The Israelites Freed From the Slavery of the Babylon
In the time of Jehoiakim, the Babylonians conquered Judah and the Jews started to serve the Kingdom of Babylon since then. And later they were taken to the land of Babylon as slaves, and the Isrealites had to live in the land for 70 years until the fulfillment of the prophecy of the bible. (Jeremiah 25:11) And 70 years later in around 539 AD when the Persian Kingdom conquered Babylon, King Cyrus the King of Persia set the Israelites free from the slavery and let them go back to their own land.
In the Book of Ezra Chapter 2, we can see the descriptions of the people who came back for the slavery and their genealogies. But there were some problems for the people whose genealogies were uncertain at the time. They could not prove that they descended from the family they claimed to be in. Because of this they could not be included in the priesthood and they were ordered not to eat any of the most sacred food, the most sacred right they had as a member of the priest family.
And the bible says that they could be restored to their rightful position as priests of God in only one condition:’
Ezra 2:62 These searched for their family records, but they could not find them and so were excluded from the priesthood as unclean. 63 The governor ordered them not to eat any of the most sacred food until there was a priest ministering with the Urim and Thummim.
According to the Law of Moses only the priestly family could take part in the sacred food for the sanctuary. Since the sanctuary the dwelling of God is sacred, anything that belongs to it was also considered to be sacred, including food. Therefore, God allowed only the members of the priest family to eat the sacred food coming from the sanctuary.
Exodus 29:31 Take the ram for the ordination and cook the meat in a sacred place. 32 At the entrance to the tent of meeting, Aaron and his sons are to eat the meat of the ram and the bread that is in the basket. 33 They are to eat these offerings by which atonement was made for their ordination and consecration. But no one else may eat them, because they are sacred. 34 And if any of the meat of the ordination ram or any bread is left over till morning, burn it up. It must not be eaten, because it is sacred.
Leviticus 22:10 No one outside a priest’s family may eat the sacred offering, nor may the guest of a priest or his hired worker eat it.
A Priest Ministering With Urim and Thummim
The right to eat from the sacred food was given only to the family of the priests. And some of the people were excluded from eating the sacred food since they could not prove their ancestry through the genealogical record. In this case, there must appear a priest ministering with Urim and Thummim to decide and judge whether they are the true members of the priest family or not. Then what are the Urim and Thummim. One of the ornament made for a priest was a breastpiece with 12 stones which represent the 12 tribes of Israel and inside the breastpiece the priest must carry Urim and Thummim when he enter the sanctuary to make right decisions for the Israelites.
Exodus 28:29 “Whenever Aaron enters the Holy Place, he will bear the names of the sons of Israel over his heart on the breastpiece of decision as a continuing memorial before the Lord. 30 Also put the Urim and the Thummim in the breastpiece, so they may be over Aaron’s heart whenever he enters the presence of the Lord. Thus Aaron will always bear the means of making decisions for the Israelites over his heart before the Lord.
So when the priest had to make a important decision, he carried Urim and Thummim in front of God so that the right decision could be made for the matter. Urim and Thummim means “Light” and “Perfection” respectively. Therefore, its meaning is the “perfect light”. According to the bible, “light” means the truth, and thus Urim and Thummim can be interpreted as “Perfect Truth”.
This means the matter of deciding the descendancy of those unrecorded people could be possible only through the appearance of the priest with “Perfect Truth”. The principle concerning the analogy between the light and truth can be interpreted like this. When we are in darkness, we cannot know or decide the colors or shapes. Only through the light everything can be exposed to us in its own value. Likewise, without truth we cannot know if a certain thing or idea is true or false. However, when the perfect truth appears, we can have means to judge and decide their value according to the accurate standard. In this sense, the truth can be compared to light.
Anyway, this concept of a priest with Urim and Thummim was not given only for the Israelites in the time of Ezra. Rather, it will come truth when God decides his people in the last days.
The Chosen People of God
The bible teaches that God will separate people into two groups: one for salvation and one for destruction. We can see so many different parables of Jesus Christ concerning the work of God separating his people from the evil ones in the last days.
Matthew 13:29 “‘No,’ he answered, ‘because while you are pulling the weeds, you may uproot the wheat with them. 30 Let both grow together until the harvest. At that time I will tell the harvesters: First collect the weeds and tie them in bundles to be burned; then gather the wheat and bring it into my barn.’”
