Leviticus 8:10
And Moses took the anointing oil, and anointed the tabernacle and all that was therein, and sanctified them.
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(10) As the Lord commanded Moses.—That is, the making of these pontifical garments here enumerated, and the investiture of the high priest by Moses, were according to the Divine command given in Exodus 28:1-43.

(10) And Moses took the anointing oil.—Having invested the high priest with the visible emblems of his office and holiness, Moses now, in accordance with the directions given in Exodus 30:26-30; Exodus 40:9-11, first anointed the tabernacle and all that was therein—that is, the ark of the covenant, the altar of incense, the candlestick, the table of shewbread, with all the utensils belonging unto them. For the ingredients of this oil, which is also called “oil of holy ointment” (Exodus 30:25), see Exodus 30:23-25.

And sanctified them.—That is, by this unction Moses separated them from the laity, and dedicated them to the service of God, so that they were not to come in contact with any defilement. (See Exodus 29:37; Exodus 30:29-30.)

8:1-13 The consecration of Aaron and his sons had been delayed until the tabernacle had been prepared, and the laws of the sacrifices given. Aaron and his sons were washed with water, to signify that they ought to purify themselves from all sinful dispositions, and ever after to keep themselves pure. Christ washes those from their sins in his own blood whom he makes kings and priests to our God, Re 1:5,6; and those that draw near to God must be washed in pure water, Heb 10:22. The anointing of Aaron was to typify the anointing of Christ with the Spirit, which was not given by measure to him. All believers have received the anointing.Moses first anointed with the holy oil Exodus 30:25 the tabernacle and all therein, that is, the ark of the covenant, the table of showbread, the candlestick and the golden altar, with all the articles that belonged to them. 10-12. took the anointing oil, &c.—which was designed to intimate that persons who acted as leaders in the solemn services of worship should have the unction of the Holy One both in His gifts and graces. No text from Poole on this verse.

And Moses took the anointing oil,.... Which Bezaleel had made, according to the directions which Moses had given him, and he had received from the Lord: this Moses brought with him to the door of the tabernacle, as he was ordered, Leviticus 8:2 and now he took it and made use of it as follows:

and anointed the tabernacle and all that was therein; the altar of incense, the candlestick, and table of shewbread:

and sanctified them; separated and devoted them to sacred use and service.

And Moses took the anointing oil, and anointed the {b} tabernacle and all that was therein, and sanctified them.

(b) That is, the holiest of holies, the sanctuary and the court.

10. Probably an interpolation, as (1) there is no parallel for it in Exodus 29, and (2) the LXX. places Leviticus 8:10 b after Leviticus 8:11.

10–12. (c) anointing. The first definite variation from Exodus 29 is found in these verses. Exodus 29:7 contains the command: ‘Then shall thou take the anointing oil, and pour it upon his head, and anoint him.’ To this correspond the opening words of Leviticus 8:10, ‘And Moses took the anointing oil …’ and Leviticus 8:12, ‘And he poured of the anointing oil upon Aaron’s head, and anointed him.’ The clauses of Leviticus 8:10-11 which intervene, record the anointing of the tabernacle, the altar, and the laver, in words closely parallel to those of Exodus 40:9-11. Other passages which refer to the ceremony of anointing are: Exodus 29:7 (referring to Aaron only), Exodus 29:36 (to the altar), Exodus 30:26-29 (a full list of things to be anointed) and Exodus 40:9-11 (a shorter list). It will be seen that the verbal coincidences in Leviticus 8:10-12 are with Exodus 29:7; Exodus 40:9-11. But it should be noticed that whereas in Exodus 40:12-15 mention is made of anointing Aaron’s sons as well as Aaron himself, there is no account of such a ceremony in Leviticus 8.

