NADAB AND ABIHU OFFERED STRANGE FIRE
Then Nadab and Abihu, the sons of Aaron, each took his censer and put fire in it, put incense on it, and offered profane fire before the Lord, which He had not commanded them. So fire went out from the Lord and devoured them, and they died before the Lord. And Moses said to Aaron, “This is what the Lord spoke, saying: ‘By those who come near Me I must be regarded as holy; And before all the people
I must be glorified.’ ” So Aaron held his peace. Then Moses called Mishael and Elzaphan, the sons of Uzziel the uncle of Aaron, and said to them, “Come near, carry your brethren from before the sanctuary out of the camp.” So they went near and carried them by their tunics out of the camp, as Moses had said. And Moses said to Aaron, and to Eleazar and Ithamar, his sons, “Do not uncover your heads nor tear your clothes, lest you die, and wrath come upon all the people. But let your brethren, the whole house of Israel, bewail the burning which the Lord has kindled. You shall not go out from the door of the tabernacle of meeting, lest you die, for the anointing oil of the Lord is upon you.” And they did according to the word of Moses.
The episode above was the first casualty concerning the priests that were just ordained to minister before the Lord. Apparently the sons of Aaron did not understand the magnitude of the position they were in and the character of God when it comes to disobeying His commandments I believe they did not know that God would respond to what they did this way. This was a senseless death. What were they looking for? According to 1 Samuel 15: 22 which says “Has the Lord as great delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices, As in obeying the voice of the Lord? Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice, And to heed than the fat of rams.” These children of Aaron played with fire and fire from the Lord consumed them. This was an unfortunate incidence. If they had not ventured to try their own fire without being sent , they would not have died an untimely death. Obedience is the key to walking with the Lord. Moses had understood this and everything He did was “according to the Lord’s commands” God even charged Aaron, their father to let him know that “Any one that comes before Him must know that He is Holy and He must be glorified.” Moses directed their brethren to carry them outside the camp. Aaron and his two remaining sons were told not to mourn the dead sons or show it in their appearance. The whole house of Israel was allowed to express their regret or bitterness about what had happened but Aaron must not partake in this, and must not go out of the door of the tabernacle or else he would die.
As the Bible rightly puts it, God says “I change not”. The children of Israel saw the way He dealt with the Egyptians when He sent Moses to Pharaoh and Pharaoh refused to let them go. Why should any one not fear this God? 1 Samuel 2 says “No one is holy like the Lord, For there is none besides You, Nor is there any rock like our God “The Lord kills and makes alive; He brings down to the grave and brings up. The Lord makes poor and makes rich; He brings low and lifts up. He raises the poor from the dust And lifts the beggar from the ash heap, To set them among princes And make them inherit the throne of glory (2, 6-8). Therefore brothers and sisters, we that are at this end of the spectrum, let us not abuse Grace, and let us walk reverently with our God. Let us fear Him and obey all His commandments, If only we can remember that our lives are naked before Him, even are thoughts are known to Him. So it is not possible for us to hide from His presence? I do not then understand those who do evil and believe God did not see them. Their reward will be given to them at the appointed time. Now that we are nearer the end than before, let us walk circumspectly redeeming the time because the days are evil. May the Lord increase the grace upon us so that we can humble ourselves in His presence and do what is right. Be blessed!!!