Before the priests could serve in their ministry to offer sacrifices for the atonement of the people, much was required and must be accomplished through the Consecration Ceremony.
There was to be a sin offering providing atonement for their own sins (8:14-17); a burnt offering rendering their worship acceptable (8:18-21); and a ram of ordination to consecrate them as priests (8:22-28).
Both the sin offering and the ram of ordination would symbolize the cleansing and consecration of their entire bodies and lives for the service of the priestly ministry.
Then he brought the bull of the sin offering, and Aaron and his sons laid their hands on the head of the bull of the sin offering. 15Moses slaughtered it and took some of its blood and put it on the lobe of Aaron’s right ear, and on the thumb of his right hand and on the big toe of his right foot. 24 He also had Aaron’s sons come near; and Moses put some of the blood on the lobe of their right ear, and on the thumb of their right hand and on the big toe of their right foot, (8:14-15).
Then he presented the second ram, the ram of ordination, and Aaron and his sons laid their hands on the head of the ram. 23 Moses slaughtered it and took some of its blood and put it on the lobe of Aaron’s right ear, and on the thumb of his right hand and on the big toe of his right foot. 24 He also had Aaron’s sons come near; and Moses put some of the blood on the lobe of their right ear, and on the thumb of their right hand and on the big toe of their right foot, (8:22-24).
The consecrated lives of the priests still needed the burnt offering to purify all their works of service; in essence consecrating the very worship offered by the priests to Holy God.
…Moses offered up the whole ram in smoke on the altar. It was a burnt offering for a soothing aroma; it was an offering by fire to the Lord, just as the Lord had commanded Moses, (8:21).
This Consecration Ceremony explicitly displayed the serious call into the priesthood and the absolute need for atonement of sin for every human ever born. Aaron and his sons, the newly ordained priests, could not offer sacrifices for atonement of others without first having their own sins atoned for and covered by the blood of the sin offering.
Consider Him Who Needed No Consecration Ceremony
- Jesus Needed No sin offering; for He knew no sin.
- He made Him who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf, so that we might become the righteousness of God in Him, (2 Corinthians 5:21).
- 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, (Hebrews 4:15).
- Jesus Needed No burnt offering to render His worship acceptable; for He lived a life in perfect worship.
- Therefore Jesus answered and was saying to them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, the Son can do nothing of Himself, unless it is something He sees the Father doing; for whatever the Father does, these things the Son also does in like manner,” (John 5:19)
- “For I have come down from heaven, not to do My own will, but the will of Him who sent Me,” (John 6:38).
- Jesus Needed No ram of ordination; for He is designated by God as our perfect High Priest forever.
- For 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;… 9 And having been made perfect, He became to all those who obey Him the source of eternal salvation, 10 being designated by God as a high priest according to the order of Melchizedek, (Hebrews 5:1,9-10).
- For it was fitting for us to have such a high priest, holy, innocent, undefiled, separated from sinners and exalted above the heavens; 27 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. 28 For the Law appoints men as high priests who are weak, but the word of the oath, which came after the Law, appoints a Son, made perfect forever, (Hebrews 7:26-28).
How do we respond to Him Who Needed No Consecration Ceremony?
- We can live in His assurance; we have received His righteousness when we place our faith in His perfect sinless sacrifice as the only atonement for our sins.
- But now apart from the Law the righteousness of God has been manifested, being witnessed by the Law and the Prophets, 22 even the righteousness of God through faith in Jesus Christ for all those who believe; (Romans 3:21-22).
- We can worship Him without fear or constraint; our service to Him in worship is rendered acceptable through the blood of our perfect, spotless lamb.
- But when Christ appeared as a high priest of the good things to come, He entered through the greater and more perfect tabernacle, not made with hands, that is to say, not of this creation; 12 and not through the blood of goats and calves, but through His own blood, He entered the holy place once for all, having obtained eternal redemption. 13 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, 14 how much more will the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered Himself without blemish to God, cleanse your conscience from dead works to serve the living God? (Hebrews 9:11-14).
- How can we not be encouraged and confident in our faith when we know our perfect and eternal High Priest understands and sympathizes with our needs, and daily intercedes for those who draw near to Him?
- Therefore, since 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. 16 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 4:14-16).
- The former priests, on the one hand, existed in greater numbers because they were prevented by death from continuing, 24 but Jesus, on the other hand, because He continues forever, holds His priesthood permanently. 25 Therefore He is able also to save forever those who draw near to God through Him, since He always lives to make intercession for them, (Hebrews 7:23-25).