Isn’t it interesting that the first command Moses gave the Israelites, before they began the work of building the tabernacle and beginning the next stage of their journey with God, was the command about the Sabbath. The 7th day shall be your holy day, a day of sabbath rest to the Lord.
There are a lot of theological discussions about the sabbath and how it applies to believers today. I am not going to get into a discussion about dispensationalism. Instead, here is what I think is important:
If you are a photographer hired by a couple getting married, it is important to remember, the goal is not to take a lot of beautiful photos, the goal is bring those photos back to the bride and groom. You have to bring the camera back into your home base, upload the photos and recharge the camera.
In our service for God, we sometimes forget that. We get so focused on the activity, we don’t reconnect with God. How much stronger and more focused would your service for the Lord be if every 7 days you stopped and plugged back in fully? What would your life look like if every 7 days you spent the day uploading the prior 6 days activities to God?
The other part of our lesson today that I found interesting was God’s desire for a willing heart. There are two ways of looking at the gifts the Israelites were giving:
- One perspecitive is to recognize that they will never see their gifts in use again. The gold utensils are for use inside the Holy place, an area that the givers are restricted from going. Many of us would have a hard time with this. When we give money to an organization we want to see the results of our gift; a report back; photos; something.
- The other perspective is to recognize that the gold bracelets they had carried around for the past year are being crafted into the mercy seat of God. What an absolutely amazing and honoring thing. What would you be willing to give for use within the tabernacle of God?
The reality is that both perspectives are true, both then and now, in gifts from a willing heart. We may never get to see how the donations we make from a willing heart are used to bring glory to God. That isn’t important. If it is what is important, then we need a heart check. The key is that, while we don’t see the product of our giving, God does. And isn’t the entire universe God’s rightful tabernacle and anything that furthers the church on this earth is a tool in the Holy of Holies.
7th day shall be your holy day, a day of sabbath rest to the LORD
To be His people, a holy nation or priests, set apart
I am called to be a part of His holy church and become holy, set apart, a priest in His service
The people of Israel, all who was willing and whose heart moved them, men and women alike
God, the LORD – chose Bezalel son of Uri, the son of Hur, tribe of Judah, filled him with the Spirit of God, with wisdom, with understanding, with knowledge and with all kinds of skills, work in gold, silver, bronze, cut/set stones, woodwork, artistic craft, Oholiab son of Ahisamak, of the tribe of Dan, the ability to teach others; engravers, designers, embroiderers, weavers
every skilled person to whom the Lord has given skill and ability to know how to carry out all the work of constructing the sanctuary
vs3-5, stopped work and told Moses the people are bringing more than enough
That my gifts be viewed by God – the donations they brought were being used in such a way they would never see them again
The details were important – each had a specific reason and each foreshadow Jesus and heaven