"1 And it came to pass on the eighth day, that Moses called Aaron and his sons, and the elders of Israel; 2 And he said unto Aaron, Take thee a young calf for a sin offering, and a ram for a burnt offering, without blemish, and offer them before the LORD. 3 And unto the children of Israel thou shalt speak, saying, Take ye a kid of the goats for a sin offering; and a calf and a lamb, both of the first year, without blemish, for a burnt offering; 4 Also a bullock and a ram for peace offerings, to sacrifice before the LORD; and a meat offering mingled with oil: for to day the LORD will appear unto you. 5 And they brought that which Moses commanded before the tabernacle of the congregation: and all the congregation drew near and stood before the LORD. 6 And Moses said, This is the thing which the LORD commanded that ye should do: and the glory of the LORD shall appear unto you. 7 And Moses said unto Aaron, Go unto the altar, and offer thy sin offering, and thy burnt offering, and make an atonement for thyself, and for the people: and offer the offering of the people, and make an atonement for them; as the LORD commanded." — Leviticus 9:1-7 KJV.
AARON’S FIRST OFFERING AND BLESSING.
1. On the eighth day — There are three eighth-day services in the Levitical law. The other two are the cleansing of the leper (Leviticus 14:10, 23) and the purification of a defiled Nazarite. (Numbers 6:10.) There are three such scenes in the Gospels — the transfiguration, (Luke 9:28,) the resurrection and manifestation on the first or eighth day of the week, and the second manifestation to all the apostles. John 20:19-26. The elders of Israel — At what period the transition occurred when the word elder acquired an official signification it is impossible to say. The earliest notice of the elders acting in concert as an organized body is in the time of the exode. Exodus 3:16. It is highly probable that Moses availed himself of an institution known as the senate, the γερουσια of the Seventy, which had been in existence ever since Israel had become a people. From the Hebrew זקן, elder, Dean Stanley derives the term sheik. As representatives of the people, the elders are sometimes put for the congregation. See Joshua xxiii, 2. They retained their position under all political changes, through the monarchy and captivity to the time of Christ, when they are noticed as a distinct body from the Sanhedrin, but always acting in conjunction with it and the other dominant classes. Matthew 26:59.
2. Calf for a sin offering — The Hebrew for calf also signifies calf image. Exodus 32:4. Thus Moses delicately reminds Aaron of the great sin which he had committed in making the golden calf, and teaches him that the animal which was the object of idolatrous worship among the Egyptians, as a symbol of the deity, is fit only for a sin offering to Jehovah, the Creator of all things. See chap. iv, Introductory. Without blemish — See Leviticus 1:3, note. Before the Lord — This was at the door of the tabernacle. Leviticus 1:3, note.
3. A kid of the goats — See Leviticus 23:19, note. A burnt offering — Chap. 1 and Leviticus 6:9, notes.
4. Peace offerings — Chaps. 3 and Leviticus 7:11-28, notes. Meat offering — Chaps. 2, and Leviticus 6:14-23, notes. “Meal offering,” (R.V.) For to-day the Lord will appear unto you — The term for contains the reason for all the sacrifices commanded in the preceding verses. Jehovah manifests himself only to those who obediently seek him in his ordinances. (Exodus 29:42, 43.) See also especially John 14:21. God can give to the believer an indubitable demonstration of his presence and favour without the manifestation of a visible form. The invisible God no man hath seen at any time; the only-begotten Son hath declared him. John 1:18. By reference to verses 6, 23 it appears that the promised manifestation is that of “the glory of Jehovah.” This was not constantly seen either by the people or by Moses. The sincere inquirer after God, who diligently gathers up and uses all his light, and follows un-hesitatingly wherever the truth leads, will attain an experimental and satisfactory assurance of the existence and forgiving grace of God in Jesus Christ. There is really no such thing as “honest scepticism.” Sacrifice, and Jehovah will appear. Obedience must precede the divine manifestation. See John 7:17. At the tomb of Lazarus Jesus said to Martha, “If thou wilt believe, thou shalt see the glory of God.” See John 11:40. The condition is essentially the same in both instances. Faith is the root of obedience; obedience is faith unfolded in action.
7. Make an atonement for thyself — After seven days of consecration τελείωσις — making perfect — Leviticus 8:11, note,) Aaron is not absolutely holy and perfect, but only an imperfect shadow of the High Priest “who is holy, harmless, undefiled, and made higher than the heavens.” “Only as one who had been himself atoned for could the high priest make atonement for others, on the received principle, An innocent man must come and make an atonement for the guilty; but the guilty may not come and make an atonement for the innocent.” — Delitzsch, Heb, 5:3. The person of the atoner must not be offensive to the Supreme Executor of the law. The high priest accompanied his sin offering with a threefold confession — the first for himself and his own family, the second for the priesthood in general, and the third for all Israel. The first was thus: “O Jehovah, do thou expiate the misdeeds, the crimes, and the sins wherewith I have done evil, and have sinned before thee, I and my house, as it is written in the law of Moses thy servant.” “On that day shall the priest make an atonement for you, to cleanse you; that ye may be clean from all your sins before Jehovah.” Leviticus 16:30. For the nature of the Old Testament atonement see Leviticus 1:4; 4:20, notes.