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Daily Bread - June 23, 2018
Written by Pastor Mark Spitsbergen
Saturday, 23 June 2018 06:19
Leviticus 16:2 - And the Lord said unto Moses, Speak unto Aaron your
brother, that he come not at all times into the holy place within the vail
before the mercy seat, which is upon the ark; that he die not: for I will
appear in the cloud upon the mercy seat.

Degrees of Holiness Part 5 - The Tabernacle and its Furniture:

Degrees of holiness were distinguished within the tabernacle itself. The
chamber behind the veil, where the ark was kept, was called the “holy of
holies” (Hebrew: qōdeš haqqŏdāšı̂m), also referred to as the “most holy.”
The rest of the tabernacle was referred to as simply the “holy place:
(Hebrew: haqqōdeš). Yet, the entire tent structure was also called “most
holy” (Exodus 30:26, 29). Only the high priest, who was the holiest priest
of all, was allowed to enter the most holy place where the ark dwelt. Only
the ordinary priests could help the high priest in the chamber that housed
the table, the altar of incense, and the lamp stand, whereas any of the
Levites and Israelites could come to the area where the altar of burnt
offerings was in the outer court. Each of the chambers had footings and
planks that were made with different materials: gold in the most holy
place, silver in the holy place, and copper in the courts (Exodus 26:37,
27:10-11, 17, 36:38, 38:10-11, 17, 19, 30-31).

Some of the tabernacle furniture is most holy, while other furniture in the
tabernacle is only holy. The treatment and restrictions placed upon the two
are most notable in communicating degrees of holiness and their impacts on
those who come near to them. The furniture that was most holy in the
tabernacle was the ark, the altar of incense, the lamp-stand, the bread
table, the burnt offering altar and the laver (Exodus 29:37, 30:10, 26-29,
40:10, Numbers 4:4, 19). Along with this special designation of holiness is
the proximity of the furniture to the holy of holies. The degrees of
holiness can be viewed from several perspectives, with the highest degree
resting upon the ark and the lowest upon the altar for burnt offerings. The
altars in the Tabernacle, ark, table of incense, lamp stand, and bread
table, were all made of gold while the burnt offering altar was made of
copper.

The way each of these vessels were handled also expressed degrees of
holiness. The more holy an object was, the more dangerous and lethal it was
when interacted with (Numbers 4:15, 19-20, 18:3). When the ark was
transported, it had to always be enclosed behind the veil, so it was
wrapped in the veil, followed by a skin, and then a blue cloth (Numbers
4:4-6). The table was wrapped in a regular blue cloth, scarlet cloth, and
then a skin cover (Numbers 4:7-8). The lamp and incense altar were wrapped
in a regular blue cloth followed by a skin cover (Numbers 4:9-10), whereas
the burnt offering altar was wrapped in a purple cloth and a skin cover
(Numbers 4:13-14). The gold furniture was lethal if anyone but a priest saw
them (Numbers 4:18-20). However, the copper pieces of furniture could be
seen.

Even the furniture pieces were not to be touched or seen by the Levites,
under pain of death (Exodus 30:26-29, Numbers 4:4-20, 24-28, 31-33). They
were to be carefully wrapped by the priest and then, depending on the
degree of holiness, were either carried in wagons or carried upon the
shoulders of the Levites. The ark, of course, was where God manifested
Himself, and it was never to be seen (Exodus 25:22, 30:36, Numbers 7:89,
cf. Exodus 29:42, Leviticus 16:2, 12-13).

Be Blessed,

Pastor Mark Spitsbergen
 
Daily Bread - June 22, 2018
Written by Pastor Mark Spitsbergen
Friday, 22 June 2018 06:19
Leviticus 16:2 - And the Lord said unto Moses, Speak unto Aaron your
brother, that he come not at all times into the holy place within the vail
before the mercy seat, which is upon the ark; that he die not: for I will
appear in the cloud upon the mercy seat.

Degrees of Holiness Part 4:

Levites, Firstborn, and Nazarites
The Levites and the firstborn were given a unique degree of holiness
different from the general population of Israel (Exodus 13:1, Numbers
3:5-13). However, the holiness that they received still does not afford
them the same degree of holiness enjoyed by those allowed to enter the
tabernacle (Numbers 18:2-4). The Nazarites also had a different degree of
holiness attached to their vow, and along with that holiness, greater
purity laws. Some of the restrictive laws for the Nazarite were similar to
that of the high priest, but yet, the Nazarites were not allowed to come
into the tabernacle (Numbers 6:7-8, cf. Leviticus 21:10-12).

Offerings
There are degrees of holiness given to offerings - they are either “holy of
holies” (most holy) or they are simply “holy.” The offerings that are most
holy are the sin, guilt and meal offerings. Only the high priest can eat
the offerings that are most holy, and he must eat them in the tabernacle
(Leviticus 6:9-18, 19-30, 7:6, 10:13, 17, 24:9, Numbers 18:10, Ezekiel
42:13). There were other offerings that were only holy, so therefore of
lesser holiness. These offerings were peace offerings, firstborn animals,
Passover, tithe offerings, and first fruit offerings. These offerings of
lesser holiness, such as the peace offerings and the Passover offering, can
be eaten by the general population anywhere outside the tabernacle, except
for those portions belonging only to the priest (Leviticus 22:10-16).

