Saturday, August 20
We have made it to the end of the book of Exodus! Even if this is your first time reading through the book of Exodus (and CONGRATULATIONS to you, if it is!), several parts of these final chapters should sound quite familiar – because we have read nearly the SAME thing just a few chapters back? What is the difference? Why the repetition?
In Exodus 27 & 28 God is giving explicit directions to Moses on how the priestly garments, the altar and the tabernacle courtyard are to be made – materials to be used, precise dimensions, and the exact designs God desires for His Holy Place and His Holy People. And, in Exodus 38 & 39 we read that it WAS done exactly the SAME way – including once again all the materials, dimensions and exact designs. In chapter 39 it says at least 8 times that the work was done “-as the Lord commanded Moses”. At the end of the chapter (vs. 43-43) is says, “The Israelites had done all the work just as the Lord commanded Moses. Moses inspected the work and saw that they had done it just as the Lord had commanded. So Moses blessed them.” It seems that details are pretty important to God. He didn’t just want it done. He wanted it done correctly. He wanted it done HIS way. Sometimes I think we are quick to pat ourselves on the back if we can just cross a job off the list. But, have we done it correctly? Have we done it God’s Way? Is there a job that needs some more of your attention to do it correctly? To get it done God’s Way?
Another related phrase that caught my attention was a saying that was to be engraved on a gold plate and attached to the priest’s clothing with a blue cord: “HOLY TO THE LORD”. Holiness – to be set apart – total devotion – unlike any other. As a member of the royal priesthood (as explained in 1 Peter 2), how is your holiness quotient looking today? Are you set apart – or blending in? Are you totally devoted – or only when convenient? Is there a visual reminder (like the priest’s gold engraved plate on their clothes) that will help you remember to be HOLY TO THE LORD?
“But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people belonging to God, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light. Once you were not a people, but now you are the people of God; once you had not received mercy , but now you have received mercy. Dear friends, I urge you, as strangers and aliens in the world, to abstain from sinful desires, which war against your soul. Live such good lives among the pagans that, thought they accuse you of doing wrong, they may see your good deeds and glorify God on the day he visits us.” I Peter 2:9-12
HOLY TO THE LORD!
And All Your Tomorrows Too!
(Thank you to Josiah Cain who wrote this week. Since he was working so hard serving in Louisiana the devotion for today (Saturday) was written by Marcia Railton. Keep praying for Louisiana – and let’s jump into Leviticus next!)