Leviticus 21:24
And Moses told it to Aaron, and to his sons, and to all the children of Israel.
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(24) And unto all the children of Israel.—These regulations about the conduct and qualifications of the priesthood, which God imparted to Moses, the latter not only communicated to the high priest and his sons the priests, but to the representatives of the people, who, as the community, had the supervision of the priests. The sacerdotal laws were administered and enforced by the elders or Sanhedrim, who were the representatives of the people. (See Leviticus 21:21.)

21:1-24 Laws concerning the priests. - As these priests were types of Christ, so all ministers must be followers of him, that their example may teach others to imitate the Saviour. Without blemish, and separate from sinners, He executed his priestly office on earth. What manner of persons then should his ministers be! But all are, if Christians, spiritual priests; the minister especially is called to set a good example, that the people may follow it. Our bodily infirmities, blessed be God, cannot now shut us out from his service, from these privileges, or from his heavenly glory. Many a healthful, beautiful soul is lodged in a feeble, deformed body. And those who may not be suited for the work of the ministry, may serve God with comfort in other duties in his church.Sanctuaries - The places especially holy, including the most holy place, the holy place, and the altar.

This law is of course to be regarded as one development of the great principle that all which is devoted to the service of God should be as perfect as possible of its kind.

16-24. Whosoever he be … hath any blemish, let him not approach to offer the bread of his God—As visible things exert a strong influence on the minds of men, any physical infirmity or malformation of body in the ministers of religion, which disturbs the associations or excites ridicule, tends to detract from the weight and authority of the sacred office. Priests laboring under any personal defect were not allowed to officiate in the public service; they might be employed in some inferior duties about the sanctuary but could not perform any sacred office. In all these regulations for preserving the unsullied purity of the sacred character and office, there was a typical reference to the priesthood of Christ (Heb 7:26). No text from Poole on this verse. And Moses told it to Aaron, and to his sons,.... What God had said to him concerning the priests defiling themselves for the dead, both common priests and high priest, and concerning their marriages and their blemishes; that they might be careful not to transgress the laws and rules given them concerning those things:

and to all the children of Israel; to the heads of the tribes and elders of the people, and by them to the whole, that they might know who were fit, and who not, to put their sacrifice into their hands, to offer for them: Jarchi thinks this was to warn the sanhedrim concerning the priests, whose business it was to examine and judge who were fit for service and who not; for so we are told (k), that in the chamber Gazith, or of hewn stone, the great sanhedrim of Israel sat and judged the priests, and rejected some and received others.

(k) Misn. Middot, c. 5. sect. 3.

And Moses told it unto Aaron, and to his sons, and unto all the children of Israel.
Directions for the sons (descendants) of Aaron who were afflicted with bodily imperfections. As the spiritual nature of a man is reflected in his bodily form, only a faultless condition of body could correspond to the holiness of the priest; just as the Greeks and Romans required, for the very same reason, that the priests should be ὁλόκληροι, integri corporis (Plato de legg. 6, 759; Seneca excerpt. controv. 4, 2; Plutarch quaest. Romans 73). Consequently none of the descendants of Aaron, "according to their generations," i.e., in all future generations (see Exodus 12:14), who had any blemish (mum, μῶμος, bodily fault) were to approach the vail, i.e., enter the holy place, or draw near to the altar (in the court) to offer the food of Jehovah, viz., the sacrifices. No blind man, or lame man, or charum, κολοβόριν (from κολοβός and ῥίν), naso mutilus (lxx), i.e., one who had sustained any mutilation, especially in the face, on the nose, ears, lips, or eyes, not merely one who had a flat or stunted nose; or שׂרוּע, lit., stretched out, i.e., one who had anything beyond what was normal, an ill-formed bodily member therefore; so that a man who had more than ten fingers and ten toes might be so regarded (2 Samuel 21:20).
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