Saturday, September 2, 2023

September 2, 2023

The details of building the altar reminds me of a huge grill or fire pit, which ultimately is what it is, but it has unique features, making it extraordinary for the sacrifices to God. Most of us didn't grow up in a royal household like Moses, so some of the details of the Tabernacle he included may not register in our imagination. Even Moses, who lived in a palace most of his life, may not have known how they would look, except God showed him while he was with him on the mountain. If it were me, I would have to hurry and write down these details so I wouldn't forget. Still, God inspired Moses, which probably allowed him to remember every intricate detail that He had in mind for His dwelling place among the Israelites.

God can use your circumstances for his good. Moses's mother protected him by sending him off in a basket in the river, making sure Pharaoh's daughter would find him. Though it was traumatic for him and his family, it saved him from execution as a boy baby. Growing up in Pharaoh's house helped him secure Israel's release from captivity, but when building the Tabernacle, the privilege of living a royal lifestyle came in handy when designing luxurious accommodations for God. 

Whatever has happened to you, whether good or bad, can be used by God for his purpose. Never let your circumstances stop you from doing what God called you to do. You are a useful tool carefully crafted by God, just as Moses was.

Hollow with boards shalt thou make it: as it was shewed thee in the mount, so shall they make it. Exodus 27:8

Friday, September 1, 2023

September 1, 2023

If only we could see through the eyes of Moses the beauty of the Tabernacle when God gave him instructions for its construction. God wanted the Israelites to know he dwelled with them as they moved through the wilderness, but his home was not typical and reflected his deity. Interestingly, the outside was rough and sturdy, but the inside was exquisitely decorated with luxurious blue, purple, and scarlet fabrics and included accessories overlayed with gold and silver. The Tabernacle had dishes, tables, candle sticks, and more, just as you might find in a human's home, yet it was extraordinary and set apart to show how exceptional God is. This portion of scripture is a reminder that our outward appearance does not set us apart; our holiness through Jesus makes us sparkle as God's dwelling place.

Moreover thou shalt make the tabernacle with ten curtains of fine twined linen, and blue, and purple, and scarlet: with cherubims of cunning work shalt thou make them. Exodus 26:1

The curtains were to be embroidered with cherubims as a reminder that God surrounds his church with his angels. The scriptures struck me hard this morning; because we love Jesus and fear God, his angel sets up camp around us for our protection. Can you imagine that? We are indeed a blessed people. If you need encouragement today, read Psalms 34; it will brighten your day!

The angel of the LORD encampeth round about them that fear him, and delivereth them. Psalms 34:7

Thursday, August 31, 2023

August 31, 2023

Remember when God told the Israelites to borrow or plunder the Egyptians? There was a purpose for doing that, and it wasn’t so they could have the finer things for their possession. The instructions God gives us may not make sense at the time, but when things fall into place, and you see the reason for it, you have a moment of clarity. 

For example, years ago, we had someone doing work in our house, and the Holy Spirit impressed upon me to ask him about his sister who was sick. I didn’t know this guy or if he even had a sister, but I did what God told me to do. He fell apart and wondered how I knew about her. So I told him the impression I got from God. I don’t know what good it did, but maybe he needed to hear it to confirm that God was listening to his prayers concerning her health. 

God had plans for the things the Israelites plundered, and it became apparent when he instructed Moses to build the sanctuary so he could dwell among them. He asks that they contribute an offering specifying certain high-end items. God is royalty and should be treated as such. If you are instructed to do something odd, don’t always dismiss it as your imagination; it could be God preparing you for something he has planned. When his reason becomes clear, you are in awe of how amazing He is. 

And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying, Speak unto the children of Israel, that they bring me an offering: of every man that giveth it willingly with his heart ye shall take my offering. Exodus 25:1-2

Wednesday, August 30, 2023

August 30, 2023

Much like the Israelites, I want to hurry the time. Moses gave them a sample of the law, including the Ten Commandments. Those were the basics, but the Ten Commandments had yet to be written in stone. God gave them the commandments in chapter 20 but didn't give them the stone writings until many chapters later. Moses brought the elders and representatives of the tribes up to the mountain. While there, they presented sacrifices and were sprinkled with blood to enter a covenant with God, agreeing to obey Him. After that, he allowed them to see him, yet they saw only the fabulous Safire stone He was standing on. The impression must have been incredible. Moses and Joshua went up the mountain, where Moses met with God for forty days and forty nights. 

