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And Aaron shall offer the Levites before the LORD for an offering of the children of Israel, that they may execute the service of the LORD.

New Defender's Study Bible Notes

8:11 offer the Levites. The Levites, after being cleansed, were offered as an offering to the Lord by the whole nation in gratitude to God for their deliverance from Egypt, and as a substitute for their firstborn sons (Numbers 8:16-18; also Numbers 3:9). Four times it is stressed that they have been offered as an offering to God (Numbers 8:11,13,15,21). Then two bullocks were offered in substitution for the Levites–one as a sin offering, the other as a burnt offering (Numbers 8:12), so that the Levites could then be given to Aaron and the priests for the service of the tabernacle (Numbers 8:19). The theme of substitution and blood redemption pervaded the whole dedication and installation ceremony, all foreshadowing the future substitutionary and redemptive work by our greater High Priest, the Lord Jesus Christ (see Hebrews 9:11-12).

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