Haydock Catholic Bible Commentary
Month of the second year, ver. 15. The first day of every month was kept with some degree of solemnity, though it was not a day of rest. (Numbers xxxiii. 11.; 1 Kings xx. 5.; &c.) (Calmet)
Priesthood. Hebrew, "And thou shalt put upon Aaron the holy garments, and anoint him, and sanctify him, that he may serve me in the priest's office: (14) and thou shalt bring his sons, and put on them their tunics; (15) and thou shalt anoint them, as thou didst anoint their father, that they may perform the office of priests to me for ever, in their generations." As the priesthood was hereditary in Aaron's family, this first unction might suffice for all. Yet, the new high priests were always anointed till the days of our Saviour, chap xxix. 7.
Cover of purple, goat skins, &c.
Testimony, or tables of the law. The pagans enclosed various symbolical figures, cakes, &c., in their mystic arks. (Clement of Alexandria) But how different were they from the sacred records of religion! (Calmet)
Roof, covering both the holy of holies and the sanctuary. (Menochius)
Laver. This is a repetition of ver. 7, (Calmet) shewing that the command was fulfilled. (Haydock)
Glory. The cloud which had rested over the tent, appointed for prayer, came now to the grand tabernacle, in the midst of the camp. (Calmet) --- By its superior lustre, it signified that the glory of God was there. (St. Augustine, q. 173.)
Moses, out of respect, abstained from entering that day. (Calmet) --- The cloud of legal observances, though designed to prefigure Christ and the gospel, seems however to hinder the Jews from recognizing them. (St. Augustine) (Tirinus)
A fire. The same cloud overshadowed the camp by day, and enlightened it by night. (Chaldean; Chap. xiii. 22.)