Carly did a great job covering the sudden deaths of Aaron’s sons. Can you imagine the first week on a job being such high stakes?
There has been much said, and speculated, about this strange fire, but I’m going to go ahead and throw in my theory too.
“Now Nadab and Abihu, the sons of Aaron, took their respective firepans, and after putting fire in them, placed incense on it and offered strange fire before the LORD, which He had not commanded them.” (10:1)
Something we’ve mentioned and observed several times through the almost four years we’ve done this study, is how the LORD gave specific instructions on how to worship Him in order to disassociate Himself from other gods.
Aaron and his sons had likely observed priests in Egypt, and were now almost certainly stepping into this role with preconceived notions. Maybe they were excited for the celebrity of all it, the showmanship, the honor.
In the chapters leading up, they had been given extensive instructions, and under heavy supervision, did everything correctly at first. Then, in a moment, they offer an incense that wasn’t prescribed by the LORD.
What would have given them this idea?
Perhaps it was something they’d seen pagan priests do, we can’t be sure. What is for sure is that the LORD refuses to be worshipped the way people worship pagan gods. Those involved detestable￼ practices like orgies, drug use and human sacrifice–something the LORD desperately wanted Israel far from.
When Aaron’s sons show the first signs of improvising–whether it was something they’d seen somewhere else or not–it needed to be nipped in the bud.
This makes me wonder how I worship the LORD now. It also begs the question of how modern people worship things besides the LORD.
Sometimes we think our obsessions or interests merely need redirecting, but we must always remember that the LORD is entirely other from the little things we idolize. He’s taught us what worshipping Him looks like.
What do you suppose worship is? Does this line up with His Word, or did you learn it somewhere else?