision of the divine presence. The question before us is one which all should ask for themselves, and none should be at ease till they have received an answer of peace. With careful self-examination let us enquire, "Lord, is it I."

"He that has clean hands." Outward, practical holiness is a very precious mark of grace. To wash in water with Pilate is nothing, but to wash in innocence is all-important. It is to be feared that many professors have perverted the doctrine of justification by faith in such a way as to treat good works with contempt; if so, they will receive everlasting contempt at the last great day. It is vain to prate of inward experience unless the daily life is free from impurity, dishonesty, violence, and oppression. Those who draw near to God must have "clean hands." What monarch would have servants with filthy hands to wait at his table? They who were ceremonially unclean could not enter into the Lord's house which was made with hands, much less shall the morally defiled be allowed to enjoy spiritual fellowship with a holy God. If our hands are now unclean, let us wash them in Jesu's precious blood, and so let us pray unto God, lifting up pure hands. But "clean hands" would not suffice, unless they were connected with "a pure heart." True religion is heart-work. We may wash the outside of the cup and the platter as long as we please; but if the inward parts be filthy, we are filthy altogether in the sight of God, for our hearts are more truly ourselves than our hands are. We may lose our hands and yet live, but we could not lose our heart and still live; the very life of our being lies in the inner nature, and hence the imperative need of purity within. There must be a work of grace in the core of the heart as well as in the palm of the hand, or our religion is a delusion. May God grant that our inward powers may be cleansed by the sanctifying Spirit, so that we may love holiness and abhor all sin. The pure in heart shall see God, all others are but blind bats; stone-blindness in the eyes arises from stone in the heart. Dirt in the heart throws dust in the eyes.

The soul must be delivered from delighting in the groveling toys of earth; the man who is born for heaven "hath not lifted up his soul unto vanity." All men have their joys, by which their souls are lifted up; the worldling lifts up his soul in carnal delights, which are mere empty vanities; but the saint loves more substantial things; like Jehoshaphat, he is lifted up in the ways of the Lord. He who is content with the husks will be reckoned with the swine. If we suck our consolation from the breasts of the world, we prove ourselves to be its home-born children. Does the world satisfy thee? Then thou hast thy reward and thy portion in this life; make much of it, for thou shalt know no other joy.

"Nor sworn deceitfully." The saints are men of honor still. The Christian man's word is his only oath; but that is as good as twenty oaths of other men. False speaking will shut any man out of heaven, for a liar shall not enter into God's house, whatever may be his professions or doings (Rev 21:27, 22:15). God will have nothing to do with liars, except to cast them into the lake of fire (cp the first, preeminent liar, the Devil - Jn 8:44, Rev 20:10). Every liar is a child of the Devil (1Jn 3:8-10), and will be sent home to his father. A false declaration, a fraudulent statement, a cooked account, a slander, a lie—all these may suit the assembly of the ungodly, but are detested among true saints: how could they have fellowship with the God of truth, if they did not hate every false way? (Treasury of David—Psalm 24)

Guzik observes that "As part of the consecration ceremony, Aaron and his sons lived for an entire week at the tabernacle of meeting. Yet they still had sin to atone for during that week (Ex. 29:35–37). The consecration ceremony did not make Aaron and his sons perfect. During the seven days of just sitting in the tabernacle he added more sin to his account that had to be cleared. Through the repetition of sacrifice, God also wanted to show that as useful as the animal sacrifices were, they were not complete and could not make and end of sins. Only the perfect sacrifice of the Messiah could do that."

Lindsey - Aaron immediately began his priestly duties by offering the first of the sacrifices of the tribal leaders on 12 consecutive days (Nu 7:10–88; cf. Bernard J. Bamberger, “Leviticus,” in The Torah: A Modern Commentary, 3:65–6). (Ibid)

A calf, a bull - A male calf, an valuable possession in this agrarian economy. While it might be coincidence, one wonders if this live calf was not also a reminder of Aaron's sin with the inanimate "molten (golden) calf" (Ex 32:1-5)?

As noted below, all the offerings described in Leviticus 1-7 are offered in this section with the exception of the guilt or trespass offering (see chart above for overview) was a private offering of the individual and thus would be inappropriate on this public occasion to commence the cult (Milgrom).

Sin offering (02403)(chattat/chattath) is a main Hebrew word for sin but also is used as here for sin offering.

Burnt offering (05930)('olah introduced in Leviticus 1) (Occurs 10x in Leviticus 9 - Lev 9:2, 3, 7, 12, 13, 14, 16, 17, 22, 24)

Sin offering for the priest is described in Lev 4:3ff-note when he commits an unintentional sin (see comments). The sin offering was also a component of their ordination ritual (Lev. 8:14–29). In the New Testament in explaining the Better Priesthood of Christ to his Jewish readers, the writer reminded them that "every high priest taken from among men is appointed on behalf of men in things pertaining to God, in order to offer both gifts and sacrifices for sins; he can deal gently with the ignorant and misguided, since he himself also is beset with weakness; and because of it he is obligated to offer [sacrifices] for sins (so in context "weakness" is not physical but moral weakness), as for the people, so also for himself." (Heb 5:1-3-note) He goes on to introduce Christ, the better High Priest, noting that "it was fitting that we should have such a high priest, holy, innocent, undefiled, separated from sinners and exalted above the heavens; Who does not need daily, like those high priests, to offer up sacrifices, first for His own sins, and then for the [sins] of the people, because this He did once for all when He offered up Himself." (Heb 7:26-27-note)

The burnt offering ('olah = wholly burned. Derived from 'alah = to ascend ~ goes up in smoke. Lxx = "holokautoma" English = holocaust (cp The Holocaust)!)

See commentary on Lev 1:3-17 and commentary on Lev 6:8-13 for more detail regarding the burnt offering.

Regarding the burnt offering Guzik observes that "Even though Aaron just spent the prior week in special dedication to the LORD, there was still more to give. Though this was an important experience of dedication, the idea of consecration had to be ongoing in the life of Aaron and all of God's priests."

The well known Bible expositor, Warren Wiersbe in his comments on Romans 12:1-note applies this same idea (the need for ongoing dedication or consecration) -- "For many years I have tried to begin each day by surrendering my body to the Lord. Then I spend time with His Word and let Him transform my mind and prepare my thinking for that new day. Then I pray, and I yield the plans of the day to Him and let Him work as He sees best. I especially pray about those tasks that upset or worry me—and He always sees me through. To have a right relationship with God, we must start the day by yielding to Him our bodies, minds, and wills… The Spirit of God transforms your life by renewing your mind (2Co 3:18-note), but He cannot do this unless you give Him your body." If you begin each day by surrendering your body, mind and will to your Lord, it will make a great deal of difference in what you do with your body during the day! (Bible Exposition Commentary. 1989. Victor)

And so presenting oneself to God is synonymous with consecration. But what is consecration? (See F B Meyer's excellent devotional entitled Consecration)

As the story goes a church member posed the following question to the pastor “Will you please tell me in a word what your idea of consecration is?” Holding out a blank sheet of paper the pastor replied, “It is to sign your name at the bottom of this blank sheet, and to let God fill it in as He will.” Are you ready to "sign up" and "give yourself away" like in the line from Isaac Watt's famous hymn…

Alas and Did My Savior Bleed
But drops of grief can ne’er repay
The debt of love I owe.
Here, Lord, I give myself away,
’Tis all that I can do!

John Trapp comments on the smell of burnt flesh (we all know that smell) - The smell of sin is grievous; it offends all God’s senses Compare Jehovah's words in Isaiah "Isaiah 1:12 “When you come to appear before Me, Who requires of you this trampling of My courts?13 “Bring your worthless offerings no longer, Incense is an abomination to Me. New moon and sabbath, the calling of assemblies– I cannot endure iniquity and the solemn assembly." (Isaiah 1:12-13-note)

Comment: While the smell of sin is grievous to God, the soothing aroma of the sacrifice is pleasing to Him (when given from a right heart) as it pointed to the consummate, perfect sacrifice, Christ Jesus Who "gave Himself up for us (doctrine of substitution), an offering and a sacrifice to God as a fragrant aroma." (Eph 5:2-note) The heart of the problem Trapp alludes to is not so much with the quality of the sacrificial animals [although that too was occasionally a problem] but with the heart of the sacrificer! As the psalmist asks (and answers) "Who may ascend into the hill of the LORD? And who may stand in His holy place? He who has clean hands and a pure heart, Who has not lifted up his soul to falsehood, And has not sworn deceitfully." Ps 24:3-4-note) God always inspects our heart before He accepts our offering, the giver before the gift! That was true in OT times and it is true today. It is so "easy" (and potentially self-deceptive) to give God our "time, talent or gifts" but to do so without first giving Him our hearts and our obedience (cp 1Sa 15:22-23). David echoes this timeless principle (after his adultery with Bathsheba and murder of Uriah) writing "For Thou dost not delight in sacrifice, otherwise I would give it; Thou art not pleased with burnt offering. The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit; A broken and a contrite heart, O God, Thou wilt not despise." (Ps 51:16-17-note)

Leviticus 9:3 "Then to the sons of Israel you shall speak, saying, 'Take a male goat for a sin offering, and a calf and a lamb, both one year old, without defect, for a burnt offering, (Take: Lev 4:23 Lev 16:5,15 Ezra 6:17 Ezra 10:19) (calf: Lev 9:2) (both: Lev 12:6, 14:10, 23:12, Ex 12:5 = same requirement for Passover Lamb)

INSTRUCTIONS FOR THE PEOPLE

Then - This expression of time usually marks what comes next in a succession of events. In this case, we have already had a calf for the sin offering and a goat for the burnt offering (Lev 9:2).

Sons of Israel - To whom is this directive issued? It seems to be the elders of Lev 9:1, not Aaron's sons. The Septuagint translation would support this as the Greek uses the same noun gerousia here as was used to translate "elders" in Lev 9:1.

A male goat - Literally a "he-goat of goats."

A male goat for a sin offering… calf… lamb… without defect - Reuben A Torrey sees these OT emblems as pointing to Christ = Isa 53:10 Ro 8:3 2Co 5:21 Titus 2:14 Heb 9:26-28 1Pe 2:24, 1Pe 3:18 Rev 5:9

Sin offering (02403)(chattat/chattath) is a main Hebrew word for sin but also is used as here for sin offering.

Calf and a lamb both one year old - Literally "a calf and a lamb, sons of a year, flawless"

Without defect (NET = flawless, ESV = without blemish) (08549)(tamim from the verb tamam = to be complete, entire or whole [literal sense in Lev 3:9-note, Ezek 15:5], refers to a action which is completed) has both physical (without defect) and spiritual (blameless, devout, upright) significance. The fundamental idea is completeness or wholeness. Tamim deals primarily with a state of moral or ceremonial purity (e.g., animal sacrifices - 51x tamim refers to unblemished animals - Passover lamb in Ex 12:5 picturing of course Christ sinless perfection - 1Cor 5:7, "knew no sin" = 2Cor 5:21-note). The Lxx translates tamim with the adjective amomos which means without defect, the same adjective used to describe the precious blood of the Lamb of God (1Pe 1:18-19-note). The writer of Hebrews asks "For if the blood of goats and bulls and the ashes of a heifer sprinkling those who have been defiled, sanctify for the cleansing of the flesh, how much more will the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered Himself without blemish (amomos) to God, cleanse your conscience from dead works to serve the living God?" (Heb 9:12-13-note) What is amazing is that this same word used of Christ and His blood shed for us is also now descriptive of the eternal position of every soul that has entered into the New Covenant in His blood (Read Eph 1:4-note, Col 1:22-note, Jude 1:24-note). But position calls for concordant practice and so not surprisingly, Paul uses amomos in his command for us now to work out our salvation (our blameless position in Christ) - "Do (present imperative - all things ALL the time! This is not naturally but only supernaturally possible, as we yield to the Spirit in us Who is at work in us to give us the will or want to or desire and the power to follow through! Php 2:13-note) ALL things without grumbling or disputing; that (always pause to ponder this strategic term of purpose - here Paul explains the purpose of not grumbling or disputing in ALL THINGS!) you may prove yourselves to be blameless (amemptos) and innocent, children of God above reproach (amomos) in the midst of a crooked and perverse generation, among whom you appear as lights in the world." (Php 2:14-15-note) Those who are blameless in POSITION, should now be blameless in their PRACTICE. Why? So that those watching us (and the unbelievers ARE WATCHING you can be assured!) may see tangible evidence that we are children of God. In short, we are to PRACTICE the Gospel in our lives, so that we might have opportunities to PROCLAIM the Gospel with our lips! How are doing, dear saint without defect? Are you living like it?

Leviticus 9:4 and an ox and a ram for peace offerings, to sacrifice before the LORD, and a grain offering mixed with oil; for today the LORD will appear to you.'" (Ox: Lev 3:1-17) (grain offering: Lev 2:1-16 Lev 6:14-23 Nu 15:3-9) (today: Lev 9:6,23 Ex 16:10 Ex 19:11 Ex 24:16 Ex 29:43 Ex 40:34,35 Nu 14:10 Nu 16:19 1Ki 8:10-12 Ezek 43:2)

PURPOSE OF THE PREPARATION

Peace offering… grain offering - So along with the sin offering and burnt offering of Lev 9:3, this represents a "full complement" of offerings.

