Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Church Harmony and the Oil Poured on Aaron

Psalm 133:1
How good and pleasant it is
    when brothers live together in unity!

Psalm 133:2
It is like precious oil poured on the head,
    running down on the beard,
  running down on Aaron's beard,
    down upon the collar of his robes.

Unknowingly, those who cause unnecessary divisions in the church deprive themselves of wonderful blessings, much like dumping a pile of mud on the very well where they fetch water.  

Psalm 133 should motivate us to pursue church unity; for it pronounces blessing upon brothers who "live together in  unity". That blessedness was likened to two things: first, the oil poured upon Aaron (verse 2); and second, the dew of Mt. Hermon (verse 3).

In this post, we will dwell on verse 2. The third verse will be tackled in the next post.

1. The Oil Conveys the Blessing of Being Special
We derived this first point by looking into two questions:
       a. What the oil was?
       b. What the oil did?

Both of these questions are answered in Exodus 30:22-33.

As to the question "What the oil was?" we see that it was a very special fragrant oil. It was exclusively for tabernacle use. The proper blend was a general knowledge; the right proportion is known by all for it is written in the book. But I guess no one dared to imitate the blend for personal use, for a warning was issued: "Whoever makes perfume like it and whoever puts it on anyone other than a priest must be cut off from his people.'"

As to the question "What the oil did?", we find out that whatever it touched became holy (v.29). Ordinary utensils became holy. Ordinary men from the tribe of Levi became special when the oil was applied on them.

Thus, church harmony is pleasant for it conveys that we are a special people. It is a manifestation that we are a holy nation. We may look ordinary in the eyes of men, but our unity in the faith testifies that we are a people belonging to God.

2. The Oil Conveys the Blessing of Acceptable Worship.
The mention of Aaron's name drives us to look into the significance of the Aaronic ministry. The primary aspect of the ministry is to offer sacrifices in behalf of the people.

In Leviticus 9, after Aaron offered the sacrifices, the glory of the Lord appeared to all the people, and fire came out before the Lord's presence to consume what was offered. The people fell on their faces out of reverence yet they were shouting with joy knowing that their sacrifices were accepted.

Another aspect of Aaronic ministry is to pronounce the priestly blessing upon the people (Numbers 6:23-27). Part of the formula to be uttered is "the LORD make his face shine upon you" (v.25). The NLT renders it as "May the LORD smile on you". The opposite of that is for the Lord to face you with a frown. When a king is displeased with you, you know your life is in danger. You may sing praises to him all day but it will not change a thing; it may even aggravate the situation for your voice is an abomination to his ears.

Church harmony is pleasant for it conveys that out worship is not in vain. We can come to God corporately and he faces us with a smile. We may not be the best of singers but our praises are accepted before his throne. He is pleased with what we offer and he bestows blessing upon our lives.

3. The Oil Conveys Abundant Grace

Notice that the Psalmist pays attention to the quantity of the oil poured upon Aaron. Upon the first drop, it would have been enough to make Aaron fit for the ministry. Yet the oil was poured lavishly that it flowed from his head, to his beard and to his robe. You can also imagine how fragrance filled the air.

Church harmony is pleasant because it conveys the abundance of God's grace on his people. When he bestows blessing upon us, he doesn't measure it in teaspoons. What he gives his people is "grace upon grace" (John 1:16)

1 comment:

  1. Facebook comments:

    Sheryll: church unity din po kami ngayon, as an essential to revival.. :) waiting for the 2nd part.

    Manny: She, ibig mo bang sabihin ay may mga bagong mensahe si Ptr. Jurem tungkol sa church unity? Updated ba mp3 uploads ng SDG? Baka pakinabangan ko 'yan. May ihahanda kasi akong lesson na mas malawak ang scope pero related pa rin sa church unity.

    Sheryll: opo, bro. Manny. Though i'm not sure if d manuscripts are already out. Noon may preaching din sya on psalm 131. Try ko pong magtanong sa radio ministry..

    Manny: galing ako sa website ninyo. Clicking on the "Current Message" tab, ito ang mga pamagat na nakikita kong may kaugnayan sa paksa ng Church Unity (paki-confirmed kung ito nga ang mga latest)
    1. The Church Covenant; A Tool for Unity
    2. Clarification Regarding Christian Unity
    3. The Basis Of Christian Unity

    Sheryll: na upload na pala. :) yan na nga po.