Preparation is necessary for service/worship.
v18-20: A laver was like a sink or a basin, although much larger. It was a sanctified vessel and was where the priests washed their hands and feet (this was not immersion. Many scholars believe immersion took place outside of the tabernacle location, as a means of preparation in order to enter into the tabernacle area) in order to approach G-d and serve Him without dying.
v21: This washing (so that death does not occur) is emphasised again. People were killed if they approached G-d without adequate preparation.
· A statute forever: i.e. for as long as there is a priesthood. (This is not a statute for eternity as we know that in the new Jerusalem there is no temple or priesthood).
v23-24: Quality – i.e. the preferred spices, the ones that G-d prefers and mandates.
· G-d gives the recipe for how the anointing oil was made.
v25: Compounded according to the art of the perfumer – it was mixed by someone skilled. If it was incorrectly mixed it did not have the desired outcome.
v26-29: All the vessels in the tabernacle were anointed with this oil. This oil gave them a new status. Although G-d is omnipresent in a unique way He dwelt in the Holy of Holies. Once these things were anointed – even though they were not in the Holy of Holies – they acquired the same status as those things found in the Holy of Holies. And that’s why if the priests were not properly prepared they would die – in the same way that the high priest would die if he entered into the Holy of Holies in an improper way.
v30-31: The work of the priests impacted the children of Israel (your worship can impact others)
v32: man’s flesh – those who were not of the priesthood could not have this oil poured on them.
v33: Cut off from his people – he will no longer have access to the family of G-d. If we do not respect the standards of G-d in regard to how worship needs to be done then we are cut off from the people of G-d.
v34: These are the same spices that made up the anointing oil.
v35-36: These spices were mixed together and then made into a fine powder before being placed in the Holy of Holies.
v37: This incense was only to be used for G-d’s purpose and pleasure – not to be used for any persons own objectives.
v38: It is emphasised here that this incense was something that was only for the L-rd. We don’t experience that same fragrance for ourselves. (Worship is unto the L-rd, not unto ourselves. We don’t worship in order to be blessed or get something from it. We worship as an offering to G-d and, in doing so, it brings His presence and purposes into our lives)