III. AARON BLESSING THE PEOPLE
Leviticus 9:22 says, “Then Aaron lifted up his hands toward the people and blessed them; and he came down from offering the sin offering, the burnt offering, and the peace offerings.” This signifies that Christ as our High Priest after His crucifixion blessed us in His resurrection (Luke 24:50).
The Lord in His resurrection is with us all the days until the consummation of the age (Matt. 28:20). The Lord’s presence with us is His blessing. As long as we have His presence, we are under His blessing. When His blessing is with us, even our mistakes become blessings. But without His presence, even if we are right in everything, there is nothing but vanity. Although our High Priest has gone into the heavens. He is still present with us, and His presence is a blessing not only in the church life but also in our family life and in our practical daily life.
The Lord’s presence as our blessing comes to us through our application of Him as all the offerings. Every day we need to apply Christ as our sin offering, burnt offering, meal offering, and peace offering. If we apply Him as these offerings, we will have His blessing, which is His presence.
John 3:16 says that God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son. In what way did God give His Son to us? He gave Him to us as all the offerings. When we take the sin offering, we take an aspect of Christ. When we take the burnt offering, we take another aspect of Christ. When we take the meal offering and the peace offering, we take yet other aspects of Christ.
Our Savior is the unique sin offering. When we repented and believed in the Lord Jesus, we applied Him as the sin offering without realizing it. Later, we might have been inspired to be absolute for God. Although we had not heard about the burnt offering, we prayed and offered ourselves to God. At that time, the Spirit might have shown us that we are sin, even leprous, and that we cannot be absolute for God. Then we might have prayed, “Lord Jesus, I cannot be absolute for God, but You are absolute, and You can be my absoluteness.” This is to take Christ, the Son given to us by God, as the burnt offering.
Many Christians understand John 3:16 in a very general way. How can we accept Christ as the great gift from God if we do not apply Christ as the offerings? If we would enjoy this all-inclusive person, we need to apply Him daily as our sin offering, burnt offering, meal offering, and peace offering. Then we will enjoy His presence as our blessing in every way.
IV. MOSES AND AARON ENTERING INTO THE TENT OF MEETING AND COMING OUT TO BLESS THE PEOPLE
“Moses and Aaron went into the tent of meeting, and when they came out they blessed the people” (Lev. 9:23a). This signifies that Christ as our Prince and High Priest entered into the heavens to be our kingly Priest (Acts 5:31; Heb. 4:14; 7:1) and will come out of the heavens to bless us.
Both Moses and Aaron typify Christ. Moses was the leader, the prince, and Aaron was the high priest. Today Christ is our Prince and our High Priest. When He comes to us, He comes with blessings, and His being with us is the all-inclusive blessing we need. We can enjoy this blessing only by applying Christ as the offerings. If we apply Him as the sin offering, the burnt offering, the meal offering, and the peace offering, we will have the blessing we need.
The blessing of Aaron and Moses upon the Jews is still in effect. This blessing will continue until the entire house of Israel repents and turns to the Savior at His second coming. The principle is the same with the spiritual blessing we enjoy today. A spiritual blessing lasts much longer than we realize. I am still enjoying certain blessings which I received many years ago. A spiritual blessing, therefore, is a great matter.
The New Testament tells us to bless others and not to curse them (Luke 6:28; Rom. 12:14). Even if we are hated, persecuted, and evilly spoken of, we should bless those who persecute us and pray that the Lord will forgive them. In our feeling, no person should be under a curse.
V. FIRE COMING OUT FROM GOD AND CONSUMING THE BURNT OFFERING
“Then fire came out from before Jehovah and consumed the burnt offering and the portions of fat on the altar; and when all the people saw it, they shouted and fell on their faces” (Lev. 9:24). This fire signifies that God’s holiness as a consuming fire accepts our offerings by burning. Anything that corresponds to God’s holy nature God’s holiness accepts by consuming it. But anything that does not meet the requirements of God’s holiness will be judged by God’s holiness through burning. In such a case, the fire represents the God who is the consuming fire (Heb. 12:29).
After we enjoy God’s presence, the appearing of His glory, and the Lord’s blessing, we should be prepared to receive the consuming fire. It is a spiritual law that God’s blessing is followed by the consuming fire of suffering. This fire is a sign that God has accepted what we have offered to Him in Christ and with Christ.
The same fire, which is the representative of God’s holiness, may either be a consuming fire for God’s acceptance or a judging fire. The consuming fire accepted the offering up of Stephen (Acts 7:55-59), whereas with the coming of Titus in A.D. 70 this consuming fire judged the mixture at Jerusalem.
To us today, the consuming fire may be a divine acceptance of our offering to God, or it may be God’s judgment due to our offenses. How do we know whether the consuming fire is God’s acceptance or God’s judgment? This can be discerned by our situation. If we enjoy Christ and offer Him to God, the consuming fire will be God’s acceptance. However, if we offend God’s government and a burning comes to us, this burning is God’s judgment upon us for touching His government. This is a serious matter.
(Life-Study of Leviticus, Chapter 32, by Witness Lee)