And it came to pass on the eighth day, that Moses called Aaron and his sons, and the elders of Israel;
On the eighth day - i. e., on the first day after the week of consecration.
And 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.
A young calf - A bull calf, which might have been what we should call a yearling ox.
And 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;
A kid of the goats - A shaggy he-goat. See Leviticus 4:23 note.
Also 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.
And they brought that which Moses commanded before the tabernacle of the congregation: and all the congregation drew near and stood before the LORD.
And Moses said, This is the thing which the LORD commanded that ye should do: and the glory of the LORD shall appear unto you.
The glory of the Lord - Compare Exodus 16:7.
And 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.
It is to be remarked that Aaron offers no peace-offering for himself. It was enough that he should participate in the peace-offerings of the consecration Leviticus 8:31, and in the two peace-offerings about to be sacrificed for the people.
His sin-offering was probably regarded not so much as a sacrifice for his own actual sins as a typical acknowledgment of his sinful nature and of his future duty to offer for his own sins and those of the People. See marginal references. "The law maketh men high priests which have infirmity; but the word of the oath, which was since the law, maketh the Son, who is consecrated (in the margin perfected, see Leviticus 8:22 note) forevermore, Hebrews 7:28.
Aaron therefore went unto the altar, and slew the calf of the sin offering, which was for himself.
And 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:
Aaron did not act according to the ordinary Law Leviticus 4:5-7, Leviticus 4:16-18, but as Moses had done in the sin-offering of the consecration ceremony (Leviticus 8:15; compare also Leviticus 4:25, Leviticus 4:30, Leviticus 4:34). The probable reason of this was that he had not yet been formally introduced as the high priest into the holy place of the tabernacle.
Brought the blood - They most likely held the basons in which the blood was received as it ran from the victim, and then handed them to their father. See Leviticus 1:5.
But 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.
And the flesh and the hide he burnt with fire without the camp.
And he slew the burnt offering; and Aaron's sons presented unto him the blood, which he sprinkled round about upon the altar.
And they presented the burnt offering unto him, with the pieces thereof, and the head: and he burnt them upon the altar.
And he did wash the inwards and the legs, and burnt them upon the burnt offering on the altar.
And 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.
In this first complete series of offerings made by the high priest, the sacrifices take their appointed order; first, the sin-offering to make atonement; then the burnt-offering, to signify the surrender of the body, soul and spirit to Yahweh in heaven; and lastly the peace-offering, to show forth the communion vouchsafed to those who are justified and sanctified. See Leviticus 8:14 note.
And he brought the burnt offering, and offered it according to the manner.
And he brought the meat offering, and took an handful thereof, and burnt it upon the altar, beside the burnt sacrifice of the morning.
He 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,
And 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:
And they put the fat upon the breasts, and he burnt the fat upon the altar:
And the breasts and the right shoulder Aaron waved for a wave offering before the LORD; as Moses commanded.
And 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.
Aaron having completed the offerings, before he came down from the stage surrounding the altar on which the priests used to stand to officiate (see Exodus 27:8), turned toward the people, and blessed them; probably using the form which became the established one for the priests Numbers 6:24-26, and which is still maintained in the synagogues.
And 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.
Aaron, having now gone through the cycle of priestly duties connected with the brass altar, accompanies Moses into the tent of Meeting. It was reasonable that Moses, as the divinely appointed leader of the nation, should induct Aaron into the tabernacle.
Blessed the people - This joint blessing of the mediator of the Law and the high priest was the solemn conclusion of the consecration and Inauguration. (Compare 2 Chronicles 6:3-11.) According to one tradition, the form used by Moses and Aaron resembled Psalm 90:17. But another form is given in the Targum of Palestine, "May your offerings be accepted, and may the Lord dwell among you and forgive you your sins."
And 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.
The very ancient Jewish tradition has been widely adopted that the sacred fire of the altar originated in this divine act, and that it was afterward preserved on the altar of the tabernacle until the dedication of the temple, when fire again "came down from heaven." 2 Chronicles 7:1. But according to the sacred narrative the altar-fire had been lighted in a natural way before this occasion. (Compare Leviticus 8:16; Leviticus 9:10, Leviticus 9:13, etc.; Exodus 40:29.) It would therefore seem that the fire which "came out from before the Lord" manifested itself, according to the words of Leviticus 9:24, not in kindling the fuel on the altar, but in the sudden consuming of the victim. For the like testimony to the acceptance of a sacrifice, see Judges 13:19-20; 1 Kings 18:38; 1 Chronicles 21:26, and probably Genesis 4:4. The phrase to turn a sacrifice to ashes, became equivalent to accepting it (Psalm 20:3, see the margin). The fire of the altar was maintained in accordance with Leviticus 6:13.