KJV Study Bible - The “grain offering” symbolized the consecration to God of the fruit of one’s labor. It indicated that all of their toil or activities should be dedicated to God. And the “peace offerings” conveyed the concept of fellowship and communion with God.

Peace offerings (08002)(selem/shelem introduced in Leviticus 3) is a noun which means fellowship offerings, thanksgiving offerings and all uses (except Amos 5:22) are in the plural form (selamim). The root Hebrew word conveys the idea of completion and fulfillment, of entering into a state of wholeness and unity, a restored relationship. The peace offerings were voluntary offerings (like burnt and grain offerings) given to God with thanks and praise.

Grain offering (04503)(minchah introduced in Leviticus 2) means a gift (given to another without compensation = Ge 32:13, 2Ki 8:8), tribute ( payment by one ruler or nation to another in acknowledgment of submission or as the price of protection = Jdg 3:14, 2Sa 8:2; Hos 10:6) or offering (as a gift offered to God). The most common sense by far in the OT is as an offering (usually "grain offering" in the NAS but it could refer to animal offerings Ge 4:3-5 or "sacrifices" in general - Isa 19:21).

For - This is a term of explanation and Oh, what a glorious explanation is given, the promise of the appearance of Yahweh before the sons of Israel! To reiterate, "For" explains why Aaron was to make the sin offering and the burnt offering.

The LORD will appear to you (fulfilled in Lev 9:23) - Is this a Theophany? Are is it a manifestation of the Shekinah glory? See the note on Leviticus 9:23

Baker writes that "His glory is the outward, visible manifestation of his being, which in itself evokes reverence and fear from those who see it (Isa 6:3–5). Ezekiel was so awestruck that he could not bring himself to state that he even saw God’s presence, saying instead that he saw (lit.) “the appearance of the likeness of the glory of the LORD” (Ezek 1:28)." (Cornerstone Commentary)

Leviticus 9:5 So they took what Moses had commanded to the front of the tent of meeting, and the whole congregation came near and stood before the LORD. (congregation: Ex 19:17 Dt 31:12 1Ch 15:3 2Ch 5:2,3 Ne 8:1)

So (not translated this way in all the versions - "And" = ESV) - This term of conclusion introduces their immediate obedient response, something that was too often sorely lacking (cp Jer 7:23-24, 25-27, 28)

Allen Ross - The obedience of Aaron and the people is instructive, for they prepared to worship as they were commanded. Worship has always been an act of obedience, for the word of the LORD calls the covenant people to come and appear before him. And when they come into his courts, they must do so properly. The motivation for their intense preparation was so the glory of the LORD would appear (note the interchange: “the LORD” [9:4] and “the glory of the LORD” [9:6]). This glory in which the LORD appeared was the visible presence of the LORD among his people (cf. Exod. 24:16–17). Its appearance was critical to the inauguration of worship, for if God did not make his presence known, worship was merely an empty ritual and would not last. (Holiness to the Lord- A Guide to the Exposition of the Book of Leviticus)

Tent of meeting - First used in Ex 27:21 (146x in 140v)

Tent of meeting - "There are two “Tents of Meeting”: the one that stood outside the camp (see, e.g., Ex 33:7) and the one that stood in the midst of the camp (Ex 40:2; Nu 2:2ff) and served as the LORD’s residence until the construction of the temple in the days of Solomon (Ex 27:21; 29:4; 1Kgs 8:4; 2Chr 5:5, etc.; cf. 2Sa 7:6). Ex 40:35 uses both “tabernacle” and “tent of meeting” to refer to the same tent: “Moses could not enter the tent of meeting because the cloud had settled on it, and the glory of the LORD filled the tabernacle.” It is clear that “tent of meeting” in Leviticus (Lev 1:1, 3, 5; 3:2, 8, 13; 4:4f, 7, 14, 16, 18; 6:16, 26, 30; 8:3f, 31, 33, 35; 9:5, 23; 10:7, 9; 12:6; 14:11, 23; 15:14, 29; 16:7, 16f, 20, 23, 33; 17:4ff, 9; 19:21; 24:3) refers to the “tabernacle.” The latter term refers to the tent as a “residence,” while the former refers to it as a divinely appointed place of “meeting” between God and man. This corresponds to the change in terms in Ex 40:35, where “tent of meeting” is used when referring to Moses’ inability to enter the tent, but “tabernacle” when referring to the LORD taking up residence there in the form of the glory cloud." (Leviticus 1 - NET Bible Notes)

Click notes on Lev 3:2 for more discussion of the Tent of Meeting

Tabernacle - Hastings' Dictionary of the Bible

Tabernacle - Baker's Evangelical Dictionary of Biblical Theology

Tabernacle - Holman Bible Dictionary

Tabernacle - International Standard Bible Encyclopedia

The whole congregation - It seems that the elders were "representing" the congregation in their offering the sin, burnt, peace and grain offerings. There certainly would have been no way the individual Israelites (all 2-4 million of them) could have made these offerings. On the other hand it is not unreasonable that the rest of the congregation gathered around the Tabernacle as close as possible.

Came near (07126)(qarab) is translated in the Septuagint with proserchomai which means to draw near, to come facing toward, to approach (used 7x in Hebrews - Heb 4:16, 7:25, 10:1, 22, 11:6: 12:18, 12:22). Qarab is used 8x in Leviticus 9 (Lev 9:2, 5, 7-9, 15-17) and 5 times in Lev 10 (Lev 10:1, 3-5, 19).

Before (06440)(panim/paniym/paneh) occurs over 2000x and is a masculine plural (it always occurs in plural in OT) noun which literally means face (Ge 43:31; Lev. 13:41; 1Kgs. 19:13). Paniym can be a substitute for the entire person (Ex 33:14,15). More often it is used figuratively. The Septuagint translates panim in this passage with the word prosopon which is literally "the eye (ops) toward (pros)" and thus the front, the face, countenance, appearance or presence. This makes God's Help very personal. He is not some distant, uninterested God! (Remember that next time you feel as if He has deserted you dear believer -- and memorize Hebrews 13:5 -note!) The psalmist has a sense of God's presence. This reminds of those beautiful words "As for me, the nearness of God is my good." (Ps 73:28-note, cp Isa 58:2)

The LORD - Jehovah

Leviticus 9:6 Moses said, "This is the thing which the LORD has commanded you to do, that the glory of the LORD may appear to you." (glory: Lev 9:23 Ex 16:10 Ex 24:16 Ex 40:34,35 1Ki 8:10-12 2Ch 5:13,14 Eze 43:2)

THE GOAL OF WORSHIP REITERATED

The LORD has commanded you to do - Butler comments that here we see "The requirement is to do what God commands. We burden ourselves with many obligations which are not valid, while we often ignore the requirements of God that are valid."

That - Don't miss this one! This is a term of purpose or result (see discussion of value of observing) which emphasizes the purpose (or result) of the obedience to God's instructions. In this case it introduces the result (reward) for obedience… The presence of Yahweh in their midst!

The glory of the LORD (See Shekinah glory cloud and Shekinah. See also Overview- The Glory of the LORD) The people of Israel had previously seen the glory of Jehovah (Ex 16:10 Ex 24:16) In Ex 40:34,35 "the glory of the LORD filled the tabernacle", but here in Leviticus 9 the glory would appear and consume the burnt offering and fat portions on the altar (Lev. 9:23-24).

Rooker - The manifestation of the presence of God had specific relevance to this important day in Israel’s history when the sacrificial system officially began; the manifestation of God’s presence at the commencement of sacrificial offerings is a reminder that the goal of worship is to encounter God (see Lev 9:22–24). (Leviticus- An Exegetical and Theological Exposition of Holy Scripture = The New American Commentary- Mark F. Rooker)

It is surprising that there are only two verses that mention GLORY in the Book of Leviticus - Lev 9:6 and Lev 9:23.

HCSB Study Note - The fullest disclosure of the Lord was the human incarnation of Jesus Christ, whose death and resurrection demonstrated the glory of the LORD (Ro 6:4-note; Heb 2:9-note). Christians participate in the glory of the Lord (2Co 4:17-note; 1Pe 5:10-note).(Holman Christian Standard Bible Study Bible)

There were two departures of God's glory in ancient Israel's history and one departure in the NT - The first departure of the glory that dwelt in the Tent of Meeting left the camp because of the sins of the people (1Sa 4:21 where Ichabod means "Where is the glory?"). When the Temple erected by Solomon was completed the "the house of the LORD, was filled with a cloud, so that the priests could not stand to minister because of the cloud, for the glory of the LORD filled the house of God." Then Solomon said, "The LORD has said that He would dwell (Hebrew = shakan = gives us our word Shekinah, a word which is not in the Bible) in the thick cloud." (2Chr 5:13-14, 6:1) The glory of this Temple later departed (A progressive departure = Ezek 8:4-note; Ezek 9:3-note; Ezek 10:4-note, Ezek 10:18-19-note; Ezek 11:22–23-note - see the description of the progressive departure of the Shekinah Glory from the Temple BEFORE it was razed by Nebuchadnezzar). The glory returned for a brief moment when Jesus appeared as the God-Man, the living Word Who was God - "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God… and the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, glory as of the only begotten from the Father, full of grace and truth." (Jn 1:1,14-note, cp Lk 2:8-9 for the glory of the Lord at Christ's birth)

Wiersbe reminds believers of their great privilege noting that "Today, God’s glory dwells in the bodies of His people (1Cor 6:19–20-note), in each local assembly of His people (1Cor 3:16–17), and in His church collectively (Eph 2:19–22-note). One day, we shall see that glory lighting the perfect heavenly city that God is preparing for His people (Rev 21:22–23-note). (Be Holy: Leviticus- Becoming -Set Apart- for God )

As Ross notes "Down through history, the faithful went to see the LORD in the sanctuary, to behold his power and his glory (Ps. 63:2)

Ps 63:2 Thus I have beheld Thee in the sanctuary, to see Thy power and Thy glory.

Spurgeon - He longed not so much to see the sanctuary as to see his God; he looked through the veil of ceremonies to the invisible One. Often had his heart been gladdened by communion with God in the outward ordinances, and for this great blessing he sighs again; as well he might, for it is the weightiest of all earth's sorrows for a Christian man to lose the conscious presence of his covenant God. He remembers and mentions the two attributes which had most impressed themselves upon his mind when he had been rapt in adoration in the holy place; upon these his mind had dwelt in the preceding Psalm, and the savor of that contemplation is evidently upon his heart when in the wilderness: these he desires to behold again in the place of his banishment. It is a precious thought that the divine power and glory are not confined in their manifestation to any places or localities; they are to be heard above the roaring of the sea, seen amid the glare of the tempest, felt in the forest and the prairie, and enjoyed wherever there is a heart that longs and thirsts to behold them. Our misery is that we thirst so little for these sublime things, and so much for the mocking trifles of time and sense. We are in very truth always in a weary land, for this is not our rest; and it is marvelous that believers do not more continuously thirst after their portion far beyond the river where they shall hunger no more, neither thirst any more; but shall see the face of their God, and his name shall be in their foreheads. David did not thirst for water or any earthly thing, but only for spiritual manifestations. The sight of God was enough for him, but nothing short of that would content him. How great a friend is he, the very sight of whom is consolation. Oh, my soul, imitate the psalmist, and let all thy desires ascend towards the highest good; longing here to see God, and having no higher joy even for eternity. (Amen)

Glory (03519)(kabod) from the conveys the basic of that which is heavy or weighty, and which is most often used figuratively. In English we hear that someone's opinion "carries a lot of weight" which indicate that the person is important or influential. When we refer to someone as a "heavyweight," we mean that they possess power, prominence, or stature. Here we are speaking of course of God Who is "heavy," in the sense that He is powerful, and is worthy of honor, respect, and obedience. The Septuagint translates the Hebrew word kabod with doxa, which in simple terms means a proper opinion of something. So when we "glorify" God, we give a proper opinion of Who He is. In the present context, the visual manifestation of God is referred to as kabod (doxa) and gives the Israelites a proper opinion of Who God is.

