10.5 Moses 10, Day 5

A special calling

Over and over again, as I study the bible, I’m struck by how upside down man’s ways are to God’s ways.

First, you are not an accident, some random product of unplanned and unexpected events.  I don’t have a problem with the idea that things evolve and change over time, but who wants to believe they are nothing but a random accident?  I believe I am here for a purpose and that there is a specific purpose and calling for my life.

But even though, as Christians, we believe this, we still can get things turned around.  First, we start with us.  We are born, we have a number of experiences and preferences and training and relationships, we accept Jesus, we look for our mission or calling and then we pray to be equipped for that role.

But look at it in reverse and we get a better view of God’s perspective.  First, God plans a special mission or calling for you.  Then Jesus and the Holy Spirit go to work aligning time and place and experience and training and relationships.  Then you are born.

We saw today how God had a mission for two specific craftsmen in the construction of the tabernacle.  God didn’t look around and review the resumes of the Isrealites to see who would be the best.  He selected these men to be in this place at this time with these gifts and talents before they were ever born.  He has done the same for me and you.

Finally, here is an aside so that you won’t ever forget the names of the craftsmen.  Not only did God bless them with appropriate talents, but He also gave them perfect names.  Bezalel, sounds just like Bedazzle, without the duh. What a perfect name for the interior decorator!  And his helper is name Oholiab, which sounds like Oh-Holy-Ab, and he would need some Holy Abs of Steel for the heavy lifting he would need to do.  I hope this makes you smile and helps you remember their names.

 

My Answers:

9.
a.
the prayers of God’s people

b.
at morning and twilight so that it will burn regularly

c.
There are times I should stop and pray, but also, my prayers should be constantly before the Lord

10.
a.
before entering the tent of meeting

b.
washed daily – daily repent and receive the cleansing

11.
a.
They would die

b.
cut off from the people

c.
These things were holy and sacred (set apart) – using them for self or others would be self worship or, at a minimum, putting self at the same level as God

12.
a.
filled him with the Spirit of God, with wisdom, with understanding, with knowledge and with all kinds of skills

b.
All different, all appointed by God to serve God

c.
To serve – to connect – to teach

10.4 Moses 10, Day 4

Priests, Present, Prayer, Patience, Passing the Torch

Are you called to be an active part of the ministry of your church? Yes.

1. Priests: When you become a Christian you are clothed in Christ.  Just as the priests of the tabernacle wore special clothing to designate them as part of a unique group, set apart for special work before God, we wear Christ inside and out.  All Christians are priests, with an expectation of being part of the ministry of the church.  That ministry can take on many forms, such as teaching, counseling, caring, feeding, praying, supporting, etc.  When the priests put on their clothing, it was like a uniform.  In the same way, when we ask for Christ to be the center of our life, we take on the uniform of that faith.  There are no spectators, no one sitting on the sidelines, if you are a Christian you’re place is in the field.

2. Present: The priests were present at the tabernacle every day.  They had days of rest, but a big part of what they did was show up every day.  The incense was lit twice a day, the candle wicks were mended, the bread was placed on the table, the sacrifices were made, the cleansing took place.  In the same way, we are called to show up and do kingdom work every day.  Every day we are called to cleanse our soul.  Every day we are called to break bread with God.  Every day we are tend the light to the world that our candle shines to those to whom we influence.

3. Prayer: When we decide we need to become more active in church, we often start with an assessment of what we are good at or what we are comfortable doing.  But, that is wrong.  Our approach should begin with prayer.  If we trust God and know that He has a plan and calling for our work in His church, we need to also begin by asking Him to reveal that plan to us.

4. Patience: After we pray, we need to wait patiently and continue to pray.  A few years back I read Tony Dungy’s book, Quiet Strength.  He said, “I needed to do my current job well, keep preparing, and wait on God’s timing. I needed to trust His leadership rather than try to force an outcome I wanted.”  He explained that every time he jumped ahead of God in his career, things did not go well.  We need to have the same patience in our work and our job in God’s church.

5. Pass the torch: God did not only appoint Aaron, He also appointed his sons.  I was visiting with a lady recently who asked about the church we attended.  She and her family had attended a church for the past 2 years, but she explained that it was an older, established church and they had not found a place to plug in and serve in the church.  Each time they had attempted, they found themselves trespassing on someone’s established turf.  People serving in roles in the church are often heard to complain that they have to do too much themselves because others aren’t stepping up.  Could it possibly be that we are not actively developing the future leaders to step in?  Could God have something else in mind for you that you can’t step up to because you won’t let go of your current position?

