The priesthood immediately comes short of the glory of God
Lastly, we have what, alas!
is always the case with man. The first day the priesthood
is established, it comes short of the glory of God. Nadab
and Abihu offer strange fire, acting as men in nature in
their relationship with God, not founding their service
on the altar of sacrifice, and they die.
What the presence
of God requires
The priests must on no
account whatever depart from their consecration (vers. 6,
7); therefore they must be Nazarites (ver. 9), apart from
that which is only the excitement of the flesh, separated
unto God from all that which would let nature loose in
His presence; from that which would prevent them from
feeling its powera state of abstraction in which
the flesh has no place. The presence of God must have its
full power, and the flesh must be silent before Him. It
is only thus that they would be able to discern between
that which is unclean and that which is purethat
which is profane and that which is holy. There are lawful
things, real joys, which, however, do not belong to
priesthoodjoys which flow from God's blessings, and
which do not keep the flesh in check as does His presence;
for there is always a certain restraint on the heart, on
nature and its activity, produced by the presence of God.
But priesthood is exercised before Him.