Verses 10, 11. - The anointing is still more specifically the means of consecration than the investing or the washing. (For the anointing oil, which is here referred to as a thing well known, see Exodus 30:22-25, where its component parts are designated.) The consecration of things as well as of persons is sanctioned by the action of Moses, who anointed the tabernacle and all that was therein, and sanctified them. They were thus set apart for holy purposes. By all that was therein would be meant the ark, the vail, the altar of incense, the candlesticks, the table of show-bread. After the tabernacle and its furniture had been anointed, the altar - that is, the brazen altar - and all his vessels, both the laver and his foot, were sprinkled; not once only, as the things within the tabernacle, but seven times, to show that it was specially holy, although situated only in the court. The laver, for the priests' use, was between the door of the tabernacle and the brazen altar of burnt offering. Its foot, or base, is described in Exodus 38:8, as made, according to the translation of the Authorized Version, "of brass, of the looking-glasses of the women assembling, which assembled at the door of the tabernacle." Leviticus 8:10According to the directions in Exodus 30:26-30 (cf. Lev Exo 40:9-11), the anointing was performed first of all upon "the tabernacle and everything in it," i.e., the ark of the covenant, the altar of incense, the candlestick, and table of shew-bread, and their furniture; and then upon the altar of burnt-offering and its furniture, and upon the laver and its pedestal; and after this, upon Aaron himself, by the pouring of the holy oil upon his head. This was followed by the robing and anointing of Aaron's sons, the former only of which is recorded in Leviticus 8:13 (according to Exodus 28:40), the anointing not being expressly mentioned, although it had not only been commanded, in Exodus 28:41 and Exodus 40:15, but the performance of it is taken for granted in Leviticus 7:36; Leviticus 10:7, and Numbers 3:3. According to the Jewish tradition, the anointing of Aaron (the high priest) was different from that of the sons of Aaron (the ordinary priests), the oil being poured upon the head of the former, whilst it was merely smeared with the finger upon the forehead in the case of the latter (cf. Relandi Antiqq. ss. ii. 1, 5, and 7, and Selden, de succ. in pontif. ii. 2). There appears to be some foundation for this, as a distinction is assumed between the anointing of the high priest and that of the ordinary priests, not only in the expression, "he poured of the anointing oil upon Aaron's head" (Leviticus 8:12, cf. Exodus 29:7; Psalm 133:2), which is applied to Aaron only, but also in Leviticus 21:10, Leviticus 21:12; although the further statement of the later Talmudists and Rabbins, that Aaron was also marked upon the forehead with the sign of a Hebrew כ (the initial letter of כהן), has no support in the law (vid., Selden, ii. 9; Vitringa, observv. ss. ii. c. 15, 9). - On the mode in which the tabernacle and its furniture were anointed, all that is stated is, that the altar of burnt-offering was anointed by being sprinkled seven times with the anointing oil; from which we may safely conclude, that the other portions and vessels of the sanctuary were anointed in the same way, but that the sprinkling was not performed more than once in their case. The reason why the altar was sprinkled seven times with the holy anointing oil, is to be sought for in its signification as the place of worship. The anointing, both of the sacred things and also of the priests, is called קדּשׁ "to sanctify," in Leviticus 8:10-12, as well as in Exodus 40:9-11 and Exodus 40:13; and in Exodus 40:10 the following stipulation is added with regard to the altar of burnt-offering: "and it shall be most holy," - a stipulation which is not extended to the dwelling and its furniture, although those portions of the sanctuary were most holy also, that the altar of burnt-offering, which was the holiest object in the court by virtue of its appointment as the place of expiation, might be specially guarded from being touched by unholy hands (see at Exodus 40:16). To impress upon it this highest grade of holiness, it was sprinkled even times with anointing oil; and in the number seven, the covenant number, the seal of the holiness of the covenant of reconciliation, to which it was to be subservient, was impressed upon it. To sanctify is not merely to separate to holy purposes, but to endow or fill with the powers of the sanctifying Spirit of God. Oil was a fitting symbol of the Spirit, or spiritual principle of life, by virtue of its power to sustain and fortify the vital energy; and the anointing oil, which was prepared according to divine instructions, was therefore a symbol of the Spirit of God, as the principle of spiritual life which proceeds from God and fills the natural being of the creature with the powers of divine life. The anointing with oil, therefore, was a symbol of endowment with the Spirit of God (1 Samuel 10:1, 1 Samuel 10:6; 1 Samuel 16:13-14; Isaiah 61:1) for the duties of the office to which a person was consecrated. The holy vessels also were not only consecrated, through the anointing, for the holy purposes to which they were to be devoted (Knobel), but were also furnished in a symbolical sense with powers of the divine Spirit, which were to pass from them to the people who came to the sanctuary. The anointing was not only to sanctify the priests as organs and mediators of the Spirit of God, but the vessels of the sanctuary also, as channels and vessels of the blessings of grace and salvation, which God as the Holy One would bestow upon His people, through the service of His priests, and in the holy vessels appointed by Him. On these grounds the consecration of the holy things was associated with the consecration of the priests. The notion that even vessels, and in fact inanimate things in general, can be endowed with divine and spiritual powers, was very widely spread in antiquity. We meet with it in the anointing of memorial stones (Genesis 28:17; Genesis 35:14), and it occurs again in the instructions concerning the expiation of the sanctuary on the annual day of atonement (ch. 16). It contains more truth than some modern views of the universe, which refuse to admit that any influence is exerted by the divine Spirit except upon animated beings, and thus leave a hopeless abyss between spirit and matter. According to Exodus 29:9, the clothing and anointing of Aaron and his sons were to be "a priesthood to them for a perpetual statute," i.e., to secure the priesthood to them for all ages; for the same thought is expressed thus in Exodus 40:15 : "their anointing shall surely be an everlasting priesthood throughout their generations." When the Talmudists refer these words to the sons of Aaron or the ordinary priests, to the exclusion of Aaron or the high priest, this is opposed to the distinct context, according to which the sons of Aaron were to be anointed like their father Aaron. The utter want of foundation for the rabbinical assumption, that the anointing of the sons of Aaron, performed by Moses, availed not only for themselves, but for their successors also, and therefore for the priests of every age, is also the more indisputable, because the Talmudists themselves infer from Leviticus 6:15 (cf. Exodus 29:29), where the installation of Aaron's successor in his office is expressly designated an anointing, the necessity for every successor of Aaron in the high-priesthood to be anointed. The meaning of the words in question is no doubt the following: the anointing of Aaron and his sons was to stand as a perpetual statute for the priesthood, and to guarantee it to the sons of Aaron for all time; it being assumed as self-evident, according to Leviticus 6:15, that as every fresh generation entered upon office, the anointing would be repeated or renewed.
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