Notes on Exodus 28

Precious Stones

 Back in Exodus 25, Moses was instructed by God to ask for contributions from the people so he could build the Tabernacle.  He was to also ask for onyx and setting stones for the clothing Aaron the High Priest would ware.

 In Chapter 28 we see how those precious stones were used. In the first 14 verses, the Ephod is described. It is made of two parts, a front and a back and was to be worn close to the body. The two parts will be joined together at the shoulders with onyx stones that have the names of the twelve tribes of Israel. In verse 12 we are told that Aaron is to bear the names of the tribes of Israel before the Lord.

 Following this they were to make a breastpiece of judgment. On it they were to mount four rows of three precious stones with the name of a tribe of Israel engraved on each stone, twelve in all. The breastpiece of judgment was to be tied to the ephod so it would not swing away for Aaron was to carry the judgment of the children of Israel over his heart before the Lord on a continual basis.

 The stones used in the clothing above are precious stones.  Having the names of the tribes of Israel engraved on them and their placement on the clothing tells us that God values His people very much, and He is concerned about their welfare.  In the two parables Jesus told in Matthew 13:44-46 we can see just how much God loves and values us. We must never let that truth swing away from our heart. For the truth is, “…God so loved the world, that He gave His only Begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” John 3:16 KJV   

 Then in verses 31-35, Aaron was to wear a robe with golden bells and pomegranates attached to the hem of the robe. The pomegranates represent fruitfulness and the bells represent ministry. The color of the robe represents heavenly mindedness.  He was to be faithful and obedient in serving the Lord and the same is true for us.

 The next item in Chapter 28 is the Turban. On the Turban was to be a gold plate with “Holy to the Lord” engraved on it. Aaron was to wear this on his forehead to take away the iniquity of the holy things that the people would consecrate.

Jesus is our High Priest. When we come before the Lord and seek forgiveness of our sins, or give our life to the Lord, or give an offering of thanksgiving it is not our action that makes us holy.  It is He  He who makes these and us holy by his work on the cross. He wore the crown of thorns that we might be accepted before the Lord. See Genesis 3:17-19, Isaiah 64:6.

 The final clothing is for Aaron’s sons.  They too will be anointed and consecrated to serve the Lord as priests. In 1 Peter 2:9&10 we read, “But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s special possession, that you may declare the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His wonderful light. Once you were not a people of God; once you had not received mercy, but now you have received mercy.” NIV 

As a royal priesthood we are to take on the characteristics of our High Priest Jesus. To take up our cross and follow Him is to put to death the old man and the old ways and to be the new creation He has made and go where He goes, doing what He is doing.  We are to be like Him as Aaron’s sons were to be like Aaron.

 Here are some verses for further study. Psalm 9:1, 19:14, 51:10; Proverbs 3:5&6, 4:23; Matthew 5:8; Hebrews 3:12&13; 10:25; 1Peter 1:22&23

 May God bless and guide.

Pastor Dave