Archive for September 1st, 2011

Exodus 31

Exodus 31 shows a very important truth – what God originates, God will orchestrate.  The last number of chapters have contained instructions to Moses on what and how to build a number of things for worship.  Very detailed instructions about a number of items to be built or created.  The only problem was – who and how was it going to get done.  But God had a plan for that, and now he reveals it to Moses.  Bezalel has been filled with the Spirit of God and provided the skills for the task along with Oholiab.  God has uniquely gifted these guys to lead the charge.

It is important to catch what happens here.  They are filled with the Spirit of God with “ability and intelligence, with knowledge and all craftsmanship….to work in every craft”.  If there is every a doubt that God gifts people differently based on the assignments He is giving – this shows it is how He works.  We sometimes can fall into the trap of thinking that God’s gifts are all about spiritual stuff – but clearly He also gifts those He calls to do creative things too.  What God calls us to do – He will provide the skill and ability to complete.

So here is the list that Moses has been given.  It is pretty long and there is a whole lot of work to be done.  Moses would never have been able to do this on his own.  But with God’s gifts given to specific men who are to lead the project – it will happen as God desires.  Moses simply needs to lead the charge.  “And I have given to all able men ability, that they may make all that I have commanded you:

  1. tent of meeting
  2. ark of the testimony
  3. mercy seat
  4. furnishings of the tent
  5. table and its utensils
  6. pure lampstand
  7. altar of incense
  8. altar of burnt offering
  9. basin and its stand
  10. finely worked garments
  11. holy garments
  12. anointing oil
  13. fragrant incense

The list is long – the skills needed varied – yet God says do it.  When He does – He equips us.  We need to live knowing that He won’t call us to do things He will not enable us to complete.

So after a long list of work to be done – Moses gets these words from God: “Above all you shall keep my Sabbaths, for this is a sign between me and you throughout your generations, that you may know that I, the Lord, sanctify you….You shall keep the Sabbath, because it is holy for you….Six days shall work be done, but the seventh day is a Sabbath of solemn rest, holy to the Lord….as a covenant forever”. Does God take rest seriously?  These words certainly seem to indicate that He does.  The penalty for not obeying in this area was death.  So it is obvious He takes it very seriously.  What does it mean to you and me?  We need to get with God and ask Him to clearly show us how we should treat the Sabbath.  There is no question it is not just another day on the calendar.  Not just a 7th day in our week.  It is a day He has created with specific purpose.  Do we need to be legalistic with it?  Probably not, but we also should not ignore its design and intent.  After all, these words were “written with the finger of God”.  They are not man’s opinion.  They are God’s truth.  We need to seek Him and understand what they mean to us!

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