Merrill on the Hebrew word kabod - Most often, however, it is used to indicate God's manifest presence and power (e.g., "King of Glory" - Ps 24:7-10) and therefore is sometimes used as a synonym of the Hebrew term for holiness. Collins notes that Kabod Yahweh is a technical term and caution must be exercised in how much of the verb is read into it, and, in fact, it must be only the sense of "honorable" that is included (Collins, NIDOTTE, 2:584). It is first used with relation to God in Exod. 16. It is next used when Moses ascended Mount Sinai (Ex 24). Since "the glory of the LORD" refers primarily to the presence of God, which could be accompanied by visible manifestations, it is not surprising that it is often associated with fire (Ex 24:16-17) or at least with cloud or smoke (Ex 40:34; Isa 6:3-4). Perhaps unexpectedly, given the emphasis of Leviticus, the noun occurs only twice in the book, here and in Lev 9:23 (the verb form also appears in Lev 10:3). It occurs in this chapter detailing a historical event, the beginning of the priests' ministry. In a broader sense, the end of all the ritual was the proper worship of God but such external conformity did not ensure God's presence. It did, however, remove the obstacles of human sin that might prevent God's glory from being seen if He so chose to manifest His glory. Lev 9:23 is the only mention of the appearance of the glory of the LORD to the people between Exodus 40 (at the erection of the tabernacle) and Numbers 9 (which describes how the cloud moved with the tabernacle in the wilderness). Here the appearing of God's glory as it came out from within the tabernacle and consumed the burnt offering and fat portions signified God's acceptance of the worship of His people and the commitment to bless them as requested by Aaron and Moses. Lev 10:3 uses the Niphal or intensive stem of the verb form meaning "honored or glorified." Despite over 300 occurrences of the verb kabod and its derivatives in the OT, this is the only use in Leviticus of the verb with its meaning of glory or honor. This is unexpected since many occurrences of the manifestation of God's glory have to do with the tabernacle (e.g., Exod. 16:10; 40:34). But Leviticus focuses on the details of the sacrificial system and the separation that must be recognized between the holy and the common, between the clean and the unclean. It is only in the context of the historical narrative concerning the inauguration of the priestly ministry that in Leviticus. God's glory is manifested. God is the glorious one who is to be honored. His Son will also bear this glory as recorded in John 1:14, "we have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth." (Ibid)

Commanded you to do… LORD may appear - There is a simple but profound principle here - if we expect to experience the presence of the LORD (Coram Deo = Latin phrase for "in the presence of God" summarizing the idea of saints living in the presence of, under the authority of, and to the honor and glory of God) in our life, we need to obey what He commands. We need to confess when we sin. In fact, we need to confess daily (Why daily? Because in 1Jn 1:9-note "confess" is in the present tense which speaks of ongoing confession, not as ritual of course, but as prompted by the the Spirit Who convicts us of sin).

There is a beautiful New Testament parallel…

“He who has (present tense) My commandments and keeps (obeys - present tense - speaks of direction, not perfection for no man other than Jesus could obey God perfectly) them, he (ekeinos is emphatic = the idea is this one alone, he alone) it is who loves (present tense = continually, as his abiding attitudes and actions. Don't just say you love Him. Show it by obeying!) Me (Jn 14:15); and he who loves Me shall be loved by My Father, and I will love him, and will disclose (emphanizo = literally make visible = not that we will literally see Jesus now but figuratively, of Jesus' self-revelation inwardly communicated and this in turn speaks of His Spirit Who indwells each believer. Is this promise somewhat "mystical?" To be sure, but it is still true!) Myself to him.” (John 14:21)

Leviticus 9:7 Moses then said to Aaron, "Come near to the altar and offer your sin offering and your burnt offering, that you may make atonement for yourself and for the people; then make the offering for the people, that you may make atonement for them, just as the LORD has commanded." (Offer your sin offering: Lev 9:2 Lev 4:3,20 Lev 8:34 1Sa 3:14 Heb 5:3 7:27,28 9:7) (offer: Lev 4:16-20 Heb 5:1)

ATONEMENT FOR AARON THEN THE PEOPLE

Moses then said to Aaron - Here we see the "baton" passed from Moses to Aaron, who thereafter would be the high priest for the people.

Come near (07126)(qarab) means to draw near or approach, literally coming physically closer to the altar. See depiction of the Tent of Meeting - note the altar to which Moses refers is called "the brazen altar" in this diagram - Schematic Diagram of The Tabernacle.

Moses' invitation for sinners to draw near through the atoning sacrifices is a clear foreshadowing of the once for all atoning sacrifice of our Great High Priest which beckons us now to draw near to God, doing so even with boldness and confidence have confessed and repented of our sins. The Septuagint supports this thought, for it uses the verb proserchomai to translate qarab. Proserchomai is used frequently in the book of Hebrews to speak of drawing near to God on the basis of the mediatorial, priestly work of the Son. For example, in Hebrews 4:16 the writer exhorts us "Therefore let us draw near with confidence to the throne of grace, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need." (Hebrews 4:16-note)

As New Testament believers in Yeshua, we are encouraged to draw near because we have a High Priest, as the writer has just explained…

Since then we have a Great High Priest who has passed through the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our confession. 15 For we do not have a high priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but One who has been tempted in all things as [we are, yet] without sin.

(Heb 4:14-15-note)

Proserchomai is also used in Heb 10:22 again exhorting us to draw near because of the finished work of Christ, our High Priest

Since therefore, brethren, we have confidence to enter the holy place by the blood of Jesus, 20 by a new and living way which He inaugurated for us through the veil, that is, His flesh, 21 and since [we have] a Great Priest over the house of God, 22 let us draw near with a sincere heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled [clean] from an evil conscience and our bodies washed with pure water. (Heb 10:19-22-note)

Baker observes that "The center of attention of this chapter is the altar, the focus of the rituals (Lev 9:7–14, 17–20) and the place of the fiery appearance of God himself (Lev 9:24). (Cornerstone Commentary)

CLEAN PRIESTS
THEN
CLEAN PEOPLE

Rooker comments on your (Aaron's) sin offering - The sin offering focuses again on the priests’ sinfulness, since this offering was not given for a specific sin according to the instructions of Leviticus 4 but for the general depravity of God’s servants. (Leviticus- An Exegetical and Theological Exposition of Holy Scripture = The New American Commentary- Mark F. Rooker)

Sin offering (02403)(chattat/chattath) is a main Hebrew word for sin but also is used as here for sin offering. In Ex 29:14 we see that chattat/chattath can refer not only to sin but also to the sin offering. This latter meaning takes on special significance in Leviticus 16 which describes in detail the annual Day of Atonement (Yom Kippur), chattat is used 8 times to describe the sin offering (Lev 16:3, 5-6, 9, 11, 15,25, 27-note). How fascinating that the same word chattat describes not only the problem but also the remedy for the problem. Indeed, it was the blood of the sin offering that brought atonement (Lev 16:6,11,27-note)! Mounce writes that this "has profound implications for understanding Paul’s statement in 2Cor 5:21-note, that the One Who knew no sin was made sin for us, that in Him we might become the righteousness of God. Did Jesus become sin, or did He become a sin offering? Given Paul’s thorough acquaintance with the OT, perhaps both are implied." (Ed comment: See Ro 8:3-note = "in the likeness of sinful flesh and [as an offering] for sin, He condemned sin in the flesh")

Burnt offering (05930)('olah from 'alah = to ascend and thus the picture of going up in smoke) refers to a whole burnt offering (one which goes up in smoke), which was voluntary, was understood as a sacrificial gift to God, resulting in a pleasing aroma acceptable to Jehovah (Lev 1:9). The presenter laid hands on the sacrifice which many feel signifies they saw the animal sacrifice as their substitute. The blood was sprinkled on the altar (Lev 1:6) When this offering was properly carried out (including a right heart attitude not just a "going through the motions," [which was not pleasing to God - Jer 6:20, Jer 7:21, 23, 24, see David - Ps 51:16-17-note] not just an external "work," but an internal submission and obedience to Jehovah), they made atonement and were acceptable before Jehovah. The total burning indicated (or should have indicated) total consecration of the presenter's heart and soul and life to Jehovah.

Make atonement (forgive, appease) (03722)(kapar) means to make atonement, to make reconciliation (to reconcile), to purge, to make propitiation (to propitiate), to pacify, to cancel. There are two main ideas regarding the meaning of kapar - (1) Kapar means to cover over sin (2) A number of resources however favor the idea that kapar means to wipe away.

Make atonement for yourself - Both high priest and people had to be atoned for in the Old Testament sacrificial system. Not even the officer who officiated at the altar was exempt. (See the contrast with our Great High Priest Christ Jesus in Heb 9:11-14-note) Aaron was a high priest but "he himself also is beset with weakness; and because of it he is obligated to offer sacrifices for sins, as for the people, so also for himself." (Heb 5:2-3-note)

Jesus brings in a better priesthood than Aaron's, for Jesus was a "high priest, holy, innocent, undefiled, separated from sinners and exalted above the heavens who does not need daily, like those high priests, to offer up sacrifices, first for His own sins, and then for the sins of the people, because this He did once for all when He offered up Himself." (Heb 7:26-27-note) "And every priest stands daily ministering and offering time after time the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins; but He, having offered one sacrifice for sins for all time, SAT DOWN AT THE RIGHT HAND OF GOD." (Heb 10:11-12-note)

John Butler - "The fact that they had to offer sacrifices for themselves shows the inferiority of the law to grace. Under grace Christ “needeth not … as those high priests [under the law], to offer up sacrifice, first for his own sins, and then for the people’s” (Hebrews 7:27). Christ was sinless and needed no sacrifices for His sins." (Analytical Bible Expositor)

POSB - God had promised to meet His people, to reveal Himself and give them a deep sense of His presence. But before God could reveal Himself, the people had to prepare to meet Him. God does not meet with a people until their hearts and lives are cleansed from sin. No person can experience the fulness of God's presence if there is sin in his life. God grants the fulness of God's presence only to those who are pure and clean, who have been forgiven their sins through the sacrificial substitute. The importance of being cleansed from sin is seen in this one fact: the priests had been offering sacrifice after sacrifice for seven full days during their ordination service. Yet here they were again on the very next day, during their very first worship service, being commanded to offer the substitute sacrifice for themselves. The sinfulness of man and the polluting, contaminating power of sin are seen in this command. The point is clear: the believer must walk in open confession before God. A continual cleansing from sin is needed, the cleansing that comes through the Lamb of God.

Leviticus 9:8 So Aaron came near to the altar and slaughtered the calf of the sin offering which was for himself. (Lev 1:4,5 4:4,29)

THE IRONY:
OFFER A CALF
(NOT A GOLDEN CALF!)

So - This signifies immediate obedience to the instructions from Moses. No questions about why this way, why now, etc. Simple obedience, which is always the way to blessing and fulness of joy.

Aaron came near to the altar - He drew nigh to the structure which foreshadowed the great "altar" upon which the Lamb of God (Jn 1:29) would be sacrificed as the consummate sin offering. As noted from Lev 9:9, Aaron's sons were with him, but here they

Slaughtered the calf - A graphic picture of the costliness of the payment for sin! What an incredible picture of the grace and forgiveness of our Holy God! Recall Aaron's "offering" of another "calf" -

Now when the people saw that Moses delayed to come down from the mountain, the people assembled about Aaron, and said to him, “Come, make us a god (the people got out of Egypt but couldn't get Egypt out of their hearts! Are we ever like them? Do we hold on to a few trinkets from this fallen world? I am convicted once again as I write!) who will go before us; as for this Moses, the man who brought us up from the land of Egypt, we do not know what has become of him.” And Aaron said to them, “Tear off the gold rings which are in the ears of your wives, your sons, and your daughters, and bring them to me.” Then all the people tore off the gold rings which were in their ears, and brought them to Aaron. And he took this from their hand, and fashioned it with a graving tool, and made it into a molten calf; and they said, “This is your god, O Israel, who brought you up from the land of Egypt (Wow! This is what opened the Red Sea? This is what slaughtered the first born of Egypt? etc, When a person is deceived, the truth is they really don't even realize they are deceived! Believers are not immune to the deceptiveness of sin - see discussion of Heb 3:13-note).” Now when Aaron saw this, he built an altar before it; and Aaron made a proclamation and said, “Tomorrow shall be a feast to the LORD (Talk about syncretistic confusion!).” (Ex 32:1-5)

Comment: One wonders what went through the minds of the people who saw Aaron "offer" a golden calf not that long ago? Interesting!

Slaughtered (07819)(shachat) means to slaughter, kill, slay and is used in both ancient and modern Hebrew. Swanson notes that shachat means "to take the life of a creature, implying the object being killed offers little or no resistance as in a battle or contest." Special uses of shachat refer to "beaten gold" in in 1Ki 10:16-17and 2Chr 9:15-16.

Sin offering (02403)(chattat/chattath) is a main Hebrew word for sin but also is used as here for sin offering. (Lev 9:2, 3, 7, 8, 10, 15, 22)

For himself - Aaron was a sinner and needed atonement. In offering this sacrifice for himself, he identified with the people. Pastors may be (should be - "by the will of God" - cp Paul's call 2Ti 1:1) called by God, but they are still sinners before God and in need of forgiveness as much as are those to whom they minister. Dear pastor/teacher, do you bring your daily "sin offering" to Jehovah, that you might minister to God's people with clean hands and a pure heart? Rooker adds that "As in all the various arenas of the service of God, those who are nearest to Him and carry the heaviest burden of spiritual responsibility are subject to the greatest temptations and may, more easily than others, bring dishonor to His name." (NAC)

Warren Wiersbe - Aaron and his sons had to offer a bull calf for a sin offering and a ram for a burnt offering; from then on, they would be offering a burnt offering on the altar every morning and evening (Lev 9:16; Ex. 29:38–42). Each day must begin and end with total consecration to the Lord. Being imperfect, the priests had to offer sacrifices for themselves first before they could offer sacrifices for the people (see Heb. 7:25–28). (Be Holy: Leviticus- Becoming -Set Apart- for God) (Bolding added)

Lindsey comments on Lev 9:8-14 - The ritual described follows that prescribed in Leviticus 4:3–12 except that the blood was smeared again (cf. Lev 8:15) on the horns of the altar of burnt offering instead of on the altar of incense. Likewise, Aaron offered his own burnt offering (cf. Lev 8:18–21).

Ryrie - Aaron first offered a sin offering and a burnt offering for himself (Lev 9:8-14), then he offered a sin, a burnt, a grain, and a peace offering for the people (Lev 9:15-18). These symbolized (in order) atonement, dedication, sustenance, and communion.

