“Then bring near to you Aaron your brother, and his sons with him, to serve me as priests. And you shall make holy garments for Aaron your brother, for glory and for beauty. You shall speak to all whom I have filled with a spirit of skill, that they make Aaron’s garments to consecrate him for my priesthood. They shall make: a breastpiece, an ephod, a robe, a coat of checker work, a turban, and a sash. They shall make holy garments. They shall receive gold, blue and purple and scarlet yarns, and fine twined linen.
“You shall take two onyx stones, and engrave on them the names of the sons of Israel… You shall enclose them in settings of gold filigree [and] set [them] on the shoulder pieces of the ephod, as stones of remembrance. And Aaron shall bear their names before the Lord… You shall make a breastpiece of judgment… Set in it four rows of stones [in gold filigree]. A row of sardius, topaz, and carbuncle shall be the first row; and the second row an emerald, a sapphire, and a diamond; and the third row a jacinth, an agate, and an amethyst; and the fourth row a beryl, an onyx, and a jasper. They shall be like signets, each engraved, for the twelve tribes… So Aaron shall bear the names of the sons of Israel in the breastpiece of judgment on his heart, when he goes into the Holy Place, to bring them to regular remembrance before the Lord… You shall make a plate of pure gold and engrave on it, ‘Holy to the Lord.’ And you shall fasten it on [the front of] the turban by a cord of blue.” Exodus 28:1-5,9,11-12,15,17-21,29,36-37
God’s instructions for the dress of His priests detail the ‘beauty and glory’ in which they would be adorned for this holy work on behalf of His people. These were the spiritual leaders, the transporters of the tent, the caretakers and communicators of God’s word, the ones who offered regular sacrifices for the people and tended to the service of the tabernacle where God’s glory dwelled. The priests at this time were the spokesmen for God and the mediator between Him and His people, prefiguring the splendid, completed work of Christ for His own.
Our Savior is as exquisite as these descriptions are explicit. Beautiful, worthy, holy is He! Crowning us with compassion! Robed in righteousness, and through His blood, sharing that breathtaking (life-changing) dress with us! Bearing us on His chest, bearing us to the cross where we’re carved in His hands! Remembering our names and remembering our sins no more, upholding us now with secure and everlasting arms! (Deuteronomy 33:27; Psalm 103:4; Isaiah 43:1,25; 49:16; 61:10; John 10:28; Hebrews 8:12; 1 Peter 2:24)
Behold, contemplate, and respond!
“Fairest Lord Jesus,
ruler of all nature,
O thou of God and man the Son,
Thee will I cherish,
Thee will I honor,
thou, my soul’s glory, joy, and crown.
Lord of all the nations!
Son of God and Son of Man!
Glory and honor,
now and forevermore be thine.” ~German, 17th Century
Beautiful Savior, adorn my countenance with Your splendor, my actions with Your lavish love, my words with Your praise. May all I meet and with whom I communicate encounter You and Your glory in me.