 

My Answers:

7.
a.
God

b.
If try to take an easy, comfortable job, it is blocked or not successful – called to serve in area that would not have been my initial preference, such as working with kids instead of adults.

8.
Titus: We are washed in the saving blood of Jesus and rewed by the Holy Spirit

Galations: those baptized into Christ have clothed themselves with Christ

2Cor: Anointed us, seal of ownership, put spirit in our hearts

Rom: Christ as a sacrifice of atonement – righteousness

1 Peter: the church is a chosen people, Kingdom of priests, holy nation, God’s possession

10.3 Moses 10, Day 3

It’s a map not an art project

My daughters are very talented artists.  One, in particular, can lose herself in the act of creativity.  There have been many a time that she had a school project for a class such as science or history that called for a visual representation of something.  Several hours into the project, which for most children probably took less than 1 hour, we would remind her, it is history homework, not an art project.

In today’s scripture we look at the clarity of God’s instructions, learn what it points to and remember that he repeatedly said, “make it exactly as patterned.” This reminded me, the tabernacle is a map, not an art project.  A map is exact and clear.  It provides direction.  It records and reveals the nature of things (such as nature).  It plots a specific course and/or points to a specific destination.  All of this is true of the tabernacle.

Each dimension, each object, each article used in its construction was part of a map.  It was a map that pointed to worship of God and it was a map pointing to the redemption provided through Jesus Christ.

 

My Answers:

5.
Bread Table:
The table was covered in gold, the plates and dishes, pitchers, bowls all gold.  The bread of the presence was before God at all times – Jesus at the last supper took the bread, broke it and said, this is my body given for you

Golden Lampstand:
Jesus is the light of the world,  In heaven, God is the light (no sun or moon)

Inner Curtain:
The curtain was separation from God.  When Jesus died on the cross the curtain was torn from top to bottom – the curtain represents his body

Altar:
redemption is through the precious blood of Jesus

6.
a.
make it exactly as planned/patterned

b.
It was a revelation of the temple in heaven, it also was a foreshadowing of Jesus.  Everything about God is connected.

10.2 Moses 10, Day 2

Perfect Purpose

We know that God is all powerful.  The Creator of everything has the ability to do anything, any way He wants.

As we begin the study of the tabernacle, I think this point is important to keep in mind.  Every thing and every way that goes along with the tabernacle is God’s intentional plan.  He did not need the people of Israel to bring gifts.  He did not need the gold, precious stones and yarn that they had taken from Egypt.  He didn’t need them to build the table or lampstand or even the tabernacle.  He does not need a tent or building.  He didn’t even need their sacrifices.

God chose to do these things in these ways not for Himself but for the people.  He allowed them to be a part of this.  He enabled them to have the joy of sharing and giving.  He accepted the sacrifices and obedience that they offered.

God did all of this with purpose.  The stated purpose of the temple may have been for God.  He would dwell among the people.  But God was already everywhere and in everything.  The physical representation of the temple was for the people, so they could physically experience God with them.  It was a touch point, not unlike a favorite chair that you might have sat in and cuddled and read books with your mother.

Today we don’t have a tabernacle or temple.  We have something far superior.  God chose to fulfill the promises of the temple through Jesus.  When Jesus was born, Immanuel, God with us, He take on human flesh and walked and lived and ate and slept among His people.  Then, as the ultimate sacrifice, He gave up that human life so that His blood would pay the full price of our sin as a covering, sufficient for everyone for ever.

All of this that we are reading in Exodus was not just a specific design, it was a specific revelation of God’s plan done with purpose.

 

My Answers:

3.
a.
everyone whose heart prompts them to give – not forced, but a joyful giving

b.
Remember Malachi 3:8-12

c.
A living sacrifice.  My heart, my time, my talent, my devotion, my order, my attention.

4.
a.
It is for God.  He will dwell among the people

b.
Christ was born “God with us”, He was made flesh, we are adopted as brothers/sisters to Christ, we will dwell with God forever.

c.
God would dwell in their midsts.  He would look down from above the mercy seat and see the laws (all that we broke) but in between is a covering of sacrificial blood