Be Blessed,

Pastor Mark Spitsbergen
 
Daily Bread - June 21, 2018
Written by Pastor Mark Spitsbergen
Thursday, 21 June 2018 06:19
Leviticus 16:2 - And the Lord said unto Moses, Speak unto Aaron your
brother, that he come not at all times into the holy place within the vail
before the mercy seat, which is upon the ark; that he die not: for I will
appear in the cloud upon the mercy seat.

Degrees of Holiness Part 3 - Special Anointings:

Prophets were empowered with special gifts from God when the Spirit of the
Lord would come upon them. Through this unique anointing, they were given a
special status of interaction with God, and were called holy men of God
(Jeremiah 1:5, 2 Kings 4:9). The first ones anointed to speak on behalf of
God were the seventy elders that God separated to receive some of the grace
that had been given to Moses. That special anointing can be understood,
figuratively and literally, as holiness. Men receive such ability because
of the Holy Spirit, which must be understood as a direct contact with God
Himself. Any contact with that which is holy causes an impartation of
holiness. Similar anointings and divine abilities were given to the
deliverers highlighted in the Book of Judges and to the kings.

Be Blessed,

Pastor Mark Spitsbergen
 
Daily Bread - June 20, 2018
Written by Pastor Mark Spitsbergen
Wednesday, 20 June 2018 06:19
Leviticus 16:2 - And the Lord said unto Moses, Speak unto Aaron your
brother, that he come not at all times into the holy place within the vail
before the mercy seat, which is upon the ark; that he die not: for I will
appear in the cloud upon the mercy seat.

Degrees of Holiness Part 2 - The General Population:

The general population of Israel did not have the same degree of holiness
as the priest. The great contrast between the general population of Israel
and the priesthood was first observed when Moses acted as the first “high
priest.” Moses was allowed to go up into the mountain to behold the
presence of God, while all of Israel was commanded to not come near the
mountain - under pains of death. Yet at the same time, even though they
were not allowed the same proximity to God, they were endowed with holiness
to be the people of God, and were commanded to be holy as He is holy
(Deuteronomy 7:6, 14:2, 21, Leviticus 11:44-45, 19:2, 20:7-8, 24-26,
22:32-33, Numbers 15:40-41, cf. Exodus 31:13, Ezekiel 20:12). God made them
holy, and they became known as the holiness of God (Isaiah 63:18, Jeremiah
2:3, Psalm 34:10, Ezra 9:2).

Be Blessed,

Pastor Mark Spitsbergen
 
Daily Bread - June 19, 2018
Written by Pastor Mark Spitsbergen
Tuesday, 19 June 2018 04:13
Leviticus 16:2 - And the Lord said unto Moses, Speak unto Aaron your
brother, that he come not at all times into the holy place within the vail
before the mercy seat, which is upon the ark; that he die not: for I will
appear in the cloud upon the mercy seat.

Degrees of Holiness Part 1:

In the Old Testament, God imparted degrees of holiness to different people
and things. The more a person was commissioned to interact with God, and
the closer the proximity a person or thing had to God, the higher a degree
of holiness was given. With the varying degrees of imparted holiness came
greater responsibilities to remain pure and obey God’s commands (Leviticus
10:1, 21:1-15).

The Priest
There were two classifications of priest: the high priest, and the priest.
There was only one high priest - with unique responsibilities to God, the
temple, and the people that separated him from all others (1 Chronicles
23:13). The most distinctive nature of the high priest is that he alone is
allowed to go into the holy of holies in the temple and interact with God
in the daily worship and administration of the temple (Leviticus 16:3-4,
11-16, Exodus 27:20-21, 30:7-8, Leviticus 24:1-4, 5-8, Numbers 8:1-3, cf.
also Exodus 25:37, 30:10, Leviticus 4:3-12 and 13-21, 16:1-28). All the
other priests were involved in the work of the outer court. There were
things that they did to aid the high priest in the sanctuary, but always
with extreme supervision and restriction (Exodus 27:21, 28:43, 30:19-20,
40:31-32, Leviticus 10:9, 16:17, Numbers 4:5-20).

The high priest is given a greater degree of holiness that distinguishes
him from all other priests, based upon his title alone (Leviticus 21:10,
Numbers 35:25). The way the high priest is prepared for office and anointed
also sets him apart from all others (Exodus 29:5-8, 20-21, Leviticus 8:7-9,
12, 23-24, 30, see also Exodus 28:41, 30:30, 40:13-15, Leviticus 4:3, 5,
16, 6:15, 21:10, 12, Numbers 35:25, Psalm 133:2). It is only the high
priest that must go through the consecration ritual when he steps into
office.

The clothing of the priest also speaks to the degrees of holiness. While
all the priests had holy garments, the high priest had much more elaborate
attire. It is only the high priest’s garments that are called holy garments
(Exodus 28:2, 4, 29:29, 31:10, 35:19). His garments are made of wool,
linen, and gold. The responsibility that the High Priest bears upon his
shoulders for all of Israel is witnessed by the breastplate (Exodus 28:30).
Upon his head, he is crowned with holiness unto the Lord (Exodus 28:36-38).


Be Blessed,

Pastor Mark Spitsbergen
 
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