with Aaron, Yahweh's first High Priest of the Old Covenant: He made an
everlasting covenant with him, and gave him the priesthood of the people. He
adorned him with impressive vestments, he dressed him in a robe of glory.
For the glorious
adornment of your brother Aaron you shall have sacred vestments made
- The Kesones [Tunic]: made of white linen, woven all of one
piece with a boxlike knit.
- The Me'il [ Robe]: made of turquoise wool. The Hem of the
Me'il was of alternating pomegranates and bells. The pomegranates were of
turquoise, purple, and scarlet wool and they were alternated with gold
- The Girdle or sash of variegated work
- The Tzitz [Head-plate]: made of pure gold, inscribed with
the words "Holy to Yahweh", and tied with a turquoise blue wool cord.
- The Ephod: garment with shoulder straps and stones on the
shoulders [avnei shoham stones] with the engraved names of the sons of
Israel according to birth order, six on each shoulder, with a tie belt
made of gold, turquoise, purple, and scarlet wool and twisted linen.
- The Choshen [Breastplate], the breastplate of judgment: a
folded pocket worn on the breast with 12 stones in 4 rows of 3, one stone
for each of the 12 Tribes of Israel engraved with the name of each tribe
and in which the Urim and Tumim [Thummim] are carried. The Chosen
[Breastplate] is attached on to the Ephod with straps/ties
- The Turban/ Mitre: [with embroidered sash]
- The Linen Breeches: that went from the hips to the thighs
Sirach [Ecclesiasticus] 45:1-22 recalls God's covenant with
Aaron for a perpetual ministerial priesthood and outlines the duties of the
priesthood in 45:15-17; the passage reads: Moses consecrated him and
anointed him with holy oil; and this was an everlasting covenant for him, and
for his descendants as long as the heavens endure, that he should preside over
worship, act as priest, and bless the people in the name of the Lord. He chose
him out of all the living to offer sacrifices to the Lord, incense and perfume
as a memorial to make expiation for the people. He entrusted him with his
commandments, committed him to the statues of the Law for him to teach Jacob
and his decrees and enlighten Israel on his law. [New Jerusalem translation].
Question: In this passage from Sirach
[Ecclesiasticus], what four elements identify the office of the priesthood of
God's covenant with Israel?
- His dignity and responsibility as God's representative
- The purpose of the spiritual side of his priestly mission
which is to act on behalf of the covenant people in their relationship
with God, instructing them in the Law of God and in living lives of
- The purpose of priestly service to God and the people in
the liturgy of covenant worship
- To offer sacrifice for the atonement of sin and the
restoration of communion with God
Michal Hunt, Copyright © 2005 Agape Bible
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