Parashat Shemini, "Help me to sanctify Your Name Lord!"


According to the Torah, the sons of Aharon (Nadav and Avihu) did not maintain holiness
before the Lord, the result they died. 
Vayikra / Leviticus 10:1 Now Nadab and Abihu, the sons of Aaron, took their respective
firepans, and after putting fire in them, placed incense on it and offered strange fire
before the Lord, which He had not commanded them. (NASB)
The question
though is how did Nadav and Avihu sin not maintaining holiness for the Lord?  Some
has suggested that drunkenness was the basis for their sin (
Vayikra / Leviticus 10:9
), others suggest that they died because they had
entered the Kedosh Kedoshim (Holy of Holies) (
Vayikra / Leviticus 10:1-2
).  The Scriptures however always
associates the death of these two priests with their offering “strange”
or “unauthorized” fire before God (see
Vayikra / Leviticus 10:1-3, Bamidbar / Numbers 3:4, and 26:61
).  The Hebrew text provides some insight into the reason for their sin. 
According to Vayikra / Leviticus 10:1, it says

va’yitnu vahen esh

meaning “they put in them fire.”  How did Nadav and Avihu placing fire into
their firepans (censers) violate the command of God and how did this prevent them from sanctifying
the Lord during worship?  How do these Scriptures apply to us today?
Read More here.

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Duane D. Miller received his Ph.D., M.S., and B.S. Degree in Chemical Engineering from The University of Akron Ohio. He is currently a Chemical Engineering Researcher. Duane’s research expertise has focused upon functional materials development for the control, conversion, and release of process gases in Energy production technologies. His R&D interests include computational chemistry, developing novel technologies for converting biomass to fuels and studying their fundamental interactions during the chemical conversion process. His past experience includes sorbent development for pre- and post-combustion CO2 and SO2 capture, selective absorption of H2S from methane streams, O2 capture for oxy-fuel combustion, photocatalytic reduction of alcohols, NOx reduction catalysis, the development of oxygen carriers to combust fossil fuels (CH4 and coal) for the chemical looping combustion processes, and the extraction of rare earth elements using patent pending sorbents. His research expertise has focused on operando-characterization using Infrared, Raman, and UV-Vis spectroscopy to observe the nature of the catalytic active sites and reaction intermediates under realistic reaction conditions, allowing direct correlation of molecular/electronic structures with catalyst performance during Gas-Solid / Liquid-Solid Adsorption and Photocatalytic Processes with real time online analysis of reaction products using ICP-MS and mass spectrometry. His current work involves a multi-disciplinary approach to developing, understanding, and improving the catalytic gasification of coal and methane, high temperature chemical looping combustion, and the catalytic decomposition and gasification of biomass and coal using novel microwave reactor.​ He has been studying the Hebrew Scriptures and the Torah for 20+ years and sharing what he has learned. The studies developed for MATSATI.COM are freely to be used by everyone, to God be the Glory!