Leviticus 8:3
And gather you all the congregation together to the door of the tabernacle of the congregation.
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(3) And gather thou all the congregation together—Better, and gather all the assembly together. The same word is rightly rendered assembly in the Authorised Version in Leviticus 8:4. (See Leviticus 4:13.) That is, call together the assembly of the elders, the heads of the tribes, and the principal men who represented the people. This is confirmed by Leviticus 9:1, where it is distinctly said that “Moses called Aaron and his sous, and the elders of Israel,” and where these elders are called in the following verse “the children of Israel,” by virtue of their representing the children of Israel.

Unto the door of the tabernacle of the congregation.—Better, to the entrance of the tent of meeting, that is, the courtyard of the same.

Leviticus 8:3. All the congregation — The elders, who represented all, and as many of the people as would and could get thither, that all might be witnesses both of Aaron’s commission from God, and of his work and business.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.Gather ... - Rather, gather all the assembly together toward the entrance of the tent of meeting. See Leviticus 4:13. The whole body of the people were summoned on this occasion, and the elders probably occupied the first places. The elders are especially called together in an unequivocal manner to receive directions to provide the first sacrifices for the nation to be offered by the newly consecrated priests Leviticus 9:1, and the body of the people afterward assemble as they do here Leviticus 9:5. The spot designated was the portion of the court in front of the tabernacle (see Leviticus 1:3 note). Toward this space the people were commanded to assemble to witness the great national ceremony of the consecration of the priesthood, the solemn setting apart of one of their families, the members of which were henceforth to stand as mediators between them and Yahweh in carrying out the precepts of the ceremonial law. Those who could do so, may have come into the court, and a great number of others may have occupied the heights which overlooked the enclosure of the court. As the series of ceremonies was repeated every day during a week Leviticus 8:33, it is natural to suppose that some of the people attended on one day and some on another. 3-5. gather thou all the congregation together, &c.—It was manifestly expedient for the Israelitish people to be satisfied that Aaron's appointment to the high dignity of the priesthood was not a personal intrusion, nor a family arrangement between him and Moses; and nothing, therefore, could be a more prudent or necessary measure, for impressing a profound conviction of the divine origin and authority of the priestly institution, than to summon a general assembly of the people, and in their presence perform the solemn ceremonies of inauguration, which had been prescribed by divine authority. The elders which represented all, and as many of the people as would and could get thither, that all might be witnesses both of Aaron’s commission from God, and of his work and business. And gather thou all the congregation together,.... That is, the heads of the tribes and the elders of the people, as Aben Ezra interprets it; for the whole body of the people, and every individual of them, could not be got together:

unto the door of the tabernacle of the congregation; taking this for the whole court itself, as it sometimes is; though no doubt on this occasion as great a number was convened as well could be admitted into the court, or about it, to be spectators and witnesses of the solemn investiture of Aaron and his sons with the priestly office.

And gather thou all the congregation together unto the door of the tabernacle of the congregation.
The wave-breast and heave-leg Jehovah had taken of the children of Israel, from off the sacrifices of their peace-offerings: i.e., had imposed it upon them as tribute, and had given them to Aaron and his sons, i.e., to the priests, "as a statute for ever," - in other words, as a right which they could claim of the Israelites for all ages (cf. Exodus 27:21). - With Leviticus 7:35, Leviticus 7:36, the instructions concerning the peace-offerings are brought to a close. "This (the wave-breast and heave-leg) is the share of Aaron and his sons from the firings of Jehovah in the day (i.e., which Jehovah assigned to them in the day) when He caused them to draw near to become priests to Jehovah," i.e., according to the explanation in Leviticus 7:36, "in the day of their anointing." The word משׁחה in Leviticus 7:35, like משׁחה in Numbers 18:8, signifies not "anointing," but share, portio, literally a measuring off, as in Aramaean and Arabic, from משׁח to stroke the hand over anything, to measure, or measure off.

The fulness with which every point in the sacrificial meal is laid down, helps to confirm the significance of the peace-offerings, as already implied in the name זבח sacrificial slaughtering, slain-offering, viz., as indicating that they were intended for, and culminated in a liturgical meal. By placing his hand upon the head of the animal, which had been brought to the altar of Jehovah for the purpose, the offerer signified that with this gift, which served to nourish and strengthen his own life, he gave up the substance of his life to the Lord, that he might thereby be strengthened both body and soul for a holy walk and conversation. To this end he slaughtered the victim and had the blood sprinkled by the priest against the altar, and the fat portions burned upon it, that in these altar-gifts his soul and his inner man might be grounded afresh in the gracious fellowship of the Lord. He then handed over the breast-piece by the process of waving, also the right leg, and a sacrificial cake of each kind, as a heave-offering from the whole to the Lord, who transferred these portions to the priests as His servants, that they might take part as His representatives in the sacrificial meal. In consequence of this participation of the priests, the feast, which the offerer of the sacrifice prepared for himself and his family from the rest of the flesh, became a holy covenant meal, a meal of love and joy, which represented domestic fellowship with the Lord, and thus shadowed forth, on the one hand, rejoicing before the Lord (Deuteronomy 12:12, Deuteronomy 12:18), and on the other, the blessedness of eating and drinking in the kingdom of God (Luke 13:15; Luke 22:30). Through the fact that one portion was given up to the Lord, the earthly food was sanctified as a symbol of the true spiritual food, with which the Lord satisfies and refreshes the citizens of His kingdom. This religious aspect of the sacrificial meal will explain the instructions given, viz., that not only the flesh itself, but those who took part in the meal, were all to be clean, and that whatever remained of the flesh was to be burned, on the second or third day respectively, that it might not pass into a state of decomposition. The burning took place a day earlier in the case of the praise-offering than in that of the vow and freewill-offerings, of which the offerer was allowed a longer enjoyment, because they were the products of his own spontaneity, which covered any defect that might attach to the gift itself.

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