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Making the Vestments for the Priesthood

39

Of the blue, purple, and crimson yarns they made finely worked vestments, for ministering in the holy place; they made the sacred vestments for Aaron; as the Lord had commanded Moses.

2 He made the ephod of gold, of blue, purple, and crimson yarns, and of fine twisted linen. 3Gold leaf was hammered out and cut into threads to work into the blue, purple, and crimson yarns and into the fine twisted linen, in skilled design. 4They made for the ephod shoulder-pieces, joined to it at its two edges. 5The decorated band on it was of the same materials and workmanship, of gold, of blue, purple, and crimson yarns, and of fine twisted linen; as the Lord had commanded Moses.

6 The onyx stones were prepared, enclosed in settings of gold filigree and engraved like the engravings of a signet, according to the names of the sons of Israel. 7He set them on the shoulder-pieces of the ephod, to be stones of remembrance for the sons of Israel; as the Lord had commanded Moses.

8 He made the breastpiece, in skilled work, like the work of the ephod, of gold, of blue, purple, and crimson yarns, and of fine twisted linen. 9It was square; the breastpiece was made double, a span in length and a span in width when doubled. 10They set in it four rows of stones. A row of carnelian, chrysolite, and emerald was the first row; 11and the second row, a turquoise, a sapphire, and a moonstone; 12and the third row, a jacinth, an agate, and an amethyst; 13and the fourth row, a beryl, an onyx, and a jasper; they were enclosed in settings of gold filigree. 14There were twelve stones with names corresponding to the names of the sons of Israel; they were like signets, each engraved with its name, for the twelve tribes. 15They made on the breastpiece chains of pure gold, twisted like cords; 16and they made two settings of gold filigree and two gold rings, and put the two rings on the two edges of the breastpiece; 17and they put the two cords of gold in the two rings at the edges of the breastpiece. 18Two ends of the two cords they had attached to the two settings of filigree; in this way they attached it in front to the shoulder-pieces of the ephod. 19Then they made two rings of gold, and put them at the two ends of the breastpiece, on its inside edge next to the ephod. 20They made two rings of gold, and attached them in front to the lower part of the two shoulder-pieces of the ephod, at its joining above the decorated band of the ephod. 21They bound the breastpiece by its rings to the rings of the ephod with a blue cord, so that it should lie on the decorated band of the ephod, and that the breastpiece should not come loose from the ephod; as the Lord had commanded Moses.

22 He also made the robe of the ephod woven all of blue yarn; 23and the opening of the robe in the middle of it was like the opening in a coat of mail, with a binding around the opening, so that it might not be torn. 24On the lower hem of the robe they made pomegranates of blue, purple, and crimson yarns, and of fine twisted linen. 25They also made bells of pure gold, and put the bells between the pomegranates on the lower hem of the robe all around, between the pomegranates; 26a bell and a pomegranate, a bell and a pomegranate all around on the lower hem of the robe for ministering; as the Lord had commanded Moses.

27 They also made the tunics, woven of fine linen, for Aaron and his sons, 28and the turban of fine linen, and the headdresses of fine linen, and the linen undergarments of fine twisted linen, 29and the sash of fine twisted linen, and of blue, purple, and crimson yarns, embroidered with needlework; as the Lord had commanded Moses.

30 They made the rosette of the holy diadem of pure gold, and wrote on it an inscription, like the engraving of a signet, “Holy to the Lord.” 31They tied to it a blue cord, to fasten it on the turban above; as the Lord had commanded Moses.

The Work Completed

32 In this way all the work of the tabernacle of the tent of meeting was finished; the Israelites had done everything just as the Lord had commanded Moses. 33Then they brought the tabernacle to Moses, the tent and all its utensils, its hooks, its frames, its bars, its pillars, and its bases; 34the covering of tanned rams’ skins and the covering of fine leather, and the curtain for the screen; 35the ark of the covenant with its poles and the mercy seat; 36the table with all its utensils, and the bread of the Presence; 37the pure lampstand with its lamps set on it and all its utensils, and the oil for the light; 38the golden altar, the anointing oil and the fragrant incense, and the screen for the entrance of the tent; 39the bronze altar, and its grating of bronze, its poles, and all its utensils; the basin with its stand; 40the hangings of the court, its pillars, and its bases, and the screen for the gate of the court, its cords, and its pegs; and all the utensils for the service of the tabernacle, for the tent of meeting; 41the finely worked vestments for ministering in the holy place, the sacred vestments for the priest Aaron, and the vestments of his sons to serve as priests. 42The Israelites had done all of the work just as the Lord had commanded Moses. 43When Moses saw that they had done all the work just as the Lord had commanded, he blessed them.


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1. And of the blue, and purple, and scarlet. The description of the sacerdotal garments, which is repeated in this chapter, is more accurate than it would have been had he been speaking of some unimportant matter. And assuredly, since Christ was vividly represented in the person of the high priest, this was a most important part of the legal service. We have elsewhere set forth how far it was from being an empty pomp, as when the Popish sacrificers now-a-days, in order to acquire dignity, dazzle the eyes of the simple by the splendor of their vestments, and their magnificent paraphernalia; but that rather it was for the purpose of placing before men’s eyes all that faith ought to consider in Jesus Christ. We have especially seen how great mysteries were contained in the mitre, which was Holiness to the Lord: and in the ephod, in which shone forth the light of truth and integrity of life, and in which were the symbols of the ten tribes, so that the priest bore the people itself upon his shoulders and before his breast, in such a manner that in the person of one all might be presented familiarly before God. For this reason he repeats seven times the clause, “as the Lord commanded Moses;” which certainly has the effect of awakening attention.

32. Thus was all the work of the tabernacle. A brief summary is now subjoined, whereby he indicates that in no part was there the least defect, and also declares that the children of Israel had so obeyed God’s commands, that the work itself varied in no respect from its pattern. “The children of Israel,” he says, “did according to all that the Lord commanded Moses, so did they;” whence we gather that no part of the building was impaired by any admixture. Afterwards it is added, that the tabernacle with its utensils and furniture was brought before Moses, and that all things were approved of by his judgment; for he is said to have “blessed them,” because they had duly and faithfully obeyed God’s command. This, however, was not a simple prayer, as of a private individual; but it was a promise of reward, such as might awaken confidence in the minds of the people, when they heard from the mouth (“D’un tel Prophete;” of such a Prophet. — Fr.) of this excellent and unimpeachable witness that their labor was pleasing to God.




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