Cruden Bells

At Scotland’s Cruden Bay is a small Congregational church which, unusually, has a bellcote. By this, the deacons might call worshippers to divine service, though how popular this would have made them with non-chapelgoers one cannot estimate. ‘Tis a pity we at Salem have no such bell, but it would have to be very large and heavy to summon our congregation, many of whom travel some distance. There are few bells mentioned in scripture. Those about which we read are found attached to the Levitical High Priest’s garment:

And it shall be on Aaron when he ministers, and its sound shall be heard when he goes into the Holy Place before the Lord, and when he comes out, so that he does not die. Exodus 28:35

These bells are not a call to worship, but rather a melodic assurance that the High Priest was ministering on all others’ behalf. There is no Biblical warrant to suppose that Christ, our Great High Priest in heaven, is actually attired as Aaron, though He is certainly providing that intercessory ministry. Rather than the tinkling of bells, our assurance derives from His word:

Now this is the main point of the things we are saying: We have such a High Priest, who is seated at the right hand of the throne of the Majesty in the heavens, a Minister of the sanctuary and of the true tabernacle which the Lord erected, and not man. For every high priest is appointed to offer both gifts and sacrifices. Therefore it is necessary that this One also have something to offer. For if He were on earth, He would not be a priest, since there are priests who offer the gifts according to the law; who serve the copy and shadow of the heavenly things, as Moses was divinely instructed when he was about to make the tabernacle. For He said, “See that you make all things according to the pattern shown you on the mountain.” But now He has obtained a more excellent ministry, inasmuch as He is also Mediator of a better covenant, which was established on better promises. Hebrews 8:1-6