Leviticus 9:9 Aaron's sons presented the blood to him; and he dipped his finger in the blood and put some on the horns of the altar, and poured out the rest of the blood at the base of the altar. (Lev 4:6,7,17,18,25,30 Lev 8:15 Lev 16:18 Heb 2:10 Heb 9:22,23 Heb 10:4-19)

Aaron's sons presented the blood to him - This note implies that they collected the blood as it drained out of the slaughtered animal. In our modern world, in our wonderful worship services, we lose sight of the sobering ceremony Moses describes. We do well to meditate on the "bloody sacrifices" from time to time that they might serve as a reminder of the great price of our eternal redemption and our priceless privilege of being able to come boldly to God's throne (cp the "mercy seat" in the Holy of holies) to worship Him in spirit and in truth.

Horns of the altar - Ex 29:12; Lev 4:7, 18, 25-note.

Leviticus 9:10 The fat and the kidneys and the lobe of the liver of the sin offering, he then offered up in smoke on the altar just as the LORD had commanded Moses. (fat: Lev 3:3-5,9-11 4:8-12,34,35 8:16,17 Ps 51:17 Pr 23:26 Isa 53:10 Isa 57:15 66:2) (as the Lord: Lev 4:8)

The fat and the kidneys - see Lev 4:9, Lev 3:3. The fat (cheleb) is not that intrinsic to pieces of meat, but fat covering the organs (padding, insulation, etc). The pagans also used this type of fat in food offerings.

Sin offering (02403)(chattat/chattath) is a main Hebrew word for sin but also is used as here for sin offering. (Lev 9:2, 3, 7, 8, 10, 15, 22)

Offered up in smoke (06999)(qatar from qetoreth = smoke, odor of burning sacrifice, incense) means to produce smoke, to cause to rise up in smoke, smoke, turn into fragrance by fire (esp as act of worship), burn (incense, sacrifice) (upon), (altar for) incense, kindle, offer (incense, a sacrifice). Often smoke is made by burning incense, but every major offering may also be associated with this word (Ex. 30:7; Lev. 1:9; 2:2; 3:5; 4:10; 7:5). One unusual use of this term describes Solomon’s carriage as perfumed with myrrh and incense (Song 3:6). The first three uses in Ex 29 all refer to offer up in smoke on the altar (Ex 29:13, 18, 25). Qatar is often found in same sentence as priest, the one who offers the sacrifice up in smoke and not surprisingly is a KEY WORD in the book of Leviticus, especially the first 7 chapters which deal in great detail with the various prescribed offerings.

While they were commanded to obey the carrying out of these offerings without any deviation, in truth, the offerings were but a picture of the heart of the one who offered the sacrifices. And so we read…

Ps 51:17 The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit; a broken and a contrite heart, O God, Thou wilt not despise.

Pr 23:26 Give me your heart, my son, and let your eyes delight in my ways.

Leviticus 9:11 The flesh and the skin, however, he burned with fire outside the camp. (Lev 4:11,12,21 Lev 8:17 Lev 16:27,28 Heb 13:11,12)

Burned with fire - The idea is to burned up entirely.

Outside the camp (this exact phrase 28x in 27v in NAS) - Ex 29:14; 33:7; Lev 4:12, 21-note; Lev 6:11-note.; Lev 8:17-note.; Lev 9:11; Lev 13:46-note.; Lev 16:27-note (good note by Richard Phillips).; Lev 17:3-note.; Lev 24:14, 23-note.; Nu 5:3-4; 12:14-15; 15:35-36; 19:3, 9; 31:13, 19; Dt 23:10, 12; Josh 6:23; Heb 13:11-note Heb 13:13-note. and "outside the gate" in Heb 13:12-note.

HCSB Study Note - When Aaron went outside the camp, this was the first time he had left the sanctuary since his seven-day ordination. The incineration of the sacrificial animal demonstrated that the officiating priest could not benefit from the offering made for his own sins (Lev 8:17). Another variation from the regular sin offering was that the blood was not taken inside the tent. (Holman Christian Standard Bible Study Bible)

Butler comments on Lev 9:8-11 - Four actions by the priest are done here in this offering. First, the butchering. “Slew the calf” and then divided it up to get the fat for the sacrifice. Second, the blood. “Blood … upon the horns … poured out … the bottom of the altar.” Blood of the sacrifice was given special attention. Third, the burning. Aaron “burnt” the fat upon the altar. Fourth, the banishing. The waste and left overs were banished to burning outside the camp. (Ibid)

We see this same phrase in the NT "Heb 13:12 Therefore Jesus also, that He might sanctify the people through His own blood, suffered outside the gate. 13 Hence, let us go out to Him outside the camp, bearing His reproach."

Leon Morris explains the exhortation of believers "to go out to Him outside the camp, bearing His reproach." (Heb 13:13) - This (Heb 13:12) leads to an appeal to the readers to “go to Him outside the camp” (the compound verb exerchomai, “to go out,” and the adverb exō, “outside,” emphasize the thought of “out,” “outside”). Christ is outside the camp of Judaism, and the readers are encouraged to go to Him where He is. To remain within the camp of Judaism would be to be separated from Him. Here there may be an allusion to Moses’ pitching “the tent of meeting” outside the camp and to the people’s going out to it (Ex 33:7). But in the case of Christ, there was a price to pay—that of sharing in the rejection he had undergone, “bearing the disgrace he bore.” In Heb 11:26 Moses was said to have accepted “disgrace for the sake of Christ” (the same expression as here). To align oneself with Christ is to subject oneself to scorn, reproach, and perhaps more. But consistently throughout this epistle the writer has argued, as he does here, that it is well worth it. Furthermore, his readers must have a different outlook from that of contemporary Judaism. The Jews held that the way Christ died proved Him to be accursed (Deut 21:23; Gal 3:13). The readers must be ready to stand outside Judaism with the Christ who bore the curse for them “outside the camp.” (The Expositor's Bible Commentary, Volume 12: Hebrews Through Revelation)

Kistemaker explains "First, we look at the exhortation from a Jewish point of view. The Jewish Christian must leave the family structure in which he learned the precepts and commandments, the ceremonies and traditions, the prejudice and pride of the Jew. He is asked to go to Jesus upon whom the Jewish people invoked God’s curse by hanging him on a cross (Dt. 21:23). To go to one who bears the curse of God is to share “the disgrace he bore.” By choosing for Christ, the Jew rejects Judaism and thus faces expulsion, alienation, and at times persecution. The author of Hebrews reminds the readers of the suffering, public insult, and persecution they had endured in earlier days when they became Christians (Heb 10:33). Next, every reader is exhorted to go to Jesus who was cursed by God, because through Jesus we have access to God. We identify with him, for through him we are made holy (Isa. 52:11; Ezek. 20:41; 2Cor. 6:17). He bore disgrace to set us free from the guilt of sin and to remove the curse from us. That means that the world of sin vents its hatred against us for going to Jesus (John 17:14). Christians are not taken out of the context of a sinful world but are placed in it to be witnesses for Christ. In his list of the heroes of faith, the writer notes that Moses “regarded disgrace for the sake of Christ as of greater value than the treasures of Egypt, because he was looking ahead to his reward” (Heb 11:26-note). Christians bear the name of Christ and are commanded by him to deny themselves, take up their cross, and follow him (Mt 10:38; 16:24). The Christian keeps his eye of faith fixed on Jesus (Heb 12:2-note). He knows that this present world will not remain unchanged, but will pass away. (Exposition of Hebrews. Baker Book House).

John MacArthur - As the priest of old could not have a part in the sins of the people, so the believer should be outside the camp of the world, no longer a part of its system, standards, and practices. This is what Jesus did, pictured supremely in the crucifixion, which was outside the city gates. Therefore Jesus also, that He might sanctify the people through His own blood, suffered outside the gate. I do not think the analogy can be pressed any further. It is simply a picture of Christians, following their Lord, separating themselves from the things of sin. As our Lord was crucified outside the walls of the city of Jerusalem, so we are to be spiritually outside the walls of sinning people. (MacArthur, J. Hebrews. Moody Press)

Leviticus 9:12 Then he slaughtered the burnt offering; and Aaron's sons handed the blood to him and he sprinkled it around on the altar. (Eph 5:2,25-27)

THE SECOND SACRIFICE:
BURNT OFFERING

Slaughtered (07819)(shachat)

Burnt offering (05930)('olah) - see Lev 1:1-17-note and Lev 8:18-21-note. Recall that this second offering (the sin offering was first), the burnt offering was a reflection of the offerer's total dedication or consecration to Yahweh.

This offering foreshadows that of Messiah Paul recording "Walk in love, just as Christ also loved you, and gave Himself up for us, an offering and a sacrifice to God as a fragrant aroma… Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself up for her." (Eph 5:2-note, Eph 5:25-note)

Sprinkled it around on the altar - see Lev 1:15-note. We see a similar action in the inauguration of the Mosaic covenant (Ex 24:6–8).

Sprinkled (02236)(zaraq - click word study)

Leviticus 9:13 They handed the burnt offering to him in pieces, with the head, and he offered them up in smoke on the altar.

Beloved, while these graphic descriptions to some degree "attack" our sensibilities, they nevertheless do serve as graphic reminders of the Offering on Calvary some 1400+ years later! Indeed, recalling to our mind (cp to purpose of Lord's Supper [1Cor 11:23-25] in 1Cor 11:26) the slaying of the Lamb of God should stir our emotions and fuel our passion for Jesus.

Leviticus 9:14 He also washed the entrails and the legs, and offered them up in smoke with the burnt offering on the altar. (Lev 8:21)

Washed - Lev 1:9, 13-note.

Offered them up in smoke (cp Lev 1:9, 13, 15-note) - No mention is made of the calf's hide (Lev 7:8-note), but it was probably burned (Lev 8:17-note; Lev 9:11).

Offered up in smoke (06999)(qatar used 5x in Leviticus 9-Lev 9:10, 13, 14, 17, 20)

Burnt offering (05930)('olah introduced in Leviticus 1) (Occurs 10x in Leviticus 9 - Lev 9:2, 3, 7, 12, 13, 14, 16, 17, 22, 24)

Butler alliterates the actions involved in the burnt offering - First, the cutting. “Slew the burnt offering … the pieces” (Leviticus 9:12, 13). The animal was killed by cutting its throat and then cut in pieces to be sacrificed. Second, the crimson. The blood, “which he sprinkled round about upon the altar” (Leviticus 9:12). The blood was prominent just as it was in the sin offering. Third, the consuming. “Burnt them … upon the altar.” (Leviticus 9:13). The burnt offering was obviously burned. Fourth, the cleansing. “Wash the inwards … legs” (Leviticus 9:14). (Ibid)

Leviticus 9:15 Then he presented the people's offering, and took the goat of the sin offering which was for the people, and slaughtered it and offered it for sin, like the first. (Lev 9:3 4:27-31 9:15 Nu 28:1-29:31 Isa 53:10 2Co 5:21 Tit 2:14 Heb 2:17 Heb 5:3)

THE PRIEST MEDIATES FOR THE PEOPLE

The writer of Hebrews speaking of the Aaronic priests says that "he is obligated to offer sacrifices for sins, as for the people, so also for himself." (Heb 5:3)

Ryrie on offered it for sin - Literally, he sinned it; i.e., he made it sin (Compare what God did to His Sacrifice for us in 2Cor. 5:21-note).

Sin offering (02403)(chattat/chattath) is a main Hebrew word for sin but also is used as here for sin offering. (Lev 9:2, 3, 7, 8, 10, 15, 22)

Slaughtered (07819)(shachat)

Like the first - This refers back to the sin offering (Lev 9:8-11). NET Note explains that "The blood of the sin offering of the common people was applied to the burnt offering altar just like that of the priests."

Leviticus 9:16 He also presented the burnt offering, and offered it according to the ordinance. (ordinance: Lev 9:12-14 Lev 1:3-10 Lev 8:18-21 Heb 10:1-22)

Burnt offering (05930)('olah introduced in Leviticus 1) (Occurs 10x in Leviticus 9 - Lev 9:2, 3, 7, 12, 13, 14, 16, 17, 22, 24)

Ordinance (04941) (mishpat from root sapat) means primarily to exercise the process of government. In the present context it describes a legal decision given by God to be followed by the people (Isa. 58:2; Zeph. 2:3; Mal. 2:17). These decisions could come through the use of the Urim and Thummim (Num. 27:21).

According to the ordinance - Described earlier thus not repeated

Leviticus 9:17 Next he presented the grain offering, and filled his hand with some of it and offered it up in smoke on the altar, besides the burnt offering of the morning. (the grain: Lev 9:1, Lev 2:1,2 Ex 29:38,41 Jn 6:53 Gal 2:20) (filled his hand Ex 29:38-42)

Grain offering (04503)(minchah introduced in Leviticus 2)

Offered up in smoke (06999)(qatar used 5x in Leviticus 9-Lev 9:10, 13, 14, 17, 20)

Burnt offering (05930)('olah introduced in Leviticus 1) (Occurs 10x in Leviticus 9 - Lev 9:2, 3, 7, 12, 13, 14, 16, 17, 22, 24)

HCSB Study Note on grain (Lev 9:17) and peace offerings (Lev 9:18) - The priests continued to represent the entire community by carrying out the grain and fellowship offerings that were typically offered by an individual Israelite. (Holman Christian Standard Bible Study Bible)

NET Note - The latter part of the verse (“in addition to the morning burnt offering”) refers to the complex of morning (and evening) burnt and grain offerings that was the daily regulation for the tabernacle from the time of its erection (Ex 40:29). The regulations for it were appended to the end of the section of priestly consecration regulations in Exodus 29 (see Ex 29:38–40) precisely because they were to be maintained throughout the priestly consecration period and beyond (Lev 8:33–36). Thus, the morning burnt and grain offerings would already have been placed on the altar before the inaugural burnt and grain offerings referred to here.

