EXODUS 28:36-37: “Make a plate out of pure gold. Carve words on it as if it were an official seal. Carve the words SET APART FOR THE LORD. Tie the plate to the front of the turban with a blue cord. 38Aaron must wear this plate on his forehead all the time. He will be held responsible for all the sacred gifts the Israelites set apart. Then the LORD will accept the gifts.” (NIRV)
OBSERVATION: What does it mean to be holy? This is an important question, and one that I have often struggled with, especially after reading these verses in I Peter.
- “The one who chose you is holy. So you should be holy in all that you do. It is written, “Be holy, because I am holy.” (Leviticus 11:44,45; 19:2)” 1 Peter 1:15-16 (NIRV)
To be holy is not a suggestion for the Christian, it is a command. The reason given is – “The one who chose you is holy. So you should be holy…”. We are called to be like Jesus, and that is a pretty tall order. When I read about the priestly garments that were made for Aaron, it reminded me of this call, and it also helped me to understand it.
The New Testament clearly proclaims the priesthood of all believers in Jesus Christ. There is not a special group of people who are called to be priests. All who are called of God are His chosen priests.
- “But God chose you to be his people. You are royal priests. You are a holy nation. You are a people who belong to God. All of this is so that you can sing his praises. He brought you out of darkness into his wonderful light. Once you were not a people. But now you are the people of God. Once you had not received mercy. But now you have received mercy.” 1 Peter 2:9-10 (NIRV)
A priest represented man to God, and God to man. Aaron, and his lineage, alone held the privilege of doing this as the High Priest before God. Jesus is now our High Priest who represents us to God, and He has called us to represent Him to others. How we do that depends a lot on how we view the call to be holy.
Aaron wore a turban upon his head with a golden plate which was engraved with these words – “SET APART FOR GOD”. This was to be a constant reminder to him, and to the nation of Israel, that his calling and position was something that was special, purposeful, and to be respected. As believers, we are not called to put on “holy apparel”. Yet, we are called to put on Jesus Christ.
- “Instead, put on the Lord Jesus Christ as your clothing. Don’t think about how to satisfy what your sinful nature wants.” Romans 13:14 (NIRV)
When I was a child I always acted differently when my mother dressed me up in my “Sunday clothes”. We always got dressed up to go to church, and when I had these clothes on I knew that I was expected to behave accordingly. How much more should we be reminded to behave accordingly each day, when we realize that we are clothed in Christ!
We do have a golden plate like Aaron. It is not on a turban we wear, but it has been engraved on our hearts through the blood of Jesus Christ. It too reads – “SET APART FOR THE LORD!”
Lord, help me to remember that the true clothing, which proclaims who I am in Christ, is the fruit of Your Spirit. Empower me by Your grace to truly live a fruit filled life that gives glory to You, and shows others the love and life of Jesus Christ. Empower me through the Holy Spirit so that I may walk in victory over the power of sin, self, and the devil. Help me to be “set apart”!
Help me to be holy!
In Jesus Name!