8 [d]Then the Lord spoke to Moses, saying, 9 “Command Aaron and his sons, saying, ‘This is the law for the burnt offering: the burnt offering itself shall remain on the hearth on the altar all night until the morning, and the fire on the altar is to be kept burning on it. 10 The priest is to put on his linen robe, and he shall put on undergarments next to his flesh; and he shall take up the [e]ashes to which the fire [f]reduces the burnt offering on the altar and place them beside the altar. 11 Then he shall take off his garments and put on other garments, and carry the [g]ashes outside the camp to a clean place. 12 The fire on the altar shall be kept burning on it. It shall not go out, but the priest shall burn wood on it every morning; and he shall lay out the burnt offering on it, and offer up in smoke the fat portions of the peace offerings on it. 13 Fire shall be kept burning continually on the altar; it is not to go out.
14 ‘Now this is the law of the grain offering: the sons of Aaron shall present it before the Lord in front of the altar. 15 Then one of them shall lift up from it a handful of the fine flour of the grain offering, [h]with its oil and all the incense that is on the grain offering, and he shall offer it up in smoke on the altar, a soothing aroma, as its memorial offering to the Lord. 16 What is left of it Aaron and his sons are to eat. It shall be eaten as unleavened cakes in a holy place; they are to eat it in the court of the tent of meeting. 17 It shall not be baked with leaven. I have given it as their share from My offerings by fire; it is most holy, like the sin offering and the guilt offering. 18 Every male among the sons of Aaron may eat it; it is a permanent ordinance throughout your generations, from the offerings by fire to the Lord. Whoever touches them will become consecrated.’”
There is a theme throughout these verses of permanence. God’s covenant with His people was not for a few years, or a few generations, but forever. In recognition of that, there was to be a fire on the altar forever. And the grain offering was a permanent right of the sons of Aaron (the priests). As human beings, it is easy to think short term. After all, our lives are but a vapor compared to eternity. But we must keep in mind there is a long game here. God has a plan for all of eternity, to rescue humanity, and restore their relationship with Him forever. As we play our part, always remember the stakes are high, the consequences of our actions have eternal implications.