Leviticus 9 - The Hand of God
1And it came to pass on the eighth day, that Moses called Aaron and his sons, and the elders of Israel; 2And he said unto Aaron, Take thee a young calf for a sin offering, and a ram for a burnt offering, without blemish, and offer them before the LORD. 3And unto the children of Israel thou shalt speak, saying, Take ye a kid of the goats for a sin offering; and a calf and a lamb, both of the first year, without blemish, for a burnt offering; 4Also a bullock and a ram for peace offerings, to sacrifice before the LORD; and a meat offering mingled with oil: for to day the LORD will appear unto you. 5And they brought that which Moses commanded before the tabernacle of the congregation: and all the congregation drew near and stood before the LORD. 6And Moses said, This is the thing which the LORD commanded that ye should do: and the glory of the LORD shall appear unto you. 7And Moses said unto Aaron, Go unto the altar, and offer thy sin offering, and thy burnt offering, and make an atonement for thyself, and for the people: and offer the offering of the people, and make an atonement for them; as the LORD commanded. 8Aaron therefore went unto the altar, and slew the calf of the sin offering, which was for himself. 9And the sons of Aaron brought the blood unto him: and he dipped his finger in the blood, and put it upon the horns of the altar, and poured out the blood at the bottom of the altar: 10But the fat, and the kidneys, and the caul above the liver of the sin offering, he burnt upon the altar; as the LORD commanded Moses. 11And the flesh and the hide he burnt with fire without the camp. 12And he slew the burnt offering; and Aaron's sons presented unto him the blood, which he sprinkled round about upon the altar. 13And they presented the burnt offering unto him, with the pieces thereof, and the head: and he burnt them upon the altar. 14And he did wash the inwards and the legs, and burnt them upon the burnt offering on the altar. 15And he brought the people's offering, and took the goat, which was the sin offering for the people, and slew it, and offered it for sin, as the first. 16And he brought the burnt offering, and offered it according to the manner. 17And he brought the meat offering, and took an handful thereof, and burnt it upon the altar, beside the burnt sacrifice of the morning. 18He slew also the bullock and the ram for a sacrifice of peace offerings, which was for the people: and Aaron's sons presented unto him the blood, which he sprinkled upon the altar round about, 19And the fat of the bullock and of the ram, the rump, and that which covereth the inwards, and the kidneys, and the caul above the liver: 20And they put the fat upon the breasts, and he burnt the fat upon the altar: 21And the breasts and the right shoulder Aaron waved for a wave offering before the LORD; as Moses commanded. 22And Aaron lifted up his hand toward the people, and blessed them, and came down from offering of the sin offering, and the burnt offering, and peace offerings. 23And Moses and Aaron went into the tabernacle of the congregation, and came out, and blessed the people: and the glory of the LORD appeared unto all the people. 24And there came a fire out from before the LORD, and consumed upon the altar the burnt offering and the fat: which when all the people saw, they shouted, and fell on their faces.
Today's Scripture Meaning
The first offerings of Aaron for himself and the people. (1-21) Moses and Aaron bless the people, Fire cometh upon the altar from the Lord. (22-24) Verses 1-21: 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. Verses 22-24: When the solemnity was finished, and the blessing pronounced, God testified his acceptance. There came a fire out from before the Lord, and consumed the sacrifice. This fire might justly have fastened upon the people, and have consumed them for their sins; but its consuming the sacrifice signified God's acceptance of it, as an atonement for the sinner. This also was a figure of good things to come. The Spirit descended upon the apostles in fire. And the descent of this holy fire into our souls, to kindle in them pious and devout affections toward God, and such a holy zeal as burns up the flesh and the lusts of it, is a certain token of God's gracious acceptance of our persons and performances. Nothing goes to God, but what comes from him. We must have grace, that holy fire, from the God of grace, else we cannot serve him acceptably, (Heb 12:28). The people were affected with this discovery of God's glory and grace. They received it with the highest joy; triumphing in the assurance given them that they had God nigh unto them. And with the lowest reverence; humbly adoring the majesty of that God, who vouchsafed thus to manifest himself to them. That is a sinful fear of God, which drives us from him; a gracious fear makes us bow before him.
Today's Scripture Application
Each day we walk through the Bible chapter by chapter making an application of our text to help us grow in the Lord. Many applications can be made from each day's text. Today we continue in the book of Leviticus with Chapter 9 and in today's text we see the depth of this book as on the surface we see a book of sacrifices but when look closer we see many evidences of the Character of God that we can apply to our lives today. What catches my eye today is is verse 24 where God sent fire from the sky to consume Aaron's Offering. The Israelites fell to ground in Awe as some had never seen God manifest his power. The young had only heard stories of the red sea and Pharaoh but now Gods presence is before them. In making application we too might have only heard of God working in a mighty way but fail to have a sense of urgency towards serving God because we haven't seen His Power in our lives. I remember as a young man being saved and hearing of great revivals. My witness and urgency to serve God was minimal until I went to a Billy Graham Crusade in Atlanta. There in a crowd of 75 thousand I witnessed God showing up and thousands come to Christ in mighty moving of the Hand of God. The event caused me to live for the Lord and my only regret is that I didn't heed what others had told me and served Him with the same effort before that day. How about you? Do you serve the Lord with passion even though you haven't experienced His might Hand in your life? Let us learn from today's text and serve God even though we don't see His Hand working in the forefront of our lives.
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Sincerely, Dr. David Burnette
Director, The United States Bible Society, Inc.