Therefore shall you abide at the door of the tabernacle of meeting day and night seven days, and keep the charge of the LORD, that you die not: for so I am commanded.
Read Chapter 8
George Leo Haydock
Watches. They might be permitted to take a little sleep during part of this week. (Tirinus)
In: Hebrew, "at the door of the tabernacle of the assembly, attentive to the ordinances of the Lord. "(Haydock)
Die, as Nadab did afterwards. Moses officiated as the consecrating priest. One of the most venerable of the order, consecrated the successors of Aaron. Some assert, that they only invested him with the pontifical robes. (Numbers xx. 25.; 1 Machabees x. 21.) (Calmet)
The power of Moses was extraordinary; that of Aaron was ordinary, designed to continue in after ages. (St. Augustine, q. 23.) None must presume to take this office of priest, but such as are called by God, Hebrews v. Those of the old law, were initiated by sacred rites or sacraments, which signified the grace of God, requisite to perform their duties well. They were chosen from among men, to be more holy; of which their washing was a sign, as their splendid robes were to remind them of their sublime dignity and authority over the people. The high priest had seven special ornaments: 1. white linen, to denote purity; 2. a curious girdle, intimating that he must use discretion in all things; 3. the long tunic of various colours, with bells, signifying heavenly conversation upon earth, union and harmony in faith and morals; 4. an ephod, with two precious stones on the shoulders, teaching him to support the failings of the multitude; 5. the rational, with its ornaments, show that the pontiff should be solicitous to teach sound and profitable doctrine; 6. the mitre indicates, that all his actions should be referred to God above; and lastly, the plate of gold denotes that he should have God always in view, and never forget that consummate holiness which He requireth. See St. Jerome, ep. ad Fabiol.
The three ornaments of the priests, put them in mind of purity, discretion, and a right intention, to be observed in all their conduct. On this occasion, a change was introduced in the priesthood, as the law was new; the first-born being obliged to give place to Aaron's family. Thus, when these were deprived of the exclusive privilege, and people from any family were chosen by Christ, the law of Moses ceased to exist, Hebrews vii. The ordination of the former was a figure of that sacrament, by which Christian priests still receive grace and power. (2 Timothy i.; Theodoret, q. 48. Num.; St. Augustine, de bono conj. 24.) (Worthington)