Today’s Scripture Focus: Leviticus 10:1-7
Last week we focused on the dedication service in the Tabernacle, in which the priests were ordained. God had given specific instructions for the priesthood back in Exodus when the blueprints were laid out for the Tent, its furnishings, and its implements. However, the priestly instructions could not be fulfilled until the Tabernacle was completed and the details were laid out for offering sacrifices. These details were given in Leviticus 1-7. In Leviticus 8, Aaron and his sons were dedicated to the Lord as priests. Having completed a week long ordination service, it is now time for the priests to begin offering daily sacrifices.
Aaron and his sons still had to give the required purification and consecration offerings on behalf of themselves before doing so for the people of Israel. Priests had to be made pure in order for and sacrifices to be acceptable. So, Aaron, with the assistance of his four sons, sacrificed a calf and a ram as prescribed. Then, they began sacrificing the goats and oxen that the elders of the people of Israel had brought forth. Moses took Aaron into the holy place for a final “passing of the torch”. God sent holy fire to consume the sacrifices, signifying they had been accepted and God was pleased. It was a joyous celebration!
The celebration was to conclude with the consuming of the peace offering. This was the portion of the sacrificial meat that was to be eaten by the priests and their families. Part of this ritual involved consuming the flesh of the goat offered as a sin offering while still in the Tabernacle. Why did the priests have to eat this meat in the presence of the people? In pagan worship, when evil was “transferred” to an animal, it was considered poison. It would be unheard of to eat the flesh of such an animal! God, however showed that grace was more powerful than sin. The priests could eat the meat and would be unharmed.
Before the peace offering could be eaten, however, two of Aaron’s sons disobeyed God. When going in to light the incense altar in the Holy Place, they used their own fire, rather than take it from the sacrificial altar. God’s fire came forth once again, only this time it killed the two young men! The sons of Aaron had refused to take their job seriously. Aaron and his remaining sons now saw the holiness of God in its power and its purity. Nothing common or unholy could exist in God’s presence. God could not “overlook” the sins of leaders while at the same time requiring blood for sins of the people.
- Go around the table and share prayer requests. Have someone lead in prayer.
- Let everyone who would like to share anything exciting from their week.
- Ask these three questions. Let as many answer each one as they would like.
Would it be fair to say that we don’t take the worship of God very seriously in our culture today? Why or why not?
Is there anything in today’s scripture that especially speaks to you?
What questions would you like to ask about today’s scripture?