Reflections on Leviticus 8

Over the last few months, I have been sharing some brief reflections on the book of Leviticus. This is a reflection on the eighth chapter (specifically 8:1-13).

“And he poured some of the anointing oil on Aaron’s head and anointed him to consecrate him.”

Leviticus 8:12

In the days of king Saul, things were not well with Israel. Saul had disobeyed several of God’s commandments for his own selfish ends, leading to God’s displeasure and withdrawing of his blessing. To remedy the situation, God sent the prophet Samuel to anoint a new king from the righteous family of Jesse to lead the people of Israel and to represent them in battle. Out of all of Jesse’s sons, God chose the youngest of them all, David, as the new king. As soon as Samuel poured oil upon David’s head, the Spirit of the Lord came upon him, equipping him to lead Israel.

Just as David was chosen to represent Israel, so too were the priests in the days of Moses. They were clothed in sacred garments and anointed with oil as a sign of the glory and of the weightiness of their role. They ministered on behalf of the people of Israel, teaching and leading them by the Spirit of God, that Israel would know and obey the commandments of God.

Of course, all of this is fulfilled in Jesus. He was anointed by the Spirit of God as our king and our priest, to teach and to lead the people of God to obey his commandments. Even today, he ministers amongst us by the Spirit, teaching us to honour God the Father and to apply his word to every area of our lives. And this same Spirit he has given also to us, that the people of God might be united as one, sharing in the blessing of God.

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