The critical point is that we must agree to obey God. Our Holy sacrifice was Jesus, and we are in a covenant with him and are completely washed in His blood, much like Israel was when Moses sprinkled them with blood for their covenant with God. We are chosen like Israel but must agree to be obedient to Jesus. When we realize how lackadaisical we are about salvation, we understand why Paul said in Romans 7:24, "O wretched man that I am! who shall deliver me from the body of this death?" It's a shame we don't take what Jesus did for us more seriously. We need to spend more time contemplating his sacrifice and being more thankful. 

And Moses took half of the blood, and put it in basons; and half of the blood he sprinkled on the altar. And he took the book of the covenant, and read in the audience of the people: and they said, All that the LORD hath said will we do, and be obedient. Exodus 24:6-7

Tuesday, August 29, 2023

August 29, 2023

God allowed the inhabitants of the land of Canaan to remain until Israel was large enough to move in. The Canaanites and others kept it clean and manicured until Israel was ready and their numbers and strength had increased. He intended to drive them out gradually so the wild beast would not take it over. I can't help but compare it to our sanctification and liberation. Some of us must systematically go through a process and rid ourselves of past fear, trauma, unbelief, and rejection to clean our minds. It is a gradual release so the Holy Spirit can strengthen our confidence and faith in him. There is the initial relief that follows salvation, but then we have to give up old sinful habits and release the filthy build-up left there by our old ways to complete the process of sanctification. 

When Richard's dad died, we had to move onto his property quickly because thieves and robbers found out he was gone and immediately began to loot. We ran off three groups of thieves, but that's just the ones we caught. At that point, law enforcement was no help; we had to secure the premises ourselves. Once the community realized that it was not a game and that their actions could have severe consequences, they quit trying to ransack the home. 

You must work closely with the Holy Spirit to release your mind from the enemy's stronghold. Just like we had to secure Richard's dad's property, it is up to you to secure your mind and arm it against future thieves and robbers. It's a challenging task, but it's well worth your effort. It may not be easy, but He will never leave you or forsake you. 

I will not drive them out from before thee in one year; lest the land become desolate, and the beast of the field multiply against thee. By little and little I will drive them out from before thee, until thou be increased, and inherit the land. Exodus 23:29-20

Monday, August 28, 2023

August 28, 2023

God instructed Moses by specifying how offenses should be brought to justice by him and the judges. He knew there needed to be law and order; otherwise, people would take matters into their own hands, possibly requiring too much for an offense. God is fair in his punishment, so he expects us to be fair, too. Though these laws seem basic, they would likely overdo punishment if they were to make retribution in their anger. 

What do we learn about God in this portion of scripture? He is fair, just, loving, and doesn’t tolerate the wicked. The example: 

Thou shalt not suffer a witch to live. Exodus 22:18

That one sentence explains why we have so much evil in this day and age. It has been allowed to grow and metastasize like cancer. The world is riddled with corruption because it hasn’t been stopped. We are only to worship God, but witchcraft and sorcery give place to the devil who doesn’t deserve it. When Jesus came, he freed people from their demons, releasing them from the devil’s stronghold. He loved people but hated evil. Once freed, it is up to that person to fill the void left with the Holy Spirit by accepting Christ as Savior. 

Sunday, August 27, 2023

August 27, 2023

Why did God give Moses details on how man and beast should be treated? Israel had been in captivity for so long and were treated harshly by their Egyptian masters that they needed direction from God to see the proper way to treat others in their care. Not only did he spell out the details of how humans should be treated, but he also gave instructions on how animals should be treated and the responsibility of the humans when their animal hurts a man or another animal. They should know these things, but God had to make it clear to them. 

We are servants of God, and he treats us fairly, so he expects us to treat others with respect, fairness, and care. We have the Holy Spirit who guides us, so these laws are written in our minds and hearts. Because not all people have the Holy Spirit and understand how to treat others, we often end up in court to force people to be fair. For this reason, God expects us not to take other Christians to court. However, some people claiming to be Christ-followers are not, so that’s why they end up in court. 

Dare any of you, having a matter against another, go to law before the unjust, and not before the saints? 1 Corinthians 6:1

Now these are the judgments which thou shalt set before them. Exodus 21:1