Sayfadaki görseller
PDF
ePub

in this benighted world, he is himself filled only with a sense of his own darkness, and short-comings, and unworthiness. Others see, with wonder and with gratitude, the rays that issue from his holy, and spiritual, and self-denying walk and conversation of love; he wists not, that even his face shineth. If inquired of, he would at once refer all the honour, all the glory, all the light to the divine Saviour, the source of light from whence it flows; while so little consciousness has he of the large and abundant portion that he has received, that he resembles, in his ignorance upon this point with regard to his graces, the unconsciousness of those holy men with respect to their charities, who are represented by our Lord, as asking on the great day, "Lord, when saw we thee an hungered, or athirst, or a stranger, or naked, or sick, and ministered unto thee?"

34. But when Moses went in before the Lord, to speak with him, he took the dail off, until he came out. And he came out and spake unto the children of Israel that which he was commanded.

35. And the children of Israel saw the face of Moses, that the skin of Moses' face shone: and Moses put the dail upon his face, again until he went in to speak with him.

Although veiled in the presence of the congregation, Moses took off the veil when he went in to appear before God. Yes, no veil can then remain, for all are useless in the presence of Him who seeth the heart. How fearful is the thought, that although many a man may be continually veiled before his fellow-men, to cover a life of secret iniquity, dishonesty, or lust, he cannot enter into the presence of his Maker, without feeling convinced that his veil is gone, that “all things are naked and opened unto the eyes of Him, with whom he has to do," and that however he may have succeeded in concealing his delinquencies from the world, they are known and registered on high! How terrible to such a one, is the reflection, that a day is coming, in which every concealment must be removed, and every impenitent sinner stand unveiled before the throne of God! Blessed be the Lord Jesus Christ, that He has said, “I counsel thee to buy of me white raiment that thou mayest be clothed, without money and without price;" it is not withheld from the poorest, it is not denied to the most destitute, it is not refused to the most undeserving. “Ask and ye shall have," are our Lord's own words; go in penitence, and faith, and prayer, to his mercy-seat, and the wedding-garment is your own; you shall have no need of

any other, or any better covering than that which He who is emphatically called “ The Lord our righteousness," has prepared and purchased for you, and in which you may stand unappalled even before the judgment-seat of the Eternal.

[The concluding chapters of this book, contain. ing directions for making the tabernacle, are not commented upon.]

LEVITICUS.

EXPOSITION LV.*

CHAP. X. 1-7.

1. And Nadab and Abihu, the sons of Aaron, took either of them his censer, and put fire therein, and put incense thereon, and offered strange fire before the Lord, which he commanded thein not.

2. And there went out fire from the Lord, and devoured them, and they died before the Lord.

3. Then Moses said unto Aaron, This is it that the Lord spake, saying, I will be sanctified in them that come nigh me, and before all the people I will be glorified. And Aaron held his peace.

4. And Moses called Mishael and Elzaphan, the sons of Uzziel the uncle of Aaron, and said unto them, Come near, carry your brethren from before the sanctuary out of the camp.

5. So they went near, and carried them in their coats out of the camp; as Moses had said.

6. And Moses said unto Aaron, and unto Eleazar and unto Ithamar, his sons, Uncoder not your heads, neither rend your clothes; lest ye die, and lest wrath come upon all the people: but let your brethren, the whole house of Israel, bewail the burning which the Lord hath kindled.

7. And ye shall not go out from the door of the tabernacle of the congregation, lest ye die: for the anointing oil of the Lord is upon you. And they did according to the word of Moses.

* The first nine chapters of this book, containing the laws of the different offerings, and the consecration of the priesthood, are not commented upon.

We are now commencing the third book of Moses, called Leviticus. It is so named, because it contains the account of all the ordinances and laws of that ministry, which the apostle to the Hebrews calls “The Levitical priesthood." This priesthood having been done away in Christ, and these laws abrogated, they are comparatively little interesting to us, except as they offer types of that glorious High-priest, and of that better covenant under which we live. Considering them thus, they will excite in our minds nobler and more elevated ideas of Him, whom they so faintly prefigured; and at the same time engender in our hearts a deep feeling of gratitude to that Almighty Being, who has mercifully freed us from the bondage of the ceremonial law, delivered us from the yoke which neither the Jews nor their fathers were able to bear, and brought us into that glorious liberty wherewith Christ maketh his people free.

In the preceding chapters, a long account has been given of the peculiar consecration of Aaron and his four sons to the priesthood: in this, the first incident that is mentioned, is the death of two of these very men whom the Lord had been pleased so highly to honour. Little is said of the nature of their sin, it is simply recorded, that “they offered strange fire before the Lord, which he commanded them not.” It had pleased God to honour the newly-appointed sacrifices, by sending down fire from heaven to consume them, and this fire still burned upon the altar; but these unhappy men, with a degree of wilfulness hardly to be imagined, although duly ordained priests of the Most High, instead of lighting their censers at the holy flame, preferred, either from indolence or waywardness, to bring their “strange incense ”* with them, and offer it“ before the Lord.” Like the sacrifice of Cain, such an offering must have been destitute of faith, an act of gross and positive disobedience, and accordingly they were immediately struck dead before the Lord.” If we are inclined to consider such a punishment as disproportioned to the offence, we must consider that all these laws and ordinances respecting sacrifices, were now in their earliest infancy, nay, we may almost say, that this was the hour of their birth. If, then, so stubborn and stiff-necked a people as the Israelites had beheld these laws infringed with impunity, and by the men who had just before so solemnly set apart and consecrated for the purpose of maintaining them, they niust have come to the conclusion that what had been delivered under such peculiarly striking and awful circumstances, was in reality a matter of indifference to the Being by whom they were promulgated, and might with safety be neglected by themselves.

A very important lesson may however be deduced from it by the Christian, and especially the Christian minister. He is duly consecrated to God, and ordained to his service; but this is not sufficient, he must serve God only in the Spirit, which the Almighty has himself required, when He said, “ He that hath not the Spirit of Christ is none of his."

The holy fire still remains upon the altar of God. The spirit of Christian love, and meekness, and zeal, and

* See Exodus xxx. 9.

« ÖncekiDevam »