“But when the sun sets, he will be clean, and afterword he shall eat of the holy gifts, for it is his food.”￼ (22:7)
In most cases, there is opportunity to be restored or made clean. I love that it’s by sunset, because that’s when a person needs to come in, eat, get warm, and prepare for night. It’s also when all Jewish holidays begin. Someone can spend their whole day dealing with their uncleanliness, but when it’s time to party, they’re welcomed back.
That is, for mostly unintentional uncleanliness.
I paused when I read the first chunk of 22.
“Tell Aaron and his sons to be careful with the holy gifts of the sons of Israel, which they dedicate to Me, so as not to profane My holy name; I am the LORD. Say to them, ‘If any man among all your descendants throughout your generations approaches the holy gifts which the sons of Israel dedicate to the LORD, while he has an uncleanness, that person shall be cut off from before Me; I am the LORD.'” (22:2-3)
After all the fuss of an Israelite sacrificing a pure, clean, spotless lamb for the LORD, the priest must not knowingly fumble that ball. This is serious, so the consequence is serious. That priest is OUT.
This was a very high task. There are so many careful steps to bringing a holy gift. It makes me think about how I steward gifts given to me. I know that feels like a drastic, self-centered left turn–since I’m not a Son of Aaron, and gifts to me are not unto the LORD for the giver’s purification–but it reminds me of the holiness of generosity, and do I handle it carefully?
In general, I want to always be sensitive to the sacrifice of others, whether it be time, money, or resources. True expressions of love are rooted in the divine and should be handled with care.
How can we show honor to the people in our lives through what we receive? Thankfulness? Proper stewardship? Ever seeking the LORD for instruction with investment? Generosity aka “paying it forward”? Ask the LORD about this today.