The LORD spoke to Moses, saying, “Take Aaron and his sons with him, and the garments and the anointing oil and the bull of the sin offering and the two rams and the basket of unleavened bread. And assemble all the congregation at the entrance of the tent of meeting.”
Moses has just gathered the entire congregation of Israel outside the tent of meeting to witness the ordination of Aaron and Aaron’s sons for priestly service, and I can’t help but imagine how exciting this culminating event be for all the people watching. I bet the onlookers are oohing and aahing with every ceremonial motion. This isn’t like the dead quiet folding-of-the-flag ceremony I witnessed at my grandfather’s military funeral. That ceremony is no doubt draped in unspeakable honor, but it’s the kind where no one dares make a peep. Not here. This ceremony is a rebirth of sorts. And it’s the culmination of all the people’s work, not just Moses’ and Aaron’s. These threads represent countless labors of love, from embroidery to craftsmanship to all the volitional offerings of gold, spices, acacia wood, and even mirrors that made this ordination possible. And just think: only a few months before, this hallowed ground was just a bare patch of dirt in a sea of wilderness. Now, thanks to these faithful pilgrims responding to the stirring of the Spirit in their hearts, this ground is a divine embassy unlike any other in the world. The holiest piece of real estate this side of heaven!
Picture them here, friend. Their eyes are wide open; they’re hugging their neighbors next to them; the whole crowd’s aflutter, gazing upon their work with the same delighted sense of fulfilment that God expressed when gazing upon His own: “And behold! It was very good.” Picture Bezalel standing side-by- side with Oholiab, giving him a pat on the back of approval. Picture those seamstresses who’d worked tirelessly on the tapestry now giggling together. Picture those big-hearted supporters who’d given up their finest treasures, now watching joyously as Moses robes Aaron in their gold and precious stones.
Here they are: side by side at the tent of meeting, shoulder to shoulder, not cowering in fear of God’s wonder as they’d done so often at Sinai, but right up front, right here with Moses, ready to embrace the next leg of this revelatory journey together.