34 Then the Lord said to Moses, “Take fragrant spices—gum resin, onycha and galbanum—and pure frankincense, all in equal amounts, 35 and make a fragrant blend of incense, the work of a perfumer. It is to be salted and pure and sacred. 36 Grind some of it to powder and place it in front of the ark of the covenant law in the tent of meeting, where I will meet with you. It shall be most holy to you. 37 Do not make any incense with this formula for yourselves; consider it holy to the Lord. 38 Whoever makes incense like it to enjoy its fragrance must be cut off from their people.” Exodus 30:34-38
The same principles of a holy scent for the mixture of elements applied to the incense. A small portion of the incense was to be used around the altar, while the majority of it was to be burned, probably on the golden altar outside the vail. The penalty for private use of the incense was that the people would be cut off from the rest of the people.
The Lord told Moses that the actual incense would be holy to him as well. It was a distinctive aroma; how could it be holy to Moses?
Moses had a unique responsibility among the Israelites. People relied on him for leadership and vision. He was, by virtue of his status with the Lord Almighty, set apart from the people. Even though the people could smell the fragrance when it was burned, it was to be holy to Moses.
Moses had to set an example for the people every time the high priests sacrificed. He obviously would know the steps the priests were taking at each stage of the sacrifice. He knew what was going and why because he had been face to face with the Lord Almighty. None in that camp could say that. He probably would never lord that over the people, but he probably couldn’t have normal relationships with them either. He was set apart.
It’s easy to become careless and cavalier in our walk with Christ. Over time if we’re not careful, we lose our “edge,” our passion. We, like the church in the Book of Revelation, lose our first love (Revelation 2:4). I’m not at all suggesting we lose our salvation, but our passion for Christ.
Are there things we say and do or watched that would not have done 20 years ago or even five years ago? Are we compromising our beliefs in little ways to accommodate others? I’m not saying we are, but merely asking the question.