November 20, 2019·Lisa Bolar
“Behold, how good and how pleasant it is
For brethren to dwell together in unity!
It is like the precious oil upon the head,
Running down on the beard,
The beard of Aaron,
Running down on the edge of his garments.”
— Psalm 133:1-2
I don’t know about you, but this verse is one I come across often, yet alwaysneed to be reminded of. Jesus said the world will know we’re His by how we love one another, but sometimes (even in church), that’s hard!
I love the picture of unity we’re given in this verse. Aaron was the first official high priest of Israel and the holy oil mentioned above was reserved only for him. The oil was so expensive and so sacred, it could only be used to anoint the high priest.
The first thing I think about when I read that verse is it sounds like a huge mess! It tells us the oil runs from Aaron’s head to his beard, all the way down to the bottom hem of his robe. You’re using a LOT of oil if you pour it on someone’s head and it gets all over the hem of their pants. It’s an excessive and over-the-top amount.
The second thing I think about when I read that verse is Aaron himself. God appointed Aaron the head job of High Priest. In other words, the holiest, most sacred position on earth… you would think that person would have lived a pretty perfect life. But, if you go back and read some of Aaron’s story, you’ll see he made some BIG mistakes. The holiest guy was the same guy who helped Israel construct and worship an idol after Moses had been gone for five minutes on Mount Sinai. And then, he lied about it! Moses came back down the mountain and Israel was basically sinning every which way they could. When he confronted Aaron about the idol, Aaron said “I just put some gold in the fire and out popped this calf.” Ya messed up, Aaron!
But… it’s this same Aaron that God appoints as High Priest and anoints with an excessive, over-the-top amount of the most costly and precious oil.
Aaron is just one of many examples in the Bible of people who were undeserving of God’s mercy and love, but it was lavishly poured out on them. And this is the picture God uses in this Psalm to describe what He’s looking for when it comes to loving each other. Sometimes, we withhold love if we feel that someone has wronged us or is undeserving, but let’s be reminded today… that’s not how God loved us. When Jesus’ Blood was poured out, it was an over-the-top, excessive amount of God’s perfect love being lavished upon undeserving people like you and me. I’m so thankful God doesn’t love me based on how deserving I am. He doesn’t calculate how kind, how righteous, how easy to be around I’ve been this week and then portion out His love accordingly. Every day, we have the reminder of the Cross showing us that God truly gave all His love. He’ll never love you any more or any less than that. You have ALL His love.
Holy Spirit, fill us with that kind of love, and let it overflow to people around us who desperately need a touch of Your love shown to them today.
Pastor Lisa Bolar