Also we can see the similar motive in the parable of 10 virgins and the parable of separating sheep from goats.
Matthew 25:31 “When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, he will sit on his glorious throne. 32 All the nations will be gathered before him, and he will separate the people one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats. 33 He will put the sheep on his right and the goats on his left.
At this time of separation, God will gather all the people together and decide if they are the chosen ones or not. As was prophesied in the Book of Hosea, in those days those who was once not called my people would be called my people. (Hosea 2:23) In deciding the “genealogical descendancy” of people in the last days, there are two important conditions to make the right decision as we have already seen in the Mosaic Law. First, the high priest must come and second, he must have Urim and Thummim or “Perfect Truth” in him to distinguish right from wrong.
The High Priest With Urim and Thummim
Then who came as high priest with Urim and Thummim? Who is the high priest with perfect truth? According to the bible, Jesus fulfilled the prophecies and came as the high priest with perfect truth. Paul explains two different priesthood: the priesthood of Aaron and the priesthood of Melchizedek.
He says that the priesthood of Aaron which was established according to the Law of Moses or the old covenant was not perfect for the salvation. Therefore, God set up another priest in the Order of Melchizedek established according to the Law of Christ or the new covenant. Jesus appeared as the priest in the Order of Melchizedek with perfect truth that gives salvation.
Hebrews 7:11 . If perfection could have been attained through the Levitical priesthood—and indeed the law given to the people established that priesthood—why was there still need for another priest to come, one in the order of Melchizedek, not in the order of Aaron? 12 For when the priesthood is changed, the law must be changed also.
Hebrews 5:8 Son though he (Jesus) was, he learned obedience from what he suffered 9 and, once made perfect, he became the source of eternal salvation for all who obey him 10 and was designated by God to be high priest in the order of Melchizedek.
This means Jesus is the reality of the high priest God prophesied through the copy and shadow of the high priest in the Law of Moses. Then what is the perfect truth Jesus brought?
Urim and Thummim, the Perfect Truth
Since Jesus is the reality of the high priest, he must have “Urim and Thummim” or the Perfect Truth through which he can make decision and judgment to distinguish the legitimate people of God in the last days. Then what is the perfect truth he brought with?
Hebrews 8:7 For if there had been nothing wrong with that first covenant, no place would have been sought for another. 8 But God found fault with the people and said: “The days are coming, declares the Lord, when I will make a new covenant with the people of Israel and with the people of Judah. 9 It will not be like the covenant I made with their ancestors when I took them by the hand to lead them out of Egypt, because they did not remain faithful to my covenant, and I turned away from them, declares the Lord. 10 This is the covenant I will establish with the people of Israel after that time, declares the Lord. I will put my laws in their minds and write them on their hearts. I will be their God, and they will be my people. 11 No longer will they teach their neighbor, or say to one another, ‘Know the Lord,’ because they will all know me, from the least of them to the greatest. 12 For I will forgive their wickedness and will remember their sins no more.” 13 By calling this covenant “new,” he has made the first one obsolete; and what is obsolete and outdated will soon disappear.
Here God says that the old covenant or the Law of Moses was not “perfect” enough for the salvation of his people. And for this reason God prophesies that He would establish the new covenant that is “the perfect truth” through which they could be the people of God. Hosea’s prophecy could be come truth through the new covenant. People who once was not called “my people” could be “my people” through the new covenant. Those who has the new covenant can be called people of God.
Then what is the new covenant Jesus established as high priest with Urim and Thummim? It is the Passover.
Luke 22:19 And he took bread, gave thanks and broke it, and gave it to them, saying, “This is my body given for you; do this in remembrance of me.” In the same way, after the supper he took the cup, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in my blood, which is poured out for you.
Through this we can understand the perfect truth or Urim and Thummim through which God decide and judge the legitimate people of God is the Passover new covenant. Those who keep the new covenant would be separated as sheep for salvation and those who did not keep the Passover would be grouped as goats for eternal condemnation. As people of God we must keep the Passover the new covenant for our salvation.
Even though the perfect truth “new covenant” was abolished by the work of Satan after the ascension of Jesus. Today, just as the parable says we can see both weeds and wheats are growing on the harvest field. To separate the wheat from the weeds, Christ must come back again with Urim and Thummim. Christ Ahnsahnghong brought back the Passover new covenant (the perfect truth, Urim and Thummim) and now he is separating people into two groups. In which group do you want to be in?