Rooker - The last phrase of v. 17, “in addition to the morning’s burnt offering,” indicates not only that the context of Exodus 29 is assumed but that the prescribed offerings detailed in Exod 29:38–42 were already being observed in Israelite worship. (NAC)

Leviticus 9:18 Then he slaughtered the ox and the ram, the sacrifice of peace offerings which was for the people; and Aaron's sons handed the blood to him and he sprinkled it around on the altar. (sacrifice: Lev 3:1-17 7:11-18 Ro 5:1,10 Eph 2:14-17 Col 1:20)

Slaughtered (07819)(shachat)

Peace offerings (08002)(selem/shelem introduced in Leviticus 3) is a noun which means fellowship offerings, thanksgiving offerings and all uses (except Amos 5:22) are in the plural form (selamim). The root Hebrew word conveys the idea of completion and fulfillment, of entering into a state of wholeness and unity, a restored relationship. The peace offerings were voluntary offerings (like burnt and grain offerings) given to God with thanks and praise. The focus was on fellowship and communion with Yahweh.

Sprinkled it around on the altar - This phrase is found 12x, most often in Leviticus. (Ex 29:16, 20; Lev 1:5, 11; 3:2, 8, 13; 7:2; 8:19, 24; 9:12, 18)

Sprinkled (02236)(zaraq - click word study)

Leviticus 9:19 As for the portions of fat from the ox and from the ram, the fat tail, and the fat covering, and the kidneys and the lobe of the liver, (Lev 9:10 3:5,16)

Leviticus 9:20 they now placed the portions of fat on the breasts; and he offered them up in smoke on the altar. (placed: Lev 7:29-34) (offered in smoke: Lev 3:14-17)

Offered up in smoke (06999)(qatar used 5x in Leviticus 9-Lev 9:10, 13, 14, 17, 20)

Leviticus 9:21 But the breasts and the right thigh Aaron presented as a wave offering before the LORD, just as Moses had commanded. (breasts: Lev 7:24,26,30-34 Ex 29:27,28 Isa 49:3 Lu 2:13 1Pe 4:11)

Wave offering (08573)(tenupah from nuph = to move to and fro, to wave, to sprinkle) is a feminine noun which means swinging, waving, then wave offering. Tenuphah implies the side to side motion involved in waving and thus is usually a reference to a "wave offering" but twice is translated simply as "offering" (Ex 38:24, 29). Halladay says it is "an offering waved toward the altar and away from it in consecration."

Wiersbe - When Aaron had completed all these sacrifices, he and his sons and the people of Israel were forgiven, dedicated wholly to the Lord and in fellowship with Him. The order of the sacrifices is significant: We must first deal with our sins before we can dedicate ourselves totally to the Lord; then we can enjoy fellowship with Him. (Ibid) (Bolding and color added)

Leviticus 9:22 Then Aaron lifted up his hands toward the people and blessed them, and he stepped down after making the sin offering and the burnt offering and the peace offerings.

AARONIC BENEDICTION ON THE PEOPLE

Then - After the sacrifices had been offered.

Lifted up his hands… blessed - This reminds us of the action of Jesus when He departed the disciples "And He led them out as far as Bethany, and He lifted up His hands and blessed them." (Lk 24:50) See other blessings upon the nation as a whole - 2Sa 6:17-19; 1Ki 8:55-61; 2Chr 30:27.

Baker on lifted up his hands - This is an action done in prayer (Ps 28:2; 134:2; Hab 3:10) or blessing (here and Luke 24:50), which must be differentiated from raising one hand. The latter could indicate a threat (2Sa 18:28; 20:21; cf. Ps 10:12), or an oath (Ex 6:8), showing the importance of both context and parallel forms in order to determine meaning, which must be determined not only for words but also for actions. (Cornerstone Commentary)

Richard Hawker - Who can overlook the LORD JESUS here, or want to be put in mind of the Redeemer's benediction on the mount (Mount of Olives - Acts 1:12), when He had finished redemption work on earth?

And He led them out as far as Bethany, and He lifted up His hands and blessed them. And it came about that while He was blessing them, He parted from them. (Luke 24:50-51)

HCSB Study Bible - When Aaron lifted up his hands, it showed that he invoked the Lord (1Ki 8:22 = "Then Solomon stood before the altar of the LORD in the presence of all the assembly of Israel and spread out his hands toward heaven."; Ps 28:2 = "Hear the voice of my supplications when I cry to Thee for help, when I lift up my hands toward Thy holy sanctuary."). Prayer for blessing was the duty of the priestly order (Dt 10:8 = "to bless in His name"; Dt 21:5 = "Then the priests, the sons of Levi, shall come near, for the LORD your God has chosen them to serve Him and to bless in the name of the LORD"). On the traditional priestly blessing, see Nu 6:24-26. (Holman Christian Standard Bible Study Bible)

Blessed (01288)(barak) is a verb which literally can mean to kneel (to go to one's knees - Camel in Ge 24:11, Solomon in 2Chr 6:13) as contrasted with standing position or even a bowing at the waist). And so barak can refer to an act of adoration sometimes on bended knee. To give divine blessings (Ge 1:22, 9:1-7) To esteem greatly or adore God for His blessings (Ge 24:48, Ps 103:1) To invoke blessings upon another (Ge 24:60, 27:4, 27).

Rooker - The verb brk (barak), “to bless,” is used most frequently in the Old Testament to refer to the addition of descendants or to fertility when God is the subject of the verbal action. God blesses by intensifying the natural processes, making them more productive than they normally would be. When a human, in this case a priest, pronounces a blessing, the effectiveness of the blessing is not dependent upon the authority or power of the one who pronounces the blessing, nor upon the inherent power of the spoken word. This fact is apparent in contexts that pronounce a blessing formula (with the root brk) where God is expressly accredited as the sender of the blessing. For example, in the Aaronide blessing formula of Num 6:24–27, after the blessing is cited by the priest the text explicitly states that it is the Lord who blesses the people (Num 6:27). (Leviticus- An Exegetical and Theological Exposition of Holy Scripture)

Allen Ross - The verb bārak (“to bless”) is one of those terms that the church uses regularly but does not always explain very well. The word blessing carries the basic idea of “enrichment, endowment, gift.” It refers to any enrichment that one gives another, any kind of gift. When the word is used for God’s blessing people, it signifies that he enriches them, physically, materially, emotionally, and of course spiritually. And that blessing, that endowment, often includes the ability to do what God has instructed or promised. The full blessing of God may not always be realized at once, perhaps not even in this life; sometimes the answers to prayers and the rewards of spiritual investments are delayed. The immediate enrichment we enjoy is the satisfaction of serving, whereas the bounty from God might be fully realized only in the life to come. (Holiness to the Lord- A Guide to the Exposition of the Book of Leviticus)

It is interesting to note that Lev 9:22-23 are the only 2 uses of barak in the book of Leviticus.

Here God's response to the prayer (blessing) offered by Aaron would be to cause his glory to appear (Lev. 9:23).

The classic Aaronic blessing is found in Nu 6:24-26 -

The LORD bless you, and keep you;
The LORD make His face shine on you, And be gracious to you;
The LORD lift up His countenance on you, And give you peace.’

A DOUBLE BLESSING

F B Meyer comments on Jesus our High Priest - There was a double blessing. First, Aaron blessed the people when he stood against the altar, Leviticus 9:22, and afterward, when he came out of the Tabernacle, Leviticus 9:23. When He came from offering His supreme sacrifice on Calvary, which was burned-offering, peace-offering, sin- and trespass-offerings combined, He blessed His own. We are told that as He blessed them He was borne upward to heaven, Luke 24:51; but we expect another blessing from Him, when He shall come forth out of the heavenly Temple and extend His hands in benediction, using perhaps the very words of the ancient benediction.

F B Meyer (Our Daily Homily) Aaron lifted up his hand toward the people, and blessed them. The eighth day is evidently the type of the bright millennial morning (Ed: See caveats regarding Typology). During the present age we are hidden with Christ in God; the world knoweth us not, as it knew Him not; our hopes, and joys, and aims, are largely secret. But the day is not far distant when He shall be manifested, and then we shall be manifested with Him in glory. That group of priests, following the high priest out from the recesses of the Holy Place, is a picture of the Second Advent, when Christ and his own shall come forth to bless the world. When Jesus was parted in the Ascension from his disciples, He was in the act of blessing them (Lk 24:50-51); and in that attitude He will return. Who can doubt that all through the intervening ages those blessed hands have still been outstretched, that heart ever going forth, in blessing. What a Savior is ours! In Him are combined meekness that bears all insult and hatred, and mercy that retaliates on wrong-doing in ministries of love. He fulfils his own idea of blessing those that hate, and praying for those that despitefully use. How truly can it be said of Him, as of Archbishop Ussher, that to do him a wrong is to make him your friend for ever! Let us imitate Him in this, and let the going forth of our lives be one incessant stream of benediction to men, until they shall fall on their faces and acknowledge the overwhelming power of love. But in order to this we must be much in company with our blessed Lord; gazing on his face we shall reflect his likeness; the lineaments of the Divine beauty shall pass into our life, and light it up with a loveliness which is not of earth. Thus shall we bring glory to our God.

Merrill on the phrase he stepped down - This common verb, which means "come or go down, descend," is used here in reference to the altar. However, in Exod. 20:26 the LORD specifically states that the priest was "not [to] go up to my altar on steps, lest your nakedness be exposed on it." Since this is the case, two options are available to interpret the verb in this verse. First, one could take it metaphorically in the sense that Aaron stepped away from the altar that was considered so holy that the step was "down." This metaphorical meaning attached to direction can be seen throughout the OT where Jerusalem is constantly spoken of "up" even when one is coming from a place of higher elevation. Secondly, the prohibition in Exod. 20:26 may have been against an altar so high that the worshipers, when looking up at the officiating priest, could observe his nakedness under his robes. Ezek. 43:17 speaks of a future altar with steps, needed because of its great size of over 20 feet tall, but it was also an altar with various platforms that may have increased the base size sufficiently that the worshipers were not too close to the altar. In either case it is true that God wanted both holiness and modesty to be present at the sacrificial altar.

Sin offering (02403)(chattat/chattath) is a main Hebrew word for sin but also is used as here for sin offering. (Occurs in Lev 9:2, 3, 7, 8, 10, 15, 22)

Burnt offering (05930)('olah introduced in Leviticus 1) (Occurs 10x in Leviticus 9 - Lev 9:2, 3, 7, 12, 13, 14, 16, 17, 22, 24)

Peace offerings (08002)(selem/shelem introduced in Leviticus 3) (Occurs in Lev 9:4, 18, 22)

Adam Clarke - A sin-offering, a burnt-offering, a meat-offering, and peace-offerings, were made to God that his glory might appear to the whole congregation. This was the end of all sacrifice and religious service; not to confer any obligation on God, but to make an atonement for sin, and to engage him to dwell among and influence his worshippers.

Leviticus 9:23 Moses and Aaron went into the tent of meeting. When they came out and blessed the people, the glory of the LORD appeared to all the people.

THE GOAL OF ALL WORSHIP:
THE GLORY OF GOD

Rooker on Moses and Aaron - Aaron’s entrance into the sanctuary along with Moses not only symbolized Aaron’s new role as a servant of the sanctuary but also demonstrated that the role of mediating for the people was being passed from Moses to Aaron. (Ibid)

HCSB Study Bible note on Moses and Aaron entering the tent - The entrance into the tent by Moses and Aaron confirmed the legitimacy of the newly ordained Aaron, who would enter the holy place every day from then on (Ex 29:42-44; 30:7-8). Moses entered the cloud when God descended on Mount Sinai (Ex 24:18; cp. Lk 9:34). His entrance now signaled the imminent presence of the Lord. Christians receive and declare the imminent relationship with God through Christ (2Co 5:18-20; Col 1:20). (Holman Christian Standard Bible Study Bible)

Butler on Moses and Aaron went into the tent of meeting - Moses and Aaron going into the Tabernacle was a transference of duties. “During this visit Moses committed to Aaron the care of the things within the tabernacle, as he had already given him the charge of all connected with the sacrifices of the court. Not till after this is Aaron fully initiated into his office. ‘no one takes the honor to himself, but [receives it] when he is called by God, even as Aaron was.’ (Heb 5:4-note).” (Meyrick). This was the last time for Moses and the first time for Aaron to enter into the Tabernacle tent.

Tent of meeting - see note at Lev 9:5

Matthew Poole feels that "Moses went in with Aaron to direct him, and to see him perform those parts of his office which were to be done in the holy place, about the lights, and the table of shewbread, and of the altar of incense, upon which part of the blood of the sacrifices now offered was to be sprinkled, according to the law." (Leviticus 4:7,18)

Daniel Whedon - This is the first recorded entrance of any human being into the tabernacle after its dedication, when it was so filled with glory that Moses could not enter. The purpose of their entering is not revealed. It is probable that they drew near to Jehovah in communion and intercession for the people, to burn incense, and to trim the lamps. Exodus 30:7-8.

Richard Hawker has an interesting thought on why they went into the tent - "Observe, when the service of the sanctuary, according to GOD'S commandment of it, was completed, Moses and Aaron went in (most probably) to follow up the service with prayer. Here again they represented the LORD JESUS, when in His final prayer He said, "I glorified Thee on the earth, having accomplished the work which Thou hast given Me to do. And now, glorify Thou Me together with Thyself, Father, with the glory which I had with Thee before the world was." (John 17:4-5) (Ed: cp Jn 4:34 - May we all be so focused on the Will of our Father that when we come to our dying day we might be able to humbly say [of course not in the same manner or degree of our Lord Jesus] that we have accomplished the work He has given us to do in His Son [cp Eph 2:10-note]. Yea, may we be able to utter the words of that great apostle of Jesus - "I have fought the good fight. I have finished the course. I have kept the faith." 2Ti 4:7-note).

Blessed the people - This was the second blessing. The first was only given by Aaron (Lev 9:22), probably a blessing similar to Numbers 6:23–26, but this one by both Moses and Aaron.

Wiersbe applies these two blessings to Christians today - The first blessing was probably the high priestly blessing recorded in Numbers 6:23–26. It followed the sacrifices. This reminds us that every blessing that we have comes because of the finished work of Jesus Christ on the cross (Eph. 1:3–7). Unless we know Jesus Christ as our own Savior and Lord, we don’t have any spiritual blessings of our own, and we can’t ask God to bless others through us. The second blessing followed the time Moses and Aaron had in the tabernacle, and this reminds us that we must be in fellowship with God and one another if we’re to be a blessing to others. (Be Holy: Leviticus- Becoming -Set Apart- for God)

Blessed (plural in Hebrew = both Aaron and Moses conferred the blessing) (01288)(barak) is a verb which literally can mean to kneel (to go to one's knees - Camel in Ge 24:11, Solomon in 2Chr 6:13) as contrasted with standing position or even a bowing at the waist). And so barak can refer to an act of adoration sometimes on bended knee. To give divine blessings (Ge 1:22, 9:1-7) To esteem greatly or adore God for His blessings (Ge 24:48, Ps 103:1) To invoke blessings upon another (Ge 24:60, 27:4, 27)

Barnes on theyblessed the people - This joint blessing of the mediator of the Law and the high priest was the solemn conclusion of the consecration and Inauguration. (Compare 2Chronicles 6:3-11.)

John Gill - Aaron had blessed them before, but now both Moses and Aaron blessed them, atonement being made by the sacrifice of Christ, and law and justice thereby fully satisfied; Christ and the law agree together in the blessing of the Lord's people; way was hereby made for the communication of blessings to them, consistent with the law of God, and his holiness and justice, Galatians 3:10

The glory of the LORD appeared - The nature of this glorious manifestation is somewhat enigmatic. Why do I say that? First, recall that the Glory of the LORD was associated with the Cloud (which followed Israel in the desert as described below) that appeared after the completion of the Tent of Meeting, Moses recording…

Then the cloud covered the tent of meeting, and the glory of the LORD (Shekinah) filled the tabernacle. And Moses was not able to enter the tent of meeting because the cloud had settled on it, and the glory of the LORD filled the tabernacle. And throughout all their journeys whenever the cloud was taken up from over the tabernacle, the sons of Israel would set out; but if the cloud was not taken up, then they did not set out until the day when it was taken up. For throughout all their journeys, the cloud of the LORD was on the tabernacle by day, and there was fire in it by night, in the sight of all the house of Israel. (Ex 40:34-38)

So presumably the cloud was present over or associated with the Tent of Meeting. If so this begs the question of what was the nature of the glory of the LORD that appeared to Israel? John Gill and several other older commentators offer an intriguing interpretation of glory saying "some visible signs of His glory, some very great splendor or luster, or breaking forth of His glory or Christ, the glory of the Father, appeared in an human form, as a pledge of His future incarnation, when all the above sacrifices, which were types of Him, would have their accomplishment." Could Gill, et al, be correct? I cannot completely disagree, especially when Lev 9:4 clearly states "Jehovah will appear to you." In Lev 9:6 Moses adds "the glory of the LORD may appear to you." Jehovah and His glory are presented here as one and the same in these two passages. It is also interesting to note that the same verb translated appear (raah - 07200) in Lev 9:4,6 is also used in Genesis 18:1-2 where Moses records "Now the LORD appeared (raah) to him (Abraham) by the oaks of Mamre, while he was sitting at the tent door in the heat of the day. And when he lifted up his eyes and looked, behold, three men were standing opposite him; and when he saw [them,] he ran from the tent door to meet them, and bowed himself to the earth." It follows that Jehovah appeared as a man Who later in this same section is identified by Moses as speaking to Abraham (Ge 18:13). So clearly Genesis 18 was a Theophany (most probably a Christophany or pre-incarnate appearance of Christ). And so it seems that it would not be totally unreasonable to interpret the appearance of the glory to the people of Israel in Leviticus 9 as the appearance of Jehovah Himself. And we know that even as the glory appeared before all the people in Leviticus 9, the Angel of the LORD also appeared before the entire nation of Israel, "the sons of Israel." in Judges 2:1-4 (note). However since Jehovah is not recorded as speaking (as He was in Genesis 18 and Judges 2), we are left with a question mark for now. This is one of those interesting Scriptures that we can all look forward to discussing with Moses and Aaron some day, asking them how was the glory of God manifested in Leviticus 9?

Rooker - The glory of the Lord is often associated with the cloud and the tabernacle, both of which intimated the presence of God among the people (Exod 16:10; Num 16:42; Exod 40:34–38; Num 9:15–23; 10:11–12). Manifestations of God’s glory demonstrate his desire to reveal himself and dwell among men. “God wishes to dwell with men, to have his reality and his splendor known to them.” The verb škn, “to dwell,” is sometimes used in connection with glory in reference to the tabernacle (Exod 24:16; Ps 26:8). The glory of the Lord filled the tabernacle (Exod 40:34–35) and the temple (1 Kgs 8:11), and one day in the future it will fill the whole earth (Ps 72:19; Isa 6:3; Pss 57:5; 108:5; 113:4). The manifestation of the glory of God throughout the whole earth in the future will represent a reconciliation of God and man, with life in the presence of God restored (Isa 40:5; 59:19; 60:1–22; 66:18–24). For David the revelation of the glory of God was an indication of the victory of the kingdom of God (see Num 14:21; Hab 2:14; Ps 72:19). The appearance of the Lord in glory was stated to be the goal of the inauguration ceremony in 9:4, 6. The Lord’s appearance was God’s stamp of approval upon Aaron’s benediction and upon the sacrificial complex just created. It may also be of significance that blessing follows the sacrifices made on behalf of the people. This illustrates the New Testament truth that every spiritual blessing comes to the Christian as a result of the sacrifice of Jesus Christ upon the cross. (Ibid)

Charles Ellicott - To show his gracious acceptance of the institution of the priesthood, and of the whole service connected therewith, God manifested himself in the more luminous appearance of the cloudy pillar. This glorious appearance which, in a lesser degree, always filled the tabernacle, was now visible in greater effulgence to all the people who witnessed the installation. (Comp. Exodus 16:10; Exodus 40:34; 1 Kings 8:10-12.)

John Wesley on the appearance of glory - Either a miraculous brightness shining from the cloudy pillar, as Exodus 16:10 , or a glorious and visible discovery of God's gracious presence and acceptance of the present service.

John Calvin - What follows, “the glory of the Lord appeared,” may be read separately, viz., that the majesty of God was manifested in some conspicuous sign; or else it is connected with the concluding verse, where it is said, that “there came a fire out from before the Lord, etc.” If we prefer the latter, the account of the consuming of the sacrifice was added expositively, as if it were said that God appeared when He sent forth the fire to consume the sacrifice. By this auspice, or rather miracle, God manifested that He was the Author of the legal priesthood, so that it should be held in reverence for ever.

The glory of the LORD (See related resources: Shekinah glory cloud and Shekinah) - This was the designed purpose of the sacrifices (Lev 9:4,6). The appearance of the glory of God marks consummate purpose for all the sacrificial offerings. We as NT priests who are engaged in His service, do well to ever keep in mind that all of our "sacrifices" and all of our "service" is that it might others aware of God's glory, i.e., that the glory of the LORD might appear. Jesus said it this way…

Let your light shine ( = a command to carry this out now! It is urgent! Remember that the only way to carry out a supernatural command is with supernatural enablement from God's Spirit, abiding in the Vine that we might bear much fruit. Don't fall into the trap of doing works that are "your" works rather than God's works, for only the latter Spirit energized works are good works that will endure eternally! cp Jn 15:16) before men in such a way (Key phrase! Don't ever try to receive the glory! God is a jealous God and He alone deserves the glory!) that they may see your good works , and glorify (doxazo) your Father Who is in heaven (So how is the invisible God made "visible" to the lost world?). (Matt 5:16-note)

Beloved, what about your congregation? Is the glory of the LORD present when you come together? Can others say of your worship, “that God is certainly among you” (1Cor 14:25)?

The appearance of the glory of the LORD is every New Testament believer's blessed hope (absolute assurance), for as Paul writes to Titus, we are…

looking for the blessed hope and the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior, Christ Jesus Who gave Himself for us (The laying on of hands in the OT sacrificial substitute pointed to the Perfect Substitutionary Lamb of God), that He might redeem us from every lawless deed and purify for Himself a people for His own possession, zealous for good deeds (Why would we be zealous? Because we begin to realize what the OT sacrifices were pointing toward and how we now are the beneficiaries of this "so great a salvation" which should motivate us out of love to be zealous for Jesus). (Titus 2:13-14-note)

Beloved, now we are children of God, and it has not appeared as yet what we shall be. We know that, when He appears (IN GLORY) we shall be like Him, because we shall see Him just as He is. And everyone who has this hope (THE ABSOLUTE ASSURANCE THAT WE SHALL SEE THE GLORY OF THE LORD AND EVEN THE ASSURANCE THAT WE WILL BE TRANSFORMED INTO HIS LIKENESS IN A MOMENT) fixed on Him purifies himself, just as He is pure (Note again how the prospect of the appearance of God's Glory serves to motivate a life of holiness!). (1Jn 3:2-3-note)

G Campbell Morgan on Lev. 9:23 - Thus when all things were done in accordance with the Divine plan, Moses and Aaron had access to the Tent of Meeting, and by that access were enabled to pass out and bless the people. In the Chaldee Version of the Pentateuch the words of the blessing are thus reported: "May the Word of Jehovah accept your sacrifice with favour, and remit and pardon your sins." Whether these were the actual words or no, the truth remains that these men pronounced a blessing upon the people which was of Divine authority. The principle is abiding. The servants of God, whether prophets or priests, have no power to bless men save as they receive it in direct communion with God. Before we can go out and bless the people, we must go in to the Place of Meeting with God. This is so self-evident that it seems hardly necessary to state it. Yet we are perpetually in danger of allowing our very eagerness to serve men, to interfere with our communion with God. To do so, is to fail disastrously. It is only as we serve in the Holy Place, in worship, in silence, in reception from God, that we are able to serve in the camp in work, in speech, in giving to men. Forgetfulness of this is the secret of much futility in Christian work, of much fussiness, of much feverishness. It is the souls who are strengthened, en-lightened, quieted in the Tent of Meeting, that pass out to the places and ways of men, carrying blessings with them. (Life Applications from Every Chapter of the Bible)

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TODAY IN THE WORD (Moody Bible Institute) Some people believe that biblical references to God’s glory, such as the one found in today’s verses, are actually evidence for UFOs. This theory, initially popularized by the book Chariots of the Gods in the 1960s, is held by some even today. According to them, “God” is a name designating advanced extraterrestrial beings who flew around in flashing, glowing spaceships. From these ships, the super-beings spoke to Job, Moses, Isaiah, Ezekiel, Paul and others. The Bible’s teaching of a “Second Coming” may in fact be preparation for a future alien invasion or takeover. How sad that some people find these crackpot ideas easier to believe than the challenging, holy reality of God Himself! Immediately following their consecration described in yesterday’s reading, the priests began to minister before the Lord. Within the sacrificial system, they represented God to the people and represented the people to God. As they received the sacrifices and ate the fellowship offerings with the people, their actions showed the covenant relationship and God’s acceptance of their worship (Lev 9:6). Taking up their commission of spiritual leadership on this momentous day, Aaron and his sons offered their first round of sacrifices, including sin and burnt offerings for themselves, and sin, burnt, and fellowship (plus grain) offerings for the people. God had promised to appear, and everyone needed to prepare to meet Him (Lev 9:4). So the sacrifices were offered, a blessing was spoken, and the glory of God came down. His glory probably manifested itself in a form similar to the pillar of cloud and fire that had guided and protected the Israelites thus far, especially given the miraculous fire that consumed the burnt offering. The people responded with reverence and joy, which they expressed by shouting and falling facedown to worship the Lord (Lev 9:23, 24). TODAY ALONG THE WAY - In the Old Testament, the priests ministered before the Lord. The New Testament affirms that all believers are a “royal priesthood.” As such, we also have a responsibility to serve the Lord. Specifically, evangelism, proclaiming the good news of the gospel of God, is our “priestly duty” (Ro 15:16). We are to “declare the praises of Him who called [us] out of darkness into His wonderful light” (1Peter 2:9). Have you witnessed this message of life to someone recently? Pray for an opportunity in the near future.

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TODAY IN THE WORD - Leviticus 9 Fire and Blessing: Consuming the Sacrifice - After the death of Steve Jobs, the world waits to see what will become of Apple. Steve Jobs brought the force of his creative leadership to Apple, and no one doubts that the success of Apple—and the innovations of the iPhone, iPod, and iPad—can largely be credited to him. The world needs great leaders, but leadership is often hard. In today’s reading, we see an important transfer of some of that responsibility to Aaron and his sons.

During the seven-day ordination ceremony, Moses presented the sacrifices on behalf of the priests. On the eighth day, he commended to Aaron this work. Aaron must present offerings on his behalf, on behalf of his sons, as well as the entire community. And he was careful to do the work just as God Himself had prescribed.

We draw two important conclusions from the work done by Aaron and his sons at the altar. First (and as we’ve already seen), atonement must be made for the people to draw near to God and for Him to draw near to them. Sin will prevent a holy God from communing with an unholy people. The sacrifices symbolize this divide and the need for divine mercy.

Second, we see God’s grand plan to bless His people. When Aaron finished offering the sacrifices, he raised his hands to bless the people. Atonement is a sure path to joy: God’s overriding impulse is that of blessing: in the Garden, He blessed Adam and Eve. When He called Abraham, He promised him blessings of land and legacy. When He rescued Israel, it was for the purpose of blessing them.

Here, at the entrance to the tabernacle, the fire of God’s holy blessing falls, and the people breathe joy and holy fear.

Apply the Word - One of the devil’s oldest strategies is to try to convince us that God’s plans for us are not good. Have you fallen for that lie? Maybe there’s been suffering and great pain in your life, and you questioned the character of God. May you trust and believe today that He is good, and may that faith lead you into deeper joy.

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TODAY IN THE WORD - The glory of the Lord appeared to all the people. … And when all the people saw it, they shouted for joy and fell facedown. - Leviticus 9:23, 24 - Some people believe that biblical references to God’s glory, such as the one found in today’s verses, are actually evidence for UFOs. This theory, initially popularized by the book Chariots of the Gods in the 1960s, is held by some even today. According to them, “God” is a name designating advanced extraterrestrial beings who flew around in flashing, glowing spaceships. From these ships, the super-beings spoke to Job, Moses, Isaiah, Ezekiel, Paul and others. The Bible’s teaching of a “Second Coming” may in fact be preparation for a future alien invasion or takeover.

How sad that some people find these crackpot ideas easier to believe than the challenging, holy reality of God Himself!

Immediately following their consecration described in yesterday’s reading, the priests began to minister before the Lord. Within the sacrificial system, they represented God to the people and represented the people to God. As they received the sacrifices and ate the fellowship offerings with the people, their actions showed the covenant relationship and God’s acceptance of their worship (Lev 9:6).

Taking up their commission of spiritual leadership on this momentous day, Aaron and his sons offered their first round of sacrifices, including sin and burnt offerings for themselves, and sin, burnt, and fellowship (plus grain) offerings for the people. God had promised to appear, and everyone needed to prepare to meet Him (Lev 9:4). So the sacrifices were offered, a blessing was spoken, and the glory of God came down. His glory probably manifested itself in a form similar to the pillar of cloud and fire that had guided and protected the Israelites thus far, especially given the miraculous fire that consumed the burnt offering. The people responded with reverence and joy, which they expressed by shouting and falling facedown to worship the Lord (Lev 9:23, 24).

TODAY ALONG THE WAY - In the Old Testament, the priests ministered before the Lord. The New Testament affirms that all believers are a “royal priesthood.” As such, we also have a responsibility to serve the Lord. Specifically, evangelism, proclaiming the good news of the gospel of God, is our “priestly duty” (Ro 15:16). We are to “declare the praises of Him who called [us] out of darkness into His wonderful light” (1Peter 2:9). Have you witnessed this message of life to someone recently? Pray for an opportunity in the near future.

Leviticus 9:24 Then fire came out from before the LORD and consumed the burnt offering and the portions of fat on the altar; and when all the people saw it, they shouted and fell on their faces. (Fire: Lev 6:13 Ge 4:3,4 Ge 15:17 Ex 3:2 Jud 6:21 13:19,20,23 1Ki 18:38 2Ki 19:15 1Ch 21:26 2Chr 6:2 2Chr 7:1-3 Ps 20:3,4 80:1) (they shouted: Ge 17:3 Nu 14:5 Nu 16:22 1Ki 18:39 2Chr 7:3 Ezra 3:11 Mt 26:39 Rev 4:9, 5:8, 7:11)

GOD CONSUMES THE OFFERING WITH FIRE

Lev 6:13 Fire shall be kept burning continually on the altar; it is not to go out.

Then - A small but useful expression of time (then marks succession of events or sequence) which should prompt a pause to ponder and question, asking "What happened then?," "Why now?", etc Beatitude (blessing) is followed by beauty (glory). God had given His divine seal of approval so to speak on everything that had taken place in Lev 9:1-23.

Allen Ross observes that "all this procedure is designed to be a vivid picture of the great theological doctrines of the faith. Approaching God by stages represents the pilgrimage from sin and separation through atonement and purification by the blood of the sacrifice into the presence of God in glory. It should come as no surprise then that Paul constructs the argument of the Book of Romans around the main features of this sacrificial worship, for through it the believer moved from sin to sanctification to service (see the concluding observations)." (Holiness to the Lord- A Guide to the Exposition of the Book of Leviticus).

From before Jehovah - Before is the Hebrew adverb lipne which is from a root that means literally to turn (to turn towards). Lipne is in the same family as panim which means face. It seems the idea is that fire comes out from before the face of God, and most likely came forth from the Holy of holies. The God Who had revealed Himself at Sinai was now the God of the Holy of holies, Who would dwell in their midst (Ex 24:17; 2Ch 7:3).

Many see the fire in response to their obedience and gathering together at the beginning of the Levitical priesthood as a precursor or foreshadowing of the "tongues of fire" that fell on all who were gathered together on the Day of Pentecost, the falling fire marking the inauguration of the New Covenant. (Acts 2:1-11)

David Guzik on fire - The Bible gives us seven examples of where God showed acceptance of a sacrifice with fire from heaven:

 Abel (Genesis 4:4)

 Aaron (Leviticus 9:24)

 Gideon (Judges 6:21)

 Manoah (Judges 13:19-23)

 David (1 Chronicles 21:28)

 Solomon (2 Chronicles 7:1)

 Elijah (1 Kings 18:38).

Fire was often associated with God’s presence and work. Deuteronomy 4:24 tells us, the LORD your God is a consuming fire, a jealous God. John the Baptist promised Jesus would come with a baptism with the Holy Spirit and with fire (Matthew 3:11). The Holy Spirit manifested His presence on the day of Pentecost by tongues of fire (Acts 2:3). Jesus said: I came to send fire on the earth, and how I wish it were already kindled! (Luke 12:49). Though this consecration ceremony has a spiritual application to us, we obviously were not literally consecrated to the priesthood through this ceremony. Yet our priesthood is real and after the pattern of the priesthood of Jesus, who never went through such a ceremony. The priesthood of Jesus was based on an oath, as in Hebrews 7:21-22-note: For they have become priests without an oath, but He with an oath by Him who said to Him: The Lord has sworn and will not relent, You are a priest forever according to the order of Melchizedek. We are also made priests not by a ceremony, but by the oath - the promise of God - just like Jesus. (Leviticus 9 Commentary)

Allen Ross on fire - From the divine presence the fire of the LORD came out and consumed all the animals that had been slowly burning on the altar. This was a clear signal that God accepted the offerings that had been made. The same significance can be found in other passages where the fire of the LORD consumed sacrifices:

1. In the call of Gideon the fire burned the meat and bread that Gideon brought, and Gideon was afraid. The LORD announced “peace,” and Gideon responded with a sacrifice (Judg. 6:20–24).

2. At the announcement of the birth of Samson, Manoah’s sacrifice was consumed by fire, and the angel of the LORD ascended in the fire. Manoah was afraid and said, “We have seen God!” (Judg. 13:15–22).

3. When Solomon dedicated the temple, the fire of the LORD consumed the offerings, and the glory of the LORD filled the temple. When Israel saw it, they knelt down and worshiped the LORD (2 Chron. 7:1–3).

4. When Elijah challenged the prophets of Baal, fire fell from heaven and consumed the offering, altar, water, and dust. And all the people responded with “the LORD is God” (1 Kings 18:38–39). (Ibid)

Rooker - Fire is often employed as a symbol of God’s presence and work (see Ex 3:2; 19:18; Dt 4:24; Ps 18:8-14; Isa 33:14; Ezek 1:4; Mal 3:2). Fire also often indicates God’s judgment as in Mal 3:2; Matt 3:11; Luke 3:16, but here it is used as an expression of joy, much as it is in Jdg 13:15–21; 1Ki 18:38; and 2Chr 7:1. (Ibid)

Burnt offering (05930)('olah introduced in Leviticus 1) (Occurs 10x in Leviticus 9 - Lev 9:2, 3, 7, 12, 13, 14, 16, 17, 22, 24)

SHOUTING FOR JOY

They shouted (for joy) (07442) (ranan) means to shout, to cry aloud cry, to give a ringing cry, to shout for joy, to sing joyfully. "The verb רָנַן according to Brown, Driver, Briggs is an onomatopoeic word with the meaning “let out shouts of joy” or “to sing jubilantly” (BDB, 943)." (Rooker)

It is interesting that Leviticus 9:24 is the first use of ranan (shout for joy) in the Scripture.

NET Note - Many English versions and commentaries render here “shouted for joy” (e.g., NIV; cf. NCV, NLT) or “shouted joyfully,” but the fact the people “fell on their faces” immediately afterward suggests that they were frightened as, for example, in Ex 19:16b; 20:18–21.

William White on ranan - A number of different shades of meaning and a variety of senses are developed for the root in various OT passages. The primary meaning is “to raise a noise” by shouting or with an instrument, especially a horn (Nu 10:7) or the traditional ram’s horn, the “shofar” (Josh 6:5). It is used in this sense in rituals of the Israelite tabernacle (1Sa 4:5) to describe the exaltation of the people of Israel when the ark of the covenant was brought to the camp. Later in Israel’s history in the First Commonwealth, the same root is used to describe the exaltation of the people when David brings the ark to Jerusalem. The poetic description of this in the Psalms (Ps 45:7) and the later glorification of the king at his enthronement by acclamation (1Sa 10:24) has been selected by some scholars as evidence of an enthronement ritual similar to that found in contemporary societies. However, there is no evidence to suggest such an interpretation for the root, rûa. In fact, the usage in passages encouraging the praise of God by the whole earth (Isa 44:23) and the shout of victory over an enemy (Jer 50:15; Zeph 3:14-note) are more closely related. The poetic song of praise in Job 38:7 uses this root to describe the shout of joy given by the “sons of God,” a controversial phrase referring to the faithful followers of the covenant. The root rūa is also used for cries of complaint and distress (Isa 15:4). However, the most common usage of all is in signals for war (Nu 10:7) and war cries (Josh 6:10). As an extension of this last usage, it is also employed for shouts of alarm (1Sa 17:20) and encouragement, as in Psalm 95 and 98 in which it appears twice in each related context. This unusual word appears only three times in widely scattered locations (Ex 32:17; Job 36:33; Mic 4:9-note, “Now why do you shout aloud”). (Theological Wordbook of the Old Testament- R Laird Harris, Gleason L Archer Jr., Bruce K Waltke-)

Ranan in NAS - cries(1), cries of joy(1), cry aloud(1), joyfully sing(2), rejoice(1), sang(1), shout for joy(16), shout of joy(1), shout joyfully(4), shouted(1), shouts(1), sing for joy(18), sing aloud(3), sing aloud for joy(1), sings(1).

Ranan - 52v - Lev 9:24; Deut 32:43; 1Chr 16:33; Job 29:13; 38:7; Ps 5:11; 20:5; 32:11; 33:1; 35:27; 51:14; 59:16; 63:7; 65:8; 67:4; 71:23; 81:1; 84:2; 89:12; 90:14; 92:4; 95:1; 96:12; 98:4, 8; 132:9, 16; 145:7; 149:5; Pr 1:20; 8:3; 29:6; Isa 12:6; 16:10; 24:14; 26:19; 35:2, 6; 42:11; 44:23; 49:13; 52:8f; 54:1; 61:7; 65:14; Jer 31:7, 12; 51:48; Lam 2:19; Zeph 3:14; Zech 2:10

Here are all the uses in Psalms

Ps 5:11 But let all who take refuge in Thee be glad, Let them ever sing for joy; And mayest Thou shelter them, That those who love Thy name may exult in Thee.

Ps 20:5 We will sing for joy over your victory, And in the name of our God we will set up our banners. May the LORD fulfill all your petitions.

Ps 32:11 Be glad in the LORD and rejoice, you righteous ones, And shout for joy, all you who are upright in heart.

Ps 33:1 Sing for joy in the LORD, O you righteous ones; Praise is becoming to the upright.

Ps 35:27 Let them shout for joy and rejoice, who favor my vindication; And let them say continually, “The LORD be magnified, Who delights in the prosperity of His servant.”

Ps 51:14 Deliver me from bloodguiltiness, O God, Thou God of my salvation; [Then] my tongue will joyfully sing of Thy righteousness.

Ps 59:16 But as for me, I shall sing of Thy strength; Yes, I shall joyfully sing of Thy lovingkindness in the morning, For Thou hast been my stronghold, And a refuge in the day of my distress.

Ps 63:7 For Thou hast been my help, And in the shadow of Thy wings I sing for joy.

Ps 65:8 And they who dwell in the ends [of the earth] stand in awe of Thy signs; Thou dost make the dawn and the sunset shout for joy.

Ps 67:4 Let the nations be glad and sing for joy; For Thou wilt judge the peoples with uprightness, And guide the nations on the earth. Selah.

Ps 71:23 My lips will shout for joy when I sing praises to Thee; And my soul, which Thou hast redeemed.

Ps 81:1 For the choir director; on the Gittith. A Psalm of Asaph. Sing for joy to God our strength; Shout joyfully to the God of Jacob.

Ps 84:2 My soul longed and even yearned for the courts of the LORD; My heart and my flesh sing for joy to the living God.

Ps 89:12 The north and the south, Thou hast created them; Tabor and Hermon shout for joy at Thy name.

Ps 90:14 O satisfy us in the morning with Thy lovingkindness, That we may sing for joy and be glad all our days.

Ps 92:4 For Thou, O LORD, hast made me glad by what Thou hast done, I will sing for joy at the works of Thy hands.

Ps 95:1 O Come, let us sing for joy to the LORD; Let us shout joyfully to the rock of our salvation.

Ps 96:12 Let the field exult, and all that is in it. Then all the trees of the forest will sing for joy

Ps 98:4 Shout joyfully to the LORD, all the earth; Break forth and sing for joy and sing praises.

Ps 98:8 Let the rivers clap their hands; Let the mountains sing together for joy

Ps 132:9 Let Thy priests be clothed with righteousness; And let Thy godly ones sing for joy.

Ps 132:16 “Her priests also I will clothe with salvation; And her godly ones will sing aloud for joy.

Ps 145:7 They shall eagerly utter the memory of Thine abundant goodness, And shall shout joyfully of Thy righteousness.

Ps 149:5 Let the godly ones exult in glory; Let them sing for joy on their beds.

We see a similar reaction by the people of Israel to a manifestation of God's glory in Second Chronicles…

Now when Solomon had finished praying, fire came down from heaven and consumed the burnt offering and the sacrifices; and the glory of the LORD filled the house. And the priests could not enter into the house of the LORD, because the glory of the LORD filled the LORD’s house. 3 And all the sons of Israel, seeing the fire come down and the glory of the LORD upon the house, bowed down on the pavement with their faces to the ground, and they worshiped and gave praise to the LORD, saying, “Truly He is good, truly His lovingkindness is everlasting.” (2Chr 7:1-3)

Wiersbe writes that "The fire of God consumed the burnt offering (see 2Chr 7:1–3) and gave the people the assurance that Jehovah God was among them and with them. “Our God is a consuming fire” (Heb. 12:29-note), and that fire could have consumed the people! This reminds us that the wrath of God fell on His Son rather than on sinners who deserved to be judged (2Cor 5:21-note; 1Peter 2:24-note). The paradoxical response of the people helps us better understand the experience of worship, for they were both joyful and overwhelmed. There was joy in their hearts that the true and living God had deigned to dwell among them and receive their worship, but there was also fear as the people fell on their faces in awe. The two attitudes balance each other. “Serve the Lord with fear, and rejoice with trembling” (Ps. 2:11). Paul saw this as a desirable and normal experience in the local assembly (1 Cor. 14:23–25). If our ministry doesn’t glorify God, then God can’t bless it and use it to help others and win the lost. (Ibid)

“Fell facedown” (NIV) is literally “fell on their faces.” This gesture indicates profound respect and often occurs as a response to a manifestation of God (Ezek 1:28; 3:23; 11:13; 43:2–3; 44:4; Dan 8:17).

Fell on their faces - Their response signifies a mixture of reverential awe (holy fear), respect, and honor. We see a similar description of the reaction of others who witnessed a fiery demonstration of Jehovah (Jdg 13:20,22; 2Ch 7:3; cp similar prostrate positions prompted by the Presence of Jehovah! = Ge 17:3, Nu 16:22; 20:6; 2Chr 21:16, Ezek 1:28-note, Ezek 3:23-note, Ezek 43:3 [Ezekiel was never bored by God's glory! Ever wonder what we might do when we first see Jesus in all His splendor? I Can Only Imagine] Isa 6:5-note, Acts 9:4, 22:7, 26:14, Mt 17:6, Rev 1:17).

Wenham rightly remarks “God’s greatness and holiness cannot be ignored; he must be acknowledged by our whole being. Nothing less is adequate.” (The Book of Leviticus (The New International Commentary on the Old Testament)- Gordon J. Wenham) Beloved, Wenham's comments beg the question - "Does this wholeheartedly approach describe my attitude in worship on Sunday morning? Or am I just going through the motions and experiencing an emotional response to the beat of the music? Do I truly sense the pleasure and presence of the Lord? I fear that too often I do not, for I find myself distracted by people walking in late, by the failure to play my favorite song, by the worship leader's mannerisms, etc, etc. From these distractions deliver me O Lord that I may see Jesus with the eyes of my heart. Amen"

Calvin - Lest posterity should doubt of this matter, as if it were not thoroughly certain, Moses says that the whole people was stirred up by the sight to praise God, “and fell on their faces.”

John Trapp - The consideration of God’s gracious acceptation of us in Christ should make us to lift many a humble, joyful, and thankful heart to God.

Criswell: Sometimes expositors erroneously conclude that this miraculous consuming of the sacrifices represents the initial kindling of the altar fire. It is to be remembered, however, that (1) the daily morning and evening sacrifices had been offered from the first day of the erection of the tabernacle (Ex29:38, 39; 40:29); (2) that sacrifices were offered during the seven-day consecration of Aaron and his sons (8:16-28); and (3) that sacrifices had been offered earlier in the day by Aaron, probably at the time of the morning sacrifice (9:10-20). The obvious intent of this miracle was not simply to kindle a divine altar fire, as was commonly done in the legends of the heathen, but to give a heavenly confirmation and acceptance of the sacrificial service of Aaron and his sons. (Believer's Study Bible)

Michael Heiser has an article entitled "Fire as a Motif of Divine Presence" - A number of passages in the Bible utilize fire in depicting the presence of God. Among the most familiar is Ge 3:24, where Yahweh stations cherubim with flaming swords at the entrance to Eden to ensure the fallen Adam and Eve do not reenter. In non-biblical portrayals of divine presence (e.g., the tablets from Ugarit), fiery messengers guard the divine presence. In Isaiah 6, fiery guardians, seraphim, are present in the throne room of God. The word “seraphim” derives from either the noun saraph (“serpent”; compare the Egyptian word seraf) or the verb saraph (“to burn”). The two meanings likely overlap in Isa 6. King Hezekiah’s relationship with Egypt, which coincided with Isaiah’s ministry, influenced the royal iconography during Hezekiah’s reign. Seraphim may therefore refer to a cobra and its burning venom (Egyptians considered cobras to be divine guardians). Psalm 104:4 also refers to fiery “ministers” in Yahweh’s presence. Aside from fiery beings, many biblical passages describe both Yahweh’s throne room and presence as fiery and full of smoke. In Exodus 3, Yahweh appears to Moses in a burning bush (Ex 3:2-3). After the Israelite people have left Egypt, the divine presence moves with them in a pillar of cloud by day and a pillar of fire at night (Ex 13:21–22; 14:24). Yahweh at one point descends on Mount Sinai in fire and smoke (Ex 19:18; 24:17; compare Rev 15:8). Other passages create the impression that fire is a stock image in describing the appearance of Yahweh (Dt 4:36; Ps 144:5; 2Sa 22:7–13). At times a rushing or stormy wind accompanies fire imagery (Ezek 1:4; Isa 28:2; 29:6; 30:27–30; Ps 50:3; compare Heb 12:18). Other passages describe God Himself as a consuming fire (Deut 4:24; 9:3; compare Heb 12:29), and Yahweh uses fiery bursts and lightning bolts as weapons against his enemies (Josh 10:11; Psa 18:7–14; 21:9; 148:8; 2 Sam 22:13–15; Isa 30:30). This imagery carried into the NT, most prominently in the events of Pentecost in Acts 2: When the day of Pentecost arrived, they were all together in one place. And suddenly there came from heaven a sound like a mighty rushing wind, and it filled the entire house where they were sitting. And divided tongues as of fire appeared to them and rested on each one of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues as the Spirit gave them utterance." The stormy aura of “a mighty rushing wind” accompanied by flaming “tongues” indicates that the gathered disciples are now in the divine presence; the throne room of God has come to them. This fire is associated with the Holy Spirit—the presence of God. As with other prophetic figures, the apostles are commissioned in the divine presence by the divine presence. (Faithlife Study Bible Notes) (Bolding added)

Allen Ross - One other point may be of interest for the correlation between the Old and New Testaments: the theological significance of the order of the sacrifices, which is here introduced for the first time. It is interesting to note that Paul uses the main sacrifices as a general structure for his argument in the Book of Romans. In Romans 1–2 he lays out the need for atonement by surveying the sinful condition of the human race, first without the law as people abandoned the Creator to worship the creation and then with the law that condemned sin. To show the utter sinfulness of the race, he draws on a collection of passages from the Old Testament. In Romans 3 he announces God’s remedy for sin: God sent his Son to be a propitiation for sin to redeem the world. Here Paul summarizes the atoning or expiatory sacrifices. The atonement sacrifice, however, must be joined by faith or it is not efficacious; and so in Romans 4 he discusses the importance of faith in appropriating God’s provision of redemption. Once that happens, we have peace with God. In Romans 5, then, he draws in the significance of the peace offering. Using language from the sacrificial rites, Paul explains that if we have been identified with Christ our sacrifice for sins, then we have died with him and are dead to sin (Romans 6). Therefore we are to yield our members as instruments of righteousness. But since Christ’s sacrifice was offered once and for all, a repeated sacrifice is no longer made for the maintenance of this relationship when we sin—and we do sin, even though we do not want to, as he explains in Romans 7. But the new covenant brings a better way to maintain the spiritual life and the benefits of the sacrifice: with the provision of the Holy Spirit (Romans 8). Paul then addresses the question of the value of the old covenant in light of the better relationship we have in Christ. So in Romans 9–11 he traces how the law was good and holy, but the people through rebellion and unbelief disobeyed, and so the curse of the law was brought upon them. That is why we have been grafted in as wild branches into the covenant. God will fulfill his promises to Israel when the fullness of the Gentiles has come in. After this marvelous survey of the way that God is administering the history of the faith, Paul then turns to address the proper response to the atoning work of Christ that brought us peace. And so in Romans 12 Paul draws on the meal offering, exhorting us to offer ourselves to him as living sacrifices. The rest of the book then delineates what that means for all areas of life. For these chapters the critical word is “love,” which is the way Paul explained (in Galatians) that we fulfill the law. (Ibid)

Gordon J. Wenham ties Leviticus 9 to truths in the New Testament - This chapter brings out very clearly the purpose and character of OT worship. All the pomp and ceremony served one end: the appearance of the glory of God. Aaron’s gorgeous garments, the multiplicity of animal sacrifices, were not ends in themselves but only means to the end, namely, the proper worship of God. These elaborate vestments and sacrifices helped simple human minds appreciate the majestic holiness of God. But all the ritual in the OT would have been pointless if God had not deigned to reveal himself to the people. The clothing and the sacrifices merely helped to put the worshippers in a state of mind that was prepared for God’s coming, and removed the obstacles of human sin that prevented fellowship, but they did not necessarily ensure God’s presence. The NT is equally aware of the emptiness of a ritual where God is not present. It is Christ or the Spirit that reveals the glory of God in the NT era. On various occasions in the life of Christ, we read of the glory of God appearing: at Christ’s birth (Luke 2:9) and transfiguration (Luke 9:31), in His miracles (John 2:11), and at His second coming (Mt 16:27; 25:31). Christ Himself is described as the glory of God (1Cor 2:8; John 1:14-note)… Worship must be in Spirit and Truth (Jn 4:24). When the Spirit came at Pentecost he was in the form of fire; under His inspiration the believers spoke of “the mighty works of God” (Acts 2:11). Repeatedly in Acts we read of the Spirit falling on disciples and prompting them to praise God, sometimes in strange tongues. Spontaneous and heartfelt praise is thus a feature of true worship common to both testaments. So is the aspect of fear (Ed: A reverential but still very real fear!). In ancient Israel “they fell on their faces.” Similarly on the day of Pentecost we read, “fear came upon every soul” (Acts 2:43). Hebrews reminds us to “offer to God acceptable worship, with reverence and awe; for our God is a consuming fire” (Heb. 12:28f.-note). Much of the time the worship of Israel and the modern Church falls short of these ideals, despite Christ’s prayer that all his disciples might see his glory (John 17:24). In the heavenly city that prayer will be fulfilled: “the city has no need of sun or moon to shine upon it, for the glory of God is its light, and its lamp is the Lamb” (Rev. 21:23-note). (The Book of Leviticus - The New International Commentary on the Old Testament) (Bolding added)

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