Exodus 29 is a detailed account of what should occur in the ritual for ordaining the priests into their service to the LORD. It was to last seven days, and during that time the priests were washed, anointed, and sacrifices were made. The ceremony itself is recorded in Leviticus 8.
Exodus 29 can be outlined as follows:
The fact that the LORD described this ceremony in such detail shows how important it was to the nation. Israel was chosen by God to be in a special covenant relationship with Him, and Aaron and his sons were chosen to be the mediators of this covenant. Such a privileged position required a special ceremony to impress upon all of the people what the LORD required of them in terms of worship and service. It could also be a reminder to the people that they were called to serve as a priestly nation, serving as mediators to other nations (Exodus 19:5-6).
The LORD summarizes what should be included in the ordination ceremony of the priests. Animals for sacrifice, unleavened food, and oil should be brought to the ritual.
The first step in the ordination ceremony was the washing of the priests, Aaron and his sons had to be cleansed before they could be set aside for service to the LORD.
The priestly garments are to be placed on Aaron and his sons in preparation for the ceremony itself. Aaron would be clothed with the High Priest’s garments.
The LORD describes the sin offering required to atone for the sins of Aaron and his sons. Sinful and fallen people must be cleansed before they can minister in the presence of the holy God.
The LORD describes another sin offering requiring a ram.
The LORD describes the sacrifice of the third animal, the second ram.
The LORD describes the next part of the ordination ceremony. Aaron and his sons were given parts of the sacrificed animal along with bread cakes
The LORD describes what Moses needed to do with the ram’s breast. It was to be a wave offering to the LORD and then given to Aaron and his priests.
The LORD describes how the garments of the high priest were to be handed down to the designated replacement. This was to take place during an ordination ceremony that was to last seven days.
The LORD describes what to do with the rest of the second ram sacrifice.
Now that the priests had been purified and set apart for the ministry, the altar was next. Purifying the altar was also to be a seven-day process. The end result was that the altar was most holy.
The discussion now turns from the priests’ ordination ceremony to the sacrifices that were to be performed daily.