The Ringing of the Bells

Exodus 28:33–35 (ESV) — 33 On its hem you shall make pomegranates of blue and purple and scarlet yarns, around its hem, with bells of gold between them, 34 a golden bell and a pomegranate, a golden bell and a pomegranate, around the hem of the robe. 35 And it shall be on Aaron when he ministers, and its sound shall be heard when he goes into the Holy Place before the Lord, and when he comes out, so that he does not die. 

I was reading this section of Exodus a few mornings ago. It is a description of what the priestly robes should look like. The thing that jumped out at me was the description of the bells on the hem. Not so much their description as their purpose; and its sound shall be heard when he goes into the Holy Place before the Lord, and when he comes out, so that he does not die.

It’s as if the bells are there to tell God, “Hey I’m coming in, Please Don’t kill me!” And to some extent they are, but God already knows when the priest is coming in so their real purpose is to make sure the priest hears the bells striking and realizes that he is about to walk as a sinner in the presence of the holy God.

Picture this you are the priest, walking into the holy of holies. You have heard the stories of the other priest that did not approach God reverently(Leviticus 10:1). The bells ringing signifies to God I’m coming, I ask you to spare me as I come to worship you. With every ringing bell you realize how powerful and holy God is.

So why am I making such a big deal out of the bells. Maybe we should remember this verse as we walk into church, as we enter into prayer on our own, or just we we go out and tell the world we are a Christian. We are in the presence of the holy God and we should approach Him with the same caution as the priest did.

Through Jesus we have been allowed to enter the presence of God just as the priest did, we do not need to forget it is the same God as the